This is one in a series of blog post about some old papers of the WALKER family, from Kirkliston, West Lothian, Scotland. You can see a list of the papers that have been posted onto AFamilyHistoryBlog HERE.
This document is a lease agreement (or “Tack”), dated 12th and 13th May 1884, made between the Earl of Hopetoun, John Adrian Louis Hope (landlord), and my paternal Gt-Gt-Grandmother, Margaret Johnston (or Walker) (tenant), for the farm at Kilpunt, Kirkliston, Mid Lothian, following the death of Margaret’s husband, James Walker, in 1881.
James Walker and Margaret Johnston (both born in 1818) had married at Bathgate, West Lothian, in February 1847. James had lived at Kilpunt from at least that date (if not earlier!). The Walker family appears to have been farming the land at Kilpunt since earlier in the 1800’s, having combined it with the neighbouring farm of Hiddlefaulds, where they had lived since 1745.
No doubt, after James Walker’s death, much of the day-to-day farm work would have been done by his son (my Gt-Grandfather), Thomas George Walker, who is a signed witness to the lease, and who inherited the lease when Margaret died in 1890.
Recently, while I was transcribing this document, I came across a document on-line, dated 1888 (so within the duration of this lease), where the Earl of Hopetoun leased land at Kilpunt for a railway line. This puts into context the need in this agreement for clauses about roads, railways, canals, etc. See that pdf document HERE. Note the map on page 6 of that PDF file. The route of the railway runs right through the site of Hiddlefaulds farm, where the Walker family had lived for around 100 years before moving into Kilpunt farmhouse in the 1840’s. The 25 inch Ordnance Survey maps available through the National Libruary of Scotland, show Hiddlefaulds on a map surveyed in 1893, but the railway in its place on a revised map of 1895.
Please click on the images below to view at full resolution. Transcribed text appears in a Maroon colour below each image. At the bottom I’ve made some notes about the document.
The Earl of Hopetoun
Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker
Of the Farm of Kilpunt
Dated 12th and 13th May 1884
Entry Martinmas ———– 1880
Duration ——————- 19 (Yrs)
Expiry Martinmas ———- 1899
Rent £ 565 – 2s – 6d
SCOTLAND 16/05/84 (1884)
DUPLICATE OR COUNTERPART
ORIGIONAL STAMPED WITH
SCOTLAND 26/05/84 (1884)
It is Contracted and Agreed between The Right Honorable John Adrian Louis, Earl of Hopetoun, heritable proprietor of the Lands and others aftermentioned on the one part, and Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker, residing at Kilpunt, Widow of the late James Walker, farmer there on the other part, Considering that the said James Walker at the time of his death on sixth May Eighteen hundred and eighty-one had arranged with the said Earl of Hopetoun for a renewal of his tenancy of the farm of Kilpunt for Nineteen years from the term of Martinmass Eighteen hundred and eighty – And that although the new Lease proposed for said period was prepared and sent to him about the time of his death, that event took place before the Lease was completed and [executed] – And that by Mutual General Disposition and Settlement between and executed by the said James Walker and the said Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker, dated fifth August Eighteen hundred and forty seven, and recorded in the Books of Council and Session, twenty-first May Eighteen hundred and eighty one, the said James Walker made over to the said Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker everything he should die possessed of and that in virtue thereof she has, as the ^said deceased’s heir of provision and with the concurrence of the Trustee on his Sequestrated Estate and of the said Earl of Hopetoun, between carrying on the Farm since her husband’s death and is [desirous] that said Lease should be made out and completed in her name; Therefore the said Earl of Hopetoun has Set and in consideration of the Yearly Rent and other Conditions aftermentioned hereby Lets to the said Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker, and her heirs, whether of line or provision but always without division and excluding Assignees legal or conventional, and sub-Tenants of every description All and Whole the said farm of Kilpunt in the Parish of Kirkliston, and County of Linlithgow as at present possessed by the said Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker, and extending in all to Two hundred and fifty-three Acres, three hundred and eighty decimal parts of an acre or thereby Imperial Measure, which extents without being warranted shall for the purposes of this Lease be held to be correct; And that for Nineteen Years from and after the said term of Martinmas Eighteen hundred and eighty, which is hereby declared to have been the term of Entry under this Lease; With and under this express condition that if the said Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker or Heirs succeeding to this Lease become Bankrupt by virtue of the Bankrupt Laws or execute a Trust Conveyance of her or his property for behoof of her or his Creditors or allow one year’s Rent to run into arrear and sequestration therefor to be awarded then and in every such case this Lease shall at the Proprietor’s option be null and void and he shall have right to assume possession of the Premises and the said Margaret Johnston or Walker obliges herself and her aforesaid to renounce possession and consents that Summary Diligence pass for removing herself or Heirs therefrom and that without prejudice to all legal remedies competent under the Act of Sederunt Seventeen hundred and fifty-six or otherwise. But declaring that the termination of this Lease under any of the foregoing conditions shall not import an acquittance or discharge of the obligation on the Tenant or her foresaids for Rent or additional Rent incurred previous to the time that she or they shall be required to remove from the subjects hereby Let. Nor shall any acquittance or discharge of any Rent or additional Rent due by the said Tenant or her foresaids under this Lease import a discharge or abandonment of any right to terminate this Lease under any of the foregoing conditions unless expressly discharged, it being hereby declared that it shall be in the power of the said Proprietor or his heirs and assignees to enforce any of the conditions herein written at any period unless he or they shall have expressly discharged them. And the said Proprietor binds himself and his foresaids to expend the Sum of Three hundred and fifty pounds Sterling in further improving the – Buildings and fences of said Farm – it being declared that this outlay shall be made at the sight and under &
under the direction of the Factor to the said Proprietor – (the said Sum of Three hundred and fifty pounds with the sum of Two hundred and fifty pounds already so expended making together Six hundred pounds the Sum agreed to be so expended under the arrangements with the said deceased James Walker) Reserving always to the (said) proprietor and his foresaids from the subjects hereby Let as follows videlicet Reserving always the whole Mines, Metals, Minerals, and fossils, Coal, Marl, Clay, Gravel, Sand, Sandstone, Limestone, and Slate Quarries, on the subjects hereby Let with full power to search for, [worle], win, smelt, burn and manufacture, and to carry off the same and to sink pits, form levels, make Roads, Railroads, Canals, erect Buildings and Machinery, and carry on all works within the subjects hereby let which they may think proper and to resume the land they may think necessary for these purposes. Reserving also full power at all times to take off land from any part or parts of the subjects hereby Let for the purpose of planting or for the purpose of [fencing] or letting on Building Leases or for making, altering or widening Roads or for making Railroads or Canals or pieces of water Declaring that the Proprietor or his foresaids shall be bound always to keep properly enclosed any lands resumed for any of these purposes, at his own expense, and that the said Ten:ant shall receive for any land so resumed an abatement from the Rent in the proportion that the extent of Ground resumed [be as to] the extent of the whole subjects hereby Let. And also shall receive payment of the value of any crop which may be growing on, or unexhausted manure in the ground when resumed as the same shall be ascertained by arbitration. Reserving also to the Proprietor and his foresaids all the Woodlands and Grass in the Plantations, and all Plantations, Woods and Trees whatsoever now or that may hereafter be upon the subjects hereby Let with liberty to prune, cut and carry away the same, and to replant the land from which the same may be taken, the Tenant being indemnified only in the event of these operations occasioning damage to any growing crop, but not otherwise, as the same shall be ascertained by arbitration. And reserving also to the Proprietor and to those to whom he may give authority the use of all the existing roads on the subjects hereby Let. And reserving also power to make such additional communication Gates in the fences as they may think fit they being bound to uphold the same. Reserving also to the Proprietor, with the exception of the Tenant’s Right to kill Ground Game under the provisions of the Ground Game Act, Eighteen Hundred and Eighty, the whole Game with power to the Proprietor or those whom he may authorise to shoot, hunt, or sport, the Tenant being bound to preserve all Game from all others and to turn off all intruders Reserving also power to straighten Marches and excamb Lands with the neighbouring Proprietors and Tenants and also to make new Drains or Levels for water, the damage sustained by the Tenant in such operations being settled by arbitration, and for payment of which the proprietor shall be liable. Reserving also power at all times to enter upon the subjects hereby Let to ascertain how far the Tenant has fulfilled the obligations undertaken by her under the Reservations and Conditions contained in these presents and also if the Houses, Fences, Gates, or Drains should fall into disrepair reserving power to the Proprietor to put the same into proper order, and charge the Tenant with the expenses thereof unless she execute such repairs within one month after being required by written notice. Which Tack the said Proprietor under the Reservations and Conditions before and after mentioned binds and obliges himself his Heirs and Successors to warrant to the said Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker, and her Heirs at all hands For which causes and on the other part, the said Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker obliges herself and her Heirs, Executors, and Successors, to pay to the said John Adrian Louis, Earl of Hopetoun, and his Heirs and Assignees, or to his or their Commissioners, Factors, or Chamberlains, in their name, at their respective residences within the County of Linlithgow yearly, the money Rent following namely the sum of Five Hundred and Sixty-five Pounds, Two Shillings and Sixpence. Declaring that &
that the said Rent shall be payable at two terms in the year Martinmas and Whitsunday as follows at the term of Martinmas yearly the sum of Two hundred and eighty two Pounds, Eleven shillings and Threepence and at the term of Whitsunday yearly the balance of the said Rent, beginning the first terms payment at Martinmas in the year Eighteen Hundred and Eighty-one, and the next term’s payment at WhitSunday Eighteen Hundred and Eighty two in full of the first year’s Rent for crop and year Eighteen Hun:dred and Eighty one, and so forth yearly and termly thereafter during the whole years of this Lease (except in so far as already paid) with a fifth part more of each term’s Rent of liquidate penalty in case of failure and the legal interest of each term’s Rent from the respective terms of payment during the non-payment thereof. But notwithstanding the terms of payment before specified to pay the whole Rents which shall be due for their possession of the subjects hereby Let at or previous to the term of Martinmass Eighteen Hundred and Ninety-nine at which term this Lease expires. And further to keep and maintain one Hound or Pointer or other Dog when required by the Proprietor or his – Factor without any allowance therefor. And further to pay all Public and Parochial Burdens payable by Tenants by law. And further to pay at the rate of Six and one half per centum per annum upon all outlay by the said Proprietor upon the subjects hereby Let which the said Tenant may ask and the said Proprietor agree to after the date of these presents (the foresaid sums of Three hundred and fifty pounds and Two hundred and fifty pounds excepted), and also to perform all carriages free of charge connected there with or connected with the Houses and Buildings presently erected or hereafter to be erected on the subjects hereby Let both which stipulations as to interest and carriages shall be understood in all cases whether expressed or not. And further to make good to the Proprietor his foresaids any loss or damage by Fire to the whole or any of the Houses and Buildings now or hereafter to be erected on the subjects hereby Let and for further security thereof the Tenant binds and obliges herself and her foresaids at their own expense to keep always insured in name of the Proprietor and Tenant or their respective foresaids for their respective rights and interests the said whole Houses and Buildings pre:sently erected or hereafter to be erected on the subjects hereby Let against loss or damage by Fire to the extent of three-fourths of their value, and also to keep at all times insured as aforesaid against loss by Fire the whole Crop and Stocking of the said Farm to the extent of their full value all as the same may be ascertained from time to time by arbitration, and these in one of the Established Fire Insurance Offices and to exhibit to the said Proprietor or his foresaids or to his or their Factor at the term of Martinmas yearly when the first portion of each year’s Rent is payable, Receipts for the payment of the premium due at that term of Martinmas yearly for the said several Insurances for the Twelve months succeeding. Declaring that the said Proprietor or his foresaids shall if so inclined have power to make the said Insurances to be effected in name of the Proprietor and Tenant or their respective foresaids, as said is and that the said Tenant or her foresaids shall in that event be bound to repay yearly to the said Proprietor and his foresaids the annual Premium for said Insurances at said term of Martinmas yearly and that the first sums paid by the said Tenant or her foresaids at or after the said term of Martinmas yearly shall be held to be applied in repayment of the said Insurances even although the Receipt or Receipts granted therefor shall bear that the money was paid to account of Rent. And further the Tenant, subject to the expenditure of the foresaid sum of Three hundred and fifty pounds yet to be made by the Proprietor, accepts the Houses and Fences as being in a good and tenantable state. Moreover the said Tenant obliges herself to maintain and leave in a good and tenantable condition the whole Houses, Drains, and Watercourses, Fences and Gates now on or hereafter to be erected on said Farm, except such as the Proprietor has herein before become bound to keep up and maintain and also the Proprietor paying one-half of the cost of repairing Fences bounding the &
the Plantations and maintaining at his sole expense the Fences surrounding the land which may be resumed as aforesaid. Further the Tenant binds herself to preserve and protect the whole trees now growing on the subjects hereby Let or which may be hereafter planted, and if she fail to do so she – binds herself to pay the damage which may be incurred by her fault or negligence as the same – shall be ascertained by arbitration. And further the Tenant binds and obliges herself to accept of such Lands as may be received under an excambion provided such Lands lie contiguous to the Farm and in like manner the Tenant obliges herself to give up any Lands which may be given away in an excambion leaving all questions as to deductions or increase of Rent arising out of such changes to be settled by arbitration. And further the said Tenant binds and obliges herself to reside on the subjects hereby Let, and in the event of her death the Heir of the said Lease Shall constantly reside on the subjects hereby Let. And further the said Tenant binds and obliges herself to make no alterations on the Houses and Buildings hereby Let to her without the – leave in writing of the said Proprietor or his Factor for the time being. And with regard to the cultivation and Management of the said farm the Tenant binds and obliges herself and her foresaids to cultivate and manage it according to the rules of good husbandry and to maintain the lands in a clean and fertile condition. And particularly without prejudice to these general conditions that not more than two fifth parts of the arable lands of the said farm shall be in anyone year in White Crops declaring that Peas or Beans (except Beans properly manured with twenty tons of farm yard manure per acre, drill sown and laboured as greencrop) and Turnip Seed and […] shall in all cases be counted as part of the acreage under White Crops in any year, that not less than one fifth part of the arable lands shall be in any one year in Pasture Grass and shall be in whole fields and not in separate or detached portions of fields that not more than one-fifth part of the arable lands shall be in any one year cut for Hay that all lands that shall be in any one year in Summer Fallow or Turnips or Potatoes or other Green Crop shall be in that year well and sufficiently manured and in order thereto that not less than one-half of the lands that shall be in Summer Fallow, Turnips, or Potatoes, or other Green Crop in any year shall be – manured in that year with not less than twenty-five tons of well-rotted farmyard dung per Imperial acre and should any portion of the remaining half of the said lands have a smaller quantity than the twenty-five tons of well rotted farm-yard dung per Imperial acre applied to it the deficiency shall be made up by an application of City Manure or of approved Artificial Manures at a cost of Four Pounds Ten Shillings per acre in value of said City or Artificial Manures to be applied to each acre of the said remain:ing half of the lands in proportion to the deficiency in the quantity of farm-yard manure applied. Declaring that at the termination of this Lease no part of the said farm shall be left in Summer Fallow the – Proprietor declining to pay for Summer Fallow that in the last year of this Lease the Proprietor or Incoming Tenant shall have power to sow Grass Seed in such parts of the lands as have been in Summer Fallow or in Green Crops in the preceding year provided the same be sown along with the Spring Crop or within eight days thereafter, or if with the Wheat Crop not later than the month of April and in order thereto the Tenant in possession hereby binds herself (and her foresaids) to give six days notice in writing to the Proprietor or Incoming Tenant before beginning to sow her last Spring Crop and failing their or either of them sowing the Grass Seeds as aforesaid the said Tenant in possession hereby binds herself to do so with ten pounds of good White and Red Clover Seed and one bushel and half a bushel of Perennial Rye Grass Seed to the Imperial acre or with such kinds and quantities of Clover and Grass Seed as the Pro:praetor or Incoming Tenant may direct and for the cost of which Seed and for the sowing allenarly she shall be paid as the value thereof shall be ascertained by arbitration and in either event the said Tenant in possession shall be bound to harrow and roll in the same, in a proper manner without – charge &
charge, and further shall be bound not to cut or pasture with stock of any kind or otherwise injure the lands so sown down after the last Crop has been reaped. And further the whole Dung or Manure produced on the farm shall be annually applied to the lands hereby Let and expressly in the last year of this Lease the whole Dung made on the farm previous to Whitsunday of the said last year shall be applied to the lands hereby let. And further the Tenant shall leave to the Landlord or Incoming Tenant the Dung made after the term of Whitsunday in the said last year of this Lease for which she shall be paid one-half its value as the same may be ascertained by arbitration. And it is expressly stipulated that if the Tenant depart from these regulations she and her foresaids shall pay the sum of Ten Pounds Sterling of additional Rent for each acre treated or cropped differently from the mode before specified and that at the time when the Rent of the year is paid with like penalty and interest on failure which additional Rent – shall not be considered as penal but pactional the Proprietor permitting such deviations for this additional Rent. And further the said Tenant binds herself to deliver to the Proprietor or his Factor when asked a statement signed and certified by her showing the number of acres of the whole lands hereby Let with the apportionment in any year of said acreage into White Crops, Hay, Green Crops, or Fallow and Pasture. Moreover the said Mrs Margaret Johnston or Walker obliges herself and her foresaids to remove from the said farm at the expiration of this Tack without warning or process of removal, or otherwise to pay the sum of Ten Pounds Sterling of Rent per acre for each years possession thereafter and proportionately for a shorter period at the times and with penalty and interest as before mentioned and also to perform the whole other conditions in this Tack. And whereas several references are herein made to arbitration the parties oblige themselves in such cases to enter into submission to some one person of skill mutually chosen as arbiter and failing an agreement as to the choice of an arbiter the parties agree to refer the choice of an arbiter to the Sheriff of the County of Linlithgow, and it shall not be competent to bring the decision of the arbiter under revision in any Court whatever. And the said parties oblige themselves and their foresaids to Implement this Tack to each other under the penalty of Four Hundred Pounds Sterling to be paid by the party failing to the party performing or willing to perform over and above performance. And they consent to the – Registration hereof for preservation and execution. In Witness Whereof these presents written on this and the four preceding pages of paper to be duly stamped by William Lyon Mackenzie, Clerk to James Hope, Writer to the Signet, are, together with a duplicate hereof subscribed by the said Margaret Johnston or Walker, at Kilpunt aforesaid, the twelth day of May Eighteen hundred and eighty-four before these witnesses; James Law, Farmer, East Mains, Broxburn, and Thomas George Walker, residing at Kilpunt aforesaid; and by the said Earl of Hopetoun at Edinburgh the thirteenth day of said – month of May, and year last mentioned, before these Witnesses; William Lennox, Clerk to the said James Hope, and the said William Lyon Mackenzie.
William Lennox, witness
W.L. MacKenzie, witness
Tho. G Walker, witness
Robert G Keir, witness
James Law, witness
Tho. G Walker, witness
Terms used in the text;
- “Act of Sederunt”; in Scots law – see Wikipedia.
- “allenarly”; meaning “solely”, or “only” – see Wiktionary.
- “excamb”/”excambion”; in Scots law, excambion is the exchange of land – see Wikipedia.
- “Factor”; a property manager or estate manager – see Wikipedia.
- “Martinmas” & “Whitsunday”; Scottish term days – see Wikipedia
- “Tack”; a lease agreement – see http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/tack_n2
- “videlicet”; meaning “namely”, “that is to say”, or “as follows” – see Wikipedia.
The Walker family;
- James WALKER, b. 24/01/1818, at Hiddlefaulds, Kirkliston, the son of John Walker & Isobel Neil. d. 06/05/1881, at Kilpunt. Married; 23/02/1847, at Bathgate, to;
- Margaret JOHNSTON, b. btw. Apr & Sept 1818, daughter of John Johnston & Margaret Young. d. 15/09/1890 (see the JOHNSTON family tree HERE).
- John Johnston WALKER, b. 21/01/1848, d. 19/11/1891, in New Zealand (no issue).
- Margaret Young WALKER, b. 19/10/1849 (twin), d. 13/5/1891 (no issue).
- James WALKER, b. 19/10/1849 (twin), d. 4/5/1851 (at 18 months).
- Isabella Neil WALKER, b. 03/05/1852, d. 08/11/1916, m. 07/06/1894 – Thomas ALLAN (no issue).
- Jemima Janet WALKER, b. 30 Mar 1854, d. 24/12/1892 (no issue).
- Mary WALKER, b. 09/02/1856, d. 25/6/1903, m. John BRASH (1 daughter).
- Thomas George WALKER, b. 04/03/1858, d. 19/10/1951, m. 19/06/1894 – Helen Black CADZOW (7 children)
- Elizabeth Barron WALKER, b. 07/10/1860, d. 14/10/1882 (no issue).
For futher details see A history of the WALKER family.