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John (born 1813) was the son of Alexander Murray and Margaret Macdonald, it is not certain where the family were living at the time of his birth.
In 1830, during the croft lottings, John's parents obtained 6 Old South Tolsta.
John married Christina Campbell, of 1 Old South Tolsta, and the couple probably settled at 6 Old South Tolsta, as John eventually inherited this croft. They had two children at this address.
In 1841 John's eldest brother emigrated to Lingwick, Canada.
Around 1843 John's father died.
In 1851, during the croft relottings, the family obtained 37 North Tolsta, and had a son there. John's brother Roderick emigrated to Canada, with his family, instead of obtaining a croft during the relottings. Also, in 1851, John's youngest sister Isabella died and her widower obtained 9 North Tolsta.
In 1853 the family, including the two children from John's first marriage, emigrated to the Eastern Townships of Quebec. At this time 37 North Tolsta passed to Donald Macdonald.
Once in Quebec the couple had a further five children.
In total John had ten children: six girls and four boys.
John's mother died in 1860, its not entirely clear where she lived after 6 Old South Tolsta passed to John, but she may have lived with the family and emigrated to Canada with them. However John's sister, Margaret, remained in Tolsta, at 29 North Tolsta, so she may have settled with her.