See also

General Sir James MURRAY Governor of Canada, Warden of the Cinque Ports, Governor of Hull (1721-1794)

1. General Sir James Patrick 1 MURRAY Governor of Canada, Warden of the Cinque Ports, Governor of Hull, son of Alexander MURRAY 4th Lord Elibank (1677-1735) and Elizabeth STIRLING (bef1683-1756), was born on [Julian] 21 January 1721 in Ballencrieff. He was a Governor General of Canada, General in the Army, Governor of Minorca, Governor of Hull, Warden of the Cinque Ports. He married Cordelia COLLIER in 1748 in London. He married Ann WHITHAM on 14 March 1780 in Minorca. He died on 18 June 1794 in Beauport, Hastings, Sussex.


James Murray joined the British army in 1739/40 and served in the West Indies and Europe. Sent to North America in 1757 as a lieutenant colonel during the Seven Years¡¯ War, he commanded a brigade in 1758 during the successful British siege of Louisbourg, in what is now Nova Scotia, under Jeffery Amherst. He was one of General James Wolfe¡¯s three brigadiers in the British expedition against Quebec in 1759. After the British captured the city, Murray was made its military governor. When the French capitulated in 1760, he became military governor of Quebec district; he became the first civil governor of Quebec after its formal cession to Great Britain in 1763, later becoming the first British Governor of Canada. Murray opposed repressive measures against French Canadians, and his conciliatory policy led to charges against him of partiality. Although exonerated, he left his post in 1768 and was appointed governor of Minorca in 1774. He surrendered to French and Spanish troops there in 1782, for which he underwent a court of inquiry in England; after being acquitted, he was made lieutenant general (1772) and later a full general (1783).


Murray was the son of Alexander, 4th Earl Elibank, and the nephew of Patrick and Alexander, two perpetrators of the infamous Elibank plot, which attempted to kidnap the Royal Family and put the Young Pretender on the throne. James, like others in his family, had a strong rebellious streak, and against the wishes of his father, wished to join the army. After repeated refusals by his father James, aged 15, ran away from the family home accompanied by the son of one of his father's gardeners. Lady O'Donnell, James' granddaughter, related: "They concealed themselves for a day in Edinburgh and then embarked at Leith in a fishing smack. After many adventures, they arrived in Holland. James Murray enlisted in the "Scottish Dutch", a regiment composed of Scotchmen in the service of the Stadtholder. Here he remained for two or three years. He used to say in after years that he had been every rank of the army except Drummer, adding "I never was a drummer". One day a Scots nobleman (I think it was Lord Arbuthnot) coming out of the palace of the Hague was much struck by the appearance of a young soldier on duty, who looked fixedly at him: "I think I have seen you before now - you are like the Hon. James Murray who ran away from home". "Yes", answered the soldier, "I am James Murray, but I will never go home till they let me be a soldier". The nobleman made enquiries, heard the highest character of the young soldier, returned at once to Scotland, and induced Lord Elibank gladly to obtain a commission for young James in the British army".


Ann WHITHAM and James Patrick 1 MURRAY had the following children:


Cordelia MURRAY (1781-1849). Cordelia was born on 16 March 1781 in Mahon, Minorca. She married Henry HODGES on 25 April 1803 in Ore. She died on 1 May 1849.

James Patrick 2 MURRAY (1782-1834). James was born on 21 January 1782 in Leghorn. He was a Major-General in the Army. He married Elizabeth RUSHWORTH on 31 January 1803 in Freshwater, Isle of Wight. He died on 5 December 1834 in Killenure House, near Athlone.

Elizabeth Mary MURRAY (1783-1785). Elizabeth was born on 8 November 1783 in Beauport. She died on 8 April 1785 in Beauport.

Wilhelmina MURRAY (1787-1866). Wilhelmina was born on 14 January 1787 in Beauport. She married James DOUGLAS on 18 May 1813. She died on 25 February 1866.

Anne Harriet MURRAY (1788-1850). Anne was born on 10 August 1788 in Beauport. She died on 13 November 1850.

George MURRAY (1794-1794). George was born on 1 February 1794. He died in February 1794.

Second Generation

2. Alexander MURRAY 4th Lord Elibank, son of Sir Patrick 3rd MURRAY 3rd Lord Elibank and Anna BURNET, was born on 9 March 1677. He was a 4th Lord Elibank. He had the title '4th Lord Elibank'. He married Elizabeth STIRLING in February 1698. He died on 6 February 1735.


Sir Alexander became 4th Lord Elibank on his father's death in 1686, when he was nine years old. He had 15 children of whom 5 sons and 5 daughters survived him.

As a matter of interest, the Lord of Elibank voted for the Union of the Scottish and English Parliaments in Edinburgh in 1706-1707. He also recieved ?0 for doing so. This information was stated by The Earl of Glasgow, on oath, and by David Nairne, Secretary Deputy of Scotland. What a price for Scotland's freedom!

Alexander and his family had many financial problems, and the depletion of the family fortunes to the Stuart coffers was further exacerbated by the Fourth Earl losing heavily in the South Sea Bubble. He wrote to his wife about this - "I am infinitely vexed that you should torment yourself so much, which I assure you is more galling to me than any misfortune that has yet befallen me. As I shall answer God I have never bought a farthing's worth of stock but that third subscription, nor you may depend upon it will I venture a groat more that way, for now the South Sea has fallen to its primitive 110 this day (it stood at 1,000 a few days previously) so that it seems now past all recovery; what parliament will be able to do with it I cannot tell".

At the time, the Scottish Nobility was also in a generally impoverished state, and so Elibank's situation was not by any means unique.

Alexander devoted much of his life to the (succesful) reform of agriculture in Scotland, and was a founder of the "Society of Improvers in the knowledge fo Agriculture in Scotland".

Alexander was clearly loved and respected by both friends and family, and his son Patrick wrote of him: "My father, Alexander, Lord Elibank, died of what the Phisicians called the gout in his stomach on the 6th of February, 1736, The following character was given him in the common newspapers - "He lived esteemed and beloved by men of all ranks and parties and his death is universally lamented. No man ever surpassed himin the practice of every social virtue, he was a fond Husband, and indulgent Parent, and an unalterable friend, and as he never had an enemy he never was accused or suspected of anyone. Never was there a juster character"".


3. Elizabeth STIRLING, daughter of George STIRLING, was born before 1683. She appeared in the census. She celebrated her Bar Mitzvah. She died on 11 November 1756.


Book: "The five sons of Bare Betty" by A.C, Murray:

Elizabeth, who married at 16, displayed form her early teens an independence of character which not infrequently led her into eccentricities, and hse handed on to her sons the traits she herslef possessed of vivacity and original wit in thoought, speech and action. In his "Scotland and Scotsmen" Ramsey tells us an intertesing and amusing anecdote. A somewhat rash Edinburgh minister when conducting "public examinations" referred to Miss Elizabeth as "Betty Stirling". This caused deep offence to the dignity of the young lady: "Mistress Betty" or "Miss Betty", she said in tones of scathing rebuke, was the style of address to which she was accustomed, but certainly not "bare Betty". Needless to say, after this incident, she was always known in Edinburgh and district as "bare Betty".

When a man, who was deeply in love with her, told her that he was ready to lay down his life for her sake, "Oh," she said, "I do not believe you would part with a little joint of your little finger for my whole body." Next day the gentleman returned, and presented her triumphantly with the joint of one of his little fingers. But he was dumbfounded when she gave him a peremptory refusal, "for," said she, "the man who has no mercy on his own flesh will certainly not spare mine."

But despite this mercurial turn "bare Betty had a tender side to her character, and was much beloved by all her family.


Alexander MURRAY and Elizabeth STIRLING had the following children:


Patrick MURRAY (1703-1778). Patrick was born on 27 February 1703. He had the title '5th Lord Elibank, Earl of Westminster'. He married Margaretta Maria DE JONGE in 1735. He died on 3 August 1778 in Ballencrieff Castle in Haddingtonshire near Edinburgh..

Alexander MURRAY (1704-1705). Alexander was born on 23 July 1704. He died in 1705.

George MURRAY (1706-1785). George was born on 14 May 1706 in Aberlady. He was an Admiral in the Navy. He had the title 'Admiral, 6th Lord Elibank'. He married Isabella MCKENZIE on 8 January 1760. He died on [Julian] 12 November 1785 in Ballencrieff.

Gideon MURRAY (1710-1776). Gideon was born on 5 February 1710 in Ballencrieff. He was a Priest. He married Elizabeth MONTOLIEU DE ST. HYPPOLITE on [Julian] 30 June 1746 in London. He died on [Julian] 21 June 1776 in Wandsworth.

John MURRAY (1711-1711). John was born on 14 September 1711. He died on 31 December 1711.

Alexander MURRAY (1712-1778). Alexander was born on 9 December 1712 in Ballencrieff. He was christened on 9 December 1712 in Aberlady. He was a Politician. He had the title 'Jacobite Earl of Westminster'. He died on 27 February 1778 in Taplow, Bucks.


James Patrick 1 MURRAY (1721-1794)

Barbara MURRAY ( -1773). Barbara married James JOHNSTONE on 1 September 1719. She died on 15 March 1773.

Elizabeth MURRAY (1701-1748). Elizabeth was born on 26 August 1701. She was baptised on 27 August 1701. She died on 19 March 1748 in Edinburgh.

Anne MURRAY (1708-1793). Anne was born on 20 September 1708. She married James FERGUSON on 3 February 1733 in Aberlady. She died on 2 January 1793.

Mary MURRAY (1714-1772). Mary was born on 4 September 1714. She was baptised on 5 September 1714. She died on 18 June 1772.

Helen MURRAY (1716-1809). Helen was born on 19 January 1716. She was baptised on 24 January 1716. She married John (James) STEWART on 12 September 1761 in Edinburgh. She died on 28 December 1809 in Ormistoun.

Janet MURRAY (1723- ). Janet was born on 13 July 1723. She was baptised on 19 July 1723. She married Robert MURRAY on 22 June 1750.

Third Generation

4. Sir Patrick 3rd MURRAY 3rd Lord Elibank, son of Sir Patrick 2nd MURRAY 2nd Lord Elibank and Lady Elizabeth STEWART, was born before 1661. He had the title 'Master of Elibank, 3rd Lord Elibank'. He married Anna BURNET on 20 August 1674. He died in 1687.


"His Lordship who commanded the Militia Troop of Roxburg and Selkirk, was sworn to the Privy Council to King James VII, but was removed from it for his opposition to repeal the Penal Laws in 1687. he died in the same year: was this a result of his opposition to the King?".


5. Anna BURNET, daughter of Archbishop Alexander BURNET and Elizabeth FLEMING, married Alexander ELPHINSTONE on [Julian] 10 September 1667.


Patrick 3rd MURRAY and Anna BURNET had the following children:



Alexander MURRAY (1677-1735)

Anna MURRAY (1679- ). Anna was born on 23 August 1679.

Mary MURRAY (1681- ). Mary was born on 28 August 1681. She married John UNK on 25 April 1701.

Helen MURRAY (1683- ). Helen was born on 27 February 1683. She married John MACKENZIE on 13 August 1703.

Elizabeth MURRAY ( - )


6. George STIRLING, son of unk STIRLING, was a Surgeon; Member of Parliament. He appeared in the census.


Very little is known of this eminent Edinburgh surgeon, except a rather unusual anecdote, showing his sympathies with the the martyred Rev. James Guthrie:

A little before coming out of the tolbooth to proceed to execution, his wife embracing him said, "Now, my heart," her usual way of addressing him, "your time is drawing nigh, and I must take my last farewell of you."?Ay, you must," he answered, "for henceforth I know no man after the flesh." Before being brought out to suffer, a request was made to the authorities by his friends, to allow him to wear his hat on the way to the scaffold, and also that they would not pinion him until he reached the place of execution. Both requests were at first denied; the former absolutely, because, as was alleged, the marquis of Argyle, who had been executed a short while before, had worn his hat, in going to the scaffold; in a manner markedly indicative of defiance and contempt, and which had given much offence. To the latter request, that he might not be pinioned, they gave way so far, on a representation being made that he could not walk without his staff, on account of the rose being in one of his legs, as to allow him so much freedom in his arms as to enable him to make use of that support, but From the story of the demise of the Rev. James Guthrie, comes this anecdote about George Stirling:

.... they would not altogether dispense with that fatal preparation. Having ascended the scaffold, he delivered with a calm and serene countenance an impressive address to those around him; justified all for which he was about to suffer, and recommended all who heard him to adhere firmly to the covenant. After hanging for some time, his head was struck off and placed on the Netherbow Port, where it remained for seven and twenty years, when it was taken down and buried by a Mr Alexander Hamilton at the hazard of his own life. The body, after being beheaded, was carried to the Old Kirk, where it was dressed by a number of ladies who waited its arrival for that purpose; many of whom, besides, dipped their napkins in his blood, that they might preserve them as memorials of so admired a martyr. While these gentlewomen were in the act of discharging this pious duty, a young gentleman suddenly appeared amongst them, and without any explanation, proceeded to pour out a bottle of rich perfume on the dead body. "God bless you, sir, for this labour of love," said one of the ladies, and then without uttering a word, this singular visitor departed. He was, however, afterwards discovered to be a surgeon in Edinburgh named George Stirling.


STIRLING George - Scot

1694.00.00 - 1694.30.03 MD

[Date of Utrecht MD in Leyden volume is 1690]; Thesis `de scorbuto'; MA Edin 1690; Probably the Edinburgh surgeon who became physician FRCP Edin. George Stirling MD of Haddington; Died before 1731; Edinburgh Testaments 1712; [Not inscribed]. 543/292-3; 546/172-3; 860; 882/05&13. Leyden.


George STIRLING had the following children:



Elizabeth STIRLING (bef1683-1756)