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The Ellen Payne Odom Genealogy Library Family Tree
Clan Hanna Newsletter Fall, 2002

Chief of the Clan National
Ramsey W. Rainsford Hannay of Kirkdale and that Ilk

Convenor Emeritus
Rev. James A. M. Hanna, Th.M.
The Manse, Oak Hill, Ohio 45656

National Convenor
Prof. Charles Milton Hanna
113 Brandview Dr., Freeport, PA. 16229

Vice President
James R. Baxter
1311 Oakridge Dr., Cleveland Hights, Ohio 44121

Treasurer and Purveyor
William H. Haynes
RR2 Box 2537, Cresco, PA. 18326

Honorable Secretary
Darla Bretz
#5 Hataras Court
Bordentown, N.J. 08505

Ye 'umble Editors
Lawrence R. Hanna and Dennis M. Hanna
P.O. Box 1250, Lake Sherwood, MO. 63376

The Machers – B.C.

Part III
Durmtroddan and Torhousekie

Drumtroddan, Wigtown

One of several groups of carvings, the natural rock surface is here decorated with cup-marks, cup-and-rings (up to six rings) and grooves. Not far away on this plateau is an alignment of three tall standing stones, one now fallen.

Torhousekie, Wigtown

Known also as Torhouse, this is a slightly flattened ring of 19 low stones, graded in height, within which a setting of three stones (a recumbent and two flanking stones) may be the remains of a small ring-cairn. Another setting of three stones lies to the east of the circle on a low crest.

Torhousekie in Galloway is a stone circle showing the gradation in height of its upright stones that is typical of recumbent stone circles. Inside the circle is a ring-cairn with a setting of three stones resembling a recumbent and flankers. Dr. Aubrey Burl has described this monument as an, 'idiosyncratic recumbent stone circle', noting that its design seems to be related to the midwinter sunrise rather than to the moon.

Also not to be missed is Wren's Egg standing stones at the southern tip of the Machers.

This concludes our series on early Scotland in the Machers. I hope that when you visit our homeland you will find time to see these sites of our ancestors.

(all text from "Scotland BC" by Anna Ritchie HMSO copyright 1988)


September 7, 2000

The annual business meeting was held at the Four Points Hotel, Greenville, Pennsylvania, beginning at 7:30 p.m.

The meeting was called to order by Bill Haynes, Pennsylvania Convenor.  A motion was made, seconded and carried to accept the minutes for 2001.  The Treasurer’s Report was accepted as presented.  It was noted that the $50 donation to Westmoreland was cash and was not documented.  Life membership dues go into the endowment fund, not the general account.

The secretary reported there are 38 life members and 63 annual members.

Welcome to the newest member of our Hanna clan, Tim Wade.  We are glad to have him join us for this meeting.

MEMBERS IN ATTENDANCE: Jim Baxter, Darla Bretz, Lois Fitzpatrick, Charles Hanna, Milton "Jack" Hanna, William Haynes, Toni Schmahl, and Tim Wade

GUESTS IN ATTENDANCE: Dick Fitzpatrick and John Wojcik

OLD BUSINESS:        None


A motion was made and seconded to advertise in two magazines, The Highlander and Scottish Life.  The motion carried unanimously.

We were saddened to hear of the death of one of our members, Lillian Huffman.  Our sympathy goes to her family.

There was discussion regarding possible newsletter items that would help us to stay connected to one another.  Items such as; member’s personal information, illness/recovery, the names of members who have died in the past year, etc. Similar to what is done at the games through the "Flowers of the Field" list.  It would be nice, through the newsletter, to ask Hanna Clan members to donate $15 towards the Sorbie Castle reconstruction.

Regarding future annual clan meetings, Bill Haynes suggested we get a separate meeting room and order off the menu, with possible barbershop quartet entertainment at a cost of $75.00.  There was also a suggestion that the clan meeting be held at the clan tent around 1:00 p.m. which would free up Saturday evening for reservations at the Mountain View Inn for the ever popular Scottish Dinner/Entertainment.  We’ll give this a try next year.  We will rent a bigger tent and more chairs for the business meeting.  Bill Haynes will coordinate with Larry and Dennis Hanna, our newsletter editors, for RSVP forms for the dinner in the spring newsletter.

A motion, made by Jim Baxter and seconded by Tim Wade, that a $315 donation be given toward the Sorbie Castle reconstruction was carried unanimously.

New Sales Items: Chuck Hanna will provide small ceramic crests for sale.  Lois Fitzpatrick’s son may make two-dozen ceramic Hanna mugs.

Bill Haynes, Pennsylvania Convenor, has renewed our Pennsylvania license so we can continue to use the "Hanna/h/y Society, U.S.A." name for ten more years.

Chuck Hanna, our Convenor, has had several discussions with the Scotland Hanna Society.  First, they wanted the Hanna/h/y Society, U.S.A. to join them and give them half of our dues.  We refused.  Then they asked for only one-fourth of our dues and half of our treasury.  The only benefit to joining ourselves to their society is the ability to buy their Hanna items. 

Chuck said we have never given them dues for our entire existence and we don’t intend to start now.  Discussion is ongoing to try to come to an acceptable coexistence.

A motion was made, seconded and unanimously accepted to adjourn the meeting at 8:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Darla Bretz (Secretary)

Items form the Internet

Dumfries and Galloway Standard
Friday, 22 March 2002
Tartan trail takes John to America

A Local musician will fly across the Atlantic next month to join the world’s biggest bagpipes band. John Lockhart, from Parkgate will join pipers and drummers from all corners of the world in New York for the Tartan Day celebrations.

Around 10,000 pipers and drummers are expected to parade up 6th Avenue and into Central Park on April 6 creating miles of tartan. The events leading sponsor ScottishPower and co-sponsor Visit Scotland aim to raise $1 million for Marie Curie Cancer Care and Gilda’s Club Worldwide.

John has thought about nothing else for the past few weeks and can’t wait to get over their and represent his country. He said: "It is going to be a fantastic day and I haven’t stopped thinking about it. "I have been learning to play the pipes for three years now and I was part of a similar parade in Edinburgh two years ago when 8,000 pipers played. "If 10,000 pipers do go to New York it will be absolutely fantastic. "I am a farmer and at this time of the year I am usually lambing sheep but all my sheep were culled during the foot-and-mouth outbreak so I have the opportunity to go over and it really is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. "It says in the brochure that there will be 43 miles of tartan. "I don’t know how they worked that one out but I am sure it will be a special day with everyone dressed in kilts. "I would also like to thank all my sponsors for everything they have done to help me go over there and be part of New York’s Tartan Day."

Dear Members and Friends of the Clan Hannay Society 

We have just updated the Clan Hannay Society website, or with the latest information, including details on the 2002 Clan Gathering. 

Some of you may have run into difficulty accessing the site recently.  We have been working to resolve these, but there are still technical problems in accessing the site from its other names (e.g. and These will give you an error at the present time. As such, please continue to use the main address, to visit the site, and let us know if you have any difficulty accessing our web pages. 

We appreciate any feedback and will try and fix problems as quickly as we can.

NOTE: More of the site is now restricted to members only, so if you find yourself confronted with a members-only sign-in page and you have not yet requested sign-in permissions, please email us at or with the subject "requesting member access" and include: a) your full name b) your email address c) your mailing address d) your Clan Hannay Society Membership Number. We will email you back with your ID and password. I hope to see many of you in Sorbie this May!

Sincerely, Frank Lawler
Clan Hannay Society Internet Committee

In At Sorbie Tower
(Received September 5, 2002 from Constable David Hannah)

Dr. David Hannay wrote on behalf of Clan Hannay to congratulate Dumfries and Galloway Police for apprehending three of the culprits who broke into the shed and damaged the very expensive information plaque on the pedestal at Sorbie Tower. Nothing appears to have been stolen, although there appears to have been some minor vandalism. The three youths, around 16 years of age have been plaguing the neighborhood for a few years and local people are pleased that the Police caught them and extracted confessions. Sorbie, Garlieston and the surrounding area can breathe a sigh of relief.

Wendy the Warden and family cleared up the damage, discovered by Douglas the Herald during one of his ghost night tours of the Tower. The information plaque will be replaced and copies kept as a precaution against future loss.

Auld Lang Syne

Robert Bums certainly did not compose Auld Lang Syne to celebrate New Year's Eve. That little custom originated with Guy Lombardo's Dance Band, a "lang" time later. To Bums, the song was for friendship and wistful remembrance. We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet, (Let's have a friendly glass), For Auld Lang Syne (for good times long ago).

Burns claimed the song was not wholly his but rooted in Scottish folklore. He merely added verses and fine-tuned it, even adding a different tune. Auld Lang Sync was first published in 1796, but he did not live to see his song in print as he died that summer of heart disease, at the age of 37.

Since it's first printing, it has been translated into most modem languages. In Japan, a digitized version of Auld Lang Svne chimes when it's safe for pedestrians to cross the street! Some of the meaning has changed in its various translations. 100 years ago, a scholar noted the difficulty of translation and observed that there were 5 different titles in German. Phrases such as "we twa hae paidl'd in the burn or 'we waded in the brook together" became "we made mud pies together" in Schweitzerdeutsch.

The song became instantly popular but had nothing to do with New Year's Eve celebrations until a young Canadian bandleader named Guy Lombardo attached it to New Year's Eve in the 1930's.

Guy Lomhardo grew up in the heavily Scottish community of London, Ontario. To honor the Scottish tradition, the band he played with would play Auld Lang Syne to end an evening's entertainment. When he put together his own band, Guy Lombardo and the Royal Canadians, it was for over three decades one of the most popular dance bands in America and Canada. Early in his career his band performed on a weekly network radio show, coincidentally sponsored by "Robert Bums Panatella Cigars! Lombardo used Auld Lang Syne as the show's sign-off. The link to New Year's Eve did not come until the band had a prom date at the University of Virginia.

When his band played the song, the entire room cheered. Lombardo did not know that the tune was one of their school songs. Lombardo said later that the reaction to the song convinced him to keep the number in his repertoire and "especially on New Year's Eve." Lombardo commented later, "Of such beginnings are traditions born." as the band grew in popularity, they began broadcasting every New Year's Eve from the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City. Later on from the Waldorf-Astoria. Guy Lombardo and the Royal Canadians played Auld Lang Sync at the stroke of midnight. Millions of people around the world began singing Robert Bums' little song.

(from an article, "Anatomy of An Anthem: How Auld Lang Sync Conquered the World" by Richard F. Mooney)

Robert Burns: AULD LANG SYNE

A song of friendship and salutation. Burns describes it as `the old song of the olden times, and which has never been in print, nor even in manuscript, until I took it down from an old man's singing', but a similar `Auld Lang Syne' tune was actually printed circa 1700 and is therefore certain to be much older.

Exciting Finds at Tower
(Galloway Gazette, Saturday, 23 July 1983)

An archaeological, fieldwork summer expedition has made some pretty exciting finds at Sorbie Tower in the last couple of weeks, and the Gazette visited the site to see what had been happening there.

The party was led by Mr. Eric Talbot, lecturer in Mediaeval Archaeology at Glasgow University, who had decided to bring a group of 2nd and 3rd year Archaeology students to Sorbie for their Summer ‘dig'. Following a request from Mrs. Shan Grant who had taken a Diploma in Field Archaeology and, as a frequent summer visitor to Cardonesss, had been approached by Mr. R.W. Rainsford Hannay and asked to look at the Tower and see what needed to be done.

Sorbie Tower belongs to the Clan Hannah Society. It was in l978 that things first began to happen there when an M.S.C. project, sponsored by the Society, made a start on clearing away piles of rubble from the ground floor. They did some basic consolidation work to try and stop some more of the dilapidation of the building which is a very fine example of its type.

Visiting the site, Mrs. Grant thought that a mound nearby might well cover many secrets of an earlier earthwork castle, so she approached Mr. Talbot and suggested the site as a suitable one for a dig and more exploration.

The Glasgow University students, plus one from Munich, who had done his Ph.D. on, ‘The Tower Houses of Scotland’, worked hard clearing the site of nettles and general undergrowth to start off with before they began digging. Already they think they have discovered the base of a Flying bridge to the top of the mound, similar to that depicted in the Bayeux Tapestry. Other finds have included shards of pottery dating back to the 12th and 13th Centuries, one of which was from Bordeaux round about 1250.

Several fragments of silver coins have appeared, including one from the reign of King Henry III of France between 1574 and 1589, and Mr. Talbot is looking forward to longer expeditions in future years when more of the secrets and treasures of Sorbie may be brought to light.

The reason the mound had been "undiscovered" for so long, he thought, was because it was covered in nettles and other vegetation. Next year he hopes to bring a larger party of students for a longer time and to uncover a much larger section than has been possible in the brief two-week stay this year. It has been enough to whet his appetite and confirm his confidence in the importance of the site.

It was, he added, a particularly convenient site to work at, with the Sorbie Tower Cottage available to rent, and the hut that had been put up by the earlier M.S.C. project. It was a great luxury, he said to have a research dig, as so much of the work was generally rescue work which was not as good.

Work wasn't just going on at the Mound, however. Mrs. Shan Grant, and Mr. Scott Wood, an architect with an interest. In archaeology who took the same Diploma as Mrs. Grant, accompanied the expedition and worked steadfastly on the location directly leading from the present castle. Their major discovery was a very fine cobbled road leading away from the front courtyard of the castle and down through the woods to the perimeter of Sorbie Farm. From then it was difficult to investigate further as the land had been ploughed over and over again through the centuries, Signs of support buildings for the castle were traced, however, as well as a spring, and banks and ditches. The cobbled road has a large rock base, covered with shingle, and with the cobbles carefully and individually set into it, and there was great excitement at its discovery.

Scott Wood has completed a pretty full survey of the Tower as its stands, with beautiful drawings and plans, which will now be lodged in Edinburgh with the Royal Commission for Ancient Monuments. There any interested person will be able to see them, and perhaps in the future use them as a base for renovation.

Sorbie Tower is of special interest as it is a particularly big Tower House with many refinements, which were not common in its day. There are, for example, toilet facilities in every room, and each room was heated. Life there must indeed have been more sophisticated and comfortable than was perhaps the case in many such castle and towers.

Mr. Talbot praised both Mrs. Grant and Mr. Wood on their initiative, skills and interest, and thought that Clan Hannah Society would be delighted with the finds they had made during the two weeks in Sorbie.

What’s in a Name?

The following is a list of variations of the family name over the centuries. While I’m sure it is not complete, it will give the reader some idea as to how such a seemingly simple name had many interprations. When one considers that in the early days most common people were illiterate and that as each new lord or owner came into possision of the land, among the first things he would do was to take a census. In this way he would know how much tax or goods he was entitled to. To do this he would employ a scribe or cleric. This person may have been from another area or even another country. As a result the spellings were done as they sounded to the writer. Since the commoner could not read, he accepted without question the spelling of his name. Hanna, Hannah, Hannay, Hanney, Hanneth, A’Hanna, A’ Hannay, O’Hannaldh, Annadhl, Achannay, de Hannethe, de Annethe

A Flower of the Field

We are sadden to hear of the passing of our sister Lillian Huffman. The Clan, all wish to express our deepest sympathy to her family and friends. Her loss will be felt by all until that day, we meet again in the Lords Great Glen.

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