06: Misses Stewart

Miss Ann Gordon-Stewart and Miss Grace Gordon-Stewart

Residence: Afton Lodge, near Annbank, Ayrshire

gordon_AftonThe Barony of Afton was created in 1706 and the 1st Baronet was Sir William Gordon, son of Sir William Gordon of Earlston – the family seat of Earlston Castle situated in the parish of  St. John’s Town of Dalry, Kirkcudbrightshire. Gordon of Afton was married to Mary Campbell, daughter of Sir George Campbell of Cessnock, a chief-landowner in the parish of New Cumnock.

The newly formed Barony of Afton comprised the following lands in the parish of New Cumnock – Straid, Littlemark, Auchingee, Brochloch of Blarein, Carcow, Lagloss, Polquheys, Bank, Ashmark, Laight, Nether Dalhanna, Blackcraig, Dunside, Over Polquhirter, Nether Polquhirter, Middle Parks, Nether Parks and Whitehill of Chang .

catherinestewartHis descendant Sir Thomas Gordon of Afton sold off many of the Afton lands and acquired the lands of Stair, Ayrshire. These lands then fell to his daughter Catherine Gordon who later married Alexander Stewart, grandson of the Earl of Galloway.  Mrs Catherine Gordon Stewart gained recognition as  a great patron of Robert Burns, our national bard. ( See Catherine Gordon Stewart) .

Her husband died in 1794 and Mrs General Stewart died in 1818, leaving behind her four daughters, Catherine the eldest, Grace, Ann and Jean.

The Misses Stewart recorded in the  allocation of seats in the church are most certainly Ann and Grace. Ann passed away in 1836 and Grace died at Afton Lodge, near Annbank in 1841, and is the Miss Stewart of Afton Lodge referred to by the Rev. Matthew Kirkland in the New Statistical Account of the Parish of New Cumnock. Both daughters lie buried alongside their mother in Stair Kirkyard.

Catherine Gordon-Stewart and daughters

Mrs. Stewart’s eldest daughter Catherine married William Cunninghame of Enterkine and their son William married Miss Allason, heiress to the Logan estate and was thereafter known as William Allason Cunninghame, Esquire of Afton & Logan. In 1872 it was this William that gifted the clock to the parish church.


Proprietor Miss Stewart / Cess Tax 1816: Mr Gordon’s Part of Cessnock*, Little Mark & Chang

* Cessnock is a reference to land Sir George Campbell of Cessnock held in New Cumnock and formed the Barony of Afton

Straid Farm

Proprietor William Allason Cunninghame / Valuation Rolls 1855: Burnfoot, Straid, Littlemark and Brockloch


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