Stornoway Gas Light Company

Stornoway Gas Light Company

As the days begin their slow stretch towards Summer, I thought I’d do some introductory investigations into Stornoway’s first forays into town gas.

As usual, the results are presented as found, with the residence following the job title:

1851
Robert Wilson, 33, Manager of Stornoway Gas Works, Imorsligach(!), (b.Auchtermuchty, Fife)
John McPhail, 30, Labourer at Gas Works, Keith Street (b.Barvas)
James McDonald, 31, Plumber and Gas Fitter – Master, Enaclete, (b.Perth)

1861
Robert Wilson, 43, Gas Manager, Gas House, (b.Fife)
John Wilson, 18, Plumber and Tinsmith, Son, Gas House, b. Fifeshire
John McPhail, 40, Fireman at Gas Works, South Beach Street (b.Bragar)

1871
Robert Wilson, 53, Gas and Water Manager, Gas Works, (b.Auchtermuchty, Fife)

John McPhail, 50, Gasman, 16 South Beach Street (b. Stornoway)

1881
John McPhail, 58, Gas Manager, Gas House (b.Stornoway)
Donald McPhail, 25, Engine Fitter, Gas House (b. Stornoway)

1891
Daniel Macallum, 42, Gas Manager, 19 Bells Road (b. Barrhead, Renfrewshire)
John MacPhail, 70, Gas Works Labourer, 1 Newton Street (b. Barvas)

1901
William Miller, 27, Gas Manager, Gas Manager’s House (b. Ireland)
Murdo Mcleod, 34, Gas Stoker, 85 Cromwell Stree (b. Stornoway)

John McPhail, 82, Retired Gas Manager, 1 Newton Street, (b. Barvas)

Although these records give us little information regarding the development of gas provision in the town, they do stand as testament to one man, John McPhail, who clearly rose from the ranks to manage the Gas Works and then remained in a more lowly role before his retirement after a lifetime’s service to the Stornoway Gas Light Company.

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