by Richard Gwynallen

1733 – unknown
Relationship to Fawn: 7th great aunt

Margaret is another of the Allan family of Banffshire that remained in Scotland after our direct ancestors emigrated.  It is a very simple story.  Really it is just a story of two people marrying and moving on as great changes engulf their world.  The changes Margaret and Henry’s life undergo is a story of the aftermath of Culloden.

Margaret Allan was the sixth child of James Alexander Allan and Isabel Ruddach.  She was born on the 19th of March, 1733 in Bogtown, Fordyce Parish, in what was then Banffshire, Scotland.


On 19 July 1751, in the town of Banff, she married Henry Raeburn. Henry was several years Margaret’s senior, having been born in 1722 or 1723. He was the son of Henry Raeburn and Margaret Castles or Casells.

Once I get a copy of their marriage certificate I will post it here.

They seem to have lived at the Raeburn family’s Whyntie farm until they moved to the town of Banff sometime between 1754 – 1757. They had eight children.  The first two, Elspet (1752) and James (1754), being born at Whyntie, and the rest (George-1757, John-1759, William-1761, Henry-1764, Robert-1766, and Charles-1770) being born in Banff.

Elspet and James’ births are recorded in the Boyndie Old Parish Register, Vol. I: Births/Baptisms 1750 – 1759.  It is clear here that Margaret and Henry were still at Whyntie when Elspet was born. For James, the record shows only the “Parish of Banff,” and town or farm, but other genealogies agree that the family was still at Whyntie when James was born.

I am grateful to the Fenty Family website for information on this land.  The Fenty name is derived from Whyntie.  As they moved on they took the name of their original home with them. Their site provides interesting insights into the origin of the place name, as well as many of the maps I am using.

Whyntie is a stretch of coastline and adjacent land between Portsoy and Banff in what was called Banffshire, Scotland.   There is today a Whyntie Head, a Whyntie Wood and two farms, Easter and Wester Whyntie.


Scotland – The lands of Whyntie are on the Moray coast in the northeast


This is the land of Whyntie, with its stream, wood and bay.  Around it are the places named in the old charters, unchanged over six hundred years – Boyndie Dallachy, Brangan and Threipland (many thanks to the Fenty Family website)


Whyntie Head


Whyntie coast

There are today two farms identified in Whyntie, Easter Whyntie and Wester Whyntie.  The exact location within this setting of the Raeburn farm I do not know.

Easter Whyntie

Wester Whyntie


Margaret and Henry are believed to have become merchants or artisans in Banff, but I do not yet know specifically what. However, we may have insights into why they moved sometime between 1754 and 1757.


Between 1750 and 1830 great changes in the settlement patterns of people in Scotland occurred. The above map is the part of Major Roy’s Military Survey map from 1746 showing Whyntie. In it one can see the farming townships, or the” ferm-touns.” The ferm touns had been the basis of a communal, co-operative system of agriculture for centuries “where the run-rig arrangement of unenclosed strips of land were distributed amongst the villagers to ensure no-one got all the good or all the unproductive land.  Each family got some of both. ” (Fenty website. Scotland before the Industrial Revolution: An Economic and Social History c.1050-c. 1750, by Ian D. Whyte, provides a thorough discussion of the Scots English term ferm touns and the ancient run-rig system)

During the ’45 Rising, Hanoverian commanders were at a disadvantage in Scotland because they had no modern survey map of Scotland.  Roy’s task was to address this deficit and create a complex map that allowed for control and order of geographical space through reconnaissance and survey.  The map had many functions, not the least of which was to serve as a tool for understanding the Scottish settlement patterns and changing them.  A more complete discussion of Roy’s task and the resulting may can be found at the National Library of Scotland.

In fact, these ancient forms of land use disappeared over the next several decades to be replaced by larger farm units which often retained the name of the original village, though sometimes with an adjective added to describe the division of land taking place, such as Easter and Wester Whyntie.  Hundreds of planned towns and villages sprang up by 1850. A way of life was disappearing, but productivity of rural lands increased, amenities in towns expanded, and artisans came to thrive in the towns. As people have done everywhere, our ancestors were moving and adapting.

Though we do not know for certain, perhaps Margaret Allan and Henry Raeburn saw the writing on the wall with the first steps in the breaking up of Scottish land use patterns, and the other changes imposed on Scotland after Culloden, and made their move to Banff  to be one step ahead.  As with shifts of population from farms to towns throughout the world, rural people bring with them many skills, including blacksmithing, carpentry, and spinning and weaving.  I hope to be able to tell a story of their life in Banff one day.