|James Hamilton, eldest son of Sir George Hamilton, is
thus characterised in the Mémoires de Gramont: 'The
eldest of the Hamiltons was the man who, of all the Court,
dressed best; he was well made in his person, and possessed
those happy talents which lead to fortune and procure
success in love; he was a most assiduous courtier, had
the most lively wit, the most polished manners, and the
most punctual attention to his duty imaginable. No person
danced better, nor was any one a more general lover; a
merit of some account in a court entirely devoted to love
and gallantry. It is not surprising that, with these qualities
he succeeded the Earl of Falmouth (killed in the sea-fight
in Southwold Bay 2 June 1665), in the king's favour; but
it is very extraordinary that he should have experienced
the same destiny, as if this war had been declared against
merit only, and as if this sort of combat was fatal to none
but such as had certain hopes of a splendid fortune.' He
was one of the grooms of the bedchamber to Charles II.,
who made him colonel of a regiment of foot. In 1666 he
was elected member of Parliament for the borough of
Strabane, and took his seat on 3 July in that year, Parliament being dissolved the 7 August following. He was
appointed Ranger of Hyde Park 29 November 1671. His
regiment being embarked on board the navy, in one of the
expeditions of the Duke of York against the Dutch, Colonel
Hamilton had one of his legs taken off by a cannon-ball, of
which wound he died 6 June 1673, and was buried 7 June
in Westminster Abbey, under a monument erected to his
memory by his uncle, James, Duke of Ormond. Administration of his estate was granted to his widow 5 January
1680. In 1661, King Charles concluded a marriage betwixt
him and Elizabeth, eldest daughter of John, Lord Cole-
peper, of Thoresway, Chancellor of the Exchequer and
Master of the Rolls, who died in July 1660, by his wife
Judith, daughter of Sir Thomas Colepeper, of Hollingbourne,
in Kent, Knight, and by her (who was maid of honour to
Mary, Princess of Orange, mother of King William III., and
died in 1709, aged seventy-two, and was buried at Hollingbourne) he had six sons, of whom three only survived their infancy:-
- 1. James, sixth Earl of Abercorn.
- 2. George Hamilton, a colonel in the Foot Guards, who
fell at the battle of Steinkirk in 1692, commanding a
regiment of foot.
- 3. William Hamilton, of Chilston Park, in Kent (an
estate which his mother purchased and settled on
his family) of which county he was deputy lieutenant,
justice of peace, and colonel of the regiment of
militia for the Lath of Scray (a division of Kent) and
was always very strenuous for the Protestant succession. He died in 1737, and was buried at Lenham. He married Margaret, second daughter of
Sir Thomas Colepeper, of Holingbourne, in Kent,
sister of Frances, wife of John the last Lord Colepeper, and by her (who was buried with her husband,
22 October 1736) had four sons and one daughter.
- (1) John, High Sheriff of the county of Kent in 1719, who much
improved his seat of Chilston, married, in 1715, Mary,
daughter of John Wright, M.D., and had several children,
of whom the eldest son, William, was page of honour to
Frederick, Prince of Wales, and John, Captain in the
Royal Navy, was created a Baronet of Great Britain, 26
August 1776 for his services at the siege of Quebec. He
married, 3 October 1763, Cassandra Agnes, daughter of
Edmund Chamberlayne of Maugersbury in Gloucestershire,
and died 24 January 1784, leaving two sons, of whom the
second, Edward Joseph, was created a Baronet of the United
Kingdom, 26 January 1819. Both these titles are now held
by Sir Edward Archibald Hamilton, fourth Baronet of Great
Britain and second of the United Kingdom.
- (2) George, married to the daughter of Monsieur Vasserot, merchant in Amsterdam (who got vast riches in the Mississippi
and South Sea schemes, after which he retired to Switzerland, his native country, where he purchased a great estate).
By her he had several children, who, with their mother,
resided for some years at Geneva.
- (3) Thomas, who had a command in the army, and died in Ireland.
- (4) William, who died young.
- (5) Elizabeth, married Edwin Stede of Stedehill in Kent.