Page 13 Elizabeth Douglas and her Descendants

Elizabeth Douglas and her Gloag Descendants

Charles Douglas the carpenter and Jean Galloway had one daughter named Elizabeth. Elizabeth married a mason named George Gloag from Muthill in Perthshire. They were to have six children. George’s parents were Alexander Gloag and Ann Drummond. Alexander was a spirit merchant in Muthill in 1851. There were 11 other children in the family, two of whom went to Australia in 1857. According to a letter from his father, George was working on an extension to Logiealmond College in 1861. He also worked at Larbert the next year.

Logiealmond College, where George Gloag worked in 1861 on an extension. Image from:

This is likely to have been at a new school, known as the Royal Scottish National Institution. It was intended as a school for children with learning difficulties, known then as “imbeciles.” The term may be offensive now and cause us to shudder but the intention was to improve the quality of life of those in need.

Rather than raising funds by relying on a few large donations, the idea of a penny subscription was introduced. Enough funds soon accumulated to allow the board of directors to purchase land. As it was to be a national institution, the Stenhouse Estate near Larbert was chosen for its central location and excellent rail links. The Board commissioned Frederick Pilkington to design the school.

The first dormitory opened in May 1863 and Dr Brodie, who had run the school at Gayfield Square, became the first resident physician. The new establishment was called the Scottish National Institution for the Education of Imbecile Children and was intended for children aged between six and twelve, although older and younger children were soon taken.

Initially all the children were admitted on a fee-paying basis. For those whose families could only afford part of the fee, the Institution would award subsidies following the election of suitable applicants by donors to the Society  (from Archives Hub

From another letter the next year we learn of the difficult economic situation caused by the American Civil War affecting UK trade with America:

Every trade and everything is dull here greatly owing to the war in America. St. Margaret’s College in Crieff is just lying dead all shut up.”     

Source: Jim Bullen website, see below.

George Gloag married first in June 1863, a marriage reported in several newspapers. Sadly, his wife died in 1865. This was also reported in the newspapers, such as the Stirling Advertiser, below.

Elizabeth Douglas, then, was his second wife. Newspapers also provide other information. The Strathearn Herald in 1911 included a “50 years ago” column. On one occasion it repeated a story about how George Gloag had been walking home one night when he spotted a packet. Upon examination it turned out to include £21 in two notes. Rather than keep the money George took steps to find the owner and return the packet to him. He was rewarded with £1.

In 1871 Elizabeth, her husband and a newly born boy, unnamed as yet, were living at New Fowlis with her mother, Jane Galloway (Census 357/00 ED002/000). This was Alexander Charles. George was paying £4-0 in rent for a house at King Street in 1877/78 according to valuation rolls available on Ancestry. The owners were the heirs of Alexander Campbell. Presumably that is Campbell of Monzie Castle. In 1879/80 and 1881/82 the rent was £6 for a house on East High Street. Feu duty added 10 shilling and 6 pence to his costs.  He paid £4-5-0 for a house and loom in 1882/83 then £5-15 in 1884/85. These last two were in George Street.

In 1881 George himself was a lodger at St Fillans, presumably building in the area whilst Elizabeth and five children were living at 27 East High Street in Crieff. As only the youngest at this time had been born in Crieff they had probably moved there around 1878/9. Before then they were living in Muthill, as that is where 3 children were born. However, New Fowlis may have been inside Muthill Parish at this time.

From the Valuation Rolls on Ancestry we can see that George paid £2-10-0 rent for a house on Drummond St in 1885/86 and 1887/8. They had lived there from 1885 at least. This was a considerable saving than on his previous houses in Crieff.  He was paying £5-0-0 from 1891/92 until 1897/98 but perhaps this was for a larger house. He was a tenant of the owner of Drummond Castle estate throughout this time.

George, Elizabeth and six children were at Drummond St, Muthill on the 1891 census. Janet, who was 15, was a general domestic servant. This was to be her lot in life. She and the youngest two, Peter and Helen, were born in Muthill but the others were born in Crieff Parish. George was certainly at New Fowlis in 1896 as noted above. Eldest grandson George was living with Jane Galloway at the time of the census.

Later they left Perthshire, living at 15 Livingstone Place, Newington, Edinburgh in 1901. 

Image below of Livingston Place from Google Earth.

Elizabeth died aged 60 at 45 Buccleuch Place, Edinburgh in August 1905. Her son Robert was with her at the end. She had 3 ailments, one of which was a 5 year gastric dilatation (SR 685/04 1079). This was the family home, presumably, as George the mason was paying £18-0-0 a year in rent (VR100/237/73). George and unmarried children Janet, Peter and Helen were living at 2 Moncrieff Terrace, Newington, Edinburgh in 1911. Two rooms had windows. (Census 685/05014/00). None could speak Gaelic. George was still a mason at this time.

Hourglass Tree of Elizabeth Douglas and George Gloag:

Generation VIII: Family of Elizabeth Douglas and George Gloag

1. Alexander Charles Gloag, 1871-1941

2. Anne Gloag, 1873- 1954

3. Janet Gloag, 1875-1940

4. George Gloag, born 1877

5. Elizabeth Jane Gloag, 1878-1849

6. William Gloag, 1881-1930

7. Robert Galloway Gloag, born 1883

8. Peter Gloag, 1886-1935

9. Helen Gloag, 1886-1975

Helen Gloag married a Glasgow man named William Dalgliesh and they had a son called Andrew in Australia. I have found that this is the same Andrew Gloag Dalgliesh who was awarded the British Empire Medal for “outstanding loyalty, zeal and devotion to duty during service in the Korean theatre.”

At this time (sometime in 1953) he was a Chief Ordnance Artificer on HMAS Anzac. The award dates to 10th November 1953 but I am unsure what the action was or when it occurred. Andrew received the award from Queen Elizabeth II herself, I believe, in Melbourne in 1954. Andrew’s service number was 29576. He had enlisted at Melbourne.



Elizabeth’s widower George Gloag emigrated to Australia at the age of 65, with his daughters Helen and Janet. They sailed on the SS Themistocles, sailing from London to Brisbane, though their destination was Melbourne. They landed on 1st January.

They must have been inspired to emigrate by Peter Douglas Gloag who had sailed from Antwerp, landing at Melbourne on 26th August 1911. Peter was one of several Britons in 3rd class on the Roon. It had sailed from Bremerhaven.

At first they lived with Peter at 79 Nelson Road, Fawkner, Melbourne. Peter had changed occupation, from ironmonger to salesman of some sort. How well father George was is not known but certainly he was dead by February 1916.

In 1914 all the family lived at 100 Nelson Road, Emerald Hill, South Melbourne. Helen and Janet were at the same address until 1924.

I have unearthed a lot about Peter Douglas Gloag from Ancestry. He joined the Imperial Australian Army on 17th February 1916 in Melbourne. As a result we have a physical description of him and his full service and medical history has survived.

Peter was 5ft 7 inches in height, chest 36 (39 when expanded). His weight was 164 lb. Peter had a fair complexion, blue eyes and auburn hair. He said he was a member of the Church of England. His sister Janet was named as next of kin so this suggests that he had not yet met Elizabeth Atkinson or that they were not engaged. Peter had a scald scar on his left thumb and a birthmark on his right thigh. He had received vaccinations as an infant.

Peter was assigned to K Company at 16 Depot, Bendigo Camp, Melbourne. He did not remain in the army long. There are several documents relating to treatment for bunions and corns, which did not improve, and a medical board noted “both feet covered with corns” which he had suffered since around 1900, ie when he was about 14 or 15. A doctor treating him said he “has been unable to drill properly on account of corns on feet.” The board agreed unanimously to discharge him from the army.

He married an Elizabeth Atkinson in 1916. They had a son called Douglas Gloag who had 2 children and has descendants today. Peter died at Northcote, Victoria in 1936. From the Australian electoral rolls we know where the couple lived between 1917 and 1931. The Australian electoral rolls indicate that they had a son named Douglas Gloag (married to an Elizabeth) who was a clerk. They lived at 113 Westgarth Street, Northcote, Batman, Victoria until 1977. They had children and I would love to make contact with them.

Elizabeth Jane Gloag also emigrated to Australia. She had married a man named Ferguson. She died in South Melbourne in 1949.

Four sons of George Gloag and Elizabeth Douglas: Alex, Geordie, Will and Peter Gloag
(From Jim Bullen)

Generation X: Family of Margaret Gloag and William Spikins Bullen

1. William Alexander Bullen, died 1931

2. James Glenister Bullen, born 1933

Alexander Charles Gloag and his Family-  to Canada

Mrs Galloway was named as guardian when Alexander Charles Gloag entered Fowlis Wester* school in 1878. Apparently he had previously attended school in Crieff. He left in March 1882. Alex became a mason, like his father. He married Ann Kirk in 1896.

Alex was certainly living at 139 Buccleuch St, Edinburgh in 1928 as that is the home address given by daughter Margaret when she emigrated, as detailed below. When Alexander Charles Gloag died intestate in February 1941 his address was 9 Bristo Place, Edinburgh. George Gloag of 190a Dereham Road, Norwich, Norfolk, England (his son) was granted the estate of £202-11-0.

There is a photo below of their eldest child, Margaret Gloag (Meg). Alex visited Meg and her husband in Canada in 1930. Meg sailed from Greenock on possibly 4th August 1928, travelling 3rd class on the SS Montclare (information from Ancestry). She arrived at Montreal, Quebec on 11th August. Meg could read and had paid her own passage. One question on the entry form asks if any member of your family has physical defects and she answered yes. Who this was and what the defect was is not explained but handwritten by B Walker beside this is “entry approved.” Meg had $50 with her.

She described herself as a housewife, going to live with her fiance in Dawson Creek Margaret had married a man named William Spikins Bullen in 1928. However the departure list described her as a clerkess. Presumably she did not intend to work outside the home in Canada. He was from Newcastle upon Tyne.

A Margaret Gloag was awarded the Victory Medal and War Medal as a VAD nurse in WW1, serving from June 1916 until April 1917. Whether this was the same Margaret I cannot say.

Their elder son, Sandy, died in an accident the next year. Apparently Alex and Ann had intended to live in Canada but after this returned home. The tragic detail of this little boy’s death is given on Jim Bullen’s website.

Margaret Gloag (from Jim Bullen)

Ancestry has passenger lists including those of Meg Gloag’s parents on their visit to her. It seems that they were in Canada for 2 years, travelling out 3rd class from Glasgow on the SS Athenia on 4th October 1929 and returning on the SS Ascania which sailed from Montreal to London, arriving there on 12th October 1931. Their home address was still 139 Buccleuch Street, Edinburgh.

Jim Bullen is related to Alexander Gloag and has his own website. It includes photos of family members, family trees and anecdotes about relatives. We have been in touch with each other and have agreed to make use of each other’s material. I was delighted to find that he has DNA in common with both myself and my father, demonstrating the accuracy of our research.

Alexander Gloag, toddler Sandy Gloag and (I believe) Margaret Gloag. From Jim Bullen

Generation IX: Family of Alexander Charles Gloag and Ann Kirk

1. Margaret Gloag, 1897-1978

2. George Gloag, born 1900

3. James Alexander Gloag, 1902-1944

4. Drummond Gloag, 1906

George had a daughter named Cecilia in 1926 and she has descendants. James had a boy who died at birth and two daughters. There is at least one descendant from Generation XI.

South Africa

George Gloag and Elizabeth Douglas‘s son William Gloag emigrated to South Africa and had two children there in the 1920s (Pamela and McEwan). His brother Robert Galloway Gloag seems to have emigrated there, too. A Mr R G Gloag, aged 22, departed from Southampton on the SS Galeka on 1st December 1906, bound for East London, South Africa. He travelled steerage class. RG Gloag was a mason, increasing the likelihood that this was indeed George Gloag’s son.

Other Descendants of Elizabeth Douglas and George Gloag

Ann Gloag married Donald McLeod and had children George and Annie.

Elizabeth Jane Gloag married Joseph Ferguson and they had children James and Alice. Elizabeth died in South Melbourne, Australia in 1949.