This postcard has been causing quite a stir in our local community as it tells a moving tale of
unrequited love from 100 years ago. The postcard was remarkable for its good condition and the fact
that it was written on the face of the postcard rather than the back, the writing was also quite clearly
legible. It reads:
"Flo, Maggie and I were here this afternoon and saw Mr. Sinclair. I am in love with him. Do you
recognise him in this picture? We had a delightful voyage, and not a soul onboard was seasick. Will write
later. Grandma is a dear old lady, and so is Grandpa, but it is awful hard to understand what he says.
You know his upper teeth have all gone. Love from all. Annie"
We are indebted to Catherine Scott of Livingstone for researching the origins of the people in the
postcard and here is the story.
The postcard was written by Annie Laing Barclay, aged 20, of 57 Park Street, Barre, Vermont, USA, to
her sister Mary Gilman, 231 Broad Street, Claremont, New Hampshire, USA.
She is visiting her
grandparents, John and Mary Corbett, of Broomhill, New Deer. With her are her mother Mary and
sisters Flora, Maggie and Grace. They returned to America on the 12th September 1908, sailing from
Liverpool on board the "Mauretania".
The Mr Sinclair she refers to, may be Alexander
Sinclair of 17 High Street, New Pitsligo, who in 1901 was a fifteen year old student.
Annie (12) is a scholar living with her parents William and Mary in 57 Park Street, Barre, Washington
County, State of Vermont. Her father is involved with granite. Her brother John (26) is a
Granite Cutter and her brother William (23) is Manager of a Granite Shed. Brother Douglas (18) and sister
Mary (17) are Clerks. Sisters Flora (10) and Maggie (8) are Scholars. Grace is
(3). Annie and her younger siblings were born in Vermont, the older ones having been born in
Staying with them is a nephew of William – William B Scott (17), Granite Cutter,
born in Scotland. They also have a Servant – Elizabeth Wood (18), born in Scotland.
1910 Annie (22), Douglas (28), Flora (20), Margaret (18) and Grace (13) are still with their mother Mary
in 57 Park Street, Barre. Their father seems to have died.
Annie (33), of no
occupation, and Grace (23), Music Teacher, are still with their mother in 57 Park Street, Barre, at the
time of the 1920 census.
By 1930 there is no trace of Annie under the name Barclay. She
may, at last, have found a husband!!
Her mother Mary (75), brother Douglas (55), Importer- General
Industry, and Servant/Companion Elizabeth Wood are still living in 57 Park Street.
So finally, Annie may well have got her man but it wasn't Mr. Sinclair, or was it???
(Below left is Mr. Sinclair with the X beneath him as Annie drew it 100 years ago)