Bane, bone and stone

This is a graveyard well worth visiting, because of the view of the Sound of Gigha, because of the abundance of beautiful old headstones and because this is an ancient place of worship, established 800 years ago in 1222. A few years later Alexander II gave it to the bishoprick of Argyll.

The Gaelic Chapel – an ambiguous gesture

It is an impressive ruin, a reminder of Cromarty's past and the people that lived in it. There are others in Scotland, one in Glasgow and one in Aberdeen, all built for the Gaelic speaking community that had arrived in these places after being cleared out of their Highland homes. They were Gaelic speakers and found themselves in places where Gaelic wasn't spoken. The Gaelic Chapel was a kind gesture to the Gaelic speaking Highlanders who had come to Cromarty. It was financed by exploiting people and nature in the colonies. However, it did not last long and is now a ruin.

a deadly cry

Somehow, Kingairloch has frequently been involved in otherworldly and supernatural phenomena in the past. Most of them have to do with a cry and a boat of a ship. Sometimes, not always, the cry was deadly. Here’s more.

a traditional Highland funeral

Christina Cochran Blacklock’s funeral was the last traditional Highland funeral in the Kingairloch district. On Christmas Day 1924, Christina Cochran, nee Blacklock, died in Fort William at the age of 82. She had survived her husband, master mariner Alexander Cochran, her daughter Helen and her son James Duncan. Her granddaughter died a few years after the grandmother. Her grandson, Rev Henry Dyall, did not attend the funeral, but he had often heard the accounts of family and neighbours.

Murlaggan’s gold

There’s not much left of the ancient graveyard, a few stones possibly marker stones in the past, an overgrown stone wall that could have been an enclosure for graves or for sheep, a giant ash tree bearing the sign: And of course, there is the cairn, erected by Canadian descendants of the MacMillans that once live here and emigrated to Canada after the disastrous defeat at Culloden in 1746.

two tunes for two graveyards

never come. There are two graveyards here on opposite sides of the sea Loch, just a few miles apart as the crow flies, the land route takes longer. They have each their very distinct tradition and a very distinct tune being played at funerals.

the minister’s grave

Reverend Donald MacInnis was the third minister to serve in Glenmoriston after the Disruption for eleven years, from 1879 until his death on September 24th 188.   The two men before him also had the charge of the Free church in Fort Augustus, where they lived. Donald MacInnis was a Glenmoriston man and he would... Continue Reading →

the chieftain Hitler wanted dead

St Mary's chapel was built by Lord Lovat, chief of the clan Fraser, in the early 19th century and is currently being restored. Normally mass is held once a month. Many of the old unusually shaped gravestones in the kirkyard are decorated with fleur de lys crosses, a pattern not very common in the Highlands.... Continue Reading →

one last handshake for the king

The Chisholms came from France originally, as did many nobles in the past; the Normans first settled in the Borders and only later moved to the Beauly area. By marriage of Alexander de Chisholme to Margaret, Lady of Erchless, Erchless castle (now a private property) became the ancestral home of the clan, its chieftains were... Continue Reading →

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