01.09Lockharts of Barr
by Isabelle S. Lockhart
Andrew Lockhart was the first to be designated “of Bar” about 1390/1406. We know very little about the ones who came before him, but Lockharts (Locards, Lokarts, etc.) were in the Ayrshire area of Scotland as early as the 12th century and founded towns Symington and Stevenston in that county. “That the family was of ancient standing and had considerable ramifications in Ayrshire, there is no doubt.”
Andrew’s successor was John, the beginning of many with that name, confusing history to no end! Trying to separate and distinguish each John, I have chosen to number them — John(1), John(2), etc.
Barr Castle, a tower which still stands in Galston, was built there for a Lockhart of Bar sometime during the 15th century; Robert Lokart of Bar 1440/41, son of John(1), may have had the tower built.
Barr Castle, Galston, Ayrshire, Scotland
After the death of Robert Lokart of Bar, about 1485, the lands of Bar, with the tower, was in the crown’s hands for about 20 years. Sir Stephen Lockhart of Cleghorn, toward the end of his life, got the lands of Barr as a gift from the crown till such time as the heir to Barr should obtain lawful entry again. After Sir Stephen’s death and from about 1505 to 1507, the lands of Bar were held by Robert Colville, chancellor, a distant cousin traced back to his (many greats) grandmother Ada Lockard. In 1507, John(2) Lokart, grandson and heir of Robert Lokart, deceased, obtained regress to those lands whenever £2000 was paid to the crown.
After the 1507 royal grant of the lands of Bar to John(2) Lockart, the lands of Bar with the tower “Barr Castle” or “the tower of Galston” passed down through generations of eldest sons until 1610.
Before 1614, about 1610, John(9) Lockhart of Boghall (a descendant of an 1500 era brother of the House of Bar heir) purchased, apparently for the sum of 5300 merks, the lands of Bar and the tower from his relative George Lockart of Bar, who was suffering from a declining fortune. John(9) Lockhart of Boghall was to pay John(10), son of George Lockhart of Bar, for the purchase of land after the death of George, which occurred between 1614 and 1624. George Lockhart of Bar was considered the last laird of Bar of that bloodline. John(9) Lockhart of Boghall, thenceforth went by the title “Laird of Bar”, passing it to his son John(11) Lockhart.
John(11) Lockhart of Bar died 1669, in debt to the Campbells of Cessnock, who, by 1670, came to own all the lands of Bar and the tower.
In 1686, the lands of Cessnock, Galston, Barr, etc., belonging to Sir Hugh and George Campbells, were disjoined from the crown in favor of John Viscount Melfort.