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Skye Pioneers and "The Island"
Belfast Families - Murdoch "Tailor" MacLeod and family of Orwell Cross-Roads


Murdoch MacLeod was born in Harris, Scotland. At an early age he joined the navy and fought in the Napeolonic Wars, being present at the Battle of Trafalgar, according to family tradition on the Victory. He emigrated to P. E. Island in 1816, and after living in Flat River a number of years he married Mary MacLeod, a cousin of Neil MacLeod, who lived near Orwell Bridge. Prior to 1840 he took up a hundred acre farm, and on it built a log cabin a few yards west of Orwell cross-roads. This farm was later increased by additions on the east and west sides, until there were about four hundred acres occupied by himself and his three sons, Alexander, Murdoch and Neil. Murdo's descendants occupy these farms today.

To distinguish this family from the numerous other MacLeods in the district they were always known as "Tailor." Murdoch Tailor died at Orwell, May 23, 1860, aged 76. Both himself and consort are buried in Belfast churchyard. Their issue were:

I. RACHEL, wife of William MacLeod, Lyndale, with issue:
six daughters and one son, Donald, at present living on the old homestead in Lyndale;
II. MARGARET, wife of Norman MacSwain, Portage, Belfast, without issue;
III. DONALD, in U.S.A.;
IV. JOHN, married Miss Nicholson, Orwell Cove, without issue;
V. WILLIAM, Dundee, married Catherine Biggs, Newtown, with issue, among others:
1. NEIL, Orwell, married Elizabeth Musick, Kinross, with issue:
Percy, and Evelyn, wife of Otis MacLeod, of Uigg;
2. MURDOCH A., b. 1864, d. Nov. 1927, married Jessie Munro, Alberry Plains, with issue:
1. ALICE, wife of Mr. Stewart;
2. GWENDOLINE, wife of John Mackay;
3. MUNRO;
4. GLADYS, wife of Ernest Charlton;
5. MARGARET, wife of Mr. Campbell;
6. MARY;
7. IVAN ;
8. ARTHUR.

VI. BELLA, d. 1927, aged about 93, wife of Allan Buchanan, Mount Buchanan, with issue;
VII. NEIL, d. Aug. 25, 1910, aged 81, married Isabella McDonald, d. March 13, 1892, sister of Peter Findlay MacDonald of Orwell, with issue, among others: Neil, Murdo, Mary, Christy, Bella, and Jessie, on the homestead;
VIII. CATHERINE, d. 1903, wife of Donald MacLeod, Orwell, with issue, among others: Murdoch, Vancouver;
IX. MURDOCH, b. Nov. 8, 1832, d. Sept. 17, 1917, married Anne H. Enman, d. May 12, 1893, aged 44, daughter of David Enman, Vernon River, with issue, among others: Lawrence, living on the old homestead; Frank, Florence, and Mary, wife of William Greenwood;
X. NORMAN, d. July 5, 1889, aged 63, Dundee, married Margaret Buchanan, with issue;
XI. ANNE, b. Jan. 8, 1842, wife of Richard Wood, Orwell, with issue, among others: Cyrus, Norman, married Miss Macpherson, Dundee, with issue, and Mary Jane, wife of Mr. McInnis, with issue; (It is believed that Mrs. Wood is the only woman living whose father was a combatant in the Battle of Trafalgar. At 87 years of age she is in excellent health.)
XII. ALEXANDER, Sr., b. in Orwell, one of the ablest and most astute business men P.E.I. ever produced. Master mariner, and ship owner; this masterful character was recognized as one of the most sagacious and capable seamen of his day. He owned the farm adjoining the one on which his father lived, and when his business career was over settled down to a life of useful retirement. He died on June 14, 1893, aged 70. His devoted wife, Jessie Campbell, who was born in Skye, died on January 18, 1893, aged 70.

Captain MacLeod was part owner of, and for many years commanded, the S.S. "Gulnare," employed by the British Government in surveying and charting the coasts of Eastern Canada and Newfoundland. So wide a reputation had he as mariner that, when the first Atlantic cable was being laid, he was employed as advisor in connection with the work on the Newfoundland coast. On his retirement from command of the "Gulnare" he was succeeded in command by his son Alexander, Jr.

To Alexander MacLeod, Sr., and his wife Jessie Campbell, were born the following children:
1. MURDOCH, living in Texas;
2. ARCHIBALD, B.A., M.D. (McGill), d. Oct. 15, 1884, aged 25 years; one of the first to practice medicine in New Westminster, B.C.;
3. NORMAN, b. 1852, Vancouver, married Mary Ann MacSwain, daughter of Alexander MacSwain, of Portage, Belfast, d. Nov., 1927, aged 77, with issue:

1. FLORETTA, wife of Professor Lemuel Robertson (M.A. McGill), Vancouver, with issue: Norman (B.A., U. of B.C. Oxon.) Rhodes Scholar, married Henriette J. Welling, The Hague; Mary (U. of B.C.), wife of John C. Oliver, and Barbara (U. of B.C.);
2. MAXWELL, Nanaimo, married Henrietta McLaren, with issue: Maxwell McLaren;
3. MARY, wife of George Beveridge, with issue: James;
4. SAMUEL A., married, without issue;

4. HUGH D., b. 1856, d. April. 15, 1927, married, first, Katherine A. Munn, of Orwell, d. Sept. 22, 1893, aged 37, with issue: Jessie, wife of Oscar Nielson, Vancouver, with issue: one daughter; May, wife of Alexander Stevens, Vancouver, son of Dowager, Lady Peel, England; second, married Jessie Munn, with issue: Mildred and Ada;
5. ALEXANDER, Jr., Master Mariner, b. 1858, d. April 26, 1909, married Kate, daughter of Alexander Mackinnon, Orwell North, with issue surviving: Daniel Alexander, Jessie, wife of Malcolm Buchanan with issue: Anne, wife of John MacLeod, with issue: Leslie, married, with issue: and Helen;
6. JOHN O., Vancouver, married Anne Mutlow, Orwell, with issue: William, married, with issue: Jessie, wife of Frank Donaghy, with issue.


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