Bakers of Harris

Here are the five households with a Baker (or a Baker’s Apprentice) found in the censuses between 1841-1901 with those individuals who appear more than once identified in bold:

John Macleod, 41, Baker, East Tarbert 33, b. Harris
(Isabella Macleod, 68, Farmer’s Widow, Mother, b. Harris)
(Bella Kennedy, 13, General Servant, b. Lochs, Ross-shire)

John Macleod, 50, Baker, No 8 East Tarbert, b. Harris
(Isabella Macleod, 79, Farmer’s Wife, Mother, b. Harris)
Malcolm Mackinnon, 18, Apprentice Baker, b. Harris
(Mary Kennedy, 23, General Servant Domestic, b. Lewis, Ross-shire

(Marion Macleod, 50, Webmaker (Tweed), No 7 East Tarbert, b. Harris
Donald Maclennan, 17, Apprentice Baker, Son, b. Harris

(Mary Morison, 80, Spinner (Wool), No 10 East Tarbert, b. Harris)
(Mary Morison, 27, Sewing Mistress, Daughter, b. Harris)
(Christina Morison, 38, Domestic Servant, Daughter, b. Harris)
(Johan Morison, 36, Agent for Harris Tweed, Daughter, b. Harris)
Malcolm Morrison, 31, Baker, Boarder, b. Stornoway
(Mary K Mackinnon, 16, Domestic Servant, Granddaughter, b. Harris)
Mary Buchanan, 50, Weaveress (Formerly), Niece, b. Harris)

John Mcleod, 60, Baker, No 8 (North Harris ED 5), b. Harris
(Isabella Mcleod, 30, Wife, b. Harris)
(Kenneth Mcleod, 5, Son, b. Harris)
(Donald A Mcleod, Son, b. Harris)
Donald Mcleod, 21, Apprentice Baker, Nephew, b. Harris
(Catherine Campbell, 22, General domestic Servant, b. Harris)

The most obvious feature, apart from the late appearance in the records of any bakers, is the presumed development of farmer’s son John Macleod’s bakery business. He is shown alone in 1881 but a decade later has been joined by a second Baker and two apprentices. I presume that the Stornowegian Malcolm Morison was working for John Macleod, rather than in competition with him, but that is purely conjectural and based largely upon him being a Boarder at the time.

Whatever the truth, by 1901 John Macleod was once more the sole Baker with only one apprentice who was his 21 year-old nephew Donald Mcleod. I think it fairly safe to say that during the period 1881-1901 John Macleod was THE baker in Tarbert. It is also worth noting that he turned to marriage rather late in life (although whether this was before or after his mother’s death I do not know) and by the start of the 20thC had produced two male heirs.

Over a century later Tarbert still has a baker, Alex Dan Munro , but (as can be seen by exploring that link) the range of goods & services he supplies to the people of Harris go far beyond anything that John Macleod might possibly have envisaged some 130 years ago!

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