“Rusty Buckles”

Henry (Harry) Eden Crout, my paternal grandfather, was a clarinet player in the 2nd Dragoon Guards (Queen’s Bays), served in the 2nd Boer War and remained posted to South Africa for a total of 7 years, as part of the “occupying army”.

Marie, and their baby daughter Annie Ruby Crout, did not join him and I imagine this is because he most likely did not get his Colonel’s permission to marry.  In such cases the Army refused to accept responsibility for the soldier’s family. It’s a long time for a family to be apart which may explain later events.

For now, let’s listen to “Rusty Buckles”.  Why “Rusty Buckles”? … Well, you might ask 🙂 …


"Bays" Drum Horse - 1904

The regimental quick march of the Queen’s Bays (2nd Dragoon Guards). Published in 1952, it is a quickstep adaptation of the Regimental Slow March.
The regimental nickname-‘Rusty Buckles’- originated in the 18th century when at a parade shortly after the regiment returned to England from Ireland it had steel buckles on its saddlery and harness, whereas all other cavalry regiments had changed to brass. Steel buckles were liable to become rusty in wet or damp weather- hence the nickname. 


(c) Copyright 2012. Catherine Crout-Habel. Seeking Susan ~ Meeting Marie ~ Finding Family

Where’s John? …

Tracking down dad’s Ogilvie family has taken me down many highways and byways, wrong paths and dead ends but finally there they were in Elgin, Moray, Scotland. What a delight!

The 1861 Scottish Census showed James, aged 9, living with his widowed mother, Christina, and two younger sisters Maggie and Jean but provided no name for his dad.  Through “Scotland’s People” I managed to access my Great Great Grandparent’s Marriage Certificate and discovered that John Ogilvie, labourer, married Christina MacKenzie at Elgin Parish Church on 7 Jun 1850.  Finally there it was, my Great Great Grandfather’s name –  John Ogilvie! 

 So, what happened to John?  Did he really die young, or… did the Census taker record the info incorrectly, or… was Christina declaring herself a widow only to explain the absence of a husband/father?  

Once again, “Scotland’s People” came up with the answer in the form of John’s Death Certificate. This showed he died at home, 49 High Street, on 8 May 1858 and his brother James reported his death.  Known cause of death is not given, which is rather unusual, but there’s a reference to a Doctor’s Certificate which suggests John may have been ill for some time. Also recorded is John Ogilvie’s burial in Elgin Cathedral Churchyard.

Some time later, after discovering the wonder that is “The Moray Burial Ground Research Group”, I checked their Data Base and found a joint Ogilvie Grave that seemed John’s likely burial site.  Unfortunately the photos & transcript showed that my John Ogilvie is not buried in this grave.

So, where’s John? …

Lindsay, from the MBGRG, was most helpful in providing the following information;

Burial of John Ogilvie at Elgin Cathedral Churchyard.

From the death certificate, one can only assume that he was buried there. All the visible stones in that churchyard have been recorded and published and abstracted data is as on-line. This suggests that a) there was no headstone, b) a stone may have been placed but damaged, removed, lost over the years (this is not uncommon – some sandstone monuments suffer from frost and often delaminate – the inscribed surface just crumbling away c) the stone was a flat one, which has become buried over time and is no longer visible – Elgin Cathedral is a very important archaelogical/historic site in Elgin, and is managed by Historic Scotland, who to date have not give us permission to investigate the presence of such buried stones. Also, we have cases where buried stones of this type are in fact blank – perhaps the family unable to afford a mason to inscribe the stone.

Perusing the MBGRG Newsletter also suggests another possible location for John’s final resting place when they report;

“In 1873 the owners of the cemetery passed a resolution to prohibit the interment of paupers and strayers.” 

Elgin Cathedral Churchyard

In this they’re referring to the New Elgin Cemetery, not the Elgin Cathedral Churchyard, but makes me think that John may be buried in an un-named Pauper’s Grave somewhere. It’s recorded that on 10 Jan 1857, over a year before his death, John Ogilvie had been unable to work for some time, was admitted to Gray’s Hospital, and Christina Ogilvie had applied for “Poor Relief”.

Difficult times, indeed,  for my Great Great Grandparents and even more difficult times ahead for the widowed Christina left with a young family to raise alone.  

Time to turn my attention to 19th Century Pauper Graves in Elgin, Scotland and maybe then we’ll have an answer to the question,

Where’s John? …


SOURCES:  The Moray Burial Ground Research Group. http://www.mbgrg.org
                      Scotland’s People. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk
                      Moray Heritage Services, at Elgin. http://libindex.moray.gov.uk/mainmenu.asp

(c) Copyright 2012. Catherine Crout-Habel. Seeking Susan ~ Meeting Marie ~ Finding Family

The House in Leeds

The wails of the newborn babe reverberate through the ward and down the passage of the Leeds Maternity Hospital, Hyde Street, Yorkshire, England as Marie (Ogilvie) Crout gives birth to her first, and only son, Harry Scarborough Crout. 

Over the years I’ve looked at dad’s treasured Birth Certificate and wondered why a child born on 4 March 1912, in Yorkshire, was not delivered at home? C. Lovegrove comments on “Leodis“,

“I believe this maternity hospital took the ladies who
were likely
to have difficult births.”

Maybe this is the explanation.  Further weight is given to this supposition when we learn that Marie temporarily re-located from her home in Shipley for the birth.  There on dad’s Birth Certificate is her address:

“10 Meanwood Street, Leeds” 


Curious about this house… dad’s first home, I did a search of the Leodis data base and was delighted to discover three photos taken, from different vantage points, before being demolished to make way for new road works.  Great excitement when the photos arrived.  It’s like touching the past.  My daughter, and I, went over them with a magnifying glass and decided that Marie’s abode at 10 Meanwood Street was on the left, at the rear of the building. 

Always questioning, I wondered why she stayed in this particular house?…  Was it the home of friends, or maybe relatives? The 1901 UK Census showed that eleven years earlier, Marie’s mum, dad and 5 younger siblings  were living at 34 Servia Road, so seemed unlikely to be the family home.  I let the question go and turned my attention to other matters.

A year, or so, later “the house in Leeds” became a matter of interest again. Delighted to be in contact with an Ogilvie 2nd cousin, from Leeds, I mentioned that my dad always said he had cousins in Western Australia but I had no idea who they were or where they were likely to be living. Finding them was especially complicated because it seemed their mum was a sister of Marie Ogilvie.  Was it a sister who emigrated?  If so, who was that sister? Did she marry?  If she married, what was her new name?  When did she come? … All were questions I’d mused over throughout the years, then John passed on one bit of information which changed everything.  He recalled that the relative was female and moved to Western Australia before WW1. Sadly he believed it unlikely she ever knew that her brother John had been killed in the War.

Well, that provided a time frame and certainly focused the attention.  Remembering that the 1911 UK Census had recently been released, I did a search to find out where members of the Ogilvie family were living in 1911, the year before dad’s birth, and there it was at last! … The answer to that ongoing and perplexing question was sitting there, shining like a sparkling jewel, just waiting to be picked up.

When Marie (Ogilvie) Crout gave birth to my dad, at Leeds Maternity Hospital, she was temporarily living with her widowed mum, sisters Maggie Ogilvie and Lucy Bartle, brother-in-law Walter Bartle and 4 year old nephew, Leslie Ogilvie, in the 5 roomed home at 10 Meanwood Street, Leeds.  Whooo Hooo!!!… puzzle solved at long last.

Further research revealed that 8 months later Maggie married John Henry Baxter.  They migrated to Western Australia the following year with John travelling on ahead and Maggie arriving at Fremantle, aboard the SS “Otrantra”, on 14 Oct 1913 but that’s another wonderful story to be told on another day.

Many thanks to my cousin for sharing his precious morsel of info which enabled the sidestepping of that particular “brick wall”.  It never fails to amaze how such seemingly inconsequential “rememberings” can make a huge difference when re-constructing the events of yesteryear.

Thanks also to Leeds City Council and the Leeds Library & Information Service for “Leodis”, its photographic archive of Leeds.  Containing 52,000 new and old images it’s a joyous treasure house to those, especially from across the seas, who are researching Family History.


SOURCES:  “Leodis” http://www.leodis.net 
                      1901 UK Census
                      1911 UK Census

(c) Copyright. 2012. C.A.Crout-Habel. Seeking Susan ~ Meeting Marie ~ Finding Family

Two little girls…

Two little girls…

Two lonely graves…

                                                                                        Two grieving families…


Barbara Pauline THIELE
Born:  24 Sep 1893 – Mannum
Died:    3 Jan 1900 – Loxton

Youngest daughter of:
Johann (Friedrich) Wilhelm Thiele &
Auguste (Pauline) Bottroff




Elisabeth Clara HABEL
Born:  17 Dec 1895
Died:  25 Jan 1898

Fourth child of:
Wilhelm Emil Habel &
Maria Mathilda Grosser





South Australia, Australia

(c) Copyright 2012. Catherine Crout-Habel. Seeking Susan ~ Meeting Marie ~ Finding Family

Grandpa & the Teapot

Frederick Alexander ALLAN - 1949

Ahhh, Grandpa …

Growing up with Frederick Alexander Allan provides an endless flow of memories to share… Here’s just one little snippet.

After the death of his beloved Elizabeth Mary (nee Murray) Evans, 7 Jan 1953, Grandpa came to live with us and spent the last 13 years of his life surrounded by four active, noisy, growing children and a multitude of their friends. I realise now that it couldn’t have been easy for him but remember mum saying that his grandchildren kept him alive.

Ahhh, Grandpa … 

Every morning, as I tip my spoon into the condensed milk for that early morning “cuppa”, memories of Grandpa’s tea making and drinking rituals flood my mind.  I can see those arthritic, careworn, knobbly old hands clasped around the pot of freshly made tea, his feigned expression of surprise, the flapping hands, the sucking in of breath and the almost inaudible, “Well I’ll be blowed…”

Sometimes the unkind thought … “well of course it’s hot, you silly old fool” would flash across my young brain. Watching the blood pulsating in dad’s forehead, as he battled to control his anger, and Grandpa’s self satisfied smile was confusing to a small child.  Mum’s refusal to acknowledge her father’s behaviour and husband’s growing anger was even more confusing.  Why didn’t she do something about it?  The adult me understands.

The next step in Grandpa’s ritual was to lift the pot, by it’s black bakelite handle, and see-saw it backwards and forwards until satisfied the brew was to his liking.  Finally he’d pour the steaming hot liquid, from a great height, into his huge white cup embossed with “Father” in gold copperplate lettering.  

In my mind’s eye I can see mum’s aluminium teapot sparkling with loving attention and the use of Steelo, steel wool pads.  How many cups of tea were poured from it’s spout?  How many tears were assuaged with a cup of the rich brown beverage? How many times did Grandpa perform his pantomime? Whatever happened to mum’s beloved old teapot?   

As a youngster Grandpa’s behaviour often annoyed and irritated me, the aggravation increased with the teenage years… now the remembering brings a “smile to m’ dial”.

Ahhh, Grandpa …


(c) Copyright 2012. Catherine Crout-Habel. Seeking Susan~Meeting Marie~ Finding Family


Habel’s Bend

The River Murray, Australia

The River Murray is 2995 kilometres in length and Australia’s longest river.  Rising in the Alps, it creates the border between the states of New South Wales and Victoria.  Meandering lazily northwest the river turns south, soon after crossing the Victorian border, and travels the last 500 kilometres through South Australia to Lake Alexandrina and into the Southern Ocean.

Some 40 kilometres south of this bend the “Mighty Murray” flows past the town of Loxton.  Originally named “Loxton’s Hut”, after a primitive pine and pug hut built on the edge of the river by a boundary rider, it had a name change as Pioneer Settlers began taking up land.  One of these original settlers was Emil Wilhelm Habel.  Known as Wilhelm, or Will, he built his homestead on a bend of the river, about a kilometre downstream from the town, which soon became know as “Habel’s Bend” or “Habel’s Landing”, a name it retains today.

Emil Wilhelm Habel is the Grandfather of my former husband, Stephen

Habel's Bend

Louis Andrew Habel, and our children’s Great Grandfather.  In the late 1970’s and early 1980’s we loved to drive to Loxton, take a houseboat from “Habel’s Landing” and explore the river.  We enjoyed long, lazy days of relaxing, fishing, swimming, reading, playing games and taking turns at driving the houseboat, as well as navigating and watching out for the “snags”.  “Snags” of wood etc. in the river, not the ones you eat 🙂  Every evening it was a campfire on the banks of the “Mighty Murray” … but I digress.

The family story is that the original homestead was regularly flooded, as the river went through its natural seasons of drought followed by torretial downpours, and as soon as possible Grandfather built a sturdier home on higher ground.  A home which still stands proudly as a testament to it’s founding family – the boyhood home of my children’s Great Grandfather, Waldemar Louis Habel, 15th child of Emil Wilhelm Habel and 8th child of Maria Mathilde Grosser.

"Johann Caeser"

Emil Wilhelm Habel was born in Dutton, South Australia, on 12 Jun 1856 the first child to Johann Friedrich August Habel and Johanne Henriette Siefert who had married in Prussia and immigrated the previous year aboard the “Johann Caeser”.  Johann and Johanne left Hamburg on 5 Oct 1854 travelling with his parents, his brother and sister-in-law as well as his widowed sister, her fiance and son.  They followed other family members and arrived in Port Adelaide on New Years Day, 1855.  Their story is one to be told at a later date … so back to Emil. 

Emil W Habel & Maria E Fielke

Emil Wilhelm Habel, born in Dutton 1856, married Marie Emilie Fielke on 7Jun 1878 at Dutton.  Marie Emilie, the daughter of Johann Gottlieb Fielke and Ernestine Wilhelmina Schichholz was born in Mt Torrens on 14 Jan 1859, died tragically young and was buried at Dutton, South Australia on 8 Jan 1890 with Emil Wilhelm left to raise their 7 children alone; Martha Lydia, Alwine Minna, Lina Martin, Adolph Reinhard, Emilie Laura, Emil Alfred and MaryChristina Frieda.

Emil W Habel & Maria M Grosser

Within six months, 10 Jul 1890, Emil Wilhelm Habel met and married Maria Mathilde Grosser in Dutton.  Maria was born in Tabor,Victoria on 12 Jul 1864.  It’s no surprise that they met and decided to marry, despite the distance, because a number of Habel relations were living in Tabor, Hamilton, Murtoa and adjacent Victorian towns and there was considerable movement and re-settlement between the two communities.  The same was true of the Grossers.  In fact, Maria’s Grandparents, the original Grosser immigrants from Silesia, Prussia, settled and were buried in the nearby Barossa Valley township of Bethany, just outside of Tanunda, South Australia.

Elisabeth Clara Habel

Emil Wilhelm and Maria Mathilda continued living and farming in Dutton where they had  4 children; Edward Otto Bernhard, Oscar Emil, Amelia Olga, Elisabeth Clara and Carl Edwin. It seems Emil Wilhelm moved to Loxton without the family in 1895 with Maria Mathilde and the children following later. I estimate this to be in the second half of 1897 because  their 4th child, Carl Edwin, was born in Dutton on 21 Jun 1897 and sadly their 2nd little girl, Elisabeth Clara (aged 2), died and was buried at “Loxton Habel Private Cemetery” on 24 Jan 1898. Maybe some of Emil Wilhelm and his first wife’s younger children went with them to Loxton?

The Habels of “Habel’s Bend” had another four children; Friedrich Arthur, Victor Paul, Waldemar Louis (our relative) and lastly Armin Berthold.  Emil Wilhelm Habel fathered 16 children whilst farming and growing wheat at Dutton and Loxton, South Australia. In 1907 he handed his farm on to two sons, one from each marriage, and purchased a property at Gilles Plains.  That was later sold and the family moved to Knoxville in Adelaide.

Wilhelm died in Loxton, 12 Jun 1926, as a result of catching pneumonia after jumping out of his truck which rolled down a bank and hit a barge in the River Murray.  He is buried in the Loxton Cemetery.  Maria lived another 21 years, died on 23 Aug 1947, and is also buried at Loxton.

Initially farming and grazing country this is now a thriving irrigation area and claimed, by many, to be “the food bowl of the nation”. The land around Loxton is a significant citrus and summer fruit growing area.  Loxton is a service town for the surrounding districts and the main town for the northern part of the Murray Mallee, which is a dry farm and grain cropping area.

The Habel family continued farming at Loxton for many a long year and the site of the original homestead still bears the name, “Habel’s Bend”, in honour of these courageous pioneers. 

Emil Wilhelm & Maria Mathilde Habel and Family - 1915



SOURCES:  The Grossers From Gruenberg. 1841 – 1991. Published by the Grosser Family Reunion Committee.  ISBN 0 646 05329 9
                      Wikipedia   http://en.wikipedia.org

(c) Copyright 2012. Catherine Crout-Habel. Seeking Susan~Meeting Marie~Finding Family

Arthur Thomas Andrew ANDERSON

Remembering and honouring Arthur (Art) Thomas Andrew Anderson my former husband’s Grandfather, and my children’s Great Grandfather, who died on this day, the 17 Feb, in 1971.

Born at Bugle Ranges, South Australia, on 3 Oct 1897 the eldest son of John Frederick Anderson and Emily Adelaide Ida Harrip, Grandie’s birth was followed by 5 sisters and 3 brothers; Annie Sophia Alice, Agnes Christine Ada, Edgar Jack Brooker, Doris Elizabeth Grace, Mavis Sarah Adelaide, Stella Ruth Winifred, Hubert Ernest Ross and Raynor Verdun Harrip.

He enlisted in the 27th Battalion Australian Infanty Force, on 5 Apr 1916, and married Mary Eveline (Ev) Hembury two months later (2 Sep 1916) at her parent’s home, 27 Childers Street, North Adelaide Two weeks after marrying, Arthur Thomas Andrew Anderson embarked the “HMAT AB Commonwealth” and headed for Flanders, France and the trenches of World War 1.

27th Batt. Colour Patch

Eveline Phyllis (Phyl) Anderson, my husband’s mother and their honeymoon babe, was born on 22 Jun 1917  followed by Grandie & Nana’s son, Arthur Maxwell (Mac) Anderson, on  23 Aug 1925.

Art Anderson was active within the Returned Services League (RSL) serving as Branch President, and in a variety of roles, for very many years. He would never talk of the horrors of Flanders and trench warfare, however he always heaped great praise upon the Salvation Army and the service and comfort they gave to the Australian Forces right up there, with them, on “the front line”.

With his son-in-law, Waldemar Louis Habel, dying so young Grandie was of great support to the young family and willingly took on a fathering role for his daughter Phyl’s three children. He was a  particularly wonderful  role model to the very young and fatherless Steve, who chose to live with his grandparents for quite some time after his mother remarried.

Survived by his wife, son, daughter, seven grandchildren and eighteen great-grand children Arthur Thomas Andrew Anderson will always be loved and remembered as a caring, hardworking man of great character and tenacity – our Grandie.

May he always Rest in Peace.


(c) Copyright 2012. Catherine Crout-Habel. Seeking Susan~Meeting Marie~Finding Family

A Wee Deoch an Doris

One of my dad’s favourite songs through which he linked to his Scottish Identity.

Harry Scarborough Crout, from Leeds, Yorkshire, England, loved to challenged his Ozzie children to repeat the following words as quickly as they could:

“If ye can say it’s a braugh bricht moonlicht nicht t’nicht then ye alricht ye ken…”

Could we ever beat him? … ha ha ha …

My Scottish Grandmother… Marie


Ah, Marie … whatever must you have thought watching your Ozzie Grandchildren delighting in the knowledge, and exotica, of having a Scottish Grandmother and also a Scottish Grandfather? …but this is your story Marie not Harry’s. His can wait for another time.


I have no memory of dad ever talking about his mother, Marie Ogilvie, except for one occasion. I was growing into adulthood; he looked across the table and said quietly,

“You look like my mother, Catherine”

Sadly, during a time of great distress, Harry Scarborough Crout destroyed his mother’s photos. The thought crosses my mind that he may not have known much at all about his mother being only sixteen, and little more than a child, when he left her and his homeland to go adventuring in this wide, brown land.

However, dad was very clear about his mum’s nationality – Scottish – no doubt about it.  He spoke about her two red headed rather wild Scottish brothers and how they liked their whiskey. We marvelled as he described how one brother, in a drunken rage, took his dagger and slashed his girlfriend’s name from his arm after she betrayed him.  The creepy story, he loved to tell, about someone being walled up in a Scottish castle to die, had we four children shivering in our shoes. Whether these tales were fantasy or fact I do not know but we delighted in the drama and identified even more with our Scottish Grandmother, Marie.

Firmly imprinted in my memory dad’s pleasure in banging out Scottish tunes on the piano and the piano accordion …

“Cock-a-doodle, cock-a-doodle, I’m the Cock of the North”

comes readily to mind. He also delighted in “Deoch and Doris”…

“If ye can say, it’s a braugh bricht moonlicht nicht t’ nicht, then yer a’richt ye ken.”

Over the years, many sought our Grandmother’s Scottish birthplace and soon came to realise there are a huge number of Ogilvies in Scotland!!! At one time we thought it likely she was one of the border Ogilvies, and an ancestor of the famed balladist /poet Will Ogilvie. Although revelling in that romantic notion, persistence finally revealed the truth.

Unforgettable is the day my paternal grandparent’s Marriage Certificate finally arrived. Following the paper trail, it soon became clear that my “Scottish Grandmother” was born in 1880 in Leeds, Yorkshire, England the third child of Emma Chadwick and James Ogilvie and younger sister to Christina and John. Brother James was born in 1882, followed closely by sisters Lucy, Jennie and Maggie. The 1881 Census gives the family’s address as 27 Roxburg Street, Hunslet, Leeds and most likely Marie was born at home – so, not Scottish at all.

However, all is not lost for Marie’s dad, James Ogilvie, certainly was Scottish. James was born in 1854 in Elgin, Morayshire, Scotland, the second son of Christina McKenzie and John Ogilvie.  It seems that Marie may have been close to her father and identified with her cultural heritage through his Scottish Nationality. She was named Mary Emma but used the Scottish form, Marie, throughout her life. Most probably this would have been the version her father used and maybe her mother.

Two more children, Margaret Anne and Jean, were born to Christina and John, in Elgin. Their father died at home, 49 High Street, on 8 May 1858 when Jean was just a baby, leaving Christina to rear their family alone during very difficult times. 

James’ older brother, Alexander, moved to London shortly after their father’s death where he settled and raised his family.  James moved to Leeds, after 1871, marrying Emma Chadwick in the Leeds Registry Office on 18 May 1875.  He worked as a Currier and Leather Dresser all of his life, raising his family and dying in Leeds, Yorkshire England late in 1908 at the age of 54.  Margaret and Jean stayed with their mother in Elgin, Scotland.

Well, my Grandmother Marie wasn’t Scottish, after all, but she sure came from a long line of Scottish Highlanders.  Her dad and granddad were both born in Elgin and grandmother, Christina McKenzie, hailed from Drumnadrochet a little village close to Loch Ness.

Time and again we find that our beloved family stories may be out of kilter by a generation, or two, but a grain of truth often remains. 

Born an Englishwoman, Marie (Mary Emma) Ogilvie was a true Scot at heart … I believe.


(c) Copyright 2012. Catherine Crout-Habel. Seeking Susan~Meeting Marie~Finding Family

The Ogilvies



The Ogilvies descend from Gilbert, son of the 1st Earl of Angus, who had a charter to the barony of Ogilvie in Forfarshire in the 12th century. The founder of the Airlie branch was Sir Walter Ogilvie of Lintrathan, whose son held the lands of Airlie by a charter of 1459. The 8th Lord of Ogilvie was elevated to Earl of Airlie in 1639. The Ogilvies of Airlie were loyal to the Royal House of Stewart and suffered in their cause. They took an active part in the Jacobite Risings of 1715 and 1745. Airlie was attainted, but a pardon was granted in 1778. The Earldom was restored in 1826.