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Clan Graham

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Clan Graham are a Scottish chiefly family


There exists what Plean terms 'a colourful tradition' that the original Greme was a chieftain who fought against the Romans in Scotland. <ref>George Way of Plean and Romilly Squire, Scottish Clan and Family Encyclopedia, 148</ref> However, the real origin of the family is likely to be Anglo- Norman. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> The manor of Gregham, or Greyhome is recorded in the Doomsday book.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> Dorward attributes a 'pure Anglo-Saxon' origin, taken from an English manor recorded in the Doomsday book. <ref> David Dorward, Dictionary of Scottish Surnames, 121</ref> William de Graham arrived in Scotland with David I (1084-1153). <ref>Doward, Surnames, 121</ref> Sir William de Graham was present at the foundation of the Abbey of Holyrood in 1128. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> <ref></ref>

Middle Ages

The first family lands in Scotland appear to have been around Dalkeith in Midlothian. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref>In 1290 Sir Nicholas de Graham attended the Parliament which ratified the Treaty of Brigham which arranged for the heir to the Scottish throne, Margaret 'The Maid of Norway', to Prince Edward of England. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> They integrated into Celtic Scotland through their marriage to the princely family of Strathearn, and through this they acquired the lands around Auchterarder which became their main seat.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> Sir John de Graham was a contemporary and companion of Sir William Wallace during the Wars of Independence. He was called 'Graham with the bright sword'. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref>

The bright sword did not in the end save him from death at the Battle of Falkirk in 1298. His effigy and gravestone can still be seen in Falkirk Old Parish Church. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> The family gained land in Mugdock, north of Glasgow, where they built a castle around 1370. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> Patrick Graham of Kincardine was created a peer in 1451 with the title 'Lord Graham'.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref>

Two generations later they were created Earls of Montrose and in 1504 their hereditary lands in Angus were transformed into an earldom. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> The first earl of Montrose died at the Battle of Flodden in 1513. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> Despite this setback, by the late seventeenth century the Grahams had become one of the richest families in Scotland. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 148 </ref> At the time of the Bishop's Wars, James Graham, fifth Earl of Montrose, held hands in Braco, Perth and Kinross, which had previously belonged to the church. <ref>Michael Lynch, Scotland: A New History, 266</ref>

James Graham, fifth Earl of Montrose

James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose

James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose (1612 –1650) was a Scottish nobleman and soldier, who initially joined the Covenanters in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, but subsequently supported King Charles I as the English Civil War developed. From 1644 to 1646, and again in 1650, he fought a civil war in Scotland on behalf of the King and is generally referred to in Scotland as simply 'The Great Montrose'. <ref>,_1st_Marquess_of_Montrose</ref> From 1644-45 Montrose fought a successful campaign for the royalists, supported by his clan and a large force of Highlanders led by Alisdair Macdonald, 'Colkitto'. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> At one point Montrose seemed likely to not only hold Scotland for the king, but to drive south to rescue the royalist cause there. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> However in September 1645 Montrose was taken by surprise at Philiphaugh in the Borders by a Covenanting army under General David Lesley. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> Montrose escaped but the royalist cause appeared defeated.

In May 1646 he recieved orders from Charles I to disband his army and go into exile. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> Montrose travelled to Norway and extensively on the Continent, generally meeting a warm reception. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> However he accepted a commission from Charles II- who had partly acceded to the throne after his father's execution in 1649- to recover Scotland. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> The campaign was however, a disaster. The anticipated rising of royalists failed to happen and Montrose's tiny army was defeated at Invercharron in Ross-Shire. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> Montrose was later captured and executed in Edinburgh in 1650. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> Following the restoration the Stuarts arranged for Montrose's remains to be reunited and given one of the grandest state funerals ever held in Scotland and interred in a prominent tomb in St. Giles. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref>

Dukes of Montrose

In 1707 the chiefs were raised to the rank of Dukes of Montrose as a reward for James Graham's (1682-1742) support of the Act of Union. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> <ref></ref> The third Duke of Montrose was responsible for the repeal of the Act which banned the wearing of Highland dress in 1782. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 149 </ref> The current chief is James Graham, 8th Duke of Montrose (b.1935), who is a British conservative politician and advocate of environmental and energy issues. <ref>,_8th_Duke_of_Montrose</ref>