The Douglas Archives

A collection of historical and genalogical records

William Douglas's Blog (541)

UK New Year Honours 2021

Congratulations to the following for their appointments in the New Years Honours

Commanders of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)

William Barry Douglas OBE. Concert Pianist. For services to Music and to Community Relations in Northern Ireland. (Lurgan, County Armagh)

Officers of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)

Robert Peter Douglas Miller. For services to Wildlife Conservation in Scotland. (Haddington, East Lothian)

Members of the Order of the British…


Added by William Douglas on January 5, 2021 at 16:58 — No Comments

Best wishes for Christmas to you all

Christmas 2019

Added by William Douglas on December 24, 2020 at 10:59 — No Comments

Wikipedia deleted entry - David Douglas of St Vigeans, Angus

David Douglas of St Vigeans, Angus (1777 – c. 1855) Driver, Royal Artillery Corps from 1794 to 1815. Served 20 years in East or West India Services.

The above entry in Wikipedia has been deleted.

As far as I can tell, there was no biography, just this detail, but does anyone know who this man was>  Was he 'notable'?

Added by William Douglas on November 9, 2020 at 19:10 — No Comments

Thomas Douglas of Douglasdale, South Africa

The story begins:

It was in 1859, on July 26th, that the original farm Witkoppen was granted by land grant from President Kruger to P.E. Labuschagne and on July 5th of the same year that Driefontein 3 was granted to L.P. van Vuuren, and these land grants can be seen today in Pretoria, although the farms have now all been considerably sub-divided. Not long after, in the year 1863, Thomas Douglas, one of a family of five, was born in the small town of Stranraer in Wigtownshire,…


Added by William Douglas on November 2, 2020 at 19:30 — 1 Comment

Unconnected Jane

I am loking for help identifying these ladies, all named Jane.

  • JANE DOUGLAS, who is known to have been born in 1811 and to have married in 1841, Robert

    Douglas of Lockerby. She died in 1874.

  • JANE BROWN DOUGLAS was born 20/Apr/1810 and is known to have married Alexander

    Farquhar Crawford of Edinburgh.

  • JANE DOUGLAS was born 09/Jan/1760 and is known to have married the Rev. William van

    Mildert, Bishop of Durham on 22/Dec/1795. She…

Added by William Douglas on October 29, 2020 at 16:43 — No Comments

Alexander Henry Martini Action Carbine, property of Earl of Morton, Conaglen

C1865 Earl Of Morton Conaglen Ardgour Cased, Alexander Henry Martini Action 577x450 Obsolete Calibre Carbine & Accessories. Sn 17472…


Added by William Douglas on October 28, 2020 at 12:54 — No Comments

Edward Douglas rows the Thames

Just before 3am on 12 May 1824, a crew of Guards officers, wearing red and white broad striped jackets, straw hats and loose trousers, took to the water at Oxford’s Folly Bridge in a six-oared wherry. Among them was Edward Douglas, later Baron Penrhyn (left).

They had come together to decide a bet between Captain Charles Short of the Coldstream Guards and…


Added by William Douglas on October 12, 2020 at 16:30 — No Comments

HM Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2020

The Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2020 recognises the outstanding achievements of people across the United Kingdom.

Our congratulations go to:

Jonathan David DOUGLAS, Chief Executive, National Literacy Trust, who has been appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire for services to Education in London


Erskine Decourtney DOUGLAS who has been appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire for services to Finance in London. He is an Accredited…


Added by William Douglas on October 10, 2020 at 18:00 — No Comments

Villa Douglas and Douglas House - two very different places in focus this week

Much of my research is in response to questions raised by researchers seeking information about their ancestors.  But from time to time I find myself assisting with background research for a book.

Douglas House School

Last week, I was asked about Mrs Owen-Williams, owner and head teacher of the Douglas House School, also known as the Old Vicarage, in Malvern, Worcestershire.  My interest was immediately aroused, because earlier in the week I had resumed my…


Added by William Douglas on September 21, 2020 at 12:35 — 1 Comment

Col Robert MacDonald of Inchkenneth married Mary Douglas of Grantham

Col Robert MacDonald of Inchkenneth married Mary Douglas of Grantham in January 1801.  She was the daughter of Thomas Douglas, who originally engaged in mercantile pursuits (He worked in the cotton industry), he went on to reside at Grantham in Lincolnshire. Served as High Sheriff of that County in 1776.

He bred racehorses and was well…


Added by William Douglas on August 31, 2020 at 19:00 — No Comments

The white child slaves from Aberdeen

Among the more harrowing tales in the Douglas Archives are the references to indentured servants, often children.

Image used for illustration - it is not being suggested that these children were slaves.

The main money-making crops in colonial Georgia were tobacco, indigo and rice, all of which required intensive manual labour. Indentured servitude…


Added by William Douglas on August 27, 2020 at 10:58 — 1 Comment

James Douglas of Cavers - and religion

I have long been aware of the Douglas of Cavers links to important religious matters.

The 'Good Lady of Cavers'  was imprisoned in Stirling Castle in 1682 for her religions beliefs.

Today, I learned that James Douglas of Cavers paid for a printing of the New Testament (in Rome?) in 1849.

This is probably the same James has…


Added by William Douglas on August 13, 2020 at 11:05 — No Comments

Bonjedward back on the market

Built on the former Douglas estate of Bonjedward, the 'new' house is back on the market.  A chance for a Douglas family to bring it back into clan hands, maybe?

Bonjedward House is a magnificent listed Georgian house dating from the latter stages of the 18th century. Built for Archibald Jerdon of Bonjedward and later the seat of the Dowager Marchioness…


Added by William Douglas on July 8, 2020 at 15:16 — No Comments

Vandals tear down Statue of Frederick Douglass

Whether or not I agree with the President of the United States sentiments, the fact is that tearing down the statue of Frederick Douglass is yet another act of vandalism that is shaming the world.

The statue of the renowned Black abolitionist Frederick Douglass was torn from its base in a park in Rochester, N.Y., and then dumped some 50 feet…


Added by William Douglas on July 8, 2020 at 8:49 — No Comments

Family Tree Maker with Photos

If you are looking for a low ost way to manage your family tree, this Excel version might meet your needs:  …


Added by William Douglas on July 6, 2020 at 18:09 — 1 Comment

James Gavin's House, Douglas

James Gavin was a prominent Covenanter in contrast to the Douglas family who were prominent Episcopalian. In fact the church of Scotland sent several sharp reminders to the Douglases that they were to cease their adherence to Episcopalianism. However James 2nd Marquis of Douglas got round this problem by promoting tolerance both to Episcopalians and Presbyterians in the 1660's. This happy accommodation did not last.

James Gavin fled the Dragoons and hid in a small cave to the West of…


Added by William Douglas on June 5, 2020 at 18:12 — No Comments

Clan map timeline

"Clan maps only show a certain point in time - but this one is different!"

Added by William Douglas on June 5, 2020 at 16:30 — No Comments

Douglas Castle in 1596

No photo description available.

This picture from Pont shows how Douglas Castle may have looked in 1596 when the map for Lanarkshire was created. The late Professor McClean from Dundee thought that Pont Map had an element of accuracy about them. What is to be seen is a couple of towers with wall between them with gateway. The larger of the towers possibly had a Renaissance style Cupola. The other Castle is Parkhead which also belonged to the Douglas family. There was a castle here at Parkhead from the…


Added by William Douglas on June 4, 2020 at 12:34 — No Comments

Who is Frances Browne, Mrs John Douglas?

Thomas Gainsborough  (1727 – 1788) was an English portrait and landscape painter, draughtsman, and printmaker. One of his sitters was Frances Browne, Mrs John Douglas, who appears to be born in 1741 and died in 1811.

The portrait hangs in Waddesdon Hall, the property of the Rothschild Family.

Also in…


Added by William Douglas on May 13, 2020 at 15:57 — 1 Comment

Lord Morton’s hints

James Douglas was the 14th Earl of Morton, a Scottish peer dedicated to science with a keen interest in astronomy.  He was a founding member and President of the Society for Improving Arts and Sciences in Edinburgh, and elected as President of the Royal Society in London in 1763. 

On the eve of…


Added by William Douglas on May 8, 2020 at 9:30 — No Comments

Monthly Archives














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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