Friday, January 25, 2019

MacGREGOR - Early Nutfield Settler

The tombstone of Rev. and Mrs. James McGregore
Forest Hill Cemetery, East Derry, New Hampshire

[Note:  I will be doing a series of genealogical sketches on the early Nutfield settlers in advance of the 300th anniversary of Founders Day, April 12 - 14, 2019 in Derry, New Hampshire.  If you have additional notes on the first few generations of this family, please comment below or send me an email at, and I will edit this sketch.  These sketches will be used and distributed to the public and to descendants at the Founders Day activities.]

MacGregor – Descendants of Rev. James MacGregor of Nutfield
alternate spellings: MacGregor / McGregor / MacGregore / and possibly Greg / Gregg / 

The Reverend James MacGregor, born about 1677, was the pastor of the Aghadowey Presbyterian church in Northern Ireland.  He was the son of a military Captain, but his parents are unknown.  MacGregor often mentioned he was from Magilligan, but it is unknown if he was born there, or just grew up near there.  Rev. MacGregor would have been about age 12 during the Siege of Londonderry, and stories say that he was the young boy who fired the cannon that signaled the end of the siege.

 There is no record of James McGregor matriculating or graduating at the University of Glasgow, according to their archivist.  Since the name McGregor was outlawed in Scotland during the time he would have attended (1693 – 1784) he might have used an alias [A James Greg graduated in 1696].  

Rev. MacGregor was ordained at Aghadowey in 1701, and then brought his flock to New England in 1718, and founded Nutfield (Londonderry) in April 1719.  Because he brought members of his parish with him, he is often referred to as the "Moses of the Ulster Scots".   He married Marion Cargill, daughter of David Cargill, in Londonderry, Ireland on 29 March 1706. He died in Londonderry on 5 March 1729, and she died there on 1 January 1735/6.  They are buried in the Forest Hill Cemetery behind the First Parish Meetinghouse, the parish he founded in 1719. 


     1.       Robert
     2.       Daniel
     3.       David, born in Ireland on 6 November 1710, married Mary Boyd, and became a minister like his father.  He died 30 May 1777 at age 68.  Mary died 28 September 1793 at age 70.  Nine children – David, Robert (married Elizabeth Reid, daughter of General Georg Reid, settled in Goffstown), David (graduated Dartmouth, was a Captain in the Revolutionary War), James (married Margaret Holland, daughter of Colonel Stephen Holland), Elizabeth, Margaret (married James Rogers), Mary Anne (married James Hopkins), Jane (married Robert Hunter), Mary (married Robert Means of Amherst)
     4.       Jane
     5.       Alexander, had a daughter Susannah (1742 – 1817) who married Thomas Burnside. A grandson was Major-General Ambrose Everett Burnside of the Civil War.
     6.       Mary, married James Paul, daughter Mary married John Weir.
     7.       Elizabeth
     8.       Margaret
     9.       John
    10.   James

For more information:

“The Presbyterians of Magilligan Ancestral Guide 1600 – 1900”, by Stephen McCracken and Fiona Pegrum, 2019

Clan Gregor Society:  

MacGregor/ Gregor DNA Project at Family Tree DNA

Aghadowey: A Parish and its Linen Industry, by Rev. T. H. Mullin, Belfast, Northern Ireland, 1972

The History of Londonderry, by Rev. Edward Lutwyche Parker, 1851  

Click here for links to the sketches of all sixteen first Nutfield settlers: 

Thank you to Stephen McCracken of the Facebook page "1718 Society" for pointing me to some additional resources for the genealogy of Rev. James MacGregor. 

Window inside the
First Parish Meetinghouse
Rev. James McGregor,
Marion Cargil,
Rev. David MacGregor,
and Mary Boyd.


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "MacGREGOR - Early Nutfield Settler", Nutfield Genealogy, posted January 25, 2019, ( accessed [access date]). 


  1. James MacGregor & marion Cargill 2. David MacGrgor & Mary Boyd,3 Margaret MacGregor & James Rogers 4 James Rogers & Judith Deans 5. Harry Rogers & Maysel Doland 6 Lois Rogers & and Philo Haynes, 7 Linda Haynes (me)There is a lot of information on James MacGrego's background on the web. We spelled his name Macgregor. His Granddaughter Margaret married James Rogers of the Roger's Rangers fame. His brother Robert was the head of the Rangers .

  2. Sorry could you tell us about Rogers Rangers please?

    1. I wrote about this subject a while ago, but I could write an updated post later this year....