Lieutenant-Colonel Maclachlan is first recorded in Southampton, aged 60, at Bellevue Place in July 1841, voting for the Conservative candidates at the general election. He soon moved to 8 Rockstone Place, where he remained until his death on 29 December 1854, aged 74. He was now, through a series of promotions as a half-pay officer, lieutenant-general, promoted in June 1854. He had entered the army as an ensign in the 69th Foot on 6 May 1795, being placed on half-pay on 25 November 1816 as a major. He served for most of his career in India. He was severely wounded during the sepoy mutiny at Vellore in July 1806 when in temporary command of his regiment at the fort.

Archibald Maclachlan was the second son of Robert Maclachlan of Strathlachlan in Argyllshire, a cousin of the clan chief Lachlan Maclachlan who fell at Culloden whilst fighting for the Jacobite cause. Three of his brothers were army officers: James, a lieutenant-colonel of Royal Artillery; Robert, a captain in the 53rd Light Infantry killed in Spain in 1809; and Alexander, a lieutenant-general of Royal Artillery. A fourth brother, Lachlan Maclachlan, owned property in Ireland and was briefly MP for Galway, elected December 1832 and unseated on petition in May 1833.

Archibald married Jane Campbell, second daughter of Captain Neil Campbell of Duntroon and Oib, a sister of General Patrick Campbell and General Sir Neil Campbell, British commissioner at Elba during Napoleon's exile to the island and later governor of Sierra Leone (died 1827). They had three children. James Maclachlan (born 1815) became a lieutenant in the 82nd Regiment. He died of yellow fever whilst the regiment was stationed in Jamaica, 1840-3. Archibald Neil Campbell Maclachlan, born in Boulogne in 1820, entered the church, becoming successively curate of New Alresford (April 1846), curate of Old Alresford (January 1848) and chaplain of St Cross Hospital near Winchester (November 1850). He served as chaplain - although largely as an absentee - throughout the Chancery proceedings on the running of the hospital under the Earl of Guilford. He was vicar of Newton Valence from 1860 until his death in March 1891, succeeded in the cure by his son. A daughter, Jane, married her first cousin, Archibald Dyce and died in India in 1838 leaving two daughters. Archibald's widow, Jane, died at 8 Rockstone Place on 24 May 1868, aged 86. She shared the house with her unmarried younger sister Elizabeth Campbell.


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