Available from Boydell and Brewer
Alternated with Nairnshire
Number of voters:
|17 Feb. 1715||ALEXANDER URQUHART|
|15 Sept. 1727||SIR KENNETH MACKENZIE|
|25 Mar. 1729||SIR GEORGE MACKENZIE vice Sir Kenneth Mackenzie, deceased|
|21 May 1741||SIR WILLIAM GORDON||7|
|30 Dec. 1742||SIR JOHN GORDON vice Sir William Gordon, deceased|
Cromartyshire was controlled by the earls of Cromarty, who held the hereditary sheriffdom of the county. On 24 Jan. 1715 Lord Elibank wrote to the 2nd Earl of Cromarty:
I received last post a letter from the Duke of Montrose [leader of the Squadrone], wherein he desires me to solicit your Lordship in favour of Captain Alexander Urquhart ... so that if your Lordship be not already pre-engaged for one of your own relations, I beg it as the greatest obligation your Lordship can do me, that you will be pleased to use your interest in favour of this gentleman in the ensuing election.1
Urquhart was duly returned nem. con.2 In 1727 Sir William Gordon, whose daughter had married Lord Cromarty’s son, proposed to stand, but the ministry offered to pay a pension of £400 p.a. to Lord Cromarty, who was deeply in debt, if he would return his brother, Sir Kenneth Mackenzie. Gordon was persuaded to withdraw in favour of Mackenzie, who was returned unopposed, being replaced on his death in 1729 by his son, Sir George Mackenzie. The ministry failing to keep their promises,3 the 3rd Earl supported the Squadrone candidate, his father-in-law, Sir William Gordon, in 1741, against George Mackenzie of Farnese. In an unsuccessful petition Mackenzie claimed that he had been chosen by three of the five qualified voters, but that Gordon and the deputy sheriff had prevented his election by excluding him from the electoral roll and adding to it five unqualified voters, who supported Gordon.4 On Gordon’s death in 1742 he was succeeded by his son.
Author: J. M. Simpson
- 1. Sir W. Fraser, The Earls of Cromarty, ii. 158.