The Story of My Life

The Story of My Life

The Story of My Life

The Story of My Life

Excerpt

I was born in the early Saturday morning of June 12, 1858, the eldest child of my mother, Esther Lætitia (Hamilton), and the third son of my father, John Brookes Johnston; at 4 Newington Terrace, Kennington Park, South London. My father had married his first wife, Annette Cramsie, in 1852. She was the daughter of an Ulster Irishman who had a surname derived, some said, from a French origin--Cramsie, from "Cramoisi." Mr. Cramsie, who had come from a legendary estate known as "Bally Cramsie" (I used to gaze with awe at a hundred-years-old plan thus named, hung up in my step-grandmother's house), became in course of time a publisher and newspaper proprietor in Belfast. His wife, my step-grandmother, was a Miss Crossley; and after her husband's death had moved to Dublin with those of her children who had not married and gone out into the world. My father was introduced to her when he came over to Dublin about 1850. He fell in love with her daughter Annette, and they were married at Dublin on December 8, 1852, when my father was thirty-three years of age.

My grandfather who died in 1865 was John Johnston, for many years a Secretary to the Royal Exchange Assurance Company. My great-grandfather, George Dell Johnston, was born about 1760 and died in 1840; and my great-great-grandfather was John Johnston, a "burgher" of Glasgow, a wool-factor, and at one time a wealthy man who claimed to be descended from an Earl of Annandale.

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