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 Donald MacNeilMale 1809 -
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  • Name Donald MacNeil 
    Born 1809 
    Gender Male 
    Person ID I373  gearingillis | Shawn - back
    Last Modified 20 Mar 2007 

    Father Edward MacNeil,   b. 1780, Isle of Barra, Inverness, Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1824, Benacadie Glen, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 44 years) 
    Mother Catherine McKinnon,   b. 1790, Isle of Barra, Inverness, Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1867, Nova Scotia, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 77 years) 
    Married (1804[est])  Isle of Barra, Inverness, Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F145  Group Sheet

    Family Catherine MacNeil,   b. 1819, Isle of Barra, Inverness, Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married 1884 
    Children 
    +1. Michael MacNeil,   b. 1854,   d. 1933  (Age 79 years)
    Family ID F113  Group Sheet

  • Notes 
    • "The Clan MacNeil of Barra is said to be one of the oldest and proudest in Scotland, with a history, recorded and legendary, that is incredibly fantastic. The MaNeils fought everybody and everything, their neighbour clans, the Vikings, the kings of Scotland, the English, and the North Atlantic storms; and meanwhile they extricated an uncertain livelihood from fishing and piracy on their turbulent waters and from the thin, sterile soil of their wind-swept island. As Grandfather often remarked with pride, with them it was a real case of survival of the fittest, for only the strong, the brave and the intelligent could survive the rigours of their climate and the hardships of their life.
      "According to Clan legends, the MacNeils descended from Niall (or Neil) of Scythia, who like Joseph was minister to the Pharoah of Egypt, gave his name to the River Niall, or Nile, and married the Princess Scota, the daughter of the Pharoah who rescued Moses from the bulrushes, by whom he had a daughter Gaedhal, or Gael. Whether you credit legends or not, here you have the origins of the MacNeils, the Scots and the Gaels.
      "Of the antiquity of the MacNeils there can be no doubt whatever, for it is proverbial in Scotland that `The MacNeils had their ain boat at the Flood,' a tribute to their old age and to their seamanship and independence, all of which were common knowledge among their fellow Scots."
      Excerpt from "The Highland Heart of Nova Scotia" -- by Neil MacNeil, Cape Breton

      Motto: Vincere vel mori (To conquer or die)


      This clan claims descent from Niall, a descendent of Aodh O'Neill, a king of Northern Ireland at the beginning of the eleventh century. Niall came to the island of Barra in the Outer Hebrides around 1094 and is commonly held to be the first chief of the clan. Barra itself is thought to take its name either from St. Fionnbharr, the founder of Cork, or from St. Barr, the great-grandson of Niall of the Nine Hostages - a famous king of Ireland.
      Of the two branches of the MacNeil clan, the Barra line is now generally recognized as the chief line. Neil MacNeil, 5th of Barra, was recognized as a "Prince" at a council of the Isles in 1252, a great honour for the family.
      The fifteenth chief of the MacNeils, Ruadhri "The Turbulent" has been described as "the last of the Vikings", carrying out raiding trips from his island stronghold of Kisimul. When he was arrested for piracy of an English ship at the end of the sixteenth century, he successfully excused himself to James VI by asserting that he thought it "would be deemed good service to harass the subjects of the woman who killed his sovereign's mother!" Ruadhri was eventually captured by his own nephews and his eldest son, Neil Og, became chief.
      The clan prospered until 1838 when the 21st chief was forced to sell Barra. The chiefship passed to a cousin in the United States of America, and it was from America that the father of the present chief returned to reclaim the Castle of Kisimul.

      http://www.scottishradiance.com/skye.ram