Mary Ann Sarah Morag "Sarah" McLeod
- Born: 1806, Isle Of Skye, Scotland, United Kingdom
- Marriage (1): Malcolm McKinnon on 18 Mar 1833 in Isle Of Skye, Scotland, United Kingdom
- Died: 27 Aug 1865, Oxley Island, Taree, New South Wales, Australia at age 59
- Buried: 28 Aug 1865, Cundletown, New South Wales, Australia
Cause of her death was Abdominal dropsy.
Other names for Mary were Marian, Marion, Sarah and Mrs Sarah McKinnon.
According to her death certificate, she arrived in Australia when she was 32 years old.
She is reported to be a cousin of Euphemia McLeod, Malcolm's first wife. (The Family of Malcolm McKinnon (1802 - 1852) by L.M. McKinnon, abt 1973)
Noted events in her life were:
• She immigrated on 12 Dec 1837 to Port Jackson, , New South Wales, Australia.
• She immigrated on 12 Dec 1837 to Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
Mary married Malcolm McKinnon on 18 Mar 1833 in Isle Of Skye, Scotland, United Kingdom. (Malcolm McKinnon was born in 1802 in Isle Of Skye, Scotland, United Kingdom and died in 1852.)
Leslie M. McKinnon writes
The Family of Malcolm McKinnon (1802 - 1852)
Growing population, coupled with a destroyed economy, and recurrent famines made emigration the only alternative to starvation for thousands of Gaelic speaking people in Scotland's Highland and Island regions. Thus it was that the British Government extended the Bounty System to enable Scots to leave their native land for the promising colonies. On March 13th. 1837 the first of the Bounty ships bound for Australia departed from Dundee. She was the 'John Barry', with 323 emigrants, and July she was followed by the 'William Nicoll', with a further 321 emigrants. In the three years 1837 to 1840 a total of twenty such ships sailed from Scotland with a total of some 5,263 people anxious to find a new life for their families.
Malcolm McKinnon came to Sydney on the third of these ships, the 414 ton barque 'Midlothian', under the command of Captain Morrison. On the ship there were 127 adults, with 129 children. They were attended by their own Presbyterian minister (i), Rev.William MacIntyre, who conducted public worship for the congregation in their native Gaelic language. Dr.R.Stewart, another Gaelic speaker also came as medical superintendent. During the voyage typhus and dysentry broke out,with the result 7 adults and 17 children died before they reached Sydney on December 12th. 1837. They had departed from Loch Snizort in Skye on August 8th., so the trip had lasted a long 127 days.
It was a Monday when the 'Midlothian' arrived in Sydney Town. At 6 p.m. on the following Sabbath the migrants, with other Highlanders of the town, assembled in Scots Church (ii), Church Hill to offer up prayers and Psalms of praise at the throne of the Almighty, for His guiding hand in bringing them safely to their new home. The service was conducted by Mr.MacIntyre in Gaelic (iii), and it is believed that this was the first time that the ancient language had been used for public worship in New South Wales.
The 'Midlothian' migrants claimed that they had been promised land grants in N.S.W., but authorities here had not been informed of any such promise by their masters in Britain. The Highlanders therefore memorialised the acting Governor, Colonel Kenneth Snodgrass,praying that they settled in a district where they could have a minister of their own persuasion and language. This proposal was not without opposition, as can be seen from two letters which appeared at the time in the Sydney Morning Herald (iv):-
"The public desires to know by what authority the Highland migrants, who latterly came out to New South Wales,have been treated so differently from any previous migrants? Where they have been maintained for so unusually long a period at the expense of the colonial taxpayers? Whether it is 1 that they have been supplied with working tools at public expense? Is the disposal of the Colonial Land Fund to be for ever made a job of,under every possible shape again,why are these Highland migrants allowed to settle in a body, any more than other emigrants? The colonists of N.S.W. who contributed to the Land Fund, do they pay their money for the purpose of forming a Highland settlement for sectarian purposes in some part of the interior. The pretence under which these emigrants are to be located together is that they may have their own clergyman over them... The public ought to recollect that the cost of carrying this Highland scheme has been defrayed, in a great measure,by the English Episcopalian and Irish Roman Catholic taxpaying colonists..." (Sydney Morning Herald, February 22nd., 1838).
"Clannishness...The minister who came out with them, instead of proceeding to the Hunter (River) where the greatest number of the highlanders are settled, is to remain in Sydney to perform Divine service at Scot's Chapel on Church Hill...they could receive the ordinances of their religion in the language of their forefathers, from the Rev.MacIntyre. In a late Colonist (v) it is stated that a deputation of Highlanders were sent down to the Hunter to inspect various farms and see which they would like to be settled on best...very few of these persons can speak English which is a great drawback to their usefulness as labourers...A Settler" (Sydney Morning Herald, March 5th.1838)
In his "Reminiscences of my Life & Times", the Rev.Dr. J.D. Lang, the first Presbyterian minister in N.S.W., records his account of the occasion:-
"The first of eighteen ships (vi) that carried out the four thousand Highlanders to Sydney and Melbourne, in consequence of the severe famine in the Highlands and Island of Scotland, was the 'Midlothian',which arrived in Sydney in the month of December, 1837, and of which I had succeeded in getting the Rev.William McIntyre.A.M., appointed as chaplain, with the usual allowance for the passage and outfit. I had happened to reach Greenoch by a steamer from England on a Sabbath morning,and found Mr.MacInyre,with whom I was previously unacquainted,officiating for the day in a church (afterwards a Free Church) in the town. I then formed the highest opinion of Mr.McIntyre,who,I felt assured,would be one of the ablest and best ministers,as he certainly was. A single incident,however,had occurred in the case of the 'Midlothian'. Her passengers,who were all from the Isle of Skye, and had somehow supposed that the Colonial Government were bound not only to give them a free passage out,as they had actually done,but also to settle them on the land with their minister,refused to hire themselves as the various other immigrants of the period were doing to the colonial proprietors who were offering to engage them; remaining from week to week in the Immigration Barracks at the public expense. The Government had consequently to hold a meeting of the Executive Council on the subject, to which I,as the author of the movement at Home,and Mr. McInyre,as the chaplain of the first ship,were both summoned to give evidence,as to whether the Imperial Government had given any such pledge was either asked or given; but the Government,from a kindly feeling towards the Highlanders,agreed that any colonial proprietor should be willing to settle them in a body on his estate they would be allowed a passage at the public expense, either by land or water,to whatever part of the colony such proprietor might reside in,with rations from the Queen's stores for six months. The only proprietor,however,who offered to settle the Highlanders in a body on ghis estate,on terms mutually agreeable,was my brother,Mr.Andrew Lang,of Dunmore (vii),whither the Highlanders were forwarded according by steamboat,and received the rations promised;my mother,who was then alive and residing at Dunmore, showing the Highland women how to prepare the maize meal,which then formed a part of the colonial rations,but which they had never seen before".
Another account of the Highlanders move to the Hunter River district has been proved by the late Mr.Gordon Dennes,a man who was remarkably familiar with the people and their descendents:-
"Various proposals were made for the settlement of these memorialists. The first considered most eligible was that of Mr.Eales,of Hunter's River. The Skye-men decided to take no step in the dark. Two of their number were sent to the Hunter to examine the site of the proposed settlement and to report as to its suitability. The deputation found that Mr.Eales' land was subject to flooding. They then proceeded to Dunmore, Paterson River,the estate of Andrew Lang, another who had offered to locate them. The deputation recommended settling there.
"So much time had been consumed in delays that half the number of families had secured employment by this time. Twenty five families adhered to the original plan. They,with eight other families,totalling in all 162 individuals, proceeded to the Hunter River on January 23,1838, by the steamers Tamar and Sophie Jane. The names of the heads of the families who settled as tenants at Dunmore on that portion of the estate which was formerly owned by Mr.Standish Lawrence Hughes (viii) were:-
Angus Beaton;Donald Campbell; Donald Gillies; Alexander, Donald and John McAulay; Angus (2), Hector, John and Neil McDonald; John McIntosh; John McKay; Alexander and John McLeod; John, Malcolm, and Neil McKinnon (ix); Donald McMillan; Archibald McQueen; Alexander McRae; Angus, Donald and Hohn McSwan; Donald Munro, and Donald McDonald, a bachelor.
The remaining eight families secured employment on the Hunter as follows -- William Cowan, Duncan McDonald, and Duncan McLennan, all at Hamilto (sic) Collins Sempill's; Lachlan Grant at Peter McIntyre's; Thomas Loch at J.McLaren's; Kenneth McCrimmon, blacksmith, at Messrs Hickey's; Donald McLeod, at Mr.Hardy's,Paterson River; and James Mark, at A.S. Wrightmen's, In referring to their final location 'The Sydney Gazette' published '... individuals compose the germ of this new Highland settlement,where it is probable the language of the Gael may form the medium of general communication for ages yet to come' (x).
Rev.W.McIntyre,while assistant at Scots Church,visited and preached occasionally in Gaelic on the Hunter until he accepted a call to West Maitland in October, 1840. Here he left his mark,both in the education and religious spheres. Sir Samuel Griffiths, First Chief Justice of Australia,wrote of him: 'On the whole he was a remarkable man, and his name deserves to be remembered as one of the foremost worthies of New South Wales" ('Newcastle Morning Herald & Miners' Advocate', Feb.18th.1939).
The 'Midlothian' records give the following information concerning Malcolm Mckinnon and his family:-
Malcolm McKinnon, born Isle of Skye, a Carpenter, Presbyterian, very good character, certified by Donald Murray, Preacher of the Gospel - Isle of Skye'. Aged 35 years when he arrived. 'Good health' when he left for N.S.W.
Marian McKinnon, born on the Isle of Skye, the daughter of Roderick McLeod, and Ann Beaton. 'Character very good' certified by John McDonald, Minister Myngernish, Isle of Skye. 'Good health and strength', Presbyterian.
The list of the children is:-
Donald 13 years Mary 15 years
William 12 years Flora 9 years
Neil 6 years Euphemia 2 years
Roderick 4 years