JOHN GLADSTONE, ESQUIRE OF FASQUE, WAS ADMITTED A BURGESS OF DUNDEE
FOR HAVING PAID THE ORDINARY DUES OF ADMISSION.
The first Parliament of QUEEN VICTORIA assembled on 15th November, 1837, and the election of the member for Dundee took place on 27th July of that year. SIR HENRY PARNELL had represented that burgh from the date of GEORGE KINLOCH'S death in 1833, but at this time Mr GLADSTONE of Fasque came forward to contest the seat in the Tory interest. Out of a constituency of 1044 SIR HENRY had a large majority over his opponent. Two days before the election the Town Council entered the name of Sir HENRY PARNELL on the Burgess Roll (vide page 274), and immediately after it that of his rival appears as quoted above.
SIR JOHN GLADSTONE of Fasque was the son of THOMAS GLADSTONES, grain merchant, Leith, and of HELEN, daughter of WALTER NEILSON, Esquire of Springfield. As the name of GLADSTONE has acquired great renown, it may be interesting to note that the GLADSTONES Of Fasque are descended from the GLADSTONES of Arthurshiel, in the County of Lanark. Arthurshiel has been traced as the property of the GLADSTONES from the days of QUEEN MARY, when WILLIAM GLEDSTANES was the laird. His descendant and representative in the time of KING CHARLES II. was WILLIAM GLEDSTANIES, who sold Arthurshiel in the year 1679. He then became a burgess of the neighbouring town of Biggar, where several of his descendants still remain. He was the great great grandfather of SIR THOMAS GLADSTONE now of Fasque, and of his brother, the RIGHT HON. WILLIAM EWART GLADSTONE, M.P., of Hawarden, the two surviving sons of our burgess. On 10th February, 1835, two years before the admission of Mr JOHN GLADSTONE as a burgess of Dundee, he had obtained a Royal License to drop the final letter "s" in his surname. Arthurshiel is situated near the old Castle of Gledstanes, in the County of Lanark, and there is reason to believe that the GLEDSTANES of Gledstanes and the GLEDSTANES of Arthurshiel had a common ancestor in HERBERT of Gledstanes, who figured prominently in the County of Lanark in the year 1296.
JOHN GLADSTONE was born at Leith on 11th December, 1764, and entered into his father's business at an early age. In 1785 he went to Liverpool as clerk to a firm of corn merchants there, and afterwards became a partner in the concern. By his sagacity and commercial enterprise he realised a considerable fortune. The estate of Fasque, in Kincardineshire, was acquired by him about the year 1827 from SIR ALEXANDER RAMSAY of Balmain, and he built and endowed S. Andrew's Episcopal Church at Fasque, in close proximity to his new seat. He also erected and endowed in his native town of Leith the Presbyterian Church known as "S. Thomas." He entered Parliament as a member for Lancaster in 1819. In the Parliament of 1820 26 he represented Woodstock, and in that of 1827 he was member for Berwick. His long experience in commercial affairs caused his opinion to be highly valued by the leading statesmen of the period, although his sentiments in favour of Protection and against the repeal of the Corn Laws rendered him unpopular with a constituency so Radical as Dundee had long been before his appearance as a candidate. But his non success at Dundee apparently prevented him from attempting again to enter Parliament. His high personal character, his great success in life, and the general esteem in which lie was held, all led to his being created a Baronet by HER MAJESTY by Patent dated 27th June, 1846. The later years of his long and active life, were spent principally at his mansion of Fasque, where he died on 7th December, 1851, aged eighty seven years.
SIR JOHN GLADSTONE was twice married. His first wife died without issue; and by his second ANN, daughter of ANDREW ROBERTSON, Provost of Dingwall he had four sons and two daughters. His eldest son is SIR THOMAS GLADSTONE, Bart., present proprietor of Fasque and Balfour; and the youngest and only other surviving son is the RIGHT HON. WILLIAM EWART GLADSTONE, the eminent statesman and author. The white marble monument erected in the interior of S. Andrew's Episcopal Church at Fasque to the memory of SIR JOHN and his wife bears the following inscription:
"Sacred to the memory of Sir John Gladstone of Fasque and Balfour, Baronet: born 11th December, 1764; died 7th December, 1851. And of his wife Ann Robertson: born 4th August, 1772 ; died :23rd September, 1835"