A place for telling my family history

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of Ralston
in Renfrewshire
in Lanarkshire
in Ayrshire
in Wigtonshire
in New Zealand
in Australia


After forty years of research I have chosen this technology as the most flexible way in which I can pass on some of the stories I have gathered. The focus is on my study of the Ralston family, but I shall also include references to other family lines as well.
Most of my early research revolved around my mother's families: Dawson, Reese, Daniel and Pilson. There was never much to go on about my father's. The difference is partly a matter of numbers and contact. Mum had a huge number of cousins; Dad's family was not large, although it proved to ramify more than I could ever imagine.
In researching the Ralstons I have benefited hugely from the time I spent employed as a genealogical researcher in Edinburgh in the early 1980s, which provided me with a closer involvement with the original records of Scotland than was ever possible in New Zealand.More and more of these are now becoming directly accessible through the internet.
I shall always be grateful to Kathleen Cory, the Scottish genealogist, who was a mentor and friend.
Why Quercus? This is the Latin botanical name for the species of tree called oak. Since I gathered acorns at a Wanganui park and grew them (one is now a sizable tree in A'Court Street, Hawera) this tree has always drawn me - the timber, the leaves, the acorns. In addition the heraldic device on the arms of Ralston of Ralston is three golden acorns. So what better connection.
Bruce Ralston, Auckland, New Zealand
Updated August 2009



Other families

Daniel, Dawson, Pilson


What's in a name? the origins of the surname Ralston

An inherited profession? - factors in the family

Coat of arms - myths and facts


Database of Ralston family research, descendants of Ralstons from Paisley and Ayrshire.