My Grandfather Ernest Harrison

A Memory of Burton in Lonsdale

My grandfather Ernest Harrison was born in Burton in Lonsdale in 1880 to John Parker Harrison a master tailor one of 3 boys and 12 girls (some died young). My grandfather told us of a time when he skated on a local pond with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Ernest's sister was a post mistress in Burton and recalled talking to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle when he posted letters. Does anyone know when Sir Arthur Conan Doyle stayed in Burton in Lonsdale?
My Grandfather and his brother John competed in the Grasmere Sports, they walked to Grasmere so I believe from Burton.
In 1905 Ernest came first in the open long jump and joint 3rd in the high leap.
In 1906 John came first in the long jump and Ernest came second, Ernest also came joint 2nd in the high leap.
In 1907 John came third in the high leap, second in the open long jump and 220yards.
Ernest was in Egypt by then I think, as a tailors cutter in Cairo, he was in charge of a camel corps in the First World War in Egypt.
I have the book 'David Copperfield' that was presented to E Harrison by the men's bible class, Burton in Lonsdale, first class prize in 1905.
Ernest visited Burton and Ingleton with his family on a few occasions, my father continued this by taking his family, I remember.
I have visited the graveyard with my family and found my great-grandparents' grave with the mention of 3 of their 15 children, the oldest son died in the Boer War in Modder Spruit, South Africa from dysentry, I myself have a photograph of John and Nancy Harrison and their 7 youngest children. In the 1911 census John and Nancy are living alone, only 7 of the 15 children are still alive. the family bible went to Australia, I have the front pages with births of the 15 children.
My grandfather Ernest claimed that one of his ancestors was John Harrison who invented the chronometer, unfortunately I have had difficulty tracing the family tree back any further than my great-grandfather's mother Nancy Harrison who I think was born in Ingleton.

A memory shared by Elizabeth Orr , on Mar 28th, 2011.

Comments & feedback

Wed Feb 18th 2015, at 4:02 pm

Ruth Colley commented:

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's mother lived at Masongill Cottage in Masongill, Thornton-in Lonsdale Parish, the next parish to Burton-in Lonsdale. Burton -in-Lonsdale post office would probably have been his nearest post office. Conan Doyle was married at St Oswald's Church, Thornton-in-Lonsdale in 1885 and had a reception at the Marton Arms, just across the road from the church.

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