Families I’m researching

Elizabeth Cruden (nee Brown), Alexander Cruden, David Ramsay, Margaret Ramsay (nee Cruden), Isabella Cruden (nee Wallace).

Elizabeth Cruden (nee Brown), Alexander Cruden, David Ramsay, Margaret Ramsay (nee Cruden), Isabella Cruden (nee Wallace).

On my dad’s side: Leslie, Elder, Nicholson, Gourlay, Forbes, Kinnell: mainly from Fife, Scotland

On my mum’s side: Ramsay, Cruden, Black, Wallace, Fisher, Morrison, Cunnison, Cameron, Alison: Fife, Angus, Perthshire, Scotland.

25 thoughts on “Families I’m researching

    • No Barrows, and the only Smith was a Jean Smith who married my grand uncle Andrew Scott Nicholson in Dysart, Fife, in 1918. They emigrated to Michigan in 1923, lived in Dearborn and died without having kids as far as I can tell. But I feel as though I’ve only scratched the surface.

  1. Good luck with your research! I’ve found working on the family tree to be extremely addictive. Over 5,000 names discovered so far and some very interesting stories attached to them. I particularly enjoyed your most recent post about the alcohol. Many of my relatives worked in pubs, mostly in London.

  2. Do you mind if I ask a question due to you Scottish ancestry? Did you ever run into the name Minnes? They were Ulster Scots, who immigrated to Canada in early 1800’s. They show either Ireland and Scotland as their place of birth. I figured out that the difference in birth location seemed to change depending on current politics. I’ve searched Irish records, and Minnes is almost nonexistent, but I see the name in Scotland a lot.

    • Hi. Thanks for visiting my blog. I’ve never heard the name Minnes; either in my research or in “life”. My family – and most of my ancestors – are from Fife so that might be part of it. I know that Minnes is a town/village in Grampian, so perhaps – like my Cruden’s – the name is location-related.

      The other thing I thought was that perhaps it was a contraction or corruption of McInnes? If they were Ulster Scots it might be that they dropped the Mc so as to differentiate themselves from the local Irish? Just speculation of course. Have you tried the genealogical/historical societies in Grampian? Sorry I can’t really help. I’d love to hear how you get on with this search; it’s fascinating!

      PS: just found this which might be either a red herring, or put the cat amongst the pigeons . http://www.houseofnames.com/minnes-family-crest

  3. Every piece of info helps! Thank you. I was not aware of the town Minnes, and wondered about the dropping of the Mc. I can now look further into that. I have not tried the Grampian societies, so will look there as well. My husband does business with a Scottish man, and he heard of the name, but said it was spelled different. I haven’t had the opportunity to talk to him myself. Need to do that.

    I have seen the info on House of Names. Thank you for taking time to do this. I have Scandinavian in me, and am beginning to wonder if this Minnes line migrated from there. They we very tall people. My grandfather was 6′ 3″ and he was born in 1902! I know they were in Northern Ireland, and they called themselves Scottish (part of the Church of Scotland). I just love learning about your country. It is so beautiful, and I told my husband we MUST go there one day!!! (he travels to England a lot for business).

    Glad I found your blog. Thank you for your reply, and have a great day!

  4. I have a branch of my family who were the first European settlers in New Zealand- at Kaukapakapa. Elizabeth Frances Dixon who married Andrew James Bonar. Their son was William Bonar, a timber merchant who went to The Cook Islands.
    Andrew Bonar was sheep inspector, coroner and JP.
    My other NZ relations were the Fotheringhams.
    Both sets came from Scotland.
    The Helensville Museum has material but I need to visit one day and go to the NZ Archives.
    Cruden wrote a Concordance of the Bible and the Bonars were associated with the Evangelical Society. They even had a press in Raratonga.
    May be a connection somewhere..

    • Hi Candia. Amazing; we’re house-hunting around Helensville/Kaukapakapa at the moment. I drove past the Helensville Musuem and thought I should go and have a look around sometime – have already checked out the cemetery! Archives NZ has a very good online catalogue – but I’ve found that ordering information from them is quite expensive. My NZ connection only goes as far back as my parents who immigrated here in the 1960s. Before that, every single ancestor I’ve found is Scots.

  5. Josephine Cameron Macintosh (1892-1985), youngest of four daughters of an Edinburgh headmaster, migrated to Fresno, California to teach the local Indians English circa 1910. Thanks for checking-in on our blog.

  6. I’m taking a guess that you are still in NZ. Have you links with Leslies, across the ‘ditch’, in Victoria? I classed their wool many years ago and one of the boys spent time in New Zealand…not sure if with relatives or not.

  7. Absolutely not! It would have been cool to find some Leslie rellies in Victoria to visit. I haven’t been to Melbourne for ages; and its even longer since I ventured into the “hinterland”. Am always keen for an excuse to cross the ditch. πŸ™‚

  8. I admire this an awful lot ! There is already a relative researching my father’s family (a child of one of his brothers), but as I can’t stand her I have no idea what she’s doing and couldn’t care less. I would so love to be able to do something like this; but they’re all gone .. all gone.

    • Thank you. Your comment about your relative got me thinking about the politics of family history and how people hold on to information as a powerbase. I don’t have many relatives left to “ask” and am relying a lot on secondary sources, but I want to do this, to record what I learn for the future, so that others can’t abuse information and knowledge in the same way πŸ™‚ Thanks for stopping by and commenting; you’ve raised a point that’s come up a few times in other blogs and got me thinking about it again.

      • I can only admire your ability to find those secondary sources, Su! I wouldn’t know where to begin. I once had a play with one of the family sites, and was so utterly confused within 5′ that I just went away. So good on you !!!!

        • Thank you; I remember finding the family history sites really fiddly and complex too. I’m really fortunate that all my ancestors were Scots, and the Scottish national record-keeping system is both brilliant and accessible. It’s one of those things were you start with the one bit of information you’re sure of and work outwards (hoping for luck and a fair wind most of the time admittedly). πŸ™‚

        • Scots ? – I ADORE the Scots. Scotland is a country that makes me weep for its history, its tradition, its very … essence. Chic and I would have loved to have time to go to Scotland. I would like to be transported there, now: “Beam me up and over, Scotty, to the land of your birth” …

  9. πŸ™‚ strange how we Scots are so generally well-regarded? We colonised everywhere (not always peacefully) and yet aren’t tarred with the same brush as the English. When my parents first came to NZ from Scotland, they encountered quite a lot of anti-English sentiment (whinging poms, etc) but when people discovered they were Scots, the welcome was much warmer.

  10. Hi. I would like to tell you my mother was Elvira mary cruden, her father George cruden, his father Alexander cruden who emigrated here to new Zealand from Scotland.
    regards jillian bailey

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