JOHN ROBERT, accompanied by his family and retainers, was sent from Scotland to Ireland and granted certain land in County Londonderry. This land is today known as PORTSTEWART. In 1623, JOHN ROBERT STEWART was created First Baron Londonderry. His son, ROBERT, succeeded him as Baron Londonderry in 1689.
Records of this period are no longer available - they were destroyed in the Dublin Customs House Fire circa 1922. However, it is believed that ROBERT was succeeded by CHARLES JAMES (1721-1803), who was succeeded by JAMES ROBERT (1785-1846), who was succeeded by JOHN (1811-1907).Verification needed here.(I got this from my father but without supporting documents - Bruce W Stewart)
In 2012, Bruce & Dianne Stewart visited the area of Buncrana and Fahan. Through invaluable support & assistance from Stanley Morrow who gave us access to Parish Church Records, Anne Moore who has amassed an incredible collection of data, and Denise Coyle at the Civil Registration Office in Letterkenny, this is what we have found out so far.
If any visitor to this site has anything to contribute, this would be most welcome. Please contact Bruce Stewart
Latest Update : In Jan 2014 I heard from Patricia van Gaalen, the great-grand-daughter of Rebecca Stewart, the eldest daughter of John Stewart & Margaret Longwill of Buncrana. She has provided loads of additional information which I will incorporate into this site.
It is believed that JOHN STEWART is the son of John Stewart, apparently a sailor and his wife Elizabeth ? (Verification needed.)
It is known that JOHN STEWART (1811-1907), a shoemaker, married MARGARET LONGWILL (1824-1893) (daughter of Matthew Longwill & Anne Greer/Green? in Christ Church, Buncrana) on 11.01.1846 and lived and died at the family home, Vine Cottage, in the town of Buncrana in Country Donegal, Ireland.
Entry in the church register reads "John Stewart of this parish and Margaret Longwill of the same, married in this church by licence this 11th day of January in the year 1846. By Rev Samuel Reed Curate.
This Marriage solemnized between us John Stewart and Margaret (X) Longwill her mark in the presence of Percy S Haddy ( Waddy) M.D. and John Patton"
John was Episcopalian (Church of Ireland) and we found his records in the 1901 Census, when he was aged 89. Margaret died on 8.10.1893 of heart failure at age 69 and John died on 11.01.1907 of senile decay at age 95. Their daughter FRANCES ELIZABETH (b.05.06.1868) was at both of their deaths. After Margaret's death, Frances Elizabeth continued to live with and look after her father. Both John and Frances Elizabeth appear in the 1901 Census, John aged 89 and Frances Elizabeth, recorded as being 29 but actually 31 years old. She does not appear in the 1911 Census and we found no death record, so she either married or emigrated between 1901 and 1911. We would love to find out what happened to this great lady who dedicated so many years to looking after her aging parents.
Pat van Gaalen belives that Frances was the last survivor of the family, apparently dying in 1947 or 1954 but we have no supporting evidence or documents.
1901 Census Record of John Stewart and his daughter Frances Elizabeth Stewart
Death Certificates of John Stewart and his wife Margaret Stewart nee Longwill
Pic Left : This the last surviving building on the old Main Street of Buncrana. Immediately behind the Cottage Pub, this is what John & Margaret Stewart's Vine Cottage may have looked like. We are still searching old valuation and property records to see whether this may ACTUALLY be Vine Cottage.
Where are the graves of Margaret Stewart (D.1893) and John Stewart (D.1907?
They died in Buncrana and must have been buried there?
John and Margaret Stewart had 11 children : REBECCA B.17.11.1846 D.1939 Christ Church Register - Birth Entry 16 1847 reads : "Baptised - Jan 31 1847 Born Nov 17 1846 Rebecca John and Margaret Stewart of Buncrana Fathers Occupation - Shoemaker S Reed."
Rebecca emigrated to Australia in 1860's and married Herman Morrice Berge who arrived in the same period from Silesia, Prussia via UK. Found in the 1861 UK census. They married in 1869.
Anne was witness to Catherine Ellen's marriage along with James in 1886 so was not married then. (Newspaper cutting states that R & J's oldest aunt lived at 37 Argyle St Londonderrry in 1930. Was this anne?)
JANE B.20.09.1852 D.29.11.1853 Died at 14 months. Buried at Lower Fahan
JOHN ALEXANDER B.15.09.1854 D.1939? Same year & country as sister Rebecca?
John followed Rebecca to Australia on the "Royal Dane", departing London 8 Oct 1872 and arriving Brisbane 16 Jan 1873. He was 21 and was nominated by his brother-in-law, Herman (Berge?). He married Ann Hall Anderson in 1894.
JANE MARGARET B.11.01.1857 Margaret married John Robert McClelland about 1896 and they had one daughter Lydia Elizabeth born circa Oct - Dec 1896 in Londonderry.(Civil Regt Index) 1901 census has them living in Frances Street, Londonderry Urban No 1, Londonderry. In 1911 census Robert is listed as a joiner. He was born in Philadelphia Penn in 1850's and died in 1947 (Lydia told Barry in 1960) aged 94. Lydia also said her mother died in 1942.
CATHERINE ELLEN B.16.03.1864 Catherine married David Moore Kennedy, a Light house keeper, on 9 Sept 1886 in Buncrana. In the 1901 census she had 4 children - Harry A (13), Samuel S (12), Maud M (3) and Kathleen (1). Frederick Stapley was also living with them. His accopation is listed as commercial traveller - wine trade. (Pat van Gaalen to verify - They had 9 children(?) including Henry A born 7 Nov 1886, David born 15th Nov 1891, Samuel born 1 April 1889 and Eileen Kathleen (?))
Catherine Ellen - Birth Certificate
Catherine Ellen - Marriage Certificate
1901 Census - Frederick living
with Catherine Kennedy
FREDERICK STAPLEY B.12.12.1866 D.26.04.1955 Frederick emmigrated to Ontario, Canada in 1910/11 where he met and married Mary Duguid from Scotland on 15 Sept 1911 in Toronto. In the American records he is shown as Frederick Staples. He died in Ontario.
Frederick Stapley - Birth Certificate
Frederick Marriage Certificate
FRANCES ELIZABETH B.05.06.1868
Really do need to find out what happened to this Stewart who lived with her parents John & Margaret until their deaths in 1893 and 1907. She would have been 39 when her father died. She was in the 1901 census with John Stewart but we could not find her in the 1911 census.
Frances Elizabeth Stewart
MARY B.06.07.1873 D.27.03.1941 Age 68 37 Argyle str
Now, in the same small village of Buncrana in County Donegal, there was another Stewart family, headed by JAMES AUGUSTUS (B.circa 1835 and D.circa 1915) & AUGUSTA WILHELMINA JEAN STEWART (B.circa 1857). Who is this James? He's young enough to be John's son, but we find no record of this. Is he possibly a younger brother to John? Or are these two totally unrelated Stewart families living in the same town at similar times? Pre-1864 birth records have been lost so we could not check parentage. But we met a number of people in Buncrana who knew the Stewart sisters who all lived in the very large family home "Aughnoo" which we went to see. The Stewart sisters never married, were active in the community, played golf, were always impeccably dressed as becoming "cousins of the Queen" .
Here's the family of 7 children of James Augustus and Wilhelmina Stewart : WILHELMINA AUGUSTA B.circa 1886 Age 24 in 1911 Census D.30.01.1970 Age 89 at family home "Aughnoo" MARY ADELINE CECIL "MARY ACUSTA" B.circa 1888 Age 23 in 1911 Census D.24.07.1972 Age 88 at "Aughnoo" EDITH FRANCES B.circa 1886 Age 22 in 1911 Census D.20.11.1977 Age 91 at "Aughnoo" AUGUSTA A. B. B.circa 1890 Age 20 in 1911 Census (Possibly Augusta Anna Blanche Stewart?) HESTER LEONORA SOPHIA "HARTER" B.circa 1893 Age 18 in 1911 Census D.03.02.1965 Age 73 "Aughnoo" FLORA EUPHEMIA B.circa 1897 Age 17 in 1911 Census D.02.11.1958 Age 61 "Aughnoo" JAMES A B.circa1895 Age 16 in 1911 Census. He died in Flanders in WW1 in 1915 and his father shortly thereafter. This brought to an end this line of Stewarts.
Grave of Mary & Edith Stewart. We'd like to know which Stewart was buried here before Mary & Edith as there seems to be a new head-stone placed upon an old head-stone.
Grave of Hester Flora and Wilhelmina Augusta
Shortly after hearing the news of his only son's death in Flanders, James Augustus Stewart died in Buncrana.
Here are some findings which need clarification. Possibly not relevant to this family tree.
James & Elizabeth Stewart
Samuel & Elizabeth Stewart
Wm John Stewart
Courtesy of the Derry Central Library | Bigger McDonald Collection, we have a number of photographs of Stewarts in Buncrana. The photographs are part of the Hugh Kerr collection and date from the 1880s. Hugh Kerr was a photographer in Derry and had a studio in Carlisle Road. David Bigger and his friend Terence McDonald were local photographers and historians who were responsible for the acquisition and conservation of the photographs in the 1960s. The collection was bought by the Library service some five years ago. We need help in identifying these members of the Stewart family in Buncrana.
L-R John Stewart?, Margaret Longwill?
Wilhelmina Stewart?, James Augustus Stewart? or Frederick Staples Stewart, John's son?
Frances Elizabeth Stewart?
Adam Stewart and Brothers or Cousins?
3 Stewart sisters at Aughnoo, Hester Leonora Sophia, Wilhelmina Augusta and Flora Euphemia??
The House of Stewart
in South Africa
John and Margaret Stewart's son JAMES (1860-1948) married JANE EDWARDS (1861-1946), a Welsh girl born in Buckley, Wales, on 29 September 1891, in Chester Cathedral. In the 1901 Census, we found the records of James (aged 41), Jane (aged 40) and their son, Reginald (aged 5) (Bruce's grand-father).
In 1902, JAMES came to South Africa, followed in 1903 by his wife JANE and their three children.*** Here they spent the rest of their years, JANE dying in 1946 in Mossel Bay and JAMES two years later in 1948 in Pietermaritzburg. (James was an engineer and came to South Africa to manage the new Cape Central Railways, the forerunner to the South African Railways.)
Reginald Longwill Edwards
1895 Birth Certificate
1901 Birth Certificate
James and Jane had a 3rd child, born sometime between the census in March 1901 and her move to South Africa in 1903. Illegitimate or a twin to James Albert who was born in August 1901. Little is known about this child. Male or female? Name? Apparently she died in South Africa at a very young age.
James Albert died 1924, buried Mossel Bay, South Africa. (Apparently a fitness fanatic who studied under Tromp van Diggelen)
Edward James Stewart
Who is Edward James Stewart, B.1866 D.1935 buried in Mossel Bay, South Africa. A double grave-site indicating husband & wife, but only he has a head-stone. The sexton suggested that possibly there was no family to bury her there or no family to erect a head-stone.
Edward James Stewart
Reginald Stewart &
Hilda Burger Wedding
JAMES' eldest son, REGINALD LONGWILLE EDWARDS (the only surviving child of JAMES & Jane) was born in Londonderry and came to South Africa at age 8. In 1924, he married a South African, HILDA ANNA LOUISA BURGER (1903-1981) in the town of Robertson.
Hilda - daughter of David Burger and Hettie Burger (nee Zoutendyk). Hettie died in the Great Flu Epidemic of 1918.REGINALD and Hilda had two sons, ALBERT STEWART (1926 - 2005) and REGINALD HENRI STEWART **(1928 - 2001)
ALBERT "Bertie" STEWART (1 Apr 1926 - 20 Oct 2005) married JENNIFER CLARE MANWARING (19 Apr 1929 - 6 Oct 2021), daughter of Edward Laurence (1905 - 1986) and Vera Minnie Manwaring of the farm Brandenbury, Kent, England, on 7 October 1950 and settled in Hermanus in South Africa in 1957.
Bertie & Jennifer Stewart Wedding
Jennifer Stewart 80th Birthday
Edward Laurence "Boxer" Manwaring 1902-1984 Jennifer's father
Edward & Molly Manwaring Wedding
7 April 1926
Vera Minnie "Molly" Tassell
Jennifer's future mother
William Manwaring 1876-1936
William Manwaring & Vera Tassell
Mary May Manwaring (nee Gregory) 1881-1947 Edward's Mother
Albert "Bertie" & Jennifer Stewart have 3 sons, BRUCE WILLIAM STEWART (b.1951), IAN EDWARD STEWART (b.1953), CRAIG RICHARD STEWART (b.1960) and a daughter, FIONA MAIRI STEWART (b.1956)
Bruce William Stewart
Bruce & Dianne have 2 children.
SARAH JANE CAITLIN STEWART (b.1989) & MICHAEL BRUCE ALBERT STEWART (b.1994)
Dianne Ennis - Bruce's wife
Ian Edward Stewart
Ian has 2 children.
SEAN STEWART & BONNIE STEWART
Sean Stewart married Elizabeth Connor in 2013
Fiona Mairi Stewart
Fiona (4 Aug 1956 - 20 Jan 2018) has a daughter CHRISTI CLARE STEWART (b.1986) who married Gideon van Niekerk. Christi & Gideon have 2 daughters GENEVIEVE (b.2006) & JULIETTE (b. 2009) and a son BENJAMIN (b.)
Christi Clare van Niekerk (nee Stewart)
Craig Richard Stewart
Craig & Deanne have 2 sons, KYLE DOUGLAS STEWART (b.1989) & DEVIN RICHARD STEWART (b.1990)
Deanne Curling - Craig's wife
** REGINALD HENRI STEWART moved to Zimbabwe (formerly Southern Rhodesia) in September 1949. A childhood friend, whom he met in De Aar in the Cape when they were both 14 years old, YVONNE DAWN DE VILLIERS (b.1928), daughter of Schalk and Madge de Villiers of the Transkei, moved to Salisbury, Rhodesia in 1951. Six months later, REGINALD and YVONNE were married in De Aar. They remained settled in Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe, where they have two sons, REGINALD ALLAN STEWART (b.1954), PETER DAVID STEWART (b.1958) and a daughter, SALLY-ANNE MARGARET STEWART (b.1956), all of whom remained in that country, surviving the Unilateral Declaration of Independence, the ensuing war of liberation and the transition of that country to its present status as the Republic of Zimbabwe. Under the land-confiscation regime in Zimbabwe, they were forced to leave the country and have settled in South Africa.
Compiled by DR BRUCE WILLIAM STEWART
17 McFarlane Street, Eastcliff, Hermanus, Cape Province, South Africa
5617 Providence Glen Rd, Charlotte, North Carolina 28270, USA Email Bruce Stewart