The Douglas Archives

A collection of historical and genalogical records

Arthur Douglas - discovered to be a woman

Reported in the paper of May 2Oth, 1757 :

" A young person, five feet high, aged about nineteen, who
entered in January last on board the Resolution privateer,
Capt. Barber, under the name of Arthur Douglas, proceeded
with the ship from London to this port (?Liverpool), went aloft to furl the
sails, &c. , when called upon, was frequently mustered amongst
the marines at the time they exercised the small arms, and in
short executed the office of a landsman in all shapes with
alacrity, was on Saturday last discovered to be a woman by
one of her mess-mates.

Tis said that he found out her sex on
the passage, and that she, to prevent a discovery, then
promised to permit him to keep her company when they
arrived here ; but as soon as they came into port refused his

The officers in general give her a very modest
character, and say by her behaviour that she must have had a
genteel education. She has changed her clothes, but will not
satisfy any of them with her name or quality ; only that she
left home on account of a breach of promise of her lover. 'Tis
remarkable that during- their passage down, on the appearance
of a sail, she was eager to be fighting-, and no ways affected
with fear or sea sickness."

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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.

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