One of the original "four Johns," nothing is known of his birth and training. He was ordained at Craighead on September 6, 1755, and was specially assigned to the Southern congregation when the Presbytery was divided in 1763—"the which they do on the footing of the general call formerly tendered to him as also in consequence of the encouragement had from the voices of the commissioners from the Southern congregation." He took up residence at Quarrelwood, near Dumfries, and there a meeting-house was erected for him. He was probably the author of the historical and doctrinal sections of the Act, Declaration and Testimony of June 6, 1761. His name does not appear often in the records of Presbytery. He died on January 31, 1795.