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William Ross of Skeldon

William Ross of Skeldon Plantation (1787-1840) was the son of Hugh Ross III of Kerse and Skeldon (Ayrshire).  The family were descended from the Rosses of Kindeace in Ross-shire. He married Helen Elizabeth Drummond Ross (1808-1863), daughter of Katherine Smith and Lt. Col David Ross, in Inverness on 4 September 1830.   

According to Alastair Strathearn Gordon's A Sutherland Trail (2004):
'. . . William had by his own account gone abroad in or before 1804 as a young man of about seventeen and was doing well in Berbice by the time he erected a memorial to his parents in the Greyfriars burial ground in Edinburgh in August 1829.  He already had two natural children of his own (assuming these were born before his marriage).'

A younger brother of William, Andrew, died of 'brain fever' in Berbice in September 1819 [Blackwoods Magazine]
Helen Elizabeth Drummond Ross and William Ross had 5 children:
William Munro Ross (1832/3-1879)
Jane (Janie) Ross (1833/34-1933)
John Cameron Ross (1834/5-1877)
Katherine Ross (1836/7-1919)
Edward Gordon Ross (1839-40)
William Ross died in Berbice in 19 February 1840.
His son William Munro Ross was a West Indies merchant in London, initially on his own account but subsequently as member of the firm Cottam Morton & Co. He died on 28 January 1879 owing substantial sums.
At Emancipation in 1834 William Ross claimed £17295 2s. 6d. for 326 slaves on Skeldon Plantation.

Thanks to Chris Rathbone for most of the information on this page.


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