Monday, August 13, 2018

McMillin & Related Families 68th Reunion

Celebrating the family’s Scottish heritage and over 180-year history in Winston County, about 80 McMillin kin from 7 states gathered on July 28-29, 2018 at Lake Tiak O’Khata for their 68th annual reunion.

The Pine Ridge Lodge was the venue for the traditional cook out on Saturday night. President David McMillin of Monroe, LA returned to his role of chef and grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, and bratwurst. Many sides and desserts were provided, but Mrs. Shirley McMillin of Carthage, delighted all with her vanilla wafer cake and Mrs. Claire Crowell of Louisville pleased all with her mouthwatering bread pudding! MacMillan tartan flags greeted each kin at the entrance.

Continuing into Sunday, the McMillins met for a morning devotional, lunch, business meeting and program. The Colonial Room was decorated with traditional MacMillan tartans as well as American and Scottish flags. This year’s lovely centerpieces, created by Ashlie McMillin Johnson, of Athens, GA, and sister, Melissa McMillin Crew of Ringgold, GA displayed a medley of flowers that complemented the tartan colors: sunflowers, Queen Anne’s lace, Scottish Thistle, Hypericum berries, and seeded eucalyptus.

Janet Donoho, of Dallas, TX and Bonnie Broadway of Pascagoula assisted with registration and name tags.

The McMillin Grands marched in singing the “McMillan Rallying Song” written by Somerled MacMillan and the reunion began!

President David McMillin welcomed each guest and presided over the day’s event.

Larry Woodward of Louisville gave an inspiring devotional entitled, “God’s Holy Word”. He referenced a Bible that had been his grandmother’s and told how she had marked each time she had completed reading it. Larry stressed the importance of reading, knowing, and following God’s word. Following the devotional, Barbara McMillin, of Louisville, beautifully declared the gospel through song with “Amazing Grace My Chains Are Gone.” Rev. Percy Mac Frazier of Franklinton, LA, offered the blessing for the meal.

In keeping with tradition, several awards were given: Youngest McMillin attending was 9 month old Grayson McMillin, son of Paul and Hannah McMillin and grandson of Jamie and Lisa McMillin of Louisville; Most senior in attendance was Sue Bennett Fulcher of Louisville, at the wise age of 93; persons traveling the greatest distance again went to sisters, Sue McMillin Faulkner and Jane McMillin of Lampasas, TX ; the person having the most immediate relatives attending this year went to John McMillin of Chattanooga, TN. Jamie and John McMillin often battle for this award! Jamie’s count for this year was 12 —John’s count was 13.

Each person or representative stood and told how he/she is related to William McMillin, the immigrant who came to America around 1799. Several kin told of eventful happenings in their lives since the last reunion: Jamie and Lisa McMillin added 3 grandchildren to their family (Grayson, son of Paul and Hannah, twins Ann Chambliss and Chandler Marie, born June 22 to Jonathan and Meredith from Madison); We were excited to learn of Barbara McMillin’s engagement to Patrick Ezell, who was a guest this year; David & Leesa McMillin’s son, Cody is stationed in Sicily with the US Marines and Brady just graduated from law school and is waiting on results from the bar exam; John & Sylvia McMillin had two grandchildren graduating from high school (Lucy Johnson of Athens, GA and Jacob Crew of Ringgold, GA; Jamie Faulkner, wife of Andrew Faulkner of Houston, TX will continue her degree at Texas A&M in the fall! We were saddened to hear of the death of Charles Curry, Betty Bennett Curry’s husband from Tupelo.

Jane McMillin, daughter of the late Dr. Rush McMillin and granddaughter of the late Virgil McMillin, of Lampasas, Texas, titled her program, “The McMillins of Winston County: A Family Album.” Jane characterized her presentation as a sampling of McMillins past, who first came to Winston County, Mississippi from South Carolina more than 180 years ago.

The McMillins refer to their American forbearer as “William, the Immigrant,” who was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland about 1763, and came to America around 1799 as one of thousands of Ulster Scots or “Scots-Irish” immigrants. He was about 36 years old and married Margaret Elizabeth McInnis, who also was a Scots-Irish immigrant. They lived in South Carolina a little over 30 years before they moved to Winston County. Grandpa William was about 72 when made the trip to Mississippi.

According to one family history, the McMillin’s oldest daughter, Mary, who had married Nat Woodward settled in Winston County in 1834, a year before the rest of the McMillins made the move. Mary’s parents and eight other siblings came to Winston County around 1835.

Family tradition hold that the Woodwards wrote back to the family in South Carolina about their new home in Mississippi, describing it as what “a great, grand, glorious prosperous country it was; that you could shake the bushes and gather up the dollars.”

William and Margaret Elizabeth McInnis McMillin are buried at the Old Baptist Cemetery in Louisville, as are their oldest son David and wife Margaret Ann and several of their children who died young. In 1984, McMillin descendants dedicated a large granite marker honoring their ancestors buried there. On the reverse side of the monument are some 30 names of related families, those joined by marriages to 2nd and 3rd and 4th generation McMillins.

So at the singular spot – and at a single glance – we can see the richness and all the interesting interconnections that make the bonds of our kinship such a vibrant force in our lives.

“It is what Shakespeare described as ‘the grace of kinsmen.’ And for us, it goes back almost a thousand years to medieval Scotland,” Jane McMillin noted in her July 29 presentation.

The Scots-Irish McMillins of Winston County, Mississippi, likely were originally part of the Galloway Branch of the Clan MacMillan in southwest Scotland. The Galloway area is only about 40 miles by sea from Northern Ireland, so migration was common throughout the centuries.

Although the family name dates to the 12th century, the lineage of the Clan Chief has been traced to the early 10th century, some 200 years before the name “MacMillan” came into use.

Reports were given and the same slate of officers was voted on for the coming year: David McMillin, president; Jonathan McMillin, vice president; Claire Crowell, treasurer; Sylvia McMillin, secretary; Jamie McMillin, treasurer of the Cemetery Fund; Dr.Lamar McMillin, Jr. representative of the Clan MacMillan of North America

The 69th reunion will be held on July 27-28, 2019 at Lake Tiak O’Khata.

The meeting was adjourned with all reciting the “MacMillan Exhortation.”

Those attending the reunion from LOUISVILLE : Joe Beall, Johnny and Claire Crowell, Sue Bennett Fulcher, Charles William Haggard, Linda Hudson, Barbara McMillin, Jamie & Lisa McMillin, Jay, Megan, & Parker McMillin, Daniel, Tia & Ellis Parker, John Woodward, Johnny Woodward, Larry & Margaret Woodward;

From ALABAMA: Beth Blalock, Hallie Jean Blalock, Tuscaloosa; Marla McCully, Tom McCully, Birmingham;

From ARKANSAS: Ellen Ishee O’Lonney, Roland;

From FLORIDA: Faith Fournet, Windermere; Mel Teague, Jan Wyatt, Winterhaven;

From GEORGIA: Missy McMillin Crew & children, Jacob, Samuel, Eleanor, Eli & Issac, Ringgold; Ashley, Cole & David Haggard, Cumming; Ashlie McMillin Johnson & children, Noah, Levi & Rose, Watkinsville;

From LOUISIANA: Percy Mac & Lenora Frazier, Franklinton; Patri Gast, Folsom; Suzanne Haggard, Metarie; David & Leesa McMillin, Monroe;

From MISSISSIPPI (other than Louisville): Bonnie Broadway, Pascagoula; Lance & Reba McCullouch Greer, Oxford; Thomas Hammack, Jr, Gulfport; Mike & Mary Lynn McCully, Eupora; Lamar & Carol McMillin, Vicksburg; Paul, Hannah & Grayson McMillin, Starkville; Shirley McMillin, Carthage; Stephen, Jennifer Lynn, Lynlee & Lyla McMillin, Vicksburg; Charlie, Ashley, Grayson & Millin Moomaw, Madison; Laura Lee Mullens, Clinton;

From TENNESSEE: Danna McMillin Bennett, Mt. Juliet; Ann McMillin, Ooltewah; John & Sylvia McMillin, Ooltewah; Jimmy Moore, Collierville; Keith Moore, Memphis; From TEXAS: Janet Donoho, Dallas; Andrew, Jamie & Mac Faulkner, Houston; Sue McMillin Faulkner & Jane McMillin, Lampasas.