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John Edgar's Scottish and Australian Ancestors


18th Century Scotland

The memorial stone below is one of several Edgar family stones in the Old Graveyard in Moffat, Dumfriesshire, Scotland

In memory of John Edgar, Troloss, who died 4 July 1759, aged 42 years. Also James Edgar his son, who died at Moffat 15 March 1810, aged 59.

Also Jean Johnston, spouse of the above James Edgar, who died 25 January 1814 aged 66; also Archibald Edgar son of John Edgar who died at Harthope 3 November 1841, aged 11; also the above John Edgar who died at Moffat 18 March 1868 aged 88; also Isabella Aitchison, widow of the above John Edgar, who died at Academy Road, Moffat September 1882, aged 94.

John Edgar of Troloss (whose name I share) is my earliest Scottish ancestor (in fact my most distant known ancestor from anywhere).

Apart from the details on the stone, I have no other information about him. Although there is some suggestion that his father was called James Edgar,  born in the 1690s, the evidence is not compelling enough to claim as fact.

This site traces my direct family history from John to me in Sydney, Australia, in the 21st century.

He was probably a farm labourer and shepherd who worked in the local area. You will find no connections to nobility, no heraldic crests or battle swords with our lot.

This is despite the claim by Ramage (1857, p137) who suggests an Edgar link to the Scottish king and that after the Battle of the Standard (1138) the sons of Edgar, who was slain in this battle, adopted Edgar as a surname, being among the first Scottish families to do this.

From my perspective, the most significant thing some of them did was move to Australia and New Zealand in the 1840s and 50s.

There is considerable information available for later generations which I am willing to share. Some of it will appear in following pages. However, no details of the living will be given unless you can convince me that you are entitled to it. Send comments, corrections and questions to: archaeoaust@yahoo.com.au

Large volumes of historical data on Edgars from Scotland, Ireland, England, Australia, New Zealand,  Canada and a little from the US can be found at http://edgar.society.newsletters.googlepages.com

John Edgar's only son, James, who was born in 1751, married Jean Johnson/Johnston (born 1748) about 1778. He died at Moffat on March 15, 1810 and she died there on January 25, 1814. He was a shepherd who later farmed a small holding. They had two sons, John and David - the descent was pretty tenuous in the early days. However, that was about to change with a vengeance.

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