32] Rev Dr Alexander Turnbull (1748-1831) was the son of an Edinburgh lawyer who had inherited the estate of Dalladies in Forforshire. He started to study law and was apprenticed to Walter Scott, father of the author Sir Walter Scott, but changed course to become ordained as an Episcopalian minister and served for a time as curate in some north of England charges. Having inherited the family estate on the death of his father, Alexander gave up his church livings to live the life of a gentleman on the proceeds of the estate. At first he lived in London where he appears to have mixed with high society including Prince Tallyrand and President Munro of the United States. He was remotely related to Charles James Fox, the leader of the Whigs, and enthusiastically endorsed the liberal policies of that party. He approved of the American and French Revolutions until the latter degenerated into anarchy. In Kay it states that:
benevolence formed the basis of his political creed, as well as of his personal character; and hence, although many dissented from his opinions, none that knew, disliked the man. In Edinburgh where he was well known, his circle of acquaintance was most extensive; and few persons who have moved in general society were ever held in greater esteem….his never-ceasing charity and good will to his fellow-creatures.…redeemed a few innocent and harmless peculiarities.