So, the other day my mother reposted photos from the Scottish Genealogy Facebook page of Kilmory Chapel near Ardnamurchan, in Argyll.
She was pondering if “our” McMillans may have been part of this particular MacMillan family.
So, just like last time when she mentioned the McMillans, I decided to just do a quick little search. And I was able to somewhat solve a mystery!
(just remember, kids: never give up! You WILL eventually find something of interest!)
Let’s step back a handful of years ago.
I wrote a post about Malcolm G McMillan and Minerva Worsham back in 2011. At the time I had their marriage date and location (January 19, 1831 in Maury County, Tennessee). However, I couldn’t figure out their parents. I had narrowed Minerva’s possible folks down to Daniel Worsham and wife Liddy Hardeman. And I had also narrowed Malcolm’s possible father down to Alexander McMillan. At least one of those is correct!
In 1850, Alexander McMillan and his wife Sarah are found living in Maury County, Tennessee with son Archibald and daughter-in-law (?) Lovely Jane Agnes McMillan. But who is Sarah? What was her maiden name? It didn’t take long for me to come across a transcription of the will of Malcolm Gilchrist (1744-1821) in Maury County, Tennessee. Unfortunately, the name of the person who posted it is “Private”, but the information concerning the will came from Mrs. Nelda Stephenson (I had contact with her through email, lovely woman!). The will reads, in part (the full transcription can be read here):
WILL OF MALCOLM GILCHRIST, SR (1744-1822) Maury County, Tennessee:
Recorded Sept 24 1824
In the name of God, Amen.
I, MALCOLM GILCHRIST, SR, of Maury County in the State of Tennessee, being of sound mind and disposing memory, also of usual good health; but being aware of the uncertainty of human life and being desirous of disposing of all my worldly substances with which it has pleased God to help me, do, make and ordain, publish and declare. This is my last will and testament, hereby revoking all other heretofore made, published, or declared by me at anytime or place whatsoever…
…ITEM 5th I will and bequeath to my daughter, SARAH MCMILLAN, one hundred acres of land beginning at the beginning corner of the original survey on which I live for another thousand acres to run West and South to Duncan Gilchrist's North boundary lines so as to include one hundred acres and the improvement where she now lives, also one Negro girl slave named Phillis which I gave her when she was married, to her and her heirs forever…
…ITEM 12th: I give and bequeath to my nephew, MALCOLM GILCHRIST MCMILLAN, son of Sarah McMillan, one Negro boy slave named Dock to him and his heirs forever…
Now, I am not sure if the designation of “nephew” for Malcolm Gilchrist McMillan was a transcription error, or if it was error in the writing of the will (there are several Malcolm Gilchrists, one or two are actually nephews). However, I now know that Sarah Martha Gilchrist married Alexander McMillan (still on the lookout for the marriage date). And that their son is Malcolm Gilchrist McMillan who married Minerva Worsham.
To further cement that Sarah Martha Gilchrist married Alexander McMillan are two news article transcriptions. According to the 1850 US Mortality Schedule, Alexander McMillan died in January 1850 of old age. Appearing in The Maury Express, Vol. I, No. 27, Wednesday, July 4, 1860:
ORDER OF PUBLICATION—CIRCUIT COURT RULES. E. SKAW and wife and others vs A.J. McMillan and other. In this cause it appears that INCHABOD CARTER and wife, MARTHA J., ALEXANDER J. McMILLAN, DAVID B. McMILLAN, ELIZA P. McMILLAN, AUGUS A. McMILLAN and MALCOLM McMILLAN, defendants in said petition to sell Land are non-residents of the State of Tennessee. SAMUEL P. McGAW. CLERK CIRCUIT COURT, M.C.
PUBLIC SALE ON THE PREMISES—EBENEZER SHAW and wife and others vs A.J. McMillan and others. AUGUST TERM RULING, MAURY COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT. Will sell, on premises, on Friday, 12th October, 1860, being the late residence of ALEXANDER and SARAH McMillen, near the town of Columbia, a parcel of land, One Hundred Acres, adjoining the lands of SAMUEL GRIFFITH, BOWN, LINDSEY, MORSE, DR. JORDAN, SETLE R. KETELL and others. Also at the same time, I will sell to the highest bidder, and old Negro woman named PHILLIS. SAM’L P. McGAW, clerk.
There is a lot written about the Gilchrist family, but those are posts for other days (I will say, though, that “my” Gilchrist family appear to have come over from the Kintyre Peninsula at Argyll, Scotland). Right now, I want to get to something exciting!
(please note, information below is simply a working theory right now, so don’t hold me to it! Yet!)
In 1871, Spencer DeMumbrie married his third (known) wife Effee Jane Gilchrist. The question has always been “Who is Effee Jane Gilchrist and where did she come from?” (that’s two questions, but anyway…).
The above Sarah Martha Gilchrist McMillan had a brother by the name of Duncan Gilchrist. If this name sounds familiar, it should. Back in 2012, I wrote about Duncan briefly:
Oh, and I am still on the lookout for Effee Jane Gilchrist’s family. I think I may have narrowed it down to a 3-year-old Effa Gilchrist living in the Duncan and Effa Gilchrist household (they would have been her grandparents, I think) in 1850 in District 1, Decatur County, Tennessee. The birth year is off by 5 years compared to the 1870 census, but the state of birth is the same and it’s the closest I have been able to find. I would love some insight into this from someone who has researched the Duncan Gilchrist family.
Although the birth years may be off, I am at least 99.5% certain that three-year old Effa Gilchrist is Effee Jane Gilchrist. If we ASSUME that the Caroline Gilchrist listed three lines above little Effa is her mother, and if we ASSUME that Caroline is a widow of a Duncan Gilchrist son (only assumptions can be made at this point, really…) then:
Effee Jane Gilchrist is the second cousin of Cornelia Ann McMillan, Spencer DeMumbrie’s second (known) wife!
Now, to find the documentation to support my theory!