This is the most exciting breakthrough I've had in quite a while! We definitely have the right family, even though its very confusing with so many Neil's. Here's another interesting twist - The Boston Mills cemetery is full of Sinclairs and Campbells, all related to one another, plus a few others. The Campbells are also intermarried with the Lyons family! I correspond with some of their descendants, and I will definitely telephone them today. Can't wait for the mail.
In Neil's (II) letter he definitely referred to his father's brother Duncan. Duncan's wife Margaret Sinclair must be the in-law, and possible related to the John Sinclair from Campbelton. If this John went to New Orleans at an earlier time, that might explain why the shipwreck survivors ended up there, instead of Canada. It didn't make any sense before. By the way, I don't think there's a Cambeldon. Its probably meant to be Campbeltown, on the Kintyre peninsula, argyllshire.
Question to the list: Do any of you know of a website of
sunken emigrant ships?
Thanks to everyone for making this such a great interactive website!
PS Laurel - I'll be happy to send it to you, along with the brothers in Canada, when it gets sorted out.
Toni,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 OrleansMore later.Jean