This map incorporates many points of interest from the old Ordnance Survey map published in 1914 – the text for the introduction by Gilbert Bell is reproduced here.

The McKay family moved to Bellshill from Eglinton, Ayrshire, sometime before 1900, two years before Jonas Šugžda and his family arrived in Bellshill from Lithuania in 1902–3. My grandfather George McKay and his younger brother Robert (“Buddy”) were both born at Bothwell Park Rows (top left). The Šugžda family moved to Bothwellhaugh (just off the map to the bottom) in 1911. Jonas’ step-daughter, Ona Simanavičiūtė, married Jonas Zinkevičius in 1911, but he died in a Russian camp in 1921. Ona eventually moved from Bothwellhaugh to Bothwell Park Farm (by 1937), and remarried in 1938 (to Willie Dubickas) — she later lived at New Orbison Rows and, finally, at 23 Croftcut Avenue.

Andrew McKay had relocated his family to Galston by 1905, but returned to Bothwell Park before 1920. After Andrew died in 1932, our only family members left in Bellshill were my granny’s older half-sister, Annie (previously Zinkevičius, now Annie Dubickas), and John Shugesda (her younger brother), and his family. Johnny had returned to Bellshill from the USA in 1931, and a number of his descendants still live in the vicinity.


Comments

Bellshill District Map — 14 Comments

  1. Was born in 47 Reid street behind the church , there was a big swing park that I could see from my window. Moved to Mossend 1961 when I was 6 , good times in the old 1 room house

  2. Hi William,
    My grandfather’s brother died (aged 34) at 39 Reid Street, in 1927. You wouldn’t have any photos of Reid Street or the Bothwell Park Rows by any chance?
    Cheers,
    Alan

  3. Was wondering if anyone can remember my mother in laws family who lived at 73 Thorndean Avenue Bellsill.
    The head of the family was William Macdonald, he wife was Sarah. They had 4 children, John, Malcome, David and Mary. Mary, my mother in law was born in October 1923 in Crown(?) Terrace, Union Street Bellshill. She married my father Hashu Advani and had 11 children. One of the children, Ramesh, died in March 1952 aged 9 months. We are not sure when the made the move to Thornhill Avenue only that they lived there for a long time.
    Many thanks
    Angela

  4. My wife Susan Martin nee Farrell was born in Bellshill Maternity Hospital in 1953. Her father John Farrell worked in the mines and lived in miners cottages in the area. Are there any photos of those cottages available?

    • Hello Anthony,
      I’m sorry to say that I don’t have any photos of the Bellshill miner’s rows – more’s the pity! I would dearly like to see the rows at Belgowan Terrace and Bellside Terrace, as well as the Bothwell Park Rows a little further out of town — but none seem to exist. If you ever find any, please let me know.
      Good luck with your research,
      Alan

  5. Hi Alan, Just wanted to say thank you for sharing your family history. I have been finding out about my Lithuanian grandparents through church registrations, certificates and censuses and have recently discovered an extended family I knew nothing of. My grandparents lived at 5 Bellside Terrace (1906 – 1908) and 5 Bellgowan Terrace (1906) and my granduncle lived at no 4 (1911) so I appreciated your article very much as your family’s story must be very much like my own. Like you, I have discovered that my grandparents had several members of their families, brothers and cousins, ghettoed in Glebe Street. One again many thanks.

    • Hello Jacqui,

      Many thanks for your note. Yes, there seems to be a whole bunch of Lithuanians at Bellside & Bellgowan Terraces. My great-grandparents live at 7 Bellside in 1904, and at 6 Bellside in 1911. In 1910, they lived at 4 Bellgowan, but by October 1911 they had moved south to Bothwellhaugh.

      An interesting find I had for the 1911 census was a “Jurgis Shusda” at 4 Bellgowan (where my family had lived the previous year). Perhaps “Shusda” is a misspelling for my family name “Šugžda / Sugzda”? Also some Vidrinkas family lived at that same address – and “Vidrinkas” was my great-great-grandmother’s family name. I suspect that many Lithuanian migrants from Suvalki arrived at Bellshill at the same time and all lived around Glebe Street! I also suspect that some of these might have been my great-grandparent’s families, all migrating together.

      Perhaps we are related! 🙂

      Best wishes,

      Alan

  6. Hi Alan,

    Thank you for sharing all the interesting info about your family as well as the maps of Lithuania and Glasgow! You answered so many questions I’ve had while conducting my ancestry research.

    My great-grandfather and his brothers (last name Raudonaitis) migrated from Suvalki to Bellshill to work in the coal mines in the early 1900s, then most moved on to Scranton, Pennsylvania, USA. I have found other Lithuanian town names that I can’t locate on any maps or with Google searches. I believe it’s the case of Americans spelling it out by sounding it out like you mentioned above. I’ll message you about those town names in a different post. I’d love your thoughts on the town info!

    After searching various records, I was able to locate that my great-great uncle lived at 7 Glebe Street! Very exciting reading your stories and others’ comments — it is a small world! I have been looking for photographs of the row homes, too, with no luck. I will keep trying and let you know if I find anything.

    Thank you so much and thanks to all commenters!

    Take care and all the best,
    Kath

    • Hi Kath,
      Really pleased you’ve been able to get some information from my site. Please do let me know if you ever find photos of Glebe Street – I’d be thrilled. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if our families knew each other!
      It is small world – good luck with your research, and don’t hesitate to contact me if I can ever be of help.
      Best regards,
      Alan

  7. I’m happy to find this map! My family (McGarrity) lived at 29a Reid Street from 1915-1925, when they left Scotland for America.

  8. Fascinating to see this Alan, my great-grandparents were the Blažys who moved to Bellshill in the 1910s (I think) and would have been part of the same community. My grandmother Mariona aka Mary Crossan lived in Mossend kept the books for the Scottish Lithuanian Social Club on the Calder Rd for years.

    I would love to find out where in Lithuania the Blažys came from, sadly they are all in the Bothwellpark cemetery now so I can’t ask them!

    • Hi Tony,
      Yes, like you, I wish I’d spoken to some of my Lithuanian relatives before they passed (including my own mum, who died at 62). Luckily, I have a couple of cousins who knew something of the Bellshill Lithuanians, and both my grandmother and her older half-sister had applied and received copies of their birth certificates from Lithuania in 1927 – both these parish records have since been destroyed, so we are very lucky to have the copies. However, many records are still available in Lithuania, and a researcher was able to get quite a few of my ancestors’ BDMs – if you ever want to go down that path, I can suggest a researcher. 🙂
      Good luck with your research,
      Alan

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