Ancestry of David Livingstone

David Livingstone’s ancestry

Did Dr. David Livingstone’s grandfather really die at the Battle of Culloden?

Dr. Alexander Carmicheal wrote a piece in the Celtic Review of 1909 that Neil Livingstone, a great grandfather of the explorer who lived on the island of Lismore joined the Jacobite cause which was led by Prince Charles Edward Stuart, affectionately known as “Bonnie Prince Charlie.” After surviving the battle, he made his way home, however, was unable to return to Lismore so ended up at Ulva. This conflicts with Dr. Livingstone’s assertion that his grandfather was killed at the battle.

Carmicheal’s view is one which was held by the Argyll Livingstones.

It is interesting to note that the livingstones of Argyll followed the Stewarts of Appin into the Battle of Culloden where Donal Livingstone retrieved the banner of the Stewarts and brought it back to Ballachulish. The Livingstones of Lismore were known as the Barons of the Bachull of which Dr. David Livingstone (e) is descended.

My great great great grandmother is Ann Livingston(e), born about the same time as Dr. Livingstone. Ann married William Stewart at Old Kilpatrick 23 May 1834. So what was the connection which enabled William Stewart and Ann Livingstone to cross paths? My ancestors have often said “Ann is in some way related to Dr. Livingstone, however, I have been unable to find the connection. William was born in Stirling in 1808, but Ann’s birthdate is unknown, all we know is that Ann was not born in Dumbartonshire, because in the 1841 census it states she was not born in the county.

Livingstone’s father brought his family to Blantyre near Glasgow to work in the Cotton mills and his brothers also worked at the factory. I thought that maybe Ann worked there, but the National LIbrary of Scotland has stated that there is no known record of those who worked at the mill.

As for Ann being married to William Stewart, I am curious as to how they met. I read somewhere that people rarely married under the age of 20 in the 1800s and in fact that the average age for a woman to be married in Scotland during this time was around 24, but people tended to wait longer to get married if their economic circumstances did not favour them when they were younger. This is more so for men, which explains why the average age for men was 26 during the early 1800s.

David Livingstone’s parents were Neil Livingstone and Mary Morrison. They had five sons and three daughters. The names of the sons Charles, John, Duncan, Donald, Neil, and daughters, Mary and Catherine. Not a lot is known about Dr. Livingstone’s uncles and aunties. I note that Charles died in 1815 from another researcher’s notes. 1815 was the year of the battle of Waterloo, so did he lose his life there? I read that Livingstone’s Uncles all served in the Napoleonic wars, but I guess this was not necessarily at Waterloo because the Napoleonic wars went on for a number of years.

I have used a lot of websites such as Scotlands People, Family Search, Rootschat, Clan Livingstone, and others. I find all of these sites useful.

William Stewart and Ann Livingstone’s son, Robert Stewart, (born 1842), migrated to Australia in 1862, then to New Zealand in 1865. Robert is my great grandfather. Some of the skills which Robert learned in Scotland as a young man served him well in New Zealand. He operated a brewery at Greymouth (NZ) for a number of years. This was continued by his son Archie until 1961 when it closed.