Douglas of Baiford

 

  • The writer of the article “Morton,” in the Statistical Account, says: - “Douglas, Earl of Morton, was proprietor of the whole parish, with the exception of the Mains of Morton, lying north-west of the castle, which belonged to James Douglas, Laird of Morton. The last of this family was Captain James Douglas, who died at Baitford, Penpont, about the beginning of last century. The Earl of Morton sold his whole property and interest in this parish to Sir William Douglas of Cashoggle, who erected a house a little south of Thornhill, where he sometimes resided; but the Earl of Queensberry having obtained from Cashoggle all his lands, as well as the lands of Morton Mains from the other family, and being lord of the regality of Hawick, he obtained authority to translate that regality to Thornhill in 1610, and called it New Dalgarnock.” (Page 95.)]; he had acquired right to another third from Margaret, her elder sister, with consent of her husband, the Duke of Chatelherault; and he was also heir apparent of the youngest and only other sister, who died childless.

 

 

  • The following were recorded in the 1841 Census, Parish of Penpont, County of Dumfries (Reg. 845):

    [ 9] Hellen Christie, age 63, born Scotland - BAITFORD aka BOATFORD COTTAGE -
    [10] David Douglas, age 20, (Agricultural Lab.) - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [11] Mary Douglas, age 20 -BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [12] Catherine Martin, age 75 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [13] James Douglas, age 40, (Agricultural Lab.) - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [14] Jean Douglas, age 40 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [15] Jean Douglas, age 05 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [16] Samuel Douglas, age 09 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [17] Sarah Douglas, age 13 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [18] Bartha Ross, age 85, born Scotland - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
    [19] Margaret Kirkpatrick, age 15, (Servant) - BOATFORD [sic] -

  • "The History the Douglas Family" by Adams mentions lots of this dealing and includes an interesting snippet about William Douglas of Baitford (Penpont), tried for killing James Douglas of Killevarren in 1603. He was convicted of other crimes in 1610, sentenced to be hung, but somehow cheated the gibbet and still owned the Kirklands of Tynron in 1660/8. This is typical of feuds amongst the large families of the area.

In the same book, it is recorded that David Douglas of Baitford's ancestry is unknown, though the family is said to be descended from George Douglas, 3rd son of the Lord of Drumlanrig who was killed at Lochmaben in 1484. But as Robert Douglas, Provost of Lincluden, is recorded as being the grandfather of William Douglas of Baitford, who is known to be the grandson of David Douglas of Baitford, there is some confusion. David Douglas of Baitford is known to have had a brother, James. David married Marion Maitland, sister of John Maitland of Auchingassil, and had in addition to his eldest son James, two sons Robert and John., and some un-named daughters.

??? Douglas of Baitford died in July 1574 and was succeeded by his son and heir, James Douglas of Baitford, who has 3 brothers, Archibald, Robert and George. Also perhaps John in or of Craigmoy. There was also a sister who married John Maxwell.  James was succeeded by William Douglas of Baitford, the murderer, who married Agnes, daughter of 8th Lord Maxwell, by Lady Elizabeth Douglas.

  • in 1585, James Douglas of Baitford signed a charter, referring to Robert Douglas, Provost of Lincluden
  • In 1636, William Douglas of Baitford seems to have acquired lands from James Douglas of Morton. An Alexander douglas, WS was involved.
  • Robert Douglas of Baitford, married Marion MacGill, as her second husband, the daughter of Reverend Francis MacGill, (d. 28 Feb 1664)  Minister of Kirkmichael and Garrel.
  • Alexander Douglas of Baitford WS married 2ndly Agnes Laurie after 1641, having had three children by a previous marriage, Agnes, Robert and William. His first wife was possibly Agnes Pringle.
  • Extract from the History of Dumfries
    * In the Scottish Nation, vol. iii., p. 208, it is stated that the title was taken
    from the lands of Mortoune, in the parish of East-Calder, Mid-Lothian ; but it
    is far more probable that it was derived from the old Castle of Morton (once
    the seat of Dunegal), in the parish of that name, both of which were conferred
    on the Black Douglas when he married the Princess Egidia. The writer of
    the article "Morton," in the Statistical Account, says: — "Douglas, Earl of
    Morton, was proprietor of the whole parish, with the exception of the Mains of
    Morton, lying north-west of the castle, which belonged to James Douglas,
    Laird of Morton. The last of this family was Captain James Douglas, who
    died at Baitford, Penpont, about the beginning of last century. The Earl of
    Morton sold his whole property and interest in this parish to Sir William
    Douglas of Cashoggle, who erected a house a little south of Thomhill,
    where he sometimes resided; but the Earl of Queensberry having obtained
    from Cashoggle all his lands, as well as the lands of Morton Mains from the
    other family, and being lord of the regality of Hawick, he obtained authority
    to translate that regality to Thomhill in 1610, and called it New Dalgamock."
    (Page 95.)
  • ...James Douglas of Baitford, now callit of Pinzerie ...
  • William Douglas of Baitford, fl 1636, married Agnes Maxwell, daughter of the 8th Lord Maxwell.

The story is told differently; this from "Chronicles of Lincluden, as an abbey and as a college"

In the way just explained the family of Douglas of Baitford or
Pinzerie, descended from George, third son of Sir William Douglas
of Drumlanrig, became connected with Lincluden College. The
relationship brought about a melancholy episode in its annals, the
particulars of which we must now put on record. On the 2d of
April 1603 a contract of marriage was entered into between Agnes
Maxwell and William Douglas, heir-apparent of Baitford, with con-
sent of her brother John, the ninth Lord Maxwell, Provost Douglas,
liferenter of Lincluden, and James Douglas, feuar thereof, the
father of the bridegroom ; they obliging themselves to make over
to him, and the heirs born of the marriage, the " haill temporality "
of the College. Young Douglas, or Pinzerie as he was usually
styled, was no fitting match for a daughter of the house of Max-
well. Though of high descent and with brilliant worldly prospects
before him, he degenerated into a thorough vagabond, figuring at
times as a common housebreaker, at others as a treasonable
emissary, and filling up his cup of guilt with sundry deeds of
blood that brought ruin in their train.

And in "A history of the house of Douglas from the earliest times down to the legislative union of England and Scotland", Herbert Maxwell.

Of another Douglas who obtained an interest in
Lincluden during Provost Robert's lifetime it profits not
to say much. William Douglas younger of Baitford or
Pinzerie was a grand-nephew, some accounts say a son,
of the provost. Anyhow, he proved an unmitigated ruffian,
though he married Agnes, sister of John, 9th Lord Maxwell,
showing that his position was such as should have saved
him from bringing his name into utter degradation.

In I610 this William Douglas, being feuar of Lincluden
in right of his father, James Douglas of Pinzerie, was
arraigned before the High Court of Justiciary upon a
" dittay " containing many counts : first, that in company
with John Cunninghame his servant, and about a score of
" deboischet " men, he dragged out of his house at the
Brigend of Dumfries one Thomas Softlaw, a burgess, and
slew him ; second, that at the same place, but on another
occasion, he set upon and slew Edward Maxwell of Cros-
toun ; third, that when Greir, a swordslipper, one of his
accomplices in the last-mentioned crime, had been " tane
with the bludie hand " and lodged in prison, Douglas broke
the prison, released Greir, and carried him off to his house
of Lincluden ; fourth, that when Lord Herries attempted
to carry out the Council's order for the arrest of Douglas
on account of his association with a proclaimed rebel and
murderer, Robert Lord Maxwell, Douglas violently resisted,
and with his servants drove Herries and his men out of
Lincluden ; and lastly, he was charged not only with
common and habitual theft, but, although " ane landit
gentilman," with housebreaking and theft in the place of
Greenlaw, the property of his cousin, William Douglas of
Drumlanrig, then Provost of Lincluden.

Provost Douglas was justly indignant with his dis-
reputable relative, and vowed he would have young Pinzerie
drowned, or at least driven out of the country. Pinzerie,
realising that he had gone too far, resolved to throw himself
on his kinsman's mercy, and a pretty picture has been
preserved of his going to Greenlaw so early in the morning
that the Provost was still " lyand in his bed, and Penzerie,
pulling off his breikis and schankis,i fell down upon his
bair knees before the Provost, craving God and him for
pardoun and forgiveness." Perhaps the Provost would have
winked hard and let the culprit escape ; but the arm of
the law was stronger than of yore. Pinzerie was tried
before the Justice-depute, and, albeit there were two of the
name of Douglas among the jury of fifteen, he was con-
victed on all the counts. Thereafter he was taken to the
Mercat Cross of Edinburgh, where first his right hand was
struck off as a penalty for theft, and then this inglorious
Douglas was hanged on a gibbet.-

 

The following may have been employed on the Dalgoner estate in 1851:
•  David Douglas, age 20, (Agricultural Lab.) - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
•  Mary Douglas, age 20 -BAITFORD COTTAGE -
•  Catherine Martin, age 75 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
•  James Douglas, age 40, (Agricultural Lab.) - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
•  Jean Douglas, age 40 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
•  Jean Douglas, age 05 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
•  Samuel Douglas, age 09 - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
•  Sarah Douglas, age 13 - BAITFORD COTTAGE
•  Bartha Ross, age 85, born Scotland - BAITFORD COTTAGE -
•  Margaret Kirkpatrick, age 15, (Servant) - BOATFORD [sic] -
•  Hellen Christie, age 63, born Scotland - BAITFORD aka BOATFORD COTTAGE - 

 

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This page was last updated on 21 September 2016

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