Record

CodeNA4675
Dates1746
Person NameGovernors of the City of Aberdeen; 1746
ActivityThe pro-Government Town Council placed Aberdeen on a state of alert in August 1745, following the raising of the Jacobite standard at Glenfinnan. General Sir John Cope, who arrived in Aberdeen soon afterward, ordered that the town’s newly-purchased cannon, arms and ammunition be removed to Edinburgh. Cope’s departure with the weapons on 15 September thus left Aberdeen undefended, apart from the posse of men ordered to mount guard. The Jacobites took control of the town on 25 September 1745, when they disrupted the annual election of the Town Council and proclaimed Prince Charles Edward at the Mercat Cross. Lord Lewis Gordon was appointed Governor of the City, and William Moir of Lonmay was appointed as his Deputy. As well as collecting the usual local taxation, in December 1745 Lord Lewis Gordon demanded from property owners a levy of one man or £5 sterling for each £100 Scots of the value of their properties. The inhabitants organised several public meetings to consider how to meet this demand. The Jacobite army entered Aberdeen on 8 February 1746, withdrawing two weeks later ahead of the advancing Government troops, which arrived on 25 February. Former members of the pro-Government Town Council and the Justices of the Peace of Aberdeenshire were charged with making arrangements for the quartering of the army in Aberdeen, particularly the provision of food for the troops and horses. The Duke of Cumberland took control of the town during the Government army’s occupation of Aberdeen, and, on his departure northwards in April 1746, appointed twelve burgesses as Governors of the City, under the direction of the former Provost, James Morison of Elsick. The Governors supervised the apprehension of rebels who returned to Aberdeen after the Battle of Culloden, imprisoning them in the Tolbooth and taking statements and confessions before handing them over to the Lord Justice Clerk for trial in London or Carlisle. Still lacking a town council, the Governors of the City petitioned the King for a royal writ to hold an election for a new Town Council. The election was held on 9 July 1746. Once the Council was elected, the Governors relinquished office and were disbanded.
Corporate NameGovernors of the City of Aberdeen
Add to My Items