James Douglas-Hamilton 5th Duke of Hamilton

James, 5th Duke of HamiltonJames Hamilton, 5th Duke of Hamilton and 2nd Duke of Brandon KT FRS (5 January 1703 – 2 March 1743) was a Scottish peer, the son of the 4th Duke of Hamilton.

He was styled as Marquess of Clydesdale between 1703 and 1712 and succeded to the titles of 5th Earl of Arran and Cambridge [S., 1643], 4th Earl of Lanark [S., 1639], 4th Lord Machansyre and Polmont [S., 1639], 5th Marquess of Clydesdale [S., 1643], 5th Duke of Hamilton [S., 1643], 5th Lord Aven and Innerdale [S., 1643], 2nd Baron of Dutton [G.B., 1711] and as 2nd Duke of Brandon [G.B., 1711] on 15 November 1712.

Hamilton attended Winchester College from 1716 to 1717 and graduated from Christ Church, Oxford on 6 June 1719. He succeeded to his father's title of Duke of Hamilton in 1712. At the foundation of the noted charity, the Foundling Hospital in London, Hamilton was one of the charity's first governors and his name is listed on the organisation's royal charter, granted in October 1739.

Unfortunately, he was also secretly made a Knight of the Garter and a Knight of the Thistle by the Jacobite ‘Old Pretender’ in 1723. He was viewed with suspicion by the British government. According to Gibbs, "a passage in the 1st Earl of Egmont's diary in 1734 does not give a favourable picture of his character, or any rate of his reputation. 'The Duke of Hamilton has embarked with the Jacobite party, but having secretly offered to be with the Court if the King will make him a hereditary English Peer, the Jacobites, who have learned this, have renounced him, as a man unsettled, but all for his own interests. The King recalled him from Rome, where he was too busy with the Pretender's party ... yet at his return the King made him Lord of the Bedchamber, which place he slighted, though kept open a year for him

James significantly improved the Hamilton properties and estates with the help of the leading Scottish architect William Adam. Their main achievement was the hunting lodge at Chatelherault, which has now been carefully restored and is open to the public.

Hamilton attended Winchester College from 1716 to 1717 and graduated from Christ Church, Oxford on 6 June 1719.

 He succeeded to his father's title of Duke of Hamilton in 1712.

On 14 February 1723 (St. Valentine's Day), Hamilton married Lady Anne Cochrane, a daughter of the 4th Earl of Dundonald and they had one child, James (1724–1758), later 6th Duke of Hamilton. Anne died from the effects of her first and only childbirth a month later and Hamilton married Elizabeth Strangways (an aunt of the future Countess of Ilchester), but she died childless on 3 November 1729. He then married Anne Spencer (an aunt of the future Countess of Galloway) on 21 August 1737 and they had three children:
• Lady Anne Hamilton (1738 – 11 November 1780)
Archibald Hamilton, 9th Duke of Hamilton (15 July 1740 – 16 February 1819)
• Lt Col Lord Spencer Hamilton (1742 – 20 March 1791)

 

He died aged 40, from jaundice and palsy.