The Douglas Archives

A collection of historical and genalogical records

Which Douglas line are you researching? Dates and places help making connections.
For Myself , Sept name , Drysdale, in particular , William Drysdale and wife Helen Renny both [supposedly] born 1730s , Dunfermline , Fife , [supposedly] married Jan 22 1748 in same place.    I easily use ''[supposedly]''  because out of all the crap I have reviewed so far , nothing has shown me an actual document of birth or marriage for either  William , or his wife Helen .

 Nothing on Ancestry dot com or familysearch dot com slash insanity 

    About 6 years ago I  found an alternative spelling  of the name Drysdale , definitely nothing new , but new to me and my research ... '' Drijsdale '' Apparently Dutch , according to Encyclopedia Britanica ''TheDutch language, also called Netherlandic or Dutch Nederlands, in Belgium called Flemish or Flemish Vlaams, a West Germanic language that is the national language of the Netherlands and, with French and German, one of the three official languages of Belgium.''    I am not a scholar , I am not the sharpest tool in the shed but I do shine every now and again.

  8 years ago I ran across this Passage in a book called

the Barons of Dryfesdale I believe it was ......

'' -- In the latter part of the sixteenth and during the
seventeenth centuries there were a great number of
Scotch in Holland, engaged in the wars principally,
fighting on both sides ; there are a number of families
in France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Prussia, etc.,
who are descended from Scotch military adventurers
of that and earlier times. There was also a consider-
able trade carried on between Scotland and the Low
Countries from an early date,settled in Fife , one of
the chief counties from which trade was carried on,
and during the seventeenth century there was quite a
number of Dutch in that county (Scotland) ; their descendants
are found there at the present day. In one coast
town — Dysart — there was a specially large number
of them, and the town was known locally as " Little
Holland." __''

 Thursday , July 18th 2019 , while looking over some info ,  I had a brainstorm of a thought ,

 Drysdale, in particular , William Drysdale and wife Helen Renny ... What about 

 Drijsdale, in particular , William Drijsdale and wife Helen Rennij ???

Trading the Y=IJ .... hmmmm.... worth looking into .  Purely speculation at this point on Renny.

 In  print like this, text it is highly noticeable however in cursive both branches of the'' Y '' have a . above  them , but looks like the same name

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I didnt find my particular relative yet  but i did find the variant spellings 


Renny -



The great mass of those names of French or Flemish origin which do not date back to the Conquest or to medieval times are due to the immigration of Protestant refugees in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It is true that many names for which Huguenot ancestry is claimed were known in England long before the Reformation. Thus, Bulteel is the name of a refugee family which came from Tournay about the year 1600, but the same name is found in the Hundred Rolls Of 1273. The Grubbe family, according to Burke, came from Germany about 1450, after the Hussite persecution; but we find the name in England two centuries earlier, "without the assistance of a foreign persecution to make it respectable" (Bardsley, Dictionary of English Surnames). The Minet family is known to be of Huguenot origin, but the same name also figures in the medieval Rolls. The fact is that there was all through the Middle Ages a steady immigration of foreigners, whether artisans, tradesmen, or adventurers, some of whose names naturally reappear among the Huguenots. On several occasions large bodies of Continental workmen, skilled in special trades, were brought into the country by the wise policy of the Government. Like the Huguenots later on, they were protected by the State and persecuted by the populace, who resented their habits of industry and sobriety.......


The names of the Lowlands of Scotland are pretty much the same as those of northern England, with the addition of a very large French element, due to the close historical connection between the two countries. Examples of French names, often much corrupted, are Bethune (Pas de Calais), often corrupted into Beaton, the name of one of the Queen's Maries, Boswell (Bosville, Seine Inf.), Bruce (Brieux, Orne), ComynCumming (Comines, Nord), Grant (le grand)Rennie (René), etc.


Making conections

The more information you can give about the people you mention, the more chance there is of someone else connecting with your family.

Dates and places of births, deaths and marriages all help to place families.

Professions also help.

'My great-grandmother mother was a Douglas from Montrose' does not give many clues to follow up! But a bit of flesh on the bones makes further research possible. But if we are told who she married, what his profession was and where the children were baptised, then we can get to work.

Maybe it is time to update the information in your profile?

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