Colonsay – Our Ancestral Home

Many families in Clyde River have an ancestral connection to Colonsay, Scotland. Immigrants to Prince Edward Island in the early 1800s sailed on the Polly 1803, Dykes 1803, Oughton 1803, Spencer 1806 and settled in Belfast, Clyde River and surrounding areas, becoming part of the Selkirk Settlers. Common family names are Darrach, MacLean, MacNeil, Bell, Currie, MacPhee, MacEachern, to name a few. Here is drone footage of Colonsay. Enjoy. If you have visited here, share your experience in the comments.


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  1. Glenys Johnson on December 31, 2017 at 5:28 pm

    What a beautiful video of my Ancestral Home. I’m lucky to be visiting the island in May of 2018 followed by a report to the Bruce County, Ontario, Genealogical Society in September. This video would make a wonderful introduction to my presentation…with the permission of the Friends of Clyde River of course.

    • clyderiver on December 31, 2017 at 6:52 pm

      Hi Glenda; I don’t own video. If you click through to YouTube, you will see who captured it. I am sure if you give them proper recognition, they would be fine. Please let us know how your trip goes. My ancestry through Darrach’s and MacLeans is connected to Colonsay.

  2. Glenys Johnson on January 2, 2018 at 6:44 pm

    Hi There, I will indeed let you know how my trip goes. Thanks for the re-direct to You Tube. My Ancestry and connection to Colonsay are the families of Shaw Currie.

  3. Heather Darrach Rodd Waldron on March 25, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    Beautiful video. My mother was Margaret Darrach , daughter of Angus Darrach of New Haven PEI . Her brother was Angus Neil Darrach, who later moved to East Royalty. We always thought our ancestors were from the Isle of Skye but after research by Gordon Darrach and Malcolm Beck we found that they came to PEI on the Spencer from Colonsay. My grandmother was Margaret Nicholson Darrach and is buried in the cemetery at the Church in Clyde River as are her daughters Verna and Laura.

  4. Heather Darrach Rodd Waldron on March 25, 2018 at 1:27 pm

    It would be interesting to know how they happened to settle in Colonsay. Does anyone have any information on this that may have been passed down from others.

    • clyderiver on March 25, 2018 at 1:35 pm

      I am copying this comment from Melissa which she wrote following our story Spencer 1806 – Passage of Time which you should check out on this site. Here is the link: There are other good comments following that story as well:
      Melissa’s note: I recently traveled back to Colonsay to track down the roots of Angus Darrach. I would highly suggest this adventure. Pay attention to the spring arts festival for timing. The island has a population today of 124 ppl. I am more than eager to return!

      Imagine therefore not being able to find accommodations and we eventually reached out to a resident to house us. We got a fireside chat about the history of the Darrach family, from this local historian. The Darrach’s were Druids, residing on the island as a means to displace themselves from the mainland and the scourge there to eliminate them.

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