Robert Masterton (1856-1912)

Inspector of Poor and Burgh Chamberlain

Robert Nicol Masterton, burgh chamberlain of Dunbar, having led a life of public service, was tragically drowned at the age of 56, leaving behind his wife and four children.


Robert Nicol Masterton was the twelfth child and sixth son of John Masterton and Janet Bruce of Newburgh. His father was a linen weaver and a member of the family of Mastertons from in and around Newburgh in Fife, Scotland . A fuller genealogy of the extended family of Robert Nicol Masterton can be found at this link.

DUNBAR BURGH CHAMBERLAIN DROWNED. - Much regret was felt in Dunbar on Monday night, when it became known that Mr Robert Masterton, who was associated with numerous public offices in the burgh, had been drowned in the pond at the old brickworks in the vicinity of Westbarns. Mr Masterton was about town and in attendance at his office as usual in the afternoon. The body was observed floating in the pond, and prompt steps were taken to recover it, and on its being brought ashore efforts were made to restore animation, but without success. A native of Newburgh, Fife, Mr Masterton was for some time in the Govan parochial offices, and twenty-nine years ago he was appointed to the office of Clerk and Poor Inspector to the Dunbar Parochial Board, now the Parish Council. A man of exceptional business capacity and untiring energy, it was not long before the authorities recognised his valuable business qualities, and in course of time he was also appointed to the office of Burgh Chamberlain, where he rendered valuable service. He also held the post of clerk to the cemetery, and registrar for the burgh. Mr Masterton was an elder in the Parish Church, and it was largely due to his energy that the fine organ was erected in that church. He is survived by his widow, a son, and three daughters.

The Scotsman
14th August, 1912