The family of Anne Boyd and Henry Miller of Ballyhalbert, County Down.
Over a decade ago, I was sent a list of Boyd graves in various County Down cemeteries.
One of the 20 Boyd graves listed for the Ballyhalbert Cemetery was –
“Henry Miller, Ballyhalbert, died 18-3-1737 aged 62 years
Anne (wife) (alias) died 7-4-1771 aged 79 years
Esther Miller (daughter?) (wife of John Haslett) died 9-1-1790 aged 71 years”
I had assumed that the wife’s name was Boyd, but did not know for sure.
However, this week I was sent this private message, which did confirm that Henry Miller’s
wife was Anne Boyd -
Here lyeth the body of Henry Miller late of B/halbert who died March the 18th 1737 aged 62
yrs Born 1675
Also his wife Anne Miller alias BOYD who died April the 7th day 1771 aged 79 yrs. BORN
Also the body of Esther Miller wife to John HASLETT who died Jan. 9th 1790 aged 71 yrs.
BALLYHALBERT OLD GRAVEYARD
(TABLET ON WALL)
Here underneath lyeth the body of ye Revrent John M Murray who departed this life January
the 9th 1730 aged 32yrs.
He was the first Mineister ordained in ye Parish of Ballyhalbert the meeting house being
built in 1721.
The whole of his time of ye Parish was 6 years 1 month & 24 days. & died in
(sequence) much lamented of his hearers. Done by Robert MILLER.”
And it would appear that from the second gravestone that Henry Miller was a “stonemason”,
all, or part, of the time. (He may have built houses full time, and did gravestone when
required! As indicated by the second gravestone!)
This gravestone does not indicate which Boyd family around “Ballyhalbert” that this Anne
Boyd may have come from. There are “several” Boyd families in this area of County Down.
It does tell us that she was 17 years younger than her husband Henry Miller and it would
suggest that “Esther Miller wife to John HASLETT” was the daughter of Anne and Henry
Miller. If that is the case, it would mean that Anne was 37 years of when Esther Miller
was born and therefore most likely in the second half of Henry and Anne’s children of an
However, the stone does not tell us if this marriage by Henry Miller was his second
marriage and what other children they may have had in addition to Esther? While Anne
could have married Henry anything from about 1706, when she was only 14 years old until
her twenties, in 1716, so it is somewhat hard to estimate how many children they might
have had or if Anne’s mother might have been “Esther Boyd”.
Nor does it tell us what children Esther Miller and John Haslett may have also had
themselves. Or if their children may have migrated?
From the gravestone of Anne Boyd and Henry Miller, where it says they were from
Ballyhalbert, so does this mean the village; the townland or the Parish of that name? I
would assume, from the other gravestones, they are from the townland of Ballyhalbert.
I would like to hear from you if you are researching anyone of these families of BOYD,
MILLAR or HASLETT in Ballyhalbert, the Ards Peninsular or even the whole of County Down.
House of Boyd Society