Ruby G. Campbell, PhD., FSA (Scot)
The Clan Campbell Society (North America) Genealogy Program serves as a clearing house of information concerning CAMPBELL data. The process is threefold: (1) gathering and processing data, (2) researching these data, and (3) analyzing and reporting findings.
Data is gathered primarily from the Clan Campbell Society Genealogy Data Forms submitted by individuals upon application for membership, but also comes from other sources such as family or county histories, pedigree charts, obituaries, census records and primary documents donated by members to the CCS(NA) Archives or found in other sources by the genealogist.
Upon receipt of these forms, the data contained therein are compared to that which may already be in the computerized CCS(NA) data bank, if any. Variations are noted, new information is added including the names and addresses of all members and/or researchers who have submitted data on that particular line. This enables the Society's genealogist to place cousins in contact with one another in order that they can compare notes and perhaps clarify discrepancies.
While the Society does not always have the necessary documentation to prove the entries in the report, persons submitting data are asked to indicate the source of the data; i.e., cite wills and their locations, specific census records, etc. It is this documentation which makes genealogical research valid.
The second aspect of the CCS(NA) Genealogy Program involves the search process required in response to the varied queries which arrive by mail from all parts of the United States as well as from Canada, Great Britain, Australia, and New Zealand.
The first source consulted is, of course, the data bank of Family Group Sheets. Other sources in the Society's collection include the Clan Campbell Society (USA/North America) Journal, and a variety of books including George Frazer Black's The Surnames of Scotland (New York: The New York Public Library, 1974), Scots Kith and Kin (Edinburgh, Scotland: Albyn Press, nd), Rev. Henry Paton, ed. The Clan Campbell Abstracts of Entries Relating to Campbells in the Sheriff Court Books of Argyll at Inveraray, 8 vol. (Edinburgh, Scotland: Otto Schulze, 1913-1922), G. Harvey Johnston, The Heraldry of the Campbells (Inveraray, Argyll, Scotland: Beinn Bhuidhe Holdings, 1977, Herbert Campbell's unpublished genealogies of the various Campbell lines, and a wide variety of family and county histories. Alexander Warrack's A Scots Dialect Dictionary (Edinburgh, Scotland: W. & R. Chambers, 1911) and Francis H. Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland, 6 vol. (Edinburgh, Scotland: Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, 1882) also provide relevant and useful information.
The census records, now easily accessed via the Internet, are used in helping to establish family members and their order of birth. Some primary sources which may be available on the Internet are also be consulted in an effort to verify data.
Once all the data available in the Society's collection is located, these are carefully studied and an analysis of the data is made. When satisfied that all is in order, a multi-page ancestry report generated by the genealogy program is made and sent to the CCS(NA) member. This includes a chronology of known events in that person's life with citations as to the sources. Photocopies or extracts of all relevant material on the subject are made including complete bibliographic information. Often charts showing relationships are constructed to identify cousins and degree of relationship. Corrections and/or additions to these reports are encouraged in order to obtain as complete and accurate a record as possible.
When no data is found in the Society's records, a list of specific suggestions for further research is offered. Occasionally the actual forms needed for ordering vital records are forwarded to the inquirer. While the Society's genealogist cannot pursue this additional research, the suggestions for additional research are very specific ones which, can easily be followed by the researcher.
As a rule, a query for inclusion in the Kith and Kin column of the next issue of the Journal of the Clan Campbell Society (North America) is written in the hope that a reader will be able to assist the inquirer.
The Clan Campbell Society (North America) does request a donation from inquirers to help defray the expenses. The amount of the donation is left to the discretion of the inquirer. Make check payable to "Clan Campbell Society (North America)" and send it to the Genealogist (name and address above). All correspondence should have a self-addressed, stamped envelope enclosed.
The overall success of the Clan Campbell Society (North America) Genealogy Program depends on the support and cooperation of the members of the Society. The Society's records are only as accurate and complete as that which is submitted by the membership. Each and every CAMPBELL descendant is encouraged to send in data and descendants of CAMPBELL septs are urged to accept the challenge of developing a data bank for those surnames.