I’ve been looking in Scottish records (GOV. Scotland’s People), originally for official reasons requiring my parents’ birth certificates. I knew bits about grandparents and one or two great grandparents, but that’s where my knowledge ended. But for fun now I’ve been searching birth and marriage records, progressively going back until I’ve now broken into the late 18th Century (Gt Gt Gt Grandparents)

Some records are incomplete DOB, place and occupation, esp the 3xGt Gdparents, but at least I have names and sometimes years.

This is likely to be desperately boring to a lot of folk, but I’m finding it very intriguing, illuminating and even very heartening. Before I delved into it all, I had some vague idea of surnames and places – Gow, Weir, Montgomery and Robertson, but I was not expecting to see such a variety. Also, every forebear is Scottish. The other thing is, there are no clan chieftains, lords or toffs to be seen, they’re all ordinary working folk, so no desire to bulls*t about false ancestors.

The four main strings of my research, my 4 grandparents, have spread in different directions.

The main male string, Gow has actually been pretty steady until my father. I was born in Edinburgh, married a Filipina and have 2 kids and live outside Scotland. My father, James, was born in Tighnabruaich, Argyll. But his father James, was born in Dalnaspidal (Blair Atholl, Perthshire) and was a gamekeeper (mainly nr Tighnabruaich and later Kintyre). In turn, his father James was born and lived in Blair Atholl and was a gamekeeper (for the Duke of Atholl) and then his father Donald was born and lived in Blair Atholl as a gamekeeper too. The last of my research so far, his father James was born and lived in Blair Atholl – occupation unknown (second half 18th Century). Their spouses families include Weir from Kildmodan, Argyll, Slater from Kirkmichael (nr Pitlochry), McDougall from Fortingall (Kinloch Rannoch) Perthshire, McCraw from Kirkmichael, Stewart (from Perthshire – place ny known) and spouse family occupations including milliner, shopkeeper and sailor. So, they mostly stayed pretty close to home.

Then the Weirs, my father’s mother’s family. My Grannie as stated above came from Glendaruel, Kildmodan, Argyll. Her father, Neil was an estate overseer there yet was born in Calton, Glasgow. His father Donald also came from Glasgow and was a joiner. But in turn his father Neil came from Argyll and was a gardener. I suspect he left to live in Glasgow but his grandson came back home to Argyll. Their spouses included Imlah from Keith, Banff, Livingston from Glasgow, Fraser from Aberdeen, Gordon from Aberdeenshire, Burnett from Aberdeenshire, MacLachlan from Strathlachlan, Argyll and occupations included cook, housemaid, joiner, railway guard, farmer and forester.

On my Mum’s side, she was a Montgomery. On her father’s side there’s Peter Montgomery from Cranston, Midlothian, his father David Montgomery from Cranston, then his father also David from Cranston. Their spouses families include Robertson from Musselburgh, Jack from Pathhead, Halliday from Pencaitland, E. Lothian, Thompson and Amos. Occupations included coal miner/paper mill engineer, ploughman, domestic servant, carter, farm servant and labourer.

Lastly, the Robertsons, my mother’s-mother’s family.

Her mum was Ann Robertson from Musselburgh, Ann's dad was David Robertson from Musselburgh, his father was Thomas Robertson from Dundee and spouse families include Bell from Musselburgh, Buchan from perhaps Dundee, more Robertsons and an Agnes Symons. Occupations include factory worker, general labourer, networker (not computers – fishing net making !), mill foreman and 2 generations of tanners.

Quite a gathering ! At least if I’m an idiot, I can’t blame it on in-breeding !

I'm still looking !