|About Murray Mckenzie Family
Murray Family History -
Hello and welcome to the Murray - McKenzie family tree. This is a work in
progress and I hope you enjoy it so far. I would never have started this research if
it were not for my fathers desire to learn more about his fathers two sisters and
their families who migrated to Canada from Scotland . He often told us he had
relatives living in Canada, yet he knew nothing more than they had lived in Fernie
and one had then moved to Whitefish Montana. His own father had also gone as a young
man with the family, but had returned for whatever reason to Scotland. He remembers
letters coming but the contents were never discussed. He did meet one of his cousins
briefly and also his Aunt Lizzie who returned to Scotland for a brief visit, which incredibily
ended up coinciding with the death of her Brother, my Grandfather James, so she was able to attend
The old saying, *good things come to those who wait* must have some truth in
it. It has taken a lot of years to finally get to this stage of my project, and I
have finally achieved what I set out to do, although of course, it is a never ending
project. My goal was to find out about my Grandfather James's two sisters Catherine
(Kate) and Elizabeth (Lizzie) and their decendants, and finally with the a lot of
research and some fantastic help from some very generous people this has been
achieved. Along the way I have been able to find our ancestors records also, and
learnt a lot about where *we came from* The biggist thrill has been to actually visit where they
lived in British Columbia and Montana, and meet decendants of their family or correspond with
The main focus of my reasearch at this stage is to be able to determine a listing of
a fourth sibling, Christina into the family.I have now managed to find a marriage certificate for
Christina whom I had assumed died as a child, as none of the descendants had any knowledge of her,
I have traced her husband who died in a nursing home in Vancouver and also her son, who it seems
never married and also died in Vancouver, I am yet to find out where Christina ended up.)
Please read the stories at the bottom of this page regarding the Murray's it gives a bit of an
insight to their lives.
Workman Family History -
My fathers mother was Elizabeth Workman, she passed away when my father was young,
and although he had contact with most of her siblings over the years, due to his
moving around with the British Army and migration to Australia most of these ties
have been lost, luckily I have been able to reunite this side of the family also, so
many of the missing gaps will be able to be filled in finally.
McKenzie Family History -
My search for my Grandfather McKenzie birth mothers family is quite a challenge, he
was born to what we believed to be an Irish mother and adopted by Scots parents. It turns out that
his birth mother actually lived in Greenock, Scotland where he spent most of his life. Julia Grant
was a young girl who it seems was working at a home for retired mariners, where she could have
meet Angus McKenzie. Julia went to Belfast, Ireland to have her child (my Grandfather) she
returned with him and at the age of 7 months he was adopted by Angus McKenzie and his wife Sarah
(Killen), after the death of Angus it seems Sarah remarried a Gabriel Wilson who sqandered her
money and she fell on hard times. Sarah ended up in the poor house where she died. At some stage
the young Angus was returned to the Grant family, it is not know what age he was, but he ended up
in what was locally known as the Bank Street Boys home. The Grants lived around the Port Glasgow
area, and locally people would refer to my Grandfather as Joseph Grant, I can only assume Joseph
was the name he was baptisted? I do have a copy of his original adoption agreement and have been
able to find information on his adoptive parents and their ancestors. As a lot of the Irish
official records were destroyed it is very difficult to find information, and most of this is
gleaned from various small websites.
My New Family:
I want to welcome all of my new *family* and say how special it is that we can
share wonderful stories about our lives. We have all taken different roads and
had different upbringings, but it seems at the end of the day, we all have
great respect for our parents and our forebears. Thank you all so much for your
contributions, and please feel that this site is as much yours as it is mine. If
there is anything you wish me to add to the format please feel free to forward to me
and I will do it with pleasure.
Meanwhile, enjoy your time here and please leave me messages in the guest
book, its always nice to know who is looking.
At the bottom of this page are some stories which help to understand more about family groups
A little bit of History of where the Murray Family lived -
Saltcoats is a sea-port, partly in the parish of Stevenston and partly in that
of Ardrossan; 74 miles wsw from Edinburgh, 30 sw from Glasgow, 19 n from Ayr,
14 w by n from Kilmarnock, and one from Ardrossan: eligibly situate on the
Firth of Clyde, near to its northern extremity. The general appearance of this
town is far from prepossessing, but its situation and proximity to Ardrossan,
the arrival and departure of the trading vessels, and the passing and
repassing of the different steam-packets and railway carriages, all contribute to
give life to this ancient place; a spirit of improvement is becoming manifest with
the inhabitants; and the town, it is expected, will be lighted with gas before
this work is published.
About 170 years ago, Salt-cots (then so called) consisted only of a small
number of cots or cottages, the inhabitants of which obtained a livelihood by
making salt in kettles. But at the beginning of the last century, a harbour
being constructed for the convenience of shipments of coal, the produce of the
mines in this neighbourhood, the little hamlet began to assume the semblance
of a village; it is but in recent years, however, that it has risen to any note.
During the late war [The French Revolutionary War and the Napoleonic Wars
ending in 1815] this place possessed an extensive trade, and ship-building was
carried on with great spirit; but since the peace its commerce has been much
reduced, and it is now nearly confined to the importation of timber, and the
exportation of coals to Ireland, in which trade there are sometimes about
forty vessels employed.
The manufacture of salt here is considerable, and a great number of looms are
employed in the weaving of muslins, &. for the Glasgow and Paisley markets. A
branch of the Irvine custom-house transacts the revenue business, and the
proprietors of the Ayrshire bank have a branch here; the house in which the
business of the latter is transacted, and which is also the residence of the
manager Mr. W.B.Orr, is a very handsome building, and an ornament to Raise
Street in which it stands. Both at the east and west of the town are extensive
chymical works, belonging to Messrs Burns and Son, who manufacture magnesia
and epsom salts.
The principal Inns are the "Saracen's Head", in Harbour street, and
the "King's Arms", in Bradshaw street, the former a good posting- house. The Town-
house, the foundation of which was laid in 1825, consists of a spacious hall, with
two smaller apartments adjoining, and a lock-up for prisoners: the edifice, which
is surmounted by a steeple, is a prominent and effective object when
approaching the town. A justice court, for the recovery of small debts, sits
in this town once a month.
The places of worship are a church of the establishment, two others for the
seccessional body, one for the relief synod, a Gaelic church, and a Baptist
meeting-house. The children of the town have the advantage of free, parochial
and Sabbath schools, and a library of religious and moral works. There are
several benefit societies, which alleviate the suffering and relieve the
necessities of the poor; and one of those establishments that must ever aid
the impulse of industry and prudence - a savings bank.
An annual fair is held on the last Thursday in May.
Stevenston is a village in the parish of its name and district of Cunningham -
situate one mile north-east of Saltcoats, and two south-west from Kilwinning.
It consists chiefly of one street, half a mile in length; and derives its name
from Stephen, or "Steven", the son of Richard, who obtained a grant of lands
from Richard Morville, Constable of Scotland; the latter, then a very
celebrated man, died in 1189. Under this grant Steven settled here, and gave
his patronymic designation to the place. The parish abounds with coal and
freestone, of which large quantities are annually shipped.
The dairy and agricultural produce, comprising cheese, butter, wheat, oats,
and potatoes, is likewise of considerable value. A great portion of the
inhabitants of the village are employed in weaving, and through the agents here the
works of their looms are conveyed to the Glasgow houses. The present church is a
neat and handsome building, of modern erection. The old church belonged formerly to
the monks of Kilwinning.
Yearly fairs are held on the second Friday in August and the 31st of October.
A BATHING place advancing into celebrity, is in the parish of its name, pleasantly
situate on the western shore of Ayrshire, on an accessible point of the coast, and
only a mile west of Saltcoats, which occupies another promontory; it is 74 miles sw
of Edinburgh, 30 miles sw of Glasgow, 25 miles ssw of Paisley, and 8 w by n of
Irvine. This place, though but yet in a state of infancy, bids fair to rivalsome of
the longer established watering places, and has already become a favourable resort,
in the bathing season, for the genteel families of Ayrshire and other places - who
can be accommodated with neat and commodious houses or lodgings.
It is chiefly indebted for its existance to the noble family of Eglintoun, who had
formerly a castle of great strength and extent in the vicinity, but which is now in
ruins. A large and elegant hotel, with a suite of warm and cold baths, was erected by
the late Lord Eglintoun, at an expense of £10 000. The public rooms, the bed rooms,
offices and stabling are most commodious. This establishment is conducted by Mr
Robert Young, in a manner highly creditable to himself, and satisfactory to its
The harbour was commenced nearly thirty years ago, under the auspices of the before-
named munificent patron, who expended nearly £90000, upon it, and became the sole
proprietor both of it and the town, as well as the extensive barony of Ardrossan. The
tide harbour will contain from fifty to sixty vessels. The dock occupies an extent of
seven Scots acres, and will admit fifty vessels of from three to six hundred tons
burden. It was originally intended to form a communication between this harbour and
Glasgow, by means of a canal, the completion of which, owing to some legal points,
has been for some time suspended. An act of Parliament was obtained, in 1827, for
making a railway between Ardrossan and Johnstone, but as yet it has only been
finished to Kilwinning, a distance of six miles; a branch of four miles has also been
made to the Elgintoun coal fields. The principal traffic is in coal and stone, which
are shipped here , chiefly to Ireland.
A considerable trade is also carried on in the conveyance of passengers along the
railway; during the year ending September 31st, 1835, upwards of 21,000 persons were
so conveyed, and there was a great increase in the ensuing year. It is anticipated
that a railway communication will soon be established with Glasgow, Paisley and the
immediate towns, by means of a junction with the Glasgow and Ayrshire railway, which,
it is expected, will be shortly commenced. In the neighbourhood is a chalybeate (?)
spring, whose medicinal properties are beneficial in cases of debility, scrofula (?)
&c. The picturesque ruins of Ardrossan castle stand on an eminence, overlooking the
town. An agricultural society has been formed here, and a coursing club established.
Post Office, Elizabeth Reid, Post Mistress - Letters from Saltcoats, Irvine,
Kilmarnock, &c arrive every morning at half past nine, and are despatched every
afternoon at three.
Books about Ardrossan:
Old Ardrossan by R. & M. McSherry. Pictorial booklet old photographs (50) 1996
Down The Bath Rock. by Patrick O'Connor (1971) Publishers Gill & Macmillan Ltd.
Dublin. Patrick's recollections of Ardrossan and the Irish immigrant families living
there during the early 1900s
In a Marmalade Saloon. by Patrick O'Connor. Patrick's second book about growing up
Ardrossan Memories. by Tom Wallace. Photocopy at Ardrossan Library.
Ardrossan Shipyards. Struggle for Survival 1825-1983 by Catriona Levy & Ardrossan
Local History Workshop.
Author John Steele who lives locally has published three books relating to the town's