A Clan Document In Seattle by Donald J. Macdonald.

A written statement now in an historical society’s possession in Seattle, USA, runs as follows:

“Alan Dhu, my grandfather, at the age of 20, was in the field with Montrose in 1645 at Inverlochy, Aulderain, Alford, Kitrigh. His son, John, was born 35 years after (1680-) and with difficulty escaped with his mother and brother, Donald, from the slaughter committed by William’s troops at Inveriggan (1692) and died on the site of the identical camp of Captain Campbell in 1814 at the advanced age of 84; and my mother in 1829, at the still more advanced age of 88, leaving behind her four sons and five daughters – all the latter with immense families to the third and fourth generations.

(Sgd.) Archibald MacDonald dit Gillespie Moach Aonish Ic Iain Glenocoan.

15th December, 1830, at Fort Langley, NW Coast of America.”

The name of the signatory would, I suppose, be spelt now: Gilleasbuig Mac Aonghais ‘Ic lain Glinn’ Chomhainn.

It is a particularly interesting document, and a photostat copy would be very valuable to our records. Perhaps this paragraph may catch the eye of some clansman overseas who can induce the “Historical Society in Seattle” to allow this to be done. Sandy told me that the Society in Seattle had been lent the document but would not give it up! They might not object to allowing a copy to be made, however. Their interest in it is understandable if I quote a brief account of the said Archibald’s life.

He was born at Leacantuim on 3rd  February, 1790, studied the rudiments of medicine at Edinburgh (?), emigrated and was appointed clerk and agent by Lord Selkirk (of Hudson’s Bay Co.). He was a member of council. In July 1828, he made a canoe journey from York factory, Hudson’s Bay, to Fort Langley, New Caledonia, where he succeeded James MacMillan on 11th October 1828. He was there until 1833 and exploited the salmon industry up to 300 barrels per season. In 1833 he proposed the raising of flocks and herds on the Pacific Coast, the first area he suggested being on the Sacramento River in California. He did many more acts of development for the Hudson’s Bay Co. He was married twice: first to Princess Raven, daughter of a Chinook chief, by whom he had one son, Ranald., born 3rd February 1824, who died unmarried 5th December 1879; second to Jane Klyne (born Switzerland 23rd August 1810 – died St. Andrew’s in Quebec 15th December 1879) with issue, ten children.

Note the Sacramento River project. If the company had followed MacDonald’s suggestions, what might not have happened down that coast before the main flood of American westward migration started? It is an intriguing thought. No wonder Seattle wishes to keep the document!