About Me

Hi all, I am new to all this blogging lark and this is my first post so a bit about me.  I am 63 years young, have retired from working with teenagers and have taken up a lot of interests as an alternative to housework.

I paint in oils and watercolour (though a beginner at watercolours)and as a member of the Glenrothes Art club my hubby and I run fund raising car-boot sales twice a year.   I make all my own Christmas cards and cards for lots of other occasions.  From time to time I get involved in other crafts and at one point I did voluntary work doing arts and crafts with Age Concern.   Since I retired at 50 I have also completed a number of tapestry pictures (needlepoint really) and am working on a huge one at the moment.  It is the picture of one section in the famous ‘Lady with the Unicorn’ series and will probably take me years to finish.

For my 60th Birthday my daughter and her husband gave me a dolls house as I had always wanted one.  Later my husband built a huge extension.  This is an on going project and gardens and outbuildings are being added.  I need an extension to the house for my plans for it!!

A few years ago I began looking into my fathers genealogy and discovered a new addiction.  I have now researched my father’s family Nicolson from Skye, my mother’s family Quigley from Donegal, my mother-in-law’s familyGuthrie from Berwickshire and am currently working on my father-in-law’s family Sloan from Antrim.  My plan is to put them into hard backed books published by Blurb.com, called The Road to Edinburgh books 1-4.  They are tracing each family who ends with my daughter who lives in Edinburgh.

I have been building a Doll’s House for a few years now – 3 to be exact and I am fascinated by the amazing tiny things that can be bought. Here are some photographs of the various stages of work. The first thing completed was the roof and tiny red terracotta tiles were glued onto it.  To view further posts click the links in the  category cloud in the right hand column

I plan to write something in for most days… just bits about what I am up to most days……it will be riviting stuff…. not!

Well that’s enough about me to be going on with.  Watch this space more to come




  1. I love your site. Keep it up !

  2. Hi
    nice to put a face to the name!
    Last year i had a couple from America come and visit slafarquhar and told me their relatives lived here from about 1650.
    I too have been building, have completed the last barn conversion after 4 years. if you type slafarquhar into google youll find lots of photos.
    It was your original post that started me off getting interested in the history of the farm.
    john nicholson is still remembered in the valley!
    Steve Kelly

  3. Lovely to hear from you again. I have been a bit naughty. You may remember that you sent me some photographs which included one of the original wall of the house…… well I have put the family history into a book which published on Blurb and included the photo. As I had lost your email and name through the change in computer I couldn’t give you the credit. I can now rectify that and give you the credit in any future edition – which I am sure there will be when I dig up more information.
    How nice to know that he is still known in the area – good I hope. However not all the family history is to be proud of but then that’s what most people find. Can you tell me by what is said of him. It would be really good to know as much of his life is a blank. I would love to know more about his children as we only really have details about one son – our grandfather Malcolm.
    By the was there is a link to the book where you can see the first 15 pages, on the Nicolson link on the right.

  4. very interested to find your site my mothers maiden name was Nicolson and her late father my Grandfather was called James and when he was a boy he lived on a farm called Slafarquar. He was one of ten children.
    Helena Socha

  5. This is amazing. James was my great grandfather’s son. I think he lived at Slafarquar until 1923 when the farm was sold. I have been trying to find out more about him and his siblings. Unfortunately in the next generation my grandfather caused a huge rift in the family so not a lot was talked about. As my father died over 20 years ago it is difficult now to find out. You are the first chink in the puzzle. You may have seen on the site a link to the book I have written about the Nicolson family beginning with their roots in the Isle of Sky. Please get in touch again. If you can give me your email address I can send you more up to date information and perhaps you can tell me what you know of the family.

  6. Wow!
    It’s amazing what the internet throws up.
    Did you see this
    http://www.tooveys.com/lots.asp?WEBLOTID=121976&LOTID=3206 – Cached

  7. Your Blog getting a bit out of date I see!

  8. yes I really need to spend some time on it and update it properly

  9. yes quite!

  10. Lilian,
    I may be related to the Burns family of Tullydish Upper in Co Donegal in Ireland (Robert John, William, James, etc). One of your correspondents mentioned having a lot of information on this Burns family. Can I contact that person?

  11. Hello Edward, What is your connection? I have a lot of other information which I haven’t had time to put on this blog yet. It is in my family tree maker file elsewhere on my computor.

  12. Hi Lilian,
    Just had a wee look over your Guthrie family tree. My 3rd Great Grandfather was Archibald Guthrie 1809.
    Did you ever discover who he married? I’ve hit a complete dead end. I think he might have been a soldier in Woolwich at the time, as his daughter Elizabeth was born there.
    My family are Fifers now too. Our home is now Limekilns/Dunfermline. although I’ve lived in Turkey for the past 20 years.
    I was amused to see that you are a card maker too. I make handmade cards and also photograph cards and sell them in many of the big stores in Istanbul, Izmir and Ankara! Must be something in the DNA!!
    Annie Esentepe

  13. […] About Me […]

  14. Hi Lillian Hope your ok Not Heard from you for ages hope everything is alright with you and the family. Helena Socha

  15. Hi Helena, yes all is OK. Things have been very busy though. Ian became a local councillor last year and he is out a lot of the time therefore…..more work for me at home. We have also been doing a lot of decorating and as President of our local Art club I am often up to my eyes in work for them. As a result this website is often neglected and I have not been doing a lot of the genealogy… Last year I had to work quickly on my mother-in-laws’s family as she was becoming very frail. Unfortunately she died later in the year. One of these days soon I will get the last of the books on my family complete (my father-in-law’s family) and then no doubt start at the beginning again with the Nicolsons. There is stuff I have learned since I did that first book and corrections which need to be made so that I can make a second edition.
    All in all there is a lot to do.
    Hope you are well and my best wishes to you and your family

  16. I wonder if you might contact me at Garden Museum, Lambeth London, I am trying to find out a little about Isabella Sloan.

  17. can you tell me why you want to know about Isabella and which Isabella you refer to

  18. I have an autograph book that belonged to an Isa Sloan which was used during the period 1914-18 to record visitors – including a number of soldiers

  19. what part of the country does it apply to

  20. Bothwell, Lanarkshire

  21. OK I will have a look at my files. Unfortunately my computer has gone down and I won’t get to them till next week at the earliest.

  22. also in the book is a Poem: ‘The Crown of Sacrifice’ by H Chappell, Nov. 11th 1918. ‘In memory of D.J. Sloan, 25th Sept 1915, killed Battle of Loos, France.’ (David J Sloan, Royal Scots Fusiliers) – autographed ‘J. Kidel, Jan. 1921’.
    Poem: ‘Bruges’ [in French[ – autographed ‘Sr Theodula [?], Bothwell, 4 Juin 1916.’
    Newspaper clipping, Poem: ‘A Bit of Heather’ by W. Williams, M.A. Oxon and much more I can e mail a much more comprehensive list of the clues in the book if you like.

  23. Hi have had a look at your page….what a lot of work has gone into this..
    My family are of the Nicolson’s also. My great grandparents were Lachlan Nicolson and Kate mcinness. They were mainly from sleat. there were many children down the lines so am sure there would be a connection somewhere.
    keep up the good work.

  24. Hi Lilian I was just looking up tollydish, buncrana on google as my brothers and I are planning a trip over to see where our dad was born. I came across your blog and was looking through the Quigley family photos. My Nana was Margret Quigley who married Timothy Fitzpatrick, my Dad was one of the twins, Timothy, it was a lovely surprise to see the photos as just last night I was looking at old photos of the house.

  25. that’s lovely. My mother lived at the Big Holm until she came to Edinburgh to become a nurse. The house is quite different now and where the wall now stands was the dairy. I remember it all as being much bigger but then I was only a child. I have put together a book which goes into a lot more detail of the family. If you like I will send you a link to the web site where you can get it.

  26. that would be lovely, I look forward to it, is there family still living in the house do you know? it would be nice to meet some new relatives.

  27. http://www.blurb.co.uk/b/980834-the-roads-to-edinburgh-book-2-the-quigley-family-of

    There are people in the house although it is now very much renovated and changed

  28. Hello Lilian. Have been trying to look for Tullydish recently where I was taken to by my grandfather Joe Quigley on visits to his brother Robert John who lived in the upper house, with his two daughters. I remember down the road there was Eva and Johnny. My mother was Tilly and I know you visited her . I think you visited her when you were compiling the book. Those were happy days and the hospitality was warm. Things have changed a lot (60 years a long time) bug i ola. To have another trip there again soon.

  29. HI Lilian
    my grandfather was James Nicolson, who had an elder brother, Malcolm (known as Callum – who was a railway engineer in India)
    please get in touch as I may have some family photos for you

  30. Hi Lilian
    my grandfather was James Nicolson who had an older brother Malcolm, known as Callum, who was a railway engineer in India
    please get in touch as I may have some family photos for you

  31. Hello Dora, sorry for the delay in replying. I would be very interested in seeing any photos you may have. as you may know Malcolm was my grandfather. How do you want to send these photos? email or snail mail

  32. Lilian would you please send me a link where I can obtain a copy of your book “roads to Donegal” . I would love to have a copy, as my mum Tillie (nee Quigley ) has now passed on. I visited “the roadside” and big home in Tullydish last Sunday and it evoked many happy memories. Valerie

  33. http://www.blurb.co.uk/bookstore/detail/980834-the-roads-to-edinburgh-book-2-the-quigley-family-of

    This is the link in Blurb. If you have a problem please let me know

  34. Lilian,

    My great-grandfathers second wife was Jane Marshall Quigley. Her death certificate in Greenock in 1930 shows her parents as Adam Quigley and Jane (Moore). I believe these to be the Adam and Jane Quigley (Protestants) who were living in 1901 at Carrowreagh, Burt, Co Donegal, which is very close to the area of your Quigleys. Have you came across them in your research ? Adam would have been born around 1830.

    Don Gillies

  35. Valerie were you able to get the link for the book

  36. Hi Lillian can’t remember if I let you know or not but my mother passed away sadly the April after last April in a care home in Montrose.
    It is a shame you never got to meet her because she could have told you so much about the Nicolson family my Grandfather who was called James Nicolson. I do miss her so much. But I keep myself busy one thing I do like you Lillian, is make cards I enjoy that like your self. Hope you are your family are well. Helena Socha.

  37. Hello Helena. I was sorry to hear about your mother. Recently I have been in touch with Krysta and Dora who has sent me some things belong to my great grandfather and my grandfather. They were fascinating and it was good to hear about them

  38. I have a letter from john sloan May 5 1820 to richard

  39. I would be very interested to see this letter

  40. I dont know hiw to post pics on here..

  41. Email me ashleyheard26@gmail.com. ill send the pics, i dont know hiw on here

  42. Hi Lilian, you may remember me, I ran the Nicolson Pipe band after Major Malcolm Nicolson died, we have now managed to find the wedding details of Major Nicolson and Georgina and wondered if you would like it. And somewhere to send it as don’t seem to be able to do this here. Terry Rivers.

  43. I would love to have the information many thanks. email: lilianmsloan@gmail.com

  44. sorry about this delay email is; lilianmsloan@gmail.com

  45. Wonderful research! I am a Nicolson living in Canada. In my family bible (not that I’ve read it directly,) my father told me that we are Nicolsons from Isle of Skye as well. This is a new hobby (okay, addiction) of mine and I’ve reached a dead end on Ancestry.ca and more than a dozen websites for my paternal 2nd grandfather – George Nicolson b. 1821 (approx) in Ediburgh, d. 26 Jan 1895 in Tranent. Did I miss him in your notes?

  46. I think that those Nicolsons in Edinburgh are a different branch. I suppose if you delve far enough there will be a connection. There were so many Nicolsons from Skye who were scattered all over Scotland.

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