In Outlander Season 2, Roger is introduced to us as Roger Wakefield. However, he uses the MacKenzie surname later on. Which one is the right one?
It can get very hard to follow some family trees in Outlander. That’s especially the case when surnames change. One of the characters with a changing surname not due to marriage is Roger.
When we first meet him, he’s known as Roger Wakefield. That’s the name he runs with through his adult life, but he knows that he is a descendant from the MacKenzie family. In Outlander Season 4, he starts using the surname MacKenzie. Which is the right one?
Roger is both a Wakefield and a MacKenzie in Outlander
The truth is that both surnames are correct. After his parents’ deaths, Roger is taken in by his grandmother’s brother, Reverend Reginald Wakefield. Roger is then given the surname Wakefield.
I can’t remember if it’s explained all that much in the book, but giving Roger the Wakefield surname was likely to make things a little easier to explain when it came to why Roger was living with the reverend. Plus, everyone would have known the reverend as Wakefield and may have presumed Roger also had the same surname.
Wakefield was Roger’s mother’s maiden name. Technically he could have used it. However, his father was a MacKenzie, a descendent of Geillis and Dougal. He’s always known that he’s a MacKenzie, something that Reverend wakefield never kept from him. IN fact, the reverend had a family tree for Roger if he ever chose to explore it. Claire points out that there’s something incorrect about it when it gets to Sarah and William MacKenzie. Geillis and Dougal’s baby was adopted by the family.
When Roger heads to the past, he knows he’ll get further by saying he’s a MacKenzie and not a Wakefield. That MacKenzie name still holds strong in the time despite it being decades after Culloden. However, it does raise questions as to where he actually comes from.