Welcome to Wishart Connections!
A website concerned with ‘all things Wishart’ whether they be people, places or even battleships! Originally from Normandy, Wisharts have been in the British Isles for almost a thousand years, with the surname in its current form first appearing in Scotland, from where most Wisharts can claim their ancestral roots.
Wishart Connections is run by Wisharts for Wisharts, and has been conceived to give a voice to the global Wishart community, who are invited to share stories about their families and help create a central repository for all aspects of the surname.
Lt Col Jack Gillespie Wishart
1939 – 2015
It is with great regret that we send this out to tell you of the sudden death of Lt Col Jack Gillespie Wishart on 14 September 2015 in Edinburgh. We are sure that you will receive this news with sadness and surprise, as Jack was a larger than life person, and will join with us in conveying the sympathy of the extended Wishart Family to Jack’s wife and children.
Jack had set off for a regular dinner with friends at the Royal Scots Club in Edinburgh. He didn’t make it to the bus stop, collapsing and dying of a sudden heart attack near his home in Colinton. Over 150 friends and family attended his funeral service on 23 September at St Margaret’s Roman Catholic Memorial Church in Dunfermline, after which he was interred at Dunfermline Cemetery.
Jack was well known to many Wisharts around the world for his tireless work researching and recording Wishart genealogies. He began in 1974 following a chance meeting in London with Scott Wishart (b.1897), who gave Jack a copy of his family tree which had been prepared by Scott’s brother David. Enthused by this work, Jack quizzed his father about his own forebears and began visiting New Register House, Edinburgh to search the statutory records for Scotland. Gradually he sketched out the details of his ancestors and as he trawled wider and wider, began noting down details for all the Wisharts he could find, and so the family database was started.
The Wishart DNA Project was set up in October 2010 to facilitate knowledge and understanding of how Wishart lineages relate by combining Y-Chromosome DNA data and traditional documentary evidence.
George F. Black records the Wishart surname as ....the same as the old French name Guischard which derives from the old French word Wischard, meaning 'prudent', 'sagacious,’
Are you a Wishart, or descended from Wisharts? If so then you are one of the lucky ones and we'd love to hear from you. Please get in touch via our contact form and we shall reply as soon as possible.
Wishart Great War Centenary Project
2014 marks the centenary of the start of World War One. In 2010 Scott Wishart began an eight year project to research and record the lives of all Wisharts who served overseas between 1914 and 1919.
Wisharts were involved in a wide variety of roles during the Great War. Many enlisted in the summer and autumn of 1914, whilst others formed part of the general conscription under the Military Service Act of 1916. Roles ranged from clerical workers, labourers and drivers to front line infantry and officer duties.
Being a predominantly Scottish surname, many Wisharts were attached to Scottish regiments, however there were also strong contingents from Canada, Australia and New Zealand – with several men also coming from South Africa and Tasmania. The number of American Wisharts who served overseas isn’t currently known. Several hundred filled in draft registration cards although not all would have seen service. Where identified, I have listed those who were known to have served with the American Expeditionary Force.
Of those that saw front line action, a number distinguished themselves in the field and were subsequently merited for their actions, some even had their heroic deeds reported widely in the press yet others weren’t so fortunate. One man, despite proving himself in the trenches and earning an unblemished service record, found himself court-martialled and executed at dawn for desertion.
Wisharts were not only confined to the land, a healthy number of men served with the Royal Navy and several eventually joined the Royal Flying Corps from the army (latterly the RAF).
Overall the vast majority of individuals probably came from very humble backgrounds and it seems very likely that engaging in service overseas would have been the first time they’d have left the immediate area in which they lived. Of the 560 men and women who were in the forces, just over eight were killed in action or died of wounds.
Latest Site Updates & News
As the United States celebrates another Independence Day we take a look at the Wisharts who fought in the conflict from […]Read More ›
18 June 2015 marks the bicentennial of the Battle of Waterloo. Two Wisharts (Andrew and George) were actively involved in the […]Read More ›
George Wishart Quincentennial Conference Book
During late August 2013 over one hundred people, many named Wishart, travelled from all over the world to St. Andrews in Fife, Scotland. They had gathered to mark the 500th anniversary of the birth of George Wishart the early Scottish Reformer, who was, and still is, the most famous individual to carry the surname. A one-day conference was held on Friday 30 August, and six of the top Reformation Historians, all at professorial level, discussed what is regarded as a particularly tumultuous era in Scottish, indeed European, history and identifying George Wishart’s role within that. This book contains copies of the papers presented at the conference.
If you have any photographs of anyone named Wishart we’d love to include them on this site. Submission can be either via email or through our Flickr Wishart Connections group. It’s easy to join the group once registered with Flickr and please do not hesitate to write as much, or as little as you like about each photograph.