James WALDIE (1824–1876)
His wife Mrs Ann Hester WALDIE, née Thorp (1824–1880)
Their daughter Ellen Isabel WALDIE (1861–1864)
Their son Ronald James Thorp WALDIE (1865–1911)
St Mary Magdalen section: Row 8, Grave D70

Ellen Waldie



DIED [… APRIL 1864]


[The next three inscriptions are
obscured by the footstone, but
the names of the other people
buried here can be deduced
from the footstone and the
St Mary Magdalen burial register]

AGED 51]

AGED 55]

AGED 47]




E   I   W

J   +   W

A   H   W

R  +  W


James Waldie was born at Earlston in Scotland on 26 May 1824 and baptised there on 11 July. He was the son of James Waldie senior and his wife Helen Laidlaw.

At the time of the 1841 census James (16) was living at Roxburgh Street in Kelso on the Scottish borders with his father James (a blacksmith aged about 60) and his mother Helen (aged about 55).

By 1851 James (25) had moved down to Oxford and was an assistant mercer & draper, working for John Charles Thorp (28) and living with him and his wife and two children over his shop at 44 Broad Street, along with two other shop assistants and a cook and two nursemaids.

44 Broad Street

Ann Hester Thorp was born in Oxford on 6 December 1824 and baptised at St Mary Magdalen Church on 30 December. She was the fourth child of John Thorp and Maria Hester, who were married at St Mary the Virgin Church on 5 September 1818.

For more about Ann’s parents and siblings, see the biography of her father: John Thorp, Mayor of Oxford.

Ann’s mother died in August 1830 at the age of 34, and so from the age of six Ann was brought up by her father. Her father was a mercer at 44 Broad Street. (right), one of the shops demolished to make way for the New Bodleian Library.

At the time of the 1841 census Ann (16) was living over the shop with her father and her older siblings Susannah, Maria and John, along with a shopman and three servants.

By the time of the 1851 census Ann’s father had retired and was living at 52 St John Street (which was also in St Mary Magdalen parish) with Ann (26); they still had three servants. Ann's brother John Charles Thorp (who had married Susan Joy on 9 February 1847) took care of the business and lived over the shop with his wife and children.

Ann’s father John Thorp died on 30 December 1856, and was probably buried in his wife’s grave in St Mary Magdalen churchyard.

On 1 September 1858 at St Pancras Church, London James Waldie married Ann Hester Thorp. He was described in the register as being of St Pancras, but their marriage announcement in Jackson’s Oxford Journal stated that he was of Broad Street, so he must only have been staying temporarily in London; Ann was described as being of St Mary Magdalen parish in Oxford.

James Waldie became a partner in the business on his marriage to Ann Hester Thorp, and it was left it under his sole management. John Charles Thorp became an accountant, and at the time of the 1861 census was living with his family in Cardiff. James & Ann Waldie moved into the accommodation upstairs at 44 Broad Street, and their six children were all born there (with the births of all except the first were announced in Jackson’s Oxford Journal):

  • Helen Hester Waldie (born in Oxford on 28 June 1859 and baptised at St Mary Magdalen Church on 28 June)
  • Annie Maria Waldie (born in Oxford on 3 November 1860 and baptised at St Mary Magdalen Church on 7 December)
  • Ellen Isabel Waldie (born in Oxford on 18 December 1861 and baptised at St Mary Magdalen Church on 24 January 1862)
  • Mary Jane Waldie (born in Oxford on 15 April 1863 and baptised at St Mary Magdalen Church on 13 May)
  • Ronald James Thorp Waldie (born in Oxford on 15 July 1865 and baptised at St Mary Magdalen Church on 11 August)
  • Katie Rose Waldie (born in Oxford on 5 February 1867 and baptised at St Mary Magdalen Church on 1 March)

At the time of the 1861 census James Waldie (36) was living over the shop at 44 Broad Street with his wife Ann and their first two daughters. Also living with them were three male shop assistants, and a cook, housemaid, nurse, and porter.

Their daughter Ellen died at the age of two:

† Ellen Isabel Waldie died at 44 Broad Street at the age of two years and four months in April 1864 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 23 April (burial recorded in the parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).

In April 1866 James Waldie was elected one of the two Churchwardens of St Mary Magdalen parish. By this year he was also organizing funerals, as when the Revd W. J. Sawell of Magdalen College was buried at All Saints’ churchyard in June 1866 it was reported that the funeral arrangements were conducted by Mr Waldie, of the firm of Messrs. Thorp and Co.

John Charles Thorp inserted the following advertisement in Jackson’s Oxford Journal on 9 July 1870:

Waldie advertisement

At the time of the 1871 census James & Ann Waldie were still living over the shop at 44 Broad Street with their five surviving children, plus a governess, three draper’s shopmen, a cook, housemaid, under-housemaid, and porter. Meanwhile his brother-in-law John Charles Thorp was now a grocer in Southampton, and he and his wife and six children employed just one 16-year-old servant girl.

The firm of Thorp & Waldie are named in obituaries as having organized the following three funerals in St Sepulchre’s Cemetery: Thomas Combe (1872), the Revd Henry Wall (1873), and the Revd Alfred Hackman (1874).

James Waldie died in 1876:

† James Waldie died at 44 Broad Street at the age of 51 on 5 March 1876 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 10 March (burial recorded in the parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).

His death announcement read simply: “March 5, at his residence, 44, Broad-street, Oxford, Mr. James Waldie, aged 51.” His effects came to under £14,000, and his widow Ann Hester Waldie was one of the executors. Seven weeks after his death, on 22 April, his widow announced that that she had sold the family business to Webber Patterson. He moved into 44 Broad Street, where he continued the combined business of draper and funeral director, and Mrs Ann Hester Waldie moved to Acacia Lodge in Witney.

Her daughter Helen was married in 1878:

  • On 17 December 1878 at Hove, Sussex, Helen Hester Waldie (born 1859) married Albert Collier, youngest son of the late Horatio Collier of Witney.

Mrs Waldie had moved with her other children to 19 Derby Terrace, Croydon by the time of her death in 1880:

† Mrs Ann Hester Waldie née Thorp died at 19 Derby Terrace, Derby Road, Croydon at the age of 55 on 10 May 1880 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 14 May (burial recorded in the parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).

Her personal estate came to under £10,000, and her will was proved by her son-in-law Albert Collier, a dairyman of Clarendon House, Cuthbert Road, Croydon, one of the executors.

At the time of the 1881 census her three unmarried daughters were still living at 19 Derby Terrace, Croydon (with Louisa Gollins, a housekeeper from Witney, paying them a visit): Annie (21) and Mary (17) were described as having a private income, while Katie (14) was still at school. Her son Ronald (16) was probably away at school.

At the time of the 1891 census her son Ronald James Thorp Waldie (26) was a chartered accountant lodging at 42 Parsons Mead in Croydon.

By the time of the 1911 census he had become a Roman Catholic priest, living alone with a housekeeper at the Catholic Presbytery, Rushden, Northants. He died later that year:

† Ronald James Thorp Waldie died at Rushden, Wellingborough, Northants at the age of 47 on xx 1911 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 22 September (burial recorded in the parish register of St Mary Magdalen Church).

The burial register records that because he was a Roman Catholic, the burial in the grave of his parents and sister had to be certified under the Burial Laws Amendment Act 1880. He does not appear to have left a will.

Surviving children of James & Ellen Waldie
  • Helen Hester Waldie, Mrs Albert Collier (born 1859) emigrated to Australia with her husband. They had one son, Albert Charles Waldie Collier, born in Queensland on 13 September 1889. Helen died in Queensland at the age of 72 on 28 November 1931.
  • Annie Maria Waldie (born 1860) never married. She died in Chippenham in Wiltshire at the age of 94 in 1955.
  • Mary Jane Waldie (born 1863) married Charles Blackburn in Derby on 1 November 1884.
  • Katie Rose Waldie (born 1867) emigrated to Australia, arriving at Adelaide on 9 February 1886. She married Henry Monteith there.



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