The material on this website is largely drawn from the collections of Comann Eachdraidh Uig, collected over 30 years by members of the community. It relies heavily on oral tradition, and is therefore often undocumented. If we give no source, assume that this is oral tradition. Where possible we try to back it up with official records, newspaper accounts and other sources (which can of course be inaccurate themselves), but we recognise the value of unadulterated tradition as a valuable source in its own right. In general, it can be found to be accurate in the main, and also in the finest details, though chronologies and comprehensiveness can be compromised (the “middle detail”).
Our genealogies in particular are drawn from family history as passed down through the generations, and compiled on a croft-by-croft basis. Those families with descendants still in Uig are most accurate, while those who have left or died out are often less so, particularly with regard to where emigrants went to and their fate. If you’re relying on our accounts to build your own family tree, you are advised to check all the other usual sources (the census and BMD via Scotland’s People), but bear in mind that we find the local genealogies to stand up extremely well to testing.
The more ancient genealogies of the principle families have been worked over by various researchers, but naturally lack documentation. Rev William Matheson is our most reliable source, as he made a point of testing legends against historical documents and known conventions of storytelling, and he has punctured a few myths – most notably that of the Brahan Seer, Coinneach Odhar, who according to strong local tradition was born in Uig, but Rev Matheson has shown that his mainland story was grafted on to other legends here.
We hope you find the information on the site to be interesting and valuable as a record of how an isolated community remembers its own history. Input, corrections and suggestions are always very welcome.