Agnes Robinson1,2,3

(circa 1786 - 1 April 1863)
FatherJohn Robinson4 (say 1760 - bef. 1863)
MotherAnn UnknownSurname4 (say 1760 - bef. 1863)
Relationship3rd great-grandmother of Lorna Henderson

BMDB data

     Agnes Robinson was born cir. 1786 ENG (place from 1851 & 1861 census records, date derived from same, plus dth cert, a remarkedly consistent lady for the time.)5,6
     Agnes Robinson married Walter Fairbairn, son of Archibald Fairbairn and Alison Crosser, on 22 Nov 1806 Morebattle, ROX, SCT, OPR entry reads: "Walter Fairbairn and Agnes Robinson, date of irregular marriage 22 Nov 1806, date of confirmation 3 Jan 1808.3'
     Agnes Robertson died on 1 Apr 1863 Morebattle, ROX, SCT; Dist (Morebattle) cert #6 reads: Agnes Fairbairn, pauper, widow of Walter Fairbairn, ag. lab, died 1st Apr 1863 6am at Morebattle, no medical attendant, aged 77, d/o John Robertson, cooper, dec, Mother Ann m.s. unknown, dec. Inf. Mary F. dtr, present, reg 4th Apr.7 She was buried with Walter Fairbairn in the Churchyard, Morebattle, ROX, SCT, Described in the MI booklet as "Ivy covered stone leaning against enclosure wall" entry reads: "IMO Walter Fairbairn who died at Morebattle 19.1.1959 (sic, should be 1859!!) aged 75 yrs and Agnes Robison his wife died 1.4.1863 aged 77 yrs also Peter Holiday died Oct 1883 aged 62 yrs also Mary Fairbairn wife of Peter Holiday died 28.11.1902 aged 76 yrs and of Ann Fairbairn their dtr who died 8.11.???? (now known to be 1891) aged 81 yrs". I managed to visit this cemetery, and find the stone with the help of the kindly couple who lived on the corner of Teapot Lane (or similar name). They also opened the church and showed me the interior, which post dated my Fairbairn ancestors' stay in Morebattle. The cemetery has a lovely outlook over rolling fields.8,9
     From the naming pattern of existing children I expected a daughter called Alison and a son John to eventually surface to complete the Scottish naming pattern and fill in the gap in the known children of Walter and Agnes. Jan 2008 saw Alison surface! All as a side effect of being found by a descendant of an unexpected dtr of Peter Sinton. I went looking for other Mabon researchers, picked one who happened to live in NZ, and instead of finding a related set of Sinton/Mabon Jedburgh families, I found a descendant of the missing Alison Fairbairn. All I need now is confirmation that the John in New York of an age to be the expected John in the family, is actually related.
May 2009 update: a descendant of the New York John has been found for the dna project, with preliminary 12 marker dna results in. With a 12/12 match with descendants of the Archibald I believe to be Walter's brother, considerable weight has been added to both these theoretical linkages.
I have to add however, that there is another candidate for Walter, yet another Walter born c 1787 Swinton (marr. Agnes Renton), who just has to be related too. On balance though, my Walter of Morebattle is the better candidate in that we have evidence that he at least lived in Roxburghshire.
Apr 2011 update: all things coming to those who wait, and have access to local research. Thank you Ed, it only took us 12+ years to prove we really were "cousins". The DNA results mentioned above had been further strengthened by both the 12/12 match becoming 36/37, and a documented descendant of Walter's brother David also matching (65/67) with our New York representative. Now, finally, we have written proof, in the form of son John's military discharge.10,11

Census/Where lived/Occupations

     Agnes appeared on the census of 7 Jun 1841 Morebattle, ROX, SCT, with Walter Fairbairn, as FAIRBAIRN: Walter, 50, b ENG; Agnes, 50, born ENG, no occupation stated; Mary 14, b. county (NB instructions to the enumerators for this census were to round ages to the nearest multiple of 5, children tended to have their ages accurately recorded - or at least as accurate as such things can be. These instructions were not always followed.)12
     Walter and Agnes Fairbairn appeared on the census of 30 Mar 1851 Morebattle, ROX, as FAIRBAIRN: Walter, 66 b Swinton, BEW, pauper, street cleaner; Agnes, 65 b ENG, pauper's wife; dtr Mary, 23 b Morebattle, emp. in house.6
     Agnes appeared on the census of 7 Apr 1861 Morebattle, ROX, enumerated as FAIRBAIRN: Agnes, pauper age not known, mar. (should be widow), b ENG, dtr Mary, unm, 34, seamstress, b Morebattle.13


     As of 1863, Agnes was also known as Agnes Robertson (on her death cert, and dtr Margaret's dth cert.)4 Yet another recorded variant was Agnes Robison (as shown on her h/stone, and son's 1867 dth cert.)5,14


Walter Fairbairn (cir. 1784 - Jan 1859)
My pedigree chart
Ancestors & siblings of Les Henderson
Paternal ancestors of Lorna
Paternal timeline

Adam DAVIDSON's ancestors

Last Edited8 Mar 2013


  1. (on her own marriage entry, and the baptism of her son Archibald, so picked as the primary version of her name given it was more under her control than the other variants recorded.)
  2. OPR Baptisms Marriages: Morebattle, ROX, SCT, Baptism 1808 Archibald FAIRBAIRN, trans. L McIntosh Sep/Oct 1994.
  3. OPR Baptisms Marriages: Morebattle, ROX, SCT, Mar. 1806/8 FAIRBAIRN/ROBINSON, trans. L McIntosh Sep/Oct 1994.
  4. Agnes FAIRBAIRN nee ROBERTSON (11278), FAIRBAIRN, Agnes (ROBERTSON) DC 1863, p/copy held.
  5. Borders FHS, MIs: ROX Morebattle, Entry #125.
  6. 1851 census, Borders, ROX, Maxton, Melrose, Jedburgh, Southdean, Morebattle, ROX, Dist 811, Enum Dist ??, entry #11.
  7. Agnes FAIRBAIRN nee ROBERTSON (11278), FAIRBAIRN, Agnes (ROBERTSON) DC 1863, p/copy held, scanned Dec 2011.
  8. Walter FAIRBAIRN (11277), DC FAIRBAIRN, Walter 1859, p/copy held, scannded Dec 2011.
  9. Borders FHS, MIs: ROX Morebattle, Entry #125, extracted 1994.
  10. "Lorna's Family History Musings", Jan 2008, updated May 2009, and Apr 2011.
  11. Edward STEWART (18124), "EM FAIRBAIRN, John ex Ed S," e-mail to Lorna Henderson, Enlistment 4 Jan 1864 (Kingston) Discharge 29 Apr 1864 (Elmira) John FAIRBAIRN, (of Hardenburgh, born Scotland) , from Record of Soldiers & Officers In the Military Service, enlisted since July 1863 and credited to other places, image ex Town Clerk, rcvd Apr 2011.
  12. 1841 Census, Borders, SCT, LDS Film, Dist #1 page 8.
  13. CENSUS 1861: Borders ROX/BEW, Morebattle, Dist 811, Enum Dist ??, entry #64.
  14. Archibald FAIRBAIRN (13611), DC FAIRBAIRN, Archibald 1867, p/copy held.
  15. Amanda MABON, "EM FAIRBAIRN/STEWART ex Amanda M," e-mail to Lorna Henderson, Dth 1891 Alison STEWART nee FAIRBAIRN, rcvd (phone conversation) Jan 2008.
  16. Lorna Henderson, "FAIRBAIRN Conclusions", Jan 2008, updated May 2009.
  17. Edward STEWART (18124), "EM FAIRBAIRN, John ex Ed S," e-mail to Lorna Henderson, Birth 9 Jun 1812 John (of Hardenburgh) s/o Walter (farmer) FAIRBAIRN & Agnes ROBINSON, Scotland, from Record of Soldiers & Officers In the Military Service, enlisted since July 1863 and credited to other places, image ex Town Clerk, rcvd Apr 2011.
  18. Agnes DAVIDSON nee FAIRBAIRN, DC DAVIDSON, Agnes Chirnside 1884, p/copy taken 1994/5 held.
  19. GRO, SCT, BDM searches at GRO SCT: Dth 1903 Walter FAIRBAIRN, transcr. Stuart H, ?pre 2000?

E. & O. E. Some/most parish records are rather hard to read and names, places hard to interpret, particularly if you are unfamiliar with an area.