The first Ritchie (Richie) families in Blair Atholl

Blair castle

The locations of Cuilt-more, Ardkincael and Balinuarain as show by General Roy's map, 1747

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Before 1700 the surname of Ritchie, or Richie, was rare in the area comprising the parishes of Blair Atholl, Dull, Moulin and Logierait. The Rolls of Hearth Tax for 1694 in Blair Atholl parish lists the surname of Ritchie only three times, all being close to Blair Castle, and each having a single kiln or fireplace. The Roll of the Duke of Atholl's Fencible Men (1705-06) helps to identify them as:

David Ritchie, tenant in Balinfhuarain (Balinuarain) who was lacking a sword;
John Ritchie, tenant in Ard Ceann Coille (Ardkincael) who was needing a gun; and
Duncan Ritchie, tenant in Cuilt-more who was armed (i.e. gun, sword and targe).

These three men seem to have been the ancestors of all the subsequent Ritchie families in this area. Unfortunately there are no baptismal records in Blair Atholl parish before 1718 and the first record of marriage banns is much later. Thus, whilst it is impossible to prove that a subsequent generation definitely derived from one of these three men, probable relationships are proposed which give the best fit with the known facts.

Also there were two married women by the name of Ritchie, and in Scotland it was the tradition that a wife was still referred to by her maiden name. So these two women probably were sisters of the three men but which one, or ones, is unknown. Isobel Ritchie, was the spouse of John Menzies and they lived in Balnald of Clune, while Elspet Ritchy, was the spouse of George Calder (Caldel or McDonald) and they lived in Glen Fincastle.

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David Ritchie and Donald Ritchie, deceased, in Balinuarain

The only baptism recorded at Balinuarain between 1718 and 1744 is that of Isabel Ritchie in 1736. Thus it can be assumed that her father, Donald, was David Ritchie's son as no Donald Ritchie is mentioned in the Roll of Fencible Men (those men aged between 16 and 60 years, i.e. born 1645-1689).

Blair Atholl OPR, 23 Nov 1736
Donald Ritchie, deceased, and Isobel Stewart in Balinuarain had a daughter baptised, named Isobel.

The lack of previous births suggests that the couple had only been married for a few years before Donald died unexpectedly. He could not have been any more than 46 years old when he died and, as men tended to marry in their mid-thirties, was born 1690-1700. This would mean that David Ritchie was born 1660 or earlier.

None of the other Ritchie families use David as a fore-name, so the male line seems to have died out with Donald, meaning that all of the other Ritchies were the descendants of either John or Duncan.

Blair Atholl OPR, 12 Mar 1760
Duncan Moon in Balinuarain and Isobel Richie in Balinuarain had an illegitimate child baptised and named Margaret.

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Duncan Ritchie in Cuilt-more

By eliminating the probable descendants of David Ritchie in Balinuarain and John Ritchie in Ardkincael, the remainder are most likely to be those of Duncan Ritchie in Cuilt-more. Taking into account the ages of these later Ritchies, Duncan probably was born 1650-55. It cannot have been much earlier or he would have been over 60 in 1705. Nothing is known about Duncan's wife, including her name.

If, as seems likely, the two married Ritchie women in Cuilt-more were his daughters then he must have been a man of some esteem as one daughter had married a Murray and the other was married to the Kirk Officer. Duncan also seems to have been better off than some, owning a gun, broad sword and targe. In addition, he probably was a devout Christian (Episcopalian at that time), as one of his sons was under consideration to be a Kirk Elder at a relatively young age.

The following family list has been compiled, basing the age of each person upon the date of marriage or baptism of their first child.

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(Generation 2) The Family of Duncan Ritchie and his wife in Cuilt-more

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Alexander ~1690 1. Jannet McDonald
2. Jannet Forbes
3. Margaret McGregor
~1721

~1725

~1735
Bohespic and
Tomnaraid,
Glen Fincastle
h.
1w. by 1725
2w. by 1735
3w.
George,
Kirk Elder
~1692 Margaret Addison ~1719 Bridge of Tilt
and Balinuarain
h.
w.
Janet ~1694 Donald Murray ~1718 Cuilt-more h.
w.
John ~1696 Janet Stewart ~1723 Kincraigie h.
w.
Elspeth ~1698 Donald Frazer ~1721 Cuilt-more h.
w.
Donald ~1700 1. Elspet Robertson
2. Christian Kennedy
3. Ann Robertson
22 Dec 1735

8 Aug 1748

4 Dec 1755
Glen Fincastle h.
1w. by Aug 1748
2w. by Nov 1755
3w.
Isobel ~1702 John McCollie
(John Stewart)
~1726 Baluaine h.
w.

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George Ritchie, the Kirk Elder in Blair Atholl

On 22 Jun 1721 the Rev Dr Hamilton composed a list of possible candidates to become Kirk Elders for the Parish of Blair Atholl. One of those considered was George Richie in Baluaine. Although George Richie was not selected, he had become one of the Kirk Elders when the Rev Alexander Stewart was ordained in the church of Blair on 6 May 1741. By that time George Richie was living at Bridgend of Tilt, and was still living there when he witnessed the Treasurer's accounts for the Kirk Session, 9 Nov 1746.

The Session Minutes record that George Richie, Kirk Elder, became conjunct Treasurer with Robert Stewart in Blairuachdar on 10 Apr 1748 but, usually, the Session Minutes only mention George Richie when money from the Sabbath collection was involved. The Minutes also record that George Richie was living at Bailinfhuruain (Balinuarain) by the time that he was appointed as Treasurer.

George Richie and Margaret Addison had two sons whose baptisms are recorded in the Blair Atholl OPR: George, 29 Oct 1721 at Baluaine; and Alexander, 14 Jul 1728 at Urrard. However, evidence points to there being several other children.

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(Generation 3) The Family of George Ritchie, the Kirk Elder, and Margaret Addison

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Margaret ~1720 Robert Stewart,
Kirk Officer
20 Dec 1743 Bridge of Tilt h.
w.
George jnr. 29 Oct 1721 Margaret Gow 13 Jun 1748 Balinuarain h. ~1780
w. ~1797
Duncan ~1725 Elizabeth Crie
(Elizabeth Cree)
15 Aug 1755 Balinuarain h.
w.
Alexander 14 Jul 1728 . . Urrard d.
Jean ~1730 James Robertson 1 Jan 1751 Balinuarain h.
w.

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Robert Stewart, Kirk Officer, and Margaret Ritchie in Bridge of Tilt

Margaret Ritchie is thought to have been born around 1720 and was living at Bridgend of Tilt with her father, George Ritchie the Kirk Elder, when she married Robert Stewart, the Kirk Officer at Blair, 20 Dec 1743.

Their son George, named after Margaret's father, was born at Balinuarain, 23 Sep 1744. It was not unusual for the first child to be born in the mother's parental home, and it is recorded in the Kirk Session minutes that George Ritchie the Kirk Elder had moved there by the time that he was appointed Blair Kirk Treasurer in 1748.

According the minutes of the Kirk Session, Robert Stewart in Bridgend of Tilt listed himself in the Jacobite military, about 14 Aug 1745. He served in Lude's 3rd batallion and was taken prisoner but later discharged. The minutes also record that on 18 Jan 1747 Margaret Richie in Bridge of Tilt, the wife of Robert Stewart, the previous Kirk Officer, was paid the remainder of her husband's wages due by the Kirk Session for 3 months of 1745.

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George Ritchie jnr. and Margaret Gow in Balinuarain.

George Richie, younger, in Balinuarain and Margaret Gow in Balinuarain, married 13 Jun 1748. The use of the terms 'younger' or 'junior' meant that there were two men of the same name at Balinuarain and that one was younger than the other, but it did not imply that one was the son of the other. However, in this case they were father and son. All of their children were born at Balinuarain.

The Ritchie family moved to Mualich-more in Glen Fender around 1780 and perhaps the move was neccesitated by the death of George's father. The tack (lease) was held by widow Ritchie (Margaret Gow) and was shared with a John Robertson, together with John and Donald Gow, who possibly were her relations.

(Generation 4) The Family of George Ritchie jnr. and Margaret Gow in Balinuarain.

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Duncan 22 Mar 1749 . . Balinuarain d.
Margaret 12 Feb 1752 John McDonald 5 Jan 1790 Tighnacoille h.
w.
Isobel 26 Dec 1754 . . Balinuarain d.
Elspeth 2 Mar 1757 . . Balinuarain d.
George 26 Jul 1760 1w. Cecil McIntosh
2w. Janet Robertson
1w. 15 Apr 1794

2w. 13 Jun 1803.
Mualich-More h. 1841-51
1w. 1800-03
2w. 6 Sep 1860
Jean 15 Aug 1763 . . Balinuarain d.
Christian 22 Mar 1769 . . Balinuarain d.

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John McDonald and Margaret Ritchie in Tighnacoille, Glentilt

Blair Atholl OPR, 5 Jan 1790
John McDonald in Dalness and Margaret Richie in Mualich-more, married.

John McDonald and his wife moved to Tighnacoille before the end of the year. Tighnacoille is just to the south of where Gow's Bridge crosses the river Tilt. Being in a narrow section of the glen there is little space for growing crops and more amenable to raising sheep and goat. Consequently, John McDonald's main employment might have been as a game-keeper. It is also said that a house next to Gow's Bridge sold whisky to weary travellers - another way to supplement one's income.

The couple had at least three children as the baptisms of three sons are recorded in the Blair Atholl OPR, the first two at Tighnacoille and the last one at Bridgend of Tilt.

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(Generation 5) The Family of John McDonald and Margaret Ritchie in Tighnacoille

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Donald 10 Oct 1790 . . Tighnacoille d.
George 24 Apr 1792 . . Tighnacoille d.
James 24 Jul 1795 . . Bridgend of Tilt d.

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George Ritchie and Cecil McIntosh in Mualich-more

Although widow Ritchie held the tack for Mualich-more up until 1797, the farm probably was being run by her son George. He married Cecil McIntosh from Wester Monzie on 15 Apr 1794 and they had four children, but Cecil died after the birth of their last child, John, in 1800.

(Generation 5) The Family of George Ritchie and Cecil McIntosh in Mualich-more.

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Isabella ~1793 unmarried . Mualich-more d. 14 Oct 1864
George 16 Oct 1796 1w. Janet MacPherson
2w. Isabel Stewart
8 Oct 1826

13 Nov 1836
Brae of Lude h. by Sep 1850
1w. 1835-36
2w.
Margaret 27 Jul 1798 . . Mualich-more d.
John 17 Sep 1800 . . Mualich-more d.

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George Ritchie and Janet Robertson in Mualich-more

In 1802 the Atholl Estate was needing more income, so the Factor re-organised the farms and opened them for new offers. George Ritchie renewed the tack for Mualich-more, sharing it with Alexander Robertson and James Robertson. The lease ran until 1811 for an annual rent of 24. In the following year, 13 Jun 1803, he married Janet Robertson from Auchghoul in Glen Tilt.

From 1813 until 1816 George Ritchie had sole possession of Mualich-more, and although the annual rent was slightly reduced to 23 6s 8d, he also had to provide six kain hens (i.s. six hens or the cash equivalent) and of a carriage of coal (i.e. a man and a cart to transport coal for three-quarters of a day).

The Atholl Estate rentals describe Mualich-more as 25 acres of arable with 5 acres of pasture. In 1822 George Ritchie was in arrears with his rent and was threatened with sequestration, but the arrears were cleared by Martinmass of that year. The Factor described the farm as 'tolerably well managed', which was as close as anyone got to praise, and the lease was extended for another 3 years.

The farm grew 4 acres of oats, 2 acres of barley, 1 acre of potatoes, acres of peas, acres of parnips, acres of lint, and 2 acres of grass. To supplement the annual income three cattle were reared and sold as two year olds, and George was also employed during the stalking season as a hillman. Interestingly, he also made fiddles and other such things.

In 1828 he was summoned to appear before the Excise Court at Dunkeld, charged with selling unlicenced whisky at a ceilidh held in his barn. He protested that the whisky had nothing to do with him and that it had been brought in by others. All he had done was to give the use of his barn and played the fiddle for the dancers. He was also indignant at the charge as an Excise Officer had been present and had partaken of the whisky himself!

The 1841 census for Mualich-more shows some of the family.

Dwelling Name Age Occupation Birthplace
1 George Ritchie 81y farmer Perthshire
Alexander Ritchie 30y Perthshire
Eliza Ritchie 30y mantua maker* Perthshire
Jean Ritchie 25y Perthshire
Alexander
Ritchie **
8y Perthshire
Janet Robertson 75y Perthshire

* A mantua-maker was basically a woman's dressmaker. Elizabeth Ritchie, unmarried seamstress in Aldclune, died 27th January 1890 aged 86 years. Parents given as George Ritchie, farmer, and Janet Robertson, both deceased. Informant, her nephew William Robertson.

** 8-year old Alexander was the grandson from Brae of Lude.

In 1842 the Factor noted that George Ritchie was in arrears with his annual rent, but not as much as usual. He died before the 1851 census.

Dwelling Name Occupation Related Status Age Birth-place
34 Janet Ritchie farmer of 12 acres head widow 84y Blair Atholl
Elisabeth Ritchie mantua maker dau u/m 40y Blair Atholl
Isabella Ritchie step-dau u/m 58y Blair Atholl
Alexander Ritchie son u/m 38y Blair Atholl
Jean Ritchie dau u/m 35y Blair Atholl
John McPherson ag. labourer lodger u/m 24y Isle of Uist
John McDonald ag. labourer lodger u/m 22y Isle of Lewis

After the death of her husband, Janet Robertson, continued the lease until 1858 when it was taken over for half a year by Elizabeth and Alexander Ritchie who had the lease until 1864 and paid 30 annually.

Janet Robertson died of 'decay of nature' at Mualich-more on 6 Sep 1860, aged 93 years and was buried in the churchyard of Old Blair. Her parents were given as Alexander Robertson, farmer, and Elizabeth Gow, both deceased. The death certificate was witnessed by her grandson, Alexander Ritchie.

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(Generation 5) The Family of George Ritchie and Janet Robertson in Mualich-more.

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Elizabeth ~1804 unmarried . Mualich-more d. 27 Jan 1890
Alexander* 16 Feb 1806 unmarried . Mualich-more d. 1884
Jean 6 Jan 1809 unmarried . Mualich-more d. 1891
Janet 5 Jan 1812 John Robertson 23 Dec 1838 Blairuachdar h. 7 Mar 1879
w. 8 Oct 1883

* Alexander's mother was recorded in the Blair Atholl OPR as Margaret Robertson. An error by the registrar.

In 1881 Elizabeth Ritchie, her brother Alexander and her sister Jean were all unmarried and living at Mualich-more, but the farm was being run by their nephew Alexander Ritchie and his wife, Margaret Bell. Elizabeth, Alexander and Jean moved to Aldclune soon after the 1881 census.

Alexander Ritchie, unmarried pauper in Aldclune, died 5th December 1884 aged 79 years. Parents given as George Ritchie, farmer, and Janet Robertson, both deceased. The informant was his nephew William Robertson in Aldclune.

Elizabeth Ritchie, unmarried seamstress in Aldclune, died 27th January 1890 aged 86 years. Parents given as George Ritchie, farmer, and Janet Robertson, both deceased. The informant was her nephew William Robertson.

Jane (Jean) Ritchie, spinster in Aldclune, died 5th May 1891 aged 85 years. Parents given as George Ritchie, farmer, and Janet Robertson, both deceased. The informant was her nephew William Robertson.

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Isabella Ritchie in Mualich-more

Isabella Ritchie had an illegitimate daughter by John Stewart in Woodend, named Catherine and born at Mualich-more 15 May 1828.

Isabella Ritchie died at Mualich-more on 14 Oct 1864, aged 71 years. She was unmarried and had been an agricultural labourer. The informant was Elisabeth Ritchie, her sister (actually her step-sister).

Catherine Stewart, single, illegitimate daughter of John Stewart, farmer, and Isabella Ritchie, both deceased, died at East End, Pitlochry, 25 Aug 1902 aged 76 years. The informant was James Robertson, agent at Craig Urrard, Pitlochry.

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George Ritchie in Brae of Lude

George Ritchie in Mualich(-more) and Janet MacPherson in Little Lude, married 8 Oct 1826. They had four children but only Alexander has an entry in the Blair Atholl OPR and this shows that the family were farming at Brae of Lude by 1833. Janet died soon after the birth of Jessie in 1835 and George remarried.

(Generation 6) The Family of George Ritchie and Janet McPherson in Brae of Lude.

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
George ~1830 . . Brae of Lude d. after 1841
Jean (Jane) ~1832 George Young 12 Dec 1856 Aldclune h.
w.
Alexander 20 Oct 1833 Margaret Bell 20 Dec 1865 Mualich-more h. 22 Dec 1883
w. after 1883
Jessie ~1835 . . Mualich-more d. after 1841

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George Ritchie and Isabel Stewart in Brae of Lude.

George Ritchie in Brae of Lude and Isobel Stewart in Middlebridge, married 13 Nov 1836. They had at least four children but none were recorded in the Blair Atholl OPR, and only appear in the 1841 census returns for Brae of Lude.

Dwelling Name Age Occupation Birthplace
1 George Ritchie 40y farmer Perthshire
Isabella Stewart 28y not Perthshire
George Ritchie jnr. 11y Perthshire
Jean Ritchie 9y Perthshire
Jessie Ritchie 6y Perthshire
Donald Ritchie 3y Perthshire
Isabella Ritchie 2y Perthshire
Elspeth Stewart 18y female servant not Perthshire

George Ritchie and Isabella Stewart had another two children who appear in the 1851 census. George Ritchie died between 1846 and 1850 and to support herself and her family, Isabella Stewart married Charles Stewart in Brae of Lude on 22 Sep 1850. So the 1851 census shows the children from all three marriages.

Dwelling Name Occupation Related Status Age Birth-place
21 Charles Stewart farmer of 18 acres head marr 33y Blair Atholl
Isabella Stewart wife marr 37y Parish of Insch
un-named Stewart son u/m 8d Blair Atholl
Janet Ritchie house servant servt u/m 15y Blair Atholl
Donald Ritchie scholar step-son u/m 13y Blair Atholl
Cecily Ritchie scholar step-dau u/m 9y Blair Atholl
John Ritchie scholar step-son u/m 7y Blair Atholl

The 1851 census also shows that John Robertson, gamekeeper at Blair Walker (Blairuachdar), had Jane Ritchie, a 19 year old niece working as a servant as well as Alexander Ritchie, a 17 year old nephew working as an agricultural labourer. These were the children of George Ritchie and his first wife, Janet McPherson.

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(Generation 6) The Family of George Ritchie and Isabel Stewart in Brae of Lude.

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Donald ~1838 . . Brae of Lude d. after 1851
Isabella ~1839 . . Brae of Lude d. after 1841
Cecily ~1842 . . Brae of Lude d. after 1851
John ~1846 . . Brae of Lude d. after 1851

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George Young and Jane Ritchie in Aldclune

In the 1851 census Jane was employed as a servant by John Robertson, gamekeeper at Blair Walker (Blairuachdar). He was the brother of Charles Robertson who had married the widowed second wife of George Ritchie so, although the census gives her as niece it is more like a step-niece.

Jean (Jane) Ritchie married George Young just after the introduction of Civil Registration, so the marriage certificate provides much more information that the OPRs.

On 12th December 1856 at Blairwalker (Blairuachdar) George Young, 27 year old, handloom weaver in Aldclune, and Jane Ritchie, 24 year old housemaid at Blair Garden were married. George Young's parents were given as Thomas Young, handloom weaver, and Elizabeth Gray, deceased. Her parents were given as George Ritchie, farmer, and Janet McPherson, both deceased. Jane Ritchie signed with her mark 'X'.

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Alexander Ritchie and Margaret Bell in Mualich-more

In the 1851 census Alexander was employed as a labourer by John Robertson, gamekeeper at Blair Walker (Blairuachdar). He was the brother of Charles Robertson who had married the widowed second wife of George Ritchie so, although the census gives her as niece it is more like a step-nephew.

Alexander Ritchie and Margaret Bell married in 1865, although the marriage was not registered until 1st January 1866.

On 20th December 1865, at the parish church of Blair Atholl, Alexander Ritchie, ploughman in Mualich-more, single and aged 32 years married Margaret Bell, domestic servant in Dalriach, single and aged 22 years. His parents were given as George Ritchie, farmer, and Janet McPherson, both deceased. Her parents were given as William Bell, shepherd, and Christian McDonald. The witnesses were William Robertson and John Stirling.

Margaret Bell was the daughter of William Bell in Dalriach, Glen Garry. He died at Cullings, near Dunblane, 15th April 1881. There is a monument inscription in Blair parish churchyard (O1).

In the 1881 census they were farming Mualich-more and looking after their aunts and uncle (Elizabeth, Jean and Alexander), who were all in their seventies.

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(Generation 7) The Family of Alexander Ritchie and Margaret Bell in Mualich-more

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
George 1866 Catherine Robertson 1896 . h. 10 Mar 1944
w. 25 Feb 1944
William 1869 died in infancy . . d. 1876
Alexander 1871 . . . d.
Amelia 1872 . . . d.
John 1874 . . . d.
Janet 1877 . . . d.
William 1879 . . . d.
James 1881 . . . d.
Donald 1882 . . . d.

There is a monument inscription to the family of George Ritchie and Catherine Robertson in Blair parish churchyard (S10).

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John Robertson and Janet Ritchie in Blairuachdar

John Robertson in Glenbruar and Jannet Ritchie in Mualich-more, married 23 Dec 1838. Their first child was born at Ardindeor in Blair, but all of the others were born at Blairuachdar.

(Generation 4) The Family of John Robertson and Janet Ritchie in Blairuachdar (Blairwalker).

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
John 16 Nov 1839 unknown . Inverness Road,
Moulin
h. 5 May 1907
w. before 1881
Jessie 18 Apr 1841 . . Inverness Road,
Moulin
d. 20 Jan 1911
George 20 Mar 1843 . . Blairuachdar d.
William 24 Feb 1845 . . Blairuachdar d.
Alexander 19 Mar 1849 . . Inverness Road,
Moulin
d. 25 August 1891
Donald 15 Sep 1851 . . Blairuachdar d.
James 7 May 1854 . . Inverness Road,
Moulin
d. 15 Sep 1915

Janet Ritchie, widow of John Robertson, gamekeeper, died 8th October 1883 at Pitlochry aged 75 years. Parents given as George Ritchie, farmer, and Janet Robertson, both deceased. The informant was her son, James Robertson.

There are three monument inscriptions in Kilmaveonaig (Episcopalian) churchyard which relate to this family:

20. John Robertson, gamekeeper, Easangeal, died 7 Mar 1879 aged 72 years. His wife Janet Ritchie died at Craig Urrard, Pitlochry, 8 Oct 1883 aged 74 years. Their son Alexander died there 25 August 1891 aged 42 years and other children. (not recorded)

21. Flat stone, turfed. "JR".

22. John Robertson in Craig Urrard, Pitlochry, died 5 May 1907 aged 63 years. Jessie Robertson there died 20 Jan 1911 aged 67 years. James Robertson there, sub-agent Union Bank of Scotland, Pitlochry, died 15 Sep 1915 aged 61 years. Their daughter Jessie died at Craig Urrard 19 May 1948 aged 72 years.

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Duncan Ritchie and Elizabeth Crie (or Cree) in Balinuarain.

Another son probably was the Duncan Richie in Balinuarain who married Elizabeth Crie (or Cree) from Toldunie, 15 Aug 1755. His eldest son was named George while the second eldest daughter was named Margaret, which follows the traditional name pattern.

Duncan Richie in Balinuarain and Elizabeth Crie in Toldunie, married 15 Aug 1755.

(Generation 4) The Family of Duncan Richie and Elizabeth Crie (or Cree) in Balinuarain.

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Charlotte 5 Apr 1757 . . Balinuarain d.
George 16 Nov 1758 Elisabeth Stewart 15 Dec 1789 Dunkeld h. 11 Jun 1826
w. 29 Sep 1825
Margaret 22 Apr 1761 . . Balinuarain d.
Isobel 25 Nov 1763 . . Balinuarain d.
Katharine 27 May 1766 . . Balinuarain d.
John 24 Nov 1767 . . Balinuarain d.
Ann 14 Jan 1771 . . Balinuarain d.
Duncan 29 Aug 1778 Margaret Moan
(Margaret Moon)
17 Jul 1803 Dunkeld h. 2 Apr 1860
w. 19 Aug 1857

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George Richie and Elisabeth Stewart in Dunkeld

George Richie, under-gamekeeper to the Duke of Atholl and Elisabeth Stewart in Ardmark-beg, married 15 Dec 1789.

There is a monument inscription (86a) to the family in St Bride's (Blair Old Church) which reads:

1860. George Ritchie died at Tulliemulie, 11th June 1826, aged 68 years.
His spouse Elizabeth Stewart died 29th September 1825, aged 56 years.
Their daughter Janet died in London, 1st March 1825, aged 33 years.
Their daughter Elizabeth died 10th October 1810, aged 4 years.
Their daughter Ann died at Auchterarder 25th November 1862, aged 68 years.
Their son John died 17th Jul 1864, aged 64 years.
Their daughter Euphemia died 2nd Jul 1874 aged 78 years.

John Ritchie, unmarried Inland Revenue Officer, died at Hunter Street, Auchterarder, 17th July 1864, aged 64 years. Parents given as George Ritchie, gamekeeper, and Elisabeth Stewart, both deceased.

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Charles Keir (nearly), but subsequently Duncan Richie and Margaret Moan (Moon) in Dunkeld

Logierait OPR, 21st May 1803
Charles Keir in the City of Dunkeld and Margaret Moan (Moon) in Donavourd, registered their names for proclamation of Banns in order to marriage. (proclaimed) first time, Sunday 21st May - were not married.

It would seem that Margaret Moon decided that she was getting the wrong husband, as she married Duncan Ritchie two months later. Her marriage to Duncan Ritchie in the Logierait OPR is not obvious as she has been indexed as Margaret Moan.

Logierait OPR, 17th July 1803
Duncan Ritchie in Dunkeld and Margaret Moan (Moon) in this parish, registered their names for proclamation of Banns in order to marriage. (proclaimed) thrice this day.

Although their first child was born in 1806, her name was not entered into the Dunkeld OPR until the baptism of her brother John in 1810.

Dunkeld OPR, 9th January 1810
Duncan Ritchie and Margaret Moon had a daughter, their first child, born 8th December 1806, (baptised as) Mary Ann

Duncan Ritchie and Margaret Moon had a son, their second child, born 9th January 1810, baptised the same day, John.

Dunkeld OPR, 27th July 1814
Duncan Ritchie and Margaret Moon had a son born 27th July 1814, named Duncan

None of the family seem to appear in the 1841 census and only appear in the 1851 census for Dunkeld (2/1):

Dwelling Name Related Status Age Occupation Birthplace
2, High Street Duncan Ritchie head marr 72y retired weaver Blair Atholl
Margaret Ritchie wife marr 72y laundress Blair Atholl
Margaret Duff servt. u/m 19y house servant Dunkeld

On the 17th day of March 1857 Cathrine Ritchie, 36 year old spinster living in Dunkeld, married John Stewart Robertson, 30 year old coachman and bachelor, also living in Dunkeld. His parents were given as James Robertson, labourer, and Christian Menzies. Her parents were given as Duncan Ritchie and Margaret Moon. The witnesses were William Menzies and Duncan Ritchie.

Margaret Ritchie, married, died at High Street, Dunkeld, on 19th August 1857 aged 78 years and was buried in the old churchyard of Blair Atholl (St. Brides). Parents given as John Moon and Catherine McRae, both deceased. Informant was her son-in-law, John Robertson, householder.

There is no record of a John Moon being married to a Catherine McRae and, considering the link to Blair Atholl and age at death, her parents almost certainly were Duncan Moon and Katharine Cree.

Duncan Ritchie, linen weaver and widower, died at Wester Aberfeldy on 2nd April 1860 aged 82 years and was buried in the old churchyard of Blair Atholl (St. Brides). Parents given as Duncan Ritchie, deceased farmer, and mother unknown. The informant was his son, Duncan Ritchie.

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(Generation 5) The Children of Duncan Richie and Margaret Moon in Dunkeld

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Mary Anne Dec 8 1806 . . Dunkeld d.
John Jan 9 1810 . . Dunkeld d.
Duncan Jul 27 1814 Helen McKenzie 13 Dec 1845
(Logierait and
Blairgowrie)
Dunkeld and
Aberfeldy
h. 19 Feb 1903
w.
Cathrine ~1821 John Stewart
Robertson
17 Mar 1857
(Dunkeld, Caputh)
Dunkeld h.
w.

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Duncan Richie and Helen McKenzie in Dunkeld and Aberfeldy

Logierait OPR, 13 Dec 1845
Duncan Ritchie, Wester Aberfeldy, and Helen McKenzie, Blairgowrie, gave up their names for proclaimation of the banns of marriage. Donald Duff, Session Clerk.

The banns of marriage also were called in Blairgowrie parish church two days later.

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(Generation 4) The children of Duncan Richie and Helen McKenzie in Aberfeldy

The 1881 census shows that Helen McKenzie was born in Kilspindie around 1823. Duncan Ritchie was a cabinet maker, as was his son James Brodie Ritchie, and the family were living om the Moness Road in Aberfeldy which was part of Logierait parish. The Aberfeldy Bowls Club has a group photograph which identifies Duncan Ritchie, cabinetmaker standing at the back.

The records of the Aberfeldy Fire Brigade show that "On 8th January, 1910, a workshop belonging to Messrs. Duncan Ritchie, cabinetmaker, Moness Terrace, was burnt out.

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
James Brodie* . Margaret McKenzie 1875 Aberfeldy h.
w.
Margaret A. . . . Aberfeldy d.
Duncan . . . Aberfeldy d.
Helen . . . Aberfeldy d.
Susan Anne . . . Aberfeldy d.
Jessie G. . . . Aberfeldy d.

* James was named after his maternal uncle, James Brodie of Poldar.

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James Robertson and Jean Richie in Balinuarain

The Blair Atholl OPR shows that James Robertson in Balinuarain and Jean Ritchie in Balinuarain, married 1 Jan 1751.

(Generation 4) The Family of James Robertson and Jean Richie in Balinuarain.

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
John 22 Feb 1757 . . Balinuarain d.
Alexander 20 Jan 1760 . . Balinuarain d.
Duncan 9 Jan 1763 . . Tighnafeid d.

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(Generation 3) Donald Murray and Janet Ritchie in Cuilt-more

The identity of Donald Murray in unknown. The surname of Murray was that of the Duke of Atholl but otherwise was uncommon in this area of Perthshire. It may have been that Donald Murray was a distant relative to the Duke and was employed by him in some official capacity at Blair Castle.

Blair Atholl OPR, 23 Jan 1719
Donald Murray and Janet Ritchie in Cuilt-more had a daughter baptised, named Jannet.

Blair Atholl OPR, 14 Sep 1721
Donald Murray and Janet Ritchie in Cuilt-more had a daughter baptised, named Katharine.

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John Ritchie and Janet Stewart in Baluaine and Kincraigie

In the early 1720s John Ritchie was farming Wester Baluaine with his brother George. John was married to Janet Stewart and there were at least two children born at Baluaine, before the family moved to Urrard-beg by 1736, which was close to Blair Castle at that time.

Another Ritchie child was born at Baluaine in 1731 but only the surname and birth place are given in the OPR entry, so it is possible that the child belonged to John's brother, George Ritchie, who was married to Margaret Addison.

The following Kirk Session minute show that by 1752 the family had moved to Kincraigie:

16th August 1752
1s Sterling was given to John Ritchie in Kincraigie for going to Tulliemet with a poor woman upon his horse.

Another Kirk Session minute in 1754 was a much more serious affair as Isobel Ritchie was accused of attempting to terminate her illegitimate pregnancy. The minutes include references to several of her relatives.

(7th November 1754) Isobel Richie in Kincraigie was summoned but did not appear.

(17th November 1754) Isobel Richie in Kincraigie was summoned but did not appear and was summoned a third time.

(24th November 1754) Isobel Richie in Kincraigie appeared, owned guilt and pregnancy, and gave up William Robertson, son to (Donald Robertson, 4th of) Kincraigie, as father to it. He was summoned.

(1st December 1754) William Robertson, Kincraigie's son, appeared and owned guilt with Isobel Richie, twenty days after the Market of Foss, March last.

(29th December 1754) William Robertson, son to Kincraigie, and Isobel Richie in Kincraigie appeared. He persisted upon the time he formerly gave and refused his concern with her, the said Isobel Richie at any other time. She, after debating with him, the said William Robertson, about a time they were lighting and receiving seed oats in Kilmaveonaig when he, the said William Robertson had ado with her. This he refused.

At last, in order to refresh his memory with regard to the time that the guilt was committed, she reminded him of a night he took away some bear, out of Alexander Robertson's house in Kincraigie, the man and his wife being from home, only his daughter Margaret Robertson was in the house, and she, the said Isobel Richie was spinning in said house. It was a clear moonlight frosty night and she went out with him, and he committed guilt with her that night. This he owned but said that it was the only time he had ado with her, and refused the child to be his as it did not answer to his calculations, but she said that it was 6 weeks before Beltane.

Both were ordered to appear again, together with Margaret Robertson or any other person that could give light in the matter.

(4th January 1755) William Robertson and Isobel Richie appeared and after debating before the Session, he persisted (in his denial), while she named another time that they committed guilt viz, 20 days or thereabouts after the first time which he could not deny. The first time according to her reckoning was 5 weeks and 5 days before Beltane last. Then the said William Robertson gave in a bill of 10 Scots for both their fines, payable 6 weeks after date. The said Margaret Robertson in Kincraigie did not appear.

The Session ordered Margaret Robertson and the gardener of Urrard, William Brand in Aldclune and Charles Robertson in Kilmaveonaig to be summoned in 14 days time, in order to give light on what they knew about the same.

(19th January 1755) Isobel Richie appeared, also William Brand in Aldclune and James Young, Urrard's gardener.

William Brand in Aldclune, being interogated as to what time it was that Isobel Richie desired him to write in harvest last, and to whom, said that she desired him to write to a surgeon to procure some remedy for an aunt of hers, who lived in some glen which he did not perfectly mind, in order to remove a stoppage in her courses. This he denied to do, or to have any hand in the like matter. Further, being asked about Charles Robertson in Kilmaveonaig, and what passed betwixt them, he answered that the said Charles Robertson came to him a little afterwards and desired him to write to a surgeon to procure a remedy for a cousin of his in Glen Brerachan, troubled with a stoppage in her courses, all which he would declare upon oath.

(Charles Robertson probably was Isobel Richie's brother-in-law, as Charles Robertson in Badyo, Moulin parish and Margaret Richie in Kincraigie, married 4th January 1753. If so, then Isobel Richie's parents were John Richie and Janet Stewart).

The said Charles Robertson, being present, acknowledged he had such demands and that the remedy was for Janet Robertson, spouse to John Stewart, alias McCaoilt, in Dalnancarran (Dalnacarn, Moulin parish).

James Young was asked what passed betwixt him and Charles Robertson, and said that Charles Robertson aforesaid came to him and said that a cow of his good-mother (mother-in-law) was near to her time of calving, and being hurt wanted 2 or 3 branches of the savin tree (Juniperus sabina) in order to give her ease, which he innocently gave, but fearing what events might happen, he pursued him to Kilmaveonaig, but being informed that he was at the house of his good-father (father-in-law) in Kincraigie, sent for him directly and got from him the foresaid herbs.

(There is a ballad about four ladies-in-waiting in the court of Mary Queen of Scots, one of whom became pregnant and resorted to savin, as an abortifacient).

The Session summoned the wife (Katharine Young) of Donald Campbell in Tomnagaoith (Tomnaguie), who was said to have gone along with Isobel Richie to Dunkeld, in order to consult the gardener there, for a cure for her cousin.

(26th January 1755) Katharine Young, spouse to Donald Campbell in Tomnagaoith, being called, gave the same story.

(2nd March 1755) William Robertson, Kincraigie's son, made his first appearance before the Congregation for his fornication with Isobel Richie in Kincraigie, and was rebuked. The said Isobel Richie appeared before the Session and was informed that they now had more witnesses to prove that she was suing bad designs and destructive arts, and that she desired her aunt (Beatrice Stewart), the wife of John Forbes in Raondou, to advise with some person of skill to procure some cure for a person that was troubled with a stoppage in her courses. Isobel Richie denied her ever desiring her aunt or any other person upon that matter or giving such orders, and would in no way confess heself guilty in such practice. Beatrice Stewart was summoned to appear, Sabbath next.

(9th March 1755) William Robertson, Kincraigie's son, made his second appearance, was rebuked and dismissed, having paid a crown on account in part payment of his fine of fornication with Isobel Richie in Kincraigie.

Beatrice Stewart, spouse to John Forbes in Raondou, appeared and owned that Isobel Richie came to her at about the end of harvest last, and told her that she had a stoppage in her courses, and earnestly begged her to apply to a woman of skill in order to procure for her a remedy that might remove the same, and give her ease. The Session, having removed Isobel Richie who was present at her aunt's examination, taking the matter into their consideration, found the case proven by this and the two preceeding witnesses, that she had some bad designs in order to make her miscarry, although it did not have the intended effect. Isobel Richie was fined 12 Scots and ordered to appear for 5 Sundays and sit upon the repentance stool. Her father, John Richie, gave in his bill on her behalf, payable against Whitsunday next.

(23rd March 1755) Isobel Richie in Kincraigie made her first appearance before the Congregation, for her fornication with William Robertson, Kincraigie's son, was rebuked and seriously exhorted to repentance.

(30th March 1755) Isobel Richie in Kincraigie made her second appearance before the Congregation.

(13th April 1755) Isobel Richie in Kincraigie made her third appearance before the Congregation.

(20th April 1755) Isobel Richie in Kincraigie made her fourth appearance, was rebuked and dismissed.

(11th May 1755) William Robertson, son to Kincraigie, paid 2 Scots being the remainder of his fine for fornication with Isobel Richie in Kincraigie, and got up his bill.

(14th September 1755) John Richie in Kincraigie paid in his bill for his daughter Isobel Richie's fornication with William Robertson, Kincraigie's son, and had her fine for bad intentions modified to 6 Scots.

As a summary of the salient point:

a) John Ritchie was still alive 9th March 1755.
b) Isobel Ritchie did have an illegitimate child by William Robertson, Kincraigie's son, but there was no baptism so the name and gender of the child is unknown.
c) Charles Robertson, Isabel's brother-in-law, was living in Kilmaveonaig in January 1755.
d) Katharine Young, spouse to Donald Campbell in Tomnagaoith was Isabel's cousin. Katharine Young was living at Tomnagaoith (Tomnaguie) when she had an illegitimate daughter, Jannet, by Donald Campbell in Tomnaculag, 12 Oct 1735. Initially they lived as Tomnaculag, then at Mualich-more (1751-53), before returning to Tomnagaoith by 1755.
e) Beatrice Stewart, spouse to John Forbes in Raondou was Isabel's aunt, and presumably the sister of Isabel's mother Janet Stewart.

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(Generation 3) John Ritchie and Janet Stewart in Baluaine amd Kincraigie

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Margaret Nov 22 1724 1. Charles Robertson
2. Samuel Stewart
Jan 4 1753

unknown
Kilmaveonaig h.
w.
Isobel Jan 22 1727 James Robertson Apr 17 1755 Kincraigie h.
w.
un-named* Nov 25 1731 . . . d.
Alexander Sep 21 1736 . . . d.

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Margaret Ritchie in Kilmaveonaig and Kincraigie

As already stated Margaret Ritchie was married to Charles Robertson and were living in Kilmaveonaig in January 1755.

Blair Atholl OPR, 4 Jan 1753
Charles Robertson in Badro, Moulin parish, and Margaret Ritchie in Kincraigie were married.

The couple do not appear to have had any children and Charles Robertson died in 1755 or early 1756 as, by late 1756 Margaret had presumably remarried after returning to Kincraigie. There is no evidence of a marriage, but there is a single baptism.

Blair Atholl OPR, 11 Nov 1756
Grissel, daughter to Samuel Stewart and Margaret Ritchie in Kincraigie was baptised.

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James Robertson and Isobel Ritchie in Kincraigie

Despite being in the middle of submitting to Church Discipline for her fornication with William Robertson, Isabel got married to James Robertson and the couple produced six children, all at Kincraigie.

Blair Atholl OPR, 17 Apr 1755
James Robertson in Mualich-more and Isobel Ritchie in Kincraigie were married.

(Generation 3) The Family of James Robertson and Isobel Ritchie in Kincraigie

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Janet (twin) Apr 11 1756 . . Kincraigie d.
Christian (twin) Apr 11 1756 . . Kincraigie d.
John May 13 1758 . . Kincraigie d.
Marjorie Sep 30 1759 . . Kincraigie d.
Alexander Sep 23 1761 . . Kincraigie d.
Margaret Apr 5 1764 . . Kincraigie d.

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(Generation 3) Thomas Frazer and Elspeth Ritchie in Apersuanie and Cuilt-more

Thomas Frazer became the Blair Atholl Kirk Beadle in 1722 after Lillias McDonald made a complaint against Donald Gow, the previous Beadle.

Blair Atholl OPR, 7 Oct 1722
Thomas Frazer, Officer at Blair, and Elspeth Ritchie had a son baptised, named John.

Blair Atholl OPR, 27 Aug 1724
Thomas Frazer and Elspeth Ritchie in Apersuanie had a son baptised, named Alexander.

Blair Atholl OPR, 8 Jul 1728
Thomas Frazer, Officer at Blair, and Elspeth Ritchie had a son baptised, named William.

Blair Atholl OPR, 15 May 1731
Thomas Frazer and Elspeth Ritchie in Cuilt-more had a child baptised, name not recorded.

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John McCollie and Isobel Ritchie in Clunes and Baluaine

The surname of McCollie can be found in a number of different forms (e.g. McColl, McColly, McCulloch) and appears to have been an alias name used by some of the Stewarts living in the Glengarry area. Although there is no recorded baptism for John McCollie, it is fairly certain that he was a younger son of Ewan (Hugh) McCollie who farmed Bruchriach. It is noticeable that John McCollie named his first two sons after their grandfathers but, instead of following the traditional naming pattern, named the first after the maternal grandfather, and the second son after his own father, Ewan. This may indicate that Isobel's father carried much more influence than his own father.

Blair Atholl OPR, 7 May 1727
John McCollie and Isobel Ritchie in Clunes had a son baptised, named Duncan.

Blair Atholl OPR, 6 Apr 1729
John McCollie and Isobel Ritchie in Clunes had a son baptised, named Hugh.

Blair Atholl OPR, 26 Jun 1739
John Stewart and Isobel Ritchie in Wester Baluaine had a son baptised, named Alexander.

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(Generation 3) The Family of John McCollie, or Stewart, and Isobel Ritchie in Clunes and Baluaine

Name Born Married Date Residence Died
Duncan May 7 1727 Janet McIntosh Jul 3 1755 Clunes h. 1757
w.
Hugh
(Ewan)
Apr 6 1729 Margaret Robertson Nov 25 1760 Clunes h.
w.
Alexander Jun 26 1739 . . Baluaine h.
w.
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