Glen Discovery in GlenLyon
About us


Peter Lawrie BSc, BA, MPhil, MBCS, CITP, FSAScot

Peter in MacGregor kilt and 17th century slashed doublet Peter grew up in Inverness, the Highland capital.  He 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.

Peter began his collection of books on Scottish history whilst still at school and has a continually growing library of around 3000 volumes. Peter 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 his family origins in the Highlands.

He then 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. In 2004 he gained a certificate in Scottish Field Archaeology at the University of Glasgow and is a member of the Association of Certified Field Archaeologists.

For many years he has been a member of the Scottish Genealogy Society, the Scottish History Society and is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland.

Clan Gregor Society badge Peter's interest in genealogy led to him joining the Clan Gregor Society, where has been for many years Vice-Chairman of Council and editor of the Society's Newsletter. He has written a number of papers for the Society including  'the early history of the Clan Gregor' and  'The Clan Gregor in the 1745 rising'.

Peter's MacGregor connection comes through his father's mother who descended from a Duncan MacGregor born in rhe 1740s. During many years of genealogical research Peter tried to find conclusive documentary evidence that his ancestor Duncan was the same as Duncan, the grandson of Gregor ghlun dubh MacGregor of Glengyle, the nephew of Rob Roy MacGregor. Peter has been involved in the MacGregor DNA project through FamilyTreeDNA of Arizona. As the Y-chromosome carries the family tree interest of DNA, Peter's nearest male MacGregor relative in Australia took the test, confirming their shared DNA with the Clan chief, Sir Malcolm MacGregor of MacGregor. As new members of the clan joined the project it became apparent that Duncan may have come from upland Moray and thus may be descended from MacGregor families displaced from Glen Lyon or Rannoch.

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. He is equally as proud of his descent from many other Highland clans, particularly MacLeod and MacKay.

Out of an enduring fascination with the impact of the Jacobite risings on the Highland people, Peter has written 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. Peter is currently working on a new History of the Clan Gregor, with many pages of genealogies beginning with Gregor, the eponym in the 14th century.

The great plaid (feile mor) which Peter wears 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.