William Cochrane 1st Earl of Dundonald
Biography of William Cochrane 1st Earl of Dundonald
William Cochrane (1605-1685), 1st Earl of Dundonald, was an army officer and politician who founded the Dundonald Bursaries.
Born in Ayrshire, Cochrane was educated at Paisley Grammar School and the University. He had been christened William Blair but adopted his wife's surname, Cochrane, and inherited her family's estate near Paisley. He became a major landowner in Ayrshire and Fife and represented the former at the Scottish parliament in 1641, when he was knighted by King Charles I. He was granted the title Lord Cochrane of Dundonald in 1647 and was created Earl of Dundonald and Lord Cochrane of Paisley in 1669.