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Scotland living conditions: 1850’s

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#1
Hello. I have traced my family from the States back to Scotland, specifically Alves, Moray. I am trying to understand what sort of home a farm worker would have lived in back around the 1850’s. Not expecting many, if any, are still standing, I’m hoping to track down a historical photo or two, or images of something representative that managed to survive in Scotland or elsewhere in the UK. My 3rd great-grandfather was, according to the 1851 Census, a “farm overseer.” His address on the Census is the name of the farm, Inchstelly, which is still in operation. So I assume he had a small cottage for his wife and 5 children on the grounds of the farm, though I could be wrong on that. Interestingly, the Census also had an entry for “number of rooms with one or more windows,” which was filled in with a 3. Any insights on this matter would be very much appreciated.

Thanks!
 

p.risboy

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#3
I would hazard a guess, it was a 3 roomed cottage. Random stone walls(uncut stone), with a grass turfed or thatched roof. If he was very, very lucky, it may be slated, but I doubt it.
One door into the main living area, and 2 rooms of that, more than likely bedrooms. One for parents, one for children. 1 window in each room, usually facing south.

Much the same, as in Ireland. Plenty of photo's for them historically, if you google. They will not be the whitewashed variety, just plain random stone, with a clay mortar for the joins, and possibly some lime mixed in.

Steve.:)
 
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#4
Thanks to you both. I found the moveable map on Scotlandsplaces very helpful. I could zoom in on Inchstelly (I assume as it looks today), and go east to Ardgye / Ardgay, where my ancestor worked at a later time, before emigrating.

I have seen photos of Inchstelly - I think from the same collection (an archeological dig?), though mine had more heavy equipment blocking the shots. If I’m not wrong I think I may be looking at the area of the cottages, or where they once were - it seems to correspond to the map, which lists “Inchstelly Cottages” along a road that looks similar.

Steve, I smiled at your comment of a slate roof. Just last night I found a Google Books reference to “Transactions of the Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland,” from 1845, which noted that at Ardgye “the landlord provided houses built of stone and lime, and roofed with slates.”

John Mackay
 
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