Sir John McEwen, 1st Baronet

Sir John Helias Finnie McEwen, 1st Baronet (21 June 1894 – 19 April 1962), also known as Jock McEwen, was a British Unionist politician who served in the House of Commons as Conservative Member of Parliament for Berwick and Haddington from the 1931 to 1945 general elections.[1]

John McEwen
Member of Parliament for
Berwick and Haddington
In office
Preceded byGeorge Sinkinson
Succeeded byJohn Robertson
Lord Commissioner
of the Treasury
In office
Prime MinisterWinston Churchill
Under-Secretary of
State for Scotland
In office
Prime MinisterNeville Chamberlain
Preceded byHenry Wedderburn
Succeeded byJoseph Westwood
Personal details
John Helias Finnie McEwen

(1894-06-21)21 June 1894
Died19 March 1962(1962-03-19) (aged 67)
Political partyConservative
Brigid Mary Lindley
(m. 1923)
Children7, including Rory, Mary
Parent(s)Robert Finnie McEwen
Mary Frances Dundas
ResidenceMarchmont House
Alma materEton College
Trinity College, Cambridge
Military service
Allegiance United Kingdom
Battles/warsWorld War I

Early life edit

Sir John McEwen was the son of Robert Finnie McEwen (born 1861) of Marchmont, Berwickshire, and Bardrochat, F.S.A.Scot., Deputy Lieutenant and Justice of the Peace for Berwickshire, by Mary Frances, daughter of R. H. D. Dundas.[2] His sister, Katherine Isobel McEwen, married Roger Lumley, 11th Earl of Scarbrough, on 12 July 1922 at St Margaret's, Westminster, and had five children with him.[1]

He was educated at Eton College and Trinity College, Cambridge.[3]

Career edit

During the First World War, he served in the Cameron Highlanders, being promoted captain in 1915. He transferred to the Royal Army Flying Corps and was later a prisoner of war.[2] After the war, he joined the Diplomatic Service, and in 1920, was 3rd Secretary; 2nd Secretary in 1925, serving in the London Foreign Office, Athens and Rome.[3][4]

In the 1929 general election, he contested the seat of Berwick-upon-Tweed and Haddington for the Unionist Party, but failed. However, two years later he was elected to the House of Commons as Conservative Member of Parliament (MP) for Berwick and Haddington at the 1931 general election, and held the seat until the 1945 general election, when he was defeated.[5]

McEwen served under Neville Chamberlain as Assistant Government Whip (1938–39), Under-Secretary of State for Scotland (1939 to 1940), and under Winston Churchill as a Lord of the Treasury (1942 to 1944). He was Chairman of the Conservative Members' Committee in the House of Commons (December 1944 – June 1945).[5]

Baronetcy edit

In 1953, he was created a baronet by the Queen, of Marchmont in the County of Berwick and Bardrochat in the County of Ayr.[1][6] Upon his death in 1962, his title passed to his eldest son, Sir James. Upon Sir James' death in 1971, his title passed to his brother and Sir John's second son, Sir Robert, as Sir James had three daughters, but no sons. The current holder of the title is his grandson, Sir John Roderick Hugh McEwen, 5th Baronet (born 1965).[7]

Personal life edit

Marchmont House, the McEwen home

In 1923, McEwen married Brigid Mary Lindley (d. 1971), daughter of Sir Francis Oswald Lindley (1872–1950), the British diplomat, and granddaughter of botanist and illustrator John Lindley, who in 1840 was instrumental in saving The Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew from destruction. The raised their family at Marchmont House on the east side of the small town of Greenlaw, Scotland.[8] Together they had seven children, including:[9]

He died in April 1962, aged 67, and was succeeded in the baronetcy by his eldest son James.

Arms edit

Coat of arms of Sir John McEwen, 1st Baronet
The trunk of an oak tree sprouting Proper.[11]
Quarterly 1st & 4th Or a lion rampant Azure gorged with a ducal crown Proper on a chief of the second three garbs of the field (McEwen) 2nd & 3rd Gules three headless cranes Argent (Finnie).

Notes edit

  1. ^ a b c Britain), Queen Elizabeth (consort of George VI, King of Great (27 November 2012). Counting One's Blessings: The Selected Letters of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. Macmillan. ISBN 9780374185220. Retrieved 1 February 2017.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ a b The Editors of The Gazetteer for Scotland. "Sir John Helias Finnie McEwen from The Gazetteer for Scotland". University of Edinburgh and The Royal Scottish Geographical Society. Retrieved 1 February 2017. {{cite web}}: |last1= has generic name (help)
  3. ^ a b Black, A & C., Who's Who 1960 London, 1960, p. 1896.
  4. ^ POLITICIANS | There are all sorts, but a few Liberals may hold power balance. Time. 25 June 1945.
  5. ^ a b "Captain John McEwen (Hansard)". Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  6. ^ Who's Who 1960 p.1896.
  7. ^ Ross, David (5 May 2014). "After 500 years the McEwens decide they need a clan chief". Herald Scotland.
  8. ^ Denham, James (17 March 2016). Duns – Burgh on the Merse. ISBN 9781326559083.
  9. ^ "Person Page – Sir John Helias Finnie McEwen of Marchmont and Bardrochat, 1st Bt". The Peerage. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  10. ^ a b Goldman, Lawrence (7 March 2013). Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2005–2008. OUP Oxford. ISBN 9780199671540.
  11. ^ Debrett's Peerage. 2003. p. 649.

References edit

External links edit

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by Member of Parliament for
Berwick and Haddington

Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by Under-Secretary of State for Scotland
Succeeded by
Baronetage of the United Kingdom
New creation Baronet
(of Marchmont and Bardrochat)
Succeeded by