John GRAY 2
- Born: Of, Roeberry, South Ronaldsay, Orkney 2
- Marriage: Isabella KINNAIRD on 29 Nov 1750 in Sandwick, South Ronaldsay, Orkney 1
- Died: 1758 3
It is thought that the Gray family came to Orkney from Central Scotland in the mid-16th Century. By the early 17th Century they were Udallers (traditional landowners) at Cletts and Grimness on the east coast of South Ronaldsay, and in 1649 a William Gray was granted a Charter of Land in Hoxa and Clett. By the early 18th Century the family had moved to Roeberry, a farm which overlooks Widewall Bay on the west coast of South Ronaldsay, and continued to farm there for the next 200 years.
John's ancestry is not not known with any certainty - there are long gaps in the Parish Register - although it is likely that he was descended from either Thomas or John Gray who were farming at Widewall Bay in the 1690s. It is thought that he had a sister Margaret who married Alexander Kennedy of Braehead in St Margaret's Hope. John married Isabella Kinnaird of Burwick in 1750, and was described as 'of Roeberry' for the baptism of their three children. Their eldest son was James (qv), but little is known about their younger son John. Their daughter Isabella married her cousin James Kennedy who farmed at Braehead: their son Alexander Kennedy was a successful trader with the Hudson Bay Company in Canada, and was responsible for choosing the site of Fort Vancouver on the Columbia River.
Gray, P. (2004) Howe Saga. Bristol: Hoxa Press.
James M Irvine (2005) The Orkney Poll Taxes of the 1690s. Privately published: Ashtead, Surrey
Shaw E.C. (1973) The Kennedys - An unusual Western Family. Manitoba Historical Society Transactions Series 3 No29
John married Isabella KINNAIRD, daughter of James KINNAIRD, on 29 Nov 1750 in Sandwick, South Ronaldsay, Orkney.1 (Isabella KINNAIRD was born Of in Burwick, South Ronaldsay, Orkney 4 and died in 1787 3.)
Church Register, South Ronaldsay and Burray OPR, Orkney County RO Mf 29/2.
Church Register, South Ronaldsay and Burray OPR, Orkney County RO Mf 29/2 (baptism of son James).
Gladys Gray, "Gray Family History" (Unpublished notebook).
Church Register, South Ronaldsay and Burray OPR, Orkney County RO Mf 29/2 (marriage).