There are other possible references to Duncan Mackellar, in the years before he went to Australia. Whether or not they are the same Duncan Mackellar is not certain. However, the family had a strong connection with Greenock - and the references here are to a possible involvement with a sugar refinery there. His wife, Margaret Dick, was thought to have been from Greenock, and he married her there in July 1814.
In the The Greenock Refineries to 1901 by John M Hutcheson, from a page about sugar refining enterprises on the The Macfie Family website, we read:
"The first Greenock sugar refinery other than primitive in type was erected about 1765 on a portion of the site now belonging to the Brewers Sugar Co Ltd at the foot of Sugarhouse Lane, on ground previously occupied by Messrs. Donalds, White & co ... The name of the firm seems to have been The Greenock Sugar House Co. and the business appears to have been carried on with various changes of partnership until 1812. At this date the partners were Messrs. James Hopkirk, Daniel Mackenzie and James Mackenzie and they seem to have transferred the business to Messrs. James Atherton, Joseph Toundrow, and Samuel Farrer of Liverpool and Duncan MacKellar, merchant in Greenock, who carried it on under the name of Atherton, MacKellar & Co until 1831. In that year the property was purchased from Bainís representatives by Mr. Alex MíCallum father of the late David MíCallum of Glenburn who was a brother in law of ex-Provost Rodger. Mr. MíCallum carried on refining till his death in 1839 or 1840."
In addition to the reference to Atherton, Mackellar & Co the book by Hutcheson also appears to refer to a Duncan Mackellar being involved with Sugar House Lane (Refinery 2), Greenock, in 1800. This might have been the same person or could it have been his father, for example? (I don't know the name of his parents)
"The second sugar refinery in Greenock was at the south end of Sugarhouse Lane, now converted into a lodginghouse. ... In 1800 trade having been bad for several years the company was wound up and the refinery was disposed of to one of the former partners Mr John Macalpine the firm under which the refinery was carried on until then being Messrs Hunter, Macalpine & Co. Mr Duncan MacKellar, a Glasgow merchant next acquired the property and later sold it to Messrs Alexander Angus & Co in 1815."
There is also a reference to Duncan Mackellar in an article on the Inverclyde Museum website regarding Largs Pier:
"LARGS: An L-shaped pier was built in 1832 to replace the primitive wharf and is still standing at present. The Glasgow had first arrived in 1813, and fierce competition followed until Capt. Duncan McKellar won out. He sold out to the Wemyss Bay Co. of Gillies & Campbell, who were replaced by the Caledonian Steam Packet Co. in 1890. During the latter part of this period Largs was only a call on excursions to Ayr or on the Millport ferry service. The last paddle steamer to call was the Talisman in 1966. In 1972 a new ramp had been built for a car ferry service to Cumbrae introduced that year."
My name is Alasdair Broun and I was born and brought up in Scotland, son of a clergyman and a freelance journalist. I took up genealogy as a hobby when I was 17 and I went on to write a PhD thesis in philosophical psychology ... more >
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