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Alexander Arthur 1710

While researching the Paton Family tree I found a link between trees on the Ancestry website. This link was around common ancestors starting with Mary Arthur c1813 who married Robert Mclaren.This link took our tree back further generations to Arthur Alexander c1710 and Elizabeth Balcanqual his wife. They are the 7x Great Grandparents of Christopher and Sarah and some of their cousins.

I contacted the owner of the Family Tree, David, who gave me a very comprehensive reply as below:


"Hi John - I have looked through my papers and have found that the info I have on the Arthur family history was provided by a researcher for a relative of mine some years ago.
I am descended through Mary A's brother William Forsyth A who was my 2x great grandfather. At his death in 1899 the record shows that his parents were Richard Arthur, farmer & Margaret ms Forsyth (both deceased). The same info is provided on the marriage record of William Forsyth A in 1859 (which was after the death of his parents). WFA's parents Richard A and Margaret F are buried in Falkland churchyard, and apparently are the only Arthur's who have a gravestone surviving there. The gravestone records that Richard was 71 at his death so he would have been born around 1780/1. Margaret F was 72 at her death in 1853.
The 1851 census shows they were both born in Falkland. A death notice in the Fife papers records that Richard A farmed at Ballo near Falkland. Richard A & Margaret F's marriage is recorded in the Falkland parish register (OPR Falkland/428/2 B 1702-1819) for 28 April 1804. Five of their children's baptisms (incl Mary WFA) are also recorded in the register.
The research also showed that no baptism is recorded for Richard A (b1780/1) in Falkland. However, RA named his eldest son Richard. The researcher stated "There were only 2 heads of household surnamed Arthur registering children in Falkland's OPR 1775-1785 and one was called Richard. This Richard's wife was called Mary Clement & this name was given to their son Richard's second child [your ancestor], so I think we may surmise that this is the correct line to follow as Richard is an unusual name for Scotland". There are however 5 baptisms recorded for children of Richard A & Mary Clement including 3 called Mary.
The researcher could only find one baptism of a Richard Arthur to suit dates and he was from the neighbouring parish of Auchtermuchty - 25 December 1743 (OPR Auchtermuchty 406/1)- and was the son of Alexander Arthur & Elizabeth Balcanqual. Interestingly Richard A (b1743) gave his eldest known son the name in Alexander in 1771. I understand it was common practice to name the eldest son after the father/grandfather in Scotland."

Interesting to note the comment regards the name of Richard, as this name features very much in our family. Richard Arthur (born 25th Dec 1743) was actually a twin, his brother was  called Henry. The last point regards Scottish naming practise, it appears to have been very much used by our decendants from Mary Arthur, so Richard Arthur (b1743) naming his       eldest son Alexander is a very big clue as to the name of his Paternal Grandfather,              Alexander Arthur. Regards the 1851 Census metioned in David's bit above, here is the         information contained in that census for Richard Arthur:

1851 Scotland Census
Name: Richard Arthur
Age: 69
Estimated birth year: abt 1782
Relationship: Head
Spouse’s name: Margaret Arthur
Gender: Male
Where born: Falkland, Fifeshire
Parish Number: 428
Civil parish: Falkland
County: Fife
Address: Cross Wynd St
Occupation: Landeil Proprietor Of 5 Acres

The usual Scottish Naming patterns used were as follows:
The Eldest son named after the Paternal Grandfather.
The Eldest daughter named after the Maternal grandmother.
The second son named after the Maternal Grandfther.
The second daughter named after the paternal Grandmother.
The third son would be named after his father and the third daughter after her own mother.

Here is part of an OPR document showning the birth of Richard Arthur 25 Dec 1743 and his Parents AlexanderArthur and Elizabeth Balcanqual.

Two photo's of "Cross Wynd" in Falkland where some of our ancestors have stayed, including Richard Arthur (b. 1786) who stayed here during the Census of 1881 with his wife Margaret Forsyth.
Mary Arthur Jobson (nee Armour) and her daughter Annie McLaren Jobson are staying in Falkland at Crosswynd during the 1901 Census. Mary’s son Robert Jobson was up staying with his granny, Ann Armour (nee McLaren), that night in Falkland hill cottage up in between the Lomond Hills. Falkland Hill is actually another name for East Lomond Hill. See map:

Photo of the McLaren gravestone in Falkland new cemetery. Mary Arthur (b1813 d1893) is on 
this stone as the wife of Robert McLaren.

Falkland new Cemetery McLaren Headstone Inscription reads: Erected In memory of Robert McLaren Lomond Hill Died July 1890 Aged 82 Years Helen McLaren Newlands Died May 1873 Aged 30 Years Catherine McLaren Died February 1855 Aged 3 Years Mary Arthur 25th November 1893 Aged 80 Years Margaret McLaren Wife of John Jack died 7th July 1897 Aged 63

The photo's may be enlarged by clicking on them, 

David, if I have done this correctly would be my (John Paton) "5th Cousin once removed"
Thanks indeed due to David for the information.


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