Further Details of Kenneth MacKenzie and Jane Cameron and their known children

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Further Details of Kenneth MacKenzie and Jane Cameron and their known Children

A record of the marriage of Kenneth McKenzie and Jane Cameron was recorded in Fodderty parish on 8 April 1803. No definite record of Margaret's birth has been found, but there is a Margaret MacKenzie, recorded in the Fodderty Parish register, baptised on 27th January 1804, the daughter of Kenneth MacKenzie, but with no mother's name recorded. This would fit with our Margaret, making her the eldest daughter of Kenneth MacKenzie and Jane Cameron, as declared in the family history written by her husband Robert MacDonald, "I was united in marriage to Margaret MacKenzie, eldest daughter of Kenneth MacKenzie, smith, Dingwall." 

Kenneth MacKenzie and Jane Cameron had six known children altogether -

Why the three children immediately following Margaret were born in Port Glasgow, Renfrewshire, I do not know. For the first of the three birth/baptisms Kenneth MacKenzie is recorded as a "labourer", but for the further two births/baptisms he is recorded as a "smith". It is possible that with the increase in ship building as a result of the Napoleonic War that there was a demand for blacksmiths in and around Port Glasgow, hence the family's relocation from Cromarty. By the birth/baptism of their fourth child the family had returned to Dingwall, possibly signifying the end in the ship building boom?

I believe I have a record of Jane in the 1841 census along with three of her daughters - Isabella, Ann and Jane, staying in Cromarty at the Inn of daughter Ann's husband John MacDonald, prior to daughter Jane's departure for Canada with her husband Donald McKenzie and her young family. . On the face of it this would seem to be a family gathering to bid them farewell. (For further detail see under daughter Ann). Kenneth her husband is not present which may mean he died pre 1841. No record of Jane's death has yet been found in the post 1855 official registrations which may signify her death post 1841 but post 1855.

Margaret on 27th January 1804, Fodderty Parish

Next Generation in Family History - See Main Text

John MacKenzie, 7th December 1805, Port Glasgow, Renfrewshire.

There is a chance that John died young as in a letter from Margaret's husband, Robert McDonald, to his son Roderick in Australia, on 1st June 1874 commiserating on the death of Roderick's 3 month old baby daughter Anna, Robert states - "Your mother had a brother that died like her with a shriek called the hives. It is a kind of inflammation in the bowels." The self same Roderick in Australia seems to confirm this recording in a list of his mother's parents children where he records - "A son died in infancy."

Anna MacKenzie, 14th March 1808, Port Glasgow, Renfrewshire.

Ann married John MacDonald, the son of Alexander MacDonald, a general labourer, and Catherine Urquhart. Alexander McDonald had married Catherine Urquhart on 16 Dec 1797 in Dingwall, Ross-shire and the births of a further seven children are listed in the IGI: - Isabel born 15 Jul 1800, George born 27 May 1802, Donald born 31 Dec 1804, Mary born on 9 Feb 1807, Isabel born 21 Nov 1809, Alexnader born 24 Apr 1812, christened on 24 Apr 1812, and Flora born 2 Jul 1814 in Dingwall, Ross-shire.

Ann and John's marriage was recorded in the Lochcarron OPR on 20 November 1835 in Lochcarron, with Ann being identified as from Dingwall and John as a merchant from Janetown.

According to his later death certificate John had been previously been married to a Christina Urquhart who had presumably died by 1835. The Lochcarron OPR records this earlier marriage on 26 May 1827 in Lochcarron, with Christina being identified as from ?Loup, Contin? and John as a Coppersmith from Janetown. John and Christina had the baptisms of three children recorded in the Lochcarron OPR - Donald, 2 April 1828, Hugh, 10 April 1830, and Hannah, 26 December 1831. In each case John is recorded as of Janetown and for the entry for Hannah his occupation is given as Coppersmith.

Ann McKenzie and John McDonald seem to have had at least five known children (for further details of their children - where known - see Appendix Ji): -

What John's identification as "merchant" at the time of his marriage to Ann actually meant is unknown. Whether it was connected to his trade of Coppersmith….? By the time of the birth of their third daughter Catherine on 31st August 1840, John and Ann had moved to Cromarty, with the birth and baptism recorded in the Cromarty parish register with John recorded as an Innkeeper. It is in Cromarty that we find him and his family for the 1841 census with John as the Innkeeper of an inn at the west end of Duke Street, Cromarty.

1841 Census (7th. June) Cromarty (61) Book 1. Page 20 & 21.

Duke Street, Cromarty

Name Age Occupation Born in County (Cromarty)
John McDonald 41 Inn Keeper No
Ann McDonald 28   No
Donald McDonald 13   No
Catherine McDonald 6   No
Christina McDonald 4   No
Janet McDonald 1    
Jane McKenzie 60   No
Isabella McKenzie 20   No
Donald McKenzie 25 Farmer No
Janet McKenzie 23   No
Kenneth McKenzie 5   No
Cathrine McKenzie 2   No
Alexander McKenzie 1   Yes

As always the case with the 1841 census without the benefit of relationships between the various members of the household a certain amount of interpretation is required. This is exacerbated in this case as a number of errors in ages are also apparent. At least it is clear that they are errors as we known that Catherine should be aged 10 months to a year and born in the county of Cromarty, certainly NOT 6 and born outside the county of Cromarty as recorded in this census. I believe that this census actually lists not only Ann and John and her family, but also -

Assuming that I am correct in my belief we can be certain for the reason for this family gathering. 40 days after this census Ann sister Jane, husband Donald, and children Kenneth, Catherine and Alexander were disembarking from the Barque "Lady Gray" at Pictou in Nova Scotia on the other side of the Atlantic, so they must have left Cromarty within days of this census. No doubt their nearest and dearest had come to wish them well in their new lives. One can almost picture the scene with the "Lady Gray" sitting out in the firth and the population of Cromarty and the surrounding area temporarily swelled with the 240 odd souls that were to also make the journey to a new land and life. (Details of Jane and Donald and their life in Pictou are available separately under Jane's "bit")

We can be certain that Ann and John remained in Cromarty for the next three years or so as the birth and baptism of their fourth child Kenneth was recorded in the Cromarty, born 13th and baptised 31st May 1842 and their fifth child Alexander was also born in Cromarty as recorded latterly in the 1851 census. However they seem to have been in Dores, Inverness-shire as this is where their sixth child Ann was born according to the same 1851 census. For that census John was living at 30 Brown Street, Inverness. Sadly Ann must have died in the previous four or so years as he is recorded as a widow. Not only that but, at least on the face of it, his fortunes have also suffered a reverse as he is recorded as a "Road labourer", surely a step down from Innkeeper or Coppersmith!? Christina and Jane's places of birth are misreported as "Lochbroom" instead of "Lochcarron".

1851 Census (31st March) Inverness (98) Book 26 Page 51

30 Brown Street, Inverness.

Name Relationship Age Occupation Where Born
John McDonald Head (Widow) 50 Road Labourer Dingwall, Ross-shire
Christian McDonald Daughter 14 Scholar Lochbroom, Ross-shire
Jane McDonald Daughter 13 Domestic Duties Lochbroom, Ross-shire
Catherine McDonald Daughter 11 Scholar Cromarty, Ross-shire
Kenneth McDonald Son 10 Scholar Cromarty, Ross-shire
Alexander McDonald Son 8 Scholar Cromarty, Ross-shire
Ann McDonald Daughter 5 Scholar Dores, Inverness-shire
Isabella McDonald Servant 32 House Servant Dingwall, Rosshire

For the 1861 census John had moved to nearby Pumpgate Street and was recorded as living at number 9 with his daughter Christina and son Kenneth. The whereabouts of Jane (aged 22'ish - born Lochcarron), Alexander (aged 16'ish - born Cromarty) or Ann (aged 14'ish - born Dores) is not currently known, but there is a record of Catherine, aged 20 and born Cromarty, working as a Domestic servant in the household of Ann McGregor, a vintner, at 3 Shore Street, Inverness.


1861 Census (8th April) Inverness (98) Book 15 Page 27

9 Pumpgate Street, Inverness.

Name Relationship Age Occupation Where Born
John McDonald Head (Widow) 59 Labourer Inverness, Inverness-shire
Christian McDonald Daughter 24 Domestic Servant Inverness, Inverness-shire
Kenneth McDonald Son 18 Apprentice Blacksmith Inverness, Inverness-shire


For the 1871 census John was again at a different address. He was recorded as living at 4 Gilbert Street, with his daughter Christina still presumably looking after him and his son Alexander, aged 28, a Railway labourer. The whereabouts of Jane (aged 32'ish - born Lochcarron), Catherine (aged 30'ish - born Cromarty), Kenneth (aged 28'ish - born Cromarty) or Ann (aged 24'ish - born Dores) is not currently known, but at we can be pretty certain that by this date either Jane or Catherine had married. This fact plus the fact that Alexander was either just about to go to New York or had just got back from there is jaloused from a reference by Ann's brother in law, Robert MacDonald, in a letter of 31st August 1871 to his son Roderick, when he states "Your Aunt Ann's son Alex'r McDonald Martin went to New York the second time, & got no work, and his sister's husband is the same way". This also suggests John MacDonald belonged to the Martin branch of the Clan MacDonald


1871 Census (3rd April) Inverness (98) Book 17 Page 11

4 Gilbert Street, Inverness.

Name Relationship Age Occupation Where Born
John McDonald Head (Widow) 71 Ships Labourer Dingwall, Ross-shire
Christian McDonald Daughter 33 Labiurer's Daughter Lochcarron, Ross-shire
Alexander McDonald Son 28 Railway Labourer Dingwall, Ross-shire


John died on 15 November 1874, aged 76. His death certificate records his parents as Alexander MacDonald, a general labourer, and Catherine Urquhart, with the informant William Simpson - friend. William was actually the husband of Ann McKenzie, John's niece through his siter Mary McDonald. Presumably all his children were down south in Glasgow etc. His demise is referred to in a letter from Ann's niece Margaret MacDonald to her brother Roderick MacDonald in Melbourne. In the first letter of 7th April 1875, (from 46 Telford Rd, Inverness), she writes : - "and Kenneth McDonald's father died suddenly - my Aunt Ann's husband".

Jane/Jean McKenzie, born 15th February 1810, Port Glasgow, Renfrewshire.

Jane married Donald McKenzie circa 1836 probably in Dingwall. Jane McKenzie and Donald Mckenzie had at least six known children (for further details of their children - where known - see Appendix Jii): -

In 1841 along with 240 others they sailed from Cromarty on board the Barque "Lady Grey" leaving behind their homeland and heading for a new life in Canada. I believe I have a record of Jane in the 1841 census along with her husband Donald McKenzie and her young family and her mother Jane plus two of her sisters - Isabella and Ann - staying in Cromarty at the Inn of sister Ann's husband John MacDonald, prior to her departure for Canada. On the face of it this would seem to be a family gathering to bid them farewell. (For further detail see under daughter Ann).

Whether they originally intended to go to Quebec, the eventual destination of the Barque, or whether they were amongst the 75 who intended to disembark prior to Quebec, at Pictou, Nova Scotia is not known as in the event when "Lady Grey" reached Pictou, on 16th July, she was discovered to have Typhus on board. The fever spread to 26 of the passengers and six died. As a result a further 55 passengers decided to disembark at Pictou, making 135 in total. No doubt this early disembarkation a was caused by the fear of spending more time on board "Lady Grey" with the possibility of further out breaks of disease, combined with attraction of the land around Pictou with the possibilities it presented for industrious farmers. That Donald was on board is confirmed by the appearance of his name in a list of names given at Pictou protesting to the emigrants ill treatment form the ships master William Grey, whilst on board the "Lady Grey". * Donald's name also appears on page 256 of "A Dictionary of Scottish Emigrants to Canada Before Confederation", by Donald Whyte.

The next reference to Jane and Donald is in a letter by the husband of Jane's sister Margaret, Robert MacDonald, written on 26th December 1861 in Keills, Islay, to his son Roderick, where he states : - "A letter came from my Brother's daughter from Nova Scotia, telling that Donald McKenzie, the smith, & his wife (Jane your Aunt), & family were well, but that their son Alexr died in March last; that Donald himself & his son Kenneth were working far from home in New Brunswick, but that they were expected soon to come home. Their son Alexr was hauling wood down a river, & got cold which caused his death. He built a new house for themselves shortly before he took ? ill ?" Young Alexander whose death is reported in this letter would only have been 20/21. (Baptised 16th March 1840 in Cromarty.)

Again in a letter , by the same Robert MacDonald, this time writting from Inverness on 12th May 1869, further mention is made of Jane and Donald and their family - "Your Aunt Jane with her husband & family left where they were, & took or bought a farm elsewhere. Their address now is: Mr Donald MacKenzie, Blacksmith, Caribou River, by Pictou, Nova Scotia, North America".

Certainly for the census of 1871 Donald and Jane were recorded at Caribou with not only their son Kenneth, but also their three other sons born in Nova Scotia, Roderick, born circa 1843, John born circa 1845, and Murdoch, born 1849. This son Murdoch is also referred to in notes by a son of Jane's sister Margaret, Roderick, concerning his family history, where he records "has a son Murdoch". (He also mistakenly recorded that the family "Went to Nova Scotia 1850" )

1871 Census Caribou Nova Scotia , Canada

Surname First & Middle Names Sex Age Place of Birth Religion Origin Profession
MacKenzie Donald M 61 Scotland U Presbyterian Scotch Blacksmith
MacKenzie Jane F 61 Scotland U Presbyterian Scotch  
MacKenzie Kenneth M 33 Scotland U Presbyterian Scotch Blacksmith
MacKenzie Roderick M 28 NS U Presbyterian Scotch  
MacKenzie John M 26 NS U Presbyterian Scotch Engineer
MacKenzie Murdoch M 22 NS U Presbyterian Scotch Farmer

(*  From "The Pictou Book, Stories Of Our Past" written by George MacLaren Of Halifax N.S. in 1954.  The pages give a brief history of the brig Lady Gray/Grey on page 104 and a passenger list on page 105 which includes our Donald MacKenzie)

The Inscriptions on the McKenzie grave stone in Cariboo River Upper Cemetery

Murdock McKenzie died Sept.11 1883 aged 34 years

Jane McKenzie died Dec. 15 1869 aged 17 years

William Shannon died August 22 1895 aged 65 years

Donald MacKenzie died April 23 1878 aged 72 years

His wife

Jane died Dec. 10 1891 aged 83 years

Donald MacKenzie died 23rd April 1878, and his details recorded on the family gravestone in the Cariboo River Upper cemetery.  (Now on the Battist Road, Pictou County).  His age is recorded on the gravestone as 72 whereas according to the previous census it would have been 68'ish.  Using the two ages he must have been born 1806/1810 in Scotland, probably Ross and Cromarty.  On the gravestone there is also recorded a Jane MacKenzie died 17th December 1869 aged 17 years.  It would seem almost certain that this was a daughter of Donald and Jane MacKenzie born around 1852.

After the death of her husband, Jane MacKenzie seems to have gone to live with her youngest son Murdoch as she is recorded in his household for the census of 1881.  

Where Jane was at the time of the 1891 census is unknown but she certainly was alive at the time.  She died on 10th December 1891 and her details were recorded below her husband's on the family gravestone in the Cariboo River Upper Cemetery.  According to her age on the gravestone she was aged 83, although actually only 81.

Mary MacKenzie, baptised 22nd July 1813 in Dingwall.

Mary married Kenneth McLean, shoemaker, on 7th January 1839, as recorded in the parish register of Fodderty. Kenneth and Mary had at least seven known children (for further details of their children - where known - see Appendix Jiii):

The recently wed Mary MacKenzie and Kenneth McLean are recorded in the 1841 census on 7th June for Dingwall, along with their first child, Jane, whose baptism is recorded on 13th December 1839 in the Dingwall parish register.

1841 Census (7th. June)  Dingwall (   )  Book 3.  Page 23.


Name Age Occupation Where Born
Kenneth McLean 30 Shoemaker Yes
Mary 25   Yes
Jane 1   No

For the census of 1851 Mary and Kenneth were living with their five children Jane, Kenneth, Janet, Alexander, and John, at Burnside, Dingwall. All members of the household are recorded as born in Fodderty, Rossshire, although this is inaccurate.

1851 Census (31st March) Dingwall (62) Book 2 Page 24

Burnside, Dingwall

Name Relationship Age Occupation Where Born
Kenneth MacLean Head 45 Shoemaker Fodderty, Rossshire
Mary McLean Wife 35   Fodderty, Rossshire
Jean MacLean Daughter 12 Servant Fodderty, Rossshire
Kenneth MacLean Son 10   Fodderty, Rossshire
Janet MacLean Daughter 7   Fodderty, Rossshire
John MacLean Son 1   Fodderty, Rossshire

For the census of 1861 Mary and Kenneth were living with four children at Gardens Lane, Dingwall. Jane who would have been aged 21, Kenneth who would have been aged 20, and Alexander who would have been aged 14 are not recorded in the household.

1861 Census (8th April)  Dingwall (62)  Book 4  Page 7.

Gardens Lane, Dingwall

Name Relationship Age Occupation Where Born
Kenneth MacLean Head 58 Shoemaker Fodderty, Rossshire
Mary McLean Wife 45   Dingwall, Rossshire
Janet MacLean Daughter 16   Dingwall, Rossshire
John MacLean Son 11   Dingwall, Rossshire
Christy MacLean Daughter 8   Dingwall, Rossshire
Donald MacLean Son 5    Dingwall, Rossshire

For the census of 1871 Mary and Kenneth were living with their three younger children at Wardens Lane, Dingwall.

1871 Census (3rd April)  Dingwall (62)  Book 4  Page 8.

Wardens Lane, Dingwall

Name Relationship Age Occupation Where Born
Kenneth MacLean Head 61 Shoemaker Dingwall, Rossshire
Mary McLean Wife 54   Dingwall, Rossshire
John MacLean Son 21 Tailor Dingwall, Rossshire
Christy MacLean Daughter 17 Servant Domestic  Dingwall, Rossshire
Donald MacLean Son 15 Message Boy Dingwall, Rossshire

Mary McLean died suddenly of heart disease on 6th February 1875, at 15 Warden Street, Dingwall. The informant was her son John McLean and she was recorded as married to Kenneth McLean, shoemaker, with her father listed as Kenneth McKenzie, a smith, and her mother as Jane Cameron. The fact that it was a sudden death is confirmed by the fact that her death was the subject of a "precognition", (a sort of inquest). Her death was referred to in a letter by Margaret MacDonald, Mary's sister Margaret's daughter, in a letter of 7th April 1875 from 46 Telford Rd, Inverness to Mary's sister Margaret's son Roderick MacDonald in Melbourne : - "My aunt Mary in Dingwell died the 5th of February last. She was out making provision for the sabbath in a shop and on her return dropped down and expired without any warning". (6th February 1875 was a Saturday).

For the census of 1881 the widowed Kenneth Maclean and his son, John, were living with his married daughter Christina, her husband Donald McKinnon, and their three children, Mary born 1877/78, Alexander born 1879/80, and Margaret born January/February 1881, all born in Dingwall.

1881 Census (4th April)  Dingwall (62)  Book 1.  Page 8.

10 Hill Street, Dingwall

Name Relationship Age Occupation Where Born
Donald McKinnon Head 34 Fireman in Distillery Inverness, Inverness-shire
Christina Wife 27 Fireman's wife Dingwall, Rossshire
Mary Daughter 3   Dingwall, Rossshire
Alexander Son 1   Dingwall, Rossshire
Margaret Daughter 3 months   Dingwall, Rossshire
Kenneth MacLean Father in Law 70 Shoemaker Fodderty, (Brahn), Rossshire
John MacLean Brother in Law 30 Tailor Dingwall, Rossshire
Alexander Cowan Lodger 23 Cooper Crieff, Perthshire
Finlay Fraser Lodger 26 Ballman Daviot, Invernessshire

Kenneth MacLean died on 26 Feb 1882 at 10 Hill Street, Dingwall. His death certificate identified him as the son of Alexander McLean, a crofter, and Jessie McLean, maiden name McKenzie, and the informant was his married daughter Christina McKinnon.

He, his wife and their son John were commemorated on a gravestone in St Clements Graveyard, Dingwall,

McLean Headstone - St Clements Churchyard, Dingwall


She sleeps ?? blessed sleep


Isabella Mackenzie, baptised 16th June 1817 in Dingwall

Throughout Robert MacDonald's letters to his son Roderick when in Australia, he makes reference to "your Aunt Bell" or "Aunt Isabella", often with queries to her whereabouts. She may have been a head strong lass judging by the comment in a letter of  1st June 1875 from her niece Margaret MacDonald of 96 Telford Rd, Inverness to her brother Roderick MacDonald in Melbourne, referring to the death of Isabella's sister, Mary, in Dingwall : - "I wrote you last mail of her sister's death.  She was very sorry to hear of Isabella's conduct, but she has a peculiar way and likes to be made of a little; we would like that she knows of her sister's death"

Isabella, a spinster, died of cancer at William St, Brighton on 1st of January 1880 (Registrar Generals Office Queen St Melbourne Death Register No374 ) In the notes by Roderick, Margaret's son, concerning his family history, he refers to "Aunt Isabella McKenzie died Brighton Jan'y 1880. H. McKenzie, Reily Creek". The death is also referred to in a letter of  12th January 1881 from Isabella's niece Margaret MacDonald of 4 West Hosier St., Partick, Glasgow to her brother Roderick MacDonald in Melbourne: - "I am very sorry to hear about my Aunt Isabella.  Do you really mean to say in truth that she is dead.  If so I would write to her sister (Jane) in Canada". (Brighton is a seaside town about eight miles south-east of Melbourne.)