The Scottish Jacobites of 1715 and the Jacobite Diaspora


Author: Dobson, David
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: viii 196 pp.
ISBN: 9780806358567


In 1689 James Stuart, King of Scotland, England, and Ireland, abandoned his thrones and went into exile in France, to be replaced by William and Mary as sovereigns. Thereafter, there were several attempts by supporters of the House of Stuart, known as Jacobites, to replace the new House of Hanover and restore the former royal family. One of these was the Great Rising, alias “the ’15.” As a rough rule of thumb Scotland north of Stirling was pro-Jacobite while south of Stirling it was pro-Hanoverian. Practical military support for the Stuarts came mainly from the conservative north-east of Scotland, the Grampian Highlands, and Inverness-shire. There were also pockets of Jacobitism in the Scottish Lowlands, Northumberland, Lancashire, and south-western England.

Who were the people who provided the military and civilian support that was so essential and who, in many cases, suffered transportation, exile, banishment, or a loss of social or economic position within their community? Information on the ordinary Jacobites is generally difficult to find, apart from those who fell into the hands of the government. This volume, however, provides a partial list of Jacobites of 1715 based on manuscript or printed primary sources. This compilation has been accumulated over several years, and some of the data has been used in Mr. Dobson’s previous books, such as Dictionary of Scots Banished to the American Plantations, 1650–1715. At the same time, there is significant new material in the book resulting from more intensive research; for example, from Richard MacGregor, who provided information on those Jacobites held in Lancaster Jail. Another new source was the Sheriff Court of Argyll, where all adult men living in Mull, Iona, Tiree, and other islands, as well on Morvern, were identified as to name, residence, weapons held, and whether they had fought for the Jacobite cause in 1715. Mr. Dobson has also scrutinized burgh records and estate papers of major landowners, such as the Earl of Dalhousie. In all, this mostly new collection identifies about 2,500 Jacobites of 1715 by name, date, place, and source, and in many cases by locality of origin, name of family member(s), name of vessel traveled upon, and destination in the Americas.

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