Marianne Skinner

Marianne Skinner

b: 1 AUG 1801
d: 20 DEC 1885
1881 Census:

Dwelling: 4 5 6 7 8 9 Ashley Pl
Census Place: Westminster St Margaret, London, Middlesex, England
Source: FHL Film 1341027 PRO Ref RG11 Piece 0119 Folio 46 Page 29
Marr Age Sex Birthplace
George SCHARF U 60 M London St Martins, London, Middlesex, England
Rel: Head
Occ: F S A Civil Service Office Keeper & Sec The Nat Portait Gallry
Elizabeth BALL M 52 F Loder Nr Bridport, Dorset, England
Rel: Serv
Occ: Housekeeper
Thomas BALL M 47 M Tisbury, Wiltshire, England

Wherever she was when the enumerator called, she wasn't at home (see below), and in the national index she was not readily found with Marianne Skinner or Mary Skinner including Mary A Skinner - though I didn't look at every record. It seems that by 1881 if not before, 5 Ashley Place had been merged with neighbouring buildings, to become a block of flats as suggested below, with Elizabeth and Thomas as housekeepers.

From 'The Chaplin and Skinner Families' December 1902, pages 66 to 69:

>> 2. Miss Marianne Skinner (born 1st August, 1801,and died 20th December, 1885) was the second daughter of the late Lieut. General John Skinner and Anne Skinner (née Maclean), and sister of Mr. Allan Maclean Skinner, Q.C. Until the death of her mother, Mrs. Anne Skinner, on 16th January, 1864, at the age of 90, Miss Marianne Skinner lived with her at 8 Stratton Street, Piccadilly, and also at Hampton Court Palace, in the rooms assigned to her mother by the late Queen Victoria. (See "Sketch of the Military Services of Lieut. General John Skinner and his Sons.") After her mother's death she settled down at No. 5 Ashley Place, near Victoria Station.
Miss Skinner was very well known, and had a large circle of friends. Amongst others whom she entertained was Prince Louis Napoleon Bonaparte, afterwards the Emperor Napoleon III., and in Miss Skinner's album (now in the possession of John Allan Cleveland Skinner) are the following words written by the Prince when returning to France to become Prince President:--


The Prince's visiting card and a piece of ribbon of the Legion of Honour, which he gave to Miss Skinner, are also fastened in the album.
In the same album are verses written by several members of the family, and by Thomas Haynes Bayley, N. P. Willis, Jane Porter, Agnes Strickland, and other well-known writers. There are several sketches, and on the next page are copies of two of them.
Amongst Miss Skinner's closest friends was one who is still a dear friend of the compiler of these notes, and now, as then, lives in the flat immediately over Miss Skinner's - Mrs. Fletcher Elmes, whose sister, Lady Bancroft, the distinguished actress, has in her book of reminiscences ("Mr. and Mrs. Bancroft On and 0ff the Stage," published in 1888), given the following description of Miss Skinner (vol. II., page 315):--

" Amongst my numerous acquaintances I have met with some curious people with characteristics -possibly eccentricities -- that might be passed over by many, but, as I have before said, from my childhood I have never failed to detect these peculiarities. Until her death. I had the pleasure of knowing a very eccentric and interesting maiden lady - I say the pleasure, because I had a great regard for her. Her nature was kindly and amiable, and no one ever heard her say an ungenerous thing of man, woman. or child. She never joined in malicious gossip, and when she was unable to praise, would be silent --a noble example to womankind, I take it. Well, this dear lady, who was nearly eighty-five years old, remembered many extraordinary events. Her anecdotes of days gone by were very diverting; and,. although she dressed in the most Noah's ark sort of fashion and spoke in the most old-world way, her nature was as bright as a girl's. She loved the society of young people, mixing herself up with their lives with the keenest enjoyment. All her recollections of the past were merry; she seemed to be ever happy, and one day, when asked whether she would like to live to a tremendous age, she laughingly replied "Oh, I don't much care; only I hope when I do die they'll bury me in a cheerful churchyard!" At an evening party once there had been a great deal of classical music, which was evidently somewhat too serious for her taste, for, when asked what she thought of it, she replied in her usual cheery manner, "Oh, it is most charming! Do you think you could get them to play "Tommy, make room for your uncle": it is charmingly amusing, and I should be mightily obleeged?" Mr. Bancroft took her into dinner one night, and remarked upon her wonderful health. The vivacious old lady replied that she had never known a pain or ache in her life. "Not even toothache?" "Oh, never; don't know what the dreadful thing means." "Not a simple headache?" "Oh no, never; I think it too ridiculous!" "Not even a heartache?" "The old lady at once answered archly, smiling sweetly at her companion, "Not Yet!"
" I remember being present at an 'At Home' she gave. Her rooms were most quaintly furnished, and one seemed to live far, far back in the past as one gazed at her spinet and her old fashioned harp. Her dress comprised a pink silk skirt trimmed with a matchless lace flounce, a low black velvet bodice, a satin scarf of the family tartan - for she was proud of her Scotch descent - open worked stockings, and sandalled shoes. She carried a bag of some beautiful material over her arm, her 'get up' being completed by a necklace and old coral medallions and long earrings to match. Her hair was plaited in a small knot at the back, and three lank ringlets hung on each side of her face. She received her guests with a low curtsey, and was the cheeriest of hostesses. There was a great deal of music. but not a single sad air was played. The old lady related anecdotes in abundance, and her great anxiety was to see all the young people who were there happy and amiable. She had a habit of speaking her thoughts aloud, and this peculiarity sometimes caused much amusement A young lady who had a very pretty voice was asked to sing, and at once consented. The guests gathered round. Our old friend sat near the singer, and commented audibly on the song with delightful unconsciousness, which made it hard for anyone to preserve a grave countenance The song commenced -

"Kathleen Mavourneen,
'Oh what a charming name'
the gray dawn is breaking,
'Yes, I've seen it often coming home from a ball.'
The horn of the hunter is heard on the hill,
'Oh yes, I know, in Switzerland,'
The lark from her light wings the bright dew is shaking,
'Oh the dear little thing !'
Kathleen Mavourneen, what, slumbering still?
'Perhaps she was up late, poor dear'
Oh! dost thou not know what this night we must sever?
Oh! dost thou not know, love, this night we must part?
'Oh. can she be so cruel!'
It may be for years, of it may be for ever;
'Oh gracious, what a long time!'
Then wake from thy slumber, thou voice of my heart.
Get up, you lazy hussy.

"I need not say that it was with extreme difficulty the young vocalist could continue, and when the old lady shouted. "Get up, you lazy hussy!" we were all convulsed. Just as her guests were preparing to go, our hostess sat down to the spinet to play, as she said, 'God Save the King.'"

Miss Skinner survived her brother, the Recorder, by a few months, and died at 5 Ashley Place on 20th December 1885, at the age of 84. She was buried in the Brompton Cemetery. <<

From autobiographical notes by Edward Holroyd Pearce (Lord Pearce) 1989:

" When my mother as a girl met Robert Browning, my grandfather wisely made her learn by heart the Ride from Ghent to Aix, so that she never forgot him.
On the other hand my grandmother's aunt Marianne (whose work-box I possessed as a child, its initialled red leather thrillingly scorched in the great fire at Hampton Court Palace where she lived with her mother, the General's widow) once handed a cup of tea to Nelson when she was a child of five. According to my Mother, Aunt Marianne had no difficulty in recalling this to the end of her very long life, because she had so frequently recounted it But it is a kindness to impress on children the things that they will be glad to remember in their old age, if they have any feeling for history or romance. When I was young a very old man shook my hand with great panache saying "You are shaking the hand that once shook hands with Napoleon." He was rather a dull old gentleman and I think that the later Napoleons were rather dull, but I always remember it. And I remember being more interested in his telling me that when he was a student in a Paris hospital nine out of every ten head operations were fatal. This touched a chord since my grandfather's sister, Aunt Mattie, had had to get her highest medical qualifications in Paris because English and Scottish medical schools would not admit women into the higher degrees in mid-Victorian days. And Aunt Mattie was the doctor who brought my mother into the world."
  • 1 AUG 1801 - Birth -
  • 20 DEC 1885 - Death - ; 5 Ashley Place, buried in Brompton Cemetary
Thomas Skinner
1716 - 30 MAR 1775
John Major Skinner , Lieut General
16 FEB 1752 - 10 OCT 1827
Ann Moore
1724 - 7 MAR 1784
Marianne Skinner
1 AUG 1801 - 20 DEC 1885
Ann Maclean
12 DEC 1773 - 16 JAN 1864
Florance Maclean
ABT 1744 - 17 JUL 1815
Family Group Sheet - Child
PARENT (M) John Major Skinner , Lieut General
Birth16 FEB 1752(Date of baptism at Bishopsgate Church). His father was curate there, as well as evening lecturer there and at the chur
Death10 OCT 1827 Richmond, Surrey. His brother-in-law Donald Maclean of 37 Brunswick Sq London was joint executor with Ann, to whom he l
Marriage18 DEC 1797to Ann Maclean at St Cuthberts, Edinburgh, Scotland by the Rev Dr Mudie (additional source: IGI)
FatherThomas Skinner
MotherAnn Moore
PARENT (F) Ann Maclean
Birth12 DEC 1773Ardgour House (Cooil House), Kilmallie, Argyleshire, Scotland (IGI gives date as 1 December)
Death16 JAN 1864 8 Stratton Street, Picadilly, London, of bronchitis
Marriage18 DEC 1797to John Major Skinner , Lieut General at St Cuthberts, Edinburgh, Scotland by the Rev Dr Mudie (additional source: IGI)
FatherJohn Maclean
MotherFlorance Maclean
FAnne Skinner
Birth14 NOV 1798Edinburgh
Death27 MAR 1855Bath
Marriage20 SEP 1832to Henry Vere Huntley , RN at Bolney Church, Sussex
MThomas Skinner , CB
Birth22 FEB 1800Edinburgh
Death5 MAY 1843Mussoorie, in Himalayas, of dysentry
Marriageto Sophia Raikes
MJohn Skinner
Birth23 AUG 1802
Death28 NOV 1821Jamaica, of yellow fever
MJames Skinner
Birth27 SEP 1803Kinsale, Ireland
Death12 JAN 1842Afghanistan
MAllan Maclean Skinner , Q.C.
Birth14 JUL 18099 Cadogan Place, Chelsea, London, christened there 22 August 1809 (Parish of St Luke)
Death23 MAY 1885Reading, Berkshire
Marriage20 DEC 1837to Caroline Emily Harding at Nolton Chapel, Bridgend, Glamorganshire
FMarianne Skinner
Birth1 AUG 1801
Death20 DEC 18855 Ashley Place, buried in Brompton Cemetary