HALKETT, Peter (1695-1755), of Pitferrane, Fife.
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Family and Education
b. 21 June 1695, 1st s. of Sir Percy Wedderburn (afterwards Halkett), 1st Bt., M.P. [S], of Pitferrane, by Janet, da. of Sir Charles Halkett, 1st Bt., M.P. [S], sis. and h. of Sir James Halkett, 2nd Bt., M.P. [S]. m. Oct. 1728,1 Lady Amelia Stuart, da. of Francis, 8th Earl of Moray [S], 3s. suc. fa. as 2nd Bt. 20 Mar. 1746.
Capt. R. Scot. Fusiliers June 1717, maj. Nov. 1739; lt.-col. 44 Ft. 1741; col. Feb. 1751.
Halkett, an army officer, whose family had represented Dunfermline before the Union, stood for Stirling Burghs in 1734 on the recommendation of Lord Ilay, Walpole’s election manager for Scotland. Returned without making an appearance until the day of the election,2 he voted with the Administration on the Spanish convention in 1739, and on the place bill in 1740, but did not stand in 1741. Taken prisoner by the rebels at the battle of Prestonpans,3 he was released on parole by the Young Pretender on condition of not bearing arms for 18 months. In February 1746 he was one of the officers who refused to obey an order by Cumberland to rejoin their regiments, under threat of losing their commissions, saying that the Duke ‘was master of their commissions but not of their probity and honour’.4 He was recommended by Ilay, now Duke of Argyll, as the government candidate for Stirling in 1747,5 but gave up on being opposed by George Haldane, a favourite of Cumberland’s. In 1754 he embarked for North America, taking part in the disastrous expedition against Fort Duquesne, where he was killed, 9 July 1755.6