Ian Malcolm (politician)

Sir Ian Malcolm
Ian Zachary Malcolm Vanity Fair 12 May 1898.jpg
Malcolm as caricatured by Spy (Leslie Ward) in Vanity Fair, May 1898
Member of Parliament
for Croydon
In office
Preceded by Robert Hermon-Hodge
Succeeded by seat abolished
Member of Parliament
for Croydon South
In office
Preceded by New seat
Succeeded by Allan Smith
Personal details
Born (1868-09-03)3 September 1868
Died 28 December 1944(1944-12-28) (aged 76)
Political party Conservative
Spouse(s) Jeanne Langtry
Children 4, including Mary

Sir Ian Zachary Malcolm, 17th Laird of Poltalloch, KCMG (3 September 1868 – 28 December 1944) was a Conservative Member of Parliament and Chieftain of the Clan Malcolm/MacCallum.

Background and early life

Malcolm was born in 1868, the son of Colonel Edward Donald Malcolm, 16th of Poltalloch (1837–1930). His father's elder brother was Conservative politician John Wingfield Malcolm, Baron Malcolm of Poltalloch (1833–1902), who died childless and left the Malcolm estate to his brother Edward,[1] from whom it came to Sir Ian on his father's death in 1930.

He was educated at Eton and New College, Oxford.


Malcolm served as a Justice of the Peace (Argyll, 1898) and as MP for Stowmarket 1895–1906, Croydon 1910–1918, then Croydon South 1918 until 1919. His Labour opponent in the 1918 General Election was H.T. Muggeridge, father of Malcolm Muggeridge.

Malcolm held many diplomatic and political appointments. He travelled extensively in British India in 1901–1902, visiting the North-West Frontier Province and Rajputana, and accompanying Lord Curzon of Kedleston, Viceroy of India on his tour through Burma in late 1901.[2] He was a British Red Cross Officer during the First World War in France, Switzerland, Russia and the U.S.. In April–May 1917 he was a member of the Balfour Mission, intended to promote cooperation between the US and UK during World War I. He was private secretary to Balfour at the Peace Conference in 1919, when he was appointed a Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George (KCMG).


On 30 June 1902 at St. Margaret's, Westminster, he married Jeanne Langtry, daughter of Lillie Langtry, the famous actress. Breaking all tradition, the bride was given away by her mother.[3] Unfortunately, Malcolm's family was far from impressed by their new daughter-in-law's mother—it is likely they were highly aware that Jeanne Marie's father was not Lillie Langtry's first husband, Edward Langtry, but one of her numerous lovers—and Lillie saw less and less of her daughter. Jeanne and Sir Ian lived alternately in a house in Belgravia, London, or at the Malcolm's family seat at Poltalloch in Scotland.

They had four children: George Ian (who later succeeded as 18th Laird of Poltalloch) (1903–1976); Victor Neill (the first husband of the actress Ann Todd) (1905–1977) and Angus Christian Edward (1908–1971); and Helen Mary (1918–2010). Mary later became one of the first two female announcers on the BBC Television Service (now BBC One) from 1948 to 1956, during which time she became a household name in the UK. She died on 13 October 2010 at the age of 92.[4]


Sir Ian was the author of a number of books, including: A Persian Pastoral (poetry), Highland Lore and Legend, Paraphrased by I. Malcolm (in verse), Indian Pictures and Problems, Lord Balfour, Poets at Play (parodies), Songs of the Clachan, Stuff and Nonsense: a book of war verses, The Calendar of Empire, other essays: Vacant Thrones, Verses for Music, and War Pictures behind the Lines.

He also edited Convicted, a record of disloyal speeches, resolutions, leaflets and posters, published in Ireland and the USA between 1880 and 1911.


  1. ^ "Wills". The Times (36749). London. 23 April 1902. p. 11.
  2. ^ "Court and circular". The Times (36579). London. 7 October 1901. p. 7.
  3. ^ "Court Circular". The Times (36808). London. 1 July 1902. p. 3.
  4. ^ Purser, Philip (14 October 2010). "Mary Malcolm obituary" – via www.theguardian.com.

External links