Diary of Events

London Kilt Run 25th January 2020
25 January 2020

We were recently contacted by Robert to tell us that he is taking part in the London Kilt Run of 10 kilometres. Starting and finishing at the Robert Burns Statue opposite the Embankment Cafe in Victoria Embankment Gardens.

The route is to take in as many Scottish themed sights in the City of London as possible. This is being staged on Saturday 25th of January and will be a world record attempt for the number of people taking part.

The photo below shows Robert who is a Forsyth on his mother's side all dressed for action in his Forsyth Kilt.

If, any of you would like to join Robert in this record attempt, then please let us know. Alternatively just go along on the day to cheer him on his way.

Whats on in Scotland
01 January 2020

To simplify peoples searches we have teamed up with the Visit Scotland website.

Just click on the title Whats on in Scotland and you will be able to access the website.

This very informative website includes destinations, accommodation, see & do, holidays, travel, about Scotland and events.

This year, Visit Scotland is celebrating the Year of Young People 2018 which will give young personalities the opportunity to shine, showcase their talents and contributions, and create new ways to stand out. The year will boast a spectacular programme of events as well as providing more ways to explore all that Scotland has to offer, so you can make memories that will last a lifetime.

Latest News

Tracing your ancestors
posted on 1 March, 2020 at 10:06am

NEWSFLASH To speed up access for people wanting to trace their ancestors we have added a new heading Genealogy

We have always been aware in the Society about the level of interest in people wanting to trace their ancestors.

This can be from the person who is doing it for the first time or those who have completed their family tree and wanting to look for additional information.

Since setting up our website we have been receiving enquiries from all over the world from people wanting to trace Forsyth’s and their relatives.

Previously we printed these enquiries in our newsletters but now we are proposing to publish these on our website in order to give them maximum exposure.

Only the original enquiry is being shown as there will be a number of e-mails sent in reply.

All of the people who sent in these enquiries have given their agreement for them to be published. For reasons of data protection we have removed any postal address details.

2020 Newsletter
posted on 1 Jan, 2020 at 10:08am

We would like to put together a new newsletter which could be printed later in the year. We know that nearly everybody will have items of news that other people will find of interest. So we would like to hear from you whether it be genealogy enquiries, suggestions for future events or just letting us know about your family news items.

You can send any news items by e-mail as attachments or by post.

All we ask is that if you send photographs and want them returned that you make us aware.

Gunsmith Alexander John Forsyth
posted on 3 August, 2019 at 8:58am


We were contacted just recently by Dennis Freeman of Akron, New York who owns an original Forsyth gun with the first percussion ignition. Dennis is asking if we might be interested in buying the gun before it goes to auction in September. If, any of you are interested or know who might be then please let us know.

Alexander John Forsyth (28 December 1769 – 11 June 1843) was a Scottish Presbyterian clergyman and an exceptionally creative gunmaker and amateur chemist, invented and patented the first percussion lock in 1807. The most consequential firearm invention since the flintlock, the percussion system was a forerunner to the modern center-fire cartridge.

Gunsmiths like Joseph Manton invented more reliable forms of ignition, like the tube lock in 1814. The artist Joshua Shaw designed what is recognized today as the percussion cap, which he patented in the United States in 1822, since Forsyth had threatened his rivals in Britain with legal action. These new forms of ignition proved popular among hunters during the Regency period, who had their old reliable flintlocks converted.

Alexander was educated at King's College, Aberdeen, and succeeded his father as minister of Belhelvie in 1791.

During the Napoleonic Wars Forsyth worked on his design at the Tower Armouries. But when a new Master General of Ordnance was appointed he was dismissed; other experiments had had destructive results and the new master general did not wish to see Britain's main arsenal destroyed.

Napoleon Bonaparte offered Forsyth a reward of £20,000 if he took his invention to France, but Forsyth declined. The French gunsmith Jean Lepage developed a similar form of ignition in 1807 based on Forsyth's design, but this was not pursued.

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