These web pages are dedicated to McVitties, and their relatives, all over the World.
Our Family Tree goes back to James McVittie
born about 1670 in Murtholm, Scotland. Murtholm now forms part of the Scottish
Border town of Langholm.
The McVitties have had a long association with Langholm and the Valley of the
They farmed Hallcrofts, or Ha'crofts, near Wauchope for over 200 years.
Hallcrofts or Ha'crofts Farm - circa 1870
The bow-legged man in the middle of the group of three next to the carriage is Alexander 'Sandy of the Ha'Crofts' McVittie (1797-1890). Sandy died, age 93, in the same room at Ha'crofts in which he was born having worked the farm to within a year of his death. He is buried in Wauchope Kirkyard. The family group at the other end of the farm building are the Milligan family, Mrs. Milligan being Williamina 'Minnie' McVittie daughter of Alexander.
A number of young McVittie men and McVittie descendants have been honoured and proud to be Langholm Cornet - Master of Ceremonies at the annual Common Riding - over the years:
William Black McVittie 1870
Alexander McVittie 1873
Robert McVittie 1882
Alexander McVittie 1929
George Ian McVittie 1961,
& his brother
David Park McVittie 1965
David Hyslop Pool 1980
David's mother is Marion McVittie Hyslop. His grandmother was Elizabeth McVittie daughter of John McVittie b.1858 d.1910
David John McVittie 1996
Cornet David John McVittie crossing the Ewes Water
with the town standard
For more detail of the
History of Langholm Common Riding click here
Some well-known Border surnames appear with frequent regularity in our Family Tree - Elliot, Armstrong, Hyslop, Hotson, Grieve, Jackson, Little, Graham.
The Armstrongs in this Family Tree are related to Neil Armstrong the first man to set foot on the surface of the Moon on July 20 1969. Astronaut Neil Alden Armstrong became the first Freeman of the Burgh of Langholm on 11th March 1972. Professor Armstrong's forebears originated in the Eskdale area. He is the only man, to date, to have this honour bestowed upon him.
"One small step for Man,
'ECHOES FROM THE BORDER HILLS'
The book 'Echoes from the Border Hills' features the reminiscences of John Hyslop J.P. of Langholm (1827-1911) as edited by his son Robert Hyslop, F.S.A. Scot., F.R.Hist.S (1862-1943). In 1992 'Echoes' was republished by Dr Dorothy Hyslop Booth, John Hyslop's great granddaughter. The book is dedicated ,
"To the sons and daughters of Eskdale scattered the wide world over"
John Hyslop married Jannet McVittie, daughter of Robert McVittie of Fiddleton Bankend and his first wife, Jean Jackson. Robert married twice and fathered 16 children whose descendants are now scattered the wide world over. Many ventured across the North Atlantic Ocean to forge new lives for themselves in Canada and the United States of America. The Elliots braved what was then a 3 month, 3 week, 3 day sailing to the South Island of New Zealand.
John Hyslop also wrote 'Langholm As It Was' which Dr Dorothy Booth and her son Ewan revised and republished in 2002 [ISBN 0 9542635 0 2] . If you have a copy of the original version you are indeed fortunate.
The following is a short extract from Langholm As it Was which confirms the McVitties' long association with Langholm and its surrounding area
"LANGHOLM AS IT WAS"
by John Hyslop JP and Robert Hyslop
"What is perhaps the oldest lettered stone in Wauchope Kirkyard, stands near the middle of the northern wall. The inscription is as follows-
'Here lyes Andrew McVeti n. Murthm who died 16 day of Agest 1713, his age 66
On the same stone-
Here lies John McVeti his son, who died 25 April 1714, his age 29". *
It has long been current in Eskdale that the family of McVittie settled in Eskdale as stragglers of the Pretenders Army in 1715. This is obviously incorrect, as this will be seen from this inscription, and from the Stapelgortoun Registers printed in Appendix VI. In 1669 there were McVitties in Langholm. Wauchope and Stubholme. In that year John McVittie in Stubholme was one of the witnesses to the marriage of John Hislop of the parish of Wauchope, and Jessie Lyttle, in Hole, in the parish of Stapelgortoun.
The Langholm Congregational Church belonged to the Evangelical Union of Scotland until its junction with the Congregational Union in 1896. It originated in a period of religious revival in December 1802 A small number of men impressed with theological views more liberal than those prevailing at the time met to consider the best means or giving expression to their religious convictions and the formation of this church was the result. Its founderís were - 18 names are listed including James McVittie"
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