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The Scottish Nation
Dumfries


DUMFRIES, Earl of, a title in the peerage of Scotland, now merged in that of the marquis of Bute, conferred in 1633, on William, seventh Lord Crichton of Sanquhar, [see SANQUHAR, lord,] who was created viscount of Ayr, by patent, 2d February 1622, and earl of Dumfries, viscount of Ayr, and Lord Crichton of Sanquhar and Cumnock, 12th June 1633. He had a charter of the earldom of Menteith, 20th December the same year. He married Eupheme, daughter of James Seton of Touch, and had by her three sons and two daughters.

      His eldest son, William, second earl, was a privy-councillor to King Charles the Second, and died in 1691. By his countess, Penelope, daughter of Sir Robert Swift, of the county of York, he had two sons and three daughters. His two sons having died before him, he obtained a new patent of the earldom of Dumfries, to his grandson, William Lord Crichton, after himself, and the heirs male of his body, and failing him, to the four sisters of the latter, namely, Penelope, Margaret, Mary, and Elizabeth respectively, and failing then, and the heirs of their bodies, to the nearest heirs of the said earl whatsoever. William Lord Crichton, here mentioned, was the son of Charles Lord Crichton, second son of the second earl, (his elder brother, Robert, having died very young,) by his wife, the Hon. Sarah Dalrymple, third daughter of the first viscount Stair. He succeeded as third earl, and died on the last day of February 1694, unmarried.

      His eldest sister, Penelope, became countess of Dumfries in her own right, in virtue of the patent of 1690. She married, 26th February 1698, her cousin, the Hon. William Dalrymple of Glenmure, second son of the first earl of Stair, and died at Clackmannan 6th March 1742, having issue, William earl of Dumfries and Stair; Hon. John Dalrymple, a captain of dragoons, who died unmarried 23d February 1742; James, third earl of Stair, (see STAIR, earl of,) three other sons and two daughters, the elder of whom, Lady Elizabeth Crichton Dalrymple, married John Macdowall of Freugh in the county of Wigton, and had by him Patrick, fifth earl of Dumfries, four other sons, and two daughters.

      William, fourth earl of Dumfries, had a cornetís commission in his uncle, the earl of Stairís regiment, the 6th dragoons, in 1721, in which regiment and the third foot guards he served for twenty-six years. In 1742 he succeeded his mother as earl of Dumfries, and was aide-de-camp to the earl of Stair, at the battle of Dettingen, 26th June 1743. He was appointed captain-lieutenant in the third regiment of footguards in 1744, and on the abolition of heritable jurisdictions in 1747 he got for the sheriffship of Clackmannan two thousand pounds, and for the regality of Cumnock and Glenmure four hundred pounds. In 1752 he was invested with the order of the Thistle, and in 1760 succeeded his brother James, as fourth earl of Stair, and was thenceforward styled earl of Dumfries and Stair. He died at Dumfries-house, Ayrshire, 27th July 1768, without surviving issue, having been twice married, and was succeeded in the title of Dumfries by his nephew, Patrick Macdowall of Freugh; and in that of Stair by his cousin, John Dalrymple.

      Patrick Macdowall of Freugh, fifth earl, born 15th October 1726, was an officer in the army. He was chosen one of the sixteen representatives of the Scottish peerage at the general election, 1790, and rechosen in 1796 and 1802. He died at Edinburgh 7th April 1803, in the 77th year of his age. He married Margaret, daughter of Ronald Crauford of Restalrig, in the county of Edinburgh, and had two daughters, the younger of whom died an infant. The elder, Lady Elizabeth Penelope Crichton, born at Dumfries-house, 25th November 1772, married, October 12, 1792, John, Viscount Mountstuart, eldest son of John first marquis of Bute. He died 22d January 1794, and she, dying in the lifetime of her father, at Southampton, 25th July 1797, in the 25th year of her age, was buried at Cumnock, leaving two sons, John, sixth earl of Dumfries and second marquis of Bute, having succeeded to the latter title on the death of his grandfather the first marquis, 16th November 1814; and the Hon. (afterwards lord) Patrick James Herbert Crichton Stuart (posthumous), born at Brompton Park house, 20th August 1794, and on 28th May 1817 obtained the precedency and rank of a younger son of a marquis; died September 6, 1859. See BUTE, Marquis of).


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