Culture Vannin posted a short article earlier about a couple of the unusual place names to be found here and I thought some of you may be interested to read it. Here it is...
Why is there a 'Nassau' and an 'Antigua Cottage’ in Bride? (NB: Bride is a village in the north of the island)
It goes back to Captain John Monier, who had great success captaining boats in the 19th century such as the brig Philanderer and the brig Cronkbane (so named for the home of his wife's family, the Joughin family of that farm).*
After his travels around the world, he returned to Bride, naming places including Nassau and Antigua Cottage to fix his memories around him.
Captain John Monier died 156 years (and two days) ago, on 22 January, 1866, outliving his son, Captain Thomas Monier, who had started out in his father's line of work, but died at the age of only 23 when coming back home on board the boat, the Henry Curwen.
But, while we're at it, 'Monier' used to be a common Manx name, particularly around Bride and Andreas. The name came from 'MacEmere', and had an emphasis on the second syllable.
The name disappeared in the Isle of Man in the mid-19th Century, but it was still (and perhaps is still) to be found around Illinois in the USA, where some of the Manx families emigrated.
... So now you know what to say the next time you hear someone asking about the unusual place names down North!
* We have not investigated the nature of Monier's trading around the Caribbean at this time, but since his working life overlaps with slavery around the British Caribbean (abolished only in 1840), it would be an important question for anyone interested in taking the research further.
There was also a Frenchman called Joseph Monier. He played a big role in developing processes to reinforce concrete. I doubt that he had any links with The Isle of Man. He had a big beard in which he kept his pet budgie - Napoleon.ReplyDelete
How interesting to read about the French Joseph Monier, although I think you made up the bit about the budgie.Delete
Names are fascinating aren't they - plenty of folk with the aame name up here too.ReplyDelete
A lot of names were changed over time, particularly when not many people could read or write.Delete
Well, I live in Illinois but I do not know anyone named Monier. Funny coincidence that your article should mention the state I live in! Hope you are feeling better!ReplyDelete
Out of curiosity I did a quick Google search and found a few Moniers mentioned and a baseball stadium called Monier Field. There must have been a few of them over your way Ellen!Delete
I can't say that I've ever come across someone naming places in the UK after places from 'abroad'. Every day is a school day.ReplyDelete
It generally seems to have been the other way round, with places overseas being named after places in the UK.Delete
This reminds me a bit about where I grew up. It is an Island off the coast of Maine connected by a suspension bridge. When I was a youth there over fifty years ago names like Billings, Eaton, Haskell, Dunham, Weed, Field were the norm. Now when I visit those are the minority and there are many strange names that don't roll off the tongue living there as permanent residents. I fit right in!💖ReplyDelete
Lots of people on the move from all over the world and landing in some of the smallest places. This small island has seen its share of incomers over the years ... including me!Delete
Fascinating stuff. We were always told my husband's family were from Kirk German (though his g. grandfather came to England from Andreas, where he was born). Now research by me has connected them mostly to Ballaugh. It matters only a little in the long run as DNA research has shown that all the Craines are related.ReplyDelete
I can't find any Craine records for our little burial ground here but then this was primarily a strangers' Graveyard so not many Manx people buried here. Still, we share our home with 1000 departed souls wherever they may come from!Delete
Oh gosh, lots of waifs and strays. Do you have to mow around the headstones or is someone employed to do that regularly? I imagine that "our" Craines will be found in German, Jurby, Andreas and Ballough. Probably not much left of their little homesteads though.Delete
The headstones have all been moved into the memorial garden which is paved so no grass to mow. The graves are still there beneath the garden now.Delete
In Australia Monier is a well known brand of concrete roofing tile, which probably ties in with the French connectionReplyDelete
That sounds very likely, Jenny.Delete
I was going to mention the roof tile company but Jenny beat me to it! Are there Le Cornus in the Isle of Man? It's a well known name in South Australia but I can't remember if the origins are IOM or the Channel Islands.ReplyDelete
That would be from the Channel Islands Barbara. A lot of French origin names down there.Delete