Monday, May 06, 2019

Rutherford's Correspondents - 3. George Rutherford

Rutherford's brother, George, is not among the correspondents who preserved letters but he is mentioned in Letter 34 and twenty other letters as Samuel was concerned for his welfare.
  In 1636 George, schoolmaster in Kirkcudbright, was tried before the Edinburgh High Commission for his support for his persecuted minister Robert Gendinning. He had to leave his school and the town. 
   The information I have comes from 'Minute Book Kept By The War Committee Of The Covenanters In The Stewartry Of Kirkcudbright: In The Years 1640 And 1641' which published by J. NICHOLSON in 1854. First come Nicholson's notes which are in 19th century English and then the actual Covenanters minutes which are not!

Nothing is known of the history of Mr George Rutherford previous to 1629, when he was, through the influence of provest Fullarton and some other gentlemen, intimate friends of his brother Mr Samuel Rutherford, appointed schoolmaster and reader in Kirkcudbright The duties of both of these offices he discharged to the entire satisfaction of the magistrates, and indeed of the whole community, till the end of the year 1636. At that time tLe Bishop of Galloway suspended Mr Glendonyng, the minister of Kirkcudbright, and gave the'charge of the parish to a Mr George Buchannan, who was deposed by the Assembly of 1639. — The inhabitants however being all warmly attached to Mr
Glendonyng, prevailed on him to continue in the exercise of his ministerial duties and refused to attend the ministra- tions of the Bishop^s minion. As Mr George Rutherford was a zealous non-conformist and a strong supporter of Mr Glendonyng, he was summoned before the High Com- mission, and commanded to resign his charge and remove from Kirkcudbright. He then retired to Ayrshire, where he resided for some time ; but soon after Mr James Scott, the minister of Tongland, had been deposed by the General Assembly of 1639, he was appointed to the charge of that
parish. Here he appears to have remained until his death, the exact date of which is uncertain, but most lively it was  long before the Restoration.
Mr Rutherford seems to have acquired the lands of Ar-
grennan and Grayscroft, in the parish of Tongland, most
probably by marriage, as, in the year 1668, his three
daughters, Marion, who was married to Robert Hutton
of Newlands, Martha, who was afterwards the wife of John
Black, merchant in Kirkcudbright, and Barbara, were re-
toured as his successors and heirs in these lands. According
to tradition Mr George Rutherford had a son, called Samuel,
who was drowned when a child in the well at Argrennan.
As it may be interesting to know the duties discharged by
a schoolmaster and reader at that time, we have subjoined a
copy of Mr Rutherfurd's engagement with the magistrates
when he entered upon these offices in Kirkcudbright

At Kirkcudbright, the aught day of December, the year
of God Jm rjc twentie nine years.
The quhilk day die proreist, baillies, counsell, and com-
munitie of this burgh of Kirkcudbright, hes conduced and
agriet with Mr George Rutherfurd, brother to Mr Samuel
Rutherford, minister at Anwoth, to be their schuilmaister,
within the said burgh, for the space of ane yeir, his entrie
thereto beginning at Candlemas 1630 next ; at quhilk tyme
the said Mr George obleises him to eater to the said schuil,
or within four or fyve dayes thereafter ; and during the said
space, to teich his scoUers tiieir learning, as they are able
and capable to drink in the aamen. Lykeas, the said Mr
George obleiises him, durii^ the said space, to reid in the
kirk the prayers, publicklie, morning and evening, to raise
the psalmes in the kirk; publicklie, and to wryte in the kirk
session, their acets, as he shall be requyred. For the quhilk
the toun of Kirkcudbright obleises them to pay to the said
Mr George, for keeping of the said schuil foure score punds,
yeirlie, at four times in the yeir, Whitsunday, Lambmes,
Hallowmes and Candle mes; and that everie toun bairn
shall give him quarterlie iriijs., and everie landward bairn
xxa ; and that they shsll keep him hous mail frie ; and they
obless them to pay him yeirlie, in manner above wrytten,
XX merks, for reiding in the kirk and raising of the psalmes.
And this act to be eztendit in ample fmrm.
Mr William M*Ghie, bailzie.
Mr George Rutherfurd."

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