Rowan Family burial Marker at Govan Old Church

Today, I am straying into the territory of my sister blog, GlasgowAncestry.

A few hours ago I was undertaking research at Govan Old Church near Glasgow and came across a very old grave-marker providing family records dating back to the early 1600s. From my experience this long chronology is extremely unusual and is aided by:

  • A high quality marker stone which has suffered little erosion notwithstanding lying recumbent (flat) and subject to the vagaries of the Scottish weather.
  • High quality, deep engraving.

The foregoing points to the Rowan family being of substance.

The inscription records the deaths of:

  • James Rowan, *Portioner of East End of Meikle, Govan. Died July 4th 1631.
  • Elizabeth Rowan died 1648.
  • Agnes Calquhoun, Dec. 1675.
  • John Rowan, Nov 1716.
  • John Rowan, May 1799.
  • James Rowan, June 1st 1770, age 67.

(*In Scotland, a Portioner is/was a person who receives a portion or share of something. The person would be the proprietor of a small portion of a larger piece of land.)

As James Rowan died 1631 it is likely this marker provides a link back to the 1500s when he was probably born.  Even so, by the 16th century the site at Govan had already been a Christian place of worship and burial ground for about 900 years.