Welcome to Clan MacFarlane Worldwide!
If you're like the rest of us you have no doubt found yourself pondering your heritage. Maybe your interest was nurtured as a child or maybe it was just discovered. Either way, we're glad your interest has led you here and we invite you to become part of our worldwide, yet tight, community. Our goals are to educate, share, and take pride in our heritage.
We are MacFarlanes of all spelling variations, McGaws, Spruells, Robbs, Millers, Websters, Weavers, Blacks and many others. Together we form a organization that's kept by the strongest of bonds... family. We answer to the call Loch Sloy, we carry the arms of our forefathers, we preserve the heritage that is so uniquely yours and ours.
It is with your support that the heritage of Clan MacFarlane will continue to thrive for another 800 years. Please join today.
Loch Sloy! June, 2022
The June 2022 issue of the Loch Sloy! is now available to read by all our voting/paying members. Inside, you will get a preview of upcoming candidates for the Board, an article about McFarland Settlers in Ohio, a Muniments translation of one of the most notorious MacFarlane historical events, and information about the 2022 AMM.
Open the Read More, sign in if you haven't already, and the pdf below will open the issue. Enjoy!
CMW Muniments Project Donors
CMW MUNIMENTS PROJECT
CMW would like to acknowledge the following donors to this initiative:
ANDREA & ROB GRIEVE
SANDY McFARLAND MORGAN
Thank you for your support!
TWIGS TO TREES #46 MARCH 2022
Twigs to Trees
Mary Helen Haines
Welcome to 2022! I am constantly amazed at how quickly time goes by. This is the 46th Twigs to Trees I have written since our inception in July 2010. We have published over 400 members’ abbreviated pedigrees like the ones below, but would love to have all our other 400 plus members who have not submitted their lineages to please join us in our efforts to make connections.
If you have any special stories to share about men and women in your lineage, please let me know so we can find a place, either in our newsletter, or on our website, to share their stories. We don’t want to forget those special people who contributed to our heritage, and the best way to remember them is to put it in writing and release it to the Ethernet.
This past couple of months I began looking into the Scots-Irish families that came to Maine in the early 1700s as part of the movement from northern Ireland to New England. In particular, I researched three areas of Maine: Brunswick, Boothbay, and Bristol. The article is located here in this website: https://www.clanmacfarlane.org/public_html/genealogy/genealogical-histories/529-the-early-mcfarland-settlers-in-maine.html
The Early McFarland Settlers in Maine
The Early McFarland Settlers in Maine
by Mary Helen Haines, © 2022
We have quite a few CMW members whose ancestors were among the first Scots-Irish settlers in what became the state of Maine.
Beginning in 1692 under King William III of England and Queen Mary II, Maine was part of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, called Yorkshire, or York County. Settlement began in earnest with the arrival of immigrants from Ireland in the early 1700s.
By Kmusser - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1219460
The McFarlands were a part of over 100 families who arrived in Maine from 1718 through 1720. Other groups quickly followed and they came to three main locations: Brunswick-Topsham near the Androscoggin River in what is Sagadahoc and Cumberland counties today, Townsend/Boothbay and Pemaquid/Bristol in Lincoln County today. At the time, these areas were part of York County; however, the land was disputed by both the French and Native Americans making life precarious. (Bolton, p. 186, 187, 218, 219, 223) Alexander McFarland was killed by Native-Americans in 1742 while crossing the Androscoggin River. (Wheeler, p. 58). Near Pemaquid, John McFarland was attacked in 1747, and on John’s Island, two sons of Solomon McFarland were working in the fields when they were attacked as well. One son George was killed, while Walter was kidnapped, but returned in 1749 and was able to give his testimony. (Johnston, pp. 294, 296, 320)
Following these various families is somewhat difficult because of the creation of new counties as population grew and settlers moved inland. York was created in 1652, so all the earliest records are found there. Then in 1760 two new counties, Lincoln and Cumberland, were created. In 1799, Kennebec was created from Cumberland and Lincoln, and in 1854 Sagadahoc and Androscoggin were created from Lincoln. Brunswick is today in Cumberland. Topsham, just across the Androscoggin R. from Brunswick is in Sagadahoc County, along with Bowdoinham, Bath and Merrymeeting Bay. Boothbay, Pemaquid, and Bristol are part of Lincoln County.
The Brunswick McFarlands were headed by father James, born around 1680 in northern Ireland. He is the son of Daniel McFarland who settled in Worcester, Massachusetts; Daniel specifically mentions James living in Brunswick, York Co. when he made his will in 1737. According to Wheeler’s History of Brunswick, James McFarland is listed as one of the original owners of a lot in the Village of Brunswick in 1717 (p. 867) and for the years from 1717 to 1722 he had 5 lots in Topsham. (p. 871). James’ earliest deed record in York County dates from 1728 when he purchased 95 acres in Brunswick. (York Vol. 12, p. 325) He continued to make other land purchases; 195 acres in the same location. (Vol. 14, p. 19; Vol. 15, p. 267) and when the opportunity arose he snatched up 600 more acres in 1739 and 1742, as many early settlers moved to safety in Boston. (Vol. 21, pp. 232,233) The map below shows Fort George with the Irish New Settlement around it.
In 1735, James joined in signing a petition asking for Brunswick to be incorporated, which was finally accomplished in 1738. At the first town meeting, James’ son John was named the “Hog Constable.” This was an elected official in charge of rounding up loose hogs to prevent damage and appraising damage done by them. (Wheeler, pp. 105, 108)
James died intestate (without a will) in 1742. That year was a particularly bad year for this family. Besides James Sr. three of his children also died that year-Andrew, Hannah and John. John, who James had gifted one-half of his property in 1739, left behind wife Jane Lithgow McFarland and only child Mary. Surviving that year were James Jr., Margaret, and Eleanor. James Jr. born about 1719 and married to Isabella Means, lived across the river in Topsham. James tried to get control of John’s estate in court, but testimony against him led the judge to award Jane control of the estate and guardianship of their only child, daughter Mary.
James Jr. died in 1747 leaving four children: Sarah, James, Robert, and Margaret, whose identities and whereabouts are confirmed in a series of deed records from 1763-5. James Sr.’s female children Margaret and Eleanor, now married, and all the four children of James Jr. gave POAs to William Patten to sell their inherited property. William Patten was the mariner husband of Eleanor McFarland, who lived at Cathance Point, just up the Androscoggin River. The POAs show that James Sr.’s other daughter Margaret Proctor was married and living in Nova Scotia. Among the grandchildren, Sarah, later married to Anthony Woodside, stayed living in Brunswick. Margaret was unmarried and living in Brunswick. Their brother Robert was living at Cathance Point and working as a blacksmith in 1765. (Cumberland Bk. 4, p. 111-114) Robert then purchased a blacksmith shop back in Brunswick as well as land in Topsham and Brunswick, over 200 acres total. (Cumberland Deed Bk. 4, p. 315, Bk. 47, p. 246, and Lincoln Bk. 7, p. 122)
James McFarland III, born about 1742 in Brunswick, was a blacksmith in Bowdoinham, and used his inherited money to purchase 100 acres there. (Lincoln Bk. 3, p. 232) It is not clear how long he lived there, but there is no record of him selling that property. It is possible he came back to Brunswick to work with his brother Robert. Records in Brunswick indicate he served in the local militia in 1757 (Wheeler, p. 879).
Other records show a James McFarland working with Col. William Stanwood as a blacksmith (Wheeler, p. 578). Col. William Stanwood was the brother of Jane Stanwood, the wife of Robert McFarland. In 1790, James sold William some of Robert’s land and ran the blacksmith shop in Brunswick until 1797 when he moved from the area, according to Wheeler. There is a lot of confusion regarding blacksmith James McFarland and his descendants. There is a James McFarland, born about 1766 who settled in the town of Wales by 1815, where he lived out his life. His numerous children (Robert, James, Alexander, David, Jane) lived in both Massachusetts and Maine. Robert, b. 1791, moved his family to Bowdoinham by 1843 where he worked as a blacksmith, as did his sons Thaddeus (1819-1899) and David (1830-1891). Many members of this family are buried in the Bowdoinham Village Cemetery, and many McFarlands still live in the area today.
The McFarlands who settled in the region of Boothbay appear to have come on one of the ships captained by Robert Temple between 1718 and 1722. Rev. Isaac Taylor, assistant to Rev. Samuel Haliday at Ardstraw, County Tyrone, was eager to try out the Americas and lent monies to John McFarland Sr., John McFarland Jr. and Andrew McFarland so they could make the journey. Robert Temple witnessed the loan in 1720. (Suffolk County Files, #163586)
Among the list of earliest settlers in Townsend, that was renamed Boothbay were John and James McFarland. It is not known how they are related, but they appear to be brothers. John McFarland, Jr. (1700-1773), married to Lydia, appears to be the founder of this prominent family in Boothbay, with children Ephraim, Andrew, Thomas, Elizabeth and Sarah. James McFarland sold his property to probable nephew Andrew in two deeds comprising fifty-two acres in 1753 and another 100 acres in 1765 (York Co. Vol. 31, p. 20, Lincoln Co. Vol. 4, p. 208). James then disappears from any further records associated with this town.
Sons Ephraim and Andrew became involved in sea trade. Both were sea captains and were active in land speculation. Andrew was licensed to operate an inn, something that his wife Elizabeth Reed McFarland continued after his death. Andrew also owned a sloop and was in the middle of commissioning a new one when he died in 1781. During the Revolutionary War, Andrew was Captain of the 4th Company. He left a very detailed will in 1781, spelling out his property and his numerous children. It is the next generation who came of age during the early years of independence who really helped turn Boothbay into a destination spot. Andrew McFarland continued the foreign sea trade as a master mariner and his brother John Murray McFarland (named after the Presbyterian minister in Boothbay, John Murray) established a very successful mercantile business at the tip of what is still today called McFarland’s Point. In the Google image below, the upper left dock is McFarland’s Point, and the island in the lower part of the image is McFarland’s Island. McFarland descendants are still quite numerous in the area.
Another John McFarland settled in Boothbay and died in 1769, leaving behind a son John and daughters Hannah McFarland (who married a Walls in 1770), Margaret married to William Wiley, Jean married to Moses Robinson, and Sarah unmarried. The children sell all of father John's tracts of land in Boothbay in 1770 to John Daws. (Lincoln Bk. 7, p. 261)
Just on the other side of the Damariscotta River from Boothbay is the area of Pemaquid and Bristol. The earliest scheme to settle this area with Scots-Irish was in 1729 when Col. David Dunbar, a native of Ulster, was given the title of “Surveyor of His Majesty’s Woods.” He built Fort Frederick on the Pemaquid peninsula, on the ruins of an earlier Fort William Henry. He then brought in Scots-Irish men from Boston to settle the land. One of those men was James Sproul, who had just recently arrived in Boston in 1727. However, the deeds promised never materialized because the new governor of Massachusetts disputed Dunbar’s rights to this land and forced him to leave in 1732.
The next person to attempt settlement was Samuel Waldo, a merchant from Boston, who was given a grant between the St. George and the Penobscot Rivers. In 1735, he granted 100 acre lots of land around Fort Saint George, in what is Warren, Knox County today. Among the men who received these free grants of land were some of the same men who had arrived with David Dunbar. In particular, James Sproul and John McFarland received 200 acres each. (York Vol. 22, pp. 156, 157). However, it appears that they ended up going back to the Pemaquid/Bristol area and are considered part of the founding families of Bristol. The Sproul homestead in South Bristol today dates to 1749 and is on the historic register. Part of the original structure from 1749 was incorporated into the Federal style home built in 1815 that still exists today.
John McFarland appears to have settled across the bay from James Sproul. His name appears in a report from 1745, when the family was attacked by Indians. Mrs. McFarland was wounded in the shoulder by a musket ball, and then in 1746 the family home was attacked, several family members were wounded and the house burned to the ground. (Johnston, pp. 294, 295).
It is not clear if this family is connected to the Solomon McFarland family that lived on nearby John’s Island.
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, Solomon McFarland’s sons George and Walter were working on John’s Island, a 21 acre island at the mouth of the Pemaquid River, when they were attacked by Penobscot Indians in 1747. George was killed and Walter was carried away. (Johnston, p. 296) At the conclusion of the warring period in 1749, Walter was returned in exchange for 10 £ at a conference with the Indians at Falmouth. He had so totally adapted to Indian ways that he was not recognized by his father and the white men present until he spoke. However, because he learned the Penobscot language and ways so well, he was very useful as an interpreter for the rest of his short life. Although promised an education in Boston, that only lasted a few months then he was forced to work as an interpreter to pay the Massachusetts government back for the 10 £ they spent in for his exchange. (Johnston, pp. 321, 322)
After being burned out, the John McFarland family stayed because in 1753, John McFarland purchased 100 acres at WhaleBoat Point, on the south side of the Pemaquid River, near Fort Frederick. (Lincoln Bk.3, p. 2) The contest between the French and the English for control of this coastal area broke out in 1756. The commander of the Fort was Alexander Nickels, a native of Londonderry who had arrived in Boston in 1721. Included in the muster roll for this fort in 1758 and 1759, are John McFarland Senior and John McFarland. (Johnston, p. 312).
The Sprouls and McFarlands continued to live Bristol. Their families appear in all the census records from 1790 and beyond. The 1790 census lists John Mcfarling Sr., John McFarling Jr., Andrew McFarland and Robert McFarland, all in the same vicinity as Robert Sproul, Robert Sproul Jr. , John Sproul, Wm. Sproul, James Sproul. Today, when you go to Google Earth Pro you can find all the spots around the bay that reflect their mariner past: McFarland’s Point, McFarland’s Cove, McFarland’s Cove Rd and McFarland’s Ledges.
Adams, Silas. History of the Town of Bowdoinham 1762-1912. Fairfield, Maine. 1912.
Bolton, Charles Knowles. Scotch Irish Pioneers in Ulster and America. Baltimore. 1967
Johnston, John. The History of the Towns of Bristol and Bremen in the State of Maine. Albany, NY. 1873
McFarland, Daniel Young. Genealogy of the McFarland Family of Hancock County, Maine. Middlebury, Vermont, 1910.
Wheeler, George Augustus et.al. History of Brunswick, Topsham, and Harpswell, Maine. Boston, 1878.
Maine Encyclopedia. https://maineanencyclopedia.com/south-bristol/
Google Earth Pro for images
www.familysearch.org for Deed Records and Probate Records from the various counties: York, Lincoln, Cumberland, Sagadahoc, Androscoggin, Hancock.
CASSOC - Spring 2022 Edition of An Drochaid - The Bridge
The CASSOC - Spring 2022 Edition of An Drochaid - The Bridge is now available for CMW members to read. Be sure to login at the website first, then select "Publications" from the menu and then select "Other Publications". The actual .pdf file will be available for you to open at the bottom of the page. Cheers!
Open the Read more, sign in if you haven't already, and the pdf below will open the issue. Enjoy!
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