I have promised several people this week so if I
don't get to it in the next couple of days let me tell you this much now so you
can be working on that angle. I have a copy of a letter written by Neil,
SR. who married Margaret Lyons. (Your letter was apparently written
by his son, Neil or his grandson, Neil Bethell? Neil, Jr. named a son Neil
Bethell Sinclair so actually we are looking at Neil I, Neil II, and Neil
III. My records show that Neil II died ca. 1893 in Memphis. He did
name a son Neil Bethell Sinclair and perhaps he is the one who wrote your
letter? My records show that Neil II's aunt was Margaret Sinclair (wife
of Duncan Sinclair). That would make Duncan his uncle through
marriage. So really you have two Sinclair lines here which was not
uncommon for cousins to marry in that time era. Now that is
confusing. To put it in a nutshell - The parent of Neil I and the parent
of Margaret were siblings.
Yes, I remember very well your gift of the book and
one of these days I will finally get all of my Canadian material to you.
There is a lot of it in my files but not yet sorted. It is only in cases
like this that I have it documented. The only other possible connection in
New Orleans would be John, b. ca. 1811. I researched him also and found he
was born in Campeldon, Argylshire, Scotland. I would be surprised if he
was closely related to Duncan or Neil as he was not mentioned in the letter.
However, he could have been related to Duncan since
Neil's connection was through his wife. If anyone out there descends from
John I will be happy to furnish copies of what I found on him.
I am fascinated with the tombstone reference to New
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2000 4:24 AM
Subject: Re: lost branch of Sinclairs
How very nice to hear from you again. (In case you don't remember me,
I'm the person who sent Donald Whyte's "Dictionary of Scottish Emigrants
to Canada before Confederation")
I'm so thrilled that you recognize this family, because they have been
driving me crazy!
Im so close to connecting this American branch
with its Canadian one, but just couldn't quite do it. There are just too
many Neils, Duncans and Alexanders in that family.
When I've sorted it
out, I'll return the information to you, along with photos of the
cross, and Alexander's (either father or grandfather) grave inscription, and
back to Islay, in Argyllshire.
I'll be sitting on pins and needles! Please let me know the postage,
or other costs.
Many, many thanks!
71 Lake Street
Grimsby, Ont. Canada
Jean Grigsby wrote:
Toni,I can provide you with a lot on this family. I don't have it
in the computer but will try to get it in for you this week. This is
one of the families I researched during my research trip to New Orleans back
in May. Please send me
your mailing address. I know I probably have it somewhere but
Hi everyone, I need help reconnecting a branch of the
Sinclairs to their tree.
----- Original Message -----
October 27, 2000 5:00 AMSubject:
lost branch of
I have an old letter from a Neil Sinclair, who wrote that he was
born in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1885. In his early
recollections he said his father's name was Neil and his uncle's
name was Duncan, and they lived had in New Orleans. He also had a
cousin, Alexina, (presumably Duncan's daughter) who later married a
McBurney. This is the interesting part, he writes:
"Vaguely I knew that my progenitors came from Scotland and that
in the proceeds of immigrating to Canada, by some untoward Act of God,
their vessel was blown off course; a number of Sinclairs perished at sea
and those that were saved, finally settled in New Orleans. Of these,
my father and his brother were surely in some way connected with those who
Does this story shake any leaves in your collective trees? I've
found out that the writer, Neil, later moved to California, and I
was able to find a death record for him - 03/09/56, and it notes that his
middle name was "Bethel", his mother's maiden name.
On the Canadian front, I know he is distantly related, we also have the
It happened in 1845. I know his ancestors came
to Boston Mill, Ontario, and that the body of at least one of the deceased
was brought there for burial- Alexander, born 1814. There is a
magnificent celtic cross, probably 16 feet high, at the cemetery there,
which reads "SINCLAIR - NEW ORLEANS'. Maybe its there to
rest of the family who perished.
Does this story shake any leaves in your collective trees? How
does this Neil relate? Was he a newphew, or a grandson? What
happened to his own son Neil? I've spent days on the internet
checking out Neils, but have hit a brick wall.
Any help out there?