WEST William, Ayrshire Scotland
William West we understood was born in Campbelltown in Perthshire Scotland and came to Dalry when a young lad, he spoke Gaelic and had hardly any English, he retained his Gaelic all his life. I understand that he might not have been born in Campbelltown at all but have no further information. One of his descendants visited Scotland and found that there was no Campbelltown in Perthshire but there was one in Ayrshire but they could find no birth records for him there.
What I do know is that he received his education at the parish school where he became a pupil teacher. He then went to Edinburgh where he studied at the Normal Academy of the Church of Scotland, having completed his course there he obtained an appointment as teacher at Maybole, Ayrshire, and it was there he married Elizabeth Wales. In 1863 they left Scotland and travelled to New Zealand on sailng ship "War Spirit" He landed in Auckland where he remained for awhile undecided whether he would continue teaching. For a time while he was in Auckland he was in charge of commisarait of the British troops stationed ther on account of the Maori wars. The salary that was offered was 13 Pounds per month after a time he enquired why it was not being paid to him and was told that they never paid the last man because he was making more out of the job than the salary was to be to which Mr west replied "it's not an officer in charge you want, it's a rogue" and promptly resigned. He eventually became a Presbyterian Minister and spent most of his time as Minister of the Southbridge Parish in Canterbury New Zealand.
He had a large family of 15 children, 2 sons Donald and Bruce West emigrated to the United States, Bruce and a Kirkland West visited New Zealand when I was a young girl living in Hokitika Westland, New Zealand.
on 2012-08-12 07:09:25
Always been interested in where I came from and have always wanted to find out what the truth is behind all the family stories and legends. In my fathers family it was always said we were descended from royalty, well I have pretty well disproved that one but found a drunken Vicar instead. And in my mothers family it has always been said that we were related to Tam of Shanter's Farm made famous in Robbie Burns poem, well we have a sampler from way back which supports this and also a cup and fishing line said to belong to Tam O' Shanter who of course was actually Tam Graham of Shanters farm, the family story is that coming back from weekly market drunk as usual feel off his horse and drowned in a few inches of water.