Laidlaw / Anderson

Neil McPHEDRANAge: 96 years17761872

Name
Neil McPHEDRAN
Birth about 1776
Alias
Niel /McPhederain/

MarriageNancy McKILLOPView this family
about 1804 (Age 28 years)
Birth of a son
#1
Donald McPHEDRAN
November 1805 (Age 29 years)
Birth of a son
#2
John McPHEDRAN
August 12, 1807 (Age 31 years)
Birth of a son
#3
Peter McPHEDRAN
about 1808 (Age 32 years)
Birth of a son
#4
Duncan McPHEDRAN
1811 (Age 35 years)
Birth of a daughter
#5
Flora McPHEDRAN
1816 (Age 40 years)
Birth of a daughter
#6
Mary McPHEDRAN
February 1818 (Age 42 years)
Birth of a son
#7
Archibald McPHEDRAN
February 1820 (Age 44 years)
Birth of a son
#8
Neil McPHEDRAN
May 1822 (Age 46 years)
Birth of a daughter
#9
Nancy McPHEDRAN
1824 (Age 48 years)
Birth of a son
#10
Alexander McPHEDRAN
1827 (Age 51 years)
Birth of a son
#11
James McPHEDRAN
about 1829 (Age 53 years)

Birth of a son
#12
Dugald McPHEDRAN
about 1831 (Age 55 years)

Birth of a daughter
#13
Elizabeth McPHEDRAN
about 1834 (Age 58 years)

Marriage of a childJohn McPHEDRANJanet CAMPBELLView this family
August 12, 1834 (Age 58 years)
Marriage of a childPeter McPHEDRANSarah McGLASHENView this family
about 1841 (Age 65 years)
Death of a daughterMary McPHEDRAN
August 21, 1846 (Age 70 years)
Death of a sonArchibald McPHEDRAN
January 25, 1848 (Age 72 years)
Death of a daughterFlora McPHEDRAN
February 20, 1849 (Age 73 years)
Death of a wifeNancy McKILLOP
October 26, 1849 (Age 73 years)
Death of a sonNeil McPHEDRAN
January 20, 1850 (Age 74 years)
Death of a daughterNancy McPHEDRAN
November 20, 1850 (Age 74 years)
Marriage of a childDuncan McPHEDRANAnn MORRISONView this family
about 1855 (Age 79 years)

Death December 21, 1872 (Age 96 years)
Family with Nancy McKILLOP - View this family
himself
wife
Marriage: about 1804Argyllshire Scotland
23 months
son
Donald McPHEDRAN
Birth: November 1805 29 20Argyllshire, Scotland
Death: September 22, 1889Nassagaweya Twp., Halton Co. ON
21 months
son
17 months
son
4 years
son
6 years
daughter
2 years
daughter
Mary McPHEDRAN
Birth: February 1818 42 33Argyllshire, Scotland
Death: August 21, 1846Nassagaweya Twp., Halton Co. ON
2 years
son
Archibald McPHEDRAN
Birth: February 1820 44 35Aldborough Twp., Elgin, Co, ON.
Death: January 25, 1848Nassagaweya Twp., Halton Co. ON
2 years
son
Neil McPHEDRAN
Birth: May 1822 46 37Aldborough Twp., Elgin, Co, ON.
Death: January 20, 1850Nassagaweya Twp., Halton Co. ON
3 years
daughter
Nancy McPHEDRAN
Birth: 1824 48 39Aldborough Twp., Elgin, Co, ON.
Death: November 20, 1850Nassagaweya Twp., Halton Co. ON
4 years
son
3 years
son
3 years
son
4 years
daughter

Shared note

Neil McPhedran earlier McPhederain, emigrated to Upper Canada with hiswife and their young family in 1819. Neil's mother also accompaniedthem. There was some outstanding rent that needed to be paid on herbehalf prior to her departure. The sailing ship was either the Hope orthe Harmony. They were accompanied by Nancy's parents Donald McKillopand Catherine McArthur, and siblings of Nancy. She had four sisters andthree brothers. One brother, Duncan and his wife came to Canada the yearbefore his parents. He arrived from Tobermory, Scotland on the shipMars. Although Duncan was school teacher, he became a typical settlerand endured the hardships common in those early days.(See Note A). Itseems that Duncan was the pathfinder for his family and the extendedfamily of the McPhederans. One brother Alexander remained in Scotland.Alexander's descendants live in the same area still, according to DuncanMcKillop of St. Thomas, ON. Duncan is a descendant of his namesake. TheMcKillop family lived in Glassary parish in Argyllshire.

The McPhedrans and McKillops were among the early settlers in the Talbotsettlement, as organized by Colonel Thomas Talbot, who began his colonyin 1802 in part of what is now Elgin county with townships parallel toLake Erie. The McPhedrans settled first in Aldborough township andremained there on 50 acres doing their settlement duties to thesatisfaction of Colonel Talbot. A few settlers soon found out that hecould not be trifled with, as he would simply "rub them out". He hadsettlers registered on a chalk board in his office and if they failed toclear the required number of acres each year, make payments, cleartheir portion of the road in front of their lot, he would rub that nameoff his chalk board. Road building was central to these earlysettlements, the lots alongs the road were settled first and only laterwere settlers placed beyond the roads. The Talbot road was built,extending to Windsor in this manner, and is now known as Highway # 3.

Talbot had his misgivings about his Highland settlers, but they were theonly settlers he had until 1846. They mostly spoke the Gaelic and werenot easily put upon. The settlers felt unfairly treated by Talbot andthis led to a petition being drafted and presented to the LieutenantGovernor of Upper Canada, then Sir Peregrine Maitland in August of 1820,making a little hot water for Talbot, whose relation with the governmentwas usually tenuous. It was a complaint signed by most, if not all ofhis settlers. Neil McPhedran and his son Donald were among thosesigning. Another name of interest was that of Duncan McKillop.

Neil felt that he had a few options open to him and decided to exercisethem! Neil made proper application for his grant of land from the LieutenantGovernor as did his two eldest sons Donald and John. On the 29th ofApril 1824, they received land grants as follows: Neil as "he has afamily of six sons and three daughters" was granted two hundred acres.The usual grant was 100 acres as was case for Donald and for John. TheUnited Empire Loyalists, their widows and sons could expect to receive200 acres but in this case Neil's large family was the deciding factor. It was necessary that they swear an oath of allegiance to the crown,this was done before Colonel Talbot in his capacity as a Justice of thePeace.

The reason for the decision to make the family's new home in Nassagaweyatownship in the county of Halton is explained in part, by the chance ofobtaining a larger acreage for himself and his two eldest sons who werethen of age, as well as getting out of Talbot's unfair treatment, at onepoint they felt they might not even receive deeds to their land. Adescendant, the late Duncan McPhederan of Rockwood told me that Neilwished to escape the ague, (rhymes with plague)! He knew it wasassociated with swampy land, and Nassagaweya is rather free of theseareas, think of Halton Hills!

We now understand that ague was a form of malaria and was mosquitoborne. Neil had seen enough in his own family and his neighbours towish to find a healthier environment. Nassagaweya had its first settlerin 1820, thus seems to have been surveyed prior to that date. Donald,the eldest son of Neil along with Donald Black explored the township inthe autumn of 1823 to seek a home. The choice was Lot 18 in the 4thConcession, they returned to Elgin county and after the land grant wasapproved in April 1824 returned and erected a dwelling. In 1825 thefamily arrived to begin all over again clearing the land of trees. Itis not clear how a lot could be selected in advance as noted here, as theusual process was to draw lots from a hat. Donald drew the east halfof Lot 28 in the 4th Concession, but exchanged it for the entire(200acres) in the 5th Concession, where he settled at once and liveduntil his death in 1889. John the next brother drew a lot in Caledon andsold it for $100 and bought the east half of Lot 26 in the 5thConcession of Nassagaweya for the same money. He did not settle on thislot. About this time Donald Black also obtained a free land grant andsettled in Nassagaweya also.

Neil had become somewhat of a wheeler-dealer and had bought Lot 23 andthe east half of Lot 24 in the 3rd Concession, which he afterward equallydivided between John and Duncan (another son). There is a furtheraccount of these transactions in "History of Nasagiweya" by JoshuaNorrish, published in 1889.

In this way Neil had become a landlord, with his sons as tenant farmers!I found two documents in the Deeds of Halton County, microfilm G.S. 3381Volume A, in which Neil granted 150 acres to his son John, "inconsideration of the sum of five shillings (and the natural affection forhis son) of lawful money of the Province of Canada". This was listed asMemorial #320 and dated 9th of June 1854. An identical documentmemorial #321 was drawn up to convey another 150 acres to his sonDuncan. Son Peter had relocated in Lambton county in 1854. It is notclear whether Peter was also a tenant of his father. There may be a document similar to the above memorials, by a furthersearch of the deeds.

There was some agitation from the sons to own their own farms, afterabout 22 years as tenants under their father! Part of this agitationwas due to land becoming available in Lambton county and son John movedto Plympton township in 1857, where he bought 200 acres on Lot 27,inthe12th Concession, a short distance south and west of Forest, ON.Peter removed to Lambton county in 1854 near Wanstead and was thus thetrailblazer for his brother John and his sister Nancy Anderson and herhusband Robert and young family in 1868. Nancy and Robert are my greatgrandparents.

Neil's tombstone is in Ebenezer United Church cemetery on the Guelph Lineand is inscribed "Niel McPhederain who died 21st December 1872. Anative of the parish of Kilmichael Argyleshire Scotland." His age wasrecorded by Joshua Norrish as being 96.

His wife's tombstone is inscribed "In memory of Nancy McKillop wife ofNiel McPhedran who died Oct 26, 1849. In the 64th year of her age.Native of Scotland."

It will be noted that all documents in his lifetime refer to NielMcPhederain, I have substituted the contemporary spellings used. Thisinformation is recorded again on a nearby tombstone possibly that of sonAlex . The original monuments being regarded as less substantial, andindeed there are signs of weathering and some cracking (Neil'smonument). McPhedrain was used by some descendants as well asMcPhederan.

Some Scottish records are looked after by Malcolm Poltalloch, Archivesof Argyll-Bute in Lockgilphead. Also Colin Ferguson, in the parish ofGlassary. Useful for further research.

Note A. From the 1877 Historical Atlas of Elgin County. "One of the settlers of 1818 was the late Duncan McKillop, whose healthsoon became so impaired by change of climate and hard toil, that he hadgreat difficulties in procuring the necessities if life for his family.They had no money to purchase a cow, and Mrs. McKillop went to the riverThames, 9 miles above where Chatham now is and earned one by working forMr. Frederick Arnold, who ever after esteemed Mrs. McKillop highly forher heroism and devotion in the cause of her husband and family. Thesons John, Archibald, Duncan and Daniel are now wealthy farmers and millowners, and have always been amongst the most substantial residents ofAldborough."

29 May 1999 by Howard S. Anderson , a three greats grandson. O.G.S. 7031. Revised; 1 June 1999, 2 June 1999.