George Stephen

“On track to make a real rail fortune”. IF Donald Smith, Lord Strathcona, from Forres, was Canada’s richest man in the 1900s, his younger cousin George Stephen, from Dufftown, was not far behind. And as 1st Baron Mount Stephen, he was the first Canadian to attain a peerage. His origins were humble. He was born […]

Donald Alexander Smith

Donald Alexander Smith was born on August 6, 1820, the second of three sons of Alexander Smith, a tradesman of Archiestown and his wife, Barbara, daughter of Donald Stewart of Leanchoil. Educated at Anderson Institution, he joined the town clerk’s office at the age of 16, but two years later, emigrated to Canada to join […]

John Ogilvie

This is the remarkable story of John Ogilvie, who as a Catholic priest in penal times had to operate under the cloak of secrecy. He was eventually captured, tortured and in 1615 hanged, aged just 36. His crime? Failing to disown his religion. The bravery, devotion and unshakeable spirit of this young man from Keith […]

George Gordon

George Gordon – Man of Science Moray Connections celebrates the achievements of those from Moray who made their mark nationally or internationally.  For most, that meant going out to the world. But in the case of one nineteenth century Moravian, the scientific world came to Moray, to visit him. That man was George Gordon, Church […]

Patrick Sellar

If one person epitomised all that was hated about the Highland Clearances that man would be identified as Elgin born Patrick Sellar.  Indeed his gravestone at Elgin Cathedral still attracts visitors from overseas with Scottish connections eager to record their hatred. And yet without the Clearances and Patrick Sellar in particular, would we be celebrating […]

James Philip

Moray’s Buffalo King Of all those Moravians who made their mark nationally or internationally, few could have had as colourful a career as the boy from Dallas, James Philip, rancher, senator, gold prospector, the man who saved the buffalo from extinction, the brother-in-law of Sioux Chief, Crazy Horse. Born at Auchness Farm, Dallas, one of […]

William Marshall

WILLIAM MARSHALL (1748-1833) William Marshall was born at Fochabers, Banffshire, on the 27th December 1748. When about twelve years of age he entered the service of the Duke of Gordon and soon rose to be butler and house-steward. That he was a great favourite with the members of the Duke’s family and with the many […]

James Ramsay MacDonald

The Prime Minister From Lossiemouth James Ramsay MacDonald from Lossiemouth was the first British Labour prime minister.  MacDonald played a conspicuous part in the political history of 20th century Britain and yet never forgot his Lossiemouth roots. As part of the Moray Connections programme a Ramsay MacDonald trail has been established in his home town […]

Hugh Falconer

We should raise a celebratory cup to Hugh Falconer of Forres. Why a cup and not a glass?  Because in recognising the life and achievements of Hugh Falconer we celebrate a Moray great who brought tea drinking to the ordinary man and woman in Victorian Britain. And we also celebrate a great thinker and scientist […]