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The Thanage of Fermartyn 






Rev. WILLIAM TEMPLE, M.A., F.S.A. Scot. 


Aberdeen— D. WYLLIE & SON i > " 







P R E F A C E. 

According to Ptolemy, the Roman geographer, North Britain was occupied 
by several tribes, which, in progress of time, came to be grouped into seven 
confederacies, ruled over by seven chiefs, having under them seven inferior 
chiefs, with a king over the whole confederacies. The country between the 
Dee and the Spey formed one confederacy. 

In a description of Scotland, written in the twelfth century, mentioned by 
Dr. Stuart, this confederacy appears in two forms. In one case it is said, 
" Quartum regnum fuit ex Dee usque ad flumcn Spe majorem et meliorcm 
totius Scocie," and in the other case, it is spoken of as one of seven districts, 
into which Scotland was divided, and as composed of Mar and Buchan. 

The territory now know^n as Aberdeenshire and Banffshire was in old 
times, according to Dr. Grub, the seat of the Taixali and other Celtic tribes, 
and at the end of the sixth century formed part of the northern Picts. In the 
" Book of Deer," at the time when St. Drostan landed in Buchan, and founded 
St. Drostan's monastery, the country was divided among tribes, over which there 
was probably an Ardrigh or under King, and the royal and tribal officials, a 
Mormaer or great Steward acting for the King, and the Toisech ruling over a 
tribe and under the Mormaer. The Mormaer represented the Crown in the 
district over which he presided, accounted to the Ardrigh or King for his rents 
and dues, and was over the whole tribes of the district, while the Toisech \\as 
over a tribe, and was their captain to lead them to battle. 

The best account of the tribal communities is to be found in Dr. Skene's 
" Celtic Scotland," a learned and exhaustive work. According to Dr. Skene, 
the land was first possessed by the tribe or community before it came into 
possession of individuals. The word Tuath signified a family, and came to be 
applied to the district occupied by the tribe, and in some records it is equiva- 
lent to a barony. Tuath was the possession of the tribe, the technical name 
of which, in the Brehon laws, was Fine. By the common law of the tribes, 
the land which made up the Tuath consisted of fecht-fine or tribe land, and a 

viii Preface. 

part was tribe demesne, which went to the support of the office-bearers of the 
tribe, the Mormaer and Toisech, Brehon or Judge. The fecht-fine was occu- 
pied by the tribes thus — The indfine or commonaHty of the tribe possessed 
the tribe land ; the arable land was distributed at stated intervals among the 
ceile or free members of the tribe, each having their share ; a fresh distribution 
took place as fresh claimants for a share appeared ; the pasture land was 
pastured in common, according to the number of cattle possessed by each, and 
the waste land separated one Tuath from another. 

The Tuath was divided into homesteads, to each of which belonged as 
much land as was required for the subsistence of a family. These were called 
Raths, which enter largely into the place names of the district, as Rait, Raits- 
hill near Tolquhon, Rothie, Rothmaise, &c., &c. These Raths, according to 
the Brehon laws, to be legally constituted required a dwelling-house, an ox 
stall, a hog-sty, a sheep pen, and a calf house, and they were all surrounded by a 
ditch or rampart, with wooden pallisades for protection. There were various 
kinds of Raths. The Fine-Rath was the homestead occupied by the original 
kindred, Mar-Rath that occupied by the stranger tenants, and Jar-Raths occu- 
pied by the stranger serfs on the chiefs' demesnes lands and others. 

A system such as this prevailed in the district between the Dee and the 
Deveron at the time when St. Drostan landed in Buchan. In the various 
grants, as recorded in the " Book of Deer," to the original monastery of St. 
Drostan, we have the names recorded of the various Mormaers and Toisechs, 
who were the officials of the tribe. The language was Celtic or Gaelic, and is 
found prevalent in many of the place names of the district. 

But great changes were impending, and the office of Mormaer or royal 
official underwent considerable modification. A (vicecomes) sheriff was intro- 
duced, on whom many of the duties of the Mormaer devolved. The title of 
Mormaer fluctuated until finally it became Earl. Thus Gratnait, Mormaer of 
Buchan, whose grant to the clerics of Deer about 1 192, as recorded in the 
" Book of Deer," appears in the foundation of the monastery of Scone, in 1220, 
as Earl Gratnait. There was also the office of Maor, upon whom certain 
duties devolved, and the Mair of Fee, anciently connected with the lands of 
Pitmuxton, may have derived its name at least from this office. 

The tribal officer of Toisech also underwent a change. Thanages were 
introduced, and the Toisech became a Thane. When this change took place 
there is no record, but it probably was made about the time of Alexander I. 
The Thanages come in between the tribal organisation and the Norman feudal 
system. It arose out of the old Celtic system, and disappeared in the Norman, 
after the confusions created by the great war of independence. In the reign 

Preface. ix 

of David and his immediate successors, we find in Aberdeenshire the names of 
the ancient Earldoms of Mar, Buchan, and the Garioch, which were then fully 

The Thanage of Fermartyn extended from the Thanage of Conveth, which 
was co-extensive with the parish of Inverkeithney, to the eastern seaboard 
between the Ythan and the Don. The principal seat of the Thanage was 
Fyvie Castle, which, with the parish church, the lands of Gight and Monkshill, 
&c., being on the north bank of the Ythan, are now included in the district of 
Buchan. The Thanage of Fermartyn, like other Thanagcs, consisted of 
Thanage and Forest, and among the missing charters of Robert I. was one to 
Sir John Brown of the Thanage of Fermartyn, and another to Patrick de 
Monteith of the forestership of Kilanell and Fermartyn, showing that the 
Forest was a royal one. Afterwards in Sir Henry Preston's time, when the 
Norman system of tenure was pretty fully introduced, Fyvie or Fermartyn is 
found as a barony. 

The district of Formartine was formed after the war of independence ; but 
there is no date of its formation, and no note of its boundaries. It includes 
the larger portion of the Thanage of Fermartyn, the smaller Thanage of 
Belhelvie co-extensive with the parish of that name, the northern portion, 
including Kinkell church of the great and important Thanage of Kintore. It 
includes also the ancient regality of Frendraught, commonly called " the 
Kingdom of Forgue," and the baronies of Lessendrum and Drumblade. 

According to an old writer in the " View of the Diocese," the district of 
Formartine is about thirty miles round. Its parishes may be divided into such 
outer ones as lie on the border, and such inner ones as lie in the middle of the 
district. The outer parishes are part of Oldmachar, Newmachar, Fintray, part 
of Kinkell (this being part of the Thanage of Kintore) with its church, part of 
Monkeggie, part of Bourtie, part of Bethelnie, part of Fyvie, part of Auchter- 
less, the parishes of Forgue and Drumblade. Here Formartine ends as it were 
in a point, so that in going round it, we must turn back through the four last- 
named parishes, till descending along the Ythan we find part of Methlick with 
its church, part of Ellon, part of Tarves with its church, Logie-Buchan with its 
present church ; also Foveran, which has between it and Oldmachar the parish 
of Belhelvie. There is only one inner parish, that of Udny. 

Another writer. Sir Samuel Forbes of Foveran, thus describes Formartine : 
— " But whatever land lies between the rivers Ythan and the Don, one hears 
called by the name of Formartine among the inhabitants,' who disdain to con- 
sider themselves as belonging to Buchan.' There is no town in Formartine, 
for Aberdeen being in the neighbourhood intercepts all traffic. But if the 

X Preface. 

nature of the soil, or the genius of the inhabitants be taken into account, it is 
worthy of consideration, and inferior to none of its neighbours. To most of 
them it is superior in the number of its inhabitants, the richness of its soil, the 
number of its castles and villas, its amenity, the refinement and culture of its 

In describing Formartine, we have given an account of all the parishes, 
whether whole or in part connected with it, from the earliest times, the 
ministers thereof, and the principal persons buried in the churchyards ; also a 
history of each property, with the names of their various proprietors, and so 
far as practicable their genealogies. An account is given of Haddo and 
Methlick, of their ancient proprietors, and of the noble family of the Earl of 
Aberdeen and Viscount Formartine, The ancient history of Fyvie, the chief 
messuage of the Thanage of Fermartyn, will be found recorded, with all the 
Kings who visited and resided at it ; the Thanes thereof with their firmas or 
rents paid to the Exchequer ; the proprietors thereof with their genealogies 
down to Alexander John Forbes Leith, who, a few years ago, acquired the pro- 
perty. Meldrum has an interesting history from 1236, and it Is remarkable 
that it has been in possession of the present family from that date down to 
the present time. Udny has also been in possession of the present family for 
a very long period, arid has known no other proprietor, so far as appears, than 
an Udny of Udny. Lessendrum will be found in possession of the Bissets 
previous to the war of independence. Frendraught has had many proprietors 
from 1202, all more or less showing a connection with each other by consan- 
guinity or by marriage. The various proprietors of Esslemont and Straloch 
are given ; also the family of Irvine of Drum, who once had a connection 
with the district. Foveran, long owned by the ancient family of Turing, will 
be found detailed, as also all the other properties in the district. 

These notes have been a labour of many years, so many that we have 
begun to feel the truth of the aphorism, " Ars longa est, vita est brevis." They 
have many imperfections, and dealing with so many names and dates, can 
hardly be free from many errors. 

I have had the valued assistance of many friends, some of whom have gone 
to their rest, and their places know them no more. I gratefully record the 
valued assistance of the late Mr. Charles Elphinstone Dalrymple, F.S.A. Scot, 
a very accomplished antiquary and genealogist, and a vice-president of the 
New Spalding Club ; of the late Earl of Caithness, better known as James 
Augustus Sinclair, who kindly placed many of his stores of genealogical infor- 
mation at my disposal. The late Lord Lyon, George Burnett, gave me every 
assistance ; as did also the late Lyon Clerk-Depute, Mr. Riddell Stodart, 

Preface. xi 

whose early death was so much lamented. The lale Mr. Patrick H. Chalmers of 
Avochie rendered me valuable assistance. I also received great assistance 
from Colonel J. Allardyce of Culquoich, from Lieut-Colonel Wolrigc Gordon 
of Esslemont, and Major John Ramsay of Barra ; also from Andrew John 
Mitchell-Gill, Esq., F.S.A. Scot., of Savock and Auchinroath, author of "The 
Houses of Moir-Byres," a valuable repertory of genealogical information ; 
from John A. Henderson, Esq., author of the " History of the Parish of 
Banchory-Devenick," &c. ; from Alexander Milne Ogston, Esq. of Ardoe ; 
and from Alexander Morison Gordon, convener of the County Council of 
Aberdeen. I am also indebted to William Alexander, Esq., LL.D., author 
of " Johnny Gibb of Gushetneuk," &c. ; and to Edward Young, of Messrs. 
Wyllie & Son, the publishers of the volume. But there are three, whose 
services in revising and correcting for the press, deserve especial acknowledg- 
ment, namely, William Watt, Esq., of the " Free Press ; " A. M. Munro, Esq., 
F.S.A. Scot, Town-House, Aberdeen ; and the Rev. George Sutherland, M.A., 
F.S.A. Scot, of the Episcopal Church, Portsoy, author of "The Outlines of 
Archaeology," &c. 

For the representatives of the ancient families here detailed, I quote a poet 
of the days of old. > 

" Giffthou desire thy house lang stand, 
And thy successors bruik thy land, 
Abive all things live God in fear, 
Intromit nought with wrongous gear ; 
Nor conquess nothing wrongously, 
With thy neighbour keep charity. 
See that thou pass not thy estate, 
Obey duly thy magistrate ; 
Oppress not but support the puire, 
To help the common weill take cuire. 
Use no deceit, — mell not with treason, 
And to all men do right and reason ; 
Both unto word and deed be true ; 
All kind of wickedness eschew. 

Slay no man, nor thereunto consent, • 

Be nought cruel but patient. 
Ally ay in some guid place 
With noble, honest, godly race. 
Hate huirdome, and all vices flee. 
Be humble, haunt guide companie ; 
Help thy friend, and do nae wrang, 
And God shall cause thy house stand lang." 

— Barclay of Mathers' advice to his son, circa 1500. 


Methlick — The Gordons— now Earls of Aberdeen and Viscounts Formartine— an account 
of their first acquisition of land in the district, with a Genealogical deduction 
from John Gordon of Essie— also their predecessors- the Cumines, Earls of 
Buchan — the Fullertons, &c. 

Fyvie — Fyvie Castle — Visit of various Kings and account of royal residence there. The 
various Thanes — with the rents or feu-duties paid to the King's Exchequer. 
The proprietors— the Lindsays — the Prestons— the Meldrums — the Setons, Earls 
of Dunfermline, and Lords Fyvie — the Gordons — and the Forbes-Leith family 

The Church of Fyvie and its Ministers, 40; The Churchyard of Fyvie, 44; The 
Priory of Fyvie and the Royal Burgh of Fyvie, 54 ; The Antiquities of 
Fyvie -, 

All Saints, Woodhead — its Ministers and Churchyard ... 

FoLLA-RuLE — its Church and Churchyard 

Crichie — its Proprietors 

GiGHT and its Proprietors — the Maitlands and the Gordons 

MONKSHILL and its Proprietors — including a deduction of the Chalmers family 

Rothienorman — its Proprietors— the Forbes-Leslie Family, including Blackford, the Forbeses 
and the Watsons — also Gordon of Badenscoth 

Auchterless— its Church and Ministers, 106; The Churchyard of Auchterless, 109; 
The Barony of Auchterless — its Proprietors — the Dempsters — the 
Meldrums — the Duffs 

The Chapel of Seggat — the Family of Wallace long resident there— the Antiquities of the 
District, including the Stone Circle at Logie-Newton, and the Roman Camp at 
Glenmailen — Towie-Barclay ... ... ... ... ... ... 

Frendraught — its Proprietors from 1202. The knightly House of Ferendrach de Ferendrach. 
The Stuarts — the Erasers — the Dunbars, Earls of Moray — the Crichtons — Lord 
Crichton — afterwards Viscounts Frendraught — the Gregories — the Morisons of 

The Antiquities of Forgue, &c., including the ancient Burgh of Forgue — the Portraits in 
Frendraught House— the Dunbars of Conzie, &c., &c., 162 ; The Church of 
Forgue and its Ministers, 168 ; The Churchyard of Forgue, 174 ; 
St. Margaret's, Forgue — its Ministers and Churchyard 










Tempi.eland — its Proprietors 

Drumblair — its Proprietors— including the Duffs — the Morisons — the Thains — the Simpsons, 

AuCHARNiE — its Proprietors — the Stuarts— the Andersons 

AUCHABER — its Proprietors — the Wilsons and Thains 

Bai.gaveny — its Proprietors — with a deduction of the Kilgouis of Tullo 

MoNELLiE and Corse of Monellie — their Proprietors — with a deduction of the family of Rose- 
Innes of Netherdale ... 

Drumdoli.o — its Proprietors — the Leslies and Morisons ... 

Conland — its Wadsetters — with an account of Alexander Shand, commonly called " The 
King of Forgue " 

COBAIRDY — its Proprietors — the Murrays — the Bairds — the Wisharts — the Hamiltons — the 
Gordons- -the Morisons — the Simpsons, &c. 

BoYNSMiLL — its Proprietors 

CORNIEHAUGH — its Proprietors — the Irvines — the Duffs, &c 

Haddo — its Proprietors — the Morisons — the Duffs — the Forbeses — also a notice of the Church- 
yard of Haddo 

The Church of Drumblade and its Ministers, 235 ; The Churchyard of Drumblade 

Lessendrum — with a deduction of the Bissets 

The Barony of Drumblade— its Proprietors. The Fentons— the Hallyburtons — the 
Gordons of Lesmoir, with a complete deduction of that family and its branches 
— the old Gordons of Newton— the Gordons of Sheelagreen, Rothney and 
Invernettie — the Hutchisons of Cairngall — also the Gordons of Buthlaw, 259 
CocKLARAQUY — its Proprietors, 276 ; Dummuie — its Proprietors, 281 
Chappeltown of Drumblade, and Comaleggie, and their Proprietors, 284 
Antiquities of Drumblade 

Newmachar — its Ministers, 288 ; The Churchyard of Newmachar and Monicaboc 

Elrick — its Proprietors — the Burnetts 

Kinmundy and Kingseat and Rosehall— their Proprietors 

Parkhill — its Proprietors — with a notice of the families commonly called "Jock and Tam ' 
— with a deduction of that branch of the Gordon family ... 

Straloch — its Proprietors — the Cheynes — the Gordons — the Ramsays — with a deduction of 
the families of Ramsay and Innes ... 

Irvine of Drum — sometime Proprietor — with a deduction of that ancient family, 330 
KiNMUCK and its Churchyard — Kendale and Antiquities in the District 

Balbithan and its Proprietors — Chalmers — Gordon — Forbes-Gordon 

KiNKELL and Monkeggie — now conjoined and called Keith-hall — their Ministers, 353 
The Churchyards of Kinkell and Monkeggie 

BouRTiE and its Ministers, 363 ; The Churchyard of Bourtie, and Antiquities 

Tarves and its Ministers, 370; The Churchyard of Tarves, and Antiquities 














Contents. xv 


TOLQUHON and its Proprietors — the Forbeses, now represented by Forbes-Leith of Whitehaugh 379 

Shetiun and its Proprietors — with deductions of the Ogstons, Hays, and Shepherds 388 

Craicdam and its Ministers, with an account of Rev. Patrick Robertson 399 

Cairnbrogoie and its Proprietors, with a deduction of the Marrs 404 

Methlick and its Ministers, 406 ; The Churchyard oi'MpyruLicK 409 

Andate — Tulliegonie or Keithfield— their Proprietors 412 

Udny and its Ministers, 415; The Churchyard of Udny, 419; Udny— The Udnys of 
Udny, 425 ; Udny Academy, a famous school under the Bissets, with an 

account of many of the county gentlemen educated there 435 

Pitmedden — its Proprietors — the Pantons and the Setons, &c 443 

Pitrichie — its Proprietors — the Maitlands — the Milnes 449 

TlLLlEGRElG — its Proprietors— the Bishops of Aberdeen — Gordons— Mitchells — Dyces — the 

Harveys ... ... ... ... ... ... .. ... ... 457 

TiLLlECORTHiE — its Proprietors — including a deduction of the Ro.sses 462 

Knaperna— its Proprietors the Forbeses 464 

DuMBRECK AND Orchardtown — their Proprietors — the Dumbrecks of Dumbreck, &c. — the 

TuUiedaffs of TuUiedaff, &c. , with a deduction of the Piries ... 467 

Logierieve — its Proprietors, with a deduction of the Legertwoods and Mitchells 478 

Eli.on and its Ministers, 482 ; The Churchyard of Eli.on, with a deduction of the 
Rosses of Arnage, 488 ; St. Mary's-on-the-Rock, Ellon — representing the 

Episcopal Churches of Udny and Ellon, &c. ... ... ... ... ... 498 

Fechil and its Proprietors 503 

EssLEMONT and its Proprietors — the Marshalls — the Cheynes — the Keiths — the Hays — the 
Gordons, with a complete deduction of the Gordons of Hallhead, descended 
from " Tarn of Rivan," 507 ; The Mains of Esslemont— Tenanted since 

1720 or thereby by a family of Milnes, with a deduction ... ... ... ... 518 

LoGiEBUCHAN— its Ministers, 521 ; The Churchyard of Logiebuchan, with a deduction 

of the Buchans of Auchmacoy ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 523 

Tarty — its Proprietors, including the Duns — the Gordons, &c 537 

Watridgemuir — its Proprietors — the Blacks — the Legertwoods — the Gardens, &c 540 

Rainieston — its Proprietors — the TuUiedaffs — the Dingwalls, with a deduction of the latter 543 

Rosebank AND MossTOWN — their Proprietors 548 

Tippertie — its Proprietors — with a deduction of the Turners of Turnerhall .. 551 

Foveran — its Ministers, 556 ; The Churchyard of Foveran, 560 ; Foveran — its Pro- 
prietors — the Strathbroks — the Turins or Turings, with a deduction of that 
ancient family down to the present time — also the Forbeses — the Robertsons — 

the M'Kenzies 565 

TiLLERY— its Proprietors— Udny — Setons — Forbeses— the Legertwoods— Chambers-Hunter ... 576 

Kincraig— with a deduction of the Mitchells 580 

Blair Ythan and Savock— with a deduction of the Gills 587 

xvi Contents. 


Knockhall AND THE Newburgh— their Proprietors— the Sinclairs— the Udnys 592 

Newtyle — its Proprietors — the Skenes — the Gordons— the Lumsdens 600 

AUCHNACANT— its Proprietors 602 

FiDDES AND Hill of Fiddes — with a deduction of the Ruxtons — for many years tenants 

there 605 

Belhelvie and its Ministers, 609 ; Belhelvie and its Churchyard, 614 ; The Thanage of 

Belhelvie 618 

Balmedie and Belhelvie Lodge — their Proprietors, with a deduction of the Lumsdens — 

including Pitcaple and Auchry ... ... ... ... ... ... 621 

Blairton and Potterton, Wester Hatton, and Milden— their Proprietors 632 

Overblairton — Colpnaw now Orrok 635 

Menie — its Proprietors — the Vauses — the Carnegies — the Forbeses — the Kerrs — the Turners 

with a deduction ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 638 

Meadowbank or Muirton — its Proprietors — including a deduction of the Reids, Whitecairns 641 

Ardo — its Proprietors, with a deduction of the Harveys ... ... ... ... ... ... 642 

Scotstown — its Proprietors, with a deduction of the Moirs ... ... ... ... ... 644 

Grandhome — its Proprietors, with a deduction of the Patons ... ... ... ... ... 647 

Balgownie — its Proprietors, with a deduction of the Frasers and Forbeses 650 

FiNTRAY— its Ministers, 656; The Churchyard of Fintray, 659; Fintray— its Proprie- 
tors — the Forbeses of Craigievar, now represented by Lord Sempill 663 

DiSBLAiR — its Proprietors, with a deduction of the Dyce, Morison, and Mearns family ... 674 
Meldrum, 683 ; The Church of Bethelnie, 698 ; St. Matthews, Meldrum, 698 ; The Prophet 

ofBethelnie 698 






*• FoRTUNA Sequatur." " Ne Nimium." 

Haddo House is a spacious and elegant mansion in the Palladian style, built after 
designs by Baxter, ot Edinburgh ; enlarged in 1880, and a chapel by Mr. Street, of 
London, added. The policies are of great extent and of much beauty. The paintings in 
the house are very interesting. Besides specimens of many of the Continental schools, 
there are portraits of all the Earls, and of Sir John Gordon, who suffered for his 
loyalty to Charles I. According to Dr. Skene-Keith' of Keithhall, it had a deer park, 
in his time, one hundred and twenty years old. 

The site of the old house of Kelly is not known, for both name and situation have 
been changed. It is believed to have been at some distance from the present mansion. 

The first acquisition by the Gordon family was a portion of Haddo, after that the 
" Two Methlicks," then a portion of Kelly, and gradually the whole merged and consoli- 
dated into one property of Haddo and Methlick. 

The earliest notice of Methlick, or "Methlayk," is about the beginning of the 
fourteenth century. 

13 — . There is a charter by John de Barclay, Lord of Pitnacaldore, to William de 
Camera, Lord of Auchnaways, of all the lands of Methlayk in the shire of Aberdeen, to 
be held of the King t'n capite, sealed with the seal of William de Fotheringay, knight.- 

3 In 1378, there is a charter by Robert III., King of Scotland, to his esquire David 
Foulerton, for his faithful service, of the lands of the "Two Methlaykis," which were 

1. Keith's Survey, p. loi. 

2. Historical MSS. Commission Repsrt, Vol. I., p. 608. 

3. Id. 

The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

unrighteously possessed by William de Melgedrum, and which came into the King's 
hands by the verdict of an assize, which sat at Kincardine in the Mearns on the nth of 
December, 1375, to be held by the said David, rendering to the King and his hc'rs Kings 
of Scotland one shilling of silver, at the chief messuage of the lands, on the feast of 
Pentecost yearly. Among the witnesses are the King's eldest son, the Bishop of St. 
Andrews, the Earl of Carrick, Steward of Scotland, &c., &c.' 

In 1467, there is a charter by William de Foulerton de Aberawne to James Gordon 
of an annual rent of ten merks out of the lands of Haldauch, dated at Aberdeen, July, 

This is the first connection of the Gordons of Haddo with land in the county of 
Aberdeen, which is evidenced by existing records. 

Two years afterwards they acquired the whole of Haddo and the shadow half of 
Meikle Methlyk. 

In 1469, there is a charter by the said William Foulerton de Aberawne to the said 
James Gordon, of the lands of Haldauch, and the shadow half of Meikle Methlyk, 
excepting one croft of the said lands called " Le Chrystis croft," dated 22nd June, 

In 147 1, there are letters of resignation into the King's hand by William de 
Foulerton of the lands of Haldauch of Methlick, with half of Meikle Methlyk. This 
was a preliminary to the Gordons getting a charter of the lands from the Crown.'' 


In 1 261, Kelly belonged to Alexander Cummin, Earl of Buchan. In that year he 
founded an Hospital in the Newburgh. " Actum apud Kelly, in Buchan, Die Veneris 
proxima post Festum Sancti Matthaei, 1261."^ 

In 1272, there is a charter for an Hospital at Turriff, also given at Kelly, 3rd February, 
1272-3, by Alexander Cummin, Earl of Buchan, in presence of Alexander III., King of 
Scots, Reginald Cheyne, father and son, William de Melgdrum, and Walter, rector of 
the church of Foveran.^ 

In 1433, Robert de Erskine is owner of Kelly. In that year he gives "to our 
beloved Lord William de Forbes, knight, our whole land of Lasgowny lying in our 
barony of Kelly." ^ In 1436, he grants the same land of Lasgowny to Gilbert Menzies. 
The superiority had probably been retained.^ 

In 1482, there is a charter by David Annand of Ouchterellon to Patrick Gordon of 

1. Historical MSS. Commission Report, Vol. V., p. 608. 

2. Id. 

3. Id. 

4. Id. 

5. Antiquities, Aberdeen and Banff, Vol. I., p. 372. 

6. Id.. Vol. I., p. 323. 

7. Id., Vol. III., p. 143. 

8. Id. 

The Gordons of Haddo and Methlick. 

Methlick, of his lands of the Park of Kelly, with the lands of Owerhill (Ordhill "), dated 
Aberdeen, 12th February, 1482-3.' 

This is the first acquisition by the Gordon family of a portion of Kelly. There is 
afterwards a disposition of another portion, viz.. Mains of Kelly. "The Master of 
Erskine, with consent of Lord Erskine his father, disposes the lands of Mains of Kelly 
and others to James Gordon of Haddoch, paying £6 os. 4d. to the Abbot and Convent 
of Lindores, dated at Stirling, 19 October, 1553."^ 

The whole barony of Kelly, as well as Haddo and Methlick, gradually became the 
property of this branch of the Gordon family. 

With regard to their descent. Dr. Joseph Robertson, our greatest chartulary 
authority, writing of the family of Gordon of Haddo thus remarks — 1 " Some genealo- 
gists have sought to engraft this branch upon the parent stem before it was transplanted to 
the North towards the end of the fourteenth century. But no evidence has been produced 
in support of this claim, and modern research holds by the traditions that the house 
descends from one of the brothers *of Sir Adam Gordon, who was slain at Homildon in 
1402. His first possession seems to have been Methlick on the Banks of the Ythan." 

There is reason to believe that these brothers were cousins-german of Sir Adam 
Gordon who fell at Homildon, as will be seen in the notes on the family of Gordon of 
Pitlurg and Straloch. 

In the above quotation from Dr. Robertson, Methlick is mentioned as being their 
first possession ; but the charters already quoted show that it was Haddo situated on 
the south bank of the Ythan opposite Gight. 

According to Crawford's Peerage, "this family is descended from Sir William 
Gordon, who swore fealty to Edward I. ; " but of this there is no chartulary or 
other evidence, and Sheriff Riddell, one of the best authorities on peerage law, pro- 
nounced this " deduction to be incorrect." ^ 

I. John Gordon of Essie or Scurdargue (as to whose genealogical status see 
article on Pillurg) married Elizabeth Maitland, daughter of Robert Maitland, laird of 
Gight, by whom he had three sons. 

I. John Gordon of Auchleuchries. 
n. William Gordon of Tilly tarmont. 
III. James Gordon, ancestor of the Gordons of Haddo and Methlick.^ 

II. — This James Gordon of Haddo and Methlick married Canea Harper, half- 
portioner of Methlick, of which her father, John Harper, called in the latin of the 
charters " Johannes de Citharista," was the owner. 

1. Historical MSS. Commission Report, Vol. V., p. 608. 

2. Id. 

3. Id. 

4. Notes by the late Mr. C. E. Dalrymple. 

5. See Mr. Riddell's Notes on Pedigree of the Earl of Aberdeen in Wood's Douglas' Peerage, Advocates' Library, 

6. MS. 1580, C.E.D., Balbithan MS. History of Gordons in possession of late Mr. Chas. E. Dalrymple, also 

Gordon of Straloch's MSS. 

The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

In a MS. genealogy preserved at Parkhill, apparently drawn up by Robert Gordon of 
Straloch, Canea Harper is styled " heretrix of Methlic." ' The late John Stuart, LL.D., 
so long the moving spirit of the Spalding Club, accepted the fact of the marriage of 
James Gordon to the heiress of John Harper. The MS. of 1580, in the possession of 
the representatives of C. E. Dalrymple, Esq., calls her " ane gentlewoman called 
Harper." She probably had the " sunny half of Methlick," and we see that her husband 
acquired the shady half in 1469. But no charter of "the sunny half" is now known to 
exist. This connection, however, is not without difficulty. In another MS. she is 
called Caney Harper. In connection with her name, we may refer to a note, p. 334 
Collections for the Shires of Aberdeen and Banff, where a document is quoted, referring to 
some intromissions with the lands of Qwiltis of Shewass by William Uumbrek and 
" Conny Gordoune " his spouse. This was probably a daughter of Coney Harper or 
Gordon, married to a neighbour, Dumbrek of Dumbrek, the seat of the family of that 
name in the neighbourhood of Methlick. 

In the British Museum Library there is a MS. with the arms of the Gordons of Haddo : 
" Azure three boars' heads coupe or differenced with a crescent for a younger brother." 
This points to his being a second son and not a third as given in the Balbithan MS. 

In another MS. these are quartered with a harp in the second and third quarters, 
probably for Citharista, i.e.^ Harper of Methlick.^ 

James Gordon and Canea Harper had issue : — 

I. Patrick Gordon, of whom afterwards. 

II. Robert Gordon of Fetterletter. He had issue a daughter, who was " ane 

heretrix " and married Sir George Gordon of Shives, Knt., " which Knt. has 
conquested a great living to the augmentation of his house, and built a great 
strength thereon, with great policies, and most agreeable to such a nobleman of 
his estate." ^ 

III. Alexander Gordon, Bishop-elect of Aberdeen, formerly Chantor and Dean of 
Moray. In the Balbithan MS. it is recorded that " Alex. Gordon had many 
bastard children, viz., David Gordon of Savoch, &c." " Two of his sons are 
recorded in the following charter of lands. " Alexandro Gordon et Jacobo 
Gordon fratribus bastardis filiis naturalibus Magistri Alexandri Gordon precen- 
toris Moraviensis. June, 1506." Another. " Alexandro Gordon filio carnali 
Alexandri Gordon precentoris Moraviensis, 1509.5 

Through the influence of the Earl of Huntly he was appointed in 1515 Bishop of 
Aberdeen, and died 30th June, 15 18. Dr. Grub is of opinion, that owing to 
bad health he was never consecrated.'' 

I, Notes by the late Mr. Chas. E. Dalrymple. 

2 British Museum Lib. CM. 63, as quoted by Sheriff Riddell in his notes on the Gordons, Earls 

Aberdeen, in Wood's Douglas' Peerage, Advocates Library, Edin. 

3 Antiq. A. and B. IL p. 333, and M.S. (C. E. D.), 1580. 

4 Balbithan MS. of the Gordons. 

5 Riddell's notes on Gordons of Haddo in Wood's Douglas' Peerage, Advocates Library, Edin. 

6 Grub's Eccles. History L p. 410. 

The Gordons of Haddo and Metldick. 

IV. George Gordon of Auchinhiffe (Udny). 

1. Isobel, married to Alexander Allardes of Allardes. 

2. Margaret, married to Fraser of Durris.' 

3. , married to Andrew Prott, burgess in Aberdeen. 

James Gordon died 14 — , and was succeeded by his son, 

III. Patrick Gordon of Haddo and Methlick. 

Patrick Gordon had a charter dated 1 5 September, 1 480, of the lands of Knockinblewis, 
Breckoh, and Glassach, from Alex. Leslie of Wardens. The charter is dated within the 
chapel of the Blessed Virgin Mary of the Garioch. In 1482, there is a charter 
previously quoted of the lands of New Park of Kelly and Overhill (Ordhill ?) - 

In 1487, there is a confirmation of a charter of the lands of Auchadlie to Patrick 
Gordon de Methlic from William de S. Clare of Newburgh.^ 

He married Marion, daughter of Sir James Ogilvie of Findlater, and had issue three 
sons and three daughters. 

I. George Gordon, apparent-heir. 

II. Mr. James Gordon, Parson of Lonmay, a witness to a deed, 1556.'* 

III. Alexander Gordon, first goodman of Bracoe.^ 

I. , married to Barclay of Towie. „ 

2. -^ married to Gumming of Altyre. 

3. , married to Rose of Kilravock.^ 

Patrick Gordon died 15 — , and was succeeded by his grandson. 

IV. James Gordon of Haddo and Methlick. 

He was son of George Gordon, apparent-heir of Patrick Gordon, who died in 
France before his father, having married a daughter of Hay of Delgaty, and by her he 
left issue the said James Gordon.^ 

In 1537, James Gordon of Methlick is mentioned in a decreet anent the marches 
betwixt Lethnot and Troup.^ 

In 1547, he is mentioned in a deed in the Register of the Diocese of Aberdeen.' 

In 1553, James Gordon obtained a charter from John Master of Erskine, with con- 
sent of Lord Erskine his father, of the lands of Mains of Kellie and others." 

In 1578, there is a licence by James Gordon of Haddoch to his son Robert Gordon 

1 MS. 1580, C. E. D., and Balbithan MS. 

2 Hist. MSS. C. Rep., vol. V. p. 608. 

3 Ant. A. and B., vol. III. p. 102. 

4 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 540. * 

5 Balbithan MS. 

6 Id. 

7 MS. (1580; C. E. D. 

8. Antiquities A. and B. II., p. 226. 

9 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 432. 

10 H. M. C. Rep., V. p. 607. V. Ante p. 3. 

The Thanage of Fennartyn. 

of Sauchoch to annalie and wadset the town and lands of Murdoishill, alias Hallymanis' 
seat, lying within the barony of Kelly.' 

In 1580, steps were taken by the Council to put an end to the deadly feuds between 
the Gordons and the Forbeses. Among the Gordons are John Gordon of Pitlurg, and 
James Gordon of Haddo.^ 

On April i, 1588, there is a discharge and receipt by James Gordon of Haddo to 
Alexander Chalmers of Cults for the title deeds of the lands of Little Methlick. The 
deeds are enumerated, and the first is a charter by umquhile William Chalmers of 

He married Marjory (?) daughter of Thomas Menzies of Pitfoddels, Comptroller 
General of Scotland, according to Burke's and Douglas' Peerages ; but according to the 
MS. of 1580, already quoted, she is styled "daughter of Gilbert Menzies, Provost of 
Aberdeen." It is also recorded of him in this MS. that " he has conquest certain lands 
in Buchan in augmentation of his living, and has bigged a House called Kelly." " 

They had issue six sons. 

I. Patrick, his apparent-heir, who predeceased his father. He is mentioned in a 

memorandum of his father. James Gordon explained " that he had ordered 
Alexander Gordon of Bracoe to give a proper charter of sale of the barony of 
Knockinblewis, 10 May, 1553, to Patrick Gordon, his son and apparent-heir." ^ 

II. Robert Gordon of Savoch mentioned in Riddel's notes with his four younger 

brothers in 1559. 

III. David, ancestor of the Gordons of Nethermuir, a family which still exists, though 
Nethermuir, their ancient inheritance, has passed from them. 

IV. John Gordon of Tilliehilt, 

V. James Gordon. 

VI. Alexander Gordon. 

I. Daughter married to Cheyne of Esslemont. 
James Gordon died 1582.^ 

His son Patrick married Agnes, daughter of Alexander Frazer of Muchil, and had 
one son James, who succeeded his grandfather. 

V. James Gordon of Haddo and Methlick. 

He obtained charters from King James VI. of the lands of Kirktown, Tarvis, 
Brakla, Tulielt, also the lands of Methlick, Haddo, &c., 1582.7 

2 H. M. C. Rep., V. p. 607. 

2 Priv. Counc. Rep. III. pp. 261, 279. 

3 His. MSS. Rept, V. 608. 

4 MSS. 1580, C. E. D. Balbithan's MS. 

5 Riddell's Notes on Wood's Douglas' Peerage, Advocates Library, Edinburgh. 

6 Burke's and Douglas' Baronages. 

7 Id. 

The Gordons 0/ Haddo and Methlick. 

He married Jane, daughter of William Lord Keith, and sister of George Earl 
Marischal, and by her had issue : — 

I. George, who died before his father, having married Margaret, daughter of 

Alexander Bannerman of Elsick, by whom he had a son John, of whom after- 

II. William Gordon. 

He married second the daughter of his cousin, John Gordon of Tillyhilt.' 
He died in the beginning of 1624, and was succeeded by his grandson. 

VI. Sir John Gordon of Haddo, Bart. 

He was served heir to his grandfather, James Gordon, in 1624, and to his father, 
George Gordon, in 1627, in the lands of the two Methlicks." (See above No. V.) 

He was a man of great ability and loyalty. He was second in command to the 
Marquis of Huntly in conducting the forces that were raised for the King against the 
Covenanters in 1639. At the skirmish commonly called the "Trot of Turriff," he 
behaved with great courage, and for his good service was created a Baronet by King 
Charles I. in 1642. 

Sir John in many other instances signalised himself in^behalf of His Majesty. 

In 1643, he defended the House of Kelly against the Covenanters until reduced to 
the last extremity. At length he capitulated on honourable terms ; but he was no 
sooner in his enemy's power (Argyle's) than he was sent to Edinburgh, and imprisoned 
in St. Giles' church, in a place which has since then got the name of " Haddo's hole." 

Argyle put a garrison of thirty-six men into the house, destroyed and plundered 
everything in it, carried away out of the garners 160 chalders of victuals, killed or drove 
away all the horses and sheep that belonged to Sir John or his tenants, all of which is 
most graphically described by Spalding in his *' Troubles of Scotland." 

The Kirk also was not behind, for she drew the spiritual sword, and Sir John was 

In January, 1645, he was indicted for high treason for what he acted at Turriff and 
elsewhere, in the King's name, and was condemned to death. On the loth of July, 
1645, he was executed along with Captain John Logic, son of a learned and loyal clergy- 
man, Mr. Andrew Logic, minister of Rayne and Archdeacon of Aberdeen. Captain 
Logic was first beheaded. 

Sir John's friends had petitioned to be suffered to wait upon him on the scaffold at 
his death, and six of them were so allowed. According to " Gordon's History of the 
Gordons " ^ — " When they mounted the scaffold, they were attended by some of the town's 
ministers. One of them, in addressing himself to Sir John, desired him to make open 

1 Balbithan MS. 

2 Ret. Spec. Abdn., No. 201, &c. 

3 See Gordon's History of the Gordons, pp. 410, 414, and Spalding's " Troubles." 

8 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

and full confession of his sins to God, upon which he acknowledged that he had been a 
great and grievous sinner, and hoped that God would graciously pardon him, in and 
through the merits of his Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. On which the minister 
catching hold went to the side of the scaffold, and with an audible voice told the people 
that this unfortunate gentleman had confessed himself guilty of rising in arms against the 
country, in opposition to the covenant, which Haddo overhearing, went to the same 
place, and with the like voice answered, * Not so. I confess myself to be a great sinner 
to God, but never transgressed against the country or any in it, and what I did in that 
case, I thought good service, and bound to do as my duty by the laws of God and man.' 
After which he returned to his private devotions, using among others this short prayer — 
' I commend myself to God, and my six children to his Majestie's care, for whose sake 
I die this day.' " 

And so he passed boldly and calmly unto death. His body was buried in the 
Greyfriars Churchyard, Edinburgh. 

He married Mary, daughter of William Forbes of Tolquhon, by whom he had six 
children, of whom two sons and one daughter reached maturity. 

I. Sir John, his successor. 

II. George, the First Earl of Aberdeen. 

I. , daughter married to Sir John Forbes of Waterton. 

The children of Sir John Gordon were bereft of parents and estate, of which latter 
they received not one penny for their upbringing. The estates were returned to Sir 
John's eldest son — 

VII. Sir John Gordon, 2nd Bart. 

He married Mary, only daughter of Alexander, First Lord Pitsligo, by whom he 
had an only child Jane, who married Sir James Gordon of Lesmoir, Bart. He died 
1667, and was succeeded by his brother George, who became 

VIII. Sir George Gordon, 3rd Bart, of Haddo, and 
1st Earl of Aberdeen. 

According to Mr. Dunn,' he was educated at King's College, Old Aberdeen, of 
which he was a distinguished scholar and graduate. He studied under John Strachan, 
who enjoyed a great reputation for learning. Professor Strachan having resigned, the 
College appointed Mr. Gordon to the vacant Regency, and he became a professor the 
day after he ceased to be a student. This was in 1658, and he remained a professor four 
years. After his class proceeded to the Master's degree, he resigned his professorship at 
the close of the session 1662, and went abroad, resolving to devote himself to the 
study of law. The death of his elder brother without male issue in March, 1667, 
recalled him from the Continent, when he took possession of the estates. He became 

I See " Letters to the Earl of Aberdeen " (Spal. Club^ Preface. 

The Gordons of Haddo and Methlick. 

a member of the Scottish bar in 1668. In the year 1669, he was elected one of the 
Commissioners to represent the county of Aberdeen in the following session of this 
Parliament, 1670, 1671, 1672, and 1673; also in the Convention of Estates assembled 
at Edinburgh, June, 1678, 

On the nth of November, 1678, he was nominated one of the King's Privy Council, 
and on the death of Sir William Wallace of Craigie, he was appointed in his room, an 
ordinary Lord of Session, under the title of Lord Haddo. 

For many years the government of Scotland had been in the hands of the Duke of 
Lauderdale, and the unhappy state of the country showed the results of his administra- 
tion. Sir George Gordon, from his high official position, was brought prominently into 
contact with the State transactions towards the close of Lauderdale's administration. 
The Duke of York arrived in Edinburgh, 4 December, 1679, and took up his residence 
for three months at Holyrood, and produced a favourable impression. He returned in the 
following year, 1680, with a sort of viceregal authority, and completely superseded 
Lauderdale's influence in Scottish affairs. He assembled Parliament in 1681, in which 
Sir George Gordon took an active part, for at its opening, he was nominated one of the 
Lords of the Articles, and acted as one of the leaders of Government in conducting the 
business of the House, and was very active in supporting the Duke's administration. ' 

On the removal of Sir James Dalrymple from the presidency of the Court of Session, 
he was in 1681 promoted to the vacant office, but did not long retain it. 

Amongst those who looked forward to bear a part in the pomp and state which 
distinguished the sitting down of Parliament ia 1681 was John Leslie, Duke of Rothes ; 
but not many hours before its meeting he suddenly expired, and the Parliament had to 
be opened without a Chancellor. Sir George Gordon was appointed Chancellor in his 
room, but his appointment created no little disappointment and rivalry. Sir George 
being only a Commoner, while it was considered by many that this high office of State 
should only be filled by a Peer. His appointment to the Chancellorship was, however, soon 
followed by his elevation to the Peerage under the title of Earl of Aberdeen. The patent 
which conferred upon him this rank recites the eminent services he had rendered to 
the King ; but, perhaps^ no part of the document could be more agreeable to Sir George 
Gordon than the part relating the manner in which his father's struggles and heroic 
sufferings are recorded. 

Lord Aberdeen was called to power at a time when little but obloquy was to be 
expected by those holding official dignity, when even the wisest and ablest could only 
look forward to the exercise of but a loveless and a thankless sway. 

During a period of two years and upwards, the administration of public affairs was 
presided over by him ; but the intrigues of the party which favoured the unhappy designs 
of the Duke of York against the established religion led in the end to the Earl's resigna- 
tion. In 1684 he left London, dismantled his house in Edinburgh, and retired to 
Haddo, his house in Aberdeenshire. He did not emerge from his retirement till after 
the accession of Queen Anne, when for the first time he took the oaths to the Govern- 

lO The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

ment. The only prominent transaction in which Lord Aberdeen took part after this 
was the treaty of Union between England and Scotland. 

The remaining years of the Earl's life were spent in the tranquillity and seclusion of 
a country life, and in the improvement and extension of his family property. 

" The boy," says Mr. Dunn, " who had seen his father's house invested by fierce and 
warlike men, who had been driven a terrified child across its threshold preparatory to 
the work of destruction, now, as an old man after an eventful life, reposed in peace and 
quietness there, the scene of these wild transactions." 

The Earl of Aberdeen, while Sir George Gordon, married Ann, eldest daughter of 
Sir George Lockhart of Torbrecks, heiress of her brother William, who died in 1672. 
Her mother, Ann, was a daughter of Sir William Lockhart of Carnwath, President of 
the Court of Session. They had six children : — 

L George, Lord Haddo, died in the life-time of his father. 

II. WiUiam, 2nd Earl of Aberdeen. 

1. The Lady Anne, married to the ninth Earl of Eglinton. 

2. The Lady Martha, born February 13, 1681, was married to John Udny of Udny. 

3. The Lady Mary, born 29 March. 1682, was married to Alexander, 12th Lord 


4. The Lady Margaret — died unmarried. 

The first Earl died at Kelly, 20 April, 1720, and was succeeded by his son — 

IX. William, 2nd Earl of Aberdeen. 

He was one of the representative Peers of Scotland, but did not take a very 
active part in public life. He married first Lady Mary Leslie, only daughter of the 
Earl of Leven, by whom he had an only daughter, the Lady Ann, who married 
William, Earl of Dumfries and Stair. 

He married secondly, Susan, daughter of John, Duke of Athole, by whom he had an 
only son — 

1. George, his successor. 

2. The Lady Catharine, who married first, Cosmo, Duke of Gordon, secondly. 

General Staats Long Morris. 
The Earl married thirdly, Anne, daughter of Alexander, Duke of Gordon, and by 
her had issue — 

XL William Gordon of Fyvie, a general officer, who married Miss Isobel Black, and 

had issue a son William, who succeeded to Fyvie, and died there in 1847. 
in. Cosmo, Colonel in the army. 
IV. Alexander, born 1739. Appointed Lord of Session in 1788, under the title of 

Lord Rockville. (See Article Fyvie.) 
William, the Second Earl of Aberdeen, increased the family property very much, 
having purchased Tolquhon, Fyvie, and other estates. He died in 1745, and was 
succeeded by his son — 

TJie Gordons of Haddo and Methlick. 1 1 

X. George, 3rd Earl of Aberdeen. 

He married Catharine, daughter of Oswald Hanson, Esc). of Wakefield, Yorkshire, 
and by her, who died March 15, 181 7, had issue — 

1. George, Lord Haddo. He was accidentally killed by a fall from his horse near 
the Castle of Gight, October 2, 1791 (in the life-time of his father). He married 
Charlotte, daughter of William Baird, Esq. of New Byth, by whom he had 
issue : — 

I. George, 4th Earl of Aberdeen. 

n. William, Vice-Admiral, long member of Parliament for Aberdeenshire, 

born 1785, died February 3, 1858. 
HI. Sir Alexander Gordon, K.C.B., Lieut.-Colonel in the army, Aide-de-Camp 

to his uncle, Sir David Baird, afterward to the Duke of Wellington, and was 

killed at the battle of Waterloo, June 18, 181 5. 

IV. Sir Charles, Lieut.-Colonel, born 5 July, 1790, died 30 September, 1835. 

V. Sir Robert, a distinguished diplomatist, born 1791, died 8 October, 1847. 
VL John, Vice-Admiral, R.N., born 1792. 

I. Alicia, who obtained from the Prince Regent in 1813 the precedency 
of an Earl's daughter, and died April 24, 1847. 
n. William, who succeeded to the Ellon estate, and died 1846. 

1. Anne, married to Edward Place, Esq. of Skelton Grange, Yorkshire, and had 


2. Susan, died unmarried, 1795. 

3. Mary, married 12 March, 1789, to Thomas Horton, Esq. of Honroyde Hall, 

Yorkshire, who died 22 December, 1829 ; she died August 7, 1853. 

The Earl, who was one of the representative Peers of Scotland, died at Ellon Castle, 
August 13, 1 80 1, and was succeeded by his grandson — 

XI. George Gordon, 4th Earl of Aberdeen. K.G., K.T., LL.D., 
F.R.S., F.A.S., F.S.A. Scot., &c., &:c., &c. 

He was born at Edinburgh, 28 January, 1784. When he was six years old his 
father died, and he succeeded his grandfather at the age of 17. He was educated at 
Harrow, and from that school he entered St. John's College, Cambridge. 

At that time Pitt was First Lord of the Treasury, Melville ruled at the Admiralty, 
and the beautiful and accomplished Duchess of Gordon (Jane Maxwell) interested 
herself much in the Tory supporters. Lord Aberdeen was brought up under the especial 
notice of these, and was early introduced into the mysteries of official life. 

He graduated in 1801, and in the same year was attached to the Embassy sent 
under Lord Cornwallis to negotiate with Napoleon the peace of Amiens, a peace which 
did not last long. About this time he visited Greece, and while his countryman, Lord 
Elgin, was despoiling that classic land of some of its finest marbles, he with all the 

12 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

enthusiasm of a scholar went over ground where everything to him had the greatest 
interest. On his return to England, he established the Athenian Society, of which it 
was an essential condition that every member should have visited Greece, and from 
this was given him the name of " Athenian Aberdeen." He entered Parliament in 
1806, a year which saw Nelson, Pitt, and Fox consigned to the tomb. At that time 
there was a coalition of parties, and Lord Aberdeen, as a Representative Peer of Scot- 
land, came in contact with the Ministry *' of all the Talents," an honour which he 
continued to enjoy till 1814. 

In recognition of his diplomatic services, he was raised in 1814 to the dignity of the 
British Peerage. After the disastrous defeat of Napoleon at Moscow, a hope was enter- 
tained that Austria might be induced (though the Emperor's daughter was married to 
Napoleon) to enter into a coalition against France. To Lord Aberdeen the English 
Government committed this delicate task, which he effectually accomplished. He was 
then only 29 years of age. Dresden was the last of Napoleon's great victories, and 
Leipsic began the series of defeats. Lord Aberdeen was present at both these battles, 
and learned there the horrors of war. 

In Jan., 1828, in the Tory Government, under the Duke of Wellington, Lord Aber- 
deen became Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, and he held this office for nearly 
three years. On the overthrow of the Duke's government, he retired from office, and 
with the exception of a few months in 1834-5, when he filled the post of Colonial 
Secretary in Sir Robert Peel's short-lived Ministry, he remained in Opposition till 1841. 
In that year Peel became Prime Minister, and Lord Aberdeen was reinstalled in the 
Foreign Office. His administration of Foreign policy was cautious and pacific, yet firm 
and dignifi°d, and in the dispute with the government of the United States on the 
Oregon question, he steadily upheld the honour of his country, while he contrived to 
avert the war that seemed imminent. 

Lord Aberdeen took a deep interest in the Established Church of Scotland, and 
made an unsuccessful attempt to avert the Disruption by enacting certain restrictions on 
the right of patronage, an Act repealed in 1874, when another was passed entirely 
abolishing patronage. 

In 1852, a coalition was formed between the Whigs and the Peelites, and the Earl of 
Aberdeen was placed at the head of the Administration. He had long penetrated the 
designs of Russia regarding Turkey, and had in his dispatches denounced the ambition 
and faithlessness of the Czar Nicholas. He had, however, an undisguised horror of 
war, and strove to maintain the public peace after the nation had unequivocally 
declared for an armed resistance to the designs of Russia. The country thus drifted 
into the Crimean war, for which no adequate preparation had been made, and disasters 
of no ordinary kind followed as the result. Lord John Russell seceded from the 
Government, which had become unpopular, and it was dissolved in 1855. From that 
period till his death Lord Aberdeen did not take any part in public affairs. 

His Lordship married first, July 28, 1805, Catharine Elizabeth, eldest surviving 

The Gordons of Haddo and Methlick. 1 3 

daughterof John James, First Marquis of Abercorn. By her, who died February 29, 181 2, 
he had a son who died in infancy, and three daughters who died unmarried. The Earl 
married secondly, July 8, 18 15, Harriet, daughter of Hon. John Douglas, relict of James 
Viscount Hamilton, and mother of the first Duke of Abercorn. By her, who died 
August 26, 1833, he had issue : — 

I. George John James, Lord Haddo, his successor, 

n. Alexander, born 11 December, 1817 (died 1890), General in the army, K.C.B., 

married December 9, 1852, Caroline, eldest daughter of Sir John Herschel, 

BarL, and has issue. 

III. Douglas, Chaplain to the Queen, Canon of Sarum, and Rector of Great 
Stanhope, born 13 March, 1824, married 15 July, 1851, Ellen, daughter of the 
Earl of Morton, and has issue. 

IV. Arthur, born 1829, C.M.G., 1859; K.C.M.G., 1871 ; G.C.M.G., 1878. In 
1 86 1, he was appointed Lieut.-Governor of New Brunswick ; 1866, Governor of 
Trinidad; 1870, Governor of the Mauritius ; 1874-80, Governor of Fiji ; 1877, 
Consul-General for the Western Pacific Islands; 1880-82, Governor of New 
Zealand; 1883-89, Governor of Ceylon. He married 1865, Rachel Emily (died 
1889), eldest daughter of the late Sir John Shaw Lefevre, K.C.B., and has 

I. Frances, died, unmarried, 1834. 

His Lordship died December 14, i860, and was succeeded by his son — 

XII. George John James, 5th Earl of Aberdeen, better known 

as Lord Haddo. 

He was born 28 September, 18 16, at the Priory, near Stanmore, Middlesex. He 
studied at Cambridge, and in 1827 took his degree of M.A. He was elected in 1854 
M.P. for Aberdeenshire, and in the general election of 1857 was again returned. He 
was long in very delicate health. Symptoms of illness began to appear in 1853, from 
which he never wholly recovered. This illness proved to be a wasting atrophy, and he 
was told by the best medical advice that a fatal issue could not be averted, yet nothing 
could exceed the calm composure with which he was led to contemplate an early death 
as all but certain ; and he set his house in order. He devoted himself to the good of 
those around him, watching over his children's education, and attending to religious, 
philanthropic, and various other objects up to the very week of his death. He was 
easily accessible to the humblest and poorest of the tenants, and took the liveliest 
interest in all their wants and difficulties. This good Earl continued in the good works 
which he had set himself to do, in the great work of preparation to meet his God, until 
the last day of his life. His spirit gently and quietly passed away a few minutes after 
midnight on the morning of the 23rd March, 1864. 

14 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

He married in 1840, Mary, daughter of George Baillie of Jerviswoode, sister of the 
late Earl of Haddington, and had issue : — 

I. George Hamilton, Lord Haddo, his successor. 

II. James Hamilton, born at Ranger's House, Greenwich, 11 October, 1845. He was 

a promising young man, and was suddenly killed by the accidental discharge of 
his rifle, 12 February, 1867, to tlie great regret of all who knew him. 

III. John Campbell, the present Peer. 

1. Lady Mary, born 1844, married 1863, Walter Hugh, sixth Lord Polwarth, and 

has issue. 

2. Lady Harriet, born 1849, married 1870, William Alexander Lindsay of the 

Crawford and Balcarres family, and has issue. 

3. Lady Catharine Eliza, born 1852, married 1876, Lord Balfour of Burleigh, and 

has issue. 
His Lordship was succeeded by his eldest son — 

XIII. George Hamilton, 6th Earl of Aberdeen. 

His mournful history is quite a romance in the Peerage. He is commonly 
known as the "Sailor Earl of Aberdeen." He was educated under a private 
tutor, and at the University of St. Andrews, along with his sad-fated brother 
James. In the winter of '1863, Lord Haddo proceeded to New Brunswick, 
where his uncle, the Hon. Arthur Gordon, was Governor, and was there in 
April, 1864, when he received intelh'gence of his father's death, and returned to 
Scotland. The decision, judgment, and self reliance, which he exhibited on assuming 
the administration of his estates, were such as to excite surprise from many, who were 
unacquainted with -his real character and capacity. After a year and a half spent at 
home, during which he rebuilt the church of Methlick, he returned to his uncle in New 
Brunswick; and in 1866 commenced his long and arduous expedition, which at last 
came to so disastrous a conclusion. Laying aside altogether for a time his name and 
rank, he engaged in the American merchant service, and was with some intervals 
employed as chief officer or captain until the time of his death. His last voyage or 
engagement was as chief mate, under the name of George Osborne, on the Hera, one of 
Messrs H. W. Peabody and Co.'s line of packets, sailing from Boston to Melbourne. 
On that voyage, which commenced January 31, 1870, he was about a week after in a 
severe storm washed overboard and drowned. 

Forwhat purpose he undertook this hard life, whether from the love of adventure, or 
that he might thoroughly know the status of the sailors of the mercantile marine, and be 
able to ameliorate their condition, was at the time of his death difficult to say. But his 
family, from information which they obtained, believe that the latter was his object. He 
wished to work in his place in Parliament for the amelioration of the conditions under 
which merchant seamen were obliged to toil and spend their lives. He left his native 

The Gordotis of Haddo and Methlick. 1 5 

land, his home and his kindied, and entirely supported himself by his own earnings, and 
at last perished sadly as above narrated. He was succeeded in the title and estates by 
his youngest and last surviving brother, 

XIV. John Campbell Hamilton GordoD, 7th Earl of Aberdeen. 

He was born 3 August, 1847. In 1880, he was appointed Lord Lieutenant of 
Aberdeenshire; in 1881-1885, Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly; 
1886, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. He married in 1877, Ishbel Maria, youngest 
daughter of Sir Dudley Coutts Marjoribanks, now Lord Tweedmouth, and has issue : — 

L George, Lord Haddo, born 1879. 
II.^Hon. Dudley Gladstone, born 1883. 
III. Hon. Ian Archibald, born 1884. 

1. Lady Marjorie Adelina, born 1880. 

2. Lady Dorothea Mary, born and died 1882. 


An obelisk to the south-west of Haddo House within the grounds was erected in 
memory of the Hon. Lieut. General Sir Alexander Gordon, 'whose name is honourably 
mentioned in the Duke of Wellington's despatches, likewise in Sir Walter Scott's poem 
of Waterloo, thus : — 

" And generous Gordon 'mid the strife 
Fell while he watched his leader's life." 

The obelisk is said to be of the same form as one which marks the spot where Sir 
Alexander fell. The latter bears an inscription both in French and English. 

" Sur le champ de Bataille." 

" Sacred to the memory of Lieut, -Colonel Sir Alexander Gordon, Knight Commander 
of the most honourable Order of the Bath, Aide-de-Camp to Field Marshal the Duke of 
Wellington, and also brother to George Earl of Aberdeen, who in the 29th year of his 
age terminated a short but glorious career on the i8th June, 18 15, whilst executing the 
orders of his great Commander in the battle of Waterloo. Distinguished for gallantry 
and good conduct in the field, he was honoured with repeated marks of approbation by 
the illustrious Hero, with whom he shared the dangers of every battle in Spain, Portugal, 
and France, and received the most flattering proofs of his confidence on many trying 
occasions. His zeal and activity in the service obtained the reward of ten medals, and 
the honourable distinction of the order of the Bath. He was justly lamented by the 
Duke of Wellington in his public despatch as an officer of high promise and a serious 
loss to the country ; nor less worthy of record for his virtues in private life, his unaffected 

I See page it. 

1 6 TJie TJianage of Fermartyn. 

respect for religion, his high sense of honour, his scrupulous integrity, and the most 
amiable qualities, which secured the attachment of his friends, and the love of his own 
family. In testimony of feelings which no language can express, a disconsolate sister 
and five surviving brothers have erected this simple memorial to the object of their 
tenderest affection."' 


Soon after the Earl's death in 1861, there was erected on the Hill of Ythsie, one of 
the highest landmarks in the lowland portion of the Aberdeen estate, a Tower, rising to 
the height of nearly 100 feet. It was erected by his Lordship's tenantry. 

On a vase in the deer park of Haddo House is this inscription : — 

" Georgius Comes Aberdonensis, 


Haud immemor." 

Mr. Kemble, the celebrated actor, brother of the famous Mrs. Siddons, used 
frequently to visit Haddo House. He had a favourite stone seat a little to the east of 
Haddo House, in a rornantic part of the Knockothie wood. 

" Scdes haec saxea et inculta, Joanni Philippo Kemble per aestivos 
anni mdcccxvii menses multum Diuque secum meditanti praeter 
omnes ridebat." 

[This rude stone seat was the favourite resort of John Philip Kemble, 
who during the summer of 181 7 frequently retired to it for the 
purpose of meditation.] ' 


In the entrance Hall of Haddo House is a presentation Bust of Her Majesty, over 
which is a marble tablet thus inscribed : — 

" Effigie sua Benevolentias 
signo has £edes exornavit mdccclv. 
Victoria Regina." 

[In token of Her Royal favour Queen Victoria adorned this House with her bust.] 

I Jervise' Ins. Vol. II. p, 26. 


" Fyvie, Fyvie, ye'se never thrive, 
As lang as there's within ye stanes three. 
There's ane in the heiches tour. 
There's ane in the Leddy's bower. 
The third's aneath the water yett. 
And that's the stane ye'll never get." 

This grand and venerable castle stands on the north-east bank of the Ythan, within 
extensive and finely timbered grounds — the ancient Royal Park of Fyvie. The present 
castle has been built by the five last families who have possessed the property. 

The south-east wing, called the Preston Tower, is $he most ancient part of the 
building, and is remarkable chiefly from the figure on the top of it, said to represent 
Andrew Lammie, the trumpeter of Fyvie. 

This tower may have been erected about 1390, the date of the accession of the 
Preston family to the property. The south-west tower is known as the Meldrum Tower. 
The Prestons and the Meldrums each raised their tower, and the two must have been 
connected by a building between. Lord Dunfermline built the Seton Tower, which 
appears to have been merely added on to the curtain or connecting buildings. The 
castle had originally a courtyard, of which only two sides now remain. On the west 
side was the chapel, and on the fourth side, probably " laigh buildings," offices, servants' 
lodgings, &c. 

The archway with the grated iron gate was the gateway, through which anyone 
entering rode into the courtyard. This grated iron gate still remains.' " It is arched at 
the top, and measures nine feet in height by five feet four and a half inches in breadth. 
It consists of seven perpendicular and twelve horizontal bars besides the frame, and there 
are three hinges, which are sunk in recesses of the wall. The three bolts are squared in 
the middle, and are very massive. The iron door is situated six feet eight inches 
behind a wooden one in front, and in the centre of the arch above the doorway is a large 
aperture, evidently intended to give a warm reception to any undesired visitor." 

The entrance to the house, after Lord Dunfermline built the magnificent staircase, 
the finest in Scotland, would probably be at the foot of it. He remodelled the whole 

I Transactions Soc. Ant. Vol. 1882-3., P< 25- 

1 8 The Thanage of FermaHyn. 

top of the castle, closing in the open battlements, putting roofs on the corner turrets, 
which probably were open, and adding dormer windows along the eaves of the castle. 

General Gordon built the Gordon Tower, after the style of the old building. In the 
Gordon Tower are the dining and breakfast rooms, and in the older part, between it and 
the Meldrum Tower, are the drawing-room and the grand staircase. 

Mr. Forbes Leith, the present proprietor (a descendant of Sir Henry Preston's), has 
added in 1890, five hundred years after the building of the Preston Tower, a fifth 
tower, to be called the Forbes Leith Tower. It is built in continuation westward of 
the Gordon Tower, and its principal elevations face the west and south. It contains 
a picture gallery and a ballroom, &c. 

In the Meldrum Tower is said to be an inaccessible chamber without door or 
window. About sixty years ago, it was so far opened, that the operators were able to 
look in through a hole they made, and saw (as they believed) some bones. The room 
above it is used as a charter room, which is certainly safe from fire from the inaccessible 

The castle owes much to the fine taste of the Earl of Dunfermline, who was a great 
builder of beautiful castles. 

Fyvie Castle, or a predecessor in or near the same site, was the chief messuage of 
the Thanage of Fermartyn, and was frequently the residence of the Kings of Scotland. 

The earliest notice of Fyvie Castle is in the year 1211 or 121 4. The exact date is not 
given ; but it is between these two dates. It is in a ' charter given by William the Lion 
to the monks of Dunfermline of the church of Abercromby in Fife. It is dated apud 
Fiuene (Fyvy). Among the witnesses are William de Boscho (Wood), the Chancellor ; 
Philip de Valoniis (Vaus or Vaux), his Chamberlain ; Robert de Lundoniis (meo filio) ; 
William Comyn, Justiciar of Scotland; Richard, the son of Hugo ; Hubert de Camera 
(Chalmer), and Richard Reuel. Here at Fyvie we find William the Lion with all 
the great officials of the State granting a charter. 

The next notice is in the reign of Alexander II. He is also in the Castle of Fyvie 
granting a charter, conferring on the monks of St. Thomas Aberbrothock the church of 
Buthelny, now merged in Meldrum. Among the witnesses present are Peter Byset, 
John Byset, and Walter Byset,^ a family long in great favour with the Alexanders, and 
who besides their numerous possessions in Ross, Banff and Aberdeen shires, had 
probably Lessendrum, still in possession of the Bissets. 

In 1296, Fyvie Castle ^ was one of the stages in the progress of King Edward I. 
through Scotland. On Friday^ 20th July, he proceeded from Aberdeen to " Kintore 
manour," and next day went to Lumphanan, and thence to " Fyvy Castle " — a very 
remarkable and ill-arranged journey, for Lumphanan was far out of the way from 
Kintore to Fyvie Some think it may have been Lumphart not Lumphanan. 

In 1286, the Thanage of Fermartyn was held by Reginald Cheyne. He is described 

I Ant. A. and B. II. p. 35. 3 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 326. 

8 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 561, II. p. 226. 

Fyvie. 19 

as Firmnrius de Fermartyn, i.e. he held the Thanage on lease. He was Sheriff of 
Kincardine in 1242, and was afterwards Chamberlain. There is an account in the 
Exchequer Rolls of his firma or rent — the exact sum is not given ; but we learn from 
Skene's " Celtic Scotland " that it amounted to one hundred and twenty merles.' 

There is mention made in the Exchequer Rolls of the sums paid by the burghers of 
Fyvie for the lands of Kilmalcolm let to them, and in the said account there is a 
memorandum that Henry de Fyvin ought to render an account of the eels of Fyvin for 
the whole time that he held the waters and marshes of Fyvin. ^ These waters and 
marshes were probably on the level grounds of the Ythan, on the site of the present 
lake of Fyvie. 

After Reginald Cheyne, we find that John Comyn, Earl of Buchan, possessed the 
lands of the Thanage of Fermartyn. John de Baliol, King of Scotland, gave by charter 
to the Earl all the lands of the Thanage of Fermartyn and Derleye, except the Burgh 
and Castle of Fyvie (Fyvyn).^ And in 1304-5, the Earl pays to the King's (Edward I.) 
exchequer per John Wrokwardyns the sum of ;2^i6 for these lands." 

After the battle of Inverurie, where the Comyns were defeated by Bruce, and there 
followed the terrible "harrying of the lands of Buchan," the Earl ofBuchan's connection 
with the Thanage of Fermartyn ceases, and we find other possessors of it and the forest 

The next Thane of Fermartyn was John Brown. In the missing charters of King 
Robert the Bruce, sometime between the years 1306 and 1329, there is a charter to 
John Brown of the Thanage of Fermartyn. ^ There is another missing charter, of the 
same reign, to Patrick de Montealto of the ^ office of Forester of Kilanel and Fermartyn, 
showing that the forest was a royal one. This Patrick de Montealto was very probably 
one of the Mowats of Balquholly, now Hatton. 

Sir John Brown was also Sheriff of Aberdeen, and there are extant his accounts of 
second tithes due to the Bishopric of Aberdeen from the Thanages of Kintore, 
Fermartyn, Belhelvie, and Aberdeen, in total, the sum of ;£i us., and in 1331-32 we 
find him accounting for the dues from the burgh of Fyvie.' 

Sir John Brown was the son of Adam Brown, who fell at the battle of Falkirk in 
1298. He possessed considerable lands in Ayrshire, which were forfeited, and which 
were granted to William Lindsay, Canon of Glasgow.' Sir John, besides the Thanedom 
of Fermartyn, owned the lands of Glanderstone in the Garioch. He married and had 
issue. Among his descendants was the late David Browne of Greenknowe, Stirlingshire 
and Laurieston, Midlothian, one of whose grandchildren was the late amiable and 
accomplished Mr. Riddell Stodart, Lyon Clerk-Depute of the Herald's College, 

The next Thane of Fermartyn was Ranald More^ Chamberlain of Scotland. 

1 Skene's " Celtic Scotland," III. p. 252. 5 Rob. Index of Charters, p. 17. 

2 Exchequer Rolls I. p. 21. 6 Skene's Celtic Scotland III. p. 251. 

3 Bain's Calendar of State papers II. p. 401. 7 Exchequer Rolls, Vol. I. p. 24. 

4 Id., II. p. 440. 8 MS., Penes, late Mr. Riddell Stodart, Lyon Clerk-Dep. 

20 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

There is a missing charter by David II. to Ranald More, Chamberlain, of the lands of 
Fermartyn, Akintor, and Obeyne.' Other portions of the Thanage of Fermartyn were 
disponed in Robert II.'s time ; thus there is a charter Alexandri Coci of the two 
Culmalows in the Thanage of Fermartyn." A charter to Philip de Meldrum of the 
lands of Crichnalade, and Creichen Walter in " Thanagio de Fermartyn ; " also a 
charter to Marie Gumming, spouse of Edmund Gumming of Gilltrachis and Sauchope in 
the Thanage of Fermartyn.^ 

After the Ghamberlainship of Ranald More, two of the sisters of King David had 
the Thanage of Fermartyn. 

King Robert the Bruce, by his second marriage, had, besides David II. his successor, 
two daughters, Matilda and Margaret. Both these daughters were older than David, 
though neither of them could have been born before 131 6. Matilda "nupsit cuidam 
armigero Thomae Isaac ; " in fact, she made a mesalliance." 

In the Ghamberlain's rolls of accounts for 1342, a payment of ;^6 12s. 6d. occurs to 
Thomas, son of Isaac, until otherwise provided for.^ Mauld or Matilda Bruce, the 
spouse of Thomas Isaac, had a charter from her brother David of half of the Thanage 
of Fermartyn ; and in the accounts of the Sheriff of Aberdeen rendered March 1358-9, 
after the Lady Matilda's death, half of the Thanage of Fermartyn and Kintore is said to 
be in the hands of the Earl of Sutherland, husband of her sister Margaret Bruce ; and 
the other half in the hands of Thomas Ysak, " e gratia regis super quo," add the 
auditors, " rex consulatur " — the king to be consulted.^ 

In 1347, the revenue of the Grown lands in one of the parts of Scotland that suffered 
the least from the wars is given (the only account of the period extant), and it is noted 
that there is nothing from the Thanages of Kintore and Fermartyn, because in the 
hands of the Grown and the King's sisters.^ 

Margaret Bruce, the youngest daughter of King Robert the Bruce's second marriage, 
married William, Earl of Sutherland, and David II. granted a charter, November 10, 
1345, to her and to her husband and the heirs to be procreated between them, of the 
Earldom of Sutherland erected into a regality ; also he grants the Earl in 1365, " Totam 
medietatem " of the Thanage of Fermartyn, which he now possesses, and which we have 
granted to the same for his life-time.^ 

In 1370-80, five years after the date of the above-named grant, we find that 
Fermartyn was again in possession of the Grown, and conferred by Robert II. on his 
eldest son, the Steward of Scotland, who soon resigned it to his cousin,' Sir James 
Lindsay who was the ninth in descent of the family of Grawford, and is designed, 
" Dominus de Grawford and Buchan." He was present at the coronation of his uncle 
at Scone in 1371, and was Commissioner to treat with the English in 1374.'° 

1 Rob. Index to Charters, p. 17. 6 Exchequer Rolls, I. p. 127. 

2 Id., pp. 2, 16, 17. 7 Id., I. p. 511. 

3 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 498. 8 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 498. 

4 Burnett's Exchequer Rolls, Vol. I. pref. Fordun's 9 Fyvie Papers Hist. Com. Rept. Vol. V. p. 644. 

Annals, Vol. i. p. 78. 10 Lives of the Lindsays, I. p. 96. 

5 Exchequer Rolls, I. p 510. 

Fyvie. 2 r 

In 1381, he quarrelled with Sir John Lyon, Lord Glammis, Chamberlain of Scotland, 
and son-in-law of the King, and slew him in a duel' In 1385, he fought under the 
Earl of Douglas at Otterburne. His wife was Margaret Keith, daughter of William 
Keith, Marischal of Scotland. According to Winton, she was 

" A gude ladye, 
And led in all time gude life." 

She had been employing masons at the Castle of Fyvie, with whom the followers or 
her nephew, Robert Keith, quarrelled. 

"This discourteous chief," according to Lord Lindsay, "took up the quarrel so 
warmly, as to besiege his aunt in her own castle, but she held out, and gave notice to 
her husband, who was then at Court. He started immediately, with four hundred men to 
relieve his wife ; but was intercepted by Keith, at the Kirk of Bourtie, in the Garioch, 
where Sir James utterly defeated him, with the loss of about fifty of his followers." ^ 

This Sir James Lindsay died in 1397, without male issue, leaving two daughters, who 
inherited certain rights in the Thanage of Fermartyn. 

In 1390, there is a deed of gift by King Robert III. to Henry Preston for the 
redemption of Lord Ralph de Percy, brother of Hotspur, taken with him at Otterburne. ^ 
It is, however, not at all certain that Ralph de Percy w^s taken prisoner by Sir Henry 
Preston. The name of his captor is given by P'roissart as Mackynell, which some think 
means Maxwell. Lindsay was himself taken prisoner by the Bishop of Durham, at 
some distance from the field, after he had pursued and taken prisoner Sir Matthew 
Redham, the Governor of Berwick. There is thus a curious conflict of evidence as to 
who took Percy. There is no doubt he came into the power of Sir Henry Preston, and 
as ransom he got the lands of Fermartyn according to the deed.'' The rights of the 
daughters of Sir James Lindsay were satisfactorily settled. They evidently had still 
claims on Fermartyn notwithstanding the King's charter above-mentioned. 

In 1403, there is an arrangement between Lady Margaret Lindsay, wife of Thomas 
Colville of Oxenham, and Henry Preston regarding the Castle of Fyvy.^ This charter 
engrosses one in his favour by Thomas Colville and the said Margaret Lindsay dated 
1397. Sir Henry Preston purchased from Sir John Herrys of Terregles his wife 
Euphemia Lindsay's rights in Fermartyn.*^ 

The Park of F'yvie is called the King's park in 1395, and the demesne lands 
Gourdnes (Gourdas), and others still remained in the Crown.' In 1437, the Castle was 
in ward of the Crown, for in the account of the King's Chamberlain there is entered, 
" Pro custodia Castri de Fyvy post obitum regis," ^£"4 5s. 2d.^ 

Sir Henry Preston, Lord of Fermartyn, according to Douglas, was a man of great 

1 Doug. Peer. fol. p. 156. 6 Ant. A. and B. I. pp. 502-3. 

2 Lives of the Lindsays, L p. 96. 7 Reg. Vet. Aberbrothock p. 311. 

3 Fyvie Charters, Ant. A. and B. \. p. 490. 8 Ant. A. ara B. IL 327. 

4 Ant. A. and B. L p. 499. 9 Doug. Peer. foli. 10. 

5 Id., L p. 501. 

22 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

parts, and highly esteemed by Robert III. He got a share of 40,000 francs that were 
sent by the King of France in 1385 to be divided among his faithful allies the Scots. 
He was joined in a commission with Sir Henry Swinton and Sir John Dalzell to 
treat for a peace with England in 1391, and was named one of the ambassadors 
extraordinary to the same Court in the year 1392. 

He married Elizabeth Lindsay, and built the tower of Fyvie Castle which goes 
by his name. He died about 1433, leaving two daughters, co-heiresses, who 
shared between them the Thanage of Fermartyn. The one Mariote Preston was 
married to Sir John Forbes, son of Sir John Forbes, knight, and on July 
6, 1420, she as daughter and one of the heiresses of Sir Henry Preston, Knight 
of Fermartyn, granted a charter to the said Sir John on marriage of one half of the 
Thanage of Fermartyn. This part is called Tolquhon, where Mariote's descendants 
were for many generations (and are now represented in the male line by Rev. Henry 
Forbes Leith of Whitehaugh), all of whom are detailed in the article " Tolquhon." 

Fyvie, the other portion of Fermartyn, containing Fyvie Castle, came by the 
marriage of the other co-heiress to Alexander Meldrum, of the family of Meldrum of 
Meldrum, descended of Philip de Fedarg, who flourished in the neighbourhood of 
Meldrum in the 13th century — a family still represented in the female line by Urquhart of 

I. Alexander Meldrum of Fyvie. 

He appears in 1438 as " Dominus de Fyvie." He resigned in that year " his whole 
and entire lands of Banchory-Devenick into the hands of Walter, Abbot of Arbroath.' 
He seems to have died before .1450 or 51, as he is mentioned in a charter of that date 
of Richard de Rutherford, burgess of Aberdeen, granting to his wife Mariota for her 
life-time that wadset made to him by the late Alexander Meldrum of Fyvie of a certain 
annual rent of ^^40 Scots to be uplifted from the lands of Waterton, Ellon, with the 
fishings on the Ythan.'' 

The next to be found, a son probably of Alex. Meldrum and Preston, is 

II. William Meldrimi of Fyvie. 

He is mentioned in an assedation of the tithes of Fyvie about 1475. " David 
Abbot of Arbroath, let to an honourable man, William Meldrum of Fyvie and Elizabeth 
his spouse, and to the longer liver of them, all the tithes of the towns of Fivb, Meikle 
Gourdas, Little Gourdas, Haldauch, Sauchock, &c." ^ 

In 1490, William Meldrum of Fivy makes a grant of 40 shillings from the lands of 
Waterton, Ellon, to the Altar of St. Ninian's, within the church of St. Nicholas, Aber- 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. pp. 270-1. 3 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 498. 

2 His. MSS. Cora. Rep. IX. 188. 



deen,' and in 1502, there is a resignation into the King's hands, by the said William, of 
all the lands of Fermartyn ; one of the witnesses is Robert Gordon of Fetterletter.' 
By his wife Elizabeth Barclay he had issue : — 

I. George, his successor. 

II. Thomas Meldrum, who gets the lands of Eden.^ 

William Meldrum died about 1508, and was succeeded by his son, 

III. Sir George Meldrum of Fyvie. 

In 1482, had a charter by King James III. under the great seal, in favour of 
George Meldrum (son and apparent heir of William Meldrum of Fivb) and Elizabeth 
Innes his spouse, of the lands of Petkary in the shire of Kincardine,'' and in 1502 there 
is a charter of James IV. to the said George of the lands and barony of Fermartyn on 
the resignation of his father William Meldrum.^ In a letter of bailyeary of date 1508, 
Robert Innes is mentioned- as brother-in-law of George Meldrum.^ This deed is signed 
by George Meldrum *' manu propria," showing that he was an educated man, at a time 
when learning was not held in much esteem. George Meldrum received many charters 
of lands, and in 1505, he received the honour of knighthood. In a deed of warranty 
of that date he is styled "eques auratus." ^ Sir George Meldrum was the only one of 
his family known in a public capacity, and was frequently employed in important 
business. In 1544, he was sent by the Governor of Scotland on an embassy to the 
King of England, then personally engaged in the siege of Boulogne.^ He married 
Elizabeth Innes mentioned in the letter quoted above. He had issue at least three 
sons : — 

I. Alexander, of very infirm health, who for an annuity of 100 merks resigned his 

rights to Fyvie to his next brother.^ 

II. William Meldrum. 

III. George Meldrum. 

Sir George Meldrum was succeeded by his second son, 

IV. William Meldrum of Fyvie. 

He is mentioned in the deed above quoted, when his brother George resigned the 
rights of his birth.'° In the Fyvie charter chest there is a charter and deed of sasine in ■ 
favour of William Meldrum, elder son of Sir George Meldrum (his elder brother was by 
this time dead), of the lands and barony of Fivy, otherwise Fermartyn. Amongst the 
witnesses are Patrick Mowat of Balquholly ; Walter Innes ; Henry Robertson, Presbyter, 
Ouchterless. 21 February, 1544-45." 

1 His. MSS. Com. Rep. I. p. 256. 

2 Fyvie Chaiters. 

3 Id. 

4 Ant. A. and B. II. pp. 328-g. 

5 Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. V. p. 306. 

6 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 333. 

7 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 567. 

8 Leslie's History of Scotland, p. 187. 

9 Ant. A. and 6. II. p. 334. 

10 Id. 

11 Reg. Mag. Sig. 1514-46, No. 3073. 

24 The Tlianage of Fermartyn. 

William Meldrum died before 1577, and was succeeded by his son, 
V. George Meldrum of Fy vie. 

He was served heir to his father William Meldrum of Fivy, i October, 1577, in two parts 
of the barony of Ouchterless, Upon the inquest are James Gordon of Methlick, Patrick 
Mowat, Robert Lumsden of Clovath, Andrew Meldrum of Dumbreck. There is also a 
general retour of him to his grandfather Sir George Meldrum of Fivy, dated 1 7 January, 
f 577-78, of the lands and barony of Fivy.' This George Meldrum is mentioned in a bond 
of caution by Patrick Barclay of Towie for William Barclay of Mylesleggat that George 
Meldrum of Fivy shall be harmless of such persons under the pains and penalties con- 
tained in the King's letters of lawburrows raised thereanent by the said George 
Meldrum of Fivy and others. 

In this bond we find almost the whole fraternity of the Meldrums, viz. : — George 
Meldrum of Fivy, William Meldrum of Montcoffer, Andrew Meldrum of Dumbreck, 
George Meldrum younger thereof, Andrew Meldrum his brother, Alex. Meldrum of 
Bogheids, Robert Meldrum of Cowhill, George Meldrum of Logic Auldtown, and John 
Meldrum of TuUiecarne. Of all these there are no known descendants at the present 

The Meldrums of Fivy were getting into pecuniary and other difficulties, and the 
estate of Fivy is parted with by George Meldrum to his relative Andrew Meldrum of 
Dumbreck, who may be called the last Meldrum of Fivy. 

VI. Andrew Meldrum of Fy vie and Dumbreck. 

In 1592-93, January 31, there is a charter by George Meldrum of Fivy to an honour 
able man Andrew Meldrum of Dumbreck for the redemption and reversion of the lands of 
Tiftie, Muirfoundland, Camaloune, &c.,3 and on Feb. 26 of the same year, Andrew 
Meldrum is infeft in the lands and barony of Fivy. 

In 1593-94, January 31, there is a reversion by Andrew Meldrum of Dumbreck of the 
lands of Fivy in favour of his sons Andrew and John Meldrum. There is evidently still 
much pecuniary difficulty, and the property of Fivy or Fermartyn, after it had been for about 
one hundred and sixty years in the possession of the Meldrums, now passes away from 
them to the family of Seton. It was sold in 1596 to Lady Seton and her son Lord 
Urquhart, afterwards Lord Fyvie and Earl of Dunfermline — to the former in life-rent 
and the latter in fee. The deed of sasine is dated July 26, 1596.'* 

1 Fyvie Charters. 3 Fyvie Charters. 

2 Privy Council Records. 4 Id 

Fyvie. 2$ 


I. The first Lord Urquhart, Lord Fyvie, and Earl of Dunfermline 
was the third son of George, Seventh Lord Seton. 

He was a man of good natural parts, and of considerable erudition. He travelled 
a great deal, and stayed for a considerable time in Italy, where he applied himself to 
the study of law, in which he was a great proficient, and on that account and his other 
accomplishments, became a great favourite of James VI., who in 1585 appointed 
him as an extraordinary Lord of Session, and in 1587 one of the Senators of the 
College of Justice, by the title of Prior of Pluscarden. The lands of that priory had 
been bestowed on his father, Lord Seton, by Queen Mary, in the year 1565. Some- 
time after he was made President of the Court of Session, on the death of William 
Baillie, the President.' 

According to the editor of the Privy Council Records, " Few things are more manly 
than the conduct of Lord F'yvie when Lord President, in the case of Mr. Bruce, a 
Presbyterian clergyman, who had incurred the resentment of the King, who stopped a 
life pension of twenty-four chalder of victual given to him under the seals out of the 
rents of the Abbey of Arbroath. Mr. Bruce went to law with the King, and the King 
openly in Court dared the judges to decide against him. Lord Fyvie, however, courtier 
though he was and Privy Councillor, and also a reputed Roman Catholic, rose as Presi- 
dent of the Court, and informed the King that though His Majesty might remove him 
and the other judges from their offices, yet he had no power to compel their judgments 
while they sat there, and that they must and would do justice against His Majesty 
himself. With this opinion the other judges concurred, much to the chagrin and 
vexation of the King." He also incurred the anger of the King on another occasion. 
On 20 June, 1600, a convention was summoned by the King. He harangued for money 
for his honourable entering on the Crown of England, after the death of Elizabeth. 
Lord President F'yvie, according to Tytler, " led the opposition to the King's demands 
for a large taxation for military levies, maintaining that any attempt to secure the 
succession to England by military demonstrations or conquest was absurd in itself, 
beyond all the calculable resources of a country so poor as Scotland ; and though Mr. 
Edward Bruce, Commendator of Kinloss, argued for the King's view, Lord Fyvie's 
opinion prevailed, supported as it was by the majority of those present, and especially by 
the lesser burghs and barons." - 

In 1597, he was created Lord Fyvie, the peerage being to him and the heirs male of 
his body, whom failing to the heirs male of Sir John Seton of Barnes, his immediate 
elder brother. ^ 

1 Douglas' Peerage, also Register of Privy Seal. 3 Douglas' Peerage, p. 220. 

2 Tytler's History of Scotland 

26 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Upon the birth of Prince Henry in 1593, he was entrusted with his tuition till he 
went to England in 1603. In 1604 (13 December), he was created Lord Chancellor of 
Scotland, and in 1605, he was created Earl of Dunfermline. Both the patents of these 
are in the charter room of Fyvie, the seals being in fine preservation. 

The Earl of Dunfermline acquired a vast estate, had many baronies besides Fyvie, as 
appears by his charters under the Great Seal. He also, it appears, was at one time 
Provost of Edinburgh for nine years. He was admitted a member of the English Privy 
Council in 1609, and in 161 1 he was appointed Keeper of Holyrood Palace. 

He married first, Lilias, second daughter of Patrick, third Lord Drummond, by 
whom he had, at least, four daughters. 

1. Lady Anne, who was married to the 2nd Earl of Kelly. 

2. Lady Isabel, married to John, Earl of Lauderdale, and was mother of John, Duke 

of Lauderdale. 

3. Lady Margaret was married to Colin, Earl of Seaforth. 

4. Lady Sophia was married to David, Lord Balcarras.' 

Lord Dunfermline married secondly, Grizel Leslie, fourth daughter of James, Master 
of Rothes, and by her had a son. 

I. Charles, Lord Fyvie, who died young. 

I. Lady Jean, married to the Earl of Tweeddale. 

His Lordship married thirdly, Margaret Hay, sister of the first Earl of Tweeddale, 
by whom he had issue. 

I. Oharlos, his successor. 

I. Lady Grizel. 

Spottiswoode says of this great man, " that he exercised his place with great modera- 
tion, and to the contentment of all honest men. He was ever inclining to the Roman 
faith, as being educated at Rome in his younger days ; but he was very observant of 
good order^ and studious above all things to observe peace and quietness." "" 

Calderwood, an authority of a somewhat different school, says,^ " that, however, he 
was popishly inclined in religion, yet he condemned many abuses and corruptions in the 
Kirk of Rome, He was a good justiciar, courteous, and humane, both to strangers and 
his own country people ; but was no friend to Bishops." Lord Dunfermline died at his 
seat of Pinkie, near Musselburgh, on the i6th June, 1622, after an illness of fourteen 
days, and was succeeded by his son, 

II. Charles Seton, 2nd Earl of Dunfermline. 

He also did good service to the State. At first he was a very zealous Covenanter, 
in the beginning of Charles I.'s reign, and was one of the Committee of Parliament in 
1640; also one of the Committee of estates in 1646; but he at last returned to his 

1 Douglas' Peerage, p. 220. 3 Calderwood's History. 

2 Spottiswoode's History of the Church of Scotland. 

Fyvie. 27 

allegiance — became a faithful and loyal subject — was trusted by his Majesty, and con- 
tinued steady in the interest of the Royal family ever after. When he was Commissioner 
to the General Assembly, he behaved with great prudence and moderation, and en- 
deavoured all he could to bring the people to a true sense of their duty to the Crown 
After the death of King Charles I., he retired to the country, and lived privately all the 
time of the usurpation. But upon the first appearance of a restoration, none was more 
zealous and forward in expressing their loyalty and contributing their utmost endeavours 
of which King Charles was so sensible that he appointed him one of the Lords of the 
Privy Council immediately after his restoration. On the death of William, Earl 
Marischal, he was appointed Lord Privy Seal in the year 167 1. 

He married Lady Mary Douglas, daughter of William, Earl of Morton, by Lady 
Agnes Keith^ daughter of George, Earl Marischal, by whom he had three sons and one 

I. Alexander, his heir. 

IL Charles, who entered the navy, and was killed in an engagement against the 
Dutch, in 1672. 

III. James, afterwards Earl of Dunfermline. 

I. Lady Henrietta, who was married to William, Earl of Wigton, and was mother of 
John and Charles, Earls of Wigton. She was married secondly to William, 
Earl of Crawford, by whom she had a son and six daughters. 

The Earl died in 1674, and was succeeded by his eldest son. 

III. Alexander Seton, 3rd Earl of Dunfermline. 

He did not enjoy the honours long, and has left little or any trace in history. He 
was succeeded by his younger brother. 

IV. James Seton, 4th and last Earl of Dunfermline. 

He was a man of great honour, loyalty, and probity. He was engaged in several 
memorable expeditions in the service of the States of Holland, where he always behaved 
with remarkable prudence and resolution. Upon his brother's death, he quitted the 
Dutch service, and returned home to Fyvie, where he lived in great splendour and 
magnificence till the revolution in 1688. Being sincerely attached to the interest of 
King James VII., he never forsook nor deserted him in his direst distress. When Lord 
Dundee declared for King James, and began to raise the Highlanders for his service. 
Lord Dunfermline joined him with a troop of horse, and fought at their head at the 
battle of Killiecrankie, where he behaved with the courage and conduct becoming so 
distinguished an officer. His consequence and military renown were such that after the 
death of Dundee, he would have had the command, but for the unwelcome Commission 
produced by Colonel Cannon. When he found that nothing could more effectually be 

28 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

done for the restoration of King James, he followed him to the court of St. Germains in 
France, where he had the honour of the Order of the Thistle conferred upon him by 
that Prince, and died at St. Germains in 1694.' He married Lady Jean Gordon, 
daughter of the Marquis of Huntly, but had no issue. On his death the title of Lord 
Fyvie would have according to Douglas' Peerage devolved upon George Seton of Barnes, 
descended from John Seton the immediate elder brother of the first Lord Fyvie ; but 
probably owing to the forfeiture it never was assumed. The Earl being under 
forfeiture at the time of his death, the whole estates were confiscated, and there was 
a Royal grant of them to Sir Thomas Livingston^ Commander-in-Chief of His Majesty's 
forces in Scotland, given at Kingston, 29th April, 1695.^ This grant was rendered 
inoperative by an adjudication led by Jean Gordon, Countess of Dunfermline, for the 
jointure contained in her marriage contract, and by other adjudications led by the 
^creditors of the Earl.3 In 1695, Aug. 29, there is a charter under the Great Seal in 
favour of Jean Gordon^ Countess of Dunfermline, following on the procuration of 
resignation contained in the contract of marriage, and a precept of sasine for infeft- 
ment in her favour of the lands of Fyvie and of other lands in warrandice.'* In 1699, 
there is a disposition of the lands of Fyvie by the Countess of Dunfermline to George 
Seton of Barnes, of all and haill the lands and barony of Fyvie, tower and fortalice, &c., 
in terms of the adjudication above mentioned. And in 1 701, September 2, there is a disposi- 
tion of them to Alexander, Marquis of Huntly. In 171 1, the said Marquis dispones them to 
George Suttie of Balgone. Again there is a disposition of the lands of Fyvie by George 
Suttie of Balgone to James Suttie.^ In 172 1, the Marquis of Tweeddale appears as 
proprietor of two-third parts of the lands of Fyvie,, and Alexander Duff of Hatton, 
tacksman of the remaining third. They grant a lease in that year to Alexander Dunbar, 
of the plough-lands of Roads of Fyvie with the teind scheaves of the town and lands 
of Tiftie, Milne of Gourdas, &c.* Finally, Fyvie, after many dispositions, 
comes about 1726 into the possession of William, 2nd Earl of Aberdeen. 
In the deed of entail it is narrated that the lands pertained to the Earls of Dunfermline, 
then to the deceased " Dominum Suttie de Balgone," and to William Fall, merchant 
in Dunbar, and by them disponed, with the consent of George Seton of Barnes, to 
William, Earl of Aberdeen, and his heirs and assignees.'' 

Thus after the proscription of the last Earl of DunfermUne, Fyvie finds a master 
worthy of the grand old place. 

I. The Right Hon. William, 2nd Earl of Aberdeen, 

was thrice married (see Article Haddo). His third wife was Lady Anne Gordon, 
daughter of Alexander, Duke of Gordon, who stipulated before the marriage, that if his 
daughter should have a son, Fyvie should be settled upon him. They had issue : — 

1 Douglas' Peerage Folio, p. 220. 5 Fyvie Charters. 

2 Fyvie Charters. 6 Tack in the Charter Chest of Monkshill. 

3 Id. 7 Deed of Entail in Fyvie Charter Room. 

4 Id. 

Fyvie. . 29 

I. William, a general officer, who on his father's death inherited Fyvie. 

II. Cosmo, a colonel in the army, who had a son William, whose issue is extinct 

III. Alexander, whose descendants afterward succeeded to Fyvie. He was born in 
1739, was appointed in 1788 a Lord of Session under the title of Lord 
Rockville. He married, July 26, 1769, Anne, daughter of William Duff of 
Crombie, and widow of William, Earl of Dumfries and Stair, and died 13 March, 
1793, leaving issue : — 

I. Charles, afterwards of Fyvie. 

II. William, born 8 April, 1772, who inherited a baronetcy on the death of 

his uncle, Sir James Duff, and assumed in consequence the additional 
name of Duff. This Sir James Duff filled for a series of years the 
office of British Consul at Cadiz, and was created a baronet, 12 
November, 1813, with remainder to his nephew, the said William 
Gordon, Sir William Duff Gordon married, 1810, Caroline, daughter 
of Sir George Cornewall, Bart, of Moccas Court, Herefordshire, by 
whom he had issue : — 

Alexander Cornewall, who succeeded his father in the baronetcy in 

1823, and who married Lucy, . only child of John Austin, 

Esq., and has issue : — 

I. Maurice, born February, 1849, now Sir Maurice 
Duff Gordon, and became of Fyvie, of whom 
I. Janet married Alexander Ross, Esq., Florence. 

III. Alexander, Lieut-Col. 82nd Regt., killed at Talavera. 

William, 2nd Earl of Aberdeen, died 1745, and in compliance with his marriage 
contract with the Duke of Gordon's daughter left Fyvie to his eldest son by said 

II. Hon. William Gordon, 2nd of Fyvie. 

He was served heir of provision to his father William, Earl of Aberdeen, 20 April, 


He was a General in the army and Equery to George III. He improved the 
ancient Castle of Fyvie, and added a tower, now known as the Gordon tower. 

He married Miss Isobel Black, and had issue by her one son, by whom he was 

III. William Gordon, 3rd of Fyvie. 

He was a good scholar and antiquary, and to him in a great measure is owing the 

I Decen. Ret. 1777. 

30 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

very learned and complete statistical account of the parish of Fyvie. He improved the 
castle, and added much to the valuable contents of the library. This very highly 
respected gentleman died in 1847, and was succeeded by his cousin. 

IV. Charles GordoD, 4th of Fyvie. 

He was, as above narrated, the eldest son of Alexander, Lord Rockville, third son of 
William, 2nd Earl of Aberdeen.- He married, in 1806, Elizabeth, widow of William 
Glutton, Esq., and had issue : — 

I. Wilham Cosmo Gordon, his successor. 

II. Alexander, who succeeded his brother William. 

III. Gharles William, sometime M.P. for Berwick. He predeceased his brothers. 
Mr. Gharles Gordon died February 18, 1851, and was succeeded by his eldest son. 

V. William Cosmo Gordon, 5th of Fyvie. 

He was a Gaptain of the Artillery of the H. E. I. G. S. He was for sometime on 
the staff of his relative, Major-General Sir John Dalrymple, who commanded at Madras ; 
but retired from the service in 1847. He was afterwards Lieutenant-Golonel of the 
Aberdeen Artillery Volunteer Gorps. He married Mary Grace, daughter of Sir Robert 
Abercromby, Bart, of Birkenbog. He built and endowed a Gottage Hospital, which 
has proved a great boon to the parish of Fyvie, and also built and endowed a Ghapel 
of Ease at the Gross of Jackston in the south-western district of the parish. He died 
universally respected and beloved 8 December, 1879, and was succeeded by his brother. 

VI. Alexander Henry Gordon, 6th of Fyvie. 

He married Gatherine Jane Bradby, third daughter of Vice-Admiral Peter John 
Douglas. Previous to his accession to Fyvie, he resided on his estate of Rockville in 
Hampshire. Mr. Gordon also made great improvements on the castle, the whole of 
which he re-roofed. He also provided the means for the erection of a hall in connection 
with the Parish Ghurch, which magnificent hall was erected by his widow. He 
died very suddenly in Aberdeen, March 5, 1884, and was succeeded in the estate of 
Fyvie, by his cousin. 

VII. Sir Maurice Duff Gordon, Bart., 7th of Fyvie. 

He was the son, as above-mentioned, of Sir Alexander Gornewall Gordon, Bart, 
grandson of Sir William Duff Gordon, Bart, and great great-grandson of William, 
2nd Earl of Aberdeen. 

Falling into pecuniary difficulties he sold the estate of Fyvie to Alexander John Forbes 
Leith, son of Rear-Admiral John James Leith, by Margaret Forbes, daughter and heiress 



of Alexander Forbes of Blackford. Thus Fyvie, after being in possession of the 
Gordons for 163 years, passes away again to a new lord and master, a member of the 
ancient family of Leith, and it is to be hoped he will also prove a worthy proprietor of 
the grand old castle. The following is a deduction of the family of Leith. 

The surname of Leith is of great antiquity in Scotland. According to Douglas, the 
Leiths had considerable possessions in lands in the county of Midlothian in early times. 
The barony of Restalrig and several others in the territory of Leith are said to have 
belonged to them. From this last place it is believed they assumed the surname. At 
what time they settled in the north cannot be precisely said. The immediate ancestor of 
his family was William Leith of Barnes. He was a very accomplished gentleman, 
and a Burgess of Aberdeen, which he represented in Parliament. He was for some time 
Deputy-Chamberlain and Steward of the Household of Queen Joan. He is first 
mentioned in a grant to the Altar of St. Lawrence and St. Ninian, in the church of 
St. Nicholas, Aberdeen. He is one of the witnesses, and is designated '* William 
Leythe, burgess of Aberdeen." The date is 1342.' 

In 135 1, in the chartulary of St. Nicholas (New Spalding Club), we find that an 
honourable man William Leythe presented to St. Nicholas Church two bells of great 
value. The name of the larger bell was Lawrence (which was destroyed in 1874 when 
the church was burned), the name of the smaller one Maria.^ He is said to have killed 
Cattenach, a bailiff of the town, whose cairn was at the Barkmilne, and for atonement he 
gave the bells and Justice Mills to the town.^ He is also to be found in 1352, 1355, 
1360, giving various gifts to and adding to the building of the church of St. Nicholas.* 
In 1539, he received a charter from the Earl of Mar of the lands of Rothneyk, Hare- 
boggs, Blakboggs, and the pertinents ;5 also in 1363, he received by charter from John 
de Softelaw and Emma Browne his spouse, two crofts within the burgh of Aberdeen.* 
Also in 1369, he obtained the lands of Drumrossy from the Earl of Mar, among the 
witnesses to the charter are Philip de Dumbreck, William de Meldrum, and Walter 
Byseth.7 He had also the lands of Ruthrieston near the Dee given him by David IL, 
on the forfeiture of Duncan Chapman.^ According to Douglas' Baronage, he married a 
daughter of the 12th Earl of Mar. Her Christian name Christiane is given in the notice 
of their commemoration day — " Nonis Augusti obitus Willelmi de Lethe et Christiane 
suee sponse commemoracio qui obiit 1380." ' 

They had issue at least two sons. 

I. Laurence, of w hom afterwards. 

II. John, said to be a son of William de Lethe. He had English safe conducts in 

1362-3, was a Burgess of Aberdeen, and had a Crown charter of Ruthrieston 

1 St. Nicholas Chartulary, p. 12. 

2 Id., p. 15. 

3 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 208. 

4 St. Nicholas Chartulary, p. 16, &c. 

5 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 716. 

6 Reg. Ep. Aber. II. p. 283. 

7 Ant. A. and B. IV. pp. 220-2. 

8 Id., I. p. 232. Rob. Index, p. 52. 

9 Reg. Ep. Aber. II. p. 203. 

32 The Thanage of Fermattyn. 

near Aberdeen. John de Lethe, armiger and scutifer, has repeatedly safe con- 
ducts in 1396-1423. In 1406, he was a Commissioner to renew the alliance 
with France. And in 141 2, he was sent to the Court of England, iilong with 
Sir Walter Stewart of Ryalston, by the Duke of Albany as ambassador.' 
William de Lethe, as above mentioned, died 1380, and was succeeded by his son, 

II. Laurence Leith of Barnes. 

He is said by Douglas to have given the bell to St. Nicholas church, but, as seen 
above, this was not the case."" In 1388, Adam, Bishop of Aberdeen, with the unani- 
mous consent of the Chapter, grants to Laurence Lethe, son and heir of the late William 
1-ethe, for his life-time, the whole lands of Capronston, with their pertinents.^ In 1398, 
in a charter of James Lindsay regarding the lands of Mikill Gurdeness (Gourdas) and 
Parkhill, Laurence de Lethe is a witness.'' In 1398, Oct. 13 — Laurence de Lethe 
elected a Councillor of the Burgh of Aberdeen.^ In 1407, in a quarrel between Walter 
de Lindsay and Alexander de Forbes, Laurence de Lethe is a security for Lord Walter.*^ 
In 141 o, he is a witness to a charter of Andrew Vaus, burgess, Aberdeen, to John Zoule, 
and in 1424,^ ha is also a witness to a charter of Alan de Futhes, Master of Arts, 
Canon of Moray, of a piece of land called the Newlands. The next, a son, is given by 
Douglas in his baronage® on the authority of the Laurus Leslieana. 

III. Norman Leith of Barnes. 

He married Elizabeth, daughter of William Leslie, fourth Baron of Balquhain, by 
whom he had three sons ^ : — 

I. Henry, his heir. 

II. Gilbert. 

III. John, progenitor of the Leiths of Overhall. 
He was succeeded by his eldest son : — 

IV. Henry Leith of Barnes. 

^ In 1430, Henry Leith (not then designated ^of Barnes) is on the jury at the inquisi- 
tion of David de Bosville.'" Henry Leith of Barnes, May 4, 1440, grants for the safety 
of his own soul and that of his wife Mariotte Stewart, certain annual returns to the Altar 
of St. Lawrence and St. Ninian in the church of St. Nicholas." In 1441, he gives two 
merks from the Galcroft, lying on the northern side of the Castlehill ; also an annual 
return from certain burgage lands, in perpetual charity to God and the Blessed Virgin 

1 Stod. Arms II. p. 350. 7 Reg. Ep. Aber. II. p. 294. 

2 Douglas' Baronage, p. 225. 8 Laurus Leslieana, p. 56. 

3 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 184. 9 Douglas" Baronage, fol. 224. 

4 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 500. 10 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 334. 

5 Burgh Rec. I. p. 374. 11 St. Nicholas Chartulary, p. 186. 

6 Id., I. p. 386. 

Fyvie. 33 

Mary, for ane chaplain to celebrate at the Altar of St Lawrence for the safety of his 
soul, and that of William de Cadiou. He also in the same year makes other donations,' 
He married Mariotte Stewart, as mentioned above, and had issue a son William. He 
died before 1469, as in that year his son, probably, is found Laird of Barnes. 

V. William Leith of Barnes. 

He is mentioned in a charter in the Register of the Diocese of Aberdeen, of date 
1469.' He is also mentioned by Stodart in the second volume of his Scottish Arms.^ In 
1479, there is a precept to William Lethe of Barnes and Alexander Abercromby, Baillies 
of the Earl of Mar, to grant infeftment on the lands of Johnstown.^ In 1478, there is a 
sasine on the lands of Auchinschogyl, of which William Leith of Barnes is a witness, "^ 
The next to be found, probably a son, is 

VI. Henry Leith of Barnes. 

In 1490, there is a charter of confirmation of King James IV. by David Weymss of 
Auchlevin, &c., to Henry Leith of Barnes, of half of the lands of Auchlevin, &c.5 

Henry Leith of Barnes is dead by 1493. In a charter of that date by Alexander 
Johnston of that ilk, there is this clause, " to his beloved William Lethe, second son of 
the late Henry Leith of Barnes, of the lands of Badycj^iss, lying in the tenandry of 
Kinbruin, whom failing, to Patrick Leith his brother german, and his heirs, &c."*^ 

Henrj' Leith of Barnes married Elizabeth Gordon. She is mentioned in a deed 
regarding the redemption of " the lands of Pettodry and the third part of the lands of 
Petskurry, a.d. 1505." ^ They had the following issue : — 

I. George, his successor. • 

II. William, tutor of his nephew John. He had a charter along with his brother 

Patrick, in 1493, as above narrated, of the half of Badycaiss.^ 

III. Patrick. 

Henry Leith of Barnes was succeeded by his son. 

VII. George Leith of Barnes. 

In 1505, he is mentioned as being present at the inquest of John, Lord Glammis ; 
also in a deed of Lord Erskine, &c., he is a witness. He married, and had issue : — 

I. John Leith, his successor. 

II. William, who succeeded his brother John. 

I. Elizabeth, married (according to Douglas) to John Forbes of Towie, who had a 
crown charter of a part of Barnes in 1550. 

I St. Nicholas Chartulary, p. i86. 5 Ant. A. and B. III., p. 398, also, 

Reg. Mag. Sig. Lib. XII. No. 222. 

2 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 289. Stod. . 6 Id., III. p. 552. 

Vol. II. p. 350. 7 Id., IV. p. 737. 

3 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 737. 8 Id., III. p. 552. 

4 Id., II. p. 353. 

34 The Thanage of Femiartyn. 

2. Janet, married to Alexander Seton of Meldrum, and secondly, to Alexander 
Gordon of Abergeldie. 

George Leith of Barnes died before 1506, and according to Douglas and the 
Earldom of the Garioch, he left no male issue ; but this is not the case. He was suc- 
ceeded by his eldest son. 

VIII. John Leith of Barnes. 

He is retoured as nearest heir to his father, George Leith of Barnes, in the lands of 
Ruthrieston, with the fishings on the Dee, and the lands of Newlands, alias Ecclesfield, 
with other pertinents, of date 1506. He did not live long, and was succeeded by his 

IX. Wilham Leith of Barnes. 

He was served heir to his brother John Leith on May 2, 1508, but did not survive 
him above a year.'' 

He was succeeded by his uncle. 

X. William Leith of Edingarroch and Barnes. 

He was found by a jury, October 2, 1509, to be heir to the foresaid William, his 
nephew.3 He acquired, in 1499, the lands of Edingarroch from George Leslie of that 
ilk, and got a charter, the words of which are quoted by Douglas, " novisitis me vendi- 
disse dilecto meo Willielmo Leith filio secundo genito quondam Henrici Leith de 
Barnes, omnes et singulas terras meae dimidietatis occidentalis villae de Edin- 
garroch, January 31, 1499."" He married a daughter of John Gordon of Strathdon, by 
whom he had issue, at least, two sons : — 

I. Patrick, his heir. 

II. William, who succeeded his brother. 

William Leith of Barnes, as lie often resided at Lickliehead, being part of the estate 
of Edingarroch, was sometimes designated by both these titles. He died 15 — 

and was succeeded by his son. (A great grandson, John, is served heir to him in 
1588 in Tennant's Croft. See infra No. XIII.) 

XI. Patrick Leith of Edingarroch. 

In March 10, 15 15, he receives Royal confirmation of a charter of the eastern half 
of the lands of Edingarroch, sold to him by Alex. Leslie of that ilk.^ He died without 
issue, and was succeeded by his brother. 

XII. William Leith of Lickliehead and Edingarroch. 

He is mentioned in a retour, subsequently to be quoted, in No. XI 1 1. He lived to 

1 Ant, A. and B. III. p. 192. 4 Douglas baronage, p. 225. 

2 Id. 5 Reg. Mag. Sig. No. 1054 (i5i3-43-) 

3 Id 

Fyvie. 35 

a great age. On May 22, 1588, there is Royal confirmation of a charter in which 
William Leith of Lickliehead "ad feudifirmam dimisit " to John Leith, the elder son of 
Alexander Leith of Montgerrie and his heirs, his lands of Ardoync, &c.' 
He married, and had issue, at least, three sons. 

I. Patrick, his heir. 

II. William. 

III. Adam Leith. These two, William and Adam, are mentioned as brothers of 
Patrick Leith of Lickliehead in a minute of the Privy Council, of date March, 

William Leith died circa 1598, and was succeeded by his son, who is served heir to 
him in the year 1598. See infra No. XIII. 

XIII. Patrick Leith of Lickliehead. 

He was so denominated in his father's lifetime, and acquired the lands of the Kirktown 
of Raync from his brother-in-law, John Leslie of Balquhain, upon whose resignation he 
got a charter of them from the Archdeacon of Aberdeen in the following terms, as 
given by Douglas ; but much abridged, evidently, as given by Mr. Cosmo Innes, in the 
Register of the Diocese of Aberdeen : — 

" Patricio Leith de Lickliehead in vitali redditu et Jobanni Leith ejus secundo filio, in 
feodo et hereditate, et heredibus masculis de corpore dicti Johannis legitime procre- 
andis, quibus deficientibus Laurentio Leith filio dicti Partricii et hoeredibus masculis, &c., 
quibus deficientibus Henrico Leith etiam filio dicti Patricii." It is dated 13 August, 


He is served heir to his father, William Leith of Lickliehead, in the fourth part of 
Auchlevin, with the milne, four ox-gang of the lands of Ardoyne and Buchanstone, an 
ox gang of the lands of Harlaw in the Lordship of the Garioch, October 3, 1598.* 

He mairied Jean, second daughter of William Leslie, seventh Baron of Balquhain, 
by whom he had issue : — 

Patrick, his heir. 

II. John, designed of Edingarroch, served heir to his great grandfather (proavo), 

William Leith of Edingarroch, June 30, 158S (see No. X), in crofto vocato, 
" 'Pennant's Croft," in Auld Leslie, infra regalitate de Garioch. ^ He had a 
daughter Isabella, who was served heir to her father in 1613.*^ 

III. Laurence Leith of Kirktown of Rayne, who carried on the line of the family. 

IV. Henry Leith. In a Royal Charter of Confirmation,^ Laurence Leith of the Kirk- 
town of Rayne, and Henry Leith of Ryehill, his brother- german, obtain the 
Church lands called the Kirktown of Rayne with the Alehouse Croft, &:c., 

1 Reg. Mag. Sig. (1580-93) No. 1572. 5 Ret. Spec. Aber. No. 151. 

2 Priv. Council Register, VIII. p. 125. 6 Id, No. 40. 

3 Doug. Baronage, folio p. 225, Reg. Ep. Aber. Vol I. p. 455. 7 Reg. Mag. Sig. (1580-93), No. T265. 

4 Ret. Spec. Aber., No. 574. 

36 TJie Tha7iage of Fermattyn. 

granted them by Mr. James Erskine, Archdeacon of Aberdeen. Date 
2 February, 1578. 
Patrick Leith, like his father, died a very old man, and was succeeded in 1625 by 
his son. 

XIV. Patrick Leith of Lickliehead. 

He was served heir to his father, Patrick Leith of Licklyhead, &c., June i, 1625, in 
the fourth part of the shady part of the lands of Auchlevin with the mill, ' and on June 
9, 1620, he was served heir male of William Leith of Lickliehead, his grandfather (No. 
XII.) in the lands of Auchnagathill, the lands of Carnebog, Carnemoss, in the barony of 
Keig and regality of St. Andrews, six bovates of the lands of Auchlevin, and the 
pendicle called Lickliehead, the ecclesiastical lands of Premnay, &c.'' He is said, ac- 
cording to Douglas, to have sold the lands of Lickliehead and Edingarroch to John 
Forbes of Leslie. He, dying soon afterwards, was succeeded by his next surviving 

XV. Laurence Leith of Kirktown of Rayne. 

He resided at Buchanstone of Gartly, which was wadset to him by the Marquis of 
Huntly. He got a charter in 1551 (as above quoted in No. XHL) of the Kirklands, 
called the " Kirktown of Rayne." He married first Agnes, daughter of Alexander Leslie 
of Wardes, but by her had no issue. He married secondly, Bessie, daughter of George 
Gordon of Cocklaraquy, by whom he had a son. 

I. John, his heir. 

Lawrence Leith of Kirktown of Rayne and of the wadset of Bucharne, died, and was 
succeeded by his son. 

XVI. John Leith of the Kirktown of Rayne, &c. 

He sold the Kirktown of Rayne, and bought the lands of New Leslie, Peill, Syde, 
and Arnbog, &c., which were afterwards called Leith-hall. He married a daughter of 
Arthur Forbes, Esq., and granddaughter of Alexander Lord Forbes of Pitsligo, and had 
issue, two sons. 

I. James, his heir. 

II. Alexander Leith, progenitor of the Leiths of Bucharne, Leiths of Blair, Leiths 

of Whiteriggs in the Mearns, «&:c. 
John Leith of Bucharne and New Leslie died 16 , and was succeeded by his son. 

XVII. James Leith of Leith-hall. 

He built the house of Leith-hall upon his lands of Peill, and his descendants were 
designated of Leith-hall. He married Margaret, daughter of Alexander Strachan of 
Glenkindy, by whom he had three sons and two daughters : — 

I Ret. Spec. Aber., No. 19 2 Ret. Spec. Aber., No. 167. 

Fyvie. 37 

I. John, his heir. 

II. Alexander, ancestor of the Leiths of Freefield and Glenkindy. 

III. William. 

1. Margaret married to Gordon of Baldornie. 

2. Jean, married to John Grant of Tomavillion. 
He was succeeded by his eldest son. 

XVIII. John Leith of Leith-hall. 

He acquired the whole estate of Leslie in the Garioch, and regained possession of 
the lands of Edingarroch, the ancient patrimonial inheritance of his family. He married 
Janet Ogilvie, daughter of George, second Lord Banff, by Agnes Falconer, his wife, 
daughter of Alexander, first Lord Halkerton, and had issue : — 

I. John, his successor. 

II. Patrick. 

III. George of Blackball. 

IV. Lawrence. 

V. Antony. 

I. Elizabeth, married to Richard Gordon of Craigmile. 
Mr John Leith died 1727, and was succeeded by his son. 

XIX. John Leith of Leith-Hall. 

He was served heir general to his father, February i, 1728.* He married Mary, 
daughter of Charles Hay, Esq. of Rannes, by whom he had issue : — 
I John, his successor. 

I. Janet, married to James Gordon of Ardmeallie. 
John Leith died r736, and was succeeded by his son. 

XX. John Leith of Leith-hall. 

John Leith of Leith-hall acquired the lands of Lair and Ardlair. He married 
Harriet, daughter of Alexander Stewart of Auchlunkart, and had issue, three sons : — 

I. John, his heir. 

II. Alexander, who succeeded his brother, born 1758. 

III. Sir James Leith, a Lieutenant-General in the army, G.C.B., K.T.S., Grand 
Cordon of the Order of Merit of France, Governor of Barbadoes, and Com- 
mander of the forces in the Windward and Leeward Islands. Sir James Leith 
died October 16, 18 16. 

John Leith died 1763, and was succeeded by his son. 

I Decen. Rets., 1728. 

38 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

XXI. John Leith of Leith-hall. 

He was served heir to his father, John Leith, heir male of line and provision general, 
30 November, 1764. He died in September or October, 1788, and was succeeded by 
his brother.' 

XXII. Alexander Leith of Leith-hall. 

He was a General in the 73rd Regiment, He was served heir male of line and 
provision general to his brother in Leith-hall, Edingarroch, Old and New Flanders, 18 
March, 1768 ; to his mother, Harriet Stewart of Auchlunkart, 13 April, 1782; to his grand- 
uncle Andrew Hay of Rannes, heir of Tailzie and provision general, 20 January, 1790 ; 
also to William Gordon of Sheilagreen, who died 5 May, 1773, heir of provison special in 
Seggieden and Edderlich, in the parishes of Premnay and Kinnethmont, 4 April, 1792 ; 
also to his grandmother, Elizabeth Stewart, Auchlunkart, 6 August, 1793.'' 

He married in 1784 Mary, daughter of Charles Forbes, Esq. The Forbeses of Bal- 
logie were descended from William Forbes of Tolquhon, who married E. Gordon, 
daughter of Gordon of Lesmoir. From them was descended John Forbes of Pitna- 
caddel, who married Christina Johnstone, daughter to the laird of Caskieben, and had, 
amongst other issue, Alexander Forbes of Ballogie. A descendant of this Alexander 
sold Ballogie to the Grants, who called it Grantfield. The Grants sold it to the Mans- 
fields, who sold it to Gordon of Cluny. Its name is now Midmar Castle. A de- 
scendant of Forbes of Ballogie, about 1760, purchased the estate of Tilliesnaught, in the 
parish of Birse, and " in memoriam " altered the name to Ballogie. He bequeathed it 
to his nieces, Christian, Mary, and Elizabeth Forbes, daughters of his brother Charles. 
Mary, as mentioned above, becarne the wife of Alexander Leith of Leith-hall. They 
had issue : — 

I. Andrew, his heir. 

XL John James, Rear Admiral R.N., ot whom afterwards. 

1. Harriet Christian, married to Sir Harry Niven Lumsden, Bart., died 1830. 

2. Mary, married to Major Mitchell of Ashgrove. 

3. Elizabeth, married to Alexander Forbes, Esq. of Blackford, d. s. p. 

4. Margaret, died unmarried. 

General Leith assumed the name of Hay on succeeding to Rannes on the death of 
his granduncle, Andrew Hay of Rannes, in 1790. He died in May, 1838, and was 
succeeded by his eldest son. 

XXIII. Sir Andrew Leith-Hay of Rannes and Leith-hall. 

Born 17 February, 1785. K.H., Knight Commander of Charles III. of Spain, and 
Member of the Legion of Honour, J.P,, D.L., Lieutenant-Colonel in the army, M.P. 

I Douglas Baronage, p. 225. a Decen. Ret. i768-i78a, 1790, 1793. 

Fyvie. 39 

for the Elgin District of Rurghs, 1833-38 and 1841-47, Clerk of Ordnance 1834-38, 
Governor of Bermuda 1838-4 r, served through the Peninsular War, of which he wrotea 
history, was knighted 1834, married 1816 Mary Margaret, daughter of William Clark, 
Esq. of Buckland House, Devonshire, and by her, who died 1859, had, among others, 
issue : — 

Alexander Sebastian, now of Leith-hall. 

Sir Andrew Leith-Hay died 13 October, 1862. 

We now come to 

XXIV. John James Leith, Rear- Admiral, R.N. 

Second son of Alexander Leith of Leith-hall (XXII). He married Margaret 
Forbes, daughter of Alexander Forbes, Esq. of Blackford, and died October, 1854, 
leaving issue : — 

I. Alexander John Forbes Leith of Fyvie. 

II. Albert Howe. 

1. Margaret Mary married Patrick Stirling, Esq. of Kippendavie, and has issue. 

2. Elizabeth Alexandrina married Major Duncan Gordon of 92nd Highlanders. 

Issue — two sons and one daughter. 
Their eldest son, Alexander John Forbes Leith, purchased in 1889 the estate and 
castle of Fyvie, owned anciently by his ancestor, Sir Henry Preston of Fermartyn. He 
married in 187 1 Mary Louise January (of St. Louis, U.S.) Issue : — 

I. Percy Forbes. 

I. Ethel Louise married, 1890, Captain Charles Rosdew Burn, A.D.C. to H.R.H. 
the Duke of Connaught. 


The Church of Fyvie was dedicated to St. Peter, and prior to the Reformation belonged 
to the Abbey of St. Thomas, Arbroath. 

In 1 1 78, Matthew, Bishop of Aberdeen, gave to God and the Church of St. Thomas 
the Martyr, Arbroath, and to the monks serving God there, the Churches of Fyvy, 
Tarves, with the Chapel of Fuchul, &c.' This grant was confirmed by King William 
the Lion, 1189-96, and at subsequent periods by John, Bishop of Aberdeen; Adam, 
Bishop of Aberdeen ; and by Gilbert ; also by the Dean and Chapter. "^ 

Of the ministers of Fyvie before the Reformation the following are to be found : — 
In 1178, 1 199, and 1207, Walter, parson of Fyvy, is mentioned as a witness.^ 

The vicarage of Fyvy was taxed, in 1250, at 33 merks, and the vicar's provision was 
the altarage (offerings), with the lands of Ardingross ■* (Ardincross ?), the great tithes of 
the parish, with five merks from the lesser tithes of wool and lambs, yearly, were 
reserved to the Abbot and Convent of St. Thomas', Arbroath. 

We find that Ferchard, vicar of Fyvy in 1285, resigned the cure of Fyvy, and of 
him this is all the record, and for a long time afterwards there is no public mention of 
any that held the vicarage of Fyvy.^ 

In 1427, fully a century and a half after the last date. Sir John Crabbe is vicar of 
Fyvy, and at his death a new arrangement is made with the vicarage of St. Peter. In 
that year, Henry of Lychton, Bishop of Aberdeen, at the instance of the monks of 
Arbroath, annexes the vicarage of the Church of St. Peter's, Fyvy (then vacant by the 
decease of John Crabbe), to the neighbouring Priory of Fyvy, under condition that the 
brethren should find the perpetual vicar, by whom the cure of souls was to be served, in 
ten merks yearly, and a sufficient manse.'^ The presentation was vested in the Prior, 
the right of institution in the Bishop. 

Sir John Thome was vicar of Fyvy in 147 1, and the following interesting event is 
recorded of him. "August 18, 147 1. Sir John Thom, vicar of Fyvy, proclaimed the 
banns of marriage between a noble Lord, George, Lord Huntly, and Elizabeth Hay, 
daughter of the late William, Earl of Erroll." That marriage was not consummated 
until after May, 1476 ; the delay arising, as Sheriff Riddell suggests, from doubts 
regarding the legality of the previous divorce, and from the survival of the Princess 
Annabella down to that time.^ 

1 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 120 5 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 194. 

2 Id., pp. T20, 121. 6 Id. II. p. 327. 

3 Id., p. 327. 7 Spal. C. Mis. IV. p. xxx. 

4 Id. ,p. 327. 

Fyvie. 41 

Before 1489, Thomas Cranno held the cure of souls of Fyvy. He is buried in the 
churchyard of Fyvie, and has the inscription over him — " Pray for the soul of Thomas 
Cranno who lies here." He was succeeded by Sir Alexander Lychton.' 

On the 23rd May, 1489, Sir Alexander Lychton, a priest in the diocese of Aberdeen, 
is presented to the twelve-merk vicarage of Fyvy, vacated by the death of Thomas 
Cranno or W^atson.' 

In 1499, Thomas Strade was vicar of Fyvy ; nothing more is known of him." He 
was succeeded by Sir Andrew Panter, who, on his death in 1527, was succeeded by ^ 

Sir William Blantyr, who died in 1538, and was succeeded by Sir John Arnot, 
priest He probably survived to the Reformation, which introduced an entirely new 
order of things at Fyvy, as well as at other parishes.^ The following are after the 
Reformation ministers of Fyvie. 

In 1567, Alexander Ogilby was minister of Tarves, Methlic, Ellon, and Fyvie — 
stipend 620 merks.-* 

William Chalmers and Alex. Barroun were Reidars in 1570, or about that date. 

Thomas Gordon was minister of Fyvie in 1574. He was translated from Rescobie, 
having Methlic and Tarves also in charge, with ^^8 6s. 8d. of stipend. 

The next to be found is in 1578, Steven Mason, who was translated from Bethelnie, 
continued in 1588. 

In 1593, William was minister; but not even his surname is known. The 

next was 

Hieromie Innes, the second son of John Innes of Edingight,^ was appointed 
about 1594. He had the following family — Margaret, Janet, Janes, and James 
Innes. In 1634, while still minister of Fyvie, he raised a process against the Titulars 
and Tacksmen of Fyvie for the valuation of the Teinds of Fyvie.^ He was succeeded 
in 1635 by George Scharpe, A.M., who graduated at the University of St. Andrews in 
1 61 5, and was appointed minister of Fyvie by Charles I. He was member of the 
Assemblies, 1 638-1 639, and of the Commission 1647. Scharpe petitioned Parliament 
for stipend due by George Gordon of Gight, and for the plundering of his goods by 
malignants, and was ordered, 21st June, 1644, "to be refundit of the goods 
plundered, and payed the stipends out of the rents of the malignants who shall be 
known to have plundered his goods, or to be lyable, and addebted in payment of the 
stipends unprejudgit be any decreet, forefaulture, or other cause." He was recom- 
mended by the General Assembly, 27 August, 1647, to the Committee of 
Estates, for reparation of his losses amounting to eleven years' stipend, for which an 
Act of Parliament was immediately passed. He married, 7 February, 1636, Elizabeth 

Alexander Abercrombie was admitted before 15 July, 1649, and was translated 
to Kirk-Oswald before 5 June, 1667. 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 496. 4 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 223. 

a Id. I. p. 496. S Edingight Papers. 

3 Id. III. p. 549. 6 Fyvie Papers in Charter Room. 

42 The TJianage of Fermartyn. 

In 1 66 , William Jaffray, younger, was probably translated to Fyvie from King- 
Edward — admitted before 27 March, 1664.' He was succeeded by 

George Setone, A.M., who was translated in 1672 from Broughton, continued to 
March 29, 1683. Mary Shaw, his widow, died in August, 1706.' He was sccceeded by 

George Dalgarno, who was admitted 8 March, 1685 ; subscribed twenty merks to 
the rebuilding of King's College, 16 June, 1688. He married Sarah Robertson, and 
had two sons and four daughters — James, Thomas, Jean, Mary, Elizabeth, and Sarah.- 
He was succeeded by 

Robert Hay, who was presented to Fyvie by Susan, Marchioness of Tweeddale, 
and John Hay of Hopes, 18 December, 1717 ; ordained ist May; thereafter deposed 
July, 1719, for fornication. He was succeeded by ^ 

Thomas Scott, who had a presentation to the Church of Fyvie by Susan, 
Marchioness of Tweeddale, and John Hay of Hopes, in September, 1 7 1 9. He died 
3 July, 1748, in the 28th year of his ministry. He had two sons and two daughters 
— John, Thomas, Anne, and Elizabeth. He was succeeded by ^ 

William Moir, a son of George Moir, minister of Kintore, and presented by the 
tutors of Hon. William Gordon of Fyvie in November, 1748. He died 19 March, 
1794, in his 68th year, and 45th of his ministry. He married 22 October, 1776, 
Helen Constable, who died in Aberdeen 26 February, 181 7, aged 67, and had a son 
George. He was succeeded by 

John Falconer, who received a presentation in 1794 from General Hon. William 
Gordon. He got a new church built in 1808, and died 19 December, 1828, 
in the 74th year of his age and 35th of his ministry. He married, 23 April, 1807, 
Margaret, youngest daughter of William Tough, Esq. She had an only child, Elizabeth 
Jane. She subsequently married Rev. James Cruickshank, minister of Turriff, after- 
wards of Fyvie. 5 Mr. Falconer was succeeded by 

John Manson, M.A., son of Alexander Manson, merchant, Oldmeldrum. (M.A. 
Marischal College, 1822.) Having joined the secession of the Free Church, he was 
declared no longer a minister of the Church of Scotland, 20 June, 1843. He published 
the " New Statistical Account " of the parish, and some lectures. He married 
September 3, 1842, and had issue several children. 

Mr. Manson became pastor of the Free Church of Fyvie near Woodhead — a large 
body of parishioners adhering to him. He was succeeded by 

James Cruickshank, D.D., who was translated from Turriff in 1843 O" the presenta- 
tion of William Gordon, Esq. of Fyvie. He was a much respected clergyman, and died 
September i, 1858. He was succeeded by 

John Marshall Lang, D.D., son of Rev. Mr. Lang, of Glassford, Lanarkshire. He 

1 New Stat. Acct. 4 New Stat. Acct. and Monkshill Papers. 

2 Poll. Book, New Stat. Acct., King's Coll. Fasti. 5 Scott's Fasti. VI. 658, Tombstone and New 

3 New Stat. Acct. and Monkshill Papers. Stat. Acct. 

Fyvie. 43 

was educated at the High School, Glasgow, and at the University of Glasgow, which 
conferred on him, in 1873, the Degree of D.D. 

In 1872, he was translated to the Barony parish of Glasgow, and in 1893 was elected 
Moderator of the General Assembly. He was succeeded by his brother 

Gavin Lang, who was presented to the Church of Fyvie by William Cosmo Gordon, 
Esq. of Fyvie, in 1865. He was educated at the University of Glasgow, of which he 
was a graduate. He was translated to Glassford, of which parish his father had been 
fifty years minister, on the presentation of the Earl of Eglinton, 4 February, 1870. He 
was succeeded in Fyvie by 

Andrew Jamieson Milne, LL.D., F.S.A. Scot. Dr. Milne was educated at 
the University of Aberdeen ; graduated M.A, 1850, LL.D. 1865 ; licenced 1855 ; 
went to Kingston, Jamaica; returned to his native parish in 1870; married Annie 
Lewis Hodson, and has issue : — J. Leslie H. Milne, M.A., M.D. ; John A. R. Milne, 
Lower California ; C. J. B, Milne, B.A., Cantab, H.M.I.S., died 6 May, 1892 ; 
Arthur D. Milne, M.B. ; Alan H. Milne, B.A., Cantab. ; Bessy Milne. 

At the Cross of Jackston there is a Chapel of Ease, endowed by the late Lieut. -Col. 
Cosmo Gordon of Fyvie with an income of ;;^i3o per annum, or thereby. It has been 
served regularly by Rev. W. Little, M.A., Rev. H. Mair, M.A., and Rev. George Minty, 
M.A., assistants to the parish minister of Fyvie. 

Millbrex, a quoad sacra parish, is in the parish of Fyvie. It has had the following 
ministers — Rev. Mr. Chapman, Rev. John Stevenson, Rev. J. M'Gavin Smith B.D., 
and Rev. Charles Giles, 1892. 

The Free Church of Fyvie is situated near the village of Woodhead; was built in 1843. 
Its pastors have been the Rev. John Manson, M.A, and Rev. William Ewan, M.A. 

The Free Church of Rayne is also in the parish of Fyvie. It has had pastors — Rev. 
William Brown, M.A., and Rev. J. C. Robertson, ordained 1872. 


Into the silent land, 

Ah ! who shall lead us thither ? 

Clouds in the evening sky more darkly gather, 

And shattered wrecks lie thicker on the strand. 

Who leads us with a gentle hand, 

Thither, O Thither, 

Into the silent land ? 

O, Land ! O, Land ! 

To all the broken-hearted. 

The mildest Herald by our faith allotted 

Beckons, and with inverted torch doth stand 

To lead us with a gentle hand. 

Into the land of the great departed, 

Into the silent land. 

— Longfellow. 

I will be true and constant too 

To thee my Andrew Lammie ; 

But my bridal bed will ere then be made 

In the green churchyard of Fyvie. 

—Old Ballad. 

One grave in the " green churchyard " has many visitors — the grave of Tiftie's Annie, 
the heroine of the ballad of that nanie. Her gravestone has frequently been renewed, 
and in 1869, a cross was erected with this inscription — " Agnes Smith, Tiftie's Annie, 
died 19 January, 1673. Erected by public subscription 1869." 

Another stone also frequently visited is sacred to the memory of Robert Gordon, 
known as the Astronomer, who perished in the Ythan, near Reamshill, 21 January, 
1867. His body was discovered on the third of March following, and is interred here. 

" Cheerful, contented, humble, and honest, homeless, and unknown to relatives, he 
wandered this district for upwards of a quarter of a century. To mark his last resting 
place, the public have erected this memorial to his name." 

Within the church are the following monuments in marble : — " Sacred to the 
memory of Rev. James Cruickshank, D.D., for fifteen years the faithful and beloved 
pastor of this parish. He died 18 September, 1858, in his 71st year." 

" A faithful dispenser of the bread of life, a kind and generous benefactor to the 
poor, and to all the warm and sympathising friend. He possessed the esteem and affec- 
tion of an attached people, who have erected this tribute to his memory, 1858." 

" Let me die the death of the righteous, 
And let my last end be like his." 

Fyvie. 45 

Another monument on the north side of the church is 

** To the memory of John Cowieson, master gardener, who died at Camaloun 
3 November, 1852, aged 86. He bequeathed the earnings of his active and unblemished 
life, principally to pious and charitable purposes in Aberdeen, and in his native parish 
of Fyvie." 

At the back of the pulpit is a tablet with this in.scription — 

" In memory of Charles Gordon, Esq. of Fyvie, eldest son of the Hon. Charles 
Cordon of Rockville and Anna Cumberland, of Dumfries, who died at Southsea, in the 
county of Hants, on 17 September, 1851. Also of Eliza, his wife, who died at the same 
place on the 9th of September, 1853 ; also of their youngest son Captain Charles 
William Gordon, M.P., Berwick-on-Tweed, who died at London on the 15 June, i863." 

" Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace 
Whose mind is stayed on Thee." 

This tablet and the two east windows were placed in the parish Church of Fyvie by 
William Cosmo Gordon and Alexander Henry Gordon, as a tribute of love and respect 
to their beloved parents and brother, 

The subject of the one stained glass window is St. Paul preaching at Athens. The 
other, the lifting up of the serpent in the wilderness. 

Another monument is in memory of James Hay C-halmers of Monkshill and Mary 
Henderson of Stempster, born January 7, 1829 ; died at Torquay 24 April, 1867. 

" Earnest in belief, serious in faith. 
Zealous in good works ; an affectionate son." 

This tablet is erected to his memory by those who loved him. 

A tablet, with the arms of the Setons, and the motto " Semper," has the date 1603. 

Alexander Seton, Lord Fyvie. 

Another is in memory of William Gordon Chalmers, Captain of H.M. Bengal St&ff 
Corps. Third son of Charles Chalmers of Monkshill. Born in this parish 30 April, 
1835. Died at Kinsowlee, 21 August, 1858. A true man ; a gallant soldier ; he did 
his duty. India. Takinfuls. Pekin. Umbeya. 

A stone with the arms of Gordon of Fyvie is sacred to the memory of William 
Gordon of Fyvie, who died in the month of January, 1847, i" ^lis 72nd year. 

On the south wall of the church outside, on two polished granite stones, we read — 

" Here rest the remains of Charles Chalmers of Monkshill, in this parish, advocate, 
Aberdeen, and of his wife, Mary, daughter of Alexander Henderson of Stempster, 
Caithness. The former was born 6 July, 1790 ; died 28 November, 1877. The latter 
was born. August, 1796 ; died 23 July, 1869." 

" Here also is interred James Hay, their eldest son, advocate and commissary clerk of 
Aberdeenshire, born 7 January, 1829 ; died at Torquay, 24 April, 1867 ; and Alexander 
Henderson, their second son, writer to Her Majesty's Signet, Edinburgh, and commis- 
sary clerk of Aberdeenshire, who was born 20 September, 1833; died 3 November, 

46 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

187 1. William Gordon, their third son, Captain in H.M. Bengal Staff Corps, died at 
Kinsowlee, Upper India, 21 August, 1868, and rests in the graveyard there." 

" I am the resurrection and the life. " 

" Tho' I walk through the valley and the shadow of death, 
I will fear no evil." 

" Here also rests Patrick Henderson Chalmers of Avochie, advocate, Aberdeen ; 
born 12 July, 1839 ; died May 22, 1886." 

" Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord, that they may rest from 
their labours, and their works do follow them." 

" For so He giveth His beloved sleep." 

He is also recorded on a stone inside the church. 

A marble cross is in memory of James William Douglas, second son of Patrick 
Henderson and Jane Chalmers. Born April 30, 1884 ; died May 22, 1886. 

" My beloved has gone down into his garden to gather lilies." — Song Sol. vi. 2. 
" The Lord shall guide thee continually." — Is. Iviii. 11. 

On a stone of Peterhead granite, surmounted by a cross, is recorded the following : — 

" In loving memory of William Cosmo Gordon of Fyvie and Maryculter, born 
17 May, 1810 ; died 8 December, 1879. A devoted husband, and to all a true, loving 
and sympathising friend. ' He is not dead but sleepeth.' Erected by his sorrowing 
widow, Mary Grace, third daughter of Sir Robert Abercromby, 5th Baronet of Birken- 
bog and Forglen. She died 4th December, 1887." 

" Thanks be to God who giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." 
" He asked life of Thee, and Thou, hast given him a long life, even for ever, and ever." 

On a beautiful monument of marble, with the figure of a Phoenix rising from the 
flames, is the following inscription : — 

" O genus, attonitum gelidae formidine mortis, 
Si vitae integri, sceleris purique fuistis ; 
Quid styga ? quid tenebras, quid nomina vana timetis ? 
Corpora, sive rogus, flamma seu tabe vetustas abstulerit ; 
Mala posse pati nonulla putetis. Morte carent animse." 

" Oh race, perturbed by dread of clammy death ! 
Why should ye fear the styx and darkness ? Empty names. 
If pure and free of guilt the record of your lives, 
Decay or cleansing flame thy flesh may take, 
But think no other ills will hap. Souls never die." 

Below on a flat stone — " General Hon. William Gordon of Fyvie, died 25 May, 
1816, aged 80; and Hon. Mrs. Gordon of Fyvie, died 3 June, 1824, aged 80; also 
William Gordon of Fyvie, their only son, who died 9 January, 1847, aged 74." 

An lona cross is in memory of — " Alexander Henry Gordon of Fyvie and Mary- 
culter, born June 14, 1813 ; died March 5, 1884. ' For me to live is Christ, and to die 

Fyvie. 47 

is gain.' Catharine Jane Bradby, daughter of Admiral Douglas, wife of said Alexander 
Henry Gordon, born November 13, 1819 ; died July 9, 1891." 

" And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of Hosts, in that day 
when I make up my jewels." — Mai. iii. 17. 

A stone of Aberdeen granite, within an enclosure, is in memory of the Rev. John 
Hodgson, born in Liverpool, 10 June, 1806, died in Kingston, Jamaica, 5 July, i86r. 
His beloved wife, Mary Lewis, born in Liverpool, died at the manse of P'yvie, 
28 January, 1880. Their grandchild, Mary Lewis Milne, born at Kingston, 28 May, 
1862, died there 16 July, 1883. 

In an enclosure near the middle of the churchyard there are two tombstones. One 
of Aberdeen granite bears the inscriptions — 

" In loving memory of Alexander Milne, farmer, Petty, born 5 May, 1787 ; died 
26 March, 1862. His wife, Margaret Leslie Jamieson, born 17 March, 1806; died 
15 February, 1880." On an old stone within the same enclosure — " Here lyes William 
Milne and Janet Panton his spouse. He died November 2, 17 11, and she November, 
1698." These are the parents and some of the ancestors of Rev. Dr. Milne, minister of 
the parish, whose children are the tenth generation that have been in Fyvie. 

Within an enclosure are the tombstones of the Leslies of Rothie. 

Above is the family crest, with the motto " Gripfast;." 

1. "To the memory of James Leslie of Rothie, who died 20 June, 1823, in the 
60th year of his age." 

2. "Sacred to the memory of Robert Leslie of Rothie, who died upon the i8th 
day of February, 1 861, in the 87th year of his age. Much esteemed and respected. 
Erected by his sorrowing widow." 

"Mrs. Barbara Niven or Leslie, his widow, died 22 May, 1873, in her 78th year, 
and is here interred." 

3. " To the memory of George Leslie of Rothie, who died 12 January, 1842, in the 
77th year of his age ; and of Jonathan Leslie, his younger brother, who died at Baden- 
scoth, 4 October, 185 1, in the 78th year of his age." 

A plain stone records the death of Rev. Charles Grant, clergyman at Meiklefolla 
for upwards of 22 years, who died 21 June, 1853, aged 63, and of his children, Eliza, 
John, Jane, and Louisa. 

Near this, a stone is erected by the congregation, Meiklefolla, as a mark of respect 
to the memory of Joseph Duguid, who led their choir for upwards of 21 years. As he 
lived respected, so on 23 August, 18 14, he died at Mill of Meadaple, deeply regretted as 
a steady churchman, and obliging and truly honest man. 

A faithful servant has the following tombstone : — 

" By James Durno, as a token of respect, in memory of Alexander Milne, who died 
suddenly at Braeside of Jackston, 25 April, 1862, aged 58. He died much and justly 
regretted by all who knew him, and was for nearly thirty years the honest, faithful, 
trustworthy servant of James Durno, Jackstown." 

48 The Thanage of Fermattyn. 

A table stone is in memory of Rev. William Moir, who died at Manse of Fyvie, 
March 9, 1794, in the 68th year of his age, and the 46th of his ministry. Helen 
Constable, his spouse, died at Aberdeen, February 25, 1817, aged 67. 

There are several tombstones to the memory of families of the name of Pratt, 
who had been long resident in the parish. On one stone is recorded James Pratt, 
farmer, Darnabo ; his son James, also farmer, Darnabo ; his son John, farmer, 
Macterrie. They were dutiful and aflFectionate sons. 

On another stone there is John Pratt, died April 20, 1778, aged 89; while 
another is in memory of Alexander Pratt, born at Mill of Ardlogie, 1729, who lived 
there, and died 3 December, 1803. Jane Burnett, his spouse, died at Mill of Tiftie, 
16 April, 1828, aged 69. Also of their son William, born at Mill of Ardlogie, June, 
1779, 38 years tenant in Mill of Tiftie, who died i8 February, 1853. 

On an old stone is the inscription — In hopes of a blessed resurrection rests James 
Pratt, at Mill of Ardlogie, who died June 12, 1775, aged 82; also his spouse, 
Jean Johnstone. 

From one of these Pratts was descended Rev. John Burnett Pratt, LL.D., 
the amiable and genial minister for many years of St. James', Cruden ; author of 
" The Old Paths," " Buchan," and other works. 

Within an enclosure, on a marble tablet, it is recorded that James Hay of Monkshill, 
died 14 February, 1828, aged 53. In public life he was honourable, intelligent, 
and useful ; in private life benevolent, hospitable, and friendly. His memory will long 
be cherished, and his loss lamented in his native parish, by a wide circle of acquaint- 
ances. Ofi a flat stone, the place of interment of James Hay of Monkshill, &c. ; 
also of Elizabeth Hay, his youngest sister, who died 20 April, 1863, in the 87th year of 
her age. 

Another stone is to the memory of James Hay of Monkshill, who died 1 1 February, 
1807, aged 75 ; and of Elizabeth Eraser, his spouse, who died at Bridgend, Fyvie, 
24 January, 181 3, aged 77. To the memory also of Jane Hay their eldest daughter, 
who died at Bridgend upon the 24 January, 1840, aged 67. These are the father 
and mother and sister of the above-named James Hay, who bequeathed the property of 
Monkshill to the late Mr. Chalmers, in whose family it still is. 

A stone records the death of George Dunbar, late in Mill of Tiftie, who died 1794. 
aged 79 ; also of the sons of Alexander Dunbar of Monkshill, and Elizabeth Smith, his 
spouse, who lived and died at Mill of Tiftie, and are buried here. 

The following stones record the deaths of several who reached fourscore and ten 
years and upwards. 

George Walker, farmer in Cuttlecraigs, Daviot, died 4 March, 1777, aged 82; also 
Jane Rait, his spouse, died 30 April, 1805, aged 100 years — a great grandson of 
above is still in Cuttlecraigs. 

There is a small stone in memory of James Brown, kirk officer and sexton for 
upwards of sixty years, who died 8 March, 1843, aged 90. 

Fyvie. 49 

The following patriarch must have clone the State some service : — 

George Gray, sometime farmer in Andet, died 15 June, 1785, aged 74; also 
James Gray, late merchant in London, who died 15 August, 1785, aged 80 ; being both 
sons of Alexander Gray, sometime farmer in Mill of Burns, who died in the 96th year 
of his age, having had thirty-two legitimate children by his two wives. 

Alexander Reid, Parkburn, died June 12, 1862, aged 99. 

Jane Cruickshank, wife of James Carle, died 15 April, 1882, aged 93. 

William Leith, Swanford, died 4 August, 1848, aged 91 ; and his spouse, Elizabeth 
Watt, died 8 April, 1865, aged 99. 

Another stone bears the inscription, here lies the body of George Kennedy, some- 
time farmer in Raxton, died 26 March, 1792, aged 90, and Jane Smith, his spouse. 

A Turin stone, surmounted by a cross and sacred monogram, is in memory of 
George Grant, who died at Woodhead, 5 November, i88t, aged 98. His wife, 
Elizabeth Grant, died 27 October, 1857, aged 78. " Resurgam." 

There are several tombstones to a family of Williamsons, who were great cattle 
breeders and dealers, and who had for many years considerable influence in the district. 

One is sacred to the memory of William Williamson, farmer in Wardmyer in 
Minnonie, died March 28, 1875, aged 34; also is interred his daughter Elizabeth 
Williamson, aged 2 years. This stone is erected by George Williamson, his brother. 

Another is sacred to the memory of Catharine Williamson, spouse to George 
Williamson, in St. John's Wells, who lived respected and died regretted, on 19 March, 
1826, aged 35. The above George W^illiamson died 16 February, 1843, aged 56. 
George Williamson, late in St. John's Wells of this parish, died 15 April, 1823, aged 
75. To whose memory this monument was erected by the Aberdeenshire Agricultural 
Association as a mark of respect for his upright and honourable character, in private 
and public life ; and in testimony of the great benefit derived by the county of Aberdeen 
for his meritorious exertions as an eminent " cattle dealer " for upwards of fifty years. 

Below on a medallion is Elizabeth Forbes, relict of George Williamson, who departed 
this life, 26 January, 1825, in the 75th year of her age, having discharged under divine 
guidance the various duties of wife, parent, and friend, in a very exemplary manner. 

Another stone is in memory of William Williamson, Easter Crichie in this parish, 
who died 11 November, 1847, aged 72 ; and of his sons, James Williamson, surgeon, 
who died there 11 January, 1842, aged 27 ; and of William Williamson, who died at 
Calcutta, 6 February, 1850, aged 42, and is buried in the Scotch burial ground there. 
Also George Williamson, late of Colachat, Assam, a liberal benefactor to his native 
parish, who died at Norwood, 23 February, 1865, aged 52, and is buried here. And 
also of their mother, Elizabeth Mackie, who died at Inverurie, 20 June, 1876, aged 90. 

Within an enclosure on a flat stone is the inscription — Here rest the remains of 
Margaret Touch, who was relict of Rev. John Falconer, and by second marriage the 
beloved wife of Rev. James Cruickshank, D.D., minister of Fyvie. She died at the 
Manse of Fyvie on 27 September, 1854, aged 69; also the remains of Rev. James 


50 The Thanage of Ferviartyn. 

Cruickshank, D.D., minister of Fyvie, who died at the Manse of Fyvie, on the ist of 
April, 1858, in the 71st year of his age, and the 42nd of his ministry at Turriff and 

A flat stone is in memory of Rev. John Falconer, minister of Fyvie. He died 
19 December, 1828, in the 73rd year of his age, and the 34th of his ministry; also of 
his only child, Elizabeth Jane, who died 20 December, 1825, aged 12. " Blessed are 
the dead who die in the Lord." 

Another bears to be erected by John Gordon, surgeon, Carlehill, Fyvie, in memory 
of his wife, Agnes Ireland Gordon, who died 11 March, 1855, aged 50. The above- 
named John Gordon died 26 January, 1865, aged 58, 

Another stone is to the memory of Alexander Wilson, M.A. (son of George Wilson 
of Mill of Alathan, Monquhitter). He was parochial schoolmaster, Barthol-Chapel, 
Tarves. Died 17 July, 1855, aged 26. 

A table stone has the following inscription — In memory of Gilbert Clark, farmer in 
Kirktown of Fyvie during the seven ill years; James Clark, who was farmer in Gourdas. 
Andrew Clark, farmer in Stonemanhill, and Isobel Cowieson his spouse. James Clark, 
their son, in Cottown of Gight, died December, 1843, aged 88. Jacobina Moir, his 
spouse, died December 22, 1877, aged 70, Also in memory of William Clark, some- 
time merchant in Stonehouse of Gight, thereafter feuar in Woodhill Cottage, Kinellar, 
who by sobriety and industry amassed a small fortune, with which he built and endowed 
a free school in the burgh of Inverurie, and left money for prizes in the school of Fyvie 
for ever. . " Retjuiescat in pace." 

A stone is thus inscribed, "Erected by Robert Stott in Camalines, in memory of his 
wife, Isobel Burr, who died February 7, 1836, aged 78. Their youngest son, Rev. 
Robert Stott, schoolmaster of this parish, died 8 December, 1867, aged 69, and is 
buried here. His eldest son, John, assistant surgeon, R.N., died at Ascension on board 
H.M.S. Active, November 1865, aged 23, and was buried at sea." 

An obelisk of Aberdeen granite is in memory of Rev. John Manson, M. A., minister 
of the parish of Fyvie from 1829-1843, and of the Free Church from 1843 to 1872. He 
died 20 November, 1877, aged dd years. A faithful pastor, a wise counsellor, a warm- 
hearted friend, a devoted servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. " He being dead yet 
speaketh." Erected by the congregation and friends. On the obverse side of the 
stone, Alexander James Manson, died, while student in Aberdeen University, at 7 
Chanonry, Old Aberdeen, on February 4, 1864, aged 17, and is interred here. 

Within an enclosure are the following tombstones : — 

To the memory of James Wilson, farmer in Fetterletter, who departed this life 
February 6, 1810, aged 84 ; also his spouse, Elspet Duncan, who died January 26, 1805, 
aged 89 ; also the remains of their son, James Wilson, who also occupied the farm of 
Fetterletter for nearly fifty years, and died at Petts, 20 February, 1835, aged 81 ; also 
of his wife, Mary Wilson, who died August 19, 1828, aged 65. Here also in close 
proximity to the graves of her parents rests the body of Elizabeth Christie, wife of 

Fyvie 5 1 

Alexander Wilson, and daughter of the Very Reverend Alexander Christie and of 
Elizabeth Wilson, who departed this life 19 September, 1889, aged 90 years. The said 
Alexander Wilson was born at Fetterletter, 4 June, 1800, and occupied that farm for 
thirty-eight years. He removed in 1865 to Kirkhill, Oldmeldrum, where he died on 
3rd of January, 1890, surviving his wife only fifteen weeks. "They were lovely and 
plea.sant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided." 

On another stone a brother of the last-named Alexander Wilson is recorded : — In 
memory of James Wilson, M.D., staff surgeon, who died at Kllon, 17 l-ebruary, 1853, 
aged 60 years. " Vidua posuit lugens " ; and of Mary Hay (Irieve, his wife, who died 
2nd of May, 1 89 1, aged 79 years. She was the daughter of the Rev. Nathaniel Grieve, 
of the Episcopal Church, Ellon, 

A cross bears the inscription — Mary, infant child of Dean Wilson, born 4 February, 
died 20 March, 1841. Charles, born 5 January, 1845 ; died 10 March, 1849. 

On a marble tablet there is the following inscription : — In memoriam Alexandri 
Christie, S. T. P., Ecclesi^ Episcopalis apud Woodhead pastoris, qui obiit xxix. die 
Decembris anno salutis mdcccxxvii, retatis sure lxix. In sacris concionibus gravis erat 
et cultus orator, nee sine eloquentia. Muneribus Ecclesia; assiduam pro virili navavit 
operam, pastor spectabilis. Disciplinis Theologicis satis versatus erat Literisque varii 
generis non leviter imbutus, socius facetus, comis, taim ambitionis expers, quam 
divitiarum. Purus vixit secleris, gratus permultis, suis carissimus. 

Noster Hie Dolor, nostrum vulnus, vidua ct liberi superstites. P. C. 

[In memory of Alexander Christie, S. T. P., pastor of the Episcopal Church at \\*ood- 
head, who died on 29 December, in the year of salvation 1827, aged 62. In the sacred 
assemblies he was grave, and a cultured orator, not without the gifts of eloquence. As 
a worthy pastor, he laboured assiduously to his utmost for the church. He was well 
skilled in theological science, and well informed in literature of various kinds. He was 
humorous, courteous, as free of ambition as he was devoid of riches. He lived free 
from crime, agreeable to very many, by his own most beloved. His widow and 
surviving children placed this to his memory.] His widow was a daughter of James 
Wilson and Elspet Duncan or Wilson, in Fetterletter, above-mentioned. They had 
two sons and one daughter. 

A stone records the death of one son, James Christie, surgeon. West Crichie, who 
died 13 June, 1837. aged 42 ; and of Margaret Smith, his spouse, who died at 
Kinmundy, 24 April, 1845, aged 43. Another son was Jonathan Christie, Esq., 
Barrister in London, a famous conveyancer. He was educated at Baliol College, 
Oxford, having been a Snell Exhibitioner there. He married and had a large family. 

A stone of Peterhead granite has been erected by Robert Nicol, A.M., schoolmaster 
in Marnoch, in memory of his only son, Robert Forbes Nicol, aged 26, who was 
accidentally drowned in the Thames at London, 16 June, 1872, and is interred in 
Brompton Cemetery. The above Robert Nicol died 13 June, 1888, aged 77. 

A very modest stone bears the simple record, M. M., 1792. 

52 The T/mnage of Fermartyn. 

A very old stone, now carefully enclosed, has the mscription — Here lyes George 
Watsone, G.U.H.T., departed this life 1599 yeirs. 

Another old stone bears the following inscription — Here lyes Robert Smith of 
Smiddieburn, who departed this life 6th day of October, 1690. This was an uncle of 
Tiftie's Annie. 

A stone has this inscription — Alexander M'Callum, officer of Excise, Fyvie, died 
18 May, 1837, aged 52. Erected by his brother officers. 

On a table stone may be read the following : — " Reader, if a diligent and faithful 
discharge of duty, if the strictest integrity, if sincere, and affectionate attachment m 
service, if one possessed of these excellent qualities and dispositions suddenly cut off, in 
the early progress of his useful though humble career, by an epidemical disease, can 
claim a share of thy sympathy, let a tear fall to the memory of James Henderson, who 
died at London, 15 August, 1833, aged 25 years, and whose ashes mingle with his native 
soil beneath this humble memorial. He was a dutiful son, an affectionate brother, and 
faithful servant." 

Another stone is to the memory of William Walker, farmer in Wells of Rothie, who 
died 3 December, 1799, aged 75 ; Margaret Smith, his wife, died July 7, 1808, aged 71. 

George, their son, died at Wells of Rothie, October 10, 1841, aged 76 ; Elspet Topp, 
his wife, died at the Parsonage, Banff, January i, 187 1, aged 82. 

On the south-west corner of the church has been placed a granite tablet bearing the 
following inscription : — " In memoriam. As a mark of respect and esteem for the late 
Alejiander Fiddes Greig, M.R.C.S.E., Sunnyside, Fyvie, who, for the long period of 
forty-two years, discharged the duties of his profession in this district, with eminent and 
disinterested ability. This tablet is erected here, and a Medical bursary has been 
founded in the University of Aberdeen, by his fellow-parishioners and friends. 1882." 

There is a stone to the memory of Alexander Gordon of Gight, who was born 3 May, 
17 10, and died at Gight, 24 January, 1761 ; and of Mary Duff, his spouse, who was 
born on the 20 December, 1720, and died at Banff, 13 November, 1801. They had 
nine sons and three daughters, viz. : — George, Alexander, Patrick, John, William, 
James, Archibald, Robert, Adam ; Elizabeth, Mary, and Margaret. This is erected by 
their only surviving child, Elizabeth, who died in Banff, 20 June, 1804. 

On the reverse side is a pre-reformation inscription — " Hie Jacet Thomas de Cranno, 
orate pro anima." He was one of the ministers of Fyvie before the reformation. 

On a stone we read — In memory of James Cheyne of Inchgreen, Monquhitter, who 
for forty-four years was farmer in Fadenhill, Fyvie. He died 17 October, 1859, aged 
76 ; also of Mary, his spouse, who died 6 February, 1869, aged 85. This stone was 
erected by their son, James Cheyne of Inchgreen. 

On another, " Erected by Sarah Strachan in memory of her attached husband, 
Alexander Strachan, who died at Smallburn Cottage, Auchterless, 3 June, 1862, aged 
66; Sarah, his affectionate wife, died at Aberdeen, 1866, aged 72. Both had been 
servants to Mr. Gordon of Fyvie for many years." 

I'Xvie. 53 

An obelisk of granite is in memory of Alexander George, beloved son of Rev. 
Alexander and Louisa Bremner, died at I"'yvie, 25 January, 1874, aged 6 years. 
There are three table stones to the following : — 

1. Erected by Adam Mackie, in Mains of Fyvie, in memory of his spouse, Margaret 
Findlay, who died 23 May, 1822, aged 72 years. The aforesaid Adam Mackie died 
19 October, 1836, aged 77 years. 

2. James, infant son ol James Mackie, Lewes, and great grandson of the above- 
named Adam Mackie, died 26 May, 1859. Adam, his eldest son, died 23 August, 
1877, aged 21. 

3. In memory of Adam Mackie, Lewes, who died there on 13 May, 1850, aged 
62 years; and of his spouse, Mary Jamieson, who died 18 February, 1835. 

These three stones record the grandparents, parents, and children of James Mackie, 

On a small upright pavement slab there is the following record : — Alexander M'Kay, 
from the parish of Farr, Sutherlandshire, died at Lewes of Fyvie, 2 October, 1825, and 
is interred here. 

This unfortunate man was murdered on 16 September, 1825, in a lone part of a 
footpath along the south side of the Den of Rothie by William Allan, a native of 
Monquhitter, aged 20. Mackay was able to crawl to the Lewes of Fyvie, where he was 
kindly treated by Mr. Mackie. He died in great agony on the 2nd of October. 

Allan was apprehended, condemned to death, and sentenced to be hung on Friday, 
10 February, 1826, and his body given for dissection, a sentence which was duly carried 
into effect. His skeleton may still be seen, it is said, in the Anatomical Museum of 
Marischal College. 

The Churchyard of Fyvie is well kept. During the incumbency of Dr. Milne, it has 
been much improved and extended, at a cost to the heritors of nearly ;^5oo. 


Fallen, fallen, a silent heap, — Prior. 

The remains of the Priory of Fyvie are situated on a rising ground on the north-east 
bank of the Ythan, near the parish church, and about a mile from Fyvie Castle. There 
are little more than the indications of the site of the chapel, on which was erected, in 
1868, a cross bearing this inscription : — "This cross is erected by William Cosmo and 
Mary Grace Gordon of Fyvie, a.d. 1868, to mark the site of the ancient Priory of St. 
Mary, founded 11 79, and in memory of James Hay Chalmers, who died 1867." 

According to the author of the View of the Diocese, the Priory of Fyvie was founded 
by King William the Lion for the order of the Benedictines, after the model of Tours, 
like those of Aberbrothock, to which the House of Fyvie belonged. According to 
another account, it was founded in 11 79 by Fergus, Earl of Buchan. 

Dr. Grub, the learned author of the " Ecclesiastical History of Scotland," says that 
it was founded by neither the one nor the other. 

" The Priory of Fyvie, which was dedicated to St. Mary, was a cell of the Great 
Benedictine Abbey of Arbroath. By a charter granted at Aberdeen, on the feast of 
St. Luke, 1285, Reginald de Cheyne, head of the Norman family of that name, gave the 
lands of Ardlogie, and certain others to the church of St. Thomas the Martyr of 
Arbroath, and the monks of that monastery residing in the religious house built at 
Ardlogie, near the church of St. Peter of Fyvie. He was the founder of the Priory, 
although that honour has been assigned to William the Lion, the founder of the mother- 
house of Aberbrothock, and to the Earls of Buchan. The error has probably arisen 
from the circumstance that the King gave to the monks of Arbroath the church of 
Fyvie, and that Fergus, Earl of Buchan, and Marjory, Countess of Buchan, were among 
the early benefactors of Arbroath.'" 

Reginald Cheyne was one of the Barons of Scotland who made compact with 
Llewellyn, Prince of Wales, and his chiefs, that neither the Scots nor the Welsh should 
make peace with England without mutual consent.^ Also he and " Reginald Cheyne 
/ejils" are among the Barons of Scotland who, on the 17 March, 1289-90, gave their 
assent to the marriage of Queen Margaret of Scotland with Prince Edward of England.^ 

1 Index to the Antiquities of Aberdeen and Banff, p. 14. 3 Acts of Parliament of Scotland, Vol. I. p. 3. 

2 Foedera, Vol. I. p. 371. Foedera I. p. 73. 

Fyvie. 55 

In 1292, he is styled Sheriff of Inverarne, In 1266, Sheriff of Kincardine and Firmarius 
de Fermartyn. He was also Baron of Inverugie. Strathbrok, and had numerous posses- 
sions in the counties of Aberdeen and Caithness. 

His descendants also possessed Esslemont, Straloch, Arnage, Rainieston, &c., and 
were for many years a powerful family ; but they fell on evil times, and it is doubtful if 
any known male descendants now exist. 

In 1285, as mentioned above, he founded St. Mary's Priory of Fyvie. In that year 
he granted a deed to the monks of Arbroath, in which, for the sake of his soul, and the 
souls of his predecessors and successors, he gave to God and to the church of 
St. Thomas de Aberbrothock, and to the monks of the monastery staying in the religious 
house on his lands of Ardlogy, near the church of St. Peter, all his lands of Leuchendy 
(Lethendy) with the pertinents, to be held by the said religious men and their 
successors. In the same year there is an ordinance to Henry Cheyne, Bishop of Aber- 
deen, granting to the religious house of Ardlogy, near the church of St. Peter, all the returns 
and proceeds of the vicarage of Fyvy, together with all the offerings pertaining to the 
said vicarage.' The monks of the Priory were bound to provide a perpetual chaplain, 
who by night and day should minister the rites of the church to the parishioners of 
Fyvy. The chaplain was to be instituted to his office by the Bishop of the Diocese, and 
he was to receive from the monks of the Priory an annual sum of 100 shillings as stipend 
with which " he shall be content." 

The following are some of the Priors of St. Mary's: — In 1323, Albertinus was 
appointed Prior of the House of Fyvy. On his appointment, he received a very 
stringent order as to keeping discipline within the Priory from Brother Bernard, Abbot 
of Arbroath. He was enjoined, on three days of the week, Monday, Wednesday, and 
Friday, to hold a chapter, and regularly correct the excesses of his associates, to hold 
divine worship on the Lord's day according to canonical institutions, unless infirmity 
intervene ; also that if any of the brethren be found inebriate, clamorous, rebellious and 
disobedient, he was to try, if by good counsel he could amend them, otherwise he was to 
punish them by silence — by fasting ; also in a secret place beyond secular access, he was 
to cause them to be flogged. If these measures had not the desired effect, they were to 
be sent forward to the monastery of Arbroath with a statement of their offences.^ 

In 1361, Patrick de Firmatorius is appointed Prior of St. Mary's in room of John 
Senir, who is relieved, probably from old age, of his duties. ^ 

Seventy-seven years after the above date, viz., 1438, we find Sir John Anderston 
Prior of Fyvy. He is succeeded by John de St. Andrews, who retains the office for a 
very short time. In 1450, we find the guardianship of the priory under the common 
seal given to Malcolm Bridy on the resignation of the said John de St. Andrews. 
Malcolm Bridy receives a lease of certain payments belonging to the Abbey of Arbroath, 
which payments, after his death, were to revert to the said monastery.'' 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 194. 3 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 198. 

2 Id. p. 197 4 Id. p. 199. 

$6 The Thanage of Fennartyn. 

In 1460, Robert Cuby is appointed Prior.' 

The next to be found is Alexander Mason. He resigns the office of Prior. Being 
old and worn out with service, he receives a pension out of the monks' land of Tarves, 
and in 1508 is succeeded by Mr. James Hering.- 

In 1546, the Priory of St, Mary's pays of taxation for the sustentation of the New 
College of Justice the sum of £,2 i6s.3 

And this is the last notice of St. Mary's Priory. The Reformation is at hand ; the 
Priory is deserted ; the walls gradually crumbled away, and the fallen materials 
became useful for building purposes in the neighbourhood. 

Some of the carved work found a resting-place in the Parish Church and Manse 
walls ; while several stones, with the sacred monogram in bold relief, may be seen built 
into All Saints, Woodhead. 


There was in ancient times, while Fyvy was a Royal residence, a Royal Burgh at Fyvy, 
and there are several notices in the Exchequer Rolls of the burgesses paying the accus- 
tomed firma or rent for their privileges. 

Burghers, according to the late Mr. Burnett (Lord Lyon, and able editor of many of 
the Exchequer Rolls), were Crown vassals paying a fixed yearly firma or rent in virtue of 
their separate toft or tenement. Officers appointed by the Crown gathered the rents 
and accounted for them periodically. The officers during the first half of the 14th 
century were callen prepositi or ballivi. The latter name probably survived the period 
when the collectors of firma or rent were Crown officers ; and then Baillies became the 
names of the principal Magistrates in burghs after the Provost. Burghs were gener- 
ally leased, and leases granted on sufficiently easy terms, so as to afford to the 
town in its corporate capacity an adequate income for the management of the affairs.'' 

Out of the practice of leasing the burghs grew another arrangement, by which the 
burgesses got charters or feu-farms from the Crown, converting the tack into a perpetual 
right. Aberdeen, in 13 19, had obtained a feu charter for an yearly payment of 
^213 6s. 8d. ; Banff in the same year for a paymment of ;^2 2 3s. 4d. ; and the now 
lost Royal Burgh of Fyvy for a payment of ;^6 3s. 4d.'* 

In 1325, there is a brieve of King Robert the Bruce regarding the marches, and the 
rights of the burgesses of the Burgh of Fyvy in the peat moss of Ardlogy. The finding 
of the assize refers to the privileges of the burgesses in the time of Reginald Cheyne, 
from 1250 to 1296. It was ascertained that the burghers had no special rights of their 
own, but had to make a small payment to the Prior of Fyvy.^ 

1 Theiner's Monumenta, p. 430. 4 Exchequer Rolls, Vol. I. Preface. 

2 Ant. A, and B. III. 548. 5 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 546. 

3 Id. II. p. 200. 

Fyvie. 57 

In 1266, when Reginald Cheyne was Thane of Fermartyn, there is among the 
accounts rendered to the Excheijuer, a payment of ten marks for the lands of 
Kilmalcolm, let to the burgesses of Fyvy. There is no name at the present day in the 
neighbourhood that bears any resemblance to this." 

In 1319, in the Exchequer Rolls, there is a payment of 60s, de Burgo de Fyvy, 
mentioned as not appearing ; also certain arrears from the Burgh of Banff.' 

The Burgh of Fyvy makes payment, in 1331, of ;^23 13s. 4d for firmas due from the 
said burgh for four years past. This is in the time of John Brown, Thane of Fermartyn. 
There was also a payment of j[^\o for the Ayre ; a payment of j[,\ for the hostelage of 
William de Montealto, who was forester of Fermartyn, 

In the account of Reginald More, Thane of Fermartyn and Chamberlain, in 1332, 
there is a payment of ;^io from the prepositi of the Burgh of Fyvy.^ 

The next account of the Burgh of Fyvy is in 1340-41, and it is in conjunction 
with that of Kintore. Both Thanages were in the same hands by this time. The 
account of Gregory, prepositus of the Burghs of Kintore and Fyvy, gives for Kintore 
duties 63s. 4d., and a like sum for Fyvy, received for two terms.* 

In 1343, there are again accounts of the prepositi of the Burghs of Kintore and 
Fyvy, amounting to ;i^i4 8s. 4d, for two terms/ 

After this date, all accounts of money received from the Royal Burgh of Fyvy cease. 
With regard to Fyvy burgh, Mr. Burnett says — " Like Kintoir, the Royal Burgh of 
Fyvy sprang up under the protection of the King's Castle, and had its hostelage, &c., 
and the rents of the two burghs, as we see in the notices, are sometimes accounted 
together. While Kintoir has remained to the present day a Royal Burgh, and one of 
the smallest in Scotland, Fyvy ceased to be so at an early period."'' 

Soon after the above dates, Fyvie Castle ceased to be a Royal residence, and the 
Burgh of Fyvie depending for its prosperity on its proximity to the Court, its fortunes 
gradually ebbed away, and faded itself even from memory ; for at the present day we 
are unable to point with certainty to its site. 

In the time of the third Earl of Dunfermline an attempt was made to resuscitate the 
burgh. There exists a charter of a Burgh of Barony of Fyvie of date 1672 or 1673. It 
ratifies all previous gifts, and grants power to the said Earl and his heirs to nominate 
Baillies and Magistrates for the government of said burgh, to possess and use a mercat 
cross, and to admit masons, hewers, skinners, &c., and for punishing transgressors of 
the law, to make a booth in the said town, and to execute justice on all committers 
of murder and theft, &c. According to Dr. Pratt, the author of " Buchan," — " Wood- 
head, though now in the barony oT Gight, had its mercat cross (restored in 1846), and 
about the beginning of this century had its Tolbooth. It is situated near the peat moss 
of Ardlogy, and though the peat has now ceased to be, and the soil brought under culti- 
vation, yet sufficient indications still remain to mark the former character of the place, 

1 Exchequer Rolls, Vol. I. Ant. A. and B. II. p. 326. 3 Exchequer Rolls, I. p. 459. 

2 Id. p. 356. 4 Id., Vol. I. Pref, p. 88. 

58 The TJianage of Fermartyn. 

and perhaps to identify it with the locality in the Royal brieve of King Robert formerly 
quoted." ' 

Dr. Milne, the respected minister of Fyvie, is of opinion that the Burgh of Fyvie was 
near the Priory of St. Mary's and the Parish Church. Who shall decide when doctors 
disagree ? The proper decision is to resuscitate the burgh near the site last mentioned. 
The cross is already erected ; two halls, one of which would serve as a town-house ; 
plenty of good men and true for a Provost and Baillies, so '* macte virtute " — " Go on 
and prosper." 

X Pratt's Buchan. 


Mill of Tiftie. — At a distance about half a mile north from the Castle and in view 
of its turrets, according to Dr, Pratt, is Mill of Tiftie, the home of the damsel who 
figured as the heroine of the ancient and ever popular ballad, " Mill of Tiftie's 
Annie." The spot might indicate the romance, even if it had not been 
founded on fact. It is a highly picturesque ravine, full of natural beauty, 
waterfalls, and tangled bushes, and abundant in wild flowers. The mill is a 
ruin in the bottom of the glen ; but poor Annie's home was the farm-house 
which stands on higher ground, and which, like many others, takes its name from the 
vicinity of the mill. The Bridge of Skeugh, where Annie last met her lover, Andrew 
Lammie, was in the hollow between Tiftie and the Castle, at a point about a hundred 
yards above, and where the present bridge spans the brook. A circular clump of trees 
is said to surround the spot where the trysting tree stood, and marks the spot. 

The course of true love is said not to run smooth, and so was it the case with 
Andrew I^mmie and Mill of Tiftie's Annie. Thus says the ballad : — 

Her father beat her cruellie, 
Sae also did her motlier ; 
Her sisters sair did scoff at her, 
But woe betide her brother. 
Her brother beat her cruellie, 
His strokes they were nae canny. 

Fyvie's lands are braid and wide, 
And O, but they be bonny ; 
But I wadna gi'e my ain true love, 
For a' the lands of Fyvie. 

But mak my bed and lay me down, 

And turn my face to Fyvie, 

That I may see before I dee, 

My bonnie Andrew Lammie. 

They made her bed and laid her down, 

And turned her face to Fyvie. 

She gave a moan, and died ere morn ; 

She never saw Andrew Lammie. 

Chapels. — There was one at FoUa-Rule, elsewhere described, and the vestiges of 
two others were at one time to be seen— one on the farm of Eastertown, and the other 
on that of Fetterletter, on the estate of Gight. 

I Pratt's Buchan, p. 324. 

6o Tlie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Holy Wells. — In a field on the estate of Minonie, which still retains the name of 
St. John's Wells, there are two sainted springs, one dedicated to St. John, the other to 
St. Catherine. A little northward from the Parish Church is St Peter's Well, and on 
the Hill of Eastertown there is another dedicated to St. Paul. These wells were long 
resorted to by the people of the neighbournood, and the favour of the Saint propitiated 
by dropping an offering into the well. 

The Husbandmen of P'yvie incurred in 1382 the penalty of excommunication by 
Adam, Bishop of Aberdeen, for non-payment of second tithes, and were obliged to 
repair in a body to the Bishop's chapel at Rayne, where, having professed repentance, 
they were absolved by the Bishop, and solemnly swore obedience for the future. 

Pre-historic Remains. — There was a cairn on the outskirts of the farm of St. 
John's Well. It has now all but disappeared, many of the neighbouring cottages 
having been built out of it. In digging around it, small earthenware urns have been 
frequently found. 

A large-sized clay urn was found in 1885 in a field on the farm of Smiddieburn. A 
servant ploughing removed the bottom of the urn. The excavation in which the urn 
was, measured about four and a half feet in diameter. At the bottom of this hole there was 
a saucer-shaped cavity, twenty inches in diameter, and formed of clay, in which were 
embedded small flat stones, on which the urn rested. The urn is one of the largest yet 
found, measuring sixteen by fifteen inches. The circumference at the mouth was thirty- 
five inches, at four inches below the mouth it was forty-eight inches, at seven and a half, 
forty-two inches ; and at the bottom eighteen inches. It was made of clay, well formed, 
without any ornamentation. One similar to this was found in 1888, in the parish of 
Udny, which has been removed to the National Museum, Edinburgh. 

In a field on the farm of Burreldales there is a large upright stone about two tons 
weight. In trenching around it, an immense number of small stones have been turned 
up, which very probably formed an outer and inner circle. A neatly built grave was 
disclosed by the removal of a large flat stone, underneath was a similar stone fitting 
into the mouth of the grave, concealing an urn containing a quantity of bones, and then 
came another stone, on removing which another urn was found containing bones. All 
the urns were more or less broken.' 

A few yards distant from these another cist was found with some bones, and in this 
grave a piece of bronze was found. From the number of remains found, it seems to 
have been a burial place of note. The old highway to Aberdeen passed over the spot. 

In the south-east corner of the Parish Church there is a stone built into the wall, 
bearing a portion of the double-disc symbol, and under it part of the figure of a bird, 
apparently an eagle. The stone measures twenty-eight inches by fourteen inches. Both 
figures are incised. Birds occur rarely ; but Dr. Stuart, in his " Sculptured Stones," 

1 Abdn. Journal of the period, 1863. 

Fyvie. 6i 

gives several examples ; though none so carefully executed as the Fyvie one.' There is 
also a Fleur de lis built into the manse walls. Both stones are said to be from the ruins 
of St. Mary's Priory. 

A stone is preserved in the Castle, and it is shown as one of the weird stones. It is 
called the dripping stone, and it is asserted that this stone gives out such a quantity of 
damp as to half fill the bowl in which it is kept with water. It was, however, in one of 
its dry periods when the editor of these notes saw it ; not a drop was to be seen. It is 
not known how this stone came to occupy the place it now does. 

Skirmish of Fvvie. — In 1644, Montrose took possession of Fyvie Castle; 
but not thinking it tenable against the superior force of Argyle, he retired 
to an eminence a little to the north-eastward, where the wood afforded a 
protection. This position he defended with great bravery for several days, and 
then marched by night to Strathbogie, having in the march been deserted 
by many of his followers. Their supply of powder ran short ; but having 
dislodged some of Argyle's followers from their position, they captured the powder 
which they left, and melted down for ball all the pewter dishes they could find in the 
castle. Montrose's entrenchments are still distinctly seen, and the ground goes by the 
name of Montrose's camp. One of Argyle's encampments on the lands of Ardlogy is 
still called the " Camp-fold." A full account of the skirmish of Fyvie may be seen in 
Gordon's " Britane's Distemper," and in Napier and Grant's Lives of Montrose. 

Communion Plate. — A Communion cup of silver was presented to the church by 
Lord Fyvie. It bears his arms quarterly, and has the following inscription : — " Deo 
sacrisque in Ecclesia Fyvoeana faciendis dicavit Alex. S_'tonius Fermelindini comes 
anno salutis 1618." The escutcheon is surmounted by a large coronet under a 
crescent, and the Dunfermline motto, " Semper." 

There is also another presented by the parishioners — " Coft-be-Parochin-for-ye-Kirk- 

Also, two silver cups, very handsome, with inscription — " Dedicated to the service 
of God by the Parishioners of Fyvie, in testimony of their attachment to the church of 
their fathers. 1845." 

Two silver cups, exactly the same in weight and pattern as the 1845 ones, with 
inscription — " Dedicated to the glory of God for the use of the church of Fyvie. 1884." 

Two Pewter beakers, of which tUe following extract from the kirk-session records 
gives the history : — " November 22, 1787. After sermon, the session met, &:c. The 
minister informed the session that he had got from Aberdeen the two Communion cups 
that he had commissioned for, according to the session's appointment, and likewise the 
account of the value of bad copper, which, together with the account of the cups, he 
laid before the session." 

I Transactions Society of Antiquaries, 1888-9, pp. ■546-7. 

62 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

To received for 47 lb. 1 1 oz. Bad Copper less 6d. commission . . £\ "] \o 
By paid for two Communion Cups .... £o 4 6 

By paid Carrier for carrying the Bad Copper to Aberdeen 009 


Balance . . . £1 2 'j 

One large paten with inscription on flat edge. " Patina Eucharistica Fyviaena." 
M. G. D. 1693. 

Another has the inscription on back — " Patina Eucharistica Fyviaena." 1777. 

Both of these are of a kind of bell metal. There are also two large electro-plated 

Accusation against Mr. William Seton, Chamberlain of Fyvte, and 
HIS Wife, before the Presbytery of Turriff, for Employing a 
Charmer to Heal their Cattle. 

Gavin Sinclair, charmer, was summoned before the Presbytery of Turriff. He con- 
fessed that he brought a stone from Ireland, which had a secret virtue, as he alleged, to 
cure beasts of the quarter-ill. He confessed that being sent for by the chamerlane's 
wife of Fyvie, he had cured some cattle there, and for his trouble had got a firlot of 
meal. The Presbytery of Turriff finding this a real charmer, caused Mr. Seton and his 
wife to be summoned, also their servant, William Crawford. AH appeared save Mrs. 
Seton. Mr. Seton declared to the Presbytery that William Crawford, his servant, had 
been sent by Mrs. Seton to bring Gavin Sinclair, she having heard that the said Gavin 
was skilled in curing beasts of the quarter-ill. The Presbytery finding that the said 
William Seton was by no means accessory to the sending for the charmer was acquitted. 
Mrs Seton, however, not appearing, was summoned a second time, but did not appear, 
her husband asserting that his wife was not in the bounds of the Presbytery at present. 
Mrs. Seton, however, seems to have appeared after the third summons, and confessed 
that she did not know that Gavin Sinclair was a charmer. She was, however, found 
guilty, and was ordained to make her repentance before the pulpit of Fyvie, in the most 
humble way. Poor woman, she resisted for a long time, but at last was forced to 
submit, — the inexorable Presbytery of Turriff conquered her ! ' 

I Presbytery Records, Turriff. 


The congregation now represented by All Saints has existed since the Revolution of 
1688, The last Earl of Dunfermline was a strong partizan of King James VII., and had, 
we may believe, a large number of adherents in the parish, which comprehended a large 
portion of his estate, many of the tenants on which belonged to the Episcopal Church. 

The early history of the congregation is rather obscure, as the accounts handed 
down are very meagre The only early notice to be found of it is the solitary one of an 
ordination in 1726, by Bishop Gadderar, of Aberdeen, of a young man, William 
Badichel, to the diaconate in the Meeting House at Woodhead. 

This Meeting House existed down to 1746, when the Laird of Oight, on whose lands 
it had been erected, ejected the congregation from it, lest he should be suspected of 
being a Jacobite. 

The congregation removed to Macterry, a place about three miles distant from 
Woodhead, where they were allowed to erect another Meeting House, This 
one served the congregation until 1786, when a change of proprietors taking place 
at Gight, the congregation were again enabled to return to W^oodhead. A new church 
was erected, one half of the expense of which was borne by the grandfather of the late 
Dean Wilson, and the other half by Mr. Hay of Monkshill. 

During the forty years the congregation remained at Macterry, the names of three of 
its ministers have been recorded — John Milne in 1757, and John Cruickshank, trans- 
lated to Ellon in 1783. Mr. Cruickshank was succeeded by Rev. Alexander Christie. 
He was a very genial and able minister, and laboured with much acceptance down to 
his death, which took place in 1827. He was succeeded by Very Rev. David Wilson, 
M.A. He was ordained for Stuartfield in 1826, and translated to AVoodhead in 1827. He 
was appointed Dean of the Diocese in 1849, i" which year a new church was erected on 
the site of the former one. He married Mary Garioch, only daughter of Bishop 
William Skinner. Dean Wilson was a most worthy man, and will be long remembered 
in the parish, of which he was a native, and where he so long ministered. He died 
November 14, 1880, in the 76th year of his age. Before his death, his youngest son, 
Rev. John Skinner Wilson, B.A., Cantab., was appointed assistant and successor. Some 
time after his father's death, he was translated to St. George's Church, Edinburgh, a 
church which long enjoyed the ministrations of the late Dr. Suther, Bishop of Aberdeen. 

Mr. John Skinner Wilson was succeeded by the Rev. William Watson Hawdon, B.A, 
of Durham. 

64 Tlie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

The present church of Woodhead was built and consecrated in 1849, and, according 
to Dr. Pratt, the late venerated author of " Buchan," is one of the best specimens of 
a village church. Its architectural details are very correct, and with its spire rising from 
out a cluster of trees, forms a striking and beautiful object in the landscape for many 
miles round. Not the least remarkable feature in the church is the masonry, the 
dressings being of sandstone from the quarry of Delgaty, while the rest of the walls are 
of a kind of blue slate found in the neighbourhood, which for beauty and strength 
is unrivalled. 

In the church are the following stained glass windows : — 

In the east window are three lights illustrating the chief events in our Lord's life. In 
the centre light of the east window there is this inscription — 

" This window is dedicated to the memory of the Rev. John Cruickshank, his wife, 
and two sons, by Sarah Cruickshank, widow of John the younger, late Laird of Piltochie, 
who died in London, 16 September, 1866." 

The two side lights were filled in 1874. " A thankoffering by (now Sir) Alexander 
Wilson and his wife, Isabella Adelaide Dunn." 

The middle window on the south side has as subjects — Feeding the hungry ; 
Clothing the naked ; Moses collecting the gifts for the Tabernacle ; and Solomon 
dedicating the Temple. 

It is inscribed, "In memory of James Hay of Monkshill, ob. February, 1828; 
aetat. 54." 

And on a brass plate underneath the window is the inscription — " Jane Hay, died 
24 January, 1840, aged 67. Elizabeth Hay, the last of the family, by whom the above 
window was placed in 1861, died 29 April, 1863, aged 86 years." ["Lord, I have loved 
the habitation of thy house, and the place where thine honour dwelleth."] 

The first window on the north side bears — " In affectionate memory of M. G. W,, 
departed 1864 ; and of her friend E. H., departed 1872." 

The west window is inscribed—" In piam memoriam viri vere Reverendi David 
Wilson, M.A., hujusce ecclesise per lii. annos pastoris. Obiit xiv. Nov., mdccclxxx." 

[To the pious memory of the Very Rev. David Wilson, M.A., for fifty-two years 
pastor of this church. Died 14 November, 1880.] 

On one of the altar chairs is the inscription—" The gift of Mrs. Shearer, Ardlogie." 

On one of the south buttresses is a sun-dial with the inscription — " Lex Dei Lux 
Diei." "The gift of one to whom the Dean was a dear and valued friend." 

In the churchyard, a good number of the congregation have found a last resting- 

Two granite polished stones record the following : — " The Very Rev. David Wilson, 
Dean of Aberdeen, and for fifty-two years incumbent of this church, entered into his 
rest, 14 November, 1880, aged 75 years." 

" Mary G. Skinner, wife of Dean Wilson, entered into her rest, 14 October, 1864, 
aged 58 years," " Them also which sleep in Jesus shall God bring with Him." 

Fyvie. 65 

Mrs. Wilson was the only child of the Right Rev. William Skinner, D.D., by his 
wife, Johanna Brand. 

Dean Wilson had the following children : — 

I. James Wilson died in Sydney, New South Wales, 1891, aged 57 ; married in 

1865, Edith Mary Reed, Hull, and had issue four sons and three daughters. 

II. Rev. William Skinner Wilson, B.A. of Oxon., of Merriwa and Cassillis, 

Australia, married 14 April, 1869, Jane White. He died March 3'!, 1883, 
aged 47. 

III. David Wilson, C. M. G., Commissioner of Crown lands, Trinidad, married first, 
Jane Milne ; second, Nora Kate Clyne, and has issue five sons and two 

IV. Sir Alexander Wilson, High Sheriff of Calcutta, 1887, married 1874, Isabella 
Adelaide Dunn, and had issue one son and four daughters. 

V. Charles Wilson, born 1845, died 1849. 

VI. Rev. John Skinner Wilson, B.A., Canon of Edinburgh Cathedral, married, 
1883, Lizzie Mary Clyne, and has issue five sons. 

1. Johanna, married Rev. A. A. Jenkins, of St. Peter's Church, Galashiels, and has 

issue six sons and three daughters. 

2. Mary, born 1840, died same year. 

3. Mary Grace. 

4. Elizabeth Hargreave. 

5. Alice Gordon Wilson, married to George Grant, Esq , Trinidad, West Indies. 
Another granite stone is in memory of Isabella Riddel, wife of George Roberts, died 

17 February, 187 1, aged 46 years. 

Another stone bears to be erected in memory of Isabella Caird, who died at 
Cottown of Ardlogie, 8 September, 1 880, aged 90 years. 


In ancient times there was a church here dedicated to St. Regulus. The 
chaplaincy was endowed for the soul of Adam Pyngle and others. " At 
Kirkwall, Orkney, on the 20th of January, 1365, Barnard of Rowle, Lord of 
Fole-rule, resigned the lands of Fole-rule into the hands of Hugh Ross, Lord of 
Philorth. The said Hugh Ross afterwards granted them, with consent of William, Earl 
of Ross, and Lord of Sky, his brother, to Adam Pyngle, on the 20th of August, 1376." ' 
Adam Pyngle gave these lands to the Cathedral Church of Aberdeen for the support of 
a chaplain to perform religious service for the souls of the founder, his wife, and 
Alexander, Bishop of Aberdeen, 

There existed the indications of the site of the chapel down to the year 1847, when 
the whole foundation was dug out. It was situated in a field about three or four hundred 
yards to the west from the present church and churchyard of Folia-Rule. 

The congregation now at Folia- Rule in Fyvie represents those of Daviot, Rayne, and 

Mr. Alexander Lunan, minister of Daviot, succeeded his father at Daviot in 1672. 
He was deposed in 1 716 for refusing to join in the thanksgiving for the accession of 
George I. to the throne. He married a daughter of Elphinston of Glack, by whom he 
had a large family. He was the author of two works, one on the " Holy Communion," 
and another on the " Festivals of the Church." He ministered to the church people in 
the parish of Daviot until his death about 1729.'' 

His son, Patrick Lunan, ministered at Meikle Wartle. In October 28, 1729, he was 
present at the confirmation and ordination of his relative, Mr. Alexander Lunan, by 
Bishop Gadderar, in Dr. Garden's meeting house. Old Aberdeen. ^ Mr. Lunan, at 
Wartle, is mentioned as a subscriber for Dr. Rattray's " Ancient Liturgies," published in 

His meeting house at Meikle Wartle was exceedingly well attended. A writer in 
" Stephen's Magazine," who must have heard by tradition of the state of matters says — 
" The gentles were admitted within, and as many of the poorer people as the place could 
hold." '' Those who were neither gentles nor very poor people seem to have had to 
remain outside, and sit on their stools or benches exposed to the rain and snow. 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 158. Id. Vol. III. pp. 542-3: 3 Father Lunan's Diary, MS. 

Reg. Ep. Aber. Vol. I. pp, 106-7. 4 Stephen's Magazine, Vol. I. p. 197. 

2 Jervise" Epitaphs and Inscriptions, II. p. 409. 

Fyvie. 6y 

Mr. Lunan was succeeded by the Rev. Arthur Petrie. It may be mentioned, however, 
that WiUiam Leslie, fifth Laird of Little-Folia, after having been for sometime a clergy- 
man in Ireland, returned to Scotland in 1700. About the beginning of last century, 
he took charge of the meeting house at Ellon, and remained there till the rising of 
17 15, when he retired to his estate at Little-Folia, where he ministered till his death, 
31 July, 1743, in his 64th year. A register of baptisms by him is still preserved at 

The Rev. Arthur Petrie, the successor of Mr. Patrick Lunan, was the son of Colin 
Petrie, in Auchintender, Forgue, and his wife, Isabella Alexander, a sister of Bishop 
Alexander at Alloa. He was educated in Edinburgh, and was subsequently tutor in the 
family of Walkinshaw of that ilk, near Glasgow, He was ordained deacon by Bishop 
Gerard of Aberdeen, as his assistant in 1763, and in that year was appointed to Meikle- 
Folla, where he at once commenced to build a large commodious house capable of 
containing four hundred people, so that all the flock of whatever degree had sufficient 
accommodation for worship.' 

Mr. Petrie was nominated by Bishop Falconer, as his coadjutor and successor for 
Moray, and he was consecrated at Dundee by Bishops Rait, Falconer, Kilgour, and 
Rose. Bishop Gerard, who died in 1767, left him some legacies, and in time he suc- 
ceeded to the valuable library of his uncle, Bishop Alexander at Alloa. 

Mr. Petrie was never married, and his house at Meikle-Folla (now called Folia-Rule) 
became a school of the prophets — a seminary for young men who desired to serve at the 
altars of the Episcopal Church. One of the chief acts of his Episcopate, by which he 
will be for ever remembered, was his taking part in the consecration of Bishop Seabury, 
the first Bishop of the American church. 

Bishop Petrie died April 19, 1787, in the 56th year of his age, and the eleventh of 
his consecration as Bishop of Moray. On his tombstone in Dunbennan churchyard 
there is this inscription, from the pen of John Skinner: — 

" Quem tegit hie cippus fratrum pietate locatus Arthurum Petrie, lector amice, luge, 
Praesul apud Moravios doctus, pius, atque fidelis, Dilecti et merito nominis ille fuit. Post 
vitae undena et sacri duo lustra laboris. Ah ! nimium propere, non rediturus abit. Parce 
tamen lachrymis ; melioris gaudia vitae quamque unam coluit prsemia pacis habet. Ob. 
April ipmo., 1787 ; aet. 56. Pontificatus Rossen et Moravien iimo. R.I. P." 

[Kind reader, mourn for Arthur Petrie, whom this stone, erected by the piety of his 
brethren, covers. A learned, pious, and faithful Bishop of Moray, he was deservedly 
loved. After a life of fifty-five years, and ten years of sacred work in the Episcopate, he 
departed, alas, too soon, never to return. Yet, spare your tears ; he possesses the joys 
of a better life, and the rewards of the peace he ever studiously cultivated. He died 
April 19, 1787, in the s6th year of his age, and the nth of his Episcopate of Ross and 
Moray. May he rest in peace.] 

He was succeeded at Meikle-Folla by Rev. James Innes, M.A., who was a brother of 

I Craven's Moray, p. 123. 

68 TJie TJianage of Fermartyn. 

Rev. John Innes, of Forgue. He married Helen, daughter of George Leslie of Little- 
Folia. In his time the present church was erected about 1796, on a site given by Mr. 
Leslie of Rothie, and an aisle to accommodate the still increasing congregation was after- 
wards erected. A parsonage was also built by Mr. Innes. He died 4th November, 1826. 

A tablet was placed in the church bearing this inscription — " In memory of Rev. 
James Innes, for forty years the faithful and respected pastor of the Episcopal congrega- 
tion of Meikle-FoUa, born 16 July, 1761, died 4 November, 1826. Also of Helen 
Leslie, his spouse, only daughter of George LesHe of Little-Folia, born 25 January, 1775, 
died 15 November, 1851 ; who, with their infant son, James, who died 7 March, 1820, 
aged five months, lie interred in the churchyard of Rayne." 

" Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give unto thee a crown of life." 

Mr. Innes was succeeded by Rev. Charles Grant, then incumbent of Portsoy. 
In his time a chancel was erected, and an organ placed in the church, the gift of William 
Leslie, Esq. of Warthill. Mr. Grant resigned in 1851, and was succeeded by Rev. 
Alexander Leslie, M.A. 

The chancel window of three lights is filled with plain stained glass. 

One of the windows in the nave on the south side is filled with very rich stained 
glass representing the Resurrection. 

On the sill of the window are three brasses, placed in memory of the Leslies of 
Rothie, and bearing the following inscriptions : — 

"In memory of Robert Leslie of Rothie, born 13 February, 1775, ^i^^ ^^ February, 
1 86 1. This window was placed in the Episcopal Church at Meikle-Folla, in October, 
1864, by his sorrowing widow, Barbara Leslie." 

" In memory of Barbara Leslie, born 14 June, 1796, died 22 May, 1873." 

" In memory of James Leslie of Rothie, born 30 September, 1 763, died 20 June, 

" In memory of George Leslie of Rothie, born 17 July, 1765, died 12 January, 1842. 
Jonathan Leslie, born 30 January, 1774, died 4 October, 1852." 

There is a tablet of white marble in memory of William Leslie of Warthill, the last 
M.P. for the whole county of Aberdeen, with this inscription — " To the beloved memory 
of William Leslie of Warthill, born 16 March, 1814, died 4th March, 1880. This tablet 
is placed by his sorrowing widow. 'Till He come.' — i Cor. xi. 26." 

In 1863, a beautifully laid out churchyard was presented to the church by the late 
Lieut.-Col. Jonathan Forbes Leslie of Rothienorman. The following are some of those 
who have been laid to rest in it. 

A very handsome cross in the centre of the churchyard is to the memory of the 
donor of the " God's acre." It bears the inscription — " In memory of Jonathan Forbes 
Leslie, late Lieut.-Colonel of the 78th Highlanders, youngest son of John Forbes of 
Blackford, born February 22, 1798, died December 23, 1877. Margaret, widow of 
Jonathan Forbes Leslie, and eldest daughter of John Urquhart, Esq. of Craigston, born 
January 12, 1800, died October 15, 1882." 

Fyvie. 69 

A stone of Peterhead granite is in memory of James Hall, teacher, Medaple, who 
died 22 November, 1875, ^S^d 74. "A true Christian, whose labours were devoted for 
twenty-three years to the best interests of his pupils, by whom this stone is erected 
in affectionate remembrance." 

He was the author of " The War of Life " in two volumes, and is worthy of a place 
among the bards of Aberdeenshire. 

A massive cross records the death of Rev. George Walker, M.A., late vicar of Bel- 
ford, Northumberland, who fell asleep in Jesus, at St. Andrew's Parsonage, Banff, 
February 24, 1883, aged 64 years. *' He giveth His beloved sleep." 

Mr. Walker left a fund of ^1^500 to the Scotch Episcopal Friendly Society, the 
interest of which is to be devoted annually to such of the clergy of the Diocese of Aber- 
deen, as may be incapacitated for work by sickness. Should it not be all required for 
this purpose, the balance, if any, is to go to the funds of the society. 

A handsome granite cross is in memory of Margaret, wife of Rev. J. R. Leslie, M.A., 
All Saints, Buckie, who died May 9, 1882, aged 29. Thomas Turnbull, their son, died 
August 28, 1880, aged 8 years. 

An inscription on a granite curbstone round the grave is in memory of Norman 
Robert Leslie, born February 7, died June 3, 1875. Helen Evelyn Leslie, born 
I March, died April 17, 1877. These are children of Rev. Alexander Leslie, rector of 

A handsome granite cross is in memory of Alexander Leith of Freefield and Glen- 
kindie, died 14 July, 1886, aged 68 years. " I look for the resurrection of the dead, 
and the life of the world to come," 

A small granite headstone is to the memory of James Beattie, shoemaker, Gordons- 
town, who died 27 June, 1857, aged 84. Mr. Beattie, for more than forty years, taught, 
whilst engaged at his employment, a school, where most of the young people in the 
district received the rudiments of their education. 

C R I C H I E. 

Crichie was for many years a separate property, and had a house upon it, mentioned 
by Sir Samuel Forbes in his notice of the district of Formartine.' The property 
has now, however, been merged into the estates of the Earl of Aberdeen and that of 

Before 1500, we find a portion of it belonging to the Cheynes of Straloch. In 1499, 
there is the confirmation by King James IV. of a charter by John Cheyne of Straloch 
to his grandson, Alexander Cheyne, and his wife, Katharine Meldrum, of the half of 
Crichnalade — excepting, however, the lands of Easter and Myddil Crichie. Three years 
after, 1503, they get a sasine of the shady half of Easter Crichie, Crichnalade, and half 
of the mill.^ And in 1548, we find the Laird of Straloch (Cheyne) taxed for his part of 
the lands of Chrichie, forty shillings.^ 

About this time it was disponed to JameS Gordon of Lesmoir, who gave it to 
his second son. 

II. James Gordon of Crichie. 

He married a daughter of Barclay of Gartly, and had issue — 

I. George, his successor. 

II. Mr. James, a Jesuit priest. 

James Gordon died in 1553, and was succeeded by his son. 

III. George Gordon of Crichie. 

He was served heir to his father, James Gordon of Crichie, in a fourth part of the 
lands of Easter Crichie, a fourth part of the lands of Middil Crichie, and a fourth 
part of the lands of Crichnalade, in the barony of Crichie.* 

George Gordon married Catherine M'Intosh, by whom he had issue one son, Adam 
Gordon of Boghole. 

He repudiated Catherine M'Intosh, and married Jean, daughter of Gordon of Gight, 
by whom he had issue two sons and two daughters. 

There is also the following retour : — John Gordon, son of umquhrle George Gordon 
in Knocleith, is served heir of Alexander Gordon, burgess of Aberdeen, his uncle, in 

1 Ant. A. and B. Vol. I. p. 20. 3 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 118. 

2 Id., III. p. 555. 4 Ret. Spec. Aber. No. 19. 

Fyvie. 71 

eight ox-gang of the lands of Crichnalade, within the parish of Fyvie ; lands of Roger- 
seat lying ad umbram ; the half of Crichnalade called the Overseitts of Crichnalade, 
within the foresaid parish of Fyvie. January 12, 1579.' 

What relation this George Gordon was to the former Gordon of Crichie it is impos- 
sible to say, but the Gordons soon parted with Crichie, and we find another as proprie- 
tor of a portion of the lands, viz. : — John Robertson, 

" In 1595, there is a charter granted by John Robertson of Monquhiche, burgess of 
Aberdeen, of the half of the shady half of the town and lands of Crichie and mill 
thereof, in favour of Alexander Ewen. 

Ewen does not seem to retain these long, for in 1597 he sells the shady half of the 
lands of Easter Crichie and Middil Crichie to John Urquhart, tutor of Cromarty ; ^ arid 
nearly a hundred years after this date, we find John Urquhart is served heir to his 
father, Adam Urquhart of Meldrum, in the lands and barony of Meldrum, the lands of 
Saphoch, Muirs of Fyvie, and the lands of Crichie, &c.'* 

The author of the view of the Diocese says that Crichie formerly belonged to the 

Its " disjecta membra " seem to have had more than one proprietor several times, 
and Crichie now belongs part to the Earl of Aberdeen, and part to Mr. Forbes Leith of 

1 Ret. Spec. No. 527. 4 Ret. Spec. Aber. No. 481 

2 Ant. A. and B. III. 556. 5 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 494. 

3 Id. 

G I G H T. 

And there they stand as stands a lofty mind, 

Worn, but unstooping to the baser crowd ; 

All tenantless save to the crannying wind. 

Or holding dark communion with the cloud. 

Banners on high, and battles passed below ; 

But they who fought are in a bloody shroud, 

And those which waved are shredless dust ere now. 

And the bleak battlements shall bear no future blow. 

— Byron'. 

The ancient ruined tower and fortalice of Gight is situated on the north bank of the 
Ythan, in the parish of Fyvie and Thanage of Fermartyn. The two chief castles of 
Fermartyn were Fyvie and Tolquhon, both of them built long before Gight. Fyvie 
alone had a right to be called Fermartyn Castle, and regarding the assumption of the 
name to Gight, a writer remarks — "We regret to see this inappropriate appellation 
applied to it. Gight comes sanctioned by many interesting associations, from which it 
ought never to be divorced." ' 

The Castle of Gight overlooks the braes of Gight, a wide and picturesque ravine, 
through which the Ythan flows. The estate became about the year 1497, the property 
of William Gordon, third son of George, second Earl of Huntly, by a sister of the third 
Earl of Errol. Sir Patrick Maitland, the then baron of Gight, died, leaving two 
daughters, and Earl George got the gift of the ward of their marriage. His second son 
William not being willing to marry either of the heiresses. Earl George provided them 
with other husbands, with whom he transacted for the lands of Gight and Schivas, 
which he gave to his son the said William. 

With regard to this transaction, there is the following account in Eraser's " Bairds of 
Auchmedden " : — *' Upon the death of Sir Patrick Maitland of Gight, his estate fell 
under precognition, because of unwary securities given to creditors. George, second 
Earl of Huntly, got the gift of it from King James H. Sir Patrick left two daughters by 
his lady, daughter to Sir Robert Innes of that ilk. The Earl gave the eldest, Janet, in 
marriage to Thomas Baird, her cousin german, and with her the lands of Ordinhivas, 
Drumnakeith, &c. ; and he gave Sir Patrick Maitland's other daughter to Annand of 
Auchterellon." ' As mentioned above, the Earl of Huntly gave Gight to his second son. 

I Pratt's Buchan, p. 302 a Ftaser's Bairds of Auchmedden, p.'ia. 

Fyvie. J I 

I. William Gordon of Gight. 

He iiuirrieil Janet, daughter of Ogilvic of Boyiie, and had issue : 

I. George Gordon of Schivas. 

II. James Gordon of Caimbannoch. 

III. John Gordon of Ardmachar. 

I. , married to John (Jrant of Ballindalloch." 

The foresaid WiHiani Gordon was killed at Flodden, and was succeeded by his son. 

II. George Gordon of Gight. 

He married a daughter of Robert Gordon of Fetterletler, who was brother to Gordon 
of Haddo. George Gordon built the house of Gight, and died without issue. 
He was succeeded by his brother. 

III. James Gordon of Oairnbannoch and of Gight. 

He married a daughter of Cheyne of Straloch, and h*ad issue : — 
I. Alexander, his successor. 

n. William, who perished in the water of Bogie, without succession. 
The aforesaid James Gordon of Caimbannoch and Gight was succeeded by 
his son. 

IV. Alexander Gordon of Gight. 

He married Agnes, daughter of Cardinal Beaton, and had issue one daughter, 
married to George Hume, Earl of Dunbar. 

He was killed on the shore of Dundee by the Master of Forbes, and the goodman 
of Towie, Gordon of Gight, and the laird of Towie are said to have killed each other. 

The succession then opened up to the eldest son of John Gordon of Ardmachar, 
who married the daughter of James Gordon, first laird of Lesmoir, by whom he had issue : 

I. William Gordon, who succeeded to Gight. 

II. Captain John Gordon, who was killed at Donibristle, in the celebrated 

attack made on that house by the Earl of Huntly, when the Earl of 
Moray was killed. 

III. Alexander, killed in the wars of Holland. 

IV. George, killed by the Master of Monteith. 

I Balbithan.MS 

74 The Thanage of Fermattyn. 

I. Margaret, married to Alexander Chalmers of Strichen, and had issue by him 

one son (see Chalmers of Monkshill) ; secondly to Fraser. a brother 

of Fraser of Philorth. 

2. , married Hay, and after his death she also married Fraser, 

a brother of Fraser of Philorth. 

3. , married Sinclair of Auchynachie. 

4. , married Garden of Banchory. 

5. , married Keith of Clachriach. 

6. , married a brother of Gordon of Haddo. 

' V. William Gordon of Gight. 

He married Isobel, a daughter of Ochterlony of Kelly, by whom he had a large 
family of seven sons and seven daughters. 

I. George, his successor. In the life-time of his father, he was called of Gight. 

In 1578, George Gordon of Gight is caution for himself that he will appear 
personally before the Privy Council at any time at a month's warning, and 
also that he and his kin, his tenants and servants, shall keep good rule in 
the countrie, in the meantime, under the penalty of ;^5ooo.- 

II. John, of Ardlownie. 

III. William, killed in Turriff. 

IV. Patrick. 

V. Adam, killed by Francis Hay of Logierieve.^ 

VI. Alexander. 

VII. Robert. 

I. , married to Sir Adam Gordon of Park and Glenbucket. 

, married Mowat of Balquholly. 

, married Alexander Innes of Cults. 

, married James Cheyne of Pennin. 

, married Leith of Harthill. 

, married first, Alexander Gordon of TuUoch ; second, Thomas 

Gordon of Pittendreich, brother to Gordon of Cluny. 

7. , married George Gordon of Hallhead. 

William Gordon of Gight died 1605, and was succeeded by his eldest son. 

VI. George Gordon of Gight. 

From the above record from the Privy Council, he was called of Gight in 1578, the 
fee of the estate having probably been made over to him by his father. 

1 Balbithan MS. 3 See Art. Logierieve. 

2 Priv. Council Rec. III. pp. 102-220. 

Fyvie. 75 

In 1606, he is served heir to his father, William Gordon, in the lands and town of 
liadichcl, ivc, in the barony of Fyvic. 

lie married a daughter of Wood of IJonnilon in Angus, and had issue two sons and 
three daughters. 

1. Gteorge Gordon. 

II. Clordon 

I. , married to William Hay, brother of the Earl of Errol. 

2. Barbara, married to Sir John Turing of Foveran. 
3. , married to Innes of Coxton.' 

After the death of the daughter of Wood of Bonniton, he married Aberncthy, 
daughter of Lord Saltoun, by whom he had issue, one son and one daughter. 

George Gordon was a Roman Catholic, and the Privy Council was engaged in 
trying to bring him to justice for several Popish practices, of which he was alleged to 
have been guilty.^ " It was charged against him that at the burial of his mother, Isobel 
Ochterlony, on a particular day, in the year 1605, he caused his tenant, David Wilson, 
to carry ane crucifix upon ane spear immediately before the corpse. In like manner, at 
the burial of William Gordon ofGight in 1605, he had caused George Crawford, his 
servant, to bear ane crucifix upon ane spear the haill way before the body, he being 
personallie present on both occasions, whereby as he had offended God, slanderit his 
Kirk and Holy ministry ; sae he has committed a very great contempt against his 
Majesty, and has violated his Highness' laws and acts of parliament." 

3 In 1 6 14, the Lairds of Gight and Newton, both Gordons and both Roman 
Catholics, were sentenced by the Privy Council to perpetual banishment, never 
to set foot in Scotland, under pain of death, unless they submit themselves to the order 
of the Kirk. 

George Gordon ofGight died in 1641, and was succeeded by his son. 

VII. Sir George Gordon of Gight. 

He married a daughter of Lord Ogilvy, and had issue, two sons and a daughter. 

I. George Gordon. 

II. Gordon. 

I. Gordon. 

He was succeeded by his son. 

VIII. Sir George Gordon of Gight. 

He married a daughter of Keith of Ludquharn. This marriage produced a schism 
in the family, and a variance with his mother. The young laird alleged that 

1 Balbithan MS. 3 Priv. Council Rec. 1614. 

2 Chambers' Domestic Annals I. p. 404. 

y6 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

his father had never been infeft in the lands, and that consequently he had a right to 
the fee of the estate. His mother refused to give up the papers, and in consequence of 
this resolution, young Gight, with the assistance of his father-in-law, Keith of Ludquharn, 
attacked his father's house with the intention of taking forcible possession. The Marquis 
of Huntly, at the request of the Earl of Airly, agreed to act as arbiter in this dispute, 
which ended in an amicable settlement. 

From Spalding we read, "that the same nicht (Monday, May 6, 1644) that Kelly 
was rendered, the camp rode to Gight both horse and foot ; but the same was also 
rendered upon the morn. The young laird escapes with two or three. The old laird is 
kept beside Haddoch, and his soldiers set at liberty. There is a captain with twenty- 
four soldiers put within the place of Gight, which were well provided with meat and 
drink and other necessaries ; and wherein there was store of ammunition, powder and 
ball, with victual in girnels abundantlie." ' 

Sir George Gordon was succeeded by his son, also 

IX. Sir George Gordon of Gight. 

He married Elizabeth Urquhart of Meldrum, by whom he had an only daughter, 
heiress of the estate. He died 169 — , and was succeeded by 

X. Mary Gordon of Gight. 

She was married in 1701 '' to Alexander Davidson of Newton, son of Alexander 
Davidson of Newton by Isobel Leslie. They had issue : — 

I. Alexander, who succeeded, taking the name of Gordon. 

1. Elizabeth, married 1767, to Alexander Innes of Breda and Cowie. 

2. Jean, married to Andrew Robertson of Foveran. 

Alexander Davidson of Newton and Tillymorgan, and Mary Gordon of Gight were 
succeeded by their eldest son. 

XI. Alexander Davidson Gordon of Gight. 

He was retoured in 1735 to his father, Alexander Davidson of Newton, who died 
1 7 12, heir male special in Newton and Wrangham, Glennieston and Melvinside.^ 

In 1740, he was retoured to his mother, Mary Gordon of Gight, as heir male and 
provision general, '' and in 1735, ^^ ^^^ served heir to his uncle, JameS Davidson of 
Tillymorgan, who died September 17, 1720.^ 

1 Spalding's Troubles II. p. 357. 4 Decen. Rets. 1740. 

2 Fyvie Register of Marriages, Reg. Ho. Edinb. 5 Id. 1720. 

3 Decen. Rets. 1733. 

Fyvie. 77 

He married Margaret, daughter of 1*. UufT of Craigst(jn, by whom he had the 
following issue : — 

I. George, who succeeded. 

II. Captain Alexander Davidson, who bore that surname only, his father settling 

on him the estate of Newton, to which, though under age at his father's 
death, he succeeded in 1760, in terms of the entail. He married Jean 
Dalrymple of Logie-Elphinstone, by whom he had two daughters, who died 
HI. Patrick. 

IV. John. 

V. William. 

VI. James. 

VII. Archibald, Lieutenant 53rd (Oeneral Dalrymple Home's) regiment. He 
infeofled by precept of clare constat in 1787 his niece, Mrs. Catharine 
Gordon or Byron, in the lands of Melvinside, Glennieston, and others in 
the parish of Culsalmond, of which lands he was superior. He appears to 
have been unmarried. 

VIII. Robert. 

IX. Adam. 

1. Elizabeth, who died at Banff, June 12, 1824. 

2. Mary. 

3. Margaret.' 

Ale!?ander Davidson Gordon of Gight died January, 1760, and was succeeded by his 

XII. George Gordon of Gight. 

He was served heir to his father, April 18, 1760. He married his cousin, Catharine 
Duff of Craigston, and died in 1777, leaving an only daughter.- 

XIII. Catharine Gordon of Gight. 

She married 1786 (7 ?), Captain John Byron, by whom she had an only child. 

XIV. Right Hon. George Gordon Byron, Lord Byron. 

The poet succeeded his great grand-uncle as sixth Lord Byron in 1798. He 
married 2 January, 18 15, Anne Isabella, only child of Sir Ralph Millbank Noel, 
Bart., and Baroness Wentvvorth in her own right (died i860), by whom he had only one 

I Tombstone, Fyvie Churchyard. 2 Decen. Rets. 1760. 

78 TJie TJianage of Fermartyn. 

Lord Byron died at Missolonghi, Greece, 19 April, 1824. His daughter, 

XV. Hon. Ada Augusta Noel Byron, 

married, in 1835, William, Earl of Lovelace, and died in 1852, predeceasing her mother. 
I^dy Lovelace left issue, besides a daughter, Lady Anne King Noel, married to Wilfred 
S, Blunt, Esq. — two sons : — 

L Byron Noel, who succeeded his grandmother in i860 as Baron Wentworth, 

and died i860. 
II. Ralph Gordon Noel Millbank, who succeeded his brother as 12th Baron 
Wentworth. As heir-apparent of the Earl of Lovelace, he also bears the 
courtesy title of Viscount Ockham. 

XVI. Viscount Ockham, Baron Wentworth, 

is heir of line and representative of the families of Gordon of Gight and Davidson of 

The estate of Gight, soon after the marriage of Miss Gordon and Captain Byron, 
was sold, and merged into the estates of the Earl of Aberdeen. 


The proprietor of these lands is Major General Charles David Chalmers, of the 
Royal Artillery. 

These lands formed part of the possessions of the Priory of Fyvie, the superior of 
which was the Abbot of the Monastery of St. Thomas, Arbroath. 

Monkshill, along with the Kirklands of Fyvie and Tarves, was leased by George, 
Abbot of Arbroath, in 1508, to Sir Alexander Mason, monk, for his life-time.' In 1568, 
on the representation by Queen Mary to the Commendator and Convent of Arbroath, 
Sir George Gordon of Schivas was appointed hereditary tenant of the lands of Monks- 
hill, the Kirklands, the Mill and Brewlands held by George, formerly Lord Gordon. 
This was after Corrichie ; but the Earl of Huntly afterwards received a pardon 
for himself and friends, and was restored to these lands.- In 1625, James, Marquis of 
Hamilton, is served heir to his father, James, Marqufs of Hamilton, in the lands of 
Cairnbroggie, the Kirktown of Tarves, &c., within the barony of Tarves ; and the lands 
of Monkshill, the Kirktown of Fyvie, the Mill of Fyvie, Ardlogie, Mundurno, with the 
tithes within the barony of Fyvie.^ George, Earl of Panmure, Lord of Brichen and 
Navar, is served heir, in 1662, to his father, Patrick, Earl of Panmure, in the lands of 
Cairnbroggie, Cairnfechil, Kirktown of Tarves,"within the barony and parish of the same; 
the lands of Monkshill, the Kirktown of Fyvie, witlr the Mill, Ardlogie, &c., within the 
parish of Fyvie.* His son George is served heir, in 1671, to the same lands in much 
the same terms.^ Probably the Hamilton and Panmure families had only the superiority. 
Before 1686, Monkshill was wadset to 

Robert Dunbar, Mill of Balcairn. 

He married Marion Leslie, daughter of umquhile James Leslie of Chapeltown. The 
marriage contract is dated at Craigie, Tarves, 1680,'^ They had issue one son at least. 

II. Alexander Dunbar of Monkshill. 

He is served heir to his father, Robert Dunbar, who died in 1686, in the lands of 
Balcairn and Monkshill, under date May 10, 1700.' In 1702, Alexander Dunbar received 

1 Ant. A. and B. IH. p. 59. 5 Ret. Spec. 402. 

2 Id. p. 550. 6 Mar. Cont. in Monkshill Charter Chest 

3 Ret. Spec. Abd. 189. 7 Decen. Rets. 1700. 

4 Id. 359- 

8o The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

from Mary Gordon of Gight and George Gordon, her husband, a precept of " clare 
constat," whereby the town and lands of Monkshill are declared redeemable by them as 
superiors for the sum of three thousand merks. In this precept the lands are said to be 
in conform to a disposition by Adam Urquhart of Meldrum.' In 1705, Alexander 
Dunbar receives from Lady Jane, Countess of Dunfermline, a lease of the town and 
lands of Tiftie and Mill of Gourdas, on the same terms as they were possessed by 
William Smith.* He married Elizabeth Smith, a sister of said William, and of " Tiftie's 
Annie." Alexander Dunbar of Monkshill died about 1735, and left a son. 

III. William Dunbar of Monkshill. 

3 He was served heir in 1735 to his father, Alexander Dunbar. Soon after his acces- 
sion, Alexander Gordon of Gight redeems from Elizabeth Smith and her son, William 
Dunbar, the wadset of Monkshill, paying up the three thousand merks due thereon.'* 
Before 1744, William Dunbar, who had leased the farm of Tiftie, had died. In that 
year the Earl of Aberdeen grants to George Dunbar, in Newseat of Ardoch, a lease of 
Tiftie and Mill of Gourdas. This George Dunbar was a brother of the said William. 
He is mentioned in another lease of the same lands of date 1776, given by Colonel 
Hon. William Gordon of Fyvie. He died 1794.^ 

The Dunbars have long since passed from Fyvie, though there are still descendants. 
The present incumbent of Fyvie, Rev. Dr. Milne, is descended from a Dunbar of 
Balcairn and Monkshill. 

In 1744, Alexander Gordon of Gight sold these lands to 

William Fordyce of Auquhorthies. 

This William Fordyce was married first to Isobel Davidson, a sister of Mr. Alexander 
Gordon's; and second to Margaret Cochran. In the case of selling the lands, a condi- 
tion was made that the first offer had to be made to Mr, Gordon. William Fordyce 
was succeeded by his son. 

II. William Fordyce of Monkshill. 

He was a captain in H.M. Marines. He married, and had issue at least two 
daughters. On behalf of his second daughter, he burdened the lands with a payment of 
four thousand merks Scots, to be paid on her majority, or on her marriage, whichsoever 
should first happen after the death of his stepmother, Margaret Cochran.^ In 1768, 
Captain Fordyce sold the lands to George Gordon of Gight, and the burden of four 
thousand merks was discharged by payment of the said sum to Isobel Fordyce.^ 

1 Monkshill Charters. 4 Monkshill Charters. 

2 Id. 5 Lease penes Monkshill. 

3 Decen. Rets. 1735. 6 Monkshill Charters. 

Fyvie, 8i 

George Gordon of Gight and Monkshill died 1787, and was succeeded by his only 

Mrs. Catharine Gordon or Byron. 

She married Captain John Byron. She is served heir to her father, George Gordon, 
in the lands of Gight and others, September 30, 1785.' On 10 March, 1787, Mrs. 
Byron, with consent of her husband. Captain John Byron, in consideration of ;^84o, 
sold the lands of Monkshill, as also the superiority, or " dominium rectum," of two half- 
net's fishing in the river Don, as described in a charter of resignation, dated 12 February, 
1742, in favour of William Fordyce," to 

James Hay, Bridgend, Fyvie. 

He was factor to the Earl of Aberdeen and others. He died on 10 February, 1807, 
leaving issue : — 

I. James Hay, his successor. 

1. Jane, died 24 January, 1840, aged 67. 

2. Elizabeth, died 20 April, 1863, aged 87. 
Mr Hay was succeeded by his son, 

II. James Hay of Monkshill, 

He was served heir to his father, 17 May, 1809. In 1827, he disponed these lands, 
with the two half-net's fishing on the river Don above-mentioned, to Charles Chalmers, 
Esq., advocate, Aberdeen, the entry thereto to be at the first Whitsunday after Mr. Hay's 
death. The lands were burdened with an annuity to Mr. Hay's sisters, and after their 
deaths, with a payment of jQzo annually to the Episcopal clergyman of Woodhead ; 
also with the payment of ^^ annually to a fund for keeping the church and parsonage 
at Woodhead in repair. In case of there being no church at Woodhead, these annuities 
were to be devoted to the poor of Fyvie.^ 

Mr. Hay died February 24, 1828, and was succeeded in Monkshill by the above- 

Charles Chalmers. 

The following is his descent : — King David II. granted a charter in 1329 to William 
de Camera of the lands of Thomastown, FuUertown, Kinkell, and Dyce. These lands 
were sold by his descendant, Alexander Chalmer of Balnacraig, to Henry Forbes.* He 
married and had issue, 

II. Robert Chalmer of Balnacraig. 

1 Decen. Ret. 1785. _ 3 Monkshill Charters. 

2 Monkshill Charter. 4 Charters Reg. Ho, Edinburgh. 

82 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

He had the lands of Kintore, &c. He married Helen Garviehaugh. On August 8, 
1357, Robert Chalmer of Kintore and Helen Garviehaugh, his spouse, obtain a charter 
from Isobel Ranulph, Countess of Moray, to the lands of Balnacraig and Telanchsyn.' 
James Garviehaugh, Knight, had a charter to the above lands from Thomas Ranulph, 
Earl of Moray, confirmed by Duncan, Earl of Fife. In 1361, July 20, there is a charter 
of confirmation of the above charter to Robert de Camera by Isobel Ranulph, Countess 
of Moray. They had issue : — 

I. John, of Balnacraig. He was of Balnacraig long before 1425. 

He died in that year, as there is a retour to him of that date by his son, 
Andrew de Camera. Balnacraig remained in the possession of this branch 
of the family down to 1757, when it was sold by Ann Chalmers, the only 
child of Robert Chalmers, the 17th of Balnacraig, to Francis Farquharson 
of Finzean, who had obtained an adjudication against her for ;^36o3 5s. 7d. 
sterling, and she was obliged to execute a disposition of these lands in his 
favour. She married John Leith, coppersmith, Aberdeen, to whom she 
had a large family. 

II. William, clerk of Justiciary Rolls, 1368. He had a charter of 

Easter Ruthven, 1356 ; Murthill from Adam, Bishop of Aberdeen, in 
T388 ; ^ Fyndon in 1390. He married and had issue : — 

I. Thomas, of whom afterwards. 

II. William, Provost of Aberdeen. 

III. Symon. 

III. Thomas Chalmers of Murthill. 

The eldest son of the above William Chalmer had, in 1402, a charter of Murthill 
from Gilbert, Bishop of Aberdeen, in which he is designated as son of William de 
Camera.^ In 141 2, he was elected Provost of Aberdeen. He married Elizabeth 
Blinseill, and had issue : — 

I. Alexander, of whom afterwards. 

II. William Chalmer. 

III. Robert Chalmer. 

IV. Richard Chalmer. 

He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

IV. Alexander Chalmer of Murthill. 

Of him there is this record on a monument erected in St. Nicholas Church. " Hie 
jacet providus et honorabilis vir Alexander de Camera de Murthill, Prepositus hujus 
burgi de Aberdene qui obiit , die mensis Octobris a.d. mcccclxiii." 

1 Nisbet's Heraldry, Vol. II. 3 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 205, 

2 Reg. Ep. Aber. Vol. I. p. 183. and Burgh Register. 

Fyvie. 83 

He was Provost from 1 443-1 446. He married Agnes Hay (according to Nisbet's 
Heraldry), a daughter of the Earl of Errol. They had issue : — 

I. Alexander, of whom afterwards. 

II. Gilbert. 

III. John. 

IV. Thomas, baillie of Aberdeen, died circa 1488. 

Alexander Chalmer of Murthill died 1463, and was succeeded by his son, 

V. Alexander Chalmer of Murthill. 

He had also Cults. He was Provost of Aberdeen at various times, 1467-1495. He 
was witness to a charter, February 11, 1478, of the lands of Windmillhills, by William, 
Earl Marischall, to William do Camera of Balnacraig. He married first, Janet Leslie, 
a daughter of John Leslie of that ilk; second, Elizabeth Cullen. He died 1497, and 
left issue : — 

' I. Alexander, of Murthill, Cults, and Little Methlic. He married 
Elizabeth Douglas of Glenbervie ; secondly, Margaret Mathewson. He 
was admitted a burgess of Aberdeen. According to Nisbet, he also 
possessed Strichen ; but this was not thejcase, .it was his brother Thomas 
who was laird of Strichen. Alexander had a son Thomas who succeeded 
him, 1505, in Cults and Little Methlic. 

II. Thomas, of Strichen, of whom afterwards. 

III. William. 
I. Elizabeth. 

We now come to 

VI. Thomas Chalmer of Strichen, 

the second son of Alexander Chalmer of Cults and Murthill, provost of Aberdeen. He 
is mentioned in a marriage contract of date February 22, 1497, between John Knox of 
Auchorthy, and a daughter of John Chalmer of Auchcorry. In it he is called superior 
of the lands of Auchorthy.'' Thomas Chalmer of Strichen died July i, 1504, and was 
succeeded by his son, 

VII. John Chalmer of Strichen. 

He is served heir in 1504 to his father, Thomas Chalmer of Strichen, in the lands of 
Strichen with their pertinents ; the fourth part of the lands of Rosthevcot with their 
pertinents. Among the jury are John Dumbrek of that ilk, and John Gardin of 
Laithers, &c.^ He had issue at least two. sons : — 

I Reg. Ep. Aber. I. 319. 3 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 383. 

a Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 65. 

84 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

I. Andrew, his successor. 

II. Duncan, Chancellor of Ross. 
John Chalmer was succeeded by his son, 

VIII. Andrew Chalmer of Strichen. 

He married Christian Fraser. They are 'mentioned in a crown charter, of date 
1538, of James V. to Andrew Chalmer, son and apparent heir of John Chalmer, and to 
Christine Fraser, his spouse, of the whole lands of Strichen with the mill ; a fourth part 
of all the lands of Rostheveot with their pertinents lying in the regality of the Garioch, to 
be held by the said Andrew and Christine his spouse, and the longest liver.' 

In 1554, Andrew Chalmer reserves the life-rent to himself and his spouse, Christine 
Fraser, of the lands and barony and mill of Strichen in a charter given to his grand- 
son (nepos) Alexander Chalmer.'' 

Andrew Chalmer and Christian Fraser had issue : — 

I. William, heir-apparent, who died in the life-time of his father. 

II. David, of Ormonde. According to an account preserved amongst 

the Hatfield MS., as reported in one of the Historical MSS. Commission 
Reports, he was educated with his uncle, the Chancellor of Ross, who 
defrayed the expenses of his education in Paris and Lorraine. David, on 
his return to Scotland, became servant to Earl Bothwell. By Both well he 
was promoted to the Provostry of Creightoune. He was also by his means 
made a Senator of the College of Justice. He was a great dealer between 
the Queen and Bothwell. This and other presumptions gave cause to 
Lord Lennox, in his letters to the Queen, to accuse David Chalmer as 
culpable and participate in the murder of the King, his own son. After 
Carberry Hill, when Bothwell fled, David Chalmer also withdrew himself 
and went abroad. He was along with others " forfault " in Parliament. 
He was, however, restored to his place as a Lord of Session. He married 
Elizabeth Chalmer and had issue a son, William Chalmer of Ormonde. 

III. George, who received from his father sasine infefting him in the 
lands of Newtone of Strichen ; married Christian Innes ; had issue Patrick 
of Newtone, John, and Gilbert. 

IV. Gilbert, of Auquhortie. He married Janet Pittendreich. In a 
certain deed he is called " filius naturalis " of Andrew Chalmer, an 
expression which, taken by itself, would not have proved him illegitimate.^ 
His son William had claims on Strichen. 

We now come to William Chalmer, the eldest son and apparent heir of Andrew 
Chalmer of Strichen and his wife Christian Frgser. Of him no chartulary evidence has 

1 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 582. 3 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 583. 

2 Id. p. 583. 

Fyvie. 85 

been found. (See Section X.) Ho is mentioned in Anderson's " History of the 
Frasers," and he is there called William Chalmer of Strichen ; but he was only son and 
apparent heir. He married Isobel Forbes, a daughter of Forbes of Corfurdie, and had 
issue by her at least one son, Alexander Chalmer, mentioned in the charter of 
1554. formerly quoted. 

Isobel Forbes, according to Anderson, after the death of William Chalmer, married 
Thomas Fraser of the family of Philorth, who soon assumed the title of Fraser of 
Strichen. There is no doubt, Isobel Forbes, the widow of William Chalmer, had a 
certain interest in the lands of Strichen. In 1554, as already mentioned, there is a 
charter to Alexander Chalmer (nepos), grandson and apparent heir of Andrew Chalmer 
of Strychine, with the milne and the multures, under reservation of a life-rent to the said 
Andrew Chalmer and Christiane Fraser, his spouse. There is also a Crown charter of 
these lands." Four years after this date the lands are sold. There is a charter 
" consanguineo Thomce Fraser," son of Alexander Fraser of Philorth, of the lands of 
Burrahill, Humbie's Came, Farnybrae, Auchnary, Quhythill, and the come mill of 
Strichen, 11 May, 1558. In that year there is a confirmation charter to the said 
Thomas Fraser of the Dominical lands of Strichen, and the mylne of Strichen.'' 

The estate of Strichen thus passed from the family of Chalmer to that of Fraser. 
AVhat pressure, if any, had been brought to bear on Alexander Chalmer by his mother 
and stepfather, Thomas Fraser, towards the sale of the lands does not appear ; but, at 
anyrate, the sale of the lands, according to Anderson, caused great disappointment to 
the Chalmer family. George Chalmer, the brother of \Villiam Chalmer, was abroad, 
and not likely to return. The Chalmer family in their necessity had recourse to Gordon 
of Gight, whose daughter or sister was the second wife of the said Alexander Chalmer. 
Gordon of Gight and Thomas Fraser met at the Bridge of Deer with the hope of effect- 
ing a settlement ; but the overtures of either party were met with contempt. Gordon in 
a rage followed after Fraser, and coming up behind him at the Bridge of Deer, laid him 
dead with one blow of his two-edged sword. 

To avenge her cause, Isobel Forbes, now for the second time a widow, detailed her 
woes to Thomas Fraser of Knockie. He listened to her complaint, used all his interest 
on her behalf, and, in spite of the position of the Earl of Huntly, had Gight, his 
kinsman, condemned ; but he was ultimately released, on payment of five thousand 
merks as an assythement for the murder. Gight was afterwards killed at the battle of 

It was Thomas Fraser of Knockie's turn now to play the suitor, and Isobel Forbes, 
in gratitude for his services, again becomes a wife. Thomas Fraser, in order to prevent 
further disputes, endeavoured to get matters judicially settled.^ An agreement was 
come to with his wife's two daughters, who, in 1590-91, disponed to him their rights in 
the lands of Strichen, and on whom he settled handsome portions ; also with Patrick 

I Reg. Mag. Sig. 1546-1580, No. 692, 2 Reg. Mag. Sig. 1546-1^80, No. 1295, 

and No. 973. and No. 1385. 

3 Anderson's History of the Frasers, p. 187. 

86 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Chalmer of Newton of Strichen, who gave up all his rights on Strichen, except the infeft- 
ment on Newton of Strichen, which he also agreed to dispone to the said Thomas 
Fraser, reserving the life-rent of his mother, Christian Innes. He also obliges himself 
to cause his mother ratify and affirm the agreement. Thomas Fraser agrees to pay the 
said Patrick Chalmer seventeen hundred merles ; also binds himself to infeft the said 
Patrick in the sonne half of the said Thomas' twa pairt of the lands of Faithlie redeem- 
able on the payment of one thousand pounds Scots. Gilbert Chalmer, the brother of 
Patrick, also agrees and consents that the present contract of date 1595 be registered, 
&€.' There is an additional contract, of date 1605,* between William Chalmer, eldest 
son of David Chalmer of Ormonde, and Thomas Fraser, in which the said William, 
and his curators, John Chalmers in Drumbulge, and his brother, Alexander .Chalmer of 
Culbertie, transfer and dispone for the sum of eight hundred merks, paid to them by 
the said Thomas Fraser, any rights they had or might have had in the lands of 
Strichen, with their blessing, kindness, and goodwill, &c., done at the Kirk of Tyrie, 
September 17, 1605. 

Lord Saltoun, in his history of the Frasers, rejects Anderson's account of the 
disagreement of the Chalmer family ; but there must have been some cause for it. 
Thomas Fraser of Knockie used every means to make his position as proprietor of 
Strichen sure, buying up as it were the rights of the various parties, and he was success- 
ful. The last parties to the deed gave him their blessing ! ^ 

The following are the issue of Isobel Forbes by her ^three husbands : — First, by 
William Chalmer, fiar of Strichen. 

I. Alexander, fiar of Strichen. 

Second, by Thomas Fraser, killed by Gordon of Gight. 

1. Catharine Fraser. 

2. Violet Fraser. 

Third, by Thomas Fraser of Knockie, 

II. Thomas Fraser, from whom the Lovat family is descended. 

3. Jean Fraser. 

4. Margaret Fraser. 
We now return to 

X. Alexander Chalmer of Strichen. 

There is no chartulary evidence to show that he was the son of William Chalmer 
and Isobel Forbes, and we may mention that in I-umsden's history of the Forbeses, the 
name is not given as William but Thomas, and that he married Isobel Forbes, daughter 
of Alexander Forbes of Tolquhon by Ellison Anderson, and that thereafter the said 

1 Contract in H.M. Reg. Ho. Edinb. 3 Lord Saltoun's Frasers, p. 148, &c. 

2 Id. 1605. 

Fyvie. 87 

Isobel married the tutor of Lovat, and conveyed to him the estate of Strichen,' 
which account is correct is not easy to say ; but, as already ([uoted, there is undoubted 
evidence to show that he was the grandson of Andrew Chalmer of Strichen, and the 
representative of the Chalmer family. He married first, Elizabeth Johnstone ; secondly, 
Margaret Gordon. He had issue at least two sons : — 

I. James, at the Mill of Strichen. 

II. John. 

Both these sons are mentioned as sons of Alexander Chalmer in the contract of 
1 595- John, the second son, was by Margaret Gordon, sister of Gordon of Gight, as is 
evidenced by the following :— " Commission granted to Earl Marischal and others to 
search for George, Earl of Huntly, and John Chalmer, sister's son of the Laird of Gight, 
all accused of burning Donibristle, and of the murder of the Earl of Moray." ' 

XI. James Ohalmer, at the Mill of Strichen. 

He was the eldest son of Alexander Chalmer of Strichen. He was, prior to 1582, 
vested in the two part of the sunny third part of Easter Tyrie ; and, prior to 1576, 
infeft in Terris Ecclesiasticis de Kynoch, in the County of Ross.^ He married Janet 
Chalmer, daughter probably of Duncan Chalmer, Chancellor of Ross. They had issue : 

I. George, minister of Kinore. 

I I. John, minister of Keith, and formerly sub-Principal of King's College. He 

died by his own hand 11 June, 161 1. 

III. Patrick. 

We now come to the eldest son of James Chalmer. 

XII. Rev. George Ohalmer, minister of Kinore and Dunbennan. 

He is described in a sasine registered at Aberdeen, November 15, 1604, "as a 
venerable man, son of the late James Chal mer, Mylne of Strichen." This sasine gives 
him infeftment in the two parts of the sunny third part of Easter Tyrie, &c. He was 
born about ^572, graduated 1592. He was minister of Gartly from 1607 to 1614, when 
he was translated to Kinore and Dunbennan. He was also for sometime Regent of 
Marischal College. He married Marion Leslie, who is mentioned in a charter of the 
shadow half of Peterstown and other lands in the parish of Oldmachar.'' They had 
issue : — 

I. John. He is mentioned in a " renunciation by Mr. John Chalmer, 
eldest lawful son of the deceased George Chalmer, minister of 
Kinore, of a contract between the late Sir Alexander Eraser and the said 
Mr. George Chalmer, of date 16 November, 1603, whereby the said Sir 

1 Lumsden's History of the Forbeses, pp. 48, 49. ■3, Reg. Mag. Sig. 1510-1590, No. 61. 

2 Pitcairn's Criminal.Trials, Vol. I. p. 182. 4 Register ofSasines, Aberdeen, III. Fol. 395. 

88 The TJianage of Fermartyn. 

Alexander ratified an infeftment and sasine made by him to the deceased 
James Chalmer, father of the said George." ' He was educated a? a bursar 
at Marischal College, was appointed minister of Inveravon in 1630 ; 
married Jean Duff, and had numerous descendants. 

II. Alexander, in Ottingstone, executor to his deceased father. He is 

mentioned in the following deed, " Alexander Chalmer, lawful second son 
to umquhile Mr. George Chalmer, minister of Kinore, of all and haill the 
two pairt of ye sonne third part of ye town and lands of Easter Tyrie with 
the pertinents in favour of Thomas Fraser, 23 June, 1634." ' 

III. William, 

IV. George, minister of Rhynie, of whom afterwards. 
I. Anna. 2. Jean. 3. Isobel. 4. Elspet. 

These are all mentioned in a record in the Sheriff Clerk's office, 29 April, 1653. 
The extract adds, " the other children of the deceased Mr. George Chalmer all appear 
in a contract dated 29 June, 1637." ^ 

XIII. Rev, George Chalmer, minister of Rhynie, 

was the fourth son of Rev. George Chalmer, minister of Kinore and Dunbennan, and 
grandson of James Chalmer, at Mill of Strichen. 

George Chalmer is mentioned in a record above-mentioned, also in a list of annual 
renters. He and his brother Alexander in Ottingstone. and William are both mentioned 
as brothers." He graduated at Marischal College in 1633. He was for sometime school- 
master of Inveravon, where his brother John was for sometime minister. 

He was appointed minister of Rhynie by the Marquis of Huntly, was married, in 
1646, to Jane Gordon of Thomastown, Drumblade. She died at Elgin, July 25, 1691. 
Rev. George Chalmer died about the year 1660 or 1661, in the eighteenth year of his 
ministry. They left issue : — 

I. Hugh, minister of Marnoch. 

II. George minister of Drumblade. He was educated at King's College, 

appointed to the parish of Drumblade previous to 1687 ; married 
first, Elizabeth Gordon, daughter of James Gordon, parson of Rothiemay, 
son of Sir Robert Gordon of Straloch. He married secondly, Rachel, 
daughter of Forbes of Waterton. He left issue. 

XIV. Rev. Hugh Chalmer, minister of Marnoch, 

was the eldest son of Rev. George Chalmer, minister of Rhynie, grandson of Rev. 
George Chalmer, minister of Kinore, and great grandson of James Chalmer at Mill 
of Strichen. 

1 Reg. of Sasines, Abdn. 3 Sheriff Court Records. 

2 Sheriff Court Records. 4 S. C. Misc. Vol. III. p. 26. 

Fyvie. 89 

He was born about 1648, and is said to have been sometime schoolmaster at Keith, 
and was presented in 1680 to the church of Marnoch or Aberchirder. He married 
Elizabeth Innes, probably of the family of Inncs of Turtory. On 25 April, 1690, there 
is a " sasine on a disposition by John Innes, merchant, burgess of Aberdeen, to Mr. 
Hugh Chalmer, minister of Marnoch, and Elizabeth Innes his spouse, of an annual rent, 
in security of five hundred merles, out of Greenfields of Turtory, Rothiemay." ' They 
had issue : — 

I. James, born 1679, died in infancy. 

n. Alexander, his father's successor at Marnoch, appointed 1707. He married, 
August 3, 171 1, Barbara, daughter of Rev. John IJurnelt, minister of 
Monymusk. They had issue — John, born 1712, who was appointed in his 
29th year Regent and Professor of Theology in King's College, having 
succeeded his relative. Principal George Chalmer, in that office. He 
married Isobel, daughter of John Innes of Tilliefour. He left one 
daughter, Margaret, wife of Archibald Scott of Usan, son of Robert Scott 
of Duninald, Forfarshire, who had issue. 

III, William, born 1684, died 17 16. 

IV. James, of whom afterwards. 
I. Margaret. 

XV. Rev. James Chalmer, minister of Dyke, 

was the fourth son of Rev. Hugh Chalmer, minister of Marnoch. He studied at 
Marischal College, was appointed, 1705, minister of Dyke. He was afterwards trans- 
lated to Greyfriars parish, Aberdeen, and on 31 July, 1728, was appointed Professor of 
Divinity, Marischal College. He married, August 29, 17 10, his cousin Jane, daughter 
of Rev. George Chalmer, minister of Drumblade ; had issue : — 

I. George, born 1 7 1 1 ; died in infancy. 

II. James, of whom afterwards. 

III. Hugh, born 17 14. 

IV. Alexander, died in infancy. 

V. John. 

VI. Lewis. 
I. Anne. 

XVI. James Chalmers, 

the eldest surviving son of the above, was intended for the English church, and went to 
study at Oxford. While there, he developed a strong taste for the art of printing, and 
resolved to learn it practically in London, which he did in the office of Mr. Watts, 
where he had the celebrated Benjamin Franklin for his fellow-apprentice. In 1736, on 

I Register of Sasines, Banff. 

90 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

his return to Aberdeen, he was appointed Printer to the University and Town Council, 
of the city, in place of James Nicol, who resigned, and became one of the literary 
printers of the city. He was a man of learning and many accomplishments. On the 
outbreak of the Rebellion, he took up the Hanoverian cause, the principles of which he 
had imbibed in England, and was employed by the government to print proclamations 
and official papers for the north of Scotland. The part he took led to his being 
especially hated by the Jacobites. On their taking possession of the town, they at 
once determined to seize him, and making for his house in Castle Street broke into it, 
and barred the door ; but before they got upstairs, he jumped from one of the windows 
and managed to make his escape. He was injured by the leap ; but he succeeded in 
getting a horse, and was able to reach an outhouse at the Bridge of Dee. It was full of 
rebel soldiery, and he could go no further. They treated him with great kindness, but 
alarmed him by asking among the news, " What the rascal Chalmers, the printer, was 
doing ? " He had the presence of mind enough to answer that he was still printing the 
Duke of Cumberland's manifestoes. On this, some of them went on their knees, and 
drawing their dirks swore that they would do for him if they could catch him. Shortly 
afterwards, he again got on horseback, and made his way to the Royal army, then in the 
south, where he was well received, and very kindly treated by the Duke of Cumberland. 
He was employed as an agent for the care of the prisoners, and also as one of the chief 
commissioners of the campaign. After the Rebellion was over, he was appointed 
commissioner over some of the forfeited estates ; and the commission in his favour to 
take charge of the forfeited estates of Hallhead and Esslemont is strangely enough the 
only commission printed at full length in the Scots' Magazine.' 

Subsequently, in 1748, James Chalmers started the "Aberdeen Journal," which was 
for many years the only newspaper north of the Forth, and it is understood he received 
a small sum from government to induce him to undertake the risk. 

On the 14th March, 1739, he married Susan, daughter of Rev. James Trail, minister 
of Montrose, by his wife Christian, daughter of Provost Allardyce, Aberdeen, and grand- 
daughter of Rev. Robert Trail, by his wife Jane Annand, daughter of Alexander Annand 
of Auchterellon. They had issue : — 

I. James, born 1742, of whom afterwards. 

II. William. 

III. Lawrence. 

IV. George. 

V. Alexander, M.A., F.S.A., 1759. He received a classical and medical educa- 
tion, and about 1777 left his native country and never returned to it. He 
had obtained the situation as surgeon in the West Indies, and had arrived 
at Portsmouth to join the ship, when he suddenly changed his mind, and 
proceeded to the Metropolis, where he soon became connected with the 
Press. His literary career commenced as editor of the " Public Ledger," 

I Bissest' Diary, Gentleman's Magazine, and Scots' Magazine, 1746 ; and Life of his son, Alexander Cbalmer. 

Fyvie. 91 

and " London Packet." He also contributed to the other public journals 
of the day. He was at one time editor of the " Manchester Herald." 
Being early connected in business with Mr. George Robinson, the cele- 
brated publisher, Paternoster Row, he assisted him in judging of manu- 
scripts offered for sale. In 1793, he published a continuation of the 
" History of England." Mr. Chalmers was a valuable contributor to the 
"Gentleman's Magazine." He died in London, December 10, 1834. 

XVIL James Chalmers. 

The oldest son of James Chalmers and Susan Trail succeeded his father as printer 
and publisher of the " Aberdeen Journal." He married Margaret Douglas, daughter of 
David Douglas, merchant, London, by Katharine Forbes his wife. David Douglas was 
of the Tilwhilly family. Miss Forbes was a daughter of the old family of Forbes of 
Echt. They had issue a large family, among others — 

L David, of Westburn, who succeeded his father as printer and publisher 
of the " Aberdeen Journal." He married Ann, daughter of G. Camp- 
bell, H.M. Customs, and had issue, with others — I, James, of Westburn ; 
n. John Gray, of Balnacraig House, Banchory-Ternan ; 3. Margaret, 
wife of John Webster, LL.D., sometime *M. P. for the city of Aberdeen; 
4. Jane, who married Alexander Nicol, shipowner. 
n. William M.D., Penang, married, and had issue, among others, William 

Chalmers, D.D. 
III. Charles, of whom afterwards. 

1. Margaret, married Dr. Dyce, had issue, among others, William Dyce, R.A. 

2. Catherine, married Provost Brown, had issue, besides others, Rev. Charles 

J. Brown, D.D., and Principal D. Brown, Aberdeen. 

3. Jane, married James Littlejohn, and had issue, among others, William Little- 

john, banker, Aberdeen. 

4. Elizabeth, married Rev. William H. Burns, Kilsyth, and had issue, with 

others, William C. Burns, Chinese missionary, and Professor Islay Burns, 

5. Christina, married, 1802, to Rev. James Burns, Brechin (brother of Rev. W. 

H. Burns, Kilsyth), and had issue. Rev. James Chalmers Burns of the Free 
Church, Kirkliston, ex-moderator of Assembly. 

XVIIL Charles Chalmers of Monkshill. 

He was third son of the above James Chalmers and Margaret Douglas, was an 
advocate in Aberdeen, married Mary, daughter of Alexander Henderson of Stempster, 
Caithness, and had issue : — 

L James Hay, advocate, Aberdeen, died unmarried 24 April, 1867. 

92 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

11. Alexander Henderson, W.S,, married Marjory Williamson Laing, daughter 

of Patrick Sinclair Laing, Esq. He died November 3, 187 1. 
HI. William Gordon, Captain Bengal Staff Corps, died August 21, 1868. 
VI. Charles David, of whom afterwards. 

V. Patrick Henderson, of Avochie, advocate, married Emma Jane, daughter 
of Mr. Macdonell of Glengarry. He died February 17, 1889, leaving 
issue : — 

I. Charles Hugh, born June, 1882. 
H. J. W. D., born April 30, 1884, died May 6, 1886. 
HI. Ian P. H., born August 30, 1888. 
I. Margaret Douglas. 
Charles Chalmers of Monkshill died November 28, 1877, and was succeeded in 
Monkshill by his fourth son. 

XIX. Charles David Chalmers of Monkshill, Major-General 
of Royal Artillery. 


These lands are now in possession of Mrs. Crawford-Leslie. The mansion house was 
rebuilt by her father, the late Lieutenant-Colonel Jonathan Forbes Leslie. 

The earliest notice of the property of Rothienorman to be found is about the year 
1362. In that year, David, King of Scots, grants a confirmation charter of the lands of 
dc Knoc and Gellestan, and of the lands of Badcasse in the tenement of Kinbeon 
(Kinbruin) in the barony of Rothienorman. The lands were given by William, Earl 
Marischal, to Ade Pyngle.' In 1380, Andrew de Lesly confirmed a charter by Andrew 
Garviach, Lord of Caskieben, to Stephen Cherie, his son-in-law, and Margaret, his wife, 
of the lands of Kinbruin and Badechashe in the barony of Rothienorman.- 

Norman Leslie, in 1390, receives a charter under the great seal from Robert III., as 
son and heir of Andrew Leslie, of the lands of Cushney and Rothienorman in the shire 
of Aberdeen. This charter seems to be mentioned in Robertson's " Index of Lost 
Charters." ^ 

In 1459, King James II. granted a charter under the Great Seal to Andrew Leslie, 
Knight, son and heir of George Leslie, Earl of Rothes, of the lands and 
barony of Rothienorman. '* Again William Lethe, second son of the late 
Henry Leith of Barnes, had a charter confirmed to him in 1493 of a 
half of the lands of Badycais with their pertinents, in the tenandry of 
Kinbruin and barony of Rothienorman. ^ And in 1509 the lands of Rothie- 
norman are annexed to the barony of Ballinbreigh, on a precept of chancery of King 
James IV., done at the principal manor of the lands of Rothienorman, 19 May of that 
year.^ There is also an inquest in the same year on George, Earl of Rothes, seised in 
the lands of Rothienorman, annexed to the barony of Ballinbreigh. In 15 17, there is a 
charter to George, Earl of Rothes, by King James IV., of the said lands of Rothie- 
norman, with the mill, lying within the Sheriffdom of Aberdeen. The next notice is 
fully a century after this, but these lands are still in the possession of the noble family of 
Rothes. On 9 April, 1613, John, Earl of Rothes, was served heir to James, Master of 
Rothes, his brother, in the lands of Rothienorman, Guisey (Cushnie), and others ; ^ and 
John, Earl of Rothes, was served heir in 1642 to John, Earl of Rothes, his father, in the 

1 Ant. A. and ]?. II. p. 72. 5 Ant. A. and D. III. p. 552. 

2 His. MSS. IV. p. 496 ; Ant. A. and B. III. p. 552. 6 His. MSS. IV. p. 503. 

3 Id. p. 503 ; Ant. A. and B. I. p. 594 ; Robertson's Index, p. 127. 7 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 553. 

4 Id. p. 496. 

94 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

lands of Rothienorman in Fermartyn. They were united with others to the barony of 
Ballinbreigh.' In 1682,^ May 16, Margaret, Countess of Haddington, was served heir of 
tailzie, and provision to John, Duke of Rothes, her father, in the lands of Rothie- 

About 1723, these lands, Upper Rothie or Rothienorman, Longman's Wells, and 
others, were purchased by George Leslie, and Rothienorman then came into another 
branch of the family of Leslie, descended from the Little-Folia, Warthill, and Wardes 
branches of the family of Leslie of Balquhain. The following is their descent, as we 
learn from Leslie of Balquhain's " History of the Leslies." 

William Leslie, Laird of Little-FoUa, 

was the second son of William Leslie, third Laird of Warthill, by his wife, Margaret 
Gray. He got the lands of Little-FoUa in 161 1, his father, William Leslie, third Laird 
of Warthill, having purchased them from Gordon of Tilliehoudie, his son-in-law. They 
were then tenanted by a family of Raits, who made great opposition to the purchase. 
William Leslie of Little-Folia married Marjory, daughter of William Crichton, brother of 
Viscount Frendraught. They had issue : — 
I. James, his successor. 

1. Margaret, married to James Thomson. 

2. Elizabeth, married to Robert Burnett. 

3. Marjory, married to Patrick Adam. 

William Leslie married secondly a daughter of Leith of Harthill, but by her had no 
issue. He died in 1657, and was succeeded by his only son, 

IL James Leslie, of Little-FoUa. 

He was born in 1630. He married Isabella, daughter of Alexander Milne of 
Monkshill, and had issue : — 

I. William, born 165 1, his successor. 

IL George, born 1655, married Isabella Cheyne, daughter of William Cheyne 

of Kaithen. He succeeded his brother as fourth Laird of Little-FoUa. 
III. James, born 1661, married Janet Rait, daughter of John Rait, portioner of 
Meikle- Folia, and had issue, George, who got from his uncle, Rev. William 
Leslie, the third Laird of I^ittle-FoUa, money, with which he bought 
Kinbruin and Rothienorman, as seen afterwards. 
I. Janet, married to Alexander Wood, secondly to George Milne, her cousin. 
James Leslie married secondly Agnes, daughter of Mr. Innes, merchant, Aberdeen, 
and had issue by her — I. Alexander, who died unmarried ; II. Walter, who went 
abroad ; III. Stephen, who died unmarried ; i. Marjory, died unmarried. 

James Leslie, the second Laird of Little-Folia, died in 1693, aged 63, and was 
succeeded by his eldest son. 

I Ret. Spec. No. 262 ; 2 Ret. Spec. Abd. No. 452 ; 

Ant. A. and B. III. p. 553. Ant. A. and B. III. p. 553. 

Fyvie. 95 

III. Rev. William Leslie of Little-Folia. 

When he had finished his academical studies, he went to Ireland, and was appointed 
to the living of Aquareagh, in the county of Fermanagh. He remained there till he was 
upwards of sixty-three years of age, when finding himself declining in health, and 
wishing to be buried in the grave of his fathers, he returned and settled at Little-Folia, 
the place of his nativity, in 17 14. Having amassed a considerable fortune, he made it 
all over to his nephew, George I^slie, above-mentioned, the son of his younger brother 
James. He acquired in 17 15 in wadset Roger's Seat and Kinbruin. He died un- 
married in 1722. All the entailed property of Little-Folia went to the heir of Tailzie, 
his brother George ; but he left everything he could to his nephew, George Leslie, of 
whom afterwards. 

IV. George Leslie of Little-FoUa. 

He was previously in possession of the shadow half of Little-Folia, and succeeded to 
the sun half of the same on the death of his brother. Rev. William Leslie. George 
Leslie married Isabella, daughter of William Cheyne of Kaithen, and had issue : — 

I. William his successor. 

II. George, who succeeded his brother as sixth Laird of Little-Folia. 

I, Agnes, 2. Margaret, 3. Janet, married to Robert Farquhar, Mains of Law. 
George Leslie, fourth Laird of Little-Folia, died 21 June, 1730, aged 75 years, and 
was succeeded by his eldest son, 

V. Rev. William Leslie of Little-Folia. 

There were a few riggs of temple land in the township of Little-Folia of a different 
holding, which were not included in the entail, and which had been disponed by Rev. 
William Leslie, third laird, to his youngest brother James and his heirs. Rev. William 
Leslie bought these riggs from his cousin, George Leslie of Rothie, son and heir of 
James Leslie. The said William Leslie was for some time schoolmaster of Auchterless, 
left and went to Ireland to assist his uncle, returned, and was afterwards ordained in the 
Scottish Episcopal Church, and became pastor of the Episcopal congregation of Ellon. 
After the rising of 17 15, he retired to his house at Little-FoUa, where he ministered to 
the adherents of the Episcopal Church down to his death, on 31 July, 1743, in the 
64th year of his age. He was never married, and was succeeded by his brother, 

VI. George Leslie of Little-Folia. 

He married Mary Leslie, third daughter of Alexander Leslie, eighth Laird of Wart- 
hill, who, on the death of her brother, Alexander Leslie, became heir-female to Warthill. 
They had issue : — 

I William, born 1770, who succeeded his father as eighth Laird of Little- 
FoUa, and his uncle Alexander as tenth Laird of Warthill. 

g6 The TJianage of Fermartyn, 

IT. George, who died unmarried. 

I. Helen, married Rev. James Innes, of the Episcopal Church, FoUa-Rule. 
We now return to George Leslie, son of James Leslie and Janet Rait above- 
mentioned, and nephew of Rev. William Leslie, IIL of Little Folia. 

George Leslie of Rothienorman. 

He obtained on his uncle's death the reversionary right to Rogerseat and Kinbruin, 
and with the money which his uncle left him, he purchased the lands of Upper Rothie 
or Rothienorman, Longman's Wells, and other lands, in 1723, and to these he added 
the lands of Grannie, Cranabog, and Mill of Barnes in 1725. He married Margaret, 
daughter of James Gordon of Chapeltown, and had issue : — 
L James, his successor. 

1. Margaret, married to Hugh Gordon of Mugiemoss, and had a son, who died 

died in early manhood. 

2. Elizabeth. 

Mrs. Leslie died in 1737. Her husband denuded himself of the estate of Rothie- 
norman, in favour of his son James, on his marriage in 1760, and died in 1781. 

II. James Leslie of Rothienorman. 

He married, in 1760, Jane Gordon, second daughter of William Gordon of Baden- 
scoth. The said Jane and her elder sister Catharine, wife of Alexander Forbes of 
Blackford, being co-heiresses of Badenscoth, on the death of their only brother, James 
Gordon, without issue, in 1788, succeeded to that property. James LesHe of Rothie 
bought the half that belonged to Mrs. Forbes of Blackford, and thus the estate was 
united to that of Rothienorman. James Leslie also purchased in 1761 the feu-duty and 
superiority of the lands of Rothienorman from the Earl of Rothes, to whose family, for 
many generations, as above narrated, the estate of Rothienorman belonged. James 
Leslie had issue : — 

I. James, his successor. 

II. George, who succeeded his brother as fourth laird. 
in. John, who died at sea. 

IV. William, who died in India without issue. 

V. Jonathan, sometime merchant in Dublin. He died without issue at 


VI. Robert, who succeeded as fifth Laird of Rothie. 

I. Margaret, 2. Grace, 3. Catharine, who all died unmarried. 
In the life of Bishop Jolly, by Rev. William Walker, LL.D., we read that " Mr. 
Alexander Jolly, afterwards Bishop of Moray, was for sometime tutor in the family of 
Mr. Leslie of Rothie. His pupils were veritable sons of Anak — the six brothers 
averaged six feet in height — and, as a family, were usually spoken of ' as the sax and 
thirty feet.' ' Here's the sax and thirty feet ' was the usual exclamation, as they drew 

Fyvie. 97 

near the church door on a Sunday morning. It was natural that such pupils, living in a 
country house, and surrounded with temptations to sport and amusement, would be 
little amenable to the mild rule of the gentle Jolly. Accordingly discipline got relaxed, 
progress slackened, and the conscientious Jolly, despairing of ever being able to restore 
order and diligence, made up his mind to leave. He was spared the necessity of this 
extreme step by the potent intervention of Bishop Petrie, the pastor of Meikle-Folla. 
One day when the Bishop dined at Rothie, the housekeeper gave him a hint of the 
critical state matters were in. The Bishop at one acted on the hint. He stepped into 
the schoolroom, and learning the state of matters, he asked Mr. Jolly if he had a strap. 
' Yes,' was the reply, *' but I never use it.' The Bishop got the strap, locked the door, 
and whipped all round, and left, saying he would soon be back again ; but he never 
required to come back ; the rebellion was crushed. The boys having once tasted of the 
quality had no desire to wake up again * the might that slumbered in a prelate's arm.' " 

James Leslie, second Laird of Rothie, died in 1794, and was succeeded by his eldest 

III. James Leslie of Rothienorman. 

He built the house of Rothie, the predecessor of the present one. He also built the 
house of Kinbruin. He was never married. Being of a capricious disposition, he 
executed a deed of entail in 182 1, entailing his whole property on his next brother 
George, and his heirs male, with remainder to his brother Robert and his heirs, whom 
failing, to his cousin, Jonathan Forbes, youngest son of John Forbes of Blackford and 
so on. In this entail, James Leslie passed over his brother Jonathan Leslie. He died 
in 1823, and was succeeded by his brother, 

IV. George Leslie of Rothienorman. 

According to Mr. Leslie's history, " He had a great turn for agricultural pursuit, 
and farmed to a great extent, thereby greatly improving the estate. He paid great 
attention to the breeding of cattle, so that his cattle and sheep were of a superior descrip- 
tion, and were very much admired. Indeed, from his large experience he turned his 
cattle better out than most people, and was most successful in gaining prizes at the 
agricultural shows. He was an upright and worthy gentleman, universally beloved and 
respected. He was of a very hospitable disposition. It was long the custom of the 
Rothie family to have a large party of neighbours to dinner at ' Old Yule,' January 5. 
During fifty-four years, with one exception, George Leslie and William Leslie, tenth 
Laird of Warthill, met at Rothie on that day, and cherished their friendship at the 
festive board." 

After a lingering illness, George Leslie of Rothie died unmarried, 12 January, 1842, 
and was succeeded by his brother, 

V. Robert Leslie of Rothienorman. 

According to the deed of entail executed by his eldest brother James, in 1821, in 

98 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

preference to his next elder brother Jonathan, Robert Leslie succeeded to the estate of 
Rothienorman. He married Barbara, daughter of Robert Niven in Bruckhills, but had 
no issue. 

At his death in 1861, the estate of Rothie, according to the dispositions of the entail, 
as above mentioned, went to his cousin, Lieutenant-Colonel Jonathan Forbes of 78th 
Highlanders, youngest son of John Forbes of Blackford. He assumed the name, and 
also the arms of the Leslies. 

It may be remarked that though James 1 .eslie, second Laird of Rothienorman, left six 
sons and three daughters, and all of them, except two, attained the goodly age of threescore 
years and upwards, yet not one solitary descendant exists ; and the property of Rothie, 
after having been held by three of his sons successively, has passed from the family of 
the Leslies. 

We now come to the family of Jonathan Forbes Leslie, the first of the family of 
Forbes who held the estate of Rothienorman. The following is his descent from Forbes 
of Auquhorthies in the parish of Tarves. 

Alexander de Forbes 

was a son of John de Forbes, who was called John with the black lip. He was a peer 
of Scotland previous to 1442. He married Elizabeth Douglas, only daughter of George, 
Earl of Angus, and grand-daughter of Robert H. Alexander, Lord Forbes, died in 
1488, and was succeeded by his son, 

II. James, Lord Forbes. 

His second son was Duncan Forbes by Egidia, daughter of William, Earl 
Marischal. He became 

III. Duncan Forbes of Oorsindae. 

He married Christian, daughter of Mr. Mercer of Balleg in Perthshire, and had a 
son, William, his successor. The Forbeses of Corsindae carried the Forbes arms with a 
crescent for difference, and for a crest a boar's head, with the motto, " Spe expecto." 

IV. William Forbes of Corsindae, 

married Margaret, daughter of Lumsden of Conlan, in Fifeshire, and relict of 

Johnston of Caskieben (now called Keith-hall). The second son of this William Forbes 
of Corsindae was Duncan Forbes, who became of Monymusk. 

V. Duncan Forbes of Monymusk, 
married Agnes Gray. His brother Robert, prior of Monymusk, alienated the church 


Fyvie, 99 

lands to this Duncan Forbes at the Reformation. 'I'he Forbeses afterwards sold Mony- 
niusk, and were called of Titsligo. They are now represented by Sir William Forbes, 
Bart. Duncan Forbes died 158.}, and was succeeded by his son, 

VI. William Forbes of Monymusk. ' 

He married Lady Margaret, daughter of William, Karl of Angus. Their second son 

VII. John Forbes of Forbes-Leelie. 

He married Anna, daughter of Leslie of Lindores, and relict of George Leslie of 
Leslie. By means of her jointure and purchasing up the debts on the estate, Mr. 
Forbes obtained possession of the lands of Leslie. The Forbeses rebuilt the castle of 
Leslie, and obtained charters of that and other lands, as united in the barony of Forbes- 
Leslie. This place of Leslie in Aberdeenshire, in the parish of Leslie, was the original 
seat of the Leslies, and gave the name to the Flemish family from whom they are all 

This Jolvn Forbes of Leslie married secondly Margaret Skene, daughter of Skene of 
Skene. The second son of this marriage was 

VIII. Alexander Forbes, afterwards of Auquhorthies. 

The property is in the parish of Tarves. He married, and had issue a son, 
Alexander, by whom he was succeeded. 

IX. Alexander Forbes of Auquhorthies. 

He married Anna, daughter of William Seaton of Minnes, and had issue : — 

L John of Auquhorthies and Lethenty, born 1653. He married Barbara 
Skene, who died 1709. He died 1726. Their daughter Margaret 
married Alexander Skene of Dyce, and carried the estate of Lethenty into 
that family. 

II. Alexander, of Blackford. 

HI. son, born 1666 ; married Margaret Skene ; died 1730. 

IV. Samuel, born 1667, died 1724. 

V. Timothy, born 1670, married Patience, daughter of Robert Barclay of 
Urie, and died 1743. 

VL James, born 1672, married Catharine, daughter of Robert Barclay of Urie, 

died 1735. 
I. Barbara, born 1674, died 1746. 
Their second son Alexander became of Blackford, to whom we now come. 

lOO The Thanage of Fennartyn. 

X. Alexander Forbes of Blackford. 

He was born 1657, married 1702, Helen, only daughter of Alexander Gellie of 
Blackford. We may mention that Blackford was for long the property of a family of the 
name of Gardyn or Garden. 

Baldycaiss in 1330 belonged to Thomas de Gardyn. In 141 7, Thomas de Gardyn 
is mentioned — probably of the same family; while in 1504, Gardyn de Blackfurde is 
present at an inquest of Walter Dempster of Auchterless. Alexander Gardyn de Black- 
furde is one of the subscribers of a band in 1589 in defence of the true religion, and 
twelve years previous to this date, he is on the inquest of George Meldrum of Fyvie, 
1377.* In 1594, James Gardyn, fiar of Blackfurde, a son probably of the above 
Alexander, the last of the Gardyns of Blackfurde, is security, along with Patrick 
Copland of Udoch, for three hundred merks. 

For want of heirs, Blackford fell to the Crown in the time of James VI., who 
granted it to Sir Malcolm of Balbertie. He sold it to Adam Urquhart of Meldrum, who 
soon after sold it to John Gellie, who was minister of Monymusk, and was infeft in the 
lands of Blackford in 1635, and died in 1637. His son, Alexander GeUie of Blackford, 
married Margaret Gordon of Badycaiss (Baldyquash), and had issue a daughter, Helen, 
who married Alexander Forbes, and thus brought to him the estate of Blackford.* 

Alexander Forbes, the first of Blackford, died in 1 7 1 2, and was succeeded by his son, 

XI. Alexander Forbes of Blackford. 

He married, on 16 August, 1727, Elizabeth, daughter of John Asken, an English 
gentleman. He died 17 — , and was succeeded by his son, 

XII. Alexander Forbes of Blackford. 

He married, 16 April. 17 14, Catharine, eldest daughter of William Gordon of 
Badenscoth, who, along with her sister Jane, as has already been mentioned, became 
co-heiresses of Badenscoth. They had issue : — 

I, Alexander, his successor. 

II. John, who succeeded his brother. 
He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

XIII. Alexander Forbes of Blackford. 

He was born 22 January, 1755, died 1784, and was succeeded by his brother, 

XIII. John Forbes of Blackford. 

He was born 19 September, 1758; married, 9 September, 1784, Anne Margaretta, 
daughter of Dr. John Gregory and Hon. Elizabeth Forbes, daughter of Lord Forbes. 
They had issue ; — 

I Privy Council Records, IV., pp. 277-9 ! V. p. 644 ; and Fyvie Papers. 
Dingwall Fordyce's History of Dingwall Fordyce, p. 54. 

Fyvie. ' lOi 

I. Alexander, his successor. 

II. John, born 1787; in the H.E.I. C.S. Bengal Engineers; died 1803 from 
exhaustion, having been wrecked in the " Earl of Abergaverny," Indiaman. 

III. James Keith, born 1790; married, 1817, Marian, daughter of James 
Brown. This James Keith Forbes died 1842, leaving one surviving 
son, Jolfc Gregory Forbes, surgeon in London, who married, in 1844, 
Harriet Elizabeth, daughter of William Macyntyre, M.D., and had 
issue a large family. 

IV. Charles, born 1792, died unmarried in 1843. He was Lieutenant-Colonel 
of the 6 1 St Regiment. 

V. Andrew, born 1793, Captain R.N., died unmarried 1847. 

VI. William Nairne was a Major-General in the Bengal Engineers, and died 
at sea on his passage home. He was born 1796, and married, 1836, 
Sarah, daughter of Charles Bartlett Greenlaw, and had issue a son and 

VII. Jonathan, of whom afterwards. 

I. Mary Elizabeth, born 1795, married William Moir of Park, who died 

1843, leaving a numerous family. 

John Forbes of Blackford died r May, 1840. His wife died 1825. Their eldest 
son succeeded. 

XIV. Alexander Forbes, of Blackford. 

He was born 1786, married first, Margaret, daughter of Charles Bannerman. 
She died 1825. Secondly, Elizabeth, daughter of General Alexander Leith Hay of 
Leith-hall. By her he had no family ; by his first wife he had issue : — 

I. John, who died young, 1820. 

II. Alexander, Ensign in the 6ist Regiment of Foot. He died February i, 

1844, aged 26. , 

1. Mary Elizabeth, died 30 June, 1830, aged 12. 

2. Margaret, of whom afterward. 

3. Ann, died 1830, aged eight years. 

Alexander Forbes died October 28, 185 1, and was succeeded by his surviving 

XV. Margaret Forbes-Leith of Blackford. 

She married Rear- Admiral John Leith, who was son of Alexander Leith of Leith- 
hall, and brother of Sir Alexander Leith Hay of Rannes and Leith-hall. He was almost 
constantly in active service, until his return home in 1841. He died October 25, 1854, 
leaving issue two sons and two daughters. 

I. Alexander John Forbes Leith of Fyvie. 

I02 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

II. Albert Howe Leith. 

1. Margaret, wife of Lieutenant-Colonel Stirling of Kippendavie. 

2. Elizabeth, married to Major Gordon, Chief Constable of Aberdeenshire. 
The estate of Blackford was sold in 1857. Baldycaiss was purchased by William 

Leslie of Warthill, and Blackford, the larger portion, was purchased by 

John Paton Watson, M.A. 

He was fourth son of the late George Watson, merchant, Calcutta, who died in 
1828, by his wife, Ann, daughter of Rev. William Cock. Mr. Watson was born in 1824, 
married, in 1855, Ann, daughter of Thomas Best, Aberdeen. He was educated 
at the Grammar School and University, Aberdeen, of which he is a graduate in 1843, 
He is a magistrate, and Deputy-Lieutenant for Aberdeenshire ; was formerly a merchant 
in China ; is a member of the Oriental and City of London Clubs. He has issue : — 

I. George Best. 

II. John Dunlop. 

III. Thomas Grahame. 

IV. Andrew Vaus. 

V. SterritDufr. 

1. Jane Anne. 

2. Catharine Anne. 

We now return to 

Colonel Jonathan Forbes-Leslie. 

of Rothienorman, the first of the name of Forbes-Leslie. He was, as above narrated, 
the seventh and youngest son of John Forbes of Blackford, and, in virtue of his cousin, 
James Leslie's entail, succeeded to the estate of Rothienorman on the death of Robert 
Leslie, the last of the Leslies of Rothie. 

He was born in 1798; was Colonel of the 78th Highlanders ; and married, in 1825, 
Margaret, eldest daughter of John Urquhart of Craigston, by whom he left issue, two 
daughters. . 

1. Isabella, of whom afterwards. 

2. Anna Margaret, married, 1849, to Alexander Forbes Irvine of Drum, 

by whom she had issue, Francis Hugh Irvine, married to Mary Ramsay, 
daughter of John Ramsay of Barra, and has issue, two sons. 
Colonel Forbes-Leslie of Rothienorman died in 1877, and was succeeded by his 
eldest daughter, 

Isabella Orawford-Forbes-Leslie of Rothienorman. 

She married Lieutenant-Colonel James Henry Graham Crawford, of the Royal 
Engineers, who died i860, and has issue : — 

Fyvie. 1 03 

I. Henry, Royal Inniskillen Fusiliers, married, in 1872, Susan Annabella 

Edith, daughter of W. F. Hunter, — issue four sons and three daughters, 
n. Reginald James, died, in 1867, at Rouen, France. 
III. William Francis, died in Cheltenham, 1855. 

1. Margaret Elizabeth, married Alexander Morison Gordon of Newton, 1870, 
and has issue. 

2. Isabella, married, in 1886, Richard G. Gordon, of the King's School, 
Canterbury, who died 1892. 


The following is the descent of Mrs. Crawford Leslie and Mrs. Admiral Forbes-Leith 
from the old family of Gordon of Badenscoth. 

William Gordon of Terpersie 

was the fourth son of James Gordon, first Laird of Lesmoir. He married a daughter 

of Ogilvie of Banff, and relict of Alexander Gordon, younger of Strathavon. 

They had issue, besides others, a son GeorgO. 

The said William Gordon was at the battle of Corrichie with his chief, 28 October, 


1563, and, ten years thereafter, was with Adam Gordon, I^aird of Auchindown, at the 
battle of Tillyangus, where he killed Black Arthur Forbes, brother of Lord Forbes, 
and champion of that surname and family. He was with the said Adam Gordon 
at the battle of Craibstone, near Aberdeen, and was with him also at the bourd of 
Brechin, where the said Adam was still victorious. He built the House of Terpersie, 
and cast a ditch about it hard on the marches betwixt him and Lord Forbes. Mr. 
William Gordon was forfaulted along with his chief, the Earl of Huntly, and others 
of the name of Gordon, for the part they took at Corrichie. He died at the House of 
Rannes in the Enzie, and was honourably interred in the church of Rathven. He was 
succeeded by his son, 

II. George Gordon of Terpersie. 

He married a daughter of Ogilvy of Inverquhority, and had issue, three sons 

and a daughter : — 

I. William, of Terpersie. 

II. John, of Law. 

III. Patrick, of Badenscoth. 

, daughter, married to Gumming of Culter. 

104 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

George Gordon was a great acquirer of lands. In 1600, or thereabout, he acquired 
Bruckles from William Meldrum of Badenscoth, Three years later, he purchased 
Badenscoth from the Meldrums, and in 16 14, he acquired Darley from Meldrum of 
Iden. In 1634, George Gordon died, and was succeeded in the estate of Badenscoth 
by his third son, 

III. Patrick Gordon of Badenscoth. 

He married first, Gardyn, a daughter of Gardyn of Blackford ; and 

secondly, Hon. Ogilvie, daughter of the first Lord Banff ; by her he had issue, 

three sons and two daughters. 

I. George, of Badenscoth. 

II. James, of Barnes. 

III. John, burgess of Aberdeen. 

I. , daughter, married to John Gordon, tutor of Glenbucket. The 

marriage contracts of these two are in the charter chest at Rothienorman. 
In 1669, Agnes Gordon and her husband, the tutor of Glenbucket, gave to 
her father, Patrick Gordon, a deed of renunciation of the lands of Darley, 
which they held in security for money which had been paid up, and 
acknowledged in the deed. Patrick Gordon died soon after 1681, and was 
succeeded by his son, 

IV. George Gordon of Badenscoth. 

He married Helen, only daughter of Patrick Keith of Kirkton-hill, Forfarshire, by 
Helen AUardyce, sister of Sir John Allardyce of that ilk. They had issue : — 

I. Alexander, who predeceased his parents before 171 1. 

II. William, who succeeded. 
HI. John. 

IV. Thomas. 

In 1705, George Gordon of Badenscoth, with his eldest son Alexander (who, as 
stated, appears to have predeceased his father), made bond of provision for his three 
younger sons — William, John, and Thomas. He was succeeded by his second son, 

V. William Gordon of Badenscoth. 

He married Mary, daughter of William Baird of Auchmedden. After Mr. Gordon's 

death, she married secondly, Gordon of Wardhouse ; and thirdly, Jonathan Forbes 

of Brux. He had issue one son and two daughters : — 
I. James, his successor. 

1. Katharine, married to Alexander Forbes of Blackford in 1754. 

2. Jean, married to James Leslie of Rothie. 

In 1728, William Gordon of Badenscoth had a charter under the great seal of 
Badenscoth as a barony. He was succeeded by his son. 

Fyvie. 105 

VI. James Gordon of Badenscoth. 

James Gordon was served heir by his tutor to his father, William Gordon of Baden- 
scoth. He married Grace Hay, daughter of Hay of Mountblairy, and, 

dying without issue, was succeeded by his sisters as co-heiresses. (He was alive in 
1752 and 1767.') 

VII. Mrs. Katharine Forbes of Blackford and Mrs. Jean Leslie 

of Rothienorman. 

Mrs. Forbes' half of Badenscoth was purchased, as already narrated, by her brother- 
in-law, James Leslie of Rothie, who thus united the estates of Rothie and Badenscoth. 

Above the door of the House of Badenscoth are the arms, crest, and motto of the 
Gordons, as mentioned in " Nisbet's Heraldry," thus — Azure, a Pheon betwixt three 
boars' heads, erased or. Crest, a stag's head, proper attired or. Motto, " Dum vigilo 

There are also the initials " P. G. " and the date 1644. 

I Colonel Forbe'?' Notes. 


The parish is bounded on the north by Inverkeithney in Banffshire, and the parish 
of Turriff; on the east by Fyvie ; on the south by Rayne and Culsalmond. It had for 
its patron saint, St. Donan, abbot, whose staff, according to Dempster, who was a native 
of Auchterless, was kept in the parish, and was used for curing fever, jaundice, &c., but 
was unfortunately broken by the Reformers.' 

The Church of Ochtirles with the pertinents was confirmed by Pope Adrian IV. in 
the year 1157 to Edward, Bishop of Aberdeen.' 

The Rector of Auchterless was chantor of the Cathedral of St. Machars, Old Aber- 
deen ; but though he held a very high position, the names of very few have come 
down to us. 

Malcolm, parson de Auchterless, is witness in 12 11 to a charter of William Comyn, 
Earl of Buchan, regarding the church of Bethelnie. After him there is a silence of 

William Robertson, Presbyter at Auchterless, witnesses, in 1545, a sasine of William 
Meldrum, son and apparent heir of George Meldrum of Fyvie.^ 

Robert Allardes in 1547 is vicar of Auchterless, and in that year is witness to a deed 
of Elen Paterson's.'' 

After the Reformation we find a namesake of the above Robert Allardes as reader in 
1567, He may have conformed. 

John Rechie was reader of Auchterless from 1574-1580. 

Gideon Murray, M.A., was a third son of Andrew Murray of Blackbarony, and 
was admitted prior to 1585. He unfortunately killed a person named Aitchison, 
was confined in Edinburgh Castle, after which he laid aside all thoughts of 
the clerical profession, and was appointed chamberlain to his kinsman, Sir 
Walter Scott of Buccleuch. He acquired the estate of Elibank, alias Eliburne, 
15 March, 1594, as also the property of Longshaw in 1606, and received the honour of 
knighthood in 1605. He was a man of parts and learning, and was much taken notice 
of at Court, and being" a great favourite of King James VI., he was appointed by him, in 
161 1, Treasurer. He repaired and enlarged several of the Royal palaces, particularly 
Holyrood House, Falkland, Linlithgow, Dunfermline, and the Castles of Edinburgh and 
Dumbarton j yet there was money enough in the treasury to defray the whole expense 

T Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 6. 3 Fyvie Charters. 

2 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 560. 4 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 457. 

Fyvte. 107 

of the Court in magnificence. He married Margaret Pentland, and had issue two sons 
and one daughter : — 

I. Sir Patrick Maitland, created in 1643 Lord Elibank. 

II. Walter Muiray of Livingstone. 

I. , daughter, married William Scott of Harden. 

Sir Gideon Murray at last fell under the displeasure of the Court, and died in 1621. 

Robert Maitland was appointed in 1695. He was a member of the General 
Assembly in June, 16 10. 

William Gray was a member of the Chapter of St. Machar's Cathedral, Old Aber- 
deen, that, on 24 March, 1618, elected Patrick Forbes, Bishop of Aberdeen.' He died 
in 1622, and his son, Patrick Gray, was served heir to him, 17 November, 1622. The 
next was 

John Forbes, M.A. He was promoted from being Regent in the University and 
King's College,* and he was admitted prior to 17 July, 1640, when he was cited before a 
committee at Aberdeen for not supporting the Covenant, and suspended before 20 April, 
1 64 1, which sentence was approved of by the General Assembly in 1643. He was 
afterwards deposed. The Parliament recommended him to the Privy Council on 
account of his sufferings and loyalty, for the bygone vacant stipend of Tarves. 

Walter Hempseid was appointed minister of Auchterless in place of the dfeposed 
minister, Mr. John Forbes.^ 

Andrew Massie was translated from Drumblade prior to December 9, 1647. 
Subsequent to his death, his daughters Margaret and Elizabeth were served heirs- 

William Gray was appointed one of the Commissioners for visiting King's College, 
and gave twenty-two pounds towards the erecting of the new buildings there. He 
was translated from Auchterless to Dunse after i May, 1666.^ The next is 

William Meldrum was promoted from being Regent in Marischal College ; and 
was admitted prior to 26 April, 167 1 ; translated to Tranent in 1672. 

Henry Scougal was appointed minister of Auchterless in 1673, but was translated to 
the Professorship of Divinity in University of King's College in 1674. He died June 13, 
1678, in his twenty-eighth year, and fifth of his ministry. He was son of Patrick Scougal, 
Bishop of Aberdeen. In 1677, he published " The Life of God in the Soul of Man." 
He left his books to the library of King's College, and five thousand merks to the office 
of Professor of Divinity in the said college. 

Alexander Barclay graduated at King's College, 9 July, 1668 ; was translated from 
Auchterless to Peterhead in 1682.* 

Patrick Seton was appointed in 1682, having been translated from Dyce, but was 
deposed for drunkenness in 1694, and went to Ireland. He married, in October, 1676, 
Catharine, daughter of James Wood, sometime of Grange. 

I Ret. Gen. No. 1922. 4 Ret. Gen. 540-5, 

3 Orem'g. Hist. p. 376. 5 Records of University, pp. 316-320. 

3 Spalding's Troubles, II. p. 57. 6 Fasti. Aberd. 

io8 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

William Johnstone was translated from Kearn, 6 May, 1697 : died 1703. He 
married Jane Forbes, but had no issue.' 

Alexander Barclay, M.A., above-mentioned, formerly of Peterhead, was intruded 
prior to 12 October, 1704 ; but was obliged to retire. 

Alexander Ross was called to Auchterless by the Presbytery, jure devoluto, 20 March, 
1705, and ordained 8 May, 1706 ; died in 1729, in the twenty-third year of his 
ministry. He married Christian Harvey, who died i October, 17 10, aged twenty-two; 
secondly, Elizabeth Ogilvie, and had issue one son and two daughters — James, Isobel, 
and Katharine.'' 

Andrew Gauld was translated to Auchterless from Kinairnie, 11 June, 1730; died 
6 March, 1767, aged about sixty-nine, in the fortieth year of his ministry. Janet 
Thomson, his widow, died 11 April, 1770. 

William Stuart, M.A., graduated at King's College, Aberdeen, 25 April, 1759 ; was 
for sometime missionary at Glenlivat ; was instituted to Auchterless, [24 September, 
1767, and translated to Turriff 8 June, 1774. 

Alexander Rose, M.A., was translated from Drumoak, November 2, 1774. He got 
a new church built in 1780, and died December 7, 1810, in the eighty-fourth year of his 
age, and the forty-seventh of his ministry. He married first, 14 October, 1765, Sarah 
Gee, who died 6 February, 1789; secondly, August 5, 1790, Jean Rose, daughter of 
Alexander Rose of Lethenty, who died at Broomhill, near . Aberdeen, 22 September, 
1780. He wrote the statistical account of the parish. 

George Dingwall, M.A., was born at Smallburn in the parish, where his ancestors 
had been for several generations. He graduated at Marischal College, April i, 1806 ; 
was ordained 11 September, 181 1 ; died at Uppermill while engaged in pastoral duty, 
January 15, 1862, in the seventy-sixth year of his age, and the fifty-first of his ministry, 
in the very act of making some remarks on the uncertainty of life, and referring to the 
many sudden deaths which had recently taken place in the neighbourhood. His deep 
but unobtrusive piety, profound Christian humility, transparent integrity, and total 
absence of sinister aims in every action of life, marked him out as a character of real 
excellence. He founded two bursaries, one at the school of Auchterless of the annual 
value of ;^4 los., another at the University of Aberdeen of about £,\^ yearly, of which 
the Presbytery of Turriff are patrons, preference being given to the names of Dingwall 
and Forsyth, and natives of the parish of Auchterless. He wrote the statistical account 
of the parish of 1840.3 He was succeeded by 

Alexander Gray, M.A., D.D. He graduated M.A. 1851; D.D. 1889; was 
appointed schoolmaster of Methlick, 1851; ordained to Holburn Church, Aberdeen, 
19 March, 1857 ; translated to Strichen, 1858; and inducted to parish of Auchterless, 
1862. He married Isabella Mair, 25 August, 1851 ; issue — I. John Anderson, 
n. Alexander, HI. Thomas, IV. Marshal Lang, V. Garden Duff, VI. George ; 
I. Catharine, 2. Isabella, 3. Isabella Garland, 4. Jean Garden, 5. Jessie. 

I Poll. Book I. 3 Scott's Fasti VI. pp. 649-50-51. 

3 Tombstone, Churchyard of Auchterless. 


For them no more the blazing hearth shall bum, 

Or busy housewife ply her evening care ; 
No children run to lisp their sires return, 

Or climb his knee the envious kiss to share. 
Oft did the harvest to their sickle yield, 

Their furrow oft the stubborn glebe has broke ; 
IIow jocund did they drive their team afield ; 

How bowed the woods beneath their sturdy stroke. 

— Gray. 

There is in this churchyard no stone of an earlier date than the end of the seventeenth 

An old stone with raised letters, but nearly illegible, bears the inscription — " In 
memory ane very honest. man, George Ramsay, who Sepairted this life to a glorious 
eternity, 1685." There is no representative of the family now in the parish. 

An Aberdeen granite stone has this inscription — " Sacred to the memory of Robert 
Niven, farmer, Bruckhills, who died 20 November, 1867, aged 6t,." His sister, Isabella 
Niven, was the wife of Robert Leslie of Rothie. At her death, the small property of 
Medaple came to the son of the said Robert Niven. 

In the north-east corner of the churchyard, within an enclosure, a granite stone is 
thus inscribed — " The family burying-ground of John Paton Watson of Blackford. 
Edith died 13 June, 1869, aged 13 months." 

On a tombstone, placed by Peter Gray, Seggat, to the memory of his daughter, Jane, 
who died 19 April, 1863, aged 16, there is the following inscription : — 

Weep not for me my parents dear, 
I am not dead but sleeping here ; 
My glass is run, my grave you see, 
I in my bloom was snatched away, 
Therefore prepare to follow me. 

Within an enclosure there are two tombstones, one to a family of Thomsons, thus 
inscribed — "George Thomson, late in Littlemill, died 19 December, 1733, aged 40. 
His son, William Thomson, in Mill of Seggat, died 19 May, 1781, aged 60. George 
Thomson, in Littlemill, died 8 'March, 1790, aged 66." Mill of Seggat was in its day 
one of the best farms in Auchterless. The other stone bears this inscription — " William 
Chalmers, in Kirktown of Auchterless, was born 22 June, 1726, died i April, 1804. 
His spouse, Marjory Thomson, died 15 September, 1808, aged 80. Their son, James 

no The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Chalmers, A.M., born 26 April, 1763, died 22 July, 1846. Their son Alexander, was 
born 2 May, 1765, died 13 September, 1848. Their son, George Chalmers, died at 
Turriff, 9 April, 1852, aged 96 years." These three brothers left money to endow a 
school in the town of Turriff, which has since been erected. They also left legacies for 
the poor in various parishes, and Auchterless has an annual return of ;^2i or thereby 
from this source. 

Within a railing at the south-west corner of the old church is the burial place of a 
family of Keith, in Netherthird, who held at one time an important position in the 
parish. On a slab fast crumbling to decay may be read the following inscriptions — "To 
the memory of James Keith, in Netherthird, born 29 September, 1758, died November, 

1809. Of his mother. Christian Bisset, ; of his daughter, Mary, who died 

April, 1805 ; of his wife, Isobel Bruce, born 1740, died 20 December, 1829; of his 
sister, Susan ; of his son, Alexander Keith, late in Netherthird, who died 17 February, 
1852, aged 77 ; of his daughter, Susan, who died at Turriff, February 26, 1857 ; also of 
Mrs. Alexander Fergus Keith, widow of the late Alexander Keith, who died at Banff, 
March 31, 1873." 

A granite stone with an incised cross bears to be, " In memory of Alexander 
Cruickshank, farmer in Logie-Newton, Auchterless, who died August 5, 1858, aged 56. 
Also of his wife, Margaret Niven, who died 21 June, 1856, aged 50." 

A table stone is inscribed — " By James Cruickshank, in Toukshill, in memory of 
George Cruickshank, in Bankhead, his father, and of Margaret Topp, his mother. She 
died August 26, 1769, aged 64. Here lie also the remains of the said James Cruick- 
shank. He endowed a bursary at King's College, and another at Marischal College, of 
;;^2o or so a year, and restricted to the names of Cruickshank, Topp, or Tapp, or other- 
wise to accumulate. He left also handsome legacies to his friends. He died 18 January, 
181 1, aged 71. Inscribed in testimony of respect to the said James Cruickshank, in 
Toukshill, by Alexander Cruickshank, in Middlehill, his nephew, 1818." 

On a table stone may be read the following — " Here sleep in the peaceful bed of 
her father and mother the body of Catharine, youngest daughter of Alexander Watt, in 
Burreldales, and spouse of Adam Gray, Peterhead. She was born 10 April, 1793; 
married September 17, 1814; entered life immortal July i, 18 15, leaving a son nine 
days old. On this memorial, which time will destroy, it would be vain to record her 
piety and her virtues. They are embalmed in the heart of her husband and friends, 
and written, as they trust, in the Book, and shall be revealed to an assembly on the day 
when the glorious Redeemer of fallen man shall say, ' Come, ye Blessed, inherit the 
Kingdom prepared from the foundation of the world.' " 

Amongst a number of tombstones to the name of Jamieson is the following inscrip- 
tion — " To the memory of a faithful and fond mother, Margaret, widow of the late 
Andrew Jamieson, Turriff. She departed this life 11 March, 1847, ^g^d 71." 

" Cara anima hos fines fugit exanimumque Cadaver liquit in hoc loculo carne refecta 
tamen cum fidis rediens ; Christi donisque referta collaudans Domnum carmina laeta 

Fyvte. 1 1 1 

[Her dear soul hath passed from these earthly realms and left her lifeless hody in 
this little spot ; but when she will return in a renewed frame hearing the graces of 
Christ, she will join in singing the sweet praises of the Lord.] This is the mother of 
Rev. George Jamieson, D.I), of St. Machar's Cathedral, Old Aberdeen. 

On the north side of the old church are monuments to members of the Hatton 
family. On a marble slab is this inscription — " To the memory of Alexander Duff, 
Esq. of Hatton, bom March 26, 17 18, died November 3, 1764, who, to a goodness of 
heart, sweetness of disposition and universal benevolence, joined the social virtues of 
the husband, father, and friend. This marble tablet is inscribed 1765, by the Lady 
Anne Duff, his widow." 

Another is, "To the memory of Alexander Duff, Esq. of Hatton, born i January, 
1688, died 27 December, 1753. Also of Katharine Duff, his spouse, who died 
25 December, 1758, aged 75 ; also in memory of their son, John Duff, Esq. of Hatton, 
born 14 January, 1727, died 2 August, 1787; also of Helen Duff, his spouse, born 
21 June, 1744, died 8 October, 1808. There are also interred of the family here — 
Alexander Duff, Esq. of Hatton, their eldest son ; two sons named John ; two daughters 
named Bathia ; two daughters named Ann. and a daughter named Katharine." 

A broken column bears the inscription — " Sacred to the memory of John, eldest son 
of Garden Duff, Esq. of Hatton, died April, 1829, aged 21. On the obverse side, 
erected by his sister, Mrs. Morison of Mountblairy." 

A granite headstone has the following inscription — " In "memory of John Grant, 
Esq., late Captain in H.M.'s 72nd Regiment, who died at Manor Place, Hatton, on 
3 August, 1861, aged 82 ; of Mrs. Jane Gordon, his spouse, who died 17 October, 1853, 
in the 54th year of her age ; and of their daughter, Mary, who died 18 May, 1836, 
aged 7." 

A Peterhead granite stone is, " In memory of Mary Lumsden, wife of Robert Jopp, 
farmer in Seggat, who died 5 January, 1861, aged 50 years; of Margaret A. Jopp and 
Mary R. Jopp, their daughters, who died February i, i860, aged 19 and 11 years ; and 
of three infant children." 

The following records the death of John Anton, farmer in Thornybank, who 
departed this life. May, 1779, aged 79. 

Hail, happy soul, whose race is safely run, 

Thy warfare ended and thy joy begun, 

Thy gelid corps in sweet lepose shall sleep 

Till heaven's last trump shall rouse oblivion's sleep ; 

When fresh renewed thy sacred dust shall rise, 

Resume its form and hail its native skies. 

Of love and duty this last pledge receive, 

It's all a spouse and all a son can give. 

The following is in memory of a family of Barclays long in Knockleith, who are 
probably descended from the old family of Towie-Barclay. " Here lies Adam Barclay, 
sometime in Knockleith, and Christian Chalmers, his spouse. He died 13 August, 
1695, and she, 18 April, 1696 ; also Isobel Barclay, a daughter, and George Ellice, her 

1 1 2 The Thanage of Fermattyn. 

husband. She died 28 December, 1727, and he, 2 June, 1736 ; also William Ellice, 
their son, who lived at Mill of Knockleith, and Margaret Simpson, his wife. He died 

17 August, 1756, aged 37, and she, 15 February, 1786." 

Regarding the death of William Ellice, the " Aberdeen Journal " of the period has 
this notice — " William Ellice, as he was deservedly esteemed for his skill in country 
affairs, and the fidelity with which he discharged the trust reposed in him by his 
employers, his death was justly regretted." From this family of Ellice was descended 
the Right Hon. Edward Ellice, M.P. 

Another stone is " In memory of Charles Barclay, late of Templeland, who died at 
Mill of Knockleith, 4 February, 1838, aged 86 ; also of his wife, Bathia Smith, who died 
at Templeland, 22 September, 1822, aged 67 ; and of their eldest son, James Barclay, 
who died at Mill of Knockleith, 18 March, 1856, aged 74." This James Barclay was a 
very intelligent man, and was for many years a contributor to the " Aberdeen Journal " 
on agricultural and other subjects. 

The following inscription is on a tablet near the east of the old church — " Near this 
stone are deposited the remains of George Barclay, M.D., physician to the Aberdeen 
Infirmary, who died 20 December, 181 9, aged 27 ; and of his infant daughter, Mary, 
who died on the 27 June, 1820. Endowed with a cheerful, mild, affectionate disposi- 
tion ; respected for his talents and acquirements, and for zeal and benevolence in his 
profession, his early death was the occasion not only of sorrow to his friends but regret 
to the community in which he lived." In the church is a lozenge-shaped stone with the 
inscription — "In memory of Emma, wife of George Barclay, M.D., Aberdeen, who died 
24 March, 1837." Around is the inscription — " Fortitudo et Decor in jumentum ejus." 

On a table stone is inscribed — " Here are interred the bodies of John Wallace, late 
farmer in Chapel of Seggat, who died 29 October, 1792, aged 62 years. Margaret Mair, 
his spouse, died March 27, 1770, aged 38. Margaret Jamieson, spouse of their son, 
Harry Wallace, likewise tenant in Chapel of Seggat, died April, 1837, aged 72 years. 
The said Henry Wallace died 29 March, 1838, aged 71. Jane Wallace, second spouse 
of John Wallace, died 17 June, 1839, aged 92." 

A granite stone within an enclosure records the following — " In memory of Ann 
Lumsden, wife of Andrew Wallace, Chapel of Seggat, who died 17 October, 1873, aged 
78 ; and of the above Andrew Wallace, who died at Chapel of Seggat, 7 January, 
1881, aged 84; also in memory of their sons, James Wallace, who died at Bourke, 
New South Wales, Australia, 24 November, 1876, aged 41 years. And of John 
Wallace, M.A,, M.D,, Surgeon-Major H.M.'s 12th Regiment of Foot, who died at 
Lundi Kotel, Afghanistan, 16 July, 1879, aged 39 years." Within the church a 
beautiful marble tablet has also been erected to the last named. 

Within an enclosure a handsome granite monument " Is sacred to the memory of 
William Morrison, farmer, Tollo, Inverkeithney, born there i January, 1810, died 

18 June, 187 1 ; and his wife, Ann Lawson, who died 6 May, 1850, aged 32 years. 
* Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord.' " 

Fyvie. 1 1 3 

Within an enclosure on a granite stone is recorded the place of interment of the Rev, 
George Dingwall, the faithful minister of this parish for the long period of fifty years, 
born at Smallburn, Auchterless, 3 March, 1785, died 15 January, 1862. The Dingwalls 
were in Auchterless for several generations, as is recorded on an adjoining tombstone. 
There is also a marble tablet in the church to Mr. Dingwall's memory, erected by the 

Within the church there is another marble tablet thus inscrilied — " In memory of 
Louisa Clementina Duff, youngest daughter of (}arden Duff of Ilatton and I^uisa 
Dunbar, who died at Norwood, 16 March, 1883, in her 73rd year. ' Absent from the 
body, present with the Lord.' " 

On the outside of the new church on a stone which was formerly in the old one is 
this inscription — " Christian Harvey, spouse of Mr. Alexander Ross, minister of 
Auchterless, who departed this life 5 October, 17 10, in the 22nd year of her age; also 
of James, Isobel, and Katharine Ross, his children by Eliza Ogilvie, his second spouse. 
He died 17 January, 1729." Above the monument is a sun dial of quaint design. 

The " Aberdeen Journal " of the day records the following death : — " Died on 
12 January, 1755, near Chapel of Seggat, in the parish of Auchterless, Peter Garden, at 
the extraordinary age of 131. He retained his memory and senses till the last. He 
has lived under ten Sovereigns, namely, Charles L, Oliver Cromwell, Richard Cromwell, 
Charles H., James H., \\'illiam and Mary, Anne, George L, George H., George HL 
He remembered when a boy to have been sent to the wood to cut down wood for 
spears in the civil wars." 



The Barony of Auchterless is partly in Buchan district and partly in Formartine ; but 
very probably was entirely in the great Thanage of Fermartyn, which extended from 
the smaller Thanage of Conveth eastward to the sea. 

It is found mentioned at an early date, for, in 1 249-1 286, in the time of Alexander 
III., it occurs in the rental of the Crown lands of Aberdeenshire. The reddendo of the 
barony of Auchterless is set down as a sparrow-hawk. " Esperuarium." ' 

In the fourteenth century it was owned by a family named Dempster. 

In 1379, David Dempster of Auchterless and Caroldstone, who lived in the reign 
of King David Bruce, takes part in a perambulation of Marches near to Arbroath. His 
son Andrew got the office of Dempster of Parliament conferred on him and his heirs. 
The next to be found is ^ 

II. Walter Dempster de Auchterless. 

His name occurs in a charter of date 1434.^ Again we find in 1478 a son, probably 
of the last named, 

III. John Dempster of Auchterless. 

In that year, "the King confirmed a charter of John Dempster de Auchterless, in 
which he grants to Walter, Lord of Invermeathe, a sixth part of the barony of the same 
in excambion for the lands of Fortrie, Ordmydill, Muresk, and Kinermit, in the Lord- 
ship of Lathers, held by the said Walter. '' And in 1481, John Dempster of Auchterless 
and Caroldstone got a charter under the great seal of the superiority of the Lordship of 
Lathers, five parts of the lands of Fortrie, Ordmydill, Muresk," = and the same year 
there is a charter of the superiority of these lands.* In 1499, Irvine of Drum's son got 
a part of the barony of Auchterless, and in that year there is a confirmation by James 
IV. of a charter of John Allardes ^of that ilk to Alexander Irwin, son and heir to 
Alexander Irwin of Drum and Janet Allardes, his wife, the daughter of the said John 
Allardes, of two parts of the barony of Auchterless.' John Dempster of Auchterless 
died about 1504, and was succeeded by his son, 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 560, note. 4 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 510. 

2 Chartulary of Arbroath, p. 180; 5 Id., p. 511. 

Douglas' Baronage, p. 531. 6 Id., p. 561. 

3 History of Carnegies, p. 573. 7 Id., p. 560. 

Fyvie. 1 1 5 

IV. Walter Dempster of Auchterlesa 

He is served heir, in 1504, to his father, John Dempster, in the land, of a third 
part of the barony of Auchterless with the town of Polyglessy, called the barony of 
Auchterless-Dempster.' The next to be found is 

V. William Dempster of Auchterless. 

In 1529, William Dempster got a charter under the great seal from King James V., 
in which he is styled William Dempster of Caroldstone, Auchterless, and Muresk.* 
The next is a son of the above. 

VI. John Dempster of Auchterless, 

was granted a charter under the great seal of the lands of Muresk, Fortrie, Ordmydill, 
dated 26 November, 1533, and in the same year there is a confirmation charter by 
James V. of six parts of Mains of Lathers, granted by John Dempster in exchange for 
six parts of the lands of Muresk. There is a charter in 1541 by King James V. to 
John Dempster and Margaret Stewart of the third part belonging to the said John of 
the lands of Meikle Quisnie and Little Quisnie, of the lands of Ordley, &c., in the 
barony of Auchterless-Dempster.^ In 1553 there is a charter by John Dempster of 
Auchterless, with consent of his son and heir, James Dempster, to his third son, 
Archibald Dempster, of his sunny lands of Lanchebray and Hassiewells, in the barony 
of Auchterless-Dempster. From the above two charters, we find that John Dempster 
was married to Margaret Stewart, and that he had at least three sons. He was 
succeeded by the eldest,* 

VII. James Dempster of Auchterless. 

In 1574, he received a feu charter from Walter, Abbot of Kinloss, of the lands of 
Killesmund and the Haughs, with the Brew House in the barony of Strathisla, and this 
charter was confirmed under the great seal, 8 July, 1574. James, a son of the above, 
had a son, John, who, on the 16 February, 16x3, got a charter under the great seal of 
the lands of Knockleith. From this John the Dempsters of Dunnichen are descended. 
The next is ^ 

VIII. Thomas Dempster of Auchterless. 

He received a charter under the great seal of the lands of Muresk, Ordmydill, and 
Auchterless, 12 February, 1588. In a charter of date 1589, he is styled Thomas 
Dempster, grandson dnd heir of the deceased John Dempster of Auchterless.** In 1592 

I Ant. A. and B. III. p. 562. 4 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 566. 

a Douglas' Baronage, fol. p. 532. 5 Douglas" Baronage, p. 532. 

3 Ant. A. and B. III. pp. 565-6. 6 Id., p. 532 ; Ant. A. and B. III. p. 569. 

Il6 The Thanage of Fer7nartyn. 

there is a charter by James VI. to Thomas Dempster and Jean Leslie, his wife, in life- 
rent ; and to Robert Dempster, their second son, of the lands and barony of Auchter- 
less-Dempster, with the Tower, &c., and of the rights of patronage of the church of 
Auchterless and Inverkeithnie.' The following are of the same family: — 

James Dempster of Knockleith. 

In 1606, March 26, James Dempster is served heir to John Dempster of Knock- 
leith, his brother, in the sunny third part of the town and lands of Knockleith, the lands 
of Hassiewells, &c., the sunny third part of Halltoune of Auchterless, with the sunny 
part of Thomastown in the barony of Auchterless-Dempster.'' Also in the shady half of 
the whole town and lands of Logie-Auldtown, and the Mill of Logie-Auldtown, and in 
the pendicles of the same called Bus and Ladybog, within the barony of Auchterless- 
Meldrum. Again, 

IX. Robert Dempster of Logiealton 

on 26 May, 1622, is served heir of Thomas Dempster of Logiealton, advocate, his 
father, in the sunny part of the town and lands of Logiealton, in the barony of Auchter- 
less. ^ There is also another charter of the same year. John Dempster, third son of the 
above Thomas Dempster, was bred to the law, and married a daughter of Kirkcaldy of 
Grange. He got a charter under the great seal of a part of the lands of Logiealton, 
&c. This John Dempster afterwards acquired the lands of Pitliver, which became the 
chief title of his family. After this date the Dempsters soon parted with all their lands 
in Auchterless, and other parts of Aberdeenshire. 

In the " Scottish Nation " by Anderson, we read — " Thoma Dempster of Muresk 
having squandered away the greater part of his estates, fell into vicious courses, and on 
April 20, 1620, he was tried and found guilty of forgery and falsehood, and was 
beheaded at Edinburgh in consequence." '' 

The Dempsters of Auchterless are now represented in the female line by the 
Dempsters of Dunnichen and Skibo. 

Of the family of Dempster of Auchterless was Thomas Dempster, author of a great 
many works. An ecclesiastical history of the Scottish nation was published after his 
death ; but many of the authors celebrated in this work are fabulous. 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 570. 4 Scottish Nation, II. p. 29. 

2 Ret. Spec. No. 143. Pitcaim's Criminal Trials, III. p. 487. 

3 Id., No. 175. 

Fyvie. 1 1 7 


In a retour above quoted, part of the barony of Auchterless'is called Auchterless- 
Meldruni. It had been acquired by the Meldrum family. The chief of the name was 
Meldrum of Meldrum, and a descendant had Fyvie down to 1596. They were in 
Hatton before 1621, as appears from the following record of the Privy Council, which 
affords an example of the conduct of north country gentlemen under the ban of the law 
in those times. " November, 162 1. George Meldrum of Haltoune had been put 
to the horn and denounced rebel for some failures of duty towards James Crichton of 
Frendraught, and other persons ; and it became necessary for the Marquis of Huntly, as 
sheriff of Aberdeenshire, to send a force to capture his person. James Gordon of 
Knockespock and George Gordon of Gowie went with a band for this purpose. 
At their approach, Meldrum was in the fields, but he no sooner saw them than 
surmising their design he fled to his house, closed the gates, and prepared to stand a 
siege. They, anxious to vindicate the royal authority, beleagured the house, resolved 
not to leave it till they should have reduced the occupant to His Majesty's obedience. 
They had lain about the place for forty-eight hours^when John Innes of Crombie, 
hearing what was going on, came to them in the utmost possible haste, mounted on his 
best horse, declaring to them his desire to deal with George for the purpose of inducing 
him to submit. He entreated the deputies that with their allowance he might go and 
confer with the said George thereanent ; whereunto they very gladly yielded, seeing they 
sought nought but obedience. The Laird of Crombie in the meantime seemed very 
busy in going and coming to and frae the said George, feeding the deputies with false 
conceits and hopes, and sometimes with vain promises that he himself would be 
cautioner for the said George for the satisfaction of all his creditors, and so under this 
false pretence, having abused the confidence of the deputies — making them believe all 
that he spak — he then brought the said George Meldrum out of the house, set him upon 
his best horse, and put him away, to the great contempt and mocking of justice. For 
this contempt, the Laird of Crombie was denounced a rebel." ' 

Meldrum of Reidhill, one of the same family, was hanged and quartered for burning 
the Tower of Frendraught.* 

There are the following notices of the Meldrums of Auchterless. 

George Meldrum appears to have been succeeded by 

II. William Meldrum of Haltoun. 

Little is known legarding him, except that he died in 1644, and was succeeded by 
his brother, 

I Chambers' Domestic Annals, Vol. I., p. 537. 3 Spalding's Troubles. 

1 1 8 The TJianage of Fermartyn. 

III. James Meldrum of Haltoun. 

On 7 December, 1644, he was served heir to his elder brother, William.' He was 
succeeded by his son, 

IV. William Meldrum of Auchterless-Meldrum, 

who was served heir, January 10, 1682, to his father, James Meldrum of Haltoun;' 
and on November 27, 1691, there was a special service of William Meldrum as nearest 
heir of his father, James Meldrum of Haltoun, in the lands and barony of Auchterless, 
Meldrum, comprehending the dominical lands of Auchterless, the tower and fort, and 
Manor place. The retour enumerates the lands much as they are at the present day. 
There is also the market called St. Donan's Fair, held yearly on the said lands, 
with the customs, &c. And the said lands were held of the King and Queen in chief in 
free heritage and barony.^ He was succeeded by his brother, 

V. Alexander Meldrum of Auchterless-Meldrum, 

who was served heir, February 2, 1700, to his brother, William Meldrum of Haltoun, 
in the lands and barony of Auchterless-Meldrum. This appears to be the last of the 
Meldrums of Auchterless. 

Soon after the above date, the above lands of Auchterless were purchased by Patrick 
Duff of Craigston, and they remain, as will afterwards be shown, in the possession of his 
descendants, the Duffs of Hatton. 

The following is the descent of the Duffs of Hatton, a branch of the great family of Duff 
of which the Duke of Fife is chief. According to Douglas, Baird, and others, this family 
is descended from the old Earls of Fife, and more immediately from the Duffs of 
Muldavit and Craighead, of which they claim to be the representatives. The evidence 
on which these claims are founded requires to be reconsidered. 

Adam Duff in Olunybegg, 

according to Baird in his history of the Duffs, and Douglas in his Baronage, is said to 
be the son of John Duff of Muldavit by his second wife, Margaret Gordon. It so 
happens, however, that this John Duff was npt twice married. Isobel Allan, his wife, 
long survived him. It is recorded in the Cullen books of sasine thus : — " 1637. 
Isabell Allane, relict of John Duff of the Orchard, burgess of Cullen. Also, Isabell 
Allane, relict of umquhile John Duff, and Agnes Gordon, mother-in-law of Isabell 

1 Ret. Gen. No 8683. 3 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 572. 

2 Id., No. 6344. 

Fyvie. 119 

Allane, and relict of John Duff, sometime of Muldavit." " There existed a Margaret 
Gordon, wife of a John Duff, but she was the grandmother of the husband of Isobell 
Allane, and relict of John Duff of iVIuldavit." ' There is a precept of sasine, of date 
lo April, 1573, in connection with a confirmation charter of James Ogilvie of Findlater, 
directed to Andrew Duff in Clunybegg. Among the witness are John Duff de Connes, 
Alexander Duff de Torresoul, James Gordon, son of John Gordon de Carnburro.' 
Another precept of sasine, of date 28 August, 1581, also of a charter to James Ogilvy, is 
directed to Adam (Andrew ?) Duff in Clunybegg, and among the witnesses are 
Alexander Duff de Torresoul, and James Gordon, son of John Gordon of Carnburro. 
These very probably point to near relatives of Adam Duff in Clunybegg, and may be 
descended from the Duffs of Muldavit. Adam Duff in Clunybegg, according 
to Douglas and Baird, married Beatrix, a daughter of Gordon of Birkenburn. They 
had a numerous family, to whom he gave a good education, and their descendants 
have most of them flourished in stock and branches. Adam Duff was said to be a 
man of strong natural parts, and of indefatigable industry. He had issue : — 

I. Alexander, of Keithmore. 

II. John, ancestor of the Duffs of Corsindae. 

III. William, Provost of Inverness, married twice ; had issue, among others, a 
son, Alexander, who married Katharine Duff, heiress of Drummuir. 

IV. George, in Edendiach. 

There [were other two sons. One went south and never returned again to 
the north, and the other was drowned in the Fiddich. Two daughters, 
Jane and Helen, were both married. 
Adam Duff died April, 1676, and was succeeded by his son, 

II. Alexander Duff of Keithmore. 

He was born in 1623. He was an officer under Montrose in all his campaigns of 
1644, 1645, S"d 1646. In the beginning of 1649 or 1650, he married Helen Grant of 
Alathy, sister of Archibald Grant of Ballintomb, who was ancestor of the Grants of 
Monymusk. Keithmore, according to Baird, was a little man, and in the decline of life 
became very corpulent. He was a very judicious, frugal man, and though abundantly 
active, a great part of his success in money making is ascribed to his wife, one of the 
most industrious, painstaking women of the age. She was a sturdy, big-boned woman, 
and at last became so stout and bulky, that she required, it is said, two ells of plaiden 
to make her a pair of hose, and that at one time, when she threw herself hastily on the 
chair, without taking notice that the house cat was lying upon the seat, she so effectually 
pressed it, that it never wagged a foot more ! 

Keithmore and his wife ama'ssed a considerable fortune, and died possessed of a 
large land rent. Besides large purchases of land made by himself, his son Braco, added 
much to the family estates. They had issue : — 

I Dr. Cramond in Genealogist, Aug. 1889. a Reg. Mag. Sig. 1567-1573, No. 251 , 1581, No. 125. 

1 20 Tlie Thanage of Ferttiartyn. 

I. Alexander, his heir, afterwards of Braco. 

II. William, of Dipple. 

III. Patrick, of Craigston, of whom afterwards as of Hatton. 

1. Margaret, married James Stuart of Lesmurdie. 

2. Jean, married to George Meldrum of Crombie and minister of Glass. 

3. Mary, married to Alexander Fraser, physician, to whom she had one 
daughter, Helen, married to Alexander Hay of Rannes, secondly, to 
Thomas TuUoch of Tannachie. 

Mr. Alexander of Keithmore died in 1700, aged 76. His rental and that of his son 
exceeded 40,000 merks. 

III. Alexander Duff of Braco. 

He was born about 1650. He married Margaret, daughter of Sir James Gordon of 
Lesmoir, Bart, by whom he had issue : — 

I. William, of Braco, his successor. 

1. Margaret, married to Mr. Gordon of Glengarrick. 

2. Helen, married to William Gordon of Farskane. 

3. Mary, married to Alexander Abercrombie of Tilliebody, advocate. 

After his education at school and college, Mr. Alexander Duff attended a writer to 
the Signet's office in Edinburgh, practised as a law agent himself, and retired to the 
country in 1675. He sat long in the Scotch Parliament as representative of the county 
of Banff. He exerted himself much in ridding the country of robbers and thieves, 
and was the means of bringing to justice the famous freebooter Macpherson, who 
was hanged at Banff. He made, as already mentioned, many great additions to the 
family estate in his father's lifetime, and aided his father in managing the noble estate 
of Balvenie. Mr. Baird adds — " He was very careful of the pence, believing that 
the pounds would take care of themselves." A sturdy beggar having heard that 
he had found a halfpenny on the streets of Banff, came up to him craving an alms 
and saying, " God bless you, Braco, gies a bawbee, and if ye winna gies a bawbee of yer 
ain, gies the bawbee that ye fand." " Fin' a bawbee to yersel'," quo' Braco, and moved 
on. He'made many great additions to his estates in Banffshire, from the fact that 
there were then a very great number of small heritors in Banffshire deeply sunk in debt. 
Braco bought up these estates, some from the proprietors ; but acquired many of them 
by buying up their debts, by adjudications, comprisings, and other slump imperfect 
rights 'on their land. His accession of territory was so rapid that he looked as if he 
would soon be alone in the face of the country. According to Mr. Baird, the Earl 
of Kintore of the time is said to have added a petition to his devotions, " O, Lord, keep 
the Hill of Foudland between me and Duff of Braco!" He died 1705, and was 
succeeded by his son, 

Fyvie. 121 

IV. William Duff of Braco. 

His wife was Helen Taylor, by whom he had an only surviving daughter, Margaret, 
married, 1721, in her 12th year, to Patrick Duff of Premnay ; secondly, in 1768, she 
was married to Udny of Udny. William Duff of Braco, according to Mr. Baird, was a 
very benevolent gentleman, adored by his servants. He died in 17 18 without male 
issue, when the representation devolved upon his uncle, 

V. William DufiF of Dipple and Braco. 

He was the second son of Alexander Duff of Keithmore, and grandson of Adam 
Duff, Clunybegg, heir male of tailzie of his nephew, William Duff of Braco ; succeeded 
accordingly, and married first, Jean Gordon, daughter of Sir George Gordon of Edin- 
glassie ; by her he had one son : — 

I. William, afterwards Lord Braco. 

1. Helen, married to William Sutherland of Roscommon, brother to Kenneth, 

third Lord Duffus. 

2. Katharine, married to her cousin, Alexander Duff of Hatton. 

3. , married to Alexander M'Intosh of Blervie, and had twenty -two 


4. Elizabeth, married to Thomas Donaldson of Kinnairdie. 

He married secondly, in 1703, Jane, youngest daughter of Sir William Dunbar of 
Durn, and by her had one son and four daughters. 
II. Alexander, died 1721, aged 5. 

5. Anne, married to William Baird of Auchmedden, the author of a history of 

the Duffs, so frequently quoted in this deduction. It is a pleasant and 
admirable family history. 

6. Janet, married to Sir James Kinloch of Kinloch, in Perthshire. 

7. Mary, married to Lieutenant-General James Abercromby of Glassaugh. 

8. Henrietta, died unmarried. According to Mr. Baird, she refused many 

good marriages, and was one of the most accomplished women of her 
time, being endowed with every virtue that could adorn her sex. 
William Duff of Dipple, afterwards of Braco, died in 1722, in the 69th year of his 
age. He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

VI. William Duff of Braco. 

He was born in 1697, and married first, Janet Ogilvie, daughter of James, Earl of 
Findlater and Seafield ; but she died soon after in 1721, s.p. He married, in 1723, Jean, 
daughter of Sir James Grant of Grant, by whom he had a numerous issue. 

He was a member of the British Parliament for the county of Banff. He was created 
Lord Braco by George II. in 1735, and Earl of Fife and Viscount Macduff in the 

122 TJie Thanage of Ferniartyn. 

Peerage of Ireland, 1759. He died in September, 1763, leaving by his second 
marriage : — 

I. William, born March, 1724, died in September, 1751. 

II. James, second Earl of Fife. 

III. Alexander, of Echt, third Earl of Fife. 

IV. Peter, died in infancy, 

V. George, married to Frances, a grandchild of General Dalzell, by whom he 
got a good fortune — issue a son George. 

VI. Lewis, a Captain of the Eighth Regiment of Foot, married Miss Davis of 

VII. Arthur, an advocate. 

1. Lady Anne, married to Alexander Duff of Hatton. 

2. Janet, married to Sir William Gordon of Park, who is said to have eloped 

with her from Rothiemay House. She bore to him two sons, who were 
both in the army. She married secondly, George Hay of Mountblairy 
(see Gordons of Park, under article Cobairdy). 

3. Jane, married to Keith Urquhart of Craigston, and had issue. 

4. Helen, married to Captain Robert Duff of Logic, ancestor of Duffs of 


5. Sophia Henrietta, married 7 April, 1757, Thomas Wharton, Esq. 

6. Katharine, died at Edinburgh in 1761, much regretted. 

7. Margaret, married to James Brodie of that ilk. Lord Lieutenant of Nairn. 

She was accidentally burned to death, April 24, 1786. 
His Lordship died September 30, 1763, at Rothiemay, and was succeeded by his 
surviving son, 

VII. James, II. Earl of Fife. 

He was created a peer of Great Britain, 19 February, 1790, by the title of Baron 

His Lordship married Lady Dorothea Sinclair, only child of Alexander, ninth Earl 
of Caithness, but dying without male issue in 1809, the barony of Fife expired, while the 
other honours devolved on his brother, 

VIII. Alexander, III. Earl of Fife. 

He was born 1731 ; married 17 August, 1775, Mary, daughter of George Skene, 
Esq. of Skene, and had issue : — 

I. James, his successor. 

II. Sir Alexander, K.C.B., of Delgaty Castle, a General in the army, Lord- 

Lieutenant and Sheriff- Principal of Morayshire; married, March, 18 18, 
Anne, youngest daughter of James Stein of Kilbagie, and died March, 

Fyvie. 123 

1851, leaving issue by her, who died February 4, 1859 : — James, V. Earl, 
George Skene, M.P., Catharine, married, 11 August, 1841, John L. 
Ricardo, Esq.. M.P. ; lx)uisa, married, 12 December, 1848, Richard 
Brooke, Esq., eldest son of Sir Richard Brooke, Bart. 

1. Jane, married to Major A. J. Tayler, Esq., R.E., and died 22 May, 1850 

— issue — I., W. J. Tayler, of Glenbarry, married to Georgina Lucy Duff, 
and had issue. II. Captain Tayler, and several other sons and daughters. 

2. Ann, married 1809, Richard Wharton of Orton, and died 24 January, 1829. 

3. Sarah, married 1807. to Daniel Collier, Esq., and died 181 1. 

4. Mary, died young. 

His Lordship died 17 April, 181 1, and was succeeded by his son, 

IX. James, IV. Earl of Fife, 

K.T., G.C.H., Knight of the Order of St. Ferdinand of Spain, and of the Sword of 
Sweden, born October 5, 1776. He obtained a barony of the United Kingdom as 
Baron Fife, April 27, 1829. His Lordship married, September 9, 1799, Mary Caroline, 
daughter of John Manners, Esq., by Louisa, Countess of Dysart, who died 20 December, 
1805, by whom, he had no issue. The Earl distinguished himself during the 
Peninsular war, having volunteered his services and obtained the rank of Major-General 
in the patriotic army of Spain. He was wounded at the battle of Talavera, and again 
at the storming of the fort of Matagorda near Cadiz. Lord Fife was for some time 
attached to the Court of George IV., but after a time retired. Having seen life in all 
its phases, he withdrew to Duff House, and spent the remainder of his days in deeds of 
beneficence and kindness. Many good stories could be told of his Lordship. At the 
time of the Disruption in 1843, having more than thirty kirks in his gift, and many at 
that time at his disposal, the number of applicants was very great. Some came with an 
extraordinary number of certificates in their favour. Seeing the long list of one candi- 
date, his Lordship is said to have remarked, *' Ah, something wrong there ; too many 
flannels ! " A village doctor in the neighbourhood of his estates had a brother a proba- 
tioner, an aspiring applicant for a vacant kirk, and the doctor wrote that he and his 
brother were coming to Duff House, on a certain day, to have an interview with his 
Lordship on the subject. Lord Fife received them very politely, and entertained them 
from noon to dusk fighting all his old battles in the Peninsula over again; but took care 
never to say nor let them say a word about a kirk ! 

The minister of once wrote his Lordship for a subscription to the various 

schemes of the Church of Scotland, including the one for the Conversion of the Jews. 
Lord Fife sent five pounds to be divided amongst so many of the schemes in such pro- 
portions as should be deemed most proper. He, however, especially excluded the last- 
mentioned scheme, remarking that he had already given enough to the Jews ! 

Two sons of tenants applied for the school of Macduff, now the public school, and it 

124 "^^ Thanage of Fermartyn. 

was resolved that they should be examined in order to know the merits of the candi- 
dates. An examination was held, when the one candidate was found to be superior in 
Greek while inferior to the other on general subjects. The result being communicated 
to his Lordship, he resolved that the superior general scholar should be appointed, 
remarking that " the folk of Macduff could do without Greek ! " It happened, however, 
that the Banff Academy became vacant, when his Lordship recommended that the 
superior Grecian should now be appointed. Both his Lordship's proteges were worthy 
of his kind patronage, for the one became a professor of Greek in a colonial university ; 
the other a highly respected parish minister, while both received the highest honours 
their university could confer on them. 

Lord Fife had on his lands a great many small crofters. About seventy years ago, 
it was considered in the interest of proprietors to add small crofts to large farms, and 
thus save the expense of building houses, and the result was that many poor people were 
evicted from their holdings, and had no home left them. Lord Fife had compassion on 
these poor people ; and having large tracts of unoccupied land on his property, he gave 
them crofts on these, built houses, and assisted them in reclaiming the land by trenching, 
draining, and liming, &c. So many applications had his Lordship, that he is said to 
have written a neighbouring peer not to send his people away faster than he could take 
them in. 

His birthday, on the 5th of October, was celebrated with great enthusiasm 
throughout the length and breadth of the immense Fife territories. All loved and 
honoured him, and when the tomb closed over James, fourth Earl of Fife, perhaps the 
greatest of his name and race, many felt that a friend and benefactor was removed, on 
whose like they would never again look. 

He died 9 March, 1857, and was succeeded by his nephew, 

X. James, V. Earl of Fife, 

who was born July 6, 1814. He married the Lady Georgiana Elizabeth Hay, daughter 
of William George, seventeenth Earl of ErroU, by the Lady Elizabeth Fitzclarence, 
daughter of William IV. He was for many years M.P. for Banffshire, and was created 
a peer of the United Kingdom by the title of Baron Skene of Skene ; had issue : — 

I. Alexander William George, now Duke of Fife, born 10 November, 

1. Anne Elizabeth Clementina, born 1847 ; married, 1865, John Villiers 

Stuart, sixth Marquis of Townshend, and has issue. 

2. Lady Ida Louisa Alice, born 1848, married first, 1867, Adrian Hope, Esq. 

This marriage was dissolved in 1873. She married secondly, 1880, 
William Wilson, Esq. 

3. Lady Alexina, born 1851; married, 1871, H. A. Coventry, Esq.; she died 


Fyvie. 1 2 5 

4. Lady Agnes Cecil Emnieliiie, horn 1852 ; married first, 187 1, (leorgc 
Robert, Viscount Dupplin, which marriage was dissohed in 1876. She 
married secondly, 1876, Herbert Flower, Kscj., who died 1880. 
His Lordship died 1879, and was succeded by his only son, 

XI. Alexander William George, VL Earl of Fife, II Baron Skene. 

He was created in 1885, Karl of Fife of the United Kingdom, and in 1889, Duke of 
Fife and Manjuis of Macduff, He married, 1889, l*rincess Louise Victoria Dagmar, 
V.A., eldest daughter of H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, and has issue. 

We now return to the 

Duffs of Hatton. 

Patrick Duff of Craigston, third son of Alexander Duff of Keithmore, and 

grandson of Adam Duff of Clunybegg, married first, Innes, daughter of Innes of 

Edengight ; by her he had thirteen children. He married secondly, Mary Urquhart, 
by whom he had twenty-three children. He thus, by his two wives, had thirty-six 
children. The following are the most of the thirty-six children who came to maturity. 
I. Alexander, of Hatton, of whom afterwards. 

IL John, Provost of F^lgin. He married his cousin, Margaret Gordon, 
daughter to (iordon of Farskane, by whom he had three sons and one 

III. William, settled as merchant in Banff al)Out 17 16. He married Bathia 
(larden, daughter of Alexander Garden of Troup, by whom he had a 
numerous issue. 

IV. Patrick, of Premnay, so called from an estate in the Garioch, which he 
first purchased and afterwards sold, but always kept the title. He married 
Margaret Duff, his cousin Braco's daughter and only child, then only eleven 
years of age. She married after his death, Udny of Udny. She founded, 
in 1 791, a bursary in King's College. P]esides Premnay, Patrick Duff had 
the lands of Culter on Dceside, where he died in the year 1763. 

These four sons were by the first marriage. Of his numerous children by his second 
marriage, few reached middle age. 

V. James, to whom his father left the lands of Craigston and Castletown in 
King-Edward. He married, in 1732, Helen Abercromby of Glassaugh, by 
whom he had an only daughter, Helen Duff, who married Dr. Clarke, an 
eminent physician in Edinburgh. James Duff died in June, 1734. On 
his death, Castletown went to his daughter Helen, by whose husband. Dr. 
Clarke, it was sold to Urquhart of Craigston, and Craigston went by entail 
to Archibald Duff, the next l)rother. 

126 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

VI. Archibald, of Craigston, who was long in the service of the Swedish East 
India Company in Bengal. He sold Craigston to Captain John Urquhart 
of Cromarty, his uncle. Archibald Duff died 175 — . 

VII. Robert, of Logic, a good naval officer, from whom the Duffs of Fetteresso 
are descended. 

VIII. Adam, merchant in Aberdeen, and one of the baillies of the city. 

1. Margaret, married Alexander Gordon of Gight, born May 3, 1710, died at 

Gight, January 24, 1761. They had nine sons, and three daughters. 
George, their eldest son, had an only child, Catharine, who married 
Captain John Byron, the father of Lord Byron, the poet. 

2. Jane, married to her cousin, John Innes of Edengight, 1720. The rest of 

the thirty-six died young. 
Patrick Duff died 1731, and his eldest son succeeded to Hatton. 

II. Alexander DuflF of Hatton, Knockleith, and Balquholly. 

He married his cousin, Katharine Duff, daughter of William Duff of Dipple, after- 
wards of Braco, and father of the first Earl of Fife. He bought, in 17 19, the estates of 
Balquholly, in the parishes of Turriff and Mouquhitter, which for many generations 
belonged to the Mowats (de Monte Alto). He also purchased several estates in Forgue 
from Theodore Morison of Bognie, Balnoon from Ogilvie of Inchmartine, Downies, 
Auchinhamper, Rothmaise. Mr. Alexander Duff was a very judicious man, and did 
much to improve the property and the welfare of his tenantry. He had the following 
issue : — 

I. Alexander, of Hatton. 

II. John, who succeeded his brother Alexander. 

III. James, of whom afterwards. 

1. Jane, married, 1747, to James Abernethy of Mayen. died at Dunkirk, 
December 10, 1771, leaving three sons and six daughters. 

2. Helen. 

Mr Alexander Duff of Hatton died December, 1756, aged 65, and was succeeded in 
Hatton by his son, 

III. Alexander Duff of Hatton. 

He married, in 1745, his cousin, Lady Anne Duff, daughter of William, first Earl of 
Fife. He died from the effects of an accident in 1764, leaving a daughter, Jean Duff, 
who married Sir James Grant of Grant, by whom she had two sons, Ludovic, Alexander, 
and a daughter Ann. He was succeeded by his brother, 

IV. John Duff of Hatton and Drumblair. 

He married his second cousin, Helen Duff, daughter of Patrick Duff of Whitehills, 
by his wife, Clementina, daughter of Hay of Rannes. He died 1787, leaving issue : — 

Fyvie. 1 27 

I. Alexander, who succeeded him. 

II. Patrick, wlio succeeded Alexander. 

III. Andrew, who succeeded Patrick. 

IV. Garden, who succeeded Andrew. 
John Duff of Ifatton was succeeded by his son, 

V. Alexander Duff of Hatton. 

He married Leslie, daughter of Leslie of Melross. He had issue two 

daughters : — 

1. Mary. 

2. Helen. 

Mary Duff was a sweetheart of Lord Byron. In a journal written in 1813, he thus 
speaks of her. " I have been thinking a great deal about Mary Duff. How very odd 
that I should have been so utterly, devotedly fond of that girl, at an age, when I could 
neither feel passion nor know the meaning of the word. I remember, too, our walks, 
and the happiness of sitting by Mary in the children's apartment in their house, not far 
from the Plainstones of Aberdeen, while the lesser sister, Helen, sat playing with her 
doll, while we sat gravely making love in our way." ' 

He alluded to her in the poem, "When I roved a )>oung Highlander." 

" No feeling save one to my bosom was dear, 
Need I say, my sweet Mary, 'twas centered in you." 

Alexander Duff having no sons, the entailed estate passed to his brother, 

VI. Patrick Duff of Hatton. 

He never married, and died in 1801, aged thirty-five years, and was succeeded by 
his next brother, 

VII. Andrew Duff of Hatton. 

He died unmarried in 1819, and was succeeded by his brother, 

VIII. Garden Duff of Hatton. 

He married, in 1805, Louisa, daughter of Sir Benjamin Dunbar of Hempriggs, who 
assumed the title of Lord Duffus. He rebuilt Hatton Castle, and made it his residence, 
instead of the old manor house in Auchterless, where his family had hitherto lived. 
Hatton Castle had previously been called Hatton Lodge, and was used as a dower 
house. Part of the old Casde of Balquholly was incorporated with the present building. 
Mr. Garden Duff of Hatton had the following issue : — 

I. John, born 1807, died unmarried 1828. 

II. Benjamin, born 1808, married, 1835, Helen Emma Haynes, and had issue 
a son and daughter. 

I Anderson's Ryron, Vol. I. p. 31. 

128 The Thanage of Fermartyfi. 

III. Garden William, bom 1814, who succeeded. 

IV. Robert George, married, 1845, Mary Astley ; issue, three sons and one 

V. James, born 1820; married, 1855, Jane^ Bracken Dunlop, and has issue, 
six sons and eight daughters. 

1. Janet, born 1806 ; married, 1836, Alexander Morison of Bognie, died 1883. 

2. Helen, born 1809; married, 1834, James Buchan of Auchmacoy ; issue, 
one son and a daughter. 

3. Louisa Clementina, born 181 1, died 1863. 

Mr. Garden Duff died in 1858. His wife, Louisa, in 1865. He was succeeded by 
his son, 

IX. Garden William Duff of Hatton. 

He married first, Douglas Maria Urquhart, daughter of Beauchamp Colclough 
Urquhart of Meldrum, a family which represents the Meldrums, the Setons, and the 
Urquharts of Meldrum. By her he had issue : — 

I. Garden Alexander, now of Hatton. 

II. George, died 18 — . 

III. Beauchamp, born 1858 ; married, 1877, Grace Wood. 

1. Annie Louisa, born 185 1. 

2. Louisa Henrietta, born 1852, married to Colonel Pollard Urquhart of 

3. Janet Douglas, born 1856; married, 1886, Alexander L. Duff, R.N. 

4. Douglas Mary, born 1859. 

He married secondly, Jean, daughter of John Cook, Esq. By her he had issue : — 

IV. Walter Garden, born 1863. 

5. Mary, born 1864. 

6. Bertha Hope, born 1866, married to Alan Colquhon Duff, Indian Civil 

Mr. Garden William Duff died 1866, and was succeeded by his son, 

X. Garden Alexander Duff of Hatton. 

He married, in 1878, his cousin, Anne Isabella Urquhart, only daughter of 
Beauchamp Colclough Urquhart of Meldrum and Byth, by Isabel, daughter of Mr. 
Fraser of Braelangwell ; issue : — 

I. Garden Beauchamp, born December, 1879. 

II. Patrick Beauchamp. 

We now return to the descent of James Duff, third son of Alexander Duff of 
Hatton, by Katharine Duff, daughter of William Duff of Dipple (see No. II,). He was 
sheriff-clerk of Banffshire ; married Helen Skene, daughter of George Skene of 
Rubislaw, by whom he had two sons and one daughter ; secondly, to Margaret Dunbar 

Fyvie. 1 29 

of Kincorth, niece to Sir William Dunbar of Durn. The first Mrs. Duff died leaving a 
son only a few weeks old, viz. — 

II. George DufiF, 

who was born in 1764, and from his earliest years had a strong predilection for the sea. 
When only a boy, in hours of play, he was always found either among the shipping 
in the harbour of Banff, or in boats on the Deveron. As a boy he was sprightly, active, 
and enterprising. Finding his father adverse to his going to sea, he endeavoured, when 
nine years old, to make his escape, by concealing himself on board a small merchant 
vessel. He was afterwards sent to join his grand-uncle Commodore (afterwards Admiral) 
Robert Duff, who commanded at Gibraltar, with his flag on board the " Panther," of sixty 
guns, in September, 1777. He had been in fourteen engagements during the American 
war before he was seventeen years of age ; and in consequence of his services, he was 
at that early age made a lieutenant. He served in the " Montagu " of seventy- 
four guns, in the many encounters which our fleet had with the French, till the glorious 
i2th of April, 1782, when the Count de Grasse, then Commander-in-Chief in the " Ville 
de Paris," of a hundred and two guns, probably the largest ship in the world at that 
time, and four other ships were taken, and brought to Jamaica by our victorious fleet. 

In 1790, Lieutenant Duff, through the interest of the Duke of Gordon, was appointed 
Captain of the " Martin," sloop upon the coast of Scotland. Soon after his promotion, 
Captain Duff married Sophia, daughter of Captain Dirom of Muiresk, to whom he had 
been from childhood attached, and fixed his residence in Edinburgh. 

Upon the breaking out of the war in 1793, he was one of the very few who were 
appointed past Captains, and he went on an expedition to the West Indies as Captain of 
" The Duke," of ninety guns, bearing the flag of the Hon. Commodore Murray. This 
ship led the attack on the batteries of Martinique ; but was unfortunately struck by 
lightning, and had to be sent home to be repaired. He was soon after appointed to the 
command of the " Ambuscade," frigate of thirty-two guns, and served on her in the 
North Seas, and on the coast of Ireland until 1801, when he was appointed to the 
"Vengeance," of seventy-four guns. In 1804, a general promotion in the navy took 
place, and Captain Duff was appointed to the command of the " Mars," of seventy-four 
guns, and immediately proceeded to join her off Ferrol. He was afterwards detached 
to Cadiz, under Vice-Admiral Collingwood. 

Vice-Admiral Lord Nelson having in the end of September returned from England 
to resume the command upon that most important station, made a disposition of his 
increased force into two divisions, one of which was led by himself, and the other by 
Vice-Admiral Collingwood, Admiral Louis having been detached to the Mediterranean 
with seven sail of the line. Captain Duff had the honour upon his departure, though 
there were senior Captains in the fleet, to be appointed to command the advance or 
inshore squadron of four sail of the line. From the time the enemy began to come out 
of Cadiz on the 19 September, he was almost constantly employed in repeating signals 
from the frigates to the fleet. He followed and kept sight of the enemy, and continued 


I30 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

making signals till the memorable morning of the 21st, when it became certain that the 
enemy's fleet could not escape. The signal was made for the squadron to return, and 
take their place in the order of battle. The signal was made for the " Mars " to lead 
the lee division of our fleet, and to break the enemy's line. Captain Duff knowing that 
his ship sailed ill, ordered every stitch of canvas to be instantly set, and in the mean- 
time, while bearing down on the enemy, he went through the ship to see that everything 
was in readiness for action, and spoke to the officers and men in every part of the ship, 
giving them directions. Notwithstanding every exertion, the " Mars " was passed by 
the " Royal Sovereign," bearing the flag of Vice- Admiral Collingwood ; then the " Belle- 
isle " also shot ahead, and were in action a few minutes before the " Mars," each ship 
breaking through a different part of the enemy's line. The wind which had been light, 
then became uncertain, and prevented the ships from closing immediately with the 
enemy ; so that the few who were first engaged were in a manner surrounded, and had 
for some time to sustain a most severe conflict. There was a French ship on each side 
of the " Mars," and a Spanish, a first-rate, on her bow, and a fourth ship also within 
range of shot. The ship on her starboard quarter, the " Fougeux," was soon disabled, 
and it was thought she had struck ; but her colours had only been shot away, and she 
never ceased to fire. The Captain of Marines on the poop seeing that the " Fougeux " 
in dropping to leeward was getting into position, which would enable her to rake the 
" Mars," and that she was preparing to do so, came down to the quarter-deck to mention 
it to Captain Duff. The want of wind rendered it impossible for him to alter the posi- 
tion of the " Mars," nor could it with .safety be attempted in regard to the enemy's ships. 
Captain Duff" therefore said to the Captain of Marines, " Do you think our guns would 
bear on her ? " He said, " I think not ; but I cannot see for smoke." Then, said 
Captain Duff", we must point our guns where they can bear, and I shall go and look. 
Captain Duff went to the quarter-deck to look over the side, and then told his aide-de- 
camp, Mr. Arbuthnot, to go below and order the guns to be ])ointed more aft against 
the " Fouguex," which raked the " Mars." A cannon ball killed Captain Duff", and the 
two seamen who were immediately behind him. The ball struck the Captain on the 
breast, and carried off his head. His body fell on the gangway, where it was covered 
with a spare flag, a Union Jack, till after the action. The battle now raged in its 
utmost fury, and both fleets were enveloped in smoke, while the carnage on both 
sides, particularly on that of the enemy, was immense. About the same time that- 
gallant Duff" fell. Captain Cooke, the companion of his youth, was killed in the 
Bellerophon, and their Commander-in-Chief, Lord Nelson, was mortally wounded in the 
" Victory." The " Mars " continued engaged during the whole action, frequently with 
fresh ships ; but suffered from none so severely as the " Fougeux," which continued to 
drift, until .she was engaged by others of our ships, and finally captured by the 
" Temeraire." 

Captain Duff was a man of fine stature, strong, and well made, above six feet in 
height, and a man of open benevolent countenance. During thirty years service he had 

Fyvie. 1 3 1 

not been four years uiieruployed. He was nvirh beloved by the men in the service, 
and he acted the part of a father to the nuineroiis youni^ nun under his command. 

In acknowledgment of his heroism at Trafalgar, the gold medal, whi< h he otherwise 
would have worn, was presenteil (o his family ; as also was an elegant urn from the 
Tatriotic Society. An honourable augmentation was also granted to his son's arms. Jiy 
his wife he had {w<i ( hildren : — 

I. Admiral Norwich, of whom afterwards. 

1. Mary Ann l'V)lheringham, died 1794, in infancy. 

2. Jemima, died 1799, in infancy, 

3. (leorgina Helen, born 1803, died 1831. 

4. Ann Margaret, born 1804, died 1827. 

III. Admiral Norwich Duff, 

the son of the above, when only thirteen years of age, had joined his father a short time 
before his death. After the battle of Trafalgar, in which he took part, he successively 
joined the " Eurylaus,"' of thirty-six guns, and the " Ajax," of seventy-four guns, both 
commanded by Captain Hon. Henry I>Iackwood, and was on board the latter shi[) until 
the moment of her destruction by fire, near the Island of Tenedos, 14 February, 1817. 
Obtaining afterwards a midshipman's berth in the " Active," of forty-six guns, he was 
present at the ensuing passage of the Dardanelles, where he served in the boats at the 
destruction of a formidable Turkish battery on Point rres(iues. He subsequently 
witnessed the capture on 26 March, 180S, of the " Friedland," Venetian brig of war. 
He was present at the memorable action of Lissa, when a British squadron, carrying on 
the whole 156 guns and 879 men, utterly routed, after a conflict of six hours, with a loss 
to the "Active" of four killed and twenty-four men wounded, a Franco- Venetian 
armament, whose force amounted to 284 guns and 2655 men. Mr. Duff had been 
officially promoted to the rank of Lieutenant, 14 November, 181 1, and appointed to the 
"Active," but was afterwards promoted to the rank of Captain, and as such took part 
in expeditions to Washington, Baltimore, New Orleans, &c. He returned on half-pay 
in 1822. He married, 10 June, 1833, Helen Maria Shoolbred, and had issue : — 

I. Edward Alexander James. 

II. Adam Gordon, born 1849. 

1. Helen Sophia, married ^Villiam Trevor Griffith Boscower, Trevelyan Hall, 


2. Georgina Lucy, married W. J. Tayler, Esq. of Glenbarry, Rothiemay 

House, and has issue. 

3. Henrietta Anne, died 14 November, 1879. Of this gifted lady, the 

" Academy " says — ' Miss Duff wrote both prose and verse with grace and 
finish. Her stories and essays combined tenderness and quiet humour. 
She may be said to have belonged to and taken high rank in the school of 

132 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

which Miss Thackeray is chief. Her published work was not great in 
quantity ; but it was always careful and excellent. She contributed to the 
"St. James's Magazine" in 1875, "My Imperialist Neighbour," She also 
contributed to " Temple Bar," to the " Whitehall Review," and to many 
other periodicals. In 1878, Miss Duff published "Virginia: a Story of 
Modern Rome," and a novel called " Levander " ; also another called 
" Honor Carmichael." The notice thus concludes : Many will miss with 
regret the charming sketches in prose and verse, which made the signature 
" H. A. D.," welcome and familiar.' 
4. Louisa Eliza. 


Near the farm which bears this name stood the Chapel of Seggat, but beyond a small 
portion of a wall covered with ivy, there are no remains, ind the site of the burying- 
ground is used as a vegetable garden. 

Near the chapel is a famous well dedicated to St. Mary, to which pilgrims in days of 
old resorted, drank its waters, and made an offering. In the words of Dr. Pratt applied 
to another well, we may say : — 

In simple times, when simple folks 

Had faith in simple spell, 

How many sought thy healing spring, 

O, good St. Mary's Well ! ' 

St. Mary's waters still give back 

The sparkling rays of noon ; 

But who believes their mystic power, 

Or craves the mystic boon. 

This, however, was once not the case, for so revered was St. Mary's Well of Seggat, 
and so frequented by pilgrims in search of some boon, that the Presbytery of 
Turriff, aided by the Synod of Aberdeen, exerted themselves in vain to put an end to 
the custom of frequenting it. It is thus recorded : — " From the referees from the 
provincial synod holden at Aberdeen, in the College Kirk of New Aberdeen, April 1 7, 
1649, and four following days, Mr. Andrew Strachan being moderator, it was found that 
the chappel and the chappel well of Sigget were not demolished, nor the well filled up 
according to ane former ordinance. Therefore the Assembly ordains the Presbytery of 
Turriff to visit the Kirk of Auchterless, and demolish the said chappel, altar, and well." 

At the visitation of the Kirk of Auchterless, August 15, 1649, it is found " that the 
chappel, altar, and well at Sigget are demolished." The well remained untouched for 
a while ; but the old friendly feeling in favour of it on the part of the people soon 
revived, and we find that at a meeting of Presbytery held in November of the same 
year, that it is ordained " that a carne of stones be put upon the well of Sigget." This 
was done, but Mr. Massie at a subsequent meeting had to report that the well of Sigget 
once filled up was emptied in the night by some evil affected persons. *' He is ordained 
to fill it up again with a greater carne of stones , but it was again dug out, and the 
Presbytery at last resolved to let the well of Sigget alone. They forbore to take any 
more paines in the matter." ' 

I Mr. Brebner's Notes on the Presbytery of Turriff. 

134 The TJianage of Fermartyn. 

They have had their reward, for it is now deserted. 

No more revered is Seggat's saint, 
Nor sought sweet Seggat's vale ; 
No trusting pilgrim comes to driak, 
Nor whisper forth his tale. 

On this farm there has been a family of the name of Wallace for the long period of 
one hundred and thirty years. The following is a deduction of the family : — 

I. Alexander Wallace 

came to Gordon Castle from the south of Scotland about 1715, along with two brothers, 
Hugh and William. These three brothers are believed to be of the family of Wallace of 
Camcedean of the house of Craigie. Alexander married Christian Ferguson and had 
issue : — 

I. John. 

II. Hugh, an officer in the royal navy, served on board the " AppoUo." 

II. John Wallace, 

son of the above Alexander Wallace, married Margaret Mair. He came to Chapel 
of Seggat in 1760, on a lease granted by Lord Findlater, the proprietor at that time of 
the lands of Towie-Barclay. He was a merchant burgess of the city of Aberdeen, and 
his diploma is dated 1761. Prior to this he had been amanuensis to Lord Deskford. 
He had issue : — 

I. Harry. 

II. John, emigrated, and died in South Carolina. 

III. James, went to England ; married Loyd, daughter of Rev. Dr. 

Loyd, and had issue a son and two daughters. 

John Wallace married secondly his cousin, Jean Wallace, daughter of William 
Wallace above-mentioned, and by her had issue : — 

IV. George, who went to England ; married, and had issue. 

1. Diana, died young (by first marriage). 

2. Mary (by do.). 

3. Margaret (by second marriage), married to Mr. Murray, Newmill, 


4. Christian (by do.), married to Mr. Chisholm, Haughs of Lendrum. 

III. Harry Wallace. 

He succeeded his father in Chapel of Seggat, married Margaret, daughter of 
Alexander Jamieson in Cushnie, and has issue — 

I. Andrew, his successor. 

II. John, a planter in Jamaica, d. s. p. 
He was succeeded by his son, 

Fyvie. 135 

IV. Andrew Wallace. 

He married Miss Ami Lumsden, and liad issue : — 

I. William, his successor. 

II. Andrew, M.A., M.D., of University of Aberdeen, resident in Turriff; 
married Miss M. Leslie, and has issue. 

III. James, died in Australia. 

IV. John, M.A., M.n., of the University of Edinburgh; Surgeon-Major 
1 2th Regiment of Foot; died in Afghanistan, 1879. He was highly 
esteemed by his commanding officer and his brother officers, who erected 
a cross over his grave, where he waits "until the day dawn." 

1. Jane, married Rev. George Jamieson, D.D., senior minister of the collegiate 

charge of St. Machar's Cathedral. They have issue a large family, of 
whom Fife Jamieson, M.D., gave of distinction, but was prema- 
turely cut off in the twenty-seventh year of his age. His fellow-students 
and other friends erected a monument to his memory. 

2. Margaret, married James Grieve, of the North of Scotland Bank, Turriff. 

3. Isabella. 

4. Ann, married (jeorge Cruickshank, Comisty, factor on the Bognie and other 

estates. She died 1887. He died 1886, leaving a large family. 

5. Mary, married to Francis Walker, Craignetherty, and had issue one son, 

Mr. Andrew Wallace died in 1881, and was succeeded by his son, 

V. William Wallace, now in Chapel of Seggat. 

Attached to the church of Auchterless were four chaplancies — Towie, Seggat, Hatton, 
and Badenscoth. The feast of St. Donan, the Titular Saint of the parish, was held on 
the 17th and i8th April, when a fair was held near the church. The following is the 
collect used on St. Donan's day : — " Almighty and eternal God, when we lift our souls 
to Thee, we beseech Thee to forget the sins of our youth, that by the intercession of 
Blessed Donan, Thy Confessor and Abbot, if we have by negligence offended Thee, 
Thou mayest with mercy deign to pardon us through our Lord Jesus Christ Thy son, 
who, with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, liveth and reigneth, one God, world 
without end. Amen." 

The Glenmailen camp occupies a prominent position on the farms of Buss and 
LogieNewton, on the right bank of the Ythan, within about a mile and a half south of 
The Wells or sources of the Ythan. The north enclosing walls of the camp follow the 
windings and top of the steep banks of the ravine or hollow, through which the stream 
flows. The western and southern sides are straight lines, and occupy pretty high 

1 36 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

ground, and remain tolerably well defined. The lower or eastern wall, or line of 
entrenchment, has been somewhat obliterated by the plough, but it still appears as a 
ridge raised above the adjoining ground. The area is about one hundred and thirty 
acres, and its shape, supposing the river side to be a straight line, is that of a 
parallelogram, and the ratio of the sides are as two to three ; but the sides are not 
rectangular, the south-west and north-east angles being acute, and the other two obtuse. 
The character and style of this great work, the " castra sestiva," bears evident marks 
of Roman origin. An urn and some arrow-heads have been found in the neighbour- 
hood of the camp. 

Stone Circles. — The remains of these were at one time numerous, for as the author 
of the " Statistical Account of Auchterless " remarked, " superstition spared them 
though stones were scarce." The remains of the most remarkable are situated on the 
Kirkhill, or the Berryhill of Logic on the north of the Roman camp, which it overlooks. 
Here there are three stone circles which can be distinctly traced, with several large 
stones of a quartzy nature. 

Near the church of Auchterless there is a small artificial mound called the Moat- 
head (this was probably the Moothill), the seat of the ancient baronial courts, where 
justice was administered. In the neighbourhood there is the Gallowhill, where criminals 
were executed. 


of the glen, happy to the maids, but never to the men. 

The old castle pf Towie-Barclay was for many years the property and residence of 
the ancient family of Barclays of Towie. The venerable pile was tolerably entire till 
about 1792, when the roof turrets and embrasures were removed, and the height reduced 
two stories, and on this once proud building was placed its present low roof. Amongst 
those who settled in Scotland after the marriage of Malcolm Canmore with the Saxon 
Princess Margaret, sister to Edgar Atheling, was John Berkley, a descendant of the 
family of that name. He obtained from the King a grant of the lands of Towie in the 
parish of Auchterless. This John Berkley married the heiress of Gartly, by which 
alliance he became possessed of considerable estates in addition to the grant from the 
King. Two sons came of this marriage, one of whom succeeded to the barony of 
Gartly, the other to that of Towie. In the roll of missing charters in the reign of 
Robert the Bruce is a charter to Walter Berkley, burgess of Perth, over the lands of 
ToUie, and a similar charter was granted in the sixth year of his reign, dated August i, 
131 2. About the year 1385, Andrew Berkley, laird of Garntellie (Gartly), gave the lands 
of Melrose, in the parish of Gamrie, with the mill, to Janet de Berkley, widow of Sir John 

Fyvie. 1 37 

of Monymusk, knight, in ciuittance of certain lands of her father, John Berkley. This 
estate of Melrose, with Cullcn in Ikichan, remained in the family for upwards of three 
hundred years. They also Drumwhindle and other lands in the parish of 
Ellon ; and also at one time Fintry and Craig-Kintry (Craigston), in the parish of King- 
Edward. The following is a list of the successive proprietors of Towie-Barclay, accord- 
ing to Dr. Milne, of King-Edward, in Banff Field Club Report, 1887 : — ' 

I. Sir Alexander Barclay, foundator, died 1138. 

2 Walter, Chamberlain, appointed 1165. 

3. Sir Walter, fundit 12 10. 

4. Patrick submitted to Edward I., 1296. 

5. Sir Walter, charter 'twixt 1306-1329. 

6. Hugh of Cask, charter 1323. 

7. William, about 1388. 

8. Walter, about 1457. 

9. John, about 1480. 

10. Patrick, married Janet Ogilvy, who died 1487. 

11. Walter, mentioned 'twixt 1490-1512. 

12. Walter, married Elizabeth Hay, killed 1589. 

13. Patrick, married Anne Drummond, died 1624. 

14. William, married Jane Elphinstone, died 1643. 

15. Patrick; sisters — i Eliza, 2 Ann; died 1688. 

16. William, before 1694. 

17. Elizabeth, married John Gordon, succeeded about 1649. 

18. Patrick Gordon-Barclay. 

19. daughter, married Sir Alexander Innes. 

20. Isabella Innes, married Hon. C. Maitland, died 1761. 

21. Charles Maitland-Barclay. 

He was the last of the Barclays, proprietor of Towie. The estate was sold in 1752 to 

the Earl of Findlater for his second son, but this young man died soon after coming of 

age ; and the property was sold in 1792 to the Trustees of Robert Gordon's Hospital 

(now College). 

Over what was once the chief entrance there is inscribed, " Sir Alexander Barclay 

of Tollie, foundator, decessit anno domini, 1136." 

" In time of valth all men seem friendly, an friend is not known but in adversity." 
Notwithstanding the above ancient date, it is believed that the castle was not built 

before 1593, while there are dates 1604 and 1695 on the more modern portions of the 


I Dr. Milne in Banff Field Club Report. 


" Tristis et infelix et semper inhospita Turris." 


The earliest notice of Frendraugbt is about 1202, when Michael de Ferendrach is 
a witness to a charter given by WilHam the Lion. This Michael de Ferendra*ch also 
witnesses a charter of Alexander 11., 1226.' In 1257, Pope Alexander IV. confirmed 
to the Abbot and Convent of Arbroath a grant made by William de Ferendrach of the 
fruits of the benefice of the Church de Ferendrach.^ Besides the lands of Ferendrach, 
from which the family derived their surname, they had other lands in Perthshire. There 
is a charter of date 1282, confirming the lands of Cuparmacultin, Fordui, and others, by 
the Abbot of Dunfermline, to Malcolm de Ferendrach, in such wise as they were held 
by John de Ferendrach.^ In 1286, in a charter given by Simon, Thane of Aberchirder, 
Malcolm de Ferendrach and John de Ferendrach are mentioned as witnesses.-* 
The next to be found, and the greatest of the family, is 

Duncan de Ferendrach. 

He married about the end of the thirteenth century, Marjorie, daughter of Gilbert 
de Glencairnie, and at the same time Gilbert granted to Duncan de Ferendrach, on the 
occasion of the marriage, the lands of Congarch in the holding of Abernethy.^ In 
Bain's calendar of historical documents there are the following notices of Sir Duncan : — 
"On 17 July, 1296, he swore fealty, and did homage to King Edward." His seal is 
said to be of red wax, and is thus charged " On a shield within round tracery are three 
wolves' heads on a chief.^ On October 24, 1296, there is a writ to the Sheriff of Forfar 
to restore his lands to Duncan de Ferendrach, a tenant of Reginald Cheyne.' Again we 
find, in October, 1305, Sir Duncan keeper of the forest of Boyne (Buthyn), when he is 
commanded to give to John Comyn, Earl of Buchan, six hinds and twenty-five oaks 
fit for timber.^ 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 378; II. p. xxi. Innes' Inneses, S.C. p. 63. 5 Eraser's Grants, pref. p'. Iviii. 

2 Theiner's Monumenta, p. 74 ; Ant. A. and B. I. p. 520. 6 Bain's Hist. Documents, II. p. 196. 

3 Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. Vol. VI. 7 Id. 

4 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 320. 8 Id., II. p. 462. 

Fyvie. 139 

Sir Duncan was in high favour with Edward ; was knighted by that monarch, and 
was appointed one of thirteen (an unlucky number),' by which, along with a Viceroy, he 
proposed lo govern Scotland. " Man proposes, but God disposes." After Bannock- 
burn, he forfeited all his estates, and was obliged to withdraw to England, where he was 
received and thanked by Edward II. for his loyalty. He was slain in battle in that 
monarch's service sometime before May, 1310, and his widow, Marjorie, and her father, 
Gilbert de Glencairnie, were long pensioners on the English King's bounty. From 
Bain's ancient documents, we find the following notices regarding them : — " In 13 10 
there is a warrant to the Bishop of Chichester, Chancellor, to issue letters in favour of 
Marjorie, widow of Sir Duncan de Ferendrach, who was lately killed in the King's 
service, for payment of ten shillings per day, which the King has granted to support 
herself since she came to stay at York.' Also the King commands the Sheriff of York 
to pay Marjorie, widow of Sir Duncan de Ferendach, her annuity of forty-nine merks, in 
lieu of the Manor of Briggestoke in Northampton, then granted to Isabella, the mother 
of the Queen, for life." Lady Marjorie is regularly paid till Michaelmas, 1348, when it 
ceases at her death.' As to Gilbert Glencairnie, her father, there are the following gifts: 
— "York, October 20, 1319-20. Paid to Gilbert de Glencairnie fifty merks for the last 
Easter and Michaelmas terms." This grant was first made by King Edward II. for the 
said Gilbert's good service. Two hundred merks are also paid, on 30 April, 1320, to 
Gilbert de Glencairnie, a pensioner in Scotland, in aid of his ransom.^ 

Sir Duncan de Ferendrach, as already mentioned, was forfaulted and deprived of all 
his possessions. In Robertson's index of lost charters, one of the earliest charters by 
King Robert the Bruce is one to John de Senesclial (John Stewart), of the lands 
of Ferendrach, and from its place in the index, the date may be about 1309. Sir Duncan, 
according to Dr. Stuart, left an only daughter, Margaret de Ferendrach ; ■• but Lord 
Saltoun, in his history of the Erasers of Philorth, is of opinion that she was the daughter 
of the above-named John Stewart. The arms of the seal of her son, James Eraser of 
Frendraught, of which an impression remains attached to the Act of Succession to the 
Throne, March, 1371, show that on a triangular shield he bore "a fess chequ^ 
between three roses in chief, and as many in base, the last two and one. Crest, on a 
helmet a wolfs head, issuing from a coronet." This crest, according to his Lordship, 
was evidently taken from the old insignia of Frendraught, for the seal of Sir Duncan de 
Ferendrach, as already mentioned, in 1296, shows that his armorial bearings were three 
wolves' heads; but there is nothing in his coat armour to account for the "fess 
chequb," which probably points to a connection with a Stewart. 

Sir John Stewart of Bonhill, second son of Alexander, High Steward of Scotland, is 
said to have been born in 1246, and was killed at the battle of Falkirk in 1298. He 
left a numerous issue, and his fifth son, whose birth may be reasonably placed about 
1280, was named John. It is evident that he would have been of sufficient age to 

1 Bain's Hist. Documents, III. p. 28, No. 147. 3 Bain's Hist. Documents, III. p. 116, No. 615. 

2 Id., p. r72, No. 952. 4 Tran. Soc. Ant. Scot. 1874. 

I40 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

receive the grant of the lands of Frendraught in 1309, and to have been the father of 
Margaret de Ferendrach, who married, in 1322, by a dispensation from Pope John 
XXII., James Fraser. The fess cheque in the arms of the son of that marriage points 
to the supposition that his mother was Margaret Stewart/ The matter, however, cannot 
be now properly settled. 

James Fraser and Margaret de Ferendrach or Stewart 
of Frendraught. 

This James Fraser is believed to have been the brother of Sir Alexander Fraser, 
Chamberlain of Scotland, and the youngest son of Sir Andrew P'raser, the Sheriff of 
Stirling in 1293. He assisted, with others of his clan, the young Earl of Moray, in the 
command of the Scottish army at Homildon Hill, where he perished. The next to be 
found is 

II. Sir James Fraser of Frendraught. 

He is believed to be the son of James Fraser and Margaret de Ferendrach. In 
1369, he appears as James Fraser of Frendraught; and, in f37i, " Dominus Jacobus 
Fraser, miles, and Alexander Skrimechour " were procurators for the Abbot and monas- 
tery of Arbroath. He was one of the barons bearing the rank of knight that attended 
the coronation of Robert II., March 27, 137 1. Under the designation of "Jacobus 
Fraser dominus de Frendraught, miles," he is found witness to numerous charters, down 
to the year 1395, when he received from Robert III. "the grant of the annual rent of 
Carnowne and Culmesty, in the barony of Frendraught." ^ He probably died soon 
after. The next to be found is 

III. James Fraser of Frendraught. 

In 1402, James Fraser, "dominus de Frendraught," granted to the Abbey of 
Melrose, the lands of Cambestown, in the barony of Lossidown and Sheriffdom of the 
county of Roxburgh, which had been in the possession of the old family of Ferendrach 
de Ferendrach. His seal is attached to the charter of these lands, and shows a bend 
sinister indented between three cinque foils, two and one. " No reason," says Lord 
Saltoun, "can be given for the change of the fess cheque into the bend sinister 
indented, or why he should have three cinque foils instead of six." ^ James Fraser 
of Frendraught also granted the lands of Little Glensaughe in Kincardine to the 
Whitefriars of Aberdeen, and he was a vasssl of the Abbot of Dunfermline for the lands 
of Cuparmaculty, Fordui, Dulmanack, and Lytillkethe, in the Sheriffdom of Perth ; 
the last of which he granted to Henry de Ferendrach, probably of the old Frendraught 
family ; and the charter was confirmed by the Abbot, John de Torry, in 1404.'' The 
next is 

1 Lord Saltoun's Frasers. 3 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 524, and Lord Saltoun's Erasers. 

2 Ant. A. and B. \. p. 524. 4 Id., 523-534. 



IV. Matilda Fraser of Frendraught. 

It is impossible (according to Lord Saltoun) to say whether she was a daughter or a 
sister of the last-named James Fraser. Dr. Stuart says she was a daughter, but there is 
no evidence to show. She married Alexander Dunbar, second son of John Dunbar, 
Earl of Moray, and thus the line of the Frasers of Frendraught appears to have terminated 
in a female at the beginning of the fifteenth century, as there is no record of any junior 
branch of the family. Alexander Dunbar and Matilda Fraser had issue a son,' 

V. James Dunbar of Frendraught, and VIII. Earl of Moray. 

He was, along with the Earl of Moray and others, one of the hostages for James I. 
to the English.- He succeeded his cousin Thomas, third Earl of Moray. His estate 
of Frendraught was valued at five hundred merks Scots. He was twice married ; first to 
his cousin, Isobel, daughter of Walter Innes of that ilk ,but as this union was within the 
degrees of consanguinity forbidden by the church, it was alleged the marriage was not 
valid without a dispensation from the Pope ; but she died before that could be obtained, 
leaving issue, by the Earl, a son, Alexander, who, though he did not succeed to the 
Earldom of Moray, got the lands of Westfield in Morayshire, Conzie in Forgue, and 
many others. From him are descended Gavin, Bishop of Aberdeen, the Dunbars of 
Mochrum, the Dunbars of Northfield, the Dunbars of Akergill and Hempriggs, &c. The 
Earl married secondly, Jane, daughter of the Earl of Huntly, by whom he had issue : — 

1. Janet, of whom hereafter. 

2. Elizabeth, who was married to Archibald, third son of James, eighth Earl of 

Douglas, who, according to " Douglas' Peerage," by the prevailing influence 
of the family, obtained the Earldom of Moray, in prejudice of the said 
Alexander Dunbar of Westfield, and her elder sister Janet. It seems, 
however, that both ladies called themselves Countesses of Moray, as will 
be seen afterwards. 
James Dunbar, eighth Earl of Moray, son of Alexander Dunbar, and grandson of 

Earl John, is said to bave been murdered in the neighbourhood of Frendraught ; and 

tradition points to a cairn near Frendraught House as his grave.^ 

James Dunbar, Earl of Moray, was called " the late Earl of Moray," 26 April, 1442,* 

and was succeeded in Frendraught by his eldest daughter, 

VI. Janet Dunbar of Frendraught. 

She was married to Sir James Crichton, Lord Chamberlain of Scotland, and heir of 
Lord Crichton, Lord Chancellor of Scotland, and brought into that family the lands of 
Frendraught. They had the following issue : — 

1 Lord Saltoun's Frasers ; Dr. Stuart in Antiquarian 

Transactions regarding Forgue Commuuion Cups. 

2 Bain, IV., No. 942. 

3 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 324 ; 

Transaction Soc. Antiq. 1889-90. 

4 Exchequer Rolls, Vol. III. pref. 

142 The Thanage of Fervtartyn. 

I. William, third Lord Crichton. 

II. Gavin 

III. George, 

It is recorded in " Douglas' Peerage " that Archibald Douglas, the husband of her 
younger sister, Elizabeth, obtained, through the influence of his family, the Earldom of 
Moray; yet we find that Sir James Crichton, the husband of Janet, was " belted Earl of 
Moray in 1452, and in October 8, 1454, after his death, Janet styles herself Countess 
of Moray, and that during the life-time of her brother-in-law, Archibald Douglas." ' 
But in a resignation to the King in October, 1462, she styles herself simply Janeta de 
Dunbar, domina de Frendraught. Both the sisters, at the same time it appears, styled 
themselves " Countesses of Moray." • 

VII. William, III. Lord Crichton, 

eldest son of Janet Dunbar and Sir James Crichton, married, according to Douglas, the 
Princess Margaret, daughter of King James II, but according to Sheriff Riddell, he 
married a daughter of Lord Lauriestown.^ Probably he was twice married. He joined 
the Duke of Albany in his rebellion against his brother, James III., and garrisoned the 
castle of Crichton in his behalf, and he was in consequence attainted for treason by Parlia- 
ment, February 24, 1483. His brothers, Gavin and George, were also forfaulted for 
joining in the same rebellion. On his forfeiture he lost the castle of Crichton, a very 
ancient and magnificent structure, the ruins of which still remain. In the fourth canto 
of Marmion, Scott has very minutely described this relic of the feudal ages when he 
introduces Marmion as a guest. 

At length up that wide dale they wind, 
Where Crichton's caslle crowns the hank, 
For there the Lyon's care assigned 
A lodging meet for Marmion's rank. 

Lord Crichton had issue : — 
I James, who succeeded. 

I. , daughter, married to the Earl of Rothes. 

Old Lady Janet prudently kept Frendraught in her own hand. She made it over to 
her grandson, James Crichton, November 2, 1493, and so saved the estate. 

VIII. James Crichton of Frendraught 

had a charter of Frendraught " to James Crichton, son and heir of the late William, 
Lord Crichton, and his heirs male ; whom failing, to James Crichton, son and heir of 
Gavin Crichton and his heirs ; whom failing, to William Crichton, son also of the said 

1 Stodart Arms, II. p. 12. 3 Sheriflf Riddell's Notes on Douglas' 

a Asloan MS. in Excheq. Rolls Pref. Vol. III. Peerage in Advocates' Lib., Edinb. 

Fyvie. 143 

Gavin Crichton, the lands and barony of Frcndraught, &c." ' He acquired the lands of 
Conzie, or the superiority thereof of which he had a charter, October 16, 1530. In his 
time, King James V. visited Frendraught, on which occasion, November 13, 1536, he 
granted a charter of the barony of I-'rendrauglil, and Invcrkeilhnie, and lands in Perth- 
shire, " predicto familiari servitori, Jacobo CrciclUounc," on his own resignation, and on 
his own heirs failing, to a series of heirs.' In 1535, the AbI)Ot of Arbroath grantt,'d a 
nineteen years' lease of the teiiul sclieaves of the church of l-orgue to Sir James 
Creichtoune of Frendraught, knight, for the payment of the yearly rent of one hundred 
pounds Scots, and for supporting the roof of the choir of said church.^ He was 
succeeded l)y his son, 

IX. William Crichton of Frendraught. 

He married Agnes Aberncthy, daughter, probably, of Lord Saltoun of Rothiemay. 
In 1539, August 15, there is a charter to him and his wife of the lands of Conveth or 
Inverkeithnie. In RiddeU's notes on Wood's " Douglas' Peerage," in 1536, there is a 
letter to George Crichton of Conzie, appointing him curator to William Crichton of 
Frendraught, a " dacht and natural idiot." 

Sometime before 15 March, 1543, considerable disturbances took place at Fren- 
draught, ending in bloodshed and murder. In Pitcairn's " Criminal Trials " at that 
date, we find "that Alexander Leslie, younger of Warderis; George Crichton of Conzie, 
and sixty-eight others, found caution to undcrly the law at the next justiciaire for 
besieging the place of Frendraught, coming thereto in 'great numbers armed, beating the 
servants, mutilating Martin Abernethy and John Ross in their left hands.-* Also at the 
same date, William, Lord Abernethy of Saltoun, Alexander Abernethy of Netherdull, 
and forty-four others, found surety to underly the law at the next justiciaire at Banff for 
airt and pairt convocation of the lieges armed in a warlike manner with a great force at 
the place of Frendraught, belonging to William Crichton, for the slaughter of George 
Crichton of Conzie, and James Crichton, and the slaughter of Robert Crichton with a 
gun."= This was a terrible tragedy, and may have arisen from George Crichton having 
been appointed curator to William Crichton, and thus aroused the anger of 
Abernethy of Rothiemay, to whose daughter the said \\'illiam Crichton was married. 
By the said Agnes Abernethy he had a son and successor, 

X. Sir James Crichton of Frendraught. 

He received the honour of knighthood ; had a charter of the lands of Frendraught 
and Conveth. He had also a charter to himself and Joanna Keith of the lands of 
Bognie, April 14, 1557, and July 9, 1569. He married Joanna, daughter of William, 
fourth Earl Marischal, and had issue : — '' 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 598. 4 Pitcairn's Criminal Trials, I. p. 329. 

2 Jervise Ep. and Inscriptions ; 5 Id. 

.\nt. A. and B. III. p. 598. 6 Douglas' Peerage. 

3 Reg. Rec. Abbace de Arbroath, p. 554. 

144 The Thanage of Fermattyn. 

I. James, his successor. 

I. , a daughter, married to William Leslie of Tullieferry. 

He was succeeded by his son, 

XL James Orichton of Frendraught. 

He had charters of parts of the lands of Logiealton, 31 March, 1592, and of Darley. 
He married Janet, daughter of Alexander Gordon of Lesmoir, by whom had issue : — 

I. James, his successor. 


I. , daughter, married to Lord Oliphant. 

He was succeeded by his son, 

XIL Sir James Orichton of Frendraught. 

He received from King James VI. the honour of knighthood, and had the family 
estates made over to him in his life-time, receiving charters of the lands and baronies of 
Frendraught, Conveth, Auchingoul, Bognie, &c., to him and his heirs male, 10 August, 
1599, where he is styled eldest son of James Crichton of Frendraught. He had also a 
charter of Conzie and Penquhonone (Pitfancy). Succeeding his father, he got charters 
of Kinnairdie in Banffshire, and of Monkshill in Aberdeenshire,' and his name frequently 
appears in the Privy Council records. Thus, 1593, "George Johnstone of that ilk, 
cautioner for Sir James Creichtone of Frendraught, not to harm George Leslie of 
Warderis, conforme to deliverance of Secret Council";^ and in 1588, Sir James 
Creichton of Frendraught is caution to the Magistrates of Aberdeen for the gude 
behaviour of John Leslie of Balquhain.^ This one may refer to his father ; it is difficult 
to say which one is meant. 

Sir James Crichton married Elizabeth Gordon, daughter of John, twelfth Earl of 
Sutherland, by whom he had issue : — 

I. James, first Viscount Frendraught. 

n. George, of Auchingoul. According to Crawford, " It was but a short time 
before his birth that his mother was tried for the burning of the House of 
Frendraught, and is now the heir male of Frendraught." " 

III. William. 

IV. Francis. These two younger brothers are specified in a charter of Fren- 
draught, 1 64 1. One of them was killed by Adam Gordon. 

1. Elizabeth. 

2. Isobel. 

3. Margaret. 

1 Douglas' Peerage. 3 Priv. Coun. Rec. Vol. IV. p. 268. 

2 Priv. Coun. Rec. Vol. V. 654. 4 Crawford's MS. Baronage in Advocates' Lib. Edinb. 

Fyvie. 145 

In 1630, Sir James and his lady were involved in a sad calamity, the burning of the 
castle of Frendraught. It caused a great excitement at the time, and even yet the 
interest in it has not passed away, for notices ever and again appear on Frendraught and 
its tragedy; but it still remains an impenetrable mystery. 

At the time the burning of Frendraught took place, it may be said there was no 
King in Israel, as frequent quarrels arose between neighbours, often ending in bloodshed 
and death, without any intervention of the law. In the beginning of the year 1630, 
a quarrel arose between Frendraught and Gordon of Rothiemay, in which the latter 
was killed. This quarrel is thus described in an old M.S. history of the Gordons : — 
"The quarrel arose regarding some dispute about marches on the Deveron, and 
both parties met to decide it. William Gordon of Rothiemay finding Frendraught's 
party too strong for him, was reasonably adverse to go out to meet them ; but his 
lady intimated, if he did not go, it would be a reflection on his honour ; this, if it 
were true, was but bad counsel and inadvisedly offered. Rothiemay on this 
goes out with only ten of his menial servants mounted on horse, and engaged 
Frendraught and his party, and being overpowered with numbers, his horse was killed 
under him, and fell on the ground with his rider. In this fall, Rothiemay's helmet 
went off, and ere he recovered himself he received his death-wounds in the head. 
Notwithstanding which, he gets hold of a firelock, and with one shot he killed one 
Adam Gordon of Frendraught's party, and wounded some others, fighting courageously 
till he got f nother horse, which he mounted, and made an honourable retreat. He came 
home with his servants to the house of Rothiemay, and* seeing his lady, told her he had 
faced Frendraught, and called for drink to his servants, who had behaved themselves as 
became them, and desired the piper to play, and with his servants he danced round 
about the hall, and having lost much blood, and finding himself faint, he desired his 
lady to make his bed, and told her he would never rise again." This was the case, foi; 
he died soon after. 

For the slaughter of Rothiemay, Frendraught was adjudged by the Marquis of 
Huntly to pay to the heirs of Rothiemay, fifty thousand merks as blood money, which 
he paid. Sometime afterwards another quarrel arose between Frendraught and Leslie 
of Pitcaple, in which quarrel, the Marquis of Huntly decided in favour of Sir James 
Crichton ; the quarrel having arisen from Robert Crichton, a kinsman of Frendraught's, 
shooting Leslie of Pitcaple's son through the arm. Leslie of Pitcaple was much dis- 
appointed with the Marquis of Huntly's arbitration, and hinted that he would be 
revenged on Frendraught. He left the Bog of Gight on the day of the decision, while 
Sir James remained behind ; and in case Leslie should waylay Frendraught, the Marquis 
next day sent his son, Lord Melgum, the young laird of Rothiemay, and others, to pro- 
tect Sir James. They accompanied him home to Frendraught without meeting anyone, 
and at the earnest request of Sir James and Lady Crichton they unfortunately remained 
all night. In the words of Spalding, a contemporary chronicler by no means friendly to 
Frendraught or his lady, " they were well entertained, supped merrily, and went to bed 


146 The Thanage of Fermaftyn. 

joyfully." The Viscount Melgum was laid in a room in the old tower, which, according 
to Father Blackhall, was separated a little from the castle, and this room had a vault 
under it with a round hole (devised of old) under Aboyne's bed. The young laird of 
Rothiemay and some others were in a room above this, and in a room above this again 
were Captain RoUock, a guest of Frendraught's, and some others. " About midnight, 
this dolorous tower," says Spalding, " took fire in so sudden and furious a manner, and 
in ane clap, that the noble Viscount, the laird of Rothiemay, English Will, Colonel Ivat, 
and other servants, were cruelly burned and tormented to death." The Viscount 
Melgum, it is said, might have escaped, had he not gone upstairs to awaken Rothiemay. 
While doing so, the timber passage and stair-case connecting the tower with the rest of 
the building took fire, and prevented their return. They hurried to the window looking 
out into the close, piteously calling for help, but none was or could be rendered them. 
" Their remains," according to Johnston, *' were cast into stables among vile and musty 
straw, mere mangled remains, trunks without extremities." ' It must, however, be borne 
in mind that the tower having been burnt there was really no decent place where the 
remains might be deposited. The news of this sad event caused an excitement through- 
out the whole country, for while some blamed Frendraught, he in turn again blamed 
Pitcaple. The Marquis of Huntly, probably remembering the fine which he had 
recently imposed on Sir James as blood money for the death of Rothiemay, strongly 
suspected him and his lady. He applied to the Privy Council in Edinburgh, who 
caused an inquiry to be made into the matter ; and a committee consisting of William, 
Earl Marischal ; Patrick, Bishop of Aberdeen ; John, Bishop of Moray ; James, Lord 
Ogilvie ; David, Lord Carnegie ; and Colonel Henry Bruce, met at Frendraught on 
13 April, 1 63 1. They reported to the effect that the fire could not have happened acci- 
dentally, but designedly, which aroused still more the suspicion of the Marquis against 
Frendraught.- Sir James, however, exerted himself in his own defence, with the result that 
three persons, John Meldrum, brother-in-law of Leslie of Pitcaple ; John Tosch, and a 
female servant, were examined. The latter, after having been tortured and having confessed 
nothing, was set at liberty ; but poor Meldrum prevaricating, " tholed an assize," and on 
evidence, which would now be considered insufficient to convict the meanest criminal, 
was condemned to be hanged and quartered. Neither these proceedings of the Privy 
Council nor Sir James Crichton's exertions in his own behalf served in any way to allay 
the feeling against him and his family. According to Burton, quoted by Taylor in his 
history,^ a strange, mysterious punishment, which seemed to be a blight or judgment of 
a higher power, yet was in reality a simple and natural consequence of human conduct. 
The Crichtons were deserted ; it was the natural result of this doom that they should 
become the victims of broken clans of Highland reivers. Against these freebooters the 
deadliest enemies amongst the lowlands would combine ; but no one would take part 
with the unfortunate family of Frendraught. The marauders hovered like vultures 

I Musa Latina Aberdon, Vol. I. Sir W. Geddes, 299. 3 Taylor's Genealogical History of Families, p. 181. 

3 Grant's Carnegies (Lord Southesk), pp. 93-94. 

Fyvie. 147 

round a wounded man. They came from all parts of the mountain district, and met at 
Frendraught as a common centre where the business of all lay. A field of prey so 
inviting tempted the Macgregors from the banks of Loch Katrine, and they appeared 
under their leader Gilderoy, a robber chief of European celebrity. Thither also came 
the Clan Cameron under its chief, Allan Mclan Dhui ; the McDonnels of Glengarry 
and Clan Ranald ; the Clan Lachlan, and other plunderers, with the keen scent of the 
eagle flocking to the carcase. 

There can be no doubt that the inroads of these marauders were instigated by the 
Marquis of Huntly and the chief men of the clan, and prominent among these was the 
Lady Rothiemay. Frendraught did not passively submit to their assaults and robberies, 
but repeatedly mustered his retainers and dispersed the marauders, and recovered the 
spoil, but he was ultimately obliged for his protection to go to Edinburgh with his two 
sons. " Such was his moyen," says Spalding, " with the Privy Council, that the Marquis 
of Huntly was forced to appear before the Lords of the Council in Edinburgh, and was 
bound under a penalty of one hundred thousand merks to abstain from injuring 
Frendraught." The Marquis was obliged to submit himself humbly, as we learn from 
the following petition : — " 17 February, 1636. To King Charles L Robbed of a dear 
son and near kinsman by the cruelle and matchless treacherie of the laird of Fren- 
draught, and not content therewith, he striveth with the assistance of that traitor, Adam 
Gordon (the chief instrument and actor of all these rebellions, and he who is nearest in 
blood to Rothiemay, who was murdered by Frendraught), to robbe me of mine honour 
and your Majestie's favour. Though the way taken with him, his Majestie's old decrepit 
servant, seems hard without example, he is willing, if it please the King, that the exactest 
way of trial be taken. To inform his Majesty of his own part in the business, he 
acknowledges that since the death of my sonne, I never wissed the laird of P'rendraught 
his guid, neither did I put myself to the trouble for staying his personal harm, or saving 
his estaitt and other guids from the insolencies of others. But now in all humility, he 
acknowledged his error in not using his best means for keeping his Majestie's peace in 
the neighbourhood of his residence. He begs pardon to his Majesty, and professes 
his willingness to undergoe any punishment inflicted. He only begs that his Majesty 
will consider his condition, and pronounce his doom with his own sacred mouth." ' 

Lady Frendraught, after the burning of the tower, went to reside with her daughters 
at Kinnairdie on the Deveron. Public suspicion was particularly strong against her as 
having caused the fire, and the motto at the head of this notice embodies the popular 
suspicion regarding the burning. In two ballads (one written soon after the fire) she is 
bitterly accused, and if their accounts be true, the Medea of Euripides, and the Lady 
Macbeth of Shakespeare, both creations of the poet's fancy, would almost pale before 
Lady Frendraught ! 

In one called Frennethall there is the following : — 

1 Hist. Com. Rep. Vol. IX. 

148 The Thanage of Fertnartyn. 

When Frennet's castle's ivied walls 

Through yellow leaves were seen, 

When birds forsook the sapless boughs, 

And bees the faded green ; 

Then Lady Frennet, vengeful dame. 

Did wander frae the ha' 

To the wild forest's dowie glen 

Among the leaves that fa'. 

There to entice her victims to the castle, and to burn them. 
Again in another, Rothiemay is represented as saying — 

When he stood at the wire window. 
Most doleful to be seen. 
He did espy the Lady Frendraught, 
Who stood upon the green. 

And mercy, mercy, Lady Frendraught, 

Will ye not sink for sin ; 

For first yer husband did kill my father. 

And now ye burn his son. 

O, then, it spake, Lady Frendraught, 

And loudly did she say : 

It was great pity for good Lord John, 

But none for Rothiemay ; 

But the keys are sunk in the deep draw well, 

You cannot get away. 

These are the ballads' account of the matter, but no evidence could be brought 
against Lady Frendraught, and the cause of the fire to this day remains an unsolved 

Poor lady ! she had soon other troubles in store for her. She was for long a subject 
of prayerful consideration for the brethren of the Presbytery of Strathbogie, as she 
declined to conform to the established order of things ecclesiastical, and to attend the 
kirk, and when remonstrated with, she asked time for deliberation. Continuing, however, 
obstinate, wilfully refusing to hear the Word, she was summoned before the Presbytery, 
was admonished for the first time, the second time, the third time ; received the first 
prayer, the second prayer, the third prayer ; and excommunication was just about to be 
pronounced, when Master Reidford of Marnankirk, whose soul was sore beset with her 
ladyship, interposed, and reported to the brethren that Lady Frendraught had promised 
to hear the Word occasionally. This, however, was not deemed enough, as she was 
required to sign the Solemn League and Covenant, or else take the consequences. 
Her ladyship found it hard to submit to this, but what could she do to be free of her 
tormentors, and so she signed the Solemn League and Covenant for the sake of peace. 
Lady Crichton soon regretted her repentance, and the Brethren of Strathbogie are again 
in prayerful consideration of her case. To a deputation of the Presbytery she replied, 
" that she regretted nothing in her whole life so much as the signing of the Solemn 
League and Covenant." The sentence of excommunication was then carried out 
against her, and on the 5th of March, 1654, " the Lady Elizabeth Crichton of Fren- 
draught, for apostasie and perjurie, was excommunicated ! " 

Fyvie. 149 

Lady Frendraught's trials and troubles were not few. In l-'athcr Blackhall's " Brief 
Narrative," we read, "shortly thereafter, my Layde of Frcndret did send to me, praying 
me to come to her as ordinary, for the frere whom she had befor was depairted this life. 
I refused absolutely to see her, becaus she was suspected to be guilty of the death of 
my Lord Aljoyne, who was burned in the castle of Frcndret." 

Poor lady Frendraught ! suspected by the world as a merciless murderess, excom- 
municated by the kirk, passed by on the left hand by the priests of her own church, her 
fate was a hard one. Well might the motto from Virgil, i)laced by her husband in the 
Kirk of Forgue in his day of trouble, apply also to her ladyship, 

" O, passi graviora his quoque Deus dabit finem." 

O, ye who through more grievous ills have passed, 
From these, too, God will give relief at last. 

In Sir James' life-time, his son was at Nottingham, in 1642, created Viscount 
Frendraught and Lord Crichton. The latter title was previously borne by his family ; 
but forfeited in the third lord's time. This honour was offered to Sir James, but he 
declined it, preferring, as Spalding says, to be simply called " the Laird of Frendraught." 
Lord Frendraught accompanied the Marquis of Montrose on his last fatal expedition in 
1650, and was with him at the battle of Invercarron, in Ross-shire, where he was defeated 
by Colonel Strachan, on the 20th of April following. The Marquis' horse having been 
shot under him, he mounted the horse of Lord F'rendraught, which that young noble- 
man gallantly placed at his disposal, and galloping off the- field escaped. 

Lord Frendraught, severely wounded, having received eight or nine dangerous 
wounds, was taken prisoner, and carried to Dunrobin Castle, the residence of his 
uncle, the Earl of Sutherland, and, according to " Douglas' Peerage," died there a 
Roman death. This, however, is not the case ; as we learn from the following minute 
in the Presbytery of Turriff, before which body he was summoned to give an account of 
his grievous backsliding at Invercarron : — "At Turriff, 16 December, 1650. Com- 
peired James, Viscount F>endraught, and produced ane reference from the Commis- 
sioners of the General Assembly of the date at Stirling, 1650, by which he was referred 
to the Presbytery of Sutherland, where he should happen to reside, to conferre and deal 
with him, and try his repentance for his manifold defections from the cause and 
Covenant, his carriage, &c., and report. He produced also ane very honest testimony 
of his unfeigned sorrow for his defections, and of his Christian carriage in the Presbytery 
of Sutherland." ' A committee of the Presbytery was appointed to conferre with his 
Lordship, . , They found him more nor ordinarie humbled, and sorrowful for his sinful 
courses he had taken against the cause and Covenant of God. They found him a 
reformed man, and that he had reformed all his family, and in a word had given 
them such contentment and satisfaction to the rejoicing of their hearts, as with a good 
conscience they might recommend him to the commission of the kirk. This recom- 
mendation was successful, and in the session records of Forgue there is the following 

I Rev. J. Brebner's Notes on Presbytery of Tun iff in Aberdeen Journal. 

150 The TJianage of Fermartyn. 

minute : — "3 October, 165 1. It is ordained by uniform consent of the ministers and 
elders, that my Lord Crichton being again received into the kirk, be again admitted an 
elder." So Douglas' account of his Lordship's Roman death must be exchanged for the 
less romantic one of dying in his bed a reformed man and an elder of the kirk. 

In Gordon's " Britane's Distemper " there is the following account of Lord Fren- 
draught : — " Amongst the noblemen that began to find furth the errors of the Covenant, 
the Lord Crichton was one, a nobleman of so many laudable pairts, as I am not able to 
give his character to the lyfe. He was modest in his carriage, and of a majestic yet 
winning behaviour, his word and his promise were always as sure as the strictest bond 
and obligation. To whom he showed himself a friend, those might build on him as a 
strong rock of defence ; to whom he was an enemy he was dangerous to be feared, for 
though his genial and mild disposition made him easy to be found at the first acquaint- 
ance, yet being once lost, he was hardly ever recovered again," 

His Lordship married first the Lady Margaret Leslie, daughter of the Earl of Leven, 
by whom he had an only daughter, Janet. To this daughter Janet, on September, 1646, 
he gave a charter, " Totas villas de Comistie, Ashallach, Cranloch, Templelands, &c." ' 
She married Sir James Mackgill of Rankeillour, whose descendant, Margaret (daughter 
of Rev. William Dick, by Isabella, heiress of Nether Rankeillour and Lindores), married 
the Hon. Frederick Lewis Maitland, sixth son of the sixth Earl of Lauderdale. Their 
grandson, David Maitland Mackgill, succeeded in 1827 to the estate of Rankeillor, and in 
June, 1839, he was served heir of line in general to the first Viscount of Frendraught, 
when he assumed the additional name of Crichton, and is the representative of the 
Crichtons and the earlier families of Frendraught. 

His Lordship married secondly, Marion, daughter of Sir Alexander Irvine of Drum, 
by whom he had two sons : — 

I. James, II. Viscount. 

II. Lewis, IV. Viscount. 

At this time the Frendraught property was very large, containing a large portion of 
the parishes of Forgue, Conveth or Inverkeithnie, and Aberchirder. From an Act of 
Parliament, which passed in the Scotch Parliament,^ we learn the various properties 
which they then possessed. This enactment took place, November 17, 1641, for the 
purpose of confirming the Frendraught family in their various possessions, as the writs 
that were in the "kist" were burned in the great fire of 1630, except two infeftments, 
which were in Edinburgh. The Act enumerated the following estates : — "All and haill 
the lands and barony of Frendraught, the burgh and barony of Forg, lyand in the 
Sherriffdom of Aberdeen ; the lands and town of Polquhonzie and Conzie, the Temple- 
lands of Frendraught, and the office of heritable baillie thereof. The lands and barony 
of Kinnairdie, with the haill particular towers thereof ; also the lands and barony of 
Nedderdail, with the haill particular town and lands of ye samen. All and haill the 
lands of Pittendreich ; all and haill the teind scheaves of the foresaid lands lyand within 

I Frendraught Papers. 3 Act of Parliament. Copy at Frendraught. 

Fyvie. 1 5 1 

the parish of Aberchirdcr and Sheriffdom of Banff; also the haill lands of the barony of 
tiddes, conii)reiienden ye ijarticular town and lands lyand within the Siierriffdom of 
Aberdeen. All and haill the town and lands of Turtories, the lands of Ardfour with the 
mylne, niylne lands and se(iuells of the sanien ; also the lands of Auchinachie, &c., 
with the pertinents lyand within the Sherriffdom of Banff. Also they possessed the 
vicarages and advowsons of Forg and Inverkeithney." 

After the fire at Frendraught (as has been already narrated), the Crichtons were 
subjected to continual persecution from the Gordons, who were continually making raids 
upon and spoiling the lands of Frendraught. The Viscount also engaged in the political 
troubles of the time, with the result that the fair domains of Frendraught gradually 
diminished, and in fifty years afterwards scarcely a remnant was left. 

The disposition of Comistie, Ashalloch, and other portions to Janet Crichton has 
been already mentioned. In 1647, a very great disposition or wadset took place of 
almost all the lands previously mentioned, except Fiddes, Forgendenny, and Mellairs, 
which had been reserved or previously disponed. The greater portion of the lands were 
disponed or wadset to Rev. John Gregory, minister of Drumoak, the ancestor of the 
learned and accomplished family of that name. The wadset price was 59,560 merks 
" monete hujus regni " ; and all were created into a free barony for ever to be held by 
the said John Gregory and his heirs, in as free a manner as they were held by the said 
James, Viscount Frendraught, and James Crichton of Frendraught.' 

Rev. John Gregory died in 165 1, and was succeeded by his son, Alexander." 
This Alexander was cruelly murdered in autumn," 1663, by Francis Crichton, 
brother of the Viscount Frendraught. Gregory and Crichton met at the alehouse of 
Forgue and had " ane drink," and they then adjourned in company to the Manse of 
Forgue, where they had " ane other drink." They left the Manse apparently good 
friends, and while on the way, Crichton pleaded with Gregory not to be so hard in 
exacting his bonds on the lands of Frendraught, to the prejudice of the young Viscount, 
Gregory, however, would give no satisfaction, and Crichton then challenged him to fight, 
and took Gregory's weapons from him. After he had done so, Gregory was brought to 
Bognie by Crichton and his serving man, John Duffus, covered with wounds. Alexander 
Morison, a brother of Bognie's, took charge of the wounded man, in the Viscount and 
George Morison's absence ; but next morning, before daylight, Francis Crichton with a 
band of men surprised the house of Bognie, and threatening death to all who resisted, 
seized Gregory, and after binding him on horseback, carried him off to a solitary house 
at Cranloch in the wild upper part of the parish. Meanwhile Gregory's wife had been 
searching the country for him, and when she arrived at Bognie was horrified to hear that 
he had been carried off. Next day a message came from Crichton requesting Bognie 
to meet at a spot to which the man would conduct him, but he must come alone. 
Bognie went, and the man conducted him to Cranloch, where he found Crichton keeping 
guard over his prisoner, and was asked by him to see Gregory, and say whether he was 

I Charters penes Bognie and Frendraught. 3 Retour penes Bognie and Frendraught. 

152 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

likely to recover or die, for if he died, he said he would bury him on the moss. Bognie 
assured him that he would recover, and pleaded with Crichton to let him remove him at 
once, which Crichton, with considerable hesitation, at last agreed to, and so Gregory was 
conveyed on horseback to his own house at Kinnairdie. After a few days he was carried 
into Aberdeen to obtain medical advice, where he died. Francis Crichton was appre- 
hended and tried for murder, and condemned to death, but efforts were immediately made 
by powerful friends on his behalf, with the result that he obtained the King's oardon, on 
the condition of his leaving the country. He, however, returned, and died at Fren- 
draught.' Alexander Gregory was succeeded by his brother. 

David Gregory was served heir to his brother, June 11, 1667, and on 21st of 
July, 1677, he disponed the wadset of a large portion of the estates, including all and 
haill the Mains of Frendraught, the tower and fortalice of Frendraught, &c., to George 
Morison of Bognie, who disponed them in life-rent, November 5, 1678, in favour of 
Christian Urquhart, widow of James, second Viscount Frendraught, for her life-time.' 

James, first Viscount Frendraught, went to London in 1663, in hopes of getting 
some aid from King Charles II. to his ruined fortunes. It was, however, a vain errand; 
the merry monarch who could spend hundreds of thousands on mistresses and illegiti- 
mate offspring, could give nothing to the ruined Lord of Frendraught, who had 
sacrificed so much for him and his father. His Lordship, wounded in spirit, returned 
home, and died in the autumn of that year.' 

XIV. James, II. Viscount Frendraught, 

married Christian, second daughter of Alexander Urquhart of Dunlugat, afterwards of 
Cromarty, widow of Lord Rutherford, who, after the Viscount's death, married George 
Morison of Bognie, of whom afterwards. This Lord Frendraught, like his grandmother, 
Lady Crichton, adhered to the Church of Rome, and his conversion was for a long 
time a prayerful subject of consideration for the kirk-session of Forgue and the Presby- 
tery of Turriff ; but with more success than the Presbytery of Strathbogie had with her 

In the Presbytery book of Turriff it is recorded — " The Presbytery ordain the 
minister, Mr. Alexander Garden, and others to conferre with Lord Frendrath. By-and-by 
they report 'that they are very hopeful of gaining him,' and they are desired to continue. 
The minister of Forgue is soon able to state that my Lord Creightone has become a 
hearer of the Word, and afterwards the committee report that they had conferred with him, 
' de Transubstatione, de missa, de Purgatorio,' &c., and have good hopes that he will be 
ours. Accordingly, at next meeting, Mr. Alexander Garden [reports, ' Yt my Lord 
Creightone has conformed in omnibus, that he had it under his Lordship's hands.' So 
Viscount Frendraught ' became ours.' " * 

He died about 1676, and was succeeded by his son, 

I Bognie Charters. 2 Notes on the Presbytery of Turriff by Rev. Jas. Brebner. 

Fyvie. 153 

XV. William, III. Viscount Frendraught. 

Of I'.im very little is known ; and regarding the third marriage of his mother, the 
following improbable story is told. It occurs in the life of Dame Christian Forbes, 
written by her son. Sir William Forbes, a descendant of the marriage. 

The Viscountess announced a Scotch marriage to her maidens one afternoon in the 
words, '•' make down the bed for Saunders and me." The said Saunders had before or 
after this event got possession of wadsets over the estate, and being on his deathbed, 
the lady addressing him said, sign over to the lad (meaning her son William), " ye ken 
it is a' his ain." 

Saunders — " I'll sign when I waken." 

Narrator — " He wakened in hell ! " 

The story cannot be true, for George was the name of the Viscountess' husband, not 

William, Lord Crichton, being a minor, the Hon. Lewis Crichton was appointed his 
tutor. He died unmarried, in 1686, and was succeeded by his uncle, 

XVI. Lewis, IV. Viscount Frendraught. 

He was served heir to his nephew in 1686, and married Marjory Seaton, daughter 
of Thomas Seaton, Cornet of Horse (equitum signifer), and sister of James Seaton of 
Menie. Lewis, IV. Viscount, joined James VII., for which he was attainted by Parlia- 

In Chambers' " Domestic Annals " we read — " In Stirling Castle lay, in 1692, the 
Viscount Frendraught, and having only five hundred merks per annum Scots (about 
;^34), it was of importance that his wife should be allowed to come and live with him, 
instead of requiring a separate maintenance, to so low an ebb had the once flourishing 
house of Frendraught reached." With Lewis, IV. Viscount, ended the connection of 
the Crichtons of Crichton and Frendraught with Forgue, a family that had been Lords 
paramount of that parish for more than three hundred years. But the woe of the old 
poet, " Tristis et infelix et semper inhospita turris," was heavy upon them. Their 
house was left unto them desolate, and at the present day the name of Crichton has all 
but ceased in Forgue. They all sleep, the whole generations of them, in nameless 
graves, for no one can point to the grave of a Crichton. As was said of the proud 
Comyns, Earls of Buchan, that there was no memorial left them in the land, save the 
orisons of the monks of Deer, so of the Crichtons of Frendraught there is no memorial 
left of them in their native parish, save the sacred vessels in use at the present day in 
the kirk of Forgue. Lewis was succeeded in the title by his kinsman, 

XVII. George, V. Viscount Frendraught. 

George Crichton of Auchingoul was descended from a brother of the first Viscount 

I Bognie Charters ; Douglas' Peerage. 

154 '^^^^ Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Frendraught. He assumed the title, though his right to it seems very doubtful, as the 
patent of 1642 was to the first Lord's heirs and successors. He married, in 1699, 
Marjory, widow of Lewis, IV. Lord Frendraught. She survived till 1742. In that year, 
Mary Seton, daughter of Lachlan Seton, Sergeant of 3rd Scotch Guards, was served heir 
to her cousin, Marjory Seton, Viscountess Frendraught.' There is also to be found a 
general retour (May 19, 1693) of George Crichton of Auchingoul to James, II. Viscount 

His son did not assume the title. He took part in the rising of 1745, and soon 
after that parted with Auchingoul. The title was claimed in 1839 by Mr. M'Gill 
Crichton of Rankeillour, but unsuccessfully. 

We now return to the Morisons of Bognie, afterwards of Frendraught. 

I. Alexander Morison of Bognie. 

He acquired the lands of Bognie from Sir James Crichton and his wife, Elizabeth 
Gordon, in 1635. The charter is "Jacobus Crichton de Frendraught consensu et 
assensu meae conjugis Elizabethse Gordon, Alexandro Moresone in Bognie et Elizabethaj 
Gairden ejus spouse diutius viventi totas et integras villas E. and W. Bognie, cum 
domibus, &c." ^ From the above charter, we find that his wife's name was Elizabeth 
Gairden, a sister of Rev. Alexander Gairden, minister of Forgue. He married secondly, 
Katharine Gordon, and mention of her is made in the session records of Forgue. 

Alexander Morison signed the Solemn League and Covenant, and also signed the 
Duke of Hamilton's bond in defence of King Charles I. This latter act incurred the 
extreme displeasure of the Presbytery of Turriff, and he was summoned before them. 
" 1650, January 31. Comperit Alexander Morison of Bognie, a man whose affection to 
the Covenant and cause of God was notour to all the brethren, yet through uncircum- 
spection had subscribed the band for carrying out the unlawful engagement, and being 
accused of the same, answered that he conceived the band did impart nothing 
prejudicial to the Covenant. He submitted to the judgment of the Presbytery, and 
after a time was received according to the common order." He had the following 
family : — 

I. George, his successor. 

II. Alexander, of Pennyburn, mentioned in a charter in the possession of the 

l^ird of Bognie. Also in the proceedings regarding the murder of 

Alexander Gregory, above narrated. 
I. Barbara. 

2. , married to Blair ; issue, Elizabeth Blair. 

He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

II. George Morison of Bognie and of Frendraught. 
He married, as has been already mentioned, Christian, Viscountess Frendraught. 

1 Decen. Index of Retours, 1742. 3 Charter penes. Bognie. 

2 Gen. Ret. Riddell's Notes on Frendraught Peerage, Advocates' Library, Edinb. 

Fyvie. 155 

He was a leading man in the district before 1646," and he purchased, as has been already 
mentioned, in 1676, the wadset of the lands of Fiendraught, and made them over in 
life-rent to the Viscountess. In 1696, George Morison and the Viscountess lived at 
Bognie House. 

The household of Bognie, besides the Laird and the Viscountess, consisted of their 
son and two daughters ; Barbara Morison, a sister of the laird's ; Elizabeth Blair, his 
niece ; and Christian Ramsay, a niece of the lady's. There were also a chaplain, a 
steward, the Laird's page, a man cook, a footman, and a groom ; likewise a farm grieve, 
five male and three female servants, in all twenty-three persons, which bespeaks the 
importance and affluence of the family at the end of the seventeenth century.- They 
had issue : — 

I. Theodore, of whom afterwards. 

1. Elizabeth, married to one of the Grants of Grant. 

2. Susannah. She married John Forbes, son of Sir William Forbes of Mony- 

musk, by Barbara, daughter of Sir John Dalmahoy of that ilk. This John 
Forbes acquired, in 17 11, the properties of Upper Boyndlie and Ladysford 
in Buchan. He espoused the cause of the Pretender in 17 15, and was 
obliged to leave the country, embarking on board a vessel from Banff 
bound for Holland. He perished at sea, not without a suspicion of foul 
play, as he had a considerable sum of money in his possession. He was 
collector of the subsidy imposed on the Shire of Aberdeen, by order of the 
Earl of Mar. They had issue five sons and six daughters. Christian 
married her cousin. Sir John Forbes, Bart, of Monymusk, from whom are 
descended Sir William Forbes of Pitsligo, the late Bishop of Brechin, 
Forbes of Medwyn, and the Hon. C. J. R. Trefusis, &c. 

John Forbes of Boyndlie was succeeded in his estates by his third 
son, Theodore, a doctor of medicine, who, dying in 1736, was succeeded 
by his next youngest brother, John. He died in 1750, also without issue. 
The estates passed into the hands of his brother. George. He married 
first, Jane, daughter of William Keith of Bruxie, by whom he had one son, 
George (of whom afterwards), and two daughters ; the one died in infancy, 
the other unmarried. He married, secondly. Christian, daughter of 
Rev. Andrew Ken, minister of Turriff, by whom he had three sons and four 
daughters. His three sons by his second marriage all died without issue. 
Of his daughters, the eldest, Christian, was married to Alexander Innes of 
Pitmedden, of whom Colonel John Ramsay of Barra is descended. 
Barbara, the second, to Sir John Innes of Edengight. 

(In the family Bible of John Forbes of Upper Boyndlie there is the 
following entry : — " My wife, Susannah Morison, lawful daughter to George 

1 Session Records, Forgue. 2 Jervise Inscriptions, Vol. II 

156 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Morison of Bognie and Dame Christian Urquhart, Viscountess of Fren- 
draught, was born at Frendraught, on Wednesday, 22 December, 1680." 
After the death of her husband, Mrs. Susanna Forbes of Boyndlie got a 
house from her brother, Theodore Morison of Bognie, at Mill of Forgue, 
where she and two of her daughters lived and died.) 
George Morison died in 1699, and was succeeded by his son, 

III. Theodore Morison of Bognie and Frendraught. 

He received the early part of his education at the Grammar School of Aberdeen. In 
the latter end of the seventeenth century, the scholars of the highest class were in the 
practice of exercising archery, and in shooting for a silver arrow which belonged to the 
school. When the victor was declared, he provided at his own expense a silver medal 
of value according to his rank, bearing the arms and motto of his family, or some other 
device agreeable to his fancy. This medal was deposited in the school as a memorial 
of the victor's early expenditure in archery. Of these medals, fourteen, of different dates, 
are still preserved, according to Kennedy's "Annals," and among them is one gained by 
Theodore Morison of Bognie. On one side there is a coat of arms with motto, *' Sunt 
tria haec unum," on the other side, " Theodorus Morison de Bognie, vicit 1699, anno 
setatis 19 mo." From the medal we see that Theodore Morison was a minor when he 
succeeded his father, and that the date of his birth must have been about 1676. 

He married Catharine, eldest daughter of Sir Charles Maitland of Pitrichie, and had 
the following issue : — 

I. Alexander, who succeeded. 

II. George, of Haddo. He married Miss Abercromby, daughter of General 

James Abercromby of Glassaugh, of the Birkenbog family, by Mary, 
daughter of William Duff of Dipple. 

III. Sir William. He was born about 1740; was educated at King's 
College University, Aberdeen. He was obliged to choose a pro- 
fession, and he became a barrister. He went to Quebec to practice his 
profession, and while there, he married Catharine de Bronyac, a lady of 
French extraction, and of good family. From Quebec he went to the 
Island of Granada, and from his perfect knowledge of the French 
language, he met with great success in his profession. Through the 
influence of Mr. Pitt he was appointed Chief Justice of the Bahama 
Islands, and on his appointment, he received from George III. the honour 
of knighthood. Within two years after he landed at Nassau he died, 
leaving two sons and three daughters : — 

I. William, appointed by Mr. Pitt, Controller of the Customs. 

He was a man of considerable abilities, and married a Miss 
Baldwin, sister of Captain Baldwin, R.N. 

II. John, educated at Aberdeen, died 1832. 

Fyvie. 157 

1. Caroline, married Mr, Gamble, afterwards to Mr. William Arm- 

strong ; had issue a son and a daughter, 'I'homas and Susan. 

2. Amelia, married (it is believed privately) Hon. (Jeorge King, 

afterwards Earl of Kingston ; had issue a son and two daughters. 
The son entered the Royal Navy, and was at one time aide-de- 
camp to the King. One daughter married an P>nglish baronet ; 
the other an English barrister, afterwards a judge at Westminster. 

3. Jane, married Mr. Armstrong. 

I. Jane, married John Eorbes Leith of Whitehaugh, the male representative 
of Tolquhon. Their marriage contract is dated December 24, 1743. 
The issue of this marriage was three sons : — 

I. William, born 1748, died unmarried. 

II. Theodore, M.D. He married, 174 — , Mary Carboine, a French 
lady of ancient family, from whom the present family of White- 
haugh and Tolquhon is descended. 

III. John, died, unmarried, of fever at an early age, February 13, 

Theodore Morison of Bognie died 4 June, 1766. The " Aberdeen Journal " of the 
period has the following notice of his death : — " Died at Bognie, 4 June, 1766, in the 
eighty-first year of his age, Theodore Morison of Bognie, whose amiable character is 
known to all whom his name has reached. Others may with truth be told that his 
lengthened life of uniform virtue and universal benevolence met even in this world an 
uncommon reward. He lived without an enemy, and died without a groan." He was 
succeeded by his son, 

IV. Alexander Morison of Bognie and Frendraught. 

He married Catharine, daughter of John Duff of Cowbin, by Helen, daughter of Sir 
James Gordon of Park, Bart. They had the following family : — 

I. Theodore, who succeeded. 

II. John, of Auchintoul, Cobairdy, &c., who succeeded his brother. 

III. George, died unmarried. 

IV. James, of Strawberry Vale, Finchley, in the county of Middlesex. He 
married first, Ann Victoire, Baroness de la Marre, of Remiremont, 
Lorraine, France. She was the only child of Baron Nicholas Philippe de 
la Marre, Captain in the Regiment D. Armagnach, by Lady de la Garde, 
of a very distinguished house. He was lineally descended from Claude 
de la Marre, residing at Fresues, who was ennobled by letters patent of 
Ervie of Lorraine, Bishop and Count of Verdun, issued on the 26 Decem- 
ber, 1602, and enrolled on the nth January, 1603, in consideration of his 
virtue, deserts, and valour, and as a reward for military service rendered. 
The letters patent further declare — " That the foresaid Claude and his 

158 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

issue, born in lawful wedlock, inherit all his honours, franchises, immuni- 
ties, prerogatives, and precedencies, that have been issued and used by 
gentlemen of noble lineage. Also that he bare, Azure with fesse argent, 
gules between two mullets of the same, and accompanied in chief with two 
fleurs de lis, or, and in point, with a crescent upright of the same ; and for 
crest a flower of the ancient shield of nobility.' They had issue : — 

I. Alexander, who succeeded to Bognie. 

II. John, who succeeded his brother, 

III. Delamare, who died in 1847. 

1. Anna (Von Rosenberg), wife of Baron Von Rosenberg of 
Dresden, born 1805 ; died at Dresden, 25 January, 1880; issue 
— the Baron Von Rosenberg, Dresden, Saxony. 

2. Catharine, who died 20 December, 1823, aged 17. 

3. Caroline, who died 6 January, 1823, aged 13. To the two latter 
a monument has been erected in Drum's Aisle, St. Nicholas 
Church, Aberdeen, by their brother, Alexander. 

James Morison married secondly, Sharmer Jemima Clarinda Cotter, by 
whom he had issue : — 

IV. James, of Lincoln College, Oxford, M.A. Author of "The 
Service of Man, and other works. He married Miss Virtue, 
daughter of James Virtue, by whom he had issue one son, 
Theodore, and two daughters, Helen and Margaret. Mr Cotter 
Morison died 1888. 

Alexander, a physician, died in early life. 

Helen, married to Grant of Artamford, and had issue. A grand- 
daughter, Miss Byrne, married (as second wife) Alexander Gordon of 
Newton. Another became Mrs. Scott Moncrieff. 

Katharine, married to John Forbes of Boyndlie. They had issue, eight 
sons and four daughters. Seven of these died young and unmarried. Of 
their.s, daughters, Katharine, the eldest, was married to Alexander Scott of 
Craibstone. Jane, the fourth, was married to John Charles Ogilvie of 
Auchiries. On Mr. Forbes' death in 1824, he was succeeded by his 
son, Alexander, who married Anabella, daughter of James Reid of 
Ardoch. He died in 1863, and was succeeded by his sister, Mrs. 
Ogilvie, who was succeeded, in 1872, by her son, George Ogilvie Forbes, 
M.D. He married Miss Cordiner of Memsie ; issue, one son, John 
Charles Matthias Ogilvie, now of Boyndlie, and one daughter. 
Jane, married first to James Ogilvy of Escreavie, by whom she had 
one daughter, James Catharine, who was married to Colonel Keith Young, 
and had issue — I. Major Baird, who married first, Mary, daughter of 
Colonel Harnlin, of Royal Artillery ; issue, one daughter, Matilda Mar}'. 

Fyvie. 1 59 

(He married secondly, Lilias, daughter of John lilackwell, Esq. ; issue, 
Keith Ogilvy Baird, Lieutenant R.A.; Ethel Hay Baird.) H. James 
Keith Wellington Baird, CaiHain, Rifle Brigade, who died in 1852. 
I. Jane Margaret, died aged 15. 2. ICIi/.abeth Eorbes, died aged 16. 

3, Mary Catharine, married to Alexander Morison of Bognie and Earghan. 

4. Grace Julia, married to Rev. Bhilii) Carlyon, Vicar of AVisbech, St. 
Mary's (issue, six children— L I'hili[). H. Alexander Keith. HI. 
Harold Baird. i. Catharine Ogilvy. 2. Jessie Morison. 3. Julia 

Mrs. Ogilvy married secondly, Alexander Gordon of Newton, 
sometime of Tobago; issue, L John, who succeeded to Newton. 
H. (ieorgc, Captain in the Scots Greys. HL Alexander, who succeeded 
his brother George in the estate of Newton. Three daughters ; two of 
whom died young ; and Mary, who was married to T. A. Duff of Haddo, 
by whom she had Robert W. Duff, Major in the army ; and Alexander 
G. Duff, Colonel in the Indian army. 

4. Mary, died unmarried at (ilenbogie Cottage, 28 October, 1859, aged 84. 

5. Magdalen, married to John Shackleton. She died at Banff, March 24, 

1853, aged 81. 
Alexander Morison died September 17, i8ot, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

V. Theodore Morison of Bognie and Frendraught. 

He acquired, in 18 12, the property of Mountblairy in Banffshire, where he died 
unmarried, October 9, 1834, in the eightieth year of his age, and was succeeded by his 

VI. John Morison of Bognie, Frendraught-, and Mountblairy. 

He was for sometime M.P. for Banffshire. He had, besides the properties above 
mentioned, the estates of Auchintoul, Cobairdy, and others, but possessed the estates 
of Bognie, Frendraught, and Mountblairy for only a few months. He married, in 
1799, James, daughter of Mr. Eraser of Strichen, and aunt of Lord Lovat (restored in 
1832). He died at London, February 12, 1835, in the seventy-eighth year of his age, 
and was succeeded by his only son, 

VII. Alexander Mgrison of Bognie, Frendraught, and Mountblairy. 

He was Vice-Lieutenant of the county of Banff ; was a member of the English bar. 
He married, in 1836, Jessie, daughter of Garden Duff of Hatton, by his wife, Louisa 
Dunbar, sister of Sir George Dunbar of Hempriggs. Mr. Morison died February i, 
1874, and was succeeded in his estates of Mountblairy by his widow, and in Bognie and 
Frendraught by his cousin, 

i6o The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

VIII. Alexander Morison of Bognie and Frendraught. 

He was, as above narrated, the son of James Morison, by Anne Victoire, 
Baroness de la Marre. He was born in the West Indies, and early in life he entered 
the army of the East India Company, and after four years' service, retired with the rank 
of Captain. In 1866, he purchased the estate of Larghan in Perthshire. He married, 
as already mentioned, Mary Catharine, daughter of Colonel Keith Young, by James 
Catharine, only child of James Ogilvy of Escreavie. Mr. Morison died at Larghan 
House, December 30, 1879, and was buried in the churchyard of St. Margaret's, Forgue, 
Mr. Morison was succeeded by his brother, 

IX. John Morison of Bognie and Frendraught. 

He was the second son of James Morison by Anne Victoire, Baroness de la 
Marre. He was born July 5, 181 2, and was educated at the Grammar School, Aber- 
deen. He married, September 5, 1840, Mary Jane, daughter of Thomas Wetherell, 
of Trinity College, Cambridge, and Grand Sable estate in the Island of St. Vincent, 
West Indies. Issue : — '■ 

I. Frederick de la Marre, his successor. 

II. Alexander Theodore, Lieutenant in the Queen's Regiment. This amiable 

young man, beloved by every one who had the pleasure of his acquaint- 
ance, died of fever, at Dublin, on 15 October, 1875, aged twenty- 
six. The following regimental order was issued by the commanding 
officer : — " Royal Barracks, Dublin, October 16, 1875. The commanding 
officer regrets exceedingly having to certify to the Battalion, the death of 
Lieutenant A. T. Morison, of the Depot, ist Battalion, which took place 
on the 15th inst, at the Station, of enteric fever. Although Lieutenant 
Morison had only been but a short time with the 2nd Battalion, still he 
showed symptoms of being a very promising officer, and had by his 
affability and general good nature endeared himself to all. Out of respect 
to the deceased, the officers of the Battalion will wear mourning." 

1. Fanny Isabel, married first to Captain Low, Royal Scots, 28th Regiment; 

secondly, to Major F. J. Tidmarsh, 33rd (Duke of WeUington's) Regiment, 
and has issue a son, Robert Molyneux. 

2. Ada Henrietta Maria, married December 15, 1869, at St. George's Square, 
to Arthur Haye Francis, eldest son of the late Charles Arthur St. Leger, by 
Jane Robina, eldest daughter of the late William Hawksley, of 36 
Lowndes Square, London. Mr. St. Leger's grandfather was the Hon. and 
Rev. James St. Leger, third son of the Right Hon. Aldworth St. Leger, 
first Viscount Doneraile, by Mary, eldest daughter of Richard Barry, 
of Ballyclough (Burke's Peerage, p. 325). They had issue a son, Valentine 
Aldworth, born February i, 187 1, died March 20, 1873. 

x. Constance Victoire. 

Frendraiight. i6i 

John Morison of Bognic died November, 1886, and was succeeded by his son, 

X. Frederick de la Marre Morison of Bognie, Prendraught, 
and Mountblairy. 

He is Lieutenant-Colonel of the first Royal Scots Regiment ; was educated at 
Sandhurst ; and entered the regiment in i860. He married, in 1869, Janet Forbes, 
daughter of Alexander Gordon of Newton, by Sarah, daughter of Alexander Forbes, 
third son of Duncan Forbes Mitchell of Thainston, by Janet, daughter of Sir William 
Forbes of Craigievar. They have issue : — 

I. Alexander Edward Forbes, born 1874. 
n. Duncan Maitland, born 1884. 
I. Isabel Gordon, born 1871. 
He married secondly, 1892, Miss Mair, 


Sir Alexander Morison of Prqston Grange registered arms 1672-78. "Argent, three 
moors' heads couped proper." 

Henry Morison, W.S., registered the coat with three heads on one neck. 

In 1673, George Morison of Bognie, Co. Banff, founder of a family still existing, was 
granted arms almost identical with the above mentioned.-' 

Stodart's Arms, Vol. II. p. 155. 


There is no record at what period the House of Frendraught was modernised. The 
old tower has entirely disappeared, and the only remains of the ancient erection are 
some buildings at the south-east wing, and the lower apartments of the house. Several 
trees in the policies are of great size and age, some of which had been planted by the 

The deep draw-well of the ballad stood in the courtyard at the back of the castle, 
and, according to a writer in the "Banffshire Journal," this well was cleaned out in 1811 
or 1 81 3, and keys were found. Were these the keys with which the vengeful dame 
locked the doors of the burning tower on her ill-fated guests ? A pump has now been 
placed in the well. ^ 

At the east end of the House of Frendraught stands a small tumulus, not unlike a 
barrow of prehistoric times, but when it was opened sometime in this century no remains 
nor anything of interest were found. It may have been the Moothill, the place of 
assembly of the vassals, where cases of importance were tried by the chief, and justice, 
such as it was, administered in those days of blood and rapine. A similar tumulus on 
the banks of the Ythan, near Ellon, at one time existed. On this tumulus, called " the 
Earl's hill," the Earls of Buchan were invested, and there they held head courts four 
times a year. 

According to a chronicler of the last century, on the Raich Hill stood the 
gibbet, half-a-mile north of Frendraught, on which many suffered ; and a little below 
the Bridge of Forgue are to be seen the graves of a gang of gipsies, who suffered death 
by drowning. According to tradition, another gibbet stood on the Hill of Comisty. 
The Lords of Frendraught were said to be severe justiciaries within their own regality, 
and thus there may have been need for two. 

On the farm of Wardend there are the remains of a stone circle, and excavations 
were made here, under the auspices of the late Ur. John Stuart, but nothing of interest 
was found. One upright stone, and the altar stone so called, remain on the southern 
slope of the Foreman hill, on the farm of Westerton. Likely there had at one time 
been other stones to complete the circle, but they had been made use of for building 
purposes, and have long since disappeared, A rocking stone, "lowtand or bowand 
stone," also existed near the farm of Westerton ; but its rocking and bowing have long 
ago ceased. It was smashed and done for ! There is still a circle in fair preservation 
on the Raich farm. 

Antiquities, &c., of Forgue. 163 

According to Colonel Shand of Templeland, who was a zealous antiquary, there was 
a Roman road, probaljly tiic one still in existence on the west side of the Raich hill 
from Frendraught to the [)ul)lic school of Forgue, and which leads to the Marnoch 
ford on the Deycron. 

In the view of the Diocese, a chapel near Bognie is mentioned, hut there arc no 
remains save " umbra nominis " in the name of the farm "Chapel Park." 

On the farm of Woodside, a mile west from I-'rendraught House, on a rising ground, 
there is a fosse or ditch. It is semi-circular in form, and a similar one existed fifty 
years ago on the rising ground on the opposite side of the valley. They were both pro- 
bably used in defending the raids on Frendraught, which were frequently made in the 
olden time from Bain's hole. 

Pennyburn was at the beginning of the last century a small separate estate, occupied 
by James Spence. On it there are the remains of a mansion house of very substantial 
masonry, which seems never to have been finished. According to one tradition, it was 
built by George Morison of liognie, and whilst being rebuilt, the fourth Viscount of 
Frendraught died, when Ceorge Morison got possession of the Castle of P'rendraught 
and the lands, and the building of the house of Pennyburn ceased. 


In a charter of Novodamus, of date 16 12, one of the two deeds of the Frendraught 
property preserved when the "great kist " was burned in 1630, there is mentioned the 
erection de novo of " the I'urgh of Forgue." 

It runs thus — " We have de novo erected, made and constituted ' burgum de Forg,' 
&c., with the entire houses, buildings, gardens, lofts, crofts, pendicles, &c., and all things 
belonging unto a free burgh of barony, in all time coming to be called the burgh of 
Forgue, to James Crichton, jun., his heirs and assignees. Also free burgesses (liberos 
burgenses), bakers, braziers, linen drapers, sellers of fish, and all other artificers required 
within a free burgh. Also baillies, and all officers for the government of the said burgh. 
Also for erecting a cross (crucem foralem), a town-house (curiam). Also for holding 
within the said burgh two annual markets, namely, on the week before Palm Sunday, 
and to last for the space of five days ; a second one beginning on the penultimate day 
of the month of September, the festival of St. Michael the Archangel, and also to last 
for the space of other five days, for the buying and selling in the said burgh of all kinds 
of merchandise, as are in use in a free burgh of Barony in the kingdom of Scotland." 
The burgh of Barony was said to have been situated near the parish kirk of Forgue ; 
but beyond a public-house, whither some of the parishioners used to resort during divine 
service, much to the annoyance of the kirk-session, it never emerged further into 
existence. The times became troublesome, and the burgh of Forgue, though mentioned 
in subsequent charters and infeftments was strangled in its birth. 

164 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

The Scott Hall was built by the late Walter Scott, Glendronach Distillery. 
It bears above the principal entrance, on a polished slab of Peterhead granite, the 
following inscription : — " Gifted to the parishioners of Forgue by Walter Scott, Glen- 
dronach, 1885." 

By a disposition and deed of gift by Mr. Scott, he conveys the hall and site to six 
trustees, namely, Mr. John Morison of Bognie, and his successors in the estate of 
Bognie ; Mr. Robert Simpson, and his successors in the estate of Cobairdy ; Rev. 
James Brebner, minister of the parish, and his successors in office ; the Rev. William 
Temple and his successors in office, ministers of the Episcopal Church ; Mr. Robert 
Wright, principal teacher of the parish, and his successor ; Dr. P. G. Hay, medical 
officer of the parish, and his successors in office. 

The hall is to be used for any meetings, lectures, social gatherings, entertainments, 
or other purposes which tend to promote the interests, improvement, well-being, 
benefit or enjoyment of the inhabitants. 

Mr. Scott also gifted two hundred pounds towards the maintenance of the hall. 
There is in one of the rooms the nucleus of a library, consisting of about two hundred 
and twenty volumes, presented to the parish by the late John Morison of Bognie, 
There is also a portrait in oil of Mr. Scott, by Mr. Cadenhead, a rising artist. It is a 
full-length, and represents Mr. Scott seated in an old-fashioned, round-backed arm-chair. 
His right hand rests on the arm of the chair, while the left grasps the top of a walking 
stick. This portrait was presented to Mr. Scott by the parishioners of Forgue and 
other friends. 


In the House of Frendraught there are several portraits of interest, among others 
those of George Morison of Bognie and his wife, the Viscountess Frendraught ; their 
son, Theodore Morison of Bognie ; and his grandson, Alexander Morison of Bognie. 

There are three, however, of special interest, two said to be by Jameson, the Scottish 
Vandyke. These are the portraits of Sir James Crichton of Frendraught and his wife, 
the Lady Elizabeth Gordon, so cruelly suspected of burning Frendraught. The other 
is a portrait of the Admirable Crichton, as he is generally called, who was a relation of 
the Frendraught family, though in what degree cannot now be easily traced. " He was 
one (according to Dr. Stuart) not the least memorable of the band of literary knight- 
errants in the sixteenth centuiy, who made Scotland celebrated throughout the world. 
His knowledge of languages was wonderful, so that he received the name of the 
' Admirable Crichton.' " His father was Robert Crichton of EUiock, a property which 
was made over to him and his son James, out of the wreck of the Bishopric of Dunkeld, 
by Bishop Crichton, who in a controversy with one of his vicars said, " that he never 
knew anything of the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments ; but, thank God, he 

Antiquities, &€., of Forgue. 165 

had got on very well without thein." Robert Crichton of Elliock was Lord Advocate 
for Scotland during part of the reigns of Queen Mary and her son, James VI., and his son 
James was born August 19, 1560. In 1570, he went to the University of St. Andrews, 
where, on the 20 March, 1574, he took the degree of M.A. He went, in 1577, to 
France, where he is said to have distinguished himself by his skill alike in literature and 
arms. Leaving France, in 1580, he went to Italy, arriving at Venice, before the end of 
that year. On July 3, he met his death at the hands of his own pupil, under circum- 
stances of romantic interest, at Mantua. There are in existence several portraits of the 
Admirable Crichton, and at a meeting of the Society of Antiquaries, where several were 
exhibited, the conclusion come to by the meeting, after careful examination, was in 
favour of the Frendraught portrait. There is also a portrait of one of the Crichtoiis 
of Auchingoul, at least on the back it is so marked ; but whether it is the one who 
called himself fifth Lord Frendraught, or which member of the family, it is impossible 
to say. 


A little to the west of Bognie stood Conzie Castle, the materials of which were pro- 
bably utilised in the building of Bognie House and that of Pennyburn, but there are no 
remains. A family, however, of considerable importance, for nearly two hundred years, 
flourished here — the Dunbars of Conzie. 

Sir Alexander Dunbar, only son of James Dunbar, fifth Earl of Moray of that 
name, though he was deprived of the Earldom through the influence of the Douglas family, 
yet that was in a great measure compensated to him by King James II. He got West- 
field in Morayshire, in 1450; Conzie in Forgue, and many other lands.' He married 
Isobel, daughter of Alexander Sutherland of Duffus, who survived him. He had issue, 
six sons and one daughter. His fourth son, Gavin, was Bishop of Aberdeen, and his 
third son, Alexander, got the lands of Kilbuiac. 

II. Alexander Dunbar of Kilbuiac. 

He married Janet, daughter of John, Earl of Sutherland, and had issue — James, 
his heir. This Alexander Dunbar was killed by Alexander Sutherland of Dalred, at the 
end of March, 1498. He was succeeded by his son, 

III. James Dunbar of Conzie. 

He was served heir to his father in the lands of Altcash, 12 June, 1502, and 
heir to his grandfather, Sir Alexander Dunbar of Westfield, on January 3, 1505-6, 
in the lands of Colmyste, in the Lordship of Frendracht; and on 20 April follow- 
ing 1506, in the lands of Conzie, held in chief of the King for service of ward and 

I Ant. A. and B. III. p. 588. 

1 66 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

relief.' By his first wife he had issue a son, Alexander, who succeeded to Conzie. 
He and his second wife got a charter under the great seal — " Jacobo Dunbar de Conzie 
et Isobel Brodie sue sponse." * By the said Isobel Brodie he left issue a son, George. 
He was succeeded by his son, 

IV. Alexander Dunbar of Oonzie. 

He got a charter under the great seal — " Alexandro Dunbar de Conzie terrarum de 
Colmakill, dated June 20, 1563."^ He was one of the witnesses at an ecclesiastical 
court, where it was proved that James, Earl of Bothwell, was within the degrees of 
consanguinity forbidden by the church with Lady Jane Gordon, both on father and 
mother's side. Anno. 1565. 

He married Elizabeth, daughter of John, sixth Lord Forbes, and by her he had a son, 
Alexander, who married Grisel, heiress of John Dunbar of Mochrum. He had also 
another son, William, the first Dunbar of Hempriggs, in Caithness-shire, who got a 
charter under the great seal — " Willelmo Dunbar filio Alexandri Dunbar de Conzie 
tertiae partis villas et terrarum de Hempriggs, dated 13 April, 1576,""* a family now 
represented by Garden Duif Dunbar, who married, in St. Margaret's Church, Forgue, 
September 26, 1876, l,ouisa, eldest daughter of Lieutenant Colonel James Duff, 
Knockleith, and has issue. 

They had probably another son, who succeeded to Conzie. 

V. Patrick Dunbar of Conzie, 
signed, in 1600, a band of manrent to the Marquis of Huntly.^ He was succeeded by 

VI. Alexander Dunbar of Oonzie. 

In 1604, there is a sasine given to Alexander Dunbar of Conzie on the lands of 
Conzie and Eister Bognie, 15 May, 1604, and on 16 May, 1604, on the lands 
Penquonsie, with the mill and mill lands of the samen. 

Again, 1625, 17 January, there is a sasine to Alexander Dunbar, son of James 
Dunbar in Conzie, in the town and lands of Conzie,® and the same day sasine 
is granted of the town and lands of Conzie made by Alexander Dunbar, son of 
umquhile James Dunbar in Conzie, to James Crichton of Frendraught^ Thus Conzie 
merges into the Frendraught estates, and the Dunbars disappear from Forgue. 

Communion Cups of Forgue. — There are three chalices and two patens of con- 
siderable interest belonging to Forgue. These were presented by the Crichton family. 
One of them, a smaller chalice than the other two, appears to be of a date considerably 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 588. 5 Spald. Club. Misc. IV., 251. 

2 Reg. of the Great Seal. 6 Reg. of Sasines, H.M. Reg. Ho., Edinb. 

3 Reg. Mag. Sig. 7 Id. 

Antiquities, c/f., of Forgue. \Cy 

earlier than that of the others, and may have been in use before tiie Reformation. The 
letters " I. V. F." are stamped ui)on it, and on the paten belonging to it, with great 
rudeness. On the latter are the letters " I. H. S ," with a cross engraved in a later 
style," and on both the larger chalices is the inscription — " (Jiftit to God and to his church, 
be James Crichton of Frendracht to the Kirk of Forrig, 1633." The basin or paten, 
which measures thirteen inches in diameter, is of beaten silver, having the Crichton 
arms engraved on a boss in the centre with the following inscription : — " Gifted to God, 
and his church of Forgue, by James, Viscount of Frendraught, Lord Creichtoune." 
The letters "J. K." on the chalices are the initials of an Edinburgh silversmith of the 
day, while the letter " G." is that of the tradesman by whom the plate was assayed. 

It appears that the chalices presented by James Crichton are of a form not unlike a 
champagne glass, which was very usual about the date of the Forgue ones, but did not 
continue long in use. While the Forgue chalices are interesting as specimens of the 
ecclesiastical taste of the day, they are perhaps more interesting from their probable 
connection with 51 striking incident in the history of the donor. The Laird of Fren- 
draught and his lady were accused of burning the Castle of Frendraught, and on this 
account were brought into great trouble. When the circumstances of the Laird's 
position are considered, and the period of his sufferings, it does not seem unreasonaljle 
to suppose that the tragedy of the fire may have prompted him to the giving of the cups, 
while his elevation to the peerage may have led the son to follow the example of his 
father when he presented the massive basin inscribed with his arms. They were both 
thank-offerings. Sir James at the same time made -a like gift to the neighbouring 
churches of Inverkeithney and Aberchirder.- 

The part of the House of Bognie now remaining is used as a farm-house, and is 
surrounded by some fine old trees, especially two or three old Scotch fir trees near the 
turnpike, which are of great beauty. Near it is a fine old garden, which, according to 
tradition, was laid out and stocked with fruit trees under the auspices of Linnaius, 
the famous naturalist. The garden at Haddo was also, it is said, laid out under similar 

I Proceedings Six. Ant. Scot. Vol. X. Sess. 1872.73. 2 Dr. Stuart in Transactions of Soc. Antiijuaries, Edinb. 


The parish of Forgue was dedicated to St. Margaret, but whether to the virgin and 
martyr of that name, or to St. Margaret, Queen of Scotland, is not known. 

Forgue is believed to be derived from the Gaelic word Forrig, a fork. Two small 
streams, the Frennet and the Forge, unite near the north-eastern boundary of the parish, 
giving the appearance of a fork, which may thus have given designation to the parish. 

Pope Alexander IV., in 1257, confirmed to the Abbot and Convent of Arbroath the 
grant that had been made by Sir William de Ferendrach, without the consent of the 
Bishop of Aberdeen, of the patronage of the church of Ferendrach, with right to apply 
the fruits of the benefice, estimated at thirty merks, to their own proper uses.' This 
confirmation in the year 1296 was among the records carried off to England." In a 
retour of date, August i, 1699, Theodore Morison was served heir to his father, George 
Morison of Bognie, in the town and lands of Bognie, all in the parish of Frendraught, 
and in the parish of Forgue.^ This retour points to two parishes ; but in a deed of 
sasine of 1612 (fortunately saved from the burning of the charter chest in 1630), by 
James Crichton of Frendraught to James Crichton, jun., mention is made of the right of 
patronage of the parochial church of Frendraught, commonly called " Eccles de Forg." * 
Frendraught has undergone various spellings. Thus we find — •* Fernindraut, Feren- 
drache, Ferndraghe, Fernydroghe, and from these might easily be evolved the short 
name Forge." It was called Forge at a very early period. In a bull regarding the 
Abbey of Arbroath, in the time of one of the Popes Alexander, mention is made of the 
"vicarie called Forge," evidently alluding to the ancient foundation by Sir Michael de 
Ferendrach.s So Frendraught and the parish of Forgue are one and the same, and the 
parish has been called by the latter name for at least five hundred years. 

Of the names of the ministers before the Reformation very few have come down to 

Duncan was vicar in 1296.* He died in that year, and the monks of Arbroath 
appointed a chaplain to serve in the cure of the parish, and assigned to him a stipend of 
all the alterage, with the church lands and manse, reserving to themselves the great 
tithes of the whole parish, and the lesser tithes of lambs and wool. 

Dominus Christinus, in 137 1, is vicar of Forgue. He is obliged to take part in the 
following lawless transaction : — " John Aberchirder, the esquire of Sir Walter Leslie, met 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 522 ; II. p. 321 ; 4 Bognie Charters. 

Theiner's Monumenta, p. 74. 5 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 23. 

2 Rob. Index to Missing Charters. 6 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 321. 

3 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 516. 

TJie Church of Forgue and its Ministers. 1 69 

John de (iairdyii, and arrested him, and atrociously struck Iiis man, because he would 
not bind his master to his horse's tail. He then robbed the said John de Gairdyn of all 
his letters, and led him to a wood, where he was kept till he paid a ransom, and swore 
on the Holy Gos|)eIs, in presence of Dominus Christinus, vicar of Korge, that he would 
not deliver the letters to any except to Walter Lesly." ' 

Patrick Ogilvy, in 1485, receives from the Abbot of Arbroath, with consent of the 
whole chapter, a lease of the whole and entire tithes of the church of Forge with the 
pertinents ; and, in 1493, he take part in a commission regarding the church lands of 

William Christieson is mentioned, in 1535, as perpetual chaplain at the Altar of the 
Virgin Mary in the chancel of Forge. ' 

Mr. George Ogistoun is, in 1542, vicar of Forge, as we learn from the following 
record, no better than it should be : — " September 2, 1542. The King grants letters of 
legitimation to Patrick Ogistoun, bastard natural son of Mr. George Ogistoun, vicar of 
Forge." * He was probably the last of the vicars of Forgue before the Reformation. 

The following are ministers of Forgue after the Reformation : — 

Andrew Spens, in 1574, formerly reader at Edzell, is appointed reader to Forgue, 
Drumblait, and Culsalmond. He had jQ(i2 Scots as stipend, and the kirklands, and 
occupied, it is said, a servile office in Lord Forbes' house at Druminor before his 
appointment. 5 

John Philip, in 1590, is translated from Forgue to Keith, and soon after to Rothie- 

John Harvie, in 1601, is his successor. 

James Hay, in 1608, is minister. He is a member of the General Assembly in 16 10, 
and was present in 1620 at a visitation of the Presbytery of Strathbogie at Rothiemay.* 

William Douglas, A.M., graduated at King's College, 16 19, and in 1628, he was a 
member of the General Assembly, and of the commission in 1643. Orem in his history 
says : — " Mr. William Douglas, minister of Forgue, is chosen by the Covenanters to be 
Professor of Divinity in the College, and was reckoned a great man amongst the 
Covenanters next to Henderson. He was appointed professor about 1644. At the 
the Restoration, he joined the Episco|)al party, and kept his place. Kennedy says : — 
He was one of the ministers appointed to reprove Charles H., who, when in Aberdeen 
in the year 1650, had been observed using familiarities with the female friend who 
attended him. As spokesman of the committee, Mr. Douglas, after rebuking His 
Majesty, concluded by exhorting him to be more careful in shutting his windows, a 
delicacy, says Hume, which was never forgotten by the King." ' Mr. Douglas published 
the following works: — "Vindici^ Psalmodioe Ecclesiastical," " Oratio Panegyrica," on 
the Restoration of Charles II., &c. He married a daughter of Alexander Scroggie, 

1 Leslie's History of the Leslies, Vol. L p. 71. 5 Dr. Scott's Fasti, VL pp. 65-66. 

2 Ant. .\. and B. L p. 522 ; IL p. 209. 6 Gordon's Scots' Affairs, L pref. p. liv. 

3 Reg. Mag. Sig. (1535—; No. 1474. 7 Fasti .\berdeen ; Orem's History of Old 

4 Id. 1542, No. 2777. Abdn. p. 329 ; Kennedy's Annals, IL p. 404. 

I/O The Tlianage of Fermartyn. 

minister of Aberdeen.' He died anno 1666, and was buried in the churchyard of St. 
Machar, upon the south side of the cathedral. 

Alexander Garden, A.M., was appointed, on a presentation by James, Viscount 
Frendraught, before 20 August, 1645. ^^ ^^^ named by Parliament one of the visitors 
of the University of Aberdeen, and also had a ratification from Parliament, 1649, of ^n 
Act of Presbytery, 6 December, 1647, which runs thus : "seeing he had bought the 
same at a dear rate from his predecessor, and had his biggins and manse all destroyed 
by fire, done by Montrose and other rebels, and that oftener than anes ; has been 
plundered in later rebellions and insurrections, ordains the intrant successor to give him 
his aires or relict, in case of his decease, satisfaction for the whole biggins, according to 
the worth and value of them at his successor's entry, as shall be comprised by the sight 
of men of judgement." Mr. Garden gave in 1658, £,26 123. iid. towards the erection 
of new buildings in the King's College, and was one of the Commissioners appointed, 
22 February, 1661, for visiting the University of Aberdeen. He married Isobel 
Middleton, had issue two sons. Dr. George and Dr. James. The latter became 
Professor of Divinity in the above-mentioned University, but, refusing to conform to the 
establishment of Presbytery, he was deprived at the revolution of 1688. A sister, 
Elizabeth, was the wife of Alexander Morison of Bognie, and is mentioned in the 
charter of the lands of Bognie, 1635. Mr. Alexander Garden died 1674.^ 

George Garden, A.M., D.D., son of the above, was promoted, in 1679, from being 
regent in the University and King's College, Aberdeen ; translated to Oldmachar 
in 1679 ; ^ and was deposed by the General Assemby for Bourginianism ; was author of 
the " Life of Scougal." 

Patrick Harvey was admitted, by institution of tlie Bishop of Aberdeen, by Alexander 
Barclay, parson of Auchterless, 23 May, 1680. He was an heritor of the parish of 
Newmachar ; married, and had a daughter, Christian. He died 1704.'* 

John Maitland was translated from Insch to Forgue in 1707. " After prayer and 
rolls called, Messrs. Chalmers, Turing, Bower, and Ross being present, the edict being 
returned legally executed and endorsed, was found in order, and no objections made 
against Mr. Maitland's admission to Forgue. Mr. William Chalmers preached from 
John iv. 13. After sermon, the questions usual on such occasions being proposed to 
the said Mr. John Maitland, to all which he gave satisfying answers, he was admitted 
fixed pastor of this congregation, and cordially adopted by all concerned." ^ 26 January, 
1 7 15, Messrs. John and James Maitland, as having failed to observe the thanksgiving 
for King George on his accession to the throne, were called to answer for this neglect at 
Turriff, 23 March, 1715 ; were suspended by the Synod, April, 17 15, and the suspension 
was sustained, and brethren deposed by the Commission of General Assembly, 8 May, 
1 715. (See St. Margaret's, Forgue.) 

1 Pedigree Rose of Insch, penes Editor. 4 Poll Book. II. p. 400. 

2 Bognie Charters. 5 Presbytery Record, Turriff. 

3 Orem's Hist, p 275. 

Tlie Church of Forgiie and its Ministers. 1 71 

Alexander Forbes was called by the Presbytery jure devoluto.' There was great 
opposition to his appointment (see St. Margaret's, Forgue), but it was at last effected. 
Rev. Alexander Forbes was born 1690. He married, and had issue a son, Alexander 
of Kirkpottie, who died unmarried. A daughter, Amelia, married Rev. John Beatson, 
minister of Dunbarney, in Perthshire, and had issue several sons, who inherited in 
succession their uncle's property of Kirkpottie, and an only daughter, who married Rev. 
Andrew Bell of Crail, and had issue. Mr. Forbes died 17 May, 1758, and his death is thus 
recorded in the " Aberdeen Journal " of the period : — " A gentleman who, through the 
whole career of his life, did honour to his profession, and worthily adorned the doctrine 
he taught. In 1734, he succeeded to a considerable fortune by the death of an uncle 
in Dublin, which, though it increased his power of doing good, could not increase his 

George Abercromby, A.M., was appointed in 1759 ; was translated from Footdee on 
the presentation of Theodore Morison of Bognie, and in June, 1772, was translated to 

Alexander Wilson, graduated at Aberdeen A.M, in 1761 ; was ordained 
December 2, 1772 ; died August 5, 1779. According to Dr, Scott, he was a son of 
Rev. James Wilson, minister of Gamrie ; but Mr. Wilson had no son minister of 

William Dingwall succeeded Mr. Wilson. He studied at Marischal College ; was 
born 1745, and died 1801. His widow, Sarah Latta, survived till 1829. Mr. Dingwall 
published a statistical account of the parish. 

Alexander Allardyce, M.A., was a son of George AUardyce, surgeon, Banff; 
graduated at King's College in 1793; was ordained to Forgue, 27 September, 1802; 
got a new church built at Forgue in 1819. He died in the pulpit, June, 1833, in the 
fifty-seventh year of his age, and thirty-first of his ministry. He married Ann Dundas 
Blair, who had considerable literary and poetic skill. Mr. Allardyce had seven of a 
family, two sons and five daughters. The sons went abroad in 182 1, James as a cadet 
to India, William as a settler to Van Dieman's Land (now Tasmania). The former 
returned home in 1866, having attained the rank of Major-General, but the latter never 
returned, having died in Hobart Town in 1848. Of all the seven only one, the second 
daughter, was married. She had eight of a family, and has numerous descendants. 
After the death of Mr. Allardyce, his widow and children went to reside at Cromarty, 
where two surviving daughters, Ann and Catharine, still reside. 

Mrs. Allardyce in her life-time published the " Gudewife at Home " in the Scottish 
dialect, as also stanzas on the death of Jane Maxwell, Duchess of Gordon, and 
also on the Battle of Waterloo. The following piece of poetry entitled " The Scotch 
nurse's lament for a little boy returning to England," written in 1826, is a specimen of 
Mrs. Allardyce's poetry, which, though not possessing high poetical merit, is very 
touching and pleasing. Mr. Allardyce and his family were staying at Haddo, in Forgue, 

I New Stat. Acct. p. 607. a Scott'* Futi, VI. pp. 63-66. 

172 The Tlianage of Fermartyn. 

when it was written. Charlie was a nephew of Mr. Allardyce, and coming from India, 
where he was born, was sent as a very Uttle boy to the manse of Forgue. He left India 
when he was about seven years old. Having become a great favourite with all at the 
manse of Forgue, his departure to India was much regretted. After his return to India 
he married, and soon after died. 

How lonely now's the dear ain brae, 
The burnie's rush is heard mair clearly, 
For o'er them a' the livelong day, 
Nae mair we'll hear the voice of Charlie. 
They brought him here like primrose pale, 
Scorched by the sun, and drooping sairly ; 
But health cam' o'er the Northern gale. 
And blooming grew the cheek o' Charlie. 

They've taen him back like hardy flower 

That's nurst in Caledonia's bosom, 

Till fate in fortune's cruel power 

Tears from her breast the thriving blossom. 

Nae mair I'll see his winsome face, 

Nae mair I'll hear his blythe good morrow, 

Nae mair his skirl of joy I'll trace, 

Nor yer his short-lived sough of sorrow. 

Farewell ! Farewell ! my bonnie boy, 
Life's pleasures vanish late or early. 
Clouds follow fast on gleams of joy, 
An' sic a sunny blink was Charlie. 

Part II, (1846). 

And I have lived to see the day, 

When twenty years have vanished o'er me. 

Then to resume the mournful lay, 

A broken dream that floats before me. 

The den, the burn, the flowery brae, 

Are in the distance disappearing ; 

The sportive child gone far away, 

The northern tongue no longer hearing. 

Again removed from friends and home. 
And scenes where memory long must hover. 
Restrained in learning's frigid dome. 
The schoolboy cons his lesson over. 
Time rolls — a bark is on the sea, 
Beneath the line her pennon drooping. 
The idle sails flap heavily. 
And o'er her side the youth is stooping. 

On India's tented fields at length. 

He shares the toils of manhood's duty ; 

But suns that sapped the young bud's strength 

Can blight the blossom's opened beauty. 

What next ? Alas ! a couch of pain, 

A wife and babe around it weeping ; 

And there's a grave far o'er the main ; 

The dream is told, and Charlie's sleeping. 

The Church of Forgiie and its Ministers. 173 

Mr. Allardyce was succeeded by 

James Cordiner, M.A. He graduated at King's College in 1808; was appointed 
schoolmaster of Gartly in 1825 ; assisted for ten years Rev. James Douglas of Premnay ; 
was presented in 1834 by Theodore Morison of Bognie to the Church of Forgue. 
He died March, 1849, aged sixty-three years, and in the fifteenth of his ministry, having 
married Rachael Reid, who died at Aberdeen, 5 September, 1856, aged seventy-two. 
They had issue a son, James Douglas, and a daughter, Ann Campbell. He published, 
in 1840, a new statistical account of the parish. 

John Abel, M.A., was a native of the parish of Cluny ; graduated at King's College, 
1842, and was shortly afterwards appointed Murray Lecturer in said college. He was 
presented to the parish of Forgue by Alexander Morison of Bognie and Mountblairy 
in 1849. Mainly through his exertions a new parish church and manse was built at 
Ythan Wells, and the district formed into a separate parish. Mr. Abel married 
Elizabeth, daughter of Hercules Scott, LL.D., Professor of Moral Philosophy, and had 
issue a large family. He died 1870. 

James Brebner, M.A. ; born at Lonmay, 1839 ; graduated at the University of 
Aberdeen, 1859; appointed to Ythan Wells in 1869; translated to Forgue, 187 1 ; 
married Elspet Elmslie ; issue — James, Lily, Gavin, Elsie, Annie, Alexander Morison, 
Helen, Louisa, Robert Frederick, Jessie Morison, Walter Scott, Catharine, and May. 


The first minister of this parish was Rev. James Brebner, M.A. ; was translated to 
Forgue, 1871. The next, Alexander McWilliam, M.A., was some time school- 
master at Ythan Wells ; afterwards a clergyman in Prince Edward Island ; appointed 
to Ythan Wells, in 1871, on the presentation of Alexander Morison of Mount- 
blairy ; died 1887. . 

Alexander Boe, M.A., was appointed in 1887, and resigned 1890. 

Alexander Wilson, M.A., a native of the district of Enzie, ordained 1890. 

The Free Church of Forgue was formed into a congregation in 1843. 
John Mathieson, M.A., ordained 1843; resigned 1865. 
Alexander Wishart, appointed 1865. 


In the silent grave no conversation, 
No joyfuJ tread of friends, no voice of lovers ; 
No careful father's counsel ; nothing's 
Heard, nor nothing is, but all oblivion, 
Dust, and an endless darkness. 

—Old Play. 

The Crichtons of Frendraught were buried in the Crichton aisle of the old church, which 
now forms part of the churchyard, and is believed to be occupied by the family burying- 
ground of the Wilsons of Auchaber. Of the Crichtons there is no memorial of any 
kind in the churchyard. 

On the north side of the old church was the Bognie aisle, now enclosed with a high 
wall, and within which are the following monuments : — I. " In memory of two sons 
and three daughters of the late John Forbes of Boyndlie, and Katharine Morison, his 
wife, who all died young, and are here interred. This stone was erected by their 
affectionate mother." II. " In memory of Magdalene Morison, widow of the late John 
Shackleton, Esq., and youngest daughter of the late Alexander Morison of Bognie, who 
died at Banff, 24 March, 1858, in the 82nd year of her age. Also of Mary, his fourth 
daughter, who died at Glenbogie Cottage, 26 October, 1859, in the 85th year of her 

Another monument, at one time within the old kirk, now encased in a portion of 
the old belfry, presents a shield charged with the Garden arms — a boar's head in chief, 
and three crosslets in base, with the motto in Greek, " bear and forbear." Below is an 
inscription in Latin, carved in Portsoy marble, of which this is a translation — ' " Sacred 
to the memory of Alexander Garden, sometime Professor of Philosophy in King's 
College, Aberdeen, afterwards the most exemplary minister of the church of Forgue. In 
his whole manner of life pious, strict and blameless, and faithful to God, the church, and 
himself. He was at last prostrated by scrofula, brought on by incessant labour and 
preaching, and in this church, where he had officiated as minister for thirty years, he 
piously deposited his mortal remains, in hopes of a blessed resurrection, 9 March, 1674, 
in the 63rd year of his age. His disconsolate spouse, Isa. Middleton, erected this 
monum.ent to his memory." 

There are other two tablets in memory of members of the Bognie family, which 
will be seen in the notice of St. Margaret's Church. 

I Jervise' Inscriptions, Vol. II. p. 173. 

The Churchyard of Forgue. 175 

A flat stone, said to be on the site of the pulpit of the old church, bears this 
inscription : — " Here lyes Thomas Forbes, son to Mr. Alexander Forbes, minister of 
Forgue, who died the last day of February, 1733, in the 4th year of his age. Also 
Katharine Garden, spouse to said Mr. Forbes, who died 7 September, 1746, aged 
48 years ; and the said Alexander Forbes, who was admitted minister of Forgue, 
II September, 17 16, died 7 May, 1758, in the 69th year of his age, and 42nd of his 
ministry," (See St. Margaret's, Forgue.) 

On a very handsome granite stone, in the north-east corner of the churchyard, may 
be read the following : — " * The gift of God is eternal life.' Here rest the mortal 
remains of Rev. George AUardyce, who was 30 years minister of this parish ; who 
departed this life suddenly on the 2nd of June, 1833, aged 57. His widow, Ann 
Dundas Blair, died at Cromarty, 8 July, 1857, aged 80, and her mortal remains rest 
there 'until the day dawn.' " (See ministers of Forgue.) 

On a granite stone, within an enclosure, is the inscription : — " Rev. James Cordiner, 
for 14 years minister of Forgue, who died 4 March, 1849, aged 63; also of Rachael 
Reid, his spouse, who died at Aberdeen, 4 September, 1856, aged 72." 

A granite obelisk marks the grave of "Rev. John Abel, for 21 years minister 
of this parish; who died 31 January, 1871, aged 48 years; and of Elizabeth Scott, 
his wife, who died at Donbank Cottage, VVoodside, 6 November, 1888, aged 
57 years. 'Wait on the Lord, be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine 
heart. Wait, I say, on the Lord.' " On the south side of the obelisk : — " His eldest 
daughter, Jane, died 7 January, 1872, aged 17. Jes^sie Duff died 7 Januar)', 1872, 
aged 7 months. John died 7 January, 1872, aged 17. Elizabeth Scott died 
10 September, 1872, aged 19. William Mearns died 6 March, 1881, aged 21. 
Rev. Alexander Morison, parish minister of Kinneff and Caterline, died 15 May, 1886, 
aged 30." On the base : — " Erected by parishioners and others friends." 

A tombstone, with cross-bones, skull, and coffin, covers the remains of James 
Cruickshank, some time in Wardend ; died 1752, aged 69; also his spouse, Isobel 
Davidson ; also of William and Christian, their children. 

A granite stone is inscribed — " George Cruickshank, farmer, Comisty, died 
22 November, 1841, aged 76 years; also, Christian Alexander, his wife, who died at 
Comisty, 12 June, 1854, aged 71." 

Adjoining this one there is a headstone of granite " to the memory of Dr. James 
Cruickshank, Haughs of Corse, who died 12 August, 1849, ^g^^ 90. His wife, Helen 
Stuart, died 12 August, 1849, aged 80." (This was a brother of the above George 

Another stone is in memory of relatives of the same family bearing this inscription : 
— " William Cruickshank, sometime surgeon in the Naval Hospital, Bridgetown, 
Barbadoes, afterwards surgeon, Royal Artillery, Woolwich. Lecturer to the cadets and 
chymist to the Board of Ordinance. Died at Leys of Lessendrum, February 4, 1809, 
aged 50. His father, George Cruickshank, who practised physic and surgery for sixty 

I 'j6 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

years in the neighbourhood, died at Leys, 7 January, 1812, aged 85. His usefulness 
will be long remembered in the district where he practised, by the poor with gratitude, 
and by all with respect." 

A stone records the death of Christian Cruickshank who died at Huntly, 26 Novem- 
ber, 1846, aged 84. " Esteemed for benevolence and amiable conduct/' She left 
;;^ioo to the poor of Forgue, under the charge of the parish minister and schoolmaster 
of Forgue. 

A granite stone bears the inscription : — " James Crookshank, tenant in Conland and 
Mains of Bognie, died June 30, 1852, aged 60. Margaret, his wife, died 17 November, 
1870, aged 68. Their eldest son, Alexander Shand, who was accidentally drowned in 
crossing the Marra Creek, New South Wales, 15 June, 1870, aged 32. Their younger 
son, James Robert, who died at Advale, Queensland, 17 February, 1882, aged 38 years. 
' What I do thou knowest not now, but thou shalt know hereafter.' " 

On a table stone there is a I^tin inscription, of which the following translation is 
given by Mr. Jervise : — ' " Here are laid the ashes of George Cruickshank, late farmer 
in Hassiewells, who died 15 September, 1795, in the 8ist year of his age. This monu- 
ment of their regret for his loss was erected by his surviving wife. Christian Largue, and 
her sons, John and William ; the former a teacher in Banff Academy, and the latter 
schoolmaster in Huntly. The remains of Christian Largue, who died 17 March, 1797, 
are laid in the next grave to the north. ' For I know that the Author of our salvation 
liveth, and that He shall stand at the latter day upon the earth, when the last hour shall 
bring back primeval chaos ; although the busy worm shall devour both my tender skin 
and flesh, I shall behold Him with mine own eyes, and not another,' " 

On a headstone is the following : — " In memory of Susan Cruickshank, who resided 
many years at Haddo, and died at Boyndlie, 31 July, 1822, aged 80. Erected by Mr. 
Forbes' family." She was a nurse in that family. 

Besides stones to the memory of the Cruickshank family, a name once very preva- 
lent in Forgue, there are many memorials to a family of Shand, a name once no less 
prevalent. A table stone, with bevelled sides and ends, is erected by Mr. Robert 
Shand in Conland, "in memory of Agnes Littlejohn, his mother, who died 19 May, 
1 741, aged 46 years. As also in memory of George Shand, his father, sometime in 
Parkdargue, who died April 7, 1772, in the 84th year of his age ; and of Elizabeth 
Alexander, wife to the said Robert Shand. She died 31 March, 181 8, aged 85." 

Another stone is "to the memory of Alexander Shand, second son of George Shand 
and Agnes Littlejohn, in Parkdargue, Colonel of the Royal Artillery, who died 7 April, 
1803, aged 72, and was buried in this churchyard." There is an obelisk to his memory 
on the hill of Templeland, erected by his trustees, on which all his merits are detailed 
at full length, (See Templeland). 

An upright stone is " sacred to the memory of Alexander Shand, late in Conland, 
who died there, on 9th April, 1837, in the 80th year of his age. (See Conland.) 

I Jervise" Epitaphs and Inscriptions, Vol. II. p. 174. 

The Churchyard of Forgite. 177 

On a table stone we may read the following : — " In memory of Rev. Alexander 
Sliand, pastor of the Episcopal Chapel, Arradoul, parish of Kathven, for upwards of 
forty-five years, who died 16 November, 1834, in the 70th year of his age, and the 49th 
of his ministry. Following the exam[)le of the true Shepherd, he was faithful in the 
discharge of his duty. He was resi)ected and esteemed by all who knew him, and 
departed this life in the joyful hope of a blessed resurrection through Him ' who is the 
resurrection and the life.' Helen Shand died at IJoynsniill, 4 May, 1853, aged 85, relict 
of the late John Sharp in 'reni[)leland, and sister of the above Rev. Alexander Shand." 
Mr. John Sharp was a nephew of Colonel Shand, and his son, who assumed the name 
of Shand, succeeded to Templeland. His death is recorded on the base of a granite 
cross : — " At the foot of this cross rests in calm repose all that was mortal of Alexander 
Sharp Shand. He died 1875. 'Even so in Christ shall all be made alive.'" On 
another granite stone is inscribed: — " Erected by Alexander Sharp Shand in memory 
of his two daughters, Mary, and her sister Helenore. ' Them that sleep in Jesus will 
(lod bring with Him.' " 

A granite stone is erected " to the memory of George Shand of Ordens, Boyndie, 
who died 2 November, 1847, aged 77 ; also of his daughter, Jane, who died 2 April, 
187 1, aged 67." A very old table stone records the death of an ancestor of this George 
Shand, and of the Shands of Templeland. (See Templeland.) 

An upright stone bears the inscription : — " Erected by James Shand, surgeon, 
Turriff, in memory of his father, William Shand, late tenant, Dykehead of Avochie, who 
died 22 October, 1833, aged 77 ; and of Janet Allan, hiii mother, who died 3 September, 
1820, aged 56. Also in memory of the above named James Shand, surgeon, Turriff, 
died 29 May, 1853, aged 49." 

Another stone is " to the memory of Rev. John Shand, for many years schoolmaster 
at Oyne ; died 17 July, 1858, aged 80. He was born at Auchinhamper, Inverkeithney." 
Mr. Shand was for many years the active and intelligent secretary of the Garioch Farmer 
Club, and kept, it is said, the Garioch lairds in capital order. There are, besides the 
above recorded families, Shands in Yonder Bognie, Mill of Forgue, all more or less 
connected with each other. 

A granite headstone is in memory of " Alexander Rainy, farmer, Placemill, who 
died July, 1830, in the 86th year of his age ; also in memory of his wife, Jean 
Alexander, who died 8 Ai)ril, 1843, in the 90th year of her age." By talents and 
industry, blessed by Providence, they raised themselves from a humble station to great 
influence and respectability. By a donation which he secured on land, he provided an 
annuity of ^20 sterling to the poor of Forgue, under the management of the kirk- 
session of Forgue and others. 

The following two inscriptions are from a monument within an enclosure on the 
south side of the churchyard : — I. " In memory of William Stuart, in Boynsmill, who 
died in 1742, aged 76, and of Janet Alexander, his wife ; also of William Stuart, their 
son, who held in lease the farms of Parkdargue, Kirktown, and Little Forgue, where he 

178 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

died 12 January, 1784, aged 63. His wife, Helen Cruickshank, died 5 December, 
1780, aged 76. Of their sons, Charles and James, the former died at Placemill, and 
the latter at Parkdargue, each in his 33rd year. William Stuart, farmer, Parkdargue (son 
of Robert Stuart), died at Drumblair Cottage, 19 April, 1854, aged 45. His daughter, 
Robina Eliza, died at Little Forgue, 9 April, 1853, aged 4 years. Elizabeth Thain, his 
spouse, died at Drumblair Cottage, 25 May, 1858, aged 32." 

n. " William Stuart succeeded his father in the leases of Parkdargue, Kirktown, and 
Little Forgue, and died at Kirktown, 7 May, 1802, in his 6ist year. Ann Gordon, his 
spouse, died likewise at Kirktown, 18 September, 1819, aged 73. Two of their sons, 
James and George, died in early life. Here also are interred the remains of Jane 
Glashan, wife of Robert Stuart of Aucharnie, who died at Little Forgue, 6 April, 1851, 
aged 80; and of their son, James Stuart, who died at Cocklarachie, 19 June, 1838, 
aged 28. Robert Stuart of Aucharnie died at Little Forgue, 3 September, 1855, aged 
74." Of this family, so long in the parish, not one representative remains in Forgue. 
(See Aucharnie.) 

" In memory of Rev. George Webster, who was born at Aucharnie in this parish, 
28 July, 1790, and died 11 November, 1869. He was appointed schoolmaster of 
Forgue in 1809, and held that office for fifty-two years. This stone was erected by 
his wadow." Mr. Webster was unfortunately drowned in the Deveron. 

Upon a small marble stone within an enclosure is this inscription — " In memoiy of 
William Irvine of Cornyhaugh, who died at Towie i December, 1826 ; also of his wife, 
Martha Findlay, who died there, 26 March, 1823 ; and of two of their children, who 
died young. This stone is erected by their affectionate family. Also in memory of Mr. 
Irvine's ancestors, proprietors of Cornyhaugh for upwards of three hundred years, and 
interred in this spot. Agnes Irvine, fourth daughter of William Irvine and Martha 
Findlay, died June i, 1844. Mary Irvine, third daughter of William and Martha 
Findlay, died November 16, 1880." (See Cornyhaugh.) 

A table stone records the death of " George Phyn of Corse of Monellie, who died 
1788 aged 76 ; and of Janet Simpson, his wife, who died 1780, aged 70. (See Corse 
of Monellie.) 

On a stone of Peterhead granite there is this inscription]: — " In memory of Rev. 
Andrew Ritchie, of the Episcopal Church, who died 15 December, 1846, aged 92 years. 
Also of Helen, his wife, who died 30 November, 1833, aged 72." 

A table stone records the death of a predecessor of Mr. Ritchie's : — " Underneath is 
interred Rev. Alexander Smith, of the Episcopal Church, Parkdargue, who died 
25 March, 1777, aged 63, and in the 36th year of his ministry ; justly and universally 
regretted by all who had the pleasure of his acquaintance. This stone is erected by his 
only surviving son, Theodore Smith, merchant, Banff. This worthy man was a nonjuror, 
and never prayed for George II. or George III." 

A stone of Peterhead granite records the following : — " In memory of William 
Thomson, mason, who was born at Cornyhaugh, and resided there for upwards of fiftyyears, 

The Churchyard of Forgue. • 179 

and died at Bogs of Raich, 17 August, 1834, aged 82 ; also of Helen Low, his spouse, 
who died at Bogs of Raich, 29 March, 1825, aged 52 ; also of their family, Alexander, 
who died there, 27 June, 1826, aged 32 ; James, who died at Muirton, 2 May, 1849, 
aged 46 ; John, who died at Bogs of Raich, 7 April, 1857, aged 64 ; George, who died 
at Cheltenham, 15 June, 1867, aged 63 ; Helen, who died at Forres, 7 October, 1870, 
aged 65 ; Peter, who died at Liverpool, 13 May, 1876, aged 61 ; William, who died at 
Aberdeen, 22 July, 1880, aged 81; Ann, who died at Boynsmill, 22 July, 1880, 
aged 69." 

Within an enclosure are two table stones with the following inscriptions : — " Sacred 
to the memory of John Thain, who departed this life 21 December, 181 6, aged 77. 
This stone is erected over his remains, in testimony of merited respect and filial regard, 
by his three sons, Thomas, Alexander, and John. Here also is interred Thomas Thain, 
late of Montreal, eldest son of the above named John Thain, who departed this life a.d. 
1832, in the 53rd year of his age ; so likewise was Barbara Thain, second daughter of 
John Thain, and his spouse, Anna Richardson. She, an humble follower of the 
blessed Jesus, resigned her soul to God, on 9 September, 1838. Mary Thain died at 
Drumblair Cottage, 28 October, 1853." 

IL " Sacred to the memory of Anna Richardson, relict of the late John Thain, who 
departed this life on 16 January, 1824, aged 66 years. This stone is erected to comme- 
morate departed worth, with every sentiment of filial regard, by her three surviving sons, 
Thomas, Alexander, and John. Here likewise is interred John Richardson Thain of 
Drumblair, youngest son of John Thain, and the above named Anna Richardson, who 
departed this life 4 September, 1846, in the 51st year of his age; also of Elizabeth 
Wilson, wife of the above named J. R. Thain, who died at Drumblair Cottage, 
12 January, 1852, aged 54." 

Three stones are to the memory of a family of Leslie, now represented by Alexander 
Leslie of Braco. L " Here lies the body of John Leslie, late farmer in Corskelly, 
Rothiemay. He was born at Auchterless, February 16, 1722, and died July 8, 1794 ; 
a man respected by his friends and esteemed by all. This monument is erected by his 
widow, Margaret Duff Leslie. She died at Corskelly, 25 July, 1813, aged 67." 

n. "In memory of Alexander Leslie, farmer, Corskelly, who died 16 February, 
i859> ^gcd 77 ; also his wife, Elizabeth Murray, who died 9 January, 1867, aged 
83 years." 

HL " Erected to the memory of John Leslie, farmer in Ittingstone, in the parish of 
Huntly, who died 4 May, 1818, aged 44. Also his children, Margaret and John, who 
died in infancy; also his wife, Isobel Stuart, who died 11 July, 1836, aged 50." 

A massive granite stone, with an urn on the top, is inscribed " to the memory of 
Barbara Alexis Forbes, wife of Robert Simpson of Cobairdy, who died 9 March, 1837, 
aged 23. The said Robert Simpson of Cobairdy died 16 December, 1884, aged 80." 
On the north side " to the memory of Margaret Carny, widow of Robert Simpson of 
Cobairdy, who died 3 July, 1885, aged 61." On the south side, " In memory of John 

i8o TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Simpson, formerly in Crookmore, Tullynessle, who died at Cobairdy, 15 December, 
1837, aged 88. Also of Agnes Browne, his wife, who died at Cobairdy, 13 January, 
1849, 3g6d 89." (See Cobairdy.) 

A granite stone within an enclosure is " Sacred to the memory of John Henry of 
Corse, who died at Corse, June 19, 1850, aged 81 ; also of Charlotte Ross, his wife, who 
died at Corse, 24 May, 1850." (See Corse of Monellie.) 

Also within an enclosure, a granite headstone records the following : — " James 
Wilson of Auchaber died August 27, 1838, aged 77 ; also of his wife, Isabella Petrie, 
who died 25 September, 1833, aged 73. Their son, James, who died in March, 1814 ; 
Jane, died 17 March, 1825 ; Isabella, died April, 1825 ; Lilias, died January 8, 1872 ; 
Ann, widow of Lawrence Davidson, M.D , died 22 November, 1886. ' I know that my 
Redeemer liveth.' " 

A granite stone bears this inscription : — " Here are interred the remains of 
Alexander Harper, who died, much regretted, on 11 March, 1838, aged 84. He filled 
the ofifice of Convener of the Incorporated Trades, and was afterwards, from 1836 till 
the time of his death, a magistrate of the city of Aberdeen ; also Helen Stuart, his wife, 
who died 5 February, 1859, aged 67." He was the son of Alexander Harper, late of 
Conland Mill, who died July 8, 1824, aged 84. He held the office of elder in this 
parish for fifty years. 

A stone records the death of James Dow, farmer, Cranloch, who died 25 August, 
1859, aged 67. / 

O ye who run in life's career 
As I have done before, 
Employ well the clays that pass 
Which will return no more. 
Here lies my body. now unseen, 
And mouldering in the dust ; 
So death will also visit thee. 
And yield to it you must. 


"Sperat infestis." 

On passing through Forgue, one of the most conspicuous objects in the glen that attracts 
the eye of the stranger is the handsome church of St. Margaret's. The congregation 
that assembles there is not without an interesting history, for it represents the one that 
was formed after the rising of 17 15. 

The first Presbyterian minister that we read of at Forgue after the Revolution was 
the Rev. John Maitland. He was the son of the Rev. John Maitland, minister of 
Inverkeithney, and grandson of Rev. Richard Maitland, sometime minister of Marnoch, 
afterwards of Inverkeithney. He succeeded the last Episcopal clergyman, Rev. Mr. 
Harvey ; was translated from Insch by order of the Synod of Aberdeen, and settled at 
Forgue, on 23 May, 1707. This reverend gentleman and his brother, James, minister 
of Inverkeithney, were both deposed by the General Assembly, in a summary manner, 
on the 9 May, 17 15, because they espoused the cause of the Pretender, refusing to 
observe the Thanksgiving for the accession of George I. on the 20 January, 17 15. 

In both parishes, the greater part of the parishioners took part with the ministers, 
and resented so deeply their deposition, that the clergymen appointed to announce it, 
were not only prevented entering the churches, but even the churchyards of the parishes. 

The Viscountess Frendraught and her son, Theodore Morison of Bognie, also 
espoused the cause of the deposed ministers. The Viscountess possessing herself of 
the keys of both churches, locked the doors, and prevented the Presbytery of Turriff, 
who zealously exerted themselves, from supplying the vacancies,' and her ladyship only 
gave up the keys after a threatened civil action. After a time the Presbytery resolved 
to institute ministers to the vacant charges ; and they began with Forgue first, selecting 
the Rev. Alexander Forbes as minister. 

They took the usual steps towards his settlement ; but the two ministers appointed 
to serve an edict, intimating the day fixed for Mr. Forbes' settlement, were prevented 
from doing so by an infuriated multitude, who roughly handled them. The Presbytery, 
from past experience dreading personal violence, applied to the proper quarters for a 
party of soldiers to protect them, and for the sheriff to render the kirk of Forgue patent. 
Both were promised, but neither was forthcoming. The Presbytery on the day of the 
settlement, 25 September, 17 16, had to proceed to the kirk of Forgue without an escort, 

X Presbytery Records of Turriff and New Statistical Account under Foigue. 

1 82 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

and found " the Folk of Forgue " well prepared to give them a warm reception. They 
were met at the churchyard gate with stones and staves, were chased across the Burn of 
Forgue, and beyond the bounds of the parish. Then " the Folk " returned home, 
thinking how well they had baffled the Presbytery ; but the latter trudged on all the way 
to the kirk of Auchterless, and there carried out the settlement of Mr. Forbes. 

In the meantime the Messrs. Maitland, rejected by the Presbytery for no heinous 
sin against morality, but the venial one, so considered at least by many in those days, of 
espousing the cause of the House of Stuart, opened meeting-houses for their numerous 
friends and adherents both in Forgue and Inverkeithney. James retired to Boghead of 
Haddo, where he had a son born to him named John Maitland (in the days of his exile 
known as the Abbb Maitland), who, in 1746, was appointed chaplain to Lord Ogilvie's 
regiment, in the service of Prince Charles Stuart, and accompanied it to the fatal field 
of CuUoden, where he is said to have administered in oatmeal and whisky (no other 
elements being at hand) the Holy Sacrament to the dying Lord Strathallan.' He was 
obliged to flee the country ; and from whence he lived for many years in France ; 
returned an old man to Edinburgh, and died there in 1800, in the ninetieth year of his 
age. A monument to his ancestors may be seen in the churchyard of Inverkeithney, 
but the venerable exile rests not there, but in the Greyfriars' churchyard, Edinburgh, 
afar from the grave of his fathers, by '* the dark rolling stream of Duvranna." 

Mr. John Maitland of Forgue remained, after his deposition, for some time in the 
manse of Forgue, and held service there, but on receiving a notice from the sheriff to 
remove, he agreed to do so at the term of Whitsunday, 17 16. After this he opened a 
chapel at Pennyburn, near the House of Bognie. There seems to have been another 
at Cornyhaugh, served for some time by Mr. Irvine, brother of the proprietor of Corny- 
haugh. The last appointment made to this charge was in 1773, when a Mr. M'Farlane 
was appointed, who, in subsequent years, became Bishop of Moray. Mr. John Mait- 
land of Forgue died April 16, 1740, aged 69, and was succeeded by his brother, David 
Maitland, who became completely blind from cataract. The following obituary notice 
of him appeared in the "Aberdeen Journal" of the time. "November 15, 1757. 
Died last week, a bachelor at Pennyburn, in the 75th year of his age, Mr. David Mait- 
land, a minister of the Episcopal persuasion. His father and grandfather exercised the 
pastoral function since the Restoration. What is most remarkable of this gentleman is, 
that for several years about 1734 he became quite blind, which did not interrupt the 
executing of his office ; for he was incessantly employed in the duties of his calling, and 
when he went to Edinburgh, he was couched of a cataract by the celebrated Mr. 
George Lauder, surgeon, by which his sight was restored." - 

In his time a heath-covered chapel was erected on a site given by Theodore 
Morison of Bognie, on the brow of the hill above the present farm of Parkdargue. This 
chapel, after the death of Mr. Maitland of Inverkeithney, seems to have served the 
Nonjurors, as they were called, of both parishes. The animosities in the parish of 

I Jervise' Epitaphs, 11. p. 373. 2 Aberdeen Journal, 1757. 

S/. Margaret's Church and Churchyard. 183 

Forgue, after many of the ringleaders left the country, subsided under the peaceful 
pastorates of Messrs. David Maitland and Forbes. 

A new storm, however, was soon to burst upon the Nonjurors. Prince Charles Edward 
Stuart landed at Moidart, in Argyleshire, and the Episcopalians of Scotland unwisely, 
we may now .say, for themselves and the church espoused his cause. 

'I'hcy felt towards the Stuarts what a famous peer and novelist has .so well expressed 
regarding Dutch William and his wife. " Hard task for us Britons to like a Dutchman, 
who dethrones his father-in-law, and drinks schnapes ; prejudice certainly, but so it is 
. . . like Queen Mary ! I could as soon like Queen (loneril ! Romance flies 
from these, flies to the poor dethroned fugitive Stuart, with all his sins upon his head." 
This feeling was similar under the first two Georges. 

After the disastrous defeat of CuUoden, vengeance speedily overtook the church. 
Most of the Episcopalian chapels were either pulled down or burned, and a detachment of 
the Duke of Cumberland's forces, under the Earl of Ancrum, is said to have made short 
work of the heath-clad chapel of Parkdargue. In 1746 and 1748 the persecuting 
statutes against the Episcopalians were enacted, which forbade an Episcopalian minister 
to officiate to more than four persons besides his own family, under pain of fine, 
imprisonment, or banishment. Any layman frequenting such assemblies subjected 
himself to a fine of five pounds for the first offence, and to two years' imprisonment for 
the second, so to avoid the statute, the clergyman generally preached from the door of 
his own house, the flock standing around. 

In the life of Rev. John Skinner of Longside we find related an untoward accident 
that befel the famous poet and pastor while so engaged. " Mr. Skinner gave up in 
early life the use of a manuscript in preaching, having an unstitched sermon scattered 
by the hasty exit of a scared hen, while preaching at the door of his own house." At 
this time the Rev. Alexander Smith served at Parkdargue, and although no faithful 
chronicler has recorded whether Mr. Smith's sermons met with such mishaps, or the 
devotions of the congregation were so disturbed, we can easily imagine, in preaching 
from house to house (to be within the statute), to what sore straits clergymen were 

All was gloom, but in the deepest darkness faith and hope supported them, and the 
dawn of a brighter day was at hand, for in 1760, good George III. came to the throne, 
and the persecuting statutes were kept in abeyance. Modest chapels were again rebuilt, 
and the simple heath-covered chapel at Parkdargue restored. Mr. Smith died in 1777, 
universally regretted by all who knew him, for as one of his successors has thus written of 
him — " His memory is still preserved as a painstaking instructor of the youth of his 
flock. He used to entice them, it is said, by various means to punctuality and attention, 
frequently rewarding the aptest scholar and encouraging the bashful with the smallest of 
our coins." 

After Mr. Smith's death, the Rev. Alexander Jolly, better known in subsequent 
times as the saintly Bishop of Moray, had for eighteen months or so the charge of the 

1 84 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

congregation along with that of Turriff. He was ordained deacon in 1776, and pro- 
moted to the priesthood, March 19, 1777, and was immediately appointed to the charge 
of these congregations. 

From the excellent life of the Bishop by the Rev. William Walker, LL.D., Mony- 
musk, we have some glimpses of Mr. Jolly's labours at Parkdargue. Considering the 
state of the roads in those days, little better than bridle paths, his frequent travels 
between the two charges must of itself have been a great labour. In his services at 
Parkdargue he received a crown for every time he officiated. He was passing rich, 
with something less than J[^\Q) a year. On his leaving Parkdargue, a present of ^5 was 
collected for him. It appears that the congregation of Forgue had not been in the 
habit of communicating at Christmas ; but Mr, Jolly set in order what was wanting. In 
a letter to Bishop Kilgour he says — " I gave them at Parkdargue an opportunity at 
Christmas, and had the comfort of a congregation almost as large as is usually there at 
Pentecost." Mr. Jolly, in 1787, removed from Turriff to Fraserburgh, and was conse- 
crated Bishop of Moray in 1797. He died at Fraserburgh in 1838, and was buried at 
Turriff in his brother's grave, who, when a young man, had been accidentally drowned 
in the Deveron. Dr. Walker thus sums up his life : — " His life was the Hfe of a saint, 
the life of one of the very few out of the many good, who are not simply pre-eminently 
good, but so good that one cannot conceive a better. . . . One such life, one such 
example is a precious boon and inheritance to any church. May the little church 
which he loved so well, and so greatly adorned, long continue to ponder and reverence 
the spotless memory of Alexander Jolly." May the descendants of his flock at Park- 
dargue so think of him. 

Mr. Jolly was relieved of his labours at Parkdargue by the appointment of a young 
man. Rev. John Innes, M.A., some of whose relatives are still members of the congre- 
gation. Mr. Innes was much beloved at Forgue, and, to the great grief of the congrega- 
tion, died, while quite a young man, of fever, November 16, 1792. About four years 
before his death, Prince Charles Edward Stuart died at Rome, January 31, 1788. Soon 
after the Bishops and clergy unanimously resolved to give an open public proof of their 
submission to the present government by praying in the express words of the English 
Liturgy for His Majesty King George III., and all the Royal family. On Sunday, 
May 25, 1788, the present Royal family were first publicly prayed for in all the 
Episcopal churches of Scotland ; and on that day the congregation at Forgue ended 
their seventy-three years' testimony on behalf of the House of Stuart, and have ever 
since been good and loyal subjects. 

Mr, Innes was buried in the churchyard of Forglen, The following inscription from 
the pen of the Rev, John Skinner is placed on his grave : — 

" ' Lege et Luge.' In memory of a faithful and beloved pastor, a studious preacher 
of Divine Truth, an agreeable member of society, a dutiful son, a worthy brother in 
both relations. This stone covers the early grave of Rev. John Innes, M.A., Presbyter 

St. Margaret's Church ami Churchyard. 185 

at I'arkdargue, whom, on the 16 November, 1792, a violent fever removed to a better 
life, in liie thirty-sixth year of his age, and the fifteenth of his ministry." 

" Fralrum, care choro grale<jue 
(Jarissiine plcbi, ambubus 
Tanilom rcstitucnde, vale." 

Mr. Innes was succeeded by Rev. Andrew Ritchie, formerly of Cuminestown, whose 
memory is still dear in Forgue. He was instituted to Tarkdarguc, January i, 1793, by 
Right Rev. John Skinner, and resigned the charge, March i, 1840. He died at Portsoy 
in 1846, in the ninety-third year of his age. The i)enal laws were repealed a few months 
before his appointment, and soon after, he and his congregation set about building a 
new church, which, it api)ears from the date on the old cross on the cast end (taken, it 
IS said, from Crichton's aisle in the old kirk of Korgue), was erected in 1795. The site 
was given by Alexander Morison of Bognie, the great grandfather of the present proprie- 
tor of the estate. A member of the congregation, John Forbes of Boyndlie, a son-in- 
law of the said Mr. Morison, took an active part in the building of the church. 
This excellent man, whose good advice on all occasions, the Bishop, on his appoint- 
ment, recommended Mr. Ritchie to follow, lived then at Haddo. He not only laboured 
himself, but induced others to do likewise ; and besides the household of his father-in- 
law, Mr. Morison of Bognie, found active co-operation and assistance among the 
following members, as appears in an old list : — The Misses Bisset of Lessendrum, Mr. 
Shand, Conland ; Cruickshank, Comisty ; Thains, Drumblair ; Stuarts, Little Forgue ; 
and many others. The church, though a plain buildi^ng, was considered at the time of 
its erection a grand church ; and compared with the heath-clad erection of many sad 
memories in its neighbourhood must have seemed so. After serving the congregation 
for sixty-one years, it showed symptoms of decay, and gave place to the present church, 
the foundation stone of which was laid on the 21st of August, 1856, by Mrs. Morison of 
Bognie and Mountblairy. Among the documents placed within the foundation stone 
was the following : — " In gloriam Dei et memoriam Sanctae Margaretse Reginae primum 
posuit Lapidem Janetta Uxor Alexandri Morison de Bognie, XXI. Die Augusti, Anno 
Domini, M.D.C.C.C.LVI. Gulielmo Episcopo, Aberdonensi ; Jacobo Smith, Reciore ; 
Gulielmo Ramage, Architecto ; Johanne Thomson, murorum structore ; Gulielmo et 
Jacobo Cooper, Fabris Tignariis." 

Nearly two acres of land, at a nominal feu-duty (a shilling a year), were given, with 
consent of his successor, by Alexander Morison of Bognie and Mountblairy, as a site 
for a church, burial ground, parsonage, and garden. Towards the building of the 
church he contributed upwards of ;^iooo, and in 1867 he erected a parsonage, and in 
f868 a teacher's residence, all at his own expense. 

In the summer of 1858, the church and churchyard were consecrated by the Right 
Rev. Thomas George Suther, D.C.L., Bishop of Aberdeen. The church is built in 
the early English style of architecture, and consists of porch, nave, and chancel, with 
tower and spire rising to the height of nearly a hundred and ten feet. 

1 86 Tfie Thatiage of Fermartyti. 

" The God's acre " around the church is well laid out, intersected with walks, 
adorned with shrubs, and may serve as a good model of a country churchyard. Many 
of them are so over-crowded, and repulsively kept, that the thought to be buried in them 
adds " a terror to the grave." In St. Margaret's burial ground a good many have found 
a last resting-place, including the late Alexander Morison of Bognie and I^rghan. 

In the tower are two bells, one a small one formerly in use at Frendraught, the gift 
of the then Alexander Morison of Bognie. It bears the date 1787. The other, a large 
one, is the gift of his grandson, and bears the inscription — " Ex dono Alexandri Morison 
de Bognie, Ecclesioe Sanctae Margaretae, M.D.C.C.C.LXXII." 

A clock, with two dials, by Benson, of London, was placed in the tower in the end 
of the year 1885, and was set agoing for the first time on January 6, 1886. Below the 
north dial on the tower has been placed this inscription : — " This clock the gift of John 
Morison of Bognie, 1885." 

The Communion vessels are not ancient. Mr. Maitland, when thrust out of the 
parish kirk, did not think of spoiling the Egyptians, and carrying off the sacred vessels 
presented in Episcopal times to the kirk of Forgue, by Sir James Crichton of Fren- 
draught, and his son. Viscount Frendraught. They were given the two cups in 1633, 
and the basin, small chalice, and paten at a later period. (See Antiquities of Forgue.) 

The kirk of Forgue was also about the time the plate was given enlarged and 
repaired, and many of the inscriptions which were placed in it had reference to the 
persecution and odium which Sir James and his lady incurred on account of the 
burning of their castle of Frendraught. 

According to an old chronicler of the last century, ' " It is a large parochial one, 
with two aisles ; that on the north is the burial place of the Morisons of Bognie ; that 
on the south, which is pewed and desked for the congregation, was the burial place of 
the Crichtons. The church had excellent painted seats, with carved work, with several 
inscriptions, such as the following — ' God sends grace without fear,' ' Deus nobiscum 
quis contra,' ' O passi graviora his quoque Deus dabit finem.' " 

This church had a roof of native Forgue oak. When the church was rebuilt in 18 18 
the roof and furnishings were sold to the managers of the Episcopal church, and were 
used by them in the erection of a parsonage for their minister. These, when the 
parsonage was rebuilt by Mr. Morison of Bognie in 1867, again came to the hammer, 
and were dispersed through the parish. The old oak planks may still, some of them, 
be seen devoted to various purposes. On looking at them, still almost as fresh as they 
were two hundred and seventy years ago, one cannot help reflecting on the vicissitude 
of all earthly things, and saying with Hamlet, " to what vile uses do we come, Horatio ! " 

In St. Margaret's church there is a large silver cup recently remodelled. It bears 
the inscription — " Bequeathed by Miss Anne Bisset to the Episcopal congregation of 
Parkdargue, 1806 ; remodelled by M. G. Bisset, 1866." 

I Ant. A. and B. II. p. 234. 

67. Margaret's Church and Churchyard. 187 

A large alms dish, the gift of Or. Scolt, is inscribed — " Presented to the Episcopal 
church of Forgue by Alexander Scott, Es(i." Dr. Scott, a native of Iluntly, was a 
medical officer in the East India Company's service, and married a daughter of John 
Forbes of Boyndlie. He founded two bursaries in the University of Aberdeen, one 
designed for the education of clergymen's sons and others for the ministry of the 
Episcopal Church; and another in the patronage of the Presbytery of Strathbogie, designed 
for a like purpose in the Established Church of Scotland. He left the rest of his means, 
including the estate of Craibstone, for the purpose of building and endowing an hospital 
in his native parish of Huntly, for the maintenance of old men and women of respect- 
table characters, natives of Huntly. Dr. Scott died in 1836, and the hospital, having 
been built by his widow, was opened in May, 1856. 

There is a chalice and paten of silver bearing the following inscription — " Gifted by 
Alexander and Anabella Forbes of Boyndlie to the Episcopal Church at Parkdargue for 
the use of the service of the altar, 1853." 

In the church there is a fine organ by Mecklen, Schutze, & Co., Berlin, the gift of 
Mrs. Morison of Bognie and Mountblairy, 

A massive font of freestone of elegant design, and an oak pulpit richly carved, are 
the gifts of the late George Thomson of Boynsmill. 

In the chancel there is an altar of oak, and encaustic tiles of very rich design. These 
were procured by a legacy of ;^6o, left on certain conditions for beautifying the 
chancel of the new church of St. Margaret's by the sister Katharine of the Sisterhood of 
Mercy, St. Pancras, London. She was the eldest da^ughter of the late John Charles 
Ogilvie, M.D., physician in Aberdeen, representative of the ancient family of Ogilvie of 
Auchiries. On All Saints' Day, in connection with this legacy, there is a celebration of 
the Holy Communion. The offertory is devoted to the formation of a Poors' Fund. 
The interest of this fund, after it reaches a capital sum of ;^25, is to be divided at the 
discretion of the incumbent amongst the poor of the congregation. It has some years 
ago reached this sum. 

In the churcli on the north side there are four marble tablets to the memory of the 
Bognie family. The first two were removed from the mausoleum in the churchyard of 
Forgue by desire of Alexander Morison of Bognie, having been replaced there by 
fac-similes in granite. 

On the first tablet there is the inscription : — " Within this sepulchre, erected by his 
desire, lies the body of George Morison of Bognie, who died in the year 1699. Here 
also are interred Theodore Morison of Bognie, only son to the said George Morison, 
who died in June, 1766, aged 81 years. Also Katharine Maitland, daughter of Sir 
Charles Maidand of Pitrichie, and spouse of the said Theodore Morison, who died in 
1743, aged 48 years. Here also lie the remains of Alexander Morison of Bognie, son 
to the said Theodore Morison, who died 16 September, 1801, in the 78th year of his 
age. Also Katharine Duff, daughter of John Duff of Cowbin, and spouse of the said 
Alexander Morison, who died April 11, 1803, aged 71." 

Tfie Thanage of Fertnartyn. 

On the second tablet there is the following inscription : — " To the memory of 
Theodore Morison, Esq. of Bognie and Mountblairy, who died at Mountblairy, on the 
9 October, 1834 ; and of his brother, John Morison, Esq. of Bognie and Auchintoul, 
who died at London on the 12th of February, 1835, in the 78th year of his age. His 
remains were removed to the mausoleum of Mountblairy, 1857. Alexander Morison of 
Bognie and Mountblairy, son of John Morison of Auchintoul and Bognie, died at Edin- 
burgh, I February, 1874." 

On the third tablet there is this inscription : — " To the memory 01 George Morison, 
third son of Alexander Morison of Bognie, who died in London, 1820. James Morison, 
fourth son of Alexander Morison of Bognie, born 1770, died in Paris, 1840, Anne 
Victoire De la Marre, daughter of Baron De la Marre of Remiremont, Lorraine, 
France, wife of James Morison, born 1786, died 1818. De la Marre Morison, third 
son of James Morison, born April 15, 1814 ; died in London, 1847. Alexander 
Morison, Esq. of Bognie and Larghan, eldest son of the above James Morison, died 
December 30, 1879^ aged 70 years." 

On the fourth tablet there is this inscription : — " Sacred to the memory of Alexander 
Theodore Morison, second son of John Morison of Bognie and Frendraught, a 
Lieutenant in Her Majesty's 2nd P'oot, who died at the Royal Barracks, Dublin, on 
15 October, 1875, aged 26 years. His dear, dear remains repose in the catacombs of 
the Brompton Cemetery. John Morison, Esq. of Bognie and Frendraught, son of 
James Morison, Esq., and Ann Victoire De la Marre, his wife, died at Tunbridge Wells, 
9 March, 1886, aged 74 years." 

The church contains the following stained glass windows — memorial and others : — 

In the east window of the chancel there are three lancets. In the left and right are 
subjects illustrating the life of St. Margaret, Queen of Malcolm Canmore, to whose 
memory the church is dedicated. Underneath the one is the inscription — " This church 
was rebuilt chiefly by Alexander Morison of Bognie during the incumbency of James 
Smith, M.A., Presbyter, 1837." Under the right hand window is the inscription: — 
"In memory of Robert Stuart, who died 2 September, 1855, aged 74 years ; of Jane 
Glashan, his wife, who died 6 September, 185 1, aged 80 years. An offering by their 
son, John Stuart." This family was long connected with the congregation, having been 
members from 17 16 to 1855 ; but now no longer is the name nor any of the race in 
Forgue. " The wind has gone over them, and their place knoweth them no more." 

Their last surviving and distinguished son, John Stuart, LL.D., who gave this 
window, was born at Little Forgue in 181 3. Educated at the University of Aberdeen, 
he became an advocate in Aberdeen, and as such practised his profession in Huntly. 
He was a great student of history, and especially of archaeology, and in 1853, he was 
appointed one of the official searchers in the Register House, Edinburgh. Before that 
event, he had originated the Spalding Club, in company with Mr. Joseph Robertson. 
On coming to Edinburgh, he was chosen as the Secretary of the Scottish Society of 
Antiquaries. He edited for the Spalding Club, " The Book of Deer," " The Sculptured 

5/. Margaret's Church and Churchyard. 1 89 

Stones of Scotland " in two volumes ; and many others of a like character, such as " The 
Records of the Monastery of Kinloss." He was an LL.D. of the University of Aber- 
deen, a member of the Archaeological Society of Great Britain, and other learned 
societies. Dr. Stuart was twice married, first to the daughter of Alexander Burness of 
Mastrick, and secondly to Jane Ogilvie, of the Auchiries family. Two daughters by the 
first marriage survive, one of whom is married to Rev. John Woodward, LL D., of St 
Mary's, Montrose. He did not forget his native church, for in 1865, he gave a donation 
of ;;^ioo towards the endowment of St. Margaret's Church, upon the condition of the 
congregation raising ;^40o in addition. By the aid of Mr. and Mrs. Morison of Bognie 
and Mountblairy subscribing ;^20o, Mr. George Cruickshank, Comisty, ^^30, and 
(Jeorge Thomson of Boynsmill p^ioo, and others, Mr. Stuart's donation was secured. 
He died at Ambleside on the 16 July, 1879, in the 64th year of his age. 

In the middle lancet are subjects representing the Agony in the Garden, and our 
Lord bearing his cross. Below is the inscription — " An offering by Alexander Forbes 
of Boyndlie, in memory of John Forbes of Boyndlie, and Catharine Morison, his wife, 
long members of this congregation. The former died 6 December, 1824, the latter 
5 January, 1832." 

In the north side are two memorial windows, both double lancets. In the one which 
illustrates the parable of the talents, there is the inscription — " In memoriam, George 
Thomson of Boynsmill, obiit 15 June, 1867." 

Mr. Thomson was of a family long resident in Forgue. In early life he went to 
England, where he was very successful in business, and, as has been already mentioned, 
he was very munificent to St. Margaret's Church. The window was placed in the 
church by his widow, Mrs. Thomson, of EUingham House, Cheltenham. Another 
brother, Peter Thomson, also accompanied him to England, and he likewise was 
also very successful in business. He died in 1876, having that year been elected 
Mayor of Liverpool. 

The other double lancet, represents our Lord's charge to St. Peter, and 
Christ blessing little children, and bears this inscription — " An offering by members 
of this congregation and other friends in memory of Very Rev. James Smith, M.A., 
some time Dean of Moray, and for twenty-six years incumbent of Forgue and Aber- 
chirder. Born March 25, 1816 ; died December 27, 1867." 

Mr. Smith was a native of Aberdeen, succeeded in 1 840 to the incumbency of St. 
Margaret's, on the resignation of Rev. Andrew Ritchie ; was incumbent of Aberchirder 
in the Diocese of Moray, and was for some time Dean of that Diocese, having been 
appointed to that office on the resignation of Very Rev. Hugh Willoughby Jermyn, now 
Bishop of Brechin, and " Primus Scotiae Episcopus." He was a faithful pastor, serving 
his flock with a zeal rarely surpassed, and was mainly instrumental in securing the erec- 
tion of the new church. He resigned the incumbency of this church in 1866, and removed 
to St. Margaret's, Lochee, where he died on St. Stephen's day, 1867, from fever caught in 
the assiduous ministration to his flock. Both these windows, including the three 
lancets in the east end, are from the well-known firm of Messrs. Wailes, Newcastle. 

ipo The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

On the south side there are four memorial windows — a double lancet in memory of 
John Morison of Eognie and Frendraught. The subject is Faith and Hope, while under- 
neath on a brass plate is this inscription — "An offering to the gentle memory of their 
good father. The above window was erected by his daughters, Fanny Tidmarsh and 
Constance Victoire Morison. ' Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.' " 

A single lancet by the Messrs. Ballantyne, Edinburgh, represents the Good 
Shepherd in the twenty-third Psalm, with this inscription — " ' To the glory of God.' 
In memory of Agnes Cruickshank, wife of James Cruickshank, surgeon, Wardend, born 
February 4, 1807 ; died March 20, 1875." Mrs. Cruickshank was eldest daughter of 
the late George Cruickshank, Comisty, a family long resident and respected in Forgue. 
James Cruickshank, her husband, was in early life a surgeon in the Royal Navy ; and on 
his leaving the service, he retired to Wardend, where for upwards of fifty years he 
practised his profession. He died June 5, 1877, in the 86th year of his age. 

There is also a window by Hardman, of Birmingham. It illustrates the parable of 
the Good Shepherd. It is in memory of David Collie, and bears this inscription — " To 
the glory of God, and in loving memory of David Collie, who fell asleep at Drumblair 
Lodge, on St. Philip and St. James Day, 1890 ; and of his son, David Collie, drowned 
at sea, 1886." This window was erected by his widow, Elizabeth Young Smith, who 
died January ii, 1892, aged 64. 

There is another by Clayton and Bell illustrating the Resurrection through the 
Incarnation of our Saviour, while underneath the one medallion is the text, "The Word 
was made Flesh and dwelt among us;" and underneath the other, " This mortal must put 
on immortality." On a brass plate may be read the inscription — " Ethel Forrester 
Temple, 1872." 

This was an offering of generous sympathy by the Venerable Maurice George 
Fenwick Bisset, Lessendrum. Mr. Bisset, of the ancient family of Lessendrum — 
(see Lessendrum) — was the son of William Fenwick of Lemmington House, and of 
Elizabeth, his wife, daughter of Alexander Bisset, D.D., by Jane, daughter of General 
Bocland Knighton,' Isle of Wight. He married, 1824, his cousin, Jane Harriot Bisset, 
daughter of Maurice George Bisset of Lessendrum, by his wife, Harriot, daughter of 
Mordaunt, Earl of Peterborough. In 1859 they succeeded to the estate of Lessendrum, 
where for twenty years the good Archdeacon resided, wearing " the white flower of a 
blameless life," a blessing to the neighbourhood in which he lived. The generosity of 
this Christian gentleman was unbounded ; no case of need but had his sympathy and 
aid, and he lived quietly at his beautiful residence at Lessendrum that he might have 
the more to give. By one who oftentimes experienced his benevolence has been added 
the following inscription — "An offering by the Venerable Maurice George Fenwick 
Bisset, M.A., Lessendrum, some time Rector of Drumholm, and Archdeacon of 
Raphoe, born November 19, 1797 ; died August 6, 1879. ' Dulcis anima vivas in Deo.' " 

In the west window are two large lancets with trefoil above them, filled with 
stained glass by the Messrs. Ballantine, Edinburgh. In the one lancet there is the 

St. Margaret's Church and Churchyard. 191 

figure of St. Luke, life-size, with the text on a scroll, " Be ye followers of them, who 
throuj,'lj faith and patience inherit the promises." In the other is the fij^^ure of St. John, 
with the text, " As in Ailam all die, .so even in Christ shall all be made alive." In the 
trefoil is the figure of a dove descending from the clouds, emblematic of the Holy 
Spirit. Underneath the two lancets is the inscription — " In memoriam, Alexander 
Mori.son de Hognie et Mountblairy. Horn January 20, 1802 ; died Kebruary i 1874." 
These windows were an offering by his widow, Mrs. Morison of Mountblairy, to whom 
St. Margaret's Church owed so much. Mr. Mori.son was the only son of John Morison 
of Auchintoul and IJognie, by his wife, James, daughter of Mr, l-'raser of Strichen, and 
aunt of the Lord I -ovat, restored to the title in 1832. Me married, in 1836, Jessie, 
daughter of Garden Duff of Ilatton, by Lousia Dunbar, daughter of Sir IJenjamin 
Dunbar of Hempriggs, a family descended from the Dunbars of Con/.ie in Forgue. 

There has also been erected by his widow, in obedience to his dying wishes, on a 
site {)urchased by her, on the estate of Templeland, a Cottage Hospital. This hospital, 
intended "to furnish good medical care and comforts to residents in the parishes of 
Forgue, Ythan W^ells, Auchterless, and Inverkeithney," is under the management of 
the parish ministers of Forgue and Ythan Wells, the minister of St. Margaret's Church, 
the minister of the Free Church, and '^wc others connected with the parishes interested. 
The hos[)ital consists of two wings connected by a verandah, the one to be used as 
a fever ward, and the other for surgical cases and non-infectious complaints. It has 
been built and furnished with every requisite at the expense of Mrs. Morison, who 
handed over to the trustees jQzooo towards its endowment, a sum since increased at her 
death by ^500. On the front of one of the wings is the inscription — " This hospital 
was erected, at the desire of Alexander Morison of Bognie, by his sorrowing widow, 

On the lawn in front of the hospital is a monument of polished Aberdeen granite 
surmounted by a, and on it may be read this inscription — " l'>ected by the 
tenantry on Bognie and Mountblairy, in affectionate and respectful remembrance of 
Alexander Morison of Bognie and Mountblairy, who was proprietor of these estates for 
thirty-nine years. Born January 20, 1802; died February r, 1874." 

A heating apparatus was placed in the church in 1877, the gift of Mrs. Morison of 
Mountblairy; and in the same year a donation of ;^ioo was given by Alexander 
Cruickshank of Eynesbury, Australia, towards the endowment fund of St. Margaret's 
Church ; also another donation of ;^ioo by James Thomson of Leeds, in memory of 
his brother, William Thomson of Boynsmill Cottage, Forgue, and of Leeds, 1891. 

A lectern — an oak eagle— was presented to the church by Miss Mary Cruickshank 
in memory of her father, James Cruickshank. It bears this inscription on a brass plate 
— "To the glory of God, and in loving memory of James Cruickshank, late of Ardfour, 
who died 28 September, 1888, aged 88." 

Mrs. Morison of Mountblairy, so often mentioned in this notice, died July 27, 1883, 
aged 78, 

192 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Besides the friends and benefactors above mentioned, there were other three ladies 
who, in the early history of the congregation when at Boghead, Pennyburn, and Park- 
dargue, were good friends. These were Mrs. Susannah Forbes, widow of George Forbes 
of Boyndlie, and daughter of George Morison of Bognie, by Christian Urquhart, 
Viscountess Frendraught, and her two unmarried daughters, Barbara and Mary. 
George Forbes, who was a younger son by a second marriage of Sir William Forbes, 
Bart, of Monymusk, acquired Boyndlie in 171 1, and was appointed collector of the 
land tax of the county of Aberdeen, and during the rising of 17 15 exercised the office 
in behalf of the ill-fated son of King James II. After its failure, he had to flee the 
country, and having made his escape on a small vessel from Banff, was never heard of 
again. Foul play towards him was suspected, as he had some money in his possession, 
and some of the sailors were afterwards seen wearing his clothes, but his family dared 
not seek redress. Mrs. Forbes and her two unmarried daughters retired to Mill of 
Forgue, a place on her brother Theodore Morison of Bognie's property. He built a 
small house for her there, where she and her two daughters spent the remainder of their 
long lives. Another daughter. Christian, became the wife of her cousin, Sir William 
Forbes, fifth baronet, and after his death she resided for some time with her mother and 
sisters at Mill of Forgue, but afterwards went to Aberdeen for the education of her 
children, although she always spent a few weeks in summer with her mother and 
sisters. Sir William Forbes, Bart, the eminent banker and restorer of the fortunes of 
his house, in a life of his mother thus writes: — "The house (1789), though ruinous, 
still exists, and I never pass that way without emotion from the recollection of the 
scenes where I had spent so many of my boyish days. My two aunts, though they 
lived in a most frugal manner, were dignified and very hospitable, and widely respected 
for their cultivated minds and high principles. They had tall stately figures, wore 
quaint dresses with trains, and sleeves reaching to the elbows, with ruffles, long gloves, 
or mittens." ' The two ladies died both nearly ninety years of age, and rest along with 
their mother in Bognie's Aisle, though no memorial marks their graves. 


Miss Jeanetta Morison died in 1892, and under her will she left j[^ZP'^i the interest 
of which is to be paid annually share and share alike to two of the most deserving 
females in the parish of Forgue not on the poors' roll, to be ascertained and named 
by the minister of the Episcopal Church. Females belonging to the Episcopal Church 
of Forgue shall be preferred, and the same shall be known by the name of " Mrs. 
Shackleton's bounty." 

1 Life of Dame Christian Forbes by her son Sir William Forbes, Bart. 

Si. Margaret's Church and Churchyard. 193 


In this churchyard a good many have found a last resting-place. 

A small free-stone cross has the following inscriptions : — " In memory of James 
Denton Smith, son of Rev. James Smith, born 30 March, 1863 ; died March i, 1864 ; 
also of Leonard Denton Smith, born 4 December, 1864, died 4 June, 1865. On the 
west side, Very Rev. James Smith, some time Dean of Moray, died at St. Margaret's, 
Lochee, December 21, 1867, aged 51. Elizabeth Denton, his wife, died September 9, 
1870." Mr. Smith and his wife are buried at Dundee. 

An upright stone with a cross is " In memory of Rev. John Innes, M.A., incumbent 
of the Episcopal Church of Parkdargue, who died November 16, 1792, in the 36th year 
of his age, and the 15th of his ministry ; also of his brother, Alexander Innes, who died 
November, 1833, aged 80." On the reverse side, " In memory of Alexander Low, late 
farmer in Nether Comisty, who died 10 October, 1883, aged 73; his son, John, died 
9 October, 1839, aged 14. Both rest at Inverkeithney. His daughter, Elizabeth, died 
22 April, 1868, aged 47, who rests here. His son, James, died at New Orleans, 9 June 
1873, aged 43. His widow, Elizabeth Innes, died at Kirkland Cottage, Forgue, 
December 24, 1888, in the 90th year of her age." 

A cross marks the grave of Alexander Pyper, the faithful and attached servant for 
thirty-one years to Robert Simpson of Cobairdy, died December 5, 1868, aged 48. 

Another cross marks the grave of Ethel Forrester Temple, who died August 13, 

1872. > 

Vale cara ! seel non aeternum cara vale ! 
Farewell, dear one ; but not for ever hope replies. 

A large granite cross, upwards of twenty feet in height, marks the grave of Alexander 
Morison of Bognie and Larghan, born 6 May, 1809, died 13 December, 1879. 

On the lower limb of the cross are the Bognie arms — three moors' heads couped 
together. Crest, a dagger grasped by two hands. Motto, '* Uno ictu." 

A polished Aberdeen granite pillar, surmounted by an urn, is " In memory of 
George Bartlett, surgeon, Forgue, who died at Clifton Cottage, February 18, 1879." A 
granite cross adjoining records the death of his son,/' Alexander, born March 17, 1865 ; 
died February 3, 1869." Dr. Bartlett was a very successful and much beloved practi- 
tioner for upwards of fifteen years in Forgue. 

A granite stone bears the inscription, " In memory of Margaret Barron, beloved wife 
of Robert Wright, schoolmaster, Forgue, who died 15 July, 1882, aged 26 years." 

Another granite stone of massive design is " To the memory of George Cruickshank, 
Comisty, who died 27 September, 1886, aged 68. Also of his wife, Ann Wallace, who 
died 10 July, 1887, aged 56." A cross at the foot is "To the memory of two daughters, 
Agnes Christina and Jessie Morison, who died in infancy." Mr. Cruickshank, a very 
intelligent man, was long factor on Bognie and other estates, and took much interest in 
the affairs of the parish. 


1 94 The Tlianage of Fermartyti. 

A cross of Sicilian marble bears the inscription, " In loving memory of Garden DufF 
Dunbar of Hempriggs, Caithness, late of 75th Cameron Highlanders, and Deputy- 
Conservator of Forests, Bias, Punjab. Born 7 May, 1837, died June i, 1889." 

A granite stone is " In memory of Ferguson Simpson, late farmer Mains of Pitfour, 
who died at Woodland Cottage, January 8, 1875. Crawford, his son, died in Australia, 
November 13, 1859. Eliza N. S. Murray died at Portsoy, November 16, 1870. 
Ferguson, his son, died in New South Wales, December 30, 1877. Also his son, 
Alexander, of Demerara, who died at Aberdeen, October 3, 1879, and rests here." Mr. 
Ferguson Simpson was a famed agriculturist in Buchan. His first prize for the famous 
bull, " The Buchan Hero," at the Smithfield exhibition, London (being almost the first 
from Aberdeenshire), brought no little credit to the district, 

A granite stone within an enclosure records the following — " In memory of James 
Cruickshank, surgeon, R.N., Wardend, who died June 5, 1877, aged 85 ; and of Agnes 
Cruickshank, his wife, who died March 20, 1875, aged 78. Also Agnes, their daughter, 
who died October 8, 1854, aged 29. Also Helen, who died February 18, 1852, 
aged 21." 

Another granite stone within an enclosure is inscribed " To the memory of James 
Cruickshank, son of George Cruickshank, Comisty, by his wife, Janet Guthrie (of Tollo), 
born at Comisty ; for fifty-five years farmer in Ardfour, who died at Woodland, 
28 September, 1888, in the 89th year of his age." 

A cross is " In memory of James Taylor, farmer. Corse of Monellie, who died at 
Corse House, 9th of August, 1890, aged 72. Also his wife, Isabella Cruickshank Low, 
who died at Corse House, 16 November, 1890, aged 67. ' Till the day dawn.' " 

A polished Peterhead granite stone is " In memory of Ann Gordon, wife of William 
Thomson of this parish, who died 29 November, i860, aged 32 years." 


" Virtute Duce comite Fortuna." 

This property, as its name indicates, at one time formed a portion of the numerous 
possessions of the Order of the Knights' Templars. This Order was founded at the 
beginning of the twelfth century as a religious and a military Order for the protection of 
the Holy Sepulchre, and had become by the thirteenth century a very wealthy body 
with large possessions and settlements both on the continent and in Britain. In Aber- 
deenshire, besides Forgue, the Knights' Templars had possessions in Auchterless, 
Fyvie, Kennethmont, Rhynie, Kildrummy, &c. So wealthy were they, that many kings 
became jealous of their power, and at last, Philip, King of France, and Edward II. of 
England, with the assistance of Pope Clement V., carried out a wholesale confiscation 
of their property, and most unjustly and cruelly persecuted the Order. In 1312, the 
whole Order was suppressed through Europe, and their possessions nominally given to 
the Knights Hospitallers of St. John. A well on the property is dedicated to St John, 
the patron Saint of the Hospitallers, and the belief in its curative virtues is yet scarcely 
defunct, but in order to get the full benefit from the water, it is necessary to drop a 
crooked pin into it. The Forgue Cottage Hospital, it will thus be seen, has found a 
proper site on the lands of Templeland, old possessions of the Hospitallers. 

In 1 641, we find Templeland included in the lands of Frendraught, in an act of 
ratification, in favour of the Laird of Frendraught, of the lands and barony of Fren- 
draught, passed in the Scotch parliament. " All and haill the lands of Templeland, of 
Frendraught, and the office of heritable baillie thereof, &c., in favour of James 
Crichton."' In 1696, Templeland still formed part of the dominical lands of Fren- 
draught, and in 17 19, Theodore Morison of Bognie and Frendraught sold to Alexander 
Duff of Hatton the lands of Templeland, along with several others in the parish of 
Forgue, including the lands of Bogfontain, Glenmailen, Balgaveny, Garriesford, Auch- 
aber, Drumblair, &c.' 

The lands of Templeland, after changing hands several times, were bought, in 1778, 
by Mr. Robert Shand in Conland, for his brother. Captain Alexander Shand, in the 
Royal Artillery, who was at that time in foreign service. Colonel Shand, as he after- 
wards became, was born at Parkdargue, Forgue, May 9, 1731, being the son of George 
Shand and Agnes Littlejohn residing there. The following is the descent : — 

I Bognie Charters. 2 Templeland Charters. 

196 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Robert Shand, tenant, 1696, in Kirktown, Forgue ; married Elizabeth Wright, and 
had issue : — 

I. George, born 1688, married, as above narrated, Agnes Littlejohn, and had 

issue : — 

I. Robert Shand in Conland, married Elizabeth Alexander,^ and had 

issue — I. George, merchant, Grenada. II. Alexander, in Con- 
land. (See Conland.) 

II. Alexander, Lieutenant-Colonel, of whom afterwards. 

1. Elizabeth, married Sharp, and had issue : — I. John, 

in Cairn ton of Cobairdy, of whom afterward. i. Agnes, 
married to George Winton, in Largue, and had issue : — 
I. George, II. John. III. William, M.D., H.E.I.C.S. IV. 
James, i. Margaret. 2. Agnes. 

2. Christian, married George Sharp, in Turtorie, and had issue — 


3. Margaret, married to Robert Crookshank, in Cottown of Hawk- 
hall ; had issue : — I. James, in Mains of Frendraught, afterwards 
succeeded his cousin, Alexander Shand in Conland ; married 
Margaret Cruickshank, and had issue — Alexander, Robert, Janet, 
Agnes, Eliza, and Margaret. II. John, an advocate in Edin- 
burgh, afterwards in Madras. He was very highly respected, and 
at his death had a monument erected to his memory by public 
subscription. III. George, who was drowned on a voyage to 
Madras while performing an act of bravery, which saved the ship 
and the lives of all on board, i. Isobel, married to John 
Middleton, H.M.I.R. 

II. John Shand, in Muirtown, married Ann Forsyth, and had issue : — 

I. James, died 17 17. 

II. Alexander, died 1745. 

III. George, married to Christian Grant , issue — a son, Alexander, 
Ordens, Banffshire, who married Jane Alexander ; had issue — 
I. George, Ordens, J. P., Banffshire, married to Jessie Watt. 
I. Ann; 2. Jane; died 1871. 

We now return t6 Colonel Shand. He received a very good education, and some 
time before the year 1760, he joined the Royal Regiment of Artillery, and saw much 
military service. For some time he was Lieutenant Fireworker, in which capacity he 
gallantly distinguished himself in several engagements in Germany, and was severely 
wounded in the foot at the Battle of Brandywine River in America, on 1 1 September, 
1777. He was also present at the memorable siege of Gibraltar in the years 1780-81-82, 
and rendered distinguished service there under Lord Heathfield, whose confidence and 

Templeland. 197 

regard he enjoyed in a very high degree. He died on his estate of Templeland in April, 
1803, and was interred in the churchyard of Forgue, where there is a monument to his 
memory. There is also a pyramid to his memory on the hill of Templeland erected by 
his trustees. 

Colonel Shand, after his retirement from the army, in his leisure at Templeland 
devoted much of his time to the study of antiquities, and, according to Jervise, he was 
the first to discover the Roman camp at Olenmailen, near the source of the Ythan, of 
which he wrote an account to the Society of Antiquaries, Scotland, in 1788. Colonel 
Shand was inclined to believe that the track of the Roman road from Glenmailen passed 
through Forgue by the Raich hills, and the Deveron at Auchingoul, in the direction of 
the hill of Durn. Others are of opinion that this was but a branch, and that the main 
road passed by the redoubt over the seed-hill of Auchaber to Corse, I-essendrum, and 
Cobairdy, crossing the Deveron at the fords of Avochie to the camp of Floors. It is, 
however, very doubtful if a Roman road can be traced beyond Glenmailen. 

Colonel Shand did much to improve his property of Templeland by planting and 
rearing timber, by a system somewhat similar to irrigation. He entailed his property on 
a series of heirs — amongst them were the children of his nephew, Mr. John Sharp, above 

Mr, John Sharp married Helen Shand, a sister of the Very Rev. Alexander Shand 
of Arradoul, Dean of the Diocese of Aberdeen. He was related to the Banffshire 
family of that name, the most illustrious of whose members was the unfortunate Arch- 
bishop Sharp, son of William Sharp, Sheriff-Clerk of Banffshire. They had issue : — 

I. Alexander, who succeeded his grand-uncle, Colonel Shand, in the estate 
of Templeland, and took the surname of Shand. 

1. Helen, married to her cousin, George Winton, in Largue (son of George 

Winton, in Largue, and Agnes Sharp, niece of Colonel Shand) ; had issue 
(among others who died in infancy) a son, George Winton, Kirkton, 
Forgue ; married Jane Robertson, and has issue. 

2. Elizabeth, married to Mr. James Cruickshank, Ardfour, J.P., Banffshire ; 

issue, George, Mary, and others. 

3. Margaret, married to James Craigen, Auchingoul ; issue — I. Alexander. 

n. George. HI. James. IV. William, all of Demerara. i. Margaret. 

4. Agnes, married to her cousin, John Winton, Glendronach. 

By the terms of Colonel Shand's will, his trustees were directed to invest from time 
to time any moveable property of which he might be possessed in the purchase of lands, 
to be subsequently entailed and added to the Templeland estate ; and under this direc- 
tion they bought part, in 1808, of the property of Aucharnie, and in 181 6, Drimmies, 
in the parish of Inverurie. Colonel Shand, in virtue of this entail, was succeeded by 
his grand-nephew, above mentioned. 

II. Alexander Sharp Shand of Templeland. 
Mr. Sharp, in compliance with his grand-uncle's will, assumed the name of Shand. 

198 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

He was a J.P. for the county of Aberdeen ; married, in 1835, Miss Mary Sangster, and 
had issue : — 

1. Mary, died 1866. 

2. Helenore, died in infancy. 

3. Barbara, who succeeded. 

Mr. Sharp Shand died in 1875, and was succeeded by his last surviving daughter, 

III. Barbara Shand of Templeland. 

She married, in 1869, J. W. F. Smith, M.D. ; had issue — 

I. James Gordon, died in infancy. 

II. Alexander Kenneth, who succeeded his mother. 

1. Mary Jane. 

2. Isabella. 

3. Barbara Beatrice. 

4. Amy Patricia. 

5. Ethel Fraser. 

Dr. Smith, who on the death of his father-in-law assumed the name of Shand, was 
Professor of Medicine in the University of Aberdeen, and the second son of the late 
James Smith, surgeon, Hon. East India Company's service, who married his first cousin, 
Isabella, youngest daughter of the late Right Rev. Patrick Torry, D.D., Bishop of St. 
Andrews, and sister of Very Rev. John Torry, M.A., Dean of St, Andrews. The 
Smiths and the Torrys belonged originally to Mcnquhitter and King-Edward respectively. 
An uncle of the Bishop's, James Torry, a zealous Jacobite, was out in the '45, and 
served, as a volunteer, in Lord Pitsligo's regiment of Horse, and after Culloden had to 
remain in concealment for a considerable time in a cave in King-Edward, which used 
to be known as Torry's cave.' Bishop Torry's wife was Jane, daughter of Dr. William 
Young of Fawside, Kincardineshire, by Ann, the eldest daughter of Thomas Gordon of 
Buthlaw, Aberdeenshire, descended from Thomas Gordon of Segyden, sixth son of 
James Gordon, II. of Lesmoir,^ by Margaret, daughter of Alexander Ogilvie of Desk- 
ford, ancestor of the Earl of Findlater. Dr. Young was for some time a surgeon in the 
army, and was present at the capture of Quebec, where General Wolfe met his death on 
the heights of Abraham, September 13, 1759. 

Mrs. Smith Shand died in 1880, and was succeeded by her eldest surviving son, 

IV. Alexander Kenneth Smith-Shand of Templeland. 

The surname of Shand seems originally to have been confined to the north-eastern 
counties of Scotland, particularly Aberdeenshire, and in that county more especially to 
the districts comprising the parishes of Turriff, Forgue, Drumblade, Auchterless, Culsal- 
mond, Fyvie, King-Edward, and Gamrie. In old times it was variously spelled 

I Ncale's Life of Bishop Torry, p. i. a Pouglas' Baronage, fol. p. 31. 

Templeland. 199 

Schawand, Schaand, Schande, Schand, and Shand ; while it has also been affixed to 
various places, for example, Shandwick, Shandstone, &c. We have also Shandscross 
given to certain lands on the estate of Delgaty. The Shands, like many others in 
Aberdeenshire and in the north-east of Scotland, were strong Jacobites, and there is no 
doubt it gave considerable satisfaction to Thomas Schand, Master of Kirk and Bridge 
works, on the 26 October, 17 15, to require the three ministers of the town of Aberdeen, 
who continued to pray for King George, to give obedience to the order of the magis- 
trates, ** otherwise the magistrates will stop them thereafter from preaching within the 
burgh." The same Thomas Schand, on the 4th of November, 17 15, was authorised to 
advance money to pay for three hundred Lochaber axes for the use of the army under 
the Earl of Mar. 

The parish registers of Forgue contain many references to the name of Shand, and 
in the Register of Births for 1685, there are found under date 9 September, James 
Schand in Cobairdie, a daughter, Margaret ; do. 30 November, William Shand in 
Muretone, a daughter, Ann ; do. 4 December, Robert Schaand in Bognie, a son. In 
the Poll Book for Aberdeenshire, 1696, Vol. I. p. 391, the following entry appears : — 
" Kirkton of Forgue, Robert Schaand, tennent there, his proportion of the valued rent 
with the general poll is iis ; Elizabeth Wright, his wife, 6s." This Robert Shand was 
a direct progenitor of Colonel Shand, probably his grandfather. The following is the 
baptismal certificate of Colonel Shand — "9 November, 1731. George Shand in Park- 
dargue had a son baptised Alexander before witnesses, John Shand in Muirtown, and 
John Morison in Kirkland." This John Shand was^ the Colonel's uncle, and is the 
ancestor of Mr. George Shand, Ordens, J. P., Banffshire. 

The armorial bearings of most of the families of the name of Shand, with a slight 
difference, resemble very closely the Shands of Craig (now Caskieben), in the parish of 
Dyce, who were a wealthy family in the sixteenth century, and whose arms were 
then matriculated in the books of the Lord Lyon. These arms were azure, a boar's 
head couped argent, on a chief of the second, three mullets gules. Crest a dove volant 
above the waters holding ane branch of olive in the beak proper. Motto — " Virtute 
Duce Comite Fortuna." It is highly probable from these armorial bearings of " the 
shield azure, with the boar's head couped argent," that the Shands had at an early 
period intermarried with, or were feudal dependants of the Gordon clan. This seems much 
more likely than an idea, which Colonel Shand entertained, that the Shands were origin- 
ally descended, or were a branch of the Shaws of Rothiemurcus, and that they changed 
their name to Shand, after having been driven out of their possessions by the Grants. 

The armorial bearings of Smith-Shand of Templeland are — " Azure, a boar's head 
couped argent armed and tongued on a chief of the second, a mullet between two chess 
rooks sable. Crest, a dove volant above the waters holding a branch of olive in her 
beak proper." Motto — " Virtute Duce Comite Fortuna." 

Professor Smith-Shand married secondly, 1881, Anna Stuart, daughter of William 
Stuart, in Inverugie, by a daughter of Rev. William Stronach, minister of Marnoch. Dr. 
Smith-Shand died suddenly in June, 1891. 


Now the property of William Machardy of Campinas suo Paulo, Brazil. 

It formerly formed part of the lands of Frendraught, and in 1696, it belonged to 
Alexander Leslie, from whom it passed to Theodore Morison of Bognie, who sold it in 
1 7 19 to Alexander Duff of Hatton. , 

The next proprietor was Alexander Duff, the son of the said Alexander. He 
disponed it in 1766 to his brother, John Duff. Among the witnesses to the disposition 
were James Abernethie of Mayen, and James Duff, Sheriff-Clerk of Banff, father of 
Captain Duff, who fell at Trafalgar. It then passed from the Duff family to John 
Morison about the end of last century. Mr. Morison was afterwards of Bognie, and 
was at that time a merchant in Russia, carrying on a successful business, which 
enabled him to buy many landed properties, Cobairdy, &c. Falling, however, into 
pecuniary difficulties, his numerous purchases had to be parted with, and for this 
purpose were given over to trustees. Amongst Mr. Morison's trustees were Henry 
Lumsden of Tilwhillie, James Blaikie, Alexander Jopp, Alexander Stronach, and 
Alexander Crombie of Phesdo. By these Drumblair was sold, December 21, 1833, for 
the sum of ^5500, to John Richardson Thain, a son of John Thain and Anna 
Richardson, in Drumblair. He married Elizabeth, daughter of James Wilson of 
Auchaber, and had issue. (See Auchaber.) 

Mr. Richardson Thain died in 1847, and was succeeded by his second surviving son, 
James Wilson Thain of Drumblair. 

Soon after his succession Drumblair was sold to Robert Simpson of Cobairdy, for 
further particulars of whom see Cobairdy^ He died December, 1855, ^"d was 
succeeded by his son, Lieutenant-Colonel Patrick Browne Simpson, who sold Drum- 
blair, in 1887, to William Machardy. 

He was son of James Machardy and Margaret MacRobb, his wife, Aberchirder. 
He emigrated to Brazil, where he was most successful in business. Mr. Machardy 
since his acquisition of the estate has greatly improved and made great additions to the 
house ; the tower, and turrets, of which appearing above the trees have a fine effect. 


belonging to Drumblair, also formed part of the lands of Frendraught, and in 1688, they 
were the property of David and Margaret Cruickshank, having been disponed to them 
by David Gregory of Netherdale, who held a wadset over the Frendraught lands. After 
the Cruickshanks, the Ogilvies of Inchmartine were proprietors, and afterwards Morison 
of Auchintoul, &c. 


AucuARNiF. formed at one lime part of the lands of I'"rendraii[,dit, and came, in 1^378, 
into possession of (leorgc Morison of I'ognic and llie \'iscountess I'n.'ndrauglU, whose 
son, Theodore, sold it, in 17 19, to Alexander Duff of llatton." John Duff, a 
suceessor of the said Alexander Duff, gave a feu charter, dated 5 June, 1766, to Thomas 
Riddoch ; and in 1768, it was bought back again by the said John Duff,- who disponed 
it to John Ramsay of Barra and others, trustees. These trustees sold it, in 1796, to 
John Morison of Auchintoul. On 13 December, 1831, there is a trust disposi- 
tion of these lands to Alexander Crombie of Phesdo, Henry Lumsden of Tihvhillic, 
and Alexander Stronach, advocate in Aberdeen, ^ who sold it, in 1833, to Robert 
Stuart in Little Forgue. The following is the descent of the Stuarts as far as can 
be ascertained : — 

I. William Stuart in Boynsmill. 

He married Janet Alexander, a name very common in the parishes of Forgue and 
Inverkeithney. He was born, 1677, and died in 1742 aged 65. They had issue a son, 

II. William Stuart. 

He held in lease the farms of Parkdargue, Kirktown, and Little Forgue, and 
married Llelen Cruickshank of the Comisty family of that name. They had issue : — 
I. William, who succeeded his father, of whom afterwards. 
H. Charles, died at Placemill, aged 33. 
in. James, who died at Parkdargue, aged t,;^. 

I. Katharine, married to \\'illiam Allardes, in Boynsmill, and had issue, with 
others, James Allardes of Boynsmill, the founder of the Glendronach 
Mr. William Stuart died 12 January, 1784, aged 63. His wife, Helen Cruickshank, 
died 5 December, 1780, aged 76. He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

III. William Stuart. 

He succeeded his father in the leases of Kirktown, Parkdargue, and Little Forgue, 
and married Ann Gordon, sister of General Gordon of Culdrain, and had issue : — 

1 Charter penes Bognie. 3 Charter penes Aucharnie. 

3 Charter penes Aucharnie. 

202 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

I. Robert, of whom afterwards, 

II. William, in Inverugie, Morayshire. He married Stronach, 

daughter of Rev. William Stronach, minister of Marnoch, by Harriot, 
daughter of Sir James Reid of Barra, Bart., and had issue : — I. William 
Stuart. I. Ellen. 2. Jane. 3. Anna. The last survivor married, in 
1 881, Dr. Smith-Shand, Professor of Medicine in the University of Aber- 

III. James, died young. 

IV. George, d. s. p. 

Mr. Stuart died at Kirktown, Forgue, May 7, 1802, aged 61. His wife, Ann 
Gordon, died 8 September, 181 9, aged 73. He was succeeded by his son, 

IV. Robert Stuart of Aucharnie. 

He succeeded his father in the leases of Parkdargue and Little Forgue ; and subse- 
quently, in 1833, acquired the estate of Aucharnie, in Forgue. He married Jane, eldest 
daughter of James Glashan, writer, Keith, by Elizabeth, daughter of Rev. James 
Anderson, minister of Keith, and had issue : — 

I. John, LL.D., of whom afterwards. 

II. James Glashan, died at Cocklarachie, June 19, 1832, aged 28. 

III. William, in Parkdargue. He married Elizabeth, daughter of Mr Thain of 
Drumblair, and had issue one daughter, Robina, who died in infancy. 

Mr. Stuart died at Little Forgue, September 3, 1855, aged 74, and was succeeded in 
the estate of Aucharnie by his eldest son, 

V. John Stuart, LL.D„ of Aucharnie. 

He was born, November 11, 18 13. He married first, Elizabeth, only daughter of 
Alexander Burness, J.P., of Mastrick and Prospect Place (formerly a merchant in Aber- 
deen), by Mary, only daughter of James Smith, architect in Aberdeen, and his wife, 
Elizabeth Fullerton. Mrs. Stuart predeceased her parents in 1848, aged 24, leaving 
issue : — 

1. Mary, born, 1843. 

2. Jane Gordon, born 1847 \ both co-heiresses of their grand-parents, of whom 

Mr. Alexander Burness deceased in 187 1, and Mrs. Burness in 1873. 
Dr. John Stuart married secondly, October, 1856, Jane, daughter of Colonel 
Ogilvie of Auchiries. By this second marriage he had, besides two children who died 
in infancy : — 

I. George Ogilvie, born 1863, died December 6, 1871. 
I. Harriet, born 1862, died 1876. 
Of the issue of the former marriage with Elizabeth Burness, the second daughter, 
Jane Gordon, married, 1867, Rev. John Woodward, LI<.D., incumbent of St. Mary's 
Church, Montrose, and has issue : — 

Aucharnie. 203 

I. John Stuart, born 1868, died 1875. 

II. Charles Alexander, born 1873, died 1875. 

1. Mary Rosina, born 1871, 

2. Jane Elizabeth Stuart, born 1875. 

3. Harriet Anna Stuart, born 1878. 

4. Ethel Vera Stuart, bom 1880. 

Dr. Stuart died at Ambleside, July 19, 1877, in the 64th year of his age. (See St 

Dr. Stuart's arms do not appear in the Lyon Register, but in that respect they are 
not less worthy of regard than many other undoubted coats of old families. Dr. Stuart 
was asked to matriculate his arms, but no doubt he was always hoping that some 
evidence of descent, which would enable him to remove any little dubiety as to his 
property in the old coat, would appear. The following, had he matriculated, would 
have been his arms ' : — 

" Over all an escutcheon of pretence (for a co-heiress) ; or, a Fess chequy azure and 
argent, over all a lion rampant gu. ; the whole within a bordure engrailed of the second." 

Dr. Stuart, in 1863, sold the lands of Aucharnie to Alexander Anderson, and his 
brother, George Anderson. • 

Their descent is as follows : — 

William Anderson, farmer in the Howe of Mearns, took part with Prince 
Charles in the rebellion of 1745. He lost all in consequence, and would have lost his 
head also, had he not been tried under a merciful judge. Lord Monboddo, whose father 

was his advocate, and into whose service he afterwards entered. He married ;— , 

and had issue : — 

I. Robert, of whom afterwards. 

II. William, shipwrecked at one time on the coast of Scotland ; lived afterwards 

at Crathes, where he died. 
I. Christian. 

II. Robert Anderson. 

He was about six years old at CuUoden, and remembered seeing the Prince's army. 
He died in 1838, aged one hundred years. He was in the service of Lord Monboddo ; 
married Isobel, widow of William Mayen, farmer, ToUohill, in the Mearns. Mrs. 
Anderson had issue several sons by her marriage with Mr. Mayen, some of whom rose 
to considerable eminence in London. Mr. and Mrs. Anderson had issue two sons and 
two daughters : — 

I. Robert, married Jane Anderson, and had issue. 

II. George, of whom afterwards. 

1. Isabella. 

2. Mary. 

I Notes by Dr. Woodward, Montrose, 

204 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

III. George Anderson. 

He was second son of Robert Anderson and Isobel Mayen, and was farmer in Old 
Balbithan, parish of Kinkell ; married Margaret Anderson, and had issue : — 

I. George, Bogs of Fintray, purchased, in 1863, Nether Aucharnie, which he 
left at his death, in 1872, to his nephew, George Anderson, 

II. William, farmer, Hattonburn ; married Isabella Johnston, and had issue 
six sons and six daughters. Their second son, George, succeeded, in 
1872, his uncle, George Anderson, in Nether Aucharnie. He married, 
1885, Jane, daughter of James Morison of Culvie, and has issue : — 

III. Robert. 

IV. James, died unmarried, aged 25. 

V. Alexander, of whom afterwards. 

I. Ann, married Richard Walker Donaldson. 

IV. Alexander Anderson, J. P. 

He and his brother, George Anderson, purchased from John Stuart, LL.D., as 
above narrated, the estate of Aucharnie. He married Mary Reid ; issue; — 

I. George, in Comisty. 

II. William, in Placemill. 

III. Robert. 

1. Mary Anne. 

2. Margaret Isabella Mary. 


'* Semper Vigilans." 

AucHABER, now owncd by Captain A. S. Thain, formed, in 1696, part of the dominical 
lands of Frendraught, and also of the lands belonging to the heirs of Thomas Cushney. 

In 1719, Theodore Morison of Bognie sold to Alexander Duff the lands of Auch- 
aber and several others in the parish of Forgue. Some time after the middle of last 
century, it was acquired by James Wilson, who afterwards became proprietor of 
Cairnbanno and Auchmunziel, in the parishes of Monquhitter and New Deer. Mr. 
Wilson married Lilias Ogilvy, by whom he had issue a son and a daughter : — 
I. James. 
I. Ann. 

James Wilson married Isabella Gordon of Merdrum, sister of Mr. Gordon of Manar. 
He died in early manhood, leaving a son, James who, on his grandfather's death, 
succeeded to Auchaber. 

The daughter, Ann Wilson, married a Mr. Reid, of Portsoy, and had issue, James, 
of Ardoch, who married Miss Cuming, and had issue : — 

I. James, who, on the death of his grandfather, James Wilson of Auch- 
aber, succeeded to the estates of Cairnbanno and Auchmunziel above 
mentioned. He assumed the name of Wilson. 

II. John, M.D., surgeon in the army; married Mary Thain, daughter of 
Mr. John Thain, Drumblair, Forgue. 

III. Peter, lieutenant in the army. 

IV. John, died in Australia. 

V. Alexander. 

I. Annabella, married Alexander Forbes of Boyndlie. 
Mr. James Reid Wilson of Cairnbanno died at Roseacre Cottage, Portsoy, 
October 27, 1833, aged 42. He was married to Jane Margaret Knight, who died 
October 3, 1863, aged 79. The estates of Cairnbanno and Auchmunziel had passed 
into other hands some time before Mr. Reid Wilson's death. 

II. James Wilson of Auchaber 
succeeded his grandfather in i8~. He married Isabella, daughter of Mr. Colin Petrie, 

2o6 TJie Thanage of Fermattyn. 

Chapeltown, Drumblade, a brother of Right Rev. Arthur Petrie, Bishop of Moray. 
(See Folia-Rule.) They had the following issue : — 
I. James, died young, March, 1814. 

1. Jane, died March 17, 1825. 

2. Isabella, died April 14, 1825. 

3. Elizabeth, who married John Richardson Thain of Drumblair, second son of 

John Thain, Drumblair, and Anna Richardson, his spouse. They had 
issue : — 

I. John, who died in Australia. 

II. James Wilson, who died in the West Indies, some time of 

III. Alexander S., Captain 13th Native Infantry, H.E.I.C.S., of 
whom afterwards. 

IV. George Garioch, Lieutenant 3rd Grenadier Native Infantry, 
Indian army. On his regiment mutinying, he was attached to 
79th Highlanders, and was present at the capture of Lucknow. 
He died May, 1887. 

1. Isabella, married to Hall Alexander, Grenada, West Indies, and 
had issue : — 

1. Eliza Thain, married to William Lang, M.D., and has 

issue : — i. Margaret Thain. 2. Barbara Helen. 3. 
Ethel Mary Graham. 4. John. 5. William Graham. 
6. Allan Thomson. 7. Ernest Thain. 

2. Mary. 

3. Lilias Thain, died young. 

2. Anna, died young. 

3. Eliza Stuart, married to William Stuart, eldest son of Robert 
Stuart of Aucharnie and Little Forgue ; issue — Robina Stuart, 
who died in infancy. 

4. Mary, died unmarried. 

5. Margaret Garioch. 

6. Lilias. 

4. Margaret, married to Rev. George Garioch, son of Dr. Garioch, Oldmeldrum, 

and minister of Meldrum, afterwards of the Free Church, Oldmeldrum. 

5. Lilias, who succeeded. 

6. Ann. She married Laurence Davidson, M.D., Dundee, son of James 

Davidson, Professor of Natural Philosophy, Marischal College, Aberdeen. 
Mr. Wilson of Auchaber left ;^5o to the poor of Forgue, which is called the Auch- 
aber legacy. He died August 27, 1838, aged 77, and was succeeded in the estate of 
Auchaber by his daughter, Lilias, and others. 

Aucltaber. 207 

III. Lilias Wilson of Auchaber. 

She died January 8, 1872, when her sister, Ann, and her nephew, Captain Thain, 
succeeded to the estate. 

IV. Mrs. Ann Davidson of Auchaber. 
She died, 1886, and was succeeded in her share by her nephew, 

V. Alexander Shand Thain of Auchaber. 

He was Captain of Bengal Infantry, II.E.I.(^S. ; was present at the siege of 
Lucknow. After it, he joined the Bengal Staff Corps. 


Now the property of William Thornburrow Kilgour of Tulloch. In ancient 
times it formed part of the dominical lands of Frendraught. Before 1770, it belonged 
to James Grant of Grant, who in that year sold it to Andrew Jamieson in Cushnie. He 
was succeeded, in 1789, by his eldest son, George Jamieson, who disponed these lands 
to his brother, Andrew Jamieson in Cushnie. Andrew dying in 1836, the lands 
again came into possession of his brother, George Jamieson. They were heavily 
burdened by Isaac Forsyth, bookseller, Elgin, having a bond over them for ;^3ooo ; and 
in 1836, they were disponed in favour of Henry Lumsden, Charles Chalmers, Clements 
Lumsden, as trustees, by whom they were sold, in 1837, to Rev. George Thomson, and 
others, trustees of William Kilgour of Tulloch.' The following is the descent of the 
Kilgours of Tulloch and Balgaveny. The founder of the family was Robert KilgOUr, 
one of two brothers, who are said to have come from Fifeshire about the beginning of 
the eighteenth century. He married, in 1707, Isobel Barron, an aunt of the first 
Patrick Barron, of Woodside, near Aberdeen, one of the firm of Gordon, Barron, 
& Co., who carried on the business of manufacturing cotton and linen cloths at 
Woodside. They had issue a large family : — 

I. George, born 17 12. 

II. Robert, who became a clergyman of the Scotch Episcopal Church, and was 
located at Peterhead before 1738. After the battle of Culloden, his church 
was pulled down, as we learn from the following memorandum : — " The 
chappele of Peterhead was destroyed 7, 8, 9 of May, 1746. The managers 
were obliged to employ workmen and pay them, in order to prevent its 
being set on fire, which would have endangered the burning of the town. 
It was done by the order of Lord Ancrum (Lieutenant-Colonel of Lord 
Mark Kerr's dragoons), and was seen fully executed by the following — 
Captain Sir Robert Adams, Lieutenant Guilford, Lieutenant G. Bilstone, 
and Cornet John Frogmorton." ' Mr. Kilgour was consecrated Bishop of 
Aberdeen at Cupar-Fife, 21 September, 1768, by Primus Falconer, assisted 
by Bishops Alexander and Raitt. On the resignation by Bishop Falconer 
of the office of Primus, Bishop Kilgour was elected Primus, and in 1784, 
along with the Bishops Petrie and Skinner, he took part in the consecra- 
tion of Dr. Samuel Seabury, as the first Bishop of Connecticut in the 
United States of America. 

I Tulloch and Balgaveny Charters. 2 Minute Book of St. Peter's Church, Peterhead. 

Balgaveny. 209 

Bishop Kilgour married Margaret Arbuthnott, and had issue, a 
daughter married to Patrick Torry, D.D., Bishop of St. Andrews; 2. 
another married to Alexander Shivas ; 3. Margaret, married to Thomas 
Kilgour; 4. daughter married to Robert Kilgour; 5. daughter married to 
Mr. Forbes. 

Bishop Kilgour, who was a man of uncommon benignity of mien, and 
manner, died 22 March, 1790. 

III. William, born 17 16. 

IV. Patrick, of whom afterwards, born 17 19. 

V. Thomas, born 1726, lived at Fraserburgh. 

1. Anne, born 1708. 

2. Isobel, born 1709. 

3. Jean, born 17 10. 

4. Margaret, born 17 14. 

5. Katharine, born 1721. 

6. Margaret, born 172 — 

7. Elizabeth, born 172 — 

Robert Kilgour died 23 September, 1753, in the 72nd year of his age. His wife, 
Isobel Barron, died 2 December, 1762, also in the 72nd year of her age.' 

II. Patrick Kilgour in Kinmundy 

was fourth son of Robert Kilgour and Isobel Barron, and married, November 12, 1746, 
Jean Sangster (aunt of the late Thomas Sangster, 'advocate, Aberdeen). They had 
issue, twenty-one children. The following are eighteen of them : — 

I. Thomas, born 1752, purchased Bethelnie from Mrs. William Forbes or 
Urquhart, widow of William Forbes of Bethelnie ; the disposition is 
dated October 8, 1808.- He married first, Margaret, daughter of Bishop 
Kilgour, by whom he had issue a daughter, Margaret ; and secondly, 
1 79 1, Isabella Hall, and had issue : — 

1. James, for many years managing partner of Woodside works, near 

Aberdeen ; born 1792, died in the Isle of Man, 1855, aged 63. 

2. Isabella, born 1794. 

3. Jane, born 1796. 

4. Anne, born 1797. 

5. Elizabeth, born 1799. 

VI. Patrick, born 180T, who got from his father, in 1828, the lands 
of Bethelnie. This estate was sold in 1849 to James Lumsden 
of Auchry. 

7. Grace. 

VIII. Thomas. 

I Tombstone, Cruden Chnrcbyard. 2 Charter penes Lumsden of Bethelnie. 



The Thajiage of Fermartyn. 

II. Robert, Kinmundy, born 1755. ^^ established at Kinmundy a cloth 
manufactory, and another at Auchlee. Regarding these, Dr. Skene Keith 
says, in his " View of Aberdeenshire," of date 181 1 — "In the division of 
Buchan there are two cloth manufactories. The first and older is at 
Kinmundy, belonging to the Messrs. Kilgour, who have done a great deal 
of business in the course of about thirty years. The other is at Auchlee." ' 
In the year 1828 these establishments were broken up. 

III. Patrick, of Woodside, died 4 December, 1830, aged 73. Woodside was 
left to him by his relative, Patrick Barron, of Woodside, who died March 
19, 1799. 

IV. William, died young. 

V. William, purchased the possession of Tulloch, near Oldmeldrum. He 
was unmarried, but left an illegitimate son, Robert Kilgour, on whom 
he entailed the property of Tulloch, under the condition that he 
could not come into possession until he was twenty-four years of 
age. During his minority, from the accumulation of funds, his trustees 
purchased the small property of Balgaveny in Forgue. Robert Kilgour 
married, but d, s. p., and, agreeably to the entail, the estate of Tulloch 
went to a nephew of the entailer, as will be shown hereafter. 

VI. George, of whom afterwards. 

> born 1 748. 



Jean, born 1751. 

Margaret, born 1753. 

Helen, born 1755. 

Mary, born 1757. 

Catharine, born 1759 


Elizabeth, born 1762 


She married Dr. Robert Jamieson ; had issue — 
I. James, M.D., Aberdeen, married, and had issue, among others, James 
Auldjo, W.S., George Auldjo, M.A., C.A., Edinburgh. II. Patrick, M.D., 
Peterhead, who married, and had issue, Patrick, M.D., Peterhead. 

10. Charlotte, born 1764. 

11. Catharine, born 1765. 

12. Jean, born 1770. 

Patrick Kilgour, Kinmundy, died 8 February, 1772, and his wife, Jean Sangster, 
September, 1779. 

III. George Kilgour of Ardconnan and Balcairn. 

He was sixth son of Patrick Kilgour and Jean Sangster. He acquired the estates of 

I Keith's Survey of Aberdeenshire, p. 581. 

Balgaveny. 2 1 1 

Ardconnan and Balcairn. He married Sophia Macdoiiald Gcddes 'I'hornburrow, and 
had issue : — 

I. Patrick, who succeeded to VVoodsidc on tlie death of his uncle in 1830. 
Patrick Kilgour of Woodside is mentioned, March 9, 1826, in a disposition 
of Woodside in conjunction with his nei)hew, I'atrick, younger of Balcairn ; 
also with James, younger of Bethelnic' 

II. George Alexander. 

III. William, of whom afterwards, 

1. Sophia Agnes, married to Mr. Burcheli, 

2. Jean, married to Mr. Inglelow, and had issue, among others, the celebrated 
authoress, Jane Inglelow. 

3. Barbara, married to Mr. Holloway. 
4. , died in infancy. 

5. Eliza. 

6. Mary. 

7. Isabella. 

George Kilgour of Balcairn and Ardconnan died 18 — 

IV. William Kilgour of TuUoch and Balgaveny, 

third son of George Kilgour of Balcairn and Ardconnan, by Sophia Macdonald Geddes 
Thornburrow, succeeded, on the death of his cousin, Robert Kilgour, to the estates of 
Tulloch and Balgaveny. He married Janet Lindsay Smith, and had issue : — 
I. William Thornburrow, his successor. 

1. Janet Lindsay, married Rev. Mr. Hall. 

2. Edith. 

3. Eliza Jean. 

4. Amy Eugenie. 

Mr. William Kilgour died 1889, and was succeeded by his son, 

V. William Thornburrow Kilgour of Tulloch and Balgaveny. 

He married Miss Maud Ada Steele Innes, daughter of General James Charles Innes, 
British Army. Miss Innes was grand-daughter of General William Innes, C.B., 
H.E.I.C.S., and grand-daughter of General A. D'Auvergne. They have issue : — 

I. James William Thornburrow. 

II. D'Auvergne Howard. 
I. Winifred Maud Innes. 
2 Louise D'Auvergne. 

I Morgan's Woodside, p. 29. 



MoNELLiE and Corse of Monellie are now conjoined under one proprietor, Mr. 
Gilzean Rose Innes of Netherdale ; but they were for many years separate properties. 
The first proprietor we find is 

I. Alexander Leslie of Monellie. 

He was probably of the Drumdollo family of that name, and is mentioned in a 
band, as recorded in the Privy Council Records, of date 1593.' The next we find is 

II. George Leslie of Monellie. 

He may be a son of the above mentioned. He died before 1653, and was 
succeeded by his daughter, 

III. Janet Leslie of Monellie. 

She married John Paterson, burgess of Forres, and, February 4, 1653, was served 
heiress to her father, George Leslie, in the shadow half of the town and lands of 
Monellie, the Bagra milne, in the barony of Frendraught.^ A few years after this date 
we find 

James Gordon of Monellie. 

In 1668, there is a process in the Synod of Aberdeen against Margaret Creighton, 
spouse to James Gordon of Monellie, apostate to Popery. He soon parts with 
Monellie, and the next to be found is 

James Wishart of Monellie. 

In 1696, as we learn from the Poll Book, he is owner of Monellie, and its valued 
rent is ;;^i33 6s. 8d. He married Elspet Massie.^ After this it was acquired by a 
family of the name of Cruickshank, James, John, and Mrs. Oruickshank, who, 
September 27, 1730, disponed it to 

I. Thomas Innes of Monellie. 
The same year Mr. Innes acquired from William Urquhart of Meldrum, the Muirs 

1 Privy Council Records, V. p. 604. 3 Poll Book II. p. 404. 

2 Spec. Ret. Aberdeen, No. 317. 

Corse of Monellie. 2 \ 3 

of Fyvic. These two possessions, Monellie and Muirs of I'yvie, were llie first acfjuisi- 
tions of land by the fiiniily of Nelhcrdale.' Mr. Iiines was the second son of Thomas 
Innes, third son of John Innes, \'. of Kdcnj^i^ht, by his wife, Christian flordon, and 
his father was lont^ factor for the ICarl of I-'ife, and died 12 September, 1754. 
(See Straloeh.) 'I'homas Innes of Monellie was a NVriter to the Signet, Kdinburj^h, 

where he died, September 6, 1779, leaving by his wife , an only daughter, who 

succeeded him, 

II. Elizabeth Mary Rose Innes of Netherdale. 

She inherited also the pro|)erty of her uncle, John Innes of Muiryfold, which was 
exchanged in cxcambion for Netherdale, in the parish of Marnoch. The house of 
Netherdale was built about 1795. Miss Innes married, about 1795, James Rose of 
Gask, descended from John Rose of Ballivat, second son of Hugh Rose of Kilravock, 
who died 1 5 1 7. 

Mrs. Rose Innes was served heir to her father, Thomas Innes of Monellie, who died 
7 September, 1779 ; heir special in Colp, Smiddy Seat, and Wodend, in the parish of 
Turriff, 17 November, 1784.- They had issue, besides two sons that died in infancy: — 

III. James, who married Georgina Gilzean. He died 10 January, 1845, 
leaving a son, ThomaS Gilzean, of whom afterwards. 

IV. John, a merchant in London. 

V. Patrick, of Blachree, who died 1887. 

VI. George, a solicitor in London, married, and has issue. 

I. Elizabeth, died 1890. She left ;j^5ooo towards building and endowing a 
Cottage Hospital in the village of Aberchirder, to be called the " Rose 
Innes Hospital." 
Mrs. Elizabeth Rose Innes of Netherdale and Monellie died in 1851, and was 
succeeded by her grandson, 

III. Thomas Gilzean Rose Innes of MonelUe and Netherdale. 

He married Grace, daughter of Mr. Eraser of Park, a branch of the Philorth family. 
They have had issue three daughters : — 

1. Mary Grace Edith, married Lieutenant-Colonel Althorpe of Lamhall, Derby- 


2. Elizabeth Frances Eugenie. 

3. Georgina Everilda, married Captain Gordon. 
Mr. Rose Innes acquired Corse of Monellie in 1874. 

1 Netherdale Charters. 2 Decen. Rets. :7S4. 

214 ^/^^ Thanage of Fennartyn. 


belonged in 1696 to Alexander Phyn, who then lived in Banffshire. Its valuation 
at that time was ;^ioo annual rent.' In 1704, he is returned as one of the Papists in 
Forgue.' He was succeeded by his son or grandson, 

George Phyn of Oorse of Monellie. 

He married Janet Simpson, daughter of Simpson of Concraig, factor to the Earl of 
Kintore, by his wife, Elspet, daughter of Gilbert Keith of Auquhorsk, in Kinellar. Mrs. 
Phyn died 1780, aged 92 ; and Mr. Phyn in 1788, aged 96.^ The next owner was 

John Henry of Oorse of Monelhe. 

According to Mr. Jervise, Henry, while a herd boy, allowing a cow to break its leg, 
and fearing the wrath of his employer, absconded, and enlisted in the army, where he 
rose to the rank of Captain. He married first, Mary, daughter of Rev. Mr. Gordon, 
minister of Drumblade, who died in 1802. He married secondly, Charlotte Ross, 
daughter of Alexander Ross and Margaret Udny, daughter of Robert Udny of Auchter- 
ellon, and had issue one daughter, Margaret Udny. He died in 185 1, and was 
succeeded by his daughter, 

II. Margaret Udny Henry of Corse of Monellie. 

She married Alexander Thom, and had issue one son, Captain James Thom. Mrs. 
Thom sold, in 1874, Corse to George Gilzean Rose Innes of Netherdale, and thus 
Corse of Monellie and Monellie became united under one proprietor. 

Near Corse of Monellie had stood a cross, but of it there are no remains and no 

A branch of a Roman Road from Glenmailen to Fords of Avochie is said to have 
passed through the property, but of it likewise there is no trace. 

1 Poll Bcxjk, II. p. 411. 3 Jervise' Inscriptions, II. p. 179 ; I. p. 18. 

2 Blackhall's Brief Nar. p. xxxviii. 

D R U M D O L L O 

Is now the |)ropcrty of I-iciitcnant-Coloiiel 1"\ I). Morison of Hc^gnic. It is situated 
in the south-west of tlie j)arish of Forgue. Of the house of Drumdollo there are 
little more remains than the indications of the site, while a solitary tree and a thorn 
hedge mark where a garden had been. It is still, notwithstanding the improvements on 
county roads, nearly as inaccessible as it was three hundred years ago. 

It was for many years owned by a family of the name of Leslie, an illegitimate 
branch of the house of Balquhain. From the " History of the Leslies," we find that 
Sir Andrew Leslie, the third Baron of Balquhain, was a very turbulent man, and of 
very loose morals. He had a numerous progeny of illegitimate children, from whom 
many families of Leslie are descended — for instance the Leslies of Buchanstone, 
Andrew Leslie of Cortishy, James Leslie in Aberdeen, David Leslie in Meikle Durno, 
Gteorge Leslie of Drumdollo, and Andrew Leslie in Pitscurry.' This last 
mentioned was a very notorious character, for he carried off the daughter of Thomas 
Bisset of Balhagarty, commonly called the " fair maid" of Kemnay ; she having been 
at the time betrothed to Sir John Forbes of Druminnor, ancestor of Lord Forbes. 
Forbes attacked the castle of Balquhain and burned it, and on this, Leslie retired to 
the top of Benachie to an old fortress, at a height of nearly two thousand feet, part 
of which still remains. Having repaired this old fortress, he remained till he had made 
peace with his enemies. At what time George Leslie acquired Drumdollo is not 
known; but we find in 1613, 

II. Walter Leslie of Drumdollo. 

There is no public record of him, save that we find him succeeded by his son, 

III. James Leslie of Drumdollo. 

He was served heir, in 1613, to Walter Leslie of Drumdollo, his father, in a third 
part of a davate of Cornaleggie, in the parish of Drumblade." He was succeeded by his 

IV. Walter Leslie of Drumdollo, 

who was succeeded by his son, 

V. James Leslie of Drumdollo. 

In 1673, James Leslie was served heir to Walter Leslie of Drumdollo. The next, 
probably a brother, is 

1 Leslie's Histor>' of the Leslies, IIL p. 4. 2 Ret. Spec. .\b<ln. No. 586. 

2i6 Tlie Tlianage of Fermartyn. 

VI. Lachlan Leslie of DrumdoUo. 

In 1692, he was served heir to Walter Leslie of Tullich, his father — heir of provision 
of the second marriage of his father. In 1696, the same Lachlan Lesly is polled 
J[^() 6s., Elizabeth Lesly, his wife, and John Lesly, his son, 12s.' He was succeeded by 
his son or grandson, 

VII. John Leslie of DrumdoUo. 

He married, in 1743, Margaret, daughter of James Chalmers in Cairnwhelp and of 
Balmellan, who was tutor dative and factor to the Duke of Gordon. Mrs. Leslie was 
sister of Rev. Alexander Chalmers, minister of Cairnie. John Leslie, in 1768, granted 
a trust deed in favour, among others, the said Mr. Chalmers, minister of Cairnie, and 
George Chalmers of Balmellan, merchant in Fraserburgh. John Leslie died 20 March, 
1 771, and was succeeded by his son, 

VIII. James Leslie of DrumdoUo. 

He was served heir, in 1771, to his father, John Lesly, heir special in DrumdoUo, 
with its crofts, Denend, and Condie. The Leslies were now in great pecuniary difficul- 
ties ; and the estate of DrumdoUo passed from them by purchase to Alexander Morison 
of Bognie, the great grandfather of its present possessor. 

I Ret. Gen. Abdn. No. 7307. Poll Book, II. p. 

C O N L A N D. 

Robert Crichton, who was a relative of the Frendraught family, was owner of 
Conland before 1625. In that year, on the 16 May, with consent of Sir James Crichton 
of Frendraught, he wadset the sun plough of Conland to Thomas Clark in life-rent, 
and to James Clark in fee. This wadset, in 1634, passed from James Clark in 
Bognie to William Davidson and Margaret Johnston, his wife, in life-rent ; and 
to William Davidson, their second lawful son, in fee, and was confirmed by Robert 
Crichton. There was also added, by way of eke, one hundred merks, in all two 
thousand merks. Some years after this transaction, the said William Davidson and 
Margaret Johnston received the lands of Gerriesburn in lieu of the sun plough of 
Conland, which was reserved in special warrandice. They were redeemable by the said 
Robert Crichton for two thousand merks Scots. This new wadset was confirmed by 
David Gregorie, 30 July, 1666.' 

In 1659, after the above exchange of the sun plough of Conland for the lands of 
Gerriesburn, Robert Crichton of Conland gave a charter of Conland to his son, 
Walter Crichton, and his spouse, Janet Innes ; anti in 1698, there was a disposi- 
tion by Walter Crichton, with consent of Janet Innes, his spouse, to his son, Lewis 
Crichton, of the sun plough of the lands of Conland. And in 1709, the said Lewis 
Crichton, with consent of Mary Seton, his spouse, sold to George Leslie of North 
Leslie, for two thousand merks, under reversion, the wadset of the sun plough of the 
town and lands of Conland. After this transaction, George EUice in Netherthird, in 
1723, obtained a decree of adjudication, at his instance before the Lords of Council and 
Session, against George Leslie of North Leslie, whereby the said Lords adjudged the 
whole rights of the wadset of the sun plough of Conland, and several other subjects, to 
the said George Ellice arid his heirs. There was a debt due to George EUice by the 
said George Leslie, hence the adjudication.' 

George Ellice sold the wadset of the said sun plough of Conland on May 27, 1726, 
to Sir James Gordon of Park, and afterwards in 1729, it became the property of 
his son, Sir William Gordon of Park ; and finally it became the property of Theodore 
Morison of Bognie, he paying two thousand three hundred merks Scots, amount of 
wadset and rents from 1727.3 

Some time after the above date, it was rented by Robert Shand, a son of George 
Shand and Agnes Littlejohn in Parkdargue, a brother of Colonel Shand of Templeland. 

I Bognje Charters. 3 Bognie Charters. 

3 Id. 

2 1 8 The Thanage of Feruiartyn. 

He was succeeded in his lease by liis son, Alexander Shand, who rented another 
farm in the parish of Drumblade. He died in 1837, leaving considerable means to a 
cousin, James Crookshank, who succeeded him in Conland. Mr. Shand was a 
man of considerable influence in Forgue in his day, for at that time there were a great 
many small proprietors and life-renters in Forgue, which made the society in tne parish 
special. " The folk of Forgue " thought a great deal of themselves, and tried, so far as 
they could, to make others feel their superiority. Their neighbours, " the bodies of 
Drumblait," as they called them, they looked down upon with special contempt. 
Forgue was called a " kingdom," a name probably derived from the old regality of Fren- 
draught, which never formed a part of the great Thanage of Fermartyn, but there has 
still another origin of the designation of " Kingdom of Forgue " been given. The last 
Duke of Gordon was a very genial, public-spirited gentleman, very popular with all 
ranks ; and when Marquis of Huntly used often to invite his neighbours in Forgue to 
Huntly Lodge. Frequent guests were the proprietor of Boynsmill, and Mr. Shand, 
life-renter of Conland. In those days of hard drinking, the Marquis could stand a good 
deal, and often used to amuse himself by sending his guests, if he could, under the 
table, and he tried this with Shand of Conland, but failed. Mr. Shand was left victor at 
the table, and the Marquis himself was obliged to withdraw. Next morning his Lord- 
ship asked his valet when the old carle from Forgue left, and was informed that when 
his Lordship withdrew, Mr. Shand brewed another jorum of whisky toddy, then ordered 
his pony, rode off to Aberdeen to transact some business not a bit the worse. " Well," 
says the Marquis, " Shand is King of Forgue," and so Forgue became a kingdom. 

Mr. Shand's hospitalities were unbounded, and at Yule-tide he used to entertain his 
neighbours quite royally. Each Christmas a " mairt " was killed, and on the three days 
of Yule, he had a succession of dinner parties. On the first day the lairds and life-renters 
of Forgue were entertained ; on the second the smaller farmers ; on the last day all his 
poorer neighbours, so that ere the festivities were finished, the mairt was eaten " hough 
and horn ! " 

In Forgue almost none of the old race now remain—" Tempora mutantur ! " 

At Conland there remains a loupin-on stane, much in the same condition as when 
Mr. Shand made use of it. Husband and wife used to ride to church and market on 
one horse, the wife sitting behind on a pad, and there was a loupin-on stane at almost 
every door to enable her to mount her seat. Loupin-on stanes were frequently of a 
single block or boulder, but many of them were built, such as the one at Conland. 

Upon the 27 September, 1830, the Laird of Frendraught having in his company 
Robert Crichton of Conland, and James Leslie, son to John Leslie of Pitcaple, with 
some other servitors, the said Robert Crichton, after some speeches, suddenly shoots 
the same James Leslie through the arm. This quarrel is said to have led to the burning 
of Frendraught a few weeks after.' 

I Spalding Troubles, I. p. 15. 


Is prettily situated on the southern slope of the Foreman hill, called by a writer in the 
" View of the Diocese," the Formartine hill. This property has often, during the last 
three centuries, changed hands, and it is now the property of Robert Skirving. 

It belonged originally to a family of the name of Murray, of considerable influence 
and importance, who retained it till about the end of the first quarter of the seventeenth 
century. The first we find of the name is, 

I. Patrick Murray of Oulbardy. 

He is a witness to a deed of Fraser of Ardendrach in 14 14.' The next to be found is, 

II. Andrew Murray of Oulbardy. 

He is found acting, 1472, as baillie for James Innes of that ilk, and his seal, exhibiting 
the three stars of Murray, with a mark of difference in the centre, is still attached to a 

III. Alexander Murray of 'Oulbardie. 

He is mentioned, 1493, i^ ^ perambulation of the lands of Aberchirder.^ The next 

IV. Patrick Murray of Oulbardy. 

He died in 1504, and his widow, Isabella Rait, is found entitled to her tierce the 
same year.* He was succeeded by his son, 

V. Alexander Murray of Oobairdie. 

He was served heir to his father, Patrick Murray in Cuchbardy, in 1505. The 
next to be found is, 

VI. James Murray of Oobairdie. 

He witnesses a charter of James Grant of Freuchie as recorded in Fraser's " History 
of the Grants." ^ In 1562, James Murray of Cobairdie and his brother Alexander took 
part in the battle of Corrichie against Queen Mary, and were included in " precepto 
remissionis," which the Earl of Huntly obtained for himself and friends in 1567.* The 
next is, 

1 Ant. A. and B. I p. 381, 4 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 592. 

2 Id., II. p. aai. 5 Fraser's Grants, ill. p. 107. 

3 Id., p. 313. 6 Spal. Club Misc., IV. p. 155. 


Tlie TJianage of Feruiartyn. 

VII. Alexander Murray of Oobairdie. 

In 1 58 1, he was elected a burgess of Aberdeen ; and in 1608, along with Patrick 
Gordon, is mentioned as one of the curators of Alexander Murray; and in 1613, 
February 19, James and Francis Murray, sons of the laird of Cobairdie, are summoned 
before the Lords of the Privy Council to answer for the hurting and wounding of 
Gilbert Leslie, reidar,' Soon after this date a new owner is found. 

Alexander Burnett of Cobairdie. On 8 July, 1633, there is a deed of sasine to 
Alexander Burnett of Colbairdie ; also in 1641, there is a sasine to Alexander Burnett 
of Colbairdie of the Kirktown and lands of Aboyne.* About seventeen years after this 
date we find Sir John Baird of Cobairdie. 

He was the eldest son of Baird of Auchmedden. In T650, there is the following 
minute regarding him in the session records of Forgue : — " This day, June i, 1650, Sir 
John Baird of Cowbairdie, one of our elders, was chosyn anew to attend ye several 
Presbytery meetings, and ye next provincial assembly." He obtained the honour of 
knighthood from King Charles IL, when he was in this country on his way to 

Alexander Gregory of Cobairdie was served heir, in 165 1, to his father. Rev. John 
Gregory of Drumoak, in all and haill the lands and Mains of Cobairdie, the town and 
lands of Eister Cobairdie, Boighead, and Cornyhaugh, mill and mill lands of Cobairdie.'* 
The Gregories also did not long retain possession, and they probably only held the 
superiority a few years. After the above date, it is to be found owned by John Wishart 
of Cobairdie. 

He figures in the records of the kirk-session of Forgue. He was delatit in 1663 to 
the session for an immoral offence ; was enjoined to enter his repentance the next 
Lord's day ; but the said John alleged that he had got absolution from the late Bishop 
of Aberdeen, which the session could not believe. At last Wishart had to confess that 
he had not received any absolvitor, and craved the session humbly to pardon his 
unwarrantable assertion. He submitted very humbly and penitently.^ About 1677, we 
find a lease by Forbes of Newton of the house of Williamstone to John Wishart, some 
time of Cowbairdie.* The next is John Hamilton of Cobairdy. 

In the Poll Book of 1696, we find him laird of Cobairdy,^ and paying tax for three 
sons and three daughters, namely — John, Alexander, Robert, Helen, Elizabeth, and 
Ann. This John Hamilton, in 1704, was engaged in some very unpleasant proceedings 
with Davidson of Newton and old Lady Gordon of Gight, who married Major Buchan, 
commander of King James II.'s troops, after the death of Viscount Dundee, which 
were, however, at last satisfactorily settled.^ 

1 Misc. S. C, V. p. S3 ; Gordon's Scots' Affairs, 

I. p. xxxvii ; Burgh Records, II. pp. 313-16. 

2 Sasines Reg. House, Edinburgh. 

3 Brebner's Notes on the Presb. of Turriff in 

Aberdeen Journal. 

4 Bognie Charters. 

5 Session Records of Forgue. 

6 Newton Charters. 

7 Poll Book, II. p. 400. 

8 Chambers' Domestic Annals, III. p. 304. 

Cobairdy. 221 

From the Hamiltons, Cobairdy passed to James Gordon, son of Sir James Cordon, 
second Bart, of Park, by liis second wife, Dame Margaret Elphinstone, who was married 
first to Lesly of Balquhain. (See below No. IX.) 

The following is the descent of the Gordons of Cobairdy, now represented by 
Major Gordon Duff of Drummuir, and who possesses the property of Dummuie in the 
neighbourhood. (See Dummuie.) 

The family of Gordon of Park is descended from John Gordon of Essie — 
(regarding whom see Parkhill). John Gordon married Elizabeth, daughter of Mait- 
land, laird of Gight. He had issue three sons : — 

I. John, of Botarie and I^ngar, and the first laird of Pitlurg, of whom Pitlurg 
and his cadets are descended. He excambed the lands of I^ngar, with the 
barony of Tearochin. He married Forbes of Pitsligo's daughter, by whom 
he had two sons : — ' 

I. John, second laird of Pitlurg. 

n. James, who was the first laird of Cairnburrow He married 

Leith, daughter of Leith of Barnes, and by her had three sons: — 

I. Gteorge, of Cairnburrow, who succeeded. 

II. William, of Abachie (Avochie -). 

III. James, of Cromellat. 

Their father, the said James Gordon of Cairnburrow, died, and was interred among 
his predecessors at Botarie. He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

III. George Gordon of Cairnburrow. 

He was killed at Pinkie, 1547. He married Katharine, daughter of Alexander 

Gordon of Dummoys, sister of Alexander Gordon of Prony, who was first wife to 

Maitland of Auchincreive ; secondly, wife to Baillie of Ardneidly ; third wife to 

the foresaid George Gordon of Cairnburrow, by whom he had an only son and heir, 

IV. John Gordon of Cairnburrow. 

He married Elizabeth Gordon, daughter of Gordon of Buckie, by whom he had 
eight sons and three daughters. All these sons, with their father, were at the battle of 
Glenlivat, 1594, each having his jacksman and his footman well mounted. His eldest 

V. John Gordon of Edinglassie, 

got Edinglassie, Cairnburrow having been sold by his father to his brother William. 
He married first, the daughter of Bannerman, laird of Waterton, afterwards of Elsick, 
and had issue, three sons and two daughters." He married a second time the widow of 
Turin of Foveran, but had no issue.s His eldest son, William, got Rothiemay and 
stock of Cairnburrow. His second son, Adam, became 

1 MS. penes Drummuir. 4 Iferk MS. 

2 Balbithan MS., pp. 64-65, 5 Balbithan MS. p. 38. 

3 Id., p. 37 ; Park MS. 

222 Tlie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

VI. Sir Adam Gordon of Glenbucket, Edinglassie, Auchenhandoch, 
and was the 1st of Park. 

He was great great grandson of James, first laird of Cairnburrow and seventh in 
descent from John Gordon of Essie. He was twice married, first to Christian Gordon, 
daughter of Sir A. Gordon of Gight, and had issue : — 

I. John, who succeeded to Park. 

n. Adam, Captain, married a daughter of Gordon of Cairnwhelp. 

1. Isabel, married to John Innes of Coldcoats. 

The said Adam Gordon married secondly, Helen Tyrie, daughter of Tyrie of Drum- 
kilbo, and had issue by her : — 

III. Patrick, laird of Glenbucket. 

IV. Francis, who went to PoUand.' 

2. daughter, married John Innes of Codrain. 

Sir Adam Gordon died in Glenbucket, September, 1629, and was interred in the 
churchyard of Glenbucket.' He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

VII. Sir John Gordon of Park. 

He married Helen Sibbald, daughter to Sir James Sibbald of Rankeillor, in Fife- 
shire, and had issue : — ^ 

I. John, his successor. 

II. George, of Edinglassie. 

III. David, of Achoynanie. 

I. , married to Lyon of Muiresk. 

2. , married to Lesly of Eden. 

3. , married Cuthbert of Tillery, near Culloden. 

The said Sir John, second laird of Park, died, and was honourably interred in the 
aisle of the kirk of Ordiquhill. He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

VIII. Sir John Gordon, 1st Bart, of Park. 

By the death of Gordon of Rothiemay, he became representative of Rothiemay, 
and was created a baronet 21 August, 1686. He married four times honourably. 
First, he married Miss Graham, aunt of Lord Dundee, by whom he had one daughter. "• 

1 . Helen, married to Innes of Auchlunkart. 

He married, secondly, Sarah Forbes, sister to Sir Alexander Forbes of Tolquhon, by 
whom he had issue : — 

2. Elizabeth, married to John Gordon of Drumquhindle. 

3. Jean, married to Alexander Gordon of Cairnfield, W.S. 

1 Balbithan MS. p. 38. 3 Balbithan MS. p. 42. 

2 Id., p. 41. 4 Park MS. 

Cobairdy. 223 

Thirdly, he married Katharine Ogiivy, daughter of O^ilvy of llenipcairn ; had 
issue by her two daughters : — 

4. Anne, married to Anderson of Arradoul. 

5. Margaret, married to Innes of Knockorth. 

Fourthly, he married Dame Helen Ogilvie, daughter of the ICarl of Airlie, by whom 
he had a son, 

I. James. 

Sir John (lordon died , and was succeeded by his son, 

IX. Sir James Gordon, 2nd Bart, of Park. 

He entailed the estate of l*ark, 9 October, 17 13, on a series of htirs. He was twice 
married, first to Dame Helen Frascr, daughter of Lord .Salloun (ccjntract of marriage 
dated 3 March, 1709). He had issue by his first marriage : — ' 

I. William, his successor. 

II. John, who afterwards succeeded to the baronetcy. 

I. Helen, married to John Duff of Cowbin, of whom afterwards. 
Sir James married secondly, Dame Margaret Elphinstone, Lady Balquhain, sister of 
Lord Eli)hinstone, He had issue by her : — 

I. James, of Cobairdy, of whom afterwards. 

1. Ann, married to Charles Cheyne, W.S., and had issue. 

2. Elizabeth Mary, second wife of Lord 1' orbcs, d. s. p.- 

3. Mary. 

He was succeeded by his son, 

X. Sir William Gordon, 3rd Bart, of Park. 

He was served heir to his father, Sir James Gordon of Park, 23 April, 1728.^ Having 
been engaged in the rebellion of 1745, he fled, and was attainted of estate and honours, 
and died at Douay, in Flanders, 5 June, 1751. By his wife, Janet Duff, daughter of the 
Earl of Fife, with whom, it is said, he eloped from Rothiemay House, he had two sons 
and one daughter : — 

I. John, the eldest, called Sir John, born abroad after his father's attainder, 

was an alien. He was an officer of the 3rd Regiment of (iuards, and 
was killed in India. He married Miss Hannah Corner, and by her left an 
infant son and daughter, namely — •'John Berry, who, in 1821, took the 
title of Sir John Gordon. He married the Dean of Cloyne's daughter, 
from whom he was divorced, and by whom he had one daughter. He 
married secondly, Miss Campbell, by whom he had no issue. 

II. William, the second son, also an alien, and after his father's attainder died 
at Mountblairy in 1773. His mother, the Lady Janet, was married 
secondly to George Hay of Mountblairy. 

1 Park M.S. 3 Decen. Rets. 1725. 

2 Balbithan MS. p. 46 ; DoiiRlas' Peerage, 268. 4 Park MS. 

224 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

I. Jean, who was born at Rothiemay, and her right as an heir of entail was 
thus saved. She was married to Colonel Duncan Urquhart of Birdsyards, 
and died in August, 1767, leaving a son, Robert, who married beneath his 
rank, but left no issue. 
The next to be mentioned is 

XI. Sir John Gordon, 4th Bart, of Park. 

He was the second son of Sir James Gordon, Bart., the entailer, and a Captain 
of Marines. In consequence of his brother, Sir William Gordon's attainder, and 
Sir William's sons being aliens, he claimed the baronetcy, and succeeded to the 
estate of Park, and died unmarried in 1781. On his death the title and estate of Park 
devolved on his nephew, Ernest Gordon of Cobairdy. He was the eldest son of James 
Gordon of Cobairdy, the only son of Sir James Gordon, by his second wife, Dame 
Margaret Elphinstone, and consequently half-brother to Sir William Gordon who was 
attainted. James Gordon of Cobairdy also took part in the rising of 1745, and was 
included amongst those who were attainted, and specially exempted from the subsequent 
act of indemnity. It is believed, however, that by the influence of his brother-in-law, 
Lord Forbes, he managed to save his head, and the estate of Cobairdy. He married 
Malley Forbes, daughter of Lord Forbes, and had issue : — 

I. Ernest, his successor in Cobairdy, and Bart, of Park. 

II. James, baptised May 12, 1742, by Rev. Alexander Lunan, Episcopal 

minister of Blairdaff. James, Lord Forbes, and Sir William Gordon of 
Park being godfathers, and Lady Forbes godmother.* 
I. Mary Elizabeth, married to Mr. Leith of Glenkindy. 

XII. Sir Ernest Gordon, 5th Bart, of Park and Cobairdy. 

He was served heir to his uncle. Captain John Gordon of Park, who died Septem- 
ber, 1781, heir of tailzie and provision general in the lands, barony, manor place, and 
burgh of barony of Park, in the parish of Ordiquill, Banffshire, 29 September, 1782.- 
Sir Ernest Gordon of Cobairdy married Miss Home of Logic, and had issue : — 
I. John, his successor. 
1. Mary Elizabeth, married, but d. s. p. 
Sir Ernest Gordon died November 5, 1800, and was succeeded by his son, 

XIII. Sir John Gordon, 6th Bart, of Park and Cobairdy. 

He was served heir " to his father, Sir Ernest Gordon of Park, Bart., who died 
5 November, 1800. Heir special in Johnsleys, with its mill, Middleton, Overboddom, 
&c., in the parish of Insch. Date 11 March, i8oi."3 

" Sir John Gordon of Park to his father. Sir Ernest Gordon, Bart, of Park, heir 
general, dated 21 May, 1802."" 

I Father Lunan's Diary, copy penes Editor. 3 Decen. Rets. 1802. 

s Decen. Rets. 1782. 4 Id., 1801. 



Sir John Gordon died unmarried in 1804, and was succeeded in Park by the son of 
Helen (jordon, wife of John Duff of Cowbin. (See No. IX.) They had the following 
children : — 

I. James, born 1729, died unmarried. 

II. William, born 1731, died unmarried. 

III. John, born 1732, died unmarried. 

IV. Lachlan, on whom the estate of Park devolved, after the decease of Sir 
John Gordon, Bart, of Park and Cobairdy. 

XIV. Liachlan DufiF Gordon of Park and Cobairdy. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — "Lachlan Gordon, formerly Duff, 
VV.S., to Sir John Gordon of Park, who died July, 1804. Heir male of tailzie and 
provision special in the barony of Park, in the parish of Ordiquill, dated 7 September, 
1804." ' 

He married Rachel Hogg, daughter of Hogg of Newliston, and by her had four sons 
and four daughters. The present proprietor of Park is their great great grandson. 

After the death of Sir John Gordon in 1804, Cobairdy was sold to John Morison of 
Auchintoul, son of Alexander Morison of Bognie, by the daughter of John Duff of 

Mr. Morison let Cobairdy on an improving lease to James Allardes of Boynsmill, 
who was in his day a man of considerable influence in Forgue. The following is a 
sketch of him from the pen of the late Mr. M'Combie of Tillyfour, the first Member of 
Parliament for West Aberdeenshire : — 

" James Allardes of Boynsmill, tenant of Cobairdy, was a great farmer. He was a 
friend of the late Duke of Gordon, who introduced him to Court. He always wore 
powder. Many were the stories he told of his journeys to London, and the great 
personages he was introduced to there. He was the best chairman of a public meeting 
I ever saw, and at a public sale it was a perfect treat to hear him. He was a master of 
the art of pleasing, and no man put a company into equal good humour. He had 
something to say in every one's praise, and no one else could say it so well. He spoke 
the dialect of his own country, ' the Kingdom of Forgue,' and never affected the 
English language." "" 

Mr. Allardes made great improvements on Cobairdy in planting, reclaiming, and 
building. He built no less than 10,590 yards of stone and lime dykes, 17,791 of dry 
stone dykes, altogether twelve and three-quarter miles j and there was paid to him at 
Whitsunday, 1830, for ameliorations on the estate of Cobairdy, ^7452 19s. 6d. 

Many a good story is told regarding the sayings and doings of Mr. Allardes. He 
had a very high opinion of the durability of his stone and lime dykes, and when these 
were building, a friend remarked — " Eh, Mr. Allardes ! these dykes ye are biggin' will 
last for ever." " For ever man," quo' Mr. Allardes, " a hantle langer ! " 

I Decen. Rets. 1804. a Mr. M'Combie's Cattle Breeding Reminiscences, p. 40. 


226 Tfi^ Thaiiage of Fermartyn. 

The following regarding a use of them is special : — Returning home late one 
evening from dining at a neighbour's, Mr. AUardes was much in the condition of the 
man, who complained not so much of the length of the road as the breadth of it. In 
coming up one of the avenues to Cobairdy, which had one of his stone and lime dykes 
on each side, he stumbled with considerable force against the one dyke then against the 
other, to the danger of an ordinary erection, on which he exclaimed, " Braw dykies that 
I hae biggit ; it is weel I hae biggit ye o' stane and lime." 

For other sayings and doings of Mr. AUardes see " Boynsmill." 

From Mr. Morison, the estate of Cobairdy passed by purchase to Robert Simpson, 
who improved the property very much, and built a new mansion house. He acquired 
the estate of Drumblair in 1847. Mr. Simpson was a graduate of the university of 
Aberdeen, and studied for some time for the church ; was deputy-Lieutenant for the 
counties of Aberdeen and Banff, and a J. P. also for both counties. Mr. Simpson 
married first, Barbara Alexis, daughter of Alexander Forbes, of Jamaica, representative 
of the Forbeses of Keithock, in Mortlach, and descended from a branch of the ancient 
house of Pitsligo. A brother of Mrs. Simpson's was the late Colonel John Alexander 
Forbes, formerly commanding the 92nd Highlanders, of St. Margaret's, Auckland Hill, 
Lower Norwood, who died October 31, 1880. By her Mr. Simpson had one son : — 

I. Patrick Browne, Lieutenant-Colonel (late of 72nd Highlanders), is a deputy- 
Lieutenant of Banffshire, and a J. P. of both the counties of Aberdeen and 

Mr. Simpson married secondly, Margaret, daughter of Alexander Carnie, Provost, 
Macduff, and sister of Mrs. William Grant of Beldorney. He had issue by her : — 
n. Robert. 
I. Agnes, married, 1887, to Major Gordon of Culdrain. 

Mr. Simpson of Cobairdy died 1884, and Mrs. Simpson 1886. 

The estate of Cobairdy was sold in 1886 to Robert Skirving. 


This has been for many years a small separate property. In 1696, Alexander Lesly 
was heritor of the said lands, his wife and daughter being then alive.' In 1702, 
Alexander Leslie of Boynsmill is served heir general to his father, Alexander Lesly, of 
over Tulloch, February 5, 1702. In 1775, or thereby, it was acquired by William 
Allardes in Placemill. He married Katharine, daughter of William Stuart, in Little 
Forgue, by whom he had several sons and daughters. He was succeeded by his 
son, James, who rented, besides other farms, Cobairdy, on a long improving lease. 
Mr. Allardes was a very enterprising and public-spirited gentleman, and was the means 
of effecting many great improvements in Forgue. 

In 1825, along with Mr. J. R. Thain of Drumblair, Robert Stuart of Aucharnie; his 
nephew, Mr. \Villiam Davidson, merchant, Aberdeen, he founded the Glendronach 
Distillery. The name is derived from a small stream called the Dronac, to which Mr. 
Allardes prefixed Glen, and added an " h," and called it the Glendronach Distillery. A 
few years after it started, a fire occurred, but a more serious one occurred in 1837, 
when the whole establishment was all but burned to the ground. Owing to the oppres- 
sive excise laws then in force, distilling was rather a hazardous business, and the success 
of the company after the second fire had not been very great, and three of the partners 
retired. Mr. Allardes, however, assumed new partners, repaired the distillery, which 
was then one of the largest in the north of Scotland. Among the partners whom he 
assumed was Mr. Walter Scott, who took shares in it equal to those of Mr. Allardes, 
and was made managing partner of the company. Mr. Scott was then a young man, 
and having had a few years previous training in a distillery in the north, he engaged 
actively in the management. As the other partners were advanced in years, and by the 
constitution of the company, none of the shares of the partners could fall to heirs, these 
more aged partners all died out, and Mr. Scott became at last the sole partner in the 

Mr. Scott, besides having the Glendronach distillery, for a good many years held in 
lease several farms on the Bognie estate, and was a very successful breeder of short- 
horns, and took numerous prizes both in England and in Scotland ; but his whole 
breeding establishment was given up some years before his death. In everything con- 
nected with agricultural and other matters connected with the parish and county he took 
a deep interest. Of the Forgue Savings Bank, established in 1820, one of the oldest of 

I Poll Book, Vol. II. 

The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

these institutions, he was for many years a trustee and a director, and it owed much to 
his fostering care. To the Parish Church of Forgue he presented a fine organ, amongst 
one of the first erected in a Presbyterian church in the north ; and, as elsewhere noticed, 
he presented a hall to the parish, in which there is an excellent portrait of Mr. 
Scott, who might well have been called the " Grand Old Man of Forgue." It was pre- 
sented to Mr. Scott by the parishioners of Forgue soon after the hall was opened. Mr. 
Scott did not long survive the gift of a hall to the parish of Forgue, for he died in the 
following year. May, 1886. 

Mr. Scott left a legacy of ;!^5oo to the chief public school of Forgue, and to that of 
Wells of Ythan, the interest to be applied for the education of two young men at 
Forgue, and one at Ythan Wells. He left also a similar sum for a like purpose to his 
native parish of Polmont, where, agreeably to his wish, he is buried in the grave of his 
father and mother. 

Mr. James AUardes, who has been already mentioned as an improving tenant of 
Cobairdy, died in 1849. In his latter years, he became very much reduced in circum- 
stances, having become bankrupt in the financial crisis of 1847. 

Many a good story is told of Mr. AUardes, and few that had a recontre with him 
came off winners. Though some times overtaken, according to the custom of the times, 
he was in general a very temperate man. 

In his latter days, when much troubled with the state of his worldly affairs, he is 
said to have had recourse for comfort to the Book of Job. On perusing the troubles of 
this very patient and long-suffering patriarch, he one day remarked, " Ay, ay, Job, man, 
ye had many troubles in your day, but I doubt ye never had the trouble of a bill pro- 
tested at the bank ! " 

To a proprietor in a neighbouring parish, who managed his estate rather too much 
on commercial principles, which led to frequent changes of tenantry, Mr AUardes 

remarked, " Mr. you must be a very large proprietor ? " " O, no," was the 

reply. " Oh, I thought you were ; I see your farms so often in the newspapers to let." 

Mr. AUardes often dined at Huntly Lodge, and at Gordon Castle when the Marquis 
succeeded to the dukedom. On one occasion, he had partaken rather too much of the 
Glenlivat, and on retiring to the drawing-room, he found the Duchess playing on the 
piano, and complimented her Grace on her fine playing, paying her other high compli- 
ments. Her Grace resented or seemed to resent this, for Mr. AUardes was rather a 
privileged guest. Next morning, however, the Duke told him that the Duchess was 
much displeased with him last evening. Mr. AUardes was very grieved at this, but he 
managed to get out of the difificulty. " Well, your Grace, it was just that trash of Glen- 
livat you gave me yesterday after dinner that did not agree wi' me. If it had been my 
' ain gweed Glendronach,' I would not have been ony the waur." The result was that a 
cask of Glendronach was ordered by his Grace. 

Mr. AUardes frequently visited London, and on his return on one occasion, he 
related his experiences to a neighbour. " When in London I called on his Grace the 

Boynsmill or Glendronach. 229 

Duke of (lordon, and left my ticketty (card) with him. And I soon had an invitation 
from his drace to dine with him, and sic a fine company, none but Earls and Lords ; 
and sic fine hearty chiels as they waur. When the tae guffaw of lauchin' was dune, the 
tither began ; and as for the chiels (the footmen) ahint our chairs, * they just snickered 
and leuch.' " 

At another time a ball was given by his Grace, at which Mr. AUardes was present, 
and joined in the dancing. The Duke complimented him on his excellent dancing, 
and enquired who had been his dancing master. *' I never had one," quo' Mr. 
Allardes. " I just imitate your Grace." 

Mr. Allardes was an early riser, and one time, when at Gordon Castle, he had risen 
before his boots had reached his bedroom door. Seeing a bell-rope in the passage he 
rung it, and it being the fire-bell of the castle, he soon had plenty of servants, to whose 
enquiry as to what had happened, and where was the fire, he replied, " I was just 
wanting my beets ! " 

Mr. Allardes was not only often at Huntly Lodge, but was much asked out else- 
where, and especially at Haddo in Forgue. Some of his neighbours were rather dis- 
appointed that a frequent invitation was not extended to them ; but consoled them- 
selves with saying that Mr. Allardes was only asked down to be made fun of. Mr. 
Allardes on hearing this remarked, " Such and such an one says I am only asked down 
to Haddo to be made fun of, but none of them are ever there to see the fun." 

One day dining with the factor of Bognie, after the half-yearly audit at Bogniebrae, 
there was champagne at dinner. The servant beinjg careful of his master's interests 
poured out the champagne so high that it frothed to excess, and the result was but a 
meagre supply of Mr. Allardes' favourite beverage. The next time the servant came 
round, Mr. Allardes' held up his glass, and as the servant raised the bottle, he followed 
it, with still but meagre results. On this, Mr. Allardes remarked, *' Eh, Mr. Blaikie, 
what a capital servant you have got ; ye surely pay him good wages, for I never saw ane 
gar a bottle of champagne gang farer." 

Mr. Allardes, like every one else, found in the day of his adversity, in the " winter 
of his need," that his many friends forsook him. An invitation to dinner became very 
exceptional, few and far between. His old friends at the Manse of Inverkeithney, 
however, occasionally asked him to dinner, probably when a fourteenth man was 
needed, and then even the invitation came late as it were on a Saturday night, and 
well did Mr Allardes know that his invitation was an afterthought. He, however, 
trudges down to Inverkeithney in good time before any of the other guests had arrived, 
and greets his old friend and hostess with the exclamation, " Well, mem, I was last 
sought, but I am first here." 

On Mr. Allardes' failure, Boynsmill was sold to Mr. William Thomson of Ellingham 
House, near Cheltenham, and is now, after the death of his eldest son, the property of 
Mrs. Thomson, his widow. 


A SMALL property, situated on the northern slope of the Foreman hill, is in a very 
secluded position, and during winter does not enjoy much sunlight. It is now the pro- 
perty of John Porter, Huntly. 

Before 1647, it belonged to Sir James Crichton of Frendraught. In that 
year, James, Viscount Frendraught, with consent of his father, disponed it to Robert 
Bisset in Drumdollo. The instrument of sasine following thereon is dated July 2, 
1647.' The Crichtons retained the superiority, for in a charter of appreciation to Mr. 
John Gregory, minister of the gospel at Drumoak, of the lands of Frendraught, dated 
July, 1647, Corniehaugh is included, and the superiority appears subsequently as 
belonging to the laird of Frendraught. ° The Bissets do not seem to have retained 
Corniehaugh many years. It came subsequently into the possession of a family of the 
name of Irvine, who claimed descent from Drum. The first notice of the Irvines of 
Corniehaugh is in the records of the kirk-session of Forgue. Thus it is recorded : — 

William Irvine of Oornyhaugh, 

"an elder of the Kirk of Forgue," date 1663. In 1678, William Irvine obtained sasine 
of the lands of Corniehaugh.^ The next to be found is 

II. Robert Irvine of Oornyhaugh, 

a son of the above William Irvine, and is mentioned in the Poll Book of 1696. He 
married Elizabeth, a daughter of George Crichton of Auchingoul, by whom he had 
three sons and one daughter."* She was a member of the Church of Rome, and her 
spiritual interests were tenderly taken into consideration by the Presbytery of Turriff. In 
1699, Robert Irvine was summoned before the Privy Council in Edinburgh as a witness 
in the case of Dame Marjory Seton, relict of Lewis, IV. Viscount Frendraught, and owing 
to a very severe storm of snow arising, he was eight days on the road to Edinburgh, a 
journey usually accomplished in three days. He was in consequence denounced ; but 
on explanation, the denunciation was discharged. ^ Robert Irvine died before 1737, and 
in that year his daughter, Susan Irvine, wife of James Findlater, was served heir of 
provision general. He was succeeded by his son, 

1 Charters of Corniehaugh. 4 Presbytery of Turriff Records. 

2 Bognie Charters. Poll Book, IL p. 402. 

3 Index of Sasines H.M. Reg. Ho. Edinb., 5 Chambers' Domestic Annals, Vol. IIL 

and Session Records of Forgue. 

Corniehaiigh. 231 

III. William Irvine of Comiehaugh. 
He died in 1779, and was succeeded by his grandson," 

IV. William Irvine of Corniehaugh. 

There is a precept of " clare constat " by Alexander Morison of Bognic, superior of 
the lands of Corniehaugh and others, in favour of William Irvine, grandson and nearest 
heir of the deceased \\'illiam Irvine of Corniehaugh, dated November i, 1779." 
He married Martha, daughter of Alexander Findlay, chirurgeon, Fraserburgh, by 
Katharine, daughter of Alexander (lordon of Glendaveny, descended from Sheelagreen 
and Rothney. 'i'hey had issue : — 

1. Robert, merchant in London, married, and had issue : — I. George Duncan, 

Indian Civil Service. II. John Wilson, Melbourne. i. Margaret. 

2. , married to Rev. Alexander Cameron, minister of Edderton, 

Ross, and has issue. 

1. Elizabeth, died unmarried. 

2. Helen Martha, Walton Place, London. 

Mr, William Irvine sold, in 1791, Corniehaugh to Major, afterwards Lieutenant- 
Colonel, Alexander Dufi" of Mayen. Mr. Irvine afterwards held in lease the castle of 
Towie-Barclay, in Auchterless, where he died in 1826. 

Colonel Alexander Dufi" was commonly known as Tiger Duff, so called from a deep 
scar on his face, inflicted in an encounter in India with a tiger. He married Jane, 
daughter of James Abernethy of Mayen, who unfortunately killed John Leith of Leith- 
hall in a duel in the streets of Aberdeen, December, 1763,^ and fled to the continent, 
and was outlawed. He was succeeded by his son, 

II. William Abercromby Duff of Mayen and Corniehaugh. 

He was served heir to his father, December i, 1828, and on the 10 October, 1829, 
he received a charter of confirmation from Theodore Morison of Bognie, the superior 
of these lands." 

Mr. Duff" died in 1857, but before his death the lands of Corniehaugh were sold to 
the trustees of the Earl of Fife, and they were sold by Alexander, VI. Earl of Fife, in 
1888, to John Porter of Corniehaugh. Mr. Porter purchased also Turtoiy, and some 
other portions of the Fife estates. 

Mr. Porter married Mary Ann, daughter of Mr. George Scllar, Huntly, and has 
issue : — 

I. John Alexander. 

II. William. 

III. James, a twin with his brother William ; both died in infancy. 

IV. Charles Robert. 

I Corniehaugh Charters. 3 Gill's Moir-BjTCS, p. S3. 

3 III. 4 Corniehaugh Charters. 

232 T]ie Tlianage of Fermartyn. 

V. George Sellar. 

1. Margaret, died in infancy. 

2. Mary Elizabeth. 

3. Olivia Margaret. 

4. Barbara Florence. 

Mr. William Irvine, the last of the Irvines of Corniehaugh, is buried in the church- 
yard of Forgue. A marble tablet records that he and his ancestors were proprietors of 
Corniehaugh for more than three hundred years. According to this deduction, the 
period, however, must be considerably reduced. 

A Nonjuring chapel existed at Corniehaugh during the time that Episcopacy was 
proscribed in the last century. The site of it can still be pointed out. It was served 
for some time by one of the Irvines of Corniehaugh, and the last appointment of a 
minister to it was in 1773, when the Rev. Andrew Macfarlane, subsequently Bishop of 
Moray, was appointed. 


Formed part of the dominical lands of Frendraught. In a charter of resignation of these 
lands by David (iregorie to George Morison of Bognie.of date 167 7, there is mentioned 
"the two ploughs of Haddo in Inverkcithney." In 1673, four years before the sale to 
(ieorge Morison, the two ploughs of Haddo, along with Parkdargue, were wadset by 
David Gregory in favour of James and Alexander Davidson ; and there is a deed of 
clare constat in favour of the same parties by Theodore Morison of Bognie in 1700.' 
The wadset of the two ploughs passed afterwards to James Gordon of Daach, and from 
Patrick Duff, who acquired them, they passed, in 1721, to Theodore Morison of 
Bognie.' He gave the two " ploughs of Haddo " and others to his second son, 

II. Captain John Morison. 

Captain Morison built the mansion-house, and married Miss Abercromby, daughter 
of General James Abercromby of Glassaugh (of the Birkenbog family), by Mary, 
daughter of William Duff of Dipple. They had issue one daughter, Mary. 

Captain Morison died April i, 1777, and is interred at Haddo. His widow became 
the second wife of Robert Duff of Loggie, Vice- Admiral of the Red. He was succeeded 
by his daughter, 

III. Mary Morison of Haddo. 

She married Colonel Duff of Fetteresso, the son of Admiral Duff, thus forming a 
curious connection, the mother marrying the father, and the daughter the son. They 
had issue : — 

I. Robert, of Fetteresso. 

II. Arthur, of Glassaugh, who took the name of Abercromby. 

III. Adam, of Woodcote, Sheriff of Wigton. 

IV. Thomas A., of Haddo. 

Mrs. Duff of Haddo died 1 8 — , and was succeeded by her son, 

IV. Thomas Abercromby Duff of Haddo. 

He married first, Mary, daughter of Alexander Gordon of Newton, by Jane 
Morison, his wife, widow of James Ogilvie of Ercreavie, and had issue : — 

I. Robert William, Major in the army. 

II. Alexander G., Colonel in the army. 

I Bognie Charters. 2 Bognie Charters. 

234 1^^^ Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Thomas Abercromby Duff married secondly, Laura Fraser, daughter of Fraser. 

He had issue by her : — 

III. George Gordon, born 1840. 

I. Jemima Clark, died in infancy. 
Mr. Duff falling into pecuniary difificulties, Haddo was sold by his trustees in 
December, 1849, to John Forbes, a native of the county of Ross. He made a con- 
siderable fortune by railway contracts, of which he had large ones on the North British, 
the Edinburgh and Glasgow, and the Aberdeen railways. Mr. Forbes, in 1859, pur- 
chased the lands of Crombie, Raemoir, and Cranna. 

Upon all his estates he executed great improvements in building, reclaiming, drain- 
ing, and fencing ; in fact, as he remarked to the writer of this notice, he had improved 
himself out of them. On the fall of the value of land, he came into difficulties, and 
after his death, the bond-holders, the chief of which was the North of Scotland Bank, 
became owners of Haddo and the other estates. 

Mr. Forbes married Miss Mackenzie, the daughter of a clergyman in the county of 
Ross. By her he had a large family : — 

I. Murdoch, who was trained to business as a merchant, and died in China. 
H. George, Major 78th Highlanders, married a daughter of the late Mr. 

Kinloch of Park ; d. s. p. 188 — 
HI. Charles, who occupied the extensive farm of Tochineal ; died 188 — 

IV. William John. 

1. Wyneford, married to Mr. Webster, ribbon manufacturer in London. 

2. Isabella. 

3. Jessie, married to Mr. Gordon. 

4. Annie. 

There is a fine garden said to have been laid out by Linnaeus, a friend of the Bognie 
family. Near the gardens is a dove-cot ; a carved slab, which exhibits a crown with a 
thistle over the top, and below a lion rampant, holding a sword with both paws, with 
the date 1694. 


The church of Drumblade was dedicated to St. Hilary, and prior to the Reformation 
belonged to the church of Kinkell. There were depended on Kinkeil, the churches of 
Drumblade, Skene, Kintore, Dyce, Kemnay, Kinellar, and Monkeggie; all of which were 
severally provided with a priest, who officiated in these churches as vicar or chaplain ; 
for the parson of Kinkell himself being a principal person in the cathedral chapter had 
to reside chiefly at Old Aberdeen. By an Act of the Scotch Parliament passed in 1649, 
these kirks, above enumerated, " being pendicles of the kirk of Kinkell of auld erected 
in ane benefice and parsonage, were dissolved, disunited, and separated, and declarit 
to be several and distinct paroche kirks and parochins in all time coming." ' 

Of the names of the vicars before the Reformation few, if any, have been preserved. 

In 1 567-1574 the parish was supplied by George Rothyne, reader. 

Norman Spens, who remained till 1580, when he was deprived. 

Andrew Spens served from 1585 to 1591. 

Alexander Barclay, in 1598, was appointed to the vicarage by James VI. In a birth 
brieve, we find he had the following sons, William and James, by his wife, Bessie, 
daughter of John Duncan of Scardargue. The said Alexander Barclay was the son of 
Mr. George Barclay, advocate, Aberdeen, by his spouse, Marjory Chien.- 

Andrew Massie. He is mentioned in a minute, of date 10 November, 1643, o^ the 
Presbytery of Strathbogie.^ He was translated to Auchterless. The following minute 
respecting him is in the records of the Presbytery of Turriff: — "Mr. Andrew Massie 
produced the Covenant subscribed by all except Lessendrum and the Papists excom- 
municated in the parish." '» 

Alexander Scroggie, A.M., was translated to Drumblade from Forglen, and from 
Drumblade to Oldmachar, 20 April, 1658, and contributed the same year ;^4i 
towards the new buildings of King's College. He was the son of Rev. Alexander 
Scroggie, D.D., minister of Aberdeeji, brother of William Scroggie, Bishop of Argyll.^ 
There is in the Presbytery records of Turriff the following complaint by Mr. Scroggie : 
— •' The minister of Drumblade did honestly regrate to his brethren, that notwithstand- 
ing his charge was grate in respect of ane numerous congregation, ane irregular, 

1 Skene's Skene Family, N.S.C. p. ii. 4 Brebner's Notes on Presby., Turriff, 

2 Misc. S.C, v. p. 339. . in Aberdeen Journal. 

3 Presb. Stratbbogie, S.C. p. 39. 5 Aberdeen Fasti MS. Historj- of Roses 

of Insch, penes Editor. 

236 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

malignant, and stiff-necked people, his stipend has been and still is very little, namely, 
ane hundred pounds money and twenty-four bolls victual, with one vicarage of little 
value. His manse was imperfect, and he is so straitened that he had not ane foot- 
broad over his gate, and was so surrounded with cottars and grassmen, that in the 
summer time when his beasts did set their heads over the gate, they were either killed 
or pitifullie beaten ; that his glebe was but ane little piece of land lyand far from his 
manse and kirk, about ane mile and ane half, and consequently unprofitable ; that by 
reason of this he was exposed to the reproach and contempt of his people, and the 
Gospel under-valued and slighted." ' 

James Gordon was appointed in 1659. He preached at the consecration of the 
Scotch Bishops in Holyrood, 7 May, 1662,- and was afterwards translated to the mother 
church of Kinkell. 

William Seton, A.M., was translated from Lumphanan, admitted prior to July, 

George Chalmer, son of George Chalmer, minister of Rhynie, who was appointed to 
Drumblade before 4 February, 1687. He married Elizabeth, daughter of Mr. James 
Gordon, parson of Rothiemay.'' She was executrix to her father, and died 16 January, 
1692, By her he had two sons and two daughters — James, George, Anna, and Jean. 
He afterwards, when very old, married Rachel, said to be a daughter of Sir John 
Forbes of Waterton. She was alive in 1696. He presented to the parish two Com- 
munion cups, and died 1702. (See Monkshill.) 

John Turing, A.M., was formerly minister of Insch, and was admitted to Drumblade, 
16 March, 1703. He died January, 1733, aged about 84. From him is descended the 
present family of Turing. (See Foveran, Turing.) 

John Stewart was admitted minister of Drumblade, 20 February, 1734; died 
January, 1743. He married Magdalene, daughter of Gordon of Birkenburn. She died 
2 May, 1783. Their son, John Stewart, sold the estate of Birkenburn to James, Earl of 
Seafield. The Gordons possessed Birkenburn from 1547. Adam Gordon and 
Christina Gordon, his spouse, obtained a feu charter (cartam feodifirmam) in that year.^ 

George Gordon was served heir, in 1752, to his grandfather, Robert Gordon of Chapel- 
town,^ and was translated from Bourtie to Drumblade, where he died 8 December, 1763, 
leaving a son, Charles, who went to Glasgow ; a daughter, Elizabeth, who was married 
to John AUeson, Port Glasgow. Dr. Scott says another daughter married Captain 
John Henry of Corse, but this is a mistake. It was a daughter of Robert Gordon, 
minister of Drumblade, whom Mr. Henry married. 

William Bisset, A.M., was translated from Footdee Chapel of Ease, Aberdeen, 
having been presented by the Earl Marischal to Drumblade on 22 May, 1765.' He 
was translated to Dundee. 

t Brebner's Notes on the Presb. of Turriflf in Aber Joum. 5 New Stat. Acct. Ant. A. and B. II. p. 350. 

3 Grub's Eccles. Hist. III. p. 199. 6 Decen. Rets. 1752. 

3 Eccles. Records, Aberdeen, p. 214. 7 New Stat. Acct. 

4 New Stat. Acct. p. Poll P.ook, II. p. 271. 

The Church of DruuibUuie and its Ministers. 237 

George Abel, A.M., graduatcJ al Marischal College in 1758; was appointed to 
Drumbladc in 1776. He got a new church built in 1775, and died 14 September, 
1794, aged 56, having married Mary, daughter of James liissel of lx*ssendrum, who 
died at Aberdeen, 6 December, 1815, aged 86. 

Robert (lordon, M.A., was appointed in 1794, on the [)resentation of William, ICarl 
of Kintore. He married Jane Farquhar, who died 25 June, 1829, aged 80, and had 
issue — a son, George ; a daughter, Margaret, married to .\ndrew Macpherson, Gibston ; 
another daughter was the first wife of John Henry of Corse. Mr. (Gordon died 
27 November, 1820, aged 70, and in the 26th year of his ministry. 

Robert James Brown, M.A., the third son of I'rincipal Hrown, Marischal College, 
was appointed in 1821. Having been appointed Professor of Greek in Marischal 
College, he resigned Druniblade, 17 December, 1827. 

George Ramsay Davidson, M.A., was presented by Anthony Adrian, Earl of Kintore, 
8 May, 1828, and was translated to Lady (ilenorchy's Church, Edinburgh, 14 July, 

1842. On joining in the Free Church secession in 1843, and signing the deed of 
demission, he was declared no longer a minister of the Church of .Scotland, 28 June, 

1843. He married, June 8, 1830, and had a son, a merchant in Liverpool, and a 
daughter, Mary, who married Rev. Alexander Cusin, A.M., Collegiate minister of Free 
Lady Glenorchy's Church, Edinburgh. He received the degree of D.D. ; has published 
several pamphlets and sermons, and was the author of the New Statistical Account of 
the parish of Drumblade.' 

\V. J. Blaikie was appointed in 1842 ; remained till the Disruption, 1843 \ "^^^' 
D.D., LL.D, Professor of Apologetics and Pastoral Theology, Free Church College, 

Alexander Rainy, M.A., was the second son of the Rev. William Rainy, school- 
master for many years of Drumblade. After passing through school and college with 
distinction, he became his father's successor as schoolmaster of Drumblade, and taught 
with much acceptance for several years. In 1843, ^^ ^^^ appointed to the church of 
Drumblade, and for the long period of forty-eight years, "remote from towns, he ran 
his godly race, nor e'er had changed nor wished to change his place." Mr. Rainy was 
a man of considerable culture and ability, and although not a popular preacher, few made 
greater preparation for their Sunday duties, for he wrote a new sermon for every time he 
preached. Of his immense collection of MSS., he remarked, if the manse were to take 
fire they would illuminate the parish more than they had ever done before. Mr. Rainy's 
readiness at repartee was very great. To a proposal made for heating the church, his 
reply was, " O, I suppose you want more fire in the pulpit." To a brother minister who 
complained of the smallness of the congregation to which he had officiated, his ready 
retort was, " Well, sir, I hope you will not suppose that I am accountable for your want 
of popularity." Mr. Rainy was a kindly man, and many were the acts of kindness done 
by him to his parishioners and others in their need. The weakness of age coming on 

I .Scott's Fasti, pp. 65I-2-3. 

238 The Tlianage of Fermartyn. 

him, and having been made rather keenly to feel " that superfluous lags the veteran on 
the stage," he resigned the charge of Urumblade, not without regret. He felt the parting 
keenly, and left Drumblade and the scenes of his youth, which he never again beheld. 
He withdrew to a cottage near the parish church of Inverkeithney, where, feeling that 
his life's work was done, he gradually drooped and faded, and paralysis supervening, 
he died, after a few months' illness, in the end of January, 1893. His body, agreeably 
to his wish, rests beside that of his sister, Mrs. Soutar, in the churchyard of Inver- 
keithney, by the Deveron's murmuring stream. " Pax sit manibus." 

William Grant, M.A., was born at Tullynessle; educated at the parish school and 
the Grammar School, Old Aberdeen. He graduated in 1882 at the University of 
Aberdeen, and was appointed to Drumblade in 1891. 


Beneath these rugged elms, that ash tree's shade, 
Where heaves the turf in many a mouldering heap. 
Each in his narrow cell for ever laid, 
The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep. 
The breezy call of incense breathing morn, 
The swallow twittering from the straw-built shed, 
The cock's shrill clarion, or the echoing horn. 
No more shall rouse them from their lowly bed. 

— Gray. 

The churchyard is finely situated on an eminence above a stream, the boundary 
between it and Forgue. With the exception of a flat slab, within an enclosure, to the 
memory of George Bisset, which will be found in the notice of Lessendrum, there are 
no stones of great antiquity. Within the same enclosure there is a stone with a cross 
bearing the inscription — " Here lie the reimains of Jane Harriot Fenwick Bisset, who 
died May 2, 1866 ; also the remains of Maurice George Fenwick Bisset, who died 
6 August, 1879. ' Blessed are the dead who die in th^ Lord.'" Another of polished 
granite is inscribed — •' Sacred to the memory of the Rev. Charles Elrington Bisset of 
Lessendrum, who was called away from an earthly home, on 12 December, 1888, to an 
inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, and that passeth not away, aged 38 years. 
Rev. xxii. 3, 4." A flat slab records the death of " Maurice George Bisset of Lessen- 
drum, who died 16 December, 1821, in the 64th year of his age." On the east wall of 
the enclosure is the inscription — "This is the burial place of the family of Lessendrum 
done by Anne Bisset, 1775." Outside the Lessendrum enclosure there is a table shaped 
stone with this inscription — " Sub hoc saxo Magistri Georgii Abel, pastoris Evangelii 
apud Drumblade reliquiae inhumantur, 14 September, 1794 ; aetatis 56 ; officii 28, anno, 
diem obiit." [Under this stone are interred the remains of the Rev. George Abel, 
minister of the Gospel at Drumblade, died 10 September, 1794, in the 56th year of his 
age, and the 28th of his ministry.] He married Mary Bisset of Lessendrum. 

Another table-shaped stone is "To the memory of Rev. William Rainy, who died at 
Monellie, 24 November, 1842, aged 77 ; and of his wife, Mary Taylor, who died 
February 16, 1831, aged 77." There is also the following inscription in Latin — "In 

memoriam fortis et infelicis viri Whyte de Ardlahill in Aberdour, qui postremo 

multas post aerumnas confectus corpore opibusque e vita discessit, Londini anno P. C. N. 
1789, et sine lapide sepultus fuit." [To the memory of a brave and unfortunate man, 
Wyhte of Ardlahill in Aberdour, who, at last, after many vicissitudes, worn out in 

240 The Tkanage of Fermartyn. 

body, and destitute of means, departed this life at London in the year of our Lord 1789, 
and rests in a nameless grave.] This unfortunate gentleman was a relative of the above 
named Mr. Rainy, who, it is said, joining the rising of 1 745 under Lord Pitsligo, shared 
the sufferings of his chief and followers, and died as above recorded. 

Near the church wall a fragment of a stone bears the inscription in Latin — " Hie 
jacent cincres mulieris omatissimoe," [Here lie the ashes of a most accomplished lady.] It 
very likely formed the upper portion of a now small square stone appropriated by another 
party, on which we read on one side — " Elizabethse Gordon quae nupserat Georgio 

Chalmers, P. de Drumblade, qui obiere, hjec Januariie, 1692, ille Linquenda 

tellus et domus et placens uxor." [Elizabeth Gordon, who had married George 

Chalmer, pastor of Drumblade, who died — she — January, 1692, and he We 

must leave earth, home, and pleasing wife.] A space had been left for his own death, 
but no kind friend had added the date. Mr. Chalmer soon consoled himself for the 
loss of a pleasing wife by marrying Rachel Forbes, a daughter, it is said, of Forbes of 
Waterton. She was alive in 1696. On the other side of the stone is the inscription — 
" This stone belongs to the Gordons, and the family of Andrew Barclay, late feuar in 
Huntly, who was born in 1752, and died 1835, aged 83 years. 

A flat stone, all but eligible, records the death of " Ann, daughter of Alexander 
Gordon, formerly schoolmaster, Drumblade, and spouse of David Weyms, merchant, 
Huntly, born 1760, died " 

Another adjoining records " that underneath lie interred the remains of Robert 
Gordon of Chapeltown, who departed this life at Poolend, 19 June, 1777, aged 80." 

Two church officers, father and son, are recorded on an upright stone — "John 
Ruddach, died 9 February, 1839, aged 84, having fulfilled the duties of church officer 
for forty-eight years. Also of his son, James, who succeeded him as church officer till 
1843, ^"d died February, 1868, aged 84." 

Within an enclosure there are the following inscriptions — " In memory of the late 
Andrew Macpherson, Gibston, who died at Gibston, 12 May, 1836, aged 67 years and 
9 months ; and of his widow, Margaret Gordon, daughter of Rev. Robert Gordon, 
minister of Drumblade, who died 9 November, 181 7, aged 82." II. On another tablet 
" Major General George Gordon, R.A., born i January, 1789, died 4 June, 1861. This 
tribute of grateful affection, in memory of a beloved husband and father, is placed here 
by his widow and family. The remains of a dear child are also laid here. Jane, his 
second daughter, who died 22 October, 1846, aged 10. Jane, widow of the above, and 
daughter of Andrew Macpherson, Gibston, born 21 November, 1810, died 20 February, 
1886. * It is I be not afraid.' " (General Gordon was a son of Lieutenant-Colonel 
Gordon of Coynachie.) III. " Sacred to the memory of Elizabeth, wife of Captain 
Gordon, R.N., who died at Huntly, 23 April, 1843, ^g^d 31 years. (She was a 
daughter also of the above named Andrew Macpherson.) This memorial is placed 
where her remains are deposited by her affectionate husband. In her grave are also 
laid the remains of her husband, Admiral Charles Gordon, who died at Huntly, 9 May, 

The Churchyard of Drumblade. 241 

1876, aged 78." (He was an illegitimate son of the Duke of Gordon.) IV. " Here 
lie the remains of the Rev. Robert Gordon, minister of Drumblade, who died on 
27 November, 1820, aged 70. Also the remains of Jean Farquhar, his widow, are 
deposited here. She died 25 June, 1829, aged 79." V, On another tablet is the 
inscription — " Opposite this stone lies the body of Eliza Gordon, the wife of Captain 
Henry of Corse, who died i May, 1802, in her 2ist year, and daughter of Rev. Robert 
Gordon." This was Captain Henry's first wife. He is interred at Forgue. 

In an adjoining enclosure there is a marble monument of beautiful design erected to 
" George Macpherson, Gibston, factor on the Huntly estates for twenty-seven years. He 
died at Gibston, 3 September, 1864, in the 56th year of his age. By the tenantry of the 
Duke of Richmond and other friends of the deceased as a mark of respect to his 
memory." Mr. Macpherson married Jane, daughter of the late Very Rev. James 
Walker of the Episcopal Church, Huntly, and Dean of Moray. A cross with the sacred 
monogram records the death of two daughters of the above, " Caroline Macpherson, 
died 21 May, 1873, aged 27 ; Georgina, died 27 February, 1877, aged 31." 

Within an enclosure are three granite headstones — I. " In memory of Robert 
Lawson, merchant in Corse of Monellie ; also of his father, Alexander Lawson, who 
died, April 14, 1782, aged 68 ; also his son, Alexander Lawson, who died 22 December, 
1786, aged 23." II. On another stone is the inscription — "In memory of George 
Lawson, banker, Huntly, who died 7 June, 1858, aged 77. His wife, Margaret Robert- 
son, died 5 September, 1865, aged 84; and of their grandson, James, son of James 
Lawson, banker, Huntly, who died 26 April, 1858, aged 6." III. " In memory of 
George lawson, farmer,. Lessendrum, who died 28 April, 1852, aged 68, and of Jean 
Lawson, his wife, who died 22 March, 1850, aged 70." 

Within an enclosure are two monuments, one of marble, the other of granite, sur- 
mounted by the sacred monogram, I.H S. The marble monument is attached to the 
south wall of the churchyard, and is thus inscribed — " Sacred to the memory of Patrick 
Robertson, tanner, Huntly, who died 2 July, 1826 ; also of his sons, Alexander Robert- 
son, advocate in Aberdeen, who died 10 June, 1823; George Robertson, bank agent, 
Elgin, who died 10 May, 1859." The granite stone bears the inscription — " Erected by 
Isabella Kirkwood Robertson in remembrance of her beloved husband, James Robert- 
son, Huntly, who went home to Jesus on the morning of the 4 February, 1877, aet. 88 
years." Mr. Robertson was a banker in Huntly, a good friend to many, and was held 
in great esteem by the whole community. 

A granite stone placed against the south wall marks the burial ground of the family 
of Macdonald, who for more than a century have occupied the farm of Upper Pirries- 
rnill, popularly known as "The Farm." According to tradition, the family was 
descended from one of the Macdonalds of Glencoe, who escaped the massacre of 1692. 
Two of his descendants fought at CuUoden. Charles, the first of the family here 
interred, succeeded the Macveaghs in the occupancy of " The Farm." His eldest son, 
George, was the father of the novelist and poet, George Macdonald, LL.D., and died in 

242 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

1858. His youngest son, James, was a much esteemed Bible class teacher in and 
around Huntly for the long period of sixty years. He died in 1877, and his son, 
James Macdonald, F.S.A. Scot, is the present representative of the family. He is 
author of " Place Names of Strathbogie." 

A cross is inscribed " To the memory of Robert Lippe, who died at Westside, 
Gartly, 7 August, 1862, aged 66 ; also of his widow, Jane Robb, who died at Easthill- 
head, Keith-hall, 17 January, 1879, aged 89. Erected in grateful recognition of their 
modest worth by their only son, Robert." Their son. Rev. Robert Lippe, was for some 
time schoolmaster of Forgue, and is now chaplain to the Royal Infirmary, Aberdeen. 
He was editor of Woodrow's Biographical Collections, N.S.C. 

A headstone bears to be " Erected by James Cruickshank, farmer, Comisty, and 
Jean Andrew, his wife, in memory of their beloved son, Robert Cruickshank, who died 
30 August, 1830, aged 34. As a son and brother, as a friend, he was alike distinguished, 
and his early death called forth the expression of a sorrow, which showed how much he 
had been esteemed, and how deeply he was lamented." 

" Mourn not my friends nor weep in vain, 
The silent tomb cures all my pain, 
Yox death ere long will visit thee, 
Therefore prepare to follow me." 

A table stone has the inscription — " Here lies the body of James Cruickshank, some 
time farmer at Comisty, who died 6 October, 1782, aged 66; also Christian Cruick- 
shank, his spouse, who died 17 April, 1797, aged 77. This stone is erected by Robert 
and James Cruickshank, their surviving sons. Here also are interred the remains of the 
above named James Cruickshank, who died 7 July, 1838, aged 80. His spouse, Jean 
Andrew, died 8 September, 18 — , aged 77." 

There are two or three tombstones to a family named Maitland. One, "James, 
farmer, Brownhill, died 1776, aged 67 , also of his son, William, farmer there, who died 
1794, aged 33." This name is all but extinct in the parish. 

A granite headstone bears the inscription — " ' By the grace of God I am what I am.' 
This stone is erected by Alexander Forbes, minister of the Free Church, Drumblade, in 
memory of his beloved wife, Mary Ogg, who died two hours after the birth of her ninth 
child, 12 December, 1862, aged 42." 

A stone bears the inscription — " In memory of James Talbert," and another to 
" Mary Multurer," names not now commonly found in the district. 

A headstone is " In memory of Patrick Gammie, late in Hawkhall, who died 
2 Ociober, 1822, aged 60 ; also of his daughter, Mary Anne Gammie, spouse of Rev. 
William Laurie (of St. John's Episcopal Church, New Pitsligo), who died at New 
Pitsligo, 2 October, 1838, aged 28 ; of Robert Gammie, who died at New Orleans, 
North America, 6 December, 1852, aged 35 ; and John Gammie, who died in Australia, 
6 August, 1853, aged 32." Patrick was a surgeon in the army, and obtained the rank 
of Inspector General of Hospitals. He died in 1888, leaving p^iooo to the poor of the 

The Churchyard of Drutnblade. 243 

parish of Forgue. George made a considerable fortune in Australia by sheep farming, 
and bought the estate of Shotover in the county of Oxford ; was appointed High Sheriff 
of Oxford, 1859. He married, 1855, l-^llen, eldest daughter of Lieutenant-General 
Yaldwin of Blackdown, Sussex, and has issue : — ' I. George Cecil. II. Stuart Yaldwin. 
III. George Claude, IV. Reginald, i. Grace Ellen. 2. Mary Maitland. 3. Emmeline 

A Turin headstone bears the inscription — " Erected by the IJon. William Allan, of 
Toronto, to his father, Alexander Allan, some time in Moss of Dummuie." 

I Burke's Landed Gentry. 


" Abscissa Viresco." 

The Bissets of Lessendrum, one of the most ancient families in the county of Aber- 
deen, were in possession of that barony long before the war of Independence. During 
their long sojourn there, they have had many changes of neighbours at Frendraught, 
Strathbogie, Cobairdy, and Rothiemay ; but there has always been a Bisset at I>essen- 

The present representative of the family is Mrs. Janet Elrington Bisset, daughter of 
the late Venerable Maurice George Fenwick, some time Archdeacon of Raphoe, and 
Harriot Bisset, heiress of Lessendrum. Mrs. Elrington Bisset married J. Faviere 
Elrington, LL.D., Q.C., eldest son of Rev. Charles R. Elrington, Regius Professor of 
Divinity, Trinity College, Dublin, and Rector of Armagh, by Letitia, his wife ; had 
issue, of whom afterwards. 

The name of Bisset, Biset, Byset, or Bisaitte, as it was sometimes spelt, was of 
Norman extraction, and belonged to a family who came into Scotland in the reign of 
William the Lion, The " Scalacronica " states that " William the Lion, in 1174, on his 
return from captivity in Falaise and in England, brought back young Englishmen of 
family to seek their fortunes in the Scottish Court ; among these were named the 
•' Biseys." ' 

One branch settled in the county of Berwick, and another in the north of Scotland, 
where they had possessions in the counties of Ross, Banff, and Aberdeen. In the 
latter county they had Aboyne and probably Lessendrum ; Beaufort near Beauly 
was one of their seats in the county of Ross, where, in 1230, John Byset founded a 
priory, the remains of which are still to be seen. In 1226, he also founded a leper's 
house in connection with the church of St. Peter's, Rathven, in the county of Banff.- 
On 19 June, 1226, John Biset granted to the church of St. Peter's, and the house of 
lepers at Rathven, and the brethren serving these, the church of Kiltarlity with its 
pertinents.^ In 1222, Alexander II., by a charter dated at Fyuyn (Fyvie), 22 February, 
and witnessed by Robert, his chaplain, John Byset, Walter Byset, and confirmed by 
William Comyn, Earl of Buchan, grants to the monks of Arbroath, the church of 
Buthelny (now Meldrum)." Between the years 1 221-1236, Walter Byset (Aboyne) 

I Gray's Scalacronica Maitland Club, p. 41. 3 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 144. 

3 Beauly Priory G. C, p. 15 ; Ant. A. and B. II. p. 142. 4 Id. I. p. 561 ; Book of Bon-Accord, p. 352. 

Lessendnim. 245 

foimded the preceptory of the Kni^Iits' 'rciiiplars at Culler on the Dee,' and in 1237, 
Alexander II. granted tlie KniglUs a charter of hhcrly to acquire lands. Tlie huilding 
included a chapel, and Walter By.set also gave to the preceptory the church of Ahoyne.' 
On 17 August, 1233, \V\iller and William Hyset both witnessed at Slrivelin a charter of 
King Alexander II. to the monks of May.' 

In the year i 240, according to the author of the " IViory (jf Heauly," the Hysets 
pcsscssed the following estates : — Waller Hyset was Ifjrd (A .Ahoyne, and resided at 
Aboyne C'astle. His nephew, .Sir John Hysel, was lord of the .Aird, and resided at either 
Loval or Beaufort, in the county of Ross. Another nephew, William, was patron of the 
church, and [)robabIy owner of the estate of Abertarff in the same county ; and Robert 
Bysct, cousin of Walter'.s, was lord of Upsetlington, in the county of Ik-rwick.* 

In 1242, these Bysets, according to Robertson's " Historical Sketches," were 
involved in a very sad affair.' Walter Byset of Aboyne, at a tournament held near 
Haddington, encountered Patrick of Galloway, Earl of Athol, a young nobleman of 
great promise, whose father, Thomas, the younger brother of Alan the Constable, had 
acquired the Earldom by his marriage with Isabella, the heiress of the fief Byset was 
overthrown by his youthful competitor, and as a feud appears to have existed between 
the families, a fierce desire of vengeance was aroused in the hearts of Bysei's kinsmen 
and followers, and on the night after the tournament, the unsuspecting Earl of Athol, 
who is said to have been vainly warned of his danger by the wife of his enemy, was 
burned to death, with two of his attendants, in the house where they were sleeping at 
Haddington. Some said the building was fired to conceal a previous murder ; others 
declared the wood had been purposely heaped up on every side to prevent the escape of 
the inmates. 

The Earl of Dunbar, and all the friends and partisans of the sufferer, united in 
denouncing the Bysets as the perpetrators of the crime, accusing Walter of Aboyne of 
instigating his nephew, William Byset, to the commission of the actual murder. Nor 
did they stop here, for they aimed at eradicating the very name of Byset from the land, 
openly charging the head of the family, Walter, lord of Aboyne, with abetting the 
bloody doings of his kinsmen. 

It was in vain that William Byset protested his innocence, whilst the Queen offered 
to prove that he was in attendance upon her at Forfar on the actual nij;ht of the catas- 
trophe ; for the Royal party had been staying at Aboyne, and after the departure of 
Alexander the King, the Queen was returning southwards, under the escort of William 
Byset, on the very day of the tournament at Haddington. It was in vain also that 
Walter Byset caused his chaplains to excommunicate all who were implicated in the 
murder, entreating the Bishop of Aberdeen to publish a similar sentence throughout the 
Diocese. His cognisances had been recognised in the town of Haddington ; his 
retainers had been seen during the night of the fire, and these were sufficient proofs of 

1 Reg de Kalchou, p. 191. 4 Priory of Beauly, G.C., p. 45. 

2 \A., p. 182 ; Reg de .\bcr. II. pp. 169, 171. 5 Robertson, Vol. I. pp. 39, 40, 41. 

3 Bain's Calendar, II. p. 550. 

246 TJie Thafiage of Ferniartyn. 

guilt in the eyes of John and the Red Comyn, and his uncle, the Earl of Monteith, to 
justify their harrying the lands of the obnoxious baron, who sought shelter from their 
attacks within the walls of the castle of Aboyne. 

Incensed at this lawless outrage, for he had already appointed a day for the trial of 
William Byset at Forfar, Alexander despatched a party of his immediate followers to the 
north, forbidding the Comyns to prosecute their private feud, and charging the authorities 
of Mar with the safe conduct of the accused to the place of trial. On the appointed day 
Byset arrived at Forfar, and offered to prove his innocence by the wager of battle, 
declining to submit to the judgment of his peers, probably on the plea that they were 
prejudiced against him, and preferred, for good reason, to throw himself on the mercy 
of the King. Alexander postponed his decision until the assemblage of the great 
" moot " at Edinburgh, in which it was determined that the Bysets should be banished 
from the country, forfeiting all their possessions, and only escaping death by " swearing " 
on the " sacred relics " to devote the remainder of their lives to warring against the 
infidel for the benefit of Earl Patrick's soul. The Bysets, however, do not appear, 
notwithstanding their oath, to have considered it at all incumbent upon them to peril 
their own lives in a foreign land for the good of their murdered victim's soul. They fled 
to Ireland and to England, and we find them under the protection of King Henry III. 
Walter is said to have represented himself to the King as the victim of a rebellious 
faction, which the Scottish King was unable to control, and denied the right of the 
Scottish King, Alexander, to deprive him of his lands, artfully asserting that as Henry 
was the superior Lord of Scotland, his consent ought to be obtained before any baron 
could be forfeited. 

In Bain's " Calendar of Documents," we find the following references to the Bysets, 
and the assistance afforded them by the English Court. In 1242, the King has com- 
mitted to Walter Byset (Aboyne?) the manor of Ludeham to sustain himself at the 
King's service during pleasure.' Again, in the same year the keepers of the Bishopric 
of Winchester are commanded out of its rents to let Walter Byset (Aboyne?) have 
thirty merks of the King's gift.- Also, in 1245, the King directs to his treasurer a writ 
for payment from the treasury without delay to Walter Byset (Aboyne?) of eighty merks 
by the King's gift.^ John Byset (Beauly?) has a similar writ for fifty merks. In 1255 
there is the following entry : — " The King (Henry III.) directs the Mayor and the 

Bailiffs of Newcastle-on-Tyne to pay from their farm of forty shillings to the 

King's valet, William Byset, for his pack horse lost in the King's service." "* We see 
from the above extracts that the Bysets received an asylum and assistance from the 
King of England, and during their sojourn at the English Court, they are said to have 
stirred up no good will between the English and Scottish Kings. Notwithstanding 
their forfeiture, and though they never again attained the influence they formerly had 
with the Scottish Kings, the Bysets still remained a family of considerable influence and 

1 Bain's Calendar, I. p. 295, No. 1621. 3 Bain's Calendar, Vol. I. p. 355, No. 1678. 

2 Id., p. 314, No. 1700. 4 Id., p. 385, No. 2008. 

Lessendrum. 247 

John Byset, jun. of Bcauly, as we learn from " Bain's Calendar," left three daughters 
co-heiresses :— Cecilia Bysct was wife of William de Fenton, whose descendants held the 
superiority of lessendrum down to the beginning of the sixteenth century. Elizabeth 
Byset married Andrew de Bosco, from whom the Roses of Kilravock and other branches 
of that family are descended. Muriella, the youngest daughter, became wife of David 
de Graham. Regarding the division of their property after their father's decease there 
are the following notices : — *' In 1278, Cecilia, eldest daughter, appoints her husband, 
William de Fenton, to receive in the King's Court her share of her father's property in 
Ireland." There is a similar appointment by the other two sisters, Elizabeth and 
Muriella, to their husbands, Andrew de Bosco and David de Graham. 

The following is their descent : — 

I. Walter Byset of Aboyne and probably of Lessendrum. 

His history has been above recorded. He died in 1251, and was succeeded by his 

II. Thomas Byset of Aboyne, &c. 

There is little record of him, but he was probably father of 

III. Walter Byset of Aboyne and Lessendrum. 

We find Walter de Byset of the county of Aberdeen swearing, in 1296, fealty to 
Edward I. for his possessions in that county.'' We also find, in 1304, Walter Byset of 
Lessendrum. His name occurs in the following record: — "Gilbert de Buttergask of 
that ilk held the lands of Buttergask down to 1304, when Walter de Bysett, dominus de 
Lossindrum, got a charter of all the lands of Buttergask with their pertinents, to be held 
by the said Walter and his heirs, ' jure haereditario in perpetuum,' as freely as held by 
said Gilbert de Buttergask, &c., paying therefore annually at two terms, upon ground of 
said land, six shillings and eightpence sterling, good and legal money. The deed is 
given anno gre m° ccc" quarto (1304)." ^ Also Walter de Byset received a charter in 
the time of Robert the Bruce, after 1306, of the lands of Aboyne.-* These three Walter 
Bysets may be one and the same, namely, \Valter de Byset of Aboyne and Lessendrum. 
The next to be found is 

IV. Thomas Byset of Aboyne, &c. 

In Robertson's " Index of Missing Charters " in the time of David II., circa 1340, 
we find a charter to Thomas Byset of the lands of Aboyne.^ He may have been the 
father or near relative of 

\ Notes by D. Murray Rose. 4 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 35 ; Robertson's Index of 

3 Ragman Rolls. Missing Charters, p. 2. 

3 Notes by D. Murray Rose. 5 Robertson's Index of Missing Charters,"?. 49 ; 

Ant. A. and 6. II. p. 35. 

248 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

V. Walter Byset of Lessendrum. 

Of him we find several notices. He seems to have been a very important gentle- 
man, and is often found taking part in public business. In 1355, Walter Byset of 
Lessendrum is witness to a charter of the lands of Balhagardy, in the Garioch. given by 
Thomas, Earl of Mar, and Lord Garioch, to Lord Robert Erskine, knight, and to 
Christian Keith, his spouse.' In 1357, Walter Byset of Lessendrum is witness to a 
charter of Ade de Strachanen and Margaret, his spouse, of a portion of the lands of 
Glenkinety (Glenkindy), and one fourth part of Glenbowel.^ In 1364, in a prosecution 
and sentence " super nativis," he is described as " Walterus Byset, dominus de Lessen- 
drum, locum tenens vicecomitis de Banff." In another of the same year we find 
" Walterus dictus Byseth de Losthindrum." ^ There is among the family papers at 
Lessendrum an old and curious deed of surrender, by which Walter Byset makes over 
the whole lands of Lessendrum to William de Fenton, the Pope's legate, to be held by 
the Holy See — a method often followed in troublous times for the safe keeping of estates. 
There is no deed of restoration, but the fact of the deed of cession being in the 
possession of the proprietor of Lessendrum is proof of a restoration having taken place. 
The deed is drawn up by William Lenix, clerk of the Diocese of Brechin, and runs as 
follows : — " In ye name of the Lord. Amen. In ye year after the Incarnation, 1379, 
on the 14th day of July, in ye 2d of ye indiclion, and in ye ist year of ye Pontificate of 
the most Holy Father in Christ, Clement, by Divine Providence, Pope VII. of that 
name. In the presence of my notary, &c." The original is in Latin and written on 
vellum.* At the date of this instrument there were two Popes, Urban and Clement. 
The former was acknowledged by England, and the latter by Scotland. The next, a 
son probably, was 

VI. Patrick Byset of Lessendrum. 

He is mentioned as a witness to an agreement of date 1387. "Concordia inter 
dominum Episcopum Aberdonensem et Johannem de Forbes, &c., testibus Patricio 
Byset de Lessendrum, Wilelmo de Camera, &c." ^ This Patrick, or probably his son, 
led, in 141 1, the immediate Crown vassals of Strathbogie to the battle of Harlaw. This 
is mentioned in one of the poetical accounts of the battle.^ The next to be found also 
bears the same name. 

VII. Patrick Byset of Lessendrum. 

There is no doubt that others intervene between this Patrick and his predecessor, 
there being nearly eighty-two years between the two dates ; but they have left no trace 
in history of their existence, not even " umbra nominis." 

In " Douglas' Baronage," we find this Patrick as a witness to an arbitration in 1492 
between Alexander, vicar of Aberchirder, and Alexander Innes of Innes.' He also 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 329. 5 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 177. 

2 Id., p. 618. 6 Earldom of the Garioch (Davidson), p. 91 

3 Id. p. 477. ' 7 Douglas' Baronage, fol. p. 15. 

4 Lessendrum Charters. 



takes part in *' Perambulationc terarum ecclesie de Aberkerdour vocatarum le Yochry 
et Acbrady " along with William Meldrum de Fyvy, Alexander Murray de Cuthbardy, 
Palricius Thane de Inverkeithney, 1493.' I" 1498, Patrick Byset de Lessendrum takes 
part in the inquest of Alexander Kosuele.' 

Patrick Byset married Isobel Lindsay, and had issue by her a son and three 
daughters : — 

I. Patrick, his successor. 

1. A daughter, married to Alexander Gordon of Tillytarmont, who fell at Pinkie 

in 1547.3 

2. Beatrice, married to Walter I^slie, second laicd of New Leslie.* 

3. A daughter, married to William Leslie, first laird of Crichie.* 
Patrick Byset died in 1503. 

* In October, 1503, Isobel Lindsay, widow of Patrick Byset of Lessendrum, was 
found entitled to her tierce of the lands of Lessendrum, Mayns of Lessendrum, Cruche 
(Cruchie), Leys, &c. He was succeeded by his son, 

VIII. Patrick Byset of Lessendrum. 

In 1505, we find him taking a part in the inquisition of George Abercromby ; 
amongst the jury is " Patrick Byset de Lessendrum." ^ He married Catharine Gordon, 
daughter of William Gordon of Tillytarmont. This is evidenced by an MS. on the 
Gordons, in the possession of the representatives of tjie late Charles Dalrymple, of not 
later date, from internal evidence, than 1580. They had issue : — 

I. Patrick, his successor. 

II. William, who married the daughter of Mr. Patrick Leslie of Craigtoun, and 

had issue by her, John. 

1. Bessie, married Robert Forbes of Balinghame, and had by her, Patrick, 

John, Alexander, Margaret, and Isobel. 

2. Elizabeth married Alexander Thomson of Disblair, and had issue by her, 

Alexander, burgess of Aberdeen. 
Patrick Byset was succeeded by his son. 

IX. Patrick Byset of Lessendrum. 

He is found mentioned as a witness to a service of Archibald Campbell to the barony 
of Stratherne of date 1546.^ According to the MS. of 1580, above quoted, he married 
Murray, daughter of Murray of Cowbairdie, and had issue : — ' 

1 Ant. A. and B. II. pp. sio, 2iz, 314. 

2 Id., III. p. 334. 

3 Balbithan MS., p. 89. 

4 Leslie's History of Leslies, III. p. 34. 

6 Ant. A, and B. Ill, p. 519 

7 Id., p. 446. 

8 Thanes of Cawdor, p. 172. 

9 MS. 1580, C. E. D. 

2 50 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

I. Patrick, his successor, who was slain at Corrichie, of whom afterwards. 

1. Janet, married to John By?et, burgess of Aberdeen, and had issue — James, 

George, and Patrick. The latter married the daughter of Gilbert Byset of 
Pitmuxton, Mair of Fee of Aberdeen. 

2. Margaret, who married Thomas Baird, the son of a brother of Walter Baird 

in Banff. 
Patrick Byset fell at Pinkie in 1547, as is evidenced by the following retour made 
May 5, 1607 (sixty years after date of battle) — "Johannes Bissait haeres masculus 
Patricii Bissait qui obiit in conflictu de Pinkein patrui." ' He was succeeded by his son, 

X. Patrick Byset of Lessendrum. 

He took part with the Earl of Huntly in his rebellion against Queen Mary, and fell 
at Corrichie. He is included "in precepto remissionis," which the Earl of Huntly 
obtained for his friends, and in it is styled, " Patrick Bisset quondam de Lessendrum." - 
His sword (bearing the date October 22, 1562) is still to be seen at Lessendrum. 

Patrick Byset married , and had issue a son, George, who was but of 

tender years when his father died. 

XI. George Byset of Lessendrum. 

He was born in 1551 ; was called in family tradition the restorer — as the estate of 
Lessendrum was forfeited for the part his father took at Corrichie. The charter of 
restoration is dated 16 March, 161 1, and is to George Bisset and his son, Robert.^ 

Upon his tombstone, within what was the aisle of the old kirk of Drumblade, to 
which he gave a bell in 1604, is the following inscription : — " Hie jacet honorabilis vir 
Georgius Bisset de Lessendrum, qui obiit 25 January, 1623, aetatis suae anno 73. 
^tatem ornavit primam mihi vivida virtvs, sors rediviva domvs famam terra sol. . . . 
perennem indigetum requiem posthuma vita dedit." [Here lies an honourable man, 
George Bisset of Lessendrum who died 25 January, 1623, aged 73. Active virtue 
adorned his early youth, and the restitution of the honours of the decayed fortunes of 
his ancient house won for him an enduring reputation among his countrymen on earth. 
In the life beyond the grave he enjoys the eternal repose of the blessed.''] 

George Bisset was succeeded by his son, 

XII. Robert Bisset of Lessendrum. 

He was a staunch adherent of the Church of Rome, and suffered great persecution 
at the hands of the Covenanting Presbytery of Turriff. In the books of the Presbytery 
of Turriff it is recorded that he was excommunicated for refusing to attend the kirk and 
to sign the Solemn League and Covenant.^ "On 18 June, 1629, the Privy Council 

1 Ret. Spec. Abdn., No. 299. 4 Jervise' Inscriptions, I. p. 257. 

2 S. C. Mis., IV. p. 158. 5 Brebner's Notes on Presby. of Turriff 

3 Ant. A. and B. Ill p. 518. in Aberdeen Journal. 

Lcssendrum. 2 ; 1 

issued a charge aj^ainst R()l)crt Hisscl of Lcssendrum, and others representing, that 
notwithstanding all that had l)een reot-ntly tlone, they continue obstinate against the 
kirk and the law, going about as if nothing were amiss, and enjoying possession of their 
goods and gear, which properly belongs to His Majesty in escheat ; seeing by the latter 
circumstance that they are strengthened and fostered in their I'opish courses, the 
Council ordained that ol'tlcers at arms [)ass and pursue the rebels, enter their houses, 
and remove them furth thereof." ' 

He married the second daughter of (Icorge (iordon of Cocklarachie," by the 
daughter of James (Iordon of Merdrum, and had issue : — 
I, Alexander, his successor. 

1. Helen, who married Robert Crichton of Bainshole, called sometimes of 

DrumdoUo. Before her marriage she also experienced the tender con- 
sideration and mercies of the Presbytery of Turriff, for they declined to 
allow the banns of marriage between her and the said Robert Crichton 
to be proclaimed until the said Robert should grant a bond of ^500 
that they would both attend the kirk.^ Robert Crichton granted the 
bond, but did not long survive the marriage. His widow, after his 
death, married Alexander Gordon of Birkenburn, and had issue three sons.^ 

2, Isobel, excommunicated along with her father for refusing to attend the 

kirk, and to sign the Solemn League and Covenant. 
Robert Bisset died in or before 1646, and was succeeded by his son : — 

XIII. Alexander Bisset of Lessendrum. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — "September 20, 1652. Alexander 
Bisset de Lessendrum, heir of Maister Robert Bisset of Lessendrum, his father, in the 
lands and davach of Lessendrum, containing the Mains of Lessendrum, Renthie or 
Cruthie, and Knight's milne, with the milne in the barony of Drumblait, with the 
privileges of the peat moss within the bounds of the middle third part of the lands of 
Baigeshill, with the multures, &:c. The two pairts of the lands of Stonefield, the third 
pairt of the lands of Wedderburn, and the third pairt of the lands of Thomastown 
within the barony of Drumblait." '" 

This retour had evidently been made some years after his father's death, as he is 
mentioned in the Presbytery records of Turriff as being of Lessendrum in 1646. 
Probably his father's excommunication, and the fact of his having been denounced a 
rebel by the Privy Council, may have been the cause of the delay. 

Alexander Bisset had also to submit to the tender dealings of the Presbytery of 
Turriff. "October 20, 1647. Compeired Alexander Bisset of Lessendrum, and being 
accused of going on in rebellion with the rebels, he confessed that being threatened 
with fire and sword, he had given them men and keepit some rendevouses with them ; 

I Chamber's Domestic Annals, II. p. 34. 4 Balbiihan MS. 

3 Balbithan M.S. C. E. D. 5 Ret. Spec. Aberd. No. 492. 

3 Brebner's Notes of Presb. of Turriff in Aber. Jour. 

252 The Thanage of Ferviartyn. 

but refused that he had ever been at feights. He is ordained to sign the Solemn 
League and Covenant, and to sware to adhere to the samen in all time coming, with 
certification, if he shall contravene the same, he shall be censured as an apostate." ' He 
is soon censured as an apostate, and m 1650, he is again dealt with for asking the 
parishioners of Drumblade to sign the Duke of Hamilton's bond in defence of King 
Charles I. He was enjoined to confess his guilt on his knees, to crave God and the 
congregation forgiveness, especially those whom he had asked to subscribe the bond.^ 
After this he was for some time in peace, till it was discovered that certain Papists 
living on his land were not to be brought into the kirk. He was ordered to remove 
them, and among them his own sister, Isobel Bisset, who, all honour to her, remained 
firm in the faith of her fathers. She did not, like her sister, Helen, sell her religion for the 
sake of a husband, but she died excommunicated by the Covenanting Presbytery of 

Mr. Alexander Bisset married, in 1650, Ann, daughter of Robert Gordon of 
Straloch. She died in 17 14. They had the following issue : — 

I. Robert, his successor. 

II. William, a Major in the army, who had a son. Dr. Alexander, from 
whom the present family inherit, of whom afterwards. 

in. George. He was served heir to his brother, Charles, August 19, 1742.^ 

IV. Charles, died 1742. 

V. Lewis. 

VI. Alexander, and others. 

Mr. Alexander Bisset died in 1693, and was succeeded by his son, 

XIV. Robert Bisset of Lessendrum. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — "April 16, 1693. Robert Bisset of 
Lessendrum to his father, Alexander Bisset of Lessendrum, in the lands and davach of 
Lessendrum, comprehending the town and dominical lands of Lessendrum, &c.," much 
in the same terms as in the former one quoted. "• 

He was born in 1651 ; married, 1681, Agnes Abercromby, daughter of 

Abercromby of Birkenbog, and had issue : — 

I. James, his successor. 

II. Alexander, accidentally drowned. 

1. Jane, married in 1730, to James Gordon of Cocklarachie. 

2. Margaret. 

3. Ann, married, 1706, Peter Gordon of Ardmeallie, from whom the Hay 

Gordons, late of Mayen, are descended. 
He died 17 — , and was succeeded by his son, 

1 Brebner's Notes on Presb. of Turriflfin Aber. Joum. 3 Decen. Retours, 1742. 

2 Id. 4 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 492. 

Lessendrtivi. 253 

XV. James Bisset of Lessendrum. 

He married Anne, daughter of Dun of 'I'arty, commonly called " IJonnic Annie 
of Tarty." Her portrait may be seen at Lessendrum. She died in 1782. They 
had the following issue : — 

I. Robert, baptised October \.\, 1723. Witnesses, James CJordon of Cock- 
larachie, and Alexander Dun of Tarty. Robert died young. 

H, Alexander, his successor, baptised January 27, 1734. Witnesses, Mr. 
David Maitland and Alexander Forsooth. 

1. Anne. 

2. Agnes, baptised November 22, 1726. \\'itnesses, Patrick Dun of Tarty 
and James Gordon of Cocklarachie. 

3. Mary, married Rev. Mr. Abel, minister of Drumblade. 

4. Jean, baptised April, 1728. Witnesses, Alexander Dun of Tarty and 

James Gordon of Cocklarachie. 

5. Margaret, l)aptised December 24, 1730. Witnesses, Dun of 

Tarty and James Gordon of Cocklarachie. 

6. Elizabeth, baptised June 20, 1732. Witnesses, James Gordon of Cock- 

larachie and William Gordon of Lesmoir, 

7. Catharine, and others. 

James Bisset died in 1748, and was succeeded by his son, 

XVI. Alexander Bisset of Lessendrum. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — "1748, March 31. Alexander 
Bisset of Ivcssendrum to his father, James Bisset of Lessendrum, heir male of line and 
provision, &c." ' 

He was unmarried, and entailed the estate of Lessendrum, after the death of his 
sisters, on Maurice George Bisset, the son of Dr. Alexander Bisset, and grandson 
of Major William Bisset, as above mentioned. 

He died in 1795, and was succeeded by his sister, 

XVII. Anne Bisset of Lessendrum. 

Regarding her there is the following retour : — " Ann Bisset of Lessendrum to her 
brother, Alexander Bisset of Lessendrum, heir of tailzie and provision general. Dated 
17 October, 1795."= Her name may be seen on a chalice bequeathed by her to the 
Episcopal Church of Parkdargue, Forgue, 1802, and remodelled in 1866 by the 
Venerable Maurice George Fenwick Bisset, Lessendrum. Anne Bisset, Agnes 
Bisset, Margaret Bisset, and the last surviving sister, Mary Bisset or Abel, 
were succeeded by their kinsman, 

X Decen. Rets. 1743. 2 Decen. Rets. 1795. 

254 The Thatiage of Fermartyn. 

XVIII. Maurice George Bisset of Lessendrum. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — " Maurice Bisset or Morris George 
in Bath, to his cousin, Anne Bisset of Lessendrum, heir of tailzie and provision general. 
Dated i6 March, 1816.'" 

Dr. Alexander Bisset, above mentioned, the son of Major William Bisset, the second 
son of Alexander Bisset (XIII.) of Lessendrum, married Jane, daughter of General 
Bockland of Knighton, Isle of Wight, and had issue : — 

I. Maurice George, who succeeded to Lessendrum. 

II. William, D.D., Lord Bishop of Raphoe, who succeeded to Lessendrum 
and to Knighton, Isle of Wight. 

III. Alexander, married to Catharine Bagenal, and had issue, William, who 
also succeeded to Lessendrum. 

IV. George, D.D., who married the Lady Catharine Howard, daughter of the 
Earl of Suffolk. 

V. Henry, killed at sea. 

1. Elizabeth, married to William Fen wick of Lemmington, and had issue — 
I. William. II. Robert. III. The Venerable Maurice George, 
who married his cousin, the heiress of Lessendrum ; and others, who died 
in infancy. 

2. Sophia, married to Sir Robert Brownrigg, Bart., d. s. p. 

Maurice George Bisset of Lessendrum married Harriot, eldest daughter of John 
Mordaunt, Earl of Peterborough, and had issue : — 

1. Jane Harriot, of whom afterwards. 

2. Anne, who died in 1879. 

A monument to the memory of Mr. Bisset has been placed in the church of Drum- 
blade bearing the following inscription : — " Sacred to the memory of Maurice George 
Bisset, Esq. of Lessendrum, who died at Lessendrum, on the i6th December, 1821, in 
the 64th year of his age. This tablet is jointly inscribed by Harriot, his affectionate 
and mournful widow, and his brother and immediate successor, William, Lord Bishop 
of Raphoe, in honour of his name, and in grateful recollection of his many virtues that 
adorned his sacred character." 

He was succeeded by his brother, 

XIX. Right Rev. William Bisset, D.D., of Lessendrum, 
Lord Bishop of Raphoe. 

He married Jane, daughter of the Rev. Christopher Erie, but had no issue. The 
Bishop is buried at Drumblade, and the following inscription may be read on a marble 
tablet, with figures of mitre and crosier, the insignia of the Episcopal office, in the 
church of Drumblade : — " Sacred to the memory of William Bisset, D.D., Lord Bishop 

I Decen. Rets. 1816. 

Lessendnim. 255 

of Raphoe, and proprietor of Lesscndrum, who died on the 4lh of Sei)temhcr, 1834, 
aged 75 years." He was succeeded by his nephew, 

XX. William Bisset of Lessendrum. 

He was the son of Alexander Hisset by Catherine IJaj^^enal above mentioned. He 
married tlie Lady Ahcia Howard, dauj^diter of the ICarl of Wicklcnv, and had issue, a 
daughter, Jane I'Vances. 'I'he following is a certificate of her lja[)lisni : — " I certify that 
I have baptised Jane I-'rances, daughter of William liisset, Ksfj., and the I.ady Ahcia, 
his wife, at Lessendrum, according to the forms of the Church of England, this fifth 
day of February, 1833. Signed, !•'. Howard, vicar of Swords, Co. Dublin." 

Miss Bisset was married first to William Cilland ; secondly, in 1881, to Rev. Robert 
IJisset Elrington, vicar of Lower Brixton, Devon. 

Mr. William Bisset of Lessendrum died in 1858, and in virtue of Alexander Bisset's 
entail, the succession, instead of going to his daughter, reverted to Jane Harriot, 
eldest daughter of Maurice George Bisset of Lessendrum, who, on her father's death in 
1 82 1, had been left out in the cold, the males in the entail not being then exhausted. 

XXI. Jane Harriot Bisset of Lessendrum. 

She married her cousin, the Veneral)le Maurice George l"'enwick, son of William 
Fcnwick of Lemmington, by Elizabeth Bisset, his spouse. He was for some time 
Rector of Drumholm and Archdeacon of Raphoe. Archdeacon I'enwick, on his wife 
succeeding to the property of I^essendrum, assumed the name of Bisset. They had the 
following issue : — 

I. Mordaunt, born 1826. 

1. Janet, who succeeded her brother. 

2. Harriet. 

Mrs. Fenwick Bisset died in 1866, and was succeeded by her son. (The Venerable 
Maurice George Fenwick Bisset, her husband, died August 6, 1879, aged 82.) 

XXII. Mordaunt Fenwick Bissat of Lessendrum. 

He was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, and on leaving it he joined the 
ist Dragoon Guards, but left on inheriting the fine property of Daunscy, in A\'ilt- 
shire, left him by his grand-uncle, the Earl of Peterborough. He married, in 185 1, 
Susan, daughter and heiress of Francis Popham of Bagborough. He was M.P. for 
West Somersetshire. Mr. Bisset was a highly esteemed gentleman, beloved by his 
tenantry, to whom he was a just and considerate landlord. He died in 1884, and was 
buried in the churchyard of Bagborough. He was succeeded by his sister, 

XXIII. Mrs. Janet Elrington Bisset of Lessendrum. 

She was married to J. F'aviere Elrington, LL.D., Q.C., who died in 1883. Mrs. 
Elrington, on succeeding her brother, assumed the name of Bisset. They had issue : — 

256 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

I. Rev. Charles Elrington, some time vicar of Newbarnes, in Lancashire ; 

married, 1880, Edith E. H., eldest daughter of Rev. J. S. Moore, Rector 
of Crofton, in Yorkshire. This excellent young man, beloved by all who 
had the pleasure of his acquaintance, died s. p., December 12, 1888, aged 
39 years. 

II. Maurice, Captain in the Royal Engineers, married, 1884, Ann Isabella 

Brinkley, second daughter of the late W. S. Brinkley, and has issue : — 
I. Walter Favi^re, born Feb. 21, 1889. i. Janet Kathleen, born June 14, 

III. Rev. Mordaunt Elrington. 

I. Isabella, married Robert W. A. Holmes, C.B., Treasury Remembrancer, 
Ireland, and has issue — i. Edith J. II. Arthur N. 3. Norah K. 
4. Evelyn M. 5. Isabella R. 6. Evelyn Iris. VII. Robert C. E. 

The Mansion House of Lessendrum is finely situated. Considerable alterations and 
improvements were made by William Bisset soon after his accession to the property. 
The entry door is a Norman arch, and the staircase leading to the apartments is very 
fine, while the ceiling of the dining-room is enriched with the arms and quarterings of 
various members and connections of the family. 

There is a fine collection of paintings, many of them representations of the great 
English family of Mordaunt. The Admiral Lord Howard of Effingham, who com- 
manded Queen Elizabeth's fleet against the Armada, may be seen, and many other 
historical characters inherited by the Bisset family through their descent from the 
Mordaunts, Earls of Peterborough. 


According to Nisbet's " Heraldry," the Bissets of Lessendrum are now chief of the 
name, and bear the ancient arms of the family — the plain coat azure, and the bend 
argent. Neither motto nor crest is given, but the crest assumed by the family is a 
gnarled oak sprouting, with the motto, "Abscissa viresco." These indicate pretty 
correctly the history of the family. The oak has often been cut down, but in summer 
times it has grown green again. 


This barony now forms part of the Gordon and Richmond estates, but in ancient times 
it was very much divided, and at an early period it belonged to the Fentons, the 
descendants of Sir John Bisset of Lovat. 

In 1403, there is an indenture between William of Fenton on the one part, and 
Margaret of the Ard, I>ady of Ercles, and Thomas of Chisholme, her son and heir, on the 
other part. William of Fenton is to have the barony of Rethy in Angus, the land of 
Culace and Buttergask, in the Sheriffdom of Perth, the tenandry of Lcssendrum in the 
Sheriffdom of Aberdeen.' Again there is the following: — 1403, Margaret of the Ard, 
and her son Thomas of Chisholme, is to have the barony of Gask in Angus, the 
tenandry of Culmalegy, in the Sheriffdom of Aberdeen, while the barony of Drumblade, 
in the Sheriffdom of Aberdeen is to be divided, so that William of Fentown shall have 
the town of Sclewo (Sliach), and Margaret of Ard, and her son, Thomas, the towns of 
Drumulleys. The 40 shilling land of Gerry, and the whole of the Kirktown of Drum- 
blade being equally divided between them.- 

In 1440, there is a charter by King James II. confirming a charter by Margaret de 
Fenton of Beaufort, daughter of the deceased Walter of Fentoun, to her intended 
husband, Walter Ogilvy, son of the deceased, Patrick de Ogilvy of Uchterhouse, of the 
fourth part of the lands and manor of Beaufort, and the fourth part of her lands in the 
Sheriffdom of Inverness, and also, the fourth part of the lands of Cocklaw, Balmire, 
and Drumblait, in the Sheriffdom of Aberdeen.^ Again, in 1458, there is a grant by 
King James II. to Elizabeth Lindsay, daughter of David Lindsay of Lethnot, and of 
Margaret de Fentoun of Baky, and their heirs, whom failing, to her sisters and their 
heirs, of four parts of the lands of CuUace and Littil Buttergask, in the Sheriffdom of 
Forfar, and a fourth part of the lands of Drumblat." In 1459, we find the following 
charter by King James II. to Sir David Stewart, knight, and to Margaret, his wife, of 
the fourth part of the lands of Ard and Strathglass, in the Sheriffdom of Inverness, of 
the fourth part of the lands of Balmure, Cocklaw, Tortorstone, Buthlaw, Drumblat, and 
Tollie, in the Sheriffdom of Aberdeen, all in the king's hands by the forfeiture of Sir 
James Douglas, knight, and Janet of Fentown, his wife.^ In 1487, there is another 
transfer of the fourth part of Drumblait, *' Confirmation by King James III. of a charter 
by John I^nglands of CuUace, and Elizabeth Lindsay, his wife, to Patrick Barclay of 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 478. 4 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 513. 

2 Id., p. 478. 5 Id., IV. p. 68. 

3 Id., IV. p. 66. 


258 The Thanage of Fentiartyn. 

GrantuUy, of the lands of Drumblait, formerly belonging to Margaret Fentown, Lady of 
Baky, and,' in 1491, there is a confirmation by King James IV., of a charter by 
Margaret Fenton of Baky, David Neirne of Sanfurde, and Henry Douglas to Patrick 
Barclay of Grantully, of a fourth of the lands of Drumblait, formerly belonging to the 
deceased Janet Fentown, wife of William Hakkat, also in 1493, a confirmation of a 
charter by same Margaret Fentown, to the same Patrick Barclay, of the barony of 
Drumblait, with the superiority of Losthindrum.' 

About 60 years after this date we find the following confirmation charter : — " The 
king confirmed a charter of George Barclay of that ilk, in which, with the consent of 
Mr. James Barclay de Kynharroquy, and Mr Alexander Barclay, burgess of Aberdeen, 
he granted to Margaret Ogilvy, relict of John Stewart, Master of Buchan, for her life- 
time the lands of Kirkhill, Millhill, the half of the lands of the Kirkton of Drumblade, 
the lands of the Newton of Gerrie, with the superiority of Lessendrum, 27 June, issi."^ 
With regard to the superiority of Lessendrum, there is the following retour : — 4 February, 
1603, John Abernethy de Saltoun, was served heir of Alexander Abernethy de Saltoun, 
in the superiority of the lands and barony of Lessendrum.* 


In 1504, a new name appears in connection with portions of the barony of Drum- 
blade. John Hallyburton is mentioned as being absent from a head court of the 
sheriff of Aberdeen. ^ The next is 

II. Andrew Hallyburton of Drumblade. 

He fell at Pinkie, in 1547, and was succeeded by his son, 

III. George Hallyburton of Drumblade. 

As a minor he was served heir, 29 March, 1550, to his father Andrew Hallyburton 
of Pitcur, who fell at Pinkie, in the half of the lands of Drumblait, namely, half of the 
lands of the Kirkton (villae ecclesiasticae), third part of the lands of Gerry, and a sixth 
part of the lands of Culmalegy. There is a confirmation charter of these lands by the 
King, March 16, 1552.'^ The next is probably a son, 

IV. Sir James Hallyburton of Drumblade. 
Of him there is not much recorded, and we find him succeeded by his son, 

V. James Hallyburton of Drumblade. 

He was served heir, 6 October, 1619, to his father, Sir James Hallyburton of Pitcur, 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 514. 4 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 89. 

2 Id., p. 515. 5 Ant. A. and B. I. pp. 112, n8. 

3 Reg. Mag. Sig. 1551, No. 627. 6 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 11 ; Reg. Mag Sig. 1552, No. 767. 

The Barony of Drumblade. 259 

in the half of the lands and barony of Drumblade, namely, two farms of Dumoys, a 
third part of Clerrie, and a third part of Comalegie. He was succeeded by his brother,' 

VI. William Hallyburton. 

In January, 1629, William Halyburton of Titcur was served heir to his brother, James 
Halyburton of Pitcur, in the lands of a half of the barony of Drumblait, namely, two 
farms of Dummuie, with the third part of the lands of Gerrie, and a third part of 
Comalegie.'' The next proprietor is 

VII. James Halyburton. 

On January 11, 1653, was served heir to James Halyburton of Pitcur, his father's 
brother's son, in the lands of Kinrossie, Southtown of Kinrossie, called the Moat, &c., 
with the lands and barony of Drumblait, in the Sheriffdom of Aberdeen.^ His successor 

VIII. James Halyburton. 

On May, 1667, he was served heir male of James Halyburton of Pitcur, the son of 
the brother of his grandfather (second cousins), in the lands and barony of Drumblait, 
with certain other lands all united into the barony of Pitcur.'' The next is 

IX. David Halyburton. 

In October, 1672, he was served heir male of his brother german, James Halyburton 
of Pitcur, in the lands and barony of Drumblait, with certain other lands in Forfar and 
Perth, united into the barony of Pitcur ; also there is another retour in much the same 
terms, of date 26 October, 1681.^ Soon after this date the portions of the barony of 
Drumblait owned by the Halyburtons, pass from them, and in 1696, the date of the 
Poll Book, their names do not appear. 

The Gordons of Pitlurg at one time possessed portions of the barony of Drumblait. 
In 1548, John Gordon, son of John Gordon, who fell at Pinkie, was infeft in the lands 
of Crewethin, in the parish of Drumblait, and lordship of Strathbogie. There is a 
charter of confirmation of these lands in 1541, in which it is said that John Gordon 
attained them from Sir Thomas Ersken de Brechin.*^ In 1588, there is a charter from 
King James VI. to Sir John Gordon, knight, of the whole and entire three fourth part, and 
one-third part of a fourth part of a half of the lands and barony of Drumblait, namely, 
the lands of Sliach with " le park " of the same Adamestown, Silverhillock, Wistrone, 
Muthillock, Boigheid, Newton, the third part of the lands of Garrie, with the mills lying 
in the said barony of Drumblait ; and also was given to the said John Gordon a two 
part of the lands of Chapelton, a third part of Wedderburn, a two-part of the lands of 

1 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 164. 4 Ret. Spec. No. 381. 

2 Id., No. 211. 5 Reg. Spec. Abdn. Nos. 381, 408. 

3 Id., 315. 6 Ant. A. and B.III. p. 512 ; Reg. Mag. Sig. '541, No. 2349. 

26o The Thanage of Ferinartyn. 

Brownhill, with the mill, a third part of the lands of Thomastown, and a two-part of the 
lands of Cumalegy, lying in the said barony of Drumblait, which formerly belonged to 
Sir George Halyburton of Pitcur ; and for the faithful service of the said John Gordon, 
these lands were with others incorporated into one barony to be called Kinmundy.' 

The Gordons of Pitlurg had parted with these lands before 1642, for in that year we 
find them in possession of the Gordons of Lesmoir, as will be afterwards shown. In 
1696, Sir James Gordon, Bart, of Lesmoir, was in possession of a large portion of the 
disjecta tnembra of the barony of Drumblade, Gerry, Weston Slioch, Piriesmilne, 
Thorniebrae, Cravechin, Carnehill, Corsestone, Loanhead, Silverhillock, Boggyside. 
The rental of this portion in 1696 was ;!^i2oo, more than a third of the whole rental of 
the parish. 


II. William Gordon, 

second son of John Gordon of Essie (as to whose status see Parkhill), was designed of 
Tillytarmont, part of the Gordon property in Strathbogle, and married, according to 
Douglas, a daughter of Sir John Rutherford, but according to an old MS., of about one 
hundred and sixty years old, commonly called the Balbithan MS., a sister, and had 
issue : — 

I. George, of Tillytarmont. 

II. Patrick, ancestor of the families of Cairnburrow, Cocklarachie, Tylliangus, 

Ardmeallie, Auchintoul, and others. 
He died about 1480, and was succeeded by his son, 

III. George Gordon of Tillytarmont. 

He married Isobel, daughter of Berowald Innes of Meillars, and had issue four 
sons. This is evidenced by an old MS. of at least three hundred and twenty years of 

I. Alexander, who dwelt in Tylliminat, and was slain at Flodden. He 
married Bisset of Lessendrum's daughter, and was ancestor of the Gordons 
of Prony. 

II. James, of Lesmoir. 

III. William, of Brackley. 

IV. Thomas, of Browniehillock.- 

I Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 564 : 2 MS. 1580, C. E. D. ; Douglas' Baronage ; 

Reg. Mag. Sig. 1588, No. 1592. Gordon of Harperfield's Gordons. 

The Barony of Dniinbladc. 261 

IV. James Gordon of Lesmoir. 

According to tlic MS. of 1580 above (luotcd, " he hccaiiic anc wealthy and worthy 
man, and matle sundrie fair and great concjuests of land." He was twice married, his 
first wife being Margaret, a daughter of Patrick Stuart of I^ilhers, who bore him six sons 
and five daughters. 

I. George. 

II. James. " His father con(iucst the lands of Crichie and others in Fyvie, 
and gave them to the said James, who married Margaret Barclay, daughter 
of the laird of Gartly, who bore to him divers sons and daughters, brave 

III. Alexander. " His father conquest the lands of Birkenburn, all lyand in the 
I)arish of Keith, which he gave to his foresaid son, Alexander, with divers 
other possessions in wadset. This Alexander married Lsabel, daughter to 
George Gordon of Cairnburrow, who bore him mania sons. Secondly, he 
married Catharine, daughter of the laird of Abergeldie, who also bore him 
sundrie children ; and thirdly, he married a daughter of Alexander Gordon 
of Strathdone, who likewise bore him sundrie children." 

IV. William, of Terpersie. " This said James Gordon of Lesmoir conquest 
the lands of Terpersie,' which he gave to his fourth son, William Gordon." 
This William Gordon married Margaret Ogilvie, daughter of Sir Walter 
Ogilvy of Dunlugas. 

V. Patrick. " The said James Gordon of Lesmoir left to Patrick Gordon, his 
fifth son, soummes of money but no land. By industry he made a 
gentleman's living, and dwelt in the Enzie in Oxhill. He married Isobel 
Gordoune, daughter to Alexander Gordoune of Strathdone," - 

VI. John. "The said James Gordon of Lesmoir left to his sixth son, John, 
some wadset lands and soummes of money, but no possessions. By 
industry he made a gentleman's living, and dwelt in the Enzie at 
Litchieston." He married Elizabeth Abernethy, daughter of Michael 
Abernethy, Master of Saltoun, and had issue.^ 

1. Janet, married to William Seaton of Meldrum. "She had sundrie 
children, whose heirs are now (1580) lairds of Meldrum." 

2. Katharine, married to John Gordon, brother of the laird of Gight, and 
now heir to the lands of Gight, fallen to him by natural inheritance. 

3 Elizabeth, married on William Keith of Ludquharne, who was heir of 

4. Marjory. " Ane other daughter married on the laird of Blackball, there- 
after married on James Gordon of Kynnartie." 

I Reg. Mag. Sig. 1556, No. 877; 2 Reg. Mag. Sig. 1584, No. 754. 

.\nt. .\. and 13. IV. p. 539. 3 MS. 1580, C. E. D. 

262 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

5. Margaret. " The fifth married on Alexander Knowis, merchant in Aber- 
deen, a man of good heritage." 
The said James Gordon of Lesmoir, after the decease of Margaret Stuart, married 
Margaret Ogilvie, Lady Gartly, daughter of Sir Alexander Ogilvie of Findlater, knight,' 
who bore him sundrie sons, of whom two came to position, 

I. Thomas, the eldest. " His father gave to him the lands of Seggieden, and 

he married a gentlewoman called , who bare him sundrie sons and 

daughters. This Thomas was slain with his two sons, James and William, 
very brave gentlemen, under the Earl of Huntly's banner, on a field called 
Auchinachie, against George, Earl of Argyle," From him, according to 
Douglas, the Gordons of Buthlaw and Newtyle are descended.'' They, 
however, claim descent from another branch, as will be shown afterwards. 

II. Henry, of Dilspro. He married a daughter of the laird of Muchalls called 

Eraser, who married first, Gordon of Haddoch. Thereafter he married 
one called Agnes Hepburne, who had children. This Henry Gordon 
made a fair conquest in Buchan. 

1. Catharine, married to Blackball of Barra. 

2. Elizabeth, married to Knowis of Ashintilly.^ 

James Gordon of Lesmoir and Margaret Ogilvie, the wife of his son William, are 
mentioned in a charter of confirmation, of date 1556. James Gordon of Lesmoir died 
before 1559, and was succeeded by his son," 

V. George Gordon of Lesmoir. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — " George Gordon of Colholstane, 
heir of James Gordon of Lesmoir, his father, in the lands of Balmaude, Gerachtie, and 
Craighead, June 23, 1559." ^ Both Douglas and Gordon say he died in the life-time of 
his father, but the retour above quoted shows that he survived his father. He married 
Catharine Forbes, daughter of Alexander Forbes of Tollie in Mar, who bore to him 
sundrie sons and daughters. This George Gordone made ane great conquest, nothing 
inferior to his father, James. He had two sons that came to perfection, and three 
daughters. One son died in infancy.^ 

I. Alexander, his heir. 

II. James, died in infancy. 

III. John, of Newton. 

1. Janet, married to William Forbes of Tolquhon. 

2, Jane, married to Ogilvie of Carnousie. 

3. , married to Innes of Auchintoul ; secondly, Grant 

of Ballindalloch ; thirdly, to John Gordon of Birsemoir, 

1 Reg. Mag. Sig. 1556, No. 877 ; 4 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 537. 

Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 530. 5 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 28. 

2 MS. 1580. 6 MS. 1580 (C. E. D.) 

3 Id. C. E. D. ; Balbithan MS. 

The Barony of Drtimbladc. 263 

(ieorge Gordon of Lcsmoir died in 1600; but before proceeding with Alexander, 
his heir, we shall give the deduction of John, his third son, from whom (the late) Sir 
Alexander Anderson, knight, advocate, Aberdeen, and the Hutchisons of Cairngall, &c., 
are descended. 

John Gordon of Newton. 

Me got from his father, George Gordon of Lesmoir, the land of Glasgowforest, 
Newtone of Cuisalniond, Wranghame, with sundrie other lands in the Garioch, which 
were confirmed by Royal charters, 23 November, 1591.' He married Margaret Udny, 
daughter of the laird of Udny. They had issue two sons and six daughters : — 

I. James, of Williamstone, commonly so called as he lived there. 

II. George, of Sheelagreen, of whom afterwards. 

1. A daughter, married to Leslie of VVarthill. 

2. Elizabeth, married to Sir James Leslie of Wardes. 

3. Helen, to William Leslie of Ryehill. 

4. Isobel, to Gordon of Beldornie. 

5. , to the laird of Auchterford. 

6. Barbara, to Arthur Johnston of Caskieben.'' 
In 1592, there is a caution by Sir George Ogilvie of Dunlugas for John Gordon of 
Newton and James Gordon, his son and apparent heir, in two thousand merks each, 
that they will not harm Alexander Gordon in Stenhouse.^ In the Privy Council records 
frequent mention is made of John Gordon of Newton. The whole family was 
frequently in trouble. Thus, in 1592, we find John Hay of Ury and John Gordon of 
Newton accused before the justices in the Tolbooth, Edinburgh, for hearing Mass 
against the Act of Parliament. They plainly confessit, and were ordained, John Hay to 
pay to the treasurer one thousand merks, and John Gordon also to pay one thousand 

II. James Gordon of Newton and Williamstone. 

As he resided at Williamstone, he was generally known as of that property. He 
received from his father a charter of Newton, Wrangham, Williamstone, &c., which 
charter was confirmed to the said James Gordon by King James VI. in 1599." He 
married Isobel, daughter of Forbes of Monymusk, and by her had an only son, George. 
In 1644, he was taken prisoner at Harthill by the Covenanters, Leslie and Middleton, 
and was beheaded at Edinburgh. = 

III. George Gordon of Newton. 

He was served heir to his father, James Gordon, as we learn from the following 
retour : — " George Gordon of Newton, heir male to James Gordon of Newton, his 

1 MS. 1580, C. E. D., Reg. Mag. Sig- 1S91, 3 Priv. Counc. Reg. V. p. 764 ; do. VI. p. 54. 

Nos. 1658 and 1964. 4 Newton Charters. 

2 MS. Pedigree, penes Editor. 5 Pedigree MS. penes Editor. 

264 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

father, in the lands and barony of Newton, Wranghame, lands of Pulquhyt, Kirktown 
of Culsalmond, Lithinghame, Williarastone, &c., 10 June, 1644."' 

He married Janet, daughter of John Leslie of Wardes, who was the widow of John 
Gordon of Avochie.'' He had issue four sons and four daughters : — 

I. William, married Anna, daughter of Sir James Sibbald of Rankeillor. 
After his death she married Peter Uunbar of Dunphail. 

II. James, who succeeded, and married Janet Buchan of Auchmacoy.^ 

III. Alexander, married a daughter of Leslie of Warthill. 

IV. George, mentioned in a deed of 1643. 

I. A daughter, married to Walter Cochrane. 

2. , married to Rickart of Auchnacant. 

3. , married Keith of Kinaldie." 

Mr. George Gordon was succeeded by his second son, 

rV. James Gordon of Newton. 

He married Janet, daughter of Buchan of Auchmacoy, and had issue : — 
I. James, who married the lady of Gight, but had no issue. 

1. A daughter, married Cummins; of Birness. 

2. A daughter, married Walter Gordon, merchant burgess, Aberdeen. 

The family of Gordon of Newton having espoused the Royal cause suffered much. 
They were frequently fined, imprisoned, and so terribly overwhelmed with pecuniary 
difficulties, that they were deprived of the lands of Newton. Robert Forbes, called the 
" Tutor of Craigievar," pursued them with a relentless animosity. Purchasing all the 
debts and mortgages on the estate, which were by no means few, he got at last posses- 
sion of the estates of Newton. ^ Newton afterwards passed to a family of the name of 
Davidson, one of whom marrying the heiress of Gight assumed the name of Gordon. 
Newton eventually came into the possession of another family of the name of Gordon, 
and is presently owned by Alexander Morison Gordon, convener of the County Council 
of Aberdeen. 

The representation of this family devolved on the Gordons of Sheelagreen, to whom 
we now return. (See above.) 

I. George Gordon of Sheelagreen, 

second son of John Gordon, I. of Newton, married Christian, daughter of Gordon of 
Cocklarachie, and had issue, five sons and one daughter : — * 

I. George, his successor. 

II. Alexander, married Newmachar's daughter. 

III. John, married Seton of Minnes' daughter. 

1 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 275. 4 Gordon of Newton Papers and MS. penes Editor. 

2 Marriage Cont. penes Gordon of Newton. 5 Newton Charters. 

3 Gordon of Newton Papers. 6 MS. Pedigree, penes Editor. 

The Barony of Dnimbladc. 261 

IV. ^Villiam, married liaillie IJIair's daughter in Ord. 

V. Hugh, married Patrick Duncan's daughter in Scotstown. 

I. A daughter, married to Cruickshank of Tillymorgan. 

George Gordon of Sl>eelagreen was succeeded by his eldest son, 

II. George Gordon of Sheelagreen. 

He married first, Helen Erskine, daughter and heiress of Erskine of Rothney. There 
is a charter of Little Wranghame to George Gordon and Helen Erskine of Rothney, of 
date May 2, 1665.' By her he had one son : — 

I. George. 

He married secondly, Marjory Moir, daughter of John Moir of Barnes, by whom he 
had a son : — " 

II. William. He left the estate of Rothney to him, though it came by his first 

wife, Helen Erskine, the mother of George Gordon. He married, and had 
a son, George, who, in 1772, is retoured heir of line to his father, William 
Gordon.3 The descent of the Gordons of Rothney, according to the 
author of the " Earldom of Garioch," is now extinct. 
George Gordon of Sheelagreen, taking the title of Rothney, matriculated arms for 
himself thus : — 

" The said George Gordon of Rothney, whose grandfather was a second son of the 
family of Lesmoir, for his achievement and ensigne armorial, bears azure, a fess chcquy, 
argent, and of the first, betwixt three boars heads^ erased or, all within a bordure 
indented as the second, on ane helmet befitting his degree, with a mantle gules doubled 
argent and a wreath of his colours is set for his crest, issuing out of the torse, ' a man 
presenting a gun all proper.' The motto is ane scroll, ' Vel pax vel bellium.' Granted 
30 March, 1677. Signed Charles Erskine, Lyon." He was succeeded in Sheelagreen 
by his son, 

III. George Gordon of Sheelagreen. 

He married Elizabeth Udny, daughter of Robert Udny of Auchterellon. Their 
marriage contract is dated 27 February, 1701 ; had a charter of the lands of Sheela- 
green, dated August, 1707. By Elizabeth Udny he had at least one son,^ 

IV. George Gordon of Sheelagreen. 

He married Anne Donaldson, heiress of Cocklaw, as is evidenced by the following 
retour : — ^ " 1746. Ann Gordon or Donaldson, wife of George Gordon of Sheelagreen, 
to her father, James Donaldson of Cocklaw, Ap. 16." James Donaldson was of the 
Kinnairdie family on the Deveron. They had issue two sons and three daughters : — ^ 

1 Index of Titles of Sheelagreen. 4 MS. penes Editor ; Mar. Con. penes Rept. 

2 MS. Pedigree, penes Editor. of late Sir Alex. Anderson, knight. 
■\ Decen. Rets. 1772. 5 Decen. Rets. 1746. 

6 Sheelagreen Title-Deeds. 

266 TJie Thanage of Fermartyji. 

I. Alexander, his successor. 

II. James, of Little Cocklaw. His brother was served heir to him in Little 

Cocklaw,' 17 February, 1766. 

1. A daughter. 

2. A daughter. 

3. - Catharine, married, in 1754, Alexander Findlay, chirurgeon, Fraserburgh, 

and had issue — i. Martha, married William Irvine of Corniehaugh, in the 
parish of Forgue, and had issue. 2. Elizabeth, married James Gray, 
Fraserburgh, and had issue. 3. Ann, married George Watt, surgeon. 
Knock, Old Deer, d. s. p. 4, Helen, married Rev. William Anderson, 
15 January, 1807, minister of Strichen, and left issue, among others, Sir 
Alexander Anderson, knight. Lord Provost of Aberdeen, J.P. and D.L., 
who married Rachel, daughter of William Johnstone of Viewfield, and has 
issue living — I. Andrew, called to the bar, Lincoln's Inn, January, 1863. 
I. Katharine, married Rev. A. H. Charteris, D.D., Professor of Biblical 
Criticism in the University of Edinburgh, Dean of the Chapel Royal, one 
of Her Majesty's chaplains for Scotland, and Moderator of the General 
Assembly, 1892. 2. Helen Rachel. 
Mr. George Gordon sold Sheelagreen in 1744 to William Gordon, and sometime 
thereafter purchased Invernettie in Buchan. He was succeeded by his son, 

V. Alexander Gordon of Invernettie and Glendaveny. 

He married, 1771, Jane, daughter of Thomas Arbuthnott, Montrose, brother of the 
sixth Viscount Arbuthnott.^ Regarding Mrs. Gordon, there is the following retour : — 
"Jean Gordon or Arbuthnott, wife of Alexander Gordon of Glendaveny, to her brother, 
Alexander George, son of Thomas Arbuthnott, coheiress, provision general, August 10, 
1774."'' They had issue : — 

I. Robert, who sold Invernettie and bought Ashmore in Perthshire, married 

Anderson, daughter of Anderson of Techmuiry, d. s. p. 

I. Catherine, married Major William Forrester, twenty-second laird of Culmore 
and Culbeg, Stirlingshire. Regarding her there is the following retour : — 
" Katharine Gordon or Forrester, in Edinburgh, to her father, Alexander 
Gordon of Invernettie who died, 8 April, 1827, heir special in parts ot 
Invernettie, and in Wardes, Acquisitin, Wardhead, &c., Aberdeenshire."^ 
They had issue, i. Mary Forrester, married to James Hutchison of Spring- 
field, son of Colonel Hutchison of Cairngall — issue seventeen children, 
among whom were his eldest son, John Hutchison of Ashmore. The 
second son of James Hutchison, William, acquired the estate of Cairngall, 
formerly in possession of his grandfather Colonel Hutchison. He married 

1 Decen. Rets. 1766. 4 Decen. Rets. 1774. 

2 Mar. Con. penes. Repres. of late Sir. Alex Anderson, knight. 5 Id. 1827. 

3 Mar. Con. penes. Editor. 

The Barony of Dnimblade. 267 

Helen, daughter of John Duncan, advocate, Aberdeen, issue — William 
Ernest, now of Cairngall, and a daughter, Helen. 2. Catharine Forrester, 
married George Crichton of Viewforth, Edinburgh, issue — George, William, 
John, Catharine (Mrs. Scott), Elizabeth Dick (Mrs. Adie, Tibbermore), 
Isabella (Mrs. Alexander Temple, Strathtay), Jemima Mary (Mrs. William 
Temple, St. Margaret's, Forgue). 3. Isabella married Captain Hunter, 
Edinburgh, issue — one daughter, Elizabeth Arbuthnott. 4. Elizabeth 
Arbuthnott died unmarried. 

We now return to No. VI of the Lesmoir descent as above narrated. 

VI. Alexander Gordon of Lesmoir. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — " Alexander Gordon, heir male of 
George Gordon of Lesmoir his father, in the lands of Grodie, in the barony of Kinnadie, 
October 3, 1600." ' 

Alexander Gordon, heir of George Gordon of Lesmoir his father, in the lands and 
Glasgow Forest in the barony of Carnecrumlan, and by annexation, in the barony of 
Glencuthill,^ December 12, 1600." 

He married Anne, daughter of Alexander Forbes of Pitsligo, and had issue — four 
sons and three daughters : — 

I. James, his heir, afterwards Sir James Gordon, bart. 

II. John, minister of Crimond. 

III. George. 

IV. Alexander. 

1. Katharine, married Alexander Burnett of Leys. 

2. Agnes, married Bannerman of Waterton. 

3. Janet, married Sir James Crichton of Frendraught. 
Alexander Gordon of Lesmoir, died 1609, and was succeeded by his son, 

VII. Sir James Gordon of Lesmoir, Bart. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — " James Gordon, heir of Alexander 
Gordon of Lesmoir his father, in the lands of Balmaud, Garauchtie, Craigheid, Morleis, 
and the mill of Balmaud, April 10, 1610."^ 

When a young man he was engaged with the Earl of Huntly in the slaughter of the 
Earl of Moray, at Donibristle, a.d. 1592, for which he obtained remission under the 
great seal, " Jacobo' Gordon apparent! de Lesmoir pro arte et parte, &c., quondam Jacobi 
Moraviensis comitis, date, 18 March, 1593." 

He being a man of great parts and merit was created by Charles I. a baronet. The 
patent is to " Jacobo Gordon, baronetto de Lesmoir, et hoeredibus suis masculis quibus- 

1 Ret. Spec. No. 71. 3 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 126 ; Reg. Mag. Sig. 

2 Id. Abdn No. 73. 1591. No. 2259. 

268 TJte Tkanage of Fermartyn. 

cumque terrarum baroniae et regalitatis de Nova Scotia in America," dated, i 
September, 1625. 

He married Rebecca, daughter of Keith of Ravenscraig and had issue : — 

I. James, who died in France, September 5, 1633, leaving by a daughter of 

Sir Thomas Urquhart of Cromarty, one son, James. This James 
died in July, 1634, having married a daughter of Menzies of Pitfodels, by 
whom he left one son, James, who succeeded his great-grandfather in 
Lesmoir, and the baronetcy ; one daughter married Gordon of Beldorny, 
another Abercrombie of Glassaugh.' 

II. William of Broadland, who succeeded his grand-nephew, James, in the 


III. Alexander, of Gerry. 

I. Jean, married to Gordon of Craig. 
Sir James Gordon died 164 r, and was succeeded by his great-grandson, as is 
evidenced by the retour about to be quoted.^ 

VIII. Sir James Gordon of Lesmoir, 2 ad Bart. 

Both Douglas and Gordon of Harperfield in their deduction, say that the first 
baronet was succeeded by his second son, William, but according to the following retour 
this is not the case. 

"April 24, 1642, Dominus Jacobus Gordon de Lesmoir miles baronetus haeres 
masculus Domini Jacobi Gordon de Lesmoir militis baronetti proavi (great-grandfather) 
in Terris de Carvechin, Thornwrae, Corsiestane villae et Terris de Sliauche, Adamstone, 
cum parte villas et terrarum de Chapeltoune in Drumblait, &c." '• 

Sir James died soon after without issue, and was succeeded by his grand-uncle, 

IX. Sir William Gordon, 3rd Bart. 
He was second son of James, ist Bart. He married, and had issue : — 

I. William, his heir. 

II. Alexander James, portioner of Broadland, who, according to information in 
the possession of Mr. Gordon of Buthlaw, married his cousin, Anna Gordon 
Buthlaw, of whom afterwards. 

Sir William Gordon died 1672, and was succeeded by his son, 

X. Sir William Gordon, 4th Bart, of Lesmoir. 

Regarding him there is this retour : — " October 9, 1672, William Gordon of Lesmoir, 
heir of James Gordon of Lesmoir his grandfather, in the lands of Essie, with the croft 
called croft of Auchinleck infra baroniam de Huntlie."^ 

1 Riddell's Notes on Lesmoir in Doug. Bar. in Ad. Lib. Edin. ^ Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 260. 

2 Id. 5 Id. No. 409 

3 Id. 

The Barony of Dtiimblade. 269 

He married Margaret, daughter and heiress of Ixarmont of Balcombie in Fife, a 
Lord of Session in Scotland, and had issue : — 

I. James, his successor. 

II. William, who got the estate of Balcombie in Fife. He was bred to the law, 
was King's solicitor in the reign of James V'll. 

1. Margaret, married to Alexander Duff of liraco. 

2. Anne, married to James Ogilvie, a brother of the Earl of Mndlater. 
Sir William died , and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

XI. Sir James Gordon, 5th Bart, of Lesmoir. 

He married Jane, only daughter of Sir John Gordon of Iladdo, by whom he had 
five sons and three daughters : — 

I. William, his heir-apparent, who married Margaret, only daughter of Duff 
of Drummuir. He died before his father, leaving issue an only son, 
William, who succeeded his grandfather, Sir James. 

II. George, who, being bred to the law, was an advocate before the Court of 
Session. He married the heiress of Sands, and d. s. p. 

III. Alexander, who carried on the line of the family. He was collector of 
Customs, Aberdeen ; married Isobel, daughter of Alexander Gordon, 
merchant in Rotterdam, son of Francis Gordon of Craig, and had issue- 
five sons and eight daughters : — 

I. James. I u *u r 1 • 1 
■' > both died unmarried. 

II. George. ) 

III. Alexander, succeeded to the baronetcy of Lesmoir. 

IV. John, an officer, died unmarried. 

V. Thomas, Dutch Consul at Lcith. 

1. Jean, died in infancy. 

2. Isobel, married Robert Logic, Consul at Algiers. 

3. Margaret, died unmarried. 

4. Anne, married Archibald Christie, of Keith. 

5. Agnes. 

6. Mary. 

7. Catharine. 

8. Mary. 

IV. John, who purchased the lands of Kinellar in Aberdeenshire, and married 
Henrietta, daughter of Lord Saltoun. 

V. Robert, an officer in the army, d. s. p. 

1. Anne, married to Robert Farquharson of Finzean. 

2. Jean, married to Sandilands of Crabston. 

3. Margaret, died unmarried. 

270 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Sir James Gordon died , and was succeeded by his grandson, 

XII. Sir William Gordon, 6th Bart, of Lesmoir. 

only son of William Gordon, heir-apparent of Sir James Gordon, by Margaret Duff, 
daughter of Duff of Drummuir. This Sir William Gordon married Lilias, daughter of 
Gordon of Carnousie. He sold, in 1739, Corvichen to Andrew Hay of Mountblairy." 
He died without issue in 1750, and was succeeded by the nearest collateral male, a 

XII. Sir Alexander Gordon, 7th Bart, of Lesmoir. 

He was third son, as above narrated, of Alexander Gordon, third son of Sir James 
Gordon, Bart. Regarding him there is the following retour : — " Sir Alexander Gordon 
of Lesmoir to his cousin. Sir William Gordon, Bart, who died 15 September, 1750, 
heir special in parts of Chappeltown, Wedderburn, Brownhill, Carlogie, Sliach, in Aber- 
deenshire, 23 June, 1751. To his brother, Captain John Gordon, heir of conquest 
general, March 28, 1764. To his grandfather. Sir James Gordon, heir male general, 
1765.'"' He married Margaret Scott, daughter of Robert Scott of Druminald, Forfar- 
shire, and had issue : — 

I. Alexander, who went to China, and predeceased, unmarried, his father. 

II. George, died unmarried in the West Indies. His brother, Francis, served 
heir to him, 10 December, 1790.3 

III. Francis, succeeded as eighth baronet. 

IV. John, died unmarried, predeceased his father. 

1. Anne, married William Lumsdaine, clerk to the Signet, and had issue. 

2. Diana, born 1766, married Charles Irvine, second son of Alexander Irvine 
of Drum ; Captain 57th Regiment, afterwards Major-General unattached ; 
died in 1819. His wife died in 1855. They had issue : — 

I. Alexander, an officer H.E.I.C.S., died unmarried at Java, 1816. 

II. Charles Francis, midshipman, R.N. ; lost in command of a prize 
at sea, 181 2. 

III. George, an officer H.E.I.C.S. in the 4th Local Horse, died , 


1. Margaret, died unmarried at Leamington, 1849. 

2. Mary, born 1796, married Rev. Charles Wimberley, Chaplain 
H.E.I.C.S., and afterwards Rector of Scole, Norfolk. She died 
in 1887 aged 91. They had issue : — 

I. Charles Irvine, born 1826, died in infancy. 

II. Douglas, born 1828, an officer 20th Regiment, after- 
wards 79th Highlanders ; served in Crimea and in 

1 M'Donald's Place Names of Strathbogie. 3 Decen. Rets. 1790. 

2 Decen. Rets. 1751, 1764, and 1765. 

The Barony of Drumblade. 27 1 

Indian Mutiny ; married Helen Charlotte, daughter of 
Major Neil Campbell, H.E.I. C.S., son of Campbell of 
Kilmartin, and widow of Major Colin Campbell of 
Kilmartin and Blackhall. Captain Wimberley is a 
J. P. for the county of Inverness, and Hon. Sheriff- 
Substitute. He has issue two sons and two daughters. 

III. Charles Irvine, lx)rn 1830, now Vicar of East Chinnock, 
Somersetshire ; married, and has issue three sons and 
five daughters. 

IV. Edwin Balfour, born 1831, an officer H.E.I.C.S., some 
time on Bengal Staff Corps ; assistant Political Agent 
to Governor-General in Rajpootna ; married, and had 
a son and one daughter. He died in 1864. 

V. Henry Daniell, born 1855, died in infancy. 

VI. Reginald, born 1841, an officer Bengal Staff Corps, now 
Colonel on retired list, formerly Deputy-Superintendent, 
Port Blair, Andaman Islands ; married, and has three 
sons and one daughter. 

1. Mary Florence Lumsdaine, born 1833 ; married Rev. 

Samuel Gray (deceased), some time Rector of Lecon- 
field, in the county of York, and had issue two sons. 

2. Julia Daniell, born 1839 ; married first, Crawford James 

Campell, Executive Engineer, Public Works Depart- 
ment under Government, by whom she had one son ; 
secondly, Brigade-Surgeon Albert B. Robertson, 
Medical Staff, formerly assistant Surgeon, 15th Hussars. 

3. Margaret, married John Bowman of Gayfield, near Montrose, and had issue. 

4. Isabella, died young.' 

Sir Alexander Gordon was in great pecuniary difficulties. Newton Gerrie, Drum- 
blade, was bought in 1765 from his trustees and creditors by the Duke of Gordon. 
Essie and Lesmoir were purchased by the Duke in 1780 from the trustees of John 
Grant of Rothmaise, who, a few years previously, had purchased them from Sir William 
Gordon. Sir Alexander Gordon died in 1782, and was succeeded by his third son,= 

XIV. Sir Francis Gordon, 8th Bart. 

He went to India, in the H.E.I.C. Civil Service, as a writer in 1781. He returned 
home in 1800, having been appointed Resident at Calicut in 1791, and resigned the 
service in 1802, and died in 1837. With him the male line of this old family became 
extinct, and the large domains which they once possessed had long before his death 
passed away. " Sic transit gloria mundi." 

I Notes by Captain Douglas Wimberley. 2 M'Donald's Place Names of Strathbogie. 

2/2 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 


We now return to the Gordons of Buthlaw, a descendant of whom still retains the 

According to Douglas and Gordon of Harperfield, the Gordons of Buthlaw are 
descended from Thomas Gordon of Seggyden, eighth son of James Gordon, first of 
Lesmoir. He is also descended (according to information in the possession of the 
present proprietor of Buthlaw), from Alexander James, portioner of Broadland, second 
son of ^^'illiam Gordon, third baronet of Lesmoir. James Gordon married, and had a 
son, James, who married his cousin, Anna Gordon of Buthlaw, and acquired by charter 
dated, 4 June, 1664, the barony of Buthlaw, the Outmoor of Lesmoir, and the lands of 
Thundertown. In the charter he is described as portioner of Broadland.' They had 
issue a son, 

II. Thomas Gordon of Buthlaw. 

His father, portioner of Broadland, and his wife, Anna of Buthlaw, executed a dis- 
position of the lands of Buthlaw in his favour. He married and had issue : — 

I. David. 

II. Thomas, who succeeded his brother. 

Thomas Gordon dying about 1694, was succeeded by his eldest son, 

III. David Gordon of Buthlaw. 
He dying without issue, was succeeded by his brother, 

IV. Thomas Gordon of Buthlpw. 

He was Professor of Humanity in King's College, Aberdeen, 1739. He conveyed 
in 1712, the lands of Buthlaw to his son, Charles, an advocate in Aberdeen. 
Thomas Gordon died 1 7 — , and was succeeded by his son, 

V. Charles Gordon of Buthlaw. 

He married in 1724, Jean, daughter of John Udny of Newtyle. The other daughter, 
Anna Udny, married John Sandilandsof Countesswells, who had a son, John Sandilands, 
from whom Charles Gordon purchased his mother's moiety of Newtyle. He had by 
his wife, Jean Udny, six sons : — 

I. William, died unmarried, 

II. John, advocate. He married, Anne, eldest daughter of Rev. James 
Barclay, the last established minister of Peterhead before the Revolution 
of 1688, and d. s. p. 

III. Charles, merchant in Aberdeen. He married, Jane, youngest daughter of 
Rev. James Barclay, minister of Peterhead. This Jane Gordon or Barclay 

1 Pirie-Gordon of Buthlaw Charters. 

The Barony of Drumblade. 273 

was served heir to her brother, James Barclay of Cairness, who died, 4 
January, 1765, in Arthur's Nook, Port of Cairness, Aberdeenshire.' They 
had issue : — 

I. Charles, who succeeded his uncle John, 

1. Ann, married to Dr. Young of Fawside, Kincardineshire, and had 

issue, (I. a son. Dr. Wm. Young, who succeeded to Fawside, and 
married his cousin, Mary, daughter of Francis Logic, and Jean 
Gordon, and had issue, a daughter, who predeceased her parents.) 
I. Jane, married Bishop Torry, and had issue. 2. Daughter, 
married Mr. Ellis, d. s. p. 

2. Jean, married Francis Logic of Middlefield, and had issue, i. 

Mary, who married her cousin. Dr. Young, and had issue, i. 
daughter, who predeceased her parents. 2. Jean, married to J. 
Putnam, who d. s. p. 3. Elizabeth, died unmarried. 4. Ann, 
married to Alexander Pirie of Stoneywood, and had issue, of 
whom afterwards. 

IV. Charles, d. s. p. 

V. Alexander, d. s. p. 
VL James, d. s. p. 

Charles Gordon of Buthlaw was succeeded by his second son, 

VL John Gordon of Buthlaw and Newtyle. 

He died in July, 1775, and was succeeded by his nephew, as above narrated. 

VII. Charles Gordon of Buthlaw. 

Regarding him there is the following retour : — " Charles Gordon of Buthlaw was 
served heir, 2 April, 1775, to his uncle, John Gordon of Buthlaw, advocate, who died, 
July, 1775." Heir of provision special in the lands, Mains and Manor Place of Newtyle, 
Drums, Mains of Buthlaw, Cadger Hill, &c., Aberdeenshire. Heir portioner general."^ 

Charles Gordon married Miss Forbes, daughter of Charles Forbes of Ballogie. We 
may add that the sons of Rev. James Barclay, above mentioned, having become possessed 
of a large estate in the West Indies, purchased the lands of Cairness and Cairnglass in 
the parish of Lonmay from Lord Saltoun, sometime after 1732. Having both died 
without issue, George in 1756, and James in 1764, they left their large possessions to their 
only surviving sister, Mrs. Gordon of Buthlaw. She, in 1776, conveyed these estates to 
her nephew, Charles Gordon, who afterwards purchased the estate of Lonmay from 
Mr. Urquhart of Craigston, having then in his possession the estates of Newtyle, Cairness, 
Cairnglass, besides Buthlaw and the West Indies property.* 

1 Decen. Rets. 1765. 3 Decen. Rets. 1776. 

2 Id. 1775. 4 Notes penes RepresenUtive of late Dean Torry. 


274 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

In 1792, he built the House of Cairness, which was finished in 1797, and cost about 
;^3o,ooo. By his wife, Miss Forbes, he had two sons, 

I. Thomas, who succeeded. 

II. Charles, d. s. p. 

Mr. Charles Gordon died in 1797, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

VIII. Thomas Gordon of Buthlaw. 

His succession is evidently by the following retour : — " Thomas Gordon of Buthlaw 
to his father, Charles Gordon of Buthlaw, who died, January, 1797. Heir special in 
Newtyle, Mains of Buthlaw, ^with Mill, &c. in the parishes of Foveran and Longside.'" 
He was educated at Oxford, and having early imbibed a taste for Greek literature, he 
went to Greece, where he spent much of his time. Having a strong attachment to that 
country, he eagerly espoused the cause of liberty, when the great revolution broke out 
in 1830, and assisted the Greek leaders with large sums of money, and latterly obtained 
the rank of general in the Greek army. After the emancipation of Greece he returned 
to this country. He married a Greek lady, but died without lawful issue, leaving his 
estates to a natural son, 

Mr. Wilkinson Gordon of Cairness. 

On the death of General Gordon, the representatives of Dr. Young, and Mrs. Logic, 
namely, Dr. Young on the one hand, and on the other the three surviving daughters of 
Mrs. Logic, namely Mrs. Putnam, Miss E. Logic, and Mrs. Pirie, having disputed the 
validity of General Gordon's trust disposition and settlement in favour of his illegitimate 
son, Mr. Wilkinson Gordon, in so far as it had reference to the estates of Buthlaw and 
Newtyle, on the ground that seisin thereof had not been recorded within the statuted 
period of sixty day, and did after a tedious lawsuit in the Scotch Courts and the House 
of Lords establish their claim to the said estates by a decree of the latter, to the effect 
that a seisin unrecorded within the legal terms of sixty days is a nullity. The conse- 
quence was that one half of the estates came to Dr. Young of Fawside, in right of his 
mother, and the other half in three equal portions to the above-named ladies, as heirs- 
portionejs in right of their mother.^ 

Dr. Young's only child, a daughter, having predeceased him, his share came at his 
death, by an agreement among his heirs, to the son of his elder sister, Jane Young, wife 
of Right Rev. Patrick Torry, D.D., namely, John Torry, Dean of St. Andrews, burdened 
with portions to his aunt, Mrs. Ellis, and to his brother, Rev. Thomas Torry Anderson, 
and his two surviving sisters, Mrs. Andrew Sims and Miss Torry. Dean Torry sold his 
half of Newtyle in 1856 to Mr, Lumsden of Balmedie, the other parties interested in it 
selling him the other half. The Dean sold his share of Buthlaw to Mr. Patrick 
Pirie, eldest son of Mrs. Alexander Pirie, who also acquired the shares of his aunts, Mrs. 

I Decen. Rets. 1797 3 Notes in possession of Representatives of late Dean Torry. 

The Barony of Drumbladc. 275 

Putnam and Miss Logic. He then, on the death of his mother, became proprietor of 
Buthlaw, and assumed the name of Gordon. 

Patrick Pirie-Gordon of Buthlaw. 

He married Anne, only daughter of John Michell of Forcetthall, and Glassel, Aber- 
deenshire, and had issue : — 

I. Michell, who joined the 2nd Dragoon Guards, and died in India 

n. Patrick, died unmarried. 
HI. Edward, his successor. 

1. Anne Logie. 

2. Rachel Elizabeth. 

Mr. Patrick Pirie-Gordon died in 1886, and was succeeded by his son, 

II. Edward Pirie-Gordon of Buthlaw. 

He married Louisa, daughter of Rev. William Handley, Rector of VVindthorp, and 
has issue. 


(At the present time spelt Cocklarachie.) 

The earliest notice we have of these lands is in 1423. In that year, Sir William 
Lindsay, Sheriff of Aberdeen, resigns, and conveys one-half of the lands of Culclerochy 
in favour of Alexander Stewart, Earl of Mar.' He (Alexander Stewart) disponed them 
in 1425 in favour of Alexander Seton, who had married Elizabeth, heiress of the Gordon 
honours and estates.' 

In 1540, William Forbes of Corsinday and Margaret Lumisden, his wife, assigned to 
James Forbes, their son, the marriage of Janet Gordon, portioner of Coclaroquhy, 
daughter of William Gordon, Aesindendonald, and also other lands. ^ There is also the 
following notice: — "On i October, 1549, George Leslie was served heir to Margaret 
Winton, his mother, in the fourth part of the lands of Camlarachie and Drimdurno." "* 

There is again the following feu charter, of date 1557, to Mr. Thomas Keiro : — " Mr. 
David Carnegy, rector of Kinnoul, chaplain of the chaplaincy of St. Mary of Coclara- 
quhy, founded by the predecessors of George, Earl of Huntly, with consent of the said 
Earl to Mr. Thomas Keiro of the half of the lands of Coclarachquhy, the half of New- 
bigging, of the mill and multures, with the croft of Fuitte, and the sixth part of Garre." 
These may have been the lands belonging to the chaplaincy, which are believed to have 
been in the neighbourhood.^ 

Soon after these dates, Cocklaraquy was acquired by a branch of the Gordon family, 
which retained it down to the end of the last or the beginning of the present century. 
This is their descent : — 

I. William Gordon of Tillytarmont. 

He was the second son of John of Scardargue (see Parkhill) by Elizabeth Maitland, 

daughter of Maitland of Gight. He married Rutherford, sister of Sir John 

Rutherford, and had issue : — 

I. George, of Fulzemont, of whom the Gordons of Blelach and Lesmoir are 


II. Patrick, of whom the Gordons of Craig and others are descended. 

II. Patrick Gordon,^ 
the second son of William Gordon, married Catharine Barclay, and had issue : — 

1 Spal. Club. Mis. IV. p. 127. 4 Ret. Spec. Aber. 407. 

2 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 517. 5 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 517. 

3 Id. 6 Balbithan MS. and MS. 1580. 

Cocklaraquy. 277 

I. William, of Auchindoir. 

II. Thomas. 

III. Patrick, of Auchmenzies, of whom was descended the family of 

IV. John, chaplain of Cocklaraquy. 

V. George, of Milton of Noth, from whom the Gordons of Cocklaraquy were 

III. Gteorge Gordon of Milton of Noth, 

the fifth son of Patrick Gordon, as recorded above, married the daughter of 

Oliphant of Berrydale,' and had issue : — 

I. George, of Cocklaraquy. 

II. James. 
I. Bessie. 

Mr. George Gordon was succeeded by his son, 

IV. George Gordon of Cocklaraquy. 

He married a daughter of a brother of the Earl of Sutherland, and had issue : — ' 

I. George. 

I. Bessie. 
George Gordon of Cocklaraquy was executed bj Queen Mary after the battle of 
Corrichie, 1562. He was succeeded by his son, 

V. George Gordon of Cocklaraquy. 

He married Bessie Duncan, second daughter of James Duncan of Merdrum. He 
made a great augmentation to his estate.^ They had issue : — 

I. George, who died in the life-time of his father. He married 

Gordon, the daughter of Gordon of Lesmoir, who after his death married 
John Gordon, sixth laird of Craig. They had issue two sons — George, 
who succeeded his grandfather, and James. 

II. Alexander, of Merdum. 

III. Hugh. 

IV. William. 

1. A daughter, married Seaton of Minnes. 

2. A daughter, married Mr. Robert Bisset of Lessendrum (see Lessendrum). 

3. Christian, married George Gordon of Sheelagreen. 

In 1567, George Gordon, quondam de Cocklaraquy, was included in " precepto 
remissionis," which Lord Huntly obtained for himself and friends after Corrichie.* In 
1582, he was made a burgess of the city of Aberdeen, along with others " nocht to be 

1 Balbithan MS. and MS. 1580, C.E.D. 3 MS. 1580, C.E.D. 

a Id. 4 Spal. Club Mis. V. p. 32. 

278 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

occupieris nor handcairs with merchandes gratia consilii." In 1594, he was included in 
a charge to certain north countrymen to appear before the King and Council to answer 
for good rule and loyalty. He died before 1630.' Regarding his widow there is the 
following retour: — "1630. Bessie Duncan, relict to umquhile George Gordon of 
Cocklaraquy, declarit by Dr. William Gordon, her son, that she has her life-rent in the 
third part of Cocklaraquy, wadset of the Marquis of Huntly, for the sum of six thousand 
merks." ' He was succeeded by his grandson, recorded above, 

VI. George Gordon of Cocklaraquy. 

He married Grizzel Seaton, daughter of Seaton of Pitmedden, and had issue two 
sons : — 

I. Alexander, who got from his father the lands of Auchintoul. He studied 

law, and in 1687, in the reign of King James VH., was appointed one of 
the Senators of the College of Justice, by the title of Lord Auchintoul. He 
married Isabel Gray, daughter of Gray of Braich, brother to Lord Gray, 
and had issue, one son at least, Major-General Alexander Gordon, who 
commanded the Highland army under the Earl of Mar, in 17 15. He 
served first in the Muscovite army.^ In 1713, he was served heir to 
his father.'' He married first a daughter of General Patrick Gordon of 
Auchleuchries, secondly Barbara Mackenzie, daughter of the laird of Ard- 
loch, and had issue, three sons and a daughter. He was succeeded in 
Auchintoul by his eldest son, Alexander, and this Alexander was succeeded 
in 1768, by his sister, Catharine,^ who in that year was served heir of line 
and provision special in Auchintoul and Laithers. She died in 1797, and 
was succeeded by her cousin, Frederica Gordon or Rosenwald.* The 
estate of Auchintoul was sold soon after this date to John Morison, 
subsequently of Bognie. 

II. James, of Ardmeallie. He married Isabel Meldrum, who in 1708 

was served heir to her sister, Mary Meldrum, widow of Dr. Stiiart, 
Commissary of Moray. They had issue, I. Peter, laird of Ardmeallie, who 
married Ann, daughter of Robert Bisset of Lessendrum, and had issue, 
James, and Archibald, who died 1761. II. Alexander of Logic, in the 
parish of Crimond. III. James, a merchant in Aberdeen, i. A daughter, 
married to Skene of Lethenty. Ardmeallie passed from the Gordons also 
to John Morison, who had previously purchased Auchintoul, and it after- 
wards belonged to Edward Ellice, M.P., from whom it and Mayen were 
purchased by John Gordon of Avochie, who died 1857, aged sixty years. 

1 Priv. Council Rep. V. 147. 4 Decen. Rets. 1713. 

2 Spal. Club Mis. p. 123. 5 Id., 1768. 

3 Aberdeen Map;azine, Vol. III. p. 675, Balbithan MS. 6 Id., 1747. 

Cocklaraquy. 279 

Cjcorge Gordon of Cocklaraquy married secondly l*"raser, daughter of 

l-'raser of the I'hilorth f;imily, and had issue : — 
I, John, his successor. 
I. Janet 
He was succeeded in Cocklaraquy by his son, 

VII. John Gordon of Cocklaraquy. 

He married, and had issue : — 

I. George. 

II. Alexander. 

HI. James. 

1. Christian. 

2. Anna. 

3. Isobcl.' 

John Gordon died 14 July, 17 14, and was succeeded by his third son, 

VIII. James Gordon of Cocklaraquy. 

He married Jane, daughter of Robert Bisset of Lessendrum.- " James Gordon was 
served heir male special 17 14, to his father, John Gordon of Cocklaraquy, in one-fourth 
part of the Dauch lands of Cocklaraquy with mill, &c."^ They had issue : — 

I. Adam. 

1. Charlotte. 

2. Henrietta. " 

James Gordon died, and was succeeded by his son, 

IX. Adam Gordon of Cocklaraquy. 

He died in 1779, and there are the two following retours by his sisters: — "Charlotte 
Gordon to her brother, Adam Gordon, son of James Gordon of Cocklaraquy, heir 
portioner general, 4 August, 1779; also Harriet Gordon or Stewart, wife of Andrew 
Stewart, to her brother, Adam Gordon, son of James Gordon of Cocklaraquy, heir 
portioner general, 4 August, 1779." ■* 

The estate of Cocklaraquy afterwards merged into the Gordon estates, and is now 
the property of the Duke of Richmond and Gordon. 


The Altar of St.Mary's, Cocklaraquy, was in St. Nicholas Church, Aberdeen. "On 
the 1 6th day of March, the year of God, 1438, Elizabeth, heyie of Huntlie and Strath- 

1 Poll Boole, II. p. 3 Decen. Rets. 1714. 

2 Decen. Rets. 1714. 4 Id., 1779. 

28o The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

bogy, died at Strathbogy, and was buried at Nicholas, his church, in New Aberdene, in 
the yle of Coclarachie, which yle herself had caused build." There is also another notice 
which, according to Mr. Macdonald, removes all doubts regarding it. In the inventory 
of charters, Gordon Castle, there is this notice of a charter : — " 1537, Charter by the 
said Thomas Kerr, feuar of the half lands of Cocklarachquhy, belonging to the chaplaincy 

of the Altar of St. , within the Church of St. Nicholas, Aberdeen." Although 

the dedication is wanting, the date and the name and designation of the granter connect 
the chaplaincy with St. Nicholas Church.' Sir John Gordon, the son of the Earl of 
Huntly, after Corrichie, was condemned to be beheaded, and, in the presence of Queen 
Mary, was publicly butchered by an unskillful executioner. He was buried in the 
Cocklaraquy Aisle, which has now {1893), been identified with St. Mary's Chapel, or 
the lower church of St. Nicholas. 

I Macdonald's Place Names of Strathbogie, p. 56. 

D U M M U I R. 

DuMMUiE House, according to the "View of the Diocese," was situated two miles 
south and cast of the parish churcli, and two miles from Strathbogie. There is now no 
mansion liouse, and it belongs to Thomas (lordon Duff of I'ark and Drummuir. 

The earliest notice to be found of Dumnmie is in a division in 1403 of the lands of 
Drumblat. The two towns of Dummullys, &c., were assigned to Margaret Fenton of 
Ard, and her son, Thomas of Chesholm.' In 16 19, James Hallyburton of Pitcur is 
served heir to his father, Sir James Hallyburton of Pitcur, in the two towns of Dumoys.- 
In 1629, William Hallyburton is served heir to his brother, James Hallyburton of 
Pitcur, in the two towns of Dumoys.^ In 1696, in the " Poll Book " it is spoken of as 
in Westerton's valuation/ 

The following is the descent of its present proprietor, Mr» Thomas Gordon Duff of 
Park, Drummuir, and Dummuie : — 

Adam Duff of Drummuir was the representative of a family who for many genera- 
tions had been proprietors of Drummuir. He died in the year 1660, leaving as his 
heiress a daughter, Catharine Duff, who married Alexander Duff, son of William Duff, 
merchant, Inverness, and for many years Provost of that town. William Duff was the 
second son of Adam Duff in Clunybegg, the founder of the family now represented by 
the Duke of Fife. This Katharine Duff, commonly called Lady Drummuir, had by her 
foresaid husband, Alexander Duff, three sons and two daughters : — = 

I. Robert, to whom she left the estate of Drummuir. He married Isobel, 
daughter of Sir Archibald Campbell of Clunas, by whom he had two sons — 
I. Archibald, who succeeded as laird of Drummuir. II. William, a 
merchant, i. A daughter, Catharine, was married to Archibald Campbell 
of Rudgate, in the county of Moray. Archibald made the entail of Drum- 
muir in 1776, which, after his death in 1777, went to the issue of John 
Duff of Culbin, his uncle. 

II. John, of Culbin, of whom afterwards. 

HI. William, of Muirton, married, and had issue. 

1. Anne, married to Lachlan Mackintosh of Moy. 

2. Mary, married to Sir William Gordon, sixth Bart, of I.esmoir ; secondly, to 
Gordon of Carnousie. 

We now return to ^ 

t Ant. A. and B. I. p. 4. 4 Poll Book, II. p. 274. 

2 Ret. Spec. Alxln. No. 164. 5 Pedigree [lenes Drummuir. 

3 Id., No. 211. 6 MS. Pedigree penes Drummuir. 

282 The TJianage of Femiartyn, 

II. John Duff of Oulbin. 

He got from his mother the estate of Culbin. He married first, Mary, daughter of 
Gordon of Ellon, whose brothers were so cruelly murdered by their tutor in Edinburgh. 
By her he had issue : — 

I. Alexander, born November 24, 1726. He married his cousin, Magdalene 
Duff of Muirton, and had issue by her — I. John, who died at Paris, 1836. 
n. Archibald, who as Admiral Duff succeeded to Drummuir. He married 
Frances Jones, daughter of Rev. Mr. Jones, of Battle-Hastings. IH. 
William, who died in London unmarried. 
John Duff of Culbin married secondly, Helen, daughter of Sir James Gordon of 
Park, and had by her : — 

n. James, born 1729, died unmarried. 
in. William, died unmarried. 

IV. John, born 1 743, died unmarried at Macduff. 

V. Lachlan, W.S., Edinburgh, of whom afterwards. 

1. Catharine, born 1733, married Alexander Morison of Bognie, and had 
issue. (See Bognie.) 

2. Anne, born 1736. 

3. Helen, born 1737. 

John Duff of Culbin died 13 January, 1743, and was succeeded by his son, 

III. Lachlan Duff of Culbin. 

Lachlan Duff, W.S., Edinburgh, was born in 1741. He married Rachel, daughter 
of Mr. Hogg of Newliston. He succeeded in 1801 to the estate of Park in right of his 
mother, Helen Gordon, and assumed the name of Gordon. He had issue : — 

I. James, died unmarried. 

II. Roger, died unmarried at Riga. 

III. Alexander, killed at Trafalgar. 

IV. Thomas Duff Gordon, who succeeded. 

1. Rachel, married to Patrick Stuart of Auchlunkart. 

2. Helen, died young. 
Lachlan Duff was succeeded by his son, 

IV. Thomas Duff Gordon. 

He was born 14 March, 1790; was convener of Banffshire, He succeeded to the 
barony of Park in 1808, through his grandmother, Helen Gordon of Park, and assumed 
the surname of Gordon in lieu of his patronymic Duff. He married, 14 November, 
1 814, Joanna Maria, eldest daughter of David Macdowal Grant of Arndilly, and had 
issue : — 

Duimmiie. 283 

I. Lachlan Duff, of whom afterwards. 

II. David M'Dowal (jrant, R.N., died at Singapore. 

III. Alexander Duff. 

1. Mary Stuart, died, 1821, in infancy. 

2. Racliel, married Dr. William Mackit;, and has issue. 

3. Eliza Graham, married her cousin, Andrew Stuart of Auchlunkart, and had 

4. Eleanor, married Rev. H. Walker ; issue, four daughters. 

5. Wilhelmina, died 1842. 

6. Isabella Helen. 

7. Jemima. 

8. Johanna Maria, died young, 1837. 

9. Charlotte Emily, married Rev. John Russcl, M.A., minister of Grange, and 
has issue. 

Thomas Duff Gordon of Park died 6 December, 1855, and was succeeded in Park 
by his son, 

V. Lachlan Duff Gordon Duff of Park, Drummuir, and Dummuie. 

He succeeded to Drummuir on the death of his cousin. Admiral Duff, in 18 — . He 
married Jane, daughter of Thomas Butterficld of Bermuda, and has issue : — 

I. Thomas, born n August, 1848. 

II. Archibald. 

1. Mary Louisa. 

2. Helen Elizabeth. 

Mr. (Jordon Duff was a J. P., D.L., and M,P. for the county of Banff from 1857 to 
1861 ; died in 1886, and was succeeded by his son, 

VI. Thomas Gordon Duff of Park, Drummuir, and Dummuie. 

He married a daughter of Sir Charles Tennant, Bart., of the Glen, and has issue : — 
I. Lachlan. 
I. Joanna Lucy. 
Mr. Gordon Duff of Park and Drummuir represents the Duffs of Drummuir, the 
Duffs of Culbin, and the Gordons of Park. His descent from the latter will be seen 
under Cobairdy. 


Is now the property of Mrs. E. La wson or Ross spouse of James Ross, M.D., and of 
Miss Isabella Lawson, Elgin. 

In a retour of date 1642, we find Sir James Gordon, Bart., of Lesmoir, served heir 
to his father, James Gordon of Lesmoir, in a two part of Chapeltown.' 

In 1650, we find from the Presbytery records of Turriff, that it was owned by 
Robert Gordon, who was appointed for the Presbytery magistrate in the parish of 
Drumblade.'' The next, probably a son, is 

II. Rev. James Gordon of Chapeltown, minister of Rhynie. 

He had on his property the following list of pollable persons in 1696. Christian 
Hacket, live-rentrix indweller in Chapeltown, Anne, Elizabeth, and Elspet Gordons (her 
husband's valuation being one hundred and twenty Scots). Tenants — John Harper in 
Wedderburn, William Johnston in Thomastown, George Milne in Hillhead, John Lesly 
in Chapeltown, Alexander Cruickshank in Hillhead, Alexander Johnston in Comalegy, 
William Petrie in Newmilne. 

III. Robert Gordon of Chapeltown. 

We find of him the only record, that he was the grandfather of his successor, 
IV. Rev. George Gordon of Chapeltown, minister of Drumblade. 

He was served in 1752, heir of provision general to his grandfather, Robert Gordon 
of Chapeltown.3 He is mentioned by Dr. Scott in his " Fasti," but he makes no 
mention of his being proprietor of Chapeltown. According to the same authority he 
had a son Charles, and several daughters. 

V. Robert Gordon of Chapeltown. 

We find him recorded on a tombstone in the churchyard of Drumblade, and from 
the date he must have succeeded as a brother or other relative. " Underneath this 
stone lie interred the remains of Robert Gordon of Chapeltown, who departed this life 
at Poolend, 19 June, 1777, aged eighty." 

At Chapeltown there was a chapel, of which there are now no remains, but there is 
still a small churchyard enclosed and planted with trees, where the Bissets of Lessen- 

1 Rets. Spec. Abdn. No. 260. 3 Decen. Rets. 1752, ^ 

2 Presbytery Records, Turriff. 

Chapeltown. 285 

drum were in ancient times interred, before the time of Cieorge Bisset, commonly called 
"the restorer," who was buried in the Lessendrum Aisle in the church of Drumblade. 
At one period there was at least one grave-stone with the inscription, ** Pray for the soul 

of ." This stone was appropriated by a neighbouring farmer for a hearth-stone, 

and by the action of the fire was comi)letely destroyed. 

In the neighbourhood are two farms called Parsonspool, one on the the estate of 
Lessendrum and the other on that of Bognie. Between the two farms there is a moss, 
which in old times must have been a dismal swamp. One of the ministers of the chapel 
is said to have been drowned in it in a dark night, hence the name Parsonspool. Some 
arrow heads have been found on the farm. 


was owned in 1505 by John Troup, whom, in 1 506-1 509, we find frequently taking part 
in public business.' His name is still preserved in Troupsmill. The next owner is 
William Lyon of Comaleggie. In 1535, he acted as baillie for the Bishop of Aberdeen 
at an Episcopal Court held at Rane. In 1548, he is mentioned as one of the barons 
appointed for taxing and retouring all the lands within the Sheriffdom of Aberdeen. - 

In 1598, we find amongst the temporal barons of Aberdeenshire, one Abernethy, 
as pro[)rietor of Comaleggie.^ In 1613, John Leslie was served heir on the third part 
of a davach, and in the middle third part of the town and lands of Comaleggie, to his 
father, \V^illiam Leslie of DrumdoUo ; and much about the same time there is a deed of 
sasine of a two part of Comaleggie, and a third part of Thomastown given to John 
Gordon of Pitlurg.^ Like the rest of the barony of Drumblade it was frequently divided 
and sub-divided, it is now part of the estate of Lessendrum, having been purchased 
about twenty years ago from Mr. Humphrey, by Mordaunt Fenwick Bisset of Lessendrum. 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 446, II. p. 38, I. p. 290. 3 Kennedy's Annals, II. p. 492. 

2 Id. IV. p. 634, I. p. 115. 4 Rets. Spec. Abdn. No. 586. .\nt. A. and B. IV. p. 356. 


Stonefield on the estate of Lessendriim derived its name from a stone circle, which is 
still in a fair state of preservation. A mansion house at one period existed here used 
as a dowager house. In 1696 it was occupied by the Lady Lessendrum, so designated 
in the Poll Book ; George Bisset and Charles Bisset also resided there.' 

Holy Wells. — There are six wells of note, according to Mr. Macdonald, namely, 
Duke Well. There is a tradition that in old times the tenant was bound by lease to 
preserve this well and the stones around it, though the reason for this condition is for- 
gotten. Garrie Well is on the hill of Garrie, and Bride's Well may have been dedicated 
to St. Bridget or St. Bride, though the name may refer to some old custom now forgotten. 
St. Hilary's Well near the parish church is the well of the patron saint of the parish. 
The Bishop's Well is on the farm of Cruchie, but who the bishop was is unknown. The 
Chapel Well is on the lands of Chapeltown.* 

Sliach. — King Robert the Bruce lay encamped here during a time of sickness, 

according to Barbour. 

" Tharfor in litter tha him lay. 
And till the Slivach held their way, 
And thocht thar in that strinth to ly 
Quhill pasid war his malady." 

At the same time he kept Comyn, Earl of Buchan in check, and totally routed him 
afterwards at the battle of Barra, in 1307. The hill of Sliach on which he lay encamped 
is still called Robin's height. A well in the neighbourhood, according to the author of 
the " New Statistical Account " of the parish, is still pointed out, the water of which is 
represented as having been instrumental in the King's recovery. According to Jervise 
there had been possibly a chapel (Christ Jesus) at Sliach in early times, and in 
Aberdeen "New Prognosticator" for 1720, a market held on second Tuesday of June, is 
set down as Jesus fair at the park of Sliach in Drumblait parish.^ 

TuMULL — On Robin's height, there were some years ago entrenchments to be seen 
connected probably with Bruce's encampment, or they may have existed before that time. 
There are three tumuli, the largest of which is at the base of Robin's height, and is called 
Meethillock, the place of the meeting of the vassals. This hillock was completely 
formed of sand, and has been carted away ; one or two of the others have been opened, 
in one a circle of stones without any marks was formed in the centre, but nothing of 
interest was found. They seem barrows of prehistoric times marking the last resting- 
places of some great chiefs in the district. 

I Poll Book, IL p. 267. 3 Jervise' Ins. Vol. L under Drumblade. 

3 Macdonald's Place Names of Strathbogie, p. 65. 

The Antiquities of Drumblade, &c. 287 

BArn.EJiii.i., near Huntly, is said to liave been the scene of a battle ; but beyond a 
very vague tradition there is no historic notice of this conflict. It is now the site of 
some very handsome villas feued from the Duke of Richmond and Gordon. 

CokSiESTONE, in old times called Corstone, where there had been a stone with a 
cross, probably marking the boundaries of the Chaplands of Cocklarachie. On this 
farm there were discovered a few years ago two cup-marked stones, one of them having 
four cups and the other thirteen, arranged in a semi-circle. They are rough heathen 
stones, and were found at a considerable distance from each other, one partly and the. 
other wholly buried in the fields.' 

A small bell, which used to be rung before funerals, bears the inscription, " George 
Bisset, 1604." It was gifted by him to the parish ; but has now been removed to 

There are four Communion cups of silver. Two of them were gifted by Rev. 
George Chalmer, minister of Drumblade. One cup bears this inscription, " And He 
took the cup and gave thanks, and gave it to them saying. Drink ye all of this. 
Matthew xxvi. 27." " I will take th£ cup of salvation and call upon the name of the 
Lord." On bottom of the cup, "George Chalmer, minister of Drumblade, 1686." 
Another has, " Without shedding of blood there is no remission. Heb. ix. 22." " This 
cup is the New Testament in My blood which is shed for you. Luke xxii. 20." On 
bottom there is also, "George Chalmer, minister of Drumblade, 1686." There are 
other two cups with inscriptions, "Drumblade Communion Cups, 1809." 

From Records of Kirk-Session, Drumblade. — "December 23, 1744. Collected 
for behoof of William Rudiman, parish of Inverkeithney, who had suffered loss by fire, 
and was recommended by the Presbytery of Turriff to a Sabbath collection in all con- 
gregations within the bounds, jQi 5s. 4d. Scots was delivered to ye minister to be trans- 
mitted to him." 

" 9 April, 1746. The minister intimated that the Synod of Aberdeen had appointed 
Wednesday next to be observed throughout their bounds as a day of solemn thanks- 
giving to God on account of the suppression of the late wicked rebellion and distur- 
bance raised in the land by the Highlanders, and exhorted the congregation to the 
religious observance of said fast-day. The minister preached on said day from Psalm 
cxlvii. 12-14." 

" 6 February, 1756. There was read from the pulpit a proclamation from the King 
appointing Thursday next to be observed as a day of solemn fasting and humiliation on 
account of the dreadful earthquake at Lisbon, and exhorted the congregation to observe 
said day in a becoming manner." 

" 16 February, 1757. The minister gave unto the session 850 merks as the principal 
sum mortified by the late Sir James Gordon of Lesmore to the poor of this parish, and 
interest thereof for fourteen years preceding Martinmas last, which sum had been paid 
by Mountblairy (Hay) about a fortnight before, who had become surety to the session 
for paying that money, at his purchasing from that family the lands of Corvichen. 

I Macdonald's Place Names of Strathbogie, p. 59. 


Newmachar, or as it was first called Upper Machar, was formed out of Oldmachar or 
St. Machar, about 1621. 

In the year 1639 a church was built, where the present one stands, and in 1641, the 
minister was removed to it from Monycaboc, where there was a church dedicated to St. 
Columba. Among the constitutions of Bishop Peter Ramsay, dated at Aberdeen, 14 
Kal Mai, 1256, it is ordered, "That the Dean being parson at Kirkton, Old Aberdeen 
shall maintain also a chaplain at Monycaboc as well as at Kirkton." ' 

The Dean having charge of Monycaboc appointed a substitute, and the name of 
one of these at least has come down to us. 

Walter Ogilvy, in 1529, is mentioned as vicar of Monycaboc.^ After the Reformation, 
it is recorded that in 1570, Alexander Garioch was reader at Monicaboc, Berowald 
Innes supplied duty in 1574, Alexander Forsyth in 1576, Robert Williamson in 1585. 

James Hervie is found minister in 1630. He was promoted from being Regent in 
King's College, and was admitted before November, 1633. He attended the General 
Assembly in 1638, as a Commissioner from the doctors of Aberdeen, and other Anti- 
Covenanting ministers within the Presbytery of Aberdeen. Hervie was Moderator of 
the Presbytery of Aberdeen at the visitation of the kirk of Maryculter, 8 July, 1641, 
and was appointed by Parliament, 27 March, 1647, as one of the visitors of the Uni- 
versity.3 He married Helen Neilson. 

John Chalmers, A.M., was promoted in 164 — from being Regent in King's College; 
admitted previous to 21 October, 1651, 

George Melville, A.M., was translated from Bourtie, and admitted before 27 
October, 1654. He gave ;^24 towards erecting the building at King's College,'* and 
was translated to Udny in 1663. 

Alexander Leask was admitted before July, 1668; translated to Cruden before 30 
January, 1669. 

James Garden, A.M., was son of Rev. Alexander Garden, minister of Forgue ; 
graduated at King's College, Aberdeen, 17 July, 1662 ; appointed before 1672 ; 
translated to Bombie, in the county of Fife, before 31 December, 1675. "He 
was called," says Orem, " from thence to be Professor of Divinity in the King's College 
of Old Aberdeen, anno 1681. He performed the duty of Professor with great applause, 

1 Orem's Hist, of Old Aberdeen, p. 114 ; 3 S. C. Mis. III. p. 113 ; Spal. Troubles, I. 

Ant. A. and B. i. p. 335. p. 115 ; II. p. 55. 

2 Reg. Ep. -Aber. I. p. 314 ; Id., pp, 225-6-7. 4 Fasti Aber. p. 543. 

The Ministers of Newmachar. 289 

and continued in the said office, until he was put from his post about the beginning of 
the late Revolution by the Presbyterians, anno 1697 ; though he was a learned, devout, 
and religious man."' He died in Old Aberdeen, April 8, 1726. 

Adam Sutherland, A.M., was admitted from Oldmachar, 1662 ; and translated from 
Newmachar to Duffus, 1687. 

George Seaton was appointed, 24 June, 1687, and died, December, 1704. He 
married Barbara Peddie, and had children, George, Alexander, John, and Anna Seaton. 

William Mitchell, formerly of Kearn, was ordained, g January, 1706. He married, 
16 May, 1716; was recommended, 13 May, 1717, for charitable supply. 

John Bisset was ordained, 13 March, 17 17; was translated to Aberdeen, 26 
September, 1728. 

Thomas Ray was licenced by the Presbytery of Aberdeen, 1729, but his licence was 
recalled because he accepted a presentation. It was restored by the Commission of 
Assembly, 13 August, 1729, after presentation by the Principals and Masters, and was 
ordained by a Commission of the General Assembly, 29 October, the same year. There 
was considerable opposition on the part of the parishioners to his appointment. He was 
accused by the Presbytery of powdering his periwig on the Sabbath day, but was found 
not guilty by the General Assembly. He was deposed, 8 September, 1736, for gross 
immorality and for deserting his charge. 

Thomas Reid, A.M., son of Lewis Reid, minister of Strachan, was born, 26 April, 
1 7 10, was educated at the parish school of Kincardine O'Neil, and subsequently at 
Aberdeen ; studied Philosophy under Dr. George TurnbuU, at Marischal College ; was 
appointed librarian of King's College, and presented to Newmachar by the Principal 
and Masters there. An aversion to the law of patronage, which then characterised 
many districts of Scotland, and Newmachar especially, excited hostile feelings against 
him, and he was admitted to the charge, after having been exposed to great personal 
danger. His unwearied attention to his duties, the mildness and forbearance of his 
manners, overcame all prejudice, and, on his departure, some one said, " We fought 
against Dr. Reid when he came, and we would have fought for him when he went 
away." In 1752, the Senatus of King's College elected him Professor of Moral Philo- 
sophy. In 1763, he was appointed Professor of Moral Philosophy in the University of 
Glasgow, and he retired from the duties of his professorship in 1781, having published 
many works, and died October 7, 1796.^ 

John Maxwell was translated in 1752 from Auchindoir, on a presentation by the 
Principal and Masters of King's College. He married firstly, Jane Lumsden, by whom 
he had a daughter, Jane ; and secondly, Agnes Lumsden, who died at Aberdeen, 
30 December, 1803, and by her had three sons and six daughters, Francis, Johri, 
Henry, Anne, Barbara, Agnes, Mary, Henrietta, and Eliza, who married Alexander Dun, 
joint Rector of the Grammar School, Aberdeen. 

I Orem's Hist, of Old Aber. p. 331. 3 Chambers' Biographical Dictionary, Vol. III. 


290 TJie Thanage of Fertnartyn, 

William Stronach, A.M., was the son of Alexander Stronach in Knock of Grange ; 
was presented to Newmachar by James, Earl of Fife, in October, 1781. He got a new 
church built in 1791, and was translated to Marnoch, 19 September, 1804. He married 
Harriot, daughter of Sir James Reid, Bart, of Barra, and had issue, Alexander Stronach 
of Drumallan, advocate, Aberdeen ; William Stronach, lieutenant, died at Ardmeallie, 
1893, aged 98, and one daughter, married to William Stuart in Inverugie, Morayshire. 

Alexander Simpson, A.M., was translated from the second charge of Oldmachar, on 
a presentation by James, third Earl of Fife, 28 November, 1804. He died February 10, 
1840, in the 84th year of his age, and the 46th of his ministry. 

George Moir was appointed, on a presentation by James, fourth Earl of Fife, in 
1840. In 1843, he went out at the Disruption of the Church of Scotland, and became 
the first minister of the Free Church of Newmachar. 

Alexander Allan, A.M., was appointed in 1843, and was for twenty-three years 
minister of the parish, having died, much mourned for and esteemed by his parishioners, 
on the 10 February, 1866, in the 50th year of his age. 

William Robertson Bruce, A.M., is a native of Monquhitter ; was educated at the 
University of Aberdeen, and appointed in 1866, on a presentation by James, fifth Earl 
of Fife. 


George Moir, after having been three years minister of the parish, became, in 1843, 
the first minister of the Free Church. He died 17 June, 1857, aged 47 years. 
Alexander Thain appointed 1857. 
James Elmslie Duguid, A.M., ordained 1864, 



The place is silent — rarely sound 
Is heard those heavy mounds around, 
Nor mirthful voice of friends that meet 
Discoursing in the public street ; 
Nor hum of business dull and loud, 
Nor murmur of the passing crowd, 
Nor soldier's drum nor trumpet's swell, 
From neighbouring fort nor citadel. 
Rare sound of human toil or strife 
To death's lone dwelling speaks of life. 
Nor breaks the silence still and deep. 

— Moultrie. 

In the centre of the lone churchyard of Monycaboc is the burial place of the Burnetts 
of Elrick, but there are no memorials. 

On a small stone is the very brief inscription, "G.'W., died 1796; A C, 1797." 
Who they were, that these initials represent, few can tell ? 

On a headstone there is the following inscription — " Here lies, in the hope of a 
blessed resurrection, Alexander Joss, late farmer in Chapel of Elrick, who died 
12 March, 1785, aged 58 years. Also his spouse, Janet Stephen, who died 9 April, 
1818, aged 76 years. And their son, John Joss, fifty-three years farmer in Meikle Dyce, 
who died 13 August, 1852, aged 83 years. Also his spouse, Ann Christie, who died 
August 30, 1855, aged 94. Also John Joss, thirty-five years farmer in Old Goval, who 
died 18 December, 1856, aged 61 years. Also his spouse, Jane Runciman, who died 
15 November, 1856, aged 59 years." 

Another is " To the memory of John Rae, parochial schoolmaster of Dyce for the 
period of twenty-eight years, who died 16 July, 1839, aged 45 years. Also his daughter, 
Eliza, who died 25 August, 1842, aged 16 years. Jane, who died April 14, 1853, aged 
25 years. Also of his wife, Jane Joss, who died 22 July, 1865, aged 73 years. 


The Ramsays of Barra and Straloch have their burial place here. Within an enclo- 
sure are the following inscriptions — " In memory of John Ramsay of Barra, who died 
28 August, 1787, in the 87th year of his age. Mrs. Isabella Shepherd, his widow, who 

292 TJie Thanage of Fermariyn, 

died i8 January, 1805, in the 51st year of her age; and of Mary Ramsay, their only 
child, the wife of John Innes, advocate in Aberdeen, now John Ramsay of Barra, who 
died 18 December, 181 1, in the 43rd year of her age. This tomb and monument has 
been erected as a small testimony of grateful remembrance and affectionate regard on 
the part of a son-in-law and husband." 

II. " In this tomb are interred the remains of the last mentioned John Ramsay of 
Barra, who died 11 April, 1814, in the 59th year of his age. Of Isabella, eldest 
daughter of the said John and Mary Ramsay, who died 12 January, 1803, in the i6th 
year of her age. Also of Elizabeth, third daughter, who died 11 November, 18 18, in 
the 25th year of her age. Also the remains of their eldest son, John Ramsay of Barra, 
who died 23 October, 1832, in the 46th year of his age. And of Helen, their youngest 
daughter, who died 19 August, 1850, aged 46 years. In this tomb are deposited the 
remains of Leonora Sophia, wife of John Ramsay of Barra, only son of the last-named 
John Ramsay." 

III. There is also in the same enclosure an inscription — "In memory of William 
Lesly, lately residing at Straloch, who departed this life 30 August, 1779, aged 67 years. 
This stone was erected by his affectionate widow, Magdalene Duff," 

A stone is erected by James Philip, farmer, Waulkmill, *' in memory of his daughter 
Jane, who died October 2, 1855, aged 26. His wife, Jane Mutch, died 9 May, 1867, 
aged 62. Also the above James Philip, who died 27 April, 1876, aged 70." The 
inscription ends with the following : — 

' ' Death cut her down, though young in years, 
And smiling in her bloom." 

Another stone is inscribed, " Here is deposited the dust of William Henderson, 
once schoolmaster at Newmachar, who died 28 February, 1772, aged 86. Mary 
Hutcheon, his wife, who died 5 September, 1789, aged 88." 

On Jean, a daughter of James Singer, Blackhill of Goval, who died 20 March, 1852, 

aged 26, there is the following — 

" This lovely plant so young and fair, 
Called hence by early doom, 
Just come to show how sweet a flower 
In Paradise may bloom." 

Within an enclosure on the following tombstones to a family long resident in the 
district. I. '' In memory of William Harvey, fifty-seven years farmer in Monykebbock, 
who died 22 December, 1834, aged 82 ; and of Jean Lumsden, his spouse, who died 
3 January, 1837, aged 76. Also of their children, John, who died in infancy ; of Jean, 
who died 3 August, 1802, aged 11 ; and of James Harvey, farmer, Highlands, who died 
16 August, 1837, aged 41 years; and of Alexander, advocate, Aberdeen, who died 
18 November, 1866, aged 66." 

II. " In memory of John Lumsden, many years in Boghead of Kintore, who died 
at Monykebbock, 5 November, 1802, aged 81." From this John Lumsden, the 
Lumsdens of Auchindoir, Pitcaple, Balmedie, Belhelvie, and Auchry are descended. 

TJie Churchyards of Monycaboc and Neiomachar. 2(j^ 

III. "In memory of James Abeniclhy, founder, Ferryhill, born at Auchterlool, 
Fifeshirc, 13 November, 1774, died 5 June, 1844. Also of his wife, Jane Harvey, born 
at Monykebbock in this parish, died at I'erryhill, October 2, 1866 ; and of ^Villiam, 
their son, who died in infancy." 

Within another enclosure there arc the following memorials: — I. "In memory of 
Harriot Reid, wife of Rev. William Stronach, who died at Newmachar, on the 
i8 February, 1796, aged 28. Also in memory of James Stronach, his second son, who 
died June 17, 181 7, aged 2^. Also of Jane Stuart, his grand-daughter, and eldest 
daughter of William Stuart of Inverugic, Morayshire, who died at Aberdeen, 9 October, 
1839, aged 26." The above mentioned Harriot Reid was a daughter of Sir James 
Reid of IJarra, Bart. William Stuart was a son of Robert Stuart in Little Forgue. 

II. On a handsome cross of Peterhead granite there is the inscription, " In memory 
of Magdalene Milne, wife of Alexander Stronach, who died 13 January, 187 1, aged 64. 
Also of Alexander Stronach, who died 13 January, 1880, aged 87." 

A stone is erected " as a small tribute to the memory of Isobel Piric, daughter of 
the late John Pirie at Crossmill, of King-Edward, who, with great fidelity as house- 
keeper to the family of Rev. William Stronach during forty years, died at Aberdeen, 
18 December, 1838." 

A stone is " to the memory of Elizabeth Irvine, daughter of James Irvine, farmer in 

Forresterhill, near Aberdeen, vvho died 3 December, 1846, aged 8 years." 

" No sin could blight nor sorrow pale, 
Death came with friendly carer 
The opening bud to heaven conveyed, 
And bids it blossom there." 

x\ table stone bears the inscription, " in memory of John Black, a merchant and 
member of H.M. Council at Halifax, Nova Scotia. He died at Summerhill, near Aber- 
deen, September, 1823, aged 61. Also of Andrew Black, his brother, who died at 
Forresterhill, 30 November, 1861, aged 88, and whose remains are here interred in the 
adjoining grave, in which also arc interred the remains of Helen Pirie, wife of Andrew 
Black, who died at Aberdeen, 3 February, 1869, aged 81." 

A table stone with other inscriptions records " that here arc interred the remains of 
Edward William Vohn Lair, born at Bielfield, Westphalia, Prussia, died at Aberdeen, 
24 October, 1876." 

Within an enclosure a monument is "erected by parishioners and members of the 
Free Church congregation, Newmachar, in memory of Rev. George Moir, minister of 
the parish in 1840. At the Disruption in 1843, he became minister of the Free 
Church. His ministrations were faithful, zealous, and acceptable. He died respected 
and beloved on 17 June, 1857, aged 47 years. ' Blessed are the dead which die in the 
Lord.' Emma Edith Moir, born October 31, 1856, died May 13, i860." 

A marble tablet, with other inscriptions, records that " James Smith, parochial 
schoolmaster at Kintore, died 5 March, 1836, aged 27 years." He was the son of 
Alexander Smith, farmer in Brownhill, of Kintore, and his spouse, Elizabeth Rae. 

294 ^■^^^ T/ianage of Fermartyn. 

The following stone, with cross bones, skull, coffin, and sand-glass, records that, 
" here lies, in the hope of a blessed resurrection, George Smith, some time farmer in 
Selbie, who departed this life, November 20, 1742, aged 53. This stone was erected by 
Margaret Logen, his spouse, and his sons, George, William, and Alexander Smith. 
William Smith, late farmer in Broomhill, Kintore, died 17 August, 1778, aged 49, and 
his wife, Helen Garden, who died i May, 1799, aged 61. ' The memory of the just is 
blessed.' ' Mors janua vitae.' " 

In the west wall of the churchyard there is a tablet " to the memory of Isobel 
Cowie, spouse of Rev. Alexander Simpson, Newmachar, who died 8 January, 1837, in 
the 78th year of her age. Inscribed also to the memory of Rev. Alexander Simpson, 
who died 2 February, 1840, in the 84th year of his age, and the 45th of his ministry, 
having faithfully and uprightly discharged the duties of his office in Oldmachar for ten 
years, and in Newmachar for thirty-five years. And of their son, Rev. Alexander 
Simpson, who died at Aberdeen, 10 January, 1866, aged 63." 

Within an enclosure is a monument of Aberdeen granite, surmounted by an urn, 
thus inscribed, " Consecrated to the memory of Rev. Alexander Allan, for twenty-three 
years minister of this parish, who died 10 February, 1866, in the 50th year of his age. 
The monument was erected to their pastor and friend by the parishioners of New- 

" The race appointed I have run, 
The combat's o'er, the prize is won." 

Near the north-west corner of the Parish Church there is a stone erected by the 
family of Straloch, " in memory of Mary Robertson, for forty years a faithful servant. 
She died July 25, 1875, ^g^d 72." 

A granite headstone is " to the memory of George Scorgie, teacher, Balnakettle, 
Udny, who died 7 March, 1878, aged 74 years. Also his son, George Scorgie, who died 
at Torquay, 6 January, 1879, aged 20. Erected by a few friends." 

A table stone has been erected to the following nonagenarian — " Thomas Webster, 
Nether Minnes, died February 20, 1846, aged 91." 

E L R I C K. 

Now occui)icd by P. Uurnclt, was in early times owned l)y several proprietors. 

Krom a decree of Council of date 1492, we find that John Klemyng, knight, aire to 
unHjuhile David l"'lcmyng and Malcolm Flemyng, his faider, sail werrand and kepe to 
George, Krle of Huntly, their lands underwritten, that is to say all and haill the lands of 
Klrig, with the myln of the sammyn and their secpielis, Tillymaud, with a (juarter of 
Little Goule, and x lib of usual money of Scotland yerely, to be payit to him of the 
lands of Monycaboc, &c.' 

In 1553, it is owned by the Inncses of Innermarkic. On May 8 of that year, Robert 
Innes was served heir to his father, Robert Innes of Innermarkic, in the lands and 
barony of Monicaboc, with the advowson of the church, &:c.- 

Before 1650 it was owned by James Hamilton. On September 4 of that year he 
was served heir to David Hamilton, burgess of Edinburgh, lawful son of the late James 
Hamilton of the Westport, his Hither, in the barony of Elrick, comprehending the town 
and lands of Monycaboc, the lands of Elrick, &c., Aldgoul, Snailend, and Littlegoul.' 
This probably was a wadset or the superiority. Before December 18, 1657, it was in 
possession as a wadset of Gilbert Hervie. At that date Thomas Hervie was served heir 
to the said Gilbert in the lands and barony of Elrick comprehending the Mains of 
Elrick and mylne, the lands of Monicaboc, West Plough and Chapel Croft, the lands of 
Snailend, all in the parish of Newmachar.'' 

The Inneses, however, had still certain rights in Elrick. For we find an assignation 
on November 16, 1662, by William Innes of Kinnermonie to John Burnett, burgess of 
Aberdeen, merchant, of all right possessed by him of Elrick ; it narrates that Sir Walter 
Innes, fiar of Balvenie, with consent of umquhile Sir Robert Innes, his father, had 
assigned, in 1634, to William Innes, his reversion to Elrick wadset to Gilbert Hervie, 
elder ; that Robert Cruickshank, late baillie of Aberdeen, and Mr. John Burnett of 
Colpnay, to whom Hervie had, in 1650, disponed his wadset right to Elrick, had by 
letters of reversion, in 1650, became bound to hold the lands redeemed, and made over 
their whole right on payment to William Innes of twenty-one thousand merks. The 
letters of reversion by Cruickshank and Robert Burnett, and all right to Elrick, were 
here assigned to John Burnett.^ 

1 Ant. A. and I!. I. p. 235. 4 Ret. Spec. Aber. No. 339. 

2 Ret. Spec. .\ber. No. 16. 5 Letters of Reversion in H.M. Reg. Ho. EAin. 

3 Id., No. 2i3. and note by Mr. Bumett.late Lord Lyon. 

296 The Thanage of Fertnartyn. 

The following is the descent of the Burnetts of Elrick. William Burnett of 
Wester Camphill, Craigour, Tilliehaidie, as is evidenced by charters of date 1537, 1546, 
and 1547 ; ' married, and had issue : — 

I. Alexander, of Craigour. 

II. Andrew, of Easter Camphill, of whom afterwards. 

III. William, of Wester Camphill. He married Jane Arbuthnott. 
William Burnett of Wester Camphill was succeeded by his son, 

He married the heiress of Craigmyle of that ilk, and had issue : — 

I. Thomas, of Craigmyle, who married Jane Moncur, and died before 1620, 
leaving issue, Elizabeth, who married James Burnett, second son of 
Alexander Burnett of Leys, and had issue, two daughters. 

II. Thomas, of Kemnay, still represented. 
in. James, of Monboddo. 

IV. Robert, of Contrin, Criggie, Colpnay, and Muchalls. He was born 1620, 
and in 1650, as above narrated, obtained the lands of Elrick. He was 
known as tutor of Leys. By his second wife, Helen Arbuthnott, he had 
three daughters — i. Helen, married to Sir Alexander Burnett of Leys. 
2. Agnes, married to Thomas Burnett of Glenbervie, and after his 
death to Sir William Nicholson of Glenbervie. 3. Jean, married to 
William, son of Sir Thomas Burnett of Leys. 

II. Andrew Burnett. 

He married , and had issue : — 

I. William, of Camphill, from whom are descended the Burnetts of Camp- 

II. Alexander, from whom are descended the Burnetts of Kirkhill and 

III. Andrew, merchant, Aberdeen, 1597-1617 ; married Christian, eldest 
daughter of Alexander Jaffray of Kingswells, and had issue — Andrew, 
merchant, Aberdeen, who married Katharine, eldest daughter of John 
Lichtoun, and had issue^ among others a son, John. 

III. John Burnett of Elrick. 

He is mentioned above as obtaining the lands of Elrick by assignation from William 
Innes of Kinnermonie, and had of these a crown charter in 1663. In 1662, he was 
appointed Dean of Guild, Aberdeen." He married firstly, Marjorie Howieson, by whom 
he had issue : — 

I. John, of whom afterwards, and five daughters. 

He married secondly, Mary, daughter of George Jamesone, the famous artist, and 
by her had, 

I Notes by Mr. Burnett, Lord Lyon. 2 Notes by Lord Lyon, Burnett ; Walker's Deans of Guild. 

Elrick. 297 

II. George, who succeeded his brother John. 

III. Robert, who succeeded his brother (leorgc. 
John Burnett of Elrick was succeeded by his eldest son, 

IV. John Burnett of Elrick. 

Ho died in 1675 at the age of fifteen, having been nine years [iroprictor of Elrick, 
and was succeeded by his brother, 

V. Gteorge Burnett of Elrick. 

Ho was served heir to his brotiiier immediately senior, May 14, 1675, in the lands 
and barony of Elrick, the lands of Monicaboc, Chappeltack, &c.' He was succeeded 
by his brother, 

VI. Robert Burnett of Elrick. 

He was served heir to his brother, George liurnctt of Elrick, in the lands and 
barony of Elrick, the town and lands of Monicaboc, 14 May, 1684.- He married 
firstly, 1683, Bessie, daughter of Andrew Burnett of Durris, by whom he had issue : — 

I. John, born 1684. 

II. Andrew, his successor. 

III. Robert, born 1687. 

IV. Thomas, born 1688. 

V. Patrick, born 1689. 

He married secondly, Isobel Irvine, by whom he had issue : — 

VI. James, born 1694. 
I. Mary, born 1697. 

He died in 1697, and was succeeded by his second surviving son, 

VII. Andrew Burnett of Elrick. 

He was served heir, 16 August, 1706, to his father, Robert Burnett, who died 
28 March, 1697, heir special in Elrick and Monicaboc.^ He married, 1707, Marjorie 
(who died 1723), eldest daughter of John Johnston of that ilk and has issue : — 

I. Robert, his successor. 

II. John, who succeeded Robert. 

III. Andrew, died young. 

IV. Andrew, merchant, Campvere, 1753, and afterwards baillie of Aberdeen. 

1. Jane, born 1709. 

2. Beatrix, born 17 10. 

3. Marjorie, born 17 16; married George Mowat. 

4. Helen, born 17 19. 

Andrew Burnett of Elrick died before 1721, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

1 Ret. Spec. Aber. No. 427. 3 Decen. Rets. 1706. 

2 Id., No. 460. * 

298 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

VIII. Robert Burnett of Elrick. 

He was served heir, February 11, 1721, to his father, Andrew Burnett of Elrick, 
heir general in the lands of Elrick, Monicaboc, &c/ He died in 1737, and was 
succeeded by his next youngest brother, 

iX. John Burnett of Elrick. 

He was served heir general, 17 September, 1737, to his father, Andrew Burnett of 

Elrick.'' He married Margaret, daughter of Strachan of Balgall, afterwards wife 

of Sir Arthur Forbes, Bart, of Craigievar. In 1742, he was Dean of Guild, and in 1744, 
baillie of Aberdeen. He had issue : — 

I. Andrew, his successor. 

II. William, born 1743, died 1776. 

III. George, born 1744, Captain 33rd Foot; married Mary Rigail, d. s. p., 

IV. John, who succeeded his brother Andrew. 

v. Alexander, Quarterly Deputy Commissary General H.E.I.C.S, ; married 
Barbara Maxwell, who died 1819. 

1. Mary, born 1740. 

2. Marjory, born 1740. 

3. Hope, married firstly, James Davidson of Midmar ; secondly, 1779, 
Alexander Donaldson. 

Mr. John Burnett died in 1748. The "Aberdeen Journal" of the period thus 
records his death : — " John Burnett of Elrick, late one of the baillies of the city, died 
November — , 1748, aged 37. As he was generally beloved, his death is justly 
lamented, and to whose memory the following lines were inscribed by a friend : — 

" If all the social virtues which adorn 

The generous mind or warm the friendly heart 
Be ought regarded or the man esteemed 
A public good, whose happy lot they are, 
Well may thou, Aberdeen, mourn thy loss ! 
Such was thy son whom fate this day enwrapped 
In death's dark shade ! On thee, alas, no more 
His counsel or his conduct brings regard. 
No more with honest warmth his patriot heart 
For thee shall glow, no more his influence 
Thy sons shall bless. No more his liberal hand 
'^ Shall cheer the poor with offices benign. 

Too soon, alas ! For he's called to share 
The unimagined bliss of virtuous souls." 

Baillie Burnett was succeeded by his son, 

XI. Andrew Burnett of Elrick. 
He was born 1742, and died 1767, and was succeeded by his brother, 

• I Decen. Rets. 1711. 2 Decen. Rets. 1737; Walker's Deans of Guild. 



XII. John Burnett of Elrick. 

He was born 1745. In 17S1 was dcsigiicci of Ijcncoolan, East Indies; married, 
1785, Helen, daughter of Patrick Garden Caini>i>ell of Troup and Glenlyon, and had 
issue : — 

I. Jolin, horn 1790. 

II. Peter, his succes.sor. 
HI. Andrew, born 1794. 

IV. I'Vancis, born 1796, a merchant in Aberdeen ; married Tower, and 

had issue, a son and a daughter, who died youny;. 

V. Wilham, born 1801 ; married I'itcairn, and had issue, a daughter. 

\T. David, born 1804 ; married Forsyth. 

1. Catharine, born 1787, died unmarried, 1810. 

2, Hay, born 1799; married, 1821, Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas Lumsden of 

Mr. John Burnett of Elrick died in 1822, and was succeeded by his son, 

XIII. Peter Burnett of Elrick. 

He was served heir to his father, John Burnett, 22 March, 1824.' He married 

firstly , and had issue, a son, 

Peter, his successor. 

He married secondly, Demidoff. 

Mr. Patrick Burnett died in 1870, and was succeeded by his son, 

XIV. Peter Burnett of Elrick. 

He married Guillemina, daughter of Sir William Cater, Bart. 

It is remarkable of this family how frequently brothers succeeded brothers. 

I Decen. Ret>. 1S24. 



Now possessed by trustees for the children of William Stephen. 

In ancient times it formed a part of the lands belonging to the Bishopric of Aber- 
deen. In a charter of David I., 1136 (supposed by the late Cosmo Innes and others to 
be spurious), mention is made of Goul (Govel), Kinmundy, Mameulach, &c., as forming 
part of the lands of the See of Aberdeen, and this charter was renewed by William and 
his successors.' 

William Gordon, who was appointed in 1545 Bishop of Aberdeen, in succession to 
Bishop Stewart, was of scandalous life, and one of those prelates who contributed much 
to the early downfall of the ancient Church of Scotland. At a meeting of the Chapter 
of the Cathedral of Old Aberdeen, 5 January, 1559, the Bishop requested the advice of 
the Chapter in regard to the reformation and the suppression of heresy. The Chapter 
desired their ordinary to cause the churchmen of the Diocese to reform their scandalous 
manner of living, and to put away their concubines, and in order that the advice might 
have better effects, the Bishop himself was entreated to show a good example by 
removing from his company the gentlewoman through whom he caused great scandal.'' 

The Bishop, to provide for his household, let and disponed as much as he could 
of the lands of the Bishopric, and on the 20 October, 1565, with consent of the 
Chapter, he granted a charter of the lands of North Spittal to Janet Knowles (perhaps 
the gentlewoman above alluded to) in life-rent, and to George, John, and William 
Gordons, Elizabeth, Margaret, and Martha Gordons. With regard to Bishop Gordon, 
Bishop Spottiswood thus writes, " some hopes he gave at first of a virtuous man, but 
afterwards turned a very epicure, spending all his time in drinking, &c. ; he dilapidated 
the whole rents by feuing the lands and converting the victual duties into money, a 

great part whereof he wasted on his base born children, and the w s, their mothers, 

a man not worthy to be placed in the catalogue." ^ He died in 1577. 

The Bishop granted charters and assedations of the lands of the Bishopric for many 
years. In 1549, he gave an assedation to Thomas Downie and James Davidson of four 
oxen gangs each of the lands of Kinmundie at the following rents, payment for each 
half in money, 33s. 4d. ; half a quarter of a mairt, half a mutton, half a peck of bear, 
three firlots of oats with the straw, one capon and a half, one goose, tenpence for 

1 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. pp. 3-4-7. 3 Spottiswood's Hist. I. p. 210. 

2 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. Ixiv. 

Kinmundy and Kingseat, &c. 301 

bondages, carriages, and for leading the Bishop's teind corn, lime, slate, and salt as 
required, and service in war, according to the use of the shire. In the same year, there 
was an assedation of the lands of Boighall to Thomas Menzies of Pitfoddels, a proix*rty 
in the neighbourhood of Kinmundie, which, along with Boighall, was disponed after 
wards to the said Thomas Menzies. 

In 1624, according to the burgh records of Aberdeen, Boighall was owned by the 
family of Menzies. On the 22 April of that year, Thomas Menzies is mentioned as the 
only lawful son of the late Robert Menzies of Boighall, and in 1633, we find Wedder- 
burn inscribing his " Instituliones Grammatical " to Sir Paul Menzies of Kinmundy, the 
Provost and Town Council of Aberdeen ,' and in 1654, Paul Menzies is mentioned as 
a witness in a charter of the lands of Arnage.' 

In 1 707, Barbara Menzies is served heir portioner to her brother, Thomas Menzies 
of Kinmundie ; also at the same time Helen and Jane Menzies are served heir 
portioners. These were probably the son and daughters of the above named Paul 
Menzies. Kinmundy remained in the Menzies family down to the year 1732, when 
about that time it was sold to the Master of the Guild Hospital, Aberdeen. From the 
charters of North Kinmundie, we find that Maitland of Pitrichie, in 1750, feued these 
lands from the Master of the Guild Hospital ; and that Major Arthur Maitland sold 
them, in 1761, to the Earl of Aberdeen, in whose family they remained, till purchased 
by Alexander and William Stephen in 1846. A feu-duty of ;^42 is payable annually 
from these lands to the town of Aberdeen.^ 

S. Kinmundy belongs to Rev. D. G. Mearns, B.D., of Disblair, and minister of 
Oyne. (See Disblair.) 


is now owned by Rev. William Gordon, minister of Glenbervie, whose ancestors were 
for several generations tenants of the Duke of Gordon. 

Kingseat, according to tradition, derived its name from one of the Kings of Scotland 
having, in his peregrinations, rested there. It formed a portion of the Belhelvie estates, 
and on the sale of these by the York Buildings' Company, it came into the possession 
of Alexander Duthie, advocate in Aberdeen, who sold it, in 1792, to Alexander 
Thomson, of Banchory. From him it passed to Alexander Eraser, Aberdeen, some 
time in Edinburgh. In 1842, it was sold to Alexander Morrison in Balhaggardy, by 
whom, in -.1859, it was disponed to Sir Thomas Blaikie, knight, whose widow, Dame 
Agnes Dingwall or Blaikie, sold it, in 1874, to Rev. William Gordon." 

The Better Ale Well. — King Malcolm Canmore, according to tradition, when 
marching with his army through Aberdeenshire is said to have rested at Kingseat, and 

X Ant. A. and B. L p. 63. 3 N. Kinmundy Charters, 

a Amage Charters. 4 Kingseat Cbarten. 

302 The Thanage of Fennartyn. 

being overpowered with thirst had water brought to him from a well in the neighbour- 
hood, with which he was so pleased that he pronounced it to be better than ale. Hence 
the well is called the " Better Ale Well " to this day. 


in ancient times was called Boghole, and now belongs to Gordon of Parkhill. It was 
for some time, as already mentioned, occupied by the family of Menzies. Thomas 
Menzies owned it before 1624, and was in that year succeeded by his son, Robert 
Menzies. It was subsequently owned by John Cuthbert, writer in Edinburgh, who 
married Christian, daughter of David Gregorie of Kinnairdie. He was mainly instru- 
mental in putting in the predecessor of Dr. Thomas Reid into the church of New- 
machar contrary to the wishes of the people. At one time there was on it a mansion 
house, the ruins of which existed down to 1861. 


Formed at one lime part of the Belhelvie estate, which, on the forfeiture of the Earl 
of Panmurc after the rising of 17 15, came into the possession of the York Buildings' 
Company, and was in their possession till 1782, when, by the order of the Court of 
Session, the Belhelvie estate was sold. It was divided into sixteen lots, and one or 
more of these were purchased l)y Skene of Dyce, and added to that estate. 

There is a commodious mansion house on the estate, which was thoroughly repaired 
in 1 86 1. It is situated in extensive woodlands, and has a very fine view, across an 
artificial lake, of the hills in the distance, especially of Benachie. 

The Gordons of Pitlurg succeeded to these estates through their descent from the 
Skenes of Dyce. In tracing the descent of this ancient house, the Gordons of Park- 
hill, who are the senior of those in the northern counties possessing any male descent 
from the founders of the family of Gordon, it may be well to give some account of the 
first rise of that great historical name. George Chalmers and Dr. Joseph Robertson, 
brushing aside the fables with which the ignorance and fancy of mediaeval chroniclers 
had encrusted the early history of many of our Scottish families, have drawn from 
authentic records the following facts. Before the middle of the twelfth century, the 
progenitor of the Gordons came from England into north Britain, and obtained the 
lands of Gourdon in the county of Berwick, where he settled with his followers, and 
whence he assumed the name of Gordon or Gourdon, as it was then and for long after 
spelt. Richmond de Gourdon, 1 140-60, was a benefactor to the Abbey of Kelso ; he and 
his descendants held these lands from the Earls of March, the great Crown tenants of that 
portion of the Scottish borders, and must have been amongst their most powerful 
vassals. They were forced by their feudal obligations to follow their over-lords in their 
changes of allegiance, and thus they adhered to Wallace ; but after that hero's death, 
they for a time submitted to Edward I. Sir Adam Gordoun, then the head of the 
family, and evidently a man of power and influence, was appointed by the English King 
in 1300 a Warden of the Marches, and in 1305 one of the Justiciaries of the Lothians. 
Sir Adam was sixth in descent from Richard de Gordoun above mentioned. Shortly 
before Bannockburn he broke away from his feudal superior, the Earl of March, and 
from the English interest, and attached himself to the national party under Robert 
Bruce. For this he was well rewarded, as he received from the King a grant of the 
lands of Gordoun and others in free barony, on the forfeiture of the Earls of March, 
and some years later a grant of the barony of Strathbolgie, part of the possessions of the 

304 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

attainted Strathbolgies, Earls of Athole. That great family, however, having attached 
themselves to the Baliol faction, held their own for some generations, so that we do not 
find the Gordons as benefiting by their northern possessions (notwithstanding repeated 
charters and confirmations) until 1376, when Sir John Gordoun, great grandson to Sir 
Adam Gordoun of Bannockburn, the first grantee, finally received from King Robert 
II. a charter of confirmation of the lands of barony of Strathbolgie ' as originally granted 
to his great-grandfather by the King's grandfather. Sir John Gordon, who was a 
distinguished warrior and valiant defender of the marches, is said by all the genealogists 
to have fallen at Otterburne in 1388, though his name does not appear in any of the 
historical accounts of the battle. On the contrary, in 1391, "Johannes Gordon, miles, 
dominus ejuidem," is identified, in more than in one deed, as still living in the county 
of Aberdeen. Some years later, in 1395, he is mentioned as being dead,- 

Sir John was succeeded in his extensive possessions in the counties of Berwick and 
Aberdeen by Sir Adam Gordon, as to whose relationship to him there is some doubt, as 
will be mentioned further on. Sir Adam fell at Homildon in 1402, leaving by his wife, 
Elizabeth, daughter of Sir William Keith, knight, Marischal of Scotland, a son, John 
Gordoun, whose existence has only been discovered by the evidence of a deed in the 
Kilsythe charter chart. It is an indenture between an honourable Lady Dame Eliza- 
beth Gordoun, spouse of an honourable and worthy man. Sir Nicholas Erskine, Lord of 
Kinnoul (her second husband), and John Gordoun, the said Elizabeth's son, being a 
tack by her of one third of the lordship of Gordoune, Strathbolgie, Kinnoul, and Maler, 
dated 14 December, 1406.^ Sir Adam Gordoune and Elizabeth Keith had at least one 
daughter, Elizabeth Gordoune, who succeeded to her brother, John Gordoun, on 
his death, or shortly before 1408, in which year she and her affianced husband, Alexander 
Seton, had a charter to them and to their heirs, &c., on her resignation of the lands 
of Gordoune, Strathbolgie, &c., from Robert, Duke of Albany, then Regent. From 
Elizabeth Gordoune and Alexander Seton came the Earls of Huntly, their eldest son 
having been raised to that dignity, and he having, in 1449, assumed the surname of 
Gordon, his descendants in all their branches have been known distinctively in the 
North as the " Seton Gordons." 

At this point of the family history, two brothers appear on the scene, an account of 
whom must be given, as the elder was the ancestor of the Pitlurg family. They are 
called John and Thomas Gordon, known in local tradition as " Jock and Tam." They 
were the progenitors of upwards of fifty landed and baronial families in the counties of 
Aberdeen and Banff, forming the great bulk of the clan Gordon of the north, their 
descendants being properly known as the " Jock and Tam Gordons." 

Much controversy was carried on in former days between the Seton and the " Jock 
and Tam Gordons" respecting the paternity and status of the two brothers. The 
former alleged that they were illegitimate sons of Sir Adam Gordon, and consequently 

I Ant. A. and B. II. p, 109. 3 MS. Notes by the Lord Lyon King of Anns, 1885. 

a Id., I. p. 540; III. 471 ; IV. 162-378, Notes. 

Parkliill. 305 

half-brothers of Elizabeth, the heiress, and that their status, or rather their want of it, was 
proved by their failing to inherit the (lordon estates. The latter maintained that the 
brothers were lawful sons of Sir John (lordon, and younger brothers, and therefore 
uncles of the heiress in full blood, and that feudally the daughter of the elder brother 
would succeed. The Seton party averred that the father and mother of the brothers 
were only hand-fasted, a tie which could not legitimise the offspring. The other party 
replied, notably through the great scholar and historian of their name. Cordon of 
Straloch, that they could not understand how their ancestors could have been illegiti- 
mate, seeing that the brothers, and all descended from them, had always borne on their 
seals, ensigns, &c., the ancient coat of arms of the family without any mark of bastardy, 
adding, reasonably enough, that it was in no ways probable that the head of the family 
would have allowed them to bear such a coat of arms had they not been lawful sons. 
Straloch adds, "we know that it is not very long" (he wrote 1650-1660, and this is 
curious and interesting) " since some great families in Scotland got allowance to take 
the mark of illegitimacy out of their coat of arms ; but in those days it was not allowed 
to any to carry the paternal coat, who were not legitimate, without some cognisance 
marking the defect of their legitimacy, which was then narrowly enquired into, when the 
honour of chivalry was so much esteemed." ' 

In this controversy the truth was divided between the two parties, while each was 
partly mistaken. John and Thomas Gordon were certainly sons of Sir John, not of Sir 
Adam Gordon. They are shown to have been so, and also proved to have been 
illegitimate by a contemporary charter to be quoted presently, having been no doubt 
the issue of a hand-fast connection between Sir John and their mother whoever she may 
have been. This charter which was found about seventy years ago among the title 
deeds of Gordon of Aberdour, is now in the muniment room of Gordon Castle. It is 
the confirmation dated 1423, of Douglas, Lord of Abercorn and of Aberdour, of a deed 
of sale in 14 18, of the lands of Ardlaw and those in the barony of Aberdour.- 
" Willelmus Fraser, dominus de Philorth, dilecto et speciali meo Johanni de Gordon 
filio naturali quondam Johannis de Gordon militis domini ejusdem terras meas de Ard- 
lach tenandas predicto Johanni et haeredibus suis masculis inter ipsum et Elizabethan! 
nunc sponsam suam legitime procreatis seu procreandis quibus forte deficientibus, 
Alexandro filio naturali dicti Johannis, &c., quibus deficientibus Ade filio naturali dicti 
Johannis, &c., quibus forte deficientibus, Thome de Gordone fratri prnefati Johannis et 
hiXredibus suis masculis, &c., quibus forte deficientibus veris et legitimis hsredibus de 
Gordone cognomen de Gordon portantibus." This document being taken as proof that 
John and Thomas Gordon were not legitimate, in the ordinary sense of the term, we 
are led to inquire how that fact can be reconciled with the statements of Straloch, who 
was certainly an honest and candid writer. We can say, taken as proof, because it is 
stated on no mean authority, that the words ** naturalis et carnalis," taken by themselves 

I MS. Hist, of the Gordons, I. p. 46 ; Translation from Robert 2 Ant. A. .incl B. II. 371.9. 

Gordon of Straloch's Origo et Progressus Familiip 
Illustrissimic Gordonionum in Scotia, &c. 

3o6 The Tlianage of Fermartyn. 

without the adjunct " bastardus," do not necessarily mean bastardy. It is probable they 
were used to designate the issue of those hand-fast or left-handed marriages so common 
in the Highlands,' (our authority might have said in the Lowlands also,) and then he 
adds, " Both naturalis et carnalis are occasionally applied to individuals known to be 
legitimate in the strictest sense of the word." The probability is, however, that the 
Seton Gordons theory was correct in saying that John and Thomas Gordon were the 
issue of hand-fasting. This was an old Celtic custom, which being constantly practised 
in the Highlands was also widely prevalent in the low country. And it must be frankly 
stated, that only those who had access to the facts as drawn up from the mediaeval 
records of Scotland, can fully realise how deeply and universally the domestic and 
social life of the country was permeated by this barbarous usage and its effects. In the 
Highlands the issue of a hand-fast marriage was considered legitimate, even though the 
connection was dissolved and a fresh union formed.- Although, however, this was 
repudiated by both the canon and feudal law as has been pointed out. Nevertheless, 
it probably accounts for the disputes which often arose on the death of a chief, 
between the rightful heir as recognised by the feudal law and a claimant, who though 
stigmatised as illegitimate, denied the imputation, and generally had the sympathies of 
the clan with him. A notable instance of this occurred on the death of the ninth Earl 
of Sutherland, whose sister, wife of Sir Adam Gordon, was about to assume the title and 
with it the estates, when they were claimed by Alexander Sutherland, as being the son 
of Earl John, who had been hand-fasted to his mother. Alexander was freely stigma- 
tised as illegitimate ; but Sir Adam found it worth while to buy him off.^ In the 
Lowlands the custom survived the expulsion or the absorption of the Celtic population, 
and the proof is only too abundant of the hold it came to have on society down to the 
time of the Reformation.'* The subject is not a pleasant one to dwell on ; but the regu- 
lations of the Church of Rome respecting marriage were so oppressive, the effects of the 
" prohibited degrees " extending so far into family connections, that it was almost impos- 
sible to find members of good families who could be united within the line, whence it 
resulted that many were married without any licence or dispensation at all.^ This was 
done by hand-fasting, or by being " quyetly married " as it was termed, and this evil 
example infected others, who though not requiring dispensation seem to have felt no 
shame in substituting for it a contract which did not bind for life, while being sanctioned 
by usage, it gave a quasi respectability, according to the ideas of the time, to their 
offspring, which seems to have been considered better than those born in ordinary 
concubinage. There is evidence to show that the children born of these unions seem 
to have occupied socially much the same position as younger children born in wedlock, 
being provided for in similar proportion; their names being constantly found in settlements 

1 Gregory's Highlands and Isles of Scotland, p. 41, Note. 4 Riddell's Peerage and Consistonal Law I. pp. 67-68 ; 

2 Skene's Highlanders of Scotland, Cap. viii. ; Scotland also his remarks on Scot. Peer. Law, pp. 185-7. 

under the Early Kings by H. W. Robertson, 5 Mary Queen of Scots, Lady Jean Gordon, by John 
Vol. IL p. 98. Stuart, LL.D., pp. 65-84 ; Roger's Social Life in 

•3 History of the Gordons of Sutherland by Robert Gordon Scotland, 

of Gordonston. 

Park/till. ^ 307 

of landed property, coming immediately after the younger lawful children, and taking 
precedence of the brothers or nephews of their father. Both parents being of patrician 
rank would of course also effect their position favourably in an aristocratic society. The 
whole system, reprehensible as it seems, was no doubt a sort of lawless protest against 
the oppressive and almost intolerable restrictions of the Church of Rome, not perhaps 
to be wondered at, when we consider the fierce and unruly character of those who 
suffered from them, and the ixjverty of the country, which made the expense of dispen- 
sations and such like burdens grievous to be borne. 

What has been stated then, may explain the points which perplexed Straloch. The 
fact being, as shown, that the disability of the children who sprung from these unions 
was legal, scarcely, if at all, social. They seem to have married in the same class as 
their parents, of which the following pedigree affords ample evidence, a sure sign of 
their position in an age when a mesalliance was considered a thing impossible. The 
awkward facts here stated are ignored by many Peerage and Pedigree writers, who glibly 
pour out unbroken descents with rarely a hint of any flaw. Too often where no 
mention is made of a marriage, but where the writer states that " he left a son," it ought 
to be told that having no issue, or none surviving legally entitled to succeed, he had 
devised his estate to his *' filius naturalis," and if this occurred before the Reformation, 
it might be added that nobody living at the time thought it anything but right that he 
should do so. 

Dr. Joseph Robertson who, of the Charter Antiquaries of Scotland, was certainly 
" facile princeps," emphatically declared that the number of Scottish families which had 
not passed through one or more steps of illegitimacy was infinitesimally small, and that 
the presumption indeed was the other way. 

To return to John and Thomas Gordon, the first to mention them in any account of 
the family was Ferarius, abbot of Kinloss, a Piedmontese by birth, who was induced by 
the Huntly family about 1540-50 to attempt a history of the Gordons. He no doubt 
meant honestly, but as a foreigner was at the mercy of his informants, and his work is 
consequently a transcript of the current legends and beliefs with which he was furnished 
by his associates. When these can be tested by authentic evidence, they are rarely 
found correct ; many indeed are absurdly impossible. Having stated that Sir Adam 
Gordon was their father, he goes on to identify the mother of John and Thomas Gordon 
as the daughter of a gentleman of the neighbourhood, Cruickshank of Aswanly, on the 
Deveron, who is called " Tosh-diragh " (or Coroner) of the district ; but when we find 
that Sir Adam Gordon was not their father, as we have shown, and seeing also that he 
mistakes the name of the mother of Elizabeth Gordon, the heiress, from whom the 
Huntly family, in whose interests he wrote, were descended, there is some ground for 
hesitation in accepting his statements in any part of his subject. 

The elder of the two brothers received the lands of Essie, forming a parish in the 
extensive barony of Strathbogie. He was known in common parlance as John of Scur- 
dargue, from his residence being at that place within his lands. This estate of Essie he 

3o8 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

left to his eldest born, but, according to feudal and canon law, illegitimate son, 
Alexander Gordon, named in the charter of Ardlaw, &c., quoted some way back. The 
origin of this Alexander is an example of the barbarous practice we have so fully 
described. When very young John Gordon had been sent by his father to Skye to be 
fostered (and this shows how strongly Celtic customs held their ground in upper 
Aberdeenshire at that date) in the family of his friend, Macleod of Harris and Glenelg, 
one of the most powerful chiefs in the west. While domesticated in Dunvegan, John 
was hand-fasted to Renault Macleod, the chiefs daughter, sister to the Lady Macintosh, 
by whom he had Alexander, and probably also Adam, who is mentioned in the same 
charter as his " filius naturalis." It is curious, and shows what " John of Scurdargue's " 
own idea was as to Alexander's position (and possibly as a sort of protest in favour of 
his own), that he treated him as an elder son, and settled the principal property of Essie 
upon him. Alexander married Christian, daughter of Leslie of Balquhain, and was 
ancestor of the Gordons of Buckie, Leicheston, Knockespock, &c. 

Thomas Gordon, the younger of the two brothers, called in tradition, " Tam of 
Rivane," appears in 1423 as esquire to Sir Walter Lindsay of Glenesk, and twenty-five 
years later is termed Dominus de Auchinreath.' He look his title from the lands of 
Ruthven (Rivane), forming, like Essie, a parish in the barony of Strathbogie, which con- 
joined with that of Botarie is now the parish of Cairney. His monument and effigy in 
armour lies in a niche in the wall of the kirk of Rivane, near Huntly. Thomas Gordon 
married three wives, all daughters of baronial houses, and left many sons, from whom a 
number of families traced their descent. With this introduction we now come to the 

descent of 

John Grordon of Essie. 

He was called John of Scurdarg from his residence being at that place within the 
lands of Essie, which were granted to him by his father. Sir John Gordon, He had also 
Ardlaw in Aberdour, " noveritis me dedisse et vendidisse dilecto et speciali meo Johanni 
de Gordon filio naturali quondam domini Johannis de Gordone militis omnes meas 
terras de Ardlach, &c." In the charter just quoted his wife's name is given as Elizabeth. 
The old MS. histories of the family call the wife of whom the children were born 
Margaret. She was certainly daughter to Robert Matulant of Natyrdul (Maitland of 
Netherdale), who was grandson of Sir Robert Maitland of Thirlstane. Her brother was 
Sir Patrick Maitland of Netherdale, Gight, and Shivas. They had three sons and two 
daughters : — 

I. John, ancestor of Pitlurg and other branches. 

II. William, of Tillytarmont, ancestor of Craig, Lesmoir, and many others.^ 

III. James, of Methlic, ancestor of the Gordons of Haddo, now Earls 01 

1. Elizabeth, married, 1436, to James Baird of Ordinhivas. 

2. Janet, married to Annand of Auchterellon. 

1 Ant, A. and B. III. p, 228 ; IV, p. 183, 

ParkhilL 309 

John Gordon, as has been already mentioned, left Essie to Alexander Gordon, his 
son by Renault Macleod, to whom he was liand-fastcd. His eldest son, by his marriage 
with Elizabeth Maitland, became 

II. John Gordon of Auchleuchry. 

He got from his father the lands of Auchleuchry. He married Dame Elizabeth 
Abernethy, daughter of I^iwrence, Lord Saltoun, of Rothiemay, and had issue two sons : 

I. John, his successor. 

H. James, of Cairn burrow, ancestor of Rothiemay, Glenbucket, Park, &c. 
John Gordon was succeeded by his son, 

III. John Gordon of Auchleuchry. 

He obtained a portion of the Gordon territory by receiving the lands of Botarie 
from the Earl of Huntly ; had seisin of the lands of Kindrocht in 1487' In 1493, he 
purchased the lands of Longweir (Lungair or Lungar) and Hilton in the county of 
Kincardine, forming the southern half of the barony of Dunnottar, and in the same 
year those of Cromy, Little Warthill, with the part of Harlaw and the Glack. In this 
deed he is designated John Gordon of Auchleuchry." In 1506, he got a charter from 
Sir Alexander Seton of the lands of Kinmundy, Mylhill, Myllbrecks, and Petremarcus, 
and in the same year, he purchased the lands of Kyninmonde in Lonmay.^ John 
Gordon married Barbara, daughter of Alexander Forbes of Pitsligo, by his wife, Dame 
Hay, daughter of William, first Earl of Errol, by whom he had a son, 

I. John, his successor. 

II. Francis. 

John Gordon died 1506, and was succeeded by his son, 

IV. John Gordon of Auchleuchry, Lungar, Kinmundie, &c. 

In 1506, there is a deed of sasine in favour of John Gordon, son and heir of the 
late John Gordon of Lungar, on charter of William Gordon of Schivas, of the lands of 
Petnagoak, in the county of Aberdeen and barony of Schivas, dated 24 November, 
1506.* In 1531, there is a charter by King James V. confirming a charter of sale by 
Francis Gordon, portioner, Kindrocht and Sathlee to his brother, John Gordon of Lum- 
gair,5 and eight years later, he got a feu charter from the Bishop of Moray, to him and 
the lawful heirs male of his body, of the lands of Pitlurge, Ovir Auchquhorties, Nether 
Auchquhorties, in the barony of Keith.* These lands adjoined to Botarie. He made an 
excambion in 1541, with Sir Thomas Erskine of Brechin, receiving the lands of 

I Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 63. S Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 560. 

3 Id., III. pp. 436-464. 6 Keg. Ep. Mor. pp. 414-415 ; Ant. .\. and B. 

3 Index Farkhill Charters. II. p. 350. 

4 Id. 

lio TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Crevethin in Drumblade in exchange for Hilton, the harbour and fishings of the same;' 
and in the same year also received a charter from John Forsyth de Dykis of the lands 
of Gilkenston.' 

He married Lady Jane Stuart, daughter of the first Earl of Athole of that family, by 
his second wife. Lady Eleanor St. Clair, daughter of William, Earl of Orkney and 
Caithness. The Earl of Athole was half-brother to King James H., being son of Queen 
Joan Beaufort, by her second husband, Sir James Stuart, the black knight of Lorne.^ 
Lady Jean predeceased her husband, having borne him two sons : — 
I. John, his successor. 
IL James, who received a grant of Auchleuchries from his brother in 1546. 

I. A daughter, who married Turing of Foveran. 

John Gordon married secondly, Margaret Drummond, of the family of Stobhall, 
without issue (she married after her husband's death George Baird of Auchmedden). 
He died in 1546, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

V. John Gordon of Petlurge, Botarie, Kinmundy, &c. 

He married in 1542-3, Janet, daughter of James Ogilvie of Cullen. In 1543, they 
are both mentioned in the following deed — " Carta Johannis Gordone filii et haredis 
apparentis Johannis Gordone de Petlurge et Janete Ogilvie sue sponse of the whole 
lands of Ovir Kynmonde, Kynknoke, and Millbrek, to be held by the said John 
Gordone, jun., and Janete Ogilvie, his spouse, and the survivor, 1546." He received 
sasine of the lands of Crevethin, Gilkemston, Kindrocht, S^c* and he fell at the battle of 
Pinkie, leaving an infant son, eight months old, and two daughters. 
I. John. 

1. Janet, married to William Forbes of Newe. 

2. Margaret, married to Menzies of Pitfoddels, Provost of Aberdeen. 
John Gordon, was succeeded by his infant son, 

VI. Sir John Gordon of Petlurge, Botarie, &c. 

He was served heir to his father, slain at Pinkie, in 1548, when he was a year old. 
When he came to man's estate he showed himself probably the most remarkable man of 
his name at the time he lived, as he was much looked up to and relied on by his " kin 
and allies." The Earl of Huntly and the barons and gentlemen of the clan Gordon, in 
their negotiations with the Crown, which, in those troubled times, were both frequent and 
intricate, from the fact that the Earl of Huntly and several of his principal kinsmen 
adhered to the Roman Catholic faith, while the Laird of Pitlurg was curiously enough a 
" persona g?ata " with King James VL, as letters from the King still extant prove. 
After the battle of Glenlivat or Balrinnes, he was instrumental in inducing King James 
to condone the outbreak of the " Popish Lords," which the King not only did, but 

1 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 561. 3 Douglas' Peerage folio, p. 49- 

2 Id., III. p. 196. 4 Ant. A. and B. IV. pp. 562-563. 

Parklull. 3 1 1 

issued ;i coiiimission to Sir John (lordon (still existing) to take possession of Huntly's 
castle of Strathbogie, and to undertake the administration of the Earl's great estates, 
until a settlement was come to. He was knighted by the King at the baptism of 
Henry, IVince of Wales.' In 1580, he had a charter from King James VI., who 
granted to him (John Gordon) and Isobel Korbes, his wife, in conjunct fee, and their 
heirs male, the lands and barony of Kinmondie, to be held of the King in free barony. 
In 1588, there is a charter of the same lands, the lands of Crevethin, lands of Gilcom- 
ston, one third part of the fourth part or moiety of the lands of and barony of Drum- 
blait videlicet, "Terras de Sleache cum le I'ark, c*v:c." ' Sir John Gordon, in 1567, 
married Dame Isobel Forbes (born 1548, died 1622), daughter of William, seventh Lord 
Forbes,^ and by her had issue, two sons and a daughter : — 

I. John, his successor. 

II. Robert, of Fechil, of whom afterwards. 

I. Barbara, married, before 1622, the Hon. John Elphinstonc of Wartle, third 
son of Alexander, fourth Lord Elphinstone, and had issue. 
Sir John Gordon died in the year 1600, and was succeeded by his son, 

VII. John Gordon of Pitlurg, Botarie, Kinmundy, and Straloch. 

He was served heir to his father in 1600 in the lands of Kinmundie, Carvethin, 
Thorniewray, &c. ; as also, in 1603, to his father, in the lands of Meikle and Little 
Bannagoak in the barony of Kelly.^ In 1606, there is a charter to John Gordon of 
Pitlurg of the lands of Over Straloch, Overhill, Auchinstink, Nether Cornmill, Over 
Cornmill of Straloch, and mylne lands, lands of Kingordie, Brunthill, and Whiterashes, 
&C.5 There is an instrument of sasine in favour of John Gordon of Pitlurg and 
Nicolas Kinnaird, his spouse, and the longest liver, on a charter by Alexander, Bishop 
of Murray, of the lands of Pitlurg, &c., dated 1615.* Two years later there is a charter 
by John Gordon of Pitlurg to Robert Gordon of Fechil, his brother german, of the lands 
of Pitlurg, Auquhorties, Leterche, &c., dated at Aberdeen, June 19. In 1618, there is 
a precept of sasine of the lands of Over Kinmundie, Millbrek, Petermerkus, in favour 
of Robert Gordon. His brother german, John Gordon of Pitlurg, resigned these, 16 
December, and there is a sasine of the same date.* John Gordon married Nicola 
Kinnaird, mentioned in a deed above quoted. Being of very delicate health, he 
gradually denuded himself of his estates, and died in 16 19, and was succeeded by his 

VIII. Robert Gordon of Pitlurg, Kinmundy, Straloch, and Fechil. 

The last named estate he seems to have inherited from his father, as he is designated 
as of " Fechil" at the time he acquired from his brother the lands of Straloch. But 
coming into possession of the latter, and making it his principal residence, he came to 

1 Parkhill Family Papers. 4 Rets. Spec. Aberd. 72 and 92. 

2 .\nt. A. and U. IV. p. 564. 5 Index of Charters of Parkhill. 

3 Parkhill Family Papers. 6 Id. 

1 1 2 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

be called by it, and retained the title ever after his brother's death, notwithstanding that 
both Kinmundy and Pitlurg were more important properties, and Straloch not a barony. 
The name of Robert Gordon, or " Straloch," ranks high among Scottish men of letters 
of the seventeenth century. To many and varied accomplishments, he joined a pro- 
found classical knowledge, and an amount of scientific acquirement very rare in his class 
at the period. Thus, with abilities and culture so much beyond his compeers, he stands 
out almost alone among the northern gentlemen of the time. A well-known historical 
writer has said of him, " without the common desire of fame, or any more sordid motive, 
he devoted his life and talents to illustrate the history of his country." Speaking also 
of the assistance given by Straloch in completing the maps of Blseu's " Great Atlas of 
Scotland," a task undertaken by him at the earnest entreaty of Charles I., the same 
authority tells us that " the topographical descriptions that accompany them are the 
most valuable contributions ever made to the physical history of the country." During 
the civil war, although he had three sons fighting against the Parliamentary party, 
Straloch enjoyed the protection of government, that he might carry on his scientific 
work without interruption. He took no active part apparently in the warlike doings of 
the Gordon powers under the Marquis of Huntly ; but from correspondence still pre- 
served, he seems to have been largely consulted by his leader and kinsman in the 
tangled politics of that trying period. 

Robert Gordon lived to see the Restoration, and died in 1661, aged 81. He 
married, in 1608, Katharine, daughter of Alexander Irvine of Lenturk, by whom he had 
a numerous family, of whom the following survived him : — 

I. Robert, his successor. 

n. John, to whom he gave the estate of Fechil. He seems to have served in 
the Thirty Years' War, and afterwards to have been active under 
Montrose. From him came the Gordons of Fechil. (See Fechil.) 

in. William, called by contemporary chroniclers " ane werie able and under- 
standing gentleman," and " a pretty gentleman of great wit and humour." 
He also fought for the King, but escaped to France with his friend. Lord 
Aboyne. A family chronicler states that they died in Paris within a few 
days of each other. 

V. James, parson of Rothiemay, and laird of Zeochrie, author of a history of 
" Scots Affairs," and other works. He married, in 1643, Margaret Gordon 
of Rothiemay, without issue ; and secondly, Katharine Gordon, by whom 
he had a son, James, who married Jane Fraser, heiress of Techmuiry, and 
left descendants, the Gordons of Techmuiry. 

VII. Arthur, also in arms for the King ; but he became a successful advocate in 
Edinburgh. He married, and had a son, Robert, merchant in Dantzic, who 
founded Gordon's Hospital in Aberdeen (now Gordon's College), and a 
daughter, Catharine, married to Sir James Abercromby of Birkenbog, 

Parkhill. 3 1 3 

XI. Lewis, a physician, who practised in Aberdeen, " a learned, judicious, and 
good man," who died, unmarried, in 1704. 
Straloch's daughters who survived childhood were : — 

1. Isabel, married to Ur(juhart of Craighouse, in the county of Ross, 

2. Mary, married to Sir Richard Maitland of Pitrichie, Bart., a Lord of Session. 

(See Pitrichie.) 

3. Jane, married to Middleton of Johnston. 

4. Barbara, married Alexander Menzies of Kinmundy in Newmachar. 

5. Anne, married to Robert Bisset of Lessendrum. 

Robert Gordon died in 1661, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

IX. Robert Gordon of Pitlurg, Kinmundy, and Straloch. 

There is a precept of " clare constat " by Murdoch, Bishop of Murray, in favour of 
Robert Gordon of Pitlurg, of the lands of Pitlurg, Auquhorties, &c., crofts, Pitrifine, 
otherwise Leterche, in the barony of Keith, dated at Elgin, 1662 ; also instrument of 
sasine thereon, dated 10 December, 1662.' He married, in 1638, a daughter of Sir 
Thomas Burnett of Leys, by whom, besides nine other sons and daughters, who died 
unmarried, he left at his death, which took place in the castle of Huntly in 1681 : — 

I. Robert, his successor. 

II. John, of Collieston, of whom afterwards. 

I. Catharine, who became the second wife of Robert, second Viscount 
Arbuthnott, and left issue a quo, the present Viscount Arbuthnott is 
Robert Gordon died in 1681, and was succeeded by his son, 

X. Robert Gordon of Pitlurg, Straloch, &c. 

He married his cousin, Jean, daughter of Sir Richard Maitland of Pitrichie, who, on 
his death, married secondly, John Gordon of Fechil, her husband's and her own cousin, 
and died in 1741, aged 96. Robert Gordon left issue by Jean Maitland : — 
I. Alexander, his successor. 

I. Mary, married, in 1698, to William Baird of Auchmedden. 
Robert Gordon enjoyed the estates only about a year, and died in 1682, and was 
succeeded by his son, 

XI. Alexander Gordon of Pitlurg, Straloch, &c. 

He was served heir male of Robert Gordon of Pitlurg, his father, in the lands of 
Pitlurg, Auquhorties, Cadlow, Tarmash.'' Alexander Gordon had a long minority, 
during which his great-uncle, Alexander Gordon, the " Tutor of Pitlurg," managed so 
well, that his nephew, when of age, came into an unencumbered estate, and a large sum 
of ready money besides. He was a man of ability, sat in the first Union Parliament as 

1 Index Parkhill Charters. 2 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 168. 

314 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

member for Aberdeenshire, and played a respectable part in public life. Unfortunately, 
however, a stay in France during the reign of his friend, John Law, the financier, the 
Mississippi scheme, and what family records call " high living in Paris," brought him so 
low, that he was obliged in 1724-6 to sell the estates of Kinmundy, Pitlurg, leaving 
himself only that of Straloch. He married Jane, daughter of James Gordon of Ellon, 
and died in 1748, leaving no issue, his only son, Alexander, an Ensign in the army, 
having died unmarried in 1 742, and his daughter, Jane, in 1 743. Alexander Gordon 
was therefore succeeded by James Gordon, the grandson of his grand-uncle, John 
Gordon of Collieston, who was the second son of Robert Gordon of Pitlurg, and his wife. 
Christian Burnett of Leys. (No. IX.) John Gordon followed the practice of medicine, 
a favourite profession with the younger sons of Scottish gentry in the seventeenth and 
eighteenth centuries. He resided at Collieston, a fine old mansion, built by Cardinal 
Beaton, which he purchased along with its lands. He married, in 1675, Katharine, 
daughter of John FuUarton of Kinaber, in the county of Fermanagh, chief of that name, 
and secondly, in 1691, Helen, daughter of AUardyce of that ilk, who died the 
same year; and thirdly, in 1694, Grizel, daughter of Sir Alexander Falconer of Glen 
Farquhar, sister of the fourth Lord Falconer of Halkerton. By his first marriage he had 
issue : — 

I. John, his successor in Collieston. 
I. Jean, married to Captain William Ochterlony. 
By his third wife he had one surviving son, 

n. Patrick, M.D., who died in 1740, leaving a daughter, Elizabeth, who 
married James Abercromby of Stank. 
Dr. John Gordon died in 1 7 1 8, and was succeeded by his eldest surviving son, John 
Gordon of Collieston. 

He married Margaret Dowell, daughter of a rich merchant in Montrose, with whom 
he received a considerable fortune. He probably sold Collieston, as he purchased the 
lands of Hilton, near Aberdeen, where he settled. By his wife he had surviving issue, 
besides nine sons and daughters who died unmarried : — 

I. James his successor, and the successor of his kinsman, Alexander Gordon 

of Straloch. (No. XL) 
IL Rev. John, D.D., Incumbent of St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Aberdeen. 
He married his cousin, Jane, one of the daughters and co-heiresses of 
James Gordon, last laird of Fechil, and had issue, who all died unmarried. 
III. William, born 1720, LL.D., and of the Middle Temple. He purchased 
the estate of Harperfield, which, dying unmarried, he bequeathed to his 
great-nephew. Colonel Thomas Gordon. He wrote a history of the 

1. Catharine, married to James Davidson of Hilton.' 

2. Margaret, born 17 14, married George Turner of Menie. 

I NUbet's Hist. Vol. I. 

Parkhill. 3 1 5 

Dr. John Gordon died in 1735, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

XII. James Gordon of Hilton and Straloch. 

He followed the calling of his father and grandfather, in which he gained the rank 
of M.l)., so that, with his two brothers, the three learned professions were represented 
in their family by a doctor's degree in each. Dr. James (lordon succeeded, as before 
narrated, his cousin, Alexander (lordon of Straloch, Kinmundy, and Pitlurg (No. XL), 
in the first named estate, in 1748. He had married, in 1731, Barbara, daughter and 
heiress of Robert Cuming of Birness, by his wife, Mary Skene of Dyce (a connection 
which brought eventually the estates of Dyce and Parkhill to the Gordon family), by 
whom he had a surviving son, John. 

Dr. James Gordon died in 17 — , and was succeeded by his son, 

XIII. John Gordon Cuming of Straloch and Birness. 

On succeeding to his mother's estate of Birness he assumed her name. He was 
born in 1734, and married Mary, daughter of John Fullerton of Gallery, in the county 
of Kincardine, and died in 1768, greatly mourned as a man of much talent and 
amiabiUty of disposition. He left two sons : — 

I. John, his successor. 

II. Thomas, an officer in the army, who married Jane Nisbet, heiress of Curfin, 

in the county of I^nark ; niece of Hyndford, from whom, as 

co-heiress, she inherited the estate of Mauldsie, also in the county of 
Lanark, by whom he had three children — I. Major-General Sir J. William 
Gordon, K.C.B., of Mauldside and Carfin, which estates he sold. He was 
a highly distinguished Crimean officer, Inspector General of Fortifications. 
He died in i860. II. Hamilton Douglas Gordon, Captain in the 78th 
Highlanders. i. Amelia Jane, wife of Lieutenant-Colonel Frederick 
Hutchison, late 74th Highlanders, son of Sir William Hutchison. Colonel 
Thomas Gordon commanded for many years the Lanarkshire Militia, and 
lived at Harperfield in that county, which had been settled on him by his 
great-uncle, William Gordon, of the Middle Temple, as above mentioned. 
John Gordon was succeeded by his son, 

XV, John Gordon Gumming of Straloch and Birness. 

He succeeded his father when only seven years of age, having been born in 1761. 
During his minority his guardians sold the estate of Straloch, the last remnant of the 
Gordon property, leaving him only with the small estate of Birness in Buchan. He 
entered the army in 1779, and was soon after appointed Major in the Gordon Fencibles, 
a regiment raised by the Duke of Gordon on his extensive estates. But another army 
being required, he raised on the Duke of Gordon's estates in the Highlands one wing of 

3i6 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

five hundred men of a regiment called the Loyal Inverness Fencibles for service in 
Great Britain, of which he became Colonel Commandant, and this corps he commanded 
throughout the Irish rebellion with so much credit, that it was made a Royal regiment, 
with the title of the Duke of York's Royal Inverness Highlanders, and received the 
special thanks of George III. It was reduced at the peace of Amiens, after which 
Colonel Gordon Cumming, promoted to Major-General, commanded a brigade on the 
coast of Sussex, while the country was threatened with invasion by France. He then 
served with the army with which we occupied Sicily, and held at different times com- 
mands in the British Islands and West Indies. 

General Gordon, when he came to settle in the county of Aberdeen, gave the name 
of " Pitlurg " to the united estates of Birness and Leask in memory of the old Banff- 
shire property of his forefathers. He succeeded in 1815 to the estates of Dyce and 
Parkhill, under a settlement of a distant relative, Skene of Dyce, who died in that year. 
He married at the age of twenty-one a young lady of great beauty, only fifteen years of 
age, daughter to Sir Hew Crawford Pollock of Jordanhill and Pollock. They had 
issue several sons and daughters : — 

I. William, his successor. 

II. Thomas, Captain 74th Highlanders ; married Harriet, daughter of General 
William Hutchinson, without issue. 

III. James, Captain 4th Foot 3 married Jane Adelaide, daughter of Sir Thomas 
Kenny, bart. 

1. Crawford, married William Forlong of Errens, county of Argyle. 

2. Isabella, married Francis Gordon of Craig and Kincardine. 

General Gordon Cumming assumed the name of Skene on succeeding to Dyce and 
Parkhill. He died in 1828, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

XVI. William Gordon Cumming Skene of Pitlurg, Dyce, and Parkhill. 

He was born in 1784, and at the age of fifteen carried the colours in his father's 
regiment. In i8or, he was transferred to the 92nd Gordon Highlanders, in which he 
remained seven years, being then promoted as Captain into the 6th Regiment. He 
served with the 6th Regiment in the Peninsular campaign of 181 3, being present at the 
battles of Vittoria, Nivelle, the Bedopoa, &c. He was also in command for a time of 
the troops occupying Vittoria. His constitution being naturally delicate, he was 
invalided home from the south of France, and was only able to rejoin his regiment 
during the occupation of France in 1815. When exchanging into the 6th Regiment, 
his former commanding officer spoke of Captain Gordon as a great acquisition to the 
new corps, both as a gentleman and an officer. 

He married, in 1825, Anne, daughter ot Alexander Brebner of Learney, by whom 
he had two sons and two daughters : — 
I. John, his successor. 

Parkhill. 317 

II. Alexander, Captain Royal Artillery; killed in the trenches before Sebas- 
topol in 1855. 

1. Christian, married to Charles Elphinstone Dalrymple. 

2. Lucan, married Lieut. -Colonel ^Vi!Iiam King of Tertowie, late 74th 

Captain Gordon dimming Skene died in 1836, and was succeeded by his son, 

XVII. John Gordon Gumming Skene of Pitlurg, Dyce, and Parkhill. 

He married, in 1856, Maria, only daughter of Captain William Nares, R.N. (sister 
of Admiral Sir George Nares, R.N., K.C.B.), by whom he had one son, Alexander. 
Her death occurred in 1857, and he married secondly, in i860, Maria, only daughter of 
Sir David Brewster, LL.D., «S:c., &c., without issue. 

Mr. Gordon died in 1882, and was succeeded by his only son, 

XVIII. Alexander Gordon Gumming Skene of Pitlurg, Dyce, 

and Parkhill. 

He was born in 1857, entered the army in 1877, and served in the 90th Regiment, 
under Sir Evelyn Wood, through the Caffir and Zulu wars of 1878-9, receiving the 
medal and clasps for Kambula and Ulandi. He was afterwards transferred to the Blues 
or Royal Horse Guards, but retired from the army in 1885. He married, April 9, 
1885, Miss Ada Wilson, by whom he has issue, a son, 

John Gordon Gumming Skene. 

Loch Goul, called also the Bishop's Loch, is situated near Parkhill. Upon a small 
island there was a lodging for the Bishops of Aberdeen, and one of them, Bishop 
Benham, died here. At one time the loch was surrounded with trees, but these have 
disappeared. There is also another loch called the Corbie or Lily Loch, remarkable 
for the wild, barren, mossy nature of its surroundings. 


Straloch, now the property of John Ramsay of Barra, though rated in and pohtically 
attached to Aberdeenshire, was, until the readjustment of county boundaries after the 
passing of the recent Local Government Act, in the county of Banff, a circumstance 
which may be accounted for from its earliest possessors, the Cheynes of Inverugie, 
having been hereditary sheriffs of that county. The Cheynes of Straloch were a branch 
of the great family of Cheyne, of which Sir Reginald Cheyne, "le p^re," and Sir 
Reginald Cheyne, *' le fils," were distinguished members. 

In a manuscript history of the Cheynes (according to the author of the '* View of 
the Diocese"), from the time of Alexander III., it is said "that Francis, Lord Cheyne 
of Inverugie, had by his wife, Isobel, daughter of John Cumine, Earl of Buchan, 
besides his heir, Francis, Sir Reynauld Cheyne of Straloch, and Henry, Bishop of 
Aberdeen." ' This Sir Reynauld had by his second wife, Janet Maishall, heiress of 
Esslemont, John Oheyne of Esslemont, who probably also possessed Straloch. 

II. Henry Oheyne of Straloch. 

About 1348, King David II. granted to Henry Cheyne a yearly payment of forty 
shillings from the lands of Straloch and Achstukis. This grant was revoked in the 
Parliament of Scone, September, 1357.' The next to be found after a long interval is 

III. Ranald Oheyne of Straloch. 

He was in possession of a yearly payment of five pounds from lands in the Castle- 
gate of Aberdeen in the years 1461-64, and in 1469, he was present at a court held in 
Aberdeen by the sheriff of that county. On 12 October, 1466, he renounces the office 
of baillie of the barony of Monycaboc,^ He was succeeded by his son, 

IV. John Ohejme of Straloch. 

He is called the son of Ranald Cheyne in the following deed. On the 12 February, 
1492, there is a plea moved regarding the lands of Meikle Arnage between John 
Cheyne of Straloch, son and heir of umquhile Ranald Cheyne, and Henry Cheyne of 
Esslemont ; and he was evidently called of Straloch in his father's life-time," as appears 
from a bond of date 1441, by John Cheyne of Straloch, in warrandice of an infeftment 
made by him of the lands of Esslemont and Meikle Arnage in favour of his son, Hary.s 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 304. 4 Acta Dominorum Concilii, p. 281 ; 

2 Rob. Index of Charters, p. 33 ; Compota Ant. A. and B. I. p. 237. 

Camerariorum Scotiae, pp. 289-291 s Ant. A. and B. III. p. 6. 

3 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 614 ; I. p. 2-7. 

Ramsay of Barra and Straloch. 3 19 

In 1494, John Cheyne of Straloch was present on the inquest of Alexander Irvine of 
Drum. The next, probably his son, 

V. James Oheyne of Straloch. 

In 1504, he was present at the inquest of John Chalmer of Strichen, and in 15 12, he 
was a witness to the confirmation of a charter to Alexander Gray, burgess of Aberdeen, 
of the lands of Newton of Scheves.' There is also the following charter of date 1508 : 
King James IV. granted to Sir William Keith of Inverugie the lands of Straloch in the 
sheriffdom of Banff" resumed in the King's hands, because the predecessors of the knight 
of Inverugie had given away the greater part of them to the predecessors of James 
Cheyne of Straloch, uniting them to the barony of Inverugie, and discharging the sheriff 
of Al>erdeen for asking suit or service for them, and giving leave to the knight of 
Inverugie to grant them to James Cheyne of Straloch and his heirs. These lands were, 
if not before, at this date attached to the county of Banff.'' He was succeeded, probably 
by his son, 

VI. Alexander Oheyne of Straloch. 

In 1499, in the life-time of his grandfather, John Cheyne of Straloch, there is a 
charter by the said John to his grandson, Alexander Cheyne, and Katharine Meldrum, 
his wife, of the lands of half of Creichnalade, Fyvie. (See Crichie.) He was witness 
to an agreement regarding the marches of Fortrie and Esslemont a.d. 1537, and in the 
next year he takes part in an agreement regarding a division of the lands of Auldmill 
and Chapeltown of Esslemont. ^ The next, also, probably, a son, is 

VII. John Cheyne of Straloch. 

He took part in the inquest of Alexander Irvine, son of Alexander Irvine of Drum, 
in the lands of Drum and the forest of the same, a.d. 1579-80.* In the same year he 
disponed part of Straloch. There is a deed of sasine in favour of Alexander Litster, 
burgess of Aberdeen, and Andrew Litster, his son, on a charter of John Cheyne of 
Straloch, of the lands of Overhill in the barony of Straloch and county of Banff"; also 
the shady half of the town and lands of Eister Crichie in the parish of Fyvie, in special 
warrandice of the said lands of Overhill, In 1580, there is a letter of reversion in favour 
of John Cheyne of Straloch by Walter Cheyne, heir apparent of Arnage, and Marjorie 
Cheyne, his spouse, of the lands of Overstraloch, otherwise called the Meikletown of 
Straloch, and the lands of Creche and Eister Creche in the parish of Fyvie. He seems 
to have been dead by 1590. In that year we find ^ 

VIII. James Cheyne of Straloch. 

He seems to have been very impecunious and very troublesome, and he soon dis- 
posed of the whole lands of Straloch. In 1590, there are letters of reversion in favour 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 383 ; do. p. 71. • 4 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 303. 

2 Id., p. 303. 5 Index Charters of Parkhill. 

3 Id., pp. 17, 18, 334- 

320 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

of James Cheyne of Straloch and Barbara Keith, his spouse, by John Paton in 
Terrachie, of the lands of Brunthill and Whiterashes, and Ward of Brunthill, in the 
parish of St. Machar.' In 1600, James Cheyne of Straloch, with consent of John 
Urquhart, tutor of Cromarty, and others, gave a charter to George Gordon of Chapel- 
town of Schivas, his son, William, and his heirs, of the town and lands of Nether Chiny, 
Brunthill, Whiterashes, the town and lands of Overstraloch, Overhill, and others, and 
whole lands, &c., in the barony of Inverugie and shire of Banff. There is also an 
instrument of sasine in favour of said George Gordon, spouse, and son, dated January 
23, 1601. The said George Gordon resigns these lands in favour of Sir Thomas 
Gordon of Cluny, knight ; the precept of resignation is dated at Aberdeen, 1 1 June, 
1603.' Sir Thomas Gordon of Cluny, by charter dated at Straloch, 24 June, 1606, gave 
to John Gordon of Pitlurg of the lands of Overstraloch, Overhill, Achinstinch, Nether 
Cornemill, and Over Cornemill, Brunthill, and Whiterashes, lands of Over and Nether 
Chinys, &c., &c., all in the parish of St. Machar and shire of Banff.^ This John 
Gordon was the brother of Sir Robert Gordon, who succeeded him in Pitlurg and 
Straloch. (For an account of him and his successors see Parkhill.) The last Gordon 
of Straloch was John Gordon Gumming (No. XV. Parkhill), whose guardians sold 
Straloch, the last remnant of the Gordon property, in 1766, to John Ramsay of Barra. 
The following is the descent of Mr. Ramsay : — 

I. John Ramsay of Melross and Claystyles. 

He was probably the son of James Ramsay, who, in 16 17, was served heir to his 
father, Alexander Ramsay, in the church lands of Aberdour, and the plough lands of 
the sunny half of the town and lands of Ardly (Ardlaw ?) within the barony of Philorth. 
He had sasine of the lands of Claystyles in 1655." He was succeeded by his son, 

II. James Ramsay of Melross and Claystyles. 

He had sasine of these lands, February 22, 1655. ^ He married Meldrum, 

daughter of Meldrum of Crombie, and had a son, John, his successor. 

III. John Ramsay of Melross and Laithers, 

was served heir, June 9, 1693, to Mr. George Meldrum of Crombie, brother of his uncle 
on the mother's side, in the lands of Laithers and the salmon fishings on the Deveron, 
the mill of Laithers, and lots of lands in the parishes of Turriff, Auchterless, and Inver- 
keithnie.^ He married Mary, daughter of Sir John Forbes, Bart, of Craigievar, and had 
issue one son at least, John, who acquired Barra and Straloch. After her husband's 
death she married secondly. Major Buchan of Auchmacoy, and had issue to him a large 
family. (See Auchmacoy.) 

1 Index of Charters of Parkhill. 4 Spec. Rets. Abdn. No. 148; Sasine H.M. Reg. Ho. Edin. 

2 Id. 5 Sasine H.M. Reg. Ho. Edinb. 

3 Id. 6 Retours Banff, No. 145. 

Ramsay of Barta and Straloch. 321 

IV. John Ramsay of Melrose, Barra, and Straloch, 

married Isabella, daughter of Rev. Thomas Shepherd, minister of Bourlie, by Janet, 
daughter of John Leith of Blair. Thomas Shepherd was the son of John Shepherd, 
minister of I^gie-Coldstone, and had, besides his daughter Isabella, born 1749, a son, 
Robert, minister of Daviot. Mr. Ramsay died in 1787, leaving an only daughter, 
Mary, by whom he was succeeded. 

V. Mary Ramsay of Barra and Straloch, 

She married June 19, 1785, John Innes, eldest son of James Innes of Maisley, of 
the Edengight family, the chief of which in the male line is James Henry Innes Kerr, 
seventh Duke, of Roxburgh. John Innes assumed the name of Ramsay. They had 
issue :-^ 

I. John, of whom afterwards. 

II. James, born 1797, died 1867. 

III. William, died November, 1881. 

1. Isabella, died 1803. 

2. Mary, married Mr. Leslie of Dunlugas, died 1839. 

3. Elizabeth, died 1818. 

4. Jane. 

5. Margaret, married Sir George Turner of Menie. 

6. Helen, died 1850. 

John Innes Ramsay died in 18 14, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

VI. John Ramsay of Barra and Straloch. 

He married his cousin, Susan Innes, after-mentioned (No. VI. p. 329), and had 
issue : — 

I. John, his successor. 
I. Christina Susan Mary. 
Mr. Ramsay died in 1832, and was succeeded by his son, 

VII. John Ramsay of Barra and Straloch. 

He was educated at the University of Cambridge, of which he is an M.A. Mr. 
Ramsay married Miss Leonora Sophia Bond, daughter of Rev. Nathaniel Bond of 
Creech Grange, Dorset, and Rector of Steeple with Tyneham, Dorset. They had issue 
a daughter, Mary Agnes Ramsay. She was born in 1859; married Francis Hugh, 
only surviving son of Alexander Forbes Irvine of Drum, by Anne Margareta, 
daughter of the late Colonel Jonathan Forbes Leslie of Rothienorman ; issue : — 

I, Alexander, born 17 August, i88r. 

II. Quentin Hugh Innes, born February 16, 1888. 

322 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

The descent of John Innes from the ancient family of Innes is as follows : — 

I. Berowald (Inees). 

He appears to have been a man of considerable rank in the time of Malcolm IV., 
who succeeded to the Crown of Scotland, a.d. 1153. He got a charter from the said 
King in these words, *' Malcolmus Rex, &c., dedit Berrowaldo Flandrensi in provincia 
de Elgin Inees et Eterurecard, &c., testibus VVilelmo Moraviensi Episcopo, Wilelmo 
filio Frisgin." ' The deed was signed at Perth " in natali domini proximo post Concor- 
diam Regis et Somerled." The original charter does not exist, and it had disappeared 
before the lands were sold in 1768, for there is only an official transumpt certified per 
*' Episcopum Gavinum Dunbar, clericum rotulorum registri, &c." He was succeeded by 

II. John (Inees). 

Of him there is but little notice. He lived in the reign of King William the Lion, 
and is only mentioned in a charter of King Alexander 11. "Alexande D.G. Rex 
Scotorum, &c., Sciant nos concesisse et hse charto confirmasse Waltero filio Johannis 
filii Berowaldi Flandrensis Inees, &c." - 

III. Walter (Inees). 

He was the son of the above John (Inees), and was the first that assumed the name 
of Innes, and was undoubtedly the progenitor of all the Inneses of Scotland. He is 
mentioned in the above quoted charter of Alexander II. The charter is dated 1226. 
He also witnessed an agreement between the Bishop of Moray and David de Strath- 
bolgy, 7 August, 1235.3 He was at Elgin on an occasion of a great assemblage of 
clergy and laity, 9 and 10 October, 1226." He died in the reign of Alexander II., and 
was succeeded by his son, 

IV. Sir Alexander de Innes. 

Regarding this member of the family, Mr. Cosmo Innes says, " that Alexander, the 
son and successor of Walter, is quite unsupported by evidence, and must rest on tradi- 
tion of the family as gathered and set forth by Duncan Forbes." It was handed down 
by tradition that King Alexander was at Innes when he gave the above charter (No. II.), 
and knighted the son, Alexander, the father, Walter, being at that time very old. To 
Alexander Innes succeeds ^ 

V. William de Innes. 

He was the first of the family mentioned as " Dominus de Innes." The name of 
" William de Ineys " is found in a roll of names of certain magnates, who did homage 
to Edward I. on 14 March, 1296, apparently to entitle him to have seisin of these 
lands. He also took the oath to Government on 17 July following along with 
Duncan de Frendrach. His name was then written "William de Inays."^ This 

1 Forbes' Inneses, S.C, p. 49. 4 Reg. Ep. Morav. pp. 25-132- 

2 Id., p. S3. 5 Forbes' Inneses, S.C. p. 54. 

3 Reg. Ep. Morav, pp. 25-132. 6 Id., p. 56. 

Ramsay of Barra and Straloch. 


^Villiam, according to *' Douglas' Baronage," died in the beginning of the reign of 
Robert the Bruce, who was crowned King of Scotland, 1306. According to Mr. Innes 
he must have lived to a very good age, or that there were two Williams in succession. 
It is generally believed that there were two, father and son.' 

VI. William de Innes. 

He is witness to an agreement between the monks of Pluscarden and the burgesses 
of Elgin, dated 4 December, 1330, and is then designated William "baro de Ynes, 
&c."' He is said to have died in the reign of King David Bruce, and left a son his 

VII. Robert de Innes. 

He was witness to a charter of Walter Leslie, '* Dominus de Ross," dated 1367. In 
it he was designated " Robertus de Innes." He is mentioned also in another deed in 
the charter room of the burgh of Inverness, dated 1376.^ And according to Douglas, 
Robertus de Innes is one of the assize in a dispute between Alexander, Bishop of 
Moray, and Sir Archibald Douglas, knight, a.d. 1367. He died in the beginning of the 
reign of King Robert II., circa 137 1, leaving two sons at least.* 

I. Alexander, his successor. 

II. John, Canon of Moray. He witnessed, according to Mr. Innes, along 

with his brother that " inutilis et damnosa provisio," as the scribe of the 
chartulary styles it, which threw the Bishopric into the power of the Earl 
John and Thomas, sheriff of Moray, on the feast of St Peter, in the 
cathedral, a.d. 1389. This John, though it cannot be proved, according 
to Mr. Innes, is especially believed to be Bishop of Moray. All that we 
know is that John Innes was a Moray man, a Canon of Moray in 1389, 
Archdeacon of Caithness 1396. In 1406, John Innes was elected Bishop 
of Moray, and died 25 April, 1414,^ and there is little doubt that the Canon 
and the Bishop were one and the same. He assisted in rebuilding the 
cathedral church of Elgin, where he is buried. 
The next is 

VIII. Alexander de Innes, 

mentioned as above in a deed along with his brother John in 1389.'' He was one of 
the inquest for the service of Robert Sibbald of Aldrochty in 1393,^ and is likewise 
mentioned in a charter of John, Earl of Moray, to the burgh of Elgin, of date 1390,^ 
•' Alexandro de Innes, domino ejusdem " ; also in an instrument " de possessione 
multure de Forres." He is said, according to Douglas, to have the following issue : — ' 

1 Doug. Baron, p. 14. 

2 Forbes' Inneses, S.C. p. 57. 

3 Id., pp. 63-64. 

4 Doug. Bar. fol. p. 14. 

5 Forbes' Inneses, p. 68. 

6 Reg. Morav. p. aoi. 

7 Id., p. 205. 

8 Innes' Inneses, S.C. pp. 67. 

9 Doug. Bar. p. 14. 


The Thanage of Fennartyn. 

I. Walter, who succeeded for a short time, but of him there is no eviderjce, 

but family tradition. 

II. Robert, who, according to Douglas, succeeded his brother. 
I. Giles, married to Farquhar M'Intosh of that ilk. 

Alexander de Innes was succeeded by 

IX. Walter de Innes. 
He, dying shortly afterwards, was succeeded by his brother, 

X. Robert Innes of Innes. 

According to Douglas and Mr. Forbes, this Robert married Dame Janet de Aber- 
chirder, daughter of the Thane of Aberchirder ; ' but Mr. Cosmo Innes inclines to the 
opinion that it was Mr. Alexander de Innes, the father of these two, that married the 
heiress of Aberchirder.^ They had issue a son and successor. The Inneses after this 
marriage for long quartered the arms of Aberchirder with those of Innes, namely, " the 
boar's head erased, and the stars azure." Robert Innes was succeeded by his son, 

XI. Walter Innes of Innes. 

In 1440, Walter of Innes, lord of that ilk, was one of the notables assembled in the 
kirkyard of the Chanonry of Rosemarkie, who bore witness to the change of destination 
of Graham's lands at Kerdale.^ Waller Innes of that ilk was first on the inquest of 
northern gentry, who met at Inverness, on 11 February, 1431, for ascertaining the 
tenure of the lands of Kilravock." In 1438, Sir Walter had received the honour of 

Sir Walter married Euphemia Fraser, daughter of Hugh Fraser, first Lord Lovat, 
and widow of the laird of M'Intosh, and, according to Douglas, had issue three sons 
and two daughters : — 

I. Sir Robert, his successor. 

II. Berowaldus (Rufus or the Red Tod), from whom some of the Inneses of 
Caithness are descended. 

III. John, Bishop of Caithness, 1448. 

1. Isobel, married to James Dunbar (according to " Forbes' Inneses " only 
betrothed to him) ; had a son, Alexander, ancestor of the Dunbars of 

2. Margaret, married to Patrick Maitland of Netherdale. 

By his second wife, , he had also a son named John, designed of 

Abernethy. He died about 1456. Sir Walter de Innes was succeeded by his son, 

1 Doug. Bar. p. 14. 

2 Innes' Inneses, S.C. p. 68. 

3 Forbes' Inneses, S.C. p, 61 ; Original penes 

Brodie of Brodie. 

4 Rose of Kilravock, S.C. p. 128 

5 Forbes' Inneses, S.C. p. 73. 

Ra msay of Barra and Straloch. 325 

XII. Sir Robert Innes of Innes. 

In his father's life-time he got a charter from Alexander Seton, Ix)rd dc Gordon. 
'* Roberto Innes, filio et haeredi Waltcri Innes, domini ejusdem, &c.," of several lands of 
which he was superior, namely, the lands of Ordynnes, Rotmakyngyn, &c,, 1441. 
There is a precept of sasine of date 1456, in favour of Robert Innes, son of Walter 
Innes, of the lands of the lordship of Aberchirder.' He was of great bravery, and was 
present at the battle of Brechin, 1452. He married a daughter of the Baron of Drum- 
lanrig, and had issue : — 

I. James, his successor. 

II. Walter, ancestor of the Inneses of Innermarkie, afterwards of Balvenie, 
of whom the Inneses of Coxton, Innerbrackie, Orton, Auchintoul, were 

III. Robert, progenitor of the Inneses of Drainie, the descendants of whom, 
according to Forbes, are extinct. 

1. A daughter, married to Sir James Ogilvie of Deskford, ancestor of the Earl 
of Findlater. 

2. A daughter, married to Barclay of Towie. 

Sir Robert died before the year 1464, as in that year there is a precept of sasine in 
favour of James Innes of Innes, his son, whose descendant in the direct line. Sir Robert 
Innes of Innes, a man of great probity and worth was created. May 29, 1625, a 
baronet of Nova Scotia, by a Royal patent from King Charles I. The descendant of 
the first baronet, his grandson, Sir James Innes of Innes, married Margaret Kerr, 
daughter of the first Duke of Roxburgh, whose descendant Sir James Innes (Norcliffe) of 
Innes, succeeded by virtue of a decision of the House of Lords in 181 2, as fifth Duke of 
Roxburgh," and represents the elder branch of the Inneses of Innes, We now carry on 
the descent of Walter Innes the second son, who was the progenitor of the Innes of 
Innermarkie, from whom Major Ramsay is descended. 

XIII. Walter Innes of Innermarkie. 

He got these lands in 1480, which became the chief title of the family. He left 
issue, three sons : — 

I. Robert, his heir. 

II. ^Valter, of Touchis (now Pitfour), of whom the Inneses of Coxton were 

He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

XIV. Robert Innes of Innermarkie. 

In 1502 there is a precept of clare constat by Alexander, Earl of Huntly to Robert 
Innes, as heir of Umquhile, Walter Innes of Innermarkie, his father, in the lands of 
Innermarkie with the Mill of Cragnacorth, &c. This precept is in the charter room of 

I Innes' Inneses, S.C. pp. 75-76. 2 Douglas' Baronage, p. 15 ; Burke's Peerage. 

326 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Duff House. The precept of sasine is of date 15 15, by Johannes Comes de Athole a 
Dominus de Balveny predilecto fratri meo Roberto Innes de Innermarkie in terris de 
Edinglassie in dominio de Balveny. 

Robert Innes married Lady Elspet Stewart in 1503, daughter of the first Earl of 
Athole, and a grand-daughter of Sir James Stuart of Lome, and his wife, Queen 
Joan Beaufort, who was a grand-daughter of John of Gaunt, and great grand-daughter 
of Edward IIL Lady Joan was the heroine of the poem called the " King's Quhair." 
He had issue : — 

I. Robert, of Monycaboc, whose son, Robert, succeeded his grandfather in 
1652, and whose son and successor, Robert, January 12, 1628, was created a 
baronet by the title of Balvenie. The title being "hseredibus masculis quibus- 
cunque." This baronetcy has now devolved on the Inneses of Edengight. 
There is an instrument of resignation by Robert Innes of Innermarkie, in 
favour of Robert, his son and apparent heir, reserving his own life-rent and 
that of Elizabeth Stewart, his spouse, dated 14 November, 1536.' 

II. Walter, of Auchintoul, who on 13 September, 1552, conveyed to the Earl 
of Athole certain lands held by him. He is described as son of the late 
Robert Innes of Innermarkie.^ 

IIL Alexander, first known from a charter in 1534, extinct 1579.^ 
IV. John of Edengight, mentioned in charters 1537, 1544, 1552, 1558; 
also in one of date 1589, by William, Abbot of Kinloss, to John Innes of 
Edengight. John Innes of Edengight appears in a contract betwixt the 
laird of Innes and Innes of Innermarkie, of date 1587. He signs the 
contract thus : — " John Innes of Edengight, with my hand at the pen, led 
by Alexander Annand, notary public, at my command, because I can 
nocht wreit." * 

We now come to the Inneses of Edengight, from whom Mr. Ramsay is descended. 

I. John Innes of Edengight. 

John Innes married , and had issue : — 

I. Thomas, who succeeded. 

XL Hieronymus (Jerome) Innes, mentioned in a deed dated 1 581, in which he 
is described as second son of the said John Innes. He was minister of 
Fyvie, and had a son, John, and a daughter, Janet, married to William 

Bannerman ; also a daughter, Margaret, married to Leith, who 

had a son, George Leith. ^ 
John Innes was succeeded by his eldest son, 

1 Index of Charters Edengight. 4 Index of Charters Edengight. 

2 Id. 5 Id., Scott's Fasti, Fyvie Papers. 

3 Id. 

Ramsay of Barra and Straloclt. 327 

II. Thomas Innes of Edengight. 

In 1569 there is a charter of the Abbot of Kiuloss in favour of Thomas Innes, son 
of John Innes of Edengight, of the lands of I<:dengight and others, but reserving the 
life-rent of the said John Innes, dated 16 July. There is also another of some other lands 
in similar terms, of date 18 July, 1569. There is also another charter by the said 
Abbot, in favour of Thomas Innes and his spouse, Janet Seton, reserving the life-rent 
of John Innes, dated 9 May, 1581. In 161 1, May 20, there is a charter by the said 
Thomas Innes of Edengight, in favour of Thomas Innes, his son and apparent heir, 
and Janet Innes, his spouse, of the lands of Edengight, reserving his own life-rent and 
that of his spouse, Janet Abercromby. From these charters we find that Thomas Innes 
was twice married, first to Janet Seton, and secondly to Janet Abercromby ; by his first 
marriage he had issue at least one son, by whom he was succeeded.' 

III. Thomas Innes of Edengight. 

He is mentioned in one of the above charters, and there is a confirmation of said 
charter by Andrew Bishop of Brechin, and others, commissioners of Thomas, Lord 
Bruce of Kinloss, in favour of said Thomas Innes, dated 8 March, 1618.= He married 
Janet Innes and had issue at least one son, his successor, 

IV. John Innes of Edengight. 

There is a precept of clare constat by the commissioners of Thomas, Lord Bruce of 
Kinloss, in favour of John Innes as nearest lawful heir of the deceased Thomas Innes, 
son and apparent heir of Thomas Innes, dated 11 March, 1618.^ John Innes of 
Edengight, in 1651, was one of the signers of the call for Alexander Kerr, student in 
divinity, to be minister of Grange." He married Christian Bruce, their marriage 
contract being dated 29 June, 1637.5 John Innes died April 7, 1674, and was 
succeeded by his son. 

V. John Innes of Edengight. 

He was born 1641 ; mentioned in a deed of revocation of date 28 November, 1662 ; 
also in a deposition by Janet Innes of date 16 October, 1662. John Innes married 
Christian Gordon, their marriage contract being dated 1663. They had issue : — 

I. John, who predeceased his father. He married Helen Strachan, daughter 
of Michael Strachan of Auchantyre. Their marriage contract is dated 
August 7, 1691. He is mentioned in a disposition of date 15 July, 1697, 
by Walter Mitchell ; also in a bond to William Duff of date 17 13.* He 
left issue a son, John, of whom afterwards. 

1 Edengight Papers. 4 Pres. Book of Strathbogie, p. 206. 

2 Id. 5 Marriage Contract penes Edengight. 

3 Id. 6 Charters and Papers penes Edengight. 

328 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

II. James, mentioned in a disposition by his father of date 19 December, 
1 700, described as in Thornton. 

III. Thomas, mentioned in a bond of date May 14, 1743, as being in Muiry- 
fold. Thomas died 12 September, 1754, aged 73. He was long factor 
for the Earl of Fife. He left two sons : — ' 

I. John, of Muiryfold ; also factor for the Earl of Fife ; born 

II March, 1729, died October 3, 1780. He married Helen, 
daughter of Peter Gordon of Ardmeallie ; but had no issue. 

II. Thomas, of Monellie, Forgue ; a W.S. in Edinburgh, where he 

died 6 September, 1779, leaving an only daughter, Elizabeth 
Mary, who inherited her uncle's property of Muiryfold, which 
was exchanged in excambion for Netherdale in Marnoch. Miss 
Innes married James Rose of Gask, descended from Kilravock, 
and had issue a large family. (See Monellie.) 

1. Helen, married William Scott, merchant, Banff. Their marriage contract 
is dated 27 May, 1698. 

2. Margaret, married George Geddes in Burnside. Their marriage contract 
is dated 16 and 17 July, 1707. 

John Innes was succeeded by his grandson, John, above mentioned. 

VI. John Innes of Edengight, 

married Jane, eldest daughter of Patrick Duff of Craigston, a patriarch, who had thirty- 
six sons and daughters. Their marriage contract is dated April 30, 1720, with consent 
of John Innes, his grandfather.^ He is mentioned in an extract of A. Sutherland's 
testament of date January, 1723,^ and was served heir to his grandfather, John Innes, in 
the lands of Edengight and others, June 13, 1751. Jane Duff, his wife, was sister of 
Admiral Duff of Fetteresso, and of Catharine Duff, who married George Gordon of 
Gight, whose only child was the mother of Lord Byron. They had issue : — 

I. John, born 22 February, 1721. He married, August 9, 1753, Elizabeth 
Grant of Carron, and had issue : — 

I. John, born 1757 ; married Barbara, daughter of George Forbes 
of Boyndlie. He was served heir to his father, John Innes, in 
the lands of Edengight, 30 May, 1795,'' and succeeded to the 
baronetcy of Balvenie in 181 8, in whose descendants it still 
exists, the present baronet being Sir John Innes of Edengight, 
who was born 1840, and succeeded 1870. 

II. Thomas, born i January, 1759. 

III. James, born 1760. 

1 Edengight Papers. 3 Decen. Retours, 1751. 

2 Penes Edengight. 4 Edengight Charters. 


Ramsay of Uarra and StralocJi. 329 

IV. Alexander, born 1763. 

1. Jean, born 1754. 

2. IClizabeth, born 1756. 

3. Ann, born 1762, died 1847, 

4. Margaret, born 1765, died 1857. 

5. Helen, born 1766. 

II. Alexander, of lireda and Cowie, married Miss Davidson of Newton, in the 
(larioeh, from whom arc deseended the Inncses of Cowie and Raemoir, 

III. James, of Maisely, who married Isobel Abernethy of Mayen, and had 
issue : — 

I. John, whro married Mary Ramsay of Barra. 

II. Alexander, of Pitmedden. He married Christian Forties of 

Boyndlie, and had issue six daughters, one of wliom, Susan, 
married her cousin, John Ramsay of Barra. (Ante No. VI. 
P- 321.) 


King Robert the Bruce when he fled from Edward Longshanks came to Bonshaw, 
it is said, and took thence the oldest son of the family, William de Irwyne, to wait 
on him, and made him his armourer bearer and secretary. In 1323, there is a charter of 
the Foreste of Drum outside the Park granted by King Robert I. to William de Irwyne. 
There was excepted part of the Foreste given to Alexander called Burnard.' There is 
also in the following year, 1324, the following charter — "The King grants the Foreste 
of Drum in free barony to William de Irwyne. Among the witnesses are Bernard, 
Abbot of Arbroath."* In 132 — , there is an infeftment to William de Irwyne of ten 
pounds sterling money furth from the Customs of Dundee,^ and in 1331, Alexander, 
Bishop of Aberdeen, gave the lands of Dalmaok and Petbrachere next to the Forest of 
Drum, with the right of pasture, to William de Irwyn, for payment of forty-six shillings 
sterling and eight pennies.^ The next a son, probably, 

II. Sir Thomas de Irwyn. 

In the first edition of " Burke's Barony," he is called Alexander de Irwyn, in later 
editions Sir Thomas de Irwyn.s According to this authority, he married first a daughter 

of the Great Marischal of Scotland ; secondly, the daughter of Sir Montford of 

Lonmay. Of this Sir Thomas there is no chartulary evidence. The next is 

III. Sir Alexander de Irwyn de Drum. 

In 1388, there is an indenture anent the selling of the Park of Drum betwixt 
Alexander de Irwyne, lord of the Droum, on one part, and John Moigne, lord of 
the park, on the other part, in fee and heritage for evermair, with the annual of a 
chalder of meal, which the foresaid Alexander was wont to pay to the foresaid John, for 
upholding the foresaid Park for all the term of his hfe. He had, in 1381, to show his 
charter for the lands of Dalmayok to Adam, Bishop of Aberdeen,* and in 1389, there is a 
charter by Robert II. of the lands of Drum which belonged to John Moigne to 
Alexander Irwyn.^ In 1410, he got a charter from Alexander Stuart, Earl of Mar and 
the Garioch, for his faithful service, of all the lands of Davachdore and of Fidilmonth, 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 292. 5 Burke's Bar. (Ed. 1831) II. p. 680 ; Edit. 1871, II. p. 

2 Id., pp. 292-3. 6 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 294 ; Reg. Ep. Aber. pp. i^s-i42- 

3 Robertson's Index of Lost Charters, p. 23. 7 Id., p. 295. 

4 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 52. 

Irvine of Drum. 33 1 

with the pertinents, for a penny yearly, if sought, at the south door of the parish church 
of the foresaid lands on St. John Baptist's Day,' This Sir Alexander de Irwyne and his 
kinsman, the Earl of Mar, distinguished themselves at Liege in France. Sir Alexander 
was knighted on the morning of that battle. In 141 1, he fell at Harlaw, having fought, 
it is said, with Maclean (the ancestor of Maclean of Coll), Lieutenant-General under 
rjonald of the Isles. The following are mentioned in the book of the " Monastery of 
Saint Mary's, Cupar," as having fallen at Harlaw — *' James Scrimgeour, Constable of 
Dundee ; Alexander de Irewyn, Robert de Maule, and Thomas Munroe, knights." ' 

IV. Sir Alexander de Irwyn de Drum. 

The hero of Harlaw, according to the first edition of Burke, was succeeded in Drum 
by his brother John, who, upon inheriting Drum, changed his name to Alexander. 
According to subsequent editions, he was succeeded by his own son, Alexander, by a 
daughter of Montford of Lonmay. Which edition is correct we are unable to say. 
Sir Alexander Irwyn married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Robert Keith, Great Marischal 
of Scotland. This lady is said to have been first wedded to his deceased brother, the 
Hero of Harlaw, to adjust a feud, which had for some time subsisted between the 
families, such a proceeding being, it is said, enjoined by the States of the kingdom ; but 
the ceremony only having taken place, Alexander, the elder brother, recommended her 
to his successor should he fall at Harlaw.^ There is a great measure of improbability 
about the story, and it is omitted in the later editions, for the marriage could hardly have 
legally been effected without a dispensation from the "Pope, and of this there is no 
evidence. The lady is said to have brought to her husband the lands of Strachan in 
Kincardineshire. In 1414, there is a confirmation charter by Robert, Duke of Albany, 
of a charter to Alexander Irwyne of the lands Davachdore and Fidilmonth with their 
pertinents. Among the witnesses are Gilbert (Greenlaw), Bishop of Aberdeen and 
Chancellor of Scotland."* In 141 6, there is a charter of Alexander de Irwyne, lord of 
the forest of Drum, to John Bell, for his good service of the lands and barony of Inch- 
ture.5 In 1424, he witnesses, along with his brother Robert, a charter in favour of 
William de Forbes of Kinaldie of the lands of Glaslach, Tulinamolt, Auchmacludy, &c., 
lying in the barony of Aberdour.* In 1455, in a brieve of perambulation between the 
lands of Mundurno and Balhelvy, John, Lord Forbes, and Alexander Irwyne de Drum, 
knight, are appointed to take part.^ He had issue : — 

I. Alexander, who died in the life-time of his father. He married Janet 
Keith, who is mentioned in the following deed of sasine. In 1452, there 
is a precept of sasine from King James II. to Sir Gilbert Keith of 
Inverugie, knight, and William Aberdour, sheriffs of Aberdeen, to give 

I Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 452. S Lord Wharncliffe's MSS.; His. Com. Rep. V. p. 622. 

3 Panmure, p. 189. 6 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 389. 

3 Burke's Baronage, Ed. 183T, p. 680. ; Ed. 1871. 7 Id., I. p. 234, note. 

4 Ant. A. and B. IV. pp. 451-2. 

332 TJu Thanage of Fermartyn. 

seisin to Alexander Irwyne, son and apparent heir of Alexander Irwyne of 
Drum, knight, and to Janet Keith, his wife, of the lands of Lonmay, 
Savoch, Corskellie, and Carness, in Buchan. These lands were resigned 
by Sir Alexander Irwyne,' and may have come to him from the Montfords 
of Lonmay. 
Sir Alexander Irwyne died about 1457. On a monument in Drum's aisle there is an 
inscription — " Here lies an honourable and famous man, Alexander Irwyn of Drum, 
Dauchyndor, and Forglen, who died 14 — ; also his wife, the Lady Elizabeth Keith, 
daughter of Sir Robert de Keith, who died 14 — ." Mr. Jervise says " the Irvines did 
not possess Forglen until some time after the battle of Harlaw, nor Auchindoir until 
1506. Various circumstances (not the least important is the style of the brass itself) 
lead us to believe that it was probably erected during the first quarter of the seven- 
teenth century, perhaps by Sir William Irvine of Kelly."' As above narrated the 
Irvines had Davachdore (Auchindoir) in 1416. 
Sir Alexander was succeeded by his grandson, 

VI. Alexander Irwyn of Drum. 

In 1457, he was served heir to his grandfather, as is shown in the following instru- 
ment of sasine — " Alexander de Irwyn, grandson of the late Alexander Irwyn of Drum, 
knight, of the lands of Drum, with the pertinents ; also of the lands of Lonmay." ^ He 
married Marion Forbes, daughter of Lord Forbes, who is mentioned in a deed of date 
1494, subsequently to be quoted."* They had issue three sons and one daughter : — 

I. Alexander, his successor. 

II. Richard, of Craigtoune, of whom the Irvines of Hilltown were descended. 

III. Henry, the ancestor of the Irvines of Kincausie, a family still represented. 
I. A daughter, married to Leslie of Wardens. 

This Alexander Irwyne was a very turbulent character, and frequently involved in 
quarrels. "In 1472 he was ordained to pass in ward for attacking Walter Lindsay, in 
silence of nicht, with sixty armed men. He was to remain in the Castle of Berwic at 
his ain expenses, until freed by his sovereign, and to be deprived of his office as sheriff- 
depute, and never in time coming to minister in the same."^ In 1481 there is an 
instrument of homage by Alexander Irwyn of Drum to the Abbot of Arbroath, for the 
lands of Forglen, " for the said lands of Forglen, with their pertinents, the said 
Alexander, did homage on his bended knees (genibus flexis) to the Abbot of Arbroath. 
Besides, the said Lord Abbot declared and determined that the tenants of the regality 
of the said monastery of Arbroath, wherever existing, shall march and ride with the said 
Alexander to the army of our Lord the King, under the Brecbennach, namely, the 

1 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 8i. 4 Acta Dominorum, p. 20 ; Ant. A. and B. 

2 Jervise' Epit. and Inscrip. II. p. 369. I. p. 278. 

3 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 297. 5 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 278. 

Irvine of Drum. 333 

banner of the said abbot and convent."' In 1487 there is a remission to Alexander 
Irwin de Drum, and others, for the slaughter, at the Brig of lialgownie, of Alexander 
Frascr and George Tail/eour, and for the dismembering and mutilating of them in 
the place,'" 

In 1493, August 17, Alexander Irwyn de Drum made provision for the bairnies 
begotten betwixt him and umquhile, Nannys Menzies. The said day comperit an 
lionourable man, Alexander Irwyn dc Drum, in presence of the Court for carnal 
affection and reasonable causes grantit and assigned be ane glufi" " to David Irwyne, his 
son, begotten betwixt him and Nannys Menzies, whom God assoyle all and haill the 
lands of Coule, and the stocking thereon, which included twenty tine of oxen and four 
chalders of malt yearly; also three hundred wedders on Fortrie, in Buchan. Alexander 
received the tack and stocking of Kinnharochy, which included thirty-four oxen and 
three hundred ewes. John had the tack and stocking of Craigton, which included all 
the oxen upon that place, and twenty-eight ewes ; and Agnes had all and haill his 
guides, come, oxen, and eight score ewes being in Dalmayok, togidder with twenty-four 
ky and ane bull in Colangy, to opbring her, and to marry her. This provision was 
made for them at the scoles as well as during the rest of their lives."^ 

According to Jervise, Nannys Menzies was the wife of Alexander Irwyne of Drum. 
It is, however, not given in this deed, nor in any of the editions of Burke, that she was 
his wife. Marion Forbes, the mother of the heir of Drum, was at this time alive, and 
survived both her husband and Nannys Menzies, as shown subsequently. 

Alexander Irwyne of Drum died before 1494, and was succeeded by his son, 

VTI. Sir Alexander Irwyn of Drum, Knight. 

He was served heir to his father, April 8, 1494, in the lands of Drum, Coule, and 
Largeny, &c.'* On December 13 of the same year, the Lords' Auditors decree and 
deliver that Alexander Irwyn and Marion Forbes, his moder, does wrang in the 
occupation and manuring of the lands of Wester, Tulboury, «S:c. ^ Thus Marion 
Forbes survived Nannys Menzies. 

In a deed quoted afterwards, he is called Alexander Irwyn, knight.*^ He married 
first, Janet Keith, daughter of Keith of Ludquhain. He married secondly, a daughter 
of Alexander Gordon de Megmar — their marriage contract is dated 1487^ — and had 
issue at least one son, 

I. Alexander, of Forglen. 

Sir Alexander Irwyn of Drum died before 1527, and was succeeded by his son, 

VIII. Alexander Irwyn of Drum. 

He is mentioned in a deed, of date 1527, in which King James grants to his lovite, 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 5:4. 5 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 278. 

2 Id., III. p. 298. 6 Id., III. p. 573. 

3 Id., pp. 301-2. 7 Id., p. 299. 

4 Id., p. 302. 

334 The Thmiage of Fermartyn. 

Alexander Irwin of Forglen, son and aire of umquhile Alexander Irwin of Drum, 
knight, for the guide and thankful service done in searching, taking, and bringing of our 
rebellis, theiffs, revaris, sornaris, and murtheris, being in the North Month ; and, in part 
recompense, we grant to the said Alexander Irwyn of Forglen the nonentries, relief, &c., 
of said lands.' He is also mentioned in band of man-rent, 1527.' He married Janet 
AUardes, daughter of John AUardes of that ilk, the marriage contract is dated 
13 June, 1493.3 

They had issue : — 

I. Alexander of Forglen, who married Elizabeth Ogilvie, daughter of Ogilvie 

of Findlater. He fell at Pinkie, 1547, in the life-time of his father, and 

left the following issue :— 

I. Alexander, successor to his grandfather. 

II. William of Ardlogie, of whom there are no further records. 

III. Robert of Toryleith, in Udny. In 1569 these lands were acquired 
from Robert Turying de Foverne by Robert Irvine, brother- 
german of Alexander Irvine of Drum.* In 1627 they were 
conveyed by Alexander Irvine, heir of the above-named Robert 
Irvine, to his brother-german, John Irvine of Balbithan. In 
1659 the lands of Tonyleith were conveyed by John Forbes of 
Waterton to John Irvine of Murtle, who, in 1672, with consent 
of his son, Alexander Irvine, conveyed both teinds and lands to 

* Alexander Walker, writer in Edinburgh.^ They were for more 

than a century in the possession of the Walker family, and 
are now the property of Mr. Ramsay of Barra. From the 
Irvines of Toryleith are said to be descended the Irvines of 
Fortrie, in Ellon, but it is, however, to be observed that David 
Irwyn, the son of Alexander of Irwyn of Drum, by Nannys 
Menzies, got the lands of Fortrie to support him at the schules, 
and the Fortrie Irvines may be descended of him. In 1650-51, 
Alexander Irving was laird of Fortrie,* and a son, William, a 
clergyman, an ardent Jacobite, was at the battle of Killiecrankie 
with Viscount Dundee. In 17 15 he again took the field, and was 
imprisoned in the Fleet prison. He was afterwards consecrated 
a Bishop of the Scotch Episcopal Church. After many vicissi- 
tudes he died at Edinburgh, December 9, 1725.' 

IV. Gilbert of Collairlie, of whom come the Irvines of Murthill and 
Cults. He obtained also the lands of Auldquhat, in the barony 
of Fedderat.^ His descendant afterwards succeeded to Drum. 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 573. 5 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 8;. 

2 Id., p. 306. 6 Marr's Records of Ellon, pp. 118-119. 

3 His. Com. Rep. V. p. 630. 7 Id., p. 147. 

4 Reg. Mag. Sig. No. 2028, 1533-70. 8 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 578. 

Irvine of Dm vi. 335 

V. James, a knight of Malta, ordained l)y the (J rand Prior of the 
Order in Scotland. 

VI. John, died young. 

1. Janet, married (jordon of Abergeldie. 

2. Elizabeth, married to Seton of Meldrum. 

3. Margaret, married to Cheyne of Arnage. 

Iksides his son, Alexander, who fell at Pinkie, as above narrated. Sir Alexander 
Irvine of Drum, No. VIII. of the deduction, had — 

1. A daughter, married to the laird of Balbegno. 

2. A daughter, married to Fraser of Stoneywood, evidenced by a charter under 

the great seal " to Andrew Fraser, son and heir of Alexander Fraser, by 
Margaret, his wife, daughter of Alexander Irving of Drum, 1537." ' 
Alexander Irwyne of Drum died 15 — , and was succeeded by his grandson, 
Alexander Irvine, son of Alexander Irvine, younger of Drum, who fell at Pinkie. 

IX. Alexander Irwyn of Drum. 

He got a charter under the great seal on the resignation of his grandfather in 1553 
of the lands of Drum, Lairney, Auchindoir, Tarland, &c.= He married the Lady 
Elizabeth Keith, daughter of William, fourth Earl MarischaV and had issue five sons 
and four daughters : — 

I. Alexander, his successor. 

II. Robert, of Montcoffer. He is mentioned in a submission and decreet 
arbitral betwixt the clan and name of Forbes and the house of Drum, and 
is spoken of as portioner of Montcoffer.'' 

III. James, of Brucklaw, predecessor of Irvine of Saphock, in the parish of 
Fyvie, and Knaperna, in the parish of Udny. Regarding the latter place, 
the author of the " View of the Diocese " says, " Being chief next to 
Irvine of Drum, they began to call it ' Irvine.' " ^ 

IV. William, of Artamford. He sold it to his brother, John. 

V. John, of Artamford. He married Beatrix, daughter of Irvine of Pitmurchie 
and Lumphanan, by whom he had eight sons, who all d. s. p. except 
James, the second son, who, by a transaction with his eldest brother, 
succeeded to the estates, and became of Artamford. This James Irvine of 
Artamford married Ann, daughter of Keith of Ravenscraig, by whom he 
had, with another son, who died young, and two daughters, Anne, married 
to Elphinstone of Glack, and Beatrix, married to Dalgarno of Millhill, a 
son and successor, James, of Artamford, second substitute in the entail of 
Drum. This gentleman married, in 1673, Margaret, daughter of James 
Sutherland of Kinminity, by whom he had five sons and one daughter : — 

1 Crawford's Baronage MSS. in 3 Doug. Peer. Fol. 454. 

Advo. Lib. Edinb. 4 Ant. A. and B. IV. pp. 55-59. 

2 Reg. Mag. Sig. 1553. 5 Id., I. p. 360. 

33^ The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

I. Alexander, who sold Artamford to his brother, William, and 
bought Crimond in 1703; of this gentleman hereafter as 
inheritor of Drum, II. William, who bought Artamford from 
his brother. III. Robert. IV. Thomas, of Auchmunziel. V. 
Charles, a merchant in the Swedish E.I.C. i. Margaret, married 
to Hugh Rose of Clava. 
Alexander Irwyn of Drum, besides the five sons above narrated, had — 
I. A daughter, married to Hay of Ury. 
2. , married to Keith of Craig of Inverugie. 

3. Elizabeth, married to James Ogilvie of Boyne. 

4. Margaret, married to Gilbert Menzies of Pitfoddels. 

With regard to this Alexander Irwyn of Drum there are the following notices : — 
"Among those present at the Scotch Parliament in 1560 was Alexander Irwyn of 
Drum." ' There is extant in the family charter chest a holograph bond by King 
James VI. to Drum for five hundred merks, dated at Dalkeith, 27 November, 1587, and 
payable at Whitsunday thereafter.^ He is also mentioned in the following — " Caution 
for Alexander Irwyn of Drum as principal, and John Leslie of Boquhane as surety for 
two thousand merks, and for Hay Irwyn at the Mill of Drum, that Alexander Burnett 
of Leys and Thomas Thome and his servants shall be harmless of the said Alexander 
Irwyn." ^ 

Alexander Irwyn of Drum died about 1603, and was succeeded by his son, 

X. Alexander Irving of Drum, 

In 1603, he was served heir to his father, Alexander Irving of Drum, in the lands of 
Coulle, comprehending the croft of Coulle, Lochmaneis under the Wode, Bogfeiddil, 
Tullilodge, Tillilair, in the barony of O'Neile,'* and in 1583, he received a charter from his 
father of the lands and barony of Drum, Whiteriggs, Lonmay, and a charter of confir- 
mation from James VI.^ In 1622, he received a licence from James VI. to eat and 
feed upon flesh in the time of Lent.^ He married the Lady Marion Douglas, daughter 
of Robert, Earl of Buchan. According to Douglas in his " Peerage," she had no issue ; 
but according to other accounts, they had the following issue : — ^ 

I. Alexander, who succeeded his father. 

II. Robert, of Fedderat. This property was acquired by his grandfather in 

1573 from Crawford of Fedderat. In 1633, Robert Irving of Fedderat, as 
procurator for Dame Marion Douglas, his mother, declarit that there was 
restand owing to her by the said Robert, five hundred merks, and that 
there was restand owing to him by William, Earl Marischal, five hundred 
merks. This shows that Lady Marion had issue.^ 

1 Reg. de Panmure, I. p. 310. 5 Burke's Baronage, 1836, Vol. II. p. 682. 

2 Ant. A. and K. III. p. 319. 6 Ant.A. and B III. p. 309. 

3 Priv. Coun. Rep. IV. p. 209. 7 Doug. Peer. Fol. p. 96; Burke's Bar. II. p. 682. 

4 Ret. Spec. Aber. No. 90. 8 S.C. Mis. III. p. 106. 

Irvine of Dm m. 2)2)7 

1. Margaret, married to Sir George Ogilvie of Banff, afterwards Lord Banff. 

2. Isabella, married to Urquhart of Laithers. 

3. Janet, married to Sir William Douglas of Glenbervie, 

4. Ann, married to Sir George Ogilvie of Inverquharity. 

5. Mary, married, 1628, to Robert Graham of Morphia. 

This laird of Drum founded four bursaries of Philosophy, and two of Divinity in the 
Marischal College of Aberdeen, and four bursaries in the Grammar School, Aberdeen, 
leaving ;^ 10,000 Scots for this purpose. His testament is dated at Kelly, in Angus, 
26 December, 1629. At the same time he left six hundred merks Scots money, to 
the town of Aberdeen, to be employed by the provost and magistrates for maintaining 
and upholding of Drum's Aisle, he and his successors having one portion for their 
burials, as the Council shall determine. The Council declined the responsibility for the 
;^io,ooo Scots money for the bursaries, because it involved them in the responsibility 
of ;i^iooo Scots annual rent. Whereupon the successor of the bequeather. Sir Alexander 
Irvine, knight, invested the ;^i 0,000 Scots in the lands of Kinmuck, Peithill, Milne of 
Kinmuck, in the parish of Kinkell ; also in the town and lands of Rickarcarie, with the 
pertinents thereof called Torren, in the parish of Glengarden.' The investing of the 
money in these lands was the cause of a tedious and expensive litigation, which, two 
hundred and thirty years afterwards, reversing an unanimous judgment of the Scotch 
courts, was decided by the House of Lords against the proprietor of Drum. Alexander 
Irving of Drum also left for the lov? he carried to the town of Aberdeen (which had 
long been entertained by his family vithout change or break) four hundred merks to 
the new hospital. He died 1630, and was succeeded by his son, 

XI. Sir Alexander Irving of Drum, Knight. 

He was Sheriff-Principal of Aberdeen for many years during the reign of Charles I. 
In 162 1 he got a charter of the lands of Forglen from his father, with the consent of 
his brother, Robert Irving of Fedderat. '* The charter is to the said Alexander Irving 
of Drum, his son, and to Lady Magdalene Scrimgeour, his spouse, and the longest 
liver.' From this charter we find he married Magdalene Scrimgeour, daughter of Sir 
John Scrimgeour of Dudhope, knight, constable of Dundee. 

He was served heir to his father in 1630, and, from the following retour, we see the 
immense possessions owned by the house of Drum at that period: — "In 1630, 
Alexander Irving of Drum, heir of Alexander Irving, his father, in the lands and barony 
of Drum, Park of Drum, with the fishings upon the water of Dee ; the lands of Lonmay, 
Largneis, Fulzemont, and Tarlan, with the fishing and advowson of the church of 
Lonmay, with certain other lands in the sherriffdom of Kincardine, united into the 
barony of Drum ; the lands and barony of Fedderat ; the town and lands of Schevado, 
Artamford, Allathan, Brucklaw, Clochcan, Annachie, within the barony of Fedderat ; 
the town and lands of Ruthven, Over and Nedder Balnabraid, &c., within the lordship 

1 Drum's Mortification for Bursaries, Com. Rep. of Mar. Coll. 2 Ant. A. and B. III. 514. 


338 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

of Cromar and parish of Logiemar, with the advowson of the Church of Drumoak ; the 
lands of Coule, Lochmanis, &c , in the barony of O'Neill ; the lands of Craigtoune of 
Peterculter^ and of the croft, and town, and lands of the church of Banchory-Ternan ; 
the lands of Drumoak and Pettenbanzeone, within the barony of Murthill ; the lands of 
Kinmuck, Piethill, within the parish of Kinkell and regality of Lindore^; the lands and 
town called Eister and Wester Colairleys, the lands of Eister and Wester Beltiehill de 
Beltie, Sonday's Well, and Torphins, in the barony of Cluny and parish of Kincardine 
O'Neill." ' Of these lands it may be remarked that several of them were in possession 
of other branches of the family, but the superiority had been retained by the chief of 

Sir Alexander Irving had issue : — 

I. Alexander, his successor. 

II. Robert. He was imprisoned in the tolbooth of Edinburgh ; regarding 
him Spalding says: — "This brave young gentleman departit this Hfe within 
the toUbuith of Edinburgh, upon Tuesday, the 4th February, 16 — , and 
the same nicht being excommunicat, he was buried betwixt eleven and 
twelve o'clock, with candle licht in lanterns. The young laird being sore 
sick in the same chalmer when they were first wardit, they were all three 
put in separate houses that nane sid hae conference with another. This 
longsum, loathsum prison they endurit for the first half-year. Thereafter 
they gat liberty all three to bide in ane chalmer, but none sufferit to come 
and speak with them. But this young gallant, lying so long in prison, and 
of ane hie spirit, brak his heart and deit." " 

III. John. 

IV. Charies. 

V. Francis. 

1. Marion, married James, first Viscount Frendraught, and had issue. 

2. Jean, married George Crichton of Auchingoul, brother of Viscount 
Frendraught, and had issue. 

3. Margaret, married to Charles, Earl of Aboyne. 

In 1640, the castle of Drum was taken by the soldiers of General Munroe. 
Spalding gives the following account of it: — "April 20, 1640. On the news that 
General Munroe was coming to Aberdeen, sum barones began to fortify their houses. 
A month after there is a meeting at Strathbogie of the name of Gordon and others 
(Drum was present) to consult against the coming of Munroe. On June 2, Munroe 
marches to Drum — the laird was not at home. The lady was ordered to surrender the 
castle. She asks time to consider, and to advertise her husband. At last she renders 
up the castle on the conditions that her soldiers should go out with their arms : her 
children and under serving women should have liberty to remain within ane chalmer in 
the place. Munroe leaves a commander with forty men to keep the same, and to live 

I Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 216. 2 Spalding Troubles, II. p. 446. 

Iri'ine of Drum. 339 

on the provisions already provided, and on the laird's rents so long as they remained ; 
and the lady was required to send her husband to Munroc." This she did.' " On June 9, 
1640, the laird of Drum with sum few hors cam in to Aberdeen, according to the 
lady's promise, at the rendering of the house. He met with Earl Marischal and 
Munroe. They drank blythlie and kindlic together, and kept him still beside them."^ 
In a further notice we find "that the laird of Drum was sent south with Munroe : also 
Haddauch, Feddcrat, ^c. They were wardit in the 'I'ollbuith, Edinburgh. Drum fynit 
ten thousand merks, Fedderat four thousand, and Haddauch two thousand. On 
June 27, they plundered also the laird of Drum's ground, himself being wardit in Edin- 
burgh. In 1644, Drum castle is again attacked, this time by the Marquis of Argyle. 
Argyle had cum to Aberdeen, ryds there fra the place of Drum, had four hundred hors, 
and cam into Aberdeen, with the rest of the army. Sir Alexander Irving of Drum was 
not at home when Argyle and the rest cam ; but his lady and Lady Marie Gordon, his 
gude dochter, and sister's dochter to Argyle, were. Argyle and his company were all 
made welcome according to the time. The Marquis shortly removed the twa ladies, 
and set them out of the yettis per force (albjct the young lady was his own sister's 
dochter) with two grey plaids on their heids. Their haill servants were also put to the 
yettis; but the ladies cam in ui)on twa wark naigs in pitiful manner to the town of 
Aberdeen, and took up their lodging beside the gudewife of Auchlunkart then living in 
the town." Then continues Spalding, " the runagate Irish soldiers fell to and plunderit 
the place of Drum, quhair was stor of insicht plenishing, and rich furniture, and all other 
provision necessarie. They left nothing which could be carried away, and brak down 
the statlie beddis and timber wark ; killed and destroyed the bestial, nowt, and scheip, 
ky, for their meit. They fan yirdit in the yard of Drum ane trunkful of silver plait, 
gold plait and Jewells, chaynes, rings, and other ornaments of great worth, about twenty 
thousand poundis, whereof pairt was seen in Aberdeen. ^ Thus was the house of Drum 
oppressit and pitifully plunderit without any fault committed by the old lord himself, 
but only his two sons following the House of Huntly." Indeed, the old laird carried 
out as sheriff the behests of the Estates. In 1643, t^^ l^J^d of Drum, scherriff, as he 
had gotten order from the Estates, causit a messenger to charge the Earl Marischal, 
Lord Gordon, &c., to assist him as scherriff of Aberdeen, to search for, tak, and appre- 
hend the laird of Haddo. " And in January, 1644," Spalding says, " the laird of Drum, 
Scherriff-Principal, is chargit with letters direct in the King's name (but God knows if 
they were with his Majesty's will) to charge the barones of the shire to convein, and the 
town of Aberdeen to raise fourscore horsemen for the most part, and twa commanders, 
to go search, seek, tak, and apprehend the laird of Haddo, to tak his house and mell 
with his rents." '■ 

In 1651, a very lively controversy was carried on between Sir Alexander Irving and 
the Presbytery of Aberdeen as to the title the latter had assumed of controlling his 

1 Spalding Troubles I. pp. 281-283, &c. 3 Spalding Troubles II. pp. 355-356. 

2 Id. 4 Id. pp. 304-5. 

340 The Thanage of Fennartyn. 

spiritual interests. A great quarrel had taken place between the parties regarding the 
settlement of a minister in Sir Alexander's parish, and he had appealed from the power 
of the Presbytery to the English Commander, Colonel Overton, a proceeding which the 
Presbytery took very much amiss, and excommunicated Sir Alexander. Against this he 
protested in animated terms : — " Their excommunication," he said, " proceeded from 
men more full of fiery zeal to advance their own interests than that of the Gospel of 
Jesus Christ. They had urged him by threats to subscribe the Covenant, as gif it had 
been a matter of salvation for me to establish by arms Presbyterian government in 
England, not only would they have me forsware myself, but they will urge with the like 
threatenings my wife and daughters, who, for their age and sex, are not capable of such 
politic theology." " They also accuse Sir Alexander of being a Papist. It would not 
have caused much surprise, though he had become inclined to the Church of Rome, 
under the treatment he had received. There is no doubt but that several of his sons 
were educated at the Roman College of Douay. In the register of that college there 
are the following entries : — " 1647, Francis Irving, son of Alexander Irving of Drum ; 
1633, were entered Robert Irving, 19 years of age." He became a Presbyter 
of St. Bernard, and subsequently a Capuchin, and lived at Somerset House, London.- 

Sir Alexander Irving had a patent from King Charles I., creating him Earl of 
Aberdeen, which the breaking out of the Rebellion prevented from passing the great 
seal. His losses by the civil war were considerable, for both he and his son zealously, as 
above narrated, espoused the royal cause. His second son died in prison, and his 
eldest son was condemned to death, and his execution was only stopped in consequence 
of Montrose's victory at Kilsyth. Sir Alexander Irving died about 1658, and was 
succeeded by his son, 

XII. Alexander Irving of Drum. 

In 1658, Alexander Irvine is served heir to his father in the lands of Drum, &c., 
very much in the same terms as the retour of his father above quoted.^ Alexander 
Irving of Drum married the Lady Mary Gordon, daughter of the Marquis of Huntly, 
December 7, 1640. 

They had issue, three sons and four daughters : — 

1. Alexander, his successor. 

II. Robert. 

III. Charles. 

T. Mary, married to Patrick, Count Leslie of Balquhain. 

2. Margaret, married to Gilbert Menzies of Pitfoddels. 

3. Jean, married to Alexander Irving of Murthill, eventually of Drum. 

4. Henrietta, married to Alexander Leslie of Pitcaple. 

The laird of Drum married secondly, Margaret Coutts, who was of a different rank 

1 Chamber's Domestic Annals of Scotland, II. pp. 210-212. 3 Ret. Spec. Aber. No. 344 

2 His. Com. Report V. p. 654. 

Irvine of Drum. 34 1 

from the Marquis of Huntly's daughter. The following from Dean Christie's ballads 
has reference to her. 

" O, hold your tongue my brolher John, 
For I have done nac wrong, O ; 
I have married ane to work and spin, 
And ye've married ane to spend, O. 
For the first wife that I did wed, 
She was far al)een my degree, O. 
She wad me hae walked to the yelts of Drum, 
But the pearls abeen her bree, O. 
There were four-and-twenly gentlemen, 
Stood at the yetts of Drum, O ! 
There was nae ane among them a' 
That welcomed the lady in, O. 
He has taen her by the milk-white hand. 
And led her in liimsel', O, 
And in through ha', and in through bowers, 
Ye're welcome, Lady Drum, O." ' 

Alexander Irving by his second wife had issue : — 
I. Charles, who died in infancy. 

1. Katharine, who married John Gray. 

2. Anne, died unmarried. 

3. Elizabeth, died unmarried. 

On the restoration of Charles II., the peerage was again offered, this time to the son, 
but declined on his part. The probable reason was his very much diminished fortune. 
Several of the estates were sold, amongst others, Kelly, in Forfarshire, to Lord 

In 16 13 was executed an entail by the then Alexander Irving of Drum, in form of 
a procuratory of resignation of his estate, including the baronies of Drum, Cromar, 
and some other lands, for new infeftments to himself and his heirs male of the body, 
whom failing, to heirs of tailzie, to be contained in any writing under his hand. In 
pursuance of this procuratory, King Charles II. granted a charter of novodamus of the 
whole estate holding of the crown. In this charter, after mentioning the services of the 
first of the family under Robert the Bruce, and those of his successor at Harlaw, and 
other occasions, there is the following clause : — " But behold in more recent instances 
the faithful and ready services and sufferings both of his father, Alexander Irvine of 
Drum, and of the said Alexander, now of Drum, his son, who in the recent times of 
calamities and rebellion were worthy of the times of their faithful ancestors, and that 
especially by their most faithful and tenacious adherence in the greatest straits and 
differences to our father, Charles I. of dismal memory, and to ourselves. The fines, 
excommunications, imprisonments, and condemnation to death are all enumerated.'" 
Alexander Irvine of Drum also petitioned King Charles that, in consequence of the 
severe fines levied, his house four times garrisoned, and at length totally plundered, his 
wife and family turned out of doors, that some compensation should be made to him ; 

I Dean Christie's Ballads, I. p. 24. 3 Burke's Baronage, Ed. 1831, p. 68^. 

i Reg. de Paninurc. 

342 TJie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

but all the compensation the heroic Irvines received was that in a deed of 1684, when 
the holding of the lands of Drum was changed from "simple ward to taxt ward." 
This is all the merry monarch, who, in the charter of novodamus used very pleasing 
words, could do for the House of Drum ! ' 

In 1687 he executed a nomination of heirs of entail, failing heirs of his own body, 
namely, the Irvines of Murthill, Artamford, and Cults, and their heirs male in their 
order. Irvine of Saphock was the nearest male heir, failing the entailer's own, but for 
some dislike was entirely omitted. The laird died the same year, and was succeeded 
by his eldest son, 

XIII. Alexander Irvine of Drum. 

On March 21, 1688, he was served heir to his father, Alexander Irvine or Drum, in 
the lands and barony of Drum, &c.' He married Margaret, daughter of Forbes of 
Auchreddie, and died in 1619 without issue. In him failed the male line of the family 
from father to son. By this circumstance the succession opened to the eldest son of 
Alexander Irvine of Murthill, the first nominee under the entail who had died four 
years before the last laird. These Irvines were descended from Gilbert Irving, fourth 
son of Alexander Irvine of Drum and Jane Allardes, as detailed above. (No. VIII.) 

XIV. Alexander Irvine of Drum and Murthill. 

Alexander Irvine de Murthill, eldest son of Mr. Alexander Irvine de Murthill, heir 
of tailzie of Alexander Irvine, younger of Drum, was served heir, May i, 1696, to the 
lands and barony of Drum, and other lands.^ He married Jane Irving, daughter of 
Alexander Irving, by the Lady Mary Gordon, and had issue : — 
I. Alexander, his successor. 

1. Margaret. 

2. Helen, married to Garden of Dorlaithers. 

This gentleman sold Murthill, and the lands of Strachan, which had not been 
included in the entail. He died in 1720, and was succeeded by his son, 

XV. Alexander Irvine of Drum. 

He joined the rising of 17 15, and was severely wounded, but escaped to the conti- 
nent ; he was afterwards pardoned. He had the misfortune some time after his 
succession to become insane. He was cognosced in 1731, and died in 1735, when he 
was succeeded by his uncle and tutor, 

XVI. John Irvine of Drum. 

He was son of Alexander Irvine of Murthill, whose eldest son succeeded to Drum. 
Some time before the accession of this gentleman, means had been devised to defeat the 
entail, and to sell the greater portion of the estates of Drum, which last was effected 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. pp. 311-312. 3 Ret- Spec. Abdn. No. 498. 

2 Rets. Spec. Abdn. No. 470. 

Irvine of Drum. 343 

during his possession. He married Katharine, daughter of Robert FuUerton of 
Dudwick ; but dying in 1737 without issue, the male line of Irvine of Murthill became 
extinct. The succession then opened to the descendants of John Irvine of Artamford, 
fifth son of Alexander Irwyn of Drum, who succeeded his grandfather in 1553, and the 
Lady Elizabeth Keith, as above narrated. (See No. IX.) 

XVII. Alexander Irvine of Orimond and Drum. 

He was great grandson of Alexander Irwyn by the Lady Elizabeth Keith, and in 
1744 he became heir of line to the entailer by the death of Irvine of Saphock without 
male issue. He married, in 1698, Isabel, daughter of James Thomson of Faichficld, by 
whom he had issue : — 

I. James, who predeceased his father, unmarried. 

II. Alexander, eventually heir. 



Margaret, married to James Rose of Clava. 






6. Mary. 
Alexander Irvine of Crimond and 


died in i 







only surviving son. 

XVIII. Alexander Irvine of Drum and Orimond. 

Alexander Irvine, son of Alexander Irvine of Crimond and Drum, was served heir 
to John Irvine of Drum, heir of tailzie and provision general, June 4, 1749; and in 
1 75 1, he is served heir to his father, Alexander Irvine of Artamford.' He married 
in 1751, Mary, second daughter of James Ogilvie of Auchiries, by whom he had issue, 
three sons and three daughters : — 

L Alexander, his successor. 

II. Charles, a Major-General in the army. He married Diana, daughter of 
Sir Alexander Gordon, Bart, of Lesmoir and Drumblade, and had three 
sons, who all died s. p., and five daughters, of whom the second daughter, 
Mary, married Rev. Charles Wimberley. (See Barony of Drumblade.) 
General Irvine died in 1819. 

III. James, married a Roman lady, the widow of Mr. Mauley, the painter. 

1. Margaret. 

2. Isabella, married to Rev. Alexander Allan, and had issue, but all died s. p. 

3. Rebecca, married to George Ogilvie of Auchiries, and had issue : — 

I. Alexander, Lieutenant-Colonel 46th Regiment, married Jane, 
daughter of J. A. Ogilvie, South Carolina, died s. p. in 1832. 

I Decen. Rets. i74q-X7si. 

344 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

II. John, M.D., married Jane, daughter of John Forbes of Boyndlie. 
She succeeded to that estate on the death of her brother, 
Alexander Forbes. And on her death she was succeeded by her 
eldest son, George Ogilvie Forbes, M.D., Professor of the Insti- 
tutes of Medicine, University of Aberdeen, who, on his death in 
1885, was succeeded by his eldest son, John Charles Matthias 
Ogilvie Forbes ; married, and has issue, 

III. George, married Sarah, daughter of Sinclair ; had issue, 

two sons and a daughter. He died a Major in the Hon. E.I.C.S. 

IV. William, Captain in the Hon. E.I.C.S.; died unmarried. 
I. Mary. 

Alexander Irvine of Drum joined Prince Charles Edward in his attempt to regain 
the crown of his fathers in 1745; was fortunate enough to escape from the rout of 
CuUoden, and from forfeiture, by the grand jury twice throwing out the bills for treason 
sent to them. He died February 9, 1761, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

XIX. Alexander Irvine of Drum. 

He was served heir to his father, Alexander Irvine of Drum, in the lands of 
Drum, heir special in the Mains and Manor place of Crimond, Kirktown of Crimond, 
Hillhead of Bilbo, August 26, 1761. In 1766, he was served heir to his grandfather, 
Alexander Irvine of Artamford, Crimond, and Drum, as heir of tailzie and provision 

He married, in 1775, Jean, only daughter of Hugh Forbes of Schivas ; and had 
issue, four sons and a daughter : — 

I. Alexander, his successor. 

II. Charles, resided in London. 

III. Hugh, died in 1829. This gentleman was a famous landscape painter. 

IV. James, Captain in the Hon. E.I.C.S; married, in 1815, Frances Sophia, 
daughter of the late John Harrington, and had issue, a son and daughter. 

I. Christian. 
Alexander Irvine of Drum died in 1844, having been proprietor of Drum for the 
long period of eighty-three years. He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

XX. Alexander Irvine of Drum and Schivas. 

He was born 1777 ; was a member of the Scotch bar, and in 1 810, he was served heir 
to his cousin, Francis Forbes of Schivas, who died March, 1807, heir of tailzie and 
provision general in the barony of Schivas.^ 

Alexander Irvine married, in 18 16, Margaret, daughter of James Hamilton, and had 
issue, three sons and two daughters : — 

I. Alexander Forbes, his successor. 

I Decen. Rets. 1761-1766. 2 Decen. Rets. 1810. 

Irvine of Drum. 345 

II. James. 

III. Charles. 

1. Beatrice. 

2. Jane. 

Alexander Forbes Irvine died in 1861, and was succeeded by his eldest son, 

XXI. Alexander Forbes Irvine of Drum. 

He was an advocate of the Scotch bar ; a Deputy-Lieutenant of Aberdeenshire ; 
Convener of the county of Aberdeen ; and Sheriff of Argyll ; LL.D, of the University 
of Edinburgh. 

He married, 1848, Anna Margaretta, daughter of the late Lieutenant Colonel 
Jonathan Forbes Leslie of Rothienorman, and had issue : — 

I. Alexander Forbes, died young. 

II. Francis Hugh, his successor. 

Mr. Forbes Irvine of Drum died in 1892, and was succeeded by his surviving son, 

XXII. Francis Hugh Forbes Irvine of Drum. 

He is a barrister of the Inner Temple, London. He married, 1882, Mary, only 
child of Major John Ramsay of Barra and Straloch, and has issue : — 

I. Alexander. 

II. Quentin Hugh Innes. 


Argent, three bunches of holly leaves ; three in each one, two and one, vert, banded, 
gules. Crest, a bunch of holly leaves. Supporters — Two savages with clubs in their 
hands, and wreathed about the head and loins with holly. Motto — " Sub sole sub 

The Brecbennach mentioned in the above deduction. No. VI., was given by King 
William to the Abbey of Arbroath, and the custody of the consecrated banner of Saint 
Columba was an ancient and valuable part of the Abbey privileges. The lands of 
Forglen had of old been granted for its maintenance, and under it no doubt the vassals 
of the Abbey marched to war. The church of Forglen was dedicated to St Adamnan, 
the follower and historian of St. Columba ; but at what time the Saint's banner was 
associated with that territory cannot now be determined. The custody of the Brec- 
bennach in the beginning of the fourteenth century was held of the Abbot by the 
knightly family of Monimusk of that ilk, from whom it passed by descent to the Urys 
and the Erasers, becoming vested afterwards in the Irvines of Drum.' The reUc itself is 
said to be still in Monymusk House. 

I Cosmo Innes His. Sketches, p. 152. 



KiNMUCK lies to the south-east of the parish church of Keith-hall, and, according to 
tradition, a battle was fought there between the Scots and Danes. It is further averred 
that in consequence of a wild boar having been captured upon the lands, the name of 
Kinmuck was conferred on the district. Kinmuck was acquired by Sir Alexander 
Irvine of Drum, who, in 1629, mortified the rents of the lands for the support of bursars 
at the University of Aberdeen, the patronage being vested in his successors in Drum.' 

The hamlet of Kinmuck is nearly half-way between the kirks of Keith-hall and 
Fintray, and has long been a chief seat of the Quakers or Friends, of whose history in 
connection with the locality interesting notices will be found in the " Diary of Provost 
Jaffray of Aberdeen," and in " Jaffray's Apology for the Quakers." The meeting-house 
is a neat place of worship, and on the other side of the road from the meeting-house is a 
small but well-kept churchyard, with a few tombstones, on some of which are the 
following inscriptions : — ' 

1. "James Glenny, died 7 month 31st, 1804, aged 27 years. Elizabeth Glenny, 
died 8 month 4th, 1854, aged 76 years. Elizabeth Glenny, died 12 month 9th, 1823, 
aged 19 years." 

2. "John Glenny, died 5 month 30th, 1844, aged 44 years ; and Eliza Glenny, died 
12 month 26th, 1845, aged 10 years." 

3. " Katharine Glenny, died 10 month i6th, 1863, aged 65 years." ' 

In a large barrow or tumulus on Kinmuck there was found an urn, which contained 
calcined bones, and at a subsequent period other two urns were found, in a reversed 
position to each other, and were taken out in fragments. The bones were put into a 
box and buried in the same spot. Near to the cairn in which the bones were found is 
a large standing stone, about seven feet high and two and a half feet square at the base, 
probably the remains of a circle, * 

On Kinmuck there are the remains of a cairn, also on Balbithan there are the 
remains of Cairnmore or the big cairn ; while on the hill of Selbie there is a large cairn, 
from which a fine view can be got of a great part of the country, and of nearly the whole 
line of seashore from Aberdeen to Buchanness. 

I Jervise' Inscrip. Vol. I. pp. 303-4. 2 New Stat. Acct. p. 744. 

Kinmuck and its Churchyard. 347 

The Law is situated near the mansion-house of Balbithan, where the barons of old 
sat to administer justice, such as it was. There were once in the parish several 
druidical circles, but the stones have been made use of for building purposes. 

Part of an encampment remained until a few years ago on the moor of Kinmuck, 
where it is said a battle took [)lacc between the Danes and the Scotch. The place of 
combat bears the name of Blair Ilussey, or the field of blood. 

K E N D A I. E. 

The old mansion-house of Kcndale (formerly named Ardiharral), surrounded by a 
few trees, conveys an idea of its former importance,^though it has long been occupied as 
a farm-house. It was here in 1613 that Bishop Burnet was born, whose history of his 
own times, and the prominent part he took in contemporary events, have made so 
famous. The Bishop's father, who was one of the Senators of the College of Justice, 
under the title of Lord Crimond, was proprietor of Kendal and Crimond, in its neigh- 
bourhood, and was fourth son of Burnett of Leys. His mother was sister of Sir 
Archibald Johnston, the celebrated Lord ^^'arristoun, who was executed at Edinburgh 
in 1663.' 

I Jervise' Inscrip. I. p. 303 ; Ant. A. and B. I. p. 570. 



Balbithan, now the property of the Earl of Kintore, is situated at the bottom of a 
hollow, where it is invisible even at a short distance, and is about a mile east from the 
old church of Kinkell. An earlier house stood at old Balbithan, on a rising ground 
above the den, opposite the burgh of Kintore, and its proximity may have given rise to 
quarrels between the burgher and baronial neighbours, so as to induce the selection 
of another site for the new house in the singularly secluded position it now occupies. 
The house was built by one of the Chalmers' of Balbithan, and improved by a late 
proprietor — one of the Forbeses of Skellater. 

Balbithan at an early period formed a portion of the extensive estates of the Abbey 
of Lindores. In 1333 there is an inquest regarding the second tithes of all the annual 
returns of the escheats of the Scottish King, and from Balbithan, belonging to the Abbey 
of Lindores, there is a return of 26/8. The Abbey at an early period disponed or feued 
it, retaining the superiority. Thus in 1600, when the Abbey lands were formed into a 
temporal lordship, Balbithan, with Wranghame and others, are enumerated among the 
possessions of the Abbey. Before the above date it belonged to the family of Chalmer, 
the Abbot of Lindores being superior. 

The Chalmers' family, in whose possession it remained for nearly two hundred years, 
was originally of Kintore, afterwards of Balnacraig. 

I. John Chalmer of Balbithan, 

in 1490, married Christian Leslie; a daughter of this couple probably became the fifth 
wife of the baron (Leslie) of Wardes, by whom she had a son, Robert, who fell at 
Pinkie.' The next to be found is, 

II. David Chalmer of Balbithan. 

In 155 1 there is an agreement by David Chalmers of Balbithan and John Chalmer 
in Kintore, to affirm a decree arbitral, given between them by Sir Patrick Cheyne of 
Esslemont, knight, Thomas Menzies of Pitfoddels, and William, Earl Marischal, and, 
in 1565, there is a decreet anent the multures of the mill of P'intray, by William Wod 
in the mill, against David Chalmer of Balbithan, anent the claim of the knaveschip 
of Hedderwick and Balbithan.'' 

I Earldom of the Garioch, p. 95. 2 Deeds in H.M. Reg. Ho. Edinburgh, and 

Mr. P. H. Chalmer's Notes. 

Balbitltau. 349 

David C'halmer of IJalbithan died, September, 1582, leaving issue, I. John, his 
lieir. 11. William. III. James. I \\ Charles. V. Henry, 

His will is interesting, as giving a record of prices obtaining at the lime. I lis inventory 
contained, 24 o.xen and cash ^'8 Scots ; 12 ky, four thereof with their kar at their feet, 
8 merks each ; 3 stirks, one year old, 30/ each ; 8 queys, two years old, ^8. 3 hors, 
/^8 each ; 3 mairs with their foals at their feet, ^6 6s. 8d. each ; 6 scores auld sheep, 
20/ each ; 50 Iambs, 10/ each. 18 scores bollis aittis, and 26 score in the barns and 
barnyards, each boll with the fodder, 26/8 ; 60 bollis beir, 5 score 8 bollis in the barn- 
yard, 40/ each with fodder ; 12 bollis ([uheit, 19 bollis 2 pecks in barnyards, ^3 with 
fodder. His executors were ^\'illiam, James, and Henry Chalmer his sons." He was 
succeeded by his son, 

III. John Ohalmer of Balbithan. 

In 1584, he killed Alexander Keith, the laird of Auquhorsk, and in 1578, there are 
letters of horning against John Chalmer of Bali)ithan, James Chalmer and others to 
the number of twelve, for the slaughter of the said Alexander Keith.- The next to be 
found, probably a son, is 

IV. George Chalmer of Balbithan. 

Before 1600, according to the author of the " Earldom of the Garioch," he married a 
daughter of William Leslie of Wardes, and his name is included, in 1603, in a remission 
by James VI. to the Marquis of Huntly for the part they took at Auldquhynachan. In 
1633, Alexander Irvine in Kinkell declarit that he had restand owing to him by George 
Chalmer of Balbithan, 250 merks.^ 

In 1666, the Chalmer family still hold possession of Balbithan, and in the following 
year there is a sasine to Mr. W^illiam Chalmer of the New Place of Balbithan. He had 
at least three sons, Patrick, James, and George Chalmer; the last two, James and George, 
were infeft in the New Place of Balbithan." 

In 1673, there is a sasine to Mr. Patrick Chalmer of Balbithan and other bond- 
holders. In 1674, there is a sasine to Mr. Patrick Chalmer, son to the deceased Mr. 
AVilliam Chalmer, minister of Skene, and James and John, his brothers, in the lands of 
Balbithan. 5 In 1696, in the "Poll Book," Balbithan is mentioned as belonging to 
James Balfour, merchant. In another entry, James Chalmer, late of Balbithan, has a 
labouring valued at ^{^50. The following is the last that owned any portion of Balbithan. 
The "Aberdeen Journal" of the period records — " Died at Cairnwhelp, on 31 August, 
^TS^j James Chalmer of Balbithan, one of H.M. Justices of the Peace for the county of 
Banff, and tutor to the late Duke of Gordon during his minority; a gentleman of strict 
honour and integrity." The next to be found is 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 425. 4 Sasines H.M. Reg. Ho. Edinburgh, and Notes by 

2 Deed in H.M. Reg. Ho. Kdinburgh, and Notes by P. H. Chalmer of Avochie. 

late P. H. Chalmer of Avochie. 5 Sasines H.M. Reg. Ho. Edinb. 

3 Earldom of the Garioch. S. C. Club. Mis. III. p. 81. 

350 The Thanage of Fennartyn. 

William Hay of Balbithan. 

who, in 1699, paid cess for the town of Inverurie, and in 1707, Barbara Menzies 
appears as his relict and executrix. After this date it comes into a branch of the family 
of Gordon.' Sir John Gordon, second laird of Park, had a third son, David Gordon, 
laird of Achoynane. He married Janet Gordon, daughter of Gordon of Terpersie, 
by whom he had a son, who, about 1730, became 

James Gordon of Balbithan. 

He was the author of a MS. history of the Gordons of date about 1730, called the 
" Balbithan MS." He had a sister, Mary Gordon, He married first, Elizabeth Burnett, 
sister of Sir Alexander Burnett of Craigmile, by whom he had issue several children. 

He married secondly, Innes, daughter of Innes of Balvenie ; by her he had a 

son, Benjamin, by whom he was succeeded. 

II. Benjamin Gordon of Balbithan, 

who became a general in the army, and entailed the property of Balbithan on a series 
of heirs. He died in 1803, and was succeeded by his nephew, 

III. WiUiam Forbes-Gordon of Skellater and Balbithan. 

He assumed the name of Gordon, and during his time considerable improvements 
and additions were made to the house of Balbithan. He married, and had issue a son, 
Benjamin, who succeeded on his father's death in 1815. 

IV. Benjamin Forbes-Gordon of Balbithan. 

Regarding him there are the following retours : — " Benjamin Gordon, once Forbes, 
was served heir to his father, William Forbes of Balbithan ; heir general, 2 1 October, 
1815."* Again "Benjamin Gordon, Major-General of Balbithan, to his grand-uncle. 
General Benjamin Gordon of Balbithan ; heir general, 7 July. 182 1." Also the 
following — "Benjamin Gordon, now named Benjamin Forbes, to his grand-uncle. 
General Benjamin Gordon of Balbithan, who died, November, 1803, heir of line special 
in Balbithan, with the manor place, &c., in Aberdeenshire, 19 October, 1822." He was 
succeeded by 

V. Benjamin Abernethy Gordon of Balbithan. 

Upon a tablet in the Balbithan aisle in the church of Kinkell, is the following 
inscription : — ^' Sacred to the memory of Benjamin Abernethy Gordon, Esq., the last 
heir of entail of Balbithan, born. May, 1782, died at Shand Villa, Ryde, Isle of Wight, 
4 February, 1864." Mr. Gordon married Miss Macgregor, and had issue, a daughter. 

After Mr. Gordon's death the property was sold, and now belongs to the Earl of 

I Earldom of the Gaiioch, p. 416. 3 Decen. Rets. 1816, 1821, 1823. 

Balbithan. 351 


George Forbes of Skellater married Isobel, daughter of William Forbes of Newe, 
a cadet of the family of Pitsligo, the eldest brother of Miss Isobel Forbes being 
William Forbes, the sixth laird of Newe. He married first, 12 September, 1679, 
Christian, daughter of Alexander Forbes of Boyndlie, by whom he had one daughter, 
who married Nathaniel Forbes of Ardgeith. He married secondly, Isobel, daughter of 
Thomas Stewart of Drumin, by whom he had John Forbes, his heir; II. William, who 
died in the twentieth year of his age, and III. Alexander, born 22 December, 1687 ; 
also two daughters — i. Isobel, who married John Shaw in Glencarne; 2, Ann, who 
married Alexander Michie in Buchaam, William Forbes of Newe died 22 July, 1699. 

Alexander Forbes in New Balgonen, Keig, younger son of William Forbes, and 
brother of John Forbes, seventh laird of Newe, married Margaret, daughter of Alexander 
Gellan, in Bithnie-Forbes, by whom he had — I. Francis, a writer in Aberdeen, who 
married, and had issue one daughter, Mary, who married Robert Luckie, manufacturer 
in Aberdeen, and died s. p. ; II. John Forbes of Forbesfield, near Aberdeen ; III. 
Samuel ; IV. Robert, who went to Tobago, and one daughter, Margaret, married to 
John Johnston. 

Alexander Forbes died in 1740, aged 53, and was buried in the old churchyard 
of Forbes. 

John Forbes of Forbesfield married, 1763, Ann, daughter of Alexander Ferguson, 
baillie in Inverurie, and of the family of Badifurrow, afterwards of Pitfour. He died in 
1785, having had issue three sons, who attained manhood, namely : — 

I. John Forbes, born May 20, 1774, a lieutenant in Bengal Presidency, who 
died in 1804, unmarried. 

II. James, born July 4, 1777, a merchant in Aberdeen, of whom afterwards. 

III. Robert, born April 27, 1780, a lieutenant, Madras Presidency, who died 
1804, unmarried. 

He had also one daughter, Mary, married to John Machattie, merchant, Aberdeen. 
James Forbes, above-mentioned son of John Forbes of Forbesfield, married 
Elizabeth Eraser, and had issue four sons and four daughters, who grew up, namely : — 

I. James Forbes, of whom afterwards. 

II. Robert Forbes, born 1803, married, and had issue. 

III. John Forbes, a merchant in Aberdeen, born 1807, died umarried, 1834. 

IV. Alexander, merchant in Aberdeen, now of Morkeu, Cults, born April 19, 

1. Elizabeth, married Alexander Taylor, merchant, Aberdeen. She died 
in 1877. 

2. Jane le Grand, born 1805, died unmarried, 1879. 

352 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

3. Anne, born 1809, married 1838, without issue, to Rev. Alexander Gardiner; 
after his death she married Rev. Alexander Sim — both Church of Scotland 
ministers in Canada. 

4. Sophia, born 181 2, died unmarried, 1876. 

James Forbes died in 1834, and was buried in the family vault in St. Nicholas 

James Forbes, son of the above-mentioned James Forbes and Christian Fraser, was 
born 1800, a merchant in Aberdeen, and was for many years a magistrate in the city, 
and a Justice of the Peace for the county of Aberdeen ; married, 15 April, 1828, Elsy 
Gordon (born 1805, and died 1856), daughter of James Gordon of Bonnymuir, near 
Aberdeen, by whom he had three sons : — 

I. James, born in 1830, merchant, Aberdeen, 

II. Alexander, born 1835 ; also merchant, Aberdeen. 

III. John, born 1838; Q.C. and a Bencher of Lincoln's Inn. He married, 
1866, Maria Elizabeth, daughter of Henry Thomas, surgeon in Sheffield, 
with issue one daughter, Laura, born 1867. 

1. Agnes, born 1831, married 1855, to Archibald Simpson, M.D., London; 
issue — a large family. 

2. Elsy, born "1833. 

James Forbes died December 29, 1870. 



And what hast thou seen in the old churchyard 

To move thy spirit so, 
Sure something sad, by that clouded l)row, 

Doth make thine anger glow ? 
Sad, most sad ! 
Yes, it maketh"me mad 
So sore a sight to see : 
An old, old church, the pride of the place, 
The pride of the north countree — 
So old it fadcth from memory. 
And now it perisheth beggarly, 
Sinking, sinking, day by day. 
Inch by inch to hopeless decay ; 
Left to the care of the rotting rain, 
The ruffian blast from the gusty plain, 
And the rude, rude hands of the plundering swain, 
Till crash it sink to a heap of stones 
Amid mourning nature's moans. 
O ! a mischievous malison cleave to their bones ! 

— Sir William Duguid GedHes (applied to another church). 

The author of the "View of the Diocese " in 1730 thus writes of the church of Kinkell: 
— " This church is now so lamentably polluted and profaned that one is ashamed to 
write of it." The following is an account of it in 1862, as it appeared to the Rev. F. G. 
Lee, D.C.L., some time incumbent of St. John's church, and the first incumbent of St. 
Mary's church, Aberdeen : — ' This church consisted simply of a nave and chancel of 
third pointed work, with a south porch, the foundations of which are still to be traced. 
Now the north wall only remains. Towards the west end a mean building like an out- 
house has been erected, which serves as a burial place for the Gordons of Balbithan. 
The east wall up to the window still remains, and there are fragments lying about of the 
tracery and mullions of the east window. In the north wall adjoining the ancient 
sanctuary is a most remarkable tabernacle, almost unique of its kind. It was not 
simply an Easter sepulchre, but a permanent receptacle for the Blessed Sacrament. It 
consists of a sort of aumbrye, or deep rectangular recess in the wall, on either side of 
which, as well as above and below, are a series of sculptured ornaments. The bas-relief 
above is altogether gone, and only a flat stone remains. No traces of it or its subject 
exist ; but the two crocketed finials on either side, very Italian-Gothic in their charac- 
ter, of a close-grained freestone, are almost perfect. Below are the remains of what was 

X Gentleman's Magazine, 1862. 

354 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

the sculptured representation of an ostensorium or monstrance for the Holy Sacrament, 
with adoring angels on either side ; and underneath is some boldly sculptured foliage, 
with a shield in its centre, charged with a lion rampant crowned. A label on either 
side of the recess contains the following legend — " Hic est sutum corpus de 
viRGiNE NATUM " — " Hic cst servatum corpus de virgine natum." The letters " A. G." 
occur twice, once disjoined, and again united by a knot into a monogram. So, too, the 
device of a rose. The date 1528 also remains, as well as the inscription " memorare " 

Secondly, there is a curiously incised slab, two-thirds of which only remain, repre- 
senting a knight in armour. The figure is very similar to that of Sir Thomas Massing- 
bred, represented in " Boutell's Monumental Brasses." Upon the surcoat and on a 
shield above are represented the following arms — " A cheveron between two water 
budgets in chief, and a hunter's horn in base." No colours are indicated in the sculp- 
ture. That portion of the inscription which remains runs as follows — " Hic jacet 
nobilis Armiger Gilbertus de Grei — Anno Domini mcccxi." [Here lies a noble Esquire, 
Gilbert de Grei — a.d. mcccxi.] On the reverse side is this inscription — " Hic jacet 
honore illustris, et sancta morum pietate ornat Joannes Forbes de Ardmurd ej cOgnois 
hceres 4, qui anno setatis suae, 66, 8 Julii, a.d. 1592 obiit." [Here lies, bright with • 
honour, and adorned with saintly piety of character, John Forbes of Ardmurdo, fourth 
successor of his name (?), who died 8 July, 1592, in the 66th year of his age.] ' With 
regard to the inscription upon the slab above mentioned, Mr. Jervise, in his notice upon 
Kinkell, believes the arms inscribed to be those of the Greenlaw family, who flourished 
in Berwickshire. " Bishop Greenlaw of Aberdeen was of this family, and the person 
commemorated was one of those noble preservers of the liberties of Scotland who fell at 
Harlaw." " 

Kinkell had six chapels depending upon it. (See Drumblade.) 

In 1420, Bishop Henry Lychton erected the church of Kinkell {alias dicta 
plebeniana), belonging, with its six chapels, to the Knights of Jerusalem, into one of 
the prebends of the Cathedral Church of St. Machar.^ The church lands of Kinkell 
were held in chief of James, Archbishop of St. Andrews, and his successors, for yearly 
payment, ;^7 7s. 3d., usual Scots money." 

A few of the ancient vicars and prebendaries have been recorded. 

In 1298, July 4, Edward I. gave a letter of presentation to the then vacant church 
of Kinkell to John Bourche, of London. ^ After this there is a long interval of no 

Henry Lichton, in 1440, was parson of Kinkell. He witnesses a charter of Robert, 
Earl of Mar, along with Sir Alexander Irvine of Drum.^ He became afterwards Bishop 
of Aberdeen, and built the west front of the Cathedral of Oldmachar, and its two fine 

1 Jervise' Inscrip. I, p. 305. 4 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 428. 

2 Id. 5 Jervise' Inscrip. I. p. 307. 

3 Reg. Ep. Aber. 11. p. 253. 6 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 453. 

The Ministers^ &€., of Kinkell and Monkeggie. 


towers. He had two brothers in the church, Alexander, Prior of Torphichen in 1422, 
and Duncan, Chancellor of Aberdeen, from 1436 to 1464. 

William Auchinleck was prebend in 1473, ^"d takes part in an action of that date 
against the wrangeis withholding of certain sommcs of money for the teinds of the 
prebendary of Kinkell." 

Adam Gordon was of the Railhead family. In 1475, ^^ witnesses a charter of the 
foundation of the chappelanry de Morphy, and is also mentioned in a deed of date 
1 48 1, and in 1504 there is a charter of Adam Gordon, rector of Kinkell. He died in 
1508, and his anniversarj' was held 25 Kal. Mar. One of the monuments, with initials 
•* A, G.," in the old church may be to his memory.' 

William Mowat in 152 1 was prebendary of Kinkell.^ 

Alexander Galloway, a very distinguished man, is next found. In 1542, he grants 
Cryne's lands in Futtie to the chaplains of the Cathedral, and to this deed Alexander 
Anderson, sub-principal of King's College, is a witness.'* Mr. Galloway was the son of 
William Galloway and Marjorie Mortimer, whose anniversary was in February. He 
was for some time chaplain at Colliehill, Bourtie, which chaplaincy he endowed. He 
died in 1552. 

Mr. James Ogilvy, a very learned man, was in 1533 rector of Kinkell. He was of 
the Boyne family ; was dead before 1543.^ 

Henry Lumsden in 1545 was rector of Kinkell, as he witnessed in that year a feu 
charter made by the Bishop of Moray to George Ogilvy of Milltown.*^ He is also 
mentioned in the Register of the Privy Seal, in a letter of date 161 3, as having let to 
Alexander Skene of that ilk the teind scheaves of the lands of Wester Skene.^ Besides 
these, Alexander Anderson, sub-principal of King's College, was for some time vicar of 

Thomas Lumsden, prebend of Kinkell, is a witness to a feu charter of William 
Blenschell, 1575. He survived the Reformation. 

After the Reformation Kinkell was supplied in 1564 by James Currie, reader, 


Andrew Spens was reader in 1580. 

William Johnston in 1586 had charge of Kinkell and Kintore. 

John Walcar in 1599 had charge. He also served two years at Kemnay, but received 
nothing, because it is ane of the kirks of the benefice of Kinkell. He was latterly pre- 
sented to the parsonage and vicarage comprehending the kirks of Kinkell, Skene, 
Drumblait, Kemnay, Dyce, Kintore, and Kinellar. 

John Cheyne was admitted prior to ist of November, 1633, and remained till 1643. 

1 Acta Dominorum Auditorum, p. 24. 

Ant. A. and B. I. p. 573. 

2 Ant. A. and B. II. p. 331 ; Reg. Ep. 

Aber. II. 8. 

3 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 387. 

4 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 410. 

5 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 424. 

6 Reg. Ep. Morav. p. 394 ; Ant. A. and B. 

II. p. 250. 

7 Skene's Family of Skene, N.S.C. p. 11. 

8 Ant. A. and B. III. p. 255 ; Id. I. p. 238. 

35^ The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

" William Gray in Armurdo declarit that he had restand owing to him, two hundred 
merks,' by Mr. John Cheyne, parson of Kinkell. 

William Leith was made a prisoner with other ministers and outstanders against the 
Covenant in June, 1640, when he was probably assistant to his predecessor. He was 
appointed by the Presbytery to Kinkell, in 1647, with full charge, and was deposed 
7 December, 1649. 

John Gellie was appointed in 1650, and remained till 1661. 

James Gordon was translated from Drumblade in 1662. He died prior to 16 May, 
1669, when his son, Mr. Adam Gordon, afterwards minister of Glasgow, was admitted 
bursar to the Presbytery of Alford. 

John Gellie, formerly mentioned, was reappointed before 16 February, 1676, and 
died 1683. He married Maria Jaffray, and is buried in the churchyard of Kinkell. 

Thomas Weymss graduated at St. Andrew's University, 25 July, 1676; was 
admitted, probably as helper, before 30 April, 1683 ; was deprived, 1695, for non- 
jurancy. He married, 30 April, 1683, Janet Weymss, and had two sons and three 
daughters — David, Thomas, Margaret, Janet, and Elizabeth.^ 

George Skene was ordained 22 April, 1697. He married Maria Gordon, who died 
I August, 1 7 12, aged 32, and had a son. Dr. Francis Skene, Professor of Philosophy in 
the University and King's College, Aberdeen, who was served heir to him 27 June, 
17 24.3 

James Strachan was son of James Strachan, apothecary, Aberdeen ; was ordained 
1725, and died 29 November, 1761, in the 37th year of his ministry."* 

The parish of Kinkell was united, part to Kintore and part to Monkeggie, and they 
were appointed in all time coming to be called the united parishes of Keith hall and 


according to the author of the " View of the Diocese," was a chapel built first by the 
Johnstons of Caskieben. It may have been restored by them ; but the chapel of 
Monkeggie is mentioned at a very early date. In 11 72-1 199, between these years, 
William the I.ion confirmed to his brother, David, Earl of Huntingdon, the acquit- 
tance made to him by Matthew, Bishop of Aberdeen (in exchange for two carucates of 
land in Kelalcmund), of all the teinds which the Bishops were wont to have of the 
churches of Durnach, Monkeggin, &c.5 In 1199 there is a bull of Pope Innocent III. 
confirming the privileges of the Abbey of Lindores. Among those confirmed as 
belonging to the Abbey are Ecclesiade Inverurin cum capella de Munkegin.^ It was 
confirmed again in 1297 by Pope Nicholas IV.' In 1481 a mortgage of an annual rent 

1 S. C. Mis. III. pp. 73-92. 5 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. p. 9. 

2 Scott's Fasti, p. 586. 6 Ant. A. and B. p. 246. 

3 Decen. Rets. 1742. 7 Id. 

4 Dr. Scott's Fasti, p. 586. 

The Ministers^ &c., of Kinkell and Monkeggie. 357 

from the lands of Hilton in the Ixirony of Diinnottar in the Mearns is redeemable at the 
sacred altar in the paroche kirke de Montkege.' Again, in a charter of Patrick I^slie, 
Commendator of Lindorcs, in i6oc, the church of Monkeggie is mentioned as a 
l)endicle only of the parish of Inverurie.' 

In 1570, Monkeggie was supplied by Andrew Spens, reader, and was afterwards for 
a time united to Inverurie. It was revived, and on the annexation to Kinkell in 1754, 
the parish was appointed in all times coming to be called the united parishes of Keith- 
hall and Kinkell. 

Samuel Walker was appointed minister of Monkeggie prior to 27 January, 1635. 
He was made prisoner, notwithstanding his signing the Covenant, in June, 1640, and 
was deposed in 1649, for malignancy. "They gat no liberty to ryd upon horse, but 
were compelled to go on foot with their soldiours, who all togiddir returned bak to 
Aberdeen upon \Vednesday, i July." ^ 

William Keith was translated in 1650 from Kinellar, and a[)pointed to Udny in 1653. 

William Maitland was excommunicated at Aberdeen while a preacher prior to 1647, 
but the sentence was taken off, and he was admitted to Monkeggie, 27 July, 1654. In 
1663 Parliament ordered, as he had been a suffering minister, j£,\oo to be paid to 
Rachel Kinncar, his widow and children, out of the first and readiest of the vacant 

Samuel Walker, above mentioned, was restored, and had a warrant from Parliament, 
22 May, 1661, for ^151 Scots as a suffering minister. He remained till about 1673. 

George Keith was son of Mr. John Keith, minister of Garvock, became school- 
master of Methlic ; was appointed to Monkeggie, and was* translated to Old Deer in 

William Keith, grand-nephew of the preceding, was ordained in 1683, and died 
before 5 May, 1709, in the twenty-sixth year of his ministry. He married, and had a 
son and four daughters — John, Margaret (married to Patrick Anderson, in Moss-side of 
Kingswells), Elizabeth, Janet, and Jane. ■ 

Francis Dauney was ai)pointed 1710, and translated to Kemnay in 1719. 

John Lumsden, son of Alexander Lumsden of Auchinlclt, was schoolmaster of 
Chapel of Garioch. He was ordained 12 July, 1721, and was translated to Banchory- 
Devenick, 10 January, 1728. 

James Honeyman, son of Andrew Honeyman, minister of Kincff, was ordained 
26 September, 1728, and was translated to KinefiF, i August, 1733. 

James Darling, son of Mr. Robert Darling, minister of Ewes, was ordained 1734, 
and translated to Kintore, 25 January, 1738. 

James Cock was appointed in 1738. (In his time the two parishes were conjoined 
under the names of Keith-hall and Kinkell.) He got a new church built in 177 1. He 
died 1776, in the 78th year of his age, and the 38th of his ministry, having married 

1 Ant. .\. & D. I. p. 560. 3 Spalding's His. of the Troubles, I. p. 205. 

2 Id. p. 4 Scott's Fasti, pp. 584-3. 

358 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

Barbara Reid, who died April, i8oo, and had two sons in the ministry, Alexander of 
Cruden, and William of Rathen. 

George Skene Keith, M.A., D.D., was the representative of the family of Auquhorsk. 
He graduated at Marischal College ; was presented by the Commissioners for George, 
Earl Marischal, in May 9, 1776. The Earl having presented Mr. Thomas Tait, 
minister of the second charge of Oldmachar the following day, a question arose who 
should be preferred. The Court of Session unanimously decided in favour of Mr. 
Keith, 22 January, 1788, on the ground that a patron may delegate his powers, a judg- 
ment that was affirmed in the House of Lords in April following. He was author of a 
" General View of the Agriculture of Aberdeenshire." He was translated to Tulialan in 

John Keith, M.A., son of the above, was appointed in 1821. He graduated at 
Marischal College in 1814. He died 18 February, 1867, in his 71st year, and the 46th 
of his ministry. Few ministers lived in the hearts and affections of their people so 
uninterruptedly, and so universally lamented. He went about among them continually 
doing good. In every-day life he was a preacher of righteousness. He married, 
7 November, 1837, Agnes Mudie, and had a son, Thomas, 'and others. He published 
the statistical account of the parish.' 

James Donald, M.A., son of Rev. Mr. Donald, minister of Peterhead, was appointed 



Tell me not in mournful numbers 
Life is but an empty dream, 
For the soul is dead that slumbers, 
And things are not what they seem. 
Life is real, Life is earnest, 
And the grave is not its goal ; 
Dust thou art to dust returnest 
Was not spoken of the soul. 
Art is long, and time is fleeting, 
And our hearts tho' stout and brave, 
Still like muffled drums are beating 
Funeral marches to the grave. 

— Longfellow. 

In this churchyard it is believed many of the heroes of Harlaw were buried, though all 
save one, Gilbertus de Greenlaw, already mentioned as a relative of the Bishop of Aber- 
deen, rest in nameless graves. 

I Scott's Fasti, VI. Art. Keith-hall. 

The Ministers y &€.. of Kinkell and Monkeggie. 359 

At tlic cast end of the church there is the following inscription : — "Jacet hie 
sepulta Doinina Maria (iordon Magistn Gcorgii Skene pastoris uxor, (juie obiit August, 
1772, actatis 32. [Here hes buried Mrs. Mary (iordon, wife of Mr. George Skene, 
pastor, who died, August, 1772, aged 32.] 

" Hie jacent Magistri Johannis GeUie de Kinkell, pastoris corpora qui obiit, August 
4, 1683; et Margareta J affray ejus uxor (jux obiit, February 4, 1705." [Here lies the 
body of Mr. John Gellie, pastor of Kinkell, who died, August 4, 1683; and that of 
Margaret Jaffray his spouse, who died I-'ebruary 4, 1705.] 

Within an enclosure in the old church, on a marble slab, is inscribed :— "Erected 
by Elizabeth Gourlay in memory of her father, Robert Williamson of Armurdo, and 
his mother, Janet Dixon; also her brother, John Williamson, who died 12 August, 
1849, aged 48 ; and her husband, Robert (iourlay, Kintore, who died 8 February, 
1855, aged 66 ; also the above-named Elizabeth Gourlay, who died 28 December, 1874, 
aged 76." 

On a flat slab, south of the ruins of the church, there is the inscription : — " Here 
lies, under the hope of a blessed resurrection, A. R. King, sometime in Kinkell, who 
departed this life 22 February, 1658 ; and Margaret Sim, his spouse, who departed 
28 July, 16—." 

Within a granite enclosure there is a stone " to the memory of Thomas Thomson, 
M.D., M.R.C.S.F^., Inverurie; born March, 1793 ; died July 4, 1870. 'Forasmuch as 
ye have done it to the least of these, ye have done it unto Me.' Also of Christian 
Jamieson, his spouse, died 20 September, 187 1, aged 70. Their sons — Andrew 
Jamieson, lieutenant, 25th Regiment, Bombay, died at Bombay, 30th November, 1843, 
aged 22 ; Antony F. Keith, died at Australia, 1850, aged 23." 

" Robert Leslie of the Mauritius Cavalry Service, died at St. Helier, Jersey, 
31 December, 1871, aged 31. George Leslie, colonel, 26th Regiment, Bombay, died 
25 December, 1874, aged 38. Also their daughter, Ann Eli^abeth, died 29 January, 
1876, aged 51." 

A granite headstone is " sacred to the memory of Martha Rutherford, relict of 
Charles Robson, late of Sannieston, in the county of Roxburgh. She died at i\rmurdo, 
Aberdeenshire, 9 October, 1846, in the 77th year of her age." 

A headstone is " in memory of William Smith, farmer in Armurdo, who died 
June 17th, 1772, aged 89; also his spouse, Margaret Smith, and his son, John." 

" They were called by death, who spareth not, 
And lie full low under this stone, 
Rotting in darkness and silent dust — 
Prepare for death, for die thou must. 
Life is uncertain : death is sure ; 
• Sin is the wound : Christ the cure." 

Another headstone is erected by James Moir, mail guard, " to the memory of his 
father, who died at Aberdeen, i February, 1829, aged 72." 


The Thanage of Fennartyn. 

" Stop, stranger, stop, and walk along ; 
Stop once more and read my stone ; 
And as you read the end of me, 
Beware ! for death prepared be. 
Death did to me short warning give, 
Be mindful therefore how to live." 

A headstone has the following : — " In memory of his wife, Jane Martin, who died 

I January, 1863, aged 36; and of his son, James Ebenezer, who died January 28, 1863, 

aged 3 years." 

*' Here rest a saint's remains set free from pain, 
From death, from sin, and all its mournful train ; 
Lamented deeply by friends left behind, 
But claimed by flim who broken hearts doth bind. 
Here mingle with his mother's precious dust 
To wait the resurrection of the just. 
Her youngest son's remains, who followed soon 
His kind and lovely parent to the tomb." 

Within an enclosure, on a granite stone on the west wall of the churchyard is this 
inscription: — "The family burying-ground of Thomas Tait, 1870." Another is, "In 
memory of Jane Leslie, wife of John Tait, Esq., Crichie, who died, 29 June, 1879, aged 


A granite slab is, " In memory of Thomas Tait, Inverurie Mills, who died at Crichie, 
4 September, 1870, aged 68." 

A table stone is inscribed, " Sacred to the memory of John Tait, Esq., late cooper. 
Savannah la Mar, Jamaica, who died at Aberdeen, 30 July, 1818, in the 60th year of 
his age; also of his father, Thomas Tait, in Mill of Thainstone, who died 1872, aged 
60 ; and of his mother, Margaret Cruickshank, who died, July, 1818, aged 96 years." 


A convent, even a hermit's call 

Would break the silente of this dell. 

It is not quiet ; is not ease ; 

But something deeper far than these ; 

The separation that is here is of the grave, 

And of austere, yet happy feelings of the dead. 

— Wordsworth, 

It is in a singularly retired situation, on a knoll within the Keith-hall grounds. A 
churchyard is now around the parish church, and near to it is the private burial ground 
of the Kin tore family, recently laid out. 

Within an enclosure in the north-west corner lie some of the Kintore family, and 
within it are two small stones, one bears their arms. The initials " E. I. K." and the 
date 1696, the other is dated 1710. 

The Ministers, &c., of Kinkell and Monkeggie. 361 

A plain granite slab is thus inscribed : — " In memory of Antony Adrian, eighlli Karl 
of Kinlorc, who was born 20 April, 1794, died at Keith-hall, 11 July, 1844, in the 
51SI year of his age ; and also of his son, William Adrian (Lord Inverurie), who was 
born 2 SL-i)tenibcr, 1822, and died December 17, 1S43, aged 21 years." 

'I'hc above Earl had no fixmily by his first wife, a daughter of R. Kenny, Ivsq., of 
Horrowfield, near Montrose. 15y his second wife, a daughter of J. Hawkins, Escj., he 
had two sons and two daughters. The eldest son. Lord Inverurie, was accidentally 
killed in England while fo.x-hunting. 

The second son succeeded to the title, and married his own cousin, a daughter of 
Captain Hawkins, by whom he had issue. 

On another stone is inscribed : — " l'>ected by Kintore to the memory of his beloved 
aunt, the I^ady Mary Keith, daughter of William, seventh Earl of Kintore, who died at 
Bath, July 5, 1864, aged 69 years." 

Within an enclosure, on a marble tablet near this wall, are interred the mortal 
remains of Dr. George Skene Keith, minister of the parish of Keith-hall for forty-four 
years, and of Tulialan, in Perth, for eight months. He was born at Auquhorsk, on 
16 November, 1752 ; died at Tulialan House, 7 March, 1823 ; distinguished and 
beloved as the clergyman of a parish ; remarkable in a wider sphere for his learning 
and his science. Of great mental and bodily activity, he preserved in age the same 
love of knowledge, warmth of feeling and untiring Christian benevolence, which 
characterised his youth and manhood. Some gentlemen in this county, who had 
intended to present him with a memorial of their high respect for his character, but 
were prevented by his death, have erected this monument "to his memory. 

On a slab there is this inscription: — "In memory of Rev. John Keith, M.A., 
minister of Keith-hall and Kinkell ; ordained to Keith-hall 2 May, 1823 ; born 7 May, 
1797 ; died 18 February, 1867." This is a son of Rev. Dr. Skene Keith. 

Within an enclosure there is a granite pyramid bearing the inscription : — " Erected 
by Rev. Hugh Macintosh, minister of the Free Church, Gartly, to the sacred memory 
of his loving and beloved wife, Margaret Macintosh, who died at the Manse, full of 
faith, joy and love, on Saturday, 20 September, 1874, aged 34." 

A table stone is " in memory of Rev. James Cock, who was minister of the Gospel 
at Keith-hall. He died 17 February, 1776, in the 78th year of his age, and the 38th of 
his ministry; also of Mrs. Barbara Reid, his spouse, who died 27 April, 1800, in the 
Both year of his age ; and of their children — James, Barbara, John, Elspet, Mary, 
and Patrick ; also are interred the remains of their daughter, who died at Rathen, 
8 April, 1820." 

On a granite monument, within an enclosure, is this inscription : — "Quis Separabit." 
" Isabella Christina Mackichan, wife of James Donald, minister of Keith-hall, who died 
7 December, 1875, in the 33rd year of her age." 

On a table stone is inscribed: — "David Crab, died November 27, 1834, aged 75 ; 
was for forty years in the service of the Earls of Kintore — the last of whom he served, 

362 Tlie Thanage of Fermartyn. 

raised this stone.' * Here lies departed worth, God's noblest work, an honest man.' 
Likewise his wife, Jane Stewart, died 13 November, 1858, aged 92. Christian, their 
daughter, died 6 January, 1879. Their son, David, died 8 February, 1842, aged 48. 
Their son, Anthony Crab, died 13 December, 1879, ^g^^ ^5 years." 

A stone is ''in memory of John H. Bucklitsch, who died i January, 1831. He 
was brought from Saxeweimar by Right Hon. Anthony, Earl of Kintore, in whose 
family he acted as jager for forty-five years." 

Another is erected " to the memory of Provost William MoUison of the burgh of 
Inverurie, who was born 8 September, 1746; died 7 December, 1824, aged 78. A 
tribute of respect for an upright and honest man. H. M. P., 1826." 

Another " in memory of George Reid, sometime one of the baillies of Inverurie, 
who departed this life 22 June, 1806, aged 81. This stone is erected by his son. 
Lieutenant Anthony Reid, 8ist Regiment. He died 1813, aged 29." 


B O U R T I E. 

The Church of Bourtie belonged to the Priory of St. Andrews, and mention is made of it 
as early as 1199. In that year there is a charter of William de Lamberton regarding the 
church de Bowirdin, in which " He gave to God and to the church of St. Andrew the 
Apostle, and to the canons serving God there and about to serve, the church de 
Bowirdin, with lands and tenths and common pasture, &c."' This charter was confirmed 
by the Bishop of Aberdeen the same year; also in 1207-1228 by Adam, Bishop of 
Aberdeen. In 1 228-1239 by Gilbert, Bishop of Aberdeen ; also in 1240 by Randolph, 
Bishop of Aberdeen.^ 

In the year 1206, the church of Bourdin, with all its pertinents, was confirmed to 
the prior and brethren of the church of St. Andrews by Pope Innocent III. The church 
was also confirmed to the same by Pope Innocent IV. in the year 1 246 ; and again in 
1248 by Pope Martin V.^ The charter of William de Lamberton, above mentioned, was 
confirmed by Alexander, King of Scots. In 1268 there is an agreement between the 
prior and convent of St. Andrews, and Thomas de Ludan, the vicar of Bowirdin, 
regarding the various payments to be made to each.* 

After the above date little mention is made regarding the vicars of Bowirdin. In 
1505, Alexander Galloway (afterwards rector of Kinkell), being chaplain of Collyhill, 
gave a charter dated at Aberdeen, November 21, 1505, and confirmed by King 
James IV. at Edinburgh, and in the confirmation charter he is styled, "Alexander Gallo- 
way, our beloved chaplain." Two acres of land were granted for building a manse for 
the chaplains of Collyhill, who in return were to pray for the souls of Bishop William 
Elphinstone, Sir Walter Ogilvie of the Boyne, Andrew Elphinstone of Selmys, Duncan 
Sherar, formerly chaplain, but now parson of Clatt ; William Lesly of Balquhain and 
Elizabeth Ogilvie, his spouse ; and for the soul of the said Alexander Galloway.^ This 
is evidently a separate endowment from the church of Bourtie. The names of the 
following vicars have come down to us. 

In 1240, we find Hugo, vicar de Bowirdin.* In 1268, there is Thomas de Ludan, 
vicar de Bowirdin, mentioned in the above-quoted agreement between him and the 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 564. 4 Ant. A.iind B. I. p. 568. 

2 Liber Cartanim Prioratus Saneti Andreas pp. 266-67. 5 Id. p. 563. 

3 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 566. 6 Id. p. 565. 

364 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

prior of St. Andrews.' And Alexander Galloway seems for some time to have served at 

The next to be found is a reader under the new order of ecclesiastical affairs after 
the Reformation. 

In 1567, Andrew Drumblee is reader.' 

In 1578, James Johnston, who also had Monymusk under his charge. 

William Barclay in 1595 was reader. He was translated to Insch the year after. 

Gilbert Keith was translated from Skene, 16 — , and was admitted prior to 
November i, 1633. "Alexander Skene in Dumbreck declarit that he haid restand 
owing to him be Mr. Gilbert Keith, minister at Bourtie, two hundred merks." ^ He 
remained till 1659. 

George Melville graduated at King's College, 1646. He was translated to New- 
machar, 1654. While there he contributed ^24 Scots to the rebuilding of King's 
College. He and his predecessor are mentioned as at Bourtie in the Presbytery of the 
Garioch in 1652.'' 

William Gordon was for some time schoolmaster at Monymusk, and was named by 
the minister of the parish as his helper, 21 April, 1658 ; but a heritor protested that 
the parishioners should be at liberty to call another on the death of the incumbent. He 
was translated to St. Cuthbert's, Edinburgh. 

Robert Browne, A.M., was translated from Forglen. He was appointed in 1666. 
Mary, his daughter, married Mr. George Keith, minister of Old Deer. He wrote 
" Rudimentorum Rhetoricum Libri V." A wooden ladle for collecting the offerings, 
with the initials " R. B.," belongs to his time.^ 

Alexander Sharp was appointed in 1678 ; died between 9 February and March, 
1709. He married, and had two sons and five daughters — John, William, Mary, 
Martha, Margaret, Katharine, and Anna.^ 

James Gordon, A.M., was translated from Premnay ; elected Synod Clerk, 6 April, 
1714 ; called to St. Fergus, but his translation was refused by the Synod, 3 April, 1717. 
He was translated to Alford May i following. 

John Duncan, from the Presbytery of St. Andrews, was ordained 31 July, 17 18; 
died May, 17 19, in the first year of his ministry. 

Archibald Napier, A.M., graduated at the University of Glasgow, 27 June, 1707 ; 
ordained 17 August, 1720, and was translated to Maryculter in 1720. 

George Gordon studied at Marischal College; was appointed to Bourtie, 1723; 
translated to Drumblade in 1743, of which parish he was a native. 

Thomas Shepherd was the son of Mr. John Shepherd, minister of Logie-Coldstone, 
and was ordained 4 July, 1744. He married, 1747, Janet, daughter of John Leith of 
Blair, who died at Leithfield, July 6, 1810, aged 85. His son, Mr. Robert Shepherd 

1 Ant. A. and B. p. 568. 4 Eccles. Rec. Abdn. p. 212. 

2 Id. p. 230. 5 Jervise' Ins. II. p. 72. 

3 Spal. Club Misc. III. p. 87. 6 Poll Book II. p. 331. 

Ministers of Bourtie, &c. 365 

was minister of Daviot, and his daughter, Mary, married John Ramsay of Barra, and 
had issue. He was author of the statistical account of the parish (Sinclair's).' 

William Smith, A.M., was son of James Smith, Kintore; graduated at Marischal 
College; was schoolmaster of Inverurie for some time, and was ordained May 4, 1796 ; 
was elected conjunct Synod Clerk, October 14, 1806, and got a new church built the 
same year. He died 28 May, 1825, in his 59th year. He married, 15 August, 1797, 
Isabella, daughter of Gavin Mitchell, minister of Kinellar. She died 15 October, 1847, 
aged 75, having had two sons, James and Gavin Smith, LI..D., of Rottingdean. 

James Bisset, A.M., D.I)., was son of George Bisset, A.M., schoolmaster of Udny, 
and rector of the Udny Academy, to which office he succeeded in 18 12. He was 
appointed minister of Bourtie in 1826. During the non-intrusion controversy, he 
distinguished himself by the most unflinching opposition to the unconstitutional 
measures proposed by a majority in the Church, especially to the claims of those 
ministers holding " quoad sacra " charges, to a seat and a vote in the Church courts. 
He had the degree of D.D. from Marischal College, 23 February, 1850, and was elected 
Moderator of the General Assembly, 22 May, 1862. He married first, 24 December, 
1829, a daughter of the Rev. Mr. Lessel, minister of Inverurie ; secondly, 8 June, 1840, 
a daughter of Rev. Mr. Smith of Bower (see Udny Academy). He published various 
pamphlets ; also the new statistical account of the parish, which is one of the ablest and 
best of the accounts. He died 8 September, 1872, in the 78th year of his 

William Leslie Davidson, M.A., LL.D., is the son of Samuel Davidson, M.D., Wartle; 
studied at the University of Aberdeen, of which he was a.distinguished graduate. He 
received in 1890 the degree of LL.D. from the University of Aberdeen. 


A day will come in time's long reign, 
Such hopes hath heaven revealed ; 
When graves shall render up again, 
Those whom they once concealed. 
Then shall creation's Mighty Lord 
Bid every sluml)erer rise, 
And angels' tongues this truth record, 
The virtuous were the wise. 

— Keats. 

Two mutilated effigies lie in the churchyard, the one of a man clad in armour, with 
helmet and shield ; the other is that of a woman dressed in a long plain garment. 
These effigies, according to Mr. Jervise, had doubtless occupied a recess tomb in the 
aisle of the old kirk of Bourtie, from which they had been thrust out by vandals. 
Both had probably represented members of some of the more powerful heritors in the 

I Scott's Fasti, pp. 577-78. 


TJu Thanage of Fermartyn. 

neighbourhood, the chief of whom were the Kings and the Meldrums. Although 
traces of arms are upon the shield which covers the warrior's breast, these are too faint 
to admit of the surname being known. Probably a broken lettered slab which lies near 
at hand had formed part of the tomb. The letters, continues Mr. Jervise, are cut in 
bold relief, and it may probably refer to the laird of Colliehill and his wife. The letters 
are, however, so mutilated that few entire words remain, but " la. King " and 
the year " 1581 " are quite distinct. la. King was probably a descendant of James King 
of Bourtie, who had a grant of the lands of Westerhouse in the Garioch, in 1490, Sir 
James King of Barrach (Barra), Dudvvick, and Birness, was a Lieutenant-General in the 
service of Gustavus Adolphus, and afterwards of Charles I. of England, by the latter of 
whom he was raised to the peerage with the now extinct title of Lord Eythin. 

The surname of King appears first in Scotland about the reign of Alexander II. 
The name is still to be met with in many parts of the country. In Kinellar the late 
Colonel William Ross King possessed the property of Tertowie, a very worthy gentle- 
man who died in 1890. His father was a clergyman of the church of England. 
Lieutenant-Colonel King married a daughter of Mr. Gordon of Pitlurg.' 

Colliehill belonged to Margaret, Countess of Douglas, daughter of Donald, third 
Earl of Mar. In 1696, it belonged to Forbes of Auquhorties, and afterwards to 
Mr. Simpson, merchant in Aberdeen, founder of the Colliehill Trust.^ 

A table shaped stone, within an enclosure at the east end of the church, bears this 
inscription: — "Here lye the remains of John Leith of Kingoodie, Esq., who died in 
1764; and of his spouse, Helen Simpson, who died in 1753; and of John Grant of 
Rothmaise, Esq., who died in January, 1800, aged 86 ; and of Anne Leith, his spouse, 
life-rentrix of Kingoodie, who died in April, 1807, aged 84 ; and of Lieutenant P. Grant, 
their son, who died in September, 18 10; and also of Miss Jane Grant their daughter, 
who died in April, 18 15, aged 57." 

Alexander Leith, second son of John Leith of New Leslie (Edengarroch), is the 
reputed ancestor of the Leiths of Kingoodie, now Blair (see Fyvie). 

Kingoodie is now part of the estate of Blair, and on its coming into the possession of 
Mr. Leith (a nephew of Mr. Leith Lumsden of Clova) he changed the name of the 
house to Leithfield. 

A granite monument at the west end of the kirk is thus inscribed — " In memory of 
John Manson of Kilblean, who died 4 October, 1838, in the 77th year of his age ; and 
of Margaret Diana Knight, his wife, who died 30 December, 181 8, aged 72." Mr. 
Manson, who was a merchant in Oldmeldrum, acquired by purchase the estate of 
Kilblean. John, bis younger son, acquired the estate of Fingask. His wife (Miss 
Knight) was a daughter of Mr. Knight in Mill of Coullie, Udny, who was out in the '45, 
and had to leave the countr}'. A sister of Mrs. Manson was the wife of Rev. William 
Robertson of the Episcopal church, Meldrum. 

I Jervise' Inscrip. II. p. 73. 

2 Jervise' Inscrip. II. p. 73. 

Ministers of Bourtie, &c. 367 

Within an enclosure there is the inscription — " Rev. ^V'illiam Smith, minister of the 
parish of Hourtie, died 28 May, 1825, in tlie SQtli year of his age, and the 30th year of 
his ministry. His widow, Isabel Mitchell, daughter of Rev. (lavin Mitchell, minister of 
Kinellar, died at Inverurie, 14 October, 1847, in her 75th year. Their eldest son, 
James, died 11 July, 1836, aged 30." 

Another stone records that " Rev. (lavin Smith, LL.I)., .second son of Rev. William 
Smith, died at Rotting Dean, on 13 November, 1861, in the 56th year of his age. His 
beloved widow, Caroline Saxby, died at Brighton, August, 1862, in the 57th year of her 
age. ' Lovely and pleasant in their lives, in their deaths they were not divided.' " 

A headstone is " In memory of Theodore Allan, M.A., preacher of the gospel and 
schoolmaster of Coull, died at Bagsley, Dyce, 28 October, 1847, aged 41 ; and of his 
mother, Mary Martin, died March, 1852, aged 80 years." 

On a headstone is this inscri[)tion — " Alexander Lumsden, farmer, Pitbee, Chapel of 
Garioch, died 5 March, 1842, aged 64. Alexander died in infancy. James, second son, 
merchant, Aberdeen, most deeply regretted, died 10 September, 1845, aged 28 ; and 
his wife, Mary Dalgarno J.umsden, died June 2, i860, aged 42." 

A headstone is " In memory of the following children of the late William Donald, 
Couliehare, Udny, and Elizabeth Knox, his spouse. Their eldest son, Alexander 
Donald, W.S., Edinburgh, died 11 April, 1846, aged 51. He rests in Warriston 
cemetery. Their second son, William Donald, farmer, Viewfield, near Elgin, died 
26 April, 1858, aged 59. Their youngest son, James, farmer, Couliehare, died 2 June, 
i860, aged 47. Their mortal remains rest here. Their youngest daughter, Mary, wife 
of James Scott, Wolverhampton, died 8 November, i860, aged 52. Her mortal 
remains rest at Wolverhampton." 

A table stone bears the inscription — " To the memory of Alexander Donald, who 
once farmed part of Ythsie, who died 1 5 August, 1 806, aged 84 ; also of Margaret 
Scrcggie, his spouse, who died 5 June, 1802, aged 54 ; and of their children, Mary, who 
died 12 April, 1781 ; also two sons and two daughters, who died young. Also of 
William Donald, farmer, Couliehare, who died 20 August, 1824, aged 67 ; also of his 
spouse, Elizabeth Knox, died 5 October, 1842, aged 72. Their daughter, Jane Donald, 
died 29 June, 1847, aged 42." 

In the churchyard there is a sun-dial thus inscribed — " Gavinus Smith, LL.D., a.d. 
October, 1853. Parochioe Bourtiensis quai ipsum genuit in honorem posuit. Ul vita 
sic fugit hora." [Erected in October, 1853, by Gavin Smith, LL.D., in honour of the 
parish of Bourtie, where he was born and brought up. " As life flies so does the hour."] 

There is a stone " Sacred to the memory of James Bisset, late farmer in Mill of 
Inveramsay, who, having passed his day there in the practice of those duties, which 
became an honest man and a Christian, rendered up his soul to God on the 23rd day 
of March, 1789, in the 65th year of his age." 

An adjoining granite obelisk is to the memory of a nonagenarian, " James Bisset, 
farmer, Drumdurno, who died in 1864, in his 93rd year." 

368 The Thanage of Ferjnartyn. 

A stone has the record, "Patrick Milne, merchant, Oldmeldrum, died 1796, aged 

75. Janet Mann, his spouse, died 1790, aged 80." 

" Let further honour claim who can, 
He lived and died an honest man. " 

Another is thus inscribed, *' Gavin Renny, farmer, Old Balgove, died 1799, aged 35." 

'* Here in my silent grave I lie, 
Freed from my pains and grief ; 
Although troubles did me sore distress, 
God sent at last relief. 
His loving-kindness while here below, 
With pleasure often did fdl my soul ; 
My Saviour dear soon called me home, 
Where endless life and pleasures roll." 

Another has this inscription, " Helen Simpson, wife of Alexander Burnett, weaver. 
Old Aberdeen, died 1816, aged 59. ' Be ye also ready.'" 

" Harmless and pious she was, 
Virtue and truth she possessed, 
A lover of Jesus' cause, 
Now in him eternally blessed." 

On the following it is recorded that " George Alexander, farmer, Barra, died 1839, 
aged 72. His widow and family have placed this stone over his remains in grateful 
acknowledgment of the inheritance which they have derived from his example of 
upright conduct and well-directed industry. Helen Keith, his widow, died 1847, 
aged 79." 

Another is " Sacred to the memory of James Alexander, late farmer in Westerhouses, 
who died June 30, 1794, aged 38. Also of his brother, Wilham, late blacksmith in 
Rescivet, who died 4 November, 1806, in the 58th year of his age. Also John Slorach, 
who died at Airyhillock, 4 August, 1823, aged 64 years. And his widow, Elizabeth 
Alexander, died 6 June, 1838, aged 85." William Alexander, blacksmith in Rescivet 
(Chapel of Garioch), was the grandfather of William Alexander, LL.D., editor of the 
" Aberdeen Free Press " ; author of " Johnny Gibb of Gushetneuk," " Life among my 
ain Folk," " Sketches of Northern Rural Life in the Eighteenth Century." All these 
works, says Mr. Jervise, contain singularly graphic and truthful delineations of peasant 
life in Aberdeenshire and the north, which, besides being of general interest, must soon 
become valuable to the historian and the antiquary. 

A table stone is " Erected by Peter Burnett, late farmer in Blackbrunthings of 
Thornton, who died 2 November, 1767, aged 52. Also Jane Simpson, spouse of 
Robert Burnett, and daughter of Peter Simpson in Kendale, died 10 March, 1796, aged 

76. Also Thomas Burnett, son of Robert Burnett, schoolmaster of the parish for about 
thirty-six years, died March, 1806, aged 69. Also of Robert Bruce, son-in-law of Robert 
Burnett, who was clerk in the Episcopal chapel, Oldmeldrum, who died 23 June, 1824 
aged 79. Also his spouse, Mary Burnett, sister of the said Peter Burnett, who died 

Ministers of Bouriie, &c. 369 

4 January, 1847, aged 81. Also his son, James Bruce, Bogola, South America, who 
died 12 September, 1856, aged 57." 

Within an enclosure a polished granite stone is thus inscribed — " Here rests James 
Bisset, D.D., who died 3 September, 1872, in the 78th year of his age, and the 47th of 
labours as minister of Bourtie. To his memory this stone has been erected by 
parishioners and friends as a mark of their esteem and love." 

A monument" near the churchyard gate was " Erected to the memory of his family 
by William Bonar, farmer, Smiddy Croft, Bourtie. He wrote a poem of one hundred 
and ninety-eight pages, entitled ' The World in Ten Parts.' He died 6 April, i860, 
aged 76." • 

A headstone is " Erected by Alexander Duguid, Collyhill, Bourtie, in affectionate 
remembrance of his eldest daughter, Margaret W. Eraser, who died 7 March, 1859, 
aged 15^ years ; also of his five infant children." 


Standing Stones of Thornton. — On the Temple croft on the estate of Thornton 
(now the property of Mr. M'Kenzie of Glack) there are standing stones in very fair 
preservation ; they number eight. 

The Stannin' Stanes of Bourtie are near the manse to the south of Barrahill. 
Four large stones still remain, three of the boulders stand upright, and the other lies 
upon its side. 

Stone Coffins. — Several stone coffins containing urns and human bones were 
discovered in a cluster of boulders at Hawklaw, upon the farm of Lochend of Barra. 

Sculptured Stone. — A fragment of a sculptured stone which lies at the church of 
Bourtie, embellished with the sceptre, comb and mirror ornaments, is engraved in the 
" Sculptured Stones of Scotland," issued by the Spalding Club. 

The Pipers' Stane. — Another large boulder, called " The Pipers' Stane," lies to 
the east of the kirk. It is said to have been the spot where bagpipers waited for 
marriage parties on their return from the church, when their services were required to 
convoy them home, and to play at penny bridals. 

Hill of Barra. — There are interesting remains of an old fort on the Hill of 
Barra. The chief entrance to the stronghold is from the east. The west side is nearly 
perpendicular, and composed of the natural rock, the other sides being guarded by two 
considerable trenches, with walls of stone and earth mixed. 

KiNGOODiE. — Here there are the marks of the remains of a chapel. 

Cairns.^ — Two cairns were opened about seventy years ago, and in each there was 
found a stone coffin, enclosing two urns of hard-baked, carved pottery, both of which 
were full of rich loam mixed with charcoal. The largest of these cairns, raised on an 
eminence called the Hawklaw, originally covered nearly half-an-acre, and was surrounded 
by a circle of small stones.^ 

I Jervise' Inscriptions, II. p. 73. 2 New Stat. Acct. 



T A R V E S. 

This parish had for its tutelary saint, St. Englat, whose name is still to be found in 
Tanglanford, on the Ythan. 

The church of Tarves belonged to the Abbey of Arbroath, and early mention is 
made of it, as the Abbey had considerable lands in Tarves. 

In 1 1 78-1 199, there is a confirmation charter by Matthew, Bishop of Aberdeen, of 
the church of Tarves, with the chapel of Fuchill with the tithes, given to God, and the 
church of St. Thomas the Martyr, of Arbroath, and the monks there.' 

In the years 1 192-1207, the same is confirmed by John, Bishop of Aberdeen ; and 
from 1207-1228 by Adam, Bishop of Aberdeen ; and renewed by their successors down 
to 1247.^ In 1357, Pope Alexander VI. ratified the provision made for the vicarage of 
the church by the Abbot of Arbroath, and the convent there. There was to be an 
yearly stipend of fifteen merks, the whole altarage, and six merks in teind scheaves, and 
a yearly rent of ;!^5o Scots.^ 

The old church was a structure of some elegance, and it is described about 1730 as 
having a choir with two aisles, one for the Gordons of Haddo, now ruinous, and another 
for the Forbeses of Tolquhon, also ruinous. 

The earliest vicar or chaplain of the church of Tarves that we find is Maurice, parson 
of Tarves, who is among the witnesses to the foundation of St. Peter's Hospital in 
the Spittal by Bishop Matthew de Kyninmund, in the reign of Malcolm IV.* 

Galfridus de Wellys is vicar of Tarves in 1322, and is mentioned in a deed about a 
certain pension of eight merks due to the monastery from the vicarage tiends of Tarves.^ 

John Munro is mentioned in 1342 in another deed regarding the same eight merks. 

Sir Alexander Abercrummy, vicar of Tarves, died 1493, and was succeeded by Mr. 
John Lumsden, a priest of the Diocese of St. Andrews. 

Mr. Edward Cunyngham, rector of Cluny, in 1496, is presented. The deed of 
presentation is dated at the Abbey of Arbroath before witnesses — John Ogilvy of 
Fingask, Andrew Rossy, Patrick Uldny, and Adam -Patonson. 

Sir Thomas Myreton soon after 1497 demits the vicarage of Tarves, and is succeeded 
by Sir Archibald Balconny, who is presented to the vicarage in 1501. 

1 Ant. (A. and B.) II. p. 112. 4 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 153. 

2 Id., pp. 120, 122, 123. 5 Id., p. 335. 

3 Reg. Ep. Aber. I. pp. 18, 23. 

The Church and Ministers, &c., of Tarves. 


William Sympill was vicar down to 1534. 

Henry Lumsden was appointed 10 June, 1534' 

Alexander Ogilvy was appointed in 1540. In that year there is a precept from Pope 
Paul III. for inducting Alexander Ogilvy into the i.'er{)etual vicarage of Tarves on the 
free resignation of Henry Lumsden, He was the last of the vicars of the church of 

Of the ministers after the Reformation, 

Thomas Germok was minister of three parishes, Tarves, Fyvie, and Methlick. At 
that time Donald Reoch was reader at Tarves.' 

Thomas (lardyncwas translated from I'intray, being [)rcsented to the vicarage of 
Tarves by James VI., and according to Dr. Scott in his *' Fasti," he became unable by age 
to di.scharge the duties of his office, and died in 1633 ■* He had two daughters, one, 
Elizabeth, married to (leorge Merser in Old Aberdeen. Another to John Mowat in 
Auquhorties, whose son, with his aunt, were served heir-portioners."^ 

James Moir was appointed by Charles I. He remained till 1659. 

John Strachan, D.D., graduated at King's College in 1655, and is mentioned as 
minister of Tarves in the records of the Synod of Aberdeen in 1668. According to Dr. 
Scott he was translated to the Tron church, Edinburgh, and became Professor of 
Divinity in 1683 in the University of Edinburgh.'' 

George Anderson, A.M., D.D., in 1683 was translated from Methlic. He was 
received into communion by a committee of the General Assembly, July 2, 1694 ; was 
translated to the Professorship of Divinity in King's College, Old Aberdeen, 1 703, and 
died about 17 10, aged 75, and in the 47th year of his ministry. He was married and 
had children — James, Robert, William, Gilbert, Margaret, Anne, and Elspet Andersons, 
all alive in 1696.^ 

William Forbes, A.M., M.D., was third son of Sir John Forbes of Waterton ; studied 
medicine, and took the degree of M.D. at the University of Pisa, and after returning to 
this country he took the degree of M.A. at King's College, Aberdeen, on 21 June, 1694. 
He studied for the church, and was appointed to Tarves in 1706, having been translated 
from Leslie. He was seized with illness while attending the Synod, and died April 21, 
1738, having married Janet, third daughter of Mr, James Gregory, Professor of Mathe- 
matics in the University of Edinburgh, She died April 13, 1736, aged 60, and had issue 
five sons and five daughters — I, James, physician, Aberdeen. II. John. Ill, Thomas. 
IV, George, V, William, i. Julia, 2, Katharine, married to Mr. William Dyce, 
schoolmaster of Selkirk. 3. Helen, married to Mr. John Maclnnes, minister of Logie- 
Coldstone, 4. Jane, married to Mr, Andrew Moir, minister of Towie. 5, Susan, 
married to Mr, James Johnstone, minister of Crimond. 

1 Jervise' Inscrip. II. p. ;?5o. The Rlack liook 

of the Abbey of Arbroath. 

2 Ant. A. and 13. I. p. 335. 

3 Id., p. 229. 

4 Tombstone. 

5 Ret. Spec. Abdn. 

6 F.ccles. Re. . Ab. p. 2S4. 

III. p. 463. 

7 Poll Hook II. p. 207. 

\nt \. .and B. 

372 The Thaiiage of Fennartyn. 

Alexander Howe was formerly minister of Methlic, and was translated to Tarves in 
1738. He died" at Newhills, where he had gone to assist at the Communion, 
3 September, 1765. He married Margaret Nichol, who died 21 September, 1788, and 
had issue two daughters. 

Thomas Mitchell was translated from Tarland, and instituted to Tarves on the 
presentation of George, third Earl of Aberdeen, in 1766. He died May 10, 1793, in 
the 76th year of his age, having married, October 9, 1766, Mary, daughter of Donald 
Mackenzie of Dalmore;' had issue a son, George. He published an account of the 
parish in Sinclair's report. 

Duncan Mearns, D.D., was son of Alexander Mearns, minister of Cluny ; born 
23 August, T779; graduated at King's College, 1795, and was appointed minister of 
Tarves, 1799; became Professor of Divinity in King's College, 1816, from which he 
received the degree of D.D. He died March 2, 1852, in his 73rd year. 

Alexander Black, D.D., was son of Alexander Black, Aberdeen ; was educated at 
Marischal College; received from it, in 1824, the degree of D.D. ; was appointed to 
Tarves in 1818; was appointed Professor of Divinity in Marischal College in 1832. He 
died January 27, 1864, in his 73rd year. 

P>ancis Knox, A.M., son of Mr. Knox, farmer, Ythsie, graduated at King's College; 
was assistant schoolmaster of Tarves, and was appointed minister of Tarves in 1830 by 
George, fourth Earl of Aberdeen. He died December 7, 1870. He was a very amiable 
man, respected and beloved by the whole of his parishioners, amongst whom he was 
born, lived, and died. He published an exceedingly interesting account of the parish 
in the " New Statistical Account." 

John Pringle, M.A., was appointed in 1871. 

It may be remarked that four ministers of Tarves became Professors of Divinity. 

The Quoad Sacra Parish of Barthol-Chapel. — It may be said to represent 
the chapel of Futhcul, and according to Jervise, Barthol or Bartle is a corruption of 
Futchul, the name of a district whose chapel is mentioned with the parish church in 
charters of 1200-29.'' It was probably dedicated to St. Bartholomew; hence the name. 

None of the names of any of the old chaplains of Futhcul have been preserved. 
The foundation of the old church was visible about seventy years ago. 

The district was erected into a quoad sacra parish in 1876, and a church called 
" The Gordon Memorial Church " was erected by the Dowager-Countess of Aberdeen 
in memory of her eldest son, George, sixth Earl of Aberdeen, lost at sea in 1870. 

The first minister was the Rev. Mr. Forrest, who was translated to Lonmay in 1878. 
He was succeeded by Rev. A. R. Sutter, ordained 1879. 

J Tombstone. 2 Jen-ise' Inscrip. II. p. 355. 

The Church and Ministers ^ &c.^ of Tarves. m 


Friend afler friend departs, 
Who hath not lost a friend ? 
There is no union here of hearts 
That finds not here qn end. 
Were this frail world our final rest, 
Living or dying none were blest. 
Beyond the fight of time. 
Beyond the vale of death, 
There surely is some blessed clime 
Where life is not a breath. 
Nor life's affections transient fire, 
Whose sparks fly upwards and expire. 
There is a world alxjve 
Where parting is unknown, 
A long eternity of love. 
Formed for the good alone. 
^ And Faith beholds the dying here 

• Translated to that glorious sphere. 

— Montgomery. 

In the centre of the churchyard are the remains of the Tolquhon aisle. On the tomb 
are two shields charged with the Gordon and Forbes arms, with the initials " W. F.," 
" E. G.," and the date " 1589." The Tolquhon motto " Salus per Christum " is upon 
the scroll above the Forbes arms. And above the Gordon arms are the words "dochter 
to Lesmoir." The letters represent William Forbes and Elizabeth or Elspet Gordon, 
not Janet Gordon, as in Douglas' and William Gordon of Harperfield's accounts of the 
family of Lesmoir.' 

An old stone with cross bones and skull is to the memory of Margaret , The 

rest is illegible, save the words — 

•' Some worthy friend will drop a tear 
On these dry bones that lieth here." 

A headstone is " Erected by Eliza Wood in memory of Adam Pope, V.S., who died 
23 July, 1849, aged 48." 

A table stone is " In memory of Adam Lind, merchant, Tarves, who died 1 766. 
aged 68 ; and of his son, Adam Lind, who died 20 May, 18 10, aged 70. Also of Adam 
Lind (son of the last named), farmer, Tillycairn, who died 28 December, 1872, aged 81." 

Of the same family is the following record, " Sacred to the memory of Rev. Adam 
Lind, minister of the U.P. church, Whitehill, New Deer, born at Tarves, August, 1784 ; 
ordained to Whitehill, August, 1826. He died May, 1862. This stone was erected by 
his bereaved congregation, who lost in him a father beloved, a minister faithful, and a 
revered friend, sincere and a Christian. He was a most acceptable and successful 
minister of the Gospel for forty years. Also in memory of his beloved spouse, Margaret 
William, who died at Whitehill, January, 1861, aged 66. Also his brother-in-law and 

X Jervisc' Inscrip. II. p. 350. 

374 ^-^'^ T/ta?iage of Fermartyn. 

worthy esteemed friend, George Divorty, who died December, i860, aged 86. 'They 
were lovely in their lives, and in death they were not divided.' ' These being dead yet 
speaketh.' " 

A stone of Aberdeen granite records the name of "William Jamieson, farmer, 
Haughs of Oshogel, Turriff, who died March, 1877, aged 78 ; also of his sister, 
Margaret Jamieson, who died June, 1861, aged 76." 

On a headstone is this inscription : — " William Hay, farmer in Shethin, who died 
September, 1783, aged 79 ; also the body of Mary White, his spouse, who died May 2, 
1792, aged 80; also their son, George, who died March 11, 1820, aged 84; also, 
Isabella Hay, lawful daughter of Alexander Hay in East Shethin, who died November 
6, 1823, aged 21. Also, Margaret Daniel, his spouse, who died August 24, 1836, aged 
78 ; also the above named Alexander Hay, who died March, 1840, aged 83." 

A tablestone has the following inscription : — " James Hay, late farmer in Shethin, 
who died September 5, 181 2, aged 62. Jean Sim, spouse to said James Hay, died 
December 12, 1808, aged 49 ; also Jean Marr, who died April 6, 1826, spouse to John 
Hay, farmer in Ythsie, and of the said John Hay, who died February 28, 1830, aged 51." 

Another stone is "To the memory of Ann Legertwood, spouse to William Hay, 
farmer in Craigie, and daughter to Alexander Legertwood of Logierieve, who died June 
2, 1817, aged 23; also of the said William Hay, latterly in Shethin, who died April, 
1854, aged 67 ; also of their grand-daughter, Ann Legertwood Shepherd, who died June 
22, 1846, aged 12; also of Elsie Shepherd, who died July 7, 18 — , aged 12; also of 
Sophia Shepherd, who died 11 February, 1852, aged 15 ; also of their daughter, Sophia 
Hay, who died, February 9, 1874, aged 59. Also of her husband, George Shepherd, 
Esq., of Lundie, Forfarshire, who died June 18, 1881, at Ecclesfechan, Linlithgowshire, 
aged 72." 

Another stone has, " Erected by George Hay, in memory of his father, George Hay, 
farmer. East Shethin, who died January 15, 1879, aged 85 ; also of his mother, Mary 
Taylor, who died October, 1879, ^g^d 70." 

A headstone of Aberdeen granite bears to be " Erected by James Hay and Jessie 
Morison, in memory of Eliza Hay, died July 10, 1863, aged 11 ; John, died November 
I, 1866, aged 8; Jane, died November 14, 1866, aged 11 ; George, died November 27, 
1866, aged 6; also Jessie Morrison, wife of James Hay, who died May 24, 1874, aged 57 ; 
also the above named James Hay, farmer, Nethermill, Tarves, who died March 9, 
1879, aged 67." 

Upon a table stone " Here are interred the bodies of Alexander Knolls, and of 
Mary Petrie his wife. Mrs. Knolls died 28 November, 1800, in the 79th year of her 
age. M. A. Knolls died i June, i8ot, in the 56th year of his ministry, and the 86th 
year of his age." 

There are several tombstones to a family of the name of Knox : — "John Knox, died 
July 13, 1827, aged 72 ; a daughter. Christian; sons, William, George, and John; also 
of Margaret, daughter of John Knox, farmer. North Ythsie, who died, April 6, 1873, 
aged 67." 

The Church and Ministers, &c., of Tan'es. 375 

Another stone is "In memory of Alexander Knox, farmer, Little Yihsic, died August 

11, i8c6, aj^ed 40; also of his son, James Knox, who died June 3, 1826, aged 20; 
also his spouse Margaret Duncan, who died October 5, 1863, aged 86." 

A pyramid of granite is to the memory of a son of the above, who was minister of 
the parish of 'i'arves. •' Erected by the parishioners and friends in memory of Rev. 
' Francis Knox, A.M., who died December 7, 1870, in the 67th year of his age, and the 
38th of his ministry in his native paiish." 

A granite headstone is "In memory of Alexander Duncan, Ks(|., lute in Newseat of 
Tolquhon, who died February 4, 1842, aged 69 years ; also of his son, John Duncan, 
Esq., of Aslced, and farmer, Newseat of Tohjuhon, died November 20, 187 1, aged 62. 
Francis Duncan, sometime farmer Newseat of Tolquhon, died April, 18 14, aged 82 ; 
also his spous^, Helen Murdoch, who died 1797, aged 52. Likewise Thomas Duncan 
their son." 

A stone is "In memory of Robert Breichen in Kinharrachy, who died April i, 1797, 
aged 57 ; also, Dr. (leorge Ikeichen, who died October 9, 182 1, aged 77. 

On George Buyers, merchant, Ordhill, Tarves, who died March 15, 1850, aged 40, 
there is the following : — 

" Weep not for me, my wife dear, 
I am not dead but sleepcth here. 
The debt is paid, my grave you sec, 
Prepare yourself to follow me." 

A handsome Peterhead granite stone is thus inscribed : — " Lewis Davie, who died 
May 16, 1879, aged 64. 'A man of sincere piety, his consistent conduct, and many 
estimable qualities were known and respected through the district. He was a faithful 
and a trusted servant to the 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th Earls of Aberdeen, and by the last 
named of these this stone is erected as a token of affectionate respect." 

" Thine eyes shall see the King in his beauty, 
They shall behold the land that is afar off." 

The following stone is in memory of a Nonagenarian, " William Milne, and his wife, 
Margaret Allan, sometime in Blair of Bourtie, whence in 1809, they removed to Chapel- 
hall in the parish of Ellon, where the former died in 1830, aged 93. The latter died 
November 20, 1840, aged 76." 

A tablestone is inscribed : — "To the memory of Rev. Thomas Mitchell, minister of 
this parish, who died May 10, 1793, in the 75th year of his age, and the 52nd of his 
ministry ; also of Margaret Mackenzie, his spouse, and daughter of Donald Mackenzie, 
Esq., of Dalmore, who died June 3, 1805." 

" Here resteth the remains of George Moir, late blacksmith in Annat, died March 

12, 1784, aged 82, and of Jean Fife, his spouse, who died February 14, 1785, aged 72. 
This stone is erected by their sons in testimony of their regard for their deceased 
parents. Also, Ann Jack, spouse of their son, George Moir in Annat, who died 4 
October, 1786, aged 36 ; and Ann Moir, spouse of George Findlater in Coultie's-cairn, 
who died December 24, 1793, aged 56." 

376 The TJiaiiage of Fermariyn. 

The above (from the oldest of several tombstones), relates to a family, who, accord- 
ing to Jervise, have been blacksmiths in this district from before 1696. 

A tablestone is " To the memory of Alexander Forbes, Esq., of Schivas, who died 
May, 1803, aged 43. 

Schivas at one time belonged to the Maitlands of Pitrichie, descended from the 
Maitlands of Thirlstane, afterwards to the Grays (Lord Gray), then to the Forbeses, 
afterwards to Irvine of Drum, and now to the Earl of Aberdeen. 

There are several tombstones to a family of Argo, who have been long resident in 
the parish. "George Argo, farmer, Braeside of Tolquhon, died March 25, 1834, 
aged 73." Another to "George Argo, farmer, Cairdseat, who died March 29, 1876, 
aged 71." 

A stone is " To the memory of Alexander Garden, farmer, Mains of Tolquhon, who 
died February 17, 1855, aged 55 years." Another is inscribed: — "James Garden, 
Esq., of Watridgemuir, and farmer, North Ythsie, died at North Ythsie, March 12, 
1864, aged 61." 

A massive granite headstone bears the inscription : — " In memory of James 
Chalmers, overseer at Haddo House, and farmer in South Ythsie, who died October 27, 

1834, aged 68. Also of his wife, Mary Mair." 

A Headstone is "To the memory of William Giles, merchant, Mosshead, Udny, who 
died January 28, 1864, aged 84; also to Catharine Greig, his wife, who died May 20, 
1856, aged 76." 

A granite massive square stone is inscribed : — " In memory of George Philip, who 
died at Yondertown, Cruden, February 17, 1837, aged 86. His wife, Elizabeth Imlach, 
died January 16, 1863, aged 81." On the reverse side, " In memory of Alexander 
Philip of Yondertown, Cruden, sometime farmer in Hatton, where he died April 13, 

1835, aged 82, His brother, James Phihp, died at Tarves, March 10, 1839, aged 81." 
Near the west wall of the churchyard is a stone " Erected by George Manson of 

Triumph Plantation, Demerara, to commemorate for a few years the mouldering relics 
of his parents, who were most affectionately beloved and tenderly regretted by him. 
George Manson, born 26 October, 1732, died January 2, 1807. Margaret Thom, born 
October 2, 1732, died November 2, 1782." 

The following inscription is round the side of a flat stone, upon which, says Mr. 
Jervise, near the top there is a shield charged with the Chalmers' arms, and at the foot 
a skull and cross bones.' " Here lies Agnes Chalmers, and Isobel Chalmers, spouse to 
M. T, G." These were probably the sister-in-law and wife of the minister, who is upon 
the next quoted tombstone. 

" Here lyes Maister Thomas Gardyne, minister at Tarves, qua departit the day of 
163 — ." "Upon this stone," says Mr. Jervise, "there are two shields bearing the Gardyne 
arms, and the other those of Keith and Young quarterly." 

Two silver cups belonging to Mr. Gardyne's time, are each inscribed thus : — " This 
cup is ordinit for the sacrament of Tarves, 1618." 

I Jervise' Inscrip. II. p. 332. 

The Church and Ministers y &€., of Tarves. 377 

Within an enclosure on the south side of the burial ground, there is the following 
inscription: — " Here lies interred Rev. Mr. William Forbes, minister of the gospel at 
Tarves, who departed this life January 21, 1738, aged 70 years. Also his spouse, Janet 
Gregory, who died April 13, 1736, aged 60. Also their son, William Forbes, who 
died April 22, 1731, aged 18 ; also their daughter, Mary Forbes, who died November 
21, 1734. aged 40." 

"A grandson of This clergyman," says Mr. Jervise, " became a wealthy merchant in 
Aberdeen, and bought the estate of Echt, now the property of the Earl of Crawford." 
The last laird of Echt of this branch of the Forbes (for it was owned by another branch 
of the same family), when getting into difficulties is related to have said, that he ex- 
pected the estate of Echt (Eight) would soon become four. 

There are also two interesting tombstones to the memory of a family of the name of 
Craig. Both are lettered round the side, and upon the face of one flanked with the 
initials " J. C, M. R," is a shield with the Craig arms and a skull below. " Here lyes 
Thomas Craig, pursuvant, qua departit ye 19 of Maii, — 84, and Marjorie Ridel, his 
spous, qua departit ye xv. Aprill, 1583." 

Mr. Jervise says, " this and the following inscription are of more than common 
interest, inasmuch as they appear to add two hitherto unknown names to the list of 
Scotch Heralds." 

The next probably refers to his son, who was " Ross Herald," " Ultima dom. Gul. 
Craig Rossaei Heraeldi et Marioriae Reith ei sponse qua sibi et suis in die Resurrectionis 
reqvieturis providevt, 1617." 

" The last abode of William Craig Ross Herald, and his spouse, Marjory Reith, 
which they provided for themselves and their family to rest in until the day of the 
resurrection, 161 7.' 

The above also is carved in raised Roman capitals round the side of a flat slab. In 
the centre flanked by the initials "W. C, M. R," is a shield charged with the Craig 
arms, ermine, on a fess, a dog's head between two crescents.' 

A stone marked "M. R." in monogram, and the date " 16 13," is built (brought it 
is said from Tellyelt), into the wall of the kirk, and may have reference, Mr. Jervise 
thinks, to some relation to one or other of the wives of the Craigs. 


This property long owned by the Forbeses of Blackford, is now the property of the 
Earl of Aberdeen. 

There is a small burial ground on the property, which had chiefly been used for the 
burial of Quakers, who once had a meeting house here, but it was burned down when 
popular feeling was much excited against that quiet body of Christians. 

I Jervise' Inscrip. II. p. 352. 

378 The Thanage of Ferniartyn, 

The Forbes family were for many years interred here. An inscription in Latin, of 
which the following is a translation, refers to Mrs. Forbes, a daughter of Professor John 
Gregory of Edmburgh.' 

" To the memory of his excellent and dearly beloved wife, Ann Margaret Gregory, 
and of himself destined soon to follow her, John Forbes of Blackford, erected this monu- 
ment, A.D. 1826." 

Beside and within this wall, which he rebuilt at his own expense, " Lie the remains 
of the Forbeses of Lethentie and Auquhorthies, the ancestors of the family of Blackford, 
to whom the burial place belongs, and whose remains have for many years rested 

On another, " In the graveyard called St. John's, the property and burial place of 
his ancestors, are deposited the mortal remains of Alexander Forbes of Blackford, who 
was born ist November, 1786, and died 28th of October, 185 1. This memorial marks 
the place of his sepulture, and that of his wife, Margaret, daughter of Charles Banner- 
man, Esq., who died 24 March, 1825, aged 36 years." 

Immediately contiguous is the grave of their son, " Alexander Forbes, ensign in the 
6 1 St Regiment of Foot, who died February i, 1841 aged 26. Also, Mary Elizabeth, 
who died June 30th, aged 12 ; also, Anne, who died July 31, 1830, aged 8, and John, 
who died in March, 1820, aged 4 months. Margaret, widow of Rear- Admiral John 
Leith, and the only surviving child of the above-mentioned Alexander and Margaret 
Forbes, has placed this record of her lamented parents and beloved brothers and sisters." 

A Peterhead granite stone is " Sacred to the memory of Rear-Admiral John Leith, 
born at Leith-hall, October 22, 1788, and died at Blackford, October 25, 1854. Also, 
Harriet Anne, youngest daughter of John and Margaret Leith, who died October 25, 
1858. This stone is erected to the memory of her lamented husband by his widow, 
Margaret, daughter of Alexander Forbes of Blackford." 

1 Jervise' Inscrip. II. p. 356. 


" Tiine-liallowcd pile ! 

No more 1)<)1(1 chiefs tiiy (Irawl)ri(lgc pace, 
No more the violent man thy towers, 
No more the hjvely ^jracc thy Ijowcrs. 
The falling meteor o'er thee slioots ; 
And there, where once in rich array, 
Mel lords and knights and ladies gay, 
The hat is clinging to these walls. 
And the fox may nestle in these halls." 

— Anon. 

ToLQUHON, now the property of the Earl of Aberdeen, formed part of Fermartyn. The 
Thanagc was divided between the two daughters of Sir Henry Preston.' The one 
daughter married Alexander Meldrum, who got the Fyvie portion of Fermartyn ; the 
other, Marjorie, married Sir John Forbes. She got Tolquhon, the castle of which was 
the chief messuage of the eastern portion of the Thanage. 

The ruin of the ancient stronghold still rernains, surrounded by fine old trees, and 
consists of an ancient tower, very ruinous, called the " Preston tower," from its first 
possessor, and of several other buildings added at different periods. It was much 
added to, and some of it entirely rebuilt by William Forbes. On the front there is 
the inscription — " All this warke, save the auld tower, was begun by William Forbes, 
A.D. 1584, and ended by him 1589." 

The whole building was some time ago in a very ruinous condition, though what 
remained showed its former magnificence, is now, however, well cared for by its present 
noble proprietor, who is a descendant of Sir Henry Preston. 

Sir John Forbes, 

who married Marjorie, the daughter of Sir Henry Preston of Fermartyn, was the fifth in 
descent from John de Forbes, who flourished in the reign of William the Lion, and who 
possessed, according to Douglas, the lands and barony of Forbes. Marjorie Preston, 
failing heirs of her own body, made over the property to her husband, " nobili viro 
Johanni de Forbes." She is designated " filia et una de hseredibus quondam Henrici 
de Preston, domini de Fermartyne." The charter is dated 16 July, 1420,= They had 
issue three sons : — 

I. Sir John, his successor. 

t See Article Fyvie. 2 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 352. 


The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

IL Duncan, of Ardgethin,' who had a natural son, Henry, vicar of Alford. 

III. David. 
Sir John Forbes of Tolquhon was accused, along with James Forbes, son and heir 
of Sir Alexander Forbes, Lord Forbes, of abetting, in 1448, Sir Andrew Morison, 
chaplain, in his suit at the Market Cross of Aberdeen, against Nicholas Blair, chaplain 
to William, Lord Errol, Constable of Scotland.^ Sir John Forbes died between 
August 6, 1453, and July, 1454, and was succeeded by his son,^ 

II. Sir John Forbes of Tolquhon. 

He married Ann Straton, daughter of the laird of Laurieston, and had issue : — * 

I. Alexander, who succeeded. 

n. David, of Essie. 

in. Henry, of Logic. 

John Forbes of Tolquhon is mentioned in a decreet of 1457,^ in favour of 

Skene, for the lands of Ledach of Skene. He died 14 — , and was succeeded by his son, 

III. Alexander Forbes of Tolquhon. 

He is mentioned in an indenture of man-rent betwixt William, Lord Forbes, Sir 
Alexander Forbes of Pitsligo, " on the one pairt, and the lairds of Macintosh and 
Kilravock on the tother pairt," date 1467. He is also mentioned in an instrument "de 
perambulatione super terris debatabilibus inter terras Terwas et Meldrum, date 1469,* 
and also in 1474 as giving a charter to Patrick, son and heir of Patrick Leith of 
Harthill.^ He married Jane Hay, daughter of Hay of Delgaty, the sole issue of which 
marriage was a son, Malcolm. Alexander Forbes died before 1487, and was 
succeeded by his son, 

IV. Malcolm Forbes of Tolquhon. 

In April, 1487, Pope Innocent VIII. granted a dispensation to Malcolm Forbes of 
Tolquhon and Margaret Forbes, daughter of Lord Forbes, to marry, being within the 
prohibited degrees.^ 

He succeeded his father, Alexander Forbes of Tolquhon, before 1487, as we learn 
from a contract of that year between Margaret Forbes, in name and behalf of Malcolm 
Forbes, son of the deceased Alexander Forbes of Tochcone, and Alexander TuUiche, in 
regard to the ward and relief of the lands of Tochcone, &c.' Malcolm Forbes is 
frequently employed in public business, especially on inquests, in the years 1492, 1495, 
1 50 1, &c. In 1 501 there is a contract between William Hay, Earl of Errol, and 
Thomas Kinnaird, for the redemption of a reversion from Malcolm Forbes of Tolquhon 

1 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 587. 

2 Reg. Burgh Aber. I. pp. 16, 17. 

3 Rot. Sac. Reg. Scot. No. 217; 

Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 385. 

4 Wbitehaugh Pedigree. 

5 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 282. 

6 Id., p. 348 ; IV. p. 402. 

7 Charter penes Whitehaugh. 

8 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 332. 

9 Id., III. pp. 12, 63. 

Tolquhon. 381 

for the lands of Sithan (Shethin), Rawak, and Craigie, for the sum of four hundred 
mcrks.' They had issue : — 

I. William, his successor. 

II. Thomas. 

III. James. 

I. A daughter, , married to Alexander Cheyne of Arnage. 

Malcolm Forbes died about 1503, and was succeeded by his son, 

V. William Forbes of Tolquhon. 

In 1503, Margaret Forbes, the widow of the deceased Malcolm Forbes of Tolquhon, 
was found, by an inquest, to have right to the terce of the Mains of Tolquhon, the lands 
of Meikle Eithsy, &c.- William Forbes is not served heir till two years after this date. 
In 1505, there is an inquest on William Forbes, in which he is served heir to his father, 
Malcolm Forbes, being of legitimate age.^ In 1523, Alexander Hay, rector of Turriff, 
and William Myles, in Ardlethin, have to pay William Forbes two hundred pounds, 
under pain of excommunication.'* In 1527, he grants a charter to his son, John Forbes 

and Janete Cheyne, his spouse, of the lands of Minoney, &c.5 He married 

Leith, daughter of Leith of Barnes, and had issue : — 

I. John, d. s. p. before his father. 

II. Alexander, who succeeded. 

I. , married the laird of Glack. 

2. , married John Lamb, burgess of Aberdeen. 

3. , married Andrew Dortis, burgess of Aberdeen. 

He married secondly, in 1522, Isabel, daughter of William, fifth Earl of Errol, and 
had issue by her : — 

III. Arthur. 
4. Isabel. 

In 1536, his son, John, having died without succession, the estate was made over to 
his second son, Alexander, who had married Alison Anderson, daughter of the Lord 
Provost of Edinburgh. 

There is a charter of confirmation to Alexander, heir-apparent of William Forbes of 
Tolquhon, of the lands and barony of Tolquhon, date 2 December, 1536 ; also to the 
said Alexander and his wife, Alison Anderson, of the lands of Park and Tiftie, (Sec.'' 
William Forbes died 15 — , and was succeeded by his second son, 

VI. Alexander Forbes of Tolquhon. 

By his wife, Alison Anderson, he had issue : — 
I. William, his successor. 

1 Ant. A. and B. III. pp. 12, 63. 4 Consist. Reg. Aber. S.C. Misc. V. p. 294. 

2 Id., p. 63. 5 Ant. A. and. B. III. p. 66. 

3 Id., pp. 551, 60. 6 Id., I. p. 333. 

382 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

II. John, ancestor of the CuUoden family. 

1. Janet, married to William Forbes of Corsindae, and on his death to 

William Forbes of Fodderbirse. 

2. Isobel. 

Alexander Forbes fell at Pinkie in 1547, and was succeeded by his son, 

VII. William Forbes of Tolquhon. 

He married E. Gordon, daughter of George Gordon of Lesmoir,' and had issue : — 

I. William, of Tolquhon. 

II. James, of Knapernay, who married Janet Cheyne (see Knapernay). 

III. Walter, of Auchreddie. 

IV. Patrick, burgess of Aberdeen. 

I. A daughter, , married to William Forbes of Corsindae. 

In 1550, William Forbes of Tolquhon was bound over in two thousand pounds, for 
his soune and his friends, not to trouble the Provost and Baillies of Aberdeen,^ and in 
1573, in an action of Lord Forbes contra the Earl of Huntly, William Forbes of 
Tolquhon is examined. In 1578, William Forbes of Tolquhon was admitted a burgess 
of Aberdeen. 3 He received permission under the Privy Seal, in 1581, on account of a 
disease in his eyes, to eat flesh in Lent, and to remain at home from all King's raids, 
&c., sending a friend with his men." In 1585, he acquired Woodland, Knapernay, and 
half of TuUimade ; also a sasine of William Forbes of Tolquhon and James, his second 
son, from Henry Gordon. ^ 

He built, in 1589, an aisle in the parish church of Tarves, part of which still remains 
in the churchyard of Tarves. It bears the inscription, " W. F. E. G., 1589." He also 
endowed an hospital, which stood on a knoll in a hollow near the parish church. 
According to the author of the " View of the Diocese," it was for four poor men, who 
were to live in it, and to have a peck of meal, and three shillings, a penny, and two- 
sixths of a penny Scots ; also some malt, peats, &c., and it has, however, long ago 
disappeared. He also, save the auld tower, built the greater part of the castle. He 
also mortified, in 1589, the guids and gear within the place of Tolquhon, to remain 
constantly with the heir.^ On him, Arthur Johnston of Caskieben wrote the following : 

" Avxisset cum prole domum Tolchonus et arvis, 
Confectus senio sponte reliquiit humum. 
Condidit hunc tumulum, quo conditur ipse, supremum 
Expectans animo nil metuente diem. 
Hunc prope pauperibus devotos aspicis agros, 
Tectaque mortali non violanda manu. 
Nee procul his domini surgunt palatia, regis 
Non semel hospitio nobilitata sui. 

1 Tombstone, Tarves Churchyard. 4 Ant. A. and B. I. p. 353. 

2 Reg. Counc. Aber. I. p. 138. 5 Charters at Whitehaugh. 

3 Ant. A. and B. IV. p. 762 ; Whitehaugh Pedigree, p. 14. 6 Ant. A. and B. I. pp. 330, 354. 

Tolquhon. 383 

Haec terris monimenta dedit Tochonus, et inter 
Has operiim moles crescere vidit opes. 
Quantulus, exuvias si spectas corporis, alti 
Si pensas animi munera, quantus homo est ! " 

[His house's numbers and its lands increased, Tolquhon, 

With ills of eld worn out, the earth did gladly leave. 

He reared this tomb, wherein he lies himself. 

With fearless soul awaiting the last day. 

Near it you see lands gifted to the poor. 

And houses to be marred by no man's hand ; 

Nor far from these the owner's princely pile. 

Which more than once received a royal guest. ' 

These monuments, Tolquhon gave to the workl. 

Yet, 'mid these mighty works, he saw his wealth increase. 

Look at his ashes, and you'll say, how small a man ! 

His lofty mind's gifts ponder, you'll exclaim How Great !] i 

William Forbes died in 1595, and was succeeded by his son, 

VIII. William Forbes of Tolquhon. 

He was served heir to his father, March 22, 1595.'' He married Janet Ogilvie, 
daughter to Sir George Ogilvie of Dunlugas, grandfather of George, first Lord Banff. 
By her he had issue : — 

I. Alexander, who died s. p. in early manhood ; to him, probably, the follow- 
ing ballad refers : — 

" Word has come to young Tolquhon, 
In his chamber where he lay, 
That Sophia Hay, his first fause fair love. 
Was wedded and away. 
Sophia Hay ! Sophia Hay ! 
My love, Sophia Hay ! 
I wish her ance as sair a heart. 
As she's gi'en me to-day. 
She thinks she has done me great wrang, 
I do not think it so ; 
I hope to be in quietness. 
When she shall live in woe. 
She'll live a discontented life 
Since she has gaen frae me ; 
O'er soon, o'er soon, a weed of green 
Will shortly cover me ! " 

—Old Ballad. 

Sophia Hay married Lord Melgum, who was burned in the tower of Frendraught, 
October 18, 1630 ; and she is alluded to in the ballad of the burning of Frendraught. 
Her former lover's prophecy was too truly fulfilled. 

" Sophia Hay ! Sophia Hay ! 
Bonnie Sophia was her name. 
Her waiting maid put on her clothes, 
But I wat she tore them off again. 
And oft she cried, alas ! alas ! 
A sair heart is ill to win. 
I wan a sair heart when I married him, 
And the day is well returned again." 

I Jervise' Inscrip. II. p. 351. 2 Ret. Spec. Abdn. No. 68. 

384 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

II. Walter, of Tolquhon and Thainston. 

III. George, of Craigie. 

IV. Thomas, of Waterton, now represented by John Forbes of Merryoaks. 

V. William, of Finzean. 

1. Christina. 

2. Elizabeth, Lady Caskieben, 

3. Isabel, Lady Philorth. 

4. Mary, married to Sir John Gordon, Bart. 

In December, 1 631, he granted a charter, afterwards confirmed under the great seal, 
of the lands of Tolquhon to his second son, Walter Forbes of Thainston, and his heirs 
male, failing them the sons of his third son, George Forbes of Craigie, &c., failing whom 
to his youngest son, William, and his heirs male ; failing all whom to William Forbes of 
Knapernay, son of the late James Forbes, his brother, and his heirs male.' In 1633, 
John Udny of Belhelvie, as procurator of Robert Udn)', his brother, declairit that 
there was restand owing ten thousand and ten merks to the said Robert by William 
Forbes of Tolquhon.^ 

In this laird's time there is an account of a Baron's Court of Tolquhon held in the 
chamer at Lytill Eithsie, which is not devoid of interest. 

" October 6, 1608. Richt Hon. William Forbes of Tolquhon, laird of the ground ; 
William Wood in Balgove, baillie in that part of the barony ; William Craig, notary 
public, clerk of Couit ; Alexander Mair, officiar ; Arthur Carle, dompster. The said 
court lauch fullie and orderlie fencit, the suttis callit.^ 

*' The said day it was requirit be the officiar at command of the Laird and Bailzie, gif 
there were any outlandis man to pursew ony actions in the said court, for the said 
baillie was readye to show justice, and thereon tuk act of court and instruments, and that 
nane comperit to that effect. 

"The said day the halll tennentes of the insuken of the milne of Tolquhon com- 
plenit upon Alexander Arthour, milner of the said milne, for not holden in of the watter 
to the samen on the watter-gait thereof, and not putting of ane lock on the mill door, 
qlk was tried to be of trouth for the quilk, he was convict and decernit to amend ye 
samen in tyme cuming, and pay fourtie shillings for his bye-gane wrang and unlawe. 

" The said day, James Walkar, be sufficient trial, was convict of shoeing an horse in 
a wrang manner, quareby the said horse was made crippell, and decernit to amend in 
time cuming, and to pay fourtie shillings for his bygane wrang to the pairty. (This 
decision might not be amiss at the present day.) 

" The said day, William Beg is ordenit be his own consent to set w* in the corne- 
yard of Ythsie, be the advyse of George Mar, at ye milne of Ythsie, Duncan Mar in 
Newseitt, John Mowat in Caldhame, and John Smythe in Boghouse, as much cornes, 
beir, and aittis, as they think will satisfy the laird for his ferme, meill, and malt of this 

1 Charter penes Whitehaugh, &c. Reg. Mag. Sig. 1631. 3 Archaeological Notes in Aberdeen 

2 Id. S. C. Misc. III. p. 104. Journal, 1862. 

Tolquhon. 385 

instant crap and yeir of God, ane thousand six hundred and ane yeirs, and as will satisfic 
George Mar, at yc milnc of Ythsic, for his insuken multures of his beir and aittes the 
said yeir, and crop, qlk suld be pcyit to ye said miller. 

*' The said day, James and Duncan Brechins are decernit of thair ain confession to 
red and baud red ye marche watter gangc betwixt ye lands of Ysie and Drumbeck 
foment their occupationnis of the saidis landis of Ysie." 

The above extracts from a long document show the zeal with which a baron of old 
time exercised his jurisdiction, and in how summary a manner the complaints of parties 
were tried and disposed of. Their jurisdiction within their respective baronies was very 

This William Forbes seems to have been a person of considerable skill in 
conducting courts and trials. He was one of the two persons appointed for Aberdeen, 
under King James VI. Act (1608), anent the dearth of buits and " shoone." 

William Forbes was succeeded by his son, 

IX. Walter Forbes of Tolquhon. 

He married before 1626, Jean Forbes, sister to Alexander, first Lord Pitsligo. In 
that year he infefted her, with his father's consent, in the lands of Thainston. By her 
he had issue : — 

I. Sir Alexander of Tolquhon. 

II. Thomas of Auchry, whose son, William, succeeded his uncle. 

III. John. 

IV. William. 
I. Jean. 

In 1 64 1, there is a charter to Walter Forbes of Tolquhon, in certain lands with 
sasine." In a letter, said to be in the hand-writing of Charles II., the king forbids 
Huntly to make any levy on Tolquhon, or to make the laird turn out because he is past 
^ixty, and his son, Alexander, is already out, and as colonel commands a regiment of 
foot. In 1 66 1, he made a disposition of various parts of Tolquhon in favour of his sons, 
Thomas, John, and William, and of his only daughter, Jean, for provision. 

He died the same year, for on the 19th of October, his widow, Jean Forbes, took 
possession of Thainstone, of which she was life-rentrix ; at a court held at Thaynstone, 
her son, Thomas, acted as agent under a commission, dated 18 October.^ He was 
succeeded by his eldest son, 

X. Sir Alexander Forbes of Tolquhon, 

He married in 1649, D'inie Bathia Murray, daughter of the laird of Blackbarony, 
and relict of William Forbes of Craigievar. They had no issue. 

He was one of three colonels for Aberdeenshire in the Scotch army of Charles II. 

1 Notes in Aberdeen Journal. 3 Charters penes Whitehaugh. 

2 Whitehaugh Charters. 


386 The Thanage of Fermartyn. 

He is said to have rendered particular service to that monarch at the battle of Worcester, 
and to have been an extraordinary agent of his subsequent escape from England. 

The following singular story regarding Sir Alexander we find in " Chambers' 
Domestic Annals." "Sir Alexander Forbes having entertained in his house at Tolquhon, 
Mr. Ogilvie of Forglen, Sir J. Falconer, and Lord Pitmedden, missed immediately after 
they left two mazer cups on which he set great value. He wrote to Ogilvie mentioning 
the facts of the cups being lost, and asking if he could tell anything of them. Ogilvie 
though feeling that this was scarcely civil returned a friendly answer, assuring Sir 
Alexander that he had never seen the cups, and knew nothing directly or indirectly 
regarding them. Hereupon Sir Alexander replied apologetically, and for some time 
conducted himself in a friendly way towards Ogilvie, as if to make up for his former 

" Afterwards on Ogilvie refusing to take part with him in quarrels with a third party, 
Sir Alexander Forbes appeared to have conceived a malicious feeling towards him. To 
wreak this out, he raised an action against him in the Court of Session, on the allegation 
that he had fraudulently abstracted the fore-mentioned cups. And when the case was 
called, Tolquhon had the confidence to appear personally at the bar, and own and 
countenance the same, and crave Ogilvie's oath of calumny anent the defamatory libel. 
After Ogilvie had thus acquitted himself, Tolquhon craved permission to enter on a 
proof of the libel by witnesses, which the Lords granted. 

" While the matter was pending, Tolquhon frequently upbraided Ogilvie with the 
terms cup-stealer and cup-cheater ; nor did he hesitate to resort to legal quirks for 
keeping the charge as long as possible on the head of the accused. At length the case 
came on, and being found solely without evidence, was pronounced to be altogether 
founded in malice." ' 

A subsequent process by Forglen against Tolquhon was undefended by the latter, 
who was amerced in twenty thousand merks, whereof one half was adjudged to the 
aggrieved party. 

The mazer cup was found in the hands of a goldsmith in Aberdeen, with whom its 
careless owner had left it for repair some years before, and forgot all about it.^ 

On Sir Alexander Forbes' death without issue, the estate, heavily burdened, passed 
to the family of Thomas Forbes of Auchry, second son of Walter Forbes of Tolquhon. 
Thomas Forbes was educated for the bar, and spent some years about 1650 in Holland 
and France. He married Henrietta Erskine, daughter of James Erskine, Lord Auchter- 
house, second Earl of Buchan, of the Erskine family. The issue of this marriage was 
I. Williara, of Tolquhon. 
n. Thomas, born 1689. 

XI. William Forbes of Tolquhon 

succeeded his u