This blog is an Oscar Emmanuel Bluth and Lucy Lavinia Macdonald family gathering place - designed to strengthen family bonds, to strengthen individual family members - especially our children, to preserve sacred stories and heritage and to gather family history in an effort to produce a Bluth Family History Book.
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Alexander Findlay Macdonald
Duncan Macdonald was born in the mid 1790’s in the Kintail hamlet of Carr which is located on a hillside overlooking the ancient and Eilean Donan Castle, which is now unoccupied and in ruins. His father was Alexander Macdonald, a tailor, and his mother was Ann Macrae. He was one of five children all born at Carr. (FamilySearch records need to have children added.)
In his teens, about 1820,
an epidemic in Carr caused most of its inhabitants to die and the others evacuated
the village.Duncan went with his older
brother, Farquhar, over the mountain north a few miles to
the village of Camusluinie in the northern Kintail district of Glenelchaig.
There they settled and each married a Macrae girl – sometime in the early 1820’s.Duncan's wife was Margaret Macrae, a
descendant of Macraes who had lived in this area for centuries. Duncan was a
Protestant (Church of Scotland), and Margaret was a Roman Catholic.
Eilean Donan Castle
supported himself operating a whisky still and as a day laborer. A son,
Alexander Findlay Macdonald, was born in Camusluinie on 15 Sep 1825, and a
daughter, Isabella, was born there two years later. Both son and daughter's
christening are recorded in the Kintail Parish Register.
Duncan and Margaret were
desperately poor, and their ancestral home in the highlands offered no hope of
improvement. Seeking employment, the
couple with their two small children moved to the Scottish city of Perth, about
35 miles north of the capital of Edinburgh, in 1829. Relatives had preceded
them and probably helped them get settled. Duncan found work operating a beetling mill
(part of Scotland's textile industry) at Ruthven Mill (Ruthven Mill's name was
later changed to Shepherd's Mill.) Duncan performed the beetling and printing
The family made their home in the mill
itself, and there in 1831 Margaret gave birth to twin daughters, Ann and
Margaret, who both died soon after birth.Later the family moved to the center of Perth and settled in Cutlog
Vennel (they appear in the 1841 census). Duncan continued in the milling trade.
The Macdonald family later
moved to the center of Perth living in a narrow alley named Cutlog Vennel where
Alexander and Isabella grew up.
Cutlog Vennel, Perth
Because the city
dwellers of lowland Scotland looked down on the Highlanders who were flocking to
the cities and considered them uncivilized,Duncan wanted to provide a good education for his children.Duncan and Margaret had ambitions for their dark-haired, dark-eyed son, and saw that he received a good education at King James VI Hospital School. Their sacrifices to do that certainly paid off
in their son, Alexander’s future life, for his education prepared him with leadership
qualities that opened opportunities that truly blessed the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day
Saints, as well as his future generations of children and grandchildren.
King James VI Hospital School
On January 2, 1847, Duncan's son was
baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and at first
Duncan was furious, beat him, and the heartbroken Alexander left home to work
on the seas. Duncan later forgave his son, and he and his daughter Isabella
later joined the church. His wife Margaret
When Alexander went to serve a church
mission in 1850, Duncan, Margaret, and Isabella moved to Glasgow where
Margaret died in 1853.
In 1854 Duncan immigrated to Utah with
his son Alexander and Alexander's wife Elizabeth Graham. They sailed on the
ship John M. Wood, debarking in New Orleans. They took river steamers up the
Mississippi River, and crossed the plains, arriving October 1, 1854.
The family members all settled in
Springville, Utah, where Duncan later married a Scottish widow, Ann Thomson
Duncan and his new wife
moved to St. George, Utah, when Brigham Young called Alexander to go there to
lead in finishing the St. George Temple.Duncan, his son, and many grandsons all worked on the temple until its
Duncan saw his son become a
great leader and was undoubtedly very proud of him.Duncan died September 12, 1876 in St. George,
Washington County, Utah and is buried in St. George cemetery near many family