Toward the end of the first year after the couple arrived in Edinburgh Mary King gave birth to a daughter. Not long after Mrs. King began to show symptoms of consumption. William King details in his autobiography how he cared for her and how he got a wet nurse for the child. But his wife was to die Feb. 25, 1846. “After the death of my wife my whole affection was placed on the Child now left the last of my family and the very image of her Mother, her playful innocence had drawn my affection strongly towards her. On coming from the Class she would stretch out her arms as soon as she saw me enter the door, to leave her nurse and come to me and quite contented when she got on my knee… My child who was growing well with her wet nurse was taken suddenly on the fifth of May with Hydrocephalus or water in the head and died on the ninth of May.”
Dr. and Mrs. Chalmers were to take William King under their wings. He often breakfasted with them, especially on Wednesday mornings when they held public breakfasts for the many guests who would call upon the president of the college and head of the church. “A great deal of information was obtained at those breakfasts; as the guests were men of learning and from all parts of the world.”
Who would you like to sit down to breakfast with?