Earl of Lonsdale - First Creation

First Creation

His great-grandson, John Lowther, was created a baronet, of Lowther in the County of Westmorland, in the Baronetage of Nova Scotia in circa 1638. He was succeeded by his grandson, the second Baronet (the son of John Lowther, eldest son of the first Baronet). He was an influential politician and held several ministerial posts during the reign of William III. In 1696 he was raised to the Peerage of England as Baron Lowther and Viscount Lonsdale. His eldest son, the second Viscount, died unmarried at an early age and was succeeded by his younger brother, the third Viscount. He was also a prominent politician. On his death in 1751 the barony and viscountcy became extinct.

The late Viscount was succeeded in the baronetcy by his second cousin, James Lowther, the fifth Baronet. He was the son of Robert Lowther, son of Richard Lowther, second son of the first Baronet. Lowther was a Member of Parliament for over twenty years and served as Lord-Lieutenant of Westmorland and Cumberland. In 1784 he was raised to the Peerage of Great Britain as Baron Lowther, of Lowther in the County of Westmorland, Baron of the Barony of Kendal in the County of Westmorland and Baron of the Barony of Burgh in the County of Cumberland, Viscount Lonsdale, Viscount Lowther and Earl of Lonsdale, with normal remainder to the heirs male of his body. The Earl was childless and all his titles were heading for extinction. In 1797 he was therefore created Baron Lowther, of Whitehaven in the County of Cumberland, and Viscount Lowther, of Whitehaven in the County of Cumberland, with remainder to the heirs male of his deceased third cousin, Reverend Sir William Lowther, 1st Baronet, of Little Preston, to whom he also devised his considerable estates. These titles were also in the Peerage of Great Britain. On Lord Lonsdale's death in 1802, the baronetcy and the peerages of 1784 became extinct.

He was succeeded in the barony and viscountcy of 1797 according to the special remainder by his third cousin once removed, Sir William Lowther, 2nd Baronet, of Little Preston. He was the elder son of the aforementioned Reverend Sir William Lowther, 1st Baronet, of Little Preston, great-grandson of Sir William Lowther, brother of Sir John Lowther, 1st Baronet, of Lowther (see Lowther Baronets for a more comprehensive history of this branch of the family).

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