John Blair of Dunskey
- 1. This identification of the Captain Blair mentioned by Boswell both in letters to John Johnston and in journal entries was suggested by Ralph Walker in Boswell's Correspondence with John Johnston. It is based primarily on the facts that 1) Blair was a first cousin once removed of Lord Eglinton's, at whose place Boswell met him on May 26, 1763, and 2) Boswell referred to all junior officers as Captains. One may wonder if John Johnston had the same habit, for in a letter to Boswell of March 10, 1763, he too refers to a Captain Blair, mentioning that the said Blair would arrive in London three weeks later. Pottle, in the London Journal, suggested that Boswell might have referred to a Lieutenant Alexander Blair of whom no more seems to be known, but more information may have been available when Boswell's Correspondence with John Johnston was published almost twenty years later.
Boswell mentions a Captain Blair in an ecstatic letter to John Johnston dated September 13, 1762, and again in his journal of May 1, 1763, where he dined with Blair in the home of Andrew Douglas. He referred several times to Blair as a generous and honest soul; good company during the following months, when he saw a bit of Blair either together with Douglas or William Temple.