Tag Archives: Colquhoun
A Short History of of the Colquhoun
and Hamilton Families, Ancestors of
Alexander Colhoun and Judith Hamilton
lived their out their lives at Crosh House near the town of
Newton-Stewart, County Tyrone, the family home of the Irish
branch of the Colhoun family, a number of their children and
grandchildren emmigrated to America in the early part of the
18th century and today their American descendants number many
thousands. (I’m descended from their son Hugh Colhoun
through my great-grandmother, Lizzie Belle Calhoon).
Since there are so many of us I thought the most useful thing
I could do would be to put on some of the information about
their ancestry, particularly maternal lines.
The first person to be known by the name was Sir Gilbert de
Colquhoun, Lord of huge tracts of land of the same name in
Dumbartonshire, Scotland, born around 1150 AD. As a result
of his fueding with other clans these lands were forfeited to
the crown in 1220 AD and acquired by Umfridus de Kilpatrick
of Colquhoun, our first direct ancestor in this line. There
is relatively little known about the early Colquhouns and
nothing is known of their wives until the time of Sir Robert
de Colquhoun (1350-1390), who married the heiress of Luss,
thus adding that title and the accompanying lands to the
Colquhoun estate. Sir John (or Iain) Colquhoun (1408-1459) held the office of Governor of Dumbarton Castle
and married Jean Erskine, the daughter of Lord Robert Erskine,
however I have not yet discovered anything of her ancestry.
His grandson, also Sir John or Iain (1459-1478) succeeded him
and held the positions of Comptroller of the Exchequer (1460),
Sheriff of Dumbartonshire (1471) and Great Chamberlain (1474).
He was killed at the siege of Dunbar. The claim made that his
wife, a Boyd, was the daughter of Sir Thomas Boyd and
Princess Mary of Scotland seems to be false (see notes below),
however, another Boyd, Agnes (d. July 18, 1584 at Edinburgh),
the daughter of Robert, the 5th Lord Boyd and his wife
Mariota Colquhoun, was the descendant of this pair. (Agnes
Boyd married Sir John Colquhoun XIII & XV of Luss, on Nov.
15, 1564). This heritage is particularly interesting because
Princess Mary’s father, James II of Scotland, was the son of
James I, whose marriage into the English royal house is a
particularly dramatic and romantic tale: James, b. July 1394,
had been sent to safety in France by his father, Robert III
shortly before the later’s death in 1406. The young Prince
was captured by the English, however and held until
1424, during which time he met and fell in love with Joan
Beaufort, the granddaughter of John of Gaunt, who was the son
of Edward III and Philippa of Hainault. The poem ‘The Kinges
Quaire’ is reputed to have been written by James I about his
captivity and romance with Joan. See the following
pedigree chart and
biography of Edward III for
more information about Edward III and Philippa of Hainault.
I am much indebted for this information to Dan Calhoun,
who not only fit my branch of the Calhoons into the overall
picture but put me in touch with second cousins still living
in Kansas, to Linda Samuelson, who did much of the original
Much of my information comes from Orval O. Calhoun’s
exhaustive 4 vol. “Our Calhoun Family History”.
Although I have not verified this information myself I
believe it is generally realiable as far as the older Calhoun
information goes. However with regard to the connection of
some of the American Calhouns to the old-World family much
information remains questionable. Also his claim of royal
descent through a daughter of Sir Thomas Boyd, who married
Princess Mary of Scotland seems to be incorrect (per
correspondence with members of the Boyd List) and also the
claim of descent from the same Princess Mary and her second
husband, James Hamilton, according to my correspondence with
“The following two sources debunk the lineage of Judith
Hamilton daughter of James Hamilton son of George son of
Claud Hamilton: From “Burke’s Irish Family Records” American
Edition, London, 1976? Leslie (Co. Kerry) “This family is a
cadet branch of the LESLIES of Wardis (see Burke’s Peerage,
LESLIE of Wardis, Bt) JAMES LESLIE, of Milltown; 4th son of
William Leslie, 4th of Wardis, Falconer to King James VI and
I (see Burke’s Peerage, LESLIE of Wardis, BT); m Margaret
Erksine, dau of the Laird of Pittodrie, and d in hosp in
Aberdeen 1620, leaving issue (with a yr son) COL JAMES LESLIE,
served in King Charles I’s Army in Ireland, and in Civil War
1641, m Isabella, dau (one of 27 children by one wife) of Rev.
Alexander Conyngham, Dean of Raphoe (see Burke’s Peerage,
CONYNGHAM, M) and had issue, JOHN (Rev) of whom presently.
* Catherine, m. Rev. James Hamilton, MA, of Montgavelin
Castle, Co Donegal, eldest son of Rev. Andrew Hamilton, Pres
of Kilskerry, and had issue. He d. 1689.*” From “Burke’s
Peerage” London 1900 Lord Claud Hamilton, 1st Baron Paisley,
the zealous partizan of Mary, Queen of Scots, and a very
gallant and distinguished personage….He was b. 1543 m.
Margaret dau of George 5th Lord Seton. He d 1621, leaving
issue, 1. James, his heir 2. Claud (Sir) Constable of the
Castle Toome, Co Antrim, m the dau and heir of Sir Robert
Hamilton, of Manor Elieston, Co Tyrone. He d 1629 and was
ancestor of the baronets of Woodbrook (extinct) 3. George
(Sir) of Greenlaw and Roscrea, Co Tipperary, who left an
*only* dau Margaret m Sir Archibald Acheson, ancestor of
the Earls of Gosford. 4. Frederick, ancestor of Viscount
Boyne (see that title) 1. Margaret m William, 1st Marquess of
Many thanks to Leo van de Pas, who provided
an entirely different line of descent from Princess Mary and
James Hamilton through Agnes Boyd.
Much information on the Boyds and their royal
antecedents also came from the Boyd Family Pages. Most
royal genealogy data is from Directory of Royal Genealogical Data.
Anyone with Calhoon, Calhouns, Cahoons, Cohouns, Colquhouns, etc.
ancestry should be sure to check out the following:
Clan Colquhoun, and
this Colquhoun site with map.