He was born at Douglas Castle, Douglas, South Lanarkshire. The son of James Douglas, 2nd Marquess of Douglas and his first wife Lady Barbara Erskine, eldest daughter of John Erskine, 20th Earl of Mar.
Being informed that Lord Angus is in a private place within some miles of London, and haveing a more than ordinary concern in his education, both on the account of his immediat descent from the most loyall and ancient family of Douglas (by which so many signall services have been performed to our royal predecessors for many ages), and of the earnest desire we have that, in case of his liveing to represent it, he may not in his younger years becorrupted with ill principles, we have thought fit hereby to authorise you to speak with his father the Marques of Douglas, and to know from him to whose carehe has committed a trust of so much importance to our service and to himself, as is that of his son's education, at such a great distance from his relations, to the end that if, upon notice thereof from you, we shall not have reason to be therewith well satisisfied we may order a better course to be taken in reference to his breeding. It is our will and pleasure that you call for from the Marques, and transmit to usan account of the present condition of his eatate, particularly of the burden of debts wherewith it stands affected, and of the true extent of the yearly rent, both reall and casuall; as also of the courses (if any be) set down for the discharge of these debts, wherein you are to take the assistance of some of the nearest relations of the family. For truly we have so great a regard, not only to the standing thereof, but also its continuance in a splendid and plentiful condition, as we cannot but highly concern ourselfe in the right management of their fortune
Charles went further and laid down an annuity of £200 sterling a year for the education of young Angus. This grant was confirmed by Charles brother James VII and Angus was often in evidence at his court.
By 1688, Angus was back in Scotland and had given his support to William of Orange. He set about roaming his father's lands of Douglasdale to raise men to raise a new regiment from the Cameronian party. By 1689 he was Colonel of the newly founded Earl of Angus' Regiment. On the 14th May 1689 he paraded his men on the marquess' Holm, next to the Douglas Water.
- Blenheim, Ramillies, Oudenarde, Malplaquet, South Africa 1846-72, South Africa 1877-8-92, Relief of Ladysmith, South Africa 1899-1902
- The Great War [27 battalions]: Mons, Le Cateau, Retreat from Mons, Marne 1914 '18, Aisne 1914, La Bassée 1914, Messines 1914, Armentières 1914, Neuve Chapelle, Aubers, Loos, Somme 1916 '18, Albert 1916, Bazentin, Pozières, Flers-Courcelette, Le Transloy, Ancre Heights, Arras 1917 '18, Scarpe 1917 '18, Arleux, Ypres 1917 '18, Pilckem, Langemarck 1917, Menin Road, Polygon Wood, Passchendaele, St Quentin, Rosières, Avre, Lys, Hazebrouck, Bailleul, Kemmel, Scherpenberg, Soissonnais-Ourcq, Drocourt-Quéant, Hindenberg Line, Épéhy, Canal du Nord, St Quentin Canal, Cambrai 1918, Kortrijk, Selle, Sambre, France and Flanders 1914-18, Doiran 1917 '18, Macedonia 1915-18, Gallipoli 1915-16, Rumani, Egypt 1916-17, Battle of Gaza, El Mughar, Nebi Samwil, Jaffa, Palestine 1917-18
- Second World War: Ypres-Comines Canal, Odon, Cheux, Caen, Mont Pincon, Estry, Nederrijn, Best, Scheldt, South Beveland, Walcheren Causeway, Asten, Roer, Rhineland, Reichswald, Moyland, Rhine, Dreirwalde, Bremen, Artlenberg, North-West Europe 1940, '44-45, Landing in Sicily, Simeto Bridgehead, Sicily 1943, Garigliano Crossing, Anzio, Advance to Tiber, Italy 1943-44, Pegu 1942, Paungde, Yenagyaung 1942, Chindits 1944, Burma 1942 '44
Before too long at Utrecht, Angus started to hear whispers, that it was unseemly for a Colonel to be away from his regiment whilst they were at war. The regiment at this time was fighting in the armies of King William against Louis XIV of France. In By 1692, Angus was desperate to prove himself, as is attested by a letter home to his father begging him leave either to return to his men or return to obscurity in Scotland. It is not apparent what his father's reply was but James Douglas, Earl of Angus took command of his regiment, and died leading his men into action at the Battle of Steenkerque on the 3rd of August of that year.