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Carbon copy, letter to Robert Grier Torrence.


Dear Bob

Many thanks for your of Jan. 12. The weather is never too bad here as
we are protected from the worst gales by the Isle of Wight. Our house is in a
wood and screened from the worst in all directions. We had a large house about
five miles north of Poole with 20 rooms. This I sold when I retired in 1969 and
built a split level one in the grounds. We have a garage and workshop downstairs
om the main floor we have kitchen, hall which is also our dining room, sitting
room with colour TV and hi-fi radio, a study where I keep my collections of books
cigarette cards and stamps, our bedroom with bathroom en suite, on the next floor
there are two bedrooms and another bathroom for guests, and a large sun balcony
facing south. With oil central hearing we are very comfortable. We have still
about four acres of woodland, where I grow rhododendrons, most of them grown by
myself from seed and they are now mostly flowering size, usually from end of
Jan to the end of July. I specialized in species which are much more interesting
than the hybrids, we also have a large collection of camellias.

I was sorry to hear of your troubles, and hope you will soon be better.
As you live alone is it possible that your diet is not complete, this sometimes
can produce symptoms which are difficult to diagnose.

About your effects if you cannot get yo them why do you not order one
case at a time to be sent to your house and deal with it as you please. It would
not take too long to do the lot. You could then eliminate what you do not require
and keep what you want. It might take some time to ge to the papers but at least
you would make a start.

The One Name Society is for the future as it may  take some time to get
enough interested. The information from Edinburgh is useful but so far there is
little before 1700. So far I have traced two brothers Hugh and Alexander who
came over from Hairmyers near Glasgow about the middle of the 17th cent. This
Hugh is the one buried at Vow (p. 18 your father's book). There were two Hughs
not one as the book says. The one Hugh of Cacheny, parish of
Aghadowey is obviously different to the High of Culneman, parish of Desertoghill
the latter was mentioned in the subsidy roll meaning that he was a prosperous
man in the district, both are mentioned in different parishes in the Hearth roll
for 1663. The former is no doubt the son of the Hugh buried at Vow in 1712, and
the other may have been Sargeant Hugh. I have made out a tree showing the details
of the Scottish connection but so far have not had much luck with the Scottish line.
At this time we have traces of at least four other Torrens including one Hugh, in
North of Ireland.

Perhaps I did not make myself clear abut the books. The other book on the
family by Jared Sidney Torrance, published in 1923 after his death by his widow,
is entitled 'The Descendants of Lewis Hart and Ann Elliott', it contains a very
big section on the Aghadowey line. Unfortunately his two sons died before he did,
his wife (his second) had only two children by her first husband. Jared was the
founder of Torrance city near Los Angeles and employed Kernohan to research for
him. Hence he promised those notes to other Torrances on page 297. As these were
the basis for both his and your father's books i am anxious to get them. They must
have been among your father's notes, see page 184, last para.

On page 30 your father mentions a history of the family by Miss
Elizabeth H.K.Torrance of Punxatawney. Published Frank M.T. who was a
Professor of Engineering at the State College (now University). This I have
not been able to trace as no one in the local libraries knows it.

There is listed in the National Union Catalog of Pre-1956 Imprints
Vol 598 page 38 a book of 33 pages by Torrens, Ada Sarah Louisa (Auld)
entitled Torrens, 1786-1934. This enormous catalog lists all books held in
all American Libraries, and the only copy of this work is at Tacoma Public
Library, Wa. I have written for a photocopy but  they have not replied, I did
offer to pay. That is now about 8 weeks ago. I wonder if these two books are
the same?

The family records seem to be fairly complete since 1700, but any information
before that date would be very welcome. If your historical societies could
supply any data of that time I would be very grateful.

I have managed to get xerox copies of the two of Kernohan's books, they
had a copy in a small Donegal library. These are interesting as they describe the
conditions which existed in Ireland and Scotland which led to our family's

I recently had a colour photo of Torrence Castle, which is now empty.
It seems to be a very imposing place. It is very difficult to get any real
details of the family in the early days. I heard from Professor Torrance
of Edinburgh University that the early history described in the first pages of
your father's book is purely legend, and no foundation in fact can be found.

How is your book going? One of mine "The Golden Dawn. The Inner
Teachings" has now run into a second edition in New York (3rd in GB)
It is published by Samuel Weiser Inc,at $3.95. It is on the occult and is
a precis of my investigations into that subject over 50 years.

That is about all this time. If you can help with any of the
information before 1700 on the items marked above I would be very grateful.

With best wishes and hope for your recovery soon 

Yours sincerely


R G Torrens

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© 2002 4QD
Page's Author: Richard Torrens
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First published 14th May 2002.
Last modified: Wed, 22 Nov 2017 14:08:01 GMT