Erskine of Balhagertty and Pittodrie




Sir Thomas Erskine of Brechin, who was appointed secretary to King James V., and served as tutor of Dun during the minority of his nephew, John Erskine. He was appointed Chief Secretary to the King and Keeper of the King’s Signet for life on 5 October 1526 and is styled secretary to the King and uncle to John Erskine of Dun when he convyed his lands of Lochtonhill to him by charter of 9 February 1541.[1] He m. Elizabeth Scrimgeour, with whom, on his resignation, he had a conjunct charter for the lands of Ethiebeaton on 11 February 1531/32,[2] and d. before 18 November 1551, when a gift of the nonentry of his lands of Lumgair was granted to William Lundy of Benholm.[3] He was father of,

  1. Thomas Erskine, m. Agnes, daughter of John, 4th Lord Ogilvy of Airlie, (c/m at Edinburgh, on 14 December 1540[4]), and with whom he had a conjunct charter from his father for the lands of Kynnard, in the barony of Canterland, on 11 August 1541.[5]He was being held abroad as on 28 March 1547 his father had a safe conduct to travel to the partis of France Flanderis and Italie and otheris partis beyond se quhar he lykis best for recouering of his eldest sone and ayr out of captiuitie and bringing him hame furth of thai partis.”[6] He dsp before 29 March 1550 and his great-nephew, Thomas Erskine of Balhaggerty, was served heir general to him on 27 April 1630.[7]
  2. John Erskine of Balhaggerty, (see below).
  3. Margaret Erskine, m. by 14 July 1541, to John Allardice of that Ilk, when a precept was issued by the chancery for their infeftment in the lands of Thomastoun and Leys.[8]

John Erskine of Balhaggerty, is styled eldest son and apparent heir when witness to a charter by his father to John, Lord Erskine, for the lands and barony of Brechin on 29 March 1550.[9] He had m. by 10 January 1557, to Mariote, daughter of Archibald Douglas, Earl of Angus, when he is styled son-in-law to that person,[10] and d. before 20 February 1618 having had issue,

  1. John Erskine of Balhaggety, (see below).
  2. Magdalen Erskine, m. James Leslie, third son of William Leslie of Wardis, and in consideration of which his father assigned the lands of Meikle Dornoch to them in 1588.[11]

John Erskine of Balhaggerty, succeeded his father and had a charter under the Great Seal for the lands and barony of Balhaggarty on 20 February 1618 in which he is styled son of the late John Erskine and grandson of the late Sir Thomas Erskine.[12] He m. Marjorie, daughter of John Gordon of Cluny, in implementation of which his father assigned the lands of Balhaggarty to them by charter of 3 July 1587,[13] and to whom he granted a liferent charter for the half part of Balhaggarty on 22 March 1604, in which he is styled son of John Erskine of Balhaggerty.[14] He d. before November 1626 and was father of,

  1. Thomas Erskine of Balhaggerty, (see below).
  2. William Erskine, is styled brother to Thomas Erskine of Pittodrie when he witnessed a Bond by John, Marjorie and Christian Gordon, children to the late John Gordon of Inzean, dated 28 May 1632.[15]
  3. Marjorie Erskine, m. by 18 October 1623, to Mr Patrick Gordon of Braikie when she had a charter from him for the liferent of the town and lands of Middleton of Knockinblewis.

Thomas Erskine of Balhaggarty, succeeded his father and was served heir to him in the barony of Balhaggarty on 16 November 1625.[16] He was also served heir to his great-uncle, Thomas Erskine, eldest son of Sir Thomas Erskine of Brechin, on 27 April 1630.[17] He m. Isabel, daughter of Alexander Seton of Meldrum, who, on 11 December 1613, renounced her right to the conjunct fee and liferent of Balhaggarty, Pettrodie and Durlethan in his favour,[18] and had issue,

Sir Thomas Erskine of Balhaggerty, in favopur of whom his mother, Isobel Seton, renounced her liferent to the lands of Balhaggarty and other lands, on 1 June 1629, and is then styled the eldest son.[19] He m. Helen, daughter of Sir William Auchinleck of Balmanno, (c/m 15 & 16 January 1643[20]), and d. before January 1662 having had issue,

  1. William Erskine of Pittodrie, (see below).
  2. John Erskine, who dsp in 1702, and to whom his brother William was served heir general on 4 August 1709.[21]
  3. James Erskine, who settled at Dorletter and is styled brother to William Erskine of Pittodrie on 24 January 1724.[22]

William Erskine of Pittodrie, succeeded his father and was served heir to him in the lands of Balhaggerty and Pittodrie on 8 January 1662.[23] He m. Mary, daughter of Patrick Grant of Ballindalloch, and d. in 1723. He was father of,

  1. Thomas Erskine of Pittodrie, (see below).
  2. Jean Erskine, m. on 31 January 1710, to James Moir of Stoneywood.[24]
  3. Helen Erskine, m. John MacKenzie, younger of Ardross.[25]

Thomas Erskine of Pittodrie, succeeded his father in 1723. He m. firstly, on 24 April 1705, to Margaret, daughter of Sir Alexander Burnett of Craigmyle,[26] (she is styled wife to him on 9 October 1730, when she was served heir to her sister, Ann,[27] and was widow of Sir Charles Maitland, 4th Baronet, of Pitrichie, who had dsp in 1704), by whom he was father of,

  1. William Erskine, who was set aside in his father’s entail of his estate in 1751, on account of being fatuous. He dsp aged about 40.
  2. Alexander Erskine, bap. at Aberdeen, on 26 February 1710 and d. young.
  3. Nicholas Erskine, bap. at Aberdeen, on 12 June 1712.

He m. secondly, at Aberdeen, on Thursday 20 November 1746, to Anne, daughter of James, 15th Lord Forbes,[28] by whom he had further issue;

  1. Mary Erskine of Pittodrie, upon whom her father entailed his estate in 1751. She m. at Edinburgh, on 9 March 1779, to Major Henry Knight, 5th Regiment of Foot,[29] who assumed the additional surname of Erskine and had issue which succeeded to the lands of Pittodrie.




[1] C2/28/78.

[2] C2/24/182.

[3] PS1/24/103.

[4] GD16/44/5.

[5] C2/27/185.

[6] Pittodrie Papers. No, 25.

[7] C22/11/81.

[8] GD49/36.

[9] C2/30/553.

[10] C2/32/223.

[11] GD124/1/256 & 257.

[12] C2/48/357.

[13] C2/43/354.

[14] C2/47/114.

[15] Aberdeen Sheriff Court records.

[16] C22/9/47.

[17] C22/11/81.

[18] Aberdeen Sheriff Court records.

[19] Aberdeen Sheriff Court records.

[20] C2/58/181.

[21] Services of Heirs.

[22] GD52/648.

[23] C22/28/193.

[24] OPR – Aberdeen.

[25] RS3/104/f.185.

[26] OPR – Aberdeen.

[27] Services of Heirs.

[28] Caledonian Mercury, 27th November 1746 edition.

[29] OPR – Edinburgh.