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402Johnstons in NZ

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  • willietmj48@aol.com
    Sep 4, 2009
    I live in Auchencairn, Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland, which with Dundrennan once formed the ancient parish of Rerrick. Great grandfather William Johnston was born in Dundrennan Abbey May 16, 1843.
    He had 3 brothers: Joseph b c1846; James b 1850 and David b 1854; and a sister Janet b c1847.
    GGF William Johnston married Janet Bell (b. C1879) on Dec 12, 1871 in Dumfries. They had 8 children: David b c1873, Thomas H b c1874, William b Sep 1, 1875, George b c1878, Janet b c1879, Jane Findlay b c1882, Joseph Martin b c1884 d Sep 18, 1905 and James b 1886.
    GF William Johnston married Mary Agnes Murray (b Jan 4, 1885 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England) in Pringleton, Penpont, Dumfriesshire, on Dec 6, 1907.
    My father, also William Johnston, born May 18, 1908 in Dumfries, never did mention that he had all these uncles and aunts. His only other sibling was his sister Elizabeth Gall Johnston b Mar 31, 1911 and d Jul 31, 1979.
    I have attached 4 B&W photographs, probably descendants of Johnston’s from Dumfries, Scotland.
    My cousin, Ross Chalder, found them in a suitcase of mementoes not opened since the death of his mother, Elizabeth Gall Chalder nee Johnston in 1979.
    1 The female wearing the ball gown has the following written on the back:
       Janet taken at Napier Hospital Ball July 8th 1960

    2 The group shot of around 16 children reads:
       All the Johnston grandchildren born at that time;
       Janet, our daughter, has 2 hair ribbons and is now 17 years - sent by Eleanor.

    3 Portrait of elderly couple - he is a spitting image of GF William Johnston!

    4 The family group - mum, dad, Tony, Ian and Janet:
       printed by a company in New Plymouth, NZ

    George Henry Murray is one of the brothers of grandmother Mary Agnes  Johnston. He was born in 1881 in Northumberland, England. He was a Gamedealer in Thornhill, Dumfriesshire prior to his emigration to Quebec in Canada on the SS Cassandra on Aug 3, 1923.
    Family tales suggest that George Murray and two of his siblings emigrated to New Zealand.
     It may be that he went via Canada and that the siblings were Johnstons!
     An old address book dated around 1964 shows that a George Murray was living at 17 Bonithon Avenue, New Plymouth, Taranaki, New Zealand.
    I am new to searching for family, having only been researching since April this year.
    I hope that your contacts in the Johnston NZ Group will enable me to find out who left Dumfries, why, when and how and to make contact with their descendants.
    I will be happy to assist in any way I can with any inquiries I can assist with here in Dumfries and Galloway.

    William Johnston, 2 Church Place, Auchencairn, Castle Douglas, DG7 1RR,
    Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland.

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