Coltness Papers

Scope and Content

MS 2291

  • /1 Life of Sir James Steuart Denham of Coltness and Westshield. Said to be by Dr. Andrew Kippis. 8 vols. 231pp. [This has been printed as far as p.200 in C.C.] (Mic. Dup. 656.1)
  • /2 Memoirs for the life of Sir James Steuart Denham of Coltness and Westshield. Possibly by Archibald Hamilton (see Chamley, p.14-15, 112-114, and MS 2291/14 below.) (Mic. Dup. 656.2)
  • /3 Sir James Steuart Denham. An enquiry into the principles of political oeconomy. 2 vols. Comprises the manuscript of the first two books of the work as published. (See Chamley, p.19 - "manuscrit primitif".) (Mic. Dup. 656*)
  • /4 Sir James Steuart Denham. Notes on money and credit. (Mic. Dup. 654.4)
  • /5 Sir James Steuart Denham. Miscellaneous notes on coinage. 47 fols. (Mic. Dup. 654.5)
  • /6 Sir James Steuart Denham. "Letter to my Lord Barrington upon the principles and doctrine of money ... 1763". Afterwards added to the third volume of Steuart Denham's Political Economy. (Mic. Dup. 654.1)
  • /7 Sir James Steuart Denham. "Remarques critiques et observations generales sur un livre qui a pour titre 'Systeme de la Nature ...' par M. de Mirabaud ... 1779". (Mic. Dup. 654.2)
  • /8 Sir James Steuart Denham. Notes upon Hume's Elizabeth, relative to the trial of Mary Queen of Scots for the murder of her husband. (Mic. Dup. 654.3)
  • /9 Sir James Stuart Denham. Commonplace book. (Mic. Dup. 654.3)
  • /10 Sir James Steuart Denham. The principles of money applied to the present state of the coin of Bengal, printed in the year 1772. (Printed item.) (Not microfilmed.)
  • /11 Letters relating to Sir James Steuart Denham's Enquiry, including a draft letter from him to Millar about its publication, 15 April 1766. Also material relating to Steuart's purchase of a set of the Encyclopedie, including Andrew Lumisden letters, and other miscellaneous material, some printed. 20 fols. (Mic. Dup. 654.6)
  • /12 19 letters about a French edition of Sir James Steuart Denham's Enquiry, 1781-4. Includes 4 draft letters of Lady Frances Steuart Denham. Also a draft of an advertisement of the French translation by William Creech. 41 fols. (Mic. Dup. 654.7)
  • /13 Letter, 19 April 1783, from Captain Henry Steuart about his translation into English of "Apologie du sentiment de M.Newton sur l'ancienne chronologie des Grecs", usually attributed to Sir James Steuart Denham. With a specimen of the translation and a letter from another about the translation. 6 fols. (Mic. Dup. 654.8)
  • /14 3 letters of Sir James Steuart Denham of Coltness to his son James: 13 March 1766, 17 February 1768 and 20 May 1770. Also copies of letters of Sir James Steuart Denham to Lady Sutherland, 23 August 1743, and to Lord Dreghorn, 20 January 1780. Also "An attempt to delineate the person and character of Sir James Steuart ...", 1781, by Archibald Hamilton. Also a letter of Sir James Steuart Denham to Baron William Mure, 14 September 1764. Also an offprint of an article by David Raynor and Andrew Skinner entitled "Sir James Steuart: nine letters on the American conflict, 1775-1778", The William and Mary Quarterly, third series, 51, 1994, 755-776. (See Chamley, p.14.) (Mic. Dup. 654.9 - not the last two mentioned items.)
  • /15 14 letters to Lady Frances Steuart Denham, 1746-1782 and n.d. Mostly from relatives, for example, her aunt, Lady Northesk. Also a letter to an unknown gentleman (James Steuart Denham?) from the Countess Bentinck (fols 23-24), and four small pieces in the hand of Lady Frances Steuart Denham. 33 fols. (Mic. Dup. 654.10)
  • /16 17 letters from Lady Frances Steuart Denham to her son, General James Steuart Denham and his wife, 1775-1786 and n.d. 86 fols. (Mic. Dup. 654.11)
  • /17 20 letters from Lady Frances Steuart Denham to her son James, 1762-1765. 44 fols. (Mic. Dup. 654.12)
  • /18 Household book of Lady Frances Steuart Denham for Coltness, 1775-1777. With index folios inserted loosely. (Mic. Dup. 654.13)
  • /19 1 letter from Lady Frances Steuart Denham to her son James, 12 January 1763, and 18 letters from Alicia Steuart Denham to her husband General Sir James Steuart Denham, 1782-1785 and n.d. 36 fols. (Mic. Dup. 654.14)
  • /20 Elizabeth Steuart. "A Copy of My intended legacy book to Sir James Steuart My Well beloved Nephew, Coltness, Sep 23 1790". (Mic. Dup. 653.1)
  • /21 "Journal of what is done in the Field by the Cavalry Detachments, under the Command of Colol. Sir James Stewart. 1788". 4 loose items inserted. (Mic. Dup. 653.2)
  • /22 5 letters to Gen. Sir James Steuart Denham, 1783-1791, including two from William Pitt, Prime Minister, 24 September 1789 and 4 April 1791; 2 copy letters of letters between Alleyne Fitz Herbert and Major General Paterson, 21 August 1788, and the Marquis of Buckingham, Lord Lieutenant, and Lord Sydney, 31 October 1788; a copy of Steuart Denham's reply to the Prime Minister's letter of 4 April 1791, dated 5 April 1791; and a clothing account, November 1785. 18 fols. (Mic. Dup. 653.3)
  • /23 Letter of the Marquis of Buckingham to Lord Sydney, 31 October 1788 (copy?); copy letter of Col. Graham, 22 January 1809, about the death of Sir John Moore; one letter of General Sir James Steuart Denham, 22 July 1814; and 7 letters to General Sir James Steuart Denham, 1814-1819. 20 fols. (Mic. Dup. 653.4)
  • /24 Miscellaneous verses and anecdotes. Probably all collected by General Sir James Steuart Denham. Some printed. 38 fols. (Mic. Dup. 653.5)
  • /25 Medical recipes by Martin Eccles, surgeon, given to Lady Frances Steuart Denham, 1740s. (Mic. Dup. 653.6)
  • /26 Coltness family papers and letters, 1623-1774, including 27 letters of Sir James Steuart of Goodtrees (1635-1713), later Lord Advocate, to his father, 12 October 1671 to 30 May 1673 and two undated, and items relating to Sir James Steuart Denham's pardon from the government. 79 documents. (See C.C., pp.359-362.) (Mic. Dup. 653.7)
  • /27 Estate account book, 1683-1710. (Mic. Dup. 653.8)
  • [/28 Writ about the claim of Sir James Steuart to be the elected M.P. for Lanark, 20 December 1718. Roll. Now MS 2293/1.]
  • /29 Work in holograph by Sir James Stewart of Goodtrees, in the form of a letter to a fellow Presbyterian, relating to the ordination of ministers, 1660s-1670s. 30 fols. (Mic. Dup. 653.9)
  • /30 Two works: 1) fragment of a tract on the Picts and other early inhabitants of Scotland, 1730s?; 2) fragmentary draft of a work by Sir James Stewart of Goodtrees on political theory, c.1670? 21 fols. (Mic. Dup. 653.10)
  • /31 Two religious work by Sir James Stewart of Goodtrees, one on Roman Catholicism, the other a verse-by-verse commentary on Isaiah. 31 double sheets, with a single insert between the first and second. (Mic. Dup. 653.11)
  • /32 Part of letter book of James Stewart of Goodtrees, future Lord Advocate and grandfather of the economist, relating to business transactions with Rouen, 1672-1673. 8 fols. (Mic. Dup. 653.12)
  • /33 Letter of the Earl of Findlater to Sir Thomas Stewart of Coltness, 19 February 1698. 2 fols. (Mic. Dup. 653.13)
  • [/34 Patent of Arms of General Sir James Steuart Denham of Coltness, 15 February 1810. (In black metal tube). Now MS 2293/2. (Mic. Dup. 655.2)]
  • /35 Glencoe Papers. "Answers to the information for the Master of Stair upon the affair of Glenco, wrote by Thos Spence and corrected by Sir Jas Steuart Lord Advocate, his master". 8 fols., and old covering material. (Mic. Dup. 655.1)
  • /36 Letters to Lt.General Sir James Wolfe Murray, KCB, and other documents about the estate of Westshield and the Denham monument there, 1909-1916. (Mic. Dup. 655.3)
  • /37 "Plan of the proposed approaches from south & west to the High Street of Edinburgh." Engraved plan, n.d. (early nineteenth century). (Mic. Dup. 655.4)
  • /38 Epitaphs and monumental verses, and related letters, nineteenth century. Also printed genealogies of the Calderwoods of Polton, Steuarts of Allanton and Coltness and the Denhams of Westshield. (Mic. Dup. 655.5)
  • /39 Letters to Miss Elizabeth Steuart, Coltness, sister of the economist, from her niece, Lady Anne Erskine (16 December 1784, 7 December 1784, 3 May 1791, 23 May 1791, 26 May 1791, 3 June 1791, 6 June 1791, 18 June 1791, 16 July 1791 and n.d.), from Anna Leslie (8 June 1791), M. Douglas (n.d.), her nephews the Earl of Buchan (29 August 1791) and Thomas Erskine (30 March 1792), Mary Traill (6 March 1792), J.B. (16 April 1792), and Jean Dinwiddie (1792 and 21 April 1792). Also a copy of a letter to Miss Dalrymple from Hew Dalrymple (3 September 1731). Mostly mounted in an album, but two loose letters and one other document at the front. (Mic. Dup. 655.6)
  • /40 -
  • /43 Commonplace books of Elizabeth Steuart, mainly theological. 4 vols. (Mic. Dup. 654.7)
  • /44 "Original M.S.S. by Sir Archbd Steuart Denham wrote by himself and treatg of the familyes of Allantoun Coltness and Westshield down to the year 1761." (Printed for the most part in C.C.) (Mic. Dup. 655.8)
  • /45 "Extract from Sir Archibald Denham of Westshield his historical MS of the families of Allantown, Coltness, & Westshield" Nineteenth-century transcript. (Mic. Dup. 655.9)
  • /46 Examen critique des pretendues lettres de la Marr, et confrontation des memes lettres avec des lettres originales du Colonel Stewart; tendant a prouver l'identite de l'ecrivain des unes et des autres. Printed, incomplete. 46pp. (Mic. Dup. 655.10)
  • /47 "The original M.S. of 'The last words of the Lady Coltness', first wife of Sir Thomas Steuart ..." 8 June 1675. (Printed in C.C., pp.348-358.) (Mic. Dup. 655.11)
  • /48 Two sheets on vellum relating to Westshield and the Westshield glass, dated 17 March 1861 and 1776, and a typescript transcription of part of the vellum documents. (Mic. Dup. 655.12)
  • /49 Westshield Rental Book from Martinmas 1785 to 1794. (Mic. Dup. 655.13)
  • /50 Commonplace book of General Sir James Steuart Denham. 1820s. (Mic. Dup. 655.16)
  • /51 Legal style book of Alexander Murray. Early eighteenth century? (Mic. Dup. 655.14)

MS 2292

  • John Steuart's copy of Professor Charles Mackie's lectures on Roman antiquities. 419pp. (Mic. Dup. 655.15 - only pp 310-419 [end] on film.)

MS 2293

  • /1 Writ about the claim of Sir James Steuart to be the elected M.P. for Lanark, 20 December 1718. Roll. Formerly MS 2291/28. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /2 Matriculation of Arms of General Sir James Steuart Denham of Coltness, 15 February 1810. Vellum. (In black metal tube.) With seal attached. Formerly MS 2291/34. (Mic. Dup. 655.2)
  • /3 Army commissions of Sir James Steuart Denham: cornet in Royal Regiment of Dragoons, 17 March 1761; captain in 105th Graeme's Regiment of Foot, 13 January 1763; captain in the Royal Irish Regiment of Dragoons, 18 June 1766; major in the 13th Regiment of Dragoons, 6 November 1772; major in the 1st Regiment of Horse, 26 September 1775; Lieutenant Colonel of the 13th Regiment of Dragoons, 15 July 1776; Colonel in the army, 20 November 1782; Major General in the army, 12 October 1793. 8 vellum documents in metal container. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /4 Diploma awarding the baronetcy of Coltness to Sir Thomas Steuart, 29 January 1698. On vellum. With seal (incomplete) attached. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /5 Sir James Steuart Denham's pardon, 20 December 1771. On vellum. With seal (complete) attached. (Printed in C.C. pp.381-382.) (Not microfilmed.)

MS 2294

  • /1 Deed of exoneration, dated 7 January 1671, in favour of James Stewart of Kirkfield. On vellum. With remains of seal attached. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /2 Deed of remission, dated 9 December 1687, in favour of Thomas Stewart of Coltness. On vellum. With remains of seal attached. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /3 Document creating Thomas Steuart of Coltness a burgess and gildbrother of Edinburgh, dated 19 February 1690. On vellum. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /4 Document creating Sir Thomas Stewart of Coltness a burgess and gildbrother of Glasgow, dated 11 March 1695. On vellum. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /5 Document creating Sir David Stewart of Coltness a burgess and gildbrother of Glasgow, dated 16 October 1708. On vellum. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /6 Document creating Archibald Denham a burgess and gildbrother of Edinburgh, dated 8 July 1733. On vellum. (Not microfilmed.)
  • /7 Matriculation of arms of Sir James Stewart of Goodtrees, (i.e. the economist), dated 26 July 1745. On vellum. With seal attached. (Not microfilmed.)

MS 2295

  • Sir James Steuart Denham. The Works, political, metaphisical, and chronological, of the late Sir James Steuart of Coltness, Bart., now first collected by ... his son, from his father's corrected copies ..., 6 vols. (London, 1805.) Printed item. (Not microfilmed.)

Administrative / Biographical History

Coltness is part of modern Wishaw in Stratchlyde Region, Scotland. The manuscripts in the Coltness Papers refer to the following notables and their transactions within the Scottish and British church, state and army:

(1.) Sir James Steuart of Kirkfield and Coltness, born 1608, elected Lord Provost of Edinburgh 1648, and died 1681.

(2.) His sons Sir Thomas Steuart of Coltness, born 1631 and died 1698; and, Sir James Steuart of Goodtrees, born 1635. Sir James was called to the bar on 20 November 1661. He published a political pamphlet in 1669 in defence of peoples' rights and had to flee the country, to Rouen. Later, after another difficulty, he fled again, this time to England. On his return, he had to flee yet again, this time to The Hague in 1681. He was later pardoned, and in 1692 he was appointed as Scotland's Lord Advocate. He resigned in 1709, and died in 1713.

(3.) His son, Sir James Steuart of Goodtrees and Coltness, born 1681, became Scotland's Solicitor-General. He died in 1727.

(4.) His son, Sir James Steuart Denham of Coltness and Westshield, who would later become a political economist, had been born on 21 October 1712. Sir James was educated in North Berwick and entered Edinburgh University in 1724-25 at the age of thirteen, studying law. He was admitted to the Faculty of Advocates on 25 January 1735. After that, there followed a period of travel which took him to Leyden, Avignon, and Rome where he was courted by the exiled Stewarts. Sir James returned to Scotland in 1740 and he was in Edinburgh when Prince Charles Edward Stewart occupied the city during the rebellion of 1745. Implicated in the rebellion, Sir James was obliged to leave Scotland for Germany after the Jacobite defeat at Culloden. While in Germany, he published works on political economy in Frankfurt-on-Main and in Tuebingen. He returned to Scotland in 1763 and continued his writing. Sir James died on 26 November 1780 and was buried at Cambusnethan, near Wishaw, Clydesdale.

(5.) His son, the General, Sir James Steuart Denham, was born in August 1744. Because of his father's exile, Sir James had received his education in Germany. He entered the army in 1761 and travelled in France and Germany paying special attention to the armies of these countries. He received a troop of the 5th Royal Irish Lancers in 1766, and became a Major of the 13th Dragoons in 1772. By 1773 he was a Lieutenant-Colonel, and in 1782 was a Colonel. In 1784, Sir James became MP for the county of Lanark. He died in Cheltenham as the senior General of the army on 12 August 1839.

Access Information

Contact the repository for details.

Other Finding Aids

Handlist, H17; Another important finding aid is the alphabetical Index to Manuscripts held at Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections and Archives. Additions to the typed slips in sheaf binders were made until 1987.

Alternative Form Available

Most of the collection has been microfilmed and the shelf numbers of the relevant negative microfilms are given in Scope and Content.

Custodial History

The collection of Coltness Papers was donated to in 1988 by Mrs Katherine Jean Fyfe (nee Wolfe Murray), whose ancestors had inherited them following the death of Major-General Sir James Stuart Denham in 1839 through the marriage of Alexander Murray of Cringletie in Peeblesshire to Marion Steuart, the General's aunt.