Biggar and the House of Fleming
The House of Fleming were a local family of rank and influence who occupied a prominent place in the Biggar district. One of their homes was Boghall Castle (an excellent, detailed model of which is displayed in the museum).
Mary Fleming was one of the ‘Four Maries’ who were attendants of Mary, Queen of Scots. She was very close to the young queen, possibly because they were cousins and close in age. Mary Fleming went to France with Mary, Queen of Scots in 1548 and stayed there with her over the next thirteen years.
Mary Fleming married William Maitland of Lethington, who not only was the Queen’s advisor but was 18 years older than Mary. Apparently, the age difference stirred some gossip and amusement at court. Mary died about 1600, 13 years after Mary, Queen of Scots was executed. They hadn’t seen each other for 20 years.