• Important Update: Our New Email Domain

    Please note: We've updated our email domain to familyhistory.email. All our emails will be from this domain.

  • Do you love Genealogy? Why not write for us? we're looking for volunteers to write articles for Family history. Please contact us for further information.

Confused? - Susan Donaldson was Gillen

Evening, I'm wondering if someone may be able to help? You very kindly helped me get started and I'm puzzled again.

My nan (Susan Donaldson) was Gillen. I cannot find her on any of the electoral rolls until 1950? Her parents are still listed at 78 Leghorn Road, Willesden, and her husband listed at 49 Leghorn Road in 1938. They married in 1937, so I'm not quite sure why she's not there.

I've done a search just using susan gillen, and still nothing comes up? I've seen that due to the wars that some years are missing, but the ones where she should be she isn't anywhere?

Her first son James Donaldson was born in 1938 at Twyford Lodge Willesden so she obviously must be in this area?

It is absolutely pickling my brain!!

Any help much appreciated.

Kelly x

This looks like their marriage...
Marriages Q4 1937
Donaldson John
Gillen Susan
Vol 3a Page 1047

It looks though that is their only child in 1938. I wonder if he died in WW2, even if she was living with her parents, I think the E/R would only show the head of household.

Just rechecked and there is this..

Susan Donaldson
Year: 1948
County or Borough: Willesden
Ward or Division/Constituency: Harlesden
Reference Number: MR/PER/C/0768


Edit: However, it does look as though she is with/in the same house as John Donaldson, Minet Avenue...
Last edited:
Susan & John Donaldson 1948 Willesden Harlesden 5 Minet Avenue

Susan & John Donaldson 1949 Willesden Harlesden 4 Fortunegate Road

births - mothers maiden name Gillen

John Donaldson Apr-May-Jun 1938 Willesden Hertfordshire

David Donaldson Jan-Feb-Mar 1949 Willesden Middlesex

at a guess I'd say Susan was living somewhere else during the war, and John was in the forces. The dates above sort of confirm this. Many mothers and children were sent into the country away from the bombs, for the duration of the war

Last edited:
Thank you once again for everyone's help. I'm very new to this and still finding my way around things.

I'm also struggling to find some addresses that I think should be on the 1911 census (but for Scotland).

My dad has two addresses written down.
For my nan: 51 Holyrood Street, Lanark (susan)
For my grandad: 286 Old Shettleston Road, Shettleston. (john)

These areas tie up with the locations of their birth but they are not coming up under the censes. I have also joined the Scotlands people website but the results confuse me.

My great grandad James was a miner and I have found 3 mines in or near Shettleson. This is my grandads dad.

My nans mum and dad were John & mary gillen.

Do you think I should invest some credits onto the Scottish website as I know that this is where they were born. However my nans side of the family comes from Ireland, which I think should come under the Ancestry website which I am already paying for?

Again, any help is very much appreciated.

Kelly x
Soory forgot to mention that my dads family flit from Willesden back up to Scotland!!

John Donaldson (1938) deceased. Have found info on this. Born in Willesden.
James Donaldson (03/02/43) Born in Scotland.
William Donaldson (16/09/46) Born in Scotland.
David donaldson (22/01/49) Born in Willesden, again found info on this.

My dad has no idea why his mum went back to Scotland, and maybe this is why I can find no trace of her. I have found a record for John Donaldson in the Navy (which I know he was) in 1941.

Unfortunately my dad doesn't speak to his two elder brothers so I can't get any information from them.