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History of the Burgh of Dumfries
Chapter XLIV


REBELLION OF 1745-PERSONAL INFLUENCE OF THE YOUNG PRETENDER, CHARLES EDWARD - REBEL VICTORY AT PRESTONPANS, AND OCCUPATION OF EDINBURGH-THE DUMFRIES TOWN COUNCIL UNDERTAKE DEFENSIVE MEASURES-A PARTY OF THE INHABITANTS CAPTURE SOME REBEL WAR STORES AND WEAPONS AT ECCLEFECHAN-CONDITION OF THE BURGH DURING THE INSURRECTION-THE STRENGTH OF THE REBELS UNDERRATED, AND NO ADEQUATE MEANS TAKEN TO RESIST THEIR THREATENED VISITA CONTRIBUTION IN MONEY EXACTED BY THE PRETENDER-RETURN OF HIS ARMY FROM ENGLAND-ABORTIVE ATTEMPTS TO WITHSTAND ITS ADVANCE INTO DUMFRIESSHIRE-LORD ELCHO, AT THE HEAD OF FIVE HUNDRED HIGHLANDERS, OCCUPIES THE TOWN-MELANCHOLY MEETING OF THE LEADING BURGESSES IN THE PRESBYTERY HOUSE-THEY TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION A. DEMAND MADE UPON THEM BY THE REBELS FOR MONEY AND SHOES-ARRIVAL OF THE PRETENDER AND HIS STAFF GOSSIP ABOUT THE REBEL OCCUPATION OF THE BURGH-MEANS USED BY THE AUTHORITIES TO RAISE THE TRIBUTE-THE PRETENDER RECEIVES STARTLING INTELLIGENCE, AND PREPARES TO QUIT THE TOWN-HIS HURRIED DEPARTURE CAUSED BY A FALSE ALARM-A TAX IMPOSED BY THE TOWN COUNCIL TO PAY OFF THE LOANS THAT HAD BEEN CONTRACTED -VALUATION OF THE BURGH-COMPENSATION MONEY RECEIVED FROM THE GOVERNMENT-CLOSE OF THE REBELLION.

THE year 1745 is a memorable one in the history of Scotland, on account of the attempt then made by Charles Edward, son of the Chevalier de St. George, to recover the crown of his ancestors. In the flush of youth, in the glow of ardent hopespurred by ambition, and sustained by an idea that the claims of his family were sanctioned by heaven, and must eventually be admitted by the nation-Charles, who had vainly waited for assistance from France, landed at Moidart, Inverness-shire, on the 25th of July, relying for success on his own resources and the pecuniary assistance of some private friends. He was attended by the Marquis of Tullibardine (outlawed for his share in the insurrection of 1715); Sir Thomas Sheridan, the Prince's tutor; Sir John MacDonald, an officer in the Spanish service;

Francis Strictland, an English gentleman; AEneas MacDonald, a banker in Paris; Kelly, who had been implicated in what was called the Bishop of Rochester's plot; and Buchanan, who had been intrusted with the duty of summoning Charles to proceed from Rome to Paris when the movement was resolved upon. These "Seven Men of Moidart" did not constitute a very influential company; and if their chief had been a commonplace individual, the enterprise would, at its very first start, have proved a failure. But Charles Edward had a graceful appearance and engaging manners. With a fine oval face, the individual features of which indicated a rare combination of martial energy, lofty enthusiasm, and courtly polish, he exercised a personal influence which few, on whom the charm fell, were able to resist. No wonder that the Jacobites likened him to Bruce, and fancied they saw the figure and countenance of the hero-king reproduced in "the young Chevalier." But for this marvellous power of impressment possessed by the Prince, he could never have invested his desperate undertaking with the rosy hue of success; and when it did end ruinously, he could never have come to be mirrored in that beautiful minstrelsy of his country, which "breathes and burns" with "Bonnie Prince Charlie," and is the best evidence of the interest he awakened amongst his followers. Abstract Jacobitism doubtless did much for him; but it was chiefly because that principle was so attractively represented in its youthful champion, that the Rebellion of 1745 was not nipped in the bud.

A few clansmen joined Charles soon after his arrival at Moidart; but many who fully sympathized with his movement, waited to see what the leading man in all the Highlands, Cameron of Lochiel, intended to do. He went to Charles, for the purpose of counselling him to abandon his rash undertaking. "If such is your purpose," said his brother, Cameron. of Fassefern, "write to the Prince your opinion; but do not trust yourself within the fascination of his presence." Lochiel, however, ventured on an interview with the Prince, and left him with the resolution to take part in his fortunes, even though ruin should be the result. His decision to that effect aroused the North; "for," says Scott, "it was generally understood at the time that there was not a chief in the Highlands who would have risen, if Lochiel had maintained his pacific purpose." [Tales of a Grandfather, royal octavo ed., p. 383.] On the 19th of August the Jacobite flag was unfurled in the lone vale of Glenfinnan ; and before a month elapsed, it was waving in triumph over the proud towers of Holyrood Palace-the Government commander, Sir John Cope, having hurried off to Inverness, in an erratic search for the rebels, at the time when they marched southward and took unmolested possession of the capital. Cope, transporting his force by sea from Aberdeen to Dunbar, marched towards the city, and the Highland troops having gone out to meet him, a battle ensued on the 20th of September, at Prestonpans, which terminated in the utter rout of the royal army. By this victory Charles became virtual master of the whole of Scotland, except the Castles of Edinburgh and Stirling, and a few unimportant Highland forts. "To England! in the flush of our triumph, and before the enemy has time to recover from the stunning blow we have struck!" was the bold resolution of the Prince. "Not so, your Royal Highness," remonstrated his Council; "stay here and keep Court, and revel for awhile in the halls of your ancestors:" and Charles, holding "silken dalliance" for upwards of a month in old Holyrood, instead of at once hurrying forward, as his first impulse prompted, did not start on his sadly romantic expedition to South Britain till the 31st of October, by which time the friends of the Government had recovered in some degree from their alarm, and had made ample arrangements to counteract the invaders.

Early in September, messengers were sent by the magistrates of Dumfries to Edinburgh and Glasgow, for the purpose of obtaining reliable information regarding the rebel movement; and about the same period, Mr. John Goldie, [The first of the Goldies, or Gowdies, who settled in Scotland, were carpet manufacturers from Flanders. The Goldies of Marbrack and of Stenhouse, their descendants, became allied to some of the leading gentry of Dumfriesshire.] Commissary and Sheriff-Depute of Dumfriesshire, entered into a correspondence on the subject with Dr. John Waugh, chancellor of the diocese of Carlisle, the latter of whom communicated the reports he thus received of the insurrection to a clerical dignitary in London, and also, it is believed, to the Government. By means of their own expresses and copies of the Edinburgh Evening Courant, which had superseded the manuscript news-letters, the magistrates obtained intelligence from the North three or four times a week; and it appears the Courant had a correspondent in the Burgh or neighbourhood who sent to it despatches from the South. The following paragraph appeared in its impression of 10th September:- "There are letters from Dumfries yesterday morning, dated the 7th instant, advising that there is not the least stir, but every thing is as quiet and peaceable as usual ; that the Erskinites (friends of the Earl of Mar) have been stocking themselves with arms, and got a .standard made for them : and as these letters mention not ing of any cannonading being heard on the coast there, 'tis believed the story told with respect thereto must be groundless." Mr Goldie, writing to Dr. Waugh on the 12th of September, gives the origin of the above alarming report. "The firing mentioned," says, "was heard on our coast on Sunday was se'enight; but, upon the most diligent enquiry, it came from a West India ship belonging to the sugar-house at Whitehaven, which that day cane into port. However, from this letter and others, it was firmly believed at Edinburgh that an engagement had happened on the coast of Galloway, and it was even given out that General Keith was landed with an army at Wigtown : so easy is it to alarm at such a conjuncture." [Carlisle in 1745, by George Gill Mounsey. A highly interesting work, embodying, among other curious matter about the Rebellion, the correspondence of Mr. Goldie and Dr. Waugh regarding it.]

The Government naturally fancied that the rising in the Highlands would be followed by a corresponding movement among the Jacobite families of Nithsdale and Galloway; but though vague rumours to that effect, like the one just quoted, reached Edinburgh and London, they were groundless. Charles received few recruits from the district, owing in a great measure to the sad impressions left upon it by the former insurrection; and the only gentleman of note belonging to it who espoused his cause was James Maxwell of Kirkconnell, a lineal descendant of Aymer, second son of Sir Herbert Maxwell, brother of the first Lord Maxwell, who in the middle of the fifteenth century married the heiress of Kirkconnell. [See ante, p. 31.] What rank Maxwell bore in the rebel army is not known; but he was reckoned one of the best swordsmen of his day, and had all the bravery of his distinguished race. He was, besides, an accomplished man of letters, wielding the pen with nearly as much ease and power as the sword. A tangible proof of his literary acquirements lies in the charter chest at Kirkconnell - a manuscript account of the Prince's expedition, drawn up by the author in France, to which country he fled after the battle of Culloden.  [He was son of William Maxwell of Kirkconnell, who died in 1746. When the old man heard that his son was out with Prince Charles, he said he was glad to hear of it, and that if his life was sacrificed it would be in a good cause. This work was printed by the Maitland Club in 1841, under the title of a "Narrative of Charles, Prince of Wales's, Expedition to Scotland in the year 1745, by James Maxwell of Kirkconnell, edited by Walter Buchanan." The editor says truly that "the narrative is composed with a remarkable degree of precision and taste - insomuch as rather to appear the production of a practised littetrateur than the work of a private gentleman." (Preface, pp. 5, 6.) In 1750, James Maxwell left the Court of St. Germain's, where he resided. for several years, and returned to Kirkconnell. The modern part of that mansion (as we learn from Mr. Maxwell Witham) was built by him in 1750 and the following year. He sold the estate of Carnsalloch, a few miles above Dumfries, on the left bank of the Nith, which he had acquired by his mother, to Mr. Alexander Johnston, grandfather of its present owner, Major-General Johnston, and, then purchased the estate of Mabie. He married, in 1758, Mary, youngest daughter of Thomas Riddell of Swinbourne Castle, and died four years afterwards, aged fifty-four; leaving three sons, the second of whom, William, settled in Dumfries, and became one of the ablest physicians of his day. He was on intimate terms with Burns, and attended him on his death-bed. James, the eldest son of the Jacobite officer, was served heir to his father in 1764. By his second wife, Dorothy, daughter of William Witham, Esq., solicitor, London, grandson of William Witham of Cliffe, Yorkshire, he left one child, Dorothy Mary Maxwell, who married, in 1844, her cousin Robert Maxwell Witham, the present proprietor of Kirkconnell.]

The. inaction manifested by the Pretender's friends in Nithsdale imparted to his enemies in Dumfries a careless sense of security, of which they had some reason to repent. A considerable display of energy, however, was at first manifested by the Burgh authorities. Having met in the Council-house on the 2nd of September, Provost George Bell presiding, they discussed the alarming news received from Edinburgh, and adopted certain resolutions on the subject, as set forth in the following minute:- "The said day the magistrates and Council being informed that there is a considerable insurrection in the North and Highlands of Scotland against the present Government and our happy constitution, and considering the defenceless condition of this Burgh and adjacent country, in case any attempt should be made to disturb the peace and quiet thereof, and that the town's arms are not only reduced to a small number, but many of them much decayed and insufficient, they appoint a committee of the magistrates (Provost Crosbie; Provost Ewart, Mr. Clark, Bailie James Gilchrist, Mr. Carruthers, Mr. Fergusson, the Dean and Treasurer, and two deacons, whereof five a quorum), to examine the arms of the town's magazine, and cause mend and repair such of them as are decayed and insufficient; and to make search through the Burgh, and take an account of what arms are in the hands of any of the inhabitants, see what condition the same are in, and to have such as are decayed or out of order repaired and made fit for service ; and to cause the clerk keep an account of such arms as are found amongst the inhabitants, and of the names of the persons who bath them, and the condition they are in; and also to concur with the well-affected gentlemen of the County in all proper measures for the defence of the Government and our happy constitution in Church and State, and to take all proper measures that can contribute to the safety and preservation thereof." [Town Council Minutes.]

It was unfortunate that these resolutions were not acted upon, as the Council knew by their own messengers that the rebels were preparing to march southward. " By our best accounts they will go by Dumfries, which I'll be extremely sorry for," wrote the Provost of Glasgow, on the 14th, to Provost Bell; yet little or nothing was done to prepare for the threatened visitation-the blame of this neglect, however, resting as much on the Government as on the local authorities.

About the close of the same month (September), one of the magistrates sent to the Gentleman's Magazine an interesting statement regarding the condition of the town as affected by the rebel movement "at Dumfries and in this County." He says:- "We took an exact account of the effective men and arms, that they might be in readiness to rise upon the first warning; and writing to Edinburgh, were answered by the people ill power there, that they were glad to hear of the steadiness and loyalty of the people, but had received no instructions from the Government: which when they did, we should be acquainted with. So far as I can judge, the same spirit which you took notice of in 1715 was, with proper encouragement and support, ready to have been exerted at this time; numbers being still alive, in all the places you mention, who ventured themselves and their all in the same cause. But would you know the truth of the matter? This unhappy affair was represented still as a trifle; and the rebels as a contemptible mob that would soon be subdued. Every body was so over prudent, that nobody would take upon him to head us without a warrant from the King or Regency."

The writer, after describing the Royalist defeat at Preston, went on to say:- "The rebels were now absolutely masters of Scotland: our hands were, at the beginning, tied up; and they might, when they pleased, have cut all our throats. All this country is now enraged or discouraged; and the more so, as they must remain idle spectators of their country's ruin, without having it in their power to prevent it, or help themselves. All our towns are laid under heavy contributions. There is no law, no trade, no money; and we are now at the mercy of those who measure all right by the length of their sword. And yet the people remain unmoved, and are no way determined by this rash adventurer; regarding as nothing all his successes, promises, threatenings, and boastings."

The picture here drawn of Dumfries contrasts unfavourably with the condition of the town in 1715, when its bold, warlike attitude did much to foil the schemes of the first Pretender. A new generation had risen up, less conversant with the art of war-with a diminished sense also, perhaps, of the evils of arbitrary rule; and the Duke of Perth, when within half a day's march of the Burgh, was certainly viewed with far less apprehension than Viscount Kenmure when he menaced it thirty years before. Hence the comparatively feeble exertions made in 1745 to put the town into a proper state of defence, and to give the rebels a hot reception, should they come that way. The mural defences had fallen into neglect, and no adequate steps were taken to repair them ; there was no mustering of the able-bodied inhabitants-no influx of volunteers from the vicinity; the militia was not called out : the town was therefore left an easy prey to the enemy, who but for this circumstance would scarcely have been tempted to seize or plunder it. Under such circumstances, it evinced no audacity on the part of the insurgents that they, when yet at a far distance from the town, demanded from it a money contribution.

Immediately after the battle of Prestonpans, Provost Bell received an unwelcome message to that effect from Prince Charles. The letter embodying it (dated Holyrood House, 26th September, 1745, and written by the Prince's secretary) ran thus:- "Sir,-You are hereby ordered, upon the receipt of this, to repair to the secretary's office in the Palace of Holyrood House, there to have the contribution to be paid by the town of Dumfries for his Highness's use ascertained, which shall be done according and in proportion to the duties of excise arising out of the said town of Dumfries; for the payment of which said contribution the said duty shall be assigned. This you are ordered upon pain of rebellion forthwith to obey. By his Highness's command. - J. C. MURRAY "

Mr. Goldie, writing on the 1st of October to Dr. Waugh, says:-"Letters are sent by common Edinburgh cadys from the new Secretary of State to all the provosts of burghs in this corner of Scotland, requiring them to repair to the Secretary's office immediately, to settle the contributions to be paid by the several burghs, under the pain of rebellion. This is carrying matters with a very high hand. But what can be done? To comply or refuse are equally hazardous. Are the mighty promises of making us a free and happy people to be thus fulfilled? I believe the demand will not be complied with till it be renewed with an armed force. How will the English like our Scotts way of levying money? You got once a king from us, will you long for such another? If a party [of the rebels] come here, your humble servant must retire. They know us all by head-mark; and it is not unlikely but, on second thoughts, two or three of us may come your way." [Carlisle in 1745, p. 30. Dr. Waugh had previously invited Mr. Goldie to take refuge in Carlisle in the event of the rebels visiting Dumfries.]

The Dumfries Town Council, in hopes that "something might turn up" for their protection, treated the rebel missive with neglect, till a second summons from Holyrood compelled them to meet for its consideration-with what result is shown in the following minute:- "The said day (October 21) the magistrates and Council considering the present commotions and confusions in this kingdom, and that it is incumbent on them to take the best and prudentest measure for the honour, safety, and benefit of this place, with respect to a contribution demanded from this Burgh, they appoint a committee of the magistrates - Dean and Treasurer, Provost Crosbie, Provost Ewart, Bailie James Gilchrist, Mr. Fergusson, Mr. Corson, the Convener, and two deacons, whereof five a quorum-to concert and advise with the most considerable inhabitants of the place the properest measures to be taken by the town in the present circumstance of affairs, and to report their opinion from time to time to the Council when they shall see it necessary." [Town Council Minutes.] A marginal note, afterwards written in the record, explains what the minute only hints at, that it was " the rebels" who called for this tribute-the obnoxious term being probably omitted at the time in accordance with the very prudent policy adopted by the authorities. The "honour" of the old Whig Burgh, which they professed to have in view, should have led them to send a cartel of defiance in reply to the Jacobite demand for money; though, every thing considered, they best secured the "safety" of the place by returning a compliant answer. A refusal to pay the contribution might have provoked a vengeful visit from the Prince, which they had no sufficient means to ward off; and the vain bravado of the Council might have had for its sequel the town laid waste.
When the rebel army reached Duddingston, on its way to the South, it was separated into two divisions. One, commanded by the Prince in person, proceeded towards the eastern border, and on the 8th of November occupied the village of Brampton, in order to check Marshall Wade, in the event of that officer advancing from Newcastle to protect Carlisle. The other division, under the Duke of Perth, took the western route to the latter city.

The enemy's progress was carefully watched by the agents of the magistrates and Mr. Goldie, and faithfully reported to Dr. Waugh. The latter, writing to his London friend on the 2nd of November, says:-" The Provost of Dumfries writes last night `that a gentleman of that town was just arrived from Edinburgh, who came out last Thursday about twelve o'clock at noon, and brings advices that the baggage, artillery, ammunition, &c., were upon waggons and carts going to Dalkeith, and that the whole army were in motion and preparing to march southward; that they gave out they were to go by Kelso, and were resolved to meet Marshall Wade and give him battle. "Two days afterwards, Dr. Waugh received a note from Provost Bell, inclosing a communication from a Dumfries merchant, to the following effect:- "Two gentlemen who can be depended on, in riding between Moffat and the Crook, on Saturday, 2nd November, after five at night, met a countryman about three miles from the Crook, who said he was going to Annandale. Upon asking the news of him, he told them he had come from Peebles, and that before he came away the Provost had got a message sent him by the rebels to prepare meat, drink, and lodging for 1,800 men. ... The other returned to Dumfries, who relates that on Sabbath the 3rd, at ten o'clock forenoon, he was overtaken at Moffat by another man riding express from Peebles, of whom his friend had taken the opportunity of writing a letter that he might call upon him at Moffat; and there that express told him he left Peebles about two o'clock, Sabbath morning, and that the above-mentioned 1,800 men, with 150 carts with baggage, ammunition, &c., were come there on Saturday night, and a little before he left the town a larger body came up, which he was informed were to the number of 4,000 men, and of this an express was immediately sent to General Wade from Moffat." We close our obligations to this interesting correspondence by copying the subjoined note:

"The Provost of Dumfries to Dr. Waugh.
"Dumfries, 5th November, 1745, 8 at night.

"This moment I have advice by an express from Moffat, that a quartermaster belonging to the Highlanders came there about one of the clock this day, to secure quarters for 4,000 foot and 600 horse, and the messenger says he saw them within half a mile of the town before he came away. We expect them, or part of them, this way to-morrow. I beg you will dispatch expresses to Penrith, Kendal, Lancaster, and Whitehaven; and am most respectfully your most obedient servant."

The rebels, however, did not pass from Moffat to Dumfries -the doom of the Burgh was delayed. Carlisle was the game they had in view; and that city, strongly walled and thoroughly warned though it was, fell into their hands like a bird into the net of the fowler. The Duke of Perth's division marched down the vale of Annan towards the Border city. So bad were the roads that the baggage waggons could scarcely keep up with the men, and a portion of the stores were on this account left by them at the village of Ecclefechan. Intelligence to this effect having reached Dumfries, a party of the loyal inhabitants resolved upon an anti-rebel raid. Hurrying to the village-a distance of sixteen miles-they surprised the soldiers left in charge of the baggage, seized the articles of which it was composed, and returned with them in triumph. Among the spoils were numerous pikes and scythe-blades used by the Highlanders at Prestonpans, some of which-rusty relics of the time-are still preserved within the Mid-Steeple of the Burgh.

Carlisle Castle, utterly neglected by the Government, and garrisoned chiefly by the Cumberland and Westmoreland militia-which had "a leaning towards the Stuarts, or at least an indifference towards the House of Hanover" [Carlisle in 1745, p. 98.] -made no defence. It surrendered with the city to the Duke of Perth, on the 15th of November; who, on entering to take possession of his prize next day, solemnly proclaimed King James-the mayor and other officers, in their robes, and bearing the city sword and mace, giving their attendance. The keys of Carlisle were presented to the Prince at Brompton by the mayor and corporation on bended knee; and on the 18th, Charles Edward made his entry into the city, mounted on a white charger and preceded by not fewer than a hundred pipers.

Stimulated by so many triumphs, Prince Charles set out on the 21st at the head of his army in the direction of London, fully impressed with the idea that he would have little difficulty in becoming master of the English metropolis. After the lapse of a fortnight, the bright dream of Charles Edward had well-nigh vanished. The Highland host reached Derby, and then, like the waters of an ebbing tide, retired northwardno auxiliary streams having flowed in to carry it on to the seat of Government. [The army, according to Maxwell, was never in better spirits than at Derby it was only the urgent representations of Lord George Murray that induced the Prince to order a retreat, p. 73.] The Prince confidently expected that his ranks would be greatly swelled on his southward journey, and that succours would also reach him from France. He was disappointed as regards both; and with three armies marching to oppose him, and his own officers unwilling under such adverse conditions to proceed, he was constrained to retrace his steps, and to admit that the crown which beckoned him onward was but a delusive phantom, like the air-drawn dagger of Macbeth.

There is still extant a journal, kept by the Rev. George Duncan, at this time minister of Lochrutton, near Dumfries, which contains several curious references to the Rebellion. The following entry is given, dated Monday, 16th December:- "News came to Dumfries that the rebels were flying before the Duke of Cumberland; and orders were sent by him to the northern counties to arm, in order to catch the fugitives. On this the several parishes of the Presbytery were ordered to arm.' In obedience to this command, the parishioners of Lochrutton tendered their services to the magistrates of Dumfries; and twelve of them, it is stated, "went with other volunteers to guard Annan bridge," the patriotic minister going with them to animate their zeal; but, being induced to return to hi,, pastoral duties by the authorities of the town, the retreating rebels reached Carlisle on the 19th of December; and, with the view of withstanding them at the various passes into Scotland and giving time for the Government troops to overtake them armed parties were sent out from several parishes. These volunteers proved quite incompetent for the perilous task assigned to them, which could only have been done, with any chance of success, by veteran soldiers. A large party from Annandale took up a position on the Scotch side of the Esk, big with the ambition of pitching the Highlanders headlong into that river as they attempted to cross it. But when the plaided warriors appeared on the opposite bank, and the battlenotes of the pibroch rose loud and defiant, the raw volunteers wheeled round and vanished; only one officer, afterwards minister of Middlebie, remaining to fire a solitary random shot by way of testimony against the rebels. The dozen doughty defenders of Annan bridge evinced the same discretion, as, on learning the flight of their brethren, they hurried home to Lochrutton-the minister's own man being one of the first to flee; and no sooner did he reach his master's kitchen, than he dropped down on a long settle, and fainted away.

The Highlanders crossed the Esk at Longtown, one hundred men abreast. There were at once two thousand of them in the river; and so swollen was it at the time that nothing of them was visible but their bonneted heads and shoulders. Holding each other by their coat necks, they stemmed the impetuous current, losing not a man in the passage; and as soon as the opposite bank was reached, the pipes struck merrily up, and they danced till they were dry again. About 2,000, under Lord George Murray, the Marquis of Tullibardine, Lord Ogilvie, and Lord Nairn, then proceeded northwards by Ecclefechan; and the main body, 4,000 strong, with the Prince, the Duke of Perth, Lord Elcho, Lord Pitsligo, Lochiel, and Keppoch, marched towards Dumfries in a more westerly route. On Friday (the 20th), Lord Elcho rode forward at the head of 500 men - "all plaided and plumed in their tartan array" - along the old Annan road, but wearied with their protracted travel; and when, towards dusk, they entered Dumfries by St. Michael Street, they met with neither check nor challenge, though a partial muster of the County militia had been made whilst the rebels were in England. The rest of the division, commanded by Prince Charles, halted midway at Annan all night, joining their comrades early on the following day. Such house accommodation as could be obtained was taken advantage of by the strangers; but most of them, winter though it was, camped down in the fields to the south of what is now called Shakespeare Street.

Behold, then, the ancient Burgh once more under a military despotism! It proved of brief duration, but it was grinding and oppressive; and doubtless many of those who suffered from it regretted, when too late, that more had not been done to prevent the calamity. On the evening of Saturday the 21st of December, the rulers and other leading men of the town met in the Presbytery-house attached to the New Church, for the purpose of considering the renewed demand made upon them for money. They could not assemble in the Council Chamber, for that was occupied by a baud of Highlanders. Provost Bell was not present to preside over them, he having been seized as a hostage that the Burgh would keep good faith with its captors. A sad meeting it must have been; which conviction is intensified as we read the following record of its proceedings:- "The said day Bailie Graham and Bailie Carruthers represented to the Council and community of this Burgh called to attend the meeting, that Mr. John Hay represented he had commission from his Royal Highness Prince Charles, called by him Regent of Scotland, now in this Burgh with a powerful army, to demand of the said Burgh a contribution of two thousand pounds sterling, to be paid to-morrow against eight o'clock at night, and to deliver to him, for the use of their army, one thousand pair of shoes, together with all their arms, public and private, that are to be found in town, against the same time, and that as they would redeem their houses and families from destruction and ruin; which certification was by the said Mr. Hay frequently repeated to the said magistrates, and who would not allow them any longer time for paying in the said contribution, and delivering the said shoes and arms, than as above; Which being considered by the said magistrates and Council, with advice and consent of the community called to attend this meeting, they, the said magistrates and Council, with advice and consent foresaid, unanimously grant warrant to, and appoint the bailies and the convener, the dean, and treasurer, or any one or two of them, to borrow the said sum of two thousand pounds sterling, in whole or in parcils, wherever it can be had, to be lodged in the treasurer's hands for paying the said two thousand pounds sterling; and also to purchase and procure the said number of shoes, and to take up the foresaid arms, for answering the foresaid demand; and to grant bills and bonds for the said money and shoes to any person or persons who shall lend and provide the same, bearing interest from the time of borrowing and until payment. And the magistrates and Council hereby bind and oblige them and the other magistrates of this Burgh, and their successors in office, and the community of the said Burgh for the time being, to free and relieve the said obligants, and every of them, and their heirs, executors, and successors, of the said bills and securities so to be granted to them : the which sums are to be assessed and proportioned upon and amongst the merchants, heritors, craftsmen, and other inhabitants of and in this Burgh as shall afterwards be judged proper."

Charles, on entering Dumfries, accompanied by the Duke of Perth, Lord Elcho, Lord Pitsligo, the French ambassador, and the chiefs of Lochiel, Clanranald, Glengarry, and Keppoch, forthwith assumed the absolute sovereignty of the place. In the Lochrutton journal, under the date of Sabbath, December 22nd, occurs the following entry:- "A melancholy day-the rebels in Drumfries - about 4,000 - with the Pretender's son at their head-in great rage at the town for carrying off their baggage from Annandale, and for raising volunteers, and calling out the militia of the country in defence of the Government-demanded 2,000 sterling of contributions, . . . and that they convey their carts, with their carriages after them, to their headquarters. They were most rude in the town-pillaged some shops-pulled shoes off gentlemen's feet in the streets. In most of the churches for some miles about Drumfries, no sermon. God be blessed' we had public worship. I lectured I Sam. iv.; Mr. John Scott, minister of Drumfries (there being no sermon there), preached. Much confusion in all the neighbouring parishes-rebels robbing people's stables-pillaging some houses. They came to the border of our parish, but, God be thanked: came no further, and we suffered no loose usage."

At that time the Blue Bell Inn-a house still standing near the foot of High Street, on the west side-was the chief place of public entertainment in the Burgh; and the tenement now occupied as the Commercial Hotel [At present tenanted by Mr. William Clark. Prince Charles's room is No. 6. Two new stories were added to the house a few years ago.] was one of its principal mansions. Charles took possession of both for his own special use, residing chiefly in the former, and holding high state in the latter on one or two particular occasions. The apartment in which he held his levees, and indulged in other courtly ceremonies, was not unworthy of such distinction. Preserved as much as possible in its original condition, its ample dimensions (twenty feet square), and its walls enriched with gilded mouldings and grooved pilasters, still give to it something of a palatial aspect. What a striking picture that hall must have presented when occupied by the leaders of the rebel movement-the dauntless Clanranald, the lofty Lochiel, the impetuous Lord Elcho, the prudent Duke of Perth; the other chiefs with less distinctive features, but all men of mark; and the central figure, easily recognized as a prince even in such a patrician circle, but wearing a pensive air, all unlike the sunny radiance which lighted up his handsome face when he commenced his journey to the South. In the two months that have elapsed he has become visibly graver and older, less buoyant, more exactive and imperious. He has learned during the interval that the "right divine" on which he leaned is but a feeble reed-that his race has no hold of the English heart-that many of the Scots who once cried "God bless him!" deserted his cause as soon as he left their country-that on his return to it his foes have multiplied-and that before he can be much more than the nominal Regent of Scotland, he will have to enter upon a fiery conflict, which may after all fail miserably. It need not be wondered at that Charles Edward looks sad-gloomy, even, at times-as, sitting in council with his friends at Dumfries during these memorable days in December, 1745, he receives despatches announcing dangerous Hanoverian movements in the North, or messengers who tell him that Wade or Cumberland is following rapidly on his track. We feel persuaded that much of the Prince's ill-treatment of Dumfries is due to the morbid influence of his own mishaps. He stood in great want, too, of money and stores; so that necessity combined with other causes to render his temporary rule over the Burgh exactive and severe. Not only was a heavy pecuniary contribution levied on the inhabitants, and a large supply of foot-gear called for, but much horse furniture, many stands of arms, nine casks of gun-powder, and the funds possessed by the Government officials, were appropriated by the rebels.

Private property did not altogether escape their vindictiveness or cupidity, though there is every reason to believe that the Prince desired it to be respected by his followers. "The Provost of Dumfries," says Sir Walter Scott in his "Tales of a Grandfather," "a gentleman of family named Corsane, [Mr. Corsane was only ex-provost at this period, the chief magistrate being, as already mentioned, Mr. George Bell.] who had shown himself a stanch adherent of the Government, was menaced with the destruction of his house and property. It is not very long since the late Mrs. M'Culloch of Ardwell, daughter of Provost Corsane, told your grandfather that she remembered well, when a child of six years old, being taken out of her father's house, as if it was to be instantly burned. Too young to be sensible of the danger, she asked the Highland officer who held her in his arms to show her the Pretender; which the good-natured Gael did, under condition that little Miss Corsane was in future to call him the Prince. Neither did they carry their threats into execution against the Provost or his mansion."

Mr. Robert Chambers furnishes some pleasant gossip regarding the Jacobite occupation of the Burgh. "Within the last three years," he says, "an aged female lived in Edinburgh who recollected the occupation of Dumfries by the Highland army, being then seventeen years of age. She lived opposite to the Prince's lodging, and frequently saw him. In her father's house several of the men were quartered; and it was her recollection that they greatly lamented the course which they had taken, and feared the issue of the expedition. The proprietor of the house occupied by the Prince was a Mr. Richard Lowthian, a Non juror, and proprietor of Staffold Hall, in Cumberland. Though well-affected to the Prince's cause, he judged it prudent not to appear in his company; and yet neither did he wish to offend him by the appearance of deliberately going out of his way. The expedient he adopted in this dilemma was one highly characteristic of the time. He got himself filled so exceedingly drunk, that his being kept back from the company of the guest was only a matter of decency. His wife, who could not well be taxed with treason, did the honours of the house without scruple; and some other Jacobite ladies, particularly those of the attainted house of Carnwath, came forward to grace his Court. When the writer was at Dumfries in 1838, he saw in the possession of a private family one of a set of table napkins of the most beautiful damask, resembling the finest satin, which the ladies Dalzell had taken to grace the table of the Prince, and which they had kept ever after, with a care due to the most precious relics." [There is a set of similar articles-perhaps the very same-in the museum of the Crichton Institution, Dumfries. A plate with a red floral design, which formed part of a dinner service used by the Prince at the Blue Bell Inn, is now in the possession of Mr. Robert Gillies, engraver, Dumfries. It belonged to his father-in-law, the late Mr. John M`Cormick, a great enthusiast in local antiquities. We know of a third genuine relic of Prince Charlie. After leaving Dumfries for Upper Nithsdale, the Prince, with two Highland officers, entered the house of Dr. John Trotter, Burnfoot, Tynron, and called for refreshments. A bottle of brandy was produced, and Charles, without waiting for glasses, poured part of the liquor into a china bowl, and drank; after which he handed it to his officers, who did the same. The bowl-a handsome one, of real Oriental manufacture -is preserved in the family as a prized memento of the Prince's visit.]

As noticed by the minister of Lochrutton, there were no public religious services in Dumfries on the Sunday of the occupation. Instead of worship and rest, there was the turbulent license of military rule; the stirring bugle call, the harsh notes of the bagpipe, for the music of the Sabbath bells. The douce burgesses, instead of proceeding churchward as usual, sat within their dwellings in fear and trembling; few of them caring to encounter the tartaned strangers, who, scattered in parties here and there, made the streets look singularly foreign yet picturesque. Not a few unwelcome domiciliary visits were paid by the unceremonious mountaineers. Some of them prowled stealthily about, enriching themselves at the expense of the Lowland Whigs, whom they deemed fair game; but we have no means of knowing to what precise extent this pillaging system was carried on. Less unwelcome, though far from agreeable, were the calls made that day on the inhabitants by the committee appointed to borrow the heavy sum exacted by the rebels. Bailies Carruthers and Graham, with their colleagues, to whom this business was assigned, must have spent a wearisome Sabbath in carrying it through. Landed proprietors, professional gentlemen, merchants, and tradesmen, were appealed to by the committee; and lest the townspeople should not contribute liberally enough to this forced loan, applications were made to rich persons at a distance for aid to the Burgh in this perplexing juncture of its affairs.

Many large subscriptions were obtained. Thus, we read in the list that William Gordon, of Campbeltown, contributed 356 7s. 9d.; Joseph Corrie, town clerk, Dumfries, 218; John Johnston, provost of Annan, 100; James Hoggan, in Cumlongan, 100 12s.; William M'William, in Greenhead, Carlaverock, 80. John Milligan, merchant, Kirkcudbright, 80; and Sir Robert Laurie of Maxwelton, 40. But the aggregate was in a great measure made up of smaller sums; Charles Kirkpatrick & Sons, merchants, giving 17 10s.; John Ewart, late provost of Dumfries, giving 8 2s.; James Aiken, convener of the Trades, 2 2s.; Adam Marchbanks, deacon of the weavers, 1; Charles Mercer, mathematician, 1; William Reid, deacon of the smiths, 10s. 6d.; down to 5s., the mite of a poor widow named Agnes Lewars. [For a full list of the contributors, see Appendix M.] Of the 2,000 demanded, 1,195 was obtained by the appointed time-eight o'clock at night-in hard cash, for which bills were granted to the lenders by the Burgh authorities, and other men of substance. The rest of the money was not subscribed for, or at least remained unpaid till after the lapse of several days. It was no easy task to borrow such a large sum, on a short notice, in a town that could boast of little wealth, even though the district around was also drawn upon; and to supply a thousand pair of shoes in twenty-four hours was found to be impossible. We know that, forty-five years afterwards, there were in Dumfries exactly 236 men and boys engaged in King Crispin's craft; and probably they numbered about 200 in 1745, of whom not more than a fourth would have establishments of their own. All these were visited by the collecting committee; and after having emptied them, and added to the new articles all the old shoes that could otherwise be obtained, it was found that the entire stock at the hour of call numbered only 255 pairs, or little more than a quarter of the supply demanded by the rebels. Late at night the committee reported to the Prince, through the medium of his secretary, the measure of success that had attended their exertions, and received orders to complete the contribution of money and shoes with the utmost speed.

Still later the miniature Court at Mr. Lowthian's was convulsed by the receipt of startling intelligence. Towards midnight, and whilst Charles and his counsellors were still busily engaged in State affairs, a messenger called in breathless haste and insisted on seeing the Prince. As he was known to be a friend, he was admitted to an interview with the Pretender in a separate room. [This is No. 7 of the Commercial Hotel.] When Charles soon after rejoined his chiefs, he was observed to be more than usually dejected. It was evident to them that he had received unpleasant news of some kind; and their worst apprehensions were realized when he announced that the son of the Elector of Hanover was hurrying down upon them at the head of a great army, and might reach Dumfries before daybreak. There was no rest in the rebel Court or camp that night. Long ere the sun rose in the following morning, the drum beat to arms; and whether the Highlanders or the townspeople were most terrified by the discordant summons, it would be difficult to say; but when the cause became known, the alarm of the latter gave way to exultation. They had suffered much from the Pretender's visit-were delighted at the idea of being relieved from it soon; and when he did disappear, they never thought of singing the Jacobite strain, " Will ye no come back again?" Off next day went the Prince and his entire army, carrying with them, as hostages for the balance of the contribution, Mr. Andrew Crosbie of Holm, formerly provost of the Burgh, and Mr. Walter Riddell of Glenriddell, one of its merchant councillors.

The alarm which hastened their departure was quite unfounded. A devoted Dumfries Jacobite, named M'Ghie, a painter by trade, hearing that the Duke of Cumberland had laid siege to Carlisle, went, with the approval of some sympathizing friends, towards that city, in order to watch the movements of the royal army. He set off for that purpose on the morning of the memorable Sabbath to which frequent reference has been made; and, wearied with hovering all day on the road, he had just sat down to supper in a public-house at Annan - which stands nearly midway between Dumfries and Carlisle-when a practical humourist, who guessed the nature of his secret mission, announced with rueful visage that the Whig Duke had captured Carlisle, crossed the Esk, and was in full march after the rebels. Big with the burden of this fictitious tale, Mr. M'Ghie galloped to Dumfries, a distance, by the circuitous road then in use, of about seventeen miles, never resting for a minute till he had communicated the alarming tidings to the Prince, as already stated.

The Highland host proceeded up Nithsdale towards the west country; the Pretender and his principal officers resting on the night of Monday, the 23rd, in Drumlanrig Castle. Three full-length portraits-those of King William, Queen Mary, and Queen Anne, that still adorn the staircase of that ducal mansion-bear disfiguring tokens of the visit; some of the party, in order to manifest their hatred to the royal family, having stabbed their dirks through the pictures. The two gentlemen carried away captive by them from Dumfries did not effect their escape when a short distance from the town, as has been frequently stated. On the contrary, they were taken to Glasgow, and only set at liberty after they had paid down, in full tale, 8 15s., the balance that remained of the 200 levied upon the Burgh.

Once more the Town Council assembled in peace and freedom in their own hall, under the presidency of Provost Bell, all well pleased to get rid of the rapacious strangers; though sorry at the same time that a disagreeable duty had devolved upon them in consequence of the rebel visit-namely, to devise means for paying back the sums that had been borrowed. The first business meeting after the precipitate flight of the Jacobite army was held on the 27th of January, 1746; at which the Provost, after reporting the steps taken to raise the money, explained "that the foresaid sum of 2,000 sterling had been paid at Glasgow by Andrew Crosbie, late provost, and Walter Riddell, merchant, who were taken hostages for the same, conform to a discharge thereof, under the hand and seal of John Murray, secretary, dated the first day of January, just now produced." The Provost also tabled a receipt signed "Andrew Lumsden, acknowledging the delivery to the latter of the 255 pairs of shoes exacted from the town;" [Town Council Minutes. ] and he gave information also regarding the arms that had been delivered up, and the forage that had been furnished, at the call of the insurgents.

These statements having been duly considered by the meeting, it was resolved that an assessment should be levied to pay off the debt that had been incurred. The stentmasters appointed to undertake this laborious duty gave in to a subsequent meeting a valuable return, which supplies us with reliable information regarding the wealth of the town at this period of its history. According to the instructions given to them, they "took up an account of the rents of the tenements and buildings in the Burgh, the yearly value of such parts as are possessed by the heritors themselves, also the value of all goods, household plenishing, corns, wares, merchandise, and other perishable effects in the possession of the inhabitants," bodily clothing excepted; and they reported the value of the houses and public buildings to be 34,483 4s.; of the goods to be 28,130 19s. 9d. - in all, 62,514 3s. 9d.: so that the latter sum represents the pecuniary worth of Dumfries at the date of the Rebellion. For the purpose of letting the burden fall with diminished weight on the poorer classes, some of the wealthy heritors generously volunteered to pay an extra rate amounting to 11,134 13s. 4d., which raised the aggregate to 73,748 17s. 1d. - the amount on which the assessment was to be levied. The stentmasters found that, after allowing 159 11s. 1d. for the shoes and forage and the expense of the collection, a rate of three per cent. would cover 2,159 11s, 1d., the entire sum due; and, accordingly, a cess was imposed of three pounds on every hundred-a grievous exaction, which many of the people did not submit to without grumbling, and which was not finally paid without great difficulty and till after the lapse of nearly two years. It has been computed that the loss incurred by the town on account of Charles Edward's visit amounted to not less than 4,000.

A claim for reimbursement made by the town was favourably entertained through the exertions of the Duke of Queensberry and Sir James Johnstone, member for the Dumfries district of burghs. His Grace, in a letter to the Provost, dated London, April 14th, 1750, intimated that the Government had agreed to allow the sum of 2,848 5s. 11d. to cover the money tribute and the other exactions. "Not thinking it adviseable," he says, "to trust the warrant to the common post, I propose to put it into Sir James Johnstone's hands, who will set out from hence in a day or two, and I daresay will take care to deliver it safe, as I can vouch for his having been all along extreamly anxious for the procuring it." The royal warrant here referred to was duly received. It was addressed to the Barons of the Exchequer, the preamble being as follows:-"George R.-Trusty and well-beloved, we greet you well. Whereas, the Commissioners of our Treasury have laid before us a petition of the Provost, Bailies, Dean of Guild, and Treasurer of Drumfries, on behalf of themselves and the community of the said town, representing unto us that during the late Rebellion they were at great expense in providing arms and raising and subsisting men for the said town, as also in raising recruits for the marching regiments who served in the battles of Falkirk and Culloden, and were also obliged upon the return of the rebel army from England to pay a contribution of two thousand pounds sterling, and to deliver to the rebels two hundred and fifty-five pair of shoes; which said contribution money, with the other expenses before-mentioned, do amount in the whole to the sum of two thousand eight hundred and forty-eight pounds five shillings and eleven pence (after deducting one hundred and thirty-three pounds six shillings and eight pence for interest money which we have disallowed): and therefore the said magistrates and community have most humbly besought us to take their case into our royal consideration, and grant them such relief as we shall think proper." His Majesty, after stating that he considers it just and reasonable that the claim should be conceded, authorizes the Barons to pay the specified sum out of "the monies arising from the estates of the late Lord Elcho," forfeited to the Crown by his having been guilty of high treason.

The Duke of Queensberry, in acknowledging a letter of thanks sent to him by the Provost for his good service on this occasion, disclaimed all merit on account of it; expressed his satisfaction with the result, and added: "I shall always rejoice at every event tending to the prosperity of Drumfries, and will never fail to use my endeavours, upon all occasions, to promote it" - a profession that was no hollow one on the part of "the good Duke," as he was deservedly called by the people of the Burgh. The compensation money thus obtained was in due course distributed among those of the inhabitants on whom the three per cent. assessment had been levied; the chief duty of doing so devolving on the town clerk, Mr. Malcolm. [Mr. Malcolm built, at the foot of High Street, a house that was at the time perhaps the best mansion in the Burgh. It now belongs to and is occupied by one of his successors in office, Mr. William Martin, the present town clerk. Extract from Council minute, 23rd July, 1153:-"A petition was received from Mr. Archibald Malcolm, setting forth that he wished to remove several old thatched houses at the foot of Southgate-brae, of which he was proprietor, in order to build upon it a double house for his own residence."]

After occupying Glasgow, the rebels retired into Stirlingshire, beat the Royalists on Falkirk moor, and then retreated, even in their hour of triumph. Whatever glimpses of good fortune might at times smile upon their flag, the gloom of irretrievable defeat was "casting its shadow before;" and, like the wounded stag, they retired to their Highland coverts only to die. A cruel Nemesis, in the person of the Duke of Cumberland, was at hand, [On the 3rd of March, the Town Council of Dumfries having learned that the Duke had entered North Britain "to command his Majesty's forces," appointed a committee of their number to repair to Edinburgh and " congratulate his Royal Highness upon his arrival in Scotland, and at the same time to express the loyalty and affection of this Burgh to his Majesty's person and Government, and our present happy establishment." ] commissioned to pour out the vials of wrath on the forlorn Prince and his Highland followers, because the tyranny of his fathers had alienated the nation from the House of Stuart. The rebels could vanquish the incompetent Hawley at Falkirk, but they could not expect to cope successfully with the royal Duke, at the head of a force which nearly quadrupled their own; and so they hastened northward, depressed though resolute, as if conscious of their approaching doom. On Drummossie Moor, near Culloden, they were brought to bay and utterly defeated.

One body of Highlanders retired in good order, their pipes playing, and carrying with them the Stuart standard; the rest were broken up with fearful carnage; and the Prince, only when all hope was gone, withdrew from the fatal field. Well might the Celtic minstrel tune his harp to a doleful air, and lament the catastrophe in congenial strains like these:

"There There was no lack of bravery there-no spare of blood or breath;
For one to two our foes we dared, for freedom or for death.
The bitterness of grief is past, of terror and dismay;
The die was risked and foully cast, upon Culloden day."

No fewer than 1,200 rebels were slain or wounded on the field and in the pursuit; the Royalists behaving with a wanton brutality, that sullied the glory of their triumph. Charles Edward was accompanied from the scene of his thorough overthrow by the Duke of Perth, Lord Elcho, and a few horsemen. Crossing the Water of Nairn, he retired to the house of a gentleman in Stratharick, where, after a conference with Simon, Lord Lovat, he bade a final adieu to the wreck of his brave army, and then took refuge from his merciless pursuers in the Western Islands and among the mountains of the mainland. For five months the unfortunate Prince roamed about a hunted fugitive-the price of 30,000 set upon his head-incurring innumerable dangers and hardships, and bearing all his adverse fortune with a fortitude, and even good humour, that were truly heroic. On the 20th of September he succeeded in effecting his escape to France; but he was never in a position to attempt the revival of the Stuart cause. Prostrated on Drummossie Moor, it experienced no resurrection; and, however much we may admire the young Pretender's gallantry, and feel pity for his fate, it was doubtless well for the country that his enterprise failed, and that, as a consequence, the House of Hanover was fixed more securely on the throne than before.


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