The CUB Report – 2013

November, 2013

Issue Number 13 features:

  • Sixth Anniversary of the McCubbin DNA Project
  • The McKibbons of Merrickville, Ontario – DNA Group 1
  • The McKibbens of Mississippi – DNA Group 3
  • Joseph McKibben, 1710-1761, Ireland to Pennsylvania – DNA Group 3
  • Thomas McKibbon, the Square Timber Man – DNA Group 3
  • Hawaiian McCubbins and the Link With Peru – DNA Group 3
  • William McCubbin and Janet Riddell and Family – DNA Group 4
  • The Death Ship That Landed in Luce Bay
  • How John McCubbin Survived WW2 With the Help of Heroic Belgians
  • Frederick McCubbin Goes to London – DNA Group 3
  • A Sad Discovery by Shepherd William McCubbin
  • Australian Brothers Jack and Reg McCubbin and Their Experiences in the Pacific Theatre in WW2 – DNA Group 1
  • James McCubbin of Dunscore and His Canadian Descendants – DNA Group 1
  • Obituary: Donald McCubbing, 1937-2013 – DNA Group 1

Sixth Anniversary of the McCubbin DNA Project


by Lorna McCubbin

This has been an exciting year for new DNA discoveries.

The McKibben and McKibbon (McKs) names have been at the forefront. Of the 67 members we have in the project, we now have 7 McKs. Originally when we started the project we had doubts that the McKs were on the same tree as the McCs. This year we have found that Group 1 (the Dumfries group) have 2 McKibbon matches. Both of these males live in Canada. Group 2 (John the Colonist) have no McKs. Group 3 (the Galloway/Wigtownshire group) have 2 McKibben matches and 1 McKibbon match. Two of those males live in the U.S and one in Canada. Two other McKibben males in the U.S. have no match with the McCubbin project.

It’s also becoming apparent that those McKs who match with our McCubbins, came from Ireland to North America. Likely those McKs left Scotland for Ireland during the Plantation times or were escaping persecution during the Covenanting times.


A pleasing discovery was to find a living McCubbin of the descendants of James McCubbin of Dunscore, Dumfries (family #33). James’ son, Robert and wife Mary, nee Carson, left for Canada in 1828. As far as we know, they were among the earliest McCubbins to arrive there.

Descendants of Alexander McCubbin and Agnes Jackson of Wigtownshire (family #09) have a large family group in Australia, as a second DNA donor has confirmed.

This year we were able to connect Hamilton McCubbin of Hawaii to the Peruvian group as well as with the Australians.

The numbers of descendants to match John the Colonist in the U.S. continues to grow. We are looking for a McCubbin male DNA donor who has roots in Kirkoswald or northern Ayrshire as we are searching for a Scottish link to Sir Fergus MacCubbin of Tradunnock. You might qualify for a free test.

To find out how to link your ancestors you can go to Family Tree DNA to read more and/or contact DNA Project Administrators, Lorna or Kathy

The McKibbons of Merrickville, Ontario – DNA Group 1


This family has been researched by Donna McKibbon and Heather Marshall (nee McKibbon)


I wonder how many of you reading this, remember the old song blaring from the juke box – “Getting To Know You”?

I have been a McKibbon for over 60 years but it was not until I began tracing the family that I realized how little I really knew about the actual lives of the living, breathing people.  I had lots of dates. I knew when they were born, where they lived, how many children they had, and when they died.  But I had never seen them smile, laughed with them over some funny family happening, or shared their grief when despair clouded their horizons.

Turning to my husband I asked, “What was Grandma McKibbon like?”  He replied, “She was a great old girl. Always liked to see her grandchildren and we were always happy to see her.  One of our favorite treats was a special kid’s delicacy she called “Snackers” – squares of bread, buttered and covered with brown sugar, toasted in the oven. She would join us for the feast.”  I could see the child in his eyes, as he remembered the love shared over those snackers.

This is really what genealogy is all about – let us not forget the “snackers” in our lives.  Record what at first glance seems trivial – but what in reality life breathes life into those we lovingly call “Family”.

Two grandsons of Grandma McKibbon, curious to know about their larger world family, donated their DNAs to the project. It turns out they have a perfect match with several old families with a rich history in Dumfriesshire, Scotland and the surname McCubbin, McCubbing and McGibbon. They are related to Alexander McCubbin, the martyr of The Covenanting Times, who was executed in 1685 for attending a prayer meeting, and have strong ties to Ireland being a match with King Niall of the Nine Hostages.

Prior to immigrating to Canada this McKibbon family may have fled Scotland (as McCubbins) to escape the persecutions of The Covenanting Times or been sent to Northern Ireland as “Plantation” settlers.

James McKibbon arrived in Canada from Ireland before 1828. His wife was Margaret Stewart. His son Robert and Robert’s son were Boot and Shoemakers. As many of these skills were passed from father to son, James of Ireland may have also been a boot and shoemaker. Other professions of these industrious early McKibbons were Grist Mill Owner, Cattle Drover, Carpenter, Butcher and Station Agent.


by Heather Marshall (nee McKibbon)

Robert McKibbon was born in 1828 in Ontario to parents James McKibbon and Margaret Stewart. Both of his parents were born in Ireland. On some documents Roberts birthplace was listed as Hawkesbury, Ontario. On others it listed as Glengarry. Glengarry is a County in Ontario.

Robert McKibbon was a Boot and Shoemaker who practiced his trade in the town of Merrickville, Ontario. When Robert arrived, the village of Merrickville was the site of much activity. The Rideau Canal which connected Ottawa (then called Bytown) to Kingston had opened in 1832 bringing much activity to the area. The Rideau Canal flows right through the town and it was a prosperous place for the next 30 years until the advent of the railroad. Today Merrickville is known for its historic buildings and is a popular tourist destination.

Robert continued to operate his shoemaking business until late in life. His sons apprenticed in his store with his oldest son Robert following him into that trade. Oldest son Robert James McKibbon settled in Cobden, Ontario where he opened up his own shoe store.

We know that Robert McKibbons first wife was named Eliza Burrows based on the death certificate of her daughter Eliza Dempsey. Together Eliza Burrows and Robert McKibbon had 2 children. Their children were named Robert James McKibbon (b. 1854) and Eliza McKibbon (b. 1856). However, Roberts first wife Eliza died sometime before 1858. Their daughter Eliza married a man named Thomas Dempsey and lived her life in Ramsayville, Ontario. She is buried in the Ramsayville Cemetery.

On February 16th 1858, Robert McKibbon married his second wife Maria Perrin. Maria was the daughter of Humphrey Perrin and Elizabeth Sanders. A short time later, Robert bought a plot of land in the town of Merrickville.

According to land documents for Grenville County, Robert McKibbon bought Lot number 44 of Plan 6 in the village of Merrickville from Terence H Mirick et ux on June 30, 1858. His plot of land has the modern day address of 118 Rideau St. Merrickville, Ontario. The house there today could quite possibly be the same house that Robert McKibbon built in 1858. On the 1861 census, Roberts house is reported to be a 1.5 story frame house. The house that exists at 118 Rideau St. today certainly looks like it could be the original 1.5 story house that was built by Robert McKibbon.

Together Maria and Robert McKibbon had 5 children that survived to adulthood. Daughter Elizabeth McKibbon (b. 1862) married Thomas Dempsey, son William Humphrey McKibbon (b. 1863) married Harriet Lowe of Illinois, son Albert Ambrose McKibbon (b. 1866) married Harriet Edwards, daughter Ellen Theresa McKibbon (b. 1867) married Albert E. Gorman and daughter Margaret Ann McKibbon (b. 1870) married Fred. S. McCrea.

Roberts second son William Humphrey McKibbon moved away from Canada altogether and lived in the United States. In June 8, 1898 he married Harriet Lowe in the district of West Superior, Wisconsin. The couple lived in Duluth Minnesota for a time and in finally settled in Seattle, Washington. William H. McKibbons occupation was listed as Stationary Engineer. He died on his birthday in Seattle, WA on March 4, 1935.

Roberts second oldest daughter Elizabeth married William Fitzsimmons. His younger daughters Ellen and Margaret also married and had children. Ellen became Mrs. Albert Gorman and Margaret became Mrs. Fred S. McCrea.

Youngest son Ambrose McKibbon stayed in Merrickville. Rather than follow his father into the shoemaking business, Ambrose opened his own butcher business. He later expanded to owning his own herds of cattle and became what was known as a Cattle Drover. Together with his wife and family he lived at 318 St Lawrence Street in Merrickville.

Next door to his home he operated his butcher shop where he sold the beef from his herds. Some of his sons later joined him in the Cattle Drover trade. As his business prospered, Ambrose owned more buildings in the village, one of which is currently home to a restaurant on St. Lawrence Street called Gads Hill Place. The building that houses the restaurant is known as the McKibbon Block.

Robert McKibbon and wife Maria continued to live in Merrickville into their old age but moved to live with daughter Elizabeth Fitzsimmons in Ottawa sometime after 1911. Maria and Robert died within months of each other in 1915 but they were brought home to Merrickville to be buried. Robert McKibbon was 87 years old when he died.

They are at rest at the Union Cemetery in Merrickville in a plot with their daughters Ellen, Margaret and Elizabeth and some of their grandchildren.


Source: The Rideau Record. Nov. 9, 1915.

One by one our old landmarks drop away and pass to their long home. For fully half a century Mr. Robert McKibbon conducted a boot and shoe business in town and was known far and wide for the honesty and reliability of his products and the rectitude of his life. He was one of the old time practical craftsmen who knew his trade from the ground up and in the construction of his work much of his own nature and character entered. Of a quaint, self-contained nature and a peculiarly direct way of estimating persons, things and events, many people enjoyed nothing better than a chat with this philosopher of the hammer and awl. For the past few years he had made his home with his daughter, Mrs. W. Fitzsimmons, Ottawa, at whose place he died Friday at the age of 87 years. Funeral services were conducted in Ottawa by the Rv. Dr. McVeity and the remains brought here on the 2:30 train accompanied by his daughters Mrs. Fitzsimmons and Mrs. T. Dempsey. Many old time friends met the train to pay their last respects to the one who through long years had lived a just and upright life and had an unblemished character. The Rev. R. Stillwell conducted the services at the grave interment taking place by the side of his wife in the Union Cemetery. Four of his family survive. Robert of Cobden, Ambrose of Merrickville, Mrs. W. Fitzsimmons and Mrs. Thomas Dempsey, Ottawa


Very little is known about the parents of Robert McKibbon. From census records we know that they were both born in Ireland and that Margaret McKibbon stated her religion to be the Church of Scotland. Margaret was born around 1797 so James McKibbon was either of a similar age or possibly a decade or two older.

James McKibbon and wife Margaret were in Glengarry County, Ontario sometime before their children were born in the 1820s. There are no immigration records for that time period as records immigration records for Canada were not required to be kept until the 1860s. We do not know if they came directly to Canada from Ireland or if they came via the United States. All we know is that they were both born in Ireland, that Margaret was of Scottish extraction and that the couple was in Canada in the 1820s.

We also know that Margaret McKibbon was a widow when the first census of Canada was carried out in 1851. When that census was taken she was living in Lochiel Township, Glengarry County, Ontario. She had four other people in her household. Three of the household members were adults with the last name McKibbon. They were all of an age to be her children and one of them most certainly was her son Hugh McKibbon. Robert McKibbon was not living with her in 1851.

Unfortunately, on the 1851 census of Canada, the relationship of each person to the head of the household was not something that was recorded. In her household in Lochiel Township in 1851 were James McKibbon age 28, Hugh McKibbon age 23, Esther McKibbon age 20. All were unmarried. Also with them was a child named Anna Crookshanks age 6. Little Anna Crookshanks on this census was the key to proving that this 1851 Lochiel Township family was the same family of similarly named people who appear on the Wolford Township census in 1861 and 1871. Later an Ann Crookshanks appears in Brockville, Ontario on the 1881 census. In 1891 there is an Esther McKibbon living in Brockville with her sister Margaret. They are similar in age to the women named Margaret and Esther McKibbon who lived with the Widow McKibbon in Merrickville on the 1871 census so it seems there was some connection to Brockville.


Hugh McKibbon was Robert McKibbon of Merrickvilles brother.

I use the spelling McKibbon here although the spelling of the McKibbon family name was not settled at this point, at least for Hughs descendants. Hugh McKibbon was another son of James McKibbon and Margaret Stewart. When the 1861 census was taken he was no longer living in Lochiel Township, Glengarry County but was now in Wolford Township, Grenville County. Anna Crookshanks is still with the household and she is now 16. Mrs. McKibbon was a landowner in Wolford Township in 1861 on a farm just outside of the village of Merrickville (written as McCribben in the 1861 atlas of Grenville County). Living nearby was the family of John and Ann Roche (sometimes spelled Roach) including their daughter Jane Roche. A marriage record exists for Jane Roche and Hugh McKibbon. They married in 1861 in Kemptville, Ontario. On that marriage register Hugh McKibbons parents were listed as James McKibbon and Margaret Stewart. In 1862 Hughs wife Jane delivered a son whom they named James, but unfortunately Jane died shortly after her son was born. It is not known what became of Hugh McKibbon after his wifes death. On Janes headstone at St. Anns Cemetery in Merrickville, Jane is recorded as being the wife of Hugh McGibbon. It appears that her son James son grew up with the name James McGibbon and passed that surname onto his sons and daughters while his Merrickville cousins used the spelling McKibbon.

More pictures and charts will be included in Family Groups on our website, in 2014. The search for others in the McKibbon family tree continues in Ireland and worldwide. If you are a McKibbon, McKibben, McKibbin or a McGibbon and think you may ‘belong’ to these families, or would like to know more, please contact Heather Marshall (nee McKibbon) at

The McKibbens of Mississippi – DNA Group 3

Story by John Rob McKibben ‘Rob’, compiled by Lorna McCubbin

In 1997, Rob McKibben posted a query on Rootsweb. Rob recently writes Lorna, “Some time after compiling and posting this document a long lost relative (from Hezekiah) who had possession of John A.s bible contacted me. It was an amazing stroke of sheer luck in the “finding” of John A’s family Bible. So I now have the birth and death dates and some marriages for all of John A.s children. I can trace my ancestry with certainty to my great grandfather John A. McKibben, (1801-1874) in North Carolina,”

Rob’s father, Dale, had done an extensive amount of research and communication with other relatives. Both Dale and Rob had been trying to work past a brick wall they encountered at John A. They had problems with multiple John and John As as well as various other obstacles.

Dale was a lawyer, and had a gift for writing an interesting tale. Following are excerpts between his son , Rob, as well as with his cousin, Quinton Walters.

Dale writes:

Our McKibben family and a family named Gillon had migrated to Mississippi together from North Carolina shortly after the “Indian lands” were opened to settlers. This was in the 1840s. Their starting point in Mississippi was at or near a little village on the Yalobusha River named Graysport. It now lies beneath the waters of Grenada as well as (we believe) John A.s grave. Near there are the graves, with markers, of all of my McKibben ancestors from William Adam down to my dad.

We ultimately learned that the kickoff date in North Carolina for the trek was in the second half of 1845. The kickoff point was the country community around the Coddle Creek Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, now in Cabarrus county, but hard up against Iredell County. Note the propensity of these people to live in places that a realtor friend of mine calls “plumb nearly,” meaning plumb out of town, and nearly out of the county.”

Letter from Dale to his cousin Quinton O Walters, Oct 2, 1999

Dear Cuz,

There were 3 adult sons in the John A McKibben family at the time of the Civil war.

One son, Wlliam Adam moved into Calhoun County. William had 9 childen, all boys, 7 of whom lived to adulthood. Three were born before his Civil War service, and four afterward. The 3 older ones, being children of the Civil War and Reconstruction, when there were no schools, had a different life and lived a different culture from the four younger ones.  Three became ministers of the gospel (two in the older group and one in the younger). The older ones, with their limited education, could never become full-time paid professionals. They essentially made a living farming, but preached at small isolated rural churches on weekends. Our grandfather James Alexander, (1842-1906), was one of them.

Quinton replies:

Our grandfather (James Alexander) was abundantly clear to the effect that his first memories in life were during the Civil War years. He reported that he concluded in those years that war was a terrible thing because all of the ladies on both sides of the family wept so bitterly when his father returned to service after a couple of furloughs.

There were three young boys living in the William Adam McKibben family’s household while he was away in the War – our grandfather and two brothers. Two young unmarried ladies [aunts] moved into the house with grandfather, his mother and two brothers in order to be of comfort and protection to them. Those girls apparently had more education than was usual for that day and time, and they proceeded to home-school the three McKibben boys who had been born at that time.

Dale writes:

James Alexander, married Martha Ann Harbour, a daughter of one of the bed-rock families East of Coffeeville, in 1880.

After he married, he kept his eye on an abandoned pre-civil war plantation much further east of Coffeeville on the Calhoun County line, with a lot of land and a good antebellum house on it. But there was no way for a hard-working country boy to buy it.

There were no mortgage companies in the South then, and the main line of credit for farm people were furnishing merchants (in reality loan sharks). Then in 1898 a source of credit came up, something like manna from heaven. The British Mortgage Company authorized a bank in Water Valley to represent it.

My father [John Monroe McKibben, son of James Alexander] recalled a cold day in January when the Water Valley banker rode out to their farm on horseback with startling good news. He could then finance the purchase of the plantation. By then, its acreage had been sold down to about 600, and no one had lived in the house for several years. It became grandpa’s home that you and I knew as boys.

When grandpa bought the plantation there were no viable towns in Calhoun County.

He was far out on the edge of Yalobusha and Calhoun counties. The citizens in the northwest quadrant of that county used Coffeeville (on the railroad) as their market. For them the trip to market in horse or ox drawn wagons was more than a one day event. There was a magnificent spring flowing out of the hill immediately south of grandpa’s house, with a stream flowing on eastward across a lush pasture. For years Calhounites had been making a trip to Coffeeville into about a 3-day event, and camping in that pasture. Grandpa let them continue after he bought the place.

His farm supported his family in fine style for those times, and his large home became a haven of rest for many a weary traveler.

By the time you and I were boys, Calhoun City and Bruce had been built as towns, and there were some motor vehicles. The camping had stopped.

Both Yalobusha and Calhoun counties were proposing to consolidate their one-room county schools into larger more modern schools in or near the towns. Grandpa resisted the movement. He did not want his local schools “torn up” and moved away. HIs schools dried up. His children, grandchildren and farm tenants moved away. In time he died, and the land returned to timberland.

James died in 1942, age 84. His obituary states that “Rev J. A. McKibben preached for more than fifty years. He was an ordained preacher in the Congregational Methodist Church and was the principal organizer of the Union Hill Methodist Church in Yalobusha County. It has been said that perhaps he conducted more funeral services than any other known man in North Mississippi.”

James’ grandson, Dale Harbour McKibben (1923-2001) continued on with the legacy of his grandfather.

In his obituary it was noted:

Dale was an active member of St. Luke’s United Methodist Church for 53 years. He led the Dale McKibben Sunday School class for over 40 years and also served on the church Council of Ministries and as Chairman of the Administrative Board for many years. Mr. McKibben touched the lives of countless Boy Scouts as a volunteer Citizenship counselor.

He was a veteran of WWII, having served in the US Army Corps of Engineers in the Philippines, retiring from military service as a Lt. Colonel with the U.S. Air Force Reserve (Judge Advocate Corps) in 1972.

Mr. McKibben was a resident of Jackson since 1949 when he earned his law degree from the Ole Miss School of Law. As a law student he was a member of several honorary societies and was editor of the Law Review.

From his son Rob: “Dad always said that if it weren’t for the GI bill after WWII, he would probably be one end of a two man saw, cutting trees for the lumber company. He came a long way from a 140 acre farm with a mule and a plow, and a one room school house, to be an Editor of the Law School Journal.

“He was a long-standing member of the legal and oil and gas community of the city. He was a partner of several law firms and was most recently senior partner of McKibben & Associates.”

Prior to his death, Dale and Rob continued to search for the father of John A. McKibben (born 1801). The spelling of names changed and it was impossible to find a true link. A year before Dale died, he wrote in a letter to Rob:

In the 1800s the United States was just eleven years old. Nothing like universal public education prevailed. There were three “learned professions” in which the practitioners were supposedly literate – the clergy – lawyers – doctors. Learning was rather scarce among the rest of the population. Further, the expanding population along the east coast was moving westward into the Alleghenys, where education was even scarcer. It it said that when a family moved into those mountains in their westward journey, using a specified name, they were not always using that same name when they came out of the mountains on the west side, and certainly not with the same spelling. It just may be that we will never conclusively identify the two sets of parents that we are looking for here.

As of now I would also conclude that trying to document conclusively what these relationships were would be game not worth of the candle that it would take unless we come across by sheer luck some reliable documents with an origin at least a century back.

Since Dale left this world, a whole new aspect of searching one’s roots has emerged. DNA records are the next step in joining people when the search for documents (the paper trail) has been exhausted. Rob has recently had his DNA done. It proves that he is closely related, an exact match, to a larger family of McKibbens who arrived in America ‘between 1735 and 1740’, Joseph being the progenitor (see story of Joseph below). It also shows that he is an exact match with a McCubbin whose McKibben ancestor is documented back to County Down in Ireland, as well as with Scottish McCubbins. Dale would have liked that.

Rob McKibbin continues to search the “paper trail”.

Query: If anyone who reads this is related to John D McKibben, died 1799, please contact us at We just might find the father for John A McKibben, Rob’s great great grandfather.

Joseph McKibben, 1710-1761, Ireland to Pennsylvania – DNA Group 3

Story shared by Laurie, daughter of Philip McKibben, compiled by Lorna McCubbin

This exceptionally well researched and documented family tree was shared with us by the daughter of Philip McKibben living in Washington State.

Two other recently DNA tested men have a perfect match with him, but as yet do not have a link with Joseph.

JOSEPH (1710 – 1761)

An important immigrant group was the Scotch-Irish, who migrated from about 1717 until the Revolution in a series of waves caused by hardships in Ireland. They were primarily frontiersmen, pushing first into the Cumberland Valley region and then farther into central and western Pennsylvania. They, with immigrants from old Scotland, numbered about one-fourth of the population by 1776.

Joseph McKibben, born 1710 in County Tyrone, Ireland was among these immigrants, along with his wife Eizabeth Gibson and young son, James. Their story and those of their descendants show industrious and forthright people. Their first tract of 80 acres was granted in 1746 in Little Briton, Lancaster County, Penn. It is noted that the McKibbens supported the army during the American Revolution, supplying foods and supplies. Joseph’s son James (1731-1786) continued on with land acquistion obtaining 210 acres in Lurgon Township. He was active in the community, at one time or other, serving as supervisor of road, grand jury duty, overseer of the poor, and as a Constable.

Relations with the native indians were tenuous. Note from “Linns History. F Clinton County, Penn.” as follows:

There is a signed affidavit by Joseph McKibben, oldest son of James Sr. stating that in 1770 he and his father came up from Shippensburg in Lurgan Township, Cumberland County, Penn, to Nittany Valley, within ten miles of the great island, to make improvements on the land then owned by James Sr. They built a log house, roofed it, and clinked it and lived in it for seven weeks, while they cleared eight acres of land. Before returning to their residence in Shippensburg, they placed their farming utensils and such household furniture as they had taken with them inside the house. They were deterred the next spring, from returning because of “doubts and fears of the Indians”.

This land was eventually inherited by James Sr.’s younger sons, William and David, then minors, whom settled the land before they were of age.

David McKibben (1776 – 1857), the youngest and tenth child of James McKibben and Lettice Wilson, settled on the 300 acre farm he and his brother inherited. it is said that they were among the first settlers in the area. Obviously not fearful of the next move west into the frontier, David and his wife Elizabeth moved to Ohio, settling in Newport Twp, above the mouth of the Kentucky River. They had 11 children. Elizabeth died and David married Hulda. In all, David sired 16 children. He left a 107 acre farm to his wife and son Weston. The next descendant, following the line to Phillip in Washington, was David’s third son, Joseph (1800-1876). He married Rhoda Jennings and they were parents of fourteen children. They owned 100 acres in Ohio. Eight sons served in the Civil War.

In 1899, William Henry Jennings wrote a beautiful description of the family of Joseph and Rhoda (in the written lingua of the time, 1899).

Their married life was beautiful in its harmony. Their children, as they grew up, had before them always an example of domestic bliss that was the embodiment of peace and happiness on earth.

When the echo of the guns fired at Fort Sumpter told that their county was in danger, eight stalwart sons received the blessings of these noble parents, and rushed bravely to her defense. Joseph McKibben whose age caused him to be refused admission into the army, said, “Well if am too old to fight, I am not too old to pray”. When peace dawned again upon our stricken land, and the family once more gathered around the hearth- stone, there was one vacant chair. Seven sons had returned.

One son, Lemen Founts McKibben (1832-1904) served in the civil war from 1861 to 1865 as a corporal in the Kansas Cavalry, along with his brother Jonathon. He later lived and farmed in Blue Earth County, Minnesota with his wife Mary and children, Joseph, John and Hattie Lee.

Their son, Joseph Wesley McKibben (1860-1930) made the next big leap across America to Washington State, with his wife Harriet and children.

Their son Frank Sherman McKibben (1900-1972) was the father of Philip and grandfather of Laurie, who encouraged her father to have his DNA done.

This McKibben family whose ancestors left Ireland about 1730, landed on America’s east coast, made their way west, passing the torch from father to son until one son, Frank McKibben, arrived on the west coast in Washington State, 200 years later.

Thomas McKibbon, the Square Timber Man – DNA Group 3

Story by Alton McKibbon. compiled by Lorna McCubbin

Alton McKibbon, great, great grandson of Thomas, contributed this story of his family.

Thomas McKibbon was born in 1800, in Ireland. He immigrated to Canada with his wife Jenny. They had four children, Joseph, Jane, Margaret and James. Settling first west of Ottawa, Ontario at Fitzroy Harbour they later moved to Pakenham, Renfrew County.

Thomas was a square timber man. The Canadian Encyclopedia explains the process of squaring logs. “In the early, mid 1800s trees were normally felled with various types of timber axes (until the 1870s, when the crosscut saw became more common), and “bucked” (i.e. sawed) to stick length. Timber was squared by axemen, because square logs were easier than round logs to store and transport on Europe-bound ships. The process of squaring a log began by “lining” the wood along two sides to mark the dimensions of the desired square, and then “scoring” to remove the unwanted outside wood in rough slabs. From there, the sides of the log were rough-hewn (i.e., coarsely chopped) and then smooth-hewn using broadaxes. The process was then repeated with the remaining two sides of the wood.”

Thomas bought land around Pakenham, cut the timber off and sold the land as “Improved Lots” to new settlers. At one time he had 8 lots of 100 acres each.

Men with an industrious nature such as Thomas took advantage of the opportunity to acquire 200 acres of homestead land available in Renfrew County. In return they were required to promise to settle and cultivate the land.

With new settlers came the plague. Thomas’ wife Jenny took sick. They sold the land and burnt the buildings, covered them with dirt and told the new owner not to till the area. They then moved up the Bonnechere River with a group of other settlers. Jenny died in 1834.

Thomas moved to Mink Lake where he homesteaded with his children.He remarried Ann Bell and had a son Samuel.

They appeared on the census of 1861 in the Township of Wilberforce. Thomas, born Ireland, age 60, Ann, born Ireland, age 60 and Samuel, age 16, born Canada, living in a stone house, built 1840. Samuel married Margaret Prendergast and had 11 children.

Thomas’ first family of four children were, Joseph (Big Joe) b.1822, Margaret b.1825, Jane b. 1826, and James (1828-1882) who married Mary Jane Price.

Following Alton McKibbon’s line, James and Mary (Price) had five children. Their eldest son Thomas A.(1857-1884) married Catherine Reid. Their son Charles Alfred (1891-1970) was Alton’s father.

Alton relates, “James later homesteaded on lot 12, 3 miles away from Thomas before the land survey was done. When the survey went through he was on the wrong lot by 100 yards. He moved the house to where it now is.”

The homesteaded land remained in the family. It has been passed from James b. 1828, to Thomas b.1857 to his son Charles b.1891 to Alton, who was born, raised there and continues to work the farm.

Through the years Alton has raised beef cows, switched to Ayrshire milk cows which he milked until 1969, then switched to beef cows again. Alton then worked on heavy equipment for 30 years and farmed on weekends when retired. He continues to farm. As well, he still makes maple syrup from trees that his forefathers saved over the years for making sugar and syrup.

Alton is the proud father of his small family. His wife Dorothy passed away when his son and daughter were in their teens. Besides working on the farm they gained a good education. One of his granddaughters played hockey since she was 5 in Oakville played with Women’s Team Canada U 18 in Finland, December 2012 and came home with a Gold Medal.

The last time I talked with Alton in October, he said, “The weather has turned nice again. I am splitting wood for making Maple Syrup in spring, so busy trying to fill wood shed.”

Hawaiian McCubbins and the Link With Peru – DNA Group 3


by Kathy McCubbing

In last years CUB Report we reported that DNA tests had confirmed a link with the McCubbin family in Peru and family #02 (who are all part of our wider McCubbin DNA group 3), who hail from Ayrshire in Scotland (with descendants who emigrated variously to Australia, New Zealand and Hawaii). At that time we were awaiting DNA results from a descendant in Hawaii to confirm the Hawaiian connection, which indeed they did.

Examination of dates, names and geography suggested a closer link than we had anticipated between the McCubbins in Peru and in Hawaii: perhaps Hamilton McCubbin (born 1831 in Ayrshire) lived in Peru before he lived in Hawaii? We cannot prove this theory, but the facts that we have do not disprove it, and tend to support it:

In 1849 Hamilton was found on a passenger list bound for New York from Liverpool in England and this concords with descendants in Peru believing that he came to the country in about 1851. He married Margarita Butler and she is recorded as the mother of Alejandro McCubbin in Peru on his marriage certificate. Descendants thought that they married before they came to Peru, probably in about 1845, but despite extensive searches we have been unable to locate a marriage record. Hamilton and Margarita had at least two sons, Alejandro and Santiago, and Hamilton was thought to have died in Peru when Alejandro was about 10, which would have been in 1868.

In 1865 at age 31, and described as a Moulder, Hamilton is located aboard the Barque Whistler travelling from San Francisco to Honolulu. Whether this was just a visit he took whilst living in Peru, or whether this was the voyage he took to settle in Hawaii is unknown, but the next record we have for him is his marriage to Mary Kamalu-Pau in 1869. The couple had one son, their only child, Hamilton Jr, in 1872, just two years before Hamilton died in Hawaii in 1874.

Back in Peru Margarita Butler remarried a man named MacDonald, and she died and was buried in Lima in 1881.

Little is known about Hamiltons work life but it seems that two of his putative sons (Alejandro and Hamilton) were both to become engineers working in the sugar industry, and both were to become known for their inventions (we reported in last years Cub Report about Alejandro having designed a sugar cutting machine to which he gave his name).


Hamilton was born in Hamakua, Hawaii in 1872 and died in the Philippines in 1927. As mentioned above we know that his father, Hamilton, died in 1874 when he was just 2 years old but we dont know when his mother died. However, The Garden Island newspaper in 1917 (which was reporting on one of his important inventions) included in its report that It is perhaps a matter of personal interest that Mr McCubbin is a foster brother of our Mr Lydgate. Left an orphan, he was brought up by the Lydgates in their family in Hilo, and from there he was sent to the Coast for his mechanical training. By the age of 19 he was recorded on the census as a single man, living with other working men in Hamakua.

In 1896 he married Mary Kukahiko in Honolulu, but by 1900 they had divorced and she went to live with her brother. In 1903 he married Kahipa (Mary Lucille) Keaukahi in Waialua and between 1901 and 1917 they had 10 children, 7 of whom survived into adulthood.

In 1905 he resigned his position as Foreman of a machine shop and presumably this was when his engineering career really started.

Hamilton, Active in the Community

A wealth of information about Hamilton McCubbin and his family has been gleaned from Hawaiian newspapers which recorded minutiae of the lives of notable Hawaiian citizens – from their boat trips (on business and leisure) throughout the islands and further afield to mainland USA; the return of their children from their private schools during summer holidays; fetes; concerts and other events they attended and, in the case of Hamilton McCubbin, who was to become Chief Engineer at the Pioneer Mill Company, extensive reports about various conferences which were held in Hawaii and in which he was an active participant.

He was obviously a very active community member: a Freemason, selected to serve on various trial juries between 1905 and 1918 and selected to be an inspector of elections between 1908 and 1912. In 1911 he was a manager of a baseball team in Lahaina and in the same year he and his wife are reported to have held a luau for the scouts. He became a member of the Maui Chamber of Commerce in September 1916 and got involved with preparation for the Maui County Fair where he was in charge of music at the two day harvest celebration in September and by 1917 he was a Commissioner of Lahainaluna school. The newspapers even reported him being part of an angling party in 1918, during which Judge Burr landed a 29 pound ulua after a hard fight.”

Success as an Engineer

He had a successful and illustrious career as an Engineer. By 1912 he was working for the Pioneer Mill Company and in 1913 he was Chief Engineer in charge of a big project at a new hydro-electric power plant where, according to a newspaper report, his efforts have turned out very successful. In that same year he was part of a group of 5 who took charge of organizing a convention of engineers to be held in Honolulu that October. During the convention he delivered a paper on milling and He had prepared there a number of models and designs for conditions under which the extraction of sucrose from case is made the convention was extensively reported in the Hawaiian press and included a photo of the delegates which included Hamilton. The convention culminated in a banquet and it was reported that Engineer McCubbin, of Pioneer Mill Co, was a very popular speaker.

In 1915 he is listed as one of the directors of the Hawaiian Engineers Association. And in 1916 there are reports from another sugar engineers convention which included a big picnic on the beach and ended in a banquet which surpassed all previous occasions. Following dinner the delegates enjoyed music from a Hawaiian orchestra and vaudeville acts, which were enthusiastically received.

Important Invention: Anti U-Boat Device

In 1917 Hamilton received a huge amount of press coverage about the anti-U-boat device which he had invented and which was to become an important part of the allied naval defenses during WW1. In July 1917 the Honolulu Star Bulletin reports that the invention has been tried out and accepted by the board of strategy of the general staff at Washington. Naval experts who inspected the designs before the invention was completed are said to have assured McCubbin the device would prove practical. In the same month the Maui News spoke highly of Hamilton: To those who know something of McCubbins mechanical skill and mental make-up, it has not been hard to believe that he might have solved the big problem and the announcement that his idea has been accepted and is, or has been given a tryout by the council of national defense comes as no great surprise. The Island was obviously very proud of their son: the same report from the Maui News, though the invective language used to describe the enemy is apparent in their report, states Men, money and food supplies will not be the only contributions from Hawaii to the nation in the world struggle to save liberty-loving peoples from the barbarism of the Huns. The inventive brain of a son of the Island, Hamilton McCubbin, has produced a device that will be used effectively, if it is not already in use to rid the seas of German submarines, the last hope of the Huns to Strafe Great Britain. The Garden Island newspaper paid tribute to Hamiltons other notable inventions McCubbin has already made several valuable inventions in the line of mill machinery and railroad appliances so that he is by no means a novice in the matter of inventions. He stands in the very front rank among the mill engineers of the Islands.

Once the anti-U-boat device was in use reports came back about its effectiveness, including one in The Maui News in August 1917: The Captain of the Mexican, recently at Port Allen, and who is just back from France, reports that the safe and successful landing of the American forces under Pershing, in spite of submarine attack, was due mainly to the effectiveness of the McCubbin destroyer. All Hawaii will rejoice that a native son has helped so effectively.

In February 1918 Hamilton was mentioned during an investigation into a manager named Weinzheimer from Pioneer Mill who was assailed for disloyal utterances and attitude. Weinzheimer was a German subject who had applied for American citizenship but was under Federal surveillance and accused of being un-American because of remarks he had made about the war and the sinking of the Lusitania. The article appeared in the The Garden Island newspaper and reports that Weinzheimer called engineer McCubbin on the carpet and berated him for not offering his submarine invention to the German Government. It is unlikely that Hamilton knew that his first cousin was James Alexander McCubbin (1852-1915) , Pursers Assistant on the Lusitania, who died at sea when the ship was sunk by a German U-boat, but there is a poignancy in the fact that he developed a device which, if in use earlier, may well have saved his cousins life. See CUB Report 2009.

New Project in the Philippines

By late 1918 Hamilton had been earmarked to head a major project in the Philippines. According to the Maui News of 10 January 1919 Hamilton McCubbin, Superintendent of the Pioneer Mill Company, and one of the best known mill engineers in the Islands, expects to leave soon for the Philippines where he will have charge of the construction of some new sugar mills to be built there. Later that month more details were given about his move to superintend the erection of the Maao sugar central for the Catton, Neill Co, of this city. The mill (first to be built by this concern for the Philippines, by the way) will be shipped from Honolulu in sections, the first going forward some time about April 1. Mr McCubbin will be on the ground then and will have general charge of putting it up.

On 21 February 1919 The Maui News carried a report about Hamiltons departure for the Philippines that evening and his expected arrival there the middle of March. Other reports show that he sailed to Manila on board the Ecuador. By July 1919 other staff from the Pioneer Mill Company in Hawaii joined him, notably David Richards, a Mill Mechanic and Engineer who took 40 Hawaiian assistants with him.

Hamiltons inventiveness continued whilst working in the Philippines and in October 1922 he was reported as a delegate at a sugar conference where he described his new invention: A model cane car, the invention of Hamilton McCubbin of Maao Sugar Central Company, attracted general attention from sugar men attending the first general Philippine Sugar Conference here last week. The car is equipped with a special drawhead, consisting of a cable attached to a spring made fast under the middle of the car, instead of at the end. The bumpers are of heavy molaie blocks. It is claimed that a train made up of these cars is far more flexible than one with the ordinary drawheads and bumpers, that it will take sharp curves better, and that there is less delay and breakage if a car is derailed. In practical operation the cable runs the entire length of the train, with a spring under each car. The cars are built with flaring sides, of solid construction to prevent wastage in handling. A patent fastener enables one side to be let down and facilitates unloading in such a way as to provide uniform feed of the cane into the crushers. This feature is considered of special value, as it is pointed out that uniformity of feeding has a direct bearing on the degree of extraction obtained by the mill.

Unexpected Death

Hamilton died suddenly and unexpectedly in 1927 in an accident at the mill. Descendants believe that he fell into one of the vats of boiling sugar and report that there was a long period of time before his wife, Kahipa, was informed. From documentation received by them it seems that he was living with a woman in the Philippines and it was she who originally claimed his body.

Hamilton and Kahipas Children

Hamilton and Kahipas 7 children who survived into adulthood are mentioned in various news reports. It is not certain whether one of their children survived the scarlet fever epidemic which wracked the island in 1911 because a report in The Hawaiian Star newspaper stated that the child of H McCubbin which contracted the disease is slightly improved, though it is not yet out of danger.”

The comings and goings of his eldest daughter Margaret (1901-1945), back and forth to school, are frequently reported and a rather unusual and touching report from September 1910 records that “Engineer H McCubbin has sent a very large bunch of ladys fingers bananas to his little daughter, Margaret, in St Andrews Priory at Honolulu. There are about 400 bananas on this mammoth bunch.”

Margaret along with more than 70 of her school fellows marched in line at the funeral procession of the late Queen Liliuokalani in November 1917. A report in the Honolulu Star Bulletin recorded that Many members of the royal families had attended St Andrews Priory and, on the Saturday a chorus from the school, including Margaret, sang at Kawaliahao church when the remains of the late Queen Liliuokalani were brought to the Capitol. Margaret appears to have had musical inclinations and is mentioned in the Maui News in January 1918 when she sang alongside John Alameda, a blind musician of Honolulu who gave a concert in the Pioneer Theatre: Miss Margaret McCubbin who has a real soprano voice delighted the audience by signing two songs, both of which were encored.

In 1919 Margaret married Edward K Wagner in Honolulu but they divorced in 1921 and she remarried in 1923 to Anthony Ahlo Jr. Margaret died in 1945.

Hamilton Sonny Jrs first birthday was mentioned in The Maui News in 1906: “The McCubbins celebrated the birthday of their youngest son Sonnie by giving an open invitation to the Lahaina public at their residence. There was a grand lay out and everybody ate of the good things before them. The Punnene string band was in attendance as our genial friend Mack comes from there.” Sonny was one of the two children in the family who would suffer with leprosy during his short life. He was a patient at the Kalihi Hosp with this brother William (see below). Their younger sister Lillian (1913-1982) and her husband Walter Arend worked at the hospital as medical care givers. William also worked at the hospital, but left when the access was opened up and Lilia (as she was known) left after her husband died. Sonny died in 1933 of leprosy (which he had suffered from since 1925) and his death certificate also records that he worked in the Leprosarium as a Sanitary Inspector.

His brother, William (1912-1956), was a surviving twin whose sister died before she reached a year old. He married a woman called Ah Moi. He worked as a Labourer and died in Pearl City in 1956 at the age of 43.

Other surviving children were Jonathan Buster (1910-1956), Anna (1911-1961), who married James B Lumsden in 1924 and then George Kreusling in 1927, and Anthony Buddy (1917-1990), who served in WW2. He was married to Leona Emma and died in California.

Descendants are currently living in Hawaii and in mainland USA.

William McCubbin and Janet Riddell and Family – DNA Group 4


by Kathy McCubbing

William McCubbin (family #11, merged with #03 DNA 4), who was born in Penpont, Dumfriesshire on 16 June 1793, like many others of his family worked as a Stone Mason. He left Dumfriesshire and went to work in Lanarkshire where he met and married Janet Riddell, a dairymaid, when he was 28 years old. The couple lived in East Kilbride and this was where their first child was born a year later, a son James, in 1822.

At some point before 1836 William and Janet moved to Calton in Glasgow but nothing is known about the intervening 14 years, or whether they had other children but it seems unlikely that they did not (perhaps they died in infancy?) Their son, John, may have been born in about 1827 (according to the age he gave on his marriage certificate) but other records indicate he could have been born at any time between 1833 and 1846 (the latter clearly being impossible in light of what follows).

The criminal archives in Edinburgh Registry Office contain detailed information about two counts of theft by housebreaking by Janet Riddell McCubbin which occurred in Calton, the first of which occurred in 1836 (and for which she was convicted and imprisoned in the Bridewell of Glasgow for 23 months and kept at hard labour) and the second which occurred in 1839 (and for which she was convicted and transported to Australia for seven years).

The archives contain reports from her trials including testimonies and witness statements which describe the circumstances of the crimes, and also there is some character testimony about Janet and her husband William.

In the first case Janet was tried for theft by housebreaking in January 1836 from neighbours James Gemmell and his wife, who lived in the same tenement, in a flat above Janet and William in Millers Land, Canning Street, Calton in Glasgow. Janet was charged with stealing a number of clothing items and soft furnishings: a blue cloth jacket, a carpet bed rug, a blanket, a pair of bellows, a bed tick, a cotton bolster, a cotton pillow, a cotton shirt, a silk handkerchief, a cotton sheet and a cradle pillow.

She was accused of using an iron bar to gemmy the door open and gain access to the house. The bar was later recovered at Janets house indeed, it was found and given to the police by her husband, William! Janet denied having broken in but she did admit to going up to the Gemmells flat on the Wednesday with the intention of borrowing an Italian Iron and claimed to have found the door unlocked and had gone in and taken a carpet bed rug and a tick pillow. She also admitted to having sold the carpet rug (to Jean Robertson, who owned a broker shop) immediately for 3 shillings.

On the Friday she admitted to returning to Gemmells and stole and carried away a bed tick, a half sheet, a half blanket and a pair of bellows which she took down to her own flat. She claimed that sometime after that, on the same day, she had returned to Gemmells with a view to returning the stolen articles but met Mrs Gemmell on the stairs, who had just discovered the break-in. Mrs Gemmell told the court that during this meeting with Janet she had noticed a bag containing items nearby.

Apparently, having been unable to return the items, Janet took the bag to a shop owned by Margaret Martin (also known as McGair) and sold the items and the tick pillow (taken on the Wednesday) for 2 shillings and ninepence and both of them went to Jean Robertsons shop to retrieve the carpet bed rug sold to her earlier.

Jean Robertson, the broker, gave testimony which accorded with Janets and another broker, Agnes MacLachlane, gave testimony that Janet had offered her a blue jacket of cloth, a carpet bed rug of red, green and blue, a tick bolster stuffed with cotton, a tick pillow stuffed with cotton and a cotton shirt for a man, with a patch between the shoulders. Janet had told MacLachlane that she was selling the items because her daughter had died of scarlet fever and the money was to be used to bury her which seems to have deterred McLachlane from purchasing the items as she referred Janet to other brokers. It has not been possible to verify whether Janets story about the death of her daughter was true, and it was not mentioned further during the trial.

During this trial James Smart, Superintendent of the Calton Police Establishment described William McCubbin as a hardworking, sober and as far as [he] knows an honest man but his description of Janet was more scathing: she is a great pest in Calton from her drunken habits.

Excessive drinking was not uncommon in Calton and had been a problem, as illustrated by the following excerpts from the Glasgow Thistle of 1831.

During the week upwards of 20 persons were taken up for being drunk and disorderly on the streets (of Calton), the greater number of these were taken up on Sunday, while strolling the streets in a beastly condition, during the hours of Divine service. They were all fined in various small sums.

Mrs. Peebles, an old wretch, residing in Main Street, Calton, for having her house in a disorderly state on Sunday morning, was fined in two shillings and sixpence.

October 22, 1831, Calton Police Court, Monday.

Eighteen cases of drunks and disorderlies were disposed of. The general part of them were Chelsea pensioners, and were carried in for preservation. Some of them were ordered to pay for their porterage, and others were fined according to the nature of their offences.

November 5, 1831:

The rest of this week’s cases consisted of drunks and disorderlies, some of whom were wheeled or carried to the Police Office and had to pay porterage. The others were fined from two to five shillings.

After her release William and Janet had a daughter, Elizabeth, also known as Isabella in about 1839. Although no birth records have been found for either John (see above) or Elizabeth, their relationship with William and, by inference, Janet has been established from census records.

By 1839 William and Janet were living in a tenement on Dalmarnock Road in Bridgeton (a suburb adjacent to Calton) which rejoiced in the dubious name of Cholera Land* (but was also known as Watsons Land). Janet found herself in court again in January 1839 accused, again, of housebreaking and, again, this was from neighbours living in the same tenement.

* images and descriptions of housing in Bridgeton, some from this period, can be seen here and the report by Guthries referred to can be found here, where he records, On the New Dalmarnock Road, opposite Bartholomew Street, there is a house called Gardenside, which belonged to a Mr. Muir. He built a small block printing work at the back, which is now converted into small dwelling-houses. From this point north there were few houses. The only one of note was a four-storey building which stood back from the road. This house was converted into a Cholera Hospital in 1832, and always went under the name of the Cholera Land as long as it stood. This was a sad time. The van went round the streets every morning to lift the dead, and I have seen 10 coffins in it at a time.

Janets neighbour, Mr George Henderson, returned home on Wednesday 20 June 1838 and found his wife (Mary Jamieson) and one of the lodgers (Archibald Johnstone) already at home, having found the house broken into. They then proceeded to go around the brokers’ shops to look for the stolen items and they found the gown in Mrs Burt’s shop in Dalmarnock Road (who told them she had bought it from Janet Riddell for sixpence) but when confronted with this Janet denied it and then disappeared for a month.

Isabella Archer, another broker, told the court that she had bought the tartan shawl from Janet Riddell for fourpence. Janet had told her she was selling the shawl in order to buy her children breakfast.

In both cases Janet told the brokers that she would be returning to buy the items back. In her own statement Janet said that she resided on the ground floor of the tenement and shared a lobby with others, including the Hendersons. She told the court that she had been employed by them for about two months the previous summer to cook victuals for Henderson and his wife and some lodgers who stayed with them, but Mr Henderson called her to give this up “because there was too much drink going among them”. She claimed that the Hendersons owed her a shilling, although they denied this. She admitted to the court that she had gained access to the house using a key which had been entrusted to her when she worked for them.

So, in the light of her previous conviction Janet found herself separated from her husband and her children (Elizabeth only a babe in arms at this time) and detained in the Tolbooth of Glasgow awaiting transportation to Australia.

By December 1843 Janet had been granted a Ticket of Leave** and on completion of her sentence she was given a Certificate of Freedom.

**Tickets of leave allowed convicts to live and work for their own wages wherever they wanted to within a certain Police District. Tickets of leave were generally given to convicts with good behaviour. Convicts became eligible for a ticket after a certain amount of their sentence had been served. Generally a convict became eligible after 4 years for a seven year sentence. Once a year the convict had to report in at the ticket of leave muster or else the ticket was revoked. Writing up Tickets of Leave or Certificates of Freedom cost 2s 8d each, and even gaining ones certificate after an expired sentence cost 6d. In addition, to have these documents officially printed cost another 6d. So becoming free was never cost-free.

It is believed that Janet remarried and has living descendants in Australia.

Meanwhile, back in Scotland, William was left with their children. By 1840 he had remarried to Helen/Ellen Lindsday (born in Ireland). They are found on the 1841 census in Dalmarnock Road with James (15), John (8) and Elizabeth (1). By 1851 the family had moved to Landressy Street in Calton where William continued to work as a Mason. His son, James (24), was out of work at this time but his other son, John (18), was working as a Tenter in the local cotton mill.

James, who married Agnes Kean (or Kane), was a Cattle Driver for most of his life, and some of his children worked in the local cotton mill or in associated trades (like tailoring). His brother John, who married Catherine Kean (Agnes sister) and then later Sarah Gillan, was a Shoemaker Master in 1861 but later went on to become a Fruit Dealer (1867) and then a Confectioner (1871). He died at only 44 years old of a heart attack while working as an Iron Moulders Labourer at the local iron foundry. Only two of his 9 children survived infancy, epitomising the frailty of life in those days.

Of Johns surviving two boys, William (1860-1944), married Mary Palmer in 1880, and worked variously as an Iron Foundry Labourer, a Glass Bottle Blower and a Sewing Machine Factory Storeman. His younger brother John (1861-1902), married Elizabeth Doyle in 1892, and worked as a Glass Work Furnace Man (1891), a General Labourer (1901) and a Carter (1902). He died of chronic pneumonia at only 40 years of age.

The Death Ship That Landed in Luce Bay

by Lorna McCubbin, info from Peter Miller

I received a query from Peter Miller, author of Galloway Shipwrecks. Mr Miller is now working on a re-write and is trying to find our more details about a McCubbin (no first name) who was First Mate on a ship named Eliza. In 1832 the ship was run aground at the head of Luce Bay, Wigtownshire as most of the crew were down with cholera. McCubbin died and was buried between the Piltanton burn and the river Luce where they meet the sea. His tomb was marked on the early OS maps (1850).

Mr Miller wrote: “I can find nothing else about him, except that he might be, because of their maritime connections, of the Stranraer McCubbins that you mention in the 2005 CUB Report. Lack of first name is the stumbling block.”

In his book, Lines From My Log-Book, by Sir John Charles Dalrymple Hay, Admiral, 1879, relates that when he was a boy of twelve, McCubbin, who had served as mate on his father’s yacht, the Sappho, died of cholera.

The first experience of cholera also came about that time, and I am reminded of it, as the mate of the Sappho was a victim. From August till April [1832] the yacht [the Sappho] was in dock at Port William, and her crew, all but Will Hill, the skipper, found other employment. Poor M’Cubbin the mate, shipped in a coasting vessel, the Eliza of Port William. I remember her arrival at Piltanton Burn foot on a Sunday in July 1832. Dr M’Cracken, the village surgeon, had never before seen cholera. He was sent for, and when he came one sufferer had been landed and taken in a cart to Stranraer, where his home was. He and his wife, who nursed him, both died. There were two other cases on board. The doctor attended them. One was M’Cubbin; he died and was buried and his tomb still stands on the seashore. The vessel, which contained lime, was bought by my father and set on fire, and I well remember watching her burn, and the grand conflagration which ensued when the unslaked lime was reached by the tide as it poured into the burning vessel. By this public-spirited act, the spread of cholera in Wigtonshire was stayed. There were in all six cases, of whom four died and two recovered.

In the hope that any of you readers may have an old tale about the above McCubbin in your family history please let us know. Mr Miller and I tried to find a Stranraer connection through the McCubbin database as well as other sources and have a few possibles, i.e. Stranraer sailing families, Hugh McCubbin and Agnes McCreadie or Hugh and Isabella McCubbin, but need more information. Hopefully we can give this man a first name. Please contact Lorna at

How John McCubbin Survived WW2 With the Help of Heroic Belgians

compiled by Lorna McCubbin

The following is excerpted from

McCUBBIN Private John 3315383, HLI. Arrested 25th September 1941, Duchene house rue Sans Souci POW

In August 1940 a group of 28 soldiers who had escaped from a train taking them to POW camps in eastern Germany were hiding out in the Foret de Soignes near Brussels.

Two from the group of 28 were Private John McCUBBIN 3315383 from Stonyhurst Street (Possilpark) Glasgow and Private Bernard (Bobby) CONVILLE 3319526 serving with 1st Battalion Glasgow Highlanders 51st Highland Division also from Glasgow. McCubbin had been captured at St. Annes and Conville was captured near Cherbourg. On the 17 July 1940 after staying 8 days in a field with 30 colleagues and French POWs they were put on a train to Belgium en route to Stalag VI G Bonne in Germany. The prisoners were packed into filthy cattle trucks. Conville and McCubbin managed to escape from the train as it passed through a forest at Boitsfort, a suburb of Brussels. Their German guard’s view was blocked by their colleagues as they forced open the door but he wasn’t really concerned at what they were doing. Jumping from the train with bullets whining round their ears, they reached the temporary safety of the woods. Their aim was to re-unite with the British Army; little knowing that it had been driven from mainland Europe by the Blitzkreig. Their first contact with help was with an Englishman, who he was the soldiers never knew, but he put them on contact with people who could help them.

They were fed and clothed by the Bruxellois for six weeks and then, as it was then getting too cold to sleep out, they were taken to the house of Madame Jeanne Duchenne and her daughter Florence Duchenne at Rue Sans-Souci in the Ixelles suburb of Brussels where they stayed right through until September 1941.

George Vecsey notes:

It would have been easy for people to bar the door, respond in a different tongue, turn the men away, but many courageous Belgians sequestered these men in closets and attics or much more openly.

The following is excerpted from the New York Times 9/6/2006
Cosmic Questions on a Journey of Discovery
By George Vecsey while visiting Essen, Germany
(also included on

I am not the first member of my family to come to Essen. I arrived yesterday morning to cover some World Cup games in this area, the first time I have ever been in this old coal-mining town, the city of Krupps.

By sheer coincidence, I recently learned that exactly 63 years ago, on June 8, 1943, an aunt of mine was in Essen.

My mother often talked about her cousins Florrie and Leopold. She had met them when she visited Belgium, in the space between the world wars. They were the children of my grandmother’s sister, an Irish woman who had moved to Belgium and married a coachman for the king.

We grew up knowing that our Belgian-Irish relatives had sheltered British fugitives during the war. Looking back now, I wish I had asked more questions of my grandmother and my mother, but children are rarely smart enough to ask the right questions while the old people are still alive.

In July of 1942, my relatives, the Duchene family, harbored a member of the Glasgow Highlanders named John McCubbin. Sometimes he helped my aunt in her millinery shop; sometimes he and his Hilghlander mates posed for pictures in civilian clothes, looking almost relaxed. They were safe until Sept. 25, 1941, when the Gestapo knocked at the Duchenes’ door, and shot McCubbin when he tried to escape. He survived and ultimately he and Bobby Conville and Allan Cowan, two other Scottish soldiers who were hidden in Brussels, made it home.

My grandmother’s sister, Anne Duchene, whom the soldiers called “Jeannie” or “Mum”, was detained for a while and then released because she was 72 and promptly resumed hiding British escapees, without being caught. My aunt Florence disappeared into the camps, and never came home.

We have a photograph of Anne Duchene and her gaunt son Leopold shortly after the war ended. She has a large medal around her neck; he is wearing a military jacket and some medals. Soon afterward, Leopold died. This was the legacy of our family the European aunt and uncle we never met.

In 1954, the legendary Associated Press columnist Hal Boyle returned to Europe, which he had covered as a young war reporter. My father, who worked with Hal, referred him to our relative in Brussels, and, of course, Hittal got a column out of the old lady. It was called “The Door of Madame Duchene,” and was later reprinted in Hal’s book, “Help, Help” Another Day! The world of Hal Boyle,” published in 1969.

As journalists will do, Hal saved the cosmic question for the end: Did my great aunt ever regret taking the Scottish soldier into her home? “No,” she told him. “I make out. I have no regrets except that I have lost my two children. That is the worst of all.” Then she added, “It had to be so.”

Only a few months ago, I was puttering around on the Internet and discovered photographs of my aunt and mother, plus a photograph of the street in Brussels where my relatives had harbored the solders (Rue Sans-Souci, French for “Street Without Care”). I also learned that my aunt’s name is chiseled on a monument to the Belgian resisters, in Ixelles, near their old home.

Florence DUCHENE daughter of Jeannie DUCHENE was taken to Ravensbruck after the Essen court case in 1943; she died in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in April 1945 at the age of 38.

Frederick McCubbin Goes to London – DNA Group 3

by Penny McColm

The renowned Royal Academy of Art in London is hosting an exhibition of Australian art from the 21st September to December 8th in the Main Galleries, Burlington House.

Two of McCubbin’s major works will be on show, The Pioneer, a triptych, and Little Girl Lost — iconic paintings in Australia.

The Pioneer has a haunting feel to it. The first panel shows a wistful woman sitting in the bush, perhaps dreaming of an easier life. This woman who modeled for the painting is Anne McCubbin nee Moriarty, Frederick’s wife. The second panel depicts a couple maybe discussing where to erect a building and the third panel is a man working in the scrub with the beginnings of a town in the background, perhaps a view to the future. There are many interpretations of this amazing work.

The ‘Little Girl Lost’ is self-explanatory, it is quite heart wrenching and beautifully painted. As an Australian I can practically smell the bush.

McCubbin has never been exhibited in London before and this is an excellent opportunity for any of the ‘McCubbin family’ who live in the UK to see some of his works.

A second McCubbin called The Slipway, Williamstown, which will be historically interesting, shows the Williamstown docks as they were in the early 19th century.

And finally, an unusual piece of a stunning red head painted on the inside of a tambourine, titled ‘A Nymph by Moonlight’. There are still lovely redheads in our Australian McCubbin family, the tradition continues.

A Sad Discovery by Shepherd William McCubbin

via Lorna McCubbin

Avro Anson L9153 of No 1 A.N.S. (Air Navigation School)Prestwick, was flying a Cross Country Navigation Exercise on the 9th Jan 1939 when it flew into the 2,448 ft mountain in the Rhinns of Kells, 9 miles west of Dalry, Kirkcudbright, Scotland.

This aircraft was discovered on the mountain the following day by Shepherd William McCubbin when he noticed a light plume of smoke rising from the side of the peak, on arrival at the scene he found three of the airmen had been flung clear and one who had died in the burnt out skeleton of the Anson. All four crew were killed. The bodies of the four airmen were removed later that day by a RAF recovery team headed by a Sq/Ldr D.F.McIntyre.

Crew of L9153.

Pilot: F/O Iain Douglas Shields. (Flt Inst).
W/Op: Sgt Norman Hector Duff.
Pupil: LAC Henry Gilbert Stewart Briggs.
Pupil: LAC Gordon Eric Betts.
ASN Wikibase Occurrence #144447

Australian Brothers Jack and Reg McCubbin and Their Experiences in the Pacific Theatre in WW2 – DNA Group 1


Introduction by Kathy McCubbing (family #05, DNA1)

In 2012 Billy McCubbin from Ayrshire in Scotland (family #05 DNA1, originally from Keir in Dumfriesshire) visited distant relatives in Australia and came home laden with news and information about our Australian cousins, including that about two McCubbin brothers, Reginald (b.1919) and John (known as Jack, 1922-2008), both of whom had served in WW2 in the Pacific theatre of operations under extraordinary and extremely challenging conditions, and both had returned home very much the worse for wear as a result of their experiences.

John (Jack) McCubbin (1922-2008)

The family in Australia shared handwritten notes from Jack in which he describes how he served in Papua, at Milne Bay, during WW2. He recalls not only the attacks the Australian troops were subject to but also the dreadful conditions in which they lived: in rain-soaked tents on muddy ground. He was very ill, initially contracting malaria but also suffering with arthritis (which had ailed him since a young man). He spent time in and out of hospital in in Queensland and New South Wales. While he was in hospital in Rocky Creek in Queensland in 1943 he received a telegram informing him that his father had had a stroke, but by the time he managed to get home (it took him 7 days to get to Brisbane) he learnt that his father had died 6 days previously. He volunteered to go to Hollandia where he spent about three months and returned home with “coral germs in the ears, trench mouth, and lost nearly 3 stone weight: I came back a yellow skinned skeleton” he wrote. He suffered with arthritis for all of his life and also unexplained blackouts which worried him.

Reginald McCubbin (b.1919)

Billy also brought back a newspaper article from the Fraser Coast Chronicle of 17 March 2012 entitled “Remembering Sparrow Force. Read about war veteran Reg McCubbin’s tale of survival in Timor” which told the fascinating and sometimes shocking story of Reg McCubbin’s service in WW2. The article was accompanied by a range of photos from WWII and also current photos of Reg with author, Neville Noakes, whose father also served in Sparrow Force and who was writing a book about it. A full length documentary film has also been produced (Footsteps of Sparrow Force). Extracts from the newspaper article are reproduced below:

It has been 70 years since Reg McCubbin fought in one of the first Australian examples of guerilla warfare in a little known Second World War battle to stop the Japanese from taking over Timor. At 93 years old he can’t quite remember the details, but he remembers the Japanese paratroopers, the lack of food and the basic need to survive.

Mr. McCubbin is part of an exclusive and ever-shrinking group of veterans who were known as Sparrow Force, a company of about 1500 Australians who defended Timor in the Second World War against a force of 30,000 soldiers.

Mr McCubbin’s story started in June 1941, when he signed on as an army engineer in the 2/11th field company as a strapping 22 year old. Less than six months later he was shipped out to Timor. He thinks he landed on December 12, five days after the Pearl Harbour bombing, but it’s been too many years for Mr McCubbin to be sure.

When Japanese troops landed on February 19, bombing Darwin on the same day, Mr McCubbin and a small group of engineers were working in Atambua, separated from their main force by Japanese paratroopers. “When the Japanese landed, we were cleaning out a spring for the officers.” he said. The separation saved the small group of engineers from becoming prisoners of war when their company was forced to surrender. Instead they fought from one side of the island to the other.

Mr McCubbin remembers the strange things that happened, such as three Kitty Hawk fighters lying empty on a beach, and fight after fight with groups of Japanese troops. “We would ambush them, they would ambush us.” Mr McCubbin said. He recalls the fighting as simply a means of survival, including one time when they came under friendly fire while resting in a village hut. “All of a sudden we heard machine gun fire and there was bits of grass falling out of the thatched roof.” he said.

Eventually the engineers joined with the 2/2 Independent Company in Dili, in the Portuguese province of the island. It was in Dili, while cut off from the mainland forces, that Sparrow Force carved out a formidable reputation among the Japanese on the island. “Because the fellows fought so well and so hard, the Japanese treated them with a little dignity.” Mr Noakes said.

Despite their fierceness, the company was swiftly running out of supplies and all radio contact with Australia had been cut. Mr McCubbin and the 1500 other men were believed lost to Japanese forces. “Your mum got a telegram to say you were missing in action.” Mr McCubbin said. Radio contact with Australia was not established again until April 1942, two months after the Japanese landed and several companies had become prisoners of war. Mr Noakes stressed the number of dead – including one particular battle where 2000 Japanese soldiers died against the 1500 strong force of Australians. “It’s a measure of how good these blokes were.” he said. They were the first people to engage the Japanese and beat them.

Sparrow Force’s time in the jungle became a record of first and lasts. They held the first Allied invasion of the Second World War when the 2/2 Independent Company informed the Dili commander in the officially neutral Portuguese province that their forces were using the city and he had no choice. They were the last battalion in any war to hold a recognised bayonet charge and one of the first Australian forces to practice guerilla warfare.

“We just done what we had to do to survive.” Mr McCubbin said. Mr McCubbin and the rest of Sparrow Force were evacuated off Timor in November and December 1942, a full year after landing.”

After reading this very thought-provoking article, we contacted Reg’s son, Trevor McCubbin, and through conversations with his father, and personal research Trevor has been able to piece together a detailed account of his father’s life and his experiences in WW2 and has very generously shared this with us for our Cub Reports. It is such an important account that we would like to reproduce it in full and so provide Part One below, which covers Reg’s service in Timor, with Part Two earmarked for next year’s Cub Report (2014) relating his experiences in Papua New Guinea, Morotai, Tarakan and Balikpapan.


Part One
Early Life and WW2 Experiences in Timor (1941-1943)

by Trevor McCubbin

Reg McCubbin was born three months and two days after the finish of the first World War, in Yuleba, a small town 500km west of Brisbane which is the capital of the state of Queensland, Australia. Reg was the son of a pioneering family. His father, William McCubbin, had a carrying business working out of Yuleba bringing wool and wheat from the west to the rail head there.

William was born in 1875 the son of John and Agnes McCubbin the nephew and daughter of James McCubbin who had arrived in Australia in about 1830. James was born in Dumfriesshire Scotland in 1810. James married Christiana McIntyre in 1945. Christiana had arrived in Australia in 1837 with her parents Duncan and Christina McIntyre. Regs parental pedigree on his mothers side included three convicts and goes back to 1823. Owen Tunny a convict who arrived in 1836 married Mary Harrison whose parents were convicts, her father coming out in 1823 and her mother in 1828.

Regs father was 44 when Reg was born so he was brought up in the days where most things were done by horse power. Cars were something only heard about; trains were new and radio something for the future. The last Cob & Co stagecoach went on the run from Yuleba to Surat when Reg was 5 years old. Reg is is still alive at the writing of this story at the age of 94.

The depression had not been kind to the family and they lost their home. One of Reg’s fondest memories is sinking dams with his father when he was 16. He went out 6 years ago and found two of the dams still being used.

1940 found Reg making a living digging quartz from the ground at Cracow in central Queensland in his brother’s gold lease. He spent his 21st birthday at the Cracow pub. There was a town there then but now it is a ghost town with nothing but the pub, still running, and some abandoned shops. He had a drink in the pub in 2008 when he went to revisit the places of his youth.

1941 saw many Australians fighting in the Middle East, including Greece and Crete, and Australia was being threatened by the Japanese moving south with the knowledge they would likely attack British interests in Asia having signed the axis treaty with Germany and Italy. Australia had suffered many casualties in Greece and Crete so Reg enlisted in the Australian Imperial Forces at Toowoomba on the 16 July 1941.

After a stint in training and being hospitalized with a case of the mumps he became part of the 2/11 Field Company. The Company was attached to the 2/40 Battalion in October 1941. The 2/40 Battalion was part of the 8th Division. The 2/40th came out of Launceston in Tasmania. They travelled all the way to Darwin where Reg’s group joined them. Decked out with Boer War equipment and WWI weapons they were a mixed group with the 2/2 Independent Company (commandos) from West Australia also joining them. December 1941 saw them under a training unit in Darwin in the defense of North Australia. In December all Christmas leave was cancelled and just days after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour they disembarked for Timor. Now known as Sparrow Force they were sent in support of the small Dutch and Portuguese garrisons there. Singapore fell and the attack on Pearl Harbour all happened within days of their arrival and the battle of the Pacific began in earnest.


Reginald arrived in Koepang with 1,400 fellow Australians on 12th December 1941. The Australians, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel William Leggatt, included the 2/40th Battalion from the 8th Division as well as the 2/11 field company, the 2/2nd Independent Company as well as other detachments. Once in Timor, Sparrow Force divided. The 2/40th Battalion remained around Koepang in the Dutch zone on the south-west of the island to defend the bay and nearby Penfui airfield, where a flight of Hudson bombers of 2 Squadron RAAF was based. The 2/2nd Independent Company went to the Portuguese zone setting up base at Dili, the administrative capital, on the north coast of Portuguese Timor.

Japanese air raids on the airfield on 26 and 30 January 1942 encouraged the Australian government to make preparations for reinforcements to be sent to Timor. Their arrival was delayed when the convoy, which included the HMAS destroyers Swan and Warrego, was intercepted by Japanese bombers and forced to return to Darwin. Additional headquarters’ staff for Sparrow Force under Brigadier William Veale arrived in Koepang on 12 February.

By 19 February it was clear that the Japanese invasion was imminent and the surviving aircraft of 2 Squadron RAAF, which had flown several missions against Japanese bases and shipping, were despatched to Darwin. That same day, six of the squadron’s Hudsons were destroyed in the Japanese bombing raid on Darwin. By then it was too late to evacuate the troops of Sparrow Force so they stayed on the island.

Reg’s tasks were in construction: building and demolition. Initially the task of the 2/11 Field Coy was the construction of the preparation of the defences for the anticipated invasion. Some of the guns had been taken from ships used in the First World War which had been decommissioned and destroyed. They were remounted facing out to sea. As happened in Singapore, the Japanese didnt oblige them and came from another point on the coast quickly overrunning the defences. The 1,400 inexperienced Australians with a few months’ training were no match for the 5,000 seasoned troops in the initial landing supported by naval and air support, which landed an additional 700 paratroopers behind their lines.

Reg McCubbin was part of the contingent sent to the airfield at Penfui to mine the runway in anticipation of the invasion and then further back where the hospital and HQ were situated.

The Japanese attacked the eastern Zone Dili about midnight on 20 February and the 2/2nd Independent Company was able to inflict some damage on Japanese troops before withdrawing into the hinterland. Other Japanese forces came ashore at Koepang. The Australians fought defensively with counter attacks on the villages they had abandoned, retaking them only to lose them again. The Australians fought valiantly for 4 days resulting in the death of over 900 Japanese.

Sparrow Force was eventually split by the Japanese advance. In West Timor Leggatt’s men, many of them sick with malaria and wounded, were short of ammunition, food and water. They fought a far superior force for four days but the Japanese systematically overrun their positions. Leggett had no option but to surrender with his 1123 men on 23 February. They had fought so fiercely the Japanese believed the force was three times what they were. Brigadier Veale and a group of about 250 men which included the remnants of the 2/11 field Coy in West Timor were able to withdraw east and join the 2/2nd Independent Company in East Timor where they began a guerrilla warfare campaign. The role of the 2/11 at this stage was to hinder the advance of the Japanese by blowing up bridges and tracks to give time for their mates to get away.

They went to East Timor and joined up with the 2/2 Independent Coy and were trained by them as guerrilla fighters. The independent company troops were specially trained for commando-style operations, and they became the only Australian force still in action in enemy territory after the Japanese conquest of south-east Asia. Reg was listed as missing in action on the 22 February 1942 and his family was advised he was missing presumed dead. The Australian soldiers had been told to take no prisoner after finding their comrades, Australian prisoners, with their hands bound and bayoneted, or their throats cuts. This turned out to be the only practical thing to do as they were continually on the run and nowhere to hold them. They knew the same applied to them so every effort to save every man wounded was made. This was accomplished with the help of the local natives who saved the lives of many of the men by carrying them to safety.


Fall of Timor

During the early months, the success of the guerrillas in East Timor was only made possible by the support they received from the local Timorese who, risking execution by the Japanese, acted as porters and guides and provided food and shelter. In April, the force was able to communicate with Australian authorities for the first time. Some of the men had constructed an improvised radio set, ‘Winnie the War Winner’, named after the British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, and within 48 hours of making contact with Darwin they received much needed supplies and directions to continue their campaign.

During the following months the guerrillas inflicted damage on the Japanese occupation forces wherever and whenever they could. However, in August the Japanese launched a major counter-offensive destroying many of the links between the Australians and the local people. Although some of the Timorese were still prepared to risk their lives helping the Australians, it became more and more difficult for the guerillas to operate.

The RAAF and RAN continued supporting Sparrow Force with regular airdrops and supply voyages. In September 1942, 450 troops of the 2/4th Independent Company were landed from the destroyer HMAS Voyager. The ship ran aground in Betano Bay and was scuttled. In November, it was decided to relieve the weary 2/2nd Independent Company by evacuating them by ship. On 1 December, the corvette HMAS Armidale was sunk south of Timor while delivering Dutch colonial troops as part of the relief effort. Most of the crew and all of the troops were lost. The 2/2nd troops were withdrawn later that month.

Sparrow Force operations on Timor were progressively wound down. The Japanese, determined to wipe out the guerrillas, reinforced their garrison, with stronger patrols into the hinterland. In February 1943, the remaining members of Sparrow Force were withdrawn from East Timor. Australian and American aircraft continued bombing Japanese bases but the guerrilla campaign itself was at an end.

Reginald returned to Australia on the 11 January 1942. His condition was not good having contacted beriberi and malaria while in Timor, and tonsillitis. He was admitted to hospital on the 27th and was in and out of hospital for the next 6 months mainly due to bouts of malaria. He returned to his unit in August 1943 (Editor’s note: just a month after his father’s death).

The following link is to a detailed account of the campaign in Timor extracted from Australia in the War of 19391945. Series 1 Army, Volume IV The Japanese Thrust (1st edition, 1957), Author: Wigmore, Lionel Gage, provided on the Australian War Memorial Website:

Chapter 21 – Resistance in Timor (PDF)

Part Two of Reg and the Sparrow Force to be concluded in CUB Report 2014, will relate his experiences during his posting in Papua New Guinea, Morotai, Tarakan and Balikpapan 1943-1945

James McCubbin of Dunscore and His Canadian Descendants – DNA Group 1


compiled by Lorna McCubbin

James McCubbin lived in 1777 at Glenfoot, Dunscore, Dumfriesshire. His son Robert McCubbin and his wife Margaret McKnight had a son, Robert, born 1782 in Troqueer, Kirkcudbright, Scotland.

Notes by Leslie McCubbin of Dunscore relate:

Robert McCubbin was a poor Scottish relative of Captain James Carson of the Dingell who operated his ship on the River Mersey, Liverpool, England.  Robert was employed as a ship’s carpenter in Carson’s ship-building yards. Carson’s younger sister by 20 years and under his ward was Mary who was in a boarding school. Robert fell in love with Mary and they eloped and married. Carson disowned his sister. She was only 15 years at the time. Within the first year, their first child, James, was born in 1804.

Some fourteen years later, with his wife and five children, they set sail for Canada, living for a time in Halifax where Robert pursued his skill as a fine cabinet finisher on ships building in the port. Shortly after he arrived, he petitioned the Lieutenant-Governor for a Grant of Land of 300 acres in the parish of Hampstead, Queens County, New Brunswick. He received the title in 1821, cleared land and built a log home for his growing family. In 1827 he sold the land for “Seventy seven pounds, ten shillings current money of New Brunswick given to them in a handpouch” by John Ogden the purchaser. The family moved to the greener pastures of Upper Canada. In 1836, Robert bought 200 acres in Chatham Twp, Ontario. By 1863, Robert Sr and Mary had four sons and six daughters.

At some point, the story goes, Robert Sr was employed in Port Hope, Ontario, later at Bronte near Hamilton.  Some of the fine panelling in Dundurn Castle, Hamilton was also his work

Robert died in 1873 in Chatham, Kent, Ontario. His wife Mary died in1865. The land passed to his two sons, Robert Jr. and William McCubbin.

Robert and Mary’s descendants now span across Canada and the U.S.

One branch (two brothers, Ira Case and Franklin) of the family moved to western Canada. Ira’s grandson, Robert Bob James McCubbin (1923-2008) of Langley, BC, was one of the first McCubbins to reply to our query letters back in 2001. He provided us with his family’s history. Bob’s grandfather, Ira McCubbin left Ontario and homesteaded in Ladner, BC. He married Minnie Elliott about 1890 and had a large family of nine boys and three girls. They later became successful chicken farmers. There were no dikes in those days and when the great Fraser River flood of 1894 occurred, they had to be rescued and taken to Vancouver. They eventually settled there in the Fairmont area. One of the sons was Alva, father of Bob. Alva had an interesting but short and tragic life. For a time, Alva worked as a plainclothes detective for the Vancouver Police Dept. In World War One he was with the Black Watch Regiment then transferred to the 72nd Seaforth Highlanders, a Vancouver regiment, formed in 1914. Alva served overseas in France and was badly mustard gassed. He moved to Merrit, B.C in 1925 to assist in the first 25 cycle power system in town. At the age of 38 he died in a drowning accident while hunting, witnessed by his wife Jessie and son ‘Bob’. Bob went on to become a teacher and administrator at many Langley schools during his long career.

Franklin McCubbin was the brother of Ira Case McCubbin. We were recently contacted by a great grandson of Franklin, Douglas McCubbin who agreed to have his DNA done. Douglas’ DNA was instrumental in helping us identify and match his family’s roots and branches in Dumfriesshire.

Doug wrote:

I just thought I`d fill you in a bit about my grandfather (son of Franklin) Albert Bacel or Bert as I`m told he preferred.

He was apparently quite the achiever. He had a dairy farm in Ladner and a trucking company. McCubbin Contracting. He built a gillnetter fishing boat and was a renowned marksman, a member of the Pacific Coast Militia Rangers in World War Two; Chairman of the Delta Schoolboard from 1945 until 1955 and he was a judge at the Horse Races in Ladner. I don`t know the details but my aunt sent me a copy of his invitation to Queen Elizabeth 2`s coronation.

There’s much more to tell about the descendants of James McCubbin of Dunscore. We will be including the rest of the story of his American descendants on our website section of Family Groups in 2014.

An Obituary: Donald McCubbing, 1937-2013 – DNA Group 1

by daughter, Jackie Hayes

Don, as he was known to his friends, died after a short illness.  After being diagnosed with his illness he said “I have no regrets about anything I have ever done in my life” which gave my mum and the rest of the family great comfort.

To my sister and me, he was our dad, but to lots of other people he was a great friend, neighbour, ballroom dancer, keen golfer, and a true gentleman who always had a big smile on his face.  A military man, he did his National Service in Cyprus in the late 1950s which gave him his passion for the military.  After national service he joined the Territorial Army (TA) and taught young airforce cadets.  In later life he joined the British Legion, Hale Division, who draped the Union Jack on his coffin and played the Last Post and Reveille at his funeral.  He would have loved that!

Don was the youngest of 9 children and the last of David McCubbings (1837-1859) Gt Grandchildren.  Of all his brothers and sisters he is the only one with the McCubbing name:  The family tree was a bit complicated for a while, but with the help of Kathy and Lorna, we managed to solve an 80 year mystery and, as I found out more about his ancestors and, as he had told his siblings, he did indeed have the right name, and he was very proud of that.

Liverpool, England was the base for Don McCubbing and his family.

Don was part of McCubbin family #05, DNA group 1 who originated in Keir, Dumfriesshire.  Read more about the 80 year old mystery and how it was solved on their family page: #05-DNA-1 John McCubbin & Mgt Tait.

All the best for 2014!!

The MCFHA Committee:

  • Chairperson of McCubbin Family History Association – Kathy McCubbing, Member – Guild of One Name Studies.  Kathy forwards world queries to co-ordinators.
  • Lorna McCubbin – McFHA Co-Founder
  • James & Lorna McCubbin – Sponsors
  • DNA Project Administrator – Lorna McCubbin, Co-Admin – Kathy McCubbing
  • Penny McColm – MCFHA Co-Founder & Co-ordinator for Australia & NZ
  • Co-ordinators specialties: Kathy McCubbing, Dumfries, Lynne McCubbin, Ayrshire, Ronald ‘Rick’ McCubbin, America, Lorna and Kathy – the rest of the world. Welcome to our new coordinator, Heather Marshall (nee McKibbon) for the McKibbon, McKibbin, McKibben, and McGibbon names!
  • MCFHA Sponsors – James & Lorna McCubbin

Click to whom you wish to email; KathyLornaPennyRickLynne, or Heather.

To the many people who have contributed to the content of the CUB report, we say Thank You!

If there is information or photos that you have sent and you don’t find them in this website, please let us know. We will be entering more in 2014.

We are especially grateful to those of you who provided samples for the DNA project. It is providing a great insight into our past.

Contact us about any questions or queries about your McCubbin ancestors.

The McCubbin name, and variants, are registered with the Guild of One Name Studies, searching the McCubbin, McCubbing, McKibbon/en/in, McGibbon name and variants worldwide.

Member #5414

1 thought on “The CUB Report – 2013

  1. Pingback: #33-DNA-1 Robert McCubbin & Margaret McKnight | McCubbin Family History Project

Comments are closed.