Grange, Rachel (1682–1745)

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Grange, Rachel (1682–1745)

Scottish imprisoned noblewoman. Name variations: Lady Rachel Grange, Lady Rachel Chiesley, Lady Rachael Chiesley, Lady Rachel Chicely, Lady of St. Kilda. Born Rachel Chiesley, 1682, in Dalry, Scotland; died in June 1745, on Island of Skye, Scotland; dau. of John Chiesley of Dalry; m. James Erskine (lawyer, lord justice clerk of Court of Session, and later Lord Grange, MP), 1699; children: Christopher, Robert, James, John, Mary, Jean, Rachel.

Born into family with disagreeable streak (her father shot a man, 1689), had a miserable marriage excerbated by husband's supposed infidelities and her drinking and temper; separated from husband (1730), began stalking him, employing spies to watch his visits to London and intercept his mail; suspecting husband of taking part in the Jacobite uprising of 1715 with his brother earl of Mar, threatened to expose him (1731); was seized and kept on the Island of Hesker (1732–37), then on St. Kilda (1737–43); was "buried" in sham funeral staged by husband to explain disappearance; made contact with friends through a letter but a rescue attempt failed; was transferred to Assynt in Sutherland and finally to Isle of Skye; wrote account of abduction and mistreatment which was presented to the marquis of Brute by John Francis, earl of Mar, and ultimately published in Scots Magazine (Nov 1817); died on Isle of Skye after 14 years in captivity.

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Grange, Rachel (1682–1745)

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