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 →

the Burns connection

The Church of Crosbie has a very special connection with the poet Robert Burns. Its roof collapsed on the stormy January night of 1759, in which the poet was born. Crosbie is just under 40 miles away from Alloway. The ruin was never rebuilt and has now been made inaccessible. Unfortunately, the entire cemetery is... Continue Reading →

the witch’s grave

The River Moriston is peaceful and idyllic, it can be icy in winter and angry during a flood but it is tame these days. However, deaths have occured here and men have drowned in the river. Local tradition says, twenty men drowned in a rock pool some time long ago. The place is not to... Continue Reading →

the Nessie connection

Saint Adamnan or Adomnán was a well educated and well-travelled holy man who became the 9th abbot of Iona. He lived in the 7th century and his account of the live of Saint Columba is well known in the world of Nessie hunters because it includes the first sighting of the monster at Loch Ness.... Continue Reading →

gallow’s hill

Sometimes clues to the past lie within the place names. That is especially true for Scotland where the Gaels were very descriptive in their naming of landscape as well as man-made places. A map often tells you many things about a place before you even visit. It is down to the proper translation though, to... Continue Reading →

sin – allegations of child abuse

Fort Augustus Abbey, Catholic center of power Fort Augustus Abbey - once one of the ancient Catholics homes of Scotland. The impressive building belonged to the Lovat family for generations, they lost it and regained it, only to give it away again for good. Catholic centres of worship and power were rare in Scotland after... Continue Reading →

those who died in battle

Inverlochy Cemetery Inverlochy cemetery is small, graves scattered on a rocky hillock. It looks out of use today. Locals say only people who fought in the Battle of Inverlochy were entiteled to be buried here. There are many later burials in the cemetery though, the rules were obviously not strict. (Canmore, Inverlochy cemetery) Inverlochy Castle... Continue Reading →

childhood memories

Lady Norah Fairfax-Lucy was the youngest of a family of eight living at Calgary, born in 1895. She was a Mackenzie of Mornish by birth, her father an elder of the established Church of Scotland. Sundays on Mull Both parents observed the Sunday "with great reverence" and as austere as these Sundays now seem, Lady... Continue Reading →

stormy Martin’s lofty story

Angus Martin seems to have been a memorable and intreaguing character. He was born during the reign of Mary, Queen of Scots in a time of religious upheaval and political unrest. His family was an important one and affiliated to the MacDonalds of Sleat. Angus grew up and became 1st of Bealach, the tackman's position... Continue Reading →

monster in the monastery  

Monasteries being haunted by monsters is a rare occurrence, not just in Scotland but according to legend that is exactly what had happened here in Beauly. The Eaglais Mhòr na Manachain, the big church of the monastery, was believed to be haunted by some horrific creature and „none who went to watch the churchyard or... Continue Reading →

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