The Douglas Archives

A collection of historical and genalogical records

One of the notable Douglas families is that of the descendants of Rev. Robert Douglas, long-serving minister in Kilbarchan, Renfrewshire, Scotland.

Son of Robert Douglas of Barloch, Rev. Robert Douglas served as a pillar of Kilbarchan for over four decades. Following in the footsteps of Patrick Maxwell, he took the mantle of minister in 1802.

While known for his quiet support of the principles of non-intrusion and spiritual independence within the Church, his true legacy lies in his vast knowledge and dedication to his flock. His extensive library, overflowing two designated rooms and spilling throughout the manse, was a testament to his thirst for learning.

Rev. Douglas wasn't one to hoard knowledge. He possessed a gift for sharing his wisdom in thoughtful conversation, particularly with the younger members of his community. His "quaint, interesting, and brief remarks" instilled his "curiously varied knowledge and ripe conclusions" in those who listened.

His commitment extended to his family. He chose to educate his seven children at home, ably assisted by his wife, a descendant of a long line of ministers herself. She not only provided a strong foundation for their education but also thrived amidst the intellectual atmosphere fostered by the overflowing library.

After her husband's passing in 1846, she continued to be a source of strength and encouragement, particularly for her youngest son Carstairs who served as a missionary in China. Their bond remained strong throughout his travels, with Carstairs faithfully writing home. She sadly passed away shortly after his last departure for China.

The other children all figured prominently in Scottish society.

Robert Douglas b 1822 was founder of Douglas and Grant Engineering, Dunnikier Foundry, Cupar, Fife.

Dr James Douglas practised medicine in Glasgow til his early death.

Ann Douglas married James Murdoch, the Procurator Fiscal of Ayr.

John Monteath Douglas became a stockbroker and author of works on bimetallism.

The Reverend George Cunningham Monteath Douglas was admitted to Glasgow University at the age of 11 and worked his way up to the position of the Reverend Principal of the Scottish Free Church College.

Campbell Douglas was an architect.

Carstairs Douglas who died July 26, 1877 in Xiamen, China.

Their descendants live on.

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

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'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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