Loraine Smith from Canada has been in touch and reminded me why I started this blog. It looks like she’s solved the mystery about my McNab ancestors. My great great great grandmother was Christina McNab. She was the only daughter of John MacNab of Shenaghart in Kintyre, and Sherrobeg in Badendoch (see more here).
Turns out that Loraine’s great-great-granny’s brother, Dr. Robert McNab, started a scrapbook on clan matters (he was also, incidentally, one of 3 named by William Anderson in The Scottish Nation c. 1862 as next heirs to the Chiefship). Within that scrapbook is a copy of the letter written to the Clan Macnab Society in 1909 by Archibald Hearne McNab. AH McNab claimed the title of Clan Chief; and he was a descendant of my great great great great grandfather John McNab of Sherrabeg, etc. Here is what AH McNab has to say about his ancestry:
- Alexander McNab of Innishchewan, at the time of the 45, was first cousin to the then Chief (this would have been John Macnab, 15th Chief), and senior cadet of the clan
- Said Alexander McNab commanded the clan through the campaign and the heads of the other branches served under him, because the chief was in the Royalist (anti-Jacobite) army
- Alexander’s eldest son Duncan was succeeded in turn by his eldest son John McNab of ‘Shennagort’ and afterwards of Sherrabeg
- John died in 1848 and was succeeded by his eldest son Duncan
- On the death of Chief Archibald in 1860, said Duncan became Chief
- Duncan died unmarried in 1868 and was succeeded by his brother John McNab of Dalchully, father of Archibald Hearne McNab
The records I’ve seen are pretty close, although John MacNab of Shenaghart in Kintyre is shown to have died in 1847 rather than 1848. The clan Donald (Volume 3), includes the following information his oldest children. This tallies with AH’s account although the FamilySearch.org records show Alexander as the second son, and John as the third (see more here):
2. Jessie, who married John Macnab of the Inneshewen family, who held the property of Shenaghart, in Kintyre, and had
(a) Duncan, W.S., Edinburgh, who died unmarried
(b) John, who married, with issue
So in one fell swoop Lorraine has helped show the lineage pre-John of Sherrabeg and connect the McNab sof Sherrabeg and McNabs of Dalchully. She thinks this proves her theory that “Alexander McNab of Innishewan” in Keppoch’s regiment was actually Alexander, second son of Robert 14th chief. Lorraine also thinks that the Alexander mentioned by AH above is either the same Alexander, or perhaps his son. There’s probably some date and generation checking to be done to see which makes more sense, but it strengthens her theory that this Alexander is Broilleach Mohr and we are both his descendants. There maybe some other living descendants of AH McNab in Australia, possibly called Duncan, and who knows maybe they’ll find us through this blog.