Archibald Fairbairn1

(say 1760 - bet. 1800 - 1841)
FatherArchibald? Fairbairn2 (say 1735 - )


     Archibald Fairbairn was estimated to have been born say 1760 probably in the ?Par. of Swinton & Simprim, BEW, SCT.1
     Archibald Fairbairn and Alison Crosser, daughter of Male ?James Croser, are estimated to have married say 1782 prob. in ?ROX or ?BEW, SCT, (this date being assumed from the age of eldest child believed to belong to this family.)1
     Archibald Fairbairn died bet. 1800 - 1841 prob. in Cavers?, Par. of Eckford, ROX, SCT; (unsurprisingly, he was shown as deceased (an agricultural labourer) when his son Walter died, and isn't immediately obvious in the 1841 census.)1,3

     John Fairbairn (m. Bessie fflint) is likely to be the family patriarch for the families of Archibald? Fairbairn, Robert Fairbairn, Archibald Fairbairn, Archibald Fairbairn, William Fairbairn (m. WANLESS), John Fairbairn and William Fairbairn.
The Archibald with the ? after his name has to have existed, as the Fairbairn Surname DNA project provided a DNA match between a descendant of Archibald Fairbairn and Alison Crosser, likely first son Archibald born Whitsome, Berwickshire, and a descendant of Archibald and Mary Grierson/Giessen's, son George, baptised Bowden, Roxburghshire. These two families are contemporaries in time and fairly close by place.
The name Archibald? is assigned as father of the Archibald who married Alison Crosser from my assumption that the 1783 baptism of an Archibald to an Archibald, hynd of Whitsome Vaults, is their likely eldest child.
Prompted by this unexpected success I researched the other Archibald and have now convinced myself that his father was Robert, and grandfather John (marr. Bessie fflint), this all being from both naming patterns of the children, and the baptisms being in the right area and timeframe as there are no convenient wills left around for us to find. The extended family also end up in all the right places (Smailholm and Kelso). There's even an Archibald as a witness to one of the baptisms, and a Thomas Anderson.

My calcs are that a grandfather to the two known to exist Archibalds would cover 8 generations in total, between the matching y_DNA candidates. This agrees with the 90% probability calculations from FamilyTree DNA's y_DNA calculations (95% that it was no more than 10).
This seemed good enough reason to join the families up in this way, it may however be a generation, or two, further back - until we also factor in the growing number of autosomal dna matches bewteen the two lines. (although subsequent BigY testing shows all tested candidate lines "meet" at a branch of the yDNA tree of mankind with an estimated formation of around 1725 - very conveniently about when John and Bessie married.)

You can read about this research journey on my personal Fairbairns page.4,2,5,6
The Fairbairn surname dna project has come up trumps - again.
I began to suspect that the family of FAIRBAIRNs I was tracing around in Ontario and Alberta just might belong to the family of an Archibald who married Jane Blakey in Tynemouth in 1841. Much later, I realised that I'd never actually checked this marriage cert. When this was remedied I was very interested to see that this Archibald's father was another Archibald.
Given that the one married to Jane was given as born about 1813 in Scotland in most available records, and the only Archibald son of Archibald I had in my database of Fairbairns was the one baptised in St Boswells in 1813 to Archibald F. and Janet Scott, it was looking even more likely that I'd found out what had happened to this latter Archibald, albeit that the father was shown with an occupation (gardener) that I hadn't associated with him. (Up till now I had assumed he had died prior to the 1841 census).
Thanks to a McKee researcher connected to the Ontario branch of these Fairbairns (who only knew their ancestry back to the Robert who married Martha Almira Huston), a descendant was convinced to represent his line in the Fairbairn dna project.
The preliminary results (Apr 2009) showed a 12/12 match, and by May they showed a 64/67 match, with the known descendant of Archibald and Janet (Scott) Fairbairn. QED, especially as two of those markers are unique in the project to this line, and marker cdya of 36 is shared with Martin the known descendant of Archibald and Janet (Scott) F, and none of the others in the project.
And when in Apr 2011 Ed turned up a military record for John, son of a Walter of Roxburghshire, which clearly showed his mother as Agnes ROBINSON, we finally had a proven representative of Archibald and Alison (Crosser) Fairbairn to compare the other representatives with. A good match.7,8

DNA Info

     Archibald belongs to a tested line in the FAIRBAIRN Surname DNA Project. Follow this link for supplementary DNA information.


     Click here to see Archibald's page on WikiTree, a (free) collaborative on-line tree.9
     Follow this link for Lorna's family information on Archibald Fairbairn.


     Archibald Fairbairn is the ancestor of researcher Lorna Henderson. (Lorna being the admin for both the One Name Study and DNA Project). She would therefore like to hear from you about any Fairbairns (see footer). Email: Lorna.10


Alison Crosser (say 1760 - bet. 1800 - 1841)
  • Archibald Fairbairn11 (say Mar 1783 - May 1842)
  • Walter Fairbairn+1 (circa May 1785 - Jan 1859)
  • George Fairburn12 (circa Mar 1787 - )
  • Robert Fairbairn+ (say 1789 - aft. 1851); originally a potential relationship based on, possible, naming pattern, and Napanee connections, now reinforced by atDNA matches between descendants of both Robert and of his assumed siblings James, David and Walter13
  • James Fairbairn+14 (circa Dec 1794 - bet. 1851 - 1854)
  • John Fairbairn15,16 (circa May 1797 - )
  • David Fairbairn17,18,19,3 (circa Feb 1800 - Apr 1872)
ChartsLineage 1e: John & Bessie (fflint) FAIRBAIRN
Last Edited29 Dec 2018


  1. [S866] Walter FAIRBAIRN (11277), DC FAIRBAIRN, Walter 1859, p/copy held.
  2. [S2656] FamilyTree DNA, "FamilyTree DNA", FAIRBAIRN Surname DNA Project, 36/37 marker match between descendants of two contemporary (time and place) Archibald FAIRBAIRNs, Dec 2007.
  3. [S2757] Morebattle, ROX: Gateshaw Associate Session & Free Church Records: Item 4 (Gateshaw 1775-1907) & 8 (Free Church 1847-52), Bap. (at Morebattle) 23 Feb 1800 David s/o Archd FAIRBAIRN & Allison CROSSER, of Cavers, Par. of Eckford, ROX, extracted Jul 2008.
  4. [S2] Lorna Henderson, "FAIRBAIRN Analysis", Dec 2007, updated Jan 2015.
  5. [S2656] FamilyTree DNA, "FamilyTree DNA", FAIRBAIRN Surname DNA Project, 37/37 marker match between descendants of Archibald FAIRBAIRN & Mary GRIERSON, and of William FAIRBAIRN & Jean WANLESS, Mar 2008.
  6. [S14] FAIRBAIRN Surname DNA Project online at, 67 marker results for the three matching participants, rcvd Apr 2008.
  7. [S2] Lorna Henderson, "FAIRBAIRN Analysis", Dec 2007, updated Feb 2009, and again Apr and May 2009.
  8. [S14] FAIRBAIRN Surname DNA Project online at, 12/12 match between descendants of Archibald and Janet (SCOTT) FAIRBAIRN and of Robert and Martha Almira (HUSTON) FAIRBAIRN, rcvd Apr 2009.
  9. [S3217] WikiTree online at, Oct 2011.
  10. [S3109] Lorna Henderson, "FAIRBAIRN One Name Study", Oct 2011.
  11. [S2] Lorna Henderson, "FAIRBAIRN Analysis", Feb 2003, Dec 2007 & Mar 2008.
  12. [S3420] FamilySearch, England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975: Bap. 18 Mar 1787 George s/o Archibald FAIRBURN & Alison CROSIER, Norham, NBL,, extracted Dec 2018.
  13. [S2] Lorna Henderson, "FAIRBAIRN Analysis", Jul 2008, updated Jan 2015.
  14. [S1058] Ann COSSAR, "EM FAIRBAIRN/CROS(I)ER ex Ann C," e-mail to L McIntosh (1), Bap. 10 Dec 1794 James s/o Archibald FAIRBAIRN and Alison CROSSER, Gateshaw Assoc Session, Morebattle, ROX, ex OPR index, rcvd Mar 1996.
  15. [S1058] Ann COSSAR, "EM FAIRBAIRN/CROS(I)ER ex Ann C," e-mail to L McIntosh (1), Bap. 14 May 1797 John FAIRBAIRN, ex OPR index, rcvd Mar 1996.
  16. [S2757] Morebattle, ROX: Gateshaw Associate Session & Free Church Records: Item 4 (Gateshaw 1775-1907) & 8 (Free Church 1847-52), Bap. (at Morebattle) 14 May 1797 John s/o Archibald FAIRBAIRN & Alison CROSER, of Grahamslaw, Par. of Eckford, extracted Jul 2008.
  17. [S1058] Ann COSSAR, "EM FAIRBAIRN/CROS(I)ER ex Ann C," e-mail to L McIntosh (1), Mar 1996 ex OPR index.
  18. [S55] Scottish BMDB entries (to 1854),, Birth 7 Bap 22 Apr 1832 Janet d/o David FAIRBAIRN & Janet HERD, Swinton & Simprim, BEW Dist 755, copy d/loaded Jun 2008.
  19. [S2] Lorna Henderson, "FAIRBAIRN Analysis", Jul 2008.
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