PATERSON, Sir John, 3rd Bt. (c.1730-82), of Eccles, Berwick.
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Family and Education
b. c.1730, o.s. of John Paterson, Yr. of Eccles (d. 1743), by Margaret, da. of Sir William Seton, 2nd Bt., of Pitmedden. m. 23 Oct. 1755, Lady Anne Hume Campbell, da. of Hugh, 3rd Earl of Marchmont [S], 1da. who m. 1778 Philip Anstruther. suc. gd.-fa. as 3rd Bt. 14 Dec. 1759.
A country gentleman whose chief interests seem to have been the improvement of his estates, the embellishment of his house, and the investigation of local antiquities, Paterson was ‘not a popular character’ with his neighbours, and indeed was notorious for his gambling, ruthlessness and dissolute life.1 Firmly attached through his marriage to the dominant Marchmont interest, he was among the minority of seven freeholders who at the Berwickshire county meeting in October 1775 opposed the bill for the reform of the Scottish county franchise.2
When James Pringle vacated his seat, Paterson’s election was a demonstration of the strength of the Marchmont interest. A loyal supporter of North’s Administration, he is not known to have spoken in debate. By the time of the general election in September 1780, local opposition to Paterson and the Marchmont interest had been organized. Two other candidates appeared, Alexander Renton of Lammerton and Hugh Scott, Yr. of Harden, Marchmont’s grandson and Paterson’s nephew by marriage. The contest was unusually bitter. After Scott’s victory Paterson petitioned, alleging an illegal bargain between Scott, Renton and their supporters. The select committee declared the election void and a new writ was issued. Scott was re-elected and Paterson did not again enter Parliament.
He died 14 Jan. 1782.