Archiver > JOHNSTON-DNA > 2008-06 > 1213816393

From: "Cliff. Johnston" <>
Subject: [JOHNSTON-DNA] Johnston family - the Wee Three
Date: Wed, 18 Jun 2008 14:13:13 -0500

Greetings from Sunny Texas,

Y-DNA test results have come back confirming the suspected relationship of 3 Johnston brothers: Francis "Frank" (b. 1805), Robert "Red Robin" (b. 1808) and Archibald "Archie" (b. 1815), all born in Ireland. I call them the "Wee Three" with affection as all were taller than average with my gggrandfather, Red Robin, coming in at 6'-5" (and red hair).

According to oral family history their father may have been born in Scotland. We do not know his name. According to old and ancient Johnston/e family genealogy provided by a newfound cousin to whom we were linked by the Y-DNA tests we belong to the Johnstons in Poldean and some of our ancestors were members of the Old Gang of Wamphray (Danish Viking ancestry - Poldean is a 2,000 acre holding which left the family in 1742. It is some 4-5 miles south of Moffatt, Scotland). Our Johnston/e family left Ireland in the mid-1820's. One or more died on the crossing to Upper Canada, possibly including their father. A married sister stayed behind in Ireland with her husband. The 3 surviving brothers settled near what is now Pendleton, Ontario, Canada. They were very close to other families in the Pendleton area, such as Anderson, Wylie and Derby who came from the Magherafeldt area in Co. Derry, and it is suspected that they too may have come from the same locale.

2 of my Dad's aunts visited Ireland to find kin in the 1920's. None were found living. One aunt kept a detailed journal which included the tombstone inscriptions of our kin - they did find where they were buried and visited their graves. Unfortunately today no one knows where the journal is or where in Ireland the sisters visited.

I have been told that in Ireland the given name "Francis" was considered to be a Roman Catholic name and as such not in common use among Protestant Johnston/e families. Our ancestors were Presbyterian/Methodist. It is possible that the father of the Wee Three married a Roman Catholic woman. We do not know, but interestingly a couple of other Y-DNA cousins in the States with whom we have not been able to make a paper connection yet also have the name "Francis" used by their Protestant Irish ancestors.

If anyone has any information on our Wee Three or recognizes something about them from their research I'd appreciate hearing from you. I've been beating my head against those old Irish bricks for too long (since 1979) - something has to give, and I hope that it isn't me... ;-)

Here is a link to some photographs of our ancestors, including my gggrandfather & gggrandmother:


Cliff. Johnston
"May the best you've ever seen,
Be the worst you'll ever see;"
from A Scots Toast by Allan Ramsay

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