Collection of letters sent to Sir John Gordon of Pitlurg (d 1600), and his two sons, John Gordon of Pitlurg (d 1619) and Robert Gordon of Straloch (1580 - 1661), during the period 1585 - 1665, regarding political, family and professional matters.
9 letters are addressed to Sir John Gordon of Pitlurg. Most of these were written by King James VI, during the period 1585 - c. 1600, and concern trivial matters, but are of interest in as much as they provide evidence of the mutual friendship which existed between the two men. 1 letter of similar content, 1609, is addressed to his eldest son, John Gordon of Pitlurg from King James VI, but the remainder and majority of the collection concerns Robert Gordon of Straloch, his work, and most particularly, the political difficulties which occupied Scotland during his lifetime, c. 1619 - 1665.
A group of 16 letters refer to the concerns of his nephews, Lord Lewis Gordon, later Third Marquis of Huntly, and Lord Charles Gordon, later Earl of Aboyne, following the death of their father, George, 2nd Marquis of Huntly (d 1649), whose estate passed to the Marquis of Argyll. Straloch's advice on this matter was sought from both parties involved in the dispute, as correspondence from the Marquis of Argyll and various members of the House of Gordon testify. 17 letters sent from George, Lord Gordon (eldest son of George 2nd Marquis of Huntly (d 1649)), who fell at the Battle of Alford, in 1645, contain further references to the prevailing political conditions, and demonstrate the role of Straloch as advisor and arbitrator to the family.
Remaining letters in the collection principally concern Straloch's academic work, in particular his General Map of Modern Scotland, and of Orkney, Shetland and other adjacent islands. They also include a renewal of a former Parliamentary protection which had been enjoyed by Straloch when engaged in revising Pont's surveys. Correspondents include the Duke of Gordon, to whom Straloch dedicated his General Map of Modern Scotland ...; John Johnston, Professor of Divinity, St Andrews University; David Buchanan, who composed some of the county descriptions for Straloch's maps of Scotland for Blaeu's atlas; Robert Burnet of Crimond [var. Cramond], later Lord Cramond, father of Bishop Burnet; Sir John Scot of Scotstarvet, lawyer, privy councillor, patron of learned Scotsmen; and Samuel Wallace, an intermediary in the Low Countries between Scot and Blaeu..