John Moultrie (1702-1771)

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John Moultrie (1702-1771) was the father of John Moultrie (1729-1798), the first US-born graduate of Edinburgh University. A Scot by birth, he was also an alumnus of Edinburgh University's Medical School.

A native of Culross, Fife, John Moultrie Senior qualified M.D. at Edinburgh University then served as a surgeon in the British Navy. In 1728, he emigrated to Charlestown, South Carolina, where he enjoyed success as both a general practitioner and an indigo planter. He married twice and had five sons who would play prominent roles in the political and military life of colonial and newly independent America.

  • John Moultrie who followed in his father's footsteps graduating in Medicine from Edinburgh in 1749. He would subsequently become Governor of East Florida.
  • William Moultrie (1730-1785) who became a Major-General in the Revolutionary Army and later Governor of the state of South Carolina.
  • James Moultrie (1734-1765) who became Attorney-General of the Province of South Carolina then Chief Justice of East Florida.
  • Thomas Moultrie (1740-1780), a captain in the the Revolutionary Army who was killed in the siege of Charlestown
  • Alexander Moultrie (ca. 1750-1807) (by Moultrie's second marriage) who became the first Attorney-General of the state of South Carolina.

John Moultrie Senior's name is given as James Moultrie in some sources.


  • John Z. Bowers, 'The Influence of Edinburgh on American Medicine', in Medical Education and Medical Care: A Scottish-American Symposium, ed. Gordon McLachlan (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1977), pp. 1-23.
  • 'Letters from a Colonial Student of Medicine in Edinburgh to his Parents in South Carolina, 1746-1749', University of Edinburgh Journal, 4 (1930-31), 270-74.
  • J. B. Morrell, 'Medicine and Science in the Eighteenth Century', in Four Centuries: Edinburgh University Life, 1583-1983, ed. Gordon Donaldson (Edinburgh: University of Edinburgh Press, 1983), pp. 38-52.
  • Eleanor Winthrop Townsend, 'John Moultrie, Junior, M.D., 1729-1798, Royal Lieutenant-Governor of East Florida', Annals of Medical History, 3rd Ser., II (1940), 98-109.