William Douglas-Hamilton, 12th Duke of Hamilton
William Hamilton was the son of William Hamilton, 11th Duke of Hamilton and his wife Princess Marie Amalie of Baden. He succeeded his father as 12th Duke of Hamilton in 1863. Upon his birth he received the title of Earl of Angus, and was educated in Eton College. In 1864 he was raised to the French Duc de Chatellerault. Three years later, he stood for the first time from financial ruin when his horse racing the Grand National Steeple Chase at Aintree won and saved him.
In 1882 he was auctioning works of art, paintings and furniture from the Hamilton Palace. The auction at Christie's lasted 17 days and brought a 400,000 pounds. The Duke was considered uncouth and hedonistic.
After the early death of his younger brother Charles George 1886, he inherited the title of Earl of Selkirk.
He married in 1873 Mary Louise ( 1854-1937 ), daughter of William Montagu, 7th Duke of Manchester with whom he had only one daughter:
- Mary (1884-1957), ∞ 1906 James Graham, 6th Duke of Montrose
His successor as Duke of Hamilton was his distant cousin Alfred Hamilton, a descendant of Anna Hamilton, younger son of the 4th Duke of Hamilton.