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RE: Those St Clair of the Isles etc

> 558 pages of what appears to be thoroughly researched data. The writer
> must have travelled extensively to collect it.
>  Ian Sinclair,  Melbourne  Australia
Roland St Clair's 'The St Clairs of the Isles' should not be taken as the be
all and end all of Sinclair research.  Consider the following:

Roland St Clair didn't necessarily research the material himself, as is made
clear in various footnotes throughout the book.  For example he outlines the
Sinclairs of Murkle, the research of which he attributes to John Henderson .
In this section a version of the descendants of David of Broynach is given
in which Donald Sinclair who 'went to sea' had a son and 5 daughters, all of
whom were dead by 1767 except for a daughter.

However, in a later section, about the Sarclet Sinclairs (my line), a
completely different version of the descendants of Donald is given.  In
fact, it is stated that Donald who went to sea (in Henderson) was the same
person who was known as Donald the sailor. The contributors to this section
include Thomas Sinclair, a Sarclet descendant, well-known for works about
english Sinclairs, Caithness Events, etc.  The contributors also include a
descendant of one William Sinclair who was supposedly a son of Donald the
Sailor, son of David of Broynach.  I also suspect that statements made by
some of my own Sarclet forbears in relation to the succession of the earldom
circa 1890 have contributed to this version of Donald's descendants.     A
footnote at the rear of Henderson's work (where he put late alterations &
additions) corrects the name of one of the children listed in the Sarclet

Roland St Clair did not try to compare or validate these differering
versions, he merely reported them and therefore left the readers to judge
for themselves.

A couple of people have contributed a version of Donald's descendants to the
LDS Ancestral File which has similarities to Henderson's version.

Thus I find the versions of the descendants of Donald the sailor to be
confusing.  I have got to the point where I am wondering if Donald had more
than one marriage not to mention some 'extra' issue.  It appears that at
least one of his children in Wick parish records (Francis) was not born to
Donald's wife.  A girl in every port?

My forbears asserted that my great great grandmother Catherine Sinclair was
a daughter of Peter Sinclair who was a son of William of Freswick (the
doctor).  The works of Henderson and Roland St Clair do not give a son of
William of Freswick called Peter.  Who is right?  Am I to take the word of
Henderson & Roland St Clair? How good was their information?  Or do I take
the word of my forbears which was apparently provided in relation to an
english court case re the earldom?  Do I believe information given by my
forbears when a near relation to them stood to gain the earldom if the court
case succeeded?

Obviously a lot The St Clairs of the Isles is based on solid foundations,
but don't take it as gospel, take it with a pinch of salt like anyone else's
research and treat it as an excellent starting point for one's further

Peter Sinclair Dillon
Christchurch, New Zealand

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