George Graham Esq
1730-1801

Of Jamacia, then India and later of Kinross in Scotland

Born: 17 May, 1730 and died in London 1801.
Son of:  John Graham (1698-17??) of Edinburgh and his first wife Anges MacFarlane (daughter of Rev Robert MacFarlane).
Half brother of:
1.  John Graham (1741-1775) who married Mary Shewen. John was the son of John Graham and his second wife Helen Graham nee Mayne (sister of Robert and William Mayne).
2. 
Thomas Graham (1752-1819) who married Ann Paul.  Thomas was the son of John Graham and his second wife Helen Graham nee Mayne (sister of Robert and William Mayne).
3.  Possibly a Robert Graham (1751-????) a banker who died in Bengal.  He was married but did not have any children.
4.  Jean Park nee Graham (17??-1801) who married Lieut-Colonel Park of Lochern.  They had no children. 
George never married.         
George was never married but he had an illigetimate son James. 

George Graham: An Overview

We know of George from the following sources:
1. The book; History of Parliament, The House of Commons, 1754-1790, by Sir Lewis Namier & John Brooke.  Published 1964.
2. Christies Auction Catalogue, Kinross House, 30 March 2011.
3. A note in the 'Book of the Graemes and Grahams' by Louisa Grace Graeme.
4. The Graham family website (http://www.inchbrakie.com ).

From the book; History of Parliament, The House of Commons, 1754-1790, by Sir Lewis Namier & John Brooke.  Published 1964.  Page 525.  This has a biographical note which reads as follows:

Graham, George (1730-1801), of Kinross, Kinross-shire.

Kinross-shire 1780-1784, 1790-1796.  Born 17 May 1730, 2nd son of John Graham, Edinburgh merchant, by his 1st wife Anges, daughter of Rev Robert MacFarlane, minister of Buchanan.  Unmarried.  Burgess of Edinburgh 1777; ld. Lt. Kinross 1794-d.

Graham's father's second wife was Helen, sister of Robert and Sir William Mayne (qq.v.), who obtained appointments in the East India Company's service for Graham's half-brothers, John and Thomas .  In 1765 George Graham was settled as a planter in Jamacia, but, failing to prosper, decided in 1770, on the advice of Sir William Mayne, to seek his fortune in India.  There, having secured a contract for supplying the troops in Bengal, and engaging in private trade (in association with the House of Mayne in Lisbon), within four years he acquired 'a competency to enjoy the rest of his days'.

He owed his position mainly to his brother John, a member of the Bengal council, and a close associate of Warren Hastings.  When, after the arrival of the new councillors under North's Regulating Act, John Graham resigned, George accompanied him to England.  Settling in London as a merchant in association with Robert Mayne, he engaged in an extensive trade in wine and East India goods between Lisbon, China and India.

In 1777 he purchased the estate of Kinross, which gave him the controlling interest in a county in which his only considerable rival was John Adam of Blair Adam, whose son William then represented Gatton on Sir William Mayne's interest.  Returned unopposed at the general election in 1780, Graham was thus described in the English Chronicle in 1781: 'He is a man of moderate principles but not without discernment, and has more sober sense than many men who make greater bustle in the world.  He is likely to be ministerial as most of his connexions incline that way; although if Opposition could once get hold of him it would be a difficult matter to alter his opinion, of which he is tenacious perhaps to obstinacy.'

He supported the North Administration to the end, but thereafter his political affiliations were uncertain.  He did not vote on Shelburne's peace preliminaries, 18 Feb. 1783, and voted for Fox's East India bill, 27 Nov.  1783.  On the formation of the Pitt Administration Robinson and Dundas were 'hopeful' of his support, and although Robinson shortly afterwards counted him among the converts, in Stockdale's list of 19 Mar. 1784 he was listed among Pitt's opponents.  In 1784 Graham was mentioned as a candidate for Clackmannan, which alternated with Kinross in representation, but was not returned.

He died in London 18 Dec. 1801, leaving his estates to his illegitimate son James, on condition that he married his cousin Anna Maria, daughter of Thomas Graham MP, who failing this marriage, succeeded to Kinross.

Kinross House Scotland home of the Graham and Montgomery families

 Kinross House, Scotland


 

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