Local Connections

Dunlop brothers – William “Tiger”

William Dunlop was born in Greenock in November 1792, he served as an army surgeon in the Anglo American war of 1812 – 1815 where he was known for his tireless professionalism.  He served with the 89th Regiment of Foot and arrived in Upper Canada in 1813 and was involved in the Battle of Crysler’s Farm and Lundy’s […]

Captain John Orr 1790 – 1879

  John Orr was born in Greenock  on 3 April 1790 and baptised on 12th April.  His parents were John and Margaret Orr (Drummond).  His father is noted as a Jeweller in the baptismal records.  (Other records give his father’s name as James John Orr and occupation as a silversmith.) John Orr obtained an army […]

Rev Kerr Johnston 1812 – 1887

Kerr Johnston was born in Greenock on 26 August 1812, his father was a printer and publisher.  Kerr joined his father’s business and learned bookbinding.  He studied at Glasgow University between 1837 -1840 and later studied at Glasgow Theological Academy.   Dr Ralph Wardlaw, his tutor, was a prominent Scottish opponent of religious establishments.  Kerr supported […]

Captain Donald Brotchie

Donald Brotchie was the chaplain of the Seamen’s Friends Society, he was born in Great Yarmouth on 7th February 1807.  His family were from Dingwall, his father was a sergeant in the Rossshire Militia and was stationed in Yarmouth during the Napoloenic Wars. Donald was seven when his parents returned to Tain.  Donald wanted to go to […]

George Henry Tatham Paton VC MC

George Henry Tatham Paton was a recipient of the Victoria Cross.  He was only 22 years of age and an acting captain in the Grenadier Guards during the First World War.  The London Gazette of 12 February 1918 records the following:   “….. for most conspicuous bravery and self sacrifice.  When a unit on his left […]

Dr Tom Cochrane – missionary to China

Dr Tom Cochrane Thomas, was born, 12 November 1866 in 16 Wellington Street, Greenock into a working class family.  His father died when he was 13 years old and Tom had to seek work in the docks in order to help support his mother and the rest of his family.  He managed to cope with working in the […]

James Gammell of Garvel House 1735-1825

James Gammell of Garvel House 1735-1825

James Gammell 1735-1825 James Gammell was born  in Greenock on 12 December 1735 to William Gammell and Margaret Scott.  William Gammell had been a shipmaster and later a merchant.  He became a Baillie of the town and the landowner of the Garvel estate.  James was their 4th child.  James attended the Greenock Grammar School with his brother William where one […]

Alexander Graham Bell

Alexander Graham Bell

In the 1870s a group of Greenock Business men, including a Mr Thomas Borthwick who had a deaf child, went to hear Alexander Graham Bell in Glasgow lecturing about his “Visible Speech Machine”.  They approached him afterwards about the possibility of him helping start up a school in Greenock for the deaf children of the area using his […]

Ian McCrorie – A Life Lived to the Full

Ian McCrorie is a well known and very popular figure in the Greenock area for several reasons, the main four being:- His contribution to education as a Chemistry teacher and as Assistant Rector of Greenock Academy.  His contribution to Music in the Inverclyde area and beyond.  His love of and enthusiasm for steamers and the […]

Mary Campbell – Highland Mary

Click the link below to access the leaflet about Highland Mary Highland-mary-Leaf-Highland-mary-Leaf[2]     Mary Campbell’s grave in the Old West Kirkyard