Papers of the Seton family of Mounie, Aberdeenshire

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Mounie estate papers Inventories, 1716 - 1835; deeds of title, 1690 - 1847; maps, surveys and valuations, 1771 - 1859, including plans and sketch of Mounie Castle, 1859; legal papers, 1700 - 1891, including papers relating to the claim of Glack to use the mosses, 1700 - 1864, and papers relating to the Fingask and Glack marches, 1771, 1871, 1891; rentals and papers concerning leases, 1763 - 1901, including valuations and inventories of bigings and houses let on the estate, 1703 - 1735; estate and household accounts, and miscellaneous financial papers, 1714 - 1832; receipts for public burdens, 16th c - 1865; correspondence concerning estate management, principally from James Allan, factor, to Alexander Anderson Seton (1770 - -850), 1797 - 1852, including some rentals and accounts; papers relating to Daviot church, stipend, schoolhouse and burdens of heritors, 1723 - 1893.

Personal papers of George Seton (1672 - 1762) Miscellaneous personal papers, 1725 - 1748, including admission to the freedom of the city of Aberdeen, 1729, and papers re. George Seton's apprenticeship with George Beattie, merchant, of Montrose, 1725 - 1729; correspondence (referring to personal, professional and estate matters, including reference to his role in the Jacobite rebellion of 1745), 1708 - 1757; financial and legal papers, 1695 - 1783, including papers re. his claim on the forfeited estate of the Earl of Winton; rentals, accounts, and related papers pertaining to his role as sub-collector of bishops' rents south of the Forth, in the archbishopric of St Andrews and the bishoprics of Edinburgh and Galloway, 1705 - 1714; papers relating to the estate and family of Sir Alexander Wedderburn of Blackness, under the administration of George Seton, 1698 - 1720.

Personal papers of Dr James Anderson (1739 - 1808) Correspondence received, 1765 - 1794, and sent, 1772 - 1804, by him (referring to wide range of personal, professional and estate matters, including agricultural improvement and fisheries; including a letter from George Washington); miscellaneous papers, lectures, and notes on various topics (including weights and measures, agriculture, India, West Indies, slavery, taxes, constitution, bleaching, water mills, arboriculture, industry, politics), written by him, 1777 - 1790; papers and correspondence re. his research and report on the state of British fisheries, 1784 - 1785 (subsequently used in J. Anderson's An Account of the Present State of the Hebrides and Western Coasts of Scotland: in which an attempt is made to explain the circumstances that have hitherto repressed the industry of the natives; and some hints are suggested for encouraging the fisheries and promoting other improvements in those countries: being the substance of a report to the Lords of Treasury, of facts collected in a tour to the Hebrides, with large additions; together with the evidence given before the Committee of Fisheries (Edinburgh: Robinson, 1785)); papers relating to the publication of The Bee, 1790 - 1793; legal papers, 1768 - 1796; financial papers, 1743 - 1793, including personal, household, and some estate accounts; estate papers, 1762 - 1796, principally accounts, but including draft notes made by James Anderson, re. estate improvements, 1772 - 1796; letters and papers concerning the affairs of his widow, Mrs Sarah Anderson, 1804 - 1833; printed papers on various topics, including education, roads, agriculture, Scottish distilling industry, woollen industry, emigration, British colonies, etc. 1778 - 1796.

Personal papers of Alexander Anderson Seton (1770 - 1850) Correspondence received and sent by him, 1790 - 1849; papers concerning the Outram family, 1796 - 1825, principally correspondence between Alexander Anderson Seton and the Outram family, 1802 - 1820, but including papers relating to the estate of Benjamin Outram and his children's financial affairs, 1796 - 1812, and 1825.

Papers concerning Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Seton (1815 - 1851) Financial papers, 1829 - 1848; testimonies from private letters, with related papers, 1852 - 1856; papers relating to the Birkenhead Monument, 1886; miscellaneous papers, including poems, notes and queries re. the wreck of the Birkenhead, n.d. [19thc]

Literary compositions by members of the Seton family and unidentified writers, 1787 - 1840 and n.d. Verses by Isabella Seton, Thomas Ogilvy, Anne Wharton-Duff and others, including Address to Loch Lomond, and other items, possibly submitted to The Bee, 1787 - 1831; notebook (and copy in unknown hand) of poems by Isabella Seton, 1830 - 1841; chronicle of world events since the Creation, written in rhyme, with a key to convert letters to dates (with note added by Isabella Seton), 1836; Book Containing the Latitudes of some of the Chief Places in the World in Rhyme. Intended to be learnt by heart. By Isabella Seton, 1839 - 1840; commonplace books containing prose and poetical extracts from various sources, anon, n.d. [mid 19th c]; fragmentary pages describing tour in Germany, n.d. [1839]

Other Miscellaneous original papers, 1542 - 1904, including miscellaneous deeds, 1542 - 1699; grant of office of commissar of the Commissariat of Stirling, by George Archbishop of St Andrews, to Master Robert Moravium, 23 Feb 1610; nomination of Thomas Williamsone to the Commissar clerkship of the Commissariat of Rosse, 18 Feb 1648; marriage contract between Alexander Leslie of Warthill and Helen Seton, 8 Oct 1730; household, livery and garden accounts of William Seton and Anne Seton, 1769 - 1793.

Miscellaneous historical and genealogical research, mainly by David Seton, late 19th c

Miscellaneous printed ephemera, including newspapers of local and English origin, mostly relating to members of the Seton family, with collection covering the trial of Queen Caroline, 1755 - 1903; marriage cards and visiting cards, 19thc; illustrations from book plates, 18thc - 19thc; notices re. exhibition at Peterborough to celebrate tercentenary of Mary Queen of Scots, 1887; Minutes of proceedings at the Navy League Conference, London, 1898, containing speech by Major Seton.

For further details, particularly re. the scope and content of correspondence in this collection, see Dorothy Johnston, Letters and Papers of the Setons of Mounie, Aberdeenshire, including the Papers of Dr James Anderson (1739-1808), AUL MS 2787, Reports and Surveys of Archives in Northern Scotland, Northern Scotland, 5 (1982), 71-79.

For background details and a full description of the papers relating to the estate and family of Sir Alexander Wedderburn of Blackness, under the administration of George Seton (1672 - 1762), 1698 - 1720, see Wedderburn papers at Mounie, in Alexander Wedderburn, The Wedderburn Book, 2 vols. (Privately published, 1898)

Administrative / Biographical History

The estate of Mounie, situated 3 miles north west of Oldmeldrum, Aberdeenshire, was in the hands of the Seton family from 1714 until 1970, when Mounie Castle was sold and the family papers deposited in Aberdeen University Library.

For details of the family's history see George Seton, History of the Family of Seton (Edinburgh: Constable, 1896) and Dorothy Johnston, Letters and Papers of the Setons of Mounie, Aberdeenshire, including the Papers of Dr James Anderson (1739-1808), AUL MS 2787, Reports and Surveys of Archives in Northern Scotland Northern Scotland, 5 (1982), 71-79.


As described in Scope and Content

Conditions Governing Access

Open, subject to signature accepting conditions of use at reader registration sheet

Acquisition Information

Deposited in the University in 1970, by Burnett and Reid, advocates, Aberdeen, on behalf of Alexander Wake Seton.

Other Finding Aids

Descriptive list available in the Reading Room, Special Libraries and Archives (e-mail:

Very brief collection level description available on Aberdeen University Library Catalogue, accessible online

Alternative Form Available

No copies known

Conditions Governing Use

Subject to the condition of the original, copies may be supplied for private research use only on receipt of a signed undertaking to comply with current copyright legislation.

Permission to make any published use of material from the collection must be sought in advance from the Head of Special Libraries and Archives (e-mail: and, where appropriate, from the copyright owner. Where possible, assistance will be given in identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with normal procedures


No accruals expected

Related Material

Papers of the Seton family, of Pitmedden, Aberdeenshire, 1421-1918 (GB 231 MS 3531). George Seton, who established the family seat at Mounie in 1714, was the second son of Sir Alexander Seton, of Pitmedden.

Papers relating to the administration and collection of Bishops' rents in Scotland are deposited in the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh.

Additional Information

This material is original