The Rhinds of Arrochar
(plus Huxtables & Hamiltons)
by David & John Gillon
The Rhinds in Arrochar. (with some links
to the Huxtables and Hamiltons) by David and John Gillon sons of
Sarah Huxtable Gillon (nee Rhind)
We have deliberately not included the details of any living members
of the family. They are free to add their names if they wish. There
are many Rhinds scattered across the country who are descendents of
the Rhinds of Arrochar and we apologise in advance for any mistakes
or omissions in this text. If you spot any please email us at
Blacks Surnames suggests that name Rhind was derived from the
village of that name in the Kingdom of Fife. There are many Rhinds
from central Scotland up to Inverness. Many of them were stonemasons
and some became renown as sculptors, particularly in the Edinburgh
The Rhind direct association with Arrochar started in the early
1800's and ended in 2006 with the death of the writers' aunt Jane
Martin Meechan Rhind aged 92. From the late 1800's the Rhinds were
closely related to the Huxtables and Hamiltons and as a result the 3
surnames appear as a middle name for many of these family members.
We have added some information about the Huxtables and Hamiltons at
the end of these notes. Because the names Rhind and Huxtable are not
common it is easy to trace these families and be sure that all the
residents of Arrochar with those names are related, but there may be
Hamiltons in Arrochar who are not related.
The main line of the Arrochar Rhinds runs from Alexander Rhind
through his son Walter to the present day.
Alexander Rhind was born in 1788 at Tarbet, Argyll. His father
William was a stonemason who came to Argyll from Dumbarton Castle in
1773 to work on the Argyll section of the Highland Roads and
Bridges. Alexander was one of at least 11 children. The family moved
around Argyllshire as William worked building various bridges and
roads. Our best guess at the moment is that William was born 1746 in
Prestonpans the son of William Rhind and Agnes Balk. The reason for
this guess is that William junior called his first child Agnes which
is not a common Rhind name. The family finally settled in the
Strachur area. They were Freemasons, as well as stonemasons and
blacksmiths. There are Rhind gravestones engraved with Masonic
Exactly when Alexander moved to Arrochar is not known but he married
Janet MacFarlane at Ardentinnie in 1810. He was Blacksmith there and
she was the daughter of a ferryman, Walter MacFarlane. With a name
like McFarlane it would be reasonable to think Janet was from the
Arrochar area, but the 1851 census lists her as born in Johnstone,
Renfrewshire, about 1795. In turn Alexander and Janet had about 10
children. The birth and census records show that the family may have
moved to Port Glasgow shortly after they married but moved to
Arrochar within a couple of years.
From the birth of his eldest son William in 1814, and perhaps
earlier, until his death at age 68 in 1857, Alexander lived at
Tynaclach. We have a copy from the Scottish Records Office of a "Sasine"
(lease?) between Sir James Colquhoun of Luss, Baronet, and Alexander
"for the causes therein specified Sold Alienated and disowned and in
feu farm let and Demitted", "All and Whole that portion of Ground
consisting of one half acre and Twenty Perches - Imperial measure
being part of the farm of Stronafyne in the parish of Arrochar",
dated 1835. A feuduty of 5 pounds sterling per year with various
interest penalties for late payment was set in the document. His
wife Janet died in 1858. His occupation was shown on the census as
blacksmith employing one man, his son Walter also listed as a
Alexander's children were: -
Catherine born 1811?, at Port Glasgow, later married Robert Govan
(Gavin) and lived in Glasgow.
All the rest of the children were born at Arrochar.
William born 1814 appears to have moved to Falkirk
Janet born 1815. Died in Glasgow in 1859 and was single. Her brother
Martin signed the death certificate.
Agnes born 1817 later married John McDougald of Arrochar but lived
Walter born 1820 see below.
Isobel born 1823. In 1845 married Thomas Barrett (Burrett) and lived
Helen born 1825. In 1847 married Peter Campbell and lived in
Martin born 1829. In ? married Helen McPhail and lived in Glasgow.
Died in Glasgow 1900. Had son Martin at Arrochar in 1868 but he died
in 1895 in Glasgow. He was single and a carter. He died in some sort
Alexander born 1831, died young.
Mary born 1833. She had a son James Rhind in 1856 at Tynaclach, who
lived with his uncle John and Agnes McDougall (her sister) in
Glasgow. She married a widower Robert Muirhead in 1861 and lived in
Glasgow but unfortunately died in 1868.
Alexander born 1839 later married Mary Ging and lived at Kilmarnock.
Walter continued the family association with Arrochar. In 1843 he
fathered a son John Rhind with Mary MacFarlane. John at age 7 is
listed in the census as living with his grandparents Alex and Mary
MacFarlane at Inverchullin.
In 1851 Walter married Sarah McNicol of Glen Orchy. and had at least
6 boys and 3 girls. In the 1850's they moved to Glasgow, then about
1860 they moved to "Fiolin Reach", Lochgoilhead but sometime in the
1860's they moved back to Ballyhennan on the Tarbet road. Walter
died in 1886 at Upper Ballyhennan. After Walter's death Sarah lived
at first with her unmarried son Alexander at Ballyhennan but later
moved to Tighloan, Tarbet. Sarah died in 1909 aged 76. her address
is given as Tynaclach.
John born 1843 to Mary McFarlane. Married 1868 at Arrochar to
Catherine Hunter. His usual address on the marriage certificate is
Prince Consort, steamer, Loch Lomond. They had a daughter Christine
in 1868 at Arrochar. John lived with the MacFarlanes into the 1870's
but what happened to his wife and daughter is unknown. John himself
was a seaman and the last we can find of him is as Mate of the ship
Merlin in Larne harbour in the 1891 census, age 45, where he is
still listed as married.
born 1851 at Glenorchy. In early 1870's worked for his uncle James
McNicol blacksmith at Glenorchy. Fathered John McNicol Rhind with
Margaret Anderson in 1877 at Glenorchy. We have no further
information about John or Margaret at the moment. Alex returned to
Ballyhennan between 1881 and 1891 to live with his Mother. He was a
blacksmith. In the 1891 census he and his mother are listed as
bilingual, Gaelic and English. He died in 1900 at Tarbet and his
death certificate states he was single.
John born 1853? in Glasgow. Died 1875 of a fever lasting 20 days. He
was single and working as a shepherd near Kirkintilloch.
Walter born 1855 in Partick. We have no information about him after
the 1871 census.
Malcolm born 1858 at Lochgoilhead. Died 1864 age 6 at Upper
Janet (Jessie) born 1859 at Lochgoilhead. Married William McIntosh
(widower) in 1894 in Glasgow. He worked at Inversnaid Hotel as a
gardener or coachman. She died aged 81 in 1940 in Arrochar.
Catherine born 1861 at Coilessan, West Loch Longside. In 1884 she
had a son Allan Rhind while working as a domestic servant in
Glasgow. Allan's name was changed to Malcolm a year later. In 1891
she was living with her mother and brother at Ballyhennan. In 1900
she had a second son Thomas Huxtable Rhind while working as a
laundress in Edinburgh and again in the 1901 census she was living
with her mother but this time at Tighloan, Tarbet. She is listed as
bilingual, Gaelic and English. There are more notes on Malcolm and
Thomas below. In 1919 she married Henry Pannell skilled operator at
the Range (widower). They both were living at Tighnaclach. She died
in 1932 age 71 at Chestnut Cottage, Arrochar.
Sarah McNicol Rhind born 1866 at Upper Ballyhennan. In 1893 married
Thomas Huxtable in Edinburgh. see notes on Huxtables below. She died
in Arrochar in 1942 age 76.
(click here to see the gravestone).
Twins Martin and Malcolm born 1868 at Upper Ballyhennan.
Martin's name was changed to James. In 1891 he was working (and
living with) as a hammerman for his brother Alexander the blacksmith
at Ballyhennan. In 1897 he married Jeanie Colville and they moved to
Cowdenbeath then Kinross as a coachman. He died in Kinross in 1936.
He had Walter Alexander born 1900, died 1968, Robert John 1906, and
Janet McNicol 1910.
McNicol Rhind born 1868 at Ballyhennan. In 1901 age 32 (coachman) he
married Janet Addison Paterson in Fife and was living in
Dunfermline. Don't know exactly when he returned to Arrochar but his
son Walter was married in Arrochar in 1930 and was a labourer at the
range. His son David Walter was born in Arrochar in 1939 but moved
back to Fifeshire. Malcolm died 1947 aged 78 at Kirkfield Place,
Arrochar. His wife died the same year in Fife.
to see the gravestone).
(Cally) and Thomas (Tam) Huxtable Rhind, sons of Catherine Rhind.
Cally was born in Glasgow in 1886. In the 1891 census he was with
his mother at Ballyhennan. After that We have temporarily lost trace
of him, until he was married in 1913 (age 30?) to Janet Hamilton,
His address is shown as Tynaclach and his occupation as labourer at
Their first daughter, Jane Martin Meechan Rhind was born in 1914 at
Tynaclach, and died 2006 at Cobbler View. She was named after her
grandmother Jane Meechan (Michan), wife of her mother's father,
Cally enlisted and there his confusion over his war service as he is
believed to have used his father's name. Many of the First World War
records were destroyed in the WW2 biltz of the UK, and we have so
far not been able to find his service records. We know he did serve
in the Black Watch and was wounded early on receiving shrapnel in
his back. He may also have had some connection with the Fife and
Forfar yeomanry, which was a mounted unit, but was absorbed into the
Black Watch at the start of WW1.
Their second daughter, Catherine was born 1917 at High Kirkfield,
and died in 1971 at Cobbler View. It is interesting that her birth
was registered by her father who was shown as a charge hand at the
range and had presumably been invalided out of the Black Watch by
Sarah Huxtable born 1920 at High Kirkfield.
1986 at Clarkston, Glasgow. The writers' mother.
Jamesina Hamilton born 1923 at Kirkfield. Died 1997 at Cobbler View
Alexander born 1927 at the Admiralty Cottages. Died 1971 in
Johannesburg, South Africa.
this time Cally was a charge hand at the range.
During the Second World War Cally was in the Home Guard, Sandy
(click here for further info on Sandy)
in the Home Guard and later the Merchant Navy, Jean served in the
ATS, Sarah (Sally) also served in the ATS, Catherine (Kit) served in
the RAF as a nurse and at the end of the war was stationed for a
time in Egypt and Ina in the ATS.
Cally died in 1949 at the Admiralty Cottages, age 64. His wife Janet
(nee Hamilton) died in 1966 at Cobbler View, age 83.
Tam was born in Edinburgh in 1900. His middle name was Huxtable. His
mother was working as a laundress at the time. Her sister, Sarah,
had married Thomas Huxtable and was living in Edinburgh at that
time. Tam is listed in the 1901 census living at Tynloan with his
mother. He was too young for active service in WW1 but joined the
Argylls in 1918 and served in India. He gave his occupation as
shepherd when he enlisted. After his discharge in 1922 he married
Hannah Gardner in 1925 at Bonhill. He was 25 and a Railway
surfaceman. His usual address was given as Chestnut Cottage,
Arrochar, which was his mother's address. Later he lived with his
wife in Lochgoilhead. During WW2 Tam served in the Home Guard and
received a commendation for his service. On enlisting in the Home
Guard he gave his address as High Glencroe, but sometime during the
war he moved to Mountview, Lochgoilhead. Unfortunately their only
child Janetta died in 1958 at "Planetree" Lochgoilhead aged 32. Tam
and his wife continued to live in Lochgoilhead until she died in
1963, age 70, and he died in 1978 at age 78.
Here are some recollections of our mother Sally Gillon (nee Sarah
Huxtable Rhind) about her father Malcolm "Cally" Rhind. As a child
Cally having to go the doctor to have small pieces of shrapnel
removed from his back from wounds received during the first World
War. Occasionally the shrapnel would appear just under the skin from
deeper down and the doctor would cut them out. She remembered him
building his own wooden dinghy so he could set a fishing net in the
loch and remembered seeing dolphins in the loch.
While working on the Peggy, the range torpedo recovery vessel one
day his wage packet dropped out of his pocket and over the side.
Presumably it contained coins as it sank to the bottom. Fortunately
a diver working on the Peggy was able to recover it for him. When he
retired his colleagues presented him with a model of the Peggy in a
glass case which they had made themselves. It is still in our
possession. When he died his colleagues from the range all attended
the funeral. We believe they were refused time off because of an
Admiralty Inspection of the range but they all went anyway.
She also recalled when Tam lived in Glencroe, he woke late one
winter morning puzzled why it was so dark so late until he tried to
go outside only to find snow drifted over the top of the door and
After Cally's wife Janet (nee Hamilton) died in 1966 only our 3
maiden aunts (Kit, Ina and Jean) remained of the Rhinds living in
Arrochar. Jean was the last survivor, dying in 2006.
The first trace we have of the Huxtables is in the Scottish census
of 1881 in Edinburgh. They may be a Yorkshire Family. Thomas
Huxtable (senior) the son of a shoemaker Arthur Huxtable was born in
England, as were Thomas (junior) and Caroline, although his wife
Mary Carracher (or Kirracher) was born in Edinburgh. When he died in
1918 Thomas senior's death certificate shows him as an army
pensioner having served as a private in the 1st. Dragoon Guards. He
is shown in the census as a stableman.
am not sure exactly how many children he had but have found:-
Caroline born Yorkshire 1860? Married John Campbell 1888. Died at
Arrochar in 1944 age 84.
Thomas born England 1864? Married Sarah McNicol Rhind in 1893. See
Alice born 1866, died 1938 age 72 in Edinburgh.
Mary born England 1869
Leonora born Ireland 1875, died 1948 age 75 in Edinburgh.
Ernest born South Leith 1883.
I assume the family moved around because Thomas senior was still in
the army prior to 1880. Thomas junior served his apprenticeship as a
saddler in Edinburgh.
The connection between the Rhinds and Huxtables started in the late
1880's early 1890's. Caroline Huxtable was working at the Tarbet
hotel and married John Campbell of Tarbet. It is believed Thomas
Huxtable (junior), her brother visited her at Tarbet and met Sarah
McNicol Rhind (the daughter of Walter and Sarah Rhind) and later
married her in 1893 in Edinburgh.
Thomas junior and Sarah's first child Sarah McNicol Huxtable was
born in 1894 but unfortunately died the same year. In 1897 Sarah
McNicol Rhind Huxtable was born in Edinburgh Then followed:-
Mamie born 1898? in India?
Leonora born 1899 in Colchester Barracks? Died in 1980 at Arrochar
Alexander born 1905 Dublin. Married Hannah Monaghan (1908-1986).
Died 1973 at Arrochar. They had 3 children in the 1930's but
unfortunately Edward died as a baby. Alexander was a skilled
labourer at the range.
From family history we believe Thomas junior was also in the Lancers
(6th and 17th) and travelled while serving hence the children all
being born in different countries. There is a medal card at the
National Archives, Kew, for a Thomas Huxtable in the Tank Corps,
which may be his as the lancers all became mechanised regiments.
Thomas died in the Victoria Infirmary, Glasgow in 1928. He was
living at Tighness and was a jobbing gardener. His wife Sarah died
in 1942 at Kirkfield Place, but her usual residence is given as
Chestnut Cottage on the death certificate.
Thomas' wife Sarah provides the link with the Rhinds and his
daughter Sarah the link to the Hamiltons. In 1924 Sarah McNicol
Rhind Huxtable married Charles Stewart Hamilton. Charles died in
1958 and Sarah in 1973 in Arrochar. Their children and descendents
are still in Arrochar, England and Australia.
James Hamilton senior (son of Robert Hamilton and Margaret McDonald)
came to Scotland from Ireland sometime in the 1830's. His wife Janet
Cassidy's family came from Antrim. He was a road labourer living at
Kilervan. Killirvan (there are various spellings) was an estate of
the Duke of Argyll's, a couple miles east of Macrahanish in Kintyre.
Trodigal east and west are in the same area. There were coal
diggings at Trodigal and the coal was carried to Campbeltown on the
From the census we know they had at least 6 children, James junior,
Janet, Margaret, Donald, Daniel and Mary born during the 1850's.
James senior died in 1864 aged 55 of typhus fever, and Janet in 1874
aged 64. The descendents of their children still live in the
James junior was born about 1839 in the parish of Southend. In 1871
he married Jane Michan (Meechan) whose family were fisherman from
Ireland. Her parents were William Michan and Catherine (or Mary-Ann)
Stewart. Stewart and Meechan have been carried down as a middle name
in several generations.
They had a large family, Kate, William, Robert Daniel, Janet,
Charles, James and ?. their descendents are still in the Campbeltown
Janet provides the link to the Rhinds. She was born in 1882 in
Campbeltown. In 1913 she married Malcolm Rhind at Arrochar. Between
1901 and 1913 we believe Janet worked for a time as a housekeeper in
Ballachulish. P.J.Cronin, the author, is said to have met her there
and used her as the model for Janet the housekeeper in his famous
novel Doctor Finlay's casebook.
Charles provides the link to the Huxtables. He was born in 1888 in
Campbeltown and married Sarah McNicol Rhind Huxtable in 1924 at
Arrochar. I assume he followed his sister Janet to Arrochar. His
occupation is given as Labourer at the range. Charles died in 1956,
and Sarah in 1973. She was known as Aunt Cissie to our branch of the
Rhinds. Their children and descendents are still in Arrochar,
England and Australia.
Ian Hamilton told the writer that when he was very young he and his
mother buried his grandfather's lancer's sabre and breastplate on
the shore to avoid a family argument over who should have them.
Unfortunately the they forgot the exact spot and they have never
The Rhind/Huxtable/Hamilton relationship: -
Catherine Rhind sister to Sarah McNicol Rhind who married Thomas
Huxtable. Catherine's son Malcolm Rhind married Janet Hamilton whose
brother Charles married Sarah McNicol Rhind Huxtable (Thomas and