Family and business papers of the Quayle family of Glenmaye, Patrick

Scope and Content

The deposit contains the diary of John Lancelot Quayle 1883-1890, the diary of Madge Quayle 1916 and the notebook of Gordon Quayle c.1915 containing Black Watch platoon lists, poetry and Bible verses; also assorted correspondence including letters and postcards home from Fred and George Quayle whilst on active service and letters of condolence after their death including an expression of the King’s sympathy signed by David Lloyd George. A copy of a 2004 letter from Gordon's regiment the Black Watch records his service history. Real photograph postcards show a small group of men dancing to bagpipes, probably at Gartshore hospital, near Glasgow, 1915, the memorial cross erected at High Wood in memory of the men of 1st Battalion of the Black Watch and Cameron Highlanders who fell in action near that place, September 1916 and Quayle family grave headstones in Patrick churchyard. The typescript words to a hymn include the refrain ‘Underneath the flag of Jesus we gather today / There is room for every soldier / Come enlist without delay.’ Also present are letters written to Emily from her Daugherty relatives in the Transvaal, 1915-1916, reflecting on the war.

Further material includes three volumes (belonging to John Lancelot Quayle) regarding business accounts of stock and supplies, family members' estates (the late John Quayle, Fred Quayle, Margaret Caroline Quayle and Helen Corrin), details of beekeeping and miscellaneous information, 1892-1950. Within these volumes are accounts of the annual distribution of Christmas money to persons in need in Glenmaye district provided by Mr and Mrs George H. Moore, 1931-1938, details of bird-sightings and flowers, shrubs and trees in bloom, copies of deeds and newspaper articles.

Among letters of condolence is one from Nurse Nellie Stewart of Gartshore Hospital, Balgownie, Bearsden near Glasgow where Gordon was sent to convalesce in November 1915. A searing, eight page black rimmed letter dated 22 September 1916 also survives written by Lancelot replying to his brother Walter’s condolences sent on 1 September 1916. Lancelot expresses his heartfelt sense of loss and grief at the deaths of his brother and only son.

A one page family tree showing connections between Quayle and Daugherty family members forms part of the deposit.

Administrative / Biographical History

John Lancelot Quayle (1865-1950), widely known as Lancelot, was the son of John Quayle (c.1839-1892) and Emma, née Crellin (c.1846-1918). John Snr was the postmaster and grocer in the Village of Glenmaye on the west coast of the Isle of Man and a Member of the House of Keys (M.H.K.) of the sheading of Glenfaba, Isle of Man. The Quayle family of Glenmaye were a well-known family of the area and were strict Methodists, with Lancelot’s naming being inspired by a Methodist minister from Peel who had died in a cholera epidemic after ministering to the cholera victims. After the death of his father Lancelot took charge of the post office and grocery business and sold agricultural supplies. He was also an authority in the art of beekeeping; in 1897 he famously gathered 334lbs of honey from one hive ( Mona’s Herald, 29 September 1897) and by the time of his death Lancelot was an honorary life member of the Isle of Man Beekeepers’ Federation. In 1893 Lancelot married Emily Anne Daugherty (1863-1923) and had four children, Gordon (1895-1916), Margaret ‘Madge’ (b.1900), Emily (b.1901) and Caroline (b.1905). Throughout his life Lancelot was an active member of his community and frequently participated in the district’s business, for example he was a prominent member of the Independent Order of Rechabites, belonging to the Rising Star Tent, Glenmaye and held the position of auditor. Lancelot was the organist and office holder at Gordon Chapel and a member of the School Committee for the district of Patrick.

During the First World War the Quayle family lost two family members. Fred Quayle (c.1888-1916), Lancelot’s younger brother was a Private in the 10th (Service) Battalion Royal Fusiliers and was killed on 15 July 1916 at Pozieres, France. Fred’s final resting place is unknown however his name is inscribed on the Thiepval Memorial for the missing, France. He is also remembered in memorials and monuments in the Isle of Man (for instance the Roll of Honour in the Royal Chapel of St the Baptist, St Johns, German, and in Holy Trinity New Churchyard, Parish of Patrick, within Peel Cathedral, Parish of German and in the published Isle of Man: Great War 1914-18 Roll of Honour). The second family member was Lancelot’s son Gordon who had been a Corporal in the 1st Battalion Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) and was killed barely a month after his uncle on 18 August 1916 on the Somme Valley. Gordon is buried in Caterpillar Valley Cemetery VIII. E. 29., Longueval, France. He is also remembered in memorials and monuments in the Isle of Man (including inside the Holy Trinity Church, parish of Patrick, in the Roll of Honour within the Royal Chapel of St the Baptist, St Johns, German, and within Holy Trinity New Churchyard, Parish of Patrick and in the published Isle of Man: Great War 1914-18 Roll of Honour).

Access Information

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Archivist's Note

The biographical information was gathered from Manx newspapers Mona’s Herald (4 September 1889, 29 September 1897, 30 August 1916 & 2 January 1924), Peel City Guardian (31 October 1896), Isle of Man Times (26 February 1916), Isle of Man Examiner (1 December 1950) & Green Final (2 December 1950). The 1911 census was also used, parish of Patrick, emumeration district & batch number: 2/733. Isle of Man newspapers available online at

Fonds-level description created by Eleanor Williams (MNH Project Archivist), November 2015.


Much of the family papers of the Quayle's of Glenmaye have been published in David Lancelot Moore's The Beekeeper of Glenmay (2012).