Lachlan Shaw.

The history of the province of Moray. Comprising the counties of Elgin and Nairn, the greater part of the county of Inverness and a portion of the county of Banff,--all called the province of Moray before there was a division into counties online

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mony, 4 May, 1793, in the 74th year of his age; and of seven
of his children, who died infants.

XIX. An adjoining stone records the death of his wife,
Anna Rose, in 1821, aged 78, also that of a number of
their descendants. Three sons were merchants in New
York, and another died farmer of Kinermony, 1849,
aged 81.

Alex. M'Donald, farmer, Parkhead of Pitchash, d. 1809,
a. 84—

Heav'nward directed all his days,
His life one act of prayer and praise ;
With every modest grace inspired.
To make him lov'd, esteemed, admired.
Crown'd with a cheerfulness that show'd
How pure the source from whence it flow'd.
Such was the man whose thread, when run,
Finding the appointed time was come.
To rest he sunk, without one sigh.
The saint may sleep, but cannot die.

XX. Upon a headstone : —

Erected to the memory of James M'Donald, Esq., late of
Morant Bay, Jamaeca, who died at Charleston of Aberlour, 6
April, 1836, aged 42 ; Francis M'Donald, Esq. of Morant Bay,
died 19 June, 1833, aged 38, natives of this parish.

XXI. A costly tomb, composed of blue granite, with
three marble slabs inserted, bears that —

Charles Stewart, Esq., Deskie, who died 30 Sep. 1826, aged
74, was upright in principle, disinterested in character, and the
poor man's friend.

His widow, Mary, daughter of the late Jas. Gordon, Esq.,
Croughly, died 27 March, 1838, aged 66.

Ann Margaret, daughter of the above, spouse of Harry
Lumsden, died 18 Nov., 1835, aged 27. Chas. Geo. Lumsden,
Asst. Surg. K.R Hussars, died at Meerut, Bengal, 1862, aged
30. [Two other sons and a daughter are recorded.]


XXII. Upon a table-shaped stone -svithin same en-
closure : —

This stone is erected here by Robert Stewart, tenant in
Wester Deskie, in memory of his spouse, Elspat Gordon, who
died Jan. 31, 1781, aged 50 years, who bore to him eleven

The parisli being very large, burial-places were numer-
ous. Apart from that at Inveravon, there were others at
Chapelton, Haugh of Kihuaichlie, Lagmore, Bhuternich,
Downan, &c. That of


Which is pictures([uely situated near the junction of the
Livet and the Avon, is still used for interments, and con-
tains a number of tombstones. From one of these the
following inscription is copied : —

XXIII. M'Lac Achbreack D. 1818 A.G 90 ^ Also his spouse
Grace Grant D 1814 AG 81.

From a better cut version of the above, upon the reverse
of the same stone (where the last age is given as 80), it
appears that the first-named was George M'Lachlan,
farmer, Auchbreck.

The foundations of the old Place of worship, wliich
appears to have been a small building, may be traced
near the middle of the enclosure at Downan. A stone-
slab bears a cross incised on both sides. It appears to be
an object of some antiquity ; and, according to tradition,
near it lie some of those who fell at the battle of Glen-
livet, which was fought not far from it, between the
armies of James VI. and those of the Earls of Errol
and Huntly, in lo94.

There was long a Roman Catholic senunary at Scahin,
but on the institution of the College at Blairs, in Mary
Culter, the students were transferreil to that place.

Handsome Roman Catholic Chapels stand at Tombae
and at the Braes of Glenlivet (8. Mary.) Over the
principal entrance to tlie first (" The C-hurcli of the Incar-
nation ") are the words —


XXIV. A monument, built of granite, contains three
separate tablets thus inscribed : —


►J* Sacred to the memory of William Gordon, Esq., Minmore
vvlio died 5 Nov., 1829, aged 74 years. R.I.P.

-I< Death, I will be thy death. Osee, ch. 13.

Expecting a blessed resurrection, the mortal remains of
Anne, the beloved wife of James Petrie, Esq., here repose,
In the fear of the Lord, which, &c.
In faith, without which, &c., please God.
In hope, the anchor, &c., sure and firm.
In charity, which never faileth.
She placidly resigned her spirit to its Creator, 7th Sep., 1858,
aged 47 years : —

Her children rose up, &c.
Her husband, and he praised her.
Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain.
The woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised,
Prov., ch. 31.

Requiescat in pace.

XXV. ^ IHS. Sacred to the memory of Mary Stewart,
spouse of Capt. Wilham Gordon, Minmore, Avho died 1 Oct.,
1842, aged G3 years ; of their son, Capt. John Gordon, H.E.I.S.,
who died at Singapore 4th July, 1833, aged 27 years ; of their
daughter, Elizabeth Stewart Forbes, who died at the Convent
of Mercy, Glasgow, 10 April, 1834, aged 32; of their 3 sons
and daughters, who died in infancy. Of Lewis Gordon, Esq.,
for many years Secretary to the Highland Agricultural Society
of Scotland, who died at Aberdeen 23 January, 1839, aged 72.
And of Sir Charles Gordon, who died at Edinburgh 25th Sep.,
1845, aged 52. Requiescant in pace.

Gordons have been long resident at Minmore, and it is
from one of them that the present Gordons of Abergeldie
are descended in the male line. The above Sir Charles,
who married a sister of Angus Fletcher of Dunans, Esq.,
was trained by his uncle, and ultimately succeeded him
in the office of Secretary to the Highland Agricultural

Further up the river Avon is


In the shire of Banff. This Glen and Strath
was a part of the estate of M'Duff, Earl of Fife,


in the 13th centiuy, and was, anno 1389, June
22, resigned by Isabel M'Dnff, heh'ess, in the
hands of King Eobert III., in j^erpetuam reman-
entiam (Sliene de Verhorum Significatione titulo
Arage.) It came afterwards to Alexander, Lord
Badenoch and Earl of Buchan, who left issue
only three bastard sons, viz., Alexander (Earl of
Mar in right of his wife), Sir Andrew of Sand-
haiigh, and Walter of Kinchardin. Sir Walter
of Strathavon (son of Sir Andrew) sold Strath-
ayon, except Kilmachlie and Drumniin, to Alex-
ander Earl of Huntley, who disponed it to his son
Alexander, and he excambed it for the Barony
of Clunie. Again, George Earl of Huntley, who
died anno 1576, gave Strathavon to his son Alex-
ander, whose son, Alexander Gordon of Dun-
kintie sold Strathavon to his cousin George Earl
of Huntley. Since that time, all this parish
(except the Davach of Delnaboe) holds of Huntley
in property or superiority.

It is all environed with hills, except a small
opening towards Inveravon, and extends in lengtli,
on both sides of the river, from north-east to south-
west 7 miles : and about the middle of the parish,
the ri\T^ilet Conglas (which riseth in the hills to-
wards the Eiver Don), after a course of 7 or 8
miles, falleth into Avon, and liere the breadth of
the parish is 3 miles.

The Church standctli on the cast bank of Avon,
2 miles above the lo\ver end of tlio parisli, (> miles


south-west of luveravon, 4 miles east of Crom-
clale, and 5 miles east-north-east of Abernethie.

On the west side of the river, at the foot of
Cromdale hill, are from north to south the lands
of Inveram^ie, Inverlochie, and Forletter, the pro-
perty of the Diike of Gordon.

Above these, on the banks of the river, is Del-
naboe, for some generations the heritage of a
branch of the Clan Allan, but now the property
of Sir James Grant of Grant.

Above Delnaboe, on both sides of the river, are
Achnahyle, once a mortgage of James Grant,
brother to Easter Elchies ; Dellavorar, for three
generations the Wadset of a branch of the
M'Gregors; and Gavelack. These, and some
other possessions, are now wadsetted by William
Gordon, grandson to Glenbncket.

Above Gavelack, Glenavon runneth into the
Grampian hills about 12 miles, and is a rich pas-
ture for cattle, and a forest for red deer.

On the east side of the river, below the church,
is Dell; above the church is Euthven-Camdale,
where, in 1754, a bridge of three arches was
built over the river on the military-road.

Next is Camdale Bhrid, or Brigida's Camdale.
And on Conglas rivulet are several possessions,
particularly Achriachan, which, for about 200
years, was the inheritance of a branch of the
Farquharsons, but is now the property of the
Duke of Gordon.

218 QiTEEX Victoria's criticism of tomixtoul.

[There are four parishes of this name in Scotland, de-
rived from the patron Saint Michael ; one in Carrick,
Ayrshire, another in Annandale, Dumfries-shire, another
in Perthshire, and the fourth (the present) in Banffshire.
It has been likened to the ^-ings of a bat spread out, with
curious symmetry, to the north and south, in a westward
flight. Near the kirk there was a fountain, once highly
celebrated, and anciently dedicated to St. Michael. It
now lies neglected, choked with weeds, unhonoured and
unfrequented. In better days, the winged guardian,
under the semblance of a fly, was never absent from his
duty. If the matron wished to know the issue of her
husband's ailment, or the maiden that of her lover, they
visited the well of St. Michael. Every movement of the
sympathetic fly was regarded in silent awe ; and, as he
appeared cheerful or dejected, the votaries drew their

On the summit of a hill called the Mealaghaneimh is a
stone called Clachbhan (from clack, a stone, and bean, a
woman). On one side it measures 20 feet, on the other it
is lower and of a sloping form. In face of it two seats
have been excavated, resembling that of an arm-chair.
Till of late this stone used to be visited by pregnant
women, not only of this, but from distant countries, im-
pressed with the belief that by sitting in these seats, the
pains of travail would become easy to them. (TJte Stat.
Ace. of Scotland, vol. xii., pp. 42.5, 429, 4G4, 465.)

Queen Victoria writes, in " Leaves from the Journal of
our Life in the Highlands from 1848 to 1861," that
" Tomixtoul, which is in this parish, is the most tumble-
down poor-looking place I ever saw — one long street with
three inns, miserable, dirty-looking houses and people,
and a sad look of wretchedness about it. Grant told me
that it was the dirtiest, poorest village in the whole of
the Highlands."]— (Ed.)


[Situation, Soil, Climate. — The nortliern limits of Kirk-
michael lie on the southern borders of Cromdale, and on
the west it meets with Abernethy, in the mountains of
Cairngorum, and it occupies the western extremity of tlie
county of Banfl'. The length between the habitable ex-


tremes is 15 miles, and its greatest breadth about 5. The
Avon, in the Gaelic denoting simply the river, takes its
rise from a lake, to which itself has given its name, at
the southern bottom of Cairngorum, and holding a course
southerly, almost at right angles from the Spey, for nearly
10 miles, through a deep valley, the forest of Glenavon,
and dashing down a cataract of 18 feet in height, meet-
ing with the rivulet Builg, stealing from its parent lake
through its own green solitary vale, parallel to the Spey,
a wing of the forest, they proceed easterly in the same
course, till they turn with the stream of Conlass into a
northerly direction, right onwards to the Spey ; forming
a considerable river, on a bed chiefly of limestone, and
thereby so extremely pellucid, as to represent a depth of
three feet scarcely equal to one, whereby many have
been to the loss of their lives deceived.

Along the Avon and its tributary brooks, the soil is a
black sandy earth : on the more elevated plains, it is a
pretty fertile mould ; on the declivities, it is a red earthy
gravel, or in some places a deep clay ; and as it rises
higher on the hills, it is a more sterile moorish gravel.
There is little to recommend the climate, always cold in
winter, and in summer seldom warm, subjecting the inhabi-
tants to coughs, consumptions, and disorders of the lungs,
by which many at an advanced period, and several in early
life, are cut off; and nervous fevers, frequently fatal, pre-
vail during the summer and autumn.

State of Property. — The parish is divided into ten
little districts called davochs, from the Gaelic daimh,
oxen, and auch, field, denoting as much land as can be
ploughed in one season by 4 yoke of oxen. One of these,
named Delnaboe, is the property of Sir James Grant,
Bart., valued in the Cess Books of Banff at £233 6s. 8d.
Scots ; the other 9 appertain to the Duke of Gordon,
amounting to the valuation of £1925 6s. 8d. Scots. Ex-
cluding the forest of Glenavon, and the mountain pastur-
age pertaining to Delnaboe, the wholeparishcontains20,500
acres, of which about 1550 are arable; the whole real rent
about £1100 sterling. The whole number of black cattle
amounts to 1400, tlie sheep to 7050, goats to 310, and
horses to 303. The mean quantity of meal produced
yearly amounts to 2560 bolls, which being only about 2
bolls to each individual, excluding the potatoe and garden


stuffs, would be equal to no more than tAvo-thirds of the
proN-isions annually required.

The village of Toiiiantoul, near the middle of the
parish, contains 37 families. There is no manufacture ;
only some necessary articles of merchandise retailed ; and
the men occasionally hire as labourers by the day.

State Ecdeslastical.—The stipend is £68 6s. 8d. ster-
ling, and £10 sterling allowed by the proprietors for keep-
ing the parsonage buildings in repair. The glebe is
nearly 10 acres, and might be let for £6 sterling.
The right of patronage is the property of Sir James
Grant. The salary of the parochial school is £8 6s. 8d.,
with the usual fees of education, and the perquisites of
the office of session-clerk. The Society for Propagating
Christian Knowledge have established a school in the vil-
lage of Tomantoul, with an appointment of .£1*3 10s.,
where nearly 50 scholars attend. The number of poor
on the parish roll amounts to 32, and the yearly contri-
butions in the parochial church amount to little more
than £2 sterling. The members of the Established
Church are 892, and 384 are of the Church of Rome,
who have their own clergyman, and a handsome chapel
in the village of Tomantoul.

Miscdlaneous Information. — Although the usual pro-
portion of persons conspicuous for honour and integrity,
benevolence and uprightness in their transactions, may
be found in this parish, yet among the generality, cunning
has supplanted sincerity, and dissimulation, candour ;
profession supplies the place of sincerity, and flattery is
used as a lure to betray the unwary. Obligations are
rewarded by ingratitude ; and when a favour is past, the
benefit is no longer remembered. Opposed to interest,
promises cease to he binding ; and the most successful in
the arts of deception acquire the esteem of uncommon
abilities and merit. Suspended between barbarism and
civilization, the mind is never so strongly influenceil by
virtue, as it is attracted by the magnetism of vice.

Mr. George Gordon of Foddalettcr is justly entitled to
be ranked among the number of eminent men. As a
chemist ^nd a botanist, his knowledge was considerable,
and it was applied to the extension of useful arts. He
discovered, that by a simple preparation of a s]iecies of
moss produced by the rocks and stones of the nioniitains.


an elegant purple dye might be made. He established a
manufacture of this substance at Leith ; but its extension
was cut off by his premature death in the year 17G5.

There is a fountain of mineral water in the parish, of
the same kind with the wells of Pannanich ; it is fre-
quented by people subject to gravellish disorders, and
complaints in the stomach.

At the end of Lochavon is a large natural cave, in a de-
tached mass of stone, nearly 7 feet high and 12 in breadth.
The cavity can contain 18 armed men. It is named clach-
dhian, the stone of shelter. People often lodge in it
for a night, some from necessity, others in hunting and
fishing.] {Survey of the Province of Moray.)


The Church, a plain building, erected in 1807, stands
upon the haugh, on the south side of the Aven. It con-
tains five monuments : one is of freestone, and thus in-
scribed : —

I. Here lies the body of Ann Lindsay, spouse of John
Gordon of Glenbucket, and daughter of the Right Hon. Sir
Alexander Lindsay of Evelack, who departed tliis life on the
9th day of June, 1750, aged 50 years. Also Helen Eeid,
spouse of William Gordon, Esq. of Glenbucket, and daughter
of the Right Hon. Sir John Eeid of Barra, who died on the 5th
of May, 1766, aged 52 years; and Lilias M'Hardy, spouse of
John Gordon, Esq. of Glenbucket, and daughter of William
M'Hardy, late in Delnilat, who died May 30, 1829, aged 78
years. And of Elspet Stewart, spouse of Charles Gordon, Esq.,
St. Bridget, and daughter of William Stewart, Esq., Ballen-
trewau, who died 2nd February, 1856, aged 63 years.

II. A slab in the churchyard, which has disappeared
within the last year or two, bore the following epitaph
to the lady first named in the above inscription : —

Here 1 . . . the body of M , . . Lindsey, lady Glenbucket,
d ... to the Hon. Sir Alexander Lindsay . , . Evlack, who
in the 59 th year of her . . . departed this life on the 9 th of
June, 1 . . . : —

Her stately person, beauty, great,

Her charity and lowly heart ;

Her meekness and obedience

Her chastity and her good sense,

Do all combine to eternise.

Her fame and praise above the skies.


The Gordons of Glenbucket were descended of those of
Rothiemay, whose grandfather was of the family of Les-
more (Nisbet). The Lindsays of Evelick (Perthshire),
were descended of a younger brother of Sir Walter of
Edzell. In 166G, a baronetcy was created in the Evelick
branch of the Lindsays. The Reids, who bought Barra
about 170 years ago, were created baronets in 1707.

III. Another tablet within the kirk, commeinorates the
death of John Steuart (of the Auchnakyle and Lynchork
family), Captain in H.M. 39th regt., who died at Banga-
lore, E.L, in 1835, aged 46 ; also two of his brothers,
Robert, who died at Jamaica in 1824, aged 25, and
Charles, M.D., 86th regt., who died at Kurachee, E.I., in
1844, aged 40, &e.

IV. L^pon a similar marble slab, built into the south
wall, embellished with the Grant arms, is this inscrip-
tion : —

To the memory of Patrick Grant, Esq. of Gleulochy, lately
of Stocktomi, who died 15th April, 1783, aged 74; and of
Beatrix, his wife (daughter of Donald Grant, Esq. of Inver-
lochy), who died 24th January, 1780, aged 69. This monu-
ment is erected in testimony of filial affection and gratitude to
the best of parents, by John Grant, Chief-justice of Jamaica.

V. A table-shaped stone, outside the church, is in-
scribed as above, except that it bears to be erected " to
the best of parents by Francis Grant of Kilgraston."

This branch of the Grants is descended from John
of Freuchy, 4th son of Grant of Grant. The above-
named John, long Chief-justice of Jamaica, bought the
estate of Kilgraston, in Perthshire. He died issueless,
and was succeeded by his younger brother, the above
Francis Grant, who married a daughter of Oliphant of
Rossie, and died in 1819. Francis was succeeded by his
eldest son John, who married a sister of Lord Gray.
Lord Gray and his elder sister having both died without
issue, Mr. Grant's daughter (widow of the Hon. Mr.
Murray), is now Baroness Gray. Sir Francis Grant,
P.R.A., a well known portrait-painter, is the 4th son
of the above Francis Grant ; and the 5th son is the brave
Lieut.-Gen. Sir James Hope Grant, late Commander-in-
Chief at Madras.


VI. A beautifully executed monument of Aberdeen
granite (upon which are carvings of the insignia of the
Bath), a sword and shield cross ways, from which medals
are suspended, and inscribed, Nive, Victoria, and To The
British Army, 1793-4 bears,

Underneath lie the mortal remains of William Alexander
ilordon, Lieut. -Gen. in H.M.S., Colonel of the 54th regt. of
foot, C.B. Born at Croughly 21 March, 1769, died at Nairn,
10 Augt., 1856, aged 87.

Two monuments relating to the same family are within
the church. One to James Gordon, Esq., Croughly, who
died in 1812, aged 86, and his wife Anne Forbes, who died
in 1818, aged 82 (the parents of Lieut.-Gen. Gordon).
The second monument is to Robert Gordon, Esq., who
died in 1828, aged 47, and to several of his children.

VII. Upon the top of a table-shaped tombstone in the
churchyard : —

To preserve this burying ground, and in pious regard to the
memory of Finlay Farquliarson of Auchriachan, who possessed
this place since 1569, son to Findlay Farquharson, Esq. of
Invercauld ; likewise William Farquharson who died anno
1719, aged 80 years, who was the 9th man of that family Avho
possessed Auchriachan, and Janet Grant his spouse, who died
anno 1720, aged 78. Also William Farquharson, son of Inver
. . . who died anno 1723, aged 30, and Elizabeth Farquharson his
spouse, who died anno 1772, aged 78; also Sophia M'Gregor,
who died anno 1729, aged 59, spouse to Kohert Farquharson
in Auchriachan, who erected this monument, 1789.

The said Robert Farquharson died in 179 , William, his
son died in April 1811, and Alexander, the last in the male
line, died 11th Nov., 1835, aged 78. Janet Farquharson,
Robert's eldest daughter, married James Cameron, Ballenlisli,
and this tablet is renewed by their son, Angus Cameron of Fir-
hall, 1851 :—

These bodies low lie here consign'd to rest.
With hopes with all to rise among the blest :
Sweet be their sleep, and blessed their wakening.
Reader ! pray for those that pray for thee.

Achriachan, which, for about 200 years, was the inheri-
tance of a branch of the Farquharsons, is now (1775) the
property of the Duke of Gordon.


VIII. Within a railed enclosure, upon a handsome
granite cross : —

In memory of Capt. James Gordon, who died at Ivybank,
Nairn, 9th April, 1867, aged 90. He served in the Peninsula
with the 92nd Highlanders, and received the war medal with
seven clasps. He was also present at Waterloo, and received
the medal. He never made an enemy, or lost a friend.

IX. Near the above is the following record of another
race of gallant Highlanders : —

Capt. Robert M'Gregor, of the Clan Alpine Fencibles, and
14th Battalion of Reserve, died at Delavorar, 5 Oct., 1816, in
the 80th year of his age. His sons, Peter, Lieut. 17th
regt. of foot, was killed at the head of the Grenadiers at the
regt., at the storming of Fort Chumera, in the East Indies, in
the 26th year of his age ; John, Lieut, in the 88th regt., was
killed at the attack on Buenos Ayres, in the 1 7th year of his
age; James, Lieut. H.P. 84th regt., died at Delavorar, in his
.32nd year.

[The deaths of other members of this family are also re-

X. Here lies James Grant of Ruthven, Bailift' of Strathaven
and Glenlivet, who, in the 73rd year of his age, departed this
life, Dec. 9, an. 1743.

This Avas a man remarkable
At home, abroad, stdl hospitable ;
A good companion, trusty friend,
And still obliging to mankind.

Pallida mors, iV'c. Tninslation. — Pale death knocks with
impartial foot at the cottages of the poor and the palaces of

XI. Here lys tlu; l)ody of IsOBEL M'Lachlan, spovs to
James Grant, who departed tliis life . . . year of his age,
Oct. 29, 1722.

A rudely-shaped Cross, fornied out of a slab of gneiss,
about 5 feet high, with a hole pierced through the shaft,
between the arms of the cross, stands beside the monu-
ment of Captain James Gordon. It is said to have been
used by the natives for resting their spears or lances upon,
when they come to Divine service ; and a story is told of
some of the more sacrileirious of the Highlanders having


killed a priest by the side of the stone, for his being too
strict in demanding attendance at church.

This, however, had very possibly been the Cross of S.
Michael, round which, in byegone times, the people of
these parts (as was customary elsewhere), had assembled
for the purpose of buying and selling commodities —
markets having been originally held in churchyards, and
upon Sundays. As such, it is a relic of much local inter-
est, and possibly of high antiquity.

A chapel dedicated to S. Bridget stood near Tomintoul
in old times ; and a spring in the limestone rock of Craig-
chalkie is known by the name of S. Jessie.

A quoad sacra church and manse were erected at the

Online LibraryLachlan ShawThe history of the province of Moray. Comprising the counties of Elgin and Nairn, the greater part of the county of Inverness and a portion of the county of Banff,--all called the province of Moray before there was a division into counties → online text (page 21 of 37)