Taymouth - Bealach:
The Taymouth area includes the village of Kenmore and stretch east from the shore of Loch Tay to the confluence of the River Lyon and River Tay.
IT is said that when Sir Colin Campbell, the sixth laird of Glenorchy, built the Castle of Balloch at the extreme east end of his property, he intended that it should ultimately be the centre of his domain—that his lands should extend as fai to the east as they did to the west. His territory, however, did not stretch in one unbroken line to the west, as is the case with his descendant at the present day, for the lairds of Weem and Strowan owned lands on Loch Tayside, and the chiefs of Macnab held a considerable portion of Glendochart.
The Castle of Balloch is supposed to have been founded in 1570, [A stone bearing that date, which formed a pediment to a dormer window in the old castle, is to be seen above the archway of the principal entrance to Taymouth Grounds.] but fully a century prior to that the Glenorchy Campbells had established a firm footing in Perthshire. Sir Colin Campbell, the first laird, and founder of the family, was possessed of the ruling principle which became a characteristic with his descendants. His patrimony lay on Lochaweside and in Glenorchy, but it was not long before he was in a position to exclaim : “It’s a far cry to Lochawe.” He was four times married, and by two of his wives he came into substantial “tochers” in the shape of land in different parts of the country. About 1440 he married Mariott Stewart, grand-daughter of Isabella, Duchess of Albany, the latter of whom granted him certain lands in Lennox under the grim stipulation that thieves convicted there should be hung on her gallows at Faslane. His first wife died without issue. Sir Colin married secondly Janet Stewart, the second of the three daughters and heiresses of William, Lord of Lorn, by whom he got the eighteen-merk land of the Brae of Lorn. By her he had a son, Duncan, who succeeded him, and one daughter. On the death of his father-in-law without male issue, Sir Colin succeeded to the whole superiority of the Lordship of Lorn, which he held for a time. Thus by his two first wives Sir Colin added considerably to his lands, and he displayed his achievements on the arms of his house.1 His third wife was a daughter of Robertson of Strowan, and his fourth was Margaret Stirling, daughter of the laird of Keir. Of the lands on Loch Tayside, Sir Colin acquired Auchmore in tack from Menzies of Weem. For the assistance he rendered in the capture of the murderers of James I., he was granted by James III. the barony of Lawers, on the north side of Loch Tay, formerly held by Chalmers, who was accessory to the assassination of the unfortunate king. He Duilt Inveraray Castle for his nephew, the Earl of Argyll, whose guardian he was; but regarding Kilchurn Castle, on Loch Awe, there is doubt as to whether he was the actual founder of it, as there is a story that it was the work of one of his wives, who built it out of the accumulated rents of the estate during seven years’ absence of her lord and master, when he was fighting against the Turks in the Isle of Rhodes. He died in 1475, and was buried at Kilmartin.
Sir Duncan, the second laird, extended the family possessions on Loch Tayside by acquiring the barony of Finlarig, which had been long in the hands of the Drummonds of Stobhall, and also the tack of the twelve-merk land of Crannich from the Laird of Weem. About 1492 he came into possession of the lands of Balloch. Glenlyon likewise fell into his hands, and he received a charter from James IV., appointing him Bailie of Discher and Toyer, and Glenlyon, when he took in tack the King’s lands in Breadalbane. He was twice married, and had four sons and three daughters. To Archibald, his second son, he gave Glenlyon, and to his brother John, who had in his father’s lifetime received the barony of Lawers, he gave the eight-merk land of Shian, in Glenquaich, which he had also acquired.
Until the purchase of Finlarig, with its old castle, which had been built by the Drummonds, the Augustinian Priory, in the Isle of Loch Tay, seems to have been the residence of the Glenorchy Campbells in this quarter. There was certainly, in those days, a degree of security both from man and beast in living on an island. Kilchurn Castle, however, continued to be the chief seat for some time, and it was there that the third and fourth lairds breathed their last. They were both buried in the chapel of Finlarig, which had been erected by the third laird to be “ ane Buriall for himselfif and his Posteritie.” Sir John, the fifth laird, died in the Isle of Loch Tay, on the 5th of July, 1550, and Sir Colin succeeded as sixth laird.
From the time of the second laird to the date of the building of Balloch, the feus of the King’s lands in Breadalbane had been purchased, and several properties, including Ardbeich, Edinample and Edinchip, in Perthshire, besides others in Argyllshire, had been added to the patrimony or given to younger sons.
It would seem that Sir Colin, the sixth laird, did not at first intend to build his castle at Balloch, for it is said he commenced to rear a structure overlooking Loch Tay, on the farm of Easter Acharn, about two miles from Kenmore; but in this his plans were frustrated by the interposition of his clan, or, as another story has it by a witch, who prevailed upon him to hold eastward, and stop where he heard the first mavis sing, which was in the hedges at Balloch, and there to establish his castle. (The site of the former is yet pointed out at Tomvoulin, about 300 yards from the bridge which crosses the Acharn burn above the falls). He could not have gone much further to the east for a site, as his territory was bounded in that direction by Cromauldan, a small burn which runs into the Tay opposite Inchadney. He had as his immediate neighbours a cadet of the house of Weem, who held the barony of Comrie on the eastern shoulder of Drummond Hill, the Earl of Athole, who had Wester Stix, and the Stewarts, afterwards of Ballechin, who had Middle Stix. Within a stone-throw of the castle, on the opposite bank of the Tay, was the glebe of the parish minister, and there also stood the manse, church, and churchyard of Inchadney, as the parish of Kenmore was then designated.
We have no idea as to the style of structure of the Castle of Balloch in those days, for although we have prints showing what it was like in the last century, we cannot accept these as representations of the old building, as doubtless it had been altered to suit the taste and requirements of the intervening generations. Sir Colin died within its walls on the eleventh of April, 1583. He was succeeded by his son, Duncan—Black
Duncan, as he came to be called in after days, more it is said, from his black deeds than from his dark visage. His mother was Catherine, second daughter of Lord Ruthven.
About sixteen years after he succeeded, Sir Duncan purchased from the Earl of Athole, the forty-shilling land of Wester Stix, for which he gave five thousand merks, and for a like sum he acquired the eight-and-a-half-merk land of Middle Stix and the superiority of Garrows, in Glenquaich, from the Laird of Ballechin. He apparently had in view his father’s ambitious intention of holding his face to the rising sun. In Athole he purchased the five-pound land of Dumfallandies, the thirteen-merk land of Drumquhassil, the four-merk land of Pitnacree, and the barony of Lude also fell into his hands; these, in addition to numerous other properties, both in Perthshire and Argyll. He had to disburse to King James VI. the sum of two thousand merks to renew the feu of the Lordship of Discher and Toyer, it having been again annexed to the Crown, owing to the low ebb to which the Royal Exchequer had fallen. He gave to Menzies of Weem twenty-eight thousand merks for the lands of Crannich, Morenish, Auchmore, and Kenknock, lying on Loch Tayside. All these possessions, with the exception of Morenish, formed parts of the Parish of Weem, recently transferred to Kenmore.
Sir Duncan is erroneously looked upon in Breadalbane as the founder of the family, but well might he have been, were it only for the acquisitions he made in land. He was also a great castle-builder. He built Finlarig Castle on the site of the old one ; the tower of Achallader, wherein the first Earl of Breadalbane afterwards held his meeting with the chiefs of the insurgent clans in July, 1691 : the House of Lochdochart: “ane great howse” in Benderaloch; and the House of Barcaldine. He made improvements on Kilchurn Castle, and also threw up an embankment along the Tay at an enormous cost, to keep back the waters from flooding Balloch. He took a fatherly interest in his sisters, saw the surviving ones all married to powerful chiefs, and provided them with handsome tochers.
The Tom-na-croiche in Kenmore Park, and the pit and gallows tree at Finlarig, are looked upon as memorials of Black Duncan’s sway, and those who have but a hazy knowledge of the family history, would ascribe to him all the iniquities of the times. One local tradition credits him with the execution of the chief of the Macgregors, called by some Macgregor of Coul, on Kenmore Green, while in reality it was his illustrious father who performed that grim ceremony. The seat of this Macgregor has erroneously come to be located at a spot called Coul, some hundred yards to the west of the principal entrance to Taymouth Grounds, and some time ago there were pointed out to us, in all seriousness, the foundations of his castle. The configuration of the ground would certainly give one the idea that a building of considerable size had stood there, as a building actually did, but the foundations shewn us were merely the remains of a summer-house, called the Temple of ^Eolus, erected by one of the Earls of Breadalbane in the last century, and long since demolished—so long as to be entirely beyond the ken of our informant. The temple was circular in form, and what is left of it could without a great stretch of imagination be transformed into the round tower of an ancient fortalice. This Coul is situated in Wester Stix, which, as already mentioned belonged to the Earls of Athole. Close to the principal lodge, on the east side of the gateway, are three stones, placed slightly apart, also erroneously connected with the Macgregors as boundary marks of their property. They are stones which were used in connection with an old gateway, or rather two gateways, which formerly stood there, and gave admittance to Muttonhole and Inchadney Ferry the one way, and to Kenmore the other. This was before the present road by way of the F.ort was constructed.
We are indebted to Sir Duncan Campbell’s taste and wise judgment for many of the fine trees which adorn the parks and country about Taymouth, for we are told he “causit saw ackornis and seid of fir therein, and plantit in the samen young fir and birk, Anno 1613 and 1614.” The avenue called the Dark Walk, behind the castle, was planted by him, as well as the terraces on each side of the river. The grounds of Balloch, confined within small limits at the time, were laid out by him; and he instituted regulations and laws for his tenantry in the management of their holdings and morality of their homes.
In 1617, Sir Duncan was appointed to the office of Heritable Keeper of the Forests of Mamlorn, Bendaskerly, and Finglen. In 1625, he was created a Baronet of Nova Scotia. He was twice married—first to a daughter of John, Earl of Athole; and, secondly, to the only daughter of Patrick, fifth Lord Sinclair. He had a family of eight sons and three daughters. He died at Balloch, 3rd June, 1631, and was succeeded by his eldest son, Colin, who is best known as the patron of George Jamesone, many of whose paintings still hang on the walls of Taymouth Castle. Sir Colin married Julian, daughter of Hugh, first Lord Loudon, and died without issue in 1640.
Sir Robert, his brother, succeeded as ninth laird and third baronet, and it was during his time that Montrose laid waste his lands “betwixt the ford of Lyon and point of Lismore,” causing damage to the amount of 1,200,000 merks. The Castle on the Isle of Loch Tay was besieged by the Royalists, whose guns— planted where Taymouth Gardens now are, and within easy range— did much damage to the structure. From Sir Robert descended the Campbells of Carwhin, of Glenfalloch, of Lochdochart, and of Auchlyne.
John, his eldest son, succeeded as fourth baronet. He was twice married, and by his first wife, Lady Mary Graham, daughter of William, Earl of Strathern, he had several children, amongst them a daughter, Agnes, who became the wife of Sir Alexander Menzies of Weem, and an only surviving son, also named John, who was destined to figure conspiciously in the history of the country.
The latter was born about 1635. In 1657, he married Lady Mary Rich, daughter of Henry, Earl of Holland, who was beheaded for his attachment to the cause of Charles the Martyr. By her he had two sons, Duncan and John. In 1672, for pecuniary assistance rendered, he received a disposition of the lands held by George, sixth Earl of Caithness, who at the same time nominated him as his successor to the titles on his demise, which took place in 1676. This disposition was at first acknowledged by Parliament, and accordingly Sir John Campbell was in the following year created Earl of Caithness, by patent dated at Whitehall. His first wife having been dead by this time, he, in April, 1678, married the deceased Earl’s widow, who was a daughter of Archibald, Marquis of Argyll, by whom he had one son Colin, who was afterwards styled of Ardmaddy, and who died at London on the 31st March, 1708, at the age of twenty-nine. It was this Colin who left what was known as the Ardmaddy Mortification, secured over his estate in Nether Lorn, for the relief of the poor of the parish of Kenmore. It amounted to one hundred pounds, the interest of which the minister and kirk session had the distribution of.
George Sinclair of Keiss, the heir male of the Caithness family—the sixth Earl having had no issue—at once set about to dispute the new Earl’s right to the titles and estates, and seized the lands by force, upon which Earl John gathered together his clansmen and followers in Breadalbane, and marched thence into Caithness and engaged in a conflict near Altimarlach, which ended in the utter route of the Sinclairs. Keiss, however, did not rest there, and by dint of perseverance he got Parliament to listen to his claim, and it was eventually found that he was the rightful heir to the title, which was accordingly conveyed to him in 1681. To compensate Sir John Campbell for the loss he thus sustained, he was, the same year, created Earl of Breadalbane and Holland, Viscount of Tay and Paintland, Lord Glenorchy, Benderaloch, Ormelie, and Weik, with the precedency of his former title. He had for a time to relinquish the Caithness estates also, but on the death of his old opponent, in 1698, he again succeeded to them, and held them up till his death in 1717, when they were sold. The connection of the Campbells with Caithness is commemorated in a saying still current in Breadalbane, Or Ghalhi air bord Bhealaich—the Caithness gold on the Balloch table—and the march called the Breadalbane Salute, or Bhodach nan Brigeis, is said to have been composed by Glenorchy’s piper before the battle of Altimarlach.
The action which the first Earl of Breadalbane took in connection with what led to the Massacre of Glencoe is well known, and will ever cause his name to be mentioned with ignominy and opprobrium. Although unable to take an active part in the Rebellion of ’15 through the infirmities of old age, he sent his clan out in favour of King James. General Wade estimates the number of the Breadalbane men who took the field at one thousand. They were placed under the leadership of Campbell of Glendaruel, a cadet of the house, who joined the main force of the Jacobite army under General Gordon. In the attempt to take the Duke of Argyll’s Castle of Inveraray, a body of the Glenorchy Campbells took part, although somewhat unwillingly be it said, owing to the power that nobleman exercised in the west; but on the withdrawal of the insurgent clans from the county of Argyll, they returned to their homes, and do not appear to have again taken up arms. The remainder followed the fortunes of the Rebellion, and at Sheriffmuir on the 13th -of November, 1715, fought in Mar’s victorious right wing, against the Duke of Argyll, who was at the head of the Royalist troops. There is a tradition in Breadalbane that Duncan, Lord Ormelie, the Earl’s eldest son, was present and fought at Sheriffmuir along with his clan, but for this we believe there is no foundation. He appears to have been rather weak minded, and was under control. We cannot, therefore, be surprised that his father should have passed him over and nominated John, Lord Glenorchy, his second son, to succeed him both in the titles and estates. This procedure on the part of the Earl has been much commented on, and various reasons assigned without arriving at the true one. Lord Ormelie was born in 1660, and died in 1727, ten years after his father. He lived at Achmore when his brother succeeded to the Earldom. The first Earl married a third time, and had a daughter, Mary, who became the wife of Sir Archibald Cockburn of Langton. This estate passed by purchase in 1758 from the Cockburns, who had held it since the fourteenth century, to David Gavin, whose daughter was married in 1793 to John, fourth Earl and afterwards first Marquis of Breadalbane.
By disposition dated 1685, John, Lord Glenorchy, second son of the first Earl of Breadalbane, succeeded to the honours and estates on the death of his father in 1717. He was born on 19th November, 1662. He was twice married—first, in 1685, to Lady Frances Cavendish, eldest daughter of Henry, Duke of Newcastle. She died without issue in 1690. He married secondly, in 1695, Lady Henrietta, sister of the Earl of Jersey and daughter of Sir Edward Villiers. He died on 23rd Feb., 1752, at Holyrood House, leaving a son, John, and a daughter, Lady Henrietta, who died unmarried. Another daughter, Lady Charlotte, predeceased him.
During the Rebellion of ’45, the Earl of Breadalbane espoused the Hanoverian cause, and was the means of preventing the most of his clan from taking up arms for Prince Charlie, as their inclination would have led them to do. Kilchurn and Finlarig Castles, both occupied for the last time, were garrisoned by the Royalists, as well as Kingshouse, which had purposely been built as a barracks after the ’15, when General Wade constructed the military road through the Blackmount. It may be interesting to state here that the lead mines at Tyndrum, the property of the Earl of Breadalbane, were in full operation at this time. They were wrought by Sir Robert Clifton, of Clifton, apparently a keen Jacobite, as we find considerable destruction was done to his mining apparatus and other furnishings by the Argyllshire Militia when passing that way. There is no doubt that the little village of Clifton,1 near Tyndrum, the origin of which name has latterly puzzled many, was called after Sir Robert, in whose time we may assume the lead was first worked, and the village built for the accommodation of the miners.
John, the third Earl, was born in 1696. In 1721 he married Jemima, eldest daughter of Henry, Duke of Kent, and by her had a son, Henry, who died in 1727, and a daughter, who succeeded her maternal grandfather, and became Marchioness of Grey, and married Viscount Royston, afterwards Earl of Hardwicke. His first wife dying in 1727, Lord Breadalbane married in 1730, Arabella, grand-daughter of Sir Thomas Pershall, Baronet, of Great Sugnall, Staffordshire, by whom he had two sons, the eldest of whom, George, died at Moffatt, on the 24th March, 1744. The second son, John, Lord Glenorchy, was born in London in 1738. He married in 1761, Willielma, the youngest daughter of Dr. William Maxwell, of Preston. This was the good Lady Glenorchy, whose memory will ever be cherished for her pious actions and useful life. Of this marriage one son was born, who died in infancy. Lord Glenorchy, through his mother, succeeded to the estate of Sugnall, which he afterwards sold, and he purchased the property of Barnton, in Midlothian, where he died on the 14th November, 1771. His widow survived till 1786.
The third Earl was educated at Oxford, and at the early age of twenty-two became Minister Plenipotentiary at the court of Denmark. He sat in Parliament for Saltash for a time, and afterwards represented Oxford. In 1731 he was appointed British Minister in Russia. When spoken of in Breadalbane to the present day, he is referred to as the Ambassador. He was Senior Knight of the Bath, and Lord High Admiral of Scotland. He made a great many improvements on his vast estates. He can never be excused however, for the obliteration of the Parish Churchyard at Inchadney, an act carried out purely on selfish grounds. At his death, which took place at Holyrood House, on 26th January, 1782, the male line, as descended from the first Peer, became extinct.
The succession then devolved, by virtue of a clause in the patent in favour of heirs male general, on John Campbell, born in 1762, the elder son of Colin Campbell, of Carwhin, descended from the second surviving son of the third Baronet. His mother was a daughter of Archibald Campbell, of Stonefield, and sister of Lord Stonefield. She died 16th April, 1813. His only brother, Colin, a captain in the 99th Regiment of Foot, was granted the lands of Edinample, Glenogle, and Glenbeich, the last named being designated Carwhin, in Balquhidder. Colin also possessed Balnaguard, a property in Strathtay. He superintended many improvements which were carried out in Breadalbane, principally fencing, planting, and road-making. He died, unmarried, at Edinample Castle, in 1792.
In 1793 two fencible regiments were raised by the fourth Earl of Breadalbane, and in the following year a third battalion was embodied, bringing up the total strength to 2,300 men, of whom some 1,600 were drawn from the Breadalbane estates. The first and second battalions were disbanded in 1799, and it was not till 1802 that the third battalion was reduced, on its return from Ireland, whither it had been sent in 1795, it having been raised for service in that country if necessary. A great number of the men were granted holdings in Breadalbane, many free of rent, during the remainder of their lives. Employment was found for others about Taymouth and elsewhere.
Lord Breadalbane sat as a Scotch representative peer, from 1784 to 1806. when he was created Baron Breadalbane of Taymouth, in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. In 1831, at the coronation of William IV., he was made Earl of Ormelie and Marquis of Breadalbane. He married in 1793 Mary Turner, eldest daughter and co-heiress of David Gavin, of Langton, who in 1770 had married Lady Elizabeth Maitland, daughter of the seventh Earl of Lauderdale. David Gavin’s father and grandfather successively held the office of beadle at Lunan Parish Church, in Forfarshire. He went to Holland, where he amassed considerable wealth, and, returning to Scotland, purchased in 1758 the estate of Langton from the Cockburns. He had three daughters, who inherited his large fortune. This family the poor of Kenmore have reason to bless, for the Gavin mortification, which is distributed half-yearly among the most necessitous in the parish, was left by Elizabeth, one of the daughters. The principal, which is secured over a portion of the Breadalbane estate, yields a sum of fifty pounds per annum. Lord Breadalbane erected a monument to his wife during her lifetime, within the policies of Taymouth. It occupies the site of an old summerhouse, called Maxwell’s Buildings, on the north bank of the Tay. Surmounted by a stone cross, it stands about 30 feet high, and is of shapely proportions. It is approached by a flight of steps, which encircles the building. A heavy door of chlonte-slate—of which stone the monument is built—gives admission to a spiral stair, which leads to a small arched gallery running round the structure, open to the exterior. On a brass mural tablet there is the following inscription:—
This Building is Dedicated to my Faithful Friend and Fellow-Labourer,
MARY, COUNTESS OF BREADALBANE,
Whose maternal care has been long extended to all around this place.—Anno Domini, 1831.
She died on the 25th September, 1845, leaving two daughters and one son. Lady Elizabeth Maitland, the elder daughter, became, in 1831, the wife of Sir John Pringle, of Stitchell. Lady Mary, the younger daughter, was married in 1819 to the Marquis of Chandos, afterwards Duke of Buckingham, and died 28th June, 1862. Taymouth Castle was built by the Marquis, and there he died, on the 29th of March, 1834. His only son, John, Earl of Ormelie, succeeded as second Marquis. He was born at Dundee on the 26th of October, 1796, and married in 1821, Eliza, daughter of George Baillie, of Jerviswood. He successfully contested Perthshire in 1832, with Sir George Murray, and sat in Parliament for that county till his father’s death. In 1862 he died, without leaving issue, at Lausanne, in Switzerland, where his father had spent a good many of his young days. At his death the Marquisate of Breadalbane became extinct, but the Earldom being a Scottish honour, passed to John Alexander Gavin Campbell, of Glenfalloch, descended from the third surviving son of Sir Robert Campbell, third Baronet.
The sixth Earl, who was born in 1824, was a captain in the 1 st Royals. He married Mary Theresa, daughter of Mr. J. Edwards, of Dublin, by whom he had three sons (one of whom, Norman, born in 1866, died the same year) and one daughter. The Countess of Breadalbane died at Nice, on the 27th of February, 1870, at the early age of 38. The sixth Earl died at his residence in London, on the 20th of March, 1871. His eldest son, Gavin, born at Fermoy, 9th April, 1851, succeeded to the titles and estates, and in 1872, married Lady Alma, youngest daughter of James, fourth Duke of Montrose. The following year he was created Baron Breadalbane of Kenmore in the peerage of the United Kingdom, and in 1885 he was raised to the dignity of Earl of Ormelie, and Marquis of Breadalbane in the same peerage. He is seventeenth laird of Glenorchy, counting from his ancestor, Black Colin of Rhodes.
Since the time of Sir Duncan Campbell, the seventh laird, over a century elapsed before any addition was made to the lands about Balloch. The office of Bailie of the King’s lands in Breadalbane, including the Lordship of Discher and Toyer, had been bestowed on the second laird by James IV. during his minority, and afterwards confirmed by him by charter dated at Perth, 3rd September, 1498. This office was a hereditary one, and in 1748, when the Act for the Abolition of Heritable Jurisdiction in Scotland came into force, the second Earl of Breadalbane was deprived of the Bailliary, and having, in terms of the Act, to expend the solatium made him for the loss of the office in the purchase of land, he acquired the Barony of Comrie,1 a seventeen-merk land, after that date. The lands comprehending this barony, lie in the parishes of Kenmore, Dull and Fortingall, the portion now in Dull being formerly in Weem; and were then divided into the following possessions:—Strone Comrie and Point of Lyon, Little Comrie, Mains of Comrie, Auchinleys, and 'Comrie Castle, on the banks of the river Lyon, now an ivy clad ruin, is said to have been the first residence of the Menzieses of Weem in this quarter. It was destroyed by fire in 1487, and afterwards repaired and given to a second son when the old castle of Weem was built.
At the east end of Drummond Hill, situated on a huge mass of rock jutting out from the hillside, are the remains of an ancient castramentation locally known as “the Roman fort” and also called Dune-mackh-Tual. It is a hill fort of the rudest character. A precipice of considerable height rendered it impregnable from the east, and on the west, where, from the nature of the ground it would have been otherwise defenceless, it appears to have been protected by a double line of wall of undressed stone, void of mortar, outside of which was an entrenchment. The walls had been continued on the north and south where necessary. Probably of Pictish origin, it had been the standpoint to which the natives were driven when the valley beneath was being overrun by invaders. That its chief object was a place of defence is apparent, but it may also have been used as a beacon station, for which, from its command of a vast stretch of couutry, especially towards the east, it would have been most suitable. Indeed, this would seem obvious, if we attach signification to the name of a possession close by. Almost immediately below the fort, on the north side, and sloping to the river Lyon, are the lands of Auchinleys. This name, now corrupted into Achloa, signifies the field of the beacon.
Laggan. These, with the exception of the field at Lyon Point, are now in one farm. The Shealings of Comrie lay near Schiehallion. The Mains of Comrie was, for a number of years, the home-farm to Taymouth Castle.
The whole of the lands on the north side of the River Tay, from the Point of Lyon westward, were now in the Earl’s possession with the exception of a portion of Inchadney. There the minister of the parish had his glebe. His manse stood at the angle formed by the bend of the river, while a little to the east of it were the church and churchyard of the parish. There is doubt as to the derivation of the word Inchadney, but in all probability the place takes its name from Aidan, the titular saint of Kenmore. We give most of the ways in which we have seen the name spelt: —1491, Inchaden; 15n, Inchadin; 1522, Inchaidin; 1523-97, Inchadden and Inchaddin; circa, 1619, Inschschaddin; 1629, Inshyddin; 1643, Inchadine; 1740, Inschchecharden; 1728, Inchaldne ; 1754, Inchaddon ; 1759, Inchaidne; 1779, Inchadny ; 1781, Insh Hadney; 1785, Inshadney; 1862 (Ordnance Survey), Inchadney. It is a very old ecclesiastical site ; and from the Chronicle of Fothergill we find many interments of local magnates were made within the walls of the church. Some were buried in the choir of the church, and on the north and south sides of the great altar, and others before the steps of the altar and in the nave. Inchadney formed the last resting-place of the Macgregors, the old lairds of Balloch, and of the Robertsons, Barons of Carwhin. An entry in the Chronicle shows that, in 1526, the pedestal of the cross of the church was repaired by Dougall Johnson (McGregor).
Among the pre-Reformation clergy here, we find the following:—1468, Robert Mclnayr; 1510, Sir Maureis McNauchtane; before 1523, Sir Duncan McNachtane, and 1547, Sir Alec McGillespie. Sir Duncan Campbell, seventh laird of Glenorchy, “conquessit the patronage of Inschschaddin,” prior to 1619, for the right of which he gave two thousand merks. Sir Colin, his successor, paid a similar sum for the annuity of the teinds of his lands, which the King had taken possession of, but there being a mistake in the conveyance of those of Inchadney, through the omission of the signatures of the Bishop and Dean of Dunkeld, he obtained a new tack in 1636, from the Rev. William Menzies, then minister, at a cost of one thousand merks. About 1762 an excambion took place between the third Earl and the Rev. James Campbell, minister of the parish, whereby the glebe at Inchadney became the property of the former, and a new one was portioned off at Croftnacaber, near Kenmore, and a manse erected thereon. The parish then appears to have given up its rights to worship at Inchadney, as well as to bury its dead there. The Earl of Breadalbane attained his end—the whole of Inchadney was now his own.
Inchadney was used all along as a general place of burial irrespective of parishes. According to local tradition, the last to be interred there were two persons, one of whom had died at Bolfracks, and the other at Fearnan; and to relieve the spirit of either of the departed from for ever undergoing the doom of the Faire-chlaoidh,x the relatives arranged that the two burials should take place on the same day and at the same hour, and this was solemnly carrried out. When Inchadney ceased to be a place of burial, one or two of the tombstones were removed from there to Kenmore Churchyard, where they may be identified by the curious fact of their being placed at the foot of the graves at which they stand. The others were rudely thrown aside, and in the beginning of this century were taken to the front of Taymouth Castle, then in course of erection, and made serviceable in places where the ground was rendered soft by the constant traffic of the builders.
[It was generally believed that the spirit of the last person buried had to keep watch at the entrance to a graveyard until the next burial. The writer was told, by an eye witness, of a funeral at which the mourners ran with the coffin to be in advance of another burial, which was to take place the same day.]
Within six years after the last interments, the graveyard was planted with trees. The old church was converted into a steading or stable, and was latterly used in connection with Comrie, when it formed the home-farm. It was pulled down in 1828, and one alive until recently, who assisted in the demolition, told us of the great strength of the structure. The woodwork of the roof was of natural fir, axe dressed, and as hard as bone, and the rafters were nailed through the wall-plates into the walls with iron nails, a foot in length. The greatest difficulty was experienced in unroofing the building. The graveyard was replanted some years ago with spruce fir. A clump of similar trees marks the spot where the manse stood.
Markets were held at Inchadney up to 1575, when they were removed to Kenmore. Until 1469 markets in Scotland were held on Sundays and other holy days, and often took place within the kirkyards and even within the kirks. In that year an act was passed forbidding them to be held on holy days, but it was not till 1503, that it was made illegal to hold them within the kirkyards. Little attention was paid to the enactments, and the disregard for the religious observation of Sunday continued. In 1579, James VI., in ratifying the acts already passed, added a fine of ten shillings Scots, and also a fine of twenty shillings for anyone “gaming, playing, passing to taverns or ale-houses, selling of meat and drink and wilful remaining from the kirk in time of sermon or prayers,” and if the offenders were unwilling or unable to pay they were put in the stocks or jougs.
After the acquisition of Wester and Middle Stix, the Breadalbane property, on the south side of the Tay, extended to Croftmoraig burn, which formed the boundary between Middle and Easter Stix. It would be a difficult matter at the present day to trace the original marches of the lands of Balloch, Wester and Middle Stix, but roughly speaking the parish boundaries, as they stood before the recent alterations, may be taken as the divisions of these properties. Balloch lies wholly in Kenmore parish, and was divided into two portions, Wester and Easter. Cromauldan, already referred to, is, for the greater part of the way, the boundary between Kenmore and what was formerly a detached part of the old parish of Weem, which latter may be recognised as embracing solely the forty-shilling land of Wester Stix. Included in Wester Stix were the inn and braes of Muttonhole and island of the same name opposite Inchadney. Not a vestige of the inn remains, but the road leading to it is still discernible. An apple tree, the last remnant of the garden, was cut down some years ago. To the east of Wester Stix are the lands of Middle Stix, extending from the river Tay to Easter Ledchrosk. These lands belonged to the Cardneys of that ilk, and were, about i486, sold by Patrick Cardney to Sir John Stewart, a natural son of James II., and progenitor of the Stewarts who afterwards acquired Ballechin, in Strathtay. Middle Stix, therefore, may be called the cradle of that family. Croftmoraig or Croftmorry (Mary’s Croft), also formerly called Marchfield, forms part of these lands. Two possessions there were called Drumcroy and Drumnamuick, names long obsolete. The tenants of Dull village in olden times had their shealings on Croftmoraig hill. Easter Stix—which lies between the burn of Croftmoraig and the Tullichuil burn—is the only portion of these lands which has retained the old name to the present day. This property latterly belonged to James Menzies of Culdares, who, in 1775, excambed it for Kenknock and Eastermore [The one-merk land of Kenknock, and the ten-shilling land of Eastermore, with the shealings of Innervarrane, Garvletter, and Ariphoula, all in Glenlyon, formed part of the Barony of Glenlyon, which was held from 1502 to 1685 by a branch of the Glenorchy Campbells. In the latter year the then laird conveyed Glenlyon to the Marquis of Athole, whose son the Earl of Tullibar-dine sold Kenknock and Eastermore to Angus Macdonald in 1699. Angus Macdonald, who died in 1731, was succeeded by his son Angus, who with the consent of his son, Angus, sold the lands to Breadalbane.] in Glenlyon, which then belonged to Breadalbane. It was divided into Lower, Middle, and Braes of Stix. The buildings on these different possessions have long since been razed to the ground, with the exception of Stix House, on the banks of the Tay. Culdares’ sister lived there for many years when he was in the army. It was afterwards occupied by Dr. McLagan, who left it when he purchased the estate of Glenquaich, in Strathmore. The neighbouring field, known as the Doctor’s Park, was called after him. The houses of Middle Stix lay between the public road and the present village, which was erected about 1816. There was a meal mill on Croftmoraig burn, near to Lower Stix.
Four years previous to the excambion of Easter Stix, the adjoining property of Tullichuil was purchased by the third Earl from Sir Robert Menzies, Baronet, of Weem, who at the same time sold the lands of Borlick, Aberfeldybeg, Aberfeldy, Dun-taylor, and Duntuim. Bolfracks was then in the possession of a cadet of the house of Weem; so that, prior to 1771, the whole stretch of country, from the Grandtully march to Croftmoraig burn, was, with the exception of the estate of Moness, in the hands of the Menzieses. Moness was for long owned by the Flemyngs, and in 1787 was sold by James Stewart Flemyng, W.S., who also then possessed the estate of Killiechassie, to the fourth Earl of Breadalbane. The barony of Bolfracks was anciently part of Garth, which would seem to account for its being formerly in the parish of Fortingall. In 1635, the Earl of Athole had Bolfracks. In 1707 it was feued to Alexander Menzies, whose descendants held it till 1808, when it was sold to Lord Breadalbane. It is held under the crown.
The old roadway from Kenmore ferry to Aberfeldy passed behind the inn at Kenmore. At the foot of the brae, where the estate office stable is, it turned to the left at a right angle, and proceeded through the Taymouth parks in a straight line till in front of the castle, whence it crossed the Balloch burn and ran along the slope of the hill to where the principal lodge now is. Here and there it can be distinctly traced, but of the trees which lined it on both sides to within sight of the castle only two or three are now standing. A road branched off near Tom-na-croich to the braes of Balloch, and thence to Glenquaich. Tom-na-croich —the hanging hill, as its name implies—was where the knights of Glenorchy, great justiciaries in their time, carried out the last penalty of the law on offenders found guilty at the courts at Balloch and Kenmore. In the Chronicle of Fothergill there are two entries1570, “The VII. da of Apryill, Gregor McGregor of Glenstra heddyt at Belloch anno sexte an ten yeris.” “Item. Donald Dow McCouil Vc. Quhewin heddyt at the Kenmore be Collyn Campbel of Glenurquhay, the servint day of Apryill, and zirdyt in Fortygill that samyn day, the yer of God ane M. Vc. sexte xiiij yeris.” A portion of the retaining wall of the plateau on which the gallows stood is still remaining. Within view and close to the river is an eminence, partly artificial, called the Lady’s Mount. As it was no uncommon occurrence in olden times for women of gentle birth to witness executions, this spot may thus have been occupied on such occasions. In 1804 Tom-na-croich was planted with larch trees, and several carronades were placed on the summit.
About the middle of last century the policies of Taymouth underwent a great change at the hands of the second Earl and his son. The public road through the grounds was converted into a private drive to the castle, and a new one was constructed from Kenmore to near the foot of the Balloch burn, where it joined the old road. The line of the new road, in admitting of a considerable addition being made to the policies near Kenmore, was certainly a peculiar one. Running along the end of the loch, it ascended the hill with a steep incline for some distance, then turning sharply eastward, it passed the old houses of Balnaskiag or Bigrow, and thence down the hill till it reached Ballivouline, a small hamlet with a mill—as the name signifies—and an inn, the site of which is now occupied by Taymouth sawmill. The arable ground of the tenants of Ballivouline lay on the slope of the hill. The large field to the east is still called Croft Bisset, and traces of several buildings are to be seen close to the burn of Balloch, which was here crossed by a bridge yet standing. Other crofts in the vicinity of Taymouth were known as Peat Croft, Coupar’s Croft, and Mclnesker’s Croft, names long forgotten. Near the wooden bridge in front of Taymouth castle there is a clump of Portugal laurels which marks the site of a porter’s lodge which was built there, and which was demolished about 1799. It stood on the south side of the public road, and opposite one which branched off to the castle. Along the whole line, from Kenmore to near Croftmoraig burn, a park wall was erected, and numerous walks and footpaths were cut on the hillside. The Surprise Walk was made about this time, and from it led what was called the Nutting Walk. In 1762 the former was planted with larch trees, many of which were blown down during a severe gale which occurred on the nth November, 1829. Those remaining have attained considerable growth, and are, perhaps, the finest to be seen in the locality.
Here and there, both within and without the park wall, numerous summer houses sprang up, only one of which now remains on a conical mound near the sawmill. It was called Apollo’s Temple, and was surmounted by a metal cast of the god, now lying at the base with dismembered limbs. The Temple of Venus stood on Tom-more, and was demolished before 1830 to make way for the dairy, which was then built on its site. (The latter is constructed of quartz from Kenmore hill and Fearnan, chiefly from the former). Another summer house, called the Recess, stood at the east end of the Surprise Walk, and above Muttonhole was the Temple of ^Eolus already referred to. On the field below Croftmoraig was Mary’s Temple, called also the Octagon from it shape. It was removed in 1836. On the north terrace walk, at Inchadney, was the Star Seat, the stones from which were used towards the construction of the battery on the same site in 1829; and Maxwell’s buildings stood at the west end of the walk. About the same time as these summer houses were built, Rhevard on Drummond hill was brought into cultivation, possibly as an experiment. The flower and kitchen gardens of Balloch, hitherto in front of the castle, were transplanted to the east of Newhall, which was then called the poultry court. The old Chinese bridge across the Tay, behind the castle, the first tower near Druimntuirk or the Boar’s Ridge, and the Hermitage at the Falls of Acharn, were all erected about the same period.
In the end of last century one of the houses at Newhall was reconstructed as a residence and office for John Kennedy, who was appointed factor of Breadalbane about 1794—an appointment formerly held chiefly by relatives of the family, who, possessing properties of their own, did not reside permanently at Balloch. In 1675 Duncan Campbell of Auchlyne was factor of the Perthshire property. He was followed by Mungo Campbell of Kinloch. John Campbell of Achallader, and his son who succeeded him, held continuous office for the long period of ninety years till 1786, when William Stewart of Ardvorlich became factor. He in turn was succeeded by David Campbell of Glenlyon, who remained in office for about a year, and after a similar period during which the affairs of the estate were carried on by the Earl’s cashier in Edinburgh, John Campbell, W.S., son of John Campbell, first cashier of the Royal Bank, John Kennedy became resident factor. He died at Edinburgh on the 19th June, 1812. That year, on the appointment of Robert Reid, Bolfracks House became the factor’s residence, and remained as such till 1888. The estate office was also there till 1875, when the present building at Kenmore was erected.
Shortly after the fourth Earl succeeded to the property, the construction of the present road along the south side of Loch Tay was begun. It was completed in 1786. About the same time a bridge over the river Lyon near Comrie Ferry was built by public subscription, the commissioners of the annexed estates giving £,200 towards its erection. In 1788 the public road by way of the fort was commenced, and on its completion six years later the old road past the sawmill was closed. An additional entrance to Taymouth grounds was made near the cross roads at Kenmore about 1798, and called Gardener’s Gate, in contradistinction to one nearer the village, which was then known as Simon Fraser’s Gate. This Simon Fraser was a natural son of Lord Lovat, and was formerly a waiter in the inn at Muttonhole. Gardener was a stone hewer brought from Aberdeen for the special purpose of cutting stone pillars for the gates about Taymouth.
In 1799, the work of demolishing Balloch or Taymouth Castle as it had come to be called early in the century, was begun, and on the 30th March, 1801, the foundation stone of the central block of the new castle1 was laid, and six years after, the building was completed from plans by Elliot. New stables were also erected at Newhall, the old ones being immediately to the east of the castle; and the gardens were removed to Kingharrie, opposite the Isle of Loch Tay, the site of the old garden belonging to the priory. In 1813 the present public road from Kenmore Bridge to Dalerb was constructed, the former road having skirted the shore of the Loch. The same year, the archway in the gardens was built, and the new carriage drive to Taymouth from the east end of Kenmore Square was commenced, and on its completion, the old drives were closed. The castle underwent several improvements, notably the addition of the Chinese Rooms in 1826, by Atkinson, the architect of Scone Palace, and in 1838 the west wing was commenced from plans by David Bryce, and finished in time to be occupied by Her Majesty Queen Victoria when on her memorable visit to Breadalbane in 1842. In 1827 the gateway at Kenmore was built after the design of the one in the gardens.
[The building stone of which Taymouth Castle is constructed is chlorite-slate, from a quarry on Bolfracks Hill. The Baron of Bolfracks refused to accept any payment for the material, and Lord Breadalbane afterwards presented him with a handsome piece of plate.]
At the southern end of Tom-na-croich, near the cross roads, a village called Kilmory is said to have stood long before any houses were built on the peninsula at Kenmore, but not a vestige of it remains. A small burn which falls into the loch close by is called Alt-na-ceardach, which points to the fact of a smithy having been there at one time; and not far off what may have been the graveyard of the district was disturbed during the construction of the present drive from Kenmore to Taymouth, when several stone coffins containing bones were unearthed. 
Towards the end of the sixteenth century, Kenmore, up till then little better than a ferry station, became a place of some importance. Hew Hay and his spouse obtained from Sir Colin Campbell, in 1572, a tack of the ten-shilling land of Wester Skiag, the five-shilling land of Kenmore, and the fourty-penny land of the Coble Croft, with the keeping of a hostelry. Sir Colin had then in view the object of planting a church at Kenmore, as being a more central place than Inchadney, for in the above tack he reserved the right of resuming ground for that purpose. In 1579 a church was erected at Kenmore,
‘In a MS. collection of Breadalbane traditions noted down in the second decade of this century, in the possession of Mr. Archibald McDougall, Milton, Ardtalnaig, the following reference is made to the use of this place for interment. “Some difference having happened between the Earls of Athole and Argyle, the tenants and dependents of the Earl of Argyle came and took the creach of Athole, whereupon the Atholians gathered and went and took that of Argyle, and the one continued to take that of the other for three different times, after which the men of both countries met in the hills of Acharn in Taymouth district and fought, in which engagement the Argyle men gained the victory. Those slain were carried down on sledges and buried in a knoll in Kenmore Park, through which a road was made last year, when some of their sculls and other bones were found in graves laid and covered with flags, ” the formal petition of the parishioners, but four years prior to that, services had been held there, and the stance of the markets transferred from Inchadney, as shown by the following entry in the Chronicle of Fothergill:—“The year of God MVc sexte xv yeris on the Nyn Virgines day the prasyn and margat was haldin and begun at the Kenmore at the end of Lochthay, and ther was no margat nor fayr haldin at Inchadin quhar it was wont tilbe haldin. All doin be Collyn Campbell of Glenurquhay.” Since then the markets have continued to be held at Kenmore.
Of these, possibly, Feille nam ban naomh is the oldest. This name takes us back to a period certainly 400 years ago when the Isle of Loch Tay was occupied by nuns. Indeed tradition has it, that to their industry was due the establishing of the markets held at Inchadney, to which they came out of seclusion but once a year to sell their goods for behoof of the sisterhood. In connection with this market, and the one held in March, a time-honoured ceremony, abolished about 1840, was wont to be held. We refer to the fencing of these by the market guard, accounts of which we have from those who witnessed the proceedings. The lands on Loch Tayside were formerly divided into officiaries, for the most part according to the different estates. In each of these officiaries was a resident ground officer, chosen from among the tenants, who had to bring with him a certain number of stout young men, who constituted the guard. The old public school, which stood on Kenmore brae, formed the last guard-house. There the halberts of the rank and file were stored. At twelve o’clock noon, on the day of the fair, the market guard was mustered in front of the guard house by the Taymouth ground officer. A halbert was delivered to each man, and with the Breadalbane piper in front, the company started on its march of the boundaries of the fair. On their return to the guard-house the men delivered up their halberts, and the ordinary business of the fair, meanwhile at a standstill, was allowed to proceed. Although denuded of its insignia of office, the guard was still responsible for the peace pf the fair, and any one raising a disturbance was committed to durance
The records of the Kirk Session of Kenmore are extant from 1636, and shew that the church at Inchadney was, from that time, at all events, little used for public worship. It was only occasionally that service was held there, and that not unfrequently on account of the storminess of the weather and the swollen state of the river which prevented the minister crossing over by boat. Kenmore church did not escape the spoiliating hand of Montrose, whose soldiers broke the lock and carried off the kirk basin, as reported at a session meeting, on 12th January, 1645, when the smith was desired to make a new lock, and on which occasion three pounds were given out of the poor box to several who had suffered at that time. In 1653, when Alexander Menzies, of Comrie, craved liberty to set up a seat within the church, we find reference to the seats of other heritors in the parish. There were “ 2 dasks appertaining to the Lairds of Glenurchy on the north side bewest the Partition wall, one side appertaining to the Laird of Laurs on the north side, close to the partition wall forsd, a seat set up by Mr. William Menzies as Heretor of Wester Shian betwixt the Laird of Laurs seat & the Pulpit, an Dask appertaining to the Laird of Strowan Robertson on the south side of the Kirk bewest the Pulpit, an dask to be set up by the sd Alexr Menzies of Comries as above mentioned (6 feet in length on the north vile in the guard-house, to await the sentence of the Baron Bailie Court next day. The Taymouth ground officer received from the Earl of Breadalbane a yearly allowance of two merks, which was expended in regaling his company in Kenmore Inn. A ceremony similar in character to the above took place, we believe, at the Killin markets. The old halberts have been lost sight of, but one, now in the writer’s possession, was found some four years ago in Loch Tay, when crossing by boat betwixt the Island and Taymouth gardens.
It may be of interest to state here, that at the market held on 28th June, 1815, a residenter, who has not long since passed away, remembered hearing the news that Waterloo had been fought and won, The tidings thus had taken ten days to reach the district, side of the Kirk Contiguo wt the Laird of Glenurchie’s seat upon the west hand).” No mention is made of Campbell, laird of Easter Shian, who probably did not claim a seat, as the chapel of Shian, which was on his lands, was then standing, and used for public worship. In 1648 twenty shillings were expended for slates for the church.
We have no record of when interments were first made at Kenmore, but so late as 1654 a burial took place within the church at the instance of one of the heritors, which being contrary to the Act of Assembly of 1588, gave rise to comment on the part of the minister and elders. During improvements some years ago, when workmen were digging for sand within the building, several bones were turned up. In 1746 the right of interment at Kenmore was stopped by Lord Glenorchy who issued the following order :—“ It is appointed to the end decency and order may be observed in burying the dead in the Parish of Kenmore, that the Kirk Beddal for the time being shall make all the graves within the Church yeard of Inchaidane, and that he shall have a halfe marks Scots for each Grave Making whether for old or young, and that none Presume to break Ground upon their Perril but as aforsaid, and that the Beddal be timeously advertised so as to have the grave readymade before the Burial hour. By same order it is likewise appointed that no person whatever be Buried in the Kirkgreen of Kenmore after this Date. It is also recommended to all who make use of the Mort cloath and Bell to follow the sam Regulations as at Killine, viz.: Ringing the Bell making the grave and attendance with the Mort cloath a shilling sterling to the Beddal and a shilling to the poor. When the Mort cloath is carried out of the Country the Beddal who must attend is to have two Shillings Sterling, and the Poor three Shillings sterling, given at Taymouth, May the Twenty-sixth Jajvii and forty-six, sic. scrbr. Glenorchy.” About 1763 the present church was erected on the site of the former edifice, and when the graveyard at Inchadney was closed the one at Kenmore was re-opened. The first then to be interred is said to have been a Mrs. Mary Morison, who died on 14th November, 1763, and whose tombstone appears to be the oldest in the churchyard, excepting those which were removed from Inchadney. The date, 1782, above the church clock, records the year the latter was placed in the tower. There was, however, a clock at the church before that time.
A school was established at Kenmore in 1651, an allowance being fixed for the schoolmaster of five shillings yearly from each merkland within the parish, which extended to 240 merk 3s. 6d. land. In 1696 the schoolmaster’s salary was made a fixed one of 100 merks, and was again altered in 1700 to half a merk, payable out of each merkland, which brought up his allowance to 120 merks.2 The school occupied the site of the low building attached to the Estate office. In 1802, the building at the south end of Kenmore bridge, now used as an orphanage, became the parochial school and schoolmaster’s house. It had originally been built as a boathouse, but was latterly used as a wright’s house and shop. Robert Armstrong was then schoolmaster. He held the appointment for nearly forty years and died in 1828, when he was succeeded by his son, William, who continued in office till 1873. Another son was Robert Archibald, well known as the compiler of a Gaelic dictionary. t
Towards the middle of last century the square of Kenmore was laid out, and houses erected along the north and south sides by the third Earl. The bridge over the Tay, begun in 1772, was completed in 1774. It consists of five arches, two of which are dry. Into the east parapet, above the keystone of the centre arch and facing the roadway, is built a stone slab, on which is cut the following legend:—
This Building Erected A.D., 1774;
His Majesty Gave in Aid of it out of the Annexed Estates 1000 Str.
Viator Tuto Transeas Sis Memor Regii Benf.ficii.
Prior to the erection of the bridge a ferry boat plied across the river here, and a little lower down, a ford, called Crosg Mhic Couill, or McDougalPs crossing, gave additional means of passage.
[Between Kenmore and Aberfeldy there were five ferry boats, these being at Kenmore, Inchadney, Point of Lyon, House of Stix, and Bolfracks ; and before 1733, when Tay Bridge was built, there was a sixth boat at Aberfeldy. At each of those ferry stations, except Stix, there was an ale house. A number of fords were also used. These were :—Crosg Mhic Couill, beside the Lady’s Mount, near Kenmore ; the ford of Inchadney ; the ford of Lyon, a little to the north of the junction of that river with the Tay ; the ford of the old port, at the junction, the road to which, from the south, branched off the highway at the bridge over Croftmoraig burn, and, on the north side, the road led through the haugh of Appin past Carse farm steading, and joined the main road at Dalvainie gate below the village of Dull; the ford of Craneivie,1 near the east end of Tomintiogle Island, and close to the House of Stix ; Athanacarry, at the west end of Tegarmuchd Island ; Athanagroolaig, to the east of the gravel bank at Tegarmuchd Island ; Athanafoillan, to the west of Dalrawer ; Athanabhuirn, opposite Dalrawer ; Athanasiorghoil, below the croft park of Tullichuil (there was no proper access to this ford from the south); Rinvallie ford, near the west end of Bolfracks haugh, and Inver ford a little to the east of the last.]
The name Mains of Kenmore, as applied to the present home-farm, is a misnomer, as the lands of Kenmore lie wholly on the south side of the Tay. This farm is part of the ten-merk land of the Port and Isle, and until the name was changed was known as Mains or Port of Loch Tay. For long it was held in connection with the Inn at Kenmore. The large field to the east, called Dalmartaig, latterly formed the cow pasture of the villagers, until 1787, when it was embraced in the Taymouth policies, and Wester Portbane became the common grazing.
Opposite Taymouth gardens and within a stone-throw of the shore, is the picturesquely wooded Isle of Loch Tay, with its ancient ruins. It is circular in form, and round its sides the water reaches a considerable depth, except on the north, where it is comparatively shallow, and where a causeway is supposed to have connected it with the shore. It is wooded with fine old sycamore trees, whose spreading boughs overtop the crumbling walls of what is known as the Priory of the Isle of Loch Tay. The island is little over an acre in extent.
Early in the twelfth century, Queen Sybilla, consort of Alexander I., King of Scotland, and natural daughter of Henry I. of England, sojourned in this quarter, and taking ill, died in the isle, on the 12th of June, 1122, and here her remains were buried. Alexander, who succeeded his brother in 1107, although surnamed “ Fearce,” was known as “a very gud and valiant prince/’ and during his reign of seventeen years, he built the Abbeys of Scone and St. Colmesinch.
By charter signed at Stirling, he granted the island to the Monks of Scone, and here he founded the Priory of Loch Tay. The charter was to the following effect:—“Alexander by the grace of God, King of the Scots, to the Bishops and Earls, and to all faithful of the whole of Scotland, health. I make it known to you that, for the honour of God and S. Mary, and all the saints, I have given for myself, and for the soul of Queen Sybilla, the Island of Loch Tay, in perpetual possession, with all the rights pertaining to the same island, to Holy Trinity of Scoon, and to the Brotherhood serving God there by Monastic Rule, so that a church of God be built there for me, and for the soul of the Queen there deceased, and that this I grant to them for the present, until I shall have given them some other augmentation, so that that place may be renowned for its service to God. Herbert, Chancellor, witness at Strivling.”
Alexander died at Stirling, without succession, two years after his queen, and was buried at Dunfermline.
For over three hundred years the island remained a religious establishment. The neighbouring lands had been attached to it, as well as salmon fishing in Loch Tay, the latter of which appears to have been enjoyed throughout the whole year, the tradition being that such a right had been granted to the possessors by Alexander I. This right seems to have been exercised until comparatively recent times, and salmon from Loch Tay were exposed for sale unchallenged when fishings elsewhere were closed
According to local tradition, the Priory was, on the withdrawal of the monks, occupied by nuns, who, breaking their vows of celibacy, were summarily expelled from the island, which was not again tenanted by a religious body.
Sir Colin Campbell, first laird of Glenorchy, according to the Black Book of Taymouth, “conquessit the heretable tytill of the Ten Markland of the Port and lie of Loch Tay,” and built a “ Barmekyn wall” on the island, sometime during the middle of the fifteenth century. The former entry, however, does not appear to be accurate, as in 1480, Sir Duncan, the second laird held the lands of Port on a short tack, and it was not till 1492 that he got a charter of these and neighbouring lands. He built the “Great Hall, Chapell and Chalmeris of the Isle of Loch Tay,” and it was during his time we find “the Island of Loch Thay was burned through the negligence of servants on Palm Sunday, being the last day of March, A.D., 1509.” This disaster may have befallen the Priory, and so led to the building of the “Great Hall,” in which case the existing ruins on the island may form very little, if any, part of the old priory.
Margaret Stewart, daughter of the Earl of Athole, and Dame of Glenorchy, died in the island, on the 26th July, 1524, and was buried at Finlarig chapel.
Sir John, fifth laird of Glenorchy also “decessit in the lie of Loch Tay, the 5 of Julii, Anno, 1550,” and was interred at Finlarig. His son, Sir Colin, built the Castle of Balloch, which henceforth formed the chief residence of the family at the east end of Loch Tay.
Towards the close of 1644, the Marquis of Montrose, during his surprise march from Athole into Argyll, stopped here to besiege the island. He encamped in the orchard’close by,*his tent being pitched under a pear tree, which flourished until some twelve years ago, when it was blown down during a severe gale. Such of its timber as was serviceable was afterwards made into a large oblong table for the Reading Room, erected in the village of Kenmore by the Countess of Breadalbane; and, inlaid in the centre of the table, is a silver plate bearing, beneath cross swords with the mottoes, “ Follow' me ” and “ Ne oubleyz,” the following appropriate inscription :—
This table is made of the pear tree, under which the great Montrose encamped when besieging Sir Robert Campbell of Glenorchy in the Isle of Loch Tay.
It is presented to the Kenmore Reading Room by Montrose’s descendant, Alma Breadalbane,
as a token of the peace and love which now unites Graham and Campbell so long divided by war and hatred.
Montrose’s artillery did considerable damage to the building on the island, and it is questionable if it ever after was occupied by the Campbells. Some of the walls, although partially restored within recent years, shew where the breaches had been made.
In 1654, some of General Monk’s soldiers quartered on the island, and to them is given the credit of introducing tobacco into the district. It is interesting to note, perhaps in substantiation of this tradition, that several tobacco pipes of a quaint shape were recently discovered on the island, when the ground was being levelled for the formation of walks.
During the ’45, although Finlarig Castle, uninhabitable as it must have been at the time, was placed in the hands of the Royalists, the Isle of Loch Tay did not receive a garrison. Perhaps the proximity of Castle Menzies, where a detachment of the Duke of Cumberland’s army was stationed under Colonel Leighton, was considered a sufficient check upon any insurgent spirit in the quarter.
The ruins, which are roofless, lie on the north side of the island, and consist of two contiguous buildings running east and west, of a total length of 142 feet. The walls of the eastmost portion, which may be termed the main building, are 81 feet long by 31 feet broad outside. About 16 feet from the east gable there is a transverse wall, to the west of which was a spacious apartment about 55 feet in length, which most likely formed the banqueting hall. The foundations of a wall which are to be seen running almost the whole length in the centre of this apartment, would have given support to the great expanse of flooring, and, with transverse walls both right and left, would have formed extensive cellarage for the establishment. The western portion, which is scarcely in a line with the main building, owing to the curve which the island takes, is smaller in breadth by about 7 feet. It has two divisional walls. The westmost compartment, judging from the breadth of the chimney, may have been the kitchen. The gables, as they stand, are about 45 feet in height, and the walls about 3J feet in thickness. There are several loop holes in the walls. Those on the north side have been built up to half the thickness of the walls, and as the unbuilt portion is on the outside, the stopping-up was made from the interior, a precaution in all probability taken when Montrose’s artillery was directed at the structure.
To the south of the castle lay the courtyard, oblong in form, extending to about 850 square yards, and enclosed on the west, south, and east, by a stone wall, portions of which are yet to be seen. At the north-west corner, where there appears to have been an entrance, a square building protruded beyond the line of wall.
There are three windows in the eastmost gable, each measuring about 12 by 20 inches, and from the situation of these the building seems to have been a four-storied one. The windows, small as they are, were secured by stanchions. Portions of the slates—half an inch in thickness—which covered the roof, are to be seen scattered around the island.
The orchard, which belonged to the island, now embraced in Taymouth gardens, was latterly known as the orchard of Kingharry, a name signifying the end of the garden. Of the fruit trees which grew in it, only one is now standing, a pear tree, which is perhaps the largest of its kind in the country. It is about 45 feet in height, and, at 5 feet from the ground, the trunk measures 9 feet in girth. It still bears some fruit. Four huge sycamore trees, in a line, are said to mark the western boundary of the orchard. The girth of the northmost one, at 5 feet from the ground, is 13 feet 6 inches. There is a cavity at the top of the trunk of sufficient depth to conceal a man. The tree next to it is still larger, being 15 feet in circumference. The other two are also of great size.
In the course of recent trenching operations in Taymouth gardens a portion of an old sundial, with inscription, was unearthed, as well as a carved stone bearing the date, 1637.
We find reference to an ale-house being at Kingharry in the last century, and a ferry boat is said to have plied between it and Portbane on the south side of Loch Tay. In the vicinity were several small crofts, each of which had a distinctive name. One was known as Dalerb, the only name now preserved,
The arms of the Glenorchy Campbells are—Quarterly : first and fourth Gyronny of eight, sable and or, Campbell; second, argent, a lymphad, sable, with sail furled, flags flying and oars in action, Lorn; third, or, a fess chequy, azure and argent, Stewart. A lymphad or galley forms a charge on the escutcheon of several other families connected with the west coast. In the ninth Parliament of James I., held at Perth, 6th March, 1429, it was enacted, “All Barronnes and Lords havend lands and Lordshippes near the sea in the West, and on the North parts, and namelie for-anent the lies, that they have Galayes, that is to say, ilk four markes worth of lande ane aire. And that this till understande of them that are not feft before of Galayes. For they that are feft before sail keepe and uphalde the Galayes, that they are feft of before, and halden to susteine he their aulde infeftment. And that the saids Galayes be maid and reparrelled be Maij cum a twelfe-moneth, under the paine of ane marke to be raised to the Kingis use of ilk air. And the landes and Lord' schippes, quhat ever they be, strikand endlang the coastsyde, and inward in the land, sex mile sail contribute to the reparation and the sustentation of the saids Galayes.”
On the retiral of the Parochial schoolmaster in 1873, his income was then ascertained to be a fixed salary of £50 a year, £2 in lieu of a garden, and the school fees, which for the past three years had averaged £44 8s., from 118 scholars.
~Lairds and Lands of Loch Tayside
Ceann Mòr - "End of the water". The village was established with the construction of nearby Balloch Castle, and the name was originally that of Balloch.
The village was moved from its place near Balloch to it's present location in 1540.
Port of Taymouth and the Mains
"Port of Water". The Port is adjacent to and part of the Mains of Kenmore, predating Balloch.
It was the access to the Isle of Loch Tay immediately offshore that was possibly an early residence and fortification for the Earls of Fife, and later fortified by the Campbells.
1769: 7 Crofters and a cotter.
Braes of Taymouth
The Braes are the steep sloped land immediately south and east of the flat Mains of Kenmore and its parks.
Adjacent to the Brae of Ballansuime.
1769 Tenants: John Haggart, Patrick Crerar, Janet Dewar.
Taymouth - Balloch
Bealach - "Pass". Balloch Castle was built in 1552 by Sir Colin Campbell of Glenorchy as the seat of Clan Campbell in the region.
John Campbell the 4th Earl of Breadalbane demolished the castle and built the existing Taymouth Castle after 1806.
Dalmartaig and Inchadney
"St. Martin's haugh" and "Island of St. Aidan". Farms that are now parks adjacent to the Mains across the River Tay from Balloch.
Sron comh ruith - "Promontory of the confluence or curved plain". Here the Point of Lyon is where the River Lyon and River Tay meet.
1769 Tenants: Donald McGregor, John Sinclair and Duncan Dewar.