Tag Archives: 1789

Old WALKER papers – I, James Walker

This is my sixth blog post in a series about some old papers of the WALKER family, from Kirkliston, West Lothian, Scotland. See a list of these papers HERE.

IMG_7620-edBelow is one of several documents from an envelope labeled “Old Wills etc. of the Walker family”, which is part of a box full of family papers that I received from my aunt at a family gathering in January 2014. The contents of this envelope all date from the 1700’s.

This letter is from James Walker, b.1769. He is the nephew of the James Walker mentioned in several other documents that I’ve posted. He’s the son of Thomas Walker (b.1735), and grandson of William Walker & Elizabeth Barron (m.1728).

IMG_9490-croppedPlease click on the images to see the scans at full resolution. Transcribed text appears in a Maroon colour below each scanned image. At the bottom I’ve made some notes of my own about the document.

Letter; I-James-Walker_1789_300dpiTranscription;

I, James Wallker, being in a laguishine Condition #
and going twenty one years, called Lues Alexandr #
tenant in Murend and David Fortune tenant #
in Birds mill to bear witness what my #
wills is which I declare befor them to be #
as follows. I would have my uncel James #
Walker if Providen should take me #
away to pay all my just debts to give my #
sister Elizabeth five pounds hir husband #
five pounds my cusion John Walker five #
pounds the first term after my decease #
and my Mother to Lifereant what remains #
which will be more than one hundred #
pounds sterling and then at her death to #
be divided equally among my survive- #
-ng sistors leaving the management of all #
to my three uncles James Broun, Peller #
Broun and James Walker this [I atest] #
Before thes as above Hiddlefolds twenty #
fourth of subtember 1789

Witnes Lewis Alexander
David Fortuna, witness

James Walker


  • “Murend”; Muirend lays southwest of Hiddlefaulds, across the Union Canal.
  • “Birds Mill”; lays southeast of Hiddlefaulds, on the River Almond.

Lewis Alexander, tenant in Muirend; There is a gravestone in St Nicholas churchyard, Uphall, EH52 6JP, West Lothian, which from the dates on it, could be recording the parents and siblings of the witness to the document above. See grave no.60, here; http://www.uphall.org/downloads/stnicholas-gravestones.pdf


“James Broun” and “Peller Broun” (possibly “Peter” Broun) appear to be the brothers of Janet Broun (or Brown), who married Thomas Walker, at Kirkliston on 16/10/1761. Thomas and Janet had 8 children christened at Kirknewton, Mid Lothian;

  • Mary, chr. 5/9/1762
  • Janet, chr. 3/11/1763
  • Elizabeth, chr. 17/1/1764, (married bef.1789, according to the letter above)
  • Marion, chr. 31/5/1767
  • James, chr. 14/5/1769 (writer of the letter, above)
  • Isobel, chr. 28/9/1771
  • Margaret, chr. 9/5/1773
  • Jean, chr. 10/5/1776 (source; IGI).

Thomas Walker’s brother, James Walker (b.1731) married Janet Flint and had 3 children;

  • Mary, b. 23/6/1767
  • Elizabeth, b. 1/10/1769
  • John, b. 13/1/1772 (he “irregularly” married Isabel Neil, in May 1816)

Note that the girls here share the same names as their cousins, which could cause confusion when we search the parish registers!

There is a marriage in the Kirkliston parish registers between an “Elizabeth Walker” and James Cunningham on 11/6/1785. I once found a tree on-line which had assumed that this Elizabeth was the daughter of James W & Janet Flint! But she would have been only 16 years old at that time (unusual, but not impossible!). However the evidence in the document above, which says that Elizabeth, the daughter of Thomas W & Janet Broun, was married before 1789, leads me to believe that she is the wife of James Cunningham. She would have been 21 at the time of that marriage.

I would be interested to find any other evidence that could confirm which “Elizabeth” married James Cunningham, or that could help to solve any similar confusions that might occur. If you have (or know of) such evidence please use the Contact Form. Thanks.

OLIPHANT papers – Settlement of George BARKER – in favour of his grandchildren – 1784

For some context, and an index to these documents, please SEE HERE.

If you can help with the transcription of these documents please get in touch.

Please click on the images to see the scans at full resolution.

Here is a family tree of George BARKER, his daughters, and grandchildren;
George BARKER descendants tree Jan2016versionGeorge BARKER descendants tree Jan2016version
There is also an Outline and a Report of George BARKER’s descendants (up to 4 generations).

George BARKER’s Disposition (of the same date) is HERE.

OLIPHANT papers; envelope 2; document 2;


Settlement of George Barker, in favour of his grandchildren; 1784. Cover.

Transcription of cover;

George Barker
In favour of
His Grandchildren
8th October 1789 [prod… &]
registered […] John
Philp & John Malcom
Baillies. David Anderson

Inside (top of page);Settlement of George Barker, in favour of his grandchildren; 1784. Inside-top.Transcription of inside (top of page);

Know all men by these present, me George Barker Shipmaster in Kirkcaldy In order to #
prevent all disputes at my death am resolved to settle my affairs and make the following #
destination of my moveables Do therefore give Grant assign and dispone one #
third part of my whole moveable and [per]sonal estate [G]oods and […] [Debts] and sums of #
money ([…] moveables and […] cloths included) that shall belong and be [resting] to me #
at my death to and in favour of the children equally of my daughter Mary with William #
Oliphant shipmaster in Kirkcaldy both now deceased the names of said children being #
Christian, Robert, George, and Mary Oliphant, and another third part of my said #
moveable and personal estate to and in favour of George, Thomas, and David Dougall #
equally being the children of my other daughter Agnes with George Dougall #
Shipmaster in Kirkcaldy both also now deceased, and the remaining third part of #
my said moveable and personal estate to and in favour of Christian and Janet #
Oliphant equally being the children of my other and youngest daughter now #
deceased with Henry Oliphant, Shipmaster in Kirkcaldy. [In…agating] and […] #
my said [several] Grandchildren above named in my [full] [sight] title and [place] of the #
[premesses] and [nominate] and [appoint] them to be my Executors according to the above #
dicision Dispensing with the [generality] of these presents and [admitting] the […] to #
be as [solid] and [effectual] as if my whole moveable subjects household furniture and #
debts had been specially moved herein and [I de..] and appoint [that] before any [division] #
of the funds hereby assigned take place by [virtue] hereof my death bed and funeral #
expences and all my debts shall be satisfied and paid as [well] as the sum of thirty #
pounds sterling to Agnes Bett […] in Kirkcaldy which I bequeath to her #

Inside (bottom of page);Settlement of George Barker, in favour of his grandchildren; 1784. Inside-bottom.

Transcription of inside (bottom of page);

for good […] [payable] within six months after my decease and also a debt of forty #
pounds Sterling and interest thereof from the [fifteenth] of […] Seventeen hundred and #
Twenty six [till] payment being money borrowed by me from my daughter Mrs Dougall #
and I gave […] [or] thoer [Voucher] And the remainder of my said moveable funds to be #
divided by a three part division in terms hereof. And in regard [that] during the #
lifetime of my said daughter Mary I advanced her and her husband William #
Oliphant to the extent of One Hundred and eleven pounds Sterling therefore and #
in order to make the Children of my daughter Agnes equal I give up and discharge #
in favour of the said three Children of my daughter Agnes a [debt] of [two thousand] #
[Merks] which I paid for them to the heirs of Robert [White] [Mariner] in Kirkcaldy [conform] #
to an [assignation] in my favour dated the [third] and sixth days of February [Seventeen] #
hundred and [Twenty] two Years which I order to be delivered up to my said three Grand- #
-children and I having claims upon my other daughter and Henry Oliphant to the [extent] #
of One hundred and Sixty four pounds Sterling which I [compute] to be [fifty] five #
pounds more than I have given my other two daughters or their families therefore and #
to make an equality I […] the share of my moveables falling to the share of #
the Children of the said Henry Oliphant [&] with the payment of the said [fifty] #
five pounds Sterling One half thereof to be paid to the Children of George Dougall #
and the other half to the Children of William Oliphant and I appoint that #
the said debt […] by me from Mrs Dougall and interest thereof shall #
be paid out of my funds [without] any [conformation] to her Children equally #
declaring that I have no other claims upon my said daughters their husbands #
or families then what is above specified and settled by these [presents] [Res…ing] #

Will Drysdale, witness
Will Michie, witness
John Barker, witness

(signed) George Barker

Back page; Settlement of George Barker, in favour of his grandchildren; 1784. Back-page.Transcription of back page;

always to me not only my life rent of the subjects hereby conveyed but also full and absolute #
power over the same and to use and dispose thereupon as effectually as if these [presents] #
had not been granted and I [dispensed] with the not delivery hereof in my own #
lifetime and declare the same to be as [valid] and effectuall as if delivered and a #
good deed [altho] found lying by me or in the custody of a [neutral] person at my death #
any laws or practice to the contrary [nor] with standing and I hereby appoint the said #
Henry Oliphant to be Tutor and Curator not only to his own two Daughters but #
also to the Children of his said Brother William Oliphant for managing the #
subjects hereby assigned to them declaring he shall not be liable for [Amissions] but #
also (for) his (actual) [Intebmissions]. Consenting to the registration hereof in the [Banks] #
of Council and Session [burrous] [court] Books of Kirkcaldy or others competent #
for [preservation] and therets I constitute. #

My [Procurators] in witness whereof these presents (written #
on stamped paper by William Drysdale town clerk of Kirkcaldy) are subscribed #
by me at Kirkcaldy the eight day of May One Thousand Seven hundred and #
eighty four years before these witnesses; William Michie, taylor in Kirkcaldy #
John Barker, apprentice to the said William Drysdale, and the said William #


William Drysdale, witness
William Michie, witness
John Barker, witness

(signed) George Barker