Historical Sketches - Kilwinning

For those researching family in the three towns area.
hahaya2004
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Re: Historical Sketches - Kilwinning

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No. 13

Eglinton Family No. 8

From the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald 25th August 1855


Alexander Montgomery succeeded his father to the estate of Coilsfield. He married Lilias, eldest daughter of Sir Robert Montgomery of Skelmorlie, by whom he acquired the estate of Skelmorlie. They had issue five sons—1, Hugh, who succeeded his father in the estate of Coilsfield and Skelmorlie, and who in 1796, on the death of his third cousin, Archibald eleventh Earl of Eglinton, succeeded to the titles and estates of Eglinton; 2, Alexander Montgomery of Annick, who served with distinction for several years in the East India Company's Naval Service, and died in 1802; 3, Thomas who died at Dumfries, in Virginia, on the 13th day of August, 1793; 4, Archibald Montgomery of Stair, who was in the civil service of the East India Company; 5, Lieut.- General James Montgomery of Wrighthall [Wrighthill], who was some time Governor of Dominica, and also Colonel of the 74th and 30th regiments; and three daughters; 1, Frances, married to James Ritchie of Busbie; 2, Lilias, married to John Hamilton of Sundrum; 3, Margaret, married to John Hamilton of Bargany. Alexander Montgomery of Coilsfield, died on the 28th of December, 1783; and was succeeded in the estates of Coilsfield and Skelmorlie by his eldest son Hugh, who on the demise of his third cousin, Archibald eleventh Earl of Eglinton, in 1796, succeeded to the estates and honours of Eglinton.—Hugh twelfth Earl of Eglinton, early embraced the military profession, joining the army in 1756. He went with his regiment to America, and was in active service during the seven years war. During the greater part of that period, he held the rank of Captain in the 74th regiment, and afterwards in the 1st royals. In 1778, he was appointed Major, and subsequently Lieut.-Colonel of the West Lowland Fencibles. In 1780, he was elected Member of Parliament for the County of Ayr, and was re-elected in 1784; but resigned his seat on being appointed Inspector of Military Roads, in 1787. His eminent practical talents peculiarly adapted him for that office, the complicated duties of which, he performed in a highly efficient manner. In 1793 he held the appointment of Colonel of the West Lowland Fencibles, and shortly afterwards he raised a regiment of the line, called the Glasgow Regiment, which was disbanded in 1795. In the same year he was nominated Lieutenant-Governor of Edinburgh Castle. At the general election in 1796, he was a third time chosen to represent the County of Ayr in Parliament; but vacated his seat on his succession, almost immediately after, to the titles and estates of Eglinton. A vacancy occurring, in 1798, he was chosen a representative of the Scottish Peerage, and again re-chosen at the general election in 1802. On the 14th of February, 1806, his lordship was created a Baron of the United Kingdom, by the title of Baron Ardrossan, in Ayrshire, with a limitation to the heirs male of his body. He succeeded to the estate of Bourtreehill, in 1817, on the death of his sister-in-law, Lady Cathcart of Carleton. His lordship was Lord Lieutenant of the county, an office which he filled with credit to himself, and much advantage to the public. He enjoyed the respect, and was deservedly popular amongst all classes of the people, on account of the courteous affability of his manners, the deep interest that he took in the welfare of all those more immediately connected with the localities in which his estates were situated, and the profuse hospitality for which Eglinton Castle was then justly famous. He was a liberal patron of the fine arts, had himself a highly cultivated taste for music, was the author of several popular Scottish airs, and no mean proficient on the violincello. Accordingly the private concerts given at Eglinton Castle were of frequent occurrence, and eminently distinguished for their display of musical ability, as well as the presence of the eclat of the county. These entertainments were, however, varied by others of a more enlivening and sometimes grotesque character, and the following graphic description of a masquerade, which took place at Eglinton Castle in 1809 as given in Paterson's Families of Ayrshire, and extracted from the columns of the Edinburgh Courant of that year, may not be uninteresting to our readers. —

"Among the social festivities which enliven Eglintoun Castle in Christmas times, on Tuesday last, (27th Dec. 1809), a grand masquerade was given by the Lord Lieutenant of Ayrshire, which was attended by a very great portion of the fashion and gaiety of the country.
"About nine o'clock at night the company in masks began to arrive. When the Castle gate was thrown open, the transition from the natural winter night gloom. which pervaded the serpentine paths through the shadowy policy, to the dazzling effulgence of the brightness and splendour of the radiant halls, was superlatively striking. Fronting the door, in the centre hall, a beautiful transparent painting of the Eglintoun arms was fixed; in the niche of the saloon, opposite the grand organ, there was another transparency, representing Britannia, and above the door of the breakfast parlour, one representing an Italian dance. These, we understand, were by Mr Smith of Irvine. The taste and execution displayed, prove him to be an artist whose talents may be an acquisition to the country. Besides the ordinary lights which illuminated the entrance hall and saloon, hundreds of variegated lamps, in various fantastic forms, from the walls, from the fronts of the galleries of the saloon, and from the lustres, united in shedding rays like the meridian splendour of the sun-beams. On the railing of the staircase, a variety of evergreen shrubbery served to display variegated lamps, and to give equal light. At the entry to the large drawing-room, a gipsy den was situated; and in the middle of the room, on the right hand side, an inviting arbour, chequered with flowers, next to which a luxuriant display of evergreen shrubbery, all tastefully set off with variegated lamps, served, with the splendid mirrors, the rich furniture, and the noble grandeur of the apartments, to impress the spectator with the idea of an enchanted palace.
"Here, about ten o'clock, the characters in the masquerade had nearly assembled. Mr Sylvester Daggerwood, in capital style, was among the first who attracted notice. He was busily employed paying his respects to the company, soliciting their patronage to his benefit next Tuesday, and furnishing them with a bill of fare of the performances. Two farmers and a few sprightly country lasses seemed quite in character. A considerable group of old gentlemen, who seemed to have held commissions of the peace in the days of George the II., possessed of great garrulity, and very courteous address, afforded gallants to some ladies of similar standing, dressed in hoops, toupees, rich brocades, and apparently in a plurality of petticoats. One old gentleman in scarlet and gold, appeared to possess a peculiar knack of making himself agreeable to all; he also seemed to enjoy a waggish pleasure in quizzing a lawyer, who appeared to have little employment. A French hair-dresser industriously proffered his services; but he was in too loyal a society; instead of being encouraged by the gay and the fashionable, who seemed to dislike him for his country airs, and regard his bowing and scraping and fawning, as symptomatic of a spy, and as dangerous to be trusted as a domestic, he could only prevail on a clownish watchman to submit to his dressing. A german peasant, and a woman in the grotesque costume of the country, excited particular notice; many a sprightly waltz they danced together; for they seemed from Hungary; where the blasting influence of the Corsican satellites has not destroyed mirth and jollity, A joyous old fiddler seemed much pleased to be employed by them, and shook his elbows with as much spirit as they cut their whirling capers. A portly Dutch skipper and a few British sailors were well supported. A Jew appeared in very natural style, purchasing old clothes. A lawyer, a Turk with two ladies, and one with none, two Chinese, a doctor, an Indian Prince and Princess decked out with a profusion of gewgaws, a Hindoo Brahmin, a Pilgrim, and a Quaker, were all interesting characters. An interesting country maid, spinning with a distaff, a number of flower and fruit girls, especially one who trundled a wheel-barrow with apples, attracted considerable notice. A fine and appropriate figure of Diana, and also of the Goddess of Peace, drew general attention. Portraits of two of the noble family graced the walls of the apartment, dressed in Highland garb; and the appearance of Master Montgomerie, a nephew of the Earl's, in that attire, served to excite lively emotion and complacent anticipation. The Earl and the Countess were not masked, and mixed in the social throng with their characteristic affability and condescension. Our limits prevent us from noticing further this numerous and happy society. About one o'clock they withdrew; and after taking off their masks, and enjoying in the saloon a hearty laugh at the frolic they had been parties in, they adjourned to the dining-room, where a supper, in the most superb style of elegance and plenty, was served up, presenting part of all the delicacies of the season, a dessert of the most choice and rare fruit, and a profusion of the richest wines, &c.
"In the midst of this repast the gong sounded, and the ghost of the governor in Don Juan stalked through the saloon into the dining-room. Four fiddlers were seated on a form in the saloon. Astonishment struck three of them, and they started up; the fourth being seated at the end of the form, and blind, and not participating in the impression, as if to produce a kind of sympathetic contrast to his brethren, upset it, and fell to the floor.
"Among those who excited most attention in the characters they had assumed, were Lord and Lady Montgomerie, Lady Jane Montgomerie, Sir David and Colonel James Hunter Blair, Colonel and Mrs John Hamilton, Mr Solicitor-General Boyle, Colonel Brisbane, Colonel Burnet, Colonel A. W. Hamilton, the Miss Hamiltons of Sundrum, Mr Montgomerie, and the Mr Montgomeries of Annick, Colonel and Captain White, Major Logan, &c., &c.
"On such occasions poets are generally inspired, and we have of course been favoured with the following song:—

"A Ballad,
To the tune of Hooly and Fairly [slowly and gently, cautiously]

In Eglinton Castle I take great delight,
Where I'm feasted all day and amused every night;
But to sing all its charms it would puzzle me fairly [certainly, indeed];
When I try at a rhyme it comes hooly and fairly.
Hooly and fairly hooly and fairly,
When I try at a rhyme it comes hooly and fairly

My Lord is benevolent, friendly and true
To his king and his country, he's rivalled by few;
This place shows his taste, that he's showed up so rarely;
Would you see all its beauties, gang hooly and fairly
Hooly, &c.

With cheerful good humour my Lady behold,
Who is always the same, and ne'er frigid and cold;
She's kind to the poor, when she sees them clad barely,
And in giving relief ne'er gangs hooly and fairly.
Hooly, &c.

Montgomerie sae [so] noble, and his lady sae sweet,
In Coilsfield's gay mansion have all things complete;
Love and wealth in their cup, fortune does not deal sparely,
Or, in filling it up, e'er cries hooly and fairly
Hooly, &c.

Lady Jean in her cottage, sae neatly set out,
I suspect is some goddess that's come here about,
To instruct a' our wives to gae trig [1] late and early;
Or in cleansing their house ne'er gang hooly and fairly.
Hooly, &c.

Now in this happy circle may pleasure abound,
And wit, mirth, and frolic, go cheerfully round,
Till Aurora peeps in to hint that 'tis early;
But I'm sure when we part 'twill be hooly and fairly.
Hooly and fairly, hooly and fairly,
I'm sure when we part 'twill be hooly and fairly.

[To be continued]
________________________________________
gae trig – be brisk, active, nimble, alert, clever.
hahaya2004
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Re: Historical Sketches - Kilwinning

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No. 14

Eglinton Family No. 9

From the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald 01st September 1855


Shortly after his succession to the earldom Hugh twelfth Earl of Eglinton, rebuilt Eglinton. He also erected an elegant, stately, and elaborately finished mansion on the family estate of Coilsfield. The rebuilding of the Castle was commenced about 1798, and completed about 1802. He likewise re-arranged and enlarged the extensive pleasure grounds, laid out new gardens, and plantations, and, by the judicious exercise of his exquisite taste for the beautiful, greatly enhanced the striking effects of the quiet yet naturally picturesque scenery which on all sides surrounds the Castle. But the most extensive of his undertakings, and that which has been productive of the greatest advantages to the public, was the construction of the Harbour of Ardrossan. The object which he proposed to compass in this undertaking, was to construct a safe and commodious harbour, which, being connected with Glasgow and Paisley by means of a canal, would supersede the tedious navigation of the Clyde, while it would, at the same time facilitate and extend the commercial intercourse of the West of Scotland with the sister kingdoms, and foreign countries. Nor was he alone in his estimate of the great impetus which the commerce of the West of Scotland would receive from the consummation of such a project. In this enterprise he was joined by a considerable number of gentlemen in Ayrshire, and the neighbouring counties of Lanark and Renfrew, who, immediately perceiving the importance and feasibility of the plan, formed themselves into a company to carry on the works which were prosecuted with unusual vigour. A celebrated engineer, Mr Telfer, was engaged to survey the bay of Ardrossan and plan the Harbour; and Acts of Parliament were obtained in 1805, empowering the company to proceed with the construction of the canal and harbour. The foundation stone of the harbour was laid on the 31st July, 1806, but the canal was only completed from Glasgow to Johnstone. To the realization of this magnificent idea, the Earl devoted himself with unabated ardour, entering into the scheme with all the energy and enthusiasm so conspicuous in his character, and, accordingly, during his lifetime the works were carried on with a vigour, and at an expense which has rarely been equalled, perhaps never surpassed, by a private individual. To give some idea of the immense sums expended by his Lordship in this gigantic speculation, it may be remarked that the works were continued without interruption from 1806 till 1819, at an outlay which frequently rose as high as £1000 per month, and in no year was the outlay less than £4000. His Lordship married his cousin Eleanor, fourth daughter of Robert Hamilton of Bourtreehill, a lady who was highly esteemed for her many virtues and amiable disposition. Her Ladyship died on the 18th of January, 1817, and had issue two sons; 1, Archibald Lord Montgomery; 2, Hon. Roger Montgomery, who was a lieutenant in the navy, and died at Port Royal in Jamaica, in January, 1799:—and two daughters; 1, Lady Jean, married to Archibald Hamilton, Esq. of Carcluie; 2, Lady Lilias, married first to Robert Dundas Macqueen of Braxfield, who died on the 5th August, 1816, and secondly to Richard Alexander Oswald of Auchincruive. Lady Lilias died on the 10th September, 1845. Hugh twelfth Earl of Eglinton died on the 15th December, 1819, at the advanced age of 80 years, and was succeeded by his grandson, Archibald William, the present Earl, third son of Archibald Lord Montgomery.—Archibald Lord Montgomery was born on the 30th of July 1773. He entered the army as an ensign in the 42nd regiment, and subsequently obtained the Lieut.- Colonelcy of the Glasgow Regiment raised by his father, and which was reduced in 1795. He afterwards became Colonel of the Ayrshire Militia, but resigned his commission in 1807. In 1809 he was advanced to the rank of Major- General in the army, and was employed on active service in Sicily during the years 1812 - 13, and while there, he represented, in the absence of Lieut.-General Lord William Bentick, his Majesty at the Court of Palermo. But being soon after necessitated to remove from thence, on account of failing health, he died on the 4th of January, 1814, at Alicant in Spain, and was interred at Gibraltar. Lord Montgomery married Lady Mary Montgomery, daughter of Archibald eleventh Earl of Eglinton, and heiress to extensive entailed estates, by whom he had issue three sons; 1, A son born, and died on the 18th December, 1803; 2, Hugh Lord Montgomery, born 24th January, 1811, and who died at Eglinton Castle, on the 13th of July, 1817, aged six years and seven months, and to whose memory his grandfather, Hugh twelfth Earl of Eglinton, erected a beautiful monument, composed of white marble, commemorative of the affection which he bore to, and the inexpressible sorrow and irreparable loss he sustained in the death of his beloved and promising grandson. 3, Archibald William, the present Earl, :who on the death of his grandfather succeeded to the titles and estates of Eglinton. Lady Mary Montgomery married secondly Sir Charles Lamb, Bart. Her Ladyship died on the 12th June, 1848.
We here close the earlier and more modern history of the noble family of Eglinton. This noble house as we have seen, originally sprang from Philip de Montgomery, son of Arnulph de Montgomery, who was the fourth son of Roger Earl of Montgomery, cousin to William the Conqueror, in whose army he held the rank of Constable, and with whom he came to England. This Philip de Montgomery, as we have already stated, came from France to Scotland. in the company of David Earl of Huntingdon, in the early part of the twelfth century, and thus, dating from that time to the present day, this distinguished family may be said to have held the foremost rank amongst the nobility of Scotland for a period of upwards of seven hundred years. During this long period many members of the family have arisen, possessed of administrative talents of the first order, which led to their elevation to some of the highest situations in the Councils of their sovereign, in all of which they were as distinguished for their patriotism and love of country as for the ability and assiduity that they displayed in discharging the duties of the important offices with which they were entrusted. The antiquity and noble birth of the family of Eglinton, and its extensive landed possessions, while they entitled it to a high and honourable position amongst the nobility of Scotland, secured for it, at the same time, a connection through marriage with the first families in point of rank in the kingdom. One of these marriages, that of Margaret, daughter of Alexander first Lord Montgomery, with John Earl of Lennox, Lord Darnley, subsequently gave birth to several kings of Scotland and England. Besides these matrimonial alliances, many other important families bearing the name and arms of Montgomery, immediately sprang from the ancient house of Montgomery, and having acquired lands established themselves in various parts of the country. The first of the branches, or offshots, of whom there is any record is Marthaw [Murthauch] de Montgomery, second son of John de Montgomery the sixth of Eagleshame and Eastwood, who in the latter part of the thirteenth century became ancestor of the Montgomeries of Thornton; and Allan de Montgomery, third son of the same John, was about the same period, founder of the Montgomeries of Stair and Cassillis. George Montgomery, second son of Alexander first Lord Montgomery, received from his father a gift of the lands of Lochlibogside, Hartfield and Coply, and was ancestor of the Montgomeries of Skelmorlie, which ancient family as we have seen became united to the parent house of Eglinton, after a separation of three hundred years, by the marriage of Lilias daughter of Sir Robert Montgomery of Skelmorlie, with Alexander Montgomery of Coilsfield, the eldest son of which marriage became twelfth Earl of Eglinton. John Montgomery, third son of Alexander first Lord Montgomery, had the lands and was designed of Giffen. This John was also ancestor of the French Comtes de Montgomery. The immediate ancestor of the French branch of the house of Montgomery, was James, first Comte de Montgomery, son of the above John of Giffen, who was a Captain in the body of Scottish Guards, instituted as a guard of honour by Charles V. of France. At one of the tournaments, then a frequent species of diversion with the nobility, Comte de Montgomery accidentally killed Henry II. of France. While engaged in jousting with the king, the Comte shivered. his spear, and one of the splinters of the broken weapon having entered the eye, penetrated to the brain of his majesty, inflicting a wound of which he shortly afterwards died. This melancholy occurrence, in which the Comte played so prominent a part, made considerable noise at that time, as the manner of the king's death had been foretold, some years before the event happened, by Nostradamus, a celebrated French prophet of that period. The predictions of the seer, as translated from the French, we present to the curious among our readers, premising that the allusion to the "golden cage" in the third line, is said by commentators to mean the golden helmet worn by the king: —

"The young lion shall overcome the old one,
In martial field by a single duel.
In a golden cage he shall put out his eye.
Two wounds from one he shall die a cruel death."

The male line of this family is now extinct, but it is represented by the Marquis de Thiboutal, through the female line. We next find Robert Montgomery, grandson of Alexander first Lord Montgomery, receiving from his lordship, in 1442, a charter of the lands of Braidstone, and becoming the founder of the Montgomeries. of that place. From him were descended the Viscounts of Ardes, and the Earls of Mount-Alexander, in Ireland, which titles ceased, on the family becoming extinct in 1757. Another grandson of Alexander first Lord Montgomery, Hugh, was the ancestor of the Montgomeries of Helsilhead [Hessilhead], the male of which family is now also extinct. Sir Neil Montgomery, third son of Hugh first Earl of Eglinton, was the founder of the Montgomeries of Lainshaw, in the parish of Stewarton. The male line of this family is now extinct, having ceased in the person of James Montgomery ninth of that house. The female line was continued by his sister, Elizabeth, who married Alexander Montgomery Cuninghame of Kirktonholme. William Montgomery, fourth son of Hugh first Earl, was the first of Greenfield, which family has now merged into, and is represented by the Montgomeries of Broomlands, in Lanarkshire, itself a branch of the family of Braidstone above mentioned. Col. James Montgomery, fourth son of Alexander sixth Earl of Eglinton, was the first of the family of Coilsfield. This family which produced several distinguished members, ultimately gave a representative to the noble house of Eglinton, in the person of Hugh the twelfth Earl, who succeeded, as already noticed to the titles and estates of Eglinton, on the death, without male issue of his cousin Archibald eleventh Earl of Eglinton.
We have thus given a brief and succinct review of the numerous branches which have at various times sprung from the noble family of Eglinton, and we now return to the main line, represented by the Right Honourable Archibald William thirteenth Earl of Eglinton and Winton, who will form the subject of our succeeding sketches.

To be continued.
hahaya2004
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Re: Historical Sketches - Kilwinning

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No. 15

Eglinton Family No. 10

From the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald 08th September 1855


Archibald William, thirteenth and present Earl of Eglinton, was born at Palermo in Scicily [sic], on the 29th of September, 1812. On the death of his father, Archibald Lord Montgomery, he was brought from thence to Eglinton Castle, where he continued to reside under the care of his grandfather till the death of the latter in 1819; when he succeeded to the titles and estates of Eglinton. Subsequently, in 1840, his lordship added the title of Winton, having served himself, in the December of that year, heir-male general to George fourth Earl of Winton, the title having been attainted, in 1716, in the person of George the fifth Earl of Winton, who died without male issue. His lordship obtained an education suited to fit him for filling with honour the high positions in the councils of the nation, to which by his exalted rank he was naturally entitled to aspire, and he early and honourably distinguished himself in many of the classes at his university, giving a promise of the possession of administrative and literary talents of no mean order; and, it is scarcely necessary to say that, the various incidents in his subsequent career have in all instances proved the justness of the highly favourable opinion then entertained of his abilities. In early youth, as he has himself stated, he contracted a passionate fondness for the works of the ancient poets and romancers, and, with all the enthusiasm of a devotee he pored over the pages of those recorders of the times when the gallant deeds of chivalry cast the humanising halo of their radiant glory over the crude elements of a incipient civilisation. No class of literature, we are bold to say, has a more powerful influence over, or is more pregnant with attraction to a cultivated mind than those "Antique stories of deeds martial", while to a youth "High of ingine and right inquisitive", they are altogether irresistible. It is not therefore at all surprising that the heroic achievements of a king Arthur, a Sir Tristrim[sic], or a Sir Launcelot, with the other numberless heroes of minstrelsy and romance, should, in his boyhood have lead captive his lordship's fervid imagination; and that in his more mature years, those visions of chivalry, should revive with all the force of their original fascination, when he pondered on the picturesque pages of the eloquent Froissart, "till he fancied he heard the clang of armour, and the shrill blast of the trumpet calling him to the tented field". This intense and deep-rooted admiration of those days of chivalric glory, it is almost needless to remark, give birth to that most gorgeous and magnificent of all the spectacles which the nineteenth century has yet seen, the Eglinton Tournament,

"Where the knights were met on the tented ground,
As they met in days of yore;
And poised the lance to the trumpet sound,
While the banners were waving o'er.
Bright forms were there—and sparkling eyes
On the brave encounter bent,
But lovelier none as she gave the prize,
Than the Queen of the Tournament,"

The Eglinton Tournament, in which the noble Earl hoped to give a transient revival to, and more than surpassed in splendour the feats of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, will be still fresh in the recollection of many of our readers. But premising that not a few of the younger portion of those into whose hands the "Herald" usually falls, have only heard by imperfect report of an event which, from the intimate acquaintance displayed of the ancient usages of chivalry, and the richness of the armour and artistic exterior decorations, gained for the subject of our sketch an European reputation, we believe, that, although it may interrupt the current of our narrative, a brief account of the Tournament will not be to them uninteresting.
The Eglinton Tournament took place on the 28th and 30th of August 1839. On the first of these days the number of the spectators, who had assembled not only from all parts of Britain, but literally from the four quarters of the globe was computed to amount to 80 000 persons. The lists where the knights were to display their prowess, and contend for the honours of the day was the centre of attraction round which that vast multitude assembled. These were erected in an extensive and level, field which rose with a gentle elevation on each side, situated a short distance from the castle, and was well adapted for gratifying the assemblage with an unobstructed view of' the whole proceedings. The space in which the tilting was to be exhibited, was surrounded by a strong wooden fence, five feet high, and contained a space of about three acres, whilst along the middle of the enclosure a fence or barrier ran lengthways, extending about six hundred and fifty feet, on each side of which the knights rode to the encounter. On the eastern side of the lists stood a row of three galleries intended for the accommodation of those who had been invited to view the festivities. The central gallery was especially remarkable, both for its extent, and the costly magnificence with which it was fitted up. In it the throne of the Queen of Beauty, which stood out prominently from the rest of the building, at once caught and enchained the eye of the spectator, not less from the elaborate carved work, overlaid with gold, that surmounted the regal seat, than the dazzling brilliancy of the crimson damask drapery with which it was hung. This grand or centre gallery was seated to hold six hundred, while the smaller galleries by which it was flanked on each side held respectively six hundred. At each end of the lists stood the tents and pavilions of the knights who were to take part in the tilting. These were the Earl of Eglinton, Lord of the Tournament, Lord G. Beresford, Mr Jerningham, Lord Glenlyon, Mr Lechmere, the Earl of Craven, Captain J. O. Fairlie, Sir Charles Lamb, the Earl of Cassillis, Captain Gage, Sir F. Hopkins, Viscount Alford, and the Marquis of Waterford.
It was arranged that the procession should leave the Castle at one o'clock, but considerable delay took place in its formation, and the spectators waited long and with the most anxious impatience, the expected appearance of the cavalcade. Up to this time, the day had been one of unusual beauty, the sun shone brightly, and the calm serenity of an autumnal sky seemed to auger a continuance of fair weather. But in a short space, and to the consternation of the assembled multitude, dark clouds were seen gradually spreading their inky pall over the horizon, and almost immediately after the rain descended in torrents. This untoward mishap threw a damp on the whole proceedings. The procession which was in course of formation when the rain began to fall, was dispersed and ordered into the Castle, there to await a more favourable change in the weather. But in this they were disappointed, as little or no abatement seemed to be promised for that day; and at last when all hope of a change for the better had been given up, the procession was again ordered out and wended its way to the lists about four o'clock, and where it arrived without its principle ornament, the Queen of Beauty, who was conveyed in her carriage. After entering the lists, the procession twice made the circuit of the enclosure, and after doing obeisance to the Queen of Beauty, the knights retired to their several tents, there to await the challenge to the combat. All eyes were now bent on the pavilions, and watched with anxious expectancy for the signal, which was to call forth the knights who were to do the first honours of tilting. Presently the herald's trumpet sounded the call, and "the Knight of the Swan", the Honourable Mr Jerningham, emerged from his tent and sent his defiance to the "Knight of the Golden Lion", Captain G. O. Fairlie. The knights were clad in complete coats of mail, and armed with a shield and a lance. The lances were wholly composed of wood, about 12 feet long, and were topped with crochets or flat pieces of wood of a circular form. To provide against any accident, in case the timber should not prove of itself sufficiently frail, the preservative precaution had been taken of making several deep indentations in the lances with a saw, previous to their delivery to the knights. At another blast of the trumpet, the opposing knights set their lances in rest, selected opposite sides of the fence which ran through the lists, and levelling their lances, rode furiously forward, but failed in touching each other. This was the first course and was not counted, In the second the iron masque was struck from off the horse of the " Knight of the Swan", and in the third his horse swerved from the barrier, but by a piece of dextrous horsemanship he regained his position, and in the fourth course, Fairly broke his lance on the shield of his antagonist.
In the next tilt the Earl of Eglinton, lord of the Tournament, appeared in the lists and sent his challenge to the "Knight of the Dragon", the Marquis of Waterford. Lord Eglinton was clad in a suit of gilded armour of dazzling brilliancy. He was, says an eminent author, an eye witness of scenes, "distinguished above the other nobles not less by the magnificence of his appointments, than by the ease and dignity with which he rode, and his knightly bearing and stature. His golden armour sat on him as if he had been used to wear it, and he managed his beautiful charger, and bowed in reply to the reiterated shouts of the multitude and his friends, with such a grace and chivalric courtesy, which drew murmurs of applause from the spectators long after the cheering had subsided". Nor was the reception which his gallant opponent, the Marquis of Waterford, received less enthusiastic and flattering. The knights having placed themselves at the farther ends, and on opposite sides of the fence, the signal was given to advance. In the first course, the lord of the Tournament shivered his lance on the shield of his opponent, an act performed with so much dexterity, that it elicited from the spectators in the galleries and around the enclosure, the most hearty acclamations. In the second course, both knights missed, but in the third, the noble Earl broke another lance on the armour of his opponent, and amidst another enthusiastic burst of applause, and the sounds of martial music, the Earl proceeded to the throne of the Queen of Beauty to receive the prize of victory.
The "Knight of the Burning Tower", Sir Francis Hopkins, was the next to challenge, the "Knight of the Red Rose", A. J. Lechmere. In the first course, the "Knight of the Burning Tower", struck his opponent, and in second, he shivered his lance with such force on the armour of his antagonist, that the splinters were thrown high in the air. In the third course, he accomplished a feat of still greater dexterity, breaking his lance with all the gallantry of an ancient knight on the casket of the "Knight of the Red Rose". On the conclusion of the tilt, the "Knight of the Burning Tower" was greeted by a prolonged round of applause, which showed the ardent interest that the spectators took in the progress of the spectacle.
After the "Knight of the Burning Tower" had paid his devoirs to the Queen of Beauty, the "Knight of the Black Lion", Viscount Alford; and the King [Knight] of Gael, Lord Glenlyon, advanced to the opposite extremities of the barrier. In the first course, both knights passed each other without touching; but in second, the "Knight of the Black Lion" hit the lance of the "Knight of Gael", and in the third course, the former broke his lance on the armour of his opponent.

To be continued.
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Re: Historical Sketches - Kilwinning

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No. 16

Eglinton Family No. 11 - Eglinton Tournament

From the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald 15th September 1855


While the tilting continued the rain increased even to a perfect deluge. Every one felt soaked and uncomfortable notwithstanding that he stood in a whole forest of umbrellas. But the day's disasters did not end there, to many greater evils were looming in the distance. Drenched and hungry the occupants of the galleries were no doubt feasting their imaginations with the delicious banquet, and the exhilarating ball, which the noble Earl had prepared for his guests, never doubting that although the rain had fallen with fatal effects on the procession, thrown cold water on the performances of the knights and the heads and bodies of the spectators, yet it would spare the dinner and the dance. What then must have been the blank looks of consternation and dismay which broke on the fine features of congregated beauty, and expectant diners and dancers, when Lord Eglinton rode up to the front of the gallery where sat the Queen of Beauty, and taking off his bonnet and bowing said—"I regret much that I am compelled to announce that, in consequence of the insufficiency of the temporary buildings at the Castle, the rain has so destroyed everything as to put it out of my power to fulfil my intention of giving an entertainment to my friends". But whatever the feelings of disappointment were which that short and manly speech awakened, the announcement was followed by clapping of hand and every token of approbation and sympathy, and we are sure that there was not one present who had not more commiseration for his Lordship on account of the painful situation in which he was placed, than any regret at the temporary inconvenience that such an event might occasion themselves. Meantime, although the rain fell thickly the sports were continued; and a spirited combat with two-handed swords, not the least antique part of the games, was commenced by two men-at-arms, Mr Mackay and Mr Redbury. The combatants laid lustily about them, wielding their ponderous weapons with great skill and dexterity, their armour ringing clearly with the force and frequency of the blows, as one might fancy it did in days of yore, when the double-handed sword wrought sad havoc in an enemy's ranks. So exciting was this scene that the spectators seemed to be more impressed by its near approach to reality than any part of the previous performance, and greeted the combatants with the most animating cheers.
On the conclusion of the combat the "Knight of the Dolphin", the Earl of Cassillis, and the "Knight of the Black Lion", Lord Alford, rode up to the barrier. In the first course their lances crossed without breaking. In the second the knight of the Dolphin rode up with great impetuosity, and gallantly broke his lance on the armour of his opponent. In the third encounter both lances crossed, and the Knight of the Dolphin's was again broken.
This concluded the doings of the first day. It was now six o'clock, and the rain still falling heavily, the heralds having sounded the retreat, the procession was again marshalled, and returned to the Castle in the same order in which it had set out. Now was seen the grandest and most melancholy sight of all. Thousands of weary, wet, mud-bespattered pedestrians wended their way through the spacious parks, drenched to the skin, and engaged in a resolute contest with the flood of rain above and the sea of mud beneath. Here might be seen a pert beauty, or a staid matron of the nineteenth century decked in the grotesque costume of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, industriously picking her steps, shoeless and umbrellaless, through the superabundent puddle; whilst there might be beheld mailed heroes, stalwart esquires, bluff men-at-arms, burly halberdiers, with their buff boots, silk hose, velvet doublets, and plumed bonnets, rueful and forlorn, jostling along, and presenting to the attentive observer the most whimsical and motley-medley of ancient oddities which it was possible to conceive.
Thursday should have been the second day of the Tournament, but if the previous day was bad, that was still more unfavourable. The morning was ushered in with a perfect storm of wind and rain. Unpromising, however, as the day was, it did not quench the hopes of the thousands of eager spectators of all ranks who early congregated around the lists, awaiting the renewal of the previous day's spectacle. But these hopes suffered a sad collapse when early in the day an official intimation was issued by Lord Eglinton, that owing to the badness of the weather it was impossible to go on with the work of the Tournament. Yet thousands continued to loiter on the ground, and when about mid-day the clouds began to disperse, the rain to abate, and the sun to shine out brightly, the hopes of the hitherto disappointed began to brighten also. Nor were they deceived; the noble Earl, with his characteristic generosity, and knowing the responsibility that attached to the peculiar position in which he stood, rode himself through the grounds, and amidst the deafening plaudets[sic] of the assembled thousands, announced that, foul or fair, the Tourney should be held on the following day, Friday.
On Friday it accordingly took place; and if the two previous days were bad, this one amply compensated for all the inconvenience of its predecessors. Nothing could be more beautiful than the sunshine, and the thousands who had not seen the gorgeous procession of Wednesday, denuded as it was of its fairest features and splendour by the envious elements, promised themselves the gratification of beholding the unwonted spectacle under the most favourable circumstances. To give even a faint idea of the splendour or the magnificence of the procession on this clay would far exceed the limited space at our disposal; suffice it, therefore, to say that the most fastidious lover of "spectacles grand" must have felt proud of the gorgeous and rich display of costumes, ancient and modern, which decked the portly persons of knights and esquires. On arriving at the lists the procession entered at the principal gate, and after making the half circuit of the area the King of the Tournament, (Marquis of Waterford) the judges of the field, &c., were dismounted and placed in their respective seats in the grand gallery. The King and Queen having taken their seats on their thrones, a prolonged flourish of trumpets summoned the knights and esquires to pay their devoirs to the Queen of Beauty, (Lady Seymour) and the knights riding round again received from the ladies the favours, gloves, scarfs, &c., to be worn in their helmets during the tourney. Another blast of trumpets gave notice to the knights to retire to their pavilions, to complete their arming, and await the summoning of the herald. The knights then rode from the pavilions completely armed, and took their stations on the ground appointed to them, when the trumpets having again sounded the herald of the tourney announced that they were ready to do their devoirs against any knight who might demand the combat. On this the knight elected to run the first course against the challenger left his tent, and riding up to the gallery, demanded permission to make his assay, which was granted.
About three o'clock the tilting was begun by the "Knight of Gael," Lord Glenlyon, who sent his defiance to the "Knight of the Black Lion", Lord Alford. In the two first courses both knights failed to hit; but in the third course the Gael shivered his lance upon the shield of the Black Lion, and being declared victor, was brought up to the front of the throne of the Queen, where he paid his devoirs and retired.
The next who appeared in the lists to do the honours of tilting were the "Knight of the Griffen", the Earl of Craven, and the "Knight of the Golden Lion", Captain G. O. Fairlie. In the first course both knights splintered their lances with such grace that the encounter was justly admitted to be one of the best specimens of jousting that had yet been given. In the second both weapons crossed, but in the third the Knight of the Griffen carried his lance and struck his adversary with such precision that the weapon was shivered into fragments, a small piece only remaining in his hand below the gauntlet gripe. He immediately after retired, and passing before the Queen, paid his devoirs and was declared the victor.
The Lord of the Tournament, the Earl of Eglinton, then rode up to the lists to contend with the "Knight of the Red Rose", R. J. Lechmere. In the first and second courses both knights were bent on destroying their lances, but failed in hitting. In the third, however, the Lord of the Tournament delivered and shivered his lance on the shield of his opponent in capital style, and so gratified were the spectators with the gallant act, that as the noble Earl rode up to pay his devoirs, his success was hailed by loud acclamations, and by the waving of the handkerchiefs of the women, and the bonnets and hats of the men assembled on all sides of the amphitheatre.
The "Knight of the Stag's Head", Captain Beresford, and the "Black Knight", W. J. Gilmour, then ran four courses, all of which were without effect, and the tilt was in consequence left undecided. The courses that followed between the "Knight of the Dolphin", Lord Cassillis, and the "Knight of the White Rose", Sir Charles Lamb, and the "Knight of the Swan", Mr Jerningham, and the "Knight of the Ram", Captain Gage, although contested with great spirit were alike resultless. The same may be said of the "Knight of the Dragon",, the Marquis of Waterford, and the "Knight of the Border", Sir J. Johnstone, who, although they ran their careers with admirable speed, failed to do more than cross their lances, and that only in the first course.

To be continued.
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Re: Historical Sketches - Kilwinning

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No. 17

Eglinton Family No. 12 – Eglinton Tournament

From the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald 22nd September 1855


The tilting of Friday was concluded by the appearance in the lists of the "Knight of the Golden Lion", Captain J. O. Fairlie, and the "Knight of the Burning Tower", Sir F. Hopkins. The first career of both knights was a failure; but in the second the Golden Lion shivered his lance on the armour of the Tower. The third course was like the first, ineffective on both sides; and the Golden Lion having made the only hit, was in consequence declared the victor.
At the conclusion of the tilt the Lord of the Tournament announced to the assemblage that the jousting of the day was finished, but that, if the weather proved favourable, the passage-of-arms would be resumed next day, Saturday, a piece of information which elicited loud cheers. The tilting of Friday, it may here be observed, was not at all equal to that of Wednesday. The knights, although seemingly eager in their endeavours to hit, uniformly failed, and appeared to be nerveless, jaded, and shorn of that quickness of eye and steadiness of hand which are indispensable in the rapid movements of the tourney. On the whole, therefore, the day's performance though passable as an amateur display, failed to give satisfaction, and may not unfittingly be described by one of the best jokes of the Tourney Jester, who, on witnessing one of the ineffectual careers, cried, "Ho! ho! if the Ayrshire eagles think to dine to-day upon a dead knight, they will look long enough before they find one".
Having finished the tilting the knights essayed to emulate the feats

"Of the braw gallants
Wha rade at the ring",

so celebrated in ancient ballad story. The riding at the ring was to many not the least animating part of the day's spectacle, and in the trials of skill, the knights and esquires, who participated in this part of the performance, acquitted themselves with considerable success. The exercise was conducted in this wise:—A ring, of a size just large enough to be carried off on an ordinary lance point, was suspended from a string loosely stretched between two upright poles, and hanging at an elevation nearly level with the horse's head. One pair of these poles was placed in front of the loge of the Queen of Beauty, and another pair occupied a similar position on the opposite side of the barrier which ran through the lists. The knights and esquires who were to ride took their station about thirty-six yards distant from the ring, and on the signal being given they started, urging their horses to a gallop, and following each other in rapid succession endeavoured to bear off the ring on the point of their lances as they passed through between the poles.
The performance of the day was brought to a close by what was justly considered the most exciting and entertaining portion of either day's spectacle—a tourney with the sword between four mounted knights who represented Scotland and Ireland, and an equal number who represented the cause of England. The Scottish and Irish knights were:—the Earl of Eglinton, Lord of the Tournament; the Marquis of Waterford, the Knight of the Dragon; W. Little Gilmour, Esq., the Black Knight; and Viscount Glenlyon, the Knight of the Gael;—against the English knights—Viscount Alford, the Knight of the Black Lion; Mr Lechmere, the Knight of the Red Rose; Sir Charles Lamb, the Knight of the White Rose; and Captain Fairlie, the Knight of the Golden Lion. Preparatory to the encounter the combatants ranged themselves on opposite sides of the lists, and on the signal being given, by sound of trumpet, they rushed on each other at a furious pace. The chief merit of the trial lay in each striking two blows on his opponent in passing. But in the heat of action several of the knights did not content themselves with the required number of strokes, especially Lords Waterford and Alford, who, instead of moving onward after their two strokes, turned their horses again to the attack, and set to work in right earnest. For some time this single combat raged with fearful fury, the blows were laid on with such reckless force that the sounds of clanging armour rang through the lists, the fire flashed quickly and vividly from their arms, while many of the spectators, thinking it an arranged part of the performance, were wrought up to the highest pitch of excitement, and evinced their delight at the real nature of the melee by greeting the combatants with loud and prolonged cheers. At last the furious character of the combat began to excite fears for the consequences, and Sir Charles Lamb, the Marshall of the Tournament, who dashed between the combatants, had no small difficulty in separating the pair. This general encounter with the sword was universally admitted to be the best part of the two days' spectacle. The knights, jealous of the honour of their respective countries, hewed and hacked at each other with right good will, and so stoutly was the contest maintained that some of the swords were snapped by the hilt, while all were more or less injured. Nor was it altogether a bloodless one. In one of the encounters the Honourable Mr Jerningham was so severely cut in the wrist that he had to be stripped of his armour, and, like the knights of old, had his wound dressed on the field.
This having concluded the business of the day, the procession was again formed, and to the stirring sounds of martial music the cortege returned to the castle.
In the evening a banquet and ball were given by the Lord of the Tournament, in the temporary pavilions erected for that purpose adjoining the castle. The banquet was peculiarly sumptuous, and the ball brilliant beyond all previous precedent; and never did the princely hospitality nor generous disposition and courteous bearing of the noble Earl shine with greater lustre than when he was engaged in entertaining one of the most numerous and brilliant assemblages that ever graced the mansion of any single individual. The hall, and especially the ball-room, was fitted up on a scale of unequalled magnificence, and was superbly gorgeous from the radiant glare of myriad lamps falling with dazzling richness on the crimson drapery that surrounded the walls, and on the blaze of diamonds, jewels, and antique dresses of the guests, who wore the costumes of the gala days of ancient chivalry.
On Saturday it was intended to resume the spectacle of the previous days, but the weather again proved unfavourable, and it was consequently, to the regret of many, and to none more than to the noble Earl himself, found necessary to give up all thoughts of further continuing the entertainment.
Thus terminated the Eglinton Tournament, an entertainment which, whether from the richness of the equipment, the admirable arrangements, and the superb and extensive scale on which everything calculated to enhance the splendour of the spectacle, or add to the gratification of the spectators, was provided, has seldom been equalled, if ever surpassed even in the days when the work of the tourney was of a character sterner than a mere amusement or a gala day pastime. With the mimic nature of the combats not a few of the spectators felt disappointed. But it must be observed that the whole performance was conducted in strict accordance with the usages of ancient times. In the exhibitions of the tourney of the olden time there were two degrees of tilting. The utmost intention of the tilting of courtesy, which was that practised at Eglinton, was for the knight to break a spear by pushing it against his opponent's shield, and in order to prevent either knight being unhorsed or hurt, the lances were always made of the most brittle wood, and not unfrequently, to make them more fragile, almost cut through in several places, so as to insure their breaking the moment they were properly planted on the shield or armour of the adversary. The second kind of tilting was that with the ashen spear. This weapon differed from the former in being more tough, and in having instead of the crotchet or flat piece of wood on the point, three iron prongs, from an inch and a-half to two inches long, each prong being flattened at the point so as to make it take hold of the shield, but at the same to guard against the possibility of its penetrating the armour of the combatants. The chief merit of this encounter lay in each knight endeavouring to unsaddle and unhorse his antagonist; and although this was always done in the most perfect good humour, and without any intention of entailing fatal effects, these not unfrequently followed from the bruises sustained in the act of being unhorsed. It is, therefore, unnecessary to say that this last species of jousting was wholly unsuited to the humane character of the Eglinton Tournament.

To be continued.
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Re: Historical Sketches - Kilwinning

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No. 18

Eglinton Family No. 13

From the Ardrossan & Saltcoats Herald 13th October 1855

Concluding Article


For several years after taking his seat in the House of Peers the Earl of Eglinton generally spoke and voted on the more important political questions that occupied their lordships' attention; but on the whole he did not take any very prominent part in the general routine of business that came before the House. The defection of the late Sir Robert Peel, however, from the ranks of the party with whom he had so long acted, and by whose confidence and support he mainly attained to the high position which he held as a Parliamentary leader, through his conversion to the principles of free trade, while it deprived the great conservative party of its principal ornament and most distinguished leader in the Lower House, as well as several of its most practical and experienced statesmen, both there and in the House of Peers, had also the effect of entirely changing the aspect of the two great political parties. This event which, to all appearance, irremediably shattered the conservative party, threw its remaining members on their own resources, and again taught them the oft-repeated and wholesome lesson, that it is as fatal to the existence of a party as to the ascendancy of a principle, to leave its exclusive guidance in the hands of a few persons. The deep significance of this truth, which forcibly demonstrated that the very existence of the conservative party now depended on the vigour and energy of its individual members, was clearly perceived by many, and by none more than the noble Earl. And we well remember that in several of his Lordship's speeches on the measure for the repeal of the duty on corn, he pointedly enforced the recognition of that fact, and himself successfully exemplified the utility of the practice in exposing, by a series of arguments as sound as they were convincing, the hollowness of the plausible yet impossible predictions of the advocates of free trade. From that period, therefore, his Lordship may be said to have fairly entered the political arena, and to have taken his place as an important and influential member of the conservative party.
On the resignation by Lord John Russell of the office of Prime Minister, and the consequent fall of the Whig Ministry, on the 21st of February, 1852, the Earl of Derby was called upon to take the reins of Government. In that administration the Earl of Eglinton was appointed to the honourable yet arduous office of Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland; and we are bold to say that the Earl of Derby could not, in the whole range of his party, have chosen one in every respect better qualified to reflect honour on his administration, or redeem the Irish Government from the foul blot of being under the necessity of resorting to the most unequivocal and disgraceful political jobbing in order to retain its influence over the Irish people. The reception of his Lordship in Dublin was in the highest degree enthusiastic; each party vied with the other in its congratulations and expressions of personal respect, and a brief space demonstrated that that generous confidence had not been misplaced. It soon became manifest that his Lordship viewed the duties of his position with the eye of a man of sense and of a statesman. He exerted himself to allay the religious and political asperities that had so long proved the bane of Ireland, and showed that he rested the strength and popularity of his Government, not upon the creation of party influences, but upon a spirit of firm and generous conciliation, and the development of the material resources of the nation. To compass this object he from the first assiduously endeavoured to make himself acquainted with the character, the feelings, the prospects, and the necessities of the people for whose welfare and government he was mainly responsible.
What the means were which his Lordship considered requisite for the regeneration of Ireland we learn from a brilliant speech delivered at a banquet given in connection with the Agricultural Society of Galway, at which the noble Earl was present. On that occasion his Lordship said: —

"I have come to Galway at a time when the turmoil, the excitement, and the heart-burnings of that great but necessary evil, a general election, has scarcely subsided, when, perhaps, men who have been friends from their youth have separated from each other on a hasty word, a harsh expression, or a political accusation. Be it my duty to pour oil upon these passions, to assuage these animosities. to restore these friendships. l am not aware that the men of Galway have shown any especial favour to those who hold my political views, but I have come to Galway not the less willingly for that. I did not come to Galway as a party politician, nor as an electioneerer; but I came as the Viceroy of Ireland, anxious to allay all animosities, to sanction by my presence, and to promote so far as I am able those great interests which are essentially necessary to the welfare of every country, but which are of especial importance to the prosperity of Ireland. I came here to urge upon you the duty of uniting in heart and hand, and frankly with each other, to labour for the cultivation of the soil, from whence is chiefly to flow the materials of Ireland's greatness. Depend upon it the colour of your crops is of far more importance to you than the colour of your flags, and you will find more to learn in the neighbouring show-yard than in any political harangue, be it liberal or conservative. I believe that on the proper cultivation of the soil all real prosperity is based, and from that root all other prosperity, whether it be manufacturing or commercial, must spring. Cultivate your soil, therefore, reclaim your waste lands, manure your fields, cultivate the flax crop, turnips, and mangold, but above all live in harmony with each other, and you will soon see the tall chimneys, the busy factories, the heavy trains, and the laden ships follow. The merchandise of the world will fill your bays; and the waters of Lough Corrib will carry down the commerce of the interior. But I may also be permitted to remind you that all the riches of the earth are not above ground. There may be a great part of your country barren and covered with stones, but beneath those stones there may be mineral wealth not only sufficient to repay the utmost labour that you can employ, but the working may be the means of greatly promoting the development of the other sources of wealth in your country. I know from my own experience that estates in Scotland, which a few years ago, were not worth more than a few pounds annually, are now worth as many thousands. I also know that you have such mines in Ireland, but I trust that the present produce of these mines is but small when compared with what may hereafter be produced; and I do not think that, with the fine railway opened to your city, with your mercantile bay, and with the internal resources of Lough Corrib and Lough Mark, Galway can long remain stationary. In reference to the sentiment that has been coupled with my name, ("Prosperity to Ireland "), I would say that, in my opinion, the whole history of Ireland lies within a very small compass. Is it the character of the people which unfits them for happiness or greatness? So far from that being the case, I may venture to say that there is not a people in the world whose perceptions are so keen, whose intellects are so quick, whose hearts are so warm, and whose good feelings are so easily excited. Is there any dullness in the eyes of the daughters of Erin, or inaptitude in their fingers for the most delicate handiwork? Since I came to this country I have made it my business to investigate into the system of education, and I will venture to say that there is not a country in the world where the children exhibit more cleverness and docility, or give greater proofs of progress. Is it then the character of the climate or the nature of the soil. There is no doubt but Ireland's miseries are to be traced to disunion and strife among her children, to the turbulence which prevents the employment of her industry, the development of her resources, and the outlay of her capital. If her children would but live together as brethren, instead of foes; if they are true to themselves and their country, there will no longer be heard the wail over Ireland's sorrows and difficulties, and the Atlantic will cease to bear so many homeless wanderers upon its waves. The government must also be true to you, and must take care to execute in an impartial but firm manner, the powers with which it is invested, and I pledge my honour that so long as I remain amongst you, neither will partiality ever lead me to deviate from the straight path, nor will censure ever deter me from pursuing that course which, in my conscience, I believe to be right."

Such was the policy by which the noble Earl proposed to govern Ireland. He saw and understood that the valuable agricultural wealth of the country had been allowed to remain undeveloped, while the land had been swept by famine and disease, and the people driven from the scenes of their birth to seek a happier home on a foreign shore; and, above all, he knew that the elements of religious and political discord were deep-rooted, and had been encouraged and fostered for party purposes; and that until these were allayed, if not eradicated, there was no hope of Ireland's regeneration. He, therefore, set himself to encourage the improvement of the soil, to consolidate and render effective the national system of education; so that by the first its agricultural wealth might be increased, and by the second raze the foundation of that ignorance which was the chief element in Ireland's degradation, and the parent of its crime, misery, and poverty. The undeviating pursuit of a policy so beneficial and conciliatory could not fail to benefit and win the affections of the Irish people. And such was assuredly the result. On the occasion of his leaving Ireland, in consequence of the resignation of the Derby Ministry, and after having acted as her Majesty's representative for a period of nine months, every class of the Irish people rivalled the other in their demonstrations of affectionate respect for a nobleman who, while he largely benefited their country, left to his successor the dignified spectacle of an administration which had gained to itself the love and esteem of the people by its uniform moderation and justice. In truth it may justly be affirmed that, during at least the present century, no Lord-Lieutenant enjoyed a higher degree of personal respect, or was more deservedly popular with all classes; and even in the bitterness of party strife, neither of the hostile parties, into which Ireland was unhappily divided, could point to a single act that tended to sully the purity or overshadow the lustre of his administration.
During his Viceroyship, the noble Earl was elected to the honourable office of Lord-Rector of the Glasgow University, and the ceremony of installation took place on the 30th of Nov., 1852.
More recently, on the formation of the Association for the Vindication of Scottish Rights, his Lordship was nominated president of that body, an office which he still holds.
The Earl of Eglinton is Lord-Lieutenant of the County, and Colonel of the Royal Regiment of Ayrshire Militia.
On the 17th of February, 1841, his Lordship married Theresa, widow of Richard Howe Cockerell, Esq., Com. R.N. Her Ladyship died on the 16th of December, 1853. By this marriage his Lordship had issue three sons: —1, Archibald-William Lord Montgomery, born 3rd December, 1841; 2, Hon. Seton Montolieu, born 15th May, 1846; 3, Hon. George Arnulph, born 1848; and one daughter, Lady Egidia, born 17th December, 1843.
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