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The estate of Southdun is in the parish of Watten.

The Sinclairs of Southdun are cadets of the family of Dun, and are descended from John Sinclair of Dun, in 1560, and his second wife, Agatha Grote, who, according to Father Hay's account of the family of Dun, was a daughter of Hugh Grote of "Souldon". There is no place in the county now known as Souldon, and it is probable that the word is a misnomer for Southdun, although no mention is found of that name until the time of John Sinclair's grandson, David, first styled of Southdun. From 1545 till about 1630 there was a family of Grote of Brabsterdorran, one of whom was named Hugh, the father, probably, of Agatha Grote; and a connection between the Grotes and the Sinclairs is shown by the circumstance of a John Grote having been one of John Sinclair of Dun's curators in 1562. John Sinclair and Agatha Grote had a son, William.

0. William Sinclair is occasionally styled of Dun, and also in Dun. He married Marjory, daughter of Saul Bruce of Lyth, and in this particular Hay's account of the family is confirmed, as will be seen by referring to the "Notes" on Bruce of Lyth. He had two sons and a daughter: -

  1. David
  2. Francis, portioner of Brabsterdorran, styled "lawful brother of David Sinclair of Southdun", in 1657
  1. Isobel, who married in 1652 Thomas Grote, son of Malcolm Grote of Warse. Malcolm Grote married Margaret, daughter of George Sinclair of Forss, and his wife, Jean, only daughter of David Sinclair of Dun, thus showing the continued connection between the Grotes and the several branches of the Sinclairs of Dun

I. DAVID SINCLAIR OF Southdun is the first Sinclair who is so styled, and he is repeatedly mentioned in writings by Agatha Grote, the second wife of John Sinclair of Dun, as her "Oy", or grandchild. He married Jean, widow of his cousin, Francis Sinclair of Dun, and daughter of John Sinclair of Ulbster. He had four sons and three daughters: -

  1. Patrick, his successor
  2. James of Lyth. In 1707 James Sinclair acquired from Lord Glenorchy Alterwall and part of Brabsterdorran
  3. David, in Brabsterdorran, who had a son, David of Whitegar. He fought at Sheriffmuir in 1715 on the Stewart side
  4. Alexander
  1. Margaret, who married William Bruce of Stanstill
  2. Elizabeth, who married in 1672 Donald Budge of Toftingall
  3. Isobell, who married, in 1653, Lawrence Calder of Lynegar
II. PATRICK SINCLAIR OF SOUTHDUN married Janet, daughter of James Murray of Pennyland, and had three sons and four daughters: -
  1. James
  2. David
  3. Patrick
  1. Marjory, who married William Calder of Lynegar
  2. Jean
  3. Janet, who married John Sinclair of Rattar
  4. Elizabeth married Henry Budge, probably her cousin, son of Alexander Budge in Harpsdale, and grandson of Donald Budge, sixth of Toftingall
III. JAMES SINCLAIR OF SOUTHDUN died in minority, and was succeeded by his brother, David.

IV. DAVID SINCLAIR OF SOUTHDUN executed an entail of the estate in 1747; and considerable exchanges of property took place between him and Sinclair of Barrock. He was three times married, first in 1714 to Lady Janet, daughter of John, eighth Earl of Caithness, who died in 1720; secondly, to Marjory, daughter of Sir Robert Dunbar of Northfield, in 1748; and thirdly, to Margaret, daughter of James Murray of Clairden. By his first marriage he had a son and three daughters: -

  1. Patrick, who died about 1724
  1. Jean, who died young
  2. Jean, second of the name, who married Sir William Dunbar of Hempriggs, and died without issue
  3. Janet, who married Dr. Stuart Threipland of Fingask, and had a son, David Sinclair, a young gentlemen of much promise, who died in 1778, and a daughter, Janet
By his second marriage he had two daughters: -
  1. Marjory, who married John, son of Sir Patrick Dunbar of Northfield, her cousin-german, and had no issue. She married thereafter James Sinclair of Harpsdale, and had a son, George, who died young, and four daughters, Henrietta of Southdun, who was married to Colonel Wemyss, and Janet, who married Colonel Williamson of Banniskirk, and Emilia and Margaret, who died unmarried
  2. Miss Katharine of Southdun, who died unmarried
By his third marriage David Sinclair had a daughter: -
  1. Margaret, who died at Lyons in 1774, unmarried
V. MRS. HENRIETTA SINCLAIR OF SOUTHDUN, married Colonel Wemyss, and had an only child, William.

VI. WILLIAM SINCLAIR WEMYSS OF SOUTHDUN married Henrietta, daughter of Sir Benjamin Dunbar of Hempriggs, Lord Duffus. He died in 1831, and left two sons and two daughters: -

  1. David Sinclair
  2. Benjamin who died in 1878, leaving an only child, a daughter
  1. Janet or Jessie, who married James Sinclair of Forss, and has issue
  2. Henrietta, who married Robert Innes of Thrumster, and left an only child, Henrietta, now Mrs. Bentley-Innes of Thrumster
VII. DAVID SINCLAIR WEMYSS OF SOUTHDUN married Elizabeth, daughter of George Sackville Sutherland of Aberarder, Inverness-shire, and died 10th December 1877, aged 64. He had four sons and three daughters: -
  1. William, R.N., who died young and unmarried
  2. George Sackville
  3. Robert Dunbar Sinclair
  4. Evan
  1. Henrietta Elizabeth, who married James Smith of Olrig
  2. Mary
  3. Janet

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