Nielsen Hayden genealogy

Marion Cunningham

Female - 1623

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Generation: 1

  1. 1.  Marion Cunningham (daughter of William Cunningham and Helen Colquhoun); died in Jan 1623 in Ayr, Ayrshire, Scotland.


    "Marion Cunningham, Lady Bar, died at her home in Ayr in January 1623. She was the daughter of William Cunningham of Aiket and Helen Colquhoun, daughter of a Highland chief. […] She grew up in an age of aggression in northern Ayrshire, the time of the great feud betewen the Montgomery Earl of Eglinton and the Cunningham Earl of Glencairn which lasted over seventy years in the sixteenth century." [Ayr and Its People, citation details below]

    Marion married John Lockhart in 1595 in Stewarton, Ayrshire, Scotland. John (son of Alexander Lockhart and Margaret Kennedy) died in 1614. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

    1. Janet Lockhart died before 17 Apr 1672.

Generation: 2

  1. 2.  William Cunningham was born in in of Aiket, Ayrshire, Scotland.


    He and his family appear to have had some excitement in their lives. From Janet and Robert Wolfe Genealogy, all citing Ancient Criminal Trials in Scotland by Robert Pitcairn, Volume 1, parts 2 and 3 (Edinburgh: The Bannatyne Club, 1833):

    1570 On November 4, William Cunningham of Aiket, his servants William Fergushill and Florence Crawfurd, and John Raburne of that Ilk were accused of the murder of John Mure of Cauldwell. They were acquitted on testimony that the murder was committed by the late Alexander Cunningham the younger of Aiket. […]

    1578/79 On January 12, Helen Colquhoun did not appear in court. She was accused of administering poison to her husband William Cunningham the previous October. […]

    1585 On February 12, brothers Alexander and William Cunningham of Aiket and Patrick Cunningham in Bordland were accused of taking part in the murder of Hugh Mure, Earl of Eglinton.


    Note that while Helen Colquhoun was, on 12 Jan 1579, charged with "administering poison to her husband" the previous October, the inconclusive surviving record does not appear to confirm that her husband actually died at that time. He may have, and the "brothers Alexander and William Cunningham of Aiket" who were accused of taking part in the murder of the 4th Earl of Eglinton may have been the Alexander and William who were among the sons of William Cunningham and Helen Colquhoun. Or the William of this pair may have been this William Cunningham. The Wikipedia article Barony of Aiket, citing Castles of the Clans by Martin Coventry (Musselburgh, Scotland: Goblinshead, 2010), calling the husband of Helen Colquhoun "Robert Cunninghame", asserts that he, who was accused of the murder of John Mure and was the target of a poisoning attempt by his wife, was also among those implicated in the murder of Hugh Mure / Montgomerie, the 4th Earl.

    Ayr and Its People (citation details below) calls William Cunningham of Aiket "the late" at the time of his daughter Marion's 1595 marriage contract with John Lockhart.

    William married Helen Colquhoun before 24 Oct 1564. Helen (daughter of Humphrey Colquhoun and Helen Graham) died between 13 Jun 1594 and 13 Mar 1596 in Aiket, Ayrshire, Scotland. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

  2. 3.  Helen Colquhoun (daughter of Humphrey Colquhoun and Helen Graham); died between 13 Jun 1594 and 13 Mar 1596 in Aiket, Ayrshire, Scotland.


    Lady Aikitt, elder, sheriffdom of Ayr.

    "In 1578-79, another of [the Colquhoun] clan, Helen Colquhoun, was accused of the 'treasonable administering of poysoun' to her spouse, William Cunninghame of Aiket; but the fragmentary records give us little information about these trials…" ["Poisoning in Scotland", citation details below]

    The will of Helene Colquhoun, Lady Aikitt, elder, sheriffdom of Ayr, was proved in the Edinburgh commissary court on 13 Mar 1596.

    The 1877 Colquhoun pedigree ("Colquhoun of Luss", citation details below) shows Helen Colquhoun, daughter of Humphrey, marrying a "James" Cunningham of Aiket; it also gives her mother's name as "Katherine", rather than Helen, a mistake that also appears in many Burke's Pedigrees products. In a pair of posts to soc.genealogy.medieval on 10 Oct 2019, John Brandon points out that the papal dispensation of 1509 clearly identifies Humphrey Colquhoun's wife as Helen. As to whether Humphrey Colquhoun's and Helen Graham's daughter Helen was indeed, the Helen who married Cunningham of Aiket, Brandon points to the marriage of Robert Graham of Knockdolian, who was known to have been involved in dealings with William and Helen (Colquhoun) Cunningham, to Christian Graham, daughter of the second William Graham, 2nd earl of Montrose — further evidence of Graham-Colquhoun prosopographical adjancency.

    1. 1. Marion Cunningham died in Jan 1623 in Ayr, Ayrshire, Scotland.

Generation: 3

  1. 6.  Humphrey Colquhoun was born in in of Luss, Argyll, Scotland (son of John Colquhoun and Elizabeth Stewart); died in Jan 1538.

    Humphrey married Helen Graham about 13 Jul 1509. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

  2. 7.  Helen Graham (daughter of William Graham and Annabel Drummond).


    She was definitely a daughter of the first earl of Montrose. The will of William Graham, who was killed at the battle of Flodden Field in 1513, acknowledges a debt to the Laird of Luss (i.e. John Colquhoun, father of Humphrey), on account of his daughter's dowry, and also the Laird of Luss younger (i.e. Humphrey).

    Burke's Peerage and Burke's Landed Gentry, and thus many online sources, show William Graham's daughters Margaret, Elizabeth, and Helen, in that order, as daughters of William Graham by his second wife Janet Edmondstone.

    This cannot be true of Elizabeth. The Complete Peerage 4:470 says that Walter Drummond, grandson of John Drummond and Elizabeth Lindsay, "m., in Feb. 1513/4, his cousin Elizabeth, 2nd da. of William (Graham), 1st Earl of Montrose [S.], by his first wife Annabel, 4th da. of John (Drummond), Lord Drummond abovenamed." It can be seen that if Walter Drummond and his wife Elizabeth were cousins, it would have to be the case that Elizabeth was a daughter of William Graham's first wife, Annabel Drummond.

    CP says of Annabel Drummond that "[s]he was living 1492" and that her son William Graham, second earl of Montrose, was "a minor at his father's death", 9 Sep 1513, but "was served heir to him" 24 Oct 1513. The Scots Peerage narrates this latter event in a way that suggests that the younger William was still a minor on 24 Oct 1513: "William […] was under age at the death of his father, but in virtue of the Act of 24 August, was served his heir 24 October, 1513." SP goes on to emphasize and extoll his precocity: "He early displayed qualities of prudence and statesmanship which enabled him, over a long life," [etc.]. CP notes that the younger William "was present in Parl. [S.] 2 Jun 1514" and that he married his only wife, Janet Keith, in Dec 1515. All of which suggests that the second earl attained his majority no earlier than the end of 1513, which means that he has to have been born to Annabel Drummond no earlier than the end of 1492, and given that he could perfectly well have married while still a minor, plausibly as late as 1497 or 1498.

    Also, according to SP, William Graham and Annabel Drummond had a second son following William: "Walter, a younger son of the first marriage, who had a tack of Little Cairnie for nineteen years from the Abbot of Inchaffray, 8 January 1541-42, and appears to have been ancestor of the second family of the Grahams of Thornick, afterwards Cairnie." If so, this moves the end of Annabel Drummond's life to no earlier than the end of 1493. And again, given that the first son could easily have been born as late as 1497-98, she was quite possibly still living in 1498-99.

    The date of William Graham's marriage to Janet Edmondstone is unknown to us, but the earliest record of them as married is a charter dated 17 Mar 1505. According to CP she died between that date and 15 Apr 1506.

    The papal dispensation for Helen Graham's marriage to Humphrey Colquhoun was dated 13 Jul 1509.

    If Annabel Drummond died as soon as the records allow, say December 1493, and William Graham married Janet Edmondstone as soon as possible, say the first part of 1494, and Helen Graham was their first child, born say early 1495, then the papal dispensation for her marriage to Humphrey Colquhoun, dated 13 Jul 1509, was issued when she was fourteen. Which is hardly unheard-of among the aristocracy of 15th/16th century Scotland, but also adds up to a pretty tight fit.

    Additional to this is the fact that William Graham and Annabel Drummond married in 1479, and yet their eldest son and heir cannot have been born earlier than late 1513. It is implausible that they spent the first dozen years of their marriage having no children. We have seen that daughter Elizabeth has to have been the issue of William and Annabel. Margaret is specified by SP as a daughter of the second marriage. Aside from the fact that this implies, in SP's usual manner of listing offspring, that the other daughters, whose mothers are not noted, were from the first marriage, it also means that Helen, Jean, and Elizabeth are the only known offspring of William Graham whose birth can be used to fill the childbearing years from 1480 to 1492. (The other legitimate child of William Graham, Patrick, is given by SP as his son by his third wife, Christian Wawane.)

    Taken together, we think the evidence preponderantly suggests that Helen Graham was a daughter of William Graham's first wife, and probably, as the order of William's children in SP suggests, his eldest daughter.

    1. 3. Helen Colquhoun died between 13 Jun 1594 and 13 Mar 1596 in Aiket, Ayrshire, Scotland.

Generation: 4

  1. 12.  John Colquhoun was born in in of Luss, Argyll, Scotland (son of Humphrey Colquhoun and Helen Erskine); died between 4 Aug 1535 and 22 Aug 1536.


    Member of the Scottish parliament in 1503 and 1525.

    From The Chiefs of Colquhoun and Their Country (citation details below):

    On the death of King James the Fourth at Flodden, his son and successor, King James the Fifth, being a child of little more than one year old, the Queen Mother, Margaret daughter of King Henry the Seventh of England, was declared Regent of the realm. At the same time John Duke of of Albany was summoned from France to Scotland, and chosen governor and protector of the infant Prince and kingdom, by a Convention of the Estates. During the delay of the arrival of the Duke of Albany, the Earl of Arran assumed the office of Regent. In this assumption he was supported, among others, by John third Earl of Lennox, the Master of Glencairn, and Sir John Colquhoun of Luss, whose wife was the paternal aunt of the Earl of Lennox.

    Sir John Colquhoun joined these noblemen in a successful attempt to seize the castle of Dumbarton. During a stormy night in January 1514, they found their way into the castle, and expelled from it Lord Erskine, by whom it was held for the Queen Mother's party; and though the Earl of Arran was frustrated in his usurpation of the regency by the arrival of the Duke of Albany in Scotland, they continued to hold the castle of Dumbarton until it was surrendered by the Earl of Lennox, who, having fallen into the hands of his opponents, and having been imprisoned in the castle of Edinburgh, could obtain his liberation only on condition of his surrendering it.

    After the departure of the Duke of Albany for France in 1524, King James the Fifth, who was then only thirteen years of age, was invested with the supreme authority, but the government was in reality in the hands of the Earls of Arran, Lennox, and Morton. A pardon was therefore now easily obtained for Sir John Colquhoun of Luss and others, who had taken part in the capture of the castle of Dumbarton. On the 11th of July 1526, a "respite was granted to Sir John Colquhon of Luce, Knight, Patrick Colquhon, John Logan of Balvey, Walter and Robert his sons, George Buchquhanan of that Ilk," and twenty-nine others, for "their tressonabill asseging, taking, and withhalding of our souerane lordis castle and fortalice of Dumbertene fra his servandis, keparis thairof" On the 16th of July following, a respite "was granted to Glencairn and others."

    John married Elizabeth Stewart about 1480. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

  2. 13.  Elizabeth Stewart (daughter of John Stewart and Margaret Montgomery).


    Not to be confused with her older sister Elizabeth Stewart, who married Archibald Campbell, 2nd Earl of Argyll.

    1. 6. Humphrey Colquhoun was born in in of Luss, Argyll, Scotland; died in Jan 1538.

  3. 14.  William Graham was born between 1463 and 1464 (son of William Graham and Helen Douglas); died on 9 Sep 1513 in Flodden Field, Northumberland, England.


    "Lord Graham sat in the Parliaments of James III in 1479, 1481, 1482 and 1487, and supported the cause of that monarch against his son and the confederated Lords, being present on the royal side at the battle of Sauchieburn, 11 June 1488. He was soon received into favour, and even familiar friendship, by James IV, and sat in this sovereign's first Parliament 6 October 1488, and in the second 6 February 1491-92. His principal acquisitions were the estates of Aberuthven and Inchbrakie in Perthshire. Between 7 July7 and 20 November 1503 he was created EARL OF MONTROSE, and sat as such in Parliament 3 February 1505-6. On 3 March 1504-5 as William, Earl of Montrose, he had had a charter upon his own resignation of the lands of Old Montrose, which lands, the charter bears, belonged hereditarily to him by the grant of Robert I and the confirmation of David II under their Great Seals, to his predecessors, and which James IV now erected into the free barony and earldom of Montrose. Of the same date he had three other charters, viz. a new erection of the barony of Kincardine, of Aberuthven, Inchbrakie, and others united into a barony of Aberuthven, and of Kynnaber in Forfarshire also erected into a barony. The Earl accompanied James IV in his ill-starred invasion of England, and fell at Flodden, 'sub vexillo regis,' along with his brother George of Callendar, and his brother-in-law, Sir William Edmondstone of Duntreath, 9 September 1513." [The Scots Peerage, citation details below.]

    William married Annabel Drummond on 25 Nov 1479 in Muthill, Perthshire, Scotland. Annabel (daughter of John Drummond and Elizabeth Lindsay) died after 1492. [Group Sheet] [Family Chart]

  4. 15.  Annabel Drummond (daughter of John Drummond and Elizabeth Lindsay); died after 1492.

    Other Events:

    • Alternate death: Abt 1500

    1. 7. Helen Graham