James Buchanan of Dowanhill

1756 - 1844


Partner in the Glasgow firm of Dennistoun Buchanan and William Duff & Co. of New Providence with among others James Dennistoun (q.v.). In 1822 nine enslaved people were registered in the name of the 12 partners in the firm of William Duff & Co., which was discontinued in 1825. Although shown as the founder Buchanan, Steven in some sources, this firm appears to have been been founded earlier. Left £118,919 in 1844.

  1. The Loyal Refomers' Gazette in 1831 characterised James Buchanan of Dowanhill as a 'West India Slave Merchant'. "Merchant in partnership with his cousin Moses Steven, afterwards of Poladie, in the firms of Buchanan, Steven & Co. and Dennistoun, Buchanan & Co. [of Glasgow]." "Merchant, partner of Dennistoun, Buchanan & Co., in its day one of our foremost foreign firms" "Founded [sic] the trading firm of Buchanan Steven & Co. in the late eighteenth century."

  2. Buchanan was a second-wave investor in The Glasgow Bank or The Glasgow Banking Company (founded in 1809), which is a predecessor firm of Lloyds, having merged with The Ship Bank in 1836 and the Union Bank of Glasgow in 1843. The Glasgow Banking Company 'was the last of the old private partnership banks to be established in the city.'


Edinburgh Gazette 3374 04/10/1825 p. 187; 1822 Bahamas Slave Register Vol. 1 no. 1.

  1. The Loyal Refomers' Gazette Vol. III (Glasgow, 1831), p. 376; John Guthrie Smith, Strathendrick and Its Inhabitants From Early Times (1896), p. 344; Exhibition Illustrative of Old Glasgow (1894), p. 74, online, concerning his portrait; ODNB for his grandson Thomas Ryburn Buchanan; W.D. Rubinstein, Who were the rich?<'em> Vol. II [MS] 1844/44.

  2. Memoirs and Portraits of 100 Glasgow men No. 26 'Alexander Dennistoun'; http://www.lloydsbankinggroup.com/Our-Group/our-heritage/our-history/bank-of-scotland/glasgow-banking-company [accessed 24/05/2015].

Further Information

Ellison McCallum
4 s 1 d
Wealth at death
West India merchant

Legacies Summary

Commercial (1)

Name partner
Buchanan, Steven
West India merchant  

Relationships (1)

Business partners