A genealogy and history blog.
Cats in Family History
Cats in Family History

Cats in Family History

Pets are such a huge part of our lives. The companionship and affection that we feel for our animals is something that our ancestors felt as well. Sadly, the presence of our ancestors’ pets is often lost to time as their records are not acknowledged in the same was as humans are. All that’s left of your ancestor’s beloved pet might be a photo, or a tag from their collar.

That’s why I wanted to make this small post on International Cat Day to acknowledge some of the cats from my family and share their photos.

My great grand-uncle, Matthew Scoley Haire, cradling a cat. He’s wearing a black chauffeur’s hat, with a long black coat covering his suit. Clearly he didn’t mind the resulting cat hair on such a smart outfit!
Four grooms, possibly at Lyegrove, Gloucestershire, in front of some large barn doors. They’re all wearing light shirts and slacks, three of them have braces on. Two of the men on the left are wearing flat caps and holding cats. The man on the far right is in a taller brimmed hat.

The man second from the left in the above photo is my great-grandad, James ‘Jim’ Haire. The man to his left I believe was quite close to Jim as he was present in one of his wedding photos. I think he may be called ‘J Martin’, and in two of the three photos I have of him he’s holding cats!

J Martin (possibly) sitting down, smoking, and holding a small cat, with Jim standing to his right. They’re dressed in short sleeved shirts and smart trousers.
Holly (left) and Tigs (right) chilling on a radiator in May 2021. Holly is a white cat with black and gingers smudges over her head, back, and tail. Tigs is a ginger tabby. Both have green eyes.

Above are some of my relative’s cats. Holly is a playful, dainty, young cat who loves hunting and getting a fuss. Tigs is an old man, rescued from their family friend as he was fighting with other neighbourhood cats. He moved to my aunt and uncle’s farm, and enjoyed going off on his own for days at a time, but thankfully he always came back. Since moving to a bigger farm, he has become more of a house cat in his old age. The most shocking thing I ever saw him do was bring a whole rabbit into the house and drop it on the floor. It was hilariously awful, and I’m sort of thankful he’d killed it before he brought it in or else it would have been chaos!

Cats have their own personalities and lives that are worth preserving and remembering, so take some time to write a bit about them. Your descendants would love to see and read about the animals who were important to you throughout your life.

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