The Robertson family from Loch Tay


The information on this page is derived from multiple sources including:

The Robertson tartan

The two Robertson tartans are shown below. The red is the traditional colour, the green is the 'hunting' colour.

Where did the Robertson family come from?

The Robertson or clan Donnachaidh family has a long history. The line of the Robertson family on this webpage can be traced back to the eastern and southern sides of Loch Tay (with many births, deaths and marriages recorded at Killin), and possibly with others in the Perth/Blair Athol area. The connection between the two is still being researched.

The Robertson family of (or from near) Kilspindie

For reasons as stated below, it is possible that the Robertson family described on this page, as well as the Guild family, are from the Kilspindie area east of Perth, and that one named Robert Robertson and his wife Janet (nee Guild) moved from that area to the Ardeonaig/Auchmore/Killin area as described below. Research into this is continuing.

Old Parish Registers - Killin

There are no birth entries for May 1698 – May 1709 and November 1717 – October 1727. There are no marriage entries for April 1698 – October 1709 or from November 1717 – November 1782. And there are no death records in the Old Parish Registers. This makes piecing together the history difficult. For further information see this site.

However, it seems possible that the Robertson family described below did not arrive in the area until around 1741.

Around 1718/1723 - Birth of Robert Robertson and Janet Guild

Robert Robertson and Janet Guild married some time around 1739/1740 - see below for more details.

Robert Robertsone may be one of the following born in Perthshire from 1715 to 1723:

Janet Guild may be either:

A key question in terms of Janet's identity is why she would have been in Kilspindie in 1740 to give birth to a son, James Robertson? Was she working there, perhaps as a servant? Was Robert working there too?

In terms of identity, the Janet Guild born in 1719 seems more likely - we see the names James and Isabell in the children born to Janet and Robert Robertson (below), so it seems quite possible that Janet named her second daughter after her mother and grandmother, as per Scottish custom. It may be that Janet and Robert's first son was named after Janet's father and their second son (John) after Robert's father, while their first daughter Mary would be named after Robert's mother - or perhaps they chose Mary as Isobel/Isabell was also Janet's mother?

From 1734 - Colin Campbell and Kathrine McIntyre of Easter Ardeonaig

Some time before 1755, Christian Campbell married Katherine McEwan. Their granddaughter Christian would married into the Robertson family in 1826 (see below for more detail).

Colin Campbell and Kathrine/Katharen McIntyre from Easter Ardeonaig were married in Killin before 1734. Kathrine may be the Cathrine McIntyre born to Finlay McIntyre and Jenet McCaile/NcCaile on 27 October 1715 in Killin (Ref 361 10/65). Two Finlay McIntyre's are recorded in 'Scottish Highlanders' in 1769 (and they may be the same person): One was a joint tenant fatmer at Ballimenoch, north side of Loch Tay, while the other was a tenant farmer at Blairliargan, also on the north side of Loch Tay ['Scottish Highlanders', page 138 (SL)].

There are several Colin Campbells in 'Scottish Highlanders'; Colin may be the 'wright in Killin, witness 1738, bond registered 7 February 1740 [Source: Scottish Highlanders', p.11 (PSC)]. A 'widow of Colin' is recorded as a tenant farmer in Milton of Lawers, on the north side of Loch Tay in 1768 ['Scottish Highlanders', page 14 (SL)]. Colin's parents are unknown but they may have been Thomas and Jean, based on the names of the children born below.

Colin and Kathrine Campbell had the following children, all registered in Killin:

About 1739/40 - Robert Robertson marries Janet Guild

Robert Robertson (possibly born 1718) presumably married Janet Guild (possibly born 1720) in around 1739/1740. The record of thir marriage has not yet been located in the records of Scotland's People but it seems possible that they first lived in the Kilspindie area east of Perth. They had one child in Kilspindie and then moved to the south west side of Loch Tay, between Ardeonaig and Killin. Was there a reason why they had to leave the area? Their children were:

At the time of John's birth, the family was recorded at Easter Ardeonaig, on the southern side of Loch Tay, about 10 kms from Killin. At the time of Duncan's birth, the family was recorded at Auchmore, an area closer to Killin. It is believed that Robert Robertson was an (or the) innkeeper at Auchmore (Source: Peter Durbin).

1746 - Battle of Culloden and impact on highlanders

After the Battle of Culloden in the north of Scotland near Inverness in 1746 (to quell the Jacobite uprisings), and in particular after 1762, life began to get even worse for highlanders. Large scale emigration from Scotland to America began in the 1700s after the Battle of Culloden where the Clan structures were broken up and as a result of the Highland Clearances. Many were forced off the land (from their crofts) and moved to the coast, often thence to overseas countries such as Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and America.

From 1755 - The Campbells of Ardeonaig and Archibald McMartin

Donald McEwen, possibly the son of Patrick and Janet McEwen, baptised 12 March 1749 in Killin (Ref 361 10/203) married Christian Campbell from Ardeonaig before 1755. Donald and Christian had the following children, all registered in Killin:

Donald McEwen may be the 'merchant in Killin' recorded in 'Scottish Highlanders' in 1775 [Source: Scottish Highlanders, page 30'(NAS.GD112/11/1/2/8)]

Archibald McMartin is presumed to have been born between 1760 and 1775 and was destined to marry Katherine McEwen above - see below. The only person with that name and date of bith around that time in Scotland's People is Archibald McMartin, the son of Hugh McMartin and Sarah Campbell, baptised 6 February 1778 (Ref 564/3 20/214). These McMartins are not recorded in 'Scottish Highlanders'.

1756 - Robert Robertson is witness to a charter

Robert Robertson, innkeeper at Auchmore, and James Robertson his (16 year old) son were both witnesses to a charter on 30 March 1756 (Ref GD 112/2/49 in the National Records of Scotland - reference provided by Peter Durbin). Robert's youngest child Duncan was born the same year.

From 1768 - James Robertson - Minister at Callander

Robert and Janet Robertson's son James Robertson (born 1740) studied divinity and oriental languages at University and was recomended by William Robertson, the principal of the University, to become a Minister at Callander. William Robertson's letter states that he had sought opinions (e.g., character references) from 'Mr Campbell of Achallader who has known him [James] from his early years' and 'Mr John Campbell of the Bank in whose family he [James] has resided five years as tutor to his children'. According to the book the 'Lairds and Lands of Loch Tayside by John Christie (1892), 'Auchmore, including Auch and the mill of the property was wadsetted early in the last century to John Campbell of Achallader, Chamberlain of Breadalbane'. (Source: Peter Durbin)

James was was based at Callander, about 12 kms north west of Doune on the road to Killin, from the mid 1770s to 1812.

From 1779 - John Robertson (1744 - ?) of Killin

John Robertson was a farmer according to the death certificate of his son Colin Robertson. He may (but also may not be) be the John Robertson, 'tenant farmer, Finlarig, north side of Loch Tay' in 1769 as recorded in 'Scottish Highlanders'. [Source: Scottish Highlanders, page 58'(SL#4)]

John Robertson married Ellen/Ellin/Helen Clark/Clerk or Clerick (baptised 16 July 1755, Edramucky - ?), date and location not known, but probably before 1779 based on the date of their first child's birth. Family history remembers that Helen/Ellen Clark was the daughter of Finlay Clark/Clerk and Janet McIlduine. Edramucky is on the mid-western side of Loch Tay. Finlay Clerk was recorded as a joint tenant farmer in Etramuckie, north side of Loch Tay, in 1769 [Source: Scottish Highlanders, page 15'(SL#21)]

John and Ellen Robertson had the following children, all baptised in Killin (meaning that they probably travelled from their home for the baptisms in the church at Killin):

Birth records for Robert, Anne and James shows the family at Wester Ardchyle, which was presumably between Ardchyle and Liangarstan. At Ellen and Colin's births, the family was recorded at Liangarstan.

From the late 1770s (approx) - Peter Robertson - Innkeeper

Patrick, later Peter Robertson (born 1747) became an innkeeper (like his father) at Dalwhinnie on the road from Blair Athol to Inverness, on the western edge of present day Cairngorms National Park. (Source: Peter Durbin)

From 1780 (approx) - Duncan Robertson - Jamaica

Duncan Robertson (born 1756) is understood to have left Scotland to carry on business in Jamaica. Their Jamaican estate was Friendship in St Elizabeth, West Jamaica. Duncan returned sometime later (date to be confirmed) and bought Carronvale House near Larbert. (Source: Peter Durbin, quoting the 'Red Book of Scotland' by Gordon MacGregor)

See more details below from 1818.

From 1789 - The McMartins of Killin

Archibald McMartin and Katherine/Catharine McEwen married in Killin on 25 April 1789 (ref 361 10/283). They had the following children, all registered in Killin:

From 1794 - Papers of the Campbell family, Earls of Breadalbane

The 'Papers of the Campbell family, Earls of Breadalbane', dating from 1306 to 1908 (Archives of Scotland reference GD112) include references to Robertsons along the southern side of Loch Tay, east of Ardeonaig, as follows. Further research needs to be undertaken to identify where the Robertsons listed above actually farmed.

Late 1700s - More forced evictions from the highlands

By the late 1700's, more forced evictions were occurring. In 1792 many were forced to the coast and many others emigrated. In January 1782, Lieutenant-General John Campbell (30 March 1762 - 29 March 1834), the 1st Marquess / Marquis of Breadalbane, and a Scottish soldier and landowner, became the Earl of Breadalbane.

From 1811 - Family of James Robertson (1789 - ?)

James Robertson, the son of John Robertson (1744 - ?), married Margaret (Mary) McGregor on 10 February 1811 at Killin (Ref 361 10/332) and they had the following children:

1812 - Death of the Reverend James Robertson (born 1740)

The Reverend James Robertson, the son of Robert and Janet Robertson (nee Guild) who had been a minister at Callander from 1768, died in (or before) July 1812. His death was recorded in The Scot's Magazine of July 1812 (page 567). He was buried in the Tom na Chessaig churchyard in Callander. His gravestone included the following inscription in Latin: 'parentibus carissimis liberisque quattor' ('dear parents and four children')(Source: Peter Durbin, a descendent of James).

Mid 1810s - Duncan Robertson return to Scotland from Jamaica, marries

Duncan Robertson was the youngest child of Robert and Janet Robertson (nee Guild). He returned from Jamaica before 1818.

The following (slightly edited) details about Duncan Robertson, dated October 2011, was found on the website: Permission to use this material has not yet been received.

Dr. Duncan Robertson is documented to have purchased, for just under two thousand pounds, the seventy acre Broomage Estate at Larbert. The estate had an existing six bedroomed mansion house which he extended by adding a lodge and two wings and re-named ‘Carronvale’. Much of the interior was furnished with mahogany which is said to have been sourced from his plantation in Jamaica.

In November 1818, Duncan married Susan Anne (or Anna) Jane Stewart, daughter of Colonel Robert Stewart of Fincastle in Callander. They had three children, all believed to have been born in Edinburgh:

Duncan Robertson (born 1756) died in Edinburgh on 12 February 1824 and was buried at Larbert churchyard. (Source: Peter Durbin, a descendent of James).

On the death of their father, Duncan Stewart Robertson (aged 5) inherited Carronvale whilst another estate, Roehill in Perthshire, went to James Peter Robertson (aged 2).

Roehill was in the Port of Menteith Parish. It was originally part of the Napier of Ruskie lands, which passed over to General Alexander Graham Stirling. The Perthshire Cess Roll (land tax) for 1819-1825 when portioning out the tax states: 'That portion of the said lands and estate [Napier of Ruskie lands] belonging to Dun[ca]n Robertson called Roehill - £70'. The Perthshire Extracts of the Register of Sasines for 11 November 1874, in recording a Disposition by James Moffat of Blairhoyle, to Alexander Henderson Lee of 45 Moray Place, Edinburgh, mentions as part of the sale – '(III) the lands of Cassafuar and Duneverig, and the half of the lands of Lenystone (or Lenniestown) which third mentioned lands are now designed and known by the name of Roehill, all in the Parish of Port [of Menteith] …'. The Perthshire Valuation Roll (VR) for 1855/1856, under the Port of Menteith Parish, discloses that Captain James P. Robertson of Roehill owned three farms, namely Lenniston, Cassafuir and Donaecraig [all as spelt in the VR], let out to different tenants. There is no mention of Captain Robertson anywhere else in the VR indicating that he could have been elsewhere or abroad and simply let out his property which was collectively known as Roehill.

See: (Shows Cassafuir & Lennieston(s) in south west corner of map.) and (Shows Dunevrig (or Dunaverig) in the north west corner of map.)

It may not have been possible for their mother to maintain the estate. Carronvale was advertised ‘for rent’ in 1826 and again in 1827. The Stirling Journal of 2 March 1826 advertised the house as follows:

Modern, containing a dining room, drawing room, parlour, library, and a number of bedrooms, and other conveniences, all in the best order, having been lately painted and thoroughly repaired. The offices were large and complete and the Garden contained up-wards of a Scots Acre, well enclosed with Birch Walls, and completely stocked with Fruit Trees in full bearing.

From 1826 - Colin Robertson (1785 - 1859) moves to Drumvaich

It seems quite likely that Colin Robertson had been forced off the land and moved further south by 1826 to the Doune area, north west of Stirling, possibly with his wife to be (or her family, which may have been forced out of the highlands as well). Colin declared his intention to marry Christian McMartin (1792 - 1873) on 31 December 1825 in Kilmadock Parish (containing the settlements of Doune, Deanston, Buchany, Drumvaich, and Delvorich), and they married on 13 January 1826 in that Parish (Ref 362 50/262). This would appear to confirm that Colin had already left the Killin area by 1826. Family history recalls they lived at Drumvaich, an area or property just north of Doune.

Colin and Christian Robertson had the following children, all born in the Doune area:

Clearances from the Killin area - 1834

According to a history of the Village of Killin by Ella Walker, the death of John Campbell in 1834 'heralded a time of great hardship and sorrow for many of his humble tenants'. His son, the 2nd Marquis, did little to manage the estates and instead left the Estate to the care of his Factor, a Mr James Wyllie, 'a name long remembered with dread in Breadalbane'. According to the history, Wyllie cleared the tenants from several parts of the Estate to make room for the formation of large sheep farms, often using means 'of great cruelty and injustice'. This may have started from the early 1800's and continued after the death of Campbell. Many of the original farm houses were destroyed; the remains of many the old stone farmhouses remain scattered around Loch Tay to this day.

1835 - Susan Ann Jane Robertson (nee Stewart) married Rev Thomas Liddell

After the death of Duncan Robertson in 1824, Susan Robertson (nee Stewart) was a widow for some time. On 16 November 1835, she married again, to Rev Thomas Liddell.

1841 Census - Kilmadock (Doune)

36 Robertson's appear in the Kilmadock Parish for 1841. Colin Robertson (aged 56, an agricultural labourer), his wife Christian (Christine) Robertson (aged 48), and son Robert (10) all appear in the same houshold. Christian's parent's Archibald (72) and Catherine McMartin (79) appear to be living with Colin and Christian too.

It is not known where John Robertson was. He was 15 or 16 and could by one of many young men with that name and age in the 1841 census. He may have already left the area and headed south before travelling to Australia.

Archibald Robertson (shown as 'Archbaild' on Scotland's People in the 1841 census) appears at 'Malton' in the same Parish (Ref 362 2/1), the manservant of (possibly Peter) Cameron and family.

The younger sons, Colin Robertson (aged 7) and James Duncan Robertson (aged 5), do not appear in the census and no obvious record has been found of them after that point. Had they died by that point? Or were they just not recorded?

1840s - Duncan and James Robertson in the Army

The following (slightly edited) details about Duncan Robertson, dated October 2011, was found on the website: Permission to use this material has not yet been received.

The sons of Duncan Robertson (1756 - 1824), Duncan Stewart Robertson (born 1819) and his brother James Peter Robertson (born 1822) both served in the army. While serving in India, Duncan Robertson met his future wife Hariette Anne Mary Ogilvy (born around 1818 - 23 April 1849), youngest daughter of Hon. Col. Donald Ogilvie of Clova and Maria Morley.

James Peter Robertson spent most of his life in military service. He attended Edinburgh Military Academy where he studied military drawing and surveying and it was whilst at Edinburgh, he received a commission and was gazetted to the 31st Regiment in 1842. His service took him to Asia, South Asia and India as well as serving throughout the Indian Mutiny and the Crimean War. His book ‘Personal Adventures and Anecdotes of an Old Officer’ was published in 1906 and was dedicated to the Rt. Hon. R. B. Haldane, M.P., Secretary of State for War “In grateful remembrance of the life-long friendship that existed between the author and his noble-hearted and worth father, the late Robert Haldane of Cloaden.”

1844 - Duncan Robertson married Hariette Ogilvy

Duncan Robertson married Hariette Ogilvy in September 1844 and they had 2 children:

Duncan's wife Hariette Robertson (nee Ogilvy) died on 23 April 1849.

1849 - John Robertson departs Scotland for Australia

Colin and Christian Robertson's eldest son John Robertson made his way down to London some time before November 1848. He departed for Australia, aged 22, on the (relatively new, 635 ton ship) Francis Ridley on 9 November 1848, arriving at Port Philip (Melbourne) on 12 February 1849. The shipping record lists John in the 'Single Males, not being members of families', as a 'wheelwright' from Drummvaitch, Perthshire.

1851 census

In the 1851 Census, the two children of Duncan Stewart Robertson, Julia Robertson (aged 5) and Donald Robertson (aged 3), were living at Balnaboch (home of the Ogilvy family) in Glenprosen, County of Angus with the sisters of their deceased mother Hariette, Dorothea Maria Ogilvy (c1826 - 1895, buried Cortachy Kirkyard), age 25, and Clementina Julia Ogilvy (c 1838 - 12 August 1847), age 23. Both were shown as daughters of Hon. Col. Donald Ogilvy, Landed Proprietor (himself being absent). Both were born at Kirriemuir, Forfarshire. Dorothea Ogilvy was an author. Clementina married Kenneth Bruce Stuart (c1855 - 12 August 1857 and is buried in St. Cuthbert’s Churchyard, Edinburgh although her place of burial is unverified. It is not known where Duncan Robertson was at this time as he does not appear in any census record.

The 1851 census shows Colin Robertson (now aged 67) and Christian (aged 59) at number 12, Drumvaich, indicating a small village (other individuals are noted at different numbers, there are no street numbers). The census notes that Colin was born in Killin, Perthshire, and that Colin was now a 'Labourer and occupier of 2 acres arable and 1/8 part of 150 acres of common' (Ref 362 1/3). They appear to be living alone. The location of their children in 1851 is summarised below:

In 1854, Colin Robertson wrote a letter in reply his son John in Australia (full text below below). This letter appears to confirm that only John and Robert were alive at that point. He mentions that John's aunt is very happy to hear some news about Duncan McLean in Australia. He makes mention of 'uncle Archibald' who would seem to be overseas somewhere and doing very well. It is not clear who Archibald is; Christian's father was Archibald McMartin but none of their known children were so-named; none of John's brothers were named Archibald. One possibility is the Archibald McMartin who was born to Malcolm McMartin and Margery McDiarmid and baptised in Killin on 9 August 1791 (Ref 361/20/247). This couple had at least two other children but their marriage record has not yet been identified.

John noted in his letter that he had written to John's brother Robert (possibly in Newcastle) but had not received a reply. He added that Robert '... likes the English masters better than the Edinburgh Masters' and that he will 'stop in Newcastle all summer'. He also added that Robert was keen to go to Australia also but didn't have the money to do so.

1854 - Colin Robertson writes to his son in Australia

On 14 June 1854, Colin wrote the following letter to his son John and daughter in law Isabella (nee Croll) who were in Geelong by then:


June 14 1854

Dear Son and Daughter and all your friends there,

It is with the greatest of pleasure at this time that I sit down to write to you these few lines to let you know that we are all in ordinary steat of health (Thanks be to God for his grate Murcy towards you and us) I hope that this will find you and all friends there injoying the same blessing, we thank you for being so mindful of writing to us, we received your kind letter deated th28 January it landed us th24 May it took as long a time is any I have yet it came with the ship Australian, you anty is very happy to hear that Duncan Maclean and his wife are both in good health shee thanks you kindly for being so mindfull of sending us word about them, she thinks a wounder that they not got any of the letters shee send I think shee send two or three letters shee is in hopes by there last letter that they soon be home with great fortune as they mention in there last letter that they expect to to be home this summer. --- we received three letters from you since the beginning of January last this is the forth one I send three letters before this one I wrote you answer for each of them, in case you have not got them and we return our kind thanks and love to you for your kindness to us in the time of need in sending us ten pounds we hope that you will want and trust that you will be more richera after this nor ever you been before; with God blissing; we pray that the lord will bliss you a Spiritual blissing from on high with a long life and prosperity and we all praice him for his goodness towards us at all times. --- you (?) in your letter about your Uncle Archd, how he is coming on nor nothing about his Famley. we here from other people that he is doing will and that he is worth a great deale of money, whether this is true or not we Cannot tell you. We are very glad to here that you have got your houses ready and that you have let one of them to a tenant from our own parish if it is true, David Dewar John Dewar's father had been telling to sume of his friends that John his sonand Henderson hi(?) taken a house in Geelong from John Robertson Colin Robertson's son, it was Hohn [sic, perhaps John] Macnee in Coil bo halzie in the braes of Doune, had told me (?.) John will tell you aout him, old David Dewar is married on John Macnee's sister -- I am very happy to here that our own countrey people is so friendly to one another in a strange countrey and they ought to be so among strangers. -- I am very happy that John is goten his houses re(ady?) which I hope that they will pay him good interest for his money as I am told there is nothing that will pay better than building houses in Australia, but am quite sure that they coast you a great deale of money however we will let that alon, if a farmer was to look on all expences on his farm he would never put a plour on his land, so I would advise my man to build houses or by land there, as I am informed them people is bying and selling houses or land that they are doing well and sell with great profit; - I hope that John has built his houses secure that the wind will not blow them down lick sume of your churches (.) John Dewar's Father was telling me one day that your Church was blow down with the wind and that Henderson and John was two of the Committee of the Church lickwise that he thought that John was the (?) and the church was to be built anew, so if it be true I hope that John would see it properly built for the Congregation a false built Kirk is very dangerous I have to build a new byre this summer on my own expences I get nothing from the propraitors but the wood the old byre in nearly to the pot, I am afraid that it will fall su(?) night or day on the cows I rather build it anew myself ner to be danger only cost me about 25/- - perhaps I will get something for building sume time yet.

I have a lamentable tale to tell you that conserning Duncan Campbell o(ur) next neighbour he had been working at a road between Lock Katrine (and?) Lock Lomond left Coulbarn Inn on saturday night th6 of May it would seem that he had been drinking two freeley he was missing for sume time, after a diligent search has been made for him without suckcess at last on the 6 of June his body was found by men that was fishing in the loch. Loch Katrine. he has left his wife and 6 children to morn his loss the poor widdow is left without anything but the nei(ghbour) gives her I have gathered by superscription near 30/- it will keep the famley at the mean time Dear Children I have better let you know we have a sabbath teaching in our house since the month April ether aout 15 or 16 children on every sabbath evening James Buchnanan chos teaching the first ch(ild?) Betsy Buchanan for the second class, Jean has one from Easter Choclchat teaching the 3 class. I realy think it is doing a great deal of good to the young children, it is a great blissing to teach in the fear of God when they are young they will mind it when they (are) old --- I have wrote to Robert when ever I received your letters I have not got an answer back from him yet, the last letter we got it was the month of May th4 of that month he steated in his letter that he likes the English masters better than the Edinburgh Masters he say that the Englosh [sic] masters is not so proud and they are more kinder that he will stop in Newcastle all summer Robert was very willing (to) go after his brother but passage money was so high that he could not go except he would get some assistance I give his a copy of all letters that you send, he thinks a wounder that John is not writing to him at all he had wrote to John two or three letters and he had not got no answers back, tell John to write himself to him, although they are fare distant from one another let them keep brotherly love, I trust in God that they will love one another, in doing so they will be lick brothers: My dera [sic] daughter see yourself what manner of love you send to us in your own letters, it is true what my wife said when I read your letter and tears falling to the ground, what manner of lo(?) she said, I think my daughter it is at our own fireside speaking to face to face, although you is in Australia and we in old Drumvaich. Dear children the Gospel is very true, love goes over all - our time is but a spang length in this world so let us consider our ways how shall we come to God for we are sinful creaturs, Jesus said I am the way, no man cometh unto me but by the Father, him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out, come to him and he will save you from all distresses. I am now getting old I think my age is 73 the 4th of this month your John was born the 19th Nov 1826 so you can count his age yourself I think it is 28 years coming. Robert was boren the year of our Lord 1831 the 5th Aprile his eage 23 years past, Now my I am noe near at close with my letter, I hope we are journeying unto (a) place of which our Lord said, I will give it you, Come thou with us and we will do thee good. The Lord bless thee and keep thee The Lord make (his) face shine upon thee and be gracious unto thee May the Lord lift up (his) Countenance upon thee and give thee peace and in the kingdom of God ( .. ) Eternity- remember and write to us all the news how you are comming especially about your houses, my wife and friends joins me in our kind love to your all and may the Lord bless you all Your loveing Father till death.

Colin added the following page to the letter:

Talking nonsense

By the bye after ending my letter my sister came and said that shee would wish vry much that you would write to Duncan Maclean that shee send 4 letters to them since they left home, and that shee is wearing for another letter from them shee address her letters to the care of the man that Duncan wrought to a place called Edinburgh House in Geelong, no if you know the place where he is you can write him. I have a little more to say Andrew Maclean and John Maclean went off Australia in the month of Apeile last John was very ill off when he saw the shipe some lady told me that he fainted very ill. for aw that he took a wife with him they were saying that they would no face Duncan nor speak to him for what reason I cannot tell you, when they will land there they will be among the Cold to the shoulders. I have something more to tell you. My wife and I is very throung howing wtthe potatoes just now, they are looking very well. it apears they will be a crop in Scotland this season for everthing looks well. everything is rising in price since this ware commenced between Turkey and Russia, meal is selling at £2-13- per load, and every other accordingly; I must draw this letter to a close for want of room if I be supared in health I will write soon again, may the Lord bless you all mind us in your prayers your Father and Mother


Remember and write soon again.

1856 - Death of Duncan Stewart Robertson

The following (slightly edited) details about Duncan Robertson, dated October 2011, was found on the website: Permission to use this material has not yet been received.

Duncan Stewart Robertson age 36 died of Broncho-Pneumonia at The Manse, Lochmaben, Dumfriess-shire on 20 October 1856 where he was temporarily resident. There is no occupation listed on the registration, only that he was a widower. His death was registered by Rev. Thomas Liddell, his step-father (his step-mother was Susan Ann Jane Liddell). At the time, his daughter Julia Robertson was 11 and his son Donald Robertson was 9. The Death Registration shows his place of burial was Larbert Churchyard.

Duncan's property Carronvale was sold by his trustees to John Bell Sherriff in April 1857. It is presumed that the proceeds were split between his two children, Donald Robertson and Julia Robertson.

1856 - Robert Robertson marries Mary Sked

Robert Robertson (born 1831) married Mary Sked at Tradeston in Glasgow in 1856 (Ref 644/98). Mary Sked may be the person of that name, born to Richard Sked and Margaret Campbell, baptised on 9 January 1823 in Glasgow (Ref 644/1 310/172). If this is correct, Mary had a younger brother, Richard Sked, baptised 18 April 1830 in Greenock Old (25 miles west of Glasgow) (Ref 564/3 50/297). Robert and Mary Robertson had two children, neither of whom survived a year:

The birth (and death) location of the children suggests that Robert and Mary Robertson returned to Doune, perhaps because his father was dying, or to help his mother.

1859 Census for Kilmadock

The 1859 census for the Parish of Kilmadock shows that Colin Robertson, a dyke builder, died on 13 June 1859 aged 74. His father was recorded as John Robertson (decd.) farmer and his mother Helen Clark (decd). This information was notified by Robert Robertson, his son. Colin was buried at Doune Churchyard (probably Scots Church, which was sold to private developers in 2012 - his grave is no longer identifiable).

1859 - Christian Robertson and Robert Robertson move to Australia

Following the death of her husband, Christian Robertson, along with her son Robert Robertson and his wife Mary Robertson decided to migrate to Australia. They departed Liverpool as unassisted passengers on board the British Trident on 9 January 1860, arriving in Melbourne, Australia, on 5 April 1860. The emigration to Australia and Colin's letter above seems to indicate that none of their children remained in Scotland. Christian died in Geelong on 12 May 1873. It is likely that they were met by Christian's son (and Robert's brother) John Robertson, on arrival.

Click this link for more information about Robert Robertson in Australia and New Zealand.

The following (slightly edited) details, dated October 2011, was found on the website: Permission to use this material has not yet been received.

1861 Census - Julia and Donald Robertson

Julia Robertson (born Edinburgh) is listed in the 1861 census as a Boarder in Clifton, Bristol, England. Her brother Donald Robertson is not identified.

1871 Census - Julia and Donald Robertson

In the 1871 census, now 25 year old Julia Robertson, an annuitant, is listed as a visitor at 1 ‘Freemantle’? Villas in Clifton, Bristol, England.

Julia's brother, Donald Robertson (ages 23) and his wife Alice M. L. (age 22, born Frome, Somerset) were living at 29 Longford Street, Pancras/Marylebone, London. His occupation is listed as ‘Writer of Guide Books'.

1881 Census - Julia and Donald Robertson

By 1881, 35 year old Julia is listed as a Church Worker living at 8 Ellenbro? Crescent, Weston Super Mare in Somerset, England. She appears to be living with the Penruddock family:

Donald Robertson and his wife, shown as 'Alice' (perhaps a second name) were living in Witham, Frome, Somerset. He was shown as a 'Gentleman of Independent Means'. It is not believed that they had any children.

Both are buried at Witham, Somerset.

1891, 1901 Census and death - Julia Robertson

By 1891, now 45 year old Julia is back in Scotland living at ‘Winfield’, Whitsome, Berwickshire with 2 servants, and ‘Living on Private Means’. In 1901 the 55 year old Julia has returned to England, and living with 2 servants at 8 Arundell Terrace, Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset, again listed as ‘Living on Own Means’.

Julia Cecelia Ogilvy Robertson died aged 66 on 12 November 1911. Her death was registered at Axbridge district, Somerset (October - December Quarter).

1916 - Death of Lt Col James Peter Robertson

Lieutenant Colonel, James Peter Robertson, C.B., J.P. died at his home at Callander Lodge, Callander on 25 February 1916 age 94 years. His Death Registration shows that he was the widower of Louisa Churchill. (Louisa is believed to have died c1910). Obituaries appeared in both The Glasgow Herald of 28 February 1916 (Page 6) and The Falkirk Herald of 4 March 1916. A well as being an Indian Mutiny and Crimean War Veteran, he was a Justice of the Peace for Perthshire and at the time, the oldest Freemason in Scotland. The Falkirk Herald also added that he was a 'keen sportsman both with rod and gun' and 'at the age of 85 he could take a twenty-mile run on his bicycle without undue fatigue'.

Page created 11 December 2011, updated 13 May 2018. Copyright Andrew Warland. email: andrewwarland(at)