The Galloping Major: Douglas William Graham (1866-1936)

Family Background

The second owner of Stephanotis Douglas William Graham was born into a family of manufacturers and merchants and led a very full and busy life.

The pedigree chart below shows Douglas William Graham with his name highlighted.

Graham Pedigree
Douglas William Graham. Family pedigree chart [78]
Click image for enlarged view

Douglas Graham's Paternal Grandfather: William Graham (1786-1854)

Douglas Graham's paternal grandfather William Graham was born at Burntshields, Renfrewshire on 20 Oct 1786 and baptised at Paisley. He was the second of five sons of a Glasgow merchant, and worked in London and later with Campbell Rivers & Company, a shipping house, in Glasgow. He became a partner in his father's business and established the Lancefield Spinning Company and introduced steam-powered spinning and weaving machines. The establishment of a Lisbon branch in 1810 marked the international expansion of the company.

William Graham served for a time on the Corporation of Glasgow and as a Justice of the Peace, but generally did not play a prominent role in politics or in public affairs. He had at least 9 children by his first wife Katherine Swanston and 6 more by his second wife Anna Matilda Lowndes and died in the town of his birth in 1854.

William Graham
Portrait of William Graham (1786-1854) [103]

William started the business W. & J. Graham & Co. with his brother John to import wines from Portugal. The company became one of the most prominent shippers of port wine and, although the business is now owned by the Symington Family Estates, Graham's port is still one of their products - and jolly good it is too!

William and John Graham
Portraits of William and John Graham [106]
Graham's Port
Modern advertisement for Graham's Port [106]

The chart below shows William Graham's children and their spouses where known

William Graham Children William Graham Children
William Graham's children [12]
Click image for enlarged view

Children of William Graham and Catherine Swanston

Agnes Lang Graham (1816-?)

Agnes died unmarried but that is all the information I can find about her.

William Graham (1818-1885)

William became a Liberal MP for Glasgow, a wine merchant, cotton manufacturer and port shipper. He is remembered as a patron of Pre-Raphaelite artists like Edward Burne-Jones and Dante Gabriel Rossetti and a collector of their works. [101]. On his death he left an estate valued at £184,321 (about £24 million in 2019).

William Graham
Portrait of William Graham (1818-1885)) [103]
John Graham (1818-1893)

John was a merchant and died unmarried leaving an estate valued at £329,467 (about £43 million in 2019).

Margaret Graham (1821-1914)

Margaret married Hugh M. Lang a landowner, Doctor and Justice of the Peace. Hugh Lang died in 1900 leaving an estate valued at £60,000 (about £7.4 million in 2019) and Margaret left £36,684 (about £4.2 million in 2019) when she died.

James Graham (1821-1908)

See below.

Alexander Graham (1823-1870)

I have been unable to find any definite information about Alexander apart from a report in Burke's Family Records that he died in 1870.

Robert Graham (1824-1873

I have been unable to find any definite information about Robert apart from a report in Burke's Family Records that he died unmarried in 1873.

Katherine Graham (1826-)

Katherine died in infancy according to Burke's Family Records.

Elizabeth Graham (1827-)

I have been unable to find any information about Elizabeth at all.

Children of William Graham and Anna Matilda Lowndes

Anna Matilda Graham (1839-1926)

I could find no information about Anna other than that she died unmarried in Kensington.

Henry John Lowndes Graham (1842-1930)

Sir Henry John Lowndes Graham KCB was a Scottish public servant who had attended Harrow and Oxford, was called to the bar in 1868, became the private secretary to the Lord Chancellor Lord Cairns in 1874, and was Clerk of the Parliaments (chief clerk of the House of Lords) from 1885 to 1917. He left an estate valued at £34,429 (about £2.4 million at 2019 values).

Henry John Lowndes Graham
Henry John Lowndes Graham (1842-1930) [104]
Frances Perry Graham (1843-1912)

Frances married Thomas Yorke Dallas-Yorke (1826-1924) then a retired Army Captain who had served with the 11th Hussars from 1843-1850 and was later recorded as a Landowner and Justice of the Peace. Like most military commissions at the time, his position was purchased and he took his post at the age of 17. Dallas-Yorke would have served in this cavalry unit under the appalling Lord Cardigan but fortunately had retired before the Crimea campaign when Cardigan led his men into 'the valley of death' in The Charge of the Light Brigade. They lived at Walmsgate Hall in Lincolnshire. Frances died in 1912 leaving £14,153 (about £1.6 million at 2019 values). Thomas died in 1925 leaving an estate of £32,730 (about £2 million in 2019 values).

11th Hussars Uniform
Officer of the 11th Hussars circa 1856 in distinctive 'cherry-picker' colours [7]

Walmsgate Hall had been built in 1824 for James Whiting Yorke. The architect was Charles Heathchote Tatham. In 1901 Thomas Dallas Yorke commissioned Henry Wilson to build an Arts and Crafts chapel there. The Hall was demolished in 1950; the interior of the chapel was dismantled and partly re-erected as a church in Langworth near Lincoln leaving the shell in situ.

Walmgate Hall
Walmsgate Hall from an old postcard [102]
Walmgate Hall
Walmsgate Hall Chapel from an old postcard [102]
Elizabeth Graham (1845-1930)

Elizabeth married copper merchant Charles Seymour Grenfell who by the time he died had progressed to being a Banker. He died in 1924 leaving an estate of £66,445 (about £4 million at 2019 values). Elizabeth died in 1930 leaving an estate including land valued at £12,000 (about £790,000 at 2019 values).

Douglas Graham's Father: James Graham (1821-1908)

Douglas Graham's father James married Emily Sophia Kingscote in 1862 and they appear to have had just one child - our yacht owner. James was 18 years older than his wife but she predeceased him. James appears on the 1871 census living in Torquay with his wife and son and he is described as an East India Merchant. He appears on the 1891 census living in Westminster and described as a Merchant and J.P.. I can find no record of earlier census entries for him and it is possible that he was working abroad in the preceding years given his profession.

Burke's Family Records [80] has additional information that does not entirely marry with census information describing James thus: James Graham of Hilston Park, St Maughans, Monmouthshire and 39 Ennismore Gardens SW, J.P. and D. L. Co Monmouth (presumed to mean Deputy Lieutenant), High Sheriff 1881, Clubs - Brooks, Wellington and Windham.

Hilston House is a Palladian mansion built by George Cave, a banker form Bristol, on the site of an earlier house that had been destroyed by fire in 1838. It went through several hands until purchased by James Graham in 1881 - he in turn passed the house on to his son Douglas William Graham in 1902 - although James didn't die until 1908.

Hilston Park
Modern Photo of Hilston House, Hilston Park [49]

As to the clubs:

  • Brooks's Club was at 60 St James's Street [84]. formerly established in Pall Mall, about 1764-65, by the Dukes of Portland and Roxburgh, Lord Crewe, Lord Strathmore, and Charles James Fox. It was noted for high play. Its name is that of one of its early caterers, who died in 1782, three years after the erection of the present club-house, at his expense, from the designs of Holland. Here are portraits of C. J. Fox and the Duke of Devonshire. All members are strictly Liberals. Number of members, 575. Entrance fee, 9l. 9s.; annual subscription, £11. 11s. This Club and White's are "farmed," that is, catered for, by private subscription.
  • Wellington Club was originally established in 1832 and still exists - currently located at 91 Jermyn Street and previously in Knightsbridge. Lord Lucan is alleged to have drank there before returning home to murder the family nanny.
  • Wyndham Club was at 11 St James's Square [85]. The object of the club, as stated in Rule I., "is to secure a convenient and agreeable place of meeting for a society of gentlemen, all connected with each other by a common bond of literary or personal acquaintance." Entrance-money, 25 guineas, besides 1 guinea to the library fund; annual subscription, £8. The club is limited to 600 members.

James Graham died in London in 1908 and probate was granted to Douglas William Graham gentleman, James Noble Graham merchant, John Henry Graham Lang wine merchant. He left an estate valued at £167,957 (about £20.3 Million at 2019 values).

Douglas Graham's Maternal Grandfather: Henry Kingscote (1802-1882)

Douglas Graham's maternal grandfather Henry Kingscote was born at Hinton in Hampshire 25 May 1802. He was educated at Harrow and spent much of his early life playing cricket and hunting. He married Harriet Elizabet Tower in 1833 and he is described as a Banker on the baptism certificate of his daughter Laura and living in the City of London.

The quotation below is from the Dictionary of National Biography: [81]

KINGSCOTE, HENRY ROBERT (1802–1882), philanthropist, was born on 25 May 1802. He was second son of Thomas Kingscote (d. 1811), who was brother of Robert Kingscote of Kingscote, Gloucestershire; his mother was Harriet, fourth daughter of Sir Henry Peyton of Dodington in the same county. He was educated at Harrow, and early became a cricketer and rider to hounds. He was six feet five inches in height. He played his first match at Lord's on 21 May 1823. In 1827 he was elected president of the Marylebone Cricket Club.

A narrow escape from drowning turned his attention to religious matters; he became a friend of Bishop Blomfield, and with him was instrumental in founding the Church of England Scripture Readers' Association and the Metropolitan Visiting and Relief Association, of which he was a trustee all his life.

In 1846 he published a pamphlet-letter to the Archbishop of Canterbury on the needs of the church, which ran through several editions, and in it he urged the extension of lay agency and the foundation of new bishoprics. In 1846 he helped to found the Southwark fund for schools and churches, and in 1847 he helped in alleviating the distress in Ireland. He sent out supplies to the troops during the Crimean war.

In 1868 Kingscote was one of the founders of the British and Colonial Emigration Society; he was also the founder of the scheme for establishing workshops for the indigent blind, which was not very successful, and of the National Orphan Asylum at Ham Common. Kingscote died on 13 July 1882. He married, on 11 July 1833, Harriet Elizabeth Tower of Weald Hall, Essex, and by her had three sons and five daughters.

The chart below shows Henry Robert Kingscote's children and their spouses where known

Henry Robert Kingscote Children Henry Robert Kingscote Children
Henry Robert Kingscote's children [12]
Click image for enlarged view

Kingscote was one of the founding directors of the South Australian Company which was set up in 1834 to populate the area around present-day Adelaide. The company chartered ships to carry migrants. 'Labouring classes' could get free passage and there was provision for 'steerage' passengers at £15-20, 'middle berth' at £35-40 and 'cabin class' for £70. Children under 14 were charged £3 and those under 1 could travel free of charge. Those conveyed went voluntarily and not prisoners sentenced to 'transportation' - in fact the terms under which the province of South Australia was set up stipulated that it would be convict free. Voyages from England to Australia were undertaken by sailing ships and took up to 4 months depending on weather conditions.

The company named the first settlement on Kangaroo Island, Kingscote after Henry and emigrants started to arrive in 1836 - though Kingscote himself never went there. There had once been an aboriginal population on Kangaroo island, but these were long-gone and just a small number of 'sealers' were there when the Europeans arrived. The average age of the first group of emigrants was 19 years. After the area had been surveyed by William Light, the new province's capital was established at nearby Adelaide.

I have read Kingscote's 1846 pamphlet addressed to the Archbishop of Canterbury mentioned in the Dictionary of National Biography. He laments the low numbers of clergy per head of population - a reflection of the huge influx of people to London and other big cities as industrialisation took off - and blames the Archbishop for lack of action. In his pamphlet he takes several swipes at the Catholic Church and really seems to be far more concerned with the lack of religious instruction to the poor than with poverty itself:

.... while thus neglected by our Church, Rome has been lying in wait, - alas! most successfully too, - to deceive .....

.... This street as well as the whole adjacent neighbourhood, on Sunday afternoons in fine weather, presents one of the most awful spectacles that a Christian can be called upon to witness. The ungodly condition of these poor people is then most strikingly exhibited; the street being thronged with persons, male and female, young and old, occupied in rude sports and games, drinking, gambling and fighting. The whole scene, as a pious poor man residing on the spot once observed to the Clergyman of the district, is more fit for Sodom and Gomorrah, than for any place which professes to belong to a Christian Country.

The pamphlet goes on like this for 34 pages. I suspect the Archbishop sometimes wished that Kingscote HAD drowned.

Ultimately the pressure from Kingscote and others led to a big programme of building ugly churches and in 1851 the census recorded Kingscote as Secretary to the Subdivision of Parishes Commission and in 1861 as 'Secretary to the Royal Commission'.

The 1881 census records Kingscote as living in Seville Street in Chelsea, close to the present-day location of the Harvey Nicholls store and presumably retired. His household included his married daughter Edith and 5 servants - a housekeeper, a cook, a housemaid, a lady's maid and a butler.

Children of Henry Kingscote

Aldena Kingscote (1834-1908)

Aldena married Sir Archibald Hope, 12th Baronet of Pinkie (a hereditary title). The Hope Baronetcy of Craighall in the County of Fife was created in the Baronetage of Nova Scotia on 19 February 1628 for Thomas Hope a Scottish advocate and adviser to King Charles I. Hope was a landowner and sometime Chairman of the Life Association of Scotland. When he died in 1883 he left an estate valued at £14,000 (about £1.7 million at 2019 values). Aldena left just £ 4,560 (about £552,000 in 2019 values).

The family lived at Pinkie House, Musselburgh, East Lothian which dates back to the 16th Century and was purchased by the 9th Baronet in 1778. The building still exists and is currently the location of the independent Loretto School.

Pinkie House
Old photo of Pinkie House [7]
Laura Elizabeth Kingscote (1835-1927)

Laura married John Marjoribanks Nisbet, Rector of St Giles in the Fields at Holborn in London. He died in 1892 leaving an estate valued at £18,377 (about £2.3 million in 2019 values). She herself left just £1,218 when she died in 1927.

St Giles-in-the-Fields
The Church of St Giles in the Fields [7]

A chapel was founded at the site of St. Giles by Queen Matilda (wife of Henry I) in 1101 to serve the adjacent monastery and a leper hospital. The parish of St. Giles in the Fields was founded in 1539 and was at the time on the outskirts of the city. It grew rapidly and became known as the place where the Great Plague of 1665 originated and the churchyard became full of 'plague pits'. Poverty was rife and many of Hogarth's famous sketches including 'Gin Lane' were based in the parish. Throughout the 18th and 19th Centuries the parish became synonymous with vagrancy and destitution. Clearly the poverty didn't extend to the clergy given the estate left by the Rector!

Louisa Kingscote (1836-1906)

I can find out nothing about Louisa other than that she died unmarried in Staines. No occupation is shown on the census returns that I have been able to locate.

Henry Felix Kingscote (1837-1838)

Henry died in infancy.

Emily Sophia Kingscote (1839-1902)

See below.

Arthur Fitzhardinge Kingscote (1842-1881)

Arthur appears on the 1871 census living with a relative at St. Margaret in London and working for the Civil Service at the House of Commons. He was admitted to Munster House, in Fulham, a privately run asylum, on 14 June 1879 and died there on 5 February 1881.

Munster House
Advertisement for Munster House [45]
Eva Kingscote (1842-1872)

Eva married Charles Stewart who in 1871 was an Advocate and Articled Clerk to a Solicitor. She died at the age of 30.

Algernon Fitzhardinge Kingscote (1844-1869)

All I can find of Algernon is that he died in New Zealand at the age of 25 and was buried there.

Howard Kingscote (1846-1917)

Howard was a Lieutenant-Colonel in the Army when he married Adeline Georgina Isabella Wolff in 1885. He served in India and was later promoted to Colonel. Georgina produced three children and was presented to Queen Victoria on their return to England in 1891. Georgina became a novelist writing under the name of Lucas Cleeve. On 24 August 1895 Howard was appointed Colonel of the Oxford Regimental District and Commander of Cowley Barracks.

From about this time, Adeline's life became scandalous with a long series of debts to money-lenders and anyone she could con. In 1899 she was made bankrupt owing £100,000 (about £13 million at 2019 values) and ruined several people including two members of the clergy who had stood surety for her. By this time Howard was separated from her and presumably managed to dissociate himself from her debts. He re-married after she died in 1908 and died himself in 1917 leaving the modest sum of £6,383 (about £446,000 at 2019 values).

Mascotte of Park Lane
Cover of one of Adeline's books [103]
Anthony Kingscote (1847-1891)

Anthony served in the Royal Navy joining as a Cadet in 1860 and reaching the rank of captain by the time he retired in 1891. The last ship he served on was HMS Wallaroo a a Pearl-class cruiser built for the Royal Navy, originally named HMS Persian, built by Armstrong Whitworth and launched 5 February 1890. He married Mary Ellen Walker in 1880 and died shortly after retiring from the Navy leaving £6,376 (about £816,000 at 2019 values).

HMS Wallaroo
HMS Wallaroo [7]
Edith Kingscote (1851-1937)

Edith married John Sancroft Holmes - a landowner and 'Justice of the Peace for the County of Norfolk' in 1877. They lived at Gawdy Hall at Harleston, Norfolk which had been built in the 1500s on the site of an even older house. It was named after a family of lawyers. Queen Elizabeth I is believed to have stayed there at one time. The Holmes family took over the estate in 1778 and the hall stayed with them until it was demolished in 1939.

Gawdy Hall
Gawdy Hall [105]

John Holmes died in 1920 leaving an estate valued at £117,919 (about £5.3 million at 2019 values). When Edith died in 1937 she left an estate valued at £30,000 (about £2 million at 2019 values).

John Sancroft Holmes
Portrait of John Sancroft Holmes [107]

When he died in 1882 Henry Kingscote left a relatively modest estate valued at £2,708 (about £328k at 2019 values).

Mother of Douglas Graham: Emily Sophia Kingscote (1839-1902)

I have found nothing about Emily other than that she married James and was the mother of our yacht owner. She predeceased her husband by nearly 20 years. She clearly had her own resources as when she died in 1889 she left an estate valued at £2,082 (about £270k at 2019 values).

Douglas William Graham (1866-1936)

And so we come to Douglas William Graham the second owner of Stephanotis. As you can see from above, he was part of a very large and mostly rich family.

Maybe horrified by the size of their respective parents' families, his parents James Graham and his wife Emily produced just one offspring. He was born on 4 Feb 1866 at Inchinnan near Renfrew, and not far from Clydebank. Douglas married Mary Emmeline Carnegy at Abergavenny, Monmouthshire in April 1889 and they had two children together - William born 1890 and Douglas born 1895.

In the 1891 census the family was living with James Graham at 39 Ennismore Gardens off Knightsbridge; Douglas is described as a J.P. Mary was buried in London 31 January 1902 and Douglas appears on the 1901 census, taken just before she died, living at Hilston Park with 4 servants. He was described as a Barrister at law - Not practising.

Douglas didn't stay single for long and married Frances Joanna Maud Pinney (1870-1949), daughter of Rev. William Pinney, Rector of Llanvetherine, Monmouthshire, in 1902. They had two children together, Joan Isabel Maud born 1904 and Mary Sophia born 1906. Frances outlived Douglas by 13 years and died in 1949 leaving just £510 (about £18k at 2019 values).

Douglas appears on the 1911 census living at Hilston Park with Frances, daughters Joan and Mary, a governess and 9 servants. His occupation was recorded as 'Barrister at Law'.


Military Service

Based on a document reproduced further down the page, Graham commenced his military service around 1894 - initially in the Black Watch - the County Regiment for Fifeshire, Forfarshire and Perthshire. This regiment was stationed in India from 1896 but sent to South Africa for service in the Boer War (1899-1902) where it remained until the Peace of Vereeniging. Graham lists his other regiments in the same document and an expert on Army history will no doubt be able to decipher this far better than me. I think he refers to serving with the 3rd Volunteer Brigade South Wales and the 3rd (City of London) Battalion, London Regiment (Royal Fusiliers). Wherever it was he served, Graham retired from the Army with the rank of Major in 1910.

On 1 Jan 1913, Graham applied for an appointment to a Commission in the Territorial Force. This was a part-time volunteer component of the British Army, created in 1908 to augment British land forces without resorting to conscription. The new organisation consolidated the 19th-century Volunteer Force and yeomanry into a unified auxiliary, commanded by the War Office and administered by local County Territorial Associations. On the application form Graham stated that he had resigned his commission on 15 May 1910 and had been given permission to retain his rank and to wear uniform after his retirement. He was found fit and recommended to the position of Major with the 2nd Battalion, Monmouthshire Regiment.

Application for Commission in Territorial Force [82]

On 16 Jan 1913, Lieut. Col. B Cuthbertson, Commanding Officer of the 2nd Battalion Monmouthshire Regiment, requested that Graham should join the battalion as a 'Major Supernumary' to the regiment.

Request from Lieut. Col Cuthbertson 16 Jan 1913 [82]

On 6 Jan 1916, Graham attended a medical board at the Military Hospital at Newport Monmouthshire. The Board noted that he was suffering from gout and bronchitis and concluded He is suffering from chronic gout and is not likely to be fit for any form of military service.

Report of Medical Board 6 Jan 1916 [82]

Despite this, on 26 Oct 1916, the War Office asked Graham about an appointment as a Draft Conducting Officer. He was appointed in that capacity on 14 Nov 1916 and attached to the Plymouth Garrison on 14 Nov 1916.

Letter from War Office 29 Oct 1916 [82]
Letter from War Office 14 Nov 1916 [82]

Legal Profession

A brief note in the Graham Family Records [51] states that Graham was a J.P. and had been called to the bar, Inner Temple, 1895 in 1895. How this fits with his army role I have no idea. He described himself as a Barrister at Law - Not practising on the 1901 census and a Barrister at Law on the 1911 census. A barrister friend kindly checked out professional records and found that he didn't make it to Q.C. and there are no law reports in his name so the extent of his legal practice is unknown. It may not have extended beyond serving as a Justice of the Peace.

Leisure Interests


The Western Mail carried a notice of the Abergavenny Horse Show on 4 Aug 1913 and it shows Douglas William Graham as 'The President' and clearly a notable member of local society.

Abergavenny Horse Show
Cutting from Western Mail 4 Aug 1913 [52]


A brief note in the Graham Family Records [51] records that Douglas Graham was a member of three Gentlemen's clubs's clubs: Arthur's, Wellington and The Royal Yacht Squadron.

  • Arthur's Club was at 70 St James's Street [84]. ... founded May 1811, and is named from its original founder. The present Club-house was built in 1828 by Mr. Hopper. Its number of members is limited to 600. Entrance fee, £21.; annual subscription, £10. 10s.
  • Wellington Club was originally established in 1832 and still exists - currently located at 91 Jermyn Street and previously in Knightsbridge. Lord Lucan is alleged to have drank there before returning home to murder the family nanny.


In 1913 the Mercantile Navy List Register recorded Mr. Douglas W. Graham of Hilston Park, Monmouthshire as "Managing Owner" of Stephanotis - whatever that means.

Extract from Mercantile Navy List (1913) [48]

Given he was a member of the Royal Yacht Squadron, which describes itself as one of the most prestigious and exclusive yacht clubs in the world, it seems most unlikely that he would have been the owner of Stephanotis and not make use of her. However for whatever reason, he sold Stephanotis very quickly as by 1914 she was registered to Norman Clark Neill.


Douglas and his wife Frances appear on the passenger list of the Booth Line vessel Hildebrand which landed at Liverpool 31 Oct 1930 from Manaos - an old name for Manaus in Brazil. Hildebrand was a pretty old passenger/cargo vessel built by Scotts Shipbuilding and Engineering Co Ltd. in 1911. She had served as an Armed Merchant Cruiser in WW1, was laid up at Milford Haven in 1932 and broken up in 1934 so was near to the end of her life. Whether this was a business trip or a visit to the nearby rainforest I don't know. Manaos was a centre for production of rubbber during the late 19th century and many wealthy European families settled there.

Booth Line vessel Hildebrand of 1911 [24]

Last Years and Death

Douglas William Graham died on 22 Apr 1936 leaving £32k (about £2.2 Million at 2019 values). At the time of death he was living at Wonastow Court Monmouth - itself a considerable pile deriving from Tudor times.

Wonastow Court
Aerial photo of Wonastow Court [83]


Douglas William Graham was born into wealth. His father's family were successful Scottish businessmen. His mother came from a family of bankers with religious leanings. His maternal grandfather had been a key player in the development of South Australia and the town of Kingscote near Adelaide had been named after him.

Douglas Graham himself seems to have somehow combined being an army Major and a member of the legal profession and he inherited a large property in Monmouthshire from his father. His ownership of Stephanotis only lasted for a year and he had sold her to Norman Clark Neill by the outbreak of WW1.