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This name is of frequent occurrence in the county and in remote times. Thus we have Kenneth, Donald, and William Manson, the three portioners of the whole of Lyth, by charter in 1524; and there are Mansons, portioners of Kirk in 1531, at which date John and Magnus Manson got a charter (Charter, Andrew, B. of Caithness) of confirmation from the Pope's Legate, Silvester Darius. In 1576 the Mansons were of some note, a number of the name having signed a bond of manrent to George Sinclair of Mey. These notes, however, are confined to a more recent branch of the family, and the pedigree now given was proved in Chancery in 1853, in a suit at the instance of Mr. Anderson, executor of Margaret Manson of London, against her next-of-kin.

James Manson, who resided in Watten, had five sons and two daughters: -

  1. Alexander
  2. William
  3. John
  4. David
  5. Charles, who died at sea
  1. Elizabeth
  2. Christian, who died unmarried
I. ALEXANDER MANSON was a merchant in Thurso, and married Elizabeth Munro. As appears from a tombstone to his memory in the Oswalds' burying-ground in Thurso churchyard, he died in 17-. They had a son: -

James, a merchant in Rotterdam, who, was born in 1726, and died in 1788. He married Margaret Gay, by whom he had a son, William, who died at Curacoa in 1801, without: issue; and a daughter, Margaret, who died in London in June 1849. She is the person referred to above, whose succession; gave rise to the Chancery suit.

II. WILLIAM MANSON was a merchant in Rotterdam, and died. a bachelor in London, in July 1767. Under his settlement the descendants of his sisters were beneficiaries.

III. JOHN MANSON was a ship-carpenter at Rotherhithe, and married Ursula Cobham. He died in 1772, having had two sons and a daughter: -

  1. Alexander, a shipwright at Bermondsey, who married Jean Bowie, and died in 1828. He had four sons and a daughter. The sons were: John and Robert, who both died in India in 1818; David, who died young, and Alexander, Brigadier-General in the Bombay Artillery, who died at Bombay in 1862. Alexander had three children: Alexander R. Manson, major in the 4th Bombay Infantry; Charles James Manson, Acting Political Agent, South Mahratta Country, who was killed in the Indian Mutiny; in May 1859, at Ramdroag; and Mary Anne Jane, who was married to Major Alexander Cunningham Robertson of the 8th Regiment
  2. William, who married Mary Gregory, and died in 1840, aged 88. He had a son, John Jasper, who died in 1826 leaving issue, and a daughter, Mary Ursula, who died in 1777
  1. Mary, who married William Lang, and died in 1838
IV. DAVID MANSON was a merchant in Thurso, and married Jean, daughter of George Oswald, minister of Dunnet. He died without issue.

V. ELIZABETH MANSON married John Sinclair in Watten, and had four daughters: -

  1. Isabella Sinclair, who married David Bruce in Hastigrow, a descendant no doubt of the Bruces who owned the lands of Hastigrow and others in that locality in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. They had two sons, William and David, who both died in America, and five daughters, of whom Jean and Katharine died unmarried; Janet Bruce married Neil Sutherland, and had a son, William, who married Miss McKay, daughter of the Reverend Mr. McKay, minister of Reay. Elizabeth Bruce married George Gunn, and had issue; and Isabella Bruce married Patrick Andrew, and had a daughter, Isabella, who died unmarried, and a son, William Patrick, now Chairman of the Scinde and Punjab Railway, who is married to a grand-daughter of the eminent painter, Sir Henry Raeburn, and has issue
  2. Elizabeth Sinclair, who married John Manson, and had a son, William, and four daughters. William Manson married Isabella, daughter of Donald Williamson of Banniskirk. He had issue, and died in 1846. Jean and Isabella died unmarried. Elizabeth, who died in 1805, married Donald Robeson, writer in Thurso, and had four sons - John, William, Alexander, and Donald, and a daughter, Margaret. John Robeson married in India Miss Dunbar, daughter of Captain Dunbar of Westfield, and left a daughter. The other sons died unmarried. Margaret Robeson, the only daughter, married her cousin, Lieutenant-Colonel Robert Sinclair Sutherland of Brabster, and died in 1869 without surviving issue. Anne Manson, fourth daughter of Elizabeth Sinclair, married Morrison Snody, writer in Thurso,and died without issue in 1846
  3. Jean Sinclair, who married Patrick Brodie in Ulbster, and had issue.
  4. Janet Sinclair, who married George Gibson, and had two daughters - Margaret, who married George Sinclair Sutherland of Brabster; and Barbara, who married Major James Williamson, and had a son and two daughters
Mr. Alexander Brodie and his sister, Margaret, the only surviving children of Jean Sinclair, stood in the same degree of relationship to Margaret Manson of London as did General Manson, and the three were preferred, as next-of-kin, to Miss Manson's intestate succession, but the bulk of her estate was settled by will.

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