Lords Paisley (1587)
1st Lord Paisley, Claud Hamilton, b.1546, a.1587, d.1621
Third son of James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Arran and Lady Margaret Douglas (b.c.1510, d.1579), daughter of James Douglas, 3rd Earl of Morton. He was an active participant in the intrigues surrounding Queen Mary, helping her escape from Lochleven Castle and as a commander at the Battle of Langside, after which he accompanied the Queen to England, his title being forfeit. He was later involved in the murders of the Regent James Stewart, 1st Earl of Moray, who had imprisoned his father, and his successor Matthew Stewart, 4th Earl of Lennox. However, in 1573 his titles were restored following the Pacification. In 1579 he was again made forfeit by the Privy Council and left for England, also spending some time in France, before returning in 1585, his titles once again restored under the Act of Restitution, and he was made a Privy Counsellor and raised to the peerage. He continued to intrigue on behalf of Mary and the Catholic Church, but descended into madness in later life.
Earls of Abercorn (1606)
1st Earl of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.1575, a.1606, d.1618
Son of the 1st Lord Paisley and Margaret Seton (b.1551-1558,d.1615-1616), daughter of George Seton, 5th Lord Seton (for whom see the earls of Winton). He was made Sheriff of Linlithgow in 1600 and held a number of senior political positions, and was created 1st Lord Abercorn in 1603 for services rendered in the matter of the Union of Crowns. He represented James VI in the Irish Parliament and was responsible for promoting the Plantation of Ulster, that is, the large scale colonisation of formerly Gaelic Ulster by Scots and English. In 1606 he was created 1st Earl of Abercorn and received large areas of land in both Scotland and Ireland, especially at Strabane in County Tyrone. He was also made 1st Lord Paisley, Hamilton, Mountcashell & Kirkpatrick, a title distinct from that of his father. Latterly he served as Gentle of the Bedchamber to the King.
2nd Earl of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.c.1604, a.1618, d.c.1670
Son of the 1st Earl and Marion Boyd (b.a.1568, d.1632), daughter of Thomas Boyd, 6th Lord Boyd (for whom see the earls of Kilmarnock). He was given the title of 1st Lord Hamilton, Baron of Strabane in the Peerage of Ireland in 1616 but subsequently gave his Irish lands to his younger brother Claud Hamilton (b.c.1606, d.1638), to whom he passed the Irish lordship of Hamilton by abdication. In 1621 he became 2nd Lord Paisley after his grandfatherís death. He was ex-communicated by the Church of Scotland for being an active Roman Catholic and forced to leave Scotland.
3rd Earl of Abercorn, George Hamilton, b.c.1636, a.1670, d.b.1683
Son of the 2nd Earl and Katherine Clifton, 2nd Baroness Clifton of Leighton Bromswold (b.c.1592, d.1637), who had previously been married to Esme Stuart, the 3rd Duke of Lennox, and who retained the style of Dowager Duchess of Lennox by Royal Assent. He died unmarried while on his way to Rome and the title devolved to his second-cousin.
Barons Hamilton of Strabane (1617)
1st Baron Hamilton, James Hamilton, b.c.1604, a.1617, d.c.1670
As mentioned above, he succeeded his father as 2nd Earl of Abercorn the following year.
2nd Baron Hamilton, Claud Hamilton, b.c.1606, a.c.1633, d.1638
Younger brother of the 1st Baron. He obtained large estates in County Tyrone in Ireland from his brother.
3rd Baron Hamilton, James Hamilton, b.1633, a.1638, d.1655
Son of the 2nd Baron and Lady Jean Gordon (b.?, d.1668), daughter of George Gordon, 1st Marquess of Huntly. He fought against the English Parliamentarians and was captured in 1650, his lands confiscated, though he continued to fight until his death.
4th Baron Hamilton, George Hamilton, b.c.1636, a.1655, d.1668
Younger brother of the 3rd Baron.
5th Baron Hamilton, Claud Hamilton, b.1659, a.1668, d.1691
Son of the 4th Baron and Elizabeth Fagan (b.?, d.c.1683). In 1680 he succeeded as 4th Earl of Abercorn on the death of his distant cousin as heir-male.
Earls of Abercorn (1606, continued)
4th Earl of Abercorn, Claud Hamilton, b.1659, a.1680, d.1691
He was made a Privy Counsellor and was Lord of the Bedchamber to James VII & II. He fought for James at the Battle of the Boyne and was attainted by the Irish Parliament, his Irish peerage forfeited. The following year he returned to Ireland and fought at the Battle of Aughrim. He was killed in action at sea while travelling back to France to pass messages to James, when the ship he was on was intercepted by a Dutch warship.
5th Earl of Abercorn, Charles Hamilton, b.c.1660-1668, a.1691, d.1701
Younger brother of the 4th Earl, succeeding also to the Irish title of 6th Lord Hamilton of Strabane in 1692 by reversal of attainder. He married his cousin Catherine (b.c.1653, d.1723), daughter of James Hamilton (b.1633-1637, d.b.1670), a brother of the 3rd Earl, but he died without issue.
Baronets Hamilton of Donalong (1660)
1st Baronet Hamilton, George Hamilton, b.?, a.1660, d.1679
Fourth son of the 1st Earl of Abercorn. He fought against the English Parliamentarians and had his lands confiscated, but was rewarded after the Restoration by being made 1st Baronet Hamilton of Donalong, County Tyrone, in the Baronetage of Ireland.
2nd Baronet Hamilton, James Hamilton, b.c.1661, a.1679, d.1734
Grandson of the 1st Baronet and Mary Butler (b.?, d.1680), daughter of Thomas Butler, 1st Duke of Ormonde (Ireland) and son of James Hamilton (b.c.1620, d.1673) and Elizabeth Colepeper (b.?, d.1709), daughter of John Colepeper, 1st Baron Culpeper of Thoresway. Initially made a Privy Counsellor in Ireland by James VII & II, he switched sides at the Glorious Revolution and was amongst those who held out against James at the Siege of Londonderry. He then served on behalf of County Tyrone in the Irish House of Commons from 1692 to 1697 and in 1701 succeeded his distant cousin as 6th Earl of Abercorn.
Earls of Abercorn (1606, continued)
6th Earl of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.c.1661, a.1701, d.1734
He was additionally created 1st Viscount Strabane and 1st Baron Mountcastle in the Peerage of Ireland on inheriting the earldom.
7th Earl of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.1685-1686, a.1734, d.1743-1744
Son of the 6th Earl and Elizabeth Reading (b.c.1669, d.1764). He was invested as a Privy Counsellor in both the British and Irish Parliaments and, being a keen scientist, was also made a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1715. He was Grand Master of the Premier Grand Lodge of England from 1725 to 1726 and published a treatise on magnetism in 1729.
8th Earl of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.1712, a.1744, d.1789
Son of the 7th Earl and Anne Plumer (b.1690, d.1776), daughter of Colonel John Plumer of Blakesware. He was accelerated into the Irish House of Lords as Baron Mountcastle before his fatherís death. He re-purchased some of his familyís old Scottish estates, including Duddingston in Edinburgh, and at Paisley Abbey, and was responsible for the construction of Duddingston House and for the extension of Paisley beyond the River Cart. He was made an Irish Privy Counsellor in 1756 and was a Representative Peer from 1761 to 1784. He was created 1st Viscount of Hamilton in the Peerage of Great Britain in 1786. He never married.
9th Earl of Abercorn, John James Hamilton, b.1756, a.1789, d.1818
Nephew of the 8th Earl, being a son of that manís younger brother Captain John Hamilton (b.c.1714, d.1755) and Harriet Craggs (b.c.1713, d.1769), daughter of James Craggs, Secretary of State. Educated at Harrow School and Pembroke College Cambridge, he was a Tory MP for East Looe and then for St Germans, both in Cornwall, prior to inheriting his titles, and was a supporter of William Pitt the Younger, who he had met at Cambridge. In 1790 he was created 1st Marquess of Abercorn in the Peerage of Great Britain.
Marquesses of Abercorn (1790)
1st Marquess of Abercorn, John James Hamilton, b.1756, a.1790, d.1818
He became an Irish Privy Counsellor in 1794 and was made a Knight of the Order of the Garter in 1805.
2nd Marquess of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.1811, a.1818, d.1885
Grandson of the 1st Marquess and Catherine Copley (b.b.1764, d.1791), daughter of Sir Joseph Copley, 1st Baronet Copley, and son of James Hamilton, Viscount Hamilton (b.1786, d.1814) and Harriet Douglas (b.1792, d.1833), sister of George Sholto Douglas, 17th Earl of Morton (and who later married Sir George Hamilton-Gordon, 4th Earl of Aberdeen, Prime Minister). Born in London and educated at Harrow and Christ Church College Oxford, he was made a Knight of the Garter and Lord-Lieutenant of County Donegal in 1844 while still comparatively young. He was made a Privy Counsellor in 1846 and was Groom of the Stole for the Albert, Prince Consort, from 1846 to 1859 and served as Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland from 1866 to 1868 and again from 1874 to 1876. In 1868 he was created 1st Duke of Abercorn and 1st Marquess of Hamilton in the Peerage of Ireland.
Dukes of Abercorn (1868)
1st Duke of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.1811, a.1868, d.1885
He was Grandmaster of the Freemasons in Ireland between 1874 and 1885 and was Chancellor of the University of Ireland in 1881.
2nd Duke of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.1838, a.1885, d.1913
Son of the 1st Duke and Lady Louisa Jane Russell (b.1812, d.1905), daughter of Sir John Russell, the 6th Duke of Bedford. Also educated at Harrow and Christ Church College Oxford, he was a Conservative MP for County Donegal from 1860 to 1880 and Sheriff of County Tyrone in 1863. He was made a Companion of the Bath in 1865 and served as Lord of the Bedchamber to the Prince of Wales from 1866 to 1885, when he was made Lord-Lieutenant of County Donegal, and was made an Irish Privy Counsellor in 1887. He was Grandmaster of the Freemasons in Ireland after his father, and also held the position of Groom of the Stole from 1886 to 1891. He was invested as a Knight of the Garter in 1892. In 1901 he was special envoy to several European countries announcing the accession of Edward VII.
3rd Duke of Abercorn, James Albert Edward Hamilton, b.1869, a.1913, d.1953
Son of the 2nd Duke and Lady Mary Anna Curzon (b.1848, d.1929), daughter of Richard William Penn Curson-Howe, 1st Earl Howe. Born in London and educated at Eton, he joined the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers from school and in 1892 moved to the 1st Life Guards, where he reached the rank of Captain, before transferring as a Major to the North Irish Horse Regiment. Continuing the family tradition, he held many high level political posts, including MP for Londonderry City from 1900 to 1913, and was Lord-Lieutenant of Tyrone from 1917 to 1945. He was made a Privy Counsellor for Ireland in 1922 and also a Knight of the Order of St Partick, and was Governor of Northern Ireland from then until 1945. He was made a Knight of the Garter in 1928 and was also invested as a Knight Grace of the Order of St John of Jerusalem (KGStJ). He was made a Privy Counsellor in 1945 and was awarded the Royal Victoria Chain.
4th Duke of Abercorn, James Edward Hamilton, b.1904, a.1953, d.1979
Son of the 3rd Duke and Lady Rosaline Cecilia Caroline Bingham (b.1869, d.1958), daughter of Charles George Bingham, 4th Earl of Lucan. Educated at Eton, he joined the Grenadier Guards, and reached the rank of Captain in the Army Officer Reserve. He was High Sheriff of Tyrone in 1946 and joined the County Council of Tyrone, serving on that body until his death. He was elected to the Senate of Northern Ireland in 1949, remaining until 1962, and was Lord-Lieutenant of Tyrone from 1950 until 1979. In 1962 he was made Honorary Colonel of the 5th Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Territorial Army).
5th Duke of Abercorn, James Hamilton, b.1934, a.1979
Son of the 4th Duke and Lady Mary Katherine Crichton (b.1905, d.1990), daughter of Lieutenant-Colonel Henry William Crichton, Viscount Crichton (himself son of John Henry Crichton, 4th Earl Erne of Crom Castle). Born in London and educated at Eton and the Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester, he joined the Grenadier Guards in 1952 and was an Ulster Unionist MP for Fermanagh and South Tyrone from 1964 to 1970. He was Lord-Lieutenant of Tyrone from 1986 to 2009 and invested as a Knight of the Garter in 1999. He was Honorary Colonel of the Irish Guards from 2000 to 2008 and was a Lord of the Household from 2001 to 2009. He sat in the House of Lords using his British title of Marquess of Abercorn until 1999. He is one of the largest landowners in Ireland. As well as being the 5th Duke of Abercorn, 5th Marquess of Hamilton, 9th Viscount Strabane, 9th Baron Mountcastle and 15th Lord Hamilton, Baron of Strabane in the Peerage of Ireland, he is also 6th Marquess of Abercorn and 7th Viscount Hamilton in the Peerage of Great Britain, 14th Earl of Abercorn, 14th Lord Abercorn, 14th Lord Paisley, and 14th Lord Paisley, Hamilton, Mountcashell and Kirkpartick in the Peerage of Scotland and 10th Baronet Hamilton in the Baronetage of Ireland.
The courtesy title for the heir is Marquess of Hamilton.
(Last updated: 19/02/2010)