Laurence Stewart Watson

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

John Eben Watson

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

David Henry Watson

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

G.L. Watson

Monday, April 4th, 2011

An Early PassionPotrait of GL Watson by Sir George-Lennox-Watson

George Lennox Watson was born in Glasgow in 1851, the son of a Thomas Lennox Watson, a doctor at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary.  Watson grew up in the heart of Clydeside Industry at a time when it was reaching its peak. As a boy, he would holiday at his family’s house at Inverkip on the Clyde, and it was here that he developed his passion for yachts.  During his holidays he befriended a local yacht hand called William Mackie and was soon telling his friend how he would go about designing a yacht.

The World’s First Yacht Design Studio

When he was 16 Watson served his apprenticeship with the Clydeside ship building and engineering firm, Robert Napier & Sons. It was during his time at Napier’s that Watson started to use pioneering theories of hydrodynamics as an influence in yacht design. After practicing at J&A Inglis Shipbuilders, in 1873, at the age of just 22 he started the world’s first dedicated yacht design office.

International Acclaim

His early success in the racing classes of the day, with designs such as Clothilde, Vril and Verve soon brought his name to the fore as the most innovative yacht designer of the time. He was commissioned to design, amongst others; four America’s Cup challengers, the royal racing yacht Britannia and the largest sailing schooner of its time, Rainbow.  He also led the field in the design of large steam yachts with an international clientele which included most of the crowned heads of Europe and prominent families such as the Vanderbilts and Rothschilds. His designs would not only become iconic but featured in some of the most notable moments in history.

Royal National Lifeboat Institution

In addition to yacht design, Watson was also heavily involved with the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).  In 1877 Watson became consulting Naval Architect to the RNLI, a position which future G.L. Watson & Co. Directors would fulfil until the late 1960s.

LegacyGL Watson Restored Grave

Watson remained dedicated to his work and exercised almost fanatical attention to detailed aspects of his yachts in both design and build before his early death in November 1904, aged only 54. His design legacy was carried on by J.R. Barnett and through subsequent directors of the firm which today still bears the name of its founder.

Link to G.L. Watson Website :

Profile images © G. L. Watson & Co. Ltd. 2011

Sidney Wade (Currie)

Monday, March 14th, 2011

We have the first of, we hope, many profiles of the people buried in
the Common Ground in the Necropolis. Evelyn M Vernolini sent this
information about her 4th Great Grandmother, Sidney Wade.

Sidney Wade was born around 1795 in Belfast, Ireland. Her parents were William Wade, a Labourer and Jean whose maiden name is unknown.

She was married to Matthew Currie, a Tailor, perhaps in Ireland, as at least one of her children, Jane my 3rd great grandmother was born there. I also guess she was widowed before 1841 as Matthew is not on the census after that.

In 1841 she worked as a Cotton Winder and was living in Marshalls Lane, Glasgow. By 1851 she was a Seamstress and living in Red Row, King Street. Calton. She had at least 14 children but 5 of them were not named on her death certificate which says she was buried in Sighthill Cemetery, as certified by James (Howie) Undertaker. However on checking with the Cemeteries department they told me she was buried in the Glasgow Necropolis in common ground.

She died 31st March 1855 at the age of 60 from Chronic Bronchitis at 104 King Street, Calton, Glasgow at 1.30 pm. She had lived in Glasgow for 30 years.

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