5. Fergus, The Mystery Man?

Who was Fergus McCubbin, uncle of Fergus McCubbin of Knockdolian?

The following was researched in collaboration between Lorna McCubbin, McCubbin Family History Association, and Diane Baptie, professional researcher, Edinburgh, November, 2011.

If you’ve ever hit a brick wall in your genealogical searches, the following puzzle was more than a brick wall. After spending many hours trying to sort it out, I sent a plea off to professional researcher Diane Baptie asking her if she would help me find who the following Fergus might be:

“This involves Fergus McCubein younger of Knockdolian promising to pay the Earl of Cassilis £88/13/4d Scots, the cost of infeftIng him as heir to his uncle, the deceased Fergus McCubein of Knockdolian, dated 27 October 1677.”

On November 1, 2011, Diane replied,

“I think I have solved the mystery, by using your notes and also the NAS’s [National Archives of Scotland] online catalogue.  Obviously, I have not looked at the actual records listed in the latter, but the summaries supplied seem to be enough. I attach my notes.  It took a bit of puzzling out.”

Diane had prepared the following diagram as well as a timeline of the events of the various Fergus males.

Fergus McCubbin in Balhomie, acquired Knockdolian in 1653
GD180/44 Discharge (receipt)
This records the acquisition of the twenty pound lands of Knockdolian and the 10 merklands of Glentig in May 1653 by Fergus McCubbin in Ballhomie from John Kennedy of Kirkmichael and Andrew Adam. He paid 32,000 merks for them.

1654
GD180/201 19 Oct 1654, Marriage
Fergus & David McKubbein of Knokdolian
Contract of marriage between Fergus McKubbein of Knokdolian and David McKubbein, his eldest son, on the one part, and John Chambers at Gathgirth, Agnes Chalmers, his sister, and Isobel Blair, her mother, on the other part, for the marriage of David and Agnes; Fergus to infeft Agnes in liferent of the lands of Shekshawstone, Hanayestoune alias the Holl, Ridhill Drummor and Duworne in the parish of Colmonell

So, his eldest son was called David. David seems to have predeceased his father

In the papers of the Kennedys, Earls of Cassillis, there is an incomplete Charter of Novodamus by Charles 11 in favour of Fergus McCubbin of Knockdolian and Fergus McCubbin, his oy (grandson) (GD25/6/47)

A charter of novodamus was a new version of a charter which included any corrections or additions to an earlier one. This followed on GD25/6/98b which is dated 10 October 1665 and is a note on the date of the above rehearsing the disposition of the lands of Knockdolian etc by John Kennedy of Kirkmichell to Fergus McCubbin and by Fergus on the 13 July 1653 to Fergus McCubbin, his oy (grandson) and others (GD25/6/98b)

So, David McCubbin had had a son called Fergus and who would eventually succeed him in Knockdolian. He was obviously an only son.

Land descended according to the laws of primogeniture, i.e. the eldest son succeeded, whom failing his eldest son, who failing his nearest male heir. Fergus appears to have died without heirs or brothers and so he would be succeeded by an uncle (his fathers brother). As David McCubbin was recorded as eldest son of Fergus McCubbin elder of Knockdolian, Fergus must therefore have had another or other sons. One of those sons must have been called Fergus and would have been the immediate younger brother of David McCubbin. He must therefore have been the uncle who was heir to Fergus McCubbin younger of Knockdolian and who became the next owner of Knockdolian by 1671.

Proof that Fergus McCubbin elder of Knockdolian had a son, Fergus

GD109/1647 Bond dated 2 April 1663 by John, lord Bargany to Fergus Mccubeine, son of Fergus Mccubeine of Knokdolliane for 5,000 merks scots, with discharge, 16 November 1689 (cancelled)

John McCubbin of Balhomie
Fergus McCubbin in Balhomie, then of Knockdolian, had a brother, John McCubbin

GD109/520
Heritable bond by John, lord Bargany, to infeft John McCubbine, brother of Fergus McCubbine of Knockdolliane, for 6,000 merks scots, in annualrent of £240 scots from £3 land of Schalloch, or any other lands in bailiary of Carrick, or sheriffdom of Wigtoune. 17 Sep 1674.

¨He had married his first wife, Agnes Mowat by 1652 and by her had two daughters, Agnes who married William Chalmer, burgess of Ayr and Jonet who married Walter Kennedy of Knokdone. John McCubbin married as his second wife, Jonet Ferguson by whom he had two other daughters, Anna and Katherine (GD180/218).

John McCubbin of Balhomie died in the county of Antrim in Ireland. Fergus McCubbin of Knokdolliane was confirmed as his executor (CC8/8/81 confirmed 24 June 1701)
Fergus McCubbin is described as nephew of John McCubbin (GD180/218)

End of Diane Baptie’s notes

More about David and his son Fergus
(a) David MCCUBBIN was born between 1631 and 1635; recorded as eldest son of Fergus on marriage document. He married Agnes CHALMERS, daughter of (?) CHALMERS and Isobel BLAIR, on 19 Oct 1654; Contract.

Papers of the Cathcart Family of Genoch and Knockdolian – GD180/201 19 Oct 1654
Contract of marriage between Fergus McKubbein of Knokdolian and David McKubbin, his eldest son, on the one part, and John Chambers at Gathgirth, Agnes Chalmers, his sister, and Isobel Blair, her mother, on the other part, for the marriage of David and Agnes; Fergus to infeft Agnes in liferent of the lands of Shekshawstone, Hanayestoune alias the Holl, Ridhill Drummor and Duworne in the parish of Calmonell

He died after Nov 1654.

They had a son, Fergus born c 1653. He died 1677 (he was the nephew of John McCubbin above)

Next Fergus (2) McCubbin of Knockdolian