William Fraser.

The earls of Cromartie; their kindred, country, and correspondence (Volume 2) online

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I received, last post, a letter from the Duke of Montrose, wherein he
desires me to soUicite your Lordship in favours of one Captain Alexander
Urquart of Newhall, who designs to stand for member of parliament for the
shire of Cromartie ; so that, if your Lordship be not already preingaged for
one of your own relations, I beg it as the greatest obligation your Lordship
can do me, that you will be pleased to use your interest in favours of this
gentleman in the insuing elections. This is the first favour ever I asked of
your Lordship, and therefore I hope you will not refuse it me. And besides,


your so doing, I am perswaded, will conduce to your own advantage. Be
pleased to accept of my wife's, sister's, and my most humble duty to your
Lordship and Lady, and all your family ; and believe me allways to be with
the greatest respect imaginable, my Lord,

Your Lordship's most affectionate brother and most obedient and

humble servant,


371. The HoNOUEABLE James Erskine, Lokd Grange, Lord Justice-Clerk,
to [John second Earl of Cromartie].

Preston, 5 October 1715.
My Lord, — I beg your Lordship to pardon me for not doing my self the
honor to wait on you at Beanston Muir, for my health has not been good
these eight or ten days. And tho I was at Hadinton, where the meeting
was in a house, yet to be so long on ane open muir, till I be in a better habit
of body, could not faill to do me much harm. I have sent my proportion of
men, and several of the best and most respected men in the place to carry
them to the place of rendevous, and deliver them to the officers whom your
lordship appoints to command them. I told your lordship on Teusday that
I have only four guns, two of which are with the guard at Seatou, and the
other two, I think your lordship allow'd me to keep at home ; it being hard
that a house in the country, which may be attack'd by thieves or robbers,
should be alltogether without fire arms. I will not trouble your lordship any
farther, but I have taken the freedom to write to your deputys what concerns
this parish with respect to the militia, who will acquaint your lordship of it
as there is occasion. I hope your lordship will do me the justice to reckon
upon me as one who is firmly determined to serve his Majesty King George



and our country to the best of liis ability, and who is, with very great truth
and respect, my lord,

Your Lordship's most obedient and most humble servant,

James Erskine.

372. Patrick Haldane of Gleneagles to [John second Earl of Cromartie].

London, 20 October 1715.
My Lord, — This day, about ten of the clock, arrived ane express from
Scotland with the melancholy account of the town of Perths being ceased by
the rebells. ISTo assistance of men or armes was sent to it, so it was sur-
rendered without opposition to a party of 150 horse commanded by CoUonell
Hay, son to the Earl of Kinoul. There are no further accounts of the number
of men with Mar, nor what advancement he hath made in his march to the
low covmtry. Perth was posessed on Eriday. I have not beared how they
have treated the magistrates, who were all very honest men. This day were
carried up to the house of peers tbe replications to Oxford's answears, and ane
adress sent by the Peers to his Majesty to cause fitt up Westminster Hall for
his tryall. Strafford hath obtained to the first of November to prepare his
answears. There are no other news. Wishing your lordship a safe journy,
I am, with all respect, my lord.

Your Lordship's most humble servant,

Pat. Haldane.

373. Lady Anne Lindsay, wife of James third Viscount Kingston, to
[John second Earl of Cromartie].

Whitingham, October 31, 1715.
My Lord, — Opon your Lordship's forst ordears my Lord Kingstun's hors
was ready, but the hilandrs coming to the contrey stopt every body's hors

ROBERT PR INGLE, 1715. 161

from gouing owt. The last advertsment was so short, it hais not been in my

pover to send souner then to morove. On Sonday last there came a peper

which was read in the courch, ordring my Lord Kingstun to pay sixs pound of

penelty : I can not but seay it's hard for tow or thre days abeseans. I have

now sent a hors, the beast I have, and all souteabl forneter, and I depend

opon the frindship your Lordship hais been pleased to seay you had for my

Lord, and I presueam somwhat opon the honowr I have to be your realeshion ;

so I hope you will except of the hores I send, and order to take of the penlty.

What comands your Lordship hais, pleas to give to the bearer, whow is my

lords tenent, and be ashoured non wishes more hapenis to your Lordship

then, my Lord,

Your Lordship's most houmball seruant,

Anna Kingstun.
I beg live to give my most houmbll seruiss to my Lady.

374. PtOBEKT Peingle, Secretary of State, to the Maequis of Tweeddale.

^Vliitehall, November 4th, 1715.

My Loed, — I had yesterday, by a flying pacquett, the honour of your
Lordship's two letters of the 27 and 29, and by the ordinary post this day I
have receiv'd a duplicate of that of the 29, all which I have communicated,
as your Lordship desires, both to my Lord Tounshend and to Mr. Secretary
Stanhope, who have ordered me to assure your Lordship that they will not
faill to lay before the King what your Lordship represents of the part you
have acted for the preserving of the publick peace in that county of which
your Lordship is leivtenant, and which they doubt not but shall meet with
his Majesty's full approbation. And that your Lordship may be apprised of
the King's present sentiments in relation to the keeping up of the militia




upon the expiring of the 40 dayes, they have ordered me to transmitt to
your Lordship a copy of the letter they have been directed to write on the
same subject to the Duke of Argyle, which your Lordship hes herewith
inclosed. As to your privie seal, I think it stands much as it did wdien you
left this place, the delay of it being turn'd over upon the great hurry of
business, and the changes that hes been in the tresaury. I shall employ the
first leisure hours I have, which indeed, at present, are not many, to soUicite
it. As to the other quarters sellary, I take that to be of course, and I shall
endeavour to inform my self when your Lordship is to expect it. I have
this day receiv'd Sir Robert Hay's commission from Colonel Campbell, and
delivered to him your Lordships bill you left with me : and I shall be glad
to knou, as soon as your Lordship can, which way I am to dispose of the
commission. I can give your Lordship litle neus from this place : our great
expectation is from your parts, and I am heartily sorry they have been for some
time so much the subject of neus. We would willingly flatter our selves
that our confusions drau to an end, that the party which was at Kelso must
disperse, that the Duke of Argyle will be able to make head against the Earl
of Marr, especially if joyn'd by the regiments from Ireland, two of which sett
.saill on the 26, and the third on the 23d past ; and I am glad to tell your
Lordship that his Majesty hes ordered 3000 of the Dutch troops to land in
the Frith of Forth. We have no certain accounts of the Duke of Ormond,
and whatever disposition hes appeared in several parts of this countrey to
an insurrection, it seems to have cooled much ; and there is such a disposi-
tion made of the forces, where it was most expected, as will in all appear-
ence be sufficient to prevent or suppress what may happen of that nature.

Our last neus of the Pretender was that he had left Bar le Due, and was
come to Chateau Thierry in Champaign, upon which my Lord Stair had pre-
sented a memoriall to the Resent, who thought fitt to direct the Duke de


Guiclie, governour of that province, to give orders to Major General Contade
to carry him back to Lorrain, and to this purpose to use force if necessary ;
and my Lord Stair ^mtes that Contade was gone from Paris to putt these
orders in execution.

Your Lordship may freely lay your commands upon me, who am, with
all possible respect, my Lord,

Your Lordship's most humble and most obedient servant,

Eo. Pkingle.
Lo. INIar. of Tweedale.

375. Lady Jeax Hay, Countess Dowager of William first Earl of March, to
[John second Eael of Cromartie].

Neadpeath, the 4 of N'ovember 1715.
My Loud, — I am very sensible of your Lordship's kindnes and frind-
sheep to me and my familie on all occations ; but the desser you have in
your letter is surprising to me, and the mor when I understood by Mr. Murrj-
the occation of it. The stories your Lordship hears is without ground ; for,
for ought I can find he hath no such thoughts, and often says this is a Strang
undertaking without any sertinty of the Pretender's coming to them. And
besids, this contray is in perfect quiet, and much out of the road of any
disturbance, so that I am mor at eas then wer I else wher. My son is at
present from hom, but [I] shal propos your disser to him so soon as he coms
home, and let your Lordship know what I then resolve ; so will truble you
with no mor at present, being in all sincerity, my Lord,

Your Lordship's most affectionat ant and humble servant,

J. Maech.



Alow me to give my most humble serves to my Lady Marchionas : my
childrin is all your most humble servants,

I most let your Lordship know that the Malitie of this contray will be a
grat burdin to it, for ther never used to be mor then the quarter required. Had
my Lord Anandell required a fewer numbre of the fensibell men they would
a com out, but 400 was mor then this place could bear, ther not being much
above 2000 of the wholl ; and after all ther is no arms hear, being tuk at the
revolution and for the oths. Nor do w^e lik the colinell being ignorant of the
tread. I once ijroposd Lord Douglas. So, my dear Lord, again adew.

376. John thied Lokd Belhaven to [John second Earl of Cromaetie].

Linlithgow, November 5, 1715.
My Lord, — I had just now the honour of your Lordship's letter, acquent-
ing me with your resolution of sending the dragoons of the East Lothian
troupe that are left at Edinburgh, to quarter at Hadingtown, to preuent cor-
respondence beeing keep'd betwen the rebells in the north and south of Scot-
land. When I was ordered hither by Generall Whitman, I namd the officers
that were to march with the two troupes, which he aggreed too. I no sooner
came hither then I acquented the Duke of Argile with what officers were
march'd hither with the troupe, and with the number of the detachment out of
each troupe. In answer to this his Grace ordered me to ly at Linlithgow till
such time as I hade orders from him to march. This beeing the case, I sub-
mite it to your Lordship whither aney of the officers are to be remoov'd without
acquenting his Grace, which I shall doe by the first opportunity, and shall in
the mean time wait your Lordship's answer, which I shall, as upon every
occation, punctually obey. In the mean time I shall humbly propose to your


Lordship (since the detachment here is compos'd out of both troupes), your
Lordship will be satisfied with a detachment of both troupes that are now
at Edinburgh, to be commanded by either the leutennant or cornelle of the
Midlothian troupe, who are both at Edinburgh, and will be redy, I beleave,
to be commanded by your Lordship. If I durst presume to give your Lord-
ship my humble opinion about the most effectuall way of stopping that cor-
respondence, which I doe presume must be at Aberladie or there abouts, I doe
thinke a few foot lying alonge that cost, at such places [as] the Laird of Luff-
ness could point out to your Lordship, would prevent the correspondence more
effectually then the dragoon lying at Hadingtown. If it be about Dumbar,
Baillie Fall, I'm perswaded, [will] doe his deuty : but all this I most humbly
submite to your Lordship, and am, with the outmost sincerity.

Your Lordship's most humble and obedient servant,


377. Letter, without signature, to [John second Earl of Cromartie].

London, 8 November 1715.

My Lord,- — Since your lordship is so oblidgeing as not only to ouen the
receat of myn by yours of the last of October, but lykuays to doe me the
honour to lett me know that uhat I wrot is agrieable to yow, I now again take
the libertie to salute yow% and give your Lordship the best accounts I can of
the present posture of our afairs, and of the neus as they ar passeing here.

By an express about a ueek agoe from the Earle Stairrs, he gave acount
that upon the certan information he had of the Pretender's haveing lef[t]
Bar le duke and come the leanth of Chatau Thyrie in to France, he made ap-
lication to the Eegent, and told him that if the Pretender uas resett, abated,
or asisted in France, it could not but be looked on as a breach of the peace



and good understandeing uliich was betviixt his master, the King of Brittan,
and him.

The Eegent seemed to be of the same sentiment, and imediatly ordered
the Count de Contade to goe to that place and lett the Pretender know that
if he did not imediatly leave the dominions of France, he had orders to
convey him out of them by a partie.

This uas looked on as verie good neus by the Court and evrie bodie
else that uished uell to the goverment, and I amongst others wrot it doim
to all my friends. Butt by yesterday's express uee ar certanly informed that
he uas gon before the Count came, and noe bodie nou knoues where he is.

Last week too uee had good information that the Duke of Ormond had
bin on the uest coast with a ship in uhicli there uas considerable numbers
of armes and amunition, and that he had sent to his friends, some of uhome
came aboard of him, and declared, since the seazeing of so manie persons of
nott and distinction, the reaseing of so manie forces and cantoning them in
the maner they uere, so as to secure all the considerable sea port touns, ther
uas noething to be don or expected in this countrie, upon uhich it is certan
he uent of. The winds have bin cross and the ueather stormie ever since,
so that uee doe not know what is become of him, or uhere he is. Some
imagine he may be gou to the Pretender ; and if things uill not doe here, both
may think, if they can, of shareing their fate with Mar and the rebeles in Scot-
land, to whose number, for uhat I see, they will not add manie more then
they bring with them. Things ar certanly verie uell betuixt the Empreor, the
Dutch, and us, so that the grand alyance stands good, and the Dutch troups ar
nou certanly att sea. If they be not, noething occasions it butt the cross uinde.

Your Lordship knoues the state of our afairs in Scotland better then I. It
is certan that the firmity and good afection so manie persons of distinction
have shuen for his Majestic and the protestant intrest deserved more care and


a better fate then uee have mett with. And [it] was to have bin uished wee
had had more forces then uee have hithertoo had, if the circumstances of this
countrie, and ev'n the apeerances in Irland, could have aloued of it. Your
Lordship saw, uhen you uas here, hou much the thoughtlesnes of some ev'n
of our ouen countrie men contributed to that slounes uhich has contril)uted
so much to our ruine. You knou hou often they said it uas noething, all
uas over ; that has bin repeated as often since as uee had good neus, and as
often have those uhose care it ought to have bin to provid tymously for us,
taken a handle from that to excuse uhat wee thought neglects, uhich, to tell
your Lordship my opinion freely, have not bin so manie as is generally
thought. It is true there is nou such an armie in Britan as, I hop, putts us
out of all feers in the main ; but it [is] as true it is butt a neu reased on[e] that
could neather march nor act till nou. The fault lys in uant of lookeing to
in tyra. Uhat is nou hapned might uell have bin forseen in our countrie,
uhich is the verie roote of this rebelion, near a tuelve moneths agoe : but this
is lookeing back. Uee ar glade att last to hear the Irish troups ar landed.
Tho' neather they nor uhat uee had before ar the numbers uee uant, yett uee
aU knou they ar good, and hops att least they uill not be insulted by the
rebeles, uhose numbers uee hear ar mightily increased by the doun comeing
of the clans, uhich, by tlieir marches and nianer of acteing in Argylshyr,
seem to have taken verie odd measurs. If Mar continous to fortify Pearth,
and lys longer still, the Dutch troups, it is hoped, uill come to finish this afair,
uhich has gon too far alreadie, to the utter ruine of that poore countrie in
uhich my greatest concern is.

Your Lordship's old guests, the highlanders, uith the border and Nor-
thumberland rebeles, after a train of as odd acidents and marches as has
almost bin heard of, ar att last come in to England, and by our last acounts
ar att Kendall tendeing to Lancashyr. Generall Wiles is in that countrie


uitli nyn regiments of foot and dragouns befor tliem ; General Carpantar,
after a day's rest att Neucastle, foloiis in their rier. As nee ar evrie moment
expecteing to hear of them being disipatt, so nee hop, if they be, there nill
be no longer cause to complain of uant of troups : there nill be abundance
sent from this. My letters from Stirling Camp is of an old date. I knou
little of friends there : they have my best and sinceerest good uishes. Your
Lordship has a share of them. Adieu.

378. Alexandeh Grant of Grant to [John second Earl of Cromartie].

Castle Grant, March the 13th, 1716.

My Lord, — Nothing but being in a prodigious hurry when I was at
Inverness could have hind red me from paying my respects to your Lord-
ship : but since I had that misfortune then, I hope the next tym I come to
the countrey I shall have the pleasure of paying that debt.

Ther's a gentlewoman, a relation of niyn, married in your Lordship's
nighborhood. I find she has the misfortune at present to be under the dis-
pleasure of her husband, the Laird of Ardross ; whither that is to be entirely
attributed to him, or that the young people have some litle share in it, the
distance of our aboads forbids me to determine. I hear that in that family
it's said she has no body to own her ; but I perswade myself, after telling my
concern, your Lordship, if I were not, will take pity on her, and at least
advise them to doe her the justice her behavior has merited at their hands ;
els I will venture to ashure both the old gentleman and his sone and daughter
that they shall find she has friends. I will medle no farder in this affair till
I have the honor of your comands, but beg leave to sign, my Lord,

Your Lordship's most obedient and faithfuU humble servant,

A. Grant.


379. John first Duke of Atholl to John second Eael of Cromartie.

London, November 2d, 1717.
My Lord, — My sister Lovatt having acquainted me of the aggreeable
news of your Lordship's mariage with my neice, this is heartily to wish you
both much joy and happiness. And now since there is so near an allaiance
betwixt our familys, your Lordship may depend on al the service that is in
my power to doe you.

I have been so ill with sore eyes these several dayes that I have not been
able to goe out of my room ; and tho I be somewhat better, yett am affraid
that I must keep my room some dayes longer. This is the reason I doe not
write to your Lordship with my own hand, who am, my Lord,

Your Lordship's affectionat uncle and most faithful! humble servant,


The Princess is this evening, about 7 at night, delivered of a brave young
Prince, and is as weel as can be expected.

My Lord Ptoss, I suppose, wil be at Edinburgh some of those dayes, in his
way hither. If your Lordship pleases to discourse with his Lordship con-
cerning a project of fishing, and give your oppinion about it. I have dis-
coursd with his Majesty about it, one day that I had the honour to dine with
him, and of the great advantages [which] might redound by it to all Britain ;
and I found his Majesty (as he is in other things) is misinformed about it,
and has been told that wee can not cure our herring weel in Scotland. I
should think it proper, if your Lordship has any understanding in this, either
as to herrings or white fish, that there be proposals drawen up in writing to
be sent up here ; that, since we have an Union, wee may make the best of it
wee can. And I knou your Lordship may have great advantage by it, for I



know none in Scotland lyes so conveniently for that traide as your Lordship's
interest does.

To the right honorable the Earle of Cromarty, Edinburgh.

380. John first Duke of Atholl to [John second Eael of Chomartie].

Dunkeld, November 30th, 1720.

My Lord, — I have the favour of your Lordship's letter of the 1 7th, in
answer to two or three of mine that I had writt to your Lordship and my
neice concerning my opinion as to Mr, Alexander M'Cleods being nam'd one
of M'Cleod's curators. And tho your Lordship has given several reasons in
that letter why you think him not fitt, I cannot but oun to you that it is still
my opinion that M'Leod ought to name him one : for tlio he should accept
(which your Lordship thinks he will not, and in that case it lyes at his oun
door), I am convinced he would not desire to be concerned in taking in his
brothers accounts ; or if he should, he being but one of nine or ten, he could
not inffluence others to shew any favour to his brother : and it would look
very ill if one who is so nearly concerned in the ffamily should be left out in
the nomination. And I am confident he would be very serviceable in all
other things relating to the ffamily, excepting as to his brothers accounts,
which, as I have said, I am perswaded he will not desire to medle in.

As for Glengary, when I was at Edinburgh I understood that your Lord-
ship was clear that he should be one, and I hope your Lordship will still be
perswaded that he will shew himself a freind to M'Leod's ffamily, as I have
alwayes found him to mine. And notwithstanding of his age, I am perswaded
he will be ready to come to this country when tliere is occasion for him, and
the season of the year will allow. And having his interest lying nearest


j\rCleod's of any of the curators, he may be usfiill and serviceable to M'Leod
and his family on several occasions.

I shal add no more, since your Lordship wrytes m.e you are to acquaints
me after M'Leod has advised with his freinds, before he proceed to chosse his
curators. I am, my Lord,

Your Lordship's affectionate uncle and most humble servant,


My wife and I desire to give our affectionat humble service to my neice

381. Lady Helen Mackenzie, wife of Sir John Mackenzie of Coul, to
[John second Eael of Cromartie].

Coul, November 3d, 1721.

My Lord, — Just now I receaved a letter from Mr. Collin, in which ther is
a passage I know no present refuge I can run to, to get myself sheltered from
the storm it threatens me with, but your Lordship's friendship to prevail
with Easter Eearn not to treat me innocently as ane enemy. I cannot say
that the imployment he last undertook was very savory to me, nor can I
brag much of his friendship to me whilst in it ; and this my Lord Tarbatt
and young Davach INIuloach can witnes. But perhaps he Avent no further
then his imployment oblidged him. The passage in Mr. Collin's letter is as
foUowes : —

I was surprised very much to hear from one in the government that
S[ir] J[oh]n was blamed for having ane hand in Easter's dissaster. I saw
Easter's part of that affair that was sent to the court, where he mentioned
only that the rebells that came upon him were assisted by landed men,
without telling who these landed men were : but it seems, in his letter to my


Lord Advocat, he particularises thein, and among them condescends upon
Sir John Mackenzie of Coul ; which, if true, nothing can account for S[ir]
J[ohn']s folly : if false, as I hop it is, nothing could be more malicious. For
whether true or false, the cituation S[ir] J[olmJ is in will niEike every story
of that kind pass current here, and be believed as soon as told ; and therfore
Sir J[oh]n ought to interceed with Easter, by his friends, to cause him write