Search just our sites by using our customised search engine
Unique Cottages | Electric Scotland's Classified Directory

Click here to get a Printer Friendly PageSmiley

The Scottish Nation

GALLOWAY, a surname derived from a district in the south-west of Scotland, which took its name from the Gael, Galli, or Irish settlers, in the eighth and two following centuries, and which acquired the name of Gallwalia, Gallawidia, Gallowagia, Gallwadia, Gallweia, Gallway, Galloway. The name may be merely Galliway or Gaelway, the bay of the Gael or Irish. “A Gaelic etymologist,” says Chalmers, “would probably derive the etymon of Galloway from Gallbagh, which the English would pronounce Gallwa or Gallway, the estuary or bay of the strangers or foreigners. It seems more than probably that this difficult name was originally imposed by the Irish settlers, and afterwards Saxonised, from the coincidence of the name. The legends of the country, however, attribute the origin of the name to King Galdus, who fought and fell on the bay of Wigton. This is the fabulous Galdus who is said by Boece and Buchanan to have opposed the Romans, though conducted by Agricola. We may herein see a slight trait of history, by connecting the fictitious Galdus with the real Galgac, who fought Agricola at the foot of the Grampians.” [Chalmers’ Caledonia, vol. i. p. 359.]

      Of this surname was a distinguished officer of the Indian army, General Sir Archibald Galloway, K.C.B., who served the East India Company for thirty-five years, and during that long period, besides actions in the field, was present at six sieges and seven storms, in four of which he was closely engaged. He was the son of Mr. James Galloway of Perth, and in 1799 he was appointed, as a cadet, to the 58th native infantry, of which he became the colonel in 1836. He was present at the siege of Delhi, and was one of the handful of men to whom the Company owed the remarkable defence of that city, when besieged by an army of 70,000 men, with 130 pieces of cannon. He was also at the siege of Bhurtpore, under lord Lake, and commanded the corps of sappers, the most distinguished in the army for the hard and hazardous service it had to perform. On two most sanguinary assaults he led this corps at the head of the forlorn hope, and in the latter was desperately wounded. Lord William Bentinck, when governor-general, nominated him to be one of the members of the Military Board under its new constitution, and on his departure from India, he received an expression of the high approbation of the governor-general in council. His services were honoured with public approbation by commanders-in-chief in India, on nine different occasions, and by the supreme government of India, or the Court of Directors and superior authorities in England, on upwards of thirty occasions, the former twenty-one, and the latter eleven times. He was the author of a Commentary on the Moohummuddan Law, and another on the Law, Constitution, and Government of India. His work on Sieges in India, at the recommendation of General Mudge of the royal engineers, was reprinted by the Court of Directors, and used at their military college. It was likewise, by the orders of the marquis of Hastings when governor-general, distributed to the army for general instruction. He wrote also other military treatises. In 1838 he was nominated a Companion of the Bath, and in 1848 a Knight Commander. In 1846 he was elected a director of the East India Company, and in 1849 he officiated as chairman, which office he held at the time of his death, which took place at London on 6th April 1850, aged 70.


GALLOWAY, lord of, the ancient title of the feudatory princes of that extensive district which, in former times, comprehended not only the shire of Wigton and the stewartry of Kirkcudbright, to which the name is now restricted, but also part of Dumfries-shire and the greatest part of Ayrshire. The first lord of Galloway mentioned in history with any certainty, is Jacob, who in 973 was one of the eight reguli who met Edgar at Chester. Fergus, a subsequent lord of Galloway, flourished in the reign of David the First. At his death his extensive inheritance was divided between his two sons, Gilbert and Uchtred. The former was the ancestor of the earls of Carrick; the latter was murdered by Gilbert’s son, Malcolm, by order of his father, 22d September 1174.

      Uchtred’s son, Roland, on the death of Gilbert, in 1185, possessed himself of all Galloway; but by the interposition of King Henry the Second of England, he relinquished Carrick to his cousin Duncan, the son of gilbert. On his marriage with Eva, or Elena, daughter of Richard de Moreville, high constable of Scotland, he obtained that office, in right of his wife. His eldest son, Alan, lord of Galloway, died in 1234. By his first wife, whose name is not known, Alan had a daughter, Elena, married to Roger de Quincy, earl of Winchester, who, in her right, became constable of Scotland. By his second wife, Margaret, eldest daughter of David, earl of Huntingdon, brother of King Malcolm the Fourth, and King William, he had two daughters, Devorgoil, married to John de Baliol, lord of Barnard castle, through which marriage sprung the claim of his fourth but only surviving son, John Baliol, to the Scottish crown, and Christian, the wife of William de Fortibus, earl of Albermarle. Having, by a third wife, no issue, Alan’s lordship was divided among the three daughters. Devorgoil’s only daughter, Marjory, was married to John Cumyn of Badenoch, a competitor for the crown.


GALLOWAY, earl of, a title possessed by the family of Stewart of Garlies (conferred in 1623), descended from Sir Walter Stewart, son of Sir James Stewart of Bonkyl, and grandson of Alexander high steward of Scotland. This Sir Walter Stewart obtained the barony of Garlies, in Wigtonshire, from John Randolph, earl of Moray, by charter, wherein the earl denominates him his uncle. His son, Sir John Stewart of Dalswinton, was made prisoner at the battle of Durham in 1346, and in 1357 was one of the hostages for King David the Second. His grand-daughter (Marion Stewart, heiress of her father, Sir Walter Stewart of Dalswinton) married, 17th October, 1396, Sir John Stewart, son of Sir William Stewart of Jedworth, sheriff of Teviotdale, and left two sons, William and John, the latter provost of Glasgow. The elder son, Sir William Stewart of Dalswinton and Garlies, obtained the estate of Minto in 1429, after much opposition from the Turnbulls, the former possessors. Sir William’s third son, Sir Thomas Stewart of Minto, was ancestor of the Lords Blantyre. His eldest surviving son, Sir Alexander Stewart, succeeded him, and the great-grandson of the latter, Sir Alexander Stewart of Garlies, was one of the prisoners taken at the rout of Solway, in November 1542. He appears to have been released in 1543, on giving his son and heir Alexander as his hostage. He died in 1590, and (his son, Alexander, the same who offered to fight Kirkaldy of Grange in 1571, having been killed with the regent Lennox the same year,) he was succeeded by his grandson, Sir Alexander Stewart of Garlies, who married Christian, daughter of Sir William Douglas of Drumlanrig, and died in 1596.

      His elder son, Sir Alexander Stewart, was the first peer of the family. After being knighted by King James the Sixth, he was created Lord Garlies by patent, dated at Whitehall, 19th July 1607, when he was sworn of the privy council. On 9th September 1623 he was created earl of Galloway. He was also of the privy council of Charles the First, and died in 1649. His elder son, Alexander, Lord Garlies, having predeceased him, his second son, Sir James Stewart, who had been created a baronet in 1627, became the second earl. For his loyalty to the king, he was in 1654 fined £4,000 by Cromwell’s act of grace and pardon. He died in June 1671. His elder son, Alexander, third earl, was succeeded by his eldest son, Alexander, fourth earl, who died unmarried in 1694, whereupon his next brother, James, became fifth earl. In 1706 he was appointed one of the commissioners of the treasury, and sworn a privy councillor, but nevertheless opposed the treaty of union in all its articles, except two or three. He died 16th February 1746.

      His eldest son, Alexander, sixth earl, died at Six in Provence, 24th September 1773, in the 79th year of his age. His eldest son, Alexander, Lord Garlies, predeceased him in 1738, in the 19th year of his age. A Collection of poems printed at Glasgow contains a tribute to the memory of this young nobleman (inserted in the Gentleman’s Magazine, vol. ix. p. 97), by his friend and fellow-student, the Hon. Mr. Boyle. His next brother having also died young, John, the third son, became seventh earl of Galloway. The sixth earl’s third and youngest son, the Hon. Keith Stewart of Glasserton, appointed a captain in the royal navy in 1762, commanded the Berwick in Admiral Keppel’s engagement with the French fleet in 1778, and the same ship, with a commodore’s broad pendant, in Admiral Parker’s action with the Dutch on the Dogger bank in August 1781. In the following year he commanded the Cambridge, in Lord Howe’s squadron sent to the relief of Gibraltar, when they had an engagement with the combined fleets. He became rear-admiral in 1790, and vice-admiral in 1794. At the general election of 1768, he had been chosen M.P. for the county of Wigton, and was rechosen three times afterwards. In 1784, he vacated his seat, on being appointed receiver-general of the land tax of Scotland. He died 5th May 1795, aged 56. His eldest son, Archibald Keith Stewart, was a midshipman on board the Queen Charlotte, Lord Howe’s flag ship, on the glorious first of June 1794, and in the same vessel, bearing Lord Bridport’s flag, when the French fleet were defeated off Port L’Orient, 23d June 1796. Next day, a fatal curiosity led him over the ship’s side, to observe the carpenters stopping the shot-holes, when he lost his hold, fell into the sea, and was drowned, in the 13th year of his age. Admiral Stewart’s second son, the Right Hon. James Alexander Stewart, born in 1784, married Mary Lady Hood, eldest daughter and coheir of Francis Lord Seaforth, and assumed the surname of Stewart Mackenzie. This gentleman, who was governor of the island of Ceylon, and subsequently lord high commissioner of the Ionian islands, died 24th September 1843, leaving issue Keith William Stewart Mackenzie of Seaforth, and other children.

      John, seventh earl of Galloway, was, in 1768, while Lord Garlies, appointed one of the gentlemen of the board of police, and on 15th August 1772, one of the commissioners of trade and plantations. He founded the town and seaport of Garlieston, in Wigtonshire, He succeeded his father in 1773, and on 25th January following was constituted one of the lords of police. He was invested with the order of the Thistle, 1st November 1775. He warmly supported the Pitt administration on its formation in December 1783, and on 2d January was appointed one of the lords of the bedchamber. At the general election in 1774 he had been chosen one of the sixteen representative Scots peers, and was rechosen in 1780 and in 1784. He was created a British peer by the title of Baron Stewart of Garlies, in the stewartry of Kirkcudbright, 28th May 1796, with limitation to the heirs male of his body. He died at Galloway house, Wigtonshire, 14th November 1806, in his 71st year.

      His eldest son, Alexander, Lord Garlies, having died young, the second son, George, succeeded as eighth earl. The fourth son, the Hon. William Stewart, entered the army young, and after passing through subordinate gradations, became lieutenant-colonel of the 95th foot, 25th August 1800. The same year he was severely wounded at the unsuccessful attempt on Ferrol. He attained the rank of colonel 2d April 1801, and the same month accompanied the immortal Nelson to the attack on Copenhagen. He was highly spoken of in his lordship’s despatches, and after that attack, he concluded the convention with the Danes, by which the northern confederacy was broken. In 1804 he was a brigadier on the staff, and in 1805 he published ‘Outlines of a Plan for the general reform of the British Land Forces.’ In the expedition to Egypt, in 1807, he accompanied Major-general Mackenzie Fraser as third in command. After the surrender of Alexandria, on 20th March that year, a body of troops under Major-general Wauchope, second in command, was sent to take Rosetta, but was repulsed, and Wauchope being killed, Brigadier-general Stewart marched from Alexandria on 3d April, at the head of 2,500 men, and invested Rosetta. Though wounded, the very day of his arrival before that place, he never quitted his post; but, deceived in his expectations of support from the Mamelukes, and the enemy, consisting of Turks, Albanians, and Egyptians, increasing in force, he was obliged to abandon the bombardment, and retreat to Alexandria, which he reached on 24th April, that city being soon after evacuated. He had the rank of major-general 7th May 1808, and was appointed colonel commandant of the 3d battalion of the 95th foot, 2d September 1809. In 1795 he had been elected M.P. for Saltash in the room of his brother Lord Garlies. He died in 1827. Two of his younger brothers, the Hon. Edward Richard Stewart, and the Hon. James Henry Keith Stewart, were also officers in the army.

      George, eighth earl of Galloway, entered the navy in March 1780, and served in the Berwick, 74, in the action with the Dutch fleet, on the Dogger bank, in August 1781. He was appointed lieutenant 8th August 1789, master and commandant 1790, and commanded the Vulcan fire-ship in the squadron which sailed to the Mediterranean under Lord Hood in May 1793. The same year he was promoted to the rank of captain. In command of the Winchelsea frigate, he assisted materially in the reduction of Martinique, St. Lucia, and Guadaloupe, 11th April 1794, and was mentioned in Sir John Jervis’ despatches to the secretary of the admiralty, as having “acquitted himself with great address and spirit in the service, although he received a bad contusion from the fire of a battery against which he placed his ship, in the ‘good  old way,’ within half-musket shot.” His lordship commanded the Lively frigate in Jervis’ fleet at the glorious victory off Cape St. Vincent, 14th February 1797, and was sent home with the news of that signal action. He was appointed one of the lords of the admiralty 13th April 1805; but on the change of administration, in the following February, he quitted the board. On 28th March 1807 he was appointed lord-lieutenant and sheriff principal of Wigtonshire, and 20th January 1808 he moved the address of thanks in the House of Lords for the king’s speech. In 1810 he became rear-admiral of the Blue squadron. He was a knight of the Thistle. He died 27th March 1834.

      His eldest son, Randolph Stewart, ninth earl, born at Coolhurst in Sussex, in 1800, was lord-lieutenant of Kirkcudbright, but resigned in 1844; and of Wigtonshire, but resigned in 1851. While Lord Garlies he was M.P. for Cockermouth from 1826 to 1831. He married, in 1833, Lady Harriet Blanche Somerset, 7th daughter of the 6th duke of Beaufort, issue, Alan Plantagenet, Lord Garlies, 4 other sons and 7 daughters.

      The earl of Galloway claims the representation of the line of Darnley, on the ground that as Sir William Stewart of Jedworth was brother of Sir John Stewart of Darnley, 9(which, however, Mr. Andrew Stuart, in his Genealogical History of the Stewarts, argues against the probability of,) the earl of Galloway, the lineal descendant of the former, must be the representative of the family after the death of Cardinal York.

GALLOWAY, ROBERT, author of ‘Poems, Epistles, and Songs, chiefly in the Scottish dialect,’ was born at Stirling in June 1752. He was bred a shoemaker, but finding that occupation too sedentary for a weak habit of body, he became a bookseller, and rhymster, and kept a circulating library in Glasgow. His poems were published in that city in 1788, and the volume contained also a brief account of the Revolution of 1688, &c. He died March 4, 1794.

Return to The Scottish Nation Index Page


This comment system requires you to be logged in through either a Disqus account or an account you already have with Google, Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo. In the event you don't have an account with any of these companies then you can create an account with Disqus. All comments are moderated so they won't display until the moderator has approved your comment.

comments powered by Disqus