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Topic: OT--My Very Own Castle

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Subject: OT--My Very Own Castle
Date Posted: 11/4/2013 5:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2008
Posts: 1,356
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This is very OT, but I know that you, my HF peeps, will totally get it and I just had to share. 

Background:  I'm half Scottish, half Italian. My dad is the Scottish half, and he's always been VERY into his Scottish heritage and lineage, to the point of joining various Scottish societies and wearing the kilt of our clan tartan, and proving his lineage back to the Scot who emigrated to America in something like 1638. So, I grew up with it. As an adult, I've been a member of our particular clan's society/association for years, and have just been approached to join the board of it. We get together once a year or so formally, but then meet at various Highland Games that are held throughout the US as well. Just a few weeks ago, we met at the Stone Mountain, Georgia Highland Games and I got to meet the new chief of our clan. One of our upcoming projects will be to raise funds to purchase the castle and restore it to clan ownership--it's been held by a religious trust for almost 30 years but they no longer want it. I AM SO EXCITED!!

As if that were not enough, the wife of ourUS association's president is very into our heritage as well and she has just done some genealogical research. It always bugged her, she said, that we, Clan XXXX, could trace our lineage back to the first of our barons---the one who built us this castle in Scotland 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/theposs/7348218870/  

which I have visited and slept in. What bugged her is that we couldn't go back further---the clan rumor has always been that one of our ancestors was a knight who accompanied William the Conqueror 1066 and who was rewarded for his service by William's gift of massive lands in Inverness, Scotland--still held today. So, she's been working hard at it, and she's finally manged to prove it, to the satisfaction of Lord Lyon, who is the peer who rules on all things heritage and ancestry related in the UK. SO COOL!  I've been to Normandy and stood in William's castle in Caen.My dude must have been there!

She was told by Lord Lyon when she was corresponding with him that we are one of only 3 or 4 families IN THE WORLD who can trace our lineage back over 1,000 years for absolute certain, and the others are in the Middle East. I am soooo proud to be one of us!

My own ancestors have always fascinated me since my parents made me aware of some of the various accounts in the late '70s. My plan, ultimately, is to retire and write a better HF novel that most of what I read using my own people. Oh, I wish I could get started on that now!

Who needs Jamie? Apparently, I've got my own dudes to pick from!

Date Posted: 11/4/2013 5:30 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2009
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Well, that is totally awesome!  What a gift your parents have given you by sharing this interest and encouraging it in you. Maybe you could host a fieldtrip to Scotland for all of your good buddies here???  In my husband's direct line is a Signer of the Declaration of Independence as well as a mayor of Inverness, Scotland for whom hs is a namesake.

Date Posted: 11/4/2013 5:47 PM ET
Member Since: 3/23/2008
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Wow, what a fantasy come true!!

Date Posted: 11/4/2013 6:08 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2008
Posts: 10,295
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That's great Colleen! Wish that I could learn more about my family- cherish this!

Date Posted: 11/4/2013 9:24 PM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 3,099
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Colleen --- What a wonderful family history, I too am envious of such a long line of ancestors.

Date Posted: 11/5/2013 7:52 AM ET
Member Since: 5/27/2005
Posts: 2,393
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LOVE THIS!! And the castle is gorgeous! What an exciting prospect to get this back in the family!

I, too, love genealogy and pursue it as best and as often as I can. It gives one a real sense of self and, for me, at least, a better understanding/ appreciation of our history and heritage. 

Colleen, do you know the name of your dude? I just finished The Conqueror by Georgette Heyer and thus, have William and his story on my mind. This is just so neat!

You're quite right ... this was definitely the place to share such a great story!

 

Kelly

 

Date Posted: 11/5/2013 9:33 AM ET
Member Since: 7/6/2007
Posts: 747
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That's awesome! I was trying to dig into my ancestry at one point, too.  I think I found out there was a count back in the 1500's in Italy who was related to us, and he was heavily involved in writing treatises for the pope.  They're in the Vatican archives, but I can't read Latin.  Perhaps that will be my life's work....translating those documents lol

CR

Date Posted: 11/5/2013 4:31 PM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2008
Posts: 1,356
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@Kelly: Colleen, do you know the name of your dude? I just finished The Conqueror by Georgette Heyer and thus, have William and his story on my mind. This is just so neat!

 

Kelly, he was Robert de Ros. The surname now is 'Rose'--a corruption of de Ros having nothing to do w/ the flower, apparently.

Date Posted: 11/5/2013 7:18 PM ET
Member Since: 12/10/2005
Posts: 2,851
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Totally awesome. But were it me, I'd pick Jamie. ;-)

Date Posted: 11/6/2013 9:43 AM ET
Member Since: 7/13/2005
Posts: 5,201
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That is so cool!  I am also really into my Scottish heritage - my grandmother was born in Edinburgh.  My mother did a ton of genealogical research into her family tree but didn't get back to the Norman era!  One of the problems with tracing back one's Scottish roots is that so many Scots were forced to change their names after the Jacobite Rebellion and the Clearances in the 18th century.  That's the point at whcih my mom hit a dead end.  She did all her research in the pre-internet days by writing to records offices in the UK and Australia requesting copies of birth, marriage and death certificates.  Spent several trips to Scotland tramping through wet creepy cemetaries looking for family headstones.  When they came out with Ancestry.com, she just sniffed, "Pff.  Amateurs."

Date Posted: 11/6/2013 2:09 PM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2008
Posts: 1,356
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@ Clarinda: LOL! But I'm sure that's what my father would say too---he did his research in the late '70's, and it entailed a lot of gravestone photos and visits to small churches looking for baptismal records, etc. We just got lucky--apparently my ancestors were known for their diplomacy skills. Whichever baron was the laird at the time entertained both Bonnie Prince Charlie AND the Duke of Cumberland....the night before Culloden, pleading for peace. Neither knew the other was there.  Because of this, the castle was spared and our records preserved.  The castle is literally 10 minutes away from the Culloden battle site.

Another thing we've learned is that one of our guys was not just involved in the movement that resulted in the Magna Carta, he was THE PRIMARY GUY agitating for it....it's just so cool.  The one piece I am missing is the genealogy from my first US ancestor back to the baron of that day. Feels like I need a trip to Scotland to work that out on my own cheeky

Date Posted: 11/6/2013 4:00 PM ET
Member Since: 7/13/2005
Posts: 5,201
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Colleen, it looks like some of your ancestors may have been neighbors of some of mine, because one branch of the family came from the villages of Carrbridge and Duthil, just a short distance outside Inverness.  (Well, Duthil no longer actually exists, there's just a sign showing where it used to be.)  So we're pretty sure that they were at the Battle of Culloden, and even if they didn't actually participate, were most certainly affected by the aftermath.

Date Posted: 11/6/2013 7:04 PM ET
Member Since: 7/22/2009
Posts: 2,617
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Colleen -- Wow -- how cool to have a castle AND ancestry dating back to William the Conqueror!! A castle in Scotland would be an awesome place to host a party for your HF friends...and if Jamie were there, woohoo!!

Date Posted: 11/6/2013 10:08 PM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
Posts: 9,174
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Colleen my family were probably your peasants. cheeky  Seriously this is verra cool. I am excited for you.



Last Edited on: 11/6/13 10:09 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/6/2013 10:43 PM ET
Member Since: 5/27/2005
Posts: 2,393
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So, Colleen, now the new question ... who was your guy pushing for the Magna Carta? According to our research, Linda & I have "guarantors" for the King's good behavior re: the Magna Carta in our lineage and, maybe some signers as well; I'd have to check my research.

Kelly

 



Last Edited on: 11/6/13 10:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/6/2013 11:34 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2010
Posts: 2,138
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Um, that is so stinkin' cool!! It's beautiful! How lucky you are to have such in depth records of your family lineage! Love it. :)

My MIL is huge into geneology and a couple of years ago, she researched and pieced together my mom's side of the family, dating as far back as records went and that was one of my Christmas gifts. It was one of the best gifts I've ever received, and once these kids of mine are older and I have more time on my hands, I would love to research the other sides of my family!

Can I come to the castle party?? :)

Date Posted: 11/7/2013 8:02 AM ET
Member Since: 5/19/2007
Posts: 4,709
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Colleen, that is so neat!  I loved hearing your story, so I'm pretty sure I'd love reading your novel!  What's your timeline to retirement? I may have some time to clear off Mt. TBR.

A castle party would be awesome!!  I hope it's haunted. laugh  (The castle, that is, not the party.)

ETA: Clarinda, your mom's comment made me chuckle!  There is something more appealing about "old school" genealogy hunting, especially if it's done outside the U.S.  wink



Last Edited on: 11/7/13 8:04 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Bruce -
Date Posted: 11/7/2013 1:50 PM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2008
Posts: 3,412
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That's pretty cool, and to actually have stood in the castle where ancestors trod is awesome. The most interesting thing I've uncovered about any of my ancestors is that one was the Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University from 1587-1588. He was also President of St. John's College and Chancellor of Christ Church in Oxford, England. Apparently, another ancestor around the turn of the 18th century was the wealthiest man in Middlesex County, VA but some other branch of the family ended up with that money because my ancestors after him were poor dirt farmers.

Date Posted: 11/9/2013 8:51 AM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2008
Posts: 1,356
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So, Colleen, now the new question ... who was your guy pushing for the Magna Carta? According to our research, Linda & I have "guarantors" for the King's good behavior re: the Magna Carta in our lineage and, maybe some signers as well; I'd have to check my research.

Kelly

Kelly, it was, unimaginatively, Robert de Ros II; he would have been 4 generations later than the original Robert de Ros from Normandy--great great great grandson . He was one of the 25 Barons of Surety (the 'guarantors') and helped to draft the document itself, and was a signer. The Clan is rather proud of this and apparently, as the M. C. will celebrate a milestone anniversary in 2015--500 years-- we are planning some shindigs around this. There's to be a big celebration in London and we are going to do something around that.  This ancestor, Robert II, is buried in the Temple Church in London, one of nine Knights Templar effigy tombs there.  Robert II married Isabel MacWilliam, the illegitimate daughter of King William, called the Lion of Scotland. She had previously been married to the uncle of Robert the Bruce.

 

Would this all not make an amazing HF novel??  I think I"m about 10years from retiring....not sure I can wait that long :)

Date Posted: 11/9/2013 2:56 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2007
Posts: 4,815
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So, Colleen, when you become the chatelaine, you will, of course, be hosting a feast in your great hall for your HF buddies, right?  Complete with a kilted, red-headed Scotsman for each of us, as dining companions? devil

Date Posted: 11/10/2013 3:30 PM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2008
Posts: 1,356
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But of course! 

Date Posted: 11/12/2013 10:52 AM ET
Member Since: 7/13/2005
Posts: 5,201
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"to actually have stood in the castle where ancestors trod is awesome"

I've done this - in Newark Castle in Scotland.  However my ancestors who trod there were servants, not the lords.

Date Posted: 12/11/2013 10:45 AM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2008
Posts: 1,356
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Waaaayyyyy cool update: I am reading Katherine Ashe's series on Simon de Montfort. Just finished volume two, the viceroy years. As I read the historical notes at the back, I gleefully found a reference to Henry III having sent his daughter Margaret to Scotland, eventually to be we'd to the Scottish king. She was sent to Robert de Ros to live with for some years until she came of age----it was a very cool moment for me, to read about my ancestor in her footnote!   I am having a lot of fun with this!

Date Posted: 12/11/2013 12:41 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2009
Posts: 929
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Wow, that's fun.  Maybe we should all be on the look-out for Robert de Ros mentions and make sure to post about them!