Thomas MacKenzie

#324, (September 1806-1849)
FatherJames MacKenzie1 (11 Jun 1770-c 1844)
MotherMargaret Aird1 (1770-1809)
ChartsNicholson Family 1 - descendants
Last Edited25 Sep 2022
Biographical Database of Australia ID:B#10032539901.
     NOTE: The information on this page is my research to date and is subject to change as I become better informed. I very much welcome any corrections or additional info you might have - my email address is at the bottom of this page. Whilst historical facts are not copyright, my writing about these facts are. If you wish to use any text from this site on Ancestry or on any other website, please ask me first - Tim Hill.
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Thomas was born in September 1806 at Resolis, Ross-shire, Scotland.2 He was the son of James MacKenzie and Margaret Aird.1 Thomas MacKenzie moved to Lochinver, the parish of Assynt, Sutherland, Scotland, circa 1825.3 He was a house carpenter in October 1829.45
Culag Manse 2018
Source: Michael Wilson

He married Fanny Nicholson, a spinster of about 24, daughter of Donald Nicholson and Mary Margaret MacDougall, in a Church of Scotland ceremony at Manse on Tuesday, 20 October 1829 at Culag, the Parish of Assynt, Sutherland, Scotland. It was the first marriage in the Parish for more than 3 months. She was the child of a boat builder..4

In 1832 he was building his house in Lochinver and on 17 February 1832 wrote to John Horsburgh, factor for the landlord, the Marquis of Stafford (later Duke of Sutherland). Commenting on the terms for himself and the smith, he stated that “we think the terms exceedingly hard but being in hopes the conditions may here after be in some measure mitigated we shall proceed”.6 On 30 August 1832 he wrote another letter to John Horsburgh stating the masonry work was done, but wanting to know if slaters are to be sent to the schoolmaster’s house (which he is working on); “I am verry ill of for want of money at present”.6

Thomas and Fanny, having decided to resettle in the Colonies took their young family back to the Ross family seat at Ardchronie, the Parish of Edderton, Ross-shire, Scotland, a journey of 50 miles (80 km) cross Scotland. they stayed there for a week or longer, returning with Thomas' sister Grace.3

At the age of 32 Thomas and his wife Fanny emigrated with their children and Fanny's brother Donald. from Lochinver, the parish of Assynt, Sutherland, on 21 October 1838 on the James Moran a 600 ton bark. The James Moran, largely carried those subject to the Highland clearances, and came via Rev. John Dunmore Lang's bounty scheme.7,3 After a voyage of 113 days (almost four months) Thomas and his wife Fanny arrived at Port Jackson, New South Wales, on 11 February 1839 with their family. However, their young son Malcolm, less than a year old, died on the voyage.. The vessel called at the Cape of Good Hope from late December to the 2nd of January 1839. Whilst there, some of the passengers wrote a letter to the Commissioner of Emigration in Scotland, complimenting the food, the Surgeon and the Master, and expressing a hope that their comments would relieve "a dread of the hardships they may be made to endure on the passage". At the Cape they picked up 20 survivors from the wreck of the Dunlop and conveyed them to Port Jackson.7,3
Thomas (and his wife's younger brother Donald) were brought out by a H. Scope of Liverpool and were to be paid 2 pounds and 2 shillings a week, without board. There was an undertaker named Henry Scope in Liverpool; were Thomas and Donald employed to make coffins for him?8

Thomas attended the wedding of Donald Nicholson and Margaret Brown in a Presbyterian ceremony at Free Presbyterian Church in Pitt Street on Friday, 19 March 1841 at Sydney. They also signed the marriage certificate as witnesses. It isn't known how they met but perhaps it was through Donald's work. After their marriage Donald and Margaret lived in Parramatta at least until the start of the new year. Others who may have attended the wedding include Margaret Miller as mother of the bride and John Brown as father of the bride.9

Thomas was mentioned in a book written 38 years after his death:
"They arrived out safe and well and Donald got some contracts house-building by which he made some money, and then, joining a party, he went off through "the bush," with some idea of locating land for himself and family under the advantageous terms then given to emmigrants. The party was attacked by natives (blacks) and Thomas' companion was killed but he escaped by climbing up a tree, and finally settled in "Balmain via Sydney, New South Wales"."3

After his death, Thomas was remembered as a builder in 1892.10

Thomas died in 1849 at Parramatta, New South Wales, of infammation of the kidneys.11,12


1806BirthResolis, Ross-shire, Scotland2
1825Move-newLochinver, the parish of Assynt, Sutherland, Scotland3
1829MarriageManse, in Culag, the Parish of Assynt, Sutherland, Scotland4
1832Note memo only CR CRLochinver, the parish of Assynt, Sutherland6
1832Note memo only6
Note memo only CR CRArdchronie, the Parish of Edderton, Ross-shire, Scotland3
1838Emigratn-newLochinver, the parish of Assynt, Sutherland7,3
1839Immigratn-newPort Jackson, New South Wales7,3
1839Note memo only8
1843Quotation type 33
1849DeathParramatta, New South Wales11,12


Fanny Nicholson (1805-1898)


  1. [S586] Private Nicholson Source, Genealogical Notes, January 2013 p.4.
  2. [S586] Private Nicholson Source, Genealogical Notes, January 2013 p.1.
  3. [S790] Campbell Munro Ross Mackenzie The Chronicles of the Ardchronie Children p.37.
  4. [S263] Parish Registers for Assynt, 1798- 20/10/1829 NICHOLSON, FANNY (Old Parish Registers Marriages 044/ 20 99 Assynt) Page 99 of 139.
  5. [S1015] E-mails from Michael Wilson to Tim Hill, 2018-.
  6. [S1020] E-mails from Malcolm Bangor-Jones to Tim Hill, 2018- 'Thomas Mackenzie Lochinver' - 8 April 2018 at 22:53.
  7. [S49] Donald Nicholson, "James Moran" passenger manifest.
  8. [S587] Gordon Family History (…) Nicholson, Donald, [native place] Sutherlandshire, [calling] Carpenter, [age] 25, Presbyterian, [By whom engaged] Mr H Scope, Liverpool, [pounds] 2 [shillings] 2 [per] Week [with or without board] Without.
  9. [S21] Parish Registers for Scot's Church Sydney, 1788-1856 Vol. 75 entry 932.
  10. [S1242] E-mails from Merilyn Talintyre to Tim Hill, 2021- 'Re: - Grace MacKenzie' - 1 May 2021, 12:43.
  11. [S790] Campbell Munro Ross Mackenzie The Chronicles of the Ardchronie Children p.37 (for cause of death).
  12. [S338], (… (for exact place).
  13. [S586] Private Nicholson Source, Genealogical Notes, January 2013 p.5.
  14. [S268] The Sydney Morning Herald, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1863 'Family Notices.', The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), 3 February, p. 1, viewed 3 May, 2013,