(Father of Walter) Gray
(Bef 1715-)
John Halket
(Bef 1710-)
Janet Gelly
(Bef 1710-)
Walter Gray
(Bef 1735-After 1783)
Janet Halket
Jannet Gray


Family Links

Jannet Gray

  • Christened: 30 May 1762, Fordyce 1

  General Notes:

There was a Walter Gray who married Jannet Halket and had two sons, Alexander (Christening: 30 JUN 1755 Fordyce, Banff) and John and a daughter Jannet. The church yard of Fordyce has Jannet Halket's grave stone with Walter named has a farmer in the Mill of Towie. Jannet their daughter married John Black who started farming Ley at this time so he quite possibly took over the tenacy from Walter who then moved onto the Mill of towie?

The following extract was copied on 5th Feb 2010 from <>

"Their first son John Black was christened at Deskford in 1753.
In September 1784 he married Jannet Gray and gained the tenancy of Ley Farm near Fordyce.

Jannet was the daughter of Walter Gray and Jannet Hackett.
The gravestone erected by Walter Gray when Jannet Hackett died in 1783 still survives among the ruins of the old Forfyce Kirk.

"SACRED to the Memory of his worthy Spouse JANNET HACKET ..."

Jannet Gray and John Black had 2 sons and 6 daughters.
Jannet died in 1832 and John in 1838.
John's will reveals that 5 of the daughters married and moved out of the area.
The younger son, Walter, born in 1797, emigrated to Australia in 1826. There is no mention of the older son, presumably because he had died before his father.
The remaining spinster daughter, Janet Black, ran Ley Farm and cared for her parents until their death.
Janet is responsible for the lasting evidence of our Black heritage - the substantial headstone that still stands in the shadows of the Auld Kirk at Cullen.

Janet Black's Legacy

Walter Black had left Ley Farm in 1825.
His letter of application to become a free settler in New South Wales survives.
He sailed from London on the Woodman on 6 December 1825 bound for Sydney and Hobart with 146 male convicts.

For the next 12 years he was overseer of the 2000 acre Cecil Hills property at Cabramatta that had been granted to the Judge Advocate, John Wylde.
After it was sold in 1838 Walter spent 2 years in Tasmania before moving to Melbourne.

In 1842, at the age of 45, Walter Black married another Scot who had taken an entirely different journey to Melbourne.

On the North Eastern shores of Scotland's Firth of Forth lies the ancient kingdom of Fife.

Fife is famous now for, among other things, the golf town of St.Andrews where in 1764 its first 18 hole golf course was constructed.
Around the same time Thomas Whyte and Margaret Simpson had 10 children at Kilconquhar [pronounced "Kinnochar"], 4 miles to the east of Largo, between 1762 and 1780.
Their sixth son, John Thomson Whyte, became a weaver like his father and moved to the growing industrial centre of Kirkaldy [pronounced "Kircoddy"!].

On 9 February 1807 John Thomson Whyte married Christian Christie, daughter of Alexander Christie of Leslie in Fife. The couple had 4 children christened at the Abbotshall parish kirk in Kirkaldy.
Their only daughter, Susan Whyte, was baptised in 1811.

Abbotshall, Kirkcaldy, Fife, Scotland.

In 1839, with her brother John, Susan Whyte sailed to Adelaide on the Tomantin, arriving in March 1840. After 2 years in South Australia Susan moved to Melbourne and married Walter Black in December 1842.

After a couple of years at Cowies Creek near Geelong, where their first son John was born in 1844, Walter and Susan Black took up land near Talbot in Victoria's Central Goldfields.
On the north eastern corner of the intersection of Scotchman's Creek and Stoney Creek they had another 2 children, Christina and Thomas.

Walter died in 1879 and was buried at the Amherst Cemetery.
Susan sold the Stoney Creek farm to a neighbouring pioneer, Thomas Griffiths.
(Today, on the site of the Black family home, Griffiths' descendants produce Stoney Creek flaxseed oils.)

Susan died in 1892 at her daughter Christina's home in King St Essendon.
She is buried in the Melbourne General Cemetery.
Christina had married Alexander Wighton, another native of Cullen and a Talbot neighbour.
Her younger brother, Thomas Whyte Black, moved to New Zealand, settling on the South Island.

Her eldest brother John worked as a miner before settling in Casterton, where he married Louisa Sealey in 1882."


1 Scotland's People - Index,, 30/05/1762 GRAY JANNET WALTER GRAY/JANNET HACKET FORDYCE /BANFF 153/ 0020 0230