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Drysdale - a Douglas sept


Drysdale - a Douglas sept

Drysdale is considered a sept of the Douglas clan, but it is quite likely that this was a separate family which existed previous to when the three Douglas brothers adopted the Drysdale name. A sept is a family that can be related to a clan or larger family for various reasons. Usually this came about either through marriage or by a small family seeking protection from a larger and more powerful neighbour.

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Story of the creation of the Drysdale family

The following is said to tell the story of the creation of the Drysdale family, it was actually part of the Black Douglas clan which remained in Scotland, following their failed attempt against the Scots crown in 1455. [Earlier references to Drysdale, or Dryfesdale can be found]

"On the Twentieth Day of May, One Thousand Five Hundred and Three Years

We, Thomas, William, and James Douglass, sons of the departed Thomas Douglass, of Brushwood Haugh, in the parish of Drysdale, and Shire of Dumfries, left our native place for the reason here assigned, viz:- Defending our just and lawful rights against our unjust neighbour, Johnston of Greenstonhill, who, being determined to bring water to his mill through our property, and having obtained leave of his friend, the King, began his operations on Monday, the 16th of May, We prevented him by force.
The next day he brought twenty of his vassels to carry on the work. We with two friends and three servants, (eight in all,) attacked Johnston with his twenty, and, in the contest, fourteen of his men were killed, along with their base leader. A report of these proceedings was carried to the King, and we were obliged to fly, (the tocsin being sounded).
We took shelter under the shadow of the Ochil Hills, in a lonely valley on the river Devon. After having lived there a full two years, we returned home in disguise, but found all our property in the possession of Johnston's friends, and a great reward offered for our lives. We, having purchased a small spot, called the Haugh of Dollar, and changed our names to the name of our Parish, are clearly in mind to spend the residue of our days under the ope of the Ochils, and wish the name of Drysdale to flourish in the lonely valley. The King passed through this with his Court on the 12th of June, 1506, going from Stirling to Falkland - dined on Halliday's green. (an eastern neighbour;) but we were not recognised."

The above story has been preserved among the desendants of Thomas, William, and James Douglass, now known by the name of Drysdale, and copied at several times by different individuals - first, by Simon Drysdale of the Haugh of Dollar, in the year 1620; by Robert Drysdale of Tillicoultry, in 1708; by John Drysdale, Dunfermline, in 1835; by James Drysdale, Dumfermline, in 1838; by John Montrose Drysdale, in 1841; by George Drysdale, Aberdeen, in 1845; by David Drysdale, Glasgow, in 1857; by John Harrower Drysdale, Aylmer, Ontario, Canada, in 1920; and now by Nicholas Edwin Kontzie (great-great-grandson of Jane Drysdale), Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, in 2000.

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related royal family connection

Started by June carter. Last reply by Russell Lynn Drysdale Jul 11, 2015. 3 Replies

douglas , Drysdale, drummond , gardiner , clarkContinue

Who was Margaret Drysdail?

Started by William Douglas. Last reply by William Douglas Dec 2, 2014. 1 Reply

Lieutenant and Adjutant Sholto Douglas Sorlie, formerly of the 68th Regiment of Light Infantry, and late of the 2nd Veteran Battalion, who died On Tuesday, at Leeds, in 1839 in his 68th year, was the…Continue

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Comment by Russell Lynn Drysdale on September 13, 2015 at 13:25

William Drysdale, a Well Known Shoe maker, Dies by Shooting Three
Bullets Into His Body.
ln a back yard, just behind his shop, a few minutes before 8 o'clock yesterday evening, William Drysdale, a well known Shoemaker of Taylor,
committed suicide by shooting himself three times in the left breast. The
deed was (lone with a small caliber weapon, and although two of the bullets went through his heart, the other one taking effect went an inch below, the unfortunate man lived a half hour, but did not recover consciousness.  He was removed to the station; house on Pine street and Dr. Honser was summoned Drysdale was beyond medical aid and expired without uttering a word .

Drysdale, in his gloomy moods, often said tie would end his life. He boarded with Thomas R. Nicholas, on Main street, where his remains were finally taken. He had been drinking heavily for the past two weeks. While at his shop Saturday morning shots were heard in that vicinity. Drysdale was found behind the shop In a greatly excited condition, and he shouted that his enemies were after him and meant
to take bis life. The revolver was taken from him.
Robert Moore met Drysdale after he left the Davis' drug store last evening and did not suspect that be was bent on self-destruction. When Mr. Moore parted with him Drysdale went to his shop and in a few minutes afterward three pistol shots rung out. He had gone to a coal house in the rear, leaned against the side of it and ended bis
About eight months ago he was waylaid at night by an unknown assailant and terribly beaten with a blackjack. Since then, whenever he gave himself up to drink, his actions have been queer. The act which ended his life yesterday was not unexpected.
     As far as is known be had not a relative in this country. His parents were Scotch, and he was about 36 years of age. Seven years ago ho took up his Residence in Taylor and did a thriving business at his trade. One laudable trait was his fondness for little children.
   He was troubled with melancholy,and the only cure he resorted to for
this morbid feeling was the liquor habit. Although uneducated his mind
was a storehouse of historical events,and he was skilled with a, talent for
mimicry that he often used for the amusement of his companions.

The Scranton tribune., September 17, 1894 ,  Scranton, Pennsylvania

So if this is correct his birth year would be in the area of 1858 +/- 1

  Any one missing a long lost uncle William , a shoe maker on their tree ? 

Comment by William Douglas on June 6, 2015 at 19:22

From the Telegraph of 19 February 2015: DOCKAR-DRYSDALE Charles Died at home on February the 14th after a long battle bravely fought with cancer.Adored and adoring husband of Susie,father of Adam, William and Emma and grandpa to eight very special grand children. Service at Cherington and Stourton village church at 12.30 on Tuesday the 3rd of March. Flowers welcome. Enquiries: Funeral directors R Locke and Son.

I take this to be Charles Nicholas Gordon Lloyd DOCKAR-DRYSDALE (b 1943), scion of the gentry family of that name of Wick Hall.

Comment by Russell Lynn Drysdale on June 6, 2015 at 14:41

this was a separate family which existed previous to when the three Douglas brothers adopted the Drysdale name, I find that acceptable , however , 


The following is said to tell the story of the creation of the Drysdale family, it was actually part of the Black Douglas clan which remained in Scotland, following their failed attempt against the Scots crown in 1455. [Earlier references to Drysdale, or Dryfesdale can be found]

 this needs work


Drysdale was a separate family which existed previous to when the three Douglas brothers adopted the Drysdale name , this is their story


Comment by Russell Lynn Drysdale on June 6, 2015 at 14:17

To further expand on the question posed by William  ''

Good sleuthing, Russell.

Do you know who Helen Agnes Drysdale is? ''

 This material was found in 


Compiled by Robert Alexander, 1926

Updated by Michael Outram, starting 1984

Printed 6 March 2009

  ''In 1840 Charles (born 1802) married Margaret Drysdale Douglas (born 1819) daughter of Andrew Douglas of Jodburgh and Berwick-on-Tweed and his wife Helen Agnes Drysdale.

Douglas, the second surviving son of Charles Alexander was born in 1849 and after completing his education in Aberdeen he returned to Grenada to manage his father's property Montreuil which had been left in trust for the family. In 1871 Douglas married Annie Elizabeth McEwen (born 1853) and by her had eight sons and four daughters. Like his father before him Douglas became a member of the Executive Council and the owner of several estates in the island. He died in London in January 1910 and was buried in the same grave as his father at Bow.

The other two married daughters of Charles Alexander and Helen Drysdale Douglas were Helen and Agnes who were twin sisters born in 1844. Helen married Arthur Gall, an officer of constabulary in Barbados and had two sons and daughters. Arthur Henry Beckles [Gall] was born in 1870 and became a very successful planter. In 1899 he married his cousin Margaret Edith Gall. There is no issue of the marriage.''  

Alexander is a sept of Clan Donald if I am correct . I hope that gave a clearer answer than the tree did William 

Comment by Russell Lynn Drysdale on November 27, 2014 at 13:28

In RE: Comment by William Douglas on August 5, 2013 at 16:15

Good sleuthing, Russell.

Do you know who Helen Agnes Drysdale is?


I have not invested research in this material , i simply located it 

   by pure coincident .


Drysdale, Helen Agnes 

Birth : 1781 
Gender: Female

Marriage: 17 Nov 1807 in Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Northumberland, England 
Douglas, Andrew 
Birth : 15 Feb 1781 
Death : 11 Sep 1841 Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Northumberland, England
Gender: Male
Douglas, Margaret Drysdale 
Douglas, Margaret Drysdale 
Birth : 1819 
Death : 1865 
Gender: Female
Father: Douglas, Andrew 
Mother: Drysdale, Helen Agnes 
Marriage: 15 Dec 1840 in Marnock, Banff, Scotland 
Alexander, Charles 
Birth : Auchininna, Inverkeithny, , Banff, Scotland
Death : 5 Oct 1861 Hardwick Place, Commercial Road, London, Grenada
Gender: Male
Father: Alexander, Charles 
Mother: Thain, Helen 
Alexander, Charles Douglas 
Birth : 16 Nov 1841 
Death : 26 Nov 1842 
Gender: Male
Alexander, Arthur Harvey 
Twins>Alexander, Helen 
Twins>Alexander, Agnes (Aunt Aggie) 
Alexander, Douglas 
Alexander, Margaret (Aunt Doe) 
Alexander, Thomas 
Alexander, Rosanne (Aunt Rose) 
Birth : 1854 Grenada
Death : 2 Feb 1945 Hove, Sussex, England
Gender: Female
Alexander, Charles 
Birth : 2 Jan 1854 
Death : 20 Jul 1854 
Gender: Male
Alexander, Emmeline-Aunt Em Florance Douglas 
Birth : 1857 
Gender: Female
Alexander, Florance (Aunt Flo) 
Birth : 1859 
Gender: Female
Comment by William Douglas on October 5, 2014 at 21:54

Re Missing version - I was referring to the document that I linked to from the website, which 'disappeared'. There presumably is, or was, a version that does not have the handed down notes.

Comment by Russell Lynn Drysdale on October 5, 2014 at 18:18

Comment by William Douglas on September 10, 2014 at 15:48

I have located the 'missing' version of the origins of the Drysdale family document...................... William I would say the ''missing'' version would be the original [possibly in Latin ] that Simon Drysdale copied first in 1620 , if it still exists . 

Comment by Russell Lynn Drysdale on September 17, 2014 at 0:06

            The origins of the Drysdale family  predate this  1503 document , the substance of the record from 1503 I have no reason to doubt yet the presentation as such [ from above ] ''STORY OF THE CREATION OF THE DRYSDALE FAMILY'' & ''The following tells the story of the creation of the Drysdale family ''  are misleading . 

 Gawaine and Johne  Dryfesdale and four others were recorded in january 1488  in connection with  charges that amount to treason .


Comment by William Douglas on September 10, 2014 at 15:48

I have located the 'missing' version of the origins of the Drysdale family document. Sadly, nothing startlingly new there. This version was transcribed by  John Harrower Drysdale, Aylmer, Ontario, Canada, in 1920.

As a quid pro quo to the donor, I promised to seek out good Drysdale research websites. Can anyone help?

Comment by Allan Laird on July 9, 2014 at 17:55

I am trying to find out more about my G-Grandfather's Family. His name was Dugald Drysdale. He was born in Scotland and emigrated to Australia via India. I have some information that suggests he grew up on Islay but another story goes he was apprenticed as a cabin boy at the age of nine. It is also suggested that he had a brother, name unknown (possibly Neil) and maybe a sister (possibly Catherine). He was born about 1854. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks


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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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