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Gordon Munro 1783-1860 Sutherland/Westminster

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Gordon Munro 1783-1860 Sutherland/Westminster

Postby jdunn » Wed Oct 19, 2016 11:10 am

Gordon Clunes Munro
1783 - 1860
Sutherland, Scotland/St James, Pall Mall, Westminster Ordnance Office

Gordon Munro is my Gt Gt Gt Grandfather (and Gt Grandfather of Noel Coward).

After many years of research I have not been able to find a baptism for him or any information on the names of his parents and/or siblings. I could not find a baptism in the Old Parochial Registers.

I am trying to find out where he was and what he was doing from his birth in c1783 to 1809 when he joins the HMS Ardent in Leith, Edinburgh as a Ship’s Corporal born in Sutherland. I understand that this may not be a Naval rank.

He leaves the Ardent in 1812 and I can find no further records until he reappears employed as a Stationer in Westminster where he marries in 1822 and has six children from 1827 to 1839.

He is employed as an Office Keeper in the Ordnance Office, St James, Pall Mall, Westminster from c1837 to his death in 1860. I am not familiar with this role.

In a introductory letter to support his son’s appointment application in the Ordnance written in 1857, he writes “Lord Harding has known me for upward of 42 years.”

Who were his parent/siblings?
Where was he 1783 - 1808?
Where was he and what was he doing 1812 - 1822?
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Re: Gordon Munro 1783-1860 Sutherland/Westminster

Postby AdrianB38 » Wed Oct 19, 2016 3:43 pm

Have you looked at this one baptised in Inverness (acknowledgements to the free index from ScotlandsPeople)?

Surname MUNRO
Forename GORDON
Parents/ Other Details THOMAS MUNRO/JEAN MUNRO
Age 0
Date 02/12/1786
Parish Number 098/
Ref 50 175
Parish Inverness


It's not very satisfactory on location. But what's seriously interesting is this one that is in Sutherland:
Surname MUNRO
Forename GORDON CLUNES
Parents/ Other Details GEORGE MUNRO/
Age 0
Date 27/09/1814
Parish Number 054/
Ref 10 15
Parish Loth


OK - we're way out in age, but (a) could it be a delayed baptism? or (b) could it be a relative named after your guy? Worth an investigation I think....

By the way, the fuzzy matching of surnames in ScotlandsPeople seems a bit odd. Fuzzy matching of Munro picks up Monro but fuzzy matching of Munroe only seems to find Munro while Marilyn style Monroe similarly only finds Monro on fuzzy matching.
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Re: Gordon Munro 1783-1860 Sutherland/Westminster

Postby jdunn » Thu Oct 20, 2016 7:20 am

Thank you for your help.

I think the Inverness baptism is a possibility and wondered if the family were moved out of Sutherland by the clearances although I know little of the history of that event. However, there does not seem to be any link with the parents names or the other children so it remains pending.

I only discovered the middle name Clunes recently from two marriage records of his sons. I think there is a possibility that the father, George, of the baby could be a brother of Gordon. I will take another look at that. I doubt it is a late baptism as my feeling is that he had left Scotland by 1814 but again worth considering.

Another thought is whether the Sutherland clearances caused some children not to be baptised or whether they were baptised elsewhere later or whether they were not within the remit of the OPRs.
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Re: Gordon Munro 1783-1860 Sutherland/Westminster

Postby AdrianB38 » Thu Oct 20, 2016 9:45 am

Although I mentioned a late baptism, it was really just to cover all possibilities. My personal gut feeling is that a late baptism is highly unlikely as I have seen it said that baptisms in Scotland were usually within a day or two of the birth - even on the day of birth itself. This was made easier because, like weddings, baptisms in Scotland, so far as I know, tended in that era to take place in the home, so only the Minister had to move.

This would make disruption of baptisms due to Clearance related moves, highly unlikely.

Nonetheless, all these highly unlikely events *might* have happened.

Much more likely is that the baptism took place in a kirk other than a Church of Scotland one. My suspicion is that there were more Scots in non Established (i.e. not Church of Scotland) churches than English in non Church of England. Some non C of S registers are on ScotlandsPeople now but I think many more aren't.

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Re: Gordon Munro 1783-1860 Sutherland/Westminster

Postby jdunn » Thu Oct 20, 2016 3:20 pm

Thank you for your advice. Some years ago I tried to read up on Kirk records and did not manage to work out if or where they might be held - Loth/Clyne might be a good place to start.
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