Sunday, October 25, 2009

Roots. Surname Roots, Exodus. Campbell, McConaghy - Maconochie. Ireland to Scotland and Back:

Family Exodus.  
Maconochie - Maconachie -McConaghy

1.  The Exodus
2.  Maconochie's in Burke's General Armory 1844
3.  Atholl Highlanders
4.  Family Miscellany
For Irish "Scotti" roots to Scots clans, see Irish (Scotti) raiders from Ulster making their incursions into Wales and England and what is now Scotland, soon after if not before the fall of Rome.  See image fits our forebears' migrations around the globe, our silly sense of rootedness, to places where originated people of our name, that we never knew.

 1.  The Exodus

First, the oldest "Scotties" went from Ireland to Scotland, we understand, see gaggle of information at; then the Scots went to Ireland again, and to parts everywhere after that. Find the Irish side at Ireland Road Ways, McConaghy: Ireland Roots in addition to the site. 
McConaghy, MacConaghie, Maconochie, McConnaghy, McConaghey, and other spellings.  Here:  a family's exodus. Exodus. A human concept, a going forth. Where to start on a geneology, and absent specific names, a heritage.
We lay out here our family copy of a 1944 letter tracing the Maconachies, using John Burke's Encycloped a of Heraldry or General Armory of England, Scotland and Ireland from 1844, FN 1, Scotland.  Campbelltown.  Visit there and find McConaghy's still there. Our family exodus.  Or, some of it. A connection with the Atholl Highlanders, FN 3.  On the other hand, others find the link with Robertson, not Campbell, to be checked out.
A start on our Exodus:

"MACONOCHIE (Meadowbank, co. Edinburgh; originally Campbell, of Inverawe, co, Argyll, being descended from Duncan Campbell, of Inverawe, living temp. David II, eldest son of Sir Neil Camphell, of Lochow, by his second wife, a daughter of Sir John Cameron of Locheil.  Duncan's eldest son was named Dougal, after his mother's family; and his eldest son Duncan, who, according to the Celtic custom, was patronymically M'Dowill Vic Conachie (sic); and thus the appellation, Maconochie, came to be adopted by each succeeding chieftan of the family of Campbell of Inverawe, while the cadets still bore the name of Campbell.  The present representative of this ancient line is ALEXANDER MACONOCHIE (sic), of Meadowbank, one of the Senators of the College of Justice, as Lord Meadowbank, only son of the late eminent and scientific Judge, Allan, Lord Meadowbank.

"The ARMS, according to the Charter recorded in the Register of the Lyon Office, are, azure three dexter hands couped fesseways in chief, each holding a bunch of arrows, ppr. and in base a royal crown gold, all within a bordure gyronny of eight, gold and black.  But the family have lately returned to the older form of the armorial ensigns, which instead of having the gyronny of eight as a bordure, places it in chief on the dexter side party per pale from the three hands holding arrows on the sinister.

"CREST -- A demi Highlandman holding in the dexter hand a bunch of arrows, all ppr.; above, an imperial crown.

"SUPPORTERS -- Two Highlanders attired ppr. in old Campbell tartan, each holding in the exterior hand a bow and arrow, also ppr.

"MOTTO -- His nitimur et munotor.  ("We rely on these and are strengthened by them.")

"(Copied from the Encyclopedia of Heraldry or General Armory of England, Scotland, and Ireland by John Burke, Esq.)

"To Harold McConaghy
Christmas 1944

"The Motto -- Pax cum ustitia et acquitate ("Peace with justice and righteousness") chosen during these days of the Second World War."

In Art and Religion, Exodus is an important concept. Appreciate with us one Helen Siegl print on the topic.  Helen Siegl was an artist, printmaker, prolific in Philadelphia in the 1960's.

She made this "Exodus" woodcut, and we bought and cherish it. FN 1. Here is our fair use of it.

This to us represents the sojourn to parts unknown. See this improbable beast, the guy leading has his eyes shut, for heaven's sakes.  How do you lead that way.  And the beast is holding out the lure of some fruit or something.  It is not the reins-holder to the beast, holding out the lure; but the beast to the dozing one, with the useless reins, drooping around the beast's neck.  The so-called leader is not even able to steer if he wanted to, while the passenger muses, thinking plus ca change.

Whatever, she says.

It is an allegory of marriage in an ironic way, but it can be any migration, or children heading out.


Groups, individuals from family trees. Maconochie - McConaghy - McConaghey - or Mc's or Mac's,  do your own spelling.  The original historic Maconochie Clan nonetheless, evolved into those that are recorded at "Meadowbank, Co. Edinburgh; originally Campbell, or Inverawe, Co. Argyll" and as set out in a letter to my uncle, Harold McConaghy, Christmas 1944. FN 2; and in Burke's Geneology of the Landed Gentry. See below.

2.  Tracing an Exodus Through Burke's Geneological and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry

Now we find the source of that family letter, the book now online::
  • Burke's Geneological and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry, at page 814.
This source lays out the information in the 1944 letter, and clears up some ambiguities in the later transcription about the sons, Duncan and Dougal, and more -- find also a land grant from Robert the Bruce to forbears of the Maconachies, via other clans and marriage, going back to 1330 -, at ://

I am not a geneology-focused person. I like finding clues, but not putting it all together.  And all these names are so diluted and spread about by now that there is arguably not a single full drop of a hypothetical bloodline left in anybody.  But this sleuthing gets interesting for its own sake.  Try it for your family name, if you are fortunate to know.  Do go there for the precise wording of the Mc Conochie Vc Conochie (not "Vic").

Of special interest:  Some pre-1800 data that our family archivist, VP, had been looking for, may be there. Find executions of a Maconochie father and son for participation in the Revolution of Argyll (what?), whose 9-year old son received compensation later, and a residence in Edinburgh.  See who bought and sold which residences and married whom.

This becomes our personal filing cabinet of information, not organized, just collected for ourselves: From The Scottish Nation, by William Anderson (Surnames, Family, Literature, Vol 3), google book, at ://  A fair use of tiny portion of huge work, not retyped:

" Macosochir, a surname derived from the Gaelic Macdonochie, the son of Duncan. The Maconoohies of Meadowhank, Mid Lothian, the princ,pal family of the name, ure descendants of the Camphells of Inverawe, Argyleshire, the first of whom was Duncan Camphell, eldest son of Sir Neil Camphell of Lochow, ancestor of the ducal house of Argyle, hy his 2d wife, a daughter of Sir John Cameron of Lochiel. The eldest son of that marriage, Duncan Camphell, ohtained a grant of Inverawe and Crnachun from David IL in 1330. His eldest son was named Dougal, after his mother's family, and Dongal's eldest son Duncan was called in the Highlands Mac Douill Vic Conochie. He named his son also Duncan, who was thus Maconochie Vic Conochie, the son and grandson of Conochie, or Duncan. Maconochie, from that period, hecame the patronymic appellation of each succeeding Camphell of Inverawe, while the cadets of the family still hore the name of Camphell.

From the Camphells of Inverawe sprnng the Camphells of Shirwun, Kilmartin, and Crnachan.
In 1660, l,.m .. 1 Camphell, or, as he was called, the Maconochie of Invernugh, engaged in the rehellion of the marquis of Argyle, in whose armament of the clan Camphell he held the rank of major. He was tried with the marquis in 1661 and attainted. He was soon afterwards executed at Carlisle.
After the Revolution of 1688, Dougall's son, James Maconochie, who, at his father's death, was little more than nine years old, applied to goverument for the restoration of the Argyleshire property, which had got into the possession of an uncle, hut was unsuccessful. From King William IIL, however, he ohtained a grant in compensation, which he invested in the purchase of the lands of Kirknewton, in the muir now called Meadowhank, Mid Lothian, which his descendant still possesses, and, adopting Lowland customs, all the family took the name of Maconochie. His ouly son, Alexander Maconochie, was a writer in Edinhurgh. The son of the latter, Allan Maconochie, a celehrated lawyer, horu January 26, 1748, died June 14, 1816, was a lord of session and justiciary, under the title of Lord Meadowhank, heing appointed to the former in 1796, and to the latter in 1804. While attending the university of Edinhurgh, he was one of the five students who originated the Speculative Society, and was afterwards for some time Professor of the Laws of Nature and Nations in that university. He was the author of a pamphlet entitled ' ConsideraDons on the Introduction of Trial hy Jury in Scotland,' and in 1815, when the Scottish jury court was instituted, he was appointed one of the lords commissioners. He is said to have heen the inventor of moss manure, now extensively employed in various counties of Scotland, and printed for private distrihution a tract on the suhject. He married Elizaheth, third daughter of H"hert Wellwood, Esq., of Garvock, hy whom he had issue.
His eldest son, Alexander Maconochie, passed advocate in 1799, and after heing sheriff-depute of the county of Haddington 1810, solicitor-general 1813, and lord-advocate 1816, was appointed a lord of session and justiciary in 1819, when he also took the title of Lord Meadowhank. He resigned in 1841, and died Nov. 30, 1861. On the death of his cousin, Rohert Scott Wellwood, he succeeded to the entailed estates of Garvock and Pitliver, in the county of Fife, and assumed the name of Wellwood of Garvock (see Welwood). He married Aune, eldest daughter of Lord-president Blair; issne, with 5 daughters, 4 sons, viz.—1. Allan Alexander Maconochie, LL.D., horn in 1806. passed advocate in 1829, and in 1842 appointed professor of civil law and the law of Scotland in the university of Glasgow. 2. Rohert Blair, writer to the signet. 3. William Maximilian George. 4. Heury Dunda«,
And this:  Note the different spellings found in acts of parliament and old deeds -- here from The History of the Descendants of Elder John Strong, 1339-1343, ye gods, that seven generations later and longer, angles ultimately over to a US branch (not us) of McConihe's.  See

"[In 1369, Sir Neil Campbell of Lockawe, Ar¡ryleshiro, chief of the powerful clan of Campbell, married the sister of Robert Bruce, and from them the Campbells of Argyleshire descended. Duncan Campbell, grandson of Sir Niel, the founder of the clan of the Campbells of Inverawe, assumed, according to a Highland custom the name of Donaohie or " The Macdonachie," that is, " the son of Duncan," his father's name. Some of his descendante dropped the name of Campbell, and others took the patronymic Maconochie which is spelled variously afterwards in the acts of parliament and in old title deeds, Maconochy, McConahy and McConihe. In 1661, Maconochy of Inverawe was second in command in the Earl of Argyle's army against the reigning house of Stuart. In the same year his estate and family titles were attainted and sold by the crown : but in 1668, after the Revolution, the attainder of the Earl of Argyle and of his adherents was reversed and Maconochy of Inverawe was paid by the government for his lost estate there, and he purchased with the money given him the estate ever since held by his family called Meadowbank in Mid-Lothian. The present chief or representative of the clan of the ancient line of Campbells and Maconochies is Alexander Maconochie, with the title of Lord Meadowbauk, residing on his estate near Edinburgh.]"

So:  A forebear married the sister of Robert the Bruce.  Is that how the land grants came about?  Lore tells us that each generation has a Robert Bruce, and that is true of mine as well.

Have to get all this to VP. Oh, dear. How old is she now?   More at :// including Orkney connections. 

  • Comment on dependency on old texts for any belief:  With transcription errors in peripheral geneology issues, and spellings all over the map, that matter to no one else, even in our own day, what to believe about the important stuff:  people relying on Bibles and monks in solariums etc.  Hate to think. What if the words people rely on for their faith are just errors.

  • Maconochie Hotpot - Meet another side of the Maconochie clan.  They made stews put in cans and served to people in the trenches, and also in WWII.   Maconochie's was WWI slang for (an apparently dreadful)  chewey stew served at the front - see /  This was based on something called Maconochie rations, or a tinned stew. Could be beans and pork, could be turnip and carrot, or those with other mystery meet. 

It keep people alive, but was it appreciated. Look up WWI Maconochie's stew. Made of sliced turnips and carrots, some meat in some versions, and made by the Aberdeen Maconochies. See ://  Buy a ration label for two pounds. See  ://  They also ate it at Monte Casino WWII and hated it. See ://

  • Alexander Maconochie.  Meet a star. Born in Edinburgh 1787, died 1860 was a penal reformer, and notable as a naval officer and geographer, and he also fought for the British in the American Revolution, see :// VP, this gets to be enjoyable. All speculation as to real connections, but fun. There is a long biography at ://  Penal reform:  tie to tasks, not time; with credit if job well done; not punishment but rehab. Ahead of his time.

Spellings. Anything goes and means little. Much had been transcribed from the Gaelic, and mixes of Gaelic and English with all its spellings. Add an e, change a sound to fit the pronunciation, still the same root. We had one group in 1900+ who added an e somewhere just to distinguish themselves from the others for the convenience of the postman.

3.   Atholl Highlanders.

We had found a connection to the Atholl Highlanders, see Atholl Highlanders, Blair Castle; but I am retyping the full letter here because it is illegible scanned. Typing it out, we keep the mis-capitals and mis-punctuation and all.

Meet the roots of the Maconochie's, part of which later ended up in Ireland (not the English Plantation group, but still in the north).

We added space between paragraphs, and note another format adjustment: that the last sentence about a different motto chosen during World II is actually typed and indented beside the "To Harold McConaghy" section, but we had to put it below.

4.  Family Miscellany

Also not presented here yet.  There follow, in the stapled 3 page packet, a reproduction of the new Maconochie motto, and a photograph of grandfather Robert McClure McConaghy and his wife, Louise Lucinda (or Lucinda Louise) Hilliard or Brien, from Trillich and that is a tale in itself; with their first son, Robert. Photo taken in the Bronx, NY where they lived? Both Robert and Louise had migrated, but separately, to New York in about 1900?

Now to find out what all the heraldry means.

FN 1   More on Helen Siegl.

Looking up Helen Siegl on Images, we see that an entire book with some of her woodcuts, Clip Art of the Old Testament, is selling for $3.95, see :// As Clip Art, are the pictures public domain? We think so, but will continue to research. Bread for the World, see :// reproduces her work freely, see ://; as does this church group - "woodcuts were created by Helen Siegl, a long time Bread for the World member", see 4th week in Lent entry at ://; and that came up with a search for "Helen Siegl". So does this violate anything? Ye gods, who knows. Speak up, somebody authoritative, and we will take it down, with sadness.

Here she is! A website, at ://   She was Austrian, 1924-2009.  She just died. Oh, my. Cropped portions of Exodus appear there at ://  Do we have to crop ours? I have emailed the website to see.  Stay tuned.

FN 2  More on the letter.

My mother was Harold McConaghy's youngest sister, Marjorie McConaghy, and we have a copy of that letter - purporting to include hand-typed copy from The Encyclopedia of Heraldry or General Armory of England, Scotland and Ireland by John Burke, Esq."  Looking that up, we find Burke's General Armory from 1844 selling for $62.00 at :// in 1944, when the letter was typed, there was no photocopying, so it may contain errors.


Addendum:  family legends - Truth is beyond us. Believe, then!
  • Family is descended from Robert the Bruce (aren't we all) through Clan Robertson.  That line, the MacConachies by then,  had to leave because they were sheep-thieves. Were they moved as part of King James "Protestant Plantation" policy? 
  • Family members were in the Siege of Londonderry in 1688 (this from the same family archivist, letter to my brother February 9, 1977)
  • 1700's. Stories move to Ireland - see Ireland Road Ways.

Monday, February 16, 2009

History. White Slavery, Picts, Scots, the Caribbean, Skye

Slavery and Europe

The Scots? Enslaved? This land of castles and monarchies - how did that happen.

History hides. What does history say about slavery and the Scots? Among the oldest enslaved peoples on earth are, says this site, the Pics (same as the Picts from our school days?), the Irish and the Scots, and then a group named the "Alba," see  Where does that term originate. From the word meaning white, more likely than merely Albania?  See the BBC on the Alba at The history of the Scots as a group aggregated now, is the history of separate tribal groups, and migrations, Roman Empire incursions and withdrawals.  Since the 1st Century BC, for a chronology of human trafficking as it relates to Scots, see White Slavery: What the Scots Already Know, at the Electric Scotland site.  Find names and events related to the enslavement and sale of Scots in the New World, including judges in Edinburgh regularly shipping the less savory rogues off to the North American colonies, and Rouen, France, as a favored shipping point, at the White Slavery site.

We had been told of the slave trade at Dunvegan, the castle on Skye that is the home seat of the MacLeod clan - a distant name-related connection, although probably no actual people directly derived.

See the castle at Scotland Road Ways, Dunvegan. There, at the water line, is where the boats would glide up at night to pick up the captives, and haul them away to the ships to the colonies.