Succeeded 1890, died 1939
Married in 1890 Violet, daughter of Robert Charles de Grey Vyner. At their wedding the Prince of Wales, later Edward VII, proposed the health of bride and groom. Harry was a close friend of the prince who later became godfather to his son. Like the 4th Earl, he was a keen racehorse owner. A particular favourite was Buccaneer, who won the Gold Cup at Ascot. But he was also a gambler, and on one occasion bet £15,000 on Buccaneer to win the Manchester Cup. The horse lost.
He gambled at the roulette tables of Cannes and Monte Carlo and recounted his exploits in his autobiography My Gamble With Life. Six years after inheriting title, properties, estate, colleries at Dysart, assets of £50,000, and a steam yacht of great splendour, he had lost everything and was declared bankrupt.
The family silver, gold and silver plate was sold at a three-day auction in Edinburgh.
On being made bankrupt he resigned his commission in the Fife Light Horse, and he was rebuffed when he attempted to rejoin the regiment at the outbreak of the Boer War. Anxious to travel to South Africa, he secured a job as a war correspondent for the Daily Mail. In this capacity he witnessed more of the campaign than he might have foreseen, taking part in the relief of Ladysmith and being taken prisoner on two occasions. He wrote about these experiences in his book Twice Captured.
Harry’s sister Millicent married the heir to the Duke of Sutherland but his own marriage to Violet ended when he was discovered by his father-in-law to have presented a £2000 turquoise tiara to a lady friend.
Before his divorce, Harry had joined with some friends to establish ‘Lord Rosslyn’s Theatrical Performances’. He now drew on that experience and joined a touring company.
It was during that acting career that he met and within a few days married his second wife, Georgeiana. She was an American actress. The marriage lasted two years, and in 1908 he married for a third time.
In 1917 he was reinstated as a director of the collieries at Dysart and he worked there until 1923, when they were leased to the Fife Coal Company.
His son died in 1929 and, on his death in 1939, was succeeded by his grandson.