50 years ago: Captain Nathaniel Glover Kirkconnell passes

Cayman-brac--50-years-finalIn the Aug. 31, 1966 edition of the Caymanian Weekly, a precursor of the Cayman Compass, news from the Brac included:

“Captain N.G. Kirkconnell of Stake Bay passed peacefully away on Monday evening the 22nd at his residence. He had been for over three years in failing health. He was the last survivor of the seven brothers who laid the foundation for the Kirkconnell Shipping Companies whose name today in the Caribbean Home Trade has become synonymous with the Cayman Islands.

“The expressions of appreciation, floral tributes and attendance at the funeral services were eloquent of the respect of the island. The Rev. Lee King conducted the service, assisted by Elder Carl Scott, Mr. W. Taylor Foster and Rev. Randall Douglas … Their two sons Captain Willie K. and Colvert attended.

“Nathaniel Glover Kirkconnell, Master Mariner, son of Walter and Judith Kirkconnell was born at Cayman Brac on July 8, 1888. He was united in marriage to Louisa Adell Foster on Dec. 25, 1911. To this union was born six children.

“Nattie started his life career at sea as a very young man. He joined his brothers in the construction and operation of ships in the old schooner days, days better known as the days of wooden ships and iron men. The word ‘iron’ is applicable to Captain Nattie because of the strong character he manifested in his life as well as his physical endurance to the hardships of seafaring. At this time we would pay tribute to Capt. Nattie and his brothers in the formation of R.B. Kirkconnell and Bros. in the year 1896. From the efforts of these brothers many other companies have their origin.

“He is survived by two sons, William and Colvert of Tampa, three daughters, Mrs. Charles Foster of St. Petersburg, Mrs. Kelvin Tibbetts (Louise) of Cocoa Beach and Mrs. Erben Scott (Margaret) of Jacksonville, all in Florida, daughters-in-law, sons-in-law, nine grandchildren, two sisters, Mrs. Eva Bodden of Little Cayman and Mrs. Kennether Ritch of Stake Bay, many nephews and nieces and other relatives and friends. His eldest child, Mrs. Adell Virginia Tibbetts preceded him in death.

“Bearers of the casket were Messrs. Charlie Foster, Burke Ryan, Dickie Hurlstone, Anton Foster, Denis Foster, and Capt. Mabry Kirkconnell. Nine other honorary pallbearers lined the route to the graveside namely Messrs. Eston Scott, Edward Howell, Edison Tibbetts, Eli Scott, Edlin Hurlstone, Algie Ryan, Guy Banks and Capts. McNeil Foster and Burke Ritch. He was buried at the Garden of Love Cemetery, Stake Bay.”

In the same issue, Cayman Brac correspondent Lilian Ritch wrote:

“We welcome back home Temple Tatum who resumed duties as wireless operator on Friday, July 29. Temp completed a five-unit code course with Cable & Wireless (W.I.) Ltd. at the training school on East Parade, Kingston, Jamaica.

“We also welcome home Mrs. Carlotha Smith who has returned to reside after an absence of 17 years in Jamaica. Mrs. Lothie, a daughter of the late Captain Wade and Mrs. Maggie Foster of the Bight, is the guest of Mr. and Mrs. Percy Green of the Bight.

“Visiting with Mr. and Mrs. Jack Scott and family of the West End recently were the Kenyon Knoureks of Weed, California. Mrs. Knourek, Naomi, is a daughter of the Scotts.

“Good sailing to Messrs. Darrel Bryan, Weldon Anderson, Autry Tibbetts, Osley Scott and Hallon Dilbert, who left on Saturday to join National Bulk Carriers.

“Good sailing also to Ledley Scott of the West End who had been home on vacation while his ship was undergoing repairs. He left on Thursday the 25th. He sails as chief and second officer with the Elmey Shipping Co., U.S.A.”