Kirkconnel – a poet and a partisan

a partisan for the pretender When Charles Edward Stuart came to Scotland in 1745 to conquer his crown and his realm, the young king-to-be landed in the Western Highlands, where he could count on most supporters. There were not many in the Borders who would have given him unwavering support, with one big exception: James... Continue Reading →

tailor, major, and prisoner

Blackmount is a pretty and small graveyard on the border between Peeblesshire and Lanarkshire. The cemetery goes back to the late 18th century. Many stones are very old and somewhere in between these stones a man was buried who left no gravestone to remember him. He was a tailor, a major and a prisoner.  ... Continue Reading →

kirk o’ the forest

They called it "the forest", plain and simple, there was never another one that size and importance. The Ettrick forest is extraordinary in the history of Scotland, its worth was political, biological and geographical. When one spoke of the forest, everyone knew which one was meant. There was only one of these dimensions; it reached... Continue Reading →

the Lockhart blunder

Carnwath cemetery Carnwath is home to the Lockhart family. Sir George Lockhart was a passionate Jacobite and a strong advocate of Scottish independence. Like his father, he died a violent death when he was killed in 1731. His father had been killed by John Chiesely of Kersewell after trying to mediate between his friend and... Continue Reading →

bodies on the beach

Sandwick cemetery, Isle of Lewis Signalman John Alex „Jack“ MacAskill died a few yards from home. He was only 19 years old. And he died a few yards from his grave in Sandwick cemetery. His parents were Hugh and Christina MacAskill. The family lived in 75 Keith Street in Stornoway, a modest grey building, like... Continue Reading →

one lucky man

Ness cemetery, Isle of lewis Norman MacKenzie was one lucky man. His family lived in Cross in the Ness district of the Isle of Lewis. Norman had seen the horrific battles of World War I and survived the ordeal. He was only 18 years old, when he was heading back home, the war was over... Continue Reading →

Bruce’s dead heir

Restenneth’s impressive tower adds grandeur to the modest simplicity of the structure that albeit many additons still feels very much 12th century. It is certainly one of the oldest churches in Scotland. The Picts Angus is the heart of the land of the Picts. If you know where to look, you’ll find their traces everywhere.... Continue Reading →

no space by her husband’s grave

St John’s chapel lies in ruins. The 15th century chapel in the Bragar cemetery stands on a much older site of which nothing can be seen any longer, it was a prehistoric settlement mount. This cemetery has a peculiar atmosphere, the many marker stones give it an overcrowded feel, and it certainly is that, crowded.... Continue Reading →

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