MAXWELL, John (c.1700-54), of Cardoness, Kirkcudbright.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1715-1754, ed. R. Sedgwick, 1970
Available from Boydell and Brewer



31 Dec. 1742 - 1747

Family and Education

b. c.1700, 1st surv. s. of Col. William Maxwell of Cardoness by Nicholas, o. da. of Hon. William Stewart, M.P. [S] (4th s. of James, 2nd Earl of Galloway [S]). educ. Glasgow 1717. m. Agnes, da. of Thomas Irving of Dublin, surgeon, 3s. suc. fa. 1752.

Offices Held

Ensign 21 Ft. 1729, lt. 1740; capt. 15 Ft. 1743, maj. 1751.


Maxwell, an army officer, whose family were cadets of the Maxwells of Calderwood,1 was related through his mother to James, John and William Stewart. Returned unopposed for Kirkcudbright in 1742 at a by-election caused by the death of Basil Hamilton, he voted with the Administration on the Hanoverians in 1744. Classed in 1746 as ‘Old Whig’, he stood again in 1747, supported by Argyll, Pelham and the Earl of Galloway, but withdrew before the contest when his canvass showed that he would be beaten 27 to 24. He alleged that Andrew Fletcher (Lord Milton), Argyll’s deputy in Scotland, intervened personally in favour of his opponent, who had full opposition support. ‘I dare say’, commented Argyll, ‘some of the gentlemen thought they supported the Court, at least the winning side’.2 Maxwell died before the next election, in February 1754.

Ref Volumes: 1715-1754

Author: R. S. Lea


  • 1. Fraser, Book of Carlaverock, i. 604; P. H. M’Kerlie, Lands and their Owners in Galloway, iii. 28-29.
  • 2. Maxwell to Pelham, 4 Aug. 1747, Argyll to Pelham, 23 July, 1 Aug. 1747, Newcastle (Clumber) mss.