Kinsearching August 24, 2008




Marleta Childs
P. O. Box 6825
LUBBOCK, TX 79493-6825

     Continuing to add to his series, SCOTTISH HIGHLANDERS ON THE EVE OF THE GREAT MIGRATION, 1725 - 1775, David Dobson has completed THE PEOPLE OF THE GRAMPIAN HIGHLANDS. This sixth volume in the set refers to the part of Scotland stretching from the Braes of Angus in the south, northeastward following a geological fault line known as the Highland Line to Aberdeenshire, then west as far as Strathspey. The region embraces the mountainous areas of Angus, Kincardineshire, Aberdeenshire, Banffshire, and Morayshire; however, it does not include the fertile coastal plain nor does it include Strathmore.

     Since northeast Scotland tended to be a stronghold of Jacobitism (support for the Stuarts), many of the Jacobites from the Grampian Highlands were transported to the American mainland and the West Indies after the rebellions against the English in 1715 and 1745 failed. In the eighteenth century, small-scale emigrations took place from northeastern ports like Aberdeen in order to catch ships leaving from ports located on the Clyde River. An example is the GRANT family from Strathspey, who left Greenock (near Glasgow) on the George, bound for New York in 1774. The rise of the transatlantic timber trade in the late 1700s enabled many people from the Grampians to leave via Aberdeen for the Canadian Maritimes.

     While this volume does not claim to be a comprehensive directory, it does gather references to more than 1,500 inhabitants in the Grampians during the eighteenth century. Details furnished in most entries are the individual's name, a location (place of residence, for instance), a date, and the source of the material. Some entries may contain additional facts such as occupation, names of parents or of spouse and children, or date of death. The main clans associated with the Grampian Highlands were DAVIDSON, FARQUHARSON, FORBES, GORDON, GRANT, KEITH, LINDSAY, MACKINTOSH, MACPHERSON, and OGLIVIE.

     Since Dobson's work supplements data found in the Old Parish Registers of the Church of Scotland, identifies resources that can be used when church records are missing, and demonstrates the range and quality of material available, family researchers with roots in this particular region of Scotland will welcome the publication of SCOTTISH HIGHLANDERS ON THE EVE OF THE GREAT MIGRATION, 1725 - 1775: THE PEOPLE OF THE GRAMPIAN HIGHLANDS. Libraries with genealogical collections containing the previous volumes in Dobson's series will want to purchase a copy of this latest book. Those libraries which do not have the Scottish set may want to place it on their future acquisitions list.

     The 123-page paperback has an informative introduction, a map, interesting illustrations (including one of Braemar's famous Gathering of the Clans), and a key to sources. Names of the principal individuals are arranged alphabetically. Since some entries mention people whose surname is different from that of the main entries, an index to those individuals would be helpful to genealogical researchers.

     To the book's price of $19.50, buyers should add the cost for postage and handling charges. For U. S. postal mail, the cost is $5.00 for one book or the first volume of a set and $2.50 for each additional copy or each additional volume of a set; for UPS, the cost is $7.00 for one copy and $2.50 for each additional book. The volume (item order #9016) may be purchased by check, MasterCard, or Visa from Clearfield Company, 3600 Clipper Mill Rd., Suite 260, Baltimore, Maryland 21211-1953 (for phone orders, call toll free 1-800-296-6687; fax 1-410-752-8492; website ).

     On September 19-20, 2008, the National Orphan Train Celebration will take place in Concordia, KS. In addition to offering a variety of activities and tours, the gala will feature a panel discussion with orphan train riders and descendants, a lecture on the railroad restaurant entrepreneur Fred Harvey, a research workshop on how to find orphan train relatives, and a presentation on orphan train riders by Mary Ellen Johnson, founder of the Orphan Train Heritage Society of America. For more information on registration costs and events, write to the National Orphan Train Complex, P. O. Box 322, Concordia, KS 66901-0322 or go to the website at

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