Don Edge recently sent us a photo of the graves of my great great grandparents, John Bagot Cottam and his wife Adelaide Herbert. They are buried in the West Street Cemetery in Durban, and what is interesting about the picture is that it was probably taken about the time that the gravestones were erected, or very soon afterwards. We have pictures that we took in about 1975, when we first became interested in family history. About that time there was a rumour that the cemetery would disappear because a new freeway was being built, which would cross the cemetery, and would also require the demolition of the nearby Roman Catholic Cathedral. I think that the route of the freeway was changed, and that the Cathedral, and the Cottam graves, are still there. The John Bagot Cottam who lies buried there had a sister Mary, known as Polly, who married John Stringer Worrall, a bookbinder, and they lived in London. I knew the names of their children from the 1881 English census, but I wasn’t able to find any descendants of their children. Now Don Edge, who is descended from the eldest daughter, Maggie Worrall, had made contact, and so we’ve suddenly unearthed a bunch of cousins that we knew nothing about before. Don, it appears, is my third cousin once removed.
Filed under: family history