Glen Discovery in GlenLyon
About us


Peter Lawrie, FSAScot

Peter in MacGregor kilt and 17th century slashed doublet My name is Peter John Lawrie, or in Scots Gaelic, PÓdraig Iain Labhruidh. I grew up in Inverness, the Highland capital, and studied Science and Scottish History at the University of St Andrews.  World famous as the home of golf, St Andrews is also home to Scotland's oldest University, founded in 1411.

I began my collection of books on Scottish history whilst still at school and have a continually growing library of around 4000 volumes. I took a part-time degree in Humanities with History at the Open University during the 1990s. This course included 'Modern Scottish History since 1707' and 'Family and Community History', which allowed the use of the substantial documentary sources collected over the years on some of my family origins in the Highlands.

I joined the Masters degree course run by the History department of the University of Dundee and graduated in 2003 with an MPhil for a dissertation on the Clan Gregor between 1583 and 1611.

For many years I have been a member of the Scottish Genealogy Society, the Scottish History Society and am a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland.

I am learning to speak Gaelic, the language of my ancestors, through the online An c¨rsa Inntrigidh at Sabhal M˛r Ostaig. My name in Gaelic is PÓdraig Iain Labhruidh.

Internet searches for "Peter Lawrie" usually brings up pages upon pages about some fellow who knocks a ball about with a stick. Perhaps I should promote my website in future as Padraig Labhruidh and hope that Google picks it up.
Clan Gregor Society badge My interest in genealogy led to me joining the Clan Gregor Society, where I have been for many years Vice-Chairman of Council and editor of the Society's Newsletter.

My MacGregor connection comes through my father's mother, Helen MacGregor, who definitely descended from a Duncan MacGregor born in rhe 1740s. During many years of genealogical research I have tried to find conclusive documentary evidence that my ancestor Duncan was the same as Duncan, the grandson of Gregor ghlun dubh MacGregor of Glengyle, the nephew of Rob Roy MacGregor. Recent DNA evidence has called this into question but has not completely ruled it out. The search is ongoing!

I have been involved in the MacGregor DNA project through FamilyTreeDNA of Arizona. As the Y-chromosome carries the family tree interest of DNA,my nearest male MacGregor relative in Australia took the test, confirming our shared DNA with the Clan chief, Sir Malcolm MacGregor of MacGregor, but not close enough to be of the Chief's own line.

A fascinating journey of discovery continues with the DNA project, illustrating both the genetic diversity within the clan, and the relationship of the leading families of Clan Gregor to other clans of Dalriadic origin. I am equally as proud of my descent from many other Highland clans, particularly MacLeod and MacKay in Sutherland.

I have put together a new History of the Clan Gregor, available from Smashwords 981915.

Also, out of an enduring fascination with the impact of the Jacobite risings on the Highland people, I wrote a novel concerning the exploits of Robert, the son of Gregor MacGregor of Glengyle, during the 1745 Rising. The ebook "MacGregor" is available from Smashwords 324242.
The great plaid (feile mor) which I am wearing in this image is a reconstruction by tartan expert Peter MacDonald from museum fragments of the plaid worn by Prince Charles Edward Stewart at the Battle of Culloden in 1746.   Peter Lawrie (left) with Lamar Britt at Callander. Photo Tom Kerr. On the left, Peter and Lamar Britt, also wearing a feile mor, listen to the Clan Gregor Society Pipe Band.

In the background is Ben Ledi - a distinctive summit on the edge of the fault line which divides the Scottish Highlands from the Lowlands.