Janet Hunter Balfour

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Born: 15 Apr 1852 Died: 4 Nov 1926 Married: Samuel Gordon Mother: Janet Hunter Father: David Balfour Descendant: Eugenie Gordon
Census 1841 1851 1861 1871 1881 1891 1901 1911 1921


Janet Hunter Balfour was born on the 15th April 1852 in Torryburn, Fife, Scotland, and was christened on the 27th April 1853.

Her parents were David Balfour and Janet Hunter. Her mother was buried on the same day she was christened. Possibly she died from complications in childbirth.

In 1861 she is 8 years old and living at Low Torry, Torryburn, Fife, with her father David Balfour and her brother John. Next door is living her parents John and Helen Hunter

She was sent to London to be a companion to Mary Balfour, the wife of James Balfour, her cousin. James Balfour was the son of her uncle, also James Balfour.

On the night of 2 April 1871, Janet Hunter Balfour was still living with her cousin James Balfour and his wife Mary at 24 Marchmont Street (today numbered 77 Marchmont Street). Her occupation is Shop Woman.


On the 9th April 1876 she married Samuel Gordon, at the Regent Square Church, St Pancras, London.

1876. Marriage solemnized Regent Square Church in the district of Pancras in the County of Middlesex
When Married. Name and Surname. Age Condition. Rank or Profession Residence at the Time of Marriage Father's Name and Surname Rank or Profession of Father
? April 1876 Samuel Gordon 22 Bachelor Fish Monger 86 Marchmont Street Joseph Gordon Labourer
Janet Balfour 23 Spinster --------- 24 Marchmont Street David Balfour Baker
Married in the Regent Square Church according to the Rites and Ceremonies of the Presbytarians, by Certificate by me, Dykes D.D.
This marriage was solemnized between us Samuel Gordon In the Presence of us James M. McLaren
Janet Balfour Annie Whyte

By 1881 they are living together at 84 Marchmont Street, St Pancras, London with their first three children, Mary, Helen and David. Samuel is a fishmonger, and they have both a servant girl, and a nurse. On the opposite side of the street, in number 77, is a household with James and Mary Balfour (42 and 43) which (if they are relatives) may possibly explain how Janet came to meet Samuel (or why there live there). The family says that he had a fish and game shop on Marchmont street.

On October 21st, 1885 her cousin James Balfour died, at Marchmont Street, aged 46. The baker's shop was then run by Mrs Balfour.

By 1891 they have moved to 60 Compton Street, St Pancras where they have had six more children, twins Hannah and Jane Garvie, Isabella, Alice, Eugenie and Samuel J. Gordon. At this time Samuel is still a Fishmonger and even with this number of children they can still afford a servant!

They are still at 60 Compton Street for the 1901 census, where they have gained three more children, John, George, and Eva, although sadly we appear to have lost young Samuel whose death (Samuel James Gordon) was registered in the September quarter of 1891 in St Pancras at the age of 2 (Pancras, 1b, 49).

On the night of 2 April 1911, the family are living at 76 Marchmont Street, London. There are six children still with them, including Eugenie Gordon, plus a servant Evelyn Marsh.


Here is the list of their children:

  • Mary Gordon (~1877)
  • Helen Gordon (~1879)
  • David Balfour Gordon (~1881)
  • Jane/Jean/Jeanie Garvie Gordon (~1883)
  • Hannah Janet Gordon (~1883) m. Harry Judkin (Hannah J. Gordon married a Harry Judkins in Richmond, Surrey in 1917)
  • Isabella Gordon (~1885)
  • Alice Gordon (~1886)
  • Eugenie Gordon (~1888)
  • Samuel J. Gordon (~1889 - 1891)
  • John Gordon (~1892)
  • George Gordon (~1894)
  • Eva Gordon (~1896)

Their son David Balfour Gordon appeared in the newspaper, in relation to whether he's allowed to vote in Marchmont Street:

Shoreditch Observer, 14th September 1912:


The Liberal agent at St. Pancras objected to the name of Mr. David Balfour Gordon remaining on the lodgers' list in respect of a room in Marchmont-street. Mr. Gordon, who had been requested to appear and explain his claim, said it was true that he had another residence, but he rented a furnished room in Marchmont-street because, being a fishmonger by trade, he required an apartment where he could change his "fishy" clothes and sleep at night on occasions when he had to attend the early morning market.

The Liberal Agent explained that what led him to make the objection was that information was given to him that Mr. Gordon resided in another district, was seen daily leaving his house, and that the room in Marchmont-street was rented only for the purpose of securing a vote.

The Barrister : And if he is properly qualified he has a right to claim a vote. All I can say is that Mr. Gordon has satisfied me completely that he has a qualification in this borough. He has given a perfectly straightforward explanation. I am sorry that Mr. Gordon should have been subjected to this espionage. It is not the right way either to put on or take off the list to be constantly spying in this way. The question is whether Mr. Gordon is a bona fide lodger at this place, and he has proved to me that he is.


Janet Hunter Gordon died on the 4th November 1926, almost two years after the death of her husband Samuel Gordon


GORDON Janet Hunter of 148 Castelnau Barnes Surrey widow died 4 November 1926 Probate London 29 January to David Balfour Gordon fishmonger and Albert Birch civil servant. Effects £18518 17s. 10d.

Samuel and Janet were buried in the Christian portion of the Jewish Cemetery at Golders Green (Hoop Lane?).

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