Major John McCulloch of Barholm (c. 1610-1666)

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Born 1610, the eldest son of Thomas McCulloch of Barholm, John inherited the estates of Barholm in 1630. He was an active Convenanter but served abroad as an officer in the Continental wars until returning in the late 1650's. In 1660 he was fined 800 pounds by "Middleton's" Parliament for relief of the King's good subjects who had suffred in the late troubles. In September 1666, Major John McCulloch took up arms against the Crown and was one of the principal officers leading the Pentland Rising. He and his rebels captured Sir James Dumfries in his lodgings in Ayr where they also seized arms and were joined by many other convenanters. On 26 November 1666 they arrived at Lanark, where thet renewed the Convenant, and were defeated at the pentlands on Rullion Green 28 November 1666.

Major John McCulloch and Captain Andrew Arnot with many others including John Gordon of Knockbrex and his brother were captured abd subsequently indicted in the Justiciary Court at Edinburgh 4 December.

McCulloch who had joined the rebels at Ayr, was condemned to death and hanged at the Mercat Cross of Edinburgh on 7 December 1666. Amongst the Burgh records its notes that the judgement included the direction "that the heads of Major McCulloch, Gordon of Knockbrex, and his brother, be cut off and erected at Kircudbright...the corpses to be buried where traitors are usually buried." But McCulloch's corpse was spared that final indignity. On the evening of the execution he was laid to rest in the Greyfriars Kirkyard, Edinburgh where his epitaph reads: "Major John McKoolo, west countryman, executed."

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