|James Hamilton of Donalong, in the county of Tyrone,
eldest son of Colonel James Hamilton, succeeded his father
in the post of groom of the bedchamber to Charles II. at
the early age of seventeen years, and was of the Privy
Council to his brother and successor James II., in whose
army he commanded a regiment of horse; but no sooner
did he perceive his Majesty's intentions to introduce popery
than he quitted his service, became an officer under King
William at the Revolution, and carried arms and ammunition to the relief of Londonderry, when besieged by King
James's army. By means of this supply the city was
enabled to hold out till Major-General Kirke sent in further
relief from England, which occasioned the siege to be
raised. After his grandfather's death, he declined to
assume the title of Baronet. He was elected member of
Parliament for the county of Tyrone in 1692 and 1695, and
in June 1701 succeeded to the earldom of Abercorn, also to
the barony of Strabane, in terms of the second patent of
that title. He was created BARON OF MOUNTCASTLE
and VISCOUNT OF STRABANE in the County of Tyrone
by privy seal at Hampton Court 9 November 1701, and
patent at Dublin 2 December following, took his seat as
such in the Parliament of Ireland 21 September 1703, the
first summoned to meet by Queen Anne, of whose Privy
Council he was a member, as he was also to their Majesties
George I. and II. He was member of several committees of
the House of Lords of Ireland, in the reign of Queen Anne;
took his seat in the Parliament of Scotland 3 October 1706,
steadily supported the union, voting in favour of that treaty
on every division of the House.
By the twenty-second article of the treaty of Utrecht,
Louis XIV. having engaged that he would forthwith, after
the peace was made, cause justice to be done to the family
of Hamilton concerning the dukedom of Chatelherault,
the Earl of Abercorn preferred his claim as heir male of
the first Duke of Chatelherault. Swift wrote, 24 September
1712: 'I have been mediating betwixt the Hamilton family
and Lord Abercorn, to make them compound with him, and
I believe they will do it. Lord Selkirk is to be here in
order to go to France to make the demands; and the
ministry are of opinion they will get some satisfaction, and
they empowered me to advise the Hamilton side to agree
with Abercorn, who asks a fourth part, and will go to
France and spoil all if they don't yield it.'
The earl died 28 November 1734, aged seventy-four, and
was buried, 3 December, in the Duke of Ormond's vault in
Henry the Seventh's Chapel in Westminster Abbey. His
will, dated 5 May 1731, was proved 25 April 1735.
He married (by licence, Faculty Office, 24 January) 1683/4
Elizabeth, only daughter and heiress of Sir Robert Reading
of Dublin, Baronet, so created 27 August 1675, by Jane,
widow of Charles, first Earl of Mountrath, and daughter of
Sir Robert Hannay of Mochrum, Baronet, by Jane Stewart
his wife, and by her (who died in Sackville Street, London,
16 March 1754, aged eighty-six; and was buried, 22 March,
with her husband in Westminster Abbey) had nine sons
and five daughters:-
- 1. Robert, baptized 12 July 1687, died soon afterwards.
- 2. James, seventh Earl of Abercorn.
- 3. Robert, died very young.
- 4. John, died unmarried 1714, aged 20.
- 5. George, died in infancy.
- 6. George Hamilton, was a cornet of horse; appointed in
October 1742, deputy cofferer to the Prince of Wales's
household; was member of Parliament for St. Johnstown in the county of Donegal, from 1727 to 1760;
chosen in 1734, member for Wells in England, but declared not duly elected; chosen for the same place in
1747, and sat till April 1754. He died 3 May 1775. He
married in October 1719 Bridget, daughter of Colonel
William Coward of Wells, some time a Virginia
merchant, with whom he got a large fortune, and by
her (who died at Bath 24 August 1775), had four sons
and seven daughters:-
- (1) George, born 1721, bred to the sea service, died unmarried.
- (2) John, born 1726, matriculated at University College, Oxford, 17 March 1743/4, B.A. 1747, M.A. 1751, collated to the
Archdeaconry of Raphoe 1754, died unmarried in Merrion
Square, Dublin, 12 August 1756, buried at St. Anne's Church.
Administration granted to his father 13 October 1756.
- (3) William, colonel in the army, died unmarried June 1793.
- (4) James, equerry to Frederick, Prince of Wales, married twice, died without issue 1779.
- (5) Elizabeth, married, first, contract 30 July 1754, to John
Cameron, of Glenkindy, a colonel in the French service,
nephew of Lochiel; secondly, to the Comte de Fay.
- (6) Bridget, married to the Rev. Thomas Finney, and died his
widow at Alston, near Knightsbridge, 3 April 1789.
- (7) Maria, born 7 January 1725, married, first, to Francis Marsh,
by whom she had a daughter Elizabeth, married to Colonel
Thomas Hervey; secondly, 8 June 1756, to William Beckford
of Fonthill, Gifford, in Wiltshire, Lord Mayor of London
1762 and 1769, and M.P. for that city 1754, 1761, and 1768, by
whom she had one son, William, the author of Vathek.
She died at Westend, Hampstead, 22 July 1798, aged seventy-
four, and was buried at Fonthill.
- (8) Harriot, married to the Rev. William Peter, and died 1787.
- (9) Frances, married to William Tooker, of Chilcompton in
Somersetshire, and died 1752.
- (10) Charlotte, died unmarried.
- (11) Rachel, married to the Rev. Neville Walter, grandson of
George, eleventh Lord Abergavenny.
- 7. Francis Hamilton, born in Dublin, in 1700; entered
Trinity College, Dublin, 5 February 1714/5; B.A.
1717/8; M.A. 1721; presented, 30 January 1737, to
the rectories and vicarages of Dunleer, Capocke,
Disert, Moylare, Monasterboys, and Drumcarre, in
the diocese of Armagh; and died 20 May 1746. His
will, dated 23 October 1741, was proved 18 July 1746.
He married, 20 October 1733, Dorothy, second
daughter and co-heir of James Forth of Redwood, in
the King's County, Secretary to the Commissioners
of his Majesty's Revenue, and had issue by her (whose
will, dated 3 May 1777, was proved 13 October 1780)
a son and a daughter:-
- (1) James, died young.
- (2) Frances, died unmarried; her will, dated 16 July 1808, being
proved 7 December 1819.
- 8. William Hamilton, baptized at St. Peter's, Dublin, 20
October 1703; lost off the Lizard Point, 10 November
1721, in the Royal Anne galley, going out with
Lord Belhaven to his government of Barbadoes, as a
volunteer in the sea service.
- 9. Charles Hamilton, baptized at St. Peter's, Dublin, 13
November 1704; matriculated at Christ Church, Oxford, 4 November 1720; appointed, 22 April 1738, comptroller of the board of green cloth to Frederick, Prince
of Wales; was member of Parliament for Strabane,
in Ireland, from 1727 to 1760, and from 1741 to 1747
member for Truro, in Cornwall. He was chosen first
of the seven commissioners for examining and stating
the public accounts, 26 May 1742; and appointed receiver-general of the King's revenues in the island of
Minorca; on which occasion a new writ was ordered
for Truro, 22 December 1743, and he was re-elected.
He had the estates of Cobham and Painshill, in
Surrey, which he sold before his death, at his house
on Lansdown Hill, near Bath, 11 September 1786,
aged eighty-two. He married and left issue:-
- (1) Jane, married, 17 May 1750, to Edward Moore, author of Fables
for the Fair Sex, who died 28 February 1757, and she was
appointed necessary woman to the Queen's private apartments.
- (2) ---, married, 25 June 1750, to Kenton Cowse, of the Board
- 10. Elizabeth, married, first, at St. Peter's, Dublin,
2 January 1711, to William Brownlow, of Lurgan,
member of Parliament for the county of Armagh,
and by him, who died 27 August 1739, had issue. She
was married, secondly, in France, in 1741, to Martin,
Oomte de Kearnie.
- 11. Jane, died in infancy.
- 12. Mary, married, January 1719, to Henry Colley, of
Castle Carbery, in the county of Kildare, member of
Parliament for Strabane.
- 13. Philippa, married, first, to Benjamin Pratt, D.D.,
Provost of Trinity College, Dublin, 1710, Dean of
Down, 1717, who died 6 December 1721, without
issue; secondly, to Michael O'Connell, of London,
issue, one son. She died at Paris 27 January 1767.
- 14. Jane, first lady of the bedchamber, mistress of the
robes, and privy purse to Augusta, Princess of
Wales, married (by licence, Faculty Office, 26 September 1719), as his third wife, to Lord Archibald
Hamilton, youngest son of William and Anne, Duke
and Duchess of Hamilton, and had issue. She
died in Paris 6 December 1753, and was buried at