Douglas-Hamilton family, Dukes of Hamilton and Brandon
This page summarises records created by this Family
The summary includes a brief description of the collection(s) (usually including the covering dates of the collection), the name of the archive where they are held, and reference information to help you find the collection.
The Hamilton family (created Lords Hamilton, 1445; Earls of Arran, 1503; Marquesses of Hamilton, 1559 and Dukes of Hamilton, 1643) were landholders in Buteshire (Arran), Lanarkshire and West Lothian by the 14th century. Forfeited estates of the Douglas family were acquired in 1455, and lands in Arran were granted to the 2nd Lord Hamilton with the earldom of Arran in 1503. Estates in Forfarshire (Arbroath Abbey, granted 1597) and elsewhere in Scotland were acquired subsequently, but by the 18th century the family's principal estates remained those in Arran (Brodick), Lanarkshire (Hamilton) and West Lothian (Kinneil), the Kinneil estate extending into the neighbouring county of Stirlingshire at Polmont. Some Lanarkshire property, including Crawford, had passed in the late 17th century to the Douglas family, Earls of Selkirk.
The 4th Duke of Hamilton (1658-1712), further created Duke of Brandon in 1711, acquired estates in Lancashire (Ashton Hall) and Staffordshire (Gerards Bromley and Sandon) through his marriage to Elizabeth, daughter and heir of the 5th Baron Gerard and co-heir of the 1st Earl of Macclesfield. Sandon was sold in 1776 (to the 1st Baron Harrowby) and Ashton Hall in 1853; and by the mid 19th century the remaining Staffordshire property had also been alienated. Anne (d. 1771), widow of the 5th Duke and co-heir of Edward Spencer of Rendlesham (Suffolk), married in 1751 Richard Nassau of Easton (Suffolk), brother of the 4th Earl of Rochford, and had a son William Henry Nassau (1754-1830), later 5th Earl of Rochford. Her Spencer property was inherited by the 9th Duke in 1771, and the Rochford estate in Suffolk eventually passed to the 10th Duke (d. 1852) on the death of the 5th Earl of Rochford in 1830. The 10th Duke married Susan, daughter and co-heir of the author William Beckford of Fonthill (Wiltshire) (d. 1844), whose papers and collections she inherited.
Hamilton Palace was given up in 1947, when Lennoxlove (East Lothian), the former seat of the Stewart family, Barons Blantyre, was acquired. The 5th Baron Blantyre had bought it with a fortune inherited from Frances, Duchess of Richmond and Lennox (d. 1702). The Dundonald papers were inherited by the 6th Duke of Hamilton through his mother (sister of the 5th Earl of Dundonald and heir to his unentailed estates). In 1761, on the death of the Duke of Douglas, the marquessate of Douglas passed to the 7th Duke of Hamilton, but the Douglas estates passed to a nephew of the Duke of Douglas (see Douglas-Home, Earls of Home).
Estates in 1883: 102,210 acres in Buteshire; 45,731 acres in Lanarkshire; 3,694 acres in West Lothian; 810 acres in Stirlingshire; 4,939 acres in Suffolk and 2 acres in Berkshire, worth a total of £73,638, excluding a mineral rent of £67,006.
|Sources of authority:||Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts, Principal family and estate collections A-K, 1996, p. 49.|
|Name authority reference:||GB/NNAF/F89090 (Former ISAAR ref: GB/NNAF/F8426 )|