Action of Reduction &c., 1854
at the instance of Ranald MacDonald of Gerinish against
Mrs. Mary Macdonald or Macdonell
relating to the Estate of South Morar

recorded by John Dye

M. G. 1 Vol. 559 No 517

15th September, 1934

Dear Sir,
As desired in your letter of 25th ult. enclosing cheque for £1, I send herewith extracts from the Extracted Process Number 11 of October 1854, Ranald MacDonald of Girinish against Mrs. Mary Macdonell, which I trust will suit your purpose.
As to your enquiry regarding the names of tenants in South Morar, Arisaig and Moidart, 1790 - 1820, I have to inform you that in a collection of Clanranald papers recently deposited here for preservation, there are rentals dated 1815, 1820 and 1826 of Canna, Eig, Moidart and Arisaig, showing the names of the tenants and their holdings, and copies of these can be supplied at the following charges:- Rental of 1815, 5/-, 1820, 15/-, 1826, 18/-. If, however, only the MacDonald names were abstracted, the costs would be 2/6, 7/6 and 10/- respectively. There do not appear to be any rentals of the lands of South Morar.
Yours faithfully,
Henry M. Paton
for Curator of Historical Records

Mr. Colin S. MacDonald,
P. O. Box 170,
N. B.
No 518
Edinburgh 9th January 1934

In reply to your letter of 29th ult. I have to inform you that the process in the Action of Reduction &c. at the instance of Ranald MacDonald of Gerinish against Mrs. Mary Macdonald or Macdonell relating to the Estate of South Morar is preserved here. (Extd. Pro. No. 11 of Octr. 1854). It can be examined by you or anyone on your behalf on payment of a fee of 7/6d., and, if notes are taken, an additional fee of 1/- for every 400 words copied will be charged.
Certain papers relating to the Estate of Clanranald have been deposited here recently. When they have been examined and an inventory made, they will be available for public inspection.
I am, Sir,
Your obedient Servant,
Wm. Angus
for Keeper of the Registers and Records of Scotland

Colin S. MacDonald Esq.
P. O. Drawer V,
Nova Scotia,
No 519
Summons of Reduction etc. Ranald Macdonald of Girinish in the township of Cornwall in the Eastern District and Province of' Canada, and his mandatory, against Mrs Mary Macdonald or Macdonell, residing at Spean Lodge, Nuachan near Fort William, spouse of Angus Macdonell, tacksman of Insh, in the lordship of' Lochaber, and county of' Inverness. The writs sought to be reduced include Decree of' Special Service, 19th November, 1849; whereby the Defender said Mrs Mary Macdonald or Macdonell is served heiress of provision to late James Macdonald of Morar for infeftment in parts of the estate of South Morar being the remainder of said lands disponed by deceased Major Simon Macdonald of Morar, and parts of the lands of North Morar in which said James Macdonald was infeft conform to Precept of Clare Constat in his favour as lawful and nearest heir male of John Macdonald then last of Morar, his cousin, dated 7th January, 1836.

In the Condescendence it is stated -

{l) By the titles of the estate of Morar the property has been held for many generations under a destination to male heirs.
(2) On 19th January, 1791, Lieut. afterwards Major Simon Macdonald then of Morar obtained a charter from the superior in favour of' himself and the heirs male of his marriage with Mrs AEmelia Macdonald, whom failing to Coll Macdonald, his brother-german, and his heirs male, whom failing to the nearest lawful heirs male of the said Lieut. Simon, whom failing to the nearest heirs and assignees whomsoever of said Lieut. Simon. Upon that charter said Major Simon was infeft by Sasine registered in the General Register of Sasines 19th July, 1791, and he possessed the property till his death.

(3) Major Simon was the grandson of' Allan Roy Macdona1d who was the oldest of four brothers the great grand children of Allan More Macdonald by his oldest son Allan Oig.

(4) Major Simon died leaving three sons, James, Simon, and John, and he was succeeded in the estate by James, who obtained a precept from the Superior on 27th March, 1801, and took sasine with the same destination as in the said charter of 1791 on 5th May, 1801.

(5) James Macdonald died unmarried without issue and his immediate younger brother Simon having been previously accidentally killed while unmarried, Major Simon's third and youngest son John who was an idiot took up the succession on 23rd August, 1818, and had sasine registered 28th November, 1818, also with the same destination to male heirs, as in the 1791 charter.

(6) Coll Macdonald the younger brother of Major Simon predeceased him without issue, and on the death of John the idiot the male descendants of Major Simon's grandfather Allan Roy Macdonald became extinct his three younger sons having died without issue. With Allan Roy's descendants what was more strictly and commonly called the Morar family became extinct.

(7) The immediate younger brother of Allan Roy, viz. Alexander had had two sons but they died unmarried without issue. The third brother of Allan Roy - Hugh - had been a Bishop and also died without issue. The property consequently came to the family of the fourth brother called John of Guidale (Ghaotal). His only surviving male descendant a grandson James also an idiot obtained a charter from the superior and was served as lawful and nearest heir male of John Macdonald of Morar, his cousin. He had sasine recorded 22nd March, 1836.

(8) James Macdonald the idiot died about January 1849 unmarried and without issue. He was the last of the male descendants of Allan More by his son Allan Oig. Upon the death of James the idiot the succession opened under the destination by which the estate of Morar had all along been held, to the male descendants of Allan More through his other sons - they being the male heirs of Major Simon. They were however out of the country and did not at once follow up their rights.

(9) During the absence from the country of the male heirs of Major Simon through the other sons of Allan More, Mrs Mary Macdonald or Macdonell, daughter and heir female of Coll Macdonald the brother of Major Simon had herself served heiress of provision of deceased James Macdonald of Morar. Her claim to the estate was founded upon the destination after failure of Major Simon and Coll Macdonald and their heirs male to Major Simon's 'heirs and assignees whomsoever'.

(10) She had sasine registered 26th November, 1849.

(11) The pursuer said Ranald Macdonald is the heir male of Major Simon and as such called under the destination of 1791 and subsequent titles. The male descendants of Allan More through his eldest son Allan Oig were extinct; but the pursuer is the heir male through another son of Allan More. This Allan More had two sons besides Allan Oig, viz., John and Alexander. John died, without issue but Alexander was married and left children. Ranald Macdonald the pursuer's grandfather was the only great grandson of this Alexander. He emigrated many years ago to America and had two sons Allan and Alexander Macdonald. Allan who generally resided in Prince Edwards Island, while in this country sometime ago obtained a Brieve from Chancery for serving him heir in general to John Macdonald the second son of' Allan More his great great granduncle. A long proof was led upon which he was duly served nearest and lawful heir in general to the said John Macdonald on 4th July l825. Allan Macdonald returned again to Prince Edwards Island where he died leaving no issue.

The pursuer Ranald Macdonald is the oldest son of the late Alexander who was the only brother of the said Allan, and consequently his oldest nephew and nearest and lawful heir, and nearest and lawful heir male of the deceased Major Simon.

No 523
Evidence of Mrs Catherine Macdona1d, widow of Ranald Macdonald, Springfield, St. Peters lakes Township No. 39, Kings County Prince Edward Island, taken on commission by Hon. Robert Hodgson, Chief Justice of Prince Edward Island, in his chambers in Charlotte Town on 26th September, 1853.
She depones she knows the pursuer Ranald Macdonald, son of her brother Alexander. She heard of his birth about 23 or 24 years ago but never saw him until last June. Does not know the defender.
She is 76 years of age. She is the daughter of Ranald Macdonald of Girinish in South Uist Scotland, and his wife Flora. Her mother's maiden name was Flora Macdonald of Ardnashishnisk in Scotland. She remembers when she was about 5 years of age she was at the house of her grandfather in Benbicula. When her father left Girinish for Knoydart where he resided some time before he sailed for America she was left in Uist with her nurse, where she had frequent opportunities of seeing her grandfather and her Aunt one of her grandfather's daughters by his second marriage. She has heard of a brother of her father. Her father was the eldest son and John and Alexander were next to him by the first marriage. There were two brothers by the second marriage, named Dugald and Ranald.
She has resided about 50 years in Prince Edward Island. She was born in South Uist and left Scotland when about 7 and went to Upper Canada and resided there about 18 years.
Her father married twice. The name of his first wife was Flora Macdonald of Scothouse, Inverness-shire, Scotland. The name of his second wife was Flora MacDonell of Ardnas
lishnisk. Her grandfather was married twice. The name of his first wife was Isabella Macdonald, her grandmother, and the second was Miss MacEachen, and to the best of her recollection her name was Margaret MacEachen.
Her father had one son by his first wife named Donald. He was drowned. He entered the army when he was about 15 and attained the rank of Lieutenant. She resided in Canada when she heard of his death with her father's family.
Her father's eldest son Donald was never married.
Her father Ranald Macdonald was the eldest son of Alexander Macdonald. Her father had ten children by his second marriage, four sons, Allan, the eldest, Alexander the second, Joseph the third, who died about a fortnight after his birth, and also a son who died immediately after his birth. The daughters names were Mary who died about 18 years of age unmarried; Catherine (the witness); Anne, now Mrs Ann Beaton, residing in Prince Edwards Island, wife of Alexander Beaton; Clementina, who died in infancy; second Clementina who died in Prince Edward Island about 66 years of age unmarried; and Marcella now the widow of Alexander Macdonald of St. Margarets, Prince Edward Island (The Bear's mother).
When her father, mother, her brother Allan, and sisters, came to reside in Prince Edward Island, her second brother Alexander remained in Canada, where he afterwards generally resided. Alexander some years after came to Prince Edward Island and remained about 12 months recruiting for the Glengary Regiment in which Regiment he was an officer. He lived a number of years in Canada where he died.
Her brother Alexander was married to Mary Fraser, daughter of Captain Fraser, with whom she was acquainted. Miss Fraser was a Protestant. Her brother Alexander left four daughters and one son, Ranald the eldest child; Catherine, Flora, Ann, Margaret and Johanna.
The present claimant to the estate of Morar Ronald Macdonald of Girinish in Upper Canada is the eldest and only lawful son of her second full brother Alexander.
It is about 40 years since her father died; he died at St. Margarets in Prince Edward Island. He died at the house of Alexander Macdonald, St. Margarets, and was buried at St Margarets.
Both of her full brothers are dead. She is quite satisfied of this fact. She was not present at the death or burial of her brother Allan, owing to untimely notice and the state of the roads at that season - March 1844 -the distance from her residence to St. Margarets was about 25 miles.
She has always been acquainted with the genealogy of her father and mother. She heard it from them and several old people who emigrated from Uist to Canada and this Island, in the following order. Her father Ranald of Girinish was the eldest son of Alexander of Garryghoil, and he the eldest son of John of Garryghoil, and he the eldest son of Alexander of Garryghoil was the third son of' Allan More Macdonald of Morar. Her grandfather she had heard had two younger brothers, named Allan and Donald (of Kilaulay - So. Uist). Her grandfather had a lease of Garryghoil in Uist where he resided
She never heard that the present claimant of Morar Ranald Macdonald or any of his ancestors as far back as she, knows his genealogy were illegitimate.
Her grandfather's second wife was Miss MacEachen of Puerin (Paninuran?). Her father's first and second wives were related; they were first cousins.
Her brother 'Alexander the second son of her father by the second marriage had an illegitimate son before his marriage, named Alexander She has heard he resided in the United States, and was acknowledged by his father and known by the family as illegitimate.
Her father and mother professed the Roman Catholic religion and she professes the same.

Similar evidence is given by Mrs Anne Beaton, wife of Alexander Beaton of the East Point Prince Edwards Island of Township No. 47 in Kings County in said Island, aged 73 or 74. She is the second daughter of Ranald Macdonald of Girinish South Uist Scotland. Her mother's name was Flora Macdonell of Ardnaslishnisk in Scotland, her father's second wife.

Similar evidence is given by Mrs Marcellas Macdonald, relict of Alexander Macdonald of St. Margarets Township No. 44 in Kings County Prince Edwards Island, aged 71 years. She is a daughter of Ranald Macdonald of Girinish, South Uist in Scotland.

John Dye