James Gray of Leith, Scotland, who was part of Captain Cook's crew

November 26, 2009


By chance I found your website. 

There are references to James Gray of Leith, Scotland, who was part of Captain Cook's crew 

I am descended from James' brother, William Gray. I know only a little about James. I've been doing some
family genealogy and am interested in his side of the family

How do I get in touch with Alan Vickers and Gregory Mackenzie who have written to you're web site about
James Gray 

I can direct them to a site with details of William Gray's family and help where I can

Quite a number of William Gray's descendants had maritime occupations, eg a William Nehemiah Gray, a
ship's captain who was born in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, England, married in Cardiff, Wales, and died at sea in 1866, though most descendants were based along the east coast of England

Paul Szadorski
Uxbridge, Middx 


I am afraid that I do not still have an E-Mail address for Alan Vickers, who did  not get back to me.

I am Mackenzie Gregory and it is my Ahoy Mac's Web Log that carries this correspondence about James Gray, you have just got my names the wrong way round, aAny detail about James you can provide would be most welcome thank you, hear from you again as convenient.



Thanks for replying

Couple of apologies. I was just finishing work and casually checking for James Gray and found your site.
Sod's law; a phone call, while looking at the write up on James and I hadn't focused on details in the then
rush to get home. Use to Mackenzie being a surname and I had swapped your name around, also that as exiting the website, that it was yours - too late

Don't know if you have James' parents. I have further details at home. His parents are Thomas GREAY and Helen TAYLOR. Two older brothers, Charles and William. 

His parents were married twice to each other in quick sucession. There seems to have been a general problem of marriages in that area at that time. Even a book about it 'Irregular Marriages of South Leith'. Some of it was about which church had the legal right to perform marriages

On Rootsweb, part of Ancestry You can find  The family tree of Marion Templeton & John Johnston, She is not too distantly related to me.

A quick way of finding it on Google is to use 'Westmorland Gray Misterton'. This will display info about him. Westmorland is a first name, Misterton is a place in Nottinghamshire, England which James' brother
and my direct ancestor, William GRAY ended up at. His profession was a Gardener (not backyard but for a
Baronet). It has an inland port of West Stockwith next to it on the River Trent which is still tidal at that
point so strong maritime connections and occupations, along with Gainsborough, Lincolnshire on the other bank of the river, where my mother was born, and 'The Mill on the Floss' which was in our family was located, and used for the title of the book by George Elliot

When you are on the web page click on the index and find Thomas GREAY (James' father). You will get basic details of James' family

A couple of years ago I tried to contact her on the addess from the site but got no reply, however she had
sent some material to somebody else and I've seen that.

We have been cautious about any celebrity links ie the Captain Cook connection. but all she claimed has checked out so far. I checked out on the web at the British Library, London about James Gray and found an image of the crew list for the Endevour, which confirmed him as crew. She thought there had been some scandal/ incident which involved James and another member of crew.

Unfortunately, in my area, all the library books on Captain Cook are in storage, not on shelves, and it means paying to get each one from storage without knowing if useful, so had not followed up.

Hope this is of initial help


Thank you for that.

You may be interested in this piece from AHOY about having Cook's Journal in my hands, a wonderful experience "Captain James Cook's Endeavour Journal 1768-71"


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