John Leith (b. - 1763)

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Death: Died
Cause of death: Shot in the head
Managed by: Ric Dickinson
Last Updated:

About John Leith

One Leith family member who most certainly does haunt Leith Hall is John Leith, the 3rd Laird. At the age of twenty five he married Hariott Steuart of Auchlunchart, and set about turning Leith Hall into a suitable family home. She bore him three sons and was pregnant with a fourth when, just before Christmas 1763, John rode to Aberdeen to dine with friends. Copious amounts of alcohol flowed at the meal and John reacted angrily when one of the diners accused him of adulterating the grain sold from Leith Hall. There is confusion as what happened next. Either John challenged his detractor to a duel or else his accuser simply shot him in cold blood. Whichever, on Christmas day 1736 John Leith died from the head wound he received from his adversaries pistol, and his widow was left to run the estate as best she could.

The tragedy appears to have left an indelible stain on the psychic fabric of Leith Hall and his ghost has been both sensed and seen at several locations. In 1968, guests who were sleeping in the master bedroom reported that they found its atmosphere somewhat unsettling. There discomfort was not helped by the fact that in the early hours of one morning, the wife awoke to find a man in highland dress, his head swathed in bloody bandages, standing at the foot of the bed. She later commented that he bore an uncanny resemblance to the portrait of John Leith that hangs elsewhere in the house.