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Ardnamurchan." There seems to be a hnk omitted
here in the person of Angus, son of John Sprangach,
but probably "Alexander Macian," the patronymic,'
would have been taken by the scribe composing the
charter as meaning "Alexander, son of John." Hugh
Macdonald, the Sleat historian, bastardizes this chief,
whom he calls " John Brayach," but this is Hugh's
way, and there are no grounds for putting in the
bar sinister. He married a lady of the Argyll
family, by whom he is said to have had—

1. Donald.

2. Somerled.

3. A son whose name has not come down.

4. Alexander, who succeeded.

He also had a daughter, who m. Alastair Mac-
Ian Chathanaich, 5th Chief of Dunnyveg, and
another Mariot, Avho married John Robertson of
Struan. John Brayach and three of his sons were
slam ]n battle, and the succession was carried on by

VII, Alexander, who was a minor at the time
of his father's death. He had three sons—

1. John, who succeeded.

2. Donald, of whom afterwards.

3. Alexander. '

This Alexander had two sons —

1. John.

2. Donald.

Alexander was succeeded by

VIH. John. He had by his first wife his heir
and successor John Og ; also a daughter Una, who
m. Allan Maclean of Ardthornish, of whom the
Macleans of Kinlochaline, Drimnin, Pennycross, and
others. He m. (2ndly) Janet Campbell, Dowager


Lady of Duart, without issue. He was succeeded
by his son

IX. John Og, who on the eve of his marriage
with a daughter of Cameron of Lochiel was killed
by his uncle Donald Maclan, oldest surviving son of
the 7th chief, and heir presumptive of the estate.
John Og having left no issue, the succession for a
very short time devolved upon

X. Donald, the son of Alexander just referred
to. He, however, was slain in battle with the
Camerons, and was succeeded by his nephew

XI. John MacAllister VcIain, the latter
being the patronymic and not a Christian name.
John Macian was succeeded by a son,

XII. Alexander, who was a minor at the time
of his father's death, and for whom, his uncle Donald,
the son of Alexander, acted in loco tutoris. He is
the last head of the house of whom there is any
authentic record and with him this ancient and
powerful house passes out of historical and
genealogical ken.


This family is descended from John, son of Angus
Og of Isla, who, according to the Seanachies, was a
natural son. He was thus a half-brother of the
"Good John" of Isla. He was known as Iain
Fraoch and also as Iain Abrach. The daughter of
Dugall Mac Henry, chief man of Glenco, was his
mother. The special difficulties of the genealogy
arise from the fact that so many of the same name
followed each other in the chiefship, and that with
nine or ten John Abrachs and John Mac lains and
John Mac Iain Abrachs, it is difficult to make

1. Eweu Macdonald

2. Major-Geu. Alex.


of Gleucoe. 3. Captain Macdonald, Invercoe.

Macdonald, 4. ]\Iajor D. C. Macdonald of Glen-


5. James Macdonald of Dalness.


The succession of the lieads of the Macians of
Gleiico was as follows : —

I. John Fraoch or Abrach, d. 1358.
II. John Abrachson.

III. John Abrachson.

IV. John Abrachson.
V. John Abrachson.

VI. John, who appears on record as "John of
the Isles, alias Abrachson " at the fall of the Island

VII. (Old) John, called Iain Abrach. There is
no record of his marriage nor of the marriages of
the foregoing. He had three sons —

1. John Og, who succeeded.

2. Douald Og.

3. Alastair Og.

Old John Abrach was succeeded by

VIII. John Og (1), Avho appears first on record
in 1563, and in whose time and that of his suc-
cessor the Clan Iain Abraich became very numerous.
As his successor was also called John Og, the two
have to be carefully distinguished. John Og (l)
had a family of seven sons —

(a) John Og (2), who succeeded.

(b) John Dubh, progenitor of the families of Dahiess and

Achtriachtan, of whom afterwards

(c) Alexander Mac Iain Oig, in Larach.

(d) Archibald Mac Iain Oig.

(e) Allan Roy Mac Iain Oig.

(f) Ronald Mac Iain Oig.

(g) Angus Mac Iain Oig.

John Og (1) was succeeded c. 1590 by

IX. John Og (2). He had three sons —

(a) John Abrach, his successor.

(b) Alexander.

(c) Donald Bowie.


John Og (2) was succeeded c. 1610 by

X. John Abrach. We do not find any trace of
sons of this Chief, except his successor.

XI. Alexander, who, according to the ordinary
rules of calculation, would have succeeded his father
about 1630. He M^as known in his day as Alastmr
Ruadli. He had two sons —

1. Alexander, his successor.

2. Angus, known as Aonghas Mac Alastair Kuaidh, the

well-known Gaelic bard.

Alexander, 11th Chief of Glenco, was succeeded by
his son,

XI T. Alexander, the principal victim of the
inhuman massacre of 1692. He married a daughter
of Archibald Macdonald of Keppoch, a sister of the
famous Coll, and he had two sons, both of whom
escaped from the massacre —

1. John, his successor.

2. Alexander.

Alexander Macian, the 12th Chief of Glenco, was
succeeded in the chiefship by his older son

XIII. John. There does not appear to be much
known about this chief after his escape from the
massacre beyond certain privileges accorded to him-
self and his clan in view of the ruin brought about
by the disasters of 1692. He died before 1714, and
left three sons —

1. Alexander.

2. James, a captain in the Prince's army in 1715.

3. Donald, out in 1745.

He was succeeded by

XIV. Alexander. He signed the famous
address to George I. in 1714, and was out in the
Rebellion of 1715, after which his estate was for-
feited. It does not appear that the estate was


formally restored at this time either to Alexander
or to Robert Stewart of Appin, his feudal superior,
who was also involved in the Earl of Mar's Rising.
It is prolmble, however, that the Chief of Glenco
was not disturbed in his occu2)ation of his lands by
the Duke of Argyll, on whom the estates appear to
have devolved. Alexander was also out in 1745
with the fighting men of his tribe. He was in
prison in Edinburgh as late as 1750 for his share in the
Rebellion, but he must have died shortly after that
date. He was married twice. We have no record of
the name or family of his first wife. He m. (2ndly)
Isobel, daughter of John Stewart of Ardsheal. He
was succeeded by his only son

XV. John, who in 1751 had the forfeited estate
restored. By charter dated 29th July, 1751, Robert
Stewart of Appin, heritable superior of Glenco — to
whom the Duke of Argyll had given the superiority
forfeited by his father, John Stewart — disponed to
John the two merklands of Polvig, and the two
merklands of Carnick with the Glen of Lecknamoy.
John Macian of Glenco had an only son, Alexander,
to whom he left a General Disposition of his Estates
in 1785. He was succeeded by

XVI. Alexander, who married Mary Cameron,
and had three sons, Ewen and two others, whose
names we have not been able to ascertain. Alex-
ander made a Trust Disposition of his Estate in
1814 in favour of Trustees, and Sasine was taken of
the same in 1816. In 1817 a Deed of Corroboration
of the previous procedure was executed by

XVII. Ew^EN Macdonald of Glenco, who by
this time would have succeeded his father. Ewen
was a distinguished physician in the East India
Company Service, and it would appear that the


affairs of the family became more j^rosperous when,
in 1828, the Trustees conveyed back to him the
patrimony of his house. In 1837 Ewen entailed
the estate on himself and male heirs of his body,
whom failing, to the heirs female of his body, whom
failing, to his daughter Ellen Caroline Macpherson
Macdonald, afterwards the wife of Archibald Burns
Macdonald, of Perth, The distinction drawn
between heirs female of his body and the daughter
referred to j)oints to the fact that this lady was a
natural daughter, and it is saicl that it was only
a little before his death, which took place in
1 840, that he was legally married to her mother.
Having no other heirs of his body, the estate
devolved upon Mrs Burns Macdonald, by whom it
was disentailed in 1876, and whose son sold it in
1894 to the Honourable Sir Donald Smith, now
Lord Strath cona and Mount Royal of (jlenco. We
have referred to the fact that the last Chief of
Glenco had two brothers. We have been unable to
trace themselves or their progeny, if any.



The family of Dalness was descended from John
Dubh or Black John, a son of the first John Og, 8th
Chief of Glenco. John Dubh had a large family of
sons, who, with their descendants, frequently appear
on record during the early part of the 17th century.
His sons were —

1. Angus, afterwards of Dalness.

2. Allaster, afterwards of Achtriachtan.

3. Allan Dubh in Larach.

4. John Og in Inverigau.

5. John ^lor in Achnacon.

6. Ranald.

7. Archibald.


Each member of John Diibh's tribe was called Mac
Iain Diiibh.

I. Angus» the oldest of John Diibh's sons, was
the first who stands on record as possessor of Dal-
ness, of which, in 1608, he obtains a tack from
Archibald Campbell of Inverawe. In IGIO, Angus,
along with his relatives of Achtriachtan, is called to
account for the slaughter of John Stewart of Acliarn
and his brother. He was succeeded in the lands of
Dalness and the headship of the tribe by his son

II. Alexander, who flom^ished on to the end of
the 17th century, and managed to escape by dint of
stratagem from the butchery of 1692. He was
amoncr those who in 1695 received a renewal of the
protection from captions and executions for civil
debts from the Commissioners appointed to enquire
into the massacre. The same year Alexander
obtained a Feu Charter, and became absolute owner
of Dalness, which Deed he, for greater security,
deposited with Alexander Macdonald, Chief of
Glengarry. Alexander left two sons —

1. Alexander, who succeeded to Dalness, and

2. James, of whom afterwards.

Alexander, second of Dalness, was succeeded
shortly after 1700 by his older son

III. Alexander. He m. Jean Maclachlan,
daughter of Maclachlan of Coruanan in Lochaber,
by whom he had four sons —

1. Alexander, who died young.

2. Coll, who became a captain in the 1\.N., of whom after-


3. Dugald, who entered the army.

4. John, who became a merchant in Jamaica.

Alexander m. (2ndly) Janet Campbell, by whom he

5. James, of whom afterwards.

218 The clan donald.

He is said to have gone to live at Marjbiirgh (now
Fort-William) for the education of his family, and
let Dalness to his brother James. He died in 1726,
and for some time thereafter the ownership of the
family inheritance was in a very complicated con-
dition. Alexander, however, was succeeded as head
of the house by

IV. Alexander, his oldest son, who survived
his father only for a short time. The second son
Coll had gone to the navy, and in process of time
was promoted to the rank of captain, while Dugald
and John had gone to push their fortunes abroad.
Their mother having died, their uncle James was
left in possession of Dalness. The circumstances
being favourable to villainy of this nature, he took
steps to get Dalness into his own possession. In
this he was aided by the circumstances of the '45,
when Invergarry Castle was burnt, and the Glen-
garry Charter Chest, including the Dalness titles,
was carried away by Sir Everard Falconer, under
instructions from the Duke of Cumberland. It was
seen in his custody in the Abbey of Holyrood house,
whence it was carried to London, where the j)apers
were sold to a snuff-shop. Having thus explained
the position of the estate, it falls to be mentioned
that Alexander, the fourth head of the house, was
succeeded in that position by his brother

V. Coll, second son of Alexander 3rd of Dalness.
Not till 1749 was Coll Macdonald — who by this
time commanded the Hampton Court, a war ship of
50 guns — able to return to Dalness to vindicate his
rights. He had to return to the service, but before
doing so he set in operation what proved to be a
long and expensive law-suit for the recovery of his
property. During this litigation Coll died, and

The genealogy of clan donald. 219

leaving no issue (an infant son iiaving predeceased
him), the succession devolved upon his brother,

VI. John Macdonald, then a merchant in
Jamaica. He returned to Scotland, and effected a
compromise of the various law pleas which estah-
hshed his right to the estate in 17G4. He was also
proprietor of the Estate of Gartencaber, commonly
called Clemsfield in Buchanan, where he died in
December, 1774. He was married to a daughter of
Alexander Macdonald of Keppoch, who was out in
the '45, but left no issue.

By this time all the brothers german of Alexander
Macdonald 5th of Dalness were dead without
descendants, and the succession devolved upon the
posterity of James, his half-brother. James had
tv/o sons —

1. Coll, who succeeded bis uncle John, and

2. Duncan, a distinguished soldier, for -who^e story vide

Clan Donald, Vol. II., p. 223.

John Macdonald of Dalness had executed a Dis-
position of Dalness in fiivour of his nephew,

VII. Coll, who succeeded him as proprietor of
Dalness, John also conveyed to Coll the Gartin-
caber Estate, and appointed as Trustees of his
moveable estate Ronald Macdonald of Keppoch,
John Macdonald of Glenco, Angus Macdonald of
Achtriachtan, William Macdonald, W.S., Donald
Macdonald, merchant in Glasgow, and James Mac-
intyre of Gleno, with directions to convey the
residue to his nei)hew Coll. Coll Macdonald betook
himself to the study of the law, and after serving an
apprenticeship witli William Macdonald, of St
Martins, W.S., he was admitted as a Writer to the
Signet on I8th March, 178G. Through liis con-
nection with the Highlands, he acted for many of


the northern lairds, inchiding Glengarry, Glenalla-
dale, and Lochgaiiy. One of the most important
trials with which he was concerned was that in
which he was ao-ent for Alexander Macdonald of
Glengarry, charged with shooting Lieutenant
Norman Macleod, of the 42nd Highlanders, in a
duel, and which resulted in a verdict of acquittal.
Coll purchased part of the Achtriachtan j^roperty
from his relative, Adam Macdonald, in 1812. He
married on 22nd October, 1796, Elizabeth Barbour,
daughter of Captain Donald Macbean, of the 10th
Regiment of Foot. Coll Macdonald of Dalness died
on 1st January, 1837, survived by his wife, who
died on 31st March, 1856. He had by his wife

1. James Macdonald, advocate.

2. Duncan Macdonald, AV.S.

3. Donald Macdonald.

He had two daughters —

1. Susan.

2. Margaret Campbell, who m. Captain George Downing, of

the Madras Army, with issue, of whom afterwards.

He was succeeded as head of the Dalness family by
his eldest son,

YHI. James. He passed as advocate on 26 th
June, 1821, and was appointed Sheriff-Substitute of
Linlithgow in 1832, and of Edinburghshire in 1838.
He died unmarried on 16th September, 1845, and
was succeeded by his only surviving brother,

IX. Donald, both in the Estates of Dalness and
Achtriachtan, subject to his life-rent of his sisters in

Donald died unmarried on 25th January, 1855
(the male line of Dalness thus becoming extinct), and
by his settlement directed his trustees to dispone
Dalness to his sister, Mrs Margaret Campbell Mac-


(lonald or Downing, in life-rent, and her daughter,
Elizabeth Margaret, in fee.

Mrs Downing, sister of tlie last Macdonald of
Dalness, died at London on 2nd January, 187(5, and
the Estate of Dalness was conveyed by tlie trustees
to the present proprietrix, Mrs Ehzabeth Margaret
Downing Macdonald or Stuart, the daughter of Mrs
Downing, and wife of Dugald Stuart, eldest son of
the Kigiit Honourable Sir John Stuart of Loch-
carron, Ross-shire, Vice-Chancellor of England.
Dugald Stuart died on 5th February, 1885.


This family is descended, as already stated, from

I. Alexander, son of John Dubh, son of John
Og Mac Iain Abrich of Glenco. It appears that the
lands occupied by the brothers of Alexander Mac
Iain Dubh, namely, Allan Dow, John Og, John Mor,
and Ranald, were also situated in Achtriachtan.
He was succeeded by his son,

II. Alexander, who appears on record in IGll
as Allaster Mac Iain Duibh Mhic Alastair of Ach-
triachtan, the Mac Iain Duibh being in this case the
patronymic or tribe name. He had two sons, John,
his successor, and another son, wdiose name we have
not succeeded in identifying. He also appears in
1G2G under a similar desio-nation. He was sue-
ceeded by his son,

III. John, whom we find in 1G74 as John Mac-
donald of Achtriachtan. He entered into a Bond
of Friendship with Glengarry in 1690, and was
among those who lost their lives in the massacre of
1692. John had two sons, named Alexander and
Angus Roy, to which latter reference will be made
hereafter. He was succeeded bv his elder son,


IV. Alexander, who escaped from the massacre.
Durinof his father's hfe-time he entered into a con-
tract with John Stuart Fiar of Ardsheal, whereby
he received in feu from him lands which had been
in the occupation of the family since the beginning
of the 17th century: — "All and haill the three
merk land of Kinlochbeg in Glenco, with houses,
biggings, yards, milns, multures, and with the third
part of the fir and oak woods of Kinlochbeg in
Glenco, and with other woods, isles, rocks, fishing,
pertaining and belonging to the said four merk lands,
all lying within the parish of Kilmolowack, Lord-
ship of Lorn, and Sheriffdom of Argyll. And also
the salmon fishings upon said Alexander, his own
side of the water of Leven, and salmon fishings of
Achtriachtan." The contract is dated 4th February,
1686. He was alive in 1695, when with others he
got protection from captions and execution for civil
debts. He left no sons, and was succeeded by

V. Angu8, his brother, who in 1704 completed
a title to Achtriachtan as heir to his brother
Alexander by receiving a Precept of Clare Constat
from Stuart of Appin on 8 th January of that year.
Angus of Achtriachtan possessed the estate for
many years, and there is a tradition that he lived
up to the '45, joined Prince Charles, and was slain
at Prestonpans. We are unable to vouch for the
accuracy of this tradition, but the death of Angus
of Achtriachtan did not probably take place earlier
than the above date, as it was not till July 26th,
1751, that his successor received a Precept of Clare
Constat, being infeft the following day. Angus
married Flora Cameron of Callart, and had three
daughters —


1. The older, of whose name we liave no record, married

lier fatlier's successor in tlio proprietorship) of Ach-

2. Margaret, married Angus Macintyre in (Joniasnaharric

of Callart.

3. Mary, married to ])onald Cameron of (jllenpean.

Angus of Achtriachtan left no male issue, and the
succession devolved upon his kinsman,

VI. Ang[T8. This head of Achtriachtan was the
grandson of Angus Hoy, second son of Alexander,
1st head of the family, known in his day as Alastair
Mac Iain Duibli Mliic Alastair. The name of his
father has not been traced, but he was evidently
proved to be in the direct line. Angus married as
his first wife his cousin, the daughter of the last
Achtriachtan, without issue. He married secondly,
Anne, daughter of John Campbell of Ballieveolan.
She had been previously married to Stewart of Appin.
Her marriage with Angus of Achtriachtan took
place not later than 1753, and there Avas a large
family of sons and daughters —

1. Alexander, a Captain in the East India Service.

2. A.dam, who succeeded to the estates.

3. Angus, predeceased his father.

4. James, a clerk in the Sheritt-Clerk's Office, Inverness.

5. Allan, of whom there is no record beyond the name.

6. John, died in the service of the East India Company,

without issue.

7. Hugh, died in the service of the East India Company,

without issue.

8. Robert, Ensign in East India Comj^any, died without


9. Colin, a doctor, but of whom, or descendants if an}-, we

have no notice.

Captain Alexander Macdonald, Achtriachtan's
oldest son, was about to return to Scotland when
he was seized with fever and died. He settled a


sum of about £4000 upon his relatives. Angus
had also four daughters —

(a) Jessy, who married a Mr Stevenson.

(b) Betsy, married Cameron of Clunes, with issue,
(o) Mary, died unmarried.

(d) Isabella, died unmarried.

It is said that Angus, the third son, had been
sj^ecially called, after the death of Captain Alex-
ander Macdonald, to the succession owing to his
superior fitness to guard the family interests ; but
he also predeceased his father, and the old man was
not able, through advancing infirmity, to make a
new disposition, even should he have desired it.
Angus of Achtriachtan died in 1800, and was
succeeded by his second son,

VII. Adam, who was in the West Indies at
the time of his father's death. He was served
heir to his father on 12th November, 1800.
During his time the family inheritance, mainly
through mismanagement and litigation, was com-
pletely dilapidated. In 1812 he, with consent
of his wife, sold the southern division of Achtri-
achtan, known as Achnabeath and Benchrualaist,
to Coll Macdonald of Dalness, and the remainder to
Robert Downie of Appin. In his later years, Adam
Macdonald of Achtriachtan lived at Achnacon, of
which farm he had a lease. He was a man of facile
and somewhat weak disposition, and was largely tlie
victim of designing and unscrupulous neighbours.
He married Helen Cameron, daughter of Ewen
Cameron of Glennevis, with issue —

1. Colin John.

2. John.

3. Hugh.

4. A daughter, who married Mr Mackenzie, Munlochj'',

l)rother of General Alexander Mackenzie and of Mrs


Gibson, wife of tlie Lito Rev. T)r rili})8on, minister of

5. A daughter, married to Mr Maclellan, excise ofHcer.

6. Isabella, who died unmarried.

4. Jane Frasei", who died unmarried.

Adam Macdonakl of Achtriachtaii was l)urie(l In
Island Miind, in Glenco, and was succeeded in tlie
i-epresentation of the family by his eldest son,

VIII. Colin John. He went to Australia, and
occupied a high position in the Poat-Office at Bris-
bane. He married, and had several children, among
whom his third daughter, Isabel Jane, married, in
1888, to Henry Edward Bennet.


A branch of the Clan Iain of Glencoe that may
be genealogically traced for a few generations con-
sists of the descendants ot

I. Allan Dubh, son of John Dubh, and brother
of the founders of Dalness and Achtriachtan. He
lived at Laroch in Glenco. He married Janet
Stewart of the family of Apj^in, and had two
sons, Ranald and Angus, both of w^hom were with
the Glenco contingent in the campaigns of Mon-
trose. The part which Angus played in guiding the
Royalists to winter quarters in the rich fields and
well-stocked homesteads of Argyll has been already
described in Vol. 11. Of Angus and his descendants
we know nothing further, and the descent from
Allan Maclain Duibh is found in

II. Ranald Mac All an. He was known as
Raonall na Sgeithe, Ranald of the Shield, ownig
to an incident in his life during the campaigns of
Montrose. Ha had a son,



III. Ranald Og, who, with his father, was
massacred in 1692. Raonall Og had two sons,
Donald and Alexander, who were away from the
Glen during the massacre, and so escaped.

IV. Donald was a soldier and poet, and was
his chief's lieutenant in 1745. Of himself and his
descendants in the male line, if any, we have no
further information.


I. Reginald, the founder of this family, was the
eldest surviving son of John, Lord of the Isles, by
Amie MacRuarie, the heiress of Garmoran, John,
his elder brother, and his son, Angus, not having
left issue. Reginald succeeded his mother in the
largest share of the MacRuarie lands, which, with
others, were confirmed to him by charter from his
father in 1372. Reginald married a daughter of
Walter Stewart, Earl of Atholl, and had five
sons, whether all of them by this marriage is not
certain —

1. Allan, his successor.

2. Donald, from whom the MacdpnaWs of Glengarry.

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