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Name: ARMSTRONG, Marion Kathleen, Hon. Mrs

Nee: Napier, sister of 5th Baron Napier of Magdala, dau of Edward Herbert Scott Napier

Birth Date: 1901 Bhavnagar, India

Death Date: 14 Sept 1986 Armagh

Profession: Farmer

Area: Wispers Farm, Nairobi, Ibonia Kiambu

Married: 22 Feb 1930 James Robert Bargrave Armstrong (1893-1980)

Children: Frances Evelyn (1930-1969); Kathleen Mary Perceval (1932); Florence Margaret (26 May 1934-1981); Henry Napier (1936-2014, m. Rosemary White); John Fortescue (twin of Henry, 1936-1980)

Book Reference: Debrett, Curtis, Olga, Red 31, Burke

General Information:

Curtis - p. 52 - A Walk from Nyeri to Nairobi - 'When we got back to Nyeri from visiting Mother's farm, which was about 30 miles away, Mr Gayer told us the crown wheel had gone in his car and he could only get another one from South Africa, so he was going back in Engelbrecht's car, which ran to Nairobi twice weekly. Mother and I decided to walk as Engelbrecht was too expensive. The Gray Leakeys were in charge of the hotel while the owner was away. They insisted on our taking a little porter's tent. We had thought we would just sleep under a bush in our bedding rolls. However, we were very glad we did take it as at every outspan there were about 30 Indian carts with 2 oxen each. They were coming up to the Kikuyu reserve to buy maize.  We were thankful to have the tent to dress in. Mother and I walked 15 miles a day as that is the distance an ox-cart does which allows time for the oxen to eat. 15 miles a day is very easy going; seven miles till midday, then we would wait for the cart for our lunch and then seven miles after lunch. The oxen were outspanned for an hour at lunch time to drink and feed. Then we went on again to the next outspan. We were walking through the Kikuyu reserve. There were women working in their maize plots. They greeted us and asked where we were going and where we came from, which they do to all passers by. I think they were a bit surprised as white people always drove in cars. It was interesting walking as we took in much more of the country. Often we said we don't remember this part of the road. Mother told me all about her early life till she married as we went along. It took us seven and a half days to get home.
Olga - 1927 - Wispers Farm Nairobi - "Before they left Olga [Watkins] wrote out detailed instructions for Kathleen Armstrong, her young farm manager. The job of managing 140 acres of coffee was no sinecure. The £10 a month all found was about 3 times what the lowest paid white clerk could hope to earn, and her working hours were strenuous ….. [more]

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