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Millsops Roots

Karon Gilliand

On 8 June 1823 in the Ayr parish of St Quivox and Newton, Jackson Millsop married Taylor Anderson.

A daughter Elizabeth was born that same year, followed by William in1824, John Anderson in 1827 (born in the Gorbals), Margaret in 1829, James in 1831 and Jackson in 1835.

Jackson was a coal miner born around 1801, seemingly in Ayr, but this has not been established as there is no family presence at that time in Ayr.

It seems likely that he was of Irish origin. There are a few records of Millsop/Millsoap/Milsops etc in Ayr in the early 1820 to 1860s and there is only one listing of the name in the present day in our area. In Ireland the name is found in Co. Arrnagh and Co. Tyrone. In America the name is widespread, especially using the Milsaps spelling.

In St Quivox, in the 1841 census was another family, that of Samuel and Helen Milsoap. Samuel was 63 years of age and his wife 35 (perhaps this was meant to be 53 as she is a widow 10 years later aged 63). They were both from Ireland as was their 19 year old daughter Agnes. Their other children were Martha, Margaret, Samuel, William and Sarah born between 1827 to 1836 in Maybole. It seems likely that Jackson and Samuel are related.

In the Ayr Old Parish Records there is a lone entry for the death of 69 year old Margaret Milisap on 5 May 1825, wife of labourer Samuel Millsap. Cause of death was presumed as the decay of nature.

So could this Samuel and Margaret be the parents of Samuel and Jackson? It would mean that my great great grandmother Margaret (daughter of Jackson) was named after the aforementioned Margaret Johnstone. It is a puzzle and my research will continue until I can verify some facts. By 1881 all traces of the known Millsop ancestors have gone. My guess was that the family emigrated to America and only this past week has that been verified.

There is no trace of Jackson and Taylor after 1841, I can only presume that Jackson died. Taylor on the other hand may have remarried as there is another marriage entry for a Taylor Anderson to Hugh Bradley in Dundonald in 1847. If this is not our Taylor then it is certainly a relative of hers.

It was not until the 1841 census return that I discovered that Jackson and Taylor had another daughter, Elizabeth was the first born and she was given as 19 years of age. She probably married soon after that, but I have yet to find out to whom.


WILLIAM was born 12 March 1824 in St. Quivox and Newton, he was a coalminer and married Jean Begnall on 9 February 1845. The couple moved to Kilmarnock where in 1851 brothers Jackson and James are living with them, they were all miners. (Jackson and Taylor most likely died by this time). William and Jean had no children, but in the 1861 census at Auchinleck, they have as adopted daughter Mary McCallum, she is 13 years old and was also born in St.Quivox. But, who was she? It has come to my attention that they eventually had two sons of their own. William born 1860 (but did this baby survive) and George Roy Milisop most likely born in the early 1860s.

JOHN was christened on 5 August 1827 in the Gorbals, Lanark. I had no trace of him and considered him an infant death until it came to light that the John Anderson I was noting as a relative to Taylor was indeed her son, John Anderson Millsop. John married Mary Ballentine on 13 February 1852 in Irvine. A daughter Isabelle was born 1853, New Cumnock; Taylor Anderson, 1855 Irvine; Mary, 1858 Auchinleck; Elizabeth, 1861 in England; Jean Ballentine, 1862 Auchinleck. It would appear that two of these daughters, Taylor and Elizabeth did not survive.

MARGARET was born 14 May 1829 in St.Quivox parish, she married James Bell (who had arrived in Ayr from England) on 12 March 1848 and this Scottish family are outlined in Volume 1, Issue 1 of Family Roots.

JAMES was born 15 October 1831, St. Quivox and Newton, a coal miner he married Anne Ives Muir on 31 July 1853. That same year Jennette was born, followed by Ann Ives in 1855, Irvine; Taylor Anderson in 1857, Auchinleck (also known as Georgina Jen Tylia) was christened in 1860 in Yorkshire. Elizabeth followed in 1859 and Jackson in 1862; Finally John in 1864, Auchinleck. I could not find this family in the 1861 census.

JACKSON was born 18 May 1835 in St. Quivox & Newton, another coalminer he married Jane McDonald on 3 March 1854, Kilmarnock. Martha was born in 1855 and Jane in 1857 in Auchinleck; William 1859 in Riccarton, Kilmarnock, and John in 1862 back in Auchinleck.

Thus the Ayrshire born Millsops disappear, all four sons leave the land of their birth behind to start a new life in America.


My hunch about the family emigrating was proven to be correct, I discovered the family tree for a Candy Millsop in America and her ancestors turned out to be the Millsop brothers. Here is what she told me about them.

The family story goes that one of the brothers was found to be teaching the miners how to read and write, this was frowned upon and he had to leave, his brothers followed him out there in the coming years.

William found work as a miner, he and Jean had no more children. Their son George Roy married Mary M. McCormick and they had a family in Sharon, Pennsylvania.

John Anderson is the ancestor of Candy Millsop. John left for America after 1862, a son William was born in Youngstown, Ohio in 1867 followed by James Anderson (whose son John born in 1892 was killed in 1918 in France serving his country. John was a Sergeant in the 58th Infantry), Elizabeth, Anna, Quinton Ballentine and Georgina Tyler in Bethol, Mercer County, Pennsylvania. A large family thrived from this line of the family. John was a miner too and he died on 8 January 1899 in the Pine Township, Pennsylvania.

James J. is missing from the 1861 census which made me wonder if he was the first brother to go to America, however he and Ann (or Anna as she is known in America) are last recorded in Auchinleck in 1864. They had a son Hugh in 1867 at Briar Hill, Mahoning Co. Youngstown, Ohio followed by Clara Jane in 1969 Bethol, Mercer Co. Two more children James and William James completed the family. James was a saloon keeper in Ohio, he died on 17 August 1896 in Sharpsville, Mercer Co.

Jackson too was a miner he emigrated sometime from 1862. A son Francis was born 1865 in Pennsylvania followed by Mary and Jackson W. The family then went to Youngstown, Ohio where James H, Elizabeth G, Edward and Annie were born, I think Annie did not survive for there are no further details on her. Jackson died on 17 October 1883 in Youngstown.

So as you can see there has been and still is a vast family of Millsop cousins in America. "thank you Candy".


Researched and written by Karon Gilliland