Alexander Davidson I Born 1685 Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland
ALEXANDER DAVIDSON I, born 8 AUG., 1685 Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland, - killed in the first Jacobite uprising at the Battle of Preston in 1715. 1701 ALEXANDER DAVIDSON m. Sarah MCDAVID in Cupar Fife Scotland m. 1701 I. ALEXANDER DAVIDSON (II) Born 1702 In Cupar Fife Scotland II. Phillip Davidson b. 1703 In Cupar, Fife, Scotland. III. Hezekiah Davidson b. 1705 In Cupar, Fife, Scotland. IV. William Davidson b. 1708 In Cupar, Fife, Scotland.
Cupar, Fife, was a royal and parliamentary burgh, that was the political capital of the shire, and a seat of considerable trade, the town stood amid undulating and richly-wooded environs, mainly on the left bank of the Eden. By road, it is 29 miles NE of Dunfermline. It had a royal charter from David II (King of Scotland) in 1363. A castle once stood on the eminence has utterly disappeared, but it was the seat of the Macduffs, Earls of Fife. When the castle of Cupar was the residence of Macduff, the lord or Maormore of Fife, it was the scene of that horrid tragedy, the murder of his wife and children by Macbeth, of which Shakespeare has made use in his play of Macbeth.' Kings and princes of Scotland, including nearly all the Jameses, Mary of Guise, Queen Mary, and Charles II., all visited the town, and were entertained by its magistrates. In the churchyard, is a plain upright stone inscribed: 'Here lies interred the heads of Laur. Hay and Andrew Pitulloch, who suffered martyrdom at Edinburgh, July 13th, 1681, for adhering to the Word of God and Scotland's covenanter’s work of reformation; and also one of the severed hands of David Hackston of Rathillet, who was most cruelly murdered at Edinburgh, July 30th, 1680, for the same cause.
1705 End of Scottish Independence The Acts of Union, a pair of Parliamentary Acts passed in 1706 and 1707, by the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland. These Acts joined the Kingdom of England and the Kingdom of Scotland (previously separate states, with separate legislatures but with the same monarch) into a single Kingdom of Great Britain. The Treaty was universally unpopular throughout Scotland. Many petitions were sent to the Scottish Parliament against Union, and there were massive protests in Edinburgh and several other Scottish burghs on the day it was passed as threats of widespread civil unrest resulted in the imposition of martial law by the Parliament. The personal financial interests of many Commissioners (Bank of Scotland and the Company of Scotland who had invested heavily in the Darien Scheme would receive compensation for their losses. Robert Burns referred to this: “We were bought and sold for English Gold, Sic a Parcel of Rogues in a Nation.”
1707 - January 16th, members of the Scottish Parliament vote themselves out of existence. It was considered by many the most treacherous event in Scottish history because it brings Scottish independence to an end. 1711 - The first major Scottish migration, cause by years of drought; but it was the opinion of Archbishop King that not even the dire effects of bad crops and high prices would have been enough to make the people move if they had not had the added goad of 'rack-renting', still such a novel practice that it caused intense resentment. In a letter to the Archbishop of Canterbury, King summed up the causes and tried to persuade his colleague to use his influence to arouse the English conscience to a realization of the effects of what was happening. The emigrants of 1717 would guide those who came after. *Rack-rent was simply raising the rent on the land after the period of the lease had expired, and renting to the highest bidder. After Britain’s Glorious Revolution of 1688 the adherents of the exiled Stuart king James II and his Roman Catholic descendants were known as Jacobites. The major support for their cause was in Scotland and Ireland, where the Jacobites continued to resist after the accession to the throne of William III and Mary II in 1689. William, however, defeated the Scottish Jacobites under Viscount Dundee at Killiecrankie (1689) and the Irish Jacobites in the Battle of the Boyne (1690).
When James II died in 1701, his son, James Edward (known as the Old Pretender), was recognized as king of England and Scotland by Spain and France. He first attempted an invasion of Scotland in 1708, but it was a total fiasco. More serious was the Jacobite rising of 1715, which took place after the accession of the Hanoverian George I and had support in England as well as Scotland. Nonetheless, the Scottish Jacobites were defeated at Preston in Lancashire on November 13, and by the time James Edward landed in Scotland on 22 December 1715, the cause was lost. He departed on 4 February 1716. 1715 Battle of Preston The Jacobite army ended up moving south into England with little opposition, and by the time they reached the town of Preston in Lancashire they had grown to about 4,000 in number. Their horse troops entered Preston on the night of November 9th, 1715, and as they approached two troops of English dragoons and part of a militia regiment retreated south to Wigan.
General Charles Wills of the Hanoverian Army (included the Clan Camerons) was ordered to halt their advance, and left Manchester on November 11th with six regiments, arriving near Preston on the 12th. The Jacobite leader Thomas Forster, had intended to move on that day, but, learning of Wills's approach, decided to stay and made the mistake of withdrawing troops from a strong defensive position at Ribble bridge, 0.5 miles outside Preston. The Jacobites actually won the first day of the battle, killing large numbers of Government forces. The Jacobites had barricaded the principal streets of Preston, and English General ordered an immediate attack, which met with fire from the barricades and from houses, resulting in the Hanoverian attack being repulsed with heavy losses. General Willis then ordered houses set on fire, with the aim of fires spreading to the Jacobite positions, and then Jacobites tried to do the same to houses taken as government positions. But, overnight many Jacobites left the town.
On the morning of Sunday the 13th, more government forces arrived and, finding that the town was insufficiently encircled, Wills stationed more troops to prevent the besieged Jacobite army from escaping. The Jacobites had also suffered losses in the fighting, as well as losing defectors overnight, and although the Highlanders' full intention was to fight on and take the attack to the enemy, Forster agreed to an offer to open negotiations with Wills for capitulation on favorable terms. This was done without informing the Highlanders, but Wills refused to treat with rebels. When the Highlanders learned of this that night, they were infuriated and paraded through the streets threatening any Jacobites who would even allude to a surrender, killing or wounding several people.
On the 14th the Jacobite leader sent an offered an unconditional surrender, which was immediately turned down unless it applied to the volatile Highlanders as well. A confirmation was sent back that the Scots Highlanders would surrender on the same terms. When the government forces entered the town, the Highlanders were drawn up, under arms in the market-place ready to surrender.
When the government forces entered the town, 1,468 Jacobites were taken prisoner. Seventeen Jacobites were killed and twenty-five wounded. The Hanoverian casualties were close to 300 killed and wounded. Of the ordinary Highland clansmen defeated at the Battle of Preston, 600 would later be transported to America on prisoner ships in 1717.
The surrender of the Rebel Stuart Forces at Preston in 1715,
Many jacobites, Scottish loyalists, who fought unsuccessfully to place the Stuarts on the throne of Britain in 1715 and 1746 were captured by the English, shackled, shipped and sold at Maryland docks to the highest bidder into servitude or white bondage for seven years. Many were of ancient and Honourable lineage. Some returned to Scotland at the end of their period of slavery, while others remained and became loyal tenants of the Lord Propriietary.
Alexander Davidson I, does not survive the battle of Preston, we don’t know if he died fighting or he died during British imprisonment. We do know that some of those captured were sentenced to be executed for treason. His brothers William and Andrew are taken as prisoners back to the Tower of London.
William Davidson and Andrew Davidson, who were captured at the Battle of Preston, avoid being executed and are sent to America on the Jacobite prisoner ship Friendship of Belfast in 1717 - purchased as indentured servant by Mordecai Moore and Francis Bullock.
1717 Forced Jacobite migration begins with the failure of the Jacobite uprising of 1715, 639 of the remaining 1,301 Jacobite prisoners are exiled to America. In the summer 1717, two shiploads of the Scottish Jacobites are sent sailing on ships called the Friendship of Belfast and Good Speed to Maryland and Virginia as indentured servants. William and Andrew, brothers of Alexander Davidson with 80 additional Jacobite prisoners are on board the Friendship of Belfast. As indentured servants they must submit to seven years service, or, “as it may probably happen that some of the persons so transported as aforesaid by themselves or by friends, may purchase or otherwise obtain their freedomes from their respective Masters or Owners”. William Davidson becomes an indentured servant to Mordecai Moore, a fellow Scotsman, while Andrew serves his seven years to Francis Bullock, also a Scotsman. Both are serving in Gloucester County, Virginia.
Alexander Davidson I sons immigrate to Gloucester County, VA as indentured servants. I Alexander Davidson (II) II. Phillip Davidson III. Hezekiah Davidson IV. William Davidson
There were several ways to pay for passage to the New World, including payment, indenture, and transport. Persons making the journey as indentured servants contracted to work a specific term for a sponsor in return for their passage. As for transport, it was common practice for ship’s masters to transport prisoners on speculation if they had additional space to fill for a scheduled voyage. The government might sentence someone to be transported, but that did not guarantee it would pay for the trip. Instead, on arrival the master held an auction at the port to pay for the prisoners’ passage, auctioning their services for a period of time to raise the money to pay for their passage.