|UK-Based Clan Website|
Welcome to this UK-based Clan Watson website! As I develop this website, I'll be aiming to make it a one-stop shop for all your Watson-related needs!
I want to find out everything I can about the Watson name: its origins and history, its geographic spread, relationships between various groups of Watsons around the world today, and the history of the Scottish Clan Watson. So, a fairly modest task, then!
Historical information on the origins of the surname, and of the Scottish Clan that bore the name, is a rather hard to find. Everything I've found so far suggests that the Watson name was first established in the north east of England and south east of Scotland. This is backed up by a project running at University College London (UCL) to investigate the distribution of surnames in Great Britain, both current and historic (see this map to see the distribution of Watsons from the 1881 census). The first recorded use of the surname was in Edinburgh in 1392. I've searched the internet extensively and will be posting everything I have found to date on the history pages of this site as soon as I get the time. My next stop will be to search out more traditional style reading materials and consult national and regional archives.
I have started to researching my relationship to others of the same name, although it is proving a challenge as most of my father's relatives have passed on. I've learned what I can from family sources and am now searching the records, which is proving exceedingly addictive! I've also started to investigate the family trees of other Watsons to see if I can join all the pieces up, and from the number of people contacting me through this site, I know that many of you out there are currently engaged in unravelling your own Watson trees. This is an exciting development for me, and strikes me as something that the internet should be used for - I'm enjoying the chance to work with some of you on the project, and I hope that the contacts keep coming in! Contact me via the contact page if you wish to link up, or if you are just after some pointers so that you can start your own research.
I am also keeping up to date with the search for a new chief of the Watson Clan. This is something being led by the Clan Watson Society of Canada, who have been searching out the descendents of the last registered chief, James Watson of Saughton. I'll try to keep the site updated with the latest developments, but for the most up-to-date info, it's probably best to check their website!
If you want to see how you're located relative to other registered site users, and people that are currently included in the family tree charts on this website, check out the interactive map. Let me know through the (via the contact page) if you wish to be included on it!
There's a huge number of people out there actively searching for details of their Watson ancestors (just check out the traffic on the rootsweb mailing lists), and I recently started thinking it would be great if we could combine the results into one massive, global Watson family tree. Shortly after starting to collect ancestral data on Watsons the world over, I disovered the Guild of One-Name Studies website, which is an organisation full of people doing exactly the same thing. Anyway, I signed up for the Watson study, so am now officially a gooner!
If you're researching your own Watson ancestry, or even if you only know the names of your parents and grandparents, and you want to be part of the project, send your details to me and I'll compile them into one giant master tree. Of course, it's the sort of thing that could quickly snowball out of control, but I'm willing to give it a go! I've already made a fair few contacts now, and the number of hits on the site is starting to accelerate! I will, at some point, be compiling the data into a spreadsheet fit for publishing (with no details for living people in it, of course) that I'll make available through the site.
As I've alluded to above, I'd love to hear from you if you are just starting out in your family research and need some help - I'm getting pretty adept at working with the various online tools to track down past relatives, and am always happy to pass on my recently-gained knowledge, and even to help others out with their search activities!
See the Watson Family Trees page for more details, and to see progress to date!
** LATEST UPDATE ** First off, massive apologies that I've not been keeping on top of the site in recent years! I've finally found a bit of time so have now started work on a new website to take Clan Watson forward. You can find it here - the site is still developing, so many of the links won't work as yet and there are a few placeholder pages, but hopefully you'll see more and more functionality over the next few weeks. In the meantime, feel free to sign up! If you want to be involved or want to be kept in the loop for updates, please let me know through the contact page!
Note that some of the links below don't actually have a page associated with them - that's because I haven't finished that page yet! Be patient, and I'll get there eventually! If you sign up for updates at the contact page I'll let you know as and when new areas become available!
Family Tree Research
Watson Family Trees
Requests for Help
Clan Watson History
Associated Clans & Septs
People & Places
History of Tartan
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