The Mystery of the McMillanites in Galloway #History #Scotland
There is a gaping hole in the record of baptisms and marriages between 1706 and 1712 of the McMillanites, a fragment of the Society people that rejected the Revolution Settlement of 1689 to 1690. That hole is Galloway sized.
In the 1680s, Galloway was a stronghold for the Society people, but by c.1710, even after John McMillan the minister of Balmaghie had joined the Societies, only three events are recorded among the “Continuing” Society people in all of Galloway. Those three events also seem to have involved those who were not from Galloway.
That leaves a puzzle. Were McMillan’s baptisms among the Society people in Galloway recorded elsewhere, perhaps in Balmaghie parish? We know that some elements of the McMillanites split from their brethren and that other “Continuing” Society people did not join the McMillanites. Did the dissenting Galloway societies follow someone else, like John Hepburn the leader of the Hebronites, or not acknowledge McMillan’s ministry?
At Balmaghie, Kirkcudbrightshire, 13 October, 1707.
McMillan continued to minister in Balmaghie parish after he was deprived of his charge in the Church. Mundell may have been from Tinwald parish, Dumfriesshire.
‘were married ab eodem :— James Clerk and Agnes Mundel.’
At Craigmui, [i.e., Craigmuie, Balmaclellan parish, Kirkcudbrightshire,] October , 1709.
Craigmuie lies in Balmaclellan parish, Kirkcudbrightshire.
McMillan later married Mary Gordon (b.1681-d.1723), second daughter of Alexander Gordon of Earlstoun (d.1726) and Lady Earlstoun (d.1696), and the widow of Edward Goldie of Craigmuie (d.1711). Mary Gordon had married Craigmuie in 1701 and had four children with him. She married McMillan in 1719.
‘To James Harkness in Juxta, two children brought out of Ireland, Robert, aged 10 years, and Mary, aged 4 years.’
James Harkness appears to have travelled to gain baptism for his two children.
At Balmaghie, Kirkcudbrightshire, 24 January, 1710.
John Newlands and Helen Lowrie, both in Kirkmaho parish.’
The last event listed before 1713, also appears to have involved participants from Dumfriesshire.
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