St. Clair of Herdmanston

Henry St. Clair received land at Herdmanston in East Lothian from Richard de Morville in an undated charter sometime between 1162 whilst Richard was Constable of Scotland and before Richard’s own death in 1189. By 1189, Henry was named as Sheriff of Lauder in a charter by William de Morville, who had succeeded his father Richard as Constable and probably around the same time, Henry received the barony of Carfrae in Lauderdale. At some point before William de Morville’s death in 1196, Henry resigned his lands of Carfrae back to William, who then granted Carfrae to Alan St. Clair, Sir Henry’s intended heir. This was probably as a marriage gift on Alan’s marriage to Matilda de Windlesore (or Windsor), daughter of Alexander de Windlesore, a prominent family from Westmoreland in England who were related to the de Morvilles through Avice de Lancaster, William de Morville’s mother.

There were also other St. Clairs noted in the few charters which survive, who appear contemporary with Sir Alan of Herdmanston and Carfrae. They may have been his younger brothers or cousins, such as Sir Robert, who witnessed charters in the royal court and for the Comyn family, and then disappears from the records around 1240. A John St. Clair witnessed a charter for Christian de Morville, widow of William de Morville, in 1203 along with his son, William, and after that witnessed charters for the Comyn family until the late 1260s. There are also records of a younger Henry St. Clair, who seems to have flourished between 1230s and 1255 and may have been a son of Alan St. Clair, if following the traditional Scottish naming pattern.

The documentation to link each generation is sadly lacking until the arrival of the next confirmed St. Clair of Herdmanston and Carfrae who paid homage to King Edward I in 1296.  This John was contemporary with Gregory, Alexander and Reginald St. Clairs who were around during the war with England, although no documentation survives to connect any of them to an earlier generation and, even more frustratingly, it is also possible they were instead members of the St. Clair branch, which had already established itself at Roslin by then.

Using The Enigmatic Sinclairs and Saint-Clairs of the Isles as a starting point, archival documents and charters have also been checked, where they still exist, to ensure the following tree is as up to date and as accurate as possible. Where there could be some element of doubt, they have been marked thus: (?).

Nina Cawthorne


Sir Henry de St. Clair of Herdmanston ( -aft. 1203) [Sheriff of Lauder, granted Carfrae (Lauderdale) and Herdmanston (East Lothian) before 1189] m. unknown
(?)Ada ( -c.1228) m. Petrus de Haga (Peter de Haig) of Bemersyde (Berwickshire)
(?)Henry de Haga ( -c.1240)
(?)Cospatric de Haga
(?)Sir John de St. Clair ( -aft. 1200) m. unknown
William de St. Clair [witness to charter with father dated c.1196-1200 and others for the Comyn family]
(?)Sir Robert de St. Clair ( -abt. 1240) [witnessed many charters for the Comyn family] m. (?)dau. of Radulph de Graham of Abercorn and Dalkeith [Midlothian]
Alan de St. Clair of Herdmanston ( -aft. 1244) [confirmed in Carfrae after 1189] m. bef. 1196 Matilda, dau. of Alexander de Windlesoure of Westmorland and Agnes de Lancaster
(?)Henry de St. Clair ( -c.1260) [witness for other landholders in East Lothian]
(?)Gregory de St. Clair ‘of Berwickshire’, [seal on Ragman Roll 1296 with 3 boar’s heads]
(?)Alexander de St. Clair [squire, captured at Dunbar 1296]
(?)Reginald de St. Clair [squire, captured at Dunbar 1296]
Sir John St. Clair of Herdmanston ( -aft. 1301) [seal 1296, ‘an eagle displayed’] m. unknown
John St. Clair ( -25 Aug 1330, Teba de Ardales, Spain)
Sir William de St. Clair of Herdmanston ( -25 Aug 1330, Teba de Ardales, Spain) [granted Cessford (Roxburghshire) 1325] m. Agnes (?)Keith ( -25 July 1338, Aberdeen)
(?)Margaret St. Clair m. c.1321 John, son of Sir Malcolm de Innerpeffer [Sheriff of Clackmannan and Auchterarder, Perthshire]
Sir John St. Clair of Herdmanston ( -bef. 1353) m. Margaret Sinclair of Rosslyn ( -1418), dau. of Sir Henry Sinclair of Rosslyn and Alicia de Fenton
James St. Clair (-aft. 1402) [ancestor of St. Clair of Longformacus]
Walter St. Clair of Cessford ( -1402) m. Christian Cockburn
Christian St. Clair ( -aft. 1441) m. Sir William Cockburn of Skraling (Peebles)
John St. Clair of Herdmanston ( -aft. May 1397) m. c.1377 Elizabeth, dau. of Sir Patrick Polwarth of Polwarth (Berwickshire)
(?)Thomas St. Clair [witness to mortgage of Carfrae 1413]
Sir William St. Clair of Herdmanston ( -1420) m. Margaret (unknown)
Catherine St. Clair ( -aft. Mar 1450) m. c1392 Sir John Seton, son of Sir William Seton of Seton (East Lothian) and Janet Fleming
(?)Thomas St. Clair [witness to transumpt in 1434]
Sir John St. Clair (c.1399-20 Dec 1466) m. Isabel (unknown)
Alexander St. Clair
James St. Clair
Patrick St. Clair [witness for his father 1462]
John St. Clair of Polwarth (c.1421-bef. 1466) m. Katherine Home, dau. of Sir Alexander Home of Home and Dunglas and Marion Lauder
Mariota St. Clair (c.1445-aft. 1502)
m. (1) c.1461 Sir George Home of Wedderburn (Berwickshire)
m. (2) aft. 1497, George Kerr of Samuelston (East Lothian)
Margaret St. Clair (c.1446-1490) m. Sir Patrick Home, brother of Sir George Home of Wedderburn
William St. Clair (c.1423-c.1479) m. unknown
John St. Clair ( -bef. 25 Oct 1513) [?died at Flodden] m. Marion Cockburn
James St. Clair ( -aft. 1546) (natural son)
John St. Clair ( -aft. 1545) (natural son, legitimised 1545)
Alexander St. Clair ( -aft. 1530)
James St. Clair ( -aft. 1530)
(?)George St. Clair, rector of Polwarth ( -aft. 1542)
Sir William St. Clair ( -1530) m. bef. 1522 Beatrix Renton, dau. of David Renton of Billie (Berwickshire)
Margaret St. Clair ( -aft. 1557)
Elizabeth St. Clair
John St. Clair (c.1523-c.1565) m. bef. 1545 Margaret Sinclair (?)of Dryden
John St. Clair ( -aft. 1569)
Oliver St. Clair ( -aft. 1569)
William St. Clair ( -aft. 1571) [witness 1571, ‘brother-german to Sir William St. Clair of Herdmanston’]
Alexander St. Clair ( -aft. 1565)
Beatrix St. Clair ( -aft. 1586)
Margaret St. Clair ( -aft. 1586)
Jane St. Clair ( -aft. 1586)
Alison St. Clair ( -aft. 1586)
Sir William St. Clair (1546-2 Jun 1594) m. 1566 Sibyl Cockburn, dau. of Sir John Cockburn of Ormiston and Alison Sandilands
George St. Clair
William St. Clair ( -aft. 1615)
Maria St. Clair ( -1606) m. c.1585 David, son of David McGill of Cranston-Riddell (Midlothian) and Elizabeth Forrester
Sybil St. Clair
Jean St. Clair
Margaret St. Clair
Euphame St. Clair
Susanna St. Clair ( -aft. 1622) m. 1598 Phillip Hamilton of Samuelston (East Lothian)
Elizabeth St. Clair ( -bef. 1606) m. (?)Alexander Cockburn in Stobbiswood (Berwickshire)
Sir John St. Clair ( -c.1630) [Sheriff of Haddington 1615] m. Mary Richardson, dau. of Sir James Richardson of Smeaton and Mary Kerr
Robert St. Clair (c.1610-aft. 1644) m. 1638 Helen Rae
Jean St. Clair (1643- )
Mary St. Clair (c.1612-aft. 1641)
Agnes St. Clair m. c.1647 William Forbes, Advocate
James St. Clair (c.1615- )
Sir John St. Clair (c.1608-1686) [M.P. for Haddington 1644-5] m. c.1629 Elizabeth, dau. of Sir John Sinclair of Stevenson and Marion McMath
William St. Clair of Carfrae (1633-bef. 1672) m. c.1659 Christian Sinclair, dau. of Mr John Sinclair, apparent of Stevenson (East Lothian)
Elizabeth St. Clair (1660-c.1700) m. 1682 Colin Lauder, brother of Lord Fountainhall (Haddington)
Christian St. Clair (1668-aft. 1722)
Robert St. Clair (c.1662-bef. 1722)
John St. Clair ( -aft. 1722)
Helen St. Clair (c.1665-aft. 1722)
Elizabeth St. Clair (1634- )
Marion St. Clair (1636- )
Margaret St. Clair (1638- )
Capt. Robert St Clair (1641-1702), Deputy-Governor of West Tilbury Blockhouse, Essex m. unknown
Unnamed daughter St. Clair
George St. Clair (1642-bef. 1720), merchant and Baillie, Edinburgh m. 1678 Isabella Durham, dau. of John Cunningham Durham of Pilton and Lufness
Dr John St. Clair (1679-1742)
Barbara St. Clair (1681- )
Isobel St. Clair (1683- )
Thomas St. Clair (1643-d. young)
Matthew St. Clair (1645-c.1646)
Dr Matthew St. Clair (1647-1728)
m. (1) 1705 Margaret Hume, dau. of John Hume, 9th of Nynewells (Berwickshire)
m. (2) Margaret, dau. of Sir Thomas Carre of Cavers (Roxburghshire)
Anna St. Clair (1700- ) m. William Molleson, merchant of London
Helen Molleson
Robert Molleson ( -bef. 1787)
William Molleson (c.1733-1804) m. 1762 Eleanor Russell
Dr Andrew St. Clair (1697-1760) [Prof. of Medicine at Edinburgh University] m. 1736 Elizabeth, dau. of James Drummond of Blair Drummond
Charles St. Clair (1692-1775) [later 2nd LORD SINCLAIR] m. Elizabeth, dau. of Andrew Hume Lord Kimmerghame and Elizabeth Douglas
Helen St. Clair (1649- )
John St. Clair (1632-13 Jul 1666) m. 1659 Catherine, dau. of John Sinclair, 9th Lord Sinclair and Mary, dau. of John Wemyss, 1st Earl Wemyss
John St. Clair (1663-aft. 1687)
Mary St. Clair (1666-bef. Nov 1721) m. George, son of Thomas Wilson, merchant of Edinburgh
Henry St. Clair (1660-1723) [1st HERDMANSTON LORD SINCLAIR] m. 1680 Barbara Cockburn, dau. of Sir James Cockburn of Cockburn and Grizel Hay
Henry St. Clair (1660-1723) was the eldest son of Catherine, Baroness Sinclair, only daughter of John, 9th Lord Sinclair and the last Sinclair directly descended through William ‘the Waster’, eldest son of William Sinclair, 3rd Earl of Caithness and Lord Sinclair. In 1677, Henry St. Clair of Herdmanston obtained a new patent of the Sinclair peerage, succeeded his maternal grandfather as Lord Sinclair whilst also inheriting the barony of Herdmanston from his father. For the continuation of this line please see Herdmanston Lords Sinclair.
error: Content is protected !!