The following is taken from The Stodart Pedigree:
"James, born 30th March 1703. He succeeded his father in his farm of Bilstane, on the estate of Dryden, the property of Count Lockhart Wishart, in 1745. He removed to the farm of Walston Place, Lanarkshire, belonging to the same landlord. In the same year, 1745, he rode from Walston to Dryden to give information that a search was being made for George Lockhart, eldest son of the Count, on a charge of high treason, and this timely warning enabled him to escape to Newcastle, and thence by sea to France. Mr. Stodart was also factor to Count Lockhart. He married, in 1728, Marion, daughter or Adam Haig, of Townhead, at Loanhead."
The following is taken from something written by R. R. Stodart in Ceylon, 26 March 1857. Unfortunately I cannot remember the source of the note or exactly who R. R. Stodart was.
"The Stodarts are sprung from an obscurity that cannot even like that of the petty German Princes be called illustrious, but so far as I know it was respectable. My great grandfather James possessed and farmed a small piece of land near Lasswade where I am told his father and grandfather bearing the same christian name lived before him.
"James Stodart of Loanhead married Marion Haig and had a numerous family ... [He] sold his property at Loanhead and rented the farm of Walston in Lanarkshire. For some years before his death he was unable to leave his bedroom in which he during that time kept his coffin placed so that he could always see it - a taste somewhat unusual in Britain where death is rather looked upon as a forbidden subject, and I have no doubt he was considered eccentric if not mad."
His name is given as James Walston Stodart in Jan Squire's excellent family history site. I think the middle name may have been applied later as a result of the place he lived.
My name is Alasdair Broun and I was born and brought up in Scotland, son of a clergyman and a freelance journalist. I took up genealogy as a hobby when I was 17 and I went on to write a PhD thesis in philosophical psychology ... more >
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