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The Scottish Nation: Montgomery

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From Anderson, 1867, The Scottish Nation, Vol. 3, p. 182-183:

MONTGOMERY, the surname of the noble family of Eglinton, which traces its descent from Roger de Mundegumbrie, Viscount de Hiesmes, son of Hugh de Mundegumbrie and Joceline de Beaumont, niece of Gonnera, wife of Richard, duke of Normandy, great-grandmother of William the Conqueror. Roger de Mundegumbrie, thus nearly allied to the ruling house of Normandy, after having obtained great distinction under the Norman banner in France, accompanied his kinsman, William the Conqueror, into England, and commanded the van of the invading army at the decisive battle of Hastings in 1066. In reward of his bravery he was, by the Conqueror, created earl of Chichester and Arundel, and soon after of Shrewsbury. He also received from him large grants of land, becoming, in a short time, lord of no fewer than fifty-seven lordships throughout England, with extensive possessions in Salop. Having made a hostile incursion into Wales, he took the castle of Baldwin, and gave it his own name of Montgomery, a name which both the town in its vicinity and the entire county in which it stands have permanently retained.
It is not known whence the name was derived. Eustace, in his ‘Classical Tour,’ vol. i. p. 298, mentions a lofty hill, called Monte Gomero, not far from Loretto; and in the old ballad of ‘Chevy Chase,’ the name is given as Mongon-byrry.
The first of the name in Scotland was Robert de Montgomery, supposed to have been a grandson of Earl Roger. When Walter, the son of Alan, the first high steward of Scotland, whose castle of Oswestry was in the vicinity of Shrewsbury, came to Scotland to take possession of several grants of land which had been conferred upon him by David I., Robert de Montgomery was one of the barons who accompanied him from Wales, and received from him the manor of Eglisham, in the county of Renfrew. This was for two centuries the chief possession of the Scottish section of the Montgomeries, and still remains their property undiminished as at first. Robert de Montgomery is a witness to the foundation charter of Walter, the high steward, to the monastery of Paisley in 1160, and to other charters between that year and 1175. He died about 1177.
In the Ragman Roll appear the names of John de Montgomery, and his brother, Murthaw, as among the barons who swore fealty to Edward I. in 1296. The former is designated of the county of Lanark, which then comprehended the county of Renfrew. The latter was the reputed ancestor of the Montgomeries of Thornton.
Sir John Montgomery, the seventh baron of Eaglesham, one of the heroes of the battle of Otterburn, married Elizabeth, only daughter and sole heiress of Sir Hugh de Eglinton, justiciary of Lothian, and niece of Robert II., and obtained with her the baronies of Eglinton and Ardrossan. He was the ancestor of the earls of Eglinton, as mentioned under that title, where the lineage of that noble family has been already given.
A baronetcy of the United Kingdom was possessed by the family of Montgomery of Macbeth Hill, or Magbie Hill, Peebles-shire, descended from Troilus Montgomery, son of Adam Montgomery of Giffen, a cadet of the Eglinton family, living in the reigns of James V., and Mary queen of Scots. It was conferred, 28th May, 1774, on William Montgomery of Magbie Hill, but expired on the death of his son, Sir George Montgomery, second baronet, 9th July 1831.
Sir William’s brother, Sir James Montgomery, of Stanhope, Peebles-shire, an eminent lawyer, was also created a baronet. Born at Magbie Hill, in 1721, he was educated for the Scottish bar, and attained to considerable distinction as an advocate. On the abolition of the heritable jurisdictions in Scotland in 1748, he was one of the first sheriffs then named by the crown, and he was the last survivor of those of this first nomination. He rose gradually to the offices of solicitor-general, and lord-advocate, and in 1775 was appointed lord-chief-baron of the court of exchequer in Scotland. Upon his retirement from the bench in 1801, he was created a baronet of the United Kingdom. His exertions in introducing the most improved modes of agriculture into Peebles-shire gained for him the title of ‘Father of the county.’ He died April 2, 1803, at the age of 82. His eldest son, William, lieutenant-colonel 43d foot, having predeceased him, he was succeeded by his 2d son, Sir James, 2d baronet, born Oct. 9, 1766; appointed lord-advocate in 1804, resigned in 1806; at one time M.P. for Peebles-shire. He died May 27, 1839.
His sons by a first wife having predeceased him, he was succeeded by his eldest son by his 2d wife, daughter of Thomas Graham, Esq. of Kinross. This son, Sir Graham Montgomery, 3d baronet, born July 9, 1823, graduated at Christ Church, Oxford, B.A.; married in 1845, Alice, daughter of John James Hope-Johnston, Esq. of Annandale, M.P. Issue 4 sons and 4 daughters. Sons: James Gordon Henry, born Feb. 6, 1850, Basil-Templer, Charles Percy, and Arthur Cecil. M.P. for Peebles-shire, 1852; lord-lieutenant of Kinross-shire, 1854.
The first of the family of Montgomerie of Annick Lodge, Ayrshire, was Alexander, second son of Hugh Montgomerie of Coilsfield, brother of Hugh, twelfth earl of Eglinton. His son, William Eglinton Montgomerie, succeeded him in 1802. The eldest sister of the latter, Elizabeth, was the first wife of the Right Hon. David Boyle, lord-justice-general of Scotland, and died in 1822.
The Irish family of Montgomery of Grey Abbey, county Down, is descended from Sir Hugh Montgomery, sixth laird of Braidstone, in the parish of Beith, Ayrshire, a cadet of the noble house of Eglinton, and the principal leader in the colonization of Ulster in 1606. The insurrectionary disturbances in Ireland before the death of Queen Elizabeth, had placed a large extent of confiscated property at the disposal of the crown. The laird of Braidstone, with a view of obtaining some portion of it, effected the escape of Con O’Neil, the chief of Ulster, from the castle of Carrickfergus, where he had long been imprisoned. O’Neil, in consequence “granted and assigned one half of all his land estate in Ireland” to him “his heirs and assigns.” Thereafter, O’Neil and Braidstone went to Westminster, when, through the influence of Braidstone’s brother, George, who was chaplain to his majesty, O’Neil received pardon of the king; Braidstone was knighted, and orders were given that the agreement betwixt them should be confirmed by letters patent, under the great seal of Ireland, “at such rents as therein might be expressed, and under condition that the lands should be planted with British protestants, and that no grant of fee farm should be made to any person of mere Irish extraction.”
In the winter of 1605, Sir Hugh Montgomery obtained from O’Neil a deed of feofment of all his lands. In the following May, the plantation of Ulster had begun. Amongst the gentlemen who joined Sir Hugh in the enterprise were, John Shaw of Greenock, Patrick Montgomerie of Blackhouse, Colonel David Boyd, Patrick Shaw of Kerseland, Hugh Montgomerie, junior, Thomas Nevin of Monkreddin, Patrick Mure of Dugh, Sir William Edmiston of Duntreath, and Mrssrs, Neill and Calderwood; besides a great many retainers. In 1610, only four years after the first planting, Sir Hugh brought before the king’s muster-master 1,000 able fighting men.
The success of this Scotch enterprise led to the formation of the London companies in 1612, and thus was founded the protestant province of Ulster, which, says Hume, from being “the most wild and disorderly province of all Ireland, soon became the best cultivated and most civilized.”
In 1622, Sir Hugh Montgomery was raised to the peerage of Ireland as Viscount Montgomery of Ardes, county Down. He was grandfather of Hugh, third Viscount Montgomery of Ardes, created in 1661, earl of Mount Alexander. These titles expired with Thomas, seventh earl, in 1758.
The Montgomeries of the Hall, county Donegal, possessing a baronetcy of the united kingdom, of the creation of 1808, and the Montgomeries of Convoy House, in the same county, are also descended from the Eglinton family, their progenitors in Ireland being among the settlers in Ulster in the reign of James VI. and I.


  • Anderson, William. The Scottish nation; or. The surnames, families, literature, honours, and biographical history of the people of Scotland. Edinburgh: A. Fullerton, 1867, Vol. 3, p. 182-183. Also transcribed online.

Notes on Online Versions

The original book is organized into three volumes, each with pages starting with p. 1. Here are the Volumes as originally conceived:

  • Volume 1. Abercorn (p. 1) to Curteis (p. 752)
    • Entire 1862 printing (Hathitrust.org): [1]
    • Entire 1863 printing (Hathitrust.org): [2]
    • Entire 1864 printing (Hathitrust.org): [3].
    • Entire 1867 printing (Archive.org): [4]
    • Entire 1872 printing (Archive.org): [5]
  • Volume 2. Dale (p. 1) to MacIntosh (p. 752)
    • Entire 1863 printing (Hathitrust.org): [6]
    • Entire 1864 printing (Hathitrust.org): [7]
    • Entire 1872 printing (Archive.org): [8]
    • Entire 1878 printing (Archive.org): [9]
  • Volume 3. Smith (p. 1) to Zetland (p. 678) + Supplement, p. 179-736 (Arnot to Scrimgeour).
    • Entire 1863 printing (Archive.org): [10]
    • Entire 1863 printing (Hathitrust.org): [11]
    • Entire 1864 printing (Hathitrust.org): [12].
    • Entire 1872 printing (Archive.org): [13]
  • Complete Three Volumes, 1868 printing (Archive.org): [14]

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