My Shaw line originated in Northern Ireland. 

The so-far earliest identified member is a John SHAW who married  Mary SMITH).  This information was gained from the death certificate of  Thomas Kirk SHAW, my great-great-grandfather, who died (age 49) at Templeton Place, Auchinleck on 21 October 1884.  He had married Margaret STRICKLAND (1837-1915) at Bangor, Northern Ireland on 16 August 1852.

For a long spell, only three  offspring had been identified; two  from the Census of 1861 (587/00:014 Dalry). The eldest child, James Shaw, was born in Ireland in 1855.  The second known child, a daughter, Eliza Jane Shaw,  was born in Davidshill, Dalry on 3 June 1858.

A third child, my direct ancestor, William Bain Shaw, was also born at Davidshill, Dalry on 18 April 1861. His mother, Margaret, registered the birth (her mark). Census night was 7 April!

Until 2015, nothing had been found of James or (Eliza) Jane – other than James being the informant on his father’s death certificate – 21 October 1884 (age 49).

A search in that year on the Ancestry website for others interested in Thomas Kirk Shaw, my great-great grandfather, was to radically change the situation.

The Ancestry Public Member Trees of Peter Vanderlee, chimoblue007 and SANDRAMORETTA  provided a welcome break-through –  and a fund of information.

Between them these researcher cousins had documented the entire family of Thomas Kirk Shaw and Margaret Strickland and provided a wealth of biographical details.