Category Archives: James and Mary McMurray

Genealogical Education: The British Institute courses 2014


2006 Temple Square SLC

Last year in October 2013, I took the Sources for Tracing Pre-mid-Nineteeth Cemetery Ancestors course offered by the British Institute in Salt Lake City, Utah, which is sponsored by the International Society for British Genealogy and Family History.

The course was excellent and one of my teachers appeared on an episode this last year of “Who Do You Think You Are?”  I was very excited when I saw Paul Blake on the show.

I started to build on my Boardman and McMurray/Jackson family lines on my mother’s side and I posted my findings on this blog.

Family History Library 2006

Family History Library 2006

This year in 2014, I will be attending the Institute again in Salt Lake City and taking Scottish Research: The Fundamentals and Beyond, by Paul Milner.  So I am currently in the process of preparing to attend this course and getting ready for the trip to Salt Lake City.  I also plan to take advantage of the opportunity to do more of the family research at the Family History Library.  It will be a very intense week of classes and researching.  So I will be getting back to posting on this blog some time in November 2014 about my findings in Ontario and more.

The Line at opening to the Family History Library

The Line at opening to the Family History Library

This will be my sixth trip to Salt Lake City and the Family History Library.  This library and their online website for their records has contributed greatly to my research successes.  I do know of people who go there even more than six times.

2009 3rd Floor Family History Library

2009 3rd Floor Family History Library

At the National Genealogical Society Conference held in Salt Lake City in 2010 Family Search announced that they would digitize their whole collection and it would take 100 years but they had created ways to improve digital transfer so they could do it in 10 years.  I was amazed.  Every time I go to their website it changes and gets better and better and sometimes more complicated.

2013 British Institute

2013 British Institute getting ready…

2013 British Institute Class

2013 British Institute Class

Well it is time to get back to planning for this trip.  One of the requirements is to read a book on Scottish History, so I best go and get my two chapters in.

The History of Scotland,” by Peter & Fiona Somerset Fry, reprinted several times 1997.


The Origins of the McMurrays and Jacksons…

Last October 2013, I took a trip to Salt Lake City and attended the British Institute taking classes on English records research.  I also spent time in the Family History Library trying to find out more about the origins of my mother’s family.

I presented my research in England for the  Boardman’s in a previous post.  I found that they really did come from Lancashire, England.  I still have to do more confirming of the possible children I listed in my post but I find it very intriguing that the McMurray’s and Jacksons were also in Lancashire and came over to Canada about the same time?

Here is what I have found so far regarding the McMurray and Jackson connection.  I was inspired by cousins who have gone before me.  James and Mary are my 2nd great grandparents through their daughter my great-grandmother Charlotte Ann McMurray Boardman.

1.  The marriage of James to Mary Jackson took place on 25 January 1847 in Liverpool, Lancashire, England.

Source:  Church of England, Parish Registers for St. Peter’s Church, Liverpool, Lancashire, England.  Marriage of James McMurray to Mary Jackson, 25 January 1847, St. Peter, Liverpool, Lancashire, England, FHL#1656509 Marriages 1846 to 1849, pg. 233, Entry #465. 

2.  The birth of James, their son, 8 March 1849, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northampton Co., England. He was christened on 1 April, 1849 at All Saints, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northampton Co., England.

Source:  Church of England Parish Registers, Parish Registers of All Saints Church, Newcastle-upon-Tyne 1600 to 1940, Baptism, 1844 to 1864. FHL#1068964, ITem 2 pg. 202 No. 1615, April 1, 1849.

3.  Source:  Anne Jackson Family 1851 Returns of England and Wales Census, Liverpool, Lancashire, England. Civil Parish: Liverpool Ecclesiastical parish Pembroke Place St. Silas, Town: Liverpool, County Lancashire County, England, Reg. District Liverpool, Sub Reg Islington, ED 1k, Hse #41, Piece 2184, Folio 348, page 13. This census was difficult to read.

 41, 3 [Walkenson] Ann Jackson, age 67, Head, Widow, 67, occupation _____, born Lancashire, William Jackson, son, age 24, occupation ___________, born Cumberland, Longtown, Richard Jackson, son, age 21, occupation _________, born Cumberland, Longtown, Jame McMurray, son-in-law, age 25 stonemason, born Scotland, Mary McMurray, daughter, age 29, occupation _____________, born Cumberland, Longtown, James McMurray, grandson, age 2, Northampton Newcastle.

There is more to do on this family but I am not very hopeful for further research in England.

McMurrays Immigrate to New Brunswick!

The 1861 Canadian census tells me that James and Mary McMurray came to New Brunswick about 1850 or right after their first son was born.

Their son James was born about 1849.  James was born in England.

Lets review the 1861 census which states the following:

The Canadian Census of 1861, Kent Co., New Brunswick, Parish of Weldford, sht#15, line 15, James McMurray, w, head of family, age 30, Scotch Beulowman, mason and farmer, Presbyterian, 3 children in school; Mary Jackson McMurray, f, wife, age 33, English, Longtown; James McMurray, m, son, age 12, English. Newcastle…

1.  James McMurray was from Beulowman, Scotland

In searching at Google, I find nothing except this blog’s reference regarding this term.  It is probably the best guess of the census taker and if you add a Scottish brogue to it the term “Beulowman” could be many things and if given by a family member it gets even more problematic.  My Legacy database geo locator gives me so many options but nothing close to this spelling.  So more investigation is needed.

2. Mary Jackson McMurray was born in [Longtown]. The brackets mean I am guessing because the handwriting was not clear.

There is a Longtown in Cumberland and one listed in Herefordshire, England in my Legacy geo database.  Let us see what options are available for the son.  I do need to study the census and see if I cannot determine other spellings.  I can read the Long part of the town name but I cannot make out the ending.

3. James McMurray the son, was born in Newcastle?

We find the Legacy geo locator gives two options, Northumberland and Shropshire, but nothing that is the same as his mother?  That is not necessarily a problem for it appears the family moved around.

4.  The remaining children, including Charlotte were born in New Brunswick, although we don’t know if the location is Weldford Parish in Kent Co.

So more research is needed to find birth records of the children who were born in New Brunswick, deeds to see if James moved around any, estate files.  English records will need to be studied for marriage, birth and other documents.

There is a writer by the name of Lucille Campey who has been collecting information about the Scottish immigration to Canada.  She has written several books on the subject and will be branching out to other immigrant groups.  I think it is very important to know about her work for it can be of great value.  There are others who have also written about Canadian immigration and I will touch on those in future posts.

Book:  “The Axe and the Bible, The Scottish Pioneers of New Brunswick,” 1784-1874, The Natural Heritage Books, A Member of the Dundurn Group, Toronto, 2007.

Ms. Campey has her books listed at this site but you can do a search in Google or at other book dealers to find them elsewhere. Here is her website “English to Canada:”  She is transitioning from the Scottish immigration to the English side and a new book will be available soon.

As you can see I have a Scottish 2nd great-grandfather Jame McMurray but I also have an English Mary Jackson and son James.  How long was James McMurray in England?  Did he come from Scotland down to England as a man or is he another generation back?  So I might have to wait for her new book to learn about the English immigrants?

There is work to be done!

James and Mary’s McMurray’s Children

I thought it might be a good idea to review James and Mary’s children based on the Canadian census that I found for them from 1861 to 1901.  I still need to track each child eventually.  In reviewing the children it might help to lead to a good research plan and interesting events for this whole family.  I have featured the 1861 to 1901 census in detail in the previous two posts.

James and Mary McMurray had the following children:

1.  James McMurray born about 1849 in England in Newcastle. James appears in the 1861 and 1871 census with his parents.  This means the family emigrated to New Brunswick sometime between 1849 and 1852. 

2.  Edward William McMurray born about 1852 in New Brunswick. Edward appears in the 1861 and 1871 census with the parents.

3.  Robert Carlson Carson McMurray born about 1854 in New Brunswick.  Robert appears in the 1861, 1871 and 1881 census.  This son along with his wife and 3 of his children are buried with the parents in the same cemetery.  I will discuss this in the next post.  

4.  Charlotte Anna McMurray born 13 October 1855 in New Brunswick.  Charlotte is with this family in 1871 and 1861 census.  In the 1881, 1891 and 1901 census she is with Edmund and her children.

5.  John Jackson McMurray born about 1859 in New Brunswick. John appears in the 1861 and 1871 with his parents.

6  Mary Elizabeth McMurray born about 1861 in New Brunswick.  I have Mary with her parents from 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891 and 1901.   The census changes her initial and in one she is Elizabeth but I think it is the same child.  She is about 40 in the last census so she probably continues to live beyond her parents. 

7.  Richard McMurray born about 1863 in New Brunswick.  Richard is in the 1871 census only.   Richard lived to 1886 and was only about 23 when he died.  He is also buried with his parents.  I will discuss this in the next post.

8.  Thomas Murray  McMurray born about 1865 in New Brunswick.  Thomas appears in the 1871 and 1881 census with his parents. 

There is a mention of a Leena in the 1901 census who is listed as 13 years old and a daughter.  This means that Mary, the mother, had this child when she was 64 years old and we know that cannot be possible; therefore,  I think Leena is a grand-daughter of Mary and a child of one of the other children? 

This provides a summary of the James and Mary McMurray family and my great-grandmother Charlotte’s siblings and I can now do more census work to see if I can find them and learn more about where and what happened to them all.