Alexander Stewart's exact date and place of birth are uncertain. According to the Annat History, Alexander's younger brother John was born in 1540 (but the reliability of this is uncertain) which would require Alexander to be born just prior to that. Alexander's father gave up the property of Baldorran and the family were known to have had a residence on an island in Loch Vennacher and also in Creaggan, Strathyre. Alexander could have been born in either of these places.
Alexander Stewart acquired Ardvorlich ("Ard-mhoirlich" in Gaelic meaning "the height of the great hollow") in 1580 as a freeholder of the Crown. He became leader of a clan which, according to Duncan Stewart in his "History of the Stewarts", numbered about three hundred people. Alexander and his descendants were known by the Gaelic patronymic Mac-mhic-Bhaltair, "sons of the son of Walter".
This is the family that was responsible for the outlawing of the Clan MacGregor. The story goes like this:
Alexander's brother-in-law, John Drummond, who was keeper of the Royal Forest, found a group of MacGregors poaching in the forest. As punishment he cut off their ears and sent them home humiliated. The MacGregor clan rose in defence, killing Drummond and delivering his head to the dinner table of the Ardvorlich Stewarts while Alexander was away. At the sight of her brother's severed head on her dinner table, Margaret allegedly went nuts and ran off into the woods not to be found for days. Further legend has it that she was pregnant at the time and the shock sent her into labour and she delivered James Beag in the forest.
In 1592 Alistair (Alexander) Stewart of Ardvorlich led a cattle raid in Lennox with two bagpipes leading the way.
The Stewarts of Ardvorlich continue to hold this estate to this very day (The Stewarts of Balquhidder)