“570-Year-Old Address,” Ensign, July 1976, 63
Several years before I joined the Church, I received from a great aunt a copy of a short, four-page pamphlet containing some brief information on the MacArthur family and related lines (Johnson, McKinvin, Love, McLean) in Canada and Scotland. This aunt was not a Latter-day Saint, but after I was converted I began to evaluate the information she had sent me to obtain leads for family research.
One address in the pamphlet was that of an early Canadian pioneer at the Love homestead. Although the address was 152 years old, in 1973 I sent a letter to the Love family at the address given, believing the Lord would bless me in my efforts to help those beyond the veil who had sacrificed so much for me.
When the postmaster in that area saw the letter, he recalled a man named Love who had lived on that homestead until 1943. The postmaster forwarded the letter to a nearby town, but since the man no longer lived there, the letter was forwarded three more times until it arrived at the home of Clifford A. Love of Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada. He is the sole surviving member of the Love family that originally settled on the old homestead over 150 years ago.
Mr. Love informed me that the name Love was originally McKinvin, a clan that some 570 years ago had lived on a farm in Kintyre, Argyllshire, Scotland. Since the letter to Canada had arrived at its destination, I decided that one to Kintyre might also, so I addressed a letter to the 570-year-old McKinvin farm in Kintyre. The postmaster read it and forwarded it to the District Council Office of Kintyre. It arrived the day of their monthly council meeting and was read to the council. The wife of one councilman just happened to be a descendant of the McKinvins! Not only do this man and his wife have a copy of an old parish register dating back to 1760, but they have promised to obtain information from an old churchyard dating back to 1516, where many of the McKinvins are buried.
My great aunt may not have accepted the gospel, but her pamphlet has opened the doors of salvation for hundreds of her kindred dead. May she share their joy!