2012 Reunion in New Jersey

Gary Goodwin has shared his photoshow (mpg format, large file, 407 meg) for everyone's enjoyment. Thank you Gary!

We had our 2012 reunion, our tenth modern day reunion, in Woodbridge, NJ in the Hampton Inn on July 20-22. The reunion included a banquet on Friday evening, then a very interesting presentation on "Life in the New Jersey Colony 1685-1725" by History Professor Maxine Lurie of Seton Hall University, one of the co-authors of the Encyclopedia of NJ History and an expert in colonial NJ history. She started by explaining how current times in Scotland influenced settlement in NJ in the late 17th century when David the emigrant and progentator of many Herriotts, Harriots, etc across the United States settled in New Jersey. Then she moved on to the role of government, land ownership, religion and so forth on the life of those early settlers.

On Saturday Ray Harriot talked of the progress he has made in his research on our families in Scotland. He plans to publish his work which includes corrections to some errors he has found in some of the past research. These results are now in Ray's book Beyond Trabroun. He followed that up with his progress on the NJ line in the United States. Our NJ Herriott genealogy file now (as of 2012) contains 51,000 names relating to David the emigrant. Ray had updated our DVD that was last published in 2006. He added much to this DVD including many documents such as old Scottish and United States wills, pension files, excerpts from books dealing with Heriots, papers from past reunions, information on our Surname DNA Project, Ray's Scottish research and HHA newslsetters. Proceeds from the Herriott Heritage Association DVD are invested in furthering our research. See this link for the current copy of the Herriott Heritage Association DVD. Our president, Scott Herriott, talked about our DNA project and conducted a demonstration of how statistical changes in our DNA allow us to estimate the relationships between present day descendents. The traditional research and DNA studies continue to complement each other in understanding our heritage.

After free time in the afternoon, we had a picnic dinner at Fords Park, just across the street from the hotel. We attended Sunday morning service at the First Presbyterian Church in Woodbridge (where the Harriots were elders in the 1700's.) After the church service, we located graves of a number of our kin in the cemetery behind the church. The earliest grave in this cemetery dates to 1690.

First Presbyterian Church in Woodbridge

First Presbyterian Church Cemetery

Headstone in the cemetery