Exhibition for American War of Independence hero from Rosehearty

Debbie Watt at the Hugh Mercer display at the Fraserburgh Heritage Centre
Debbie Watt at the Hugh Mercer display at the Fraserburgh Heritage Centre

An exhibition to commemorate the 290th anniversary of an American War of Independence hero who was born in Rosehearty has gone on display in Fraserburgh.

Brigadier General Hugh Mercer (1726-1777) is revered in the USA with the town of Mercersburg named in his honour, as are counties in eight U.S states - yet he is virtually unknown in Scotland.

Anew exhibition at the Fraserburgh Heritage Centre aims to change that with a display that will highlight Mercer’s achievements both as a soldier and as a physician.

Mercer was born at Pitsligo Manse near Rosehearty before escaping to America following the Battle of Culloden and become an American war hero.

The Hugh Mercer display includes a replica 3rd Virginia Regiment officer’s uniform as worn by General Mercer at the Battle of Princeton in 1777 where he was mortally wounded.

A grant from Aberdeenshire Council has enabled the Heritage Society to commission this uniform.

Antique apothecary items, on loan from Fraserburgh chemist, Robert Baird, represent Mercer’s role as a prominent physician.

The Heritage Society also hopes to develop educational links with the Hugh Mercer Elementary School in Fredericksburg, Virginia, through the project.

Fredericksburg is also home to a statue of Mercer and there is another one of him in Philadelphia.