Fife FHS Discussion Board

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Kathleen Mason - Thursday, 17 July 2014 14:21

Wondering if anyone has connections to the DRYSDALE/REID/ATKIN/STOBIE family. I have found them living on and around Bent Farm in Saline, Fife in 1841- 1851 time frame. They seem to have moved between families, living with aunts/uncles etc so am having a hard time tracking them. Also interested in STOBIE from Carnock/ Perth /Saline/Fife. Seem to have been farmers and blacksmith in early 1800's.

Thomas Muir - Tuesday, 15 July 2014 11:30


Reseaching my Muir line:  I think that one of my great x4 grandfathers was a "Captain John Muir" who was a merchant mariner in the last decades of the 18C. I believe he was part of a family business sailing first out of a Fifeshire port, then later from London. He was probably born somewhere in Fife about 1745.

He certainly married in England to one Elizabeth Gould and they had at least four children. It seems Elizabeth died and he may have remarried to a 'Mary'.

It also looks as if he had a brother called William Muir who was also involved in the business.  It looks as if they traded to northern Europe and also to the West Indies - and may well have been slavers at some point. (An ad in The Times for one of their ships for sale indicates that it is fitted for that trade.) Another of their ships was called BRICE - it sank in 1770 on voyage from Petersburgh to Bristol: John Muir was master; no loss of life.

I would be very interested to know if anyone has made a study of late 18C East coast Scottish maritime businesses and the families involved, or whether anyone is able to supply any further information.

A long time ago when I was trying to identify whether my Muirs were connected to Thomas Muir of Huntershill's family (fam mythology says we were, but little else), I remember reading that his Glasgow hop merchant father imported hops to Scotland from Kent on ships owned by cousins(?) of his, also called Muir. Could this be one and the same family business?

Tom Muir

Marg. - Saturday, 19 July 2014 05:10

Hi Tom,

Any connection to the Western Australian Muirs?




Marg. - Tuesday, 15 July 2014 02:20

Hi All, I'm researching our C/Katherine Scott, business proprietor, Colinsburgh who named her daughter Margaret Anderson and a grandson as heirs in 1823. Subsequently Margaret Anderson named her eldest son James Kidd as heir in 1845. Margaret's husband Thomas, Baker, Colinsburgh may have managed the business for them but it has been suggested that there was also a mill. Is anyone familiar with the history of milling in the area?


Margaret - Monday, 14 July 2014 02:51

I was wondering whether or not any of you who have lists of those buried in the various cemeteries would recognize any of the names I have listed below.

Henry Page & Katherine Mann married in Edinburgh 1798..she was born in Kinghorn

1870 Thornton Henry Page & Mary Beveridge Adamson 1906 Thornton

1947 Thornton Alexander Page & Jane Anderson Laing 1931 Dysart (Think Markinch..took a picture years ago but the angle doesn’t show writing well)

1960 Henry Page & Agnes Thomson 1971 Both died in Thornton  (believe in Kirkcaldy Crem)

Robert Brodie & Grizel Thomson they lived in Dysart

Robert Brodie & Ann Sharp lived in Dysart

Alexander Mann & Katharine Orrock married Kinghorn

1901 Peter Laing & Grace Davidson 1891 they lived in Dysart

1850 Peter Laing & Margaret Norval 1877 they lived in Dysart

1829 Peter Laing & Elizabeth Campbell they lived in Dysart

1850 Joseph Norval & Janet Cree 1830 Markinch  both died in Thornton

Charles Norval & Margaret Paterson married in Kintore Aberdeen

James Norvald & Janet Jaffrey married in Aberdeen

John Cree & Margaret Forbes lived in Kettle Parish

William Cree & Margaret Dall both lived in Kettelhill

1847 David Davidson & Jean Anderson 1860 Pathead both died in Dysart

William Anderson & Mary Bogie married 1770 in Kinglassie

1860  Coaltown of Balgonie Henry Adamson & Christian Beveridge 1878 Thornton

John Adamson & Isabell Thomson both lived in Dysart

1785 Henry Adamson & Jane Cunningham 1785  both lived in Dysart

James Adamson & Isabelle Dryelly married 1765 in Dysart

John Drylie & Christian Stevinson both born in Dunfermline in 1670s

William Drylie & Bessie Stevenson married 1668 Dunfermline

JohnStevinson & Bessie Allan

Thomas Stevinson & B Vallane (Wallange)

Charles Wallange & Margaret Durie

1916 Markinch James Thomson & Margaret Crombie Markinch 1946 

1899  Markinch James Thomson & Margaret Patterson 1927  Auchterderran

1873 Scoonie James Thomson & Jean Malcolm  1874 Scoonie

1852 Dykeneuk James Thomson & Frances Watt 1868 Scoonie

1824-1852 Scoonie David Thomson & Isabell Watson 1832-1837 

1789  Scoonie John Thomson & Jannett Wilson 1835-1837   Scoonie

Andrew Thomson & Christian Anderson Andrew born Scoonie; married in Kennoway 1708

1904 Markinch Robert Crombie & Margaret Lister 1914 Markinch

1881 Dysart Robert Crombie & Agnes Wallace 1844 Whins of Barnslee

Robert Crombie & Jane Scott married 1796 Auchtermuchty

1884 Bathgate Linlithgow Alexander Lister & Isabella Small  1850  Collessie

1833 Markinch George Lister (Litester) & Christian Amely (Amelie)  #

James Lister (Litester) & Rachel Mackie married in Cults 1759

1883 Markinch Robert Patterson & Agnes Grieve 1889 Dunfermline

1855  Thornton Robert Patterson & Catherine Smith 1870 Thornton                                                                             *2 dau Catherine & Margaret are buried Markinch PATERSON, CATHRINE (9): daughter of Robert Paterson at Thornton; 27 May 1838; left side of sister, Margaret Paterson, interred 1 April 1838 (No 26, 1838) PATERSON, MARGARET (19): daughter of Robert Paterson at Thornton; 1 April 1838

Alexander Patterson & Jean Aitken (Atkin) 1823  both died in Markinch

1837 Ceres Thomas Grieve & Elspeth Smith  1859 St. Andrews

Robert Smith & Agnes Wallace both born in 1750s and married in 1770s in Ceres so I would guess both died in Ceres

David Watt & Ann Howie  1823 Ceres

1768 Ceres Thomas Watt & Margaret Morris (MORES) (ON)   


John Watt & Janet Elder both married in Falkland 1763???

Alison - Sunday, 20 July 2014 11:43

These MI's are available to purchase from our online shop. just click the link above to see what is available.

Barbara - Thursday, 21 August 2014 04:17

Alexandra Mann & Katherine Orrock are direct descendants of mine.

Sue Sims - Thursday, 10 July 2014 06:52

I am researching Captain John Stevenson, born 1791 Kingsbarns. He was a whaler on the ship 'Horn' working for Dundee Whaling company He came to Australia in 1836 & I have a lot of info on him here but wanting to know more about him in Fife His father was Henry John  & his mother Christan Mtchall.

Cathy - Wednesday, 09 July 2014 11:04

Hello I have a family mystery which I'm hoping someone can help me with! My Great Grandfather Henry Giles was born in Lochgelly, Fife about 1853. His mother was Barbara Whyte and his Father was Henry Giles. His parents were not married and Barbara later married Daniel Mathieson in Lochgelly in 1856. Henry Giles senior is the mystery as I can't find any trace of him in census or BDM. On his son's marriage certificate it says his father's occupation is gardener but that is all I know. Where could I find a record of Henry junior's birth? I've tried Scotland's People but no luck. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you

Sue Delaney - Tuesday, 08 July 2014 18:31

I live in the United States and have an interesting tale to tell about a young Scotsman who fought for both sides during the American Revolution.

My ancestor, James "Scotch" Walker was christened 1 May 1756 at Craigshouse in Saline, County Fife, the son of a miller, Alexander Walker and his wife, Christian [Henderson] Walker. The couple had six other children: Margaret, Henry, Wilhamina, Thomas, Janet and William. 

Like many a poor Scottish lad of his time, James enlisted as a private soldier in His Majesty's army, ending up in an artillery unit of the 21st of Foot. He came to North America in 1777 with troops under the command of General John Burgoyne to assist the British army there in its efforts to put down the insurgents. 

However, after the British defeat at Saratoga, James, apparently being a resourceful young man, decided to try his luck in the New World and managed to escape from the group of prisoners being marched back to Boston harbor bound for England. He spent the harsh New England winter in Palmer, Massachusetts and when spring came he enlisted with the first of various Massachusetts militia units he fought with through the remainder of the war, including seeing action at West Point at the time of Benedict Arnold's defection to the British. James would receive a pension for his military service to his newly adopted country. I imagine he is either a traitor or a patriot, depending on which side of the ocean you're on.

In December 1781, James married Sarah Field in Greenwich, Massachusetts. From this union came numerous descendants who to this day are very proud of their Scottish heritage. As one of those descendants, I would like to travel back across the Atlantic and connect with people and places I have in common with my Scottish ancestors. If you or someone you know may also be a twig on the family tree of Alexander Walker and his wife Christian Henderson, I'd like to hear from you!

Sue Delaney

40686 County Highway 60

Perham, Minnesota 56573




Cell Phone: 218-849-2709

Home Phone: 218-346-4511

Frances Black - Saturday, 12 July 2014 07:59

Great story - we love these types of "snippets"!

Frances - FFHS Secretary

Susan Parton - Saturday, 05 July 2014 16:20

Looking for information on a Mary Cook married to Joseph McNeill in 1942. Fife. Joseph Mc Neill lived in Cowxenbeath

Marie Tyler - Saturday, 28 June 2014 18:40

 AUCHTERMUCHTY:  Thomas Smith TAYLOR (dob 1839), son of William TAYLOR (dob 1816, Newburgh)  and Jane BISSETT (or possibly BISHOP).  Also Jane McCULLOCH (a later marriage of Jane Bissett to Michael McCulloch.  she died in Glasgow in 1876 


 Hello and help! - I'd be very grateful if anyone could help me with the above.  Thomas S. TAYLOR gives William TAYLOR and Jane BISSETT as his parents on his marriage in 1859 in Glasgow to Rebecca WALKER.  

I can find no trace of Thomas' birth, or a marriage for William and Jane and there are lots of Jane BISSETTs in Fife who might be the mother, if she is from Fife.  She (Jane BISSETT) may have married Michael McCULLOCH and lived with him in Glasgow until her death in 1876.  This Jane gives her place of birth as Perth.


The census from Auchtermuchty from 1841 which I think would help enormously is 'missing'!  Is there somewhere I can find birth registrations for Non-conformists?


Any help or light anyone can shed would be most appreciated.



Christine Searle - Thursday, 26 June 2014 10:24

Hi,  I am descended from Thomas Tullideph, my 6xg-grandfather (sometimes spelled Tullidelph, as well as Tillydaph) who was Principal of St. Andrews University 1747 - 1777.  I can take the line back another 3 generations to William, recorded as Dulledaphe on his son's birth, although later his son's name became the standard Tullideph.  I know that William Tullideph was a covenanter and Principal of St. Salvators and St. Leonards.

I would like to know if anyone else is connected to this family, or has any more information?  They should go back to Aberdeen at some point but I haven't yet made that connection.  I have a simple One-Name-Study on Wikitree showing what Information I have.


Colleen Brown - Tuesday, 24 June 2014 04:31

H    I have hit a brick wall with my COULTER family of Dunfermline.   I would love to find the mother of my GGgrandmother..........

CATHERINE COULTER was born c1835/36 (presumably dunfermline?)

Father....DAVID COULTER......Mother....CATHERINE

I have researched census records etc.  1841 census Catherine was living with grand parents while David was at war.(so presume mother has died) .......he later married  Ann Anderson in 1852

On his death record  it states 1st wife as Catherine McGoad (can't find record)  BUT on Catherine's (b.1835/36) marriage cert here in Australia it looks like it gives her mother as

CATHERINE McBEAN or McCLEAN but very hard to read (doesn't look like McGOAD


DAVID COULTER was b.19.2.1809 DUNFIRMLINE...his parents were THOMAS COULTER and CATHERINE LUTTIT/LOUTIT   GRRR so many Catherines

hope you are not as confused as me  and can help me break down this wall

thanks Colleen


Shirley Bulley - Friday, 20 June 2014 04:20

I am a family researcher living in South Australia.   I have already made enquiries about membership of the Fife FHS, but in the meantime I would be interested in hearing from any people connected with or descended from Andrew and Helen Neilson (nee Henderson) who were married 0n 15th June 1799.   I am researching the name on behalf of my brother-in-law, who is descended from William Neilson, born 1st April 1811 in Fife, and who married Janet (Jessie) McFarlane.   Any help would be much appreciated.

David Hughes - Wednesday, 04 June 2014 11:14


I will be visiting the East Neuk of Fife with my daughter, Mary Hughes, mid July, travelling from AustraliA 

If you recognize any of the details below, please reply. With a view to meeting wider family.

My grandfather, Joseph Butters Hughes was born in Pittenweem in 1874 and my grandmother, Isabella Murray Watson was born in Cellardyke in 1875. They married in Cellardyke in 1899.

My grandfather was a fisherman from his teens and then became a wholesale fishmonger around the time of his marriage when he moved to Edinburgh where my father (also named Joseph Butters Hughes and the 5th of 7 siblings) was born in 1908. My grandfather also had fishmongering businesses in Leven and Aberdeen. The family migrated to Australia in 1929. 

Great grandparents were:

James Heugh b.1847 Pittenweem: d.1881 (married 1869) Mary Butters b.1848 Pittenweem: d.1925 Pittenweem (Mary and children are listed as Hughes) 

David Watson b.1850 Cellardyke (m.1871) Euphemia Murray b.1854 Kilrenny

Great Great grandparents were: 

James Heugh b.1817 Pittenweem (m. 1839) Elizabeth Thompson b1814 St Monance 

Joseph Butters b 1815 Pittenweem (m. 1840) Jessie Bowman b.1819 Pittenweem 

David Watson b.1813 Kilrenny (m.1841) Margaret Charles b.1815 Burntisland

Robert Murray b.1819 Kilrenny (m.1847) Isabella Watson b.1819 Kilrenny 

All the above males are listed as fishermen. 

Thank you, David Hughes  

Alison - Sunday, 08 June 2014 08:46

Hi David,

i have done some research on Hughes in Pittenweem. There is a connection and I know of living decendants. Can you please email me so that I may be able to help you. Alison,Fife Family History Society

Harry D. Watson - Monday, 09 June 2014 18:33

Hello David. Have you seen my book "Kilrenny and Cellardyke: 800 Years of History", published in 1986 by John Donald (now part of Birlinn)? In it I mention the disaster of 1890 when the fishing-boat "Garland" with its Cellardyke crew, including your David Watson, was lost with all hands. David Watson had previously sailed on the China tea-clippers, some of which were owned by his fellow native of Cellardyke Captain Alexander Rodger of Glasgow.

I have a photocopy of a photograph of David Watson and Euphemia Murray.

Butters, Bowman and Hughes (pronounced Heugh) have been common names in Pittenweem up to modern times. 

Harry D. Watson

Thomson Aikman - Tuesday, 10 June 2014 04:35

Hi David

Harry's book mentions David Watson's having fallen from the mizzen of the tea clipper Taeping.

If you don't already have the information, the Taeping was the winner of the dramatic China tea race of 1866 (and was owned wholly or substantially by Alexander Rodger). Based on searches done on my behalf, there was no one from the East Neuk on the Taeping during that race. However, a David Watson, aged 19, of Fifeshire was on board the Taeping for the 1870 race. The Board of Trade records relating to the Taeping (official number 47842) are in the National Archives in London, reference BT100/23, arranged by year of return to England. The 1870 records would include crew lists and the official log (not the full one with sailing details, etc., but it may well include mention of David's dramatic descent).

Again, if you haven't already dug into the tea races, a pretty full report of the 1866 race is in The China Clippers by Basil Lubbock, which can be downloaded from the internet, as can some good paintings of the Taeping.



David Hughes - Sunday, 15 June 2014 12:56


Thankyou Harry and Thomson


I wasn't aware of David Watson's sailing with the Taeping. I have downloaded Lubbock's book and read the fascinating account of the race with Ariel.


Harry, my cousin Peter Hughes here in Melbourne has a copy of your 800 years of History but I won't be able to view it before we travel. I would appreciate if you could email a copy of the photograph to me at . We will be lodging in Pittenweem over July 12th-19th as a base for the East Neuk and to visit Edinburgh where my father was born. Also I have a g.g.grandfather who was pastor at Charlotte Chapel in the 1850s. - Monday, 02 June 2014 01:50

Can anyone help me with the shipping from Leith in 1846. I am looking for a ship called FAMA . Passage for a James Bell was paid for by Hamilton/Riddle Property owners when they contracted him as a sheppard

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thankyou

Sue Barton - Sunday, 01 June 2014 07:55

Hello, I was wondering if anyone can help me, my ggg grandfather Alexander Fouls (Fowles) was born about 1803 ,Cupar Fife,  He joined the Scots Fusiliers  Foot Guards in Nov 1822 at the age of 19. He served in Portugal and was in England where he married and had his family. Returning to Cannongate poor house where he died in 1864.  His occupation was shoemaker. We believed his parents to be William and Christian (Aikman) Fouls. However during our research we discovered that they had another child (birth and christening dates are different) called Alexander Fouls born 1808. We cannot find a death for the first Alexander. Does anyone have any sugestions how we prove that they either had to sons with the same name or the first one died and our Alexander belongs to another family. Are there apprentice records available.. My cousin is writing a book on the Fouls/fowler branch of our tree and we would like to go back as far as possible. We are in Victoria Australia.

Susan Schipper - Friday, 30 May 2014 21:02

I'm looking for info on Duncan Davidson born 1801 in Kingston (census says Kingston, Ireland) but wondered about Kingston, Scotland.  Would like to find where he is buried.  Think it might be Dunfermline or Dysart about 1870.  5 of his children: Danial, Duncan, Jean, John and Ann died in Gallatown in the 1840's and I would like to see where they might  be buried.

I am visiting Dysart/Dunfermline June 17 and 18 so hope I hear back before then



Fran - Tuesday, 27 May 2014 21:19

looking for any info on my grans side - She was a mcleod born in lumphinanns,her fathers mother was grace drysdale downie. 
My grans mum was lizzie hepburn whose sister was kate hepburn who married a james menzies philps i believe. My aunt keeps telling me she had a very large family of all girls. If anyone recognises any names please get in touch 
Thanks in advance


fran - Saturday, 07 June 2014 18:20

Forgot to leave an email just incase

Tom Cunningham - Tuesday, 27 May 2014 13:22

Is anyone interested in John Ritchie who was at (business address most likely) 15, Roslyn Street, Kirkcaldy, in 1904?

He rented a field to Buffalo Bill Cody when the Wild West came to Kirkcaldy on 17th August 1904. E-mail me and I'll pass on the details.  

Tom Cunningham - Tuesday, 27 May 2014 13:51

PS -

e-mail address is

Lisa Gregory - Monday, 26 May 2014 21:45

I am looking for any informationi on Colin Archibald Carswell . Born

1946 . I have current information that he may of died last year . I would still like any information of him or any of his family ..thankyou

Carol Bickel - Sunday, 25 May 2014 12:17

Hoping to make a contact with anyone researching William and Mary (Laing) Rutherford. They were married in Mordinton but lived in Largo, Fife.  Their children were Elspit b. 1817, John b. 1820, Andrew b.1822, William b 1823, Nancy, James b. 1830, Helen b. 1833 and George.  I am a descendant of Andrew who married in 1854 in Baltimore, Maryland, USA in 1854. Thank you Carol Bickel 

DON CATHRO - Sunday, 18 May 2014 18:59

I am posting on behalf of Cathros in New Zealand who are trying to find out more of their family links with Fife . Alexander Cathro married Isabella Nicoll at Kilrenny in 1851 and emigrated to NZ in 1855. I believe Alexander was a  son of a George Cathro and Margaret Brown of Easter Anstruther. Any info that I can pass on or person who can assist would be greatly appreciated.   Don

Harry D. Watson - Tuesday, 10 June 2014 18:49

Hello Don. I believe your Alexander Cathro is the 10-year-old boy of that name who in the 1841 census of Kilrenny parish is living in the last house to be enumerated. He is living with John Brown, cabinetmaker, and his wife Catherine. I think this is the future Bailie John Brown, cabinetmaker, who lived at Cunzie House on the Crail road in Anstruther (but it may have been in Kilrenny parish) and his wife was Catherine Deas. Their claim to fame is that the young Robert Louis Stevenson lodged with them when his father's engineering firm were doing some work on Anstruther harbour. 

Alexander Cathro was also a cabinetmaker and he and his wife Isabella Nicol (daughter of James Nicol and Agnes Wilson) called their 1st son John Brown Cathro and their 2nd son James Cathro. 

As to Alexander Cathro's parents, the 1841 census claims that he was not born in Fife. His surname was quite common in the county of Angus (formerly Forfarshire).



Margaret CASELEY - Thursday, 15 May 2014 19:26

On Ancestry an address in the 1871 Census for George S Carlow is Mason of Luea House Parish, Markinch. Any ideas what that might be?

Grangemouth where he was born was spelt Granze Muth, so anything goes.

David Houston - Thursday, 15 May 2014 14:48

Hi Jo,

I can help you as I descend from Helen Hume via her 2nd marriage to James Houston


Please email and I will share what I know about the family



Sharon Lorenzelli - Thursday, 08 May 2014 10:50

I'm trying to find my great, great,great grandfather and his family. The information I have is his name is James Knox, born abt 1821, Fifeshire, Scotland. His father is listed on his marriage certificate as William Knox occupation Cooper. James was a Mariner - noted also as Boatswain's Mate. A family name that comes up often is Agnes - this could be a clue to his mother's name. He married in 1855 when I found him as marrying Hannah Suffield from Stepney and they lived in Limestone and later he worked in the dockyards. I would love to be able to trace my Scottish ancestry and would value any input. There is a James Knox born Burntisland but his father was a Baker and I have been told that if you had a trade you stayed in that line of work - so therefore I have ruled out this lead. Thankyou for the opportunity to post this message.

Jane Marshall - Wednesday, 07 May 2014 19:22

I have recently visited Falkland, Fife in the hope of gathering information about my ancestors.  The WHITES, they lived at Rotten Row, Balmblae and were weavers.  I have found some information from Scotland People and found a grave stone for William White and some of this family.  William White was my grandfathers brother.  Many people of Falkland were very helpful in my search.  Has  anyone got any more info or are you a White who had ancestors in Falkland.