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a website for the descendants of Angus and Nancy McCutchen MacLeod~~



The Mystery of Mary McInnis -

Old Scotch Cemetery, Kershaw County, South Carolina

This web page has been updated in May/June of 2011. The original intent of this site is the same as it has always been; to provide a FREE tool for researchers to help each other by the sharing of information - please support this intent by helping to keep it as accurate as possible. The information on this page represents the combined efforts of several researchers. I have verified the information by Wills, Equity, Deeds, Census and Cemetery Records where possible. Where no source is given, the information is unproven/unverified. Additions and corrections are welcome (rude emails are not). When writing, please include the Page Title and Web Address. Proper credit is always awarded to the provider of information. Happy Researching! Keep the circle of sharing intact, include the following if you take information for your own records: !Source: Lori McLeod Wilke; "Walking with ghosts", Research 2000 - 2011

Buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery near Bethune, the stone of Mary McInnis, wife of John McLeod has caused a great deal of confusion among those who research the various McLeod families with links to Kershaw or Sumter (and present day Lee County) South Carolina. While I do not claim to have solved the mystery, I do believe there is enough evidence to at least attempt to point others in the right direction to solve it themselves with wills, equity, and deeds. This Mary is NOT a member of my family of McLeods.

Over the last eight years I have primarily researched McLeods whose first names are Angus, Alexander, Daniel, Norman and John. I am fairly certain that many of you who have come to this page are also researching men of those names as they are among the most common in the McLeod Clan....and with the habit of the Scots to use a naming pattern, one can spend months or even years just trying to determine which generation one is looking at....let alone separating out the records and descendants of each man!

As any genealogist knows, in order to determine just which of the many Daniel's' or Alexanders' or....actually belonged to your own family of McLeods, it is necessary to access all records of any person bearing that name in your search location. Using the boundaries set out in land deeds, comparing those named as owning or living on the boundaries to the census enumeration of your guy, searching the local cemeteries.....all of these things help to separate out these elusive men of like name. It is equally important to verify that family files one views containing information and/or records used to prove ancestry or identity have been accurately interpreted and/or transcribed.

Much of the confusion surrounding the Mary McInnis of Scotch Cemetery is likely the result of folks copying and pasting information from other researchers but not following up with verification of that information. Sometimes, buried in those family files are notations that something is speculated and not proven, yet it seems that those notations are overlooked or ignored leading to a formulation of belief that is incorrect.

Over the years in which I have researched my own family of MacLeod/McLeods, I have found binder's full of information that does not belong to my line. The mystery of Mary McInnis McLeod is one that I have encountered over and over again in my searches- not only in my paper trail searches but also in Internet searches and message boards and emails from others researching the same names as do I.......and so, I began to keep records on her in the hopes of one day helping to solve her mystery....

The Tombstone Inscription


There can be no doubt that the Mary McInnis buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery was a McInnis nor that she was married to John McLeod - the tombstone confirms both these facts. The question is to WHICH John McLeod was she married and therefore it follows - who are the real ancestors of her descendants?

At least three distinct families claim this Mary as the wife of THEIR John McLeod, but only one line has a family bible naming the descendants of THEIR John and Mary McInnis McLeod. At issue is that all three distinct families have taken the descendants named in the family bible and added those descendants to their own family trees.

The Three Johns

The descendants of each of the three Johns' below all have claimed that the Mary McLeod nee McInnis buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery was married to their John - all three of them also lay claim to the named descendants and their birth and death dates. Only the first John can claim the descendants......

1. John McLeod of the Family Bible Record,

son of Daniel, son of Norman, son of Roderick, son of John, son of John, son of Roderick, the Landlord in the Shire of Inverness, lived in Dunvegan - the following was sent to me by John Davis McLeod as transcribed from his Family Bible. The ancient script in which it is written was added in 1829 just after the death of this John, by his cousin Dan'l McInnis, a cousin of John's first wife Mary McInnis. The bible also states that the first Mary died on the same date as the Mary buried at Old Scotch Cemetery and although it does not name the cemetery, it states she was buried in Kershaw District .

"Certainly it is the Leod which the MacLeods descended from was of the Royal Family of Denmark which may be found in the family Records in Dunvegan in the Shire of Inverness Scotland-the genealogy of John MacLeod to Roderick MacLeod the landlord in the Shire of Inverness lived in Dunvegan, Viz. Roderick the Lord begat John & John begat John & John begat Roderick that went from the Isle of Skye to Glenelg- Roderick Begat Norman & Norman begat Daniel Daniel & his father Norman emigrated from Glenelg in Scotland to America - first landed in Wilmington, North Carolina in the year 1775 together with their families. John MacLeod was born in Glenelg March 15, 1772. Mary the wife of John MacLeod was born January 5, 1772.

The children of John & Mary were born as follows viz:

Sarah MacLeod was born September 28, 1800 (aged 20 in 1820)
Daniel McLeod was born December 12, 1802 (aged 18 in 1820)
Anna McLeod was born January 17, 1805 (aged 15 in 1820)
Cristian McLeod was born March 10, 1807 (aged 13 in 1820)
Catherine McLeod was born March 12, 1809 (aged 11 in 1820)
Norman Rodgers McLeod was born October 11, 1811 (aged 9 in 1820) buried at Dillon County SC cemetery
Roderick Innes McLeod was born December 30, 1813 (aged 7 in 1820)
Margaret McLeod was born 3rd of May, 1816 (aged 4 in 1820)
Miles Allan McLeod was born 7th of December, 1818 (age 2 in 1820)
Catherine Caroline McLeod was born 25th of February, 1820

The children of John MacLeod and second wife Mary MacLeod were born as follows viz

Mary McLeod was born August 2, 1824
Effy Mcleod was born October 2, 1825 wife of James A. Alford buried at Dillon County SC cemetery
Jane Adeline McLeod was born 23rd day of April, 1827 buried at Dillon County SC cemetery
Neil Alexander McLeod was born 8th day of September, 1828

Norman McLeod died the year 1781 and was burried in Killean Richmond County, North Carolina
Daniel McLeod died the year 1784 & was burried with his father Norman.
Mary McLeod wife of John died the 29th of August, 1822 and was burried on Little Lynches Creek, Kershaw District.

John McLeod died September 10, 1829 buried at Alexander Sutherland's Richmond County, North Carolina.
Mary McLeod died April 4, 1874."


2. John McLeod of Una McLeod Hoffman's Genealogy

a) sometimes referred to as the son of Norman (and brother of Daniel, married to Jane R. Evans) - b) at other times, referred to as the son of Daniel and Jane R. Evans McLeod (son of Norman) -

Obviously incorrect -

a) the Family Bible claims the descendants of Mary McI McLeod and a JOHN who was the son of DANIEL and grandson of Norman

b) John son of Daniel was probably an attempt to correct the obvious discrepancy that it was DANIEL who was a son of Norman of the Family Bible. The Daniel of the Family Bible died in North Carolina in 1787 while the Daniel of this family died in 1825 in Kershaw District South Carolina.


3. John McLeod, son of Alexander and Mary Catherine McCaskill -

Again, this John McLeod was not the son of a Daniel as was the John McLeod of the above family bible record; he was the son of an ALEXANDER. Alexander and his family arrived in Kershaw County around the year 1818 when Alexander is shown in land deeds as purchasing from John Danzy. Alexander died in 1821 and is buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery Kershaw SC.

This John, his son, was the administrator of the estate after his father's death. There is confusion about just when this John himself died. Some family files state that he died in 1822 and that he is also buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery, but land deeds of 1841 in which his sister and her husband, Kenneth McCaskill name a John McLeod of Wilcox County, AL as a partial owner of the lands could indicate he survived beyond 1822. Kershaw Grantee Index (1791-1840) P/332

The confusion here is likely just a matter of the commonality of the names.....they have a John, a John is buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery near their Alexander, and a Mary McInnis is buried there whose tombstone states she was married to a John McLeod.


In every family legend, there exists truth and fiction. We genealogists hope to find records to help us determine the difference between the two. Perhaps these families were related to and connected to each other in the early years after immigration and the remnants of the story are helping to confuse the lines and generations. One source does in fact combine the first John and the third John a generation back.......


Joiner A. Mc and Anna McLeod -
Are they related to more then one of the McLeod lines named above?



Anna's grave is next to Mary's. Two others are in the same group.





Alexander MacLeod/McLeod (#3 above) is said by some researchers to be the son of a Unknown McLeod and a Anna McInnis both of whom are said to be buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery in South Carolina. Perhaps this Unknown McLeod was Joiner A. Mc - or perhaps Anna was married to Daniel McLeod, son of Norman and father of John who was married to TWO Mary McInnis' (#1 above). John Davis McLeod remembers an Aunt who claimed that Anna was in fact the mother of John and the wife of Daniel.

Another researcher states the following: Wayne Sconiers Date: 8 Jan 2005 12:49 AM

Unknown McLeod born abt 1730 married to Anna McInnis born 1737, buried in the Old Scottish Cemetery Kershaw County, South Carolina and the couple reportedly had the following children:

1. Archibald,
2. Norman,
3. John married Mary McInnis
4. Alexander (buried Old Scottish Cemetery) married Mary C. McCaskill
5. Daniel Campbell McLeod born bet 1765-1770 in Scotland married Mary Campbell born 21 August 1821 (daughter of John Yawn McLean born 1770 in Scotland and Nancy McDonald born 1779 in Scotland) both Daniel and Mary buried McGill Cemetery, Scotland County, NC

Obviously, if correct, this genealogy makes John McLeod (the husband of two Mary McInnis'), the brother of Alexander McLeod - connecting then #1 and #3 above. However, the only way this would be correct is if in fact the Unknown McLeod was Daniel. It would be easy to accept the above as true, especially since it would solve the mystery to a great degree - however, there are hints that this may not be true..........notably the following - Alexander, h/o Mary McCaskill was born cr. 1759 in Minginish, Isle of Skye, according to his tombstone....while John, h/o Mary McInnis was born in Glenelg (on the mainland of Scotland just opposite Skye) cr 1772 according to the family bible. Once again, the Family Bible may have the information that disproves this possibility or at the very least inspires caution:

Remembering that we are examining the possibility that Alexander, h/o of Mary Catherine McCaskill and John, h/o 2 Mary McInnis' were brothers, then both would have to be the sons of a Daniel McLeod in order to correspond with the written genealogy (the Family Bible).To make this easier, lets number the generations beginning with John, h/o of Mary McInnis (I know this is backwards but it suits this investigation (for lack of a better word....)

Generation One - John the husband of Mary McInnis
Generation Two - Daniel, the father of John - possibly the wife of Anna McLeod buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery
Generation Three - Norman, the father of Daniel, both of whom immigrated from Glenelg to America cr. 1775
Generation Four - RODERICK, the father of Norman, who went from the Isle of Skye to Glenelg

The Family Bible is clear that Daniel's father Norman (Generation Three above) was born in Glenelg where HIS father Roderick (Generation Four above) had migrated from Skye. Of course, Daniel may have spent some time in Minginish prior to immigrating to America with his father from Glenelg......but Alexander's tombstone is specific to his being OF Minginish indicating that he immigrated from there and not Glenelg along with Norman, Daniel and his son John.

Adding to the caution which must be used in stating that Alexander and John were brothers is the tombstone of the Joiner Mc which lays in the same "plot" at the Old Scotch Cemetery as Anna McLeod's...this Joiner Mc may have been a McLeod or a McInnis...and therefore may or may not have been the husband of Anna McLeod.


The evidence is great that the Mary McInnis McLeod of the Old Scotch Cemetery is the same Mary who is named as first wife of John McLeod of Glenelg, who was the son of Daniel, who was the son of Norman etc. in the Family Bible owned by John Davis McLeod.

    • Family bible in which the dates of birth and death are similar enough to indicate they are the same woman written in cr 1829 only 7 years after her death.
    • Family bible in which it is stated that she is buried in Kershaw, South Carolina - the statement was written cr. 1829 only 7 years after her death.
    • Family bible in which ten children are named which corresponds with the tombstone inscription again written cr 1829 during the lifetime of children of Mary McInnis McLeod
    • placement of her tombstone next to that of a Anna McLeod who was born in Glenelg, the point of immigration for John's family
    • placement of both her stone and Anna's stone in the McInnis portion of the cemetery and the long history of John's descendants with McInnis' known as cousins to the family.

The only hesitation that I have in stating that the Mary McInnis McLeod buried in the Old Scotch Cemetery is definitely the wife of John McLeod of the family bible is that there appears to be no evidence that that family ever lived in Kershaw District South Carolina. This alone cannot be used to state that she is NOT that person however; families did travel in those days - visiting relatives in neighboring states. And, there was a tradition of families traveling for miles to allow their deceased loved ones to be buried with beloved family members or in places with a deep connection to the homeland.

The tombstone may hold some answers to this mystery - Is the stone the original marker for the grave and was it placed there in 1822 or within the lifetime of those who would have had first hand knowledge of her identity or was it added later by those who believed that she was their Anna McInnis McLeod and the descendants added at that time?

In any event, there is no doubt that the descendants of John and Mary McInnis McLeod of John Davis McLeod's family bible and the Tombstone at Old Scotch Cemetery do not belong in the family trees of #2 and #3 above.......
!Source: Lori McLeod Wilke copyright © 2000-2011 All Rights Reserved