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Collection UGD 37/2 - Macdonald family of the Isles of Skye and North Uist

Identity area

Reference code

GB 248 UGD 37/2


Macdonald family of the Isles of Skye and North Uist


  • 1747-1831 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

0.3 linear metres

Context area

Name of creator

Macdonald family of Isles of Skye and North Uist (12th century-)

Biographical history

The MacDonald Family of the Isles of Skye and North Uist, Scotland, can trace their ancestry back to Somerled, provincial King of Argyll, who fell at Renfrew, Scotland, in a campaign against King Malcolm the Fourth, in 1164. Sir Donald MacDonald of Sleat, Isle of Skye, supported King Charles I (1625-1649) in the civil war and was created First Baronet of Nova Scotia, Canada, in 1625. The first Lord MacDonald was Sir Alexander MacDonald, who was elevated to the peerage of Ireland, in 1776, with the title of Baron MacDonald, of Slate. He had a distinguished military career, becoming Brigadier-General of the Royal Company. In 1768, he married Elizabeth Diana, co-heir of Godfrey Bosville (father) and Diana (mother), daughter of William Wentworth. He died in 1795 . His eldest son, the second Lord MacDonald, was Sir Alexander Wentworth MacDonald who became M P for Saltash, Cornwall, England. He died in 1824, and his brother became the third Lord MacDonald. Sir Godfrey Bosville MacDonald (b. 1775 ), eleventh Baronet, served in the army in the Low Countries, the West Indies, the Cape of Good Hope, and in the Peninsula Wars until 1814. He inherited the Bosville titles and estates from his maternal uncle. In 1803, at Norwich, England, he remarried Louisa Maria La Coast, daughter of the Duke of Gloucester, the validity of their earlier Scottish marriage having been called into question. They had three children before this date and a further seven children after the marriage. Subsequently there was a dispute over the inheritance and Sir Godfrey's eldest son, Alexander William Robert MacDonald, twelfth Baronet, did not therefore assume the title of Lord MacDonald on his father's death in 1832 . The family continued to play a distinguished role in the affairs of the nation throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Archival history

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Scope and content

Nomination of tutors and reports by tutors 1747-1762; accounts 1753-1828; correspondence 1807-1830; legal case files 1826-1831; inventories of land and titles 1828; miscellaneous estate papers 1812-1829; legal papers, correspondence, and memoranda 1789-1828

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Language of material

  • English

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Finding aids

Digital file level list available in searchroom or online at

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