Harry Lumsden of Jamaica

???? - 1796


Harry Lumsden of Jamaica bought the Clova estate in Scotland from his cousin John Lumsden, and entailed them on a series of heirs, including Harry Lumsden of Belhevie.

  1. Son of John Lumsden of Cushnie (1727-) and his wife Ann, daughter of Captain John Forbes of Newe. Born 1764. Apparently his father "did more, perhaps, than all his predeccessors to waste the [family] property, and he managed to get rid of half of it before he died. He seems to have been personally extravagant as well as reckless in his expenditure on teh estates and on his family... His sons were a great expense..." Harry entered the army in 1776, in the 14th Regiment and then the 95th Regiment of Foot. Apparently Harry was a spendthrift as well. "His father in his deed of settlement, dated 1788, records that besides the expense of his education, Harry had cost him above £2000 sterling, in raising men for [his regiment] and paying his debts." His father built a new house at Clova in Aberdeenshire. Following his father's bankruptcy in the early 1780s, Harry Lumsden bought Clova for £7900. Apparently died c. 1782.

  2. Harry Lumsden "went to Jamaica, to join his mother's brother, David, who was prospering there, made a fortune, and when the affairs of John Lumsden of Cushnie became hopelessly involved, he commissioned his brother-in-law, John Niven, to buy one of the properties, either Cushnie or Clova, he was indifferent which, so long as he preserved one at any rate in the old name... "The Major", as Harry was called (he had been in some regiment of Fencibles, and his portrait in uniform is now at Westhall), was some years ago still remembered by very old people in the parish of Auchindoir, for the kindness and consideration he showed in the terrible years that followed immediately on the purchase of the property. He never married. To Clova he added other lands, and at his death he left a considerable sum to be invested by his trustee, John Niven, in the same way. Gradually, therefore, under Mr Niven's judicious management, Wheedlemont, Towie, Premnay, Rosieburn, Tillymorgan, and Cairngrassie became parts of the Auchindoir estates, which had all been entailed by Harry Lumsden-- [1] on the heirs male of his youngest and favourite sister, Rachel, John Niven's wife; [2] on the male heirs of his second sister Catherine, the wife of John Leith; and [3] (passing over his eldest sister, whose marriage, I have heard, displeased him, as well as the daughters of Mrs Niven) on Henry, the third son of Hary [sic] Lumsden of Belhelvie, and his heirs. In every case the name of Lumsden was to be preserved. At his death, therefore, his nephew, Harry Niven Lumsden, then a child, succeeded to his estates. He married Harriet Christian, daughter of General Leith Hay of Rannes, and had four children, who, with their mother, all died before him. .. He was succeeded by his cousin Harry Leith, who took the name of Lumsden. He endeavoured, but unsuccessfully, to break the entail, and at his death in 1844 the estates passed to Henry Lumsden."

  3. Will of Harry Lumsden advocate of Auchindoir Aberdeenshire proved 02/06/1796. He appointed among his executors Robert Ross and George Bartlett of Jamaica without specifying his property there, and described himself as late of Kingston Jamaica now residing in Clova in one of the recitals contained in his will.


  1. Burke's Landed Gentry (1847) Vol. I pp. 773-4; Henry William Lumsden, Memorials of the families of Lumsdaine, Lumisden, or Lumsden (1889) pp. 90-92, 96.

  2. Ibid., pp. 102-103.

  3. PROB 11/1276/29.

We are grateful to Robert Armstrong for his assistance with compiling this entry.

Further Information


Relationships (2)

Other relatives
Notes →
Alexander Lumsden's grandfather, the father of Harry Lumsden of Belhevie, was the cousin-german of Harry Lumsden of...
Other relatives
Notes →
Henry Leith was the eventual heir of Harry...

Addresses (1)

Clova House, Lumsden, Aberdeenshire, North-east Scotland, Scotland