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Alexander Ramsay of Mar
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Alexander Ramsay of Mar

Captain Alexander Ramsay of Mar (21 December 1919-20 December 2000) was the only child of HRH Princess Patricia of Connaught, who renounced her royal title and style when she married then-Captain the Hon. Alexander Ramsay in February 1919. His mother was the youngest child of HRH The Duke of Connaught, the third son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. His father was the third son of the Earl of Dalhouise.

Alexander Arthur Alfonso David Maule Ramsay was born at Clarence House, then the London residence of his maternal grandfather, the Duke of Connaught. He (along with his cousin Viscount Lascelles, later 7th Earl of Harewood) acted as a page of honour during the coronation of King George VI. After leaving Eton College the same year, he received commission in the Grenadier Guards. Ramsay saw active service in North Africa during World War II. He lost the lower part of his right leg during a tank battle at Tunisia in 1943. In 1944, he joined the staff of his cousin, HRH the Duke of Gloucester, who was then governor general of Australia.

Upon returning to Britain in 1947, he was informed that he would inherit Mar Lodge and its estates from his aunt, Princess Arthur of Connaught. In preparation for this role, he read agriculture at Trinity College, Cambridge. After graduating in 1952, he worked for three years as assistant factor on the Linlithgow estates at South Queensferry. Ramsay inherited the Mar estate in 1959. At that point, Lord Lyon King of Arms allowed him to add the designation "of Mar" to his name. Eventually the financial difficulties of running the 73,000 acre (295 km²) Mar estates forced him to sell it to the National Trust of Scotland in 1987.

In 1956, Ramsay married Hon. Flora Fraser (18 October 1930-), the only daughter of Alexander Fraser, 20th Lord Saltoun and chief of the Name of Fraser. His wife succeeded her father as the 21st Lady Saltoun and chief of the Name of Fraser in her own right in 1979. Thereafter, they resided at wife's family seat, Cairnbulg Castle at Fraserburgh, in Aberdeenshire. In 1971, he became the deputy lord lieutentant for Aberdeenshire.

Captain Alexander Ramsay of Mar and Lady Saltoun had three daughters:

Although the Ramsays of Mar had no royal titles and carried out no public duties, they were regarded as members of the extended British Royal Family, attending most major royal events. Alexander Ramsay of Mar died on the eve of his eighty-first birthday. At the time of his death, he was one of five surviving great grandchildren of Queen Victoria.

Foonote

1 Katherine is heir presumptive to her mother's peerage and the headship of Fraser clan. Lord Lyon King Arms officially recognized her use of the surname Fraser in 1973.