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Presented to the 
library of the 



Vhe Hon. Peter Wright 

Six Circular Tours in - 
Angus and Mearns - - 


Historical and Descriptive, with Notes on the 
Ancient Superstitions, Folk Lore, Eminent 
Men, and Curious Characters in various 
districts of Forfar and Kincardineshires 







3Ftrst Gour. 

T XTRODUCTION— Approaches to the 

I City — Mechanics' Institution — Beare- 

/ &f£S M* hill— St Michael' s Mount— West Toll- Toll 

!'3 ^^% ,., • % Wood— Maulesden— St Ann's 

K}\ \ — % '^# ■ — Kintrockat — Balnabreieh - 

.X '<■-■', The Noran— Marcus— Finavon 

Castle—' Earl Beardie '— ' The 

Wicked Master' — Vitrified 

Fort— Roman Canrp— Tanna- 

dice— Cortachy Castle— Ogil- 

vys— The Battle of Saughs— 

'Hawkit Stirk' —Inverquharity 

Castle— Inverquharity Ogilvys 

— ' It was a' for our richtfu' 

King ' — Glen Clova— Clova— 

The Peel— Loch Brandy— Glen 

Ogil— Fentons of Glen Ogil— 

Castle of Corsens— Castle of 

Queich — Castle of Wester 

Ogil—' Loup in' Ague'— Castle 

of Vane— 'Kelpie's Footmark'— Deuchar Castle— Fern 

— Careston Castle— Arms of Carnegy, Balnamoon— 

Marquis of Montrose— Superstitions .... 

Extended Tour.— Cortachy Castle— The Battle 

of Saughs— Inverquharity Castle— The Oguvy 

Family — Clova— Loch Brandy. 



Second Tjour. 

1 The Kennels ' — Aldbar Castle— Sculptured Stones of 
Angus— Interesting Stone— The Old Chapel— Den o' 
Aldbar— Ardovie— Cookston— Melgund Castle— Quad- 


rangular T w< r— Armorial Bearings— Mysterious Dis- l'AQE 
appearance— Flemington Castle— Church and Parish 
of Aberl< mno— Celebrated Sculptun -• -Battle 
r-t '■ ' • - Publio 
Library— V\ ehes Stone— Forfar Castle— Forfar Loch 
— Ma 1 )re—Glamis Castle— Legend— "Witch- 
craft — The Haunted Room— Villag< mis— In- 
teresting Memorials— Vale of Strathmore— Glen of 
Ogilvy— The Nine Maidens— Kirriemuir — Manufac- 
tures—' Standing Stone'—' Rockinsr Stones '— 'Weem's 
Holes'- The Den— Airlie Castle— Weird Story— Anti- 
quities— Den of Airlie— 'Reekie Linn' — ' Slug of 
Auchranni ; '— Kingoldram— The Melgund— Castle of 
Balfour— Angus Hill 77-144 

Extended Tax,:— Forfar and District— Royalty 
at Forfar— Glamis Castle— Story of Lady Jane 
Douglas — The Haunted Room — Villa co of 
Glai le of Strathmore— Glen of Ogilvy 

'The Nine Maidens '—Kirriemuir— Standing 
Stone, and Den of Kirriemuir — Castle of Airlie 
—Legend of 'The Drummer Boy ' — Den of 
nd ' Reekie Linn '—Kingoldrum. 

GbirO tTcur. 

Fittendreich— Willie Mill's Burn— Biidge of Blackhall— 

glen of I ' -West Water— Church of Lethnot— 

tch Fiend— Priest's Road— Menmiiir— 
Lav.-i - - Tragedies — Sepulchral Remain 5 ! — 

Witch 1 other Superstitions— Hill of Wirren 

— Caterthun— The Work of the Wit eke- and Fairi 
Antiquarians Differ— Balnamoon— Interesting Family 
Hi- ig Anecdotes — ' Bonnymune's Cave ' 

— ' Rebel Laird '— Balhall— Little Brechin— Murling- 
den— Tl —A Remarkable Family— The ' Cattle 

Rake'-' u Farm— Springfield Hou3e. . . 145-178 

Extended row— Wert Water.— G Lethnot 

—Balhall— Hill of Wirren— Craig of Stoneyford. 

&c, &c. 

Ifourtb Cour. 

Glencadam— T] ii ity— Cairnbank— Bridge of Crai< k— Inch- 
bare— "^ r Bridge— Dalhousie Memorial Arch 
— Edgel] rfon Bridge — Mineral Will— The 
Muic— 1 -tie— Old Church find Churchyard- 
Lad : Izell— Lindsay Vault— Last Laird of 
Edzi Moo ran- The Burn s of 
Auchmul Cii les— Shooting Lodge of Millden 
—The ["ower— Hill of Modloch— Birks of 
Ardoch -:•".■- Bridge oi Tarf— Rowan Hill— 

Parish C] Man The Mark- I In- 

vermark I • hiemore — Invermark Lodge— Oie 

Que -The Old Church— Grave 


Poet— Lochia — Description of Loch — Surrounding page 

Mountains— The UnichandLee — ' Gryp's Chamber'— 

Dr Guthrie's Retreat— The G&berlunzie. . . . 179-235 

Extended Tour.— Bdzell Castle — The Lindsay 
Vault— Old Churchyard. 

Further Extension— -The Bridge of Mooran. 

tfittb Gour. 

The Gannochy— An Old Tradition- Balbegno Castle— 
Middleton and the Ghost— Fettercairn— The Royal 
Visit— The Ancient Cross— Witch Burning— F< bter- 
cairn House— The House of Fasque and the Glad- 
stones—The Oid Town of Kincardine— Murder of 
Kenneth III.— Legend of Den-FineRa— Kincardine 
Castle— Green Cairn— The Clatterin' Brig— [Ext 
Tour: Cairn o' Mount — Cloeh=-na-Ben— Forest of 
Bii'se — Feughside — The Feugh and the Dee.] — 
— Whisky and Cockfigkting— Glensaugh Lodge— Loch 
of Glensaugh— Bright' s Well— Glen of Drumtochty— 
A Picturesque Scene— Friar's Glen— John o' Fordoun, 
the Old Historian— The Priest's Well -Drumtochty 
Castle— Castle of Glenfarquhar— Church of St Palla- 
dius— Auchinblae— ' A Very Paradise for Retirement ' 
—Lovely Panorama as viewed from Stra'finla Top— 
Knoch Hiil— A Charming View— 'The Court Stone— 
Dnunsleed Woi »ds— An Old Encampment— Pitarrow— 
George Wishart, the Martyr — Mill of Conveth— 
Haulkerton— ' Brownie's Kettle,' or 'Sheriffs : 
— A Gruesome Story— The Church of Fordoun— The 
Parish Bier— An Old School— A Tax on Grave-tones — 
Free Church Manse. — [Extended Tour: Kincardineshire 
Villages— Fordoun to Stonehaven— Redhall, Mon- 
boddo, Li »rd M< tnboddo and Burns— Glenbervie, Castle 
and Churchyard, Tombstones of Bums' Ancesl 
Eminent Men of the Mearns, A Small County Rich in 
Historic Lore— Drundithie— Stonehaven, Old and New 
Towns — Places of Interest — Cowie— TTrie Castle, Fet- 
teresso Castle. Dunnottar Castle, Prison for Covenan- 
ters, Martyr's Monument, David Paterson [' Old Mor- 
tality' , and Sir Walter Scott— Church of KinnefE -The 
Minister's Wife and the Regalia of Scotland— Allar- 
dyce House— Arbuthnott House— Bervie— Hallgreen 
Castle—1 lenholm T< >\ver— Brotherton Castle — J i dins- 
haven— Lauriston Castle— Legend of the Blind Piper 
—Den Finella— Miltonhaven — Tangleha' — Carrying off 
a Village— Kaim o' Mathers— Ecclesgreig— St Cyrus, 
A Curious Bequest, A Poet's Grave, George Beattie, 
Johuo' Arnha ,the WaterKelpie— Dannie's Den, Mor- 
phie and Canterland. Hill of Garvock. the Packman's 
House] — Laurencekirk, Founding a Village, Lord 
Gardenstone's Humours, taking down a ' buck' and 
sharing his bed with a pig, Famous Snuff-boxes, John- 
ston and the Barclays, Thornton and the Thornton 
Family, 'Men o' the Mearns'— A Historic Vault at 


Marykirk— -Sauchiebatn- The Bereans and their Out- %gh 
spoken Pastoirs— Luthermuir— Balmak< wan — The first 
Lindsay of Balcarres— Marykirk, Kirktonhill, Intro- 
duction of the Potato— Craigo, a Long-lived Race— 
Logie-Pert, a Picturesque Old Churchyard, the Birth- 
place of a Famous Historian— The Covenanters of 
North Water Bridge, John Erskine's Dream— The 
Gallery — Inglismaldie, the Falconers and Hawkertoun 
Dunlappie. Reidhall — The Lands of Lundie, the 
Patters oi Brechin Kirk— Auchinreooh and Chapelton 
— Stracathro, John Baliol"s Penance, the Battle of 
Stracathro 236-326 

Extended Tour.— Bedhall— Monboddo— Glehbervie 
Drumlithie— Stonehaven — Cowie— Urie— Fetter- 
— Dunnottar Castle— Church of Kinneff— 
Bervie— Ben holm — Brotherton— Johnshaven— 
Den Finella -Kaim o' Ma .is— Hill 

of Garvock. 

Si£tb lour. 

Cairnbank How Templewood) and Bishop Carnott — 
Leading stones for the building or Brechin Belfry from 
1354 to 1384— Huntly Hill, the Battle of Brechin, the 
Haer Cairn, Keithock Law— The Vicarage • >f E glisj oho, 
Dun Hi »use— ^Superintendent Erskine.L hing 

at Dun. the Ghost o' Dan, murder of a young priest, 
the Erskines at Flodden, poisoning ' two zoungb 
—Bridge of Dun — Langley and Broomley, a great 
Spanish chestnut — Hillside, a pretty village, Sunny- 
side— Montrose and its castle, vi?ite I by '.Vail; ice and 
Sir James Douglas, its distinguished educational posi- 
tion, the plague, Prince Charles, the Duke of * uua- 
berland, 'The Sea enriches and the H ns,' Mon- 

trose visited by Johnson and Burns, its mo is men, 
its beautiful surroundings, a fine health report, ;:- 
places oi interest, the Basin — Ferryden — Around 
the Coast to Lunan, Usan, fisher superstitions, 'only 
: character to depend on, 1 'Th< - Road,' 

' the King's Cadger' — Parish of Craig, Saint Skae, Den 
of Dunninald, Black Jacks Castle, Castle of Craig, 
Rossie, 'cheat the wuddy,' Rossie Reformatory — 
Lunan Bay, Red Castle, a magnificent panorama, the 
Witches' Pool, a literary dominie, a kirk beadle 
father-in-law of an Earl's daughter, grandfather of a 
Marchioness, and great-grandfather of a Marquis and 
a Duchess, the last Scottish martyr— Inv«-rkeillor, 
Anniston, Ethie Castle, the ghost ofC rdiual Beaton, 
the Earls of Northesk — Kinblethmont Auchmithie 

itt's Musselcraig] a quaint old word fi- 
village, descendants of the ' Mucklebaekets,' Sir 
Walter's I edroom— Seaton House— Arbroath and its 
Abbey, historical associations, the 'Fairport' oi the 
'Antiquary,' the 'Round O,' Dr Johnson s visit, the 
Roval Forest, Legend of the Bell Bock, the Battle of 


Arbroath, the Cfiff.->. a scene of great grandeur and 
wildness, legends and traditions of the Mason'- Oove, 
the Deel's E'e, the Smuggler's Den— Hospitalfield 
(Monkbarns), a rich art collection— St Vigeans, Celtic 
Memorials, the Kind's tutor, a remarkable echo— 
Letham Grange— Colliston Castle— Friockheim— Gar- 
dyne Castle— Braikie and its cantankerous keeper, 
Castle Jean— Guthrie Castle, Kinnell and the Ogilvy 
Aisle — Maryton and the Lairds of Baldovie, Andrew 
Melville's quaint letter, bickering about Church stools, 
curious church collections in the olden time— Old 
Montrose and its Marquis, the royal forest. Lord 
Southesk on ancient ' Earth Flouses,' ' Cairns,' &c. — 
the Woods of Bonnyton. a mysterious disappearance, 
Fiulerton and Ananie, the old Montreathmont Moor 
and substantial 'pin money '— Farnell and its Old 
Castle— Kinnnird Castle and its historic associations, 
the deer park, the ancient Carnegie family, their 
talents and literary gifts, the late Earl as an anti- 
quarian and poet— The Ancient Bridge of Brechin— 
John Ochterlony on the beautiful surroundings of 
Brechin in 16S2, a picturesque spot—' the keystane o' 
the Brig'— -witchcraft anct a branded dog — Brechin 
Castle, its grounds and gardens, its ancient history, 
the scene of the homage of King John Baliol and the 
resignation of the crown and kingdom, besieged by 
the English in 1303, Sir Thomas Maule's defence, the 
' war wolf,' the Maules and their history, the Lords de 
Brechin, the Earls of Dalhousie— Lord Panmure, his 
liberality and amusing escapades— Fox Maule, the 
last Baron Panmure, the Hon. George Ramsay, C.B., 
12th Earl, Hon. John William Ramsay, 13th Earl, his 
bright career and good works, the tragic death of the 
Earl and Countess— a promising young Earl . . 327-459 

E.rtewh<l To to:— Broomley— Montrose— Ferryden 

— Craig House— Rossie Castle— Luuan, Lunan 

Bay— Redcastle. 

Further Extension. — Auchmitliie — Arbroath— and 

back by Friockheim — over Montreathmont 

Muir to Farnell. 

-. .- -- • • ' • J -' 

T ~ -^■^ W 4gg 

-^ fVmKKfrjP^ 



vv 1 

iBHRg *^M| 


Map of District 
Mechanics' Institute 
On the Noran 
Finavou Castle 

,, from the South Esk 
Cortachy Castle 
Inverquharity Castle 
Castle of Vane 
Careston Castle - 

Brechin Cathedral 
Aldbar Castle 
Melgund Castle - 
Forfar from the North 
Forfar and the Inch 
Glamis Castle 
Castle of Airlie - 
Trinity Muir on Market Uay 
West Water Bridge 
Dalhousie Memorial Arch 

























High Street, Edzell - - - - - 186 

Inglis Memorial Hall, Edzell - - - - 187 

Edzell 189 

Edzell Castle - - - - - - 191 

Mooran Bridge - 202 

Woods of the Burn - - - - - 204 

On the Modlach ... - 210 

Tarfside 212 

Bridge of Tarf 213 

Invermark Castle - - - - - 219 

Invermark Lodge ..... 221 

Queen's Well 223 

Invermark Churchyard .... 224 

Lochlee - - - - - - 229 

On Lochlee 230 

Gannochy Bridge ..... 237 

Fettercairn - - . - - - - 242 

Easque House - - - - - - 246 

DeuFineila - - ... . - 251 

Clatterin' Brig ------ 255 

Drumtoehty Castle ----- 256 

Fordoim Church - 264 

St Palladius Church - - - - 266 

Duunottar Castle .... - 277 

Bervie Parish Church - - - 282 

St Cyrus Churchyard 290 

Thornton Castle - - - - - 301 

Marykirk Parish Church - - - - 307 

Stracathro House ----- 325 

The Old Windmill 345 

ntrose Town House ... - 348 

Suspension Bridge ----- 351 

Ferryden ------ 356 

Luuan Bay ....-- 368 

Ethie Castle 375 



Mafyton Ctmrch 
Farnell Castle 

Faruell Church - 
Kinnaird Castle 
Brechin irom the Bridge 
Bridge of Brechin 
Brechin Castle 
Brechin in 1600 
Mussel Craig (Auchmithie) 
Arbroath Parish Church 
Bell Rock Lighthouse 
Hospitalrleld - 



mmm .it 1 * 


I have use! ni » varnish, 

To make fair things fairer look. 

UR introductory chapter 
treats of the attraction 
presented by the many 
notable tilings in the 
counties of Forfar and Kincardine — 
civil, ecclesiastical, social and archi- 
tectural, aswell as of the richness, 
beauty, and grandeur they present to the botanist, the 
geologist, and the lover of Nature. Here it is only necessary 
to express the hope that natives of Angus and Mearns, 
whether ic home or abroad, who are naturally pleased to 
know, as concisely as possible, about the numerous 
facts of interest pertaining to their native counties 
previous to their own days, will find not a little to 
entertain them. 

We hear a good deal in these times about " the literature 
of locality." A "National Home Union'* was recently 
formed in England, with the patriotic intent of specially 
interi members in the history and literature, the 


physical geography, and the natural history of their couniry. 
Throughout this work we again and again refer to the pro- 
ductions of other writers and the sources of our information 
regarding the traditions, antiquities, old customs, folk-lore, 
territorial families, eminent men, curious characters, and 
quaint stories of the districts. Nothing, we think, can be 
more gratifying than the increasing interest which of late 
years has sprung up regarding the past annals of our parishes 
and counties. Many unwritten legends and traditions there 
are, as well as the already written records and accounts, 
which in the present transitional and busy age it is advisable 
to lay hold of and secure in more permanent form than the 
vicissitudes and chances of traditionary lore can afford. 
Even more than in the past, says a recent writer, Mill these 
be valuable to the future historian. Our rapidly changing 
customs and modes of living, as well as the exigencies of a 
highly complex civilization, will soon obliterate from view 
many picturesque incidents and associations which now invest 
the different localities with a romantic and enticing charm. 
The history of the two counties under notice, indeed of a 
country such as Scotland, naturally divides itself into two 
sections — the one exhibiting its material progress in the 
cultivation of the land by the multiplication of its strongholds 
and baronial residences, and the other displaying the develop- 
ment of civilization by the erection and maintenance of its 
religious houses. We have, consequently, found it necessary 
in our rambles to have a good deal to do with these two 
institutions — the Castle and the Kirk — as affording a safe 
measure of advancement of a district. For, whilst the Castle 
was the outcome of physical force and designed to establish 
territorial rights by the strong hand, the Kirk was the seat 
of thau mental energy which, by the use of letters, could 
maintain these rights when established, and confirm them to 
posterity. In early times the province of the ecclesiastic 
was as much temporal as spiritual, and the history of the 


most stirring periods was often planned and initiated within 
the peaceful serenity of the cloister. 

Regarding the picturesque scenes we endeavour to describe, 
we do uot require to explain that they can be selected to suit 
the time and convenience of either tourist or home rambler. 
The number and locale of many of the places referred to may 
to some extent perplex the visitor, owing to the somewhat 
zig-zag switchback style in which, for the sake of connecting 
history and family details, we have found it necessary to 
refer to them, but a glance at our route map will be sufficient 
to make matters clear. A word of thanks is due to the 
assistance received from friends in our efforts to add interest 
to the volume by means of illustrations. Particularly are 
we indebted to Mr D. Waterson, A. R.E., the well-known 
artist, for the design on cover, for the fine proof etching of 
the Cathedral, that appears as a frontispiece in the extra- 
bound copies of this work, and also for a number of vignette 
sketches, etc. 

Around our district the journey need not be a long one to 
afford variety of entertainment and instruction. And as we 
turn away into the open country we, for the time, leave 
behind the cares and worries of daily life, and enjoy the 
repose and invigoration that mother earth imparts to ''her 
foster child — her inmate, man." Summer strolls leave pleasing 
pictures in the memory, and when winter's snows and leafless 
trees are present, these stored-up summer pictures bring 
summer to the heart. 

James, ninth Earl of Southeak (written of on paye 429 and 
following pages), died at Kinnaird Castle on 21st February 1906, 
and was succeeded by his eldest son, Charles Xoel, Lord Carnegie. 

Capt. J. C. Bubxett of Monboddo j>age 268) died April 1905. 


'J'lV-i:..;.',.' ' 



D H EDWARDS. Brechin 




"A district rich and gay. 
Broke into kills, with balmy odours crown'd, 

And joyous vales, 

Mountains and streams. 
And clnst'ring towers, and monuments of fame, 
And seen i his deeds in little bounds.'* 


HILE far from underrating the value of 
foreign travel to healthy holiday makers, 
we entertain considerable doubt as to the 
restfulhess experienced by less fortunate persons in 
struggling for apartments, and over hotel bills, in 
what Mr Blenkinsop called " furring par For 

weary mind and body there is better relaxation 
nearer home. There is no lack in variety of tem- 
perature, as well as picturesque and romantic scenery, 
or of historical and traditional associations within the 
compass of this island, and there are marvels enough 
— architectural, archaeological, and geographical — to 
occupy the mind in a genial and holiday-making 
manner. We do not forget that " local " is something 
of a despised word among certain sunward-soaring 
folks ; but is it not the case that home, which is 


always local, if seen aright, will be found to compre- 
hend the infinite spirit and the infinite form of truth 
and beauty '.' Although the district of which Brechin 
forms the centre presents many glimpses of " the stern 
and wild '" — and our late revered Queen herself, in 
her "Leaves," has testified to some of the charms of 
our neighbourhood — it will be found by the visitor 
quite different from those scenes representing the 
veriest odds and ends of creation, where Nature is 
seen in what may be called its shreds and patches, 
gussets and selvedges. Here the eye rests on many 
a smiling scene and tranquil landscape calculated to 
charm the lover of rich lowland beauty, and of 
reminiscences of an historical nature. 

Few crowni; g, or heaven-defying crags, 

Intrude ; but peaceful villages and homes, 
And softly swelling bills and valleys wide, 
Ai.d silvery rivers g-lidin_ r to th< 
And placid country seat.-, from out their wealth 
Of woodland glancing, ioiiu a perfect whole, 
[Nor wild nor tame, but Harmony itself. 

We shall suppose that summer is at its height, and 
that Nature looks her best, when every walk or drive 
into the country is full of interest to those who can 
recognise old friends in the beautiful wayside flowers, 
and in the voices of the rejoicing birds. The woods 
have put on the whole of their holiday dress, the 
green leaves refresh our eyes, and their shade at 
noon-day is as pleasant as good news from a distant 
land. Everv wayside is now a study of scented 
beauty, and every dell is a haunt of joyous sounds. 
Every object is beautiful in its own way to those 
who love to read the great book that Nature spreads 
wide open before us. 

Now-a-days we hear much about lovers of natural 
beauty waging warfare against the utilitarian spirit of 
the age. At one time they are called on to fight 


against the wanton destruction of time-honoured 
monuments of the past ; and at another against the 
intrusion of a railway into our most lovely and 
picturesque districts. 

To the tourist and the lover of the romantic any- 
thing that would tend to impair the beauty and the 
historic interest of our most attractive scenes should 
be guarded with the utmost jealousy. 

And here let us say a word about the preservation 
of ancient monuments, in which our district is so rich. 
The neglect of public monuments and graveyard 
memorials has, we are pleased to observe, led to the 
establishment of a "National Society for Preserving 
the Memorials of the Dead," a Society in which our 
King and several of the nobility, including the Earl of 
Southesk and others, take a warm interest. From the 
early reports of the local secretaries, it will be seen 
that great need existed for such a society. A vicar 
took tombstones from a graveyard to pave his coach- 
house and cottage floors. At Port-of-Menteith, in 
Perthshire, gravestones have been used in the con- 
struction of the pier for the small boats on the lake, 
Modern tiles cover curious monumental slabs in 
scores of churches, and man}^ a churchyard has been 
" ploughed up." But we need not continue the 
■weary and disgraceful catalogue. 

Everyone who is the least interested in historical 
or artistic research has been long familiar with 
examples of gross carelessness — to use no stronger 
word — displayed towards relics that tell of those who 
have quitted this world. Opinions will always vary 
as to the need of such memorials. It will be agreed, 
however, that if pious associations and the reverence 
of generations have gathered round such relics, it is 
hard that now they should run the risk of sheer 
Vandalism. We do not refer to the importance 


which more than once has arisen in cases of disputed 
succession from the preservation of gravestones and 
works of art, but we are urging, upon the grounds of 
reverence and common decency, that respect should 
be shown to the tablets which alone remain to tell us 
of our fathers. From the fact of our having had in 
our midst such noted antiquarians as the late Patrick 
Chalmers of Aldbar and the late Andrew Jervise, this 
district has been well protected, and their researches 
have cast much light on many a quaint tradition and 
richly carved memorial. 

As we proceed, it will be our endeavour to speak of 
the hoary chronicles of the past — give morsels of 
history and tradition, briefly treated, and so pleasantly 
flavoured as to tempt the reader and the visitor to 
more extensive and detailed narrative in such 
important works as Warden's "Forfarshire,"' Jervise s 
"Memorials,"' Marshall's "Scenes/ 7 Carrie's "Ancient 
Things," &c. 

In our " trips ; ' we shall find the eye resting upon 
many a picturesque landscape and historic scene — the 
hoary remains of former greatness nestling amid 
ancestral trees, the homes of great and illustrious 
families, and modern mansions rearing their graceful 
towers above much that is naturally romantic as well 
as artistically beautiful. An intelligent observation 
of what we see around us will carry with it its own 
reward, for in such a case we find — 

" Each rock a pulpit, and each stone a book, 
Proclaiming to our fancy numerous teachers. 

From lowhest nook." 


first Uour. 

Matjlesben, Kintrockat, Marcus, Finavon, 

Tannadice, Cortachy, Clova, Glenogil, 

Fern, Castle of Vane, Careston 

Castle, &c. 


We'll awa', we'll awa', to the woods 

awa', , -, !_• 1 

To the gorsy hrae, an the bu^ken 

ahaw : 
Where the hill hum rows, an the 

ht-ather grows. 
An' the bricht e" e o' heaven beams 

bonnie owre a'. 

i(5 HE charming approaches to the 
Ancient City, and the sylvan 
beauty by which it is surrounded 
are admired by all strangers, and 
have furnished pleasing themes to the 
historian as well as the poet. Even at 
the risk of being censured at the outset 
for digression, it might be said that we 
in Brechin are in little danger of ever lacking the 
largest breathing spaces so long as we have sucn 
amplitude of hill and glen. Our landed proprietors, 


as a rule, callow respectable visitors to feel that their 
foot is on their "native heath," although their name 
may not be " Macgregor." It is not so in many 
districts, where the God-made country is being 
invaded by the man-made town, and where corn has 
been seen growing, and where the singing of birds has 
been heard, now stretch lines of street loud with the 
hum of a swarming population ; and instead of the 
leafy home of the sweet warblers of the wood is the 
unsparing march of stone and lime. 

However, after all, this lateral extension of human 
habitation is a sign of progress, and it is better than 
the old extension that was vertical and vicious. Yet 
if this lateral extension is to go on, what is to become 
of the bits of green sward and our old friends the 
buttercups and daisies, and the nooks of wood wherein 
to retire from the oppression of crowded streets and 
dream of fairies, if we cannot see them — 

'• Where the midnight fairies glide." 

Although Ave daresay the green-coated gentry, who 
i are said to be very finical in their tastes, 

My must have long ago taken their departure 
A from such scenes. 

i f'CfS* The late George Gilfillan, whose sun set, 

$i><5/%^ anc ^ wnose eloquent lips became dumb 

and were sealed by death in Brechin, 

jgf- loved the city and its charming en- 

g \ . virons as well as the romantic 

'. ( ^> glens and haunted ruins in the 

> , ffS district. He wrote — "I love the 

Ik SlPftSir A town for its 

^L i ^■^^li0MS'iis^^^- beautiful situa- 

"''^^J^^P^m^^^^' tion ' lyin & S0 

AC^^^^' sweetly by the 

> -&J side of the clear 


and sparkling South Esk, surrounded t by' rich 
gardens, overhung by the frowning forehead 
of its ancient castle, and backed by the stern battle- 
ment of the Grampian mountains ; for the sake of its 
kind and intelligent inhabitants : and on account of 
many pleasing personal associations. It is not only 
beautiful in itself, but forms the centre to a wide 
surrounding circle of romantic interest. There are 
numerous fine old ruins, in which many a gay party, 
as they dine, feel their laughter deadened by the 
sound of the wind moaning through the ' rents of 
ruin' in the hollow windows, or by the sight of the 
rank grass growing in the dining-rooms where once 
still gayer parties were convened, and in which 
everything is in keeping with the spirit of the place 
— old trees above, old gardens below, and old shadowy 
hills standingup as grim guardians of thescenebehind." 
The rivers and streams of the district have been 
immortalised in verse by Eoss of " The Fortunate 
Shepherdess," and Laing, whose sweet garland of 
" Wayside Flowers " lends a perfume far beyond their 
place of birth, and who sung so felicitously of the 
winding Lemno, the limpid Keithock, the silver 
Noran, the sweet South Esk, the West Water, so dear 
to anglers, and the romantic North Esk, which has 
been described by a writer as resembling " in colour 
a mixture of claret and port wine — a mellow and 
moving autumnal darkness, finely contrasted with 
the white bubbles which sparkle on the surface ; " the 
" all-beautiful Burn," too, will yet command our 
attention and admiration — a place of such impressive 
grandeur as to make Dr Gilnllan say that if he had 
the choice of a spot in which to die, and were disem- 
bodied spirits permitted to choose some particular 
scene for an eternal sanctuary, his should be found by 
the side of these clustering woods. 



Having, in our "Pocket History of Brechin," told 
the visitor what is of interest regarding the story of 
Brechin, it is not necessary to repeat it here. We 
make our exit from the ,; west end," which has quite 
a " select aspect compared with the air of life and 
bustle of the principal thoroughfares, and take our 
wav through Castle Street (formerly known as the 
"West Port "). 

"W e make the Mechanics' Institution our starting 
point. This elegant structure is still the finest 
specimen of architecture in the city. It was gifted 

MECHANICS' institute. 

by Lord Panmure (William Maule) along with £1000 
in money, and a number of valuable paintings and 
feudally vested in the Town Council. There had 
been previously no proper lecture-room and library 
for the Mechanics' Institution, which was established 


in 1835, and increased accommodation was required 
for the grammar school, parish school, and burgh 
school. The foundation stone was laid on 28th June, 
1838 — the coronation da}^ of Queen Victoria. Shortly 
after the introduction of the Scottish Education Act 
the present High School and other schools were built, 
so that now the ground floor is used for the accommo- 
dation of the City Club reading and billiard rooms, 
and the attendant's residence. 

The front of the building is in ihe Tudor style of 
architecture, with castellated parapet, ornamented 
with pinnacles. A square tower of fine proportions 
rises in the centre to a height of eighty feet. From 
the top of the tower is seen one of the most lovely 
and variegated prospects imaginable. The Hall, 
which is open to visitors, is one of the finest sights of 
the city. It contains many valuable paintings by old 
and modern artists — including portraits of Wallace, 
Oliver Cromwell, Charles II., Queen Charlotte, Lord 
Panmure, Rev. Dr Foote, Alexander Laing, Andrew 
Jervise, and others. It also contains several of 
Philip's best productions, including " The Interior of 
a Cottage/' which secured to the artist, then a young 
man and unknown to fame, the patronage of Lord 
Panmure, who sent him to study in London, and but 
for whose generosity and influence Philip might have 
died unknown. At Brechin Castle he painted several 
pictures for his Lordship, includiug "A Group of 
Cows," probably the best effect of all his pictures, 
which, with a large historical subject, representing 
"Bruce receiving the Sacrament from -the Abbot of 
Inchaffry on the Evening of Bannockburn," graces the 
wails of the Hall. This large painting was exhibited 
in many towns, but it did not find a purchaser, and as 
Lord Panmure knew that Philip urgently required 
money, he gave him "a lordly sum" for it. 


Art and Science own his liberal hand- 
Painters and Poets— sill his debtors .stand. 

Packed together in the most unscientific manner in 
a corner of the Library, the visitor will find an 
interesting collection of ancient coins, fragments of 
pottery, and other relics of antiquity. We trust these 
form only the nucleus of what will yet become an 
important museum. 

The Dalhousie Memorial Fountain was first erected 
in front of the Mechanics' Institution, but was after- 
wards removed to St Ninian's Square. It was gifted 
by Lady Christian Maule in memorv of her brother, 
Fox, 11th Earl of Dalhousie. He succeeded his 
father, Lord Panmure, in 1852, and on the death, in 
I860, of his cousin, the Marquis of Dalhousie, his 
Lordship, through the failure of heir males, became 
the 11th Earl of Dalhousie, and Laird o' Cockpen. 
Soon after, he resumed the family name of Ramsay 
in addition to that of Maule. He was long a member 
of the Privy Council, and held the offices of Vice- 
President of the Board of Trade, Under-Secretary 
for the Home Department, Secretary of State 
for War Department, and President of the 
Board of Control. As Sccretary-at-War, from 1855 
to 1858, when the Crimean War and the Indian 
Mutiny engaged all his energies, the mme of Lord 
Panmure was much before the public. In 1812 he 
was elected Lord Rector of Glasgow University. He 
" came out" in '43, and was ever afterwards an 
attached elder of the Free Church, and took a leading 
part in the deliberations of that body. He had a rare 
combination of business talent, and being naturally of 
a shrewd and resolute mind, he was frank and out- 
spoken in a remarkable degree. He was an eloquent 
speaker, and had an admirable power of controlling 
public assemblies. Dying in his seventy-third year 


at Brechin Castle, in July 1874, he was buried in the 
family vault at Panbride. 

To the right, immediately before entering what 
might well be termed a grove of great spreading 
trees, whose branches unite like the roof of a vaulted 
•chamber, we pass the neat lodge at the entrance to 
the grounds of Bearehill, the beautiful residence of 
Mr R. Duke, manufacturer. The first banking 
establishment in Brechin was in the house of Bearehill 
— Alexander Ritchie, Depute City Clerk from 1790 
to 1796, being the banker. Mr-Ritchie was conjoined 
to the office of Clerk with John Spence, his brother- 
in-law, in 1796, and retained it till his death in 1826, 
when he was succeeded by Mr D. D. Black. The 
property of Bearehill has passed through many 
hands. John Spence, grandson of John Ochterlony 
of Flemington, and Bishop of Brechin, was in 
possession towards the end of last century. John 
Leigh ton, factor of the estate of Dunninald, who died 
in 1798, owned the property, &zid was succeeded by 
his son, David. After his death the property was 
acquired by Dr James Don, army surgeon, who died 
in 1860. Dr Don left £1000 to establish an infirmary 
in Brechin. In the Edinburgh Almanac for 1821, 
Alex. Ritchie of Bearehill is among the freeholders in 
Forfarshire. In the Angus and Mearns Remembrancer 
for 1858, George Hair Nevvall of Bearehill is included 
in the Directory of Brechin. Mr Duke has made 
tasteful additions to the house, and has greatly 
beautified the fine!}'-wooded policies. 

W e are now on the highway between Brechin and 
Forfar, the handsome entrances to Brechin Castle 
grounds being on our left. The road is skirted by a 
wall between the new and old gateways ; but as the 
beautiful policies are described in our " Guide to 


Brechin," we do not require to linger over them 
here. It should be noted, however, that a mound 
within this enclosure is known as " St Michael's 
Mount," which, strange to say, was originally in the 
Diocese of Dunkeld, and here the Bishop is said to 
have held consistorial courts. 

The hollow adjoining the Mount is called " Michael 
Den," along which there wimples a pellucid burn as 
it leaves the wooded recesses, but which becomes 
turbid and foul by various impurities between the Old 
Churchyard and the place where it flows into the 
South E-^k below the Castle. The gatekeeper's lodge 
and the substantial bridge over the burn were erected 
shortly before the death of Fox Maule, Earl of 
Dalhousie, and the former is now the principal 
entrance to the Castle. About thirty years ago 
there was a continuation of fine old trees and wooded 
loveliness on the right side of the road, terminating 
near the West Toll. The toll-bar has now disappeared 
also, but the house still stands, just beyond the road 
striking off to the left, which leads to Stannochy and 
Aldbar Castle. Many old Brechiners have still 
interesting reminiscences of the West Toll. In the 
olden time tolls, in a measure, were recognised as 
wayside inns, and here at one time a roaring trade 
was carried on in the sale of " spirits, porter, and 
ale." Then the highway between Aberdeen and 
Edinburgh had a lively traffic, and the "Defiance" 
and other well-known stage-coaches daily passed 
through the bar. But the last jingle has been heard 
of the toll-money as it fell into the keeper's hands. 

The abolition of tolls marks also the abolition of a 
little bit of the social life of the country. Those who 
have lived lon£ enough to remember the time when 
railways did not so intersect the country as they now 
do, must also remember that the toll-bar was a 


pleasant and convenient resting and refreshment place 
for ' s man and beast." In those days nearly every 
toll-house held a license, and was able with "good 
cheer " to welcome the traveller, whether on horse- 
back, in carriage, or on foot. But our iron-ways 
changed all this. The licensed toll became a nuisance 
— a place, not of refreshment for the necessitous 
traveller, but of debauch for the people of the 
neighbouring town. The licenses were gradually 
withdrawn, and without any inconvenience to the 
travelling public, who had now found in our extending 
railway system a speedier and a cheaper means of 
transit from place to place. 

Yet in those times the tollhouse was the place of 
many happy meeting of friends — of many half-hours 
of pleasure while the horses baited, and were prepared 
for another stage of the journey. Here, too, the 
rollicking carter had his drain in the early morning, 
and the carrier with his precious Lad of merchandise 
from some industrial centre, welcomed the shelter of 
the tollhouse, and ate his bread and cheese, quaffed 
his ale, and rejoiced at having made, unmolested, 
another stage in his journey. All this tollhouse 
social life has now gone. The railway has spoiled 
many traditions, and this among the rest. But even 
now it is possible that many a pleasure-seeker, on 
horseback, or in carriage, will miss the pleasant chat 
with the toll man, the respectful recognition of his 
tidy wife, or the modest, smiling face of his daughter 
when he passes by the old deserted house, and through 
the dilapidated gates, although he is not recpjired to 
pull up and produce with humorous chaff the toll 
money. But we have lingered too long over these 
" reflections," and must crave the reader's pardon. 

AVe still keep the highway by the side of what 



Brechin schoolboys know as the "Toll Wood," still 
the popular recreation ground and favourite walk of 
young and old. Ay, if these old trees were gifted 
with tongues, many a tale would they unfold of merry 
giggling groups, of blushing maids, of harmless words 
of badinage, and of loving pairs whispering those 
honeyed nothings which only the initiated can 


There are not many landscape snatches until we 
arrive at Finavon. The grounds and imposing 
mansion of Maulesden, however, first demand more 

than a passing notice. 
fj The house occupies a 
rv • charming site on the 
banks of the Esk, and 
within two miles of Brechin, al- 
though the dense masses of foliage 
almost conceal it from view. The 
policies are extensive, 
and command rich 
x "bits" of scenery. 
^^^flfj^ The walk, amid great 
overhanging boughs 
ft 1* alongthe steep banks of 

the liver, is charming, while rustic bridges span 
a clear sparkling burn, which, before it enters the 
South Esk, forms a beautiful cascade. Ornamental 
terraces and rich flower plots face the river, and a fine 
lawn slopes smoothly down to the water edge. The 
mansion is a large and handsome castellated edifice. 
The original house wasbuilt during the 18th century, 
and was soon afterwards acquired by Mr Binny. The 
Hon. Wm. Maule, third son of the Right Hon. 
William Ramsay Maule, first Lord Panmure, had the 



western portion of the house built in 1S54, and the 
old or eastern division altered to correspond with the 
new section. It is in the old Scotch baronial style, 
after designs by the late Mr Bryce, Edinburgh. 
After the death of the Hon. Mr Maule, the house was 
for some time occupied by his widow and family. 
Mrs Maule sold the estate to George A. Haig, from 
whom it was purchased in 1871 by Thomas Hunter 


Cox of Duncarse, Dundee, a partner with his brother 
in the great firm of Cox Brothers, Locheeand Dundee. 
Mr Cox, who died in 1892, greatly improved the 
beautiful surroundings. The view from the grounds 
is delightful — the stately river, flowing peacefully 
and disappearing beneath the one-arched Stannochy 
Bridge, the rich valley and finely-wooded hill, with 
variegated green fields nestling cheerfully between, 
the winding foliage-shrouded walks, murmuring rills 
in the wooded den falling into the river in a miniature 


cascade of great beauty. The gardens, sloping gently 
down to the river, are extensive, and are laid out with 
artistic skill and effect. The mansion is altogether a 
noble and graceful structure, and a very effective 
view of its general appearance can be had from the 
Stannochy Bridge. Mr J. B. Don, manufacturer, 
Forfar, is now proprietor of Maulesden, and resides 

The next object, on the right, after passing 
the neat gatehouse of Maulesden is a small group of 
houses, consisting of smithy, joiner's shop, &c. This 
was wont to be known as ''Chance Inn,'*' where the 
first halt was made by the famous"" Defiance Coach : ' 
after leaving Brechin on its way to Edinburgh. 

St Ann's Cottage, the residence of Christopher 
Wood. Esq., is beautifully situated on our right. 
Kintrockat House, formerly called Eskmount, is on 
the left bank of the South Esk, but hidden from our 
view. In the retour, dated 27th April, 1GS8, in 
favour of James, Earl of Panmure, as heir to his 
brother, Earl George, the town and lands of 
Kintrockat are included. One of the family of 
Ochterlony is said to have possessed these lands. He 
was succeeded by a son, who married Mary Ruperta, 
daughter of John Skinner, of Brechin, by his wife, 
who^ was descended from one of Prince Rupert's 
natural children. The Hon. A. Gillies of Kintrockat 
appears among the list of the freeholders of the 
county for the year 1821. and ten years later, Hunter 
of Kintrockat is mentioned. East and West 
Kintrockat subsequently came into the possession of 
the laird of Aldbar, and it still forms part of that fine 
estate — the present proprietor being Patrick Chalmers, 

In the Keg. Ep. Br., Alexander Thome (Thomson) 
of Kintrockat, Presbytery of Brechin, is twice 


mentioned — 12th Feb., 1435-6, and on 15th and 10th 
of same month and year. — See Warden's " Forfar si 
Vol. II. p. 13. Eskmount was acquired by Alexander 

Gibson Hunter, who. about 1780, purchased the lands 
of Blackness. He was succeeded by his son in the 
lands of Eskmount and Blackness. When Mr 
Hunter owned Eskmount, as Kintrockat was then 
called, it was the scene of many exciting frolics. It 
was one of the meeting-places of the Hon. William 
Maule, first Lord Panmure, and his jovial companions. 
Practical jokes were there concocted and perpetrated 
that have become historical, and illustrate social life 
in former days. 

On the left we next pass " Balnabreich Dam," 
almost covered with "rashies" and other luxuriant 
vegetation. '' Auld Eppie " who wrote pithily on 
many subjects in the Brechin Advertiser^ says : — "The 
woodit glen o' Bonnybreich is ane o ; the bonniest, 
sweetest dells 'at ever ye saw, accreditit, too, in the 
days o' ither years, as the residence o' a ghaist o' a 
white wife, like the ghaist o' Thrummy Cap, possessed 
o' some sad secret which she wis bound to reveal 
afore she gat leave to enter the abodes o" the faitbfu 5 
departit. At onyrate, she wis quite a harmless 
ghaist— or rather, I wud say, a very usefu 5 ghaist. 
She never said a word to naebody, either gude, bad, 
or indifferent, an' naebody ever daured to speir fat 
she wantit. But, fan the lassies wis like bidin' ower 
lang oot wi' the lads, she had a knack o' waggin' her 
lang, thin, white fingers at them, an' sae sendin' them 
hame as fast's their feet cud carry them. Sae it 
canna be denied that she was really a guid, usefu' 
White Wife, an' I houp she's still enjoyin her lovely 
sylvan retreat, doin' good service to mortals as she 
has opportunity. An' troth, it wid be a guid thing 
for mony a halliket lassie gin there wis still a white 



wife here and there to raise the warning finger, an' 
tat then ken that they were treading on dangerous 
ground. But we're a' ower wise an' ower weel 
edicatit noo-a-days for puttin' faith in ony sic things." 

The Noran. 

In our " trips " we will probably view the " Silvery 
Noran " at various points. Here, with Nether 
Careston on our left, we cross it for the first time. 

It is a clear, 
rapid stream, 
which rises in 
the Forfar- 
shire Gram- 
pians, and has 
a circuitous 
course of 
about twenty 
miles, passing 
the modern 
mansions of 
Glenogil, Xo- 
rauside, and 
the ancient 
ruins of Vane 
Castle. Run- 
ning over for 
the most part 
a bed of rock 
and gravel, it 
preserves the 
ox the nob ax. transparency 

and purity of its waters throughout. Laing, in his 
" Wayside Flowers," says: — "The beauties of the 
district would inspire any poet. The braes of Xoran, 


the banks of the South Esk, into which the former 
falls below Careston Castle, the Howe o' Angus, and 
the rich and varied landscape from Bun Dearachie 
brow to the Bay of Montrose, when seen on a clear 
summer's day from the burgh hill of Brechin, cannot 
be better described than in the concise language of 
Macneill : — 

Frae Grampian heights down to the sea, 

A dazzling view ! 
Corn, mealnw, mansion', water, tree, 

In varying hue." 

Quoting again from " Eppie," who, in this instance, 
evidently writes in early spring : — " The Xoran, wi' 
its finely-wooded banks, its bright sparklin' falls, the 
auld castle o' the Vane, an' mony a snug farm 
steadin' an' cantie, cozie cottar hoose — wi' its 
kail yairdie, its flower borders a' buskit wi' lillies, 
apple-rene, daisies, spinks, an' thyme ; an' its windows 
sae fu' o' fuchias an' geraniums that ye wid winder 
foo the licht o' day could ever reach the fireside — is 
the bonniest bit o' landscape in a' the Braes o' Angus, 
or, I raither sud say, in a' braid Scotland. Are not 
its banks at this present moment bricht wi' the gowden 
glory o' the sweet wild primrose, to be succeeded in a 
week or twa by the tall green stem o' the cooslip, 
bendin' under the weight o' its truss o' bonnie wee 
bloomlets 1 Are not the larch, the elm, the oak, an 7 
the plane burstin' their buds, puttin' on their Draw 
summer claes, an' tellin' a' the world that sweet, 
smilin' summer is ance mair here. An' dinna ye hear 
the blackie an' the mavie, the laverock an' the 
lintie makin' earth an' sky vocal wi' their joyous 
songs ; while, from brown earth the green blade 
springs, giving promise o' a bountifu', plentiful' 



Marcus Lodge, the gateway to which we pass on 
the left, is a fine mansion, in the Elizabethan style, 
built on the north bank of the South Esk. The late 
Colonel Swinburne purchased the estate of 
Marcus, or Markhouse, from the representatives of 
Captain Alex. Skene, R.N., cousin of the late 
Alex. Skene of Careston. It was previously in the 
possession of one of the Carnegies of Balnamoon, who 
was also proprietor of Keithock. Colonel Swinburne 
died in 1881, and the estate is now in the possession 
of his daughter, Mrs Stourton. 

Finavon Castle. 

We now reach " The Eed Lion Inn, 75 with its old- 
style swinging sign-board — a distance of six miles 
from, and half-way house between Brechin and Forfar. 
We yre tempted to linger a little in this neighbour- 
hood. Here we have a fine sample of the pre-historic 
structures of our remote ancestors — the Hill-fort of 
Finavon, which is allowed to be the oldest and most 
considerable vitrified fort in the county of Forfar. 
Here are also the remains of a famous stronghold, 
once the property and principal residence of the 
powerful Earls of Crawford. It is situated in the 
parish of Oathlaw — anciently called Finavon. The 
parish church stood near the old castle, at the place 
now known as Aikenfaulds ; but when the church was 
removed to its present site the parochial designation 
was changed to Oathlaw. George Shores wood, who 
was chosen Bishop of Brechin in 1484-, made the 
incumbent of the church of Finavon a prebendary of 
his cathedral. 

All that now remains of the ancient Castle of 
Finavon are three sides of the castle-keep or great 






tcwer, and some vaults under it ; yet. in the magnifi- 
cent building of which this is only a fragment, the old 
!h*rls of Crawford held almost regnl state, and royalty 
itself, with a numerous retinue, has been lodged and 
entertained there. The ruins stand upon a small 
mount at the confluence of the Lemno with the South 
Esk. It was built in the 14th century, and is con- 
sidered to have been a much more extensive structure 
than Edzell Castle — to which we will yet refer — 
when occupied by the noble family of Crawford. 
Ochterlony, in his account of Angus in 1G83, calls it 
" A greal old house, but now by the industry of the 
present laird (Carnegie) is made a most excellent 
house — fine rooms and good furniture." 

In the time of King Robert the Bruce the barony 
was the property of the Crown ; for that monarch 
before his death, in 1329, granted the barony of 
Finavon, and the lands of Carsegownie in the neigh- 
bouring parish of Aberlemno, to his illegitmate son, 
Sit- Robert Bruce, Mho fell in the battle of Dupplin, 
1332, loyally fighting on behalf of his royal half- 
brother David II., against the forces of the pretender 
Edward Baliol Soon after the barony came into the 
possession of the noble family of Lindsay, Earls 
of Crawford. Alexander Lindsay, who became 
fourth Earl of Crawford, was of a turbulent dis- 
position, and wore an exuberant beard — hence the 
sobriquets by which he was known — the Tiger Earl, 
and Earl Beardie. He was generally in trouble with 
his neighbours, and at one time engaged in rebellion 
against his sovereign, James II. He contrived 
eventually to make peace with his sovereign, and to 
show his gratitude he entertained the King and his 
Court with great pomp at the Castle of Finavon. 
Tradition avers that on his return from Spain (where 
he had fled on being declared the King's enemy and a 


rebel) the Earl brought with him a sapling chestnut 
tree, which he planted in the vicinity of the castle, 
and which ultimately attained a great size. It was 
unfortunately blown down during a violent storm, 
about the middle of the 18th century. "When Pennant 
visited Finavon, in the year 1771, the shattered tree 
still lay in the park. He measured the trunk, and 
found that at one foot from the ground the girth was 
42 feet, at the smallest part of the trunk 33 feet, and 
at the off-shoot of the branches 35 feet. It was in 
this castle that the brilliant marriage festivities were 
held on the celebration, in 1546, of the wedding of 
Margaret Beaton, daughter of Cardinal Beaton, to 
David Lindsay, the Master of Crawford. 

"Earl Beardie." 

Earl Beardie had a strong iron hook projecting 
from near the top of the south-east wall of his Castle, 
from which he might conveniently suspend any 
offending vassal. And it required no great offence to 
doom one to dangle from that hook. A hapless 
minstrel, wandering one day into the grounds of the 
Castle, was overheard crooning some verses which 
prophesied evil concerning its owner. Brought into 
his presence and made to repeat the verse, his doom 
was instantly pronounced hy the Tiger. 

The ladie craved pity, "but nane wad tie gi'e — 

The poor as?ed minstrel must die ; 
And Crawford's ain hand placed the grey head and lyre 

On the spikes of the turret sae high. 

On another occasion, a gallows was found in the 
Spanish Chestnut Tree, already referred to, which was 
commonly called Earl Beardie's Tree. On a 
messenger or gillie being sent from Careston to the 
Castle of Finhaven (or Finavon), he cut a walking stick 
from the Chestnut Tree, and the Earl was so enraged 


that he had the offender hanged on a branch of it. 
The ghost of this luckless person still wanders betwixt 
Finavon and Careston, and is the constant attendant 
of benighted travellers, by whom he is minutely des- 
cribed u,s a lad of about sixteen years of age, without 
bonnet or shoes, and is known as Jock Barefoot. His 
freaks are curious, and withal inoffensive, and, on 
reaching a certain burn on the road, he vanishes from 
view in a blaze of fire ! As if to confirm the story of 
Beardie still living in the secret chamber of Glamis — 
where he is doomed to play cards until the day of 
judgment — it is an old prophetic saying that 

Earl Beardie ne'er will dee. 

Nor puir Jock Barefoot be .set free. 

As lang's there gr< \v- a chestnut tree '. 

"The Wicked Master." 

In the days of David, son of Earl Beardie, and the 
fifth Earl of Crawford, Finavon Castle rose in dignity. 
In 1448 the Earl was created Duke of Montrose, the 
first dukedom ever conferred on a Scottish family. 
James III. bestowed on him many royal favours, 
including the life rent of the Lordship of Brechin and 
Xavar, and the Sheriffship of Angus. He closed his 
illustrious and honoured career at his Castle of 
Finavon in 1495; and was succeeded by his second 
son, John, who, having killed his elder brother, 
shrunk from assuming the ducal title, and whose 
death by and by on the fatal field of Flodden fore- 
closed proceedings against him for his fratricide and 
questions springing out of it. The Castle of Finavon 
was for twelve weeks the prison of his successor. 
His own son, whom history justly brands as the 
"Wicked Master" of Crawford, confined him in it for 
that space of time, and then for fifteen days in 
Brechin, to which he carried him, during which he 


broke open and robbed his coffer?, and seized his 
rents. He was the terror and scourge of his genera- 
tion, and after leading the life of a desperado till 
1452, "he was sticked by a soutar of Dundee for 
taking a stoup of wine from him." 

Everything in and about Finavon Castle, in the 
palmy days of the great Earls of Crawford, showed 
the princely state which they kept up. Like the 
monarch himself, they had their Privy Council, and 
the Councillors were of the oldest and most honour- 
able families of Angus. They had their constables, 
armour-bearers, chamberlains, &c, the two first being 
hereditary. In beauty, richness, and costliness, the 
furniture of their castle was unrivalled, and lacked 
nothing that could minister to comfort and luxury. 
If ever earthly greatness and glon r promised to be 
enduring it was here ; but they have long since 
perished utterly. 

They rose to power, to wealth, to fame ; 

They gained a proud, a deathless name — 

First in the field— first in the State — 

Btit ah: the giddy tide oi fate 

Reflowed, and swept them from their throne, 

And thus they 'came Misfortune's own ! " 

The Past ! How much that word conveys. It 
takes us back to long centuries ago. " The Poetry of 
Old Ruins/ 3 why, our land is richly dowered with 
picturesque relics of bygone days — hoary old ruins, 
whose ivy-mantled walls and moss-wreathed battle- 
ments awaken poetic memories, and around whose 
decay there lingers an exquisite pathos which is 
almost human. They have a personalit}' about them 
which is sacred and awe-inspiring, whether they be 
the mouldering ruins of monasteries or proud towers 
which sheltered kings, or of abbeys where queens 
have died. These old ruins have a fascinating spell 
about them, whose witchery almost makes us believe 


them to be the mystic custodians of secrets of the past. 

There is a charm in footing slow ncross a silent plain, 
Where patriot battle hud been fought, where glory bad the srain; 
There is a pleasure on the heath win-re Druid- old have been — 
Where mantles grey have rustled byandswept the nettled green, 
Th f in ( very spot made known in days of old- 

New to the feet, although each tale a hundred times be told. 

The castle and barony in course of time passed to 
James Carnegie, second son of David, second Earl of 
Northesk. He was succeeded by his eldest son James, 
who engaged in the rebellion of 1715. but. availing 
himself of the Act of Grace, he saved his lands from 
confiscation. It was the younger Mr James Carnegie 
who ''accidentally" killed Charles, Earl of Strath- 
more, on the High Street of Forfar, on the 9th day 
of May, 1728. They had been at a dergie held at the 
funeral of a son of Mr Carnegy of Lour in company 
with Mr Lyon of Brigton and some others. Brigton 
made some mocking observation concerning Finavon, 
which aroused his anger, and Lyon afterwards pushed 
him into the gutter. When Carnegie got up, all 
covered with mud, he pursued his tormentor, and 
having nearly overtaken him made a thrust at him 
with his sword, but his foot slipping at the time, the 
lunge aimed at Brigton took effect in the body of his 
brother, Lord Strathmore, who was then standing 
with his back to the laird of Finavon, conversing with 
another person. On discovering the sad consequences 
of his rash act, Mr Carnegie fled, and was in hiding 
for a long time : but he was ultimately apprehended 
and tried for the deed on the charge of murder, but 
he was acquitted. 

In 1842 the estate of Finavon was purchased for 

,000. A fine modern mansion has since been 

erected a little to the westward of the ruined castle, 

and the estate is now the property of Colonel 

Greenhill Gardvne of Finavon. 


Vitrified Fort. 

Numerous vitrified forts are found in Scotland, and 
some of them existed in pre-historic times. They are 
evidently native works, and many had been forts or 
places of defence, reared by the primeval races. It is 
said that vitrification was not done during the process 
of the erection, but was the effect of beacon-fires 
lighted to warn the neighbourhood of a common 
danger-, or of bonfires kindled on festive occasions, or 
in connection with religious ceremonies. Angus or 
Forfarshire possesses several specimens of vitrification, 
and here we have a famous sample. The hill rises to 
the height of nearly 600 feet above the Esk at the 
old fortalice of Finavon. The original fort had 
occupied the whole of the top of the hill, and had 
been constructed on. military principles, so as to 
command and protect every point of access. 

Carrie thus describes it : — The fort forms a paral- 
lelogram, with the angles rounded of}', extending from 
east to west about 476 feet. At the east end the 
breadth is about 38 feet ; and as the ascent on that 
side is easier than at other- points it had there been 
defended by an outwork about 52 feet distant from 
the rampart-wall. About the middle it widens con- 
siderably, and there are vestiges of some inner walls 
within the enclosure. Towards the west end, which 
is somewhat lower down the hill, the breadth is about 
125 feet, and at that end there are distinct traces of 
a well which had been dug for the use of the garrison. 
As the descent is gradual on all sides, the cavity was 
for a long time mistaken for the crater of an extinct 
volcano. In many places the stones are covered M r ith 
a thin coating of soil which supports a luxuriant crop 
of grasses, but where a large mass of the stones has 
fallen down the vitrifaction of them is still quite 


discernible. Mineralogists have ascertained that ten 

different kinds of stone, not found on the hill itself, 

have been used in constructing the fort. In the 

middle there is a considerable admixture of charcoal, 

which indicates that wood had been piled up amongst 

the stones, in order to the more perfect vitrifaction 

of the whole mass. " Huddlestone thinks that the 

traces of square fortifications inside the fort are the 

work of Roman masons — prob ibly belonging to the 

army of Agricola — and had been constructed by them 

after they dislodged the Caledonian garrison. " The 

fortress of Finavon had evidently been the master-fort 

of a chain of forts erected for the protection of the 

inhabitants of Ktrathmore from their foreign and 

domestic enemies. From its walls could be seen at a 

glance the two fortresses on the hill of Catterthun ; 

on the west the fort of Dunoon, about five miles 

beyond Forfar, and, still onwards towards Perth, the 

Barry hill at Meigle. 

There is a popular legend to the effect that the 

remains of the fort is the ruin of the first Castle 

which it was attempted to build at Finavon. The 

attempt was not allowed to proceed far ; not further 

than the laying of the foundation. Anything more 

which the builders raised during the day was always 

knocked down by some demon-power in the course of 

the next night. Watchers were set to protect the 

work, and to frighten away the mischievous spirit; 

but the result was that the watchers themselves were 

frightened. At midnight the spirit spoke thus to the 

watchers, amidst the din of the tumbling wall built 

the previous day : — 

Found even-down into the dor, 
Where 'twill neither .-hike nor shog. 

They took the hint, left the hill, and set to work in 
the vale, and their " sticket " work on the hill top 


remained to exercise the fancy of the Jonathan 
Oldbucks of future times. 

Roman Camp. 

At Battledykes, in this parish, are the remains of 
a great Roman camp. Maitland accurately surveyed 
it, and, according to his measurement, the mean 
length of the camp was about 2970 feet, and its mean 
breadth 1850, embracing an area of 80 acres. It was 
nearly three times larger than the famous camp at 
Ardoch, with which it communicated by the Roman 
Road which passed from Ardoch northward through 
Perthshire and Angusshire. It is commonly believed 
that this camp was occupied by Agricola in a.d. 81. 
On the farm of Battledykes, and within the limits of 
the Roman camp, are the King's Palace, the King's 
Seat, and the King's Bourne — significant names, 
which seem obviously to point to a period when 
Finavon was a royal demesne and residence. 


The bonnie wee toon on the breist o' the brae. 

Returning to "The Red Lion," we now start along 
a fine road to the really ideal village of Tannadice. 
Soon after leaving the Inn, we get a " peep " of 
the fine old mansion of Tannadice, snugly em- 
bowered amongst trees, and facing a beautiful stretch 
of the South Esk. This property was long m the 
possession of the Ogilvy family, but the present 
owner is Captain Xeish. Another mile, and we cross 
over the line of railway between Brechin and 
Forfar, which here spans the river on a girder bridge. 

As we round the shoulder of the belt of wood whi cn 
skirts the grounds of Tannadice House, we obtain a 
pleasant glimpse of the tower of the Parish Church 



and the blue reek rising in quiet curling wreaths 
from the humble yet cosy homes of the villagers 
nestling secure in the embrace of the braes around 
the quiet dell, which prevent "a' the airts the wind 
can blaw " from visiting it unkindly. mrrtSJ 

The neat church and manse, and beautifully-kept 
graveyard, where 

Each in Iris narrow cell forever laid, 
The rude for efathtr-; of the hamlet sleep, 

first attract our attention. But a short halt will well 
repay the visitor, who will enjoy the scene from the 
river below the churchyard, and a walk through the 

picturesquely situated little hamlet, with its fragrant- 
garden plots and rustic cottages, while 

'Neath the brae the burnie jonks, 
An' ilka thing looks cheerie. 



Here we also find the homely Inn, the Schoolhouse, 
His Majesty's Post Office, and "the merchant," from 
whom we can purchase 

Ham and needles, daidles and cheese, 
Loaves and aprons, treacle and teas. 

Also the shoemaker and tailor ; the blacksmith and 
joiner — those handicraftsmen that are necessary for 
the convenience of every rural district. There is 
nothing, save the church, of an architectural nature in 
the village. The houses are simple — a few still 

covered with thatch and stained with lichen and 
moss — some of them picturesque little structures that 
would look well on canvas. At every step a new 
combination of landscape beauties greets the eye, 
while on every bank and brae, and in every bosky dell 
there is a profusion of wild flowers, and the cheerful 
chorus of birds. Indeed, the village, with its pretty 



walks all round, must, we feel assured, now that the 
railway is so near it, soon become a popular health- 

The Church of Tannadice is one of the oldest 
ecclesiastical settlements. Tannadice was a thanedom 
at the date of the first reference we find made to it. 
In 1363 David II. gave it to John de Logy, supposed 


to be the father of his second Queen, Margaret Logy. 
David's nephew, Robert II., afterwards gave the 
thanedon to Sir John Lyon, as dower with his wife, 
Princess Jane, the King's daughter. 

On the north side of the South Esk, and near the 
present Bridge of Shielhill, stood Queich Castle in 
days of yore. Xo vestige of it, however, is now to be 
seen. Queich Castle was the property, and one of 
the residences of a historic family, the Earls of 
Buchan, the first of whom was a half-brother of 
James II., and who, about 1466, married Margaret, 


the only child of Sir Alexander Ramsay of Auchter- 
house. By this marriage he succeeded to the estates 
of the Auchterhouse Ramsays : and these continued 
in the possession of the Earls of Buchan for nearly 
two hundred years, when they passed, b} T purchase, 
in 1653, to the Earl of Panmure. But no memorable 
event, connected with ihe Buchans' possessions in 
Tannadice, or with their sojournings in Queich Castle, 
has come under our notice. 

There was another Castle in Tannadice on the side 
of the Esk, which has also quite disappeared, and of 
which we know nothing more than that it was near 
Auchlouchrie, on the eminence still bearing the name 
of Castlehill, " overhanging a deep gorge of the river, 
and having round its base a semi-circular fosse, twelve 
feet deep and thirty wide." 

Cortachy Castle. 

Here we might so far digress as to suggest that, 
should the visitor at this point have the time at his 
disposal, and be able to make an extra day of it, an 
exceedingly pleasant tour might be made through 
Glen Clova, taking in Cortachy Castle and district, 
and resting for the night at the comfortable modern 
Jubilee Hotel, Dykehead. Cortachy Castle, the 
residence of the Earl of Airlie, is a magnificent 
mansion, standing in a beautifully-wooded amphi- 
theatre on the romantic banks of the South Esk, 
which flows through the policies. Part of it is 
ancient, having, it is said, been erected by Thomas, 
third son of John Ogilvy, third baron of Inverquharity, 
who acquired the lands of Cortachy and Clova in the 
reign of King James IV. At a still earlier period the 
district of Cortachy had been the property of the 
Earls of Athole of the stock of the royal family of 



— f ii»" 

/%\ ST o 

'. 11 * 4-^ 


Scotland ; for we find that during the episcopate of 
John, Bishop of Brechin, and Chancellor of the 
kingdom— who died in 1482— Walter Palatine of 
Strathearn, Earl of Athole, and Lord of Brechin and 
Cortachy, granted the Church of Cortaehy to the 
Bishop of Brechin and his successors for ever. 
Extensive additions have from time to time been made 
to the Castle, and it is now one of the very foremost 
of the many lordly mansion-houses of Forfarshire. 
The natural beauty of the situation has been greatly 
enhanced by the hand of art, so that scarcely in all 
broad Scotland can there be found a fairer domain 
than that which now surrounds Cortachy Castle. 

It requires, says Mr A. H. Millar, in his 
"Historical Castles and Mansions of Scotland," 
no special skill to see that the building has been 
erected at separate periods and in widely divergent 
circumstances. ... A door in a wall of the 
drawing-room communicates with the room in which 
Charles II. slept in October 1G50, during one of the 
crises of his tempestuous life, and in proof of this 
there is in the Register House, Edinburgh, a letter 
from him dated " Cortaquhy, October 4th, 1650.'' 
The Castle has twice suffered from fire, and on each 
occasion has risen from its ashes with renewed* 
splendour. The grounds are laid out with great 
taste, and their sheltered position has permitted the 
successful cultivation of many rare flowers and shrubs 
without artificial protection. The most interesting 
part is that devoted to the " Garden of Friendship " 
— an extensive plot which has been cleared and is 
now planted with trees, placed in their present 
position by members of the family or by visitors to 
Cortachy Castle, and each bearing the name of the 
planter. Conspicuous amongst them is a tree planted 
by H.R.H. the Duchess of Edinburgh, on the occasion 


of her visit in August 1881, and another lofty conifer 
preserving the name of the late Professor Jowett of 
Balliol College, Oxford. Within the rustic summer- 
house that commands a view of these memorials a 
tablet has been placed, inscribed with the following 
graceful poem by the late Viscount Sherbrooke 
(Eight Hon. Kobert Lowe), expressing the sentiments 
with which he regarded the scene : — 

Is lite .1 good I Then, if a good it he, 

Mine be a life like thine, thou steadfast tree. 

The self-same earth that gave the sapling place 

Receives the mouldering trunk in -oft embrace— 
The self-same comrade- ever at thy >i<le. 
Who know not envy, wilfulness, or pride, 
The winter's waste repaire I by lavish si. ring. 
The rustling breezes that about thee sing, 
The inter-twining shadows at thy feet, 
Make up thy life, and such a life i. sweet. 
What though beneath tin- artificial shade 
No fauns have gambolled and no dryads strayed ; 
Though the coy nurslings of serener skies 
Shudder when Caledonia's tempest < rise, 
Yet sway* a cheering influence o'er the grove. 
More soft than Nature, more sedate than Eove, 
And not unhonour d shall the grove ascend. 
For every stem was planted by a friend, 
And she, ;:t whose command its shades arise, 
Is good and gracious, true, and fair, and wise. 

The family of Ogilvy is descended from Gilibrede, 
or Gilbert, third son of the second Earl of Angus, who 
.fought at the Battle of the Standard in 1138, and 
obtained the lands from William the Lion. It was in 
1369-70 that Cortachy was acquired by the family. 
Of the sixth generation, Sir William de Ogilvy was 
Sheriff of Angus. His son was the " gracious gude 
Lord Ogilvy," celebrated in the old ballad of the battle 
of Harlaw, in which both he and his son George were 

Of the best arnang them was 

The gracious gude Lord Ogilvy, 
The Sheriff-Principal of Angus, 

Renownit for truth and equity — 

For faith and magnanimity 
He had few fellows in the held. 

Yet fell by fatal destiny, 
For he nae ways wad grant to yield. 


Of the seventh generation, Sir Walter de Ogilvy was 
High Treasurer of Scotland, and Treasurer of the 
Household of James I. James, the sixth Lord, was a 
faithful servant, of Queen Mary, for which he suffered 
a long imprisonment. James, the second Earl of 
Airlie, was a zealous Royalist. He was taken 
prisoner at Philiphaugh, tried, and condemned to die ; 
but he escaped from the Castle of St Andrews in his 
sister's clothes during the night before the day fixed for 
his execution. It is not, however, necessary for us to 
enter into further details of the career of this 
distinguished family. The present Earl of Airlie was 
born in 1893. His father, David Stanley William 
Ogilvy, was born in 1856. He entered the army at 
an early age, and served in the Scots Guards in 
1875-6, changing afterwards to the 10th Hussars. 
He took part with distinction in the campaign in the 
Soudan, having been twice wounded in action. In 
1897 he was appointed Lieut. -Colonel of the 12th 
Lancers, and held that command till the outbreak of 
the South African war, during which he was killed in 
action shortly after the capture of Pretoria in 1900. 
He was married in 1886 to Lady Mabel-Frances- 
Elizabeth Gore, daughter of the fifth Earl of Arran. 

The Battle of Saughs. 

We would now take the visitor to the Churchyard, 
a short distance from the Castle. It can be entered 
by a shaded pathway from " The Garden of Friend- 
ship ''—referred to on page 43 — a place of exquisite 
beauty situated at the bottom of a vast, green basin, 
formed by a girdle of gentle eminences. The " field 
of graves ' ; is surrounded by stately and time-honoured 
trees, and the quiet spot is not only interesting on 
account of its containing the burial vault of several 


Earls and Countesses, but here we also find the grave 
of one who took part in an affray known as "The 
Battle of Saughs." The tombstone is of the 
old table fashion, and bears the following inscription, 
which is slowly becoming obliterated : — 

"I. W. 1732.— This stone was erected by Alexander Winter, 
tennent in the Boat' ? Doal] in memory of James Winter, his 
father's brother, who died on Peathaugh, in the parish of Glenisla, 
the 3rd January. 1732, aged 72. 

Here lies James Vintpr, who died in Peathaugh, 
Who fought most valointly at ye Water of Saughs, 
Along wt Led en hen dry. who did command ye day — 
They Vanquis the Enemy and made them runn away." 

The date of the "Raid " is somewhat uncertain; 
but it would be of interest to briefly narrate the 
tradition now, although it is perhaps more strictly 
connected with the Fern district, for the parishioners 
there were the actors, although the " battle-field " is 
within the confines of the parish of Lethnot. 

Calm was the morn, and close was the mist, 

Hung- o'er St Arno'd's Seat. * 
As Ferna's sons gaed oot to Saughs 

M'Gregor there to meet. 

The accounts of the "transaction"' are varied — 
some asserting it to have been about the middle of 
the 17th century — others, between 1703 and 1711. 
Jervise gives it as between 1690 and 1700, when 
Winter would be in the prime of life. It was the 
outcome of an unusually bold incursion of the C.iteran, 
headed by the " Hawkit Stirk." The inhabitants 
were called together, among the tombs of their 
fathers, by the ringing of the kirk bell. As they 
were anxious to regain their horses and cattle, the 
day was spent in discussing the question as to what 
was the proper course for doing so ; but, fearing the 
superior strength of their antagonists, many of them 

• A prominent object on one of the neighbouring hills. 


lost heart, so that the pursuit would have been 
abandoned, had not young Macintosh of Ledenhendry, 
enraged at the cowardice of his fellows, stood up on an 
eminence and called out — " Let those who wish to 
chase the Cateran follow me." Eighteen young men 
left the multitude, and rallied round the valiant 
youth, pursued the reavers, and overtook them by the 
Water of Saughs, camping around a blazing fire, and 
cooking a young Fern cow for breakfast. To settle 
the case between them, single combat was agreed on. 
A shot from the Cateran, killing one of the Fern men, 
upset this arrangement, and not the chiefs only, but 
all under them forthwith closed in deadly combat. 
Seeing Macintosh hard pressed by his antagonist, 
James Winter, stealing behind the bandit chief, 
hamstrung him ; and, though he fought on his 
stumps, Macintosh soon pierced him to the heart. 

Langtitne tliev faueht in doubtfu' strife, 

Till Peathausrh, stealthfully, 
Hamstrung M'Gregor unawares, 

And drave him on his knee. 

Thus on his knees, or on his stumps, 

H> hash'd and smash'd around ; 
But Ledenhendry pierc'd him through, 

And laid him on the ground. * 

Seeing their chief fallen, and several of their party 
biting the dust, the Cateran fled ; but the tradition is 
that not one of them escaped. 

So ceas'd the strife, and a' was still, 

And silent o'er the glen. 
Save glaids and corbies i' the air. 

That hovered o'er the slain. 

Whase man sled bodies f their gore, 

Lay reekin' o'er the green ; 
A sisht o'er sick'nin' for the saul. 

O'er painfu' for the een. 

AVe will leave the " Raid " by merely stating that 
the name of the " Hawkit Stirk " was given to the 

* " Raid of Fearn," by Alex. Laing, schoolmaster, StracntWro. 


Cateran chief from a supposition that he was the same 
person as was laid down, when an infant, at the farm- 
house door of Muir Pearsie, in the Parish of 
Kingoldrum, and from the guidwife desiring her 
husband to rise from bed about midnight to see the 
cause of the bleating cries which she heard ; but 
having a pet calf that was in the habit of prowling 
about under night, her husband lay still, insisting that 
the noise was merely " the croon o' the hawkit stirk." 
Hearing a continuation of the same piteous moan, the 
glide wife herself rose and found a male child, of a 
few weeks old lying on the sill of the door, carefully 
rolled in flannel and other warm coverings, and, 
taking it under her charge, brought it up as one of 
her own family. Nothing of the foundling or his 
parents was ever positively known : but when about 
sixteen years of age, he departed clandestinely from 
Muir Pearsie, and from the resemblance of the leader 
of this band to him, they are said to have been one 
and the same individual. 

Inverquharity Castle. 

The Quharity's a bonnie stream, 

It winds by haugh and >hieling, 
Where rays of light thro' rowans gleam, 

Their coral bead- revealing. 

Linger awhile by rains gray. 

That fondly gaze on thee— 
The dwelling place, formany a day. 

Of many an Ogilvy. 
Thyiwaters, as they speed along. 

Amid thy fleet career, 
Re-echo the unchanging song 

Their fathers wont to hear ; 

Tell of their Warlike deed- of old. 

Their L03 al ancestry — 
How noble names can ne'er 1" sold 

Like land, and tower, and tree ; 
Pausing transmit the ancient lore 

That celebrates their fame. 
Then in the Esk for evermore, 

Lose both thyself and name. 





This ancient Keep, in the immediate neighbourhood 
of Cortachv Castle, is well worth a visit. A pleasant 
hour can be spent in studying its features, and its 
surroundings afford many ideal " pic-nicing ; ' spots. 
The ruins are on an elevation formed by the junction 
of the Quharity with the Southesk. Surrounded by 
fine old trees, and although little but the roof is 
visible from a distance, the old baronial pile forms a 
very pretty picture. 

Built in the 16th century, in two wings at right 
angles to one another, with the door and stair in the 
angular corner, time, which is fast removing all trace 
of one half of the building, has dealt kindly with the 
■other, only pausing to soften the harshness of lines 
and angles, and to mellow its colour with the beauty 
of age. The window openings are narrow and care- 
fully guarded with heavy iron stanchions and cross 
bars. The glass has been kept near the face of the 
wall, and the opening boldly displayed to the inside 
in order that the little light admitted might be as 
widely diffused as possible. Light was necessary, and 
might be very desirable, but security from attack was 
the first consideration, and what avail were walls 
eight feet in thickness if the windows were wide, and 
would admit a storm of missiles? This thickness of 
walls allows of a walk about four feet wide between 
the roof and projecting parapet, with its embrasure 
eope. The stones forming the pavement of this walk 
are very large and heavy, and must have taxed the 
ingenuity and mechanical appliances of the builders in 
getting them into position. Immediately over the 
entrance the castelling supporting the parapet assumes 
a bolder proportion in order to admit of machiolations 
from which the inmates could assail unwelcome 
visitors with bullets or molten lead. Strange irony 
of time, that castelling designed with such sinister 


intentions should now only serve to beautify the 
building by the play of its light and shade. 

The castle doorway, with its pointed arch, is pro- 
tected by a massive iron gate. Similar gates are to 
be found in various parts of the country, and another 
may be seen at Invermark Castle in Glenesk. They 
were erected by special license from the king. 

Immediately adjoining the doorway is the stone 
spiral stair, which gave access to all the floors of both 
wings, and to the battlement. The first floor is of 
wood, supported on beams carried by large cortels, 
but the second and third are of stone, the building 
being arched from wall to wall. Little wood has 
been used in the construction, but where it is em- 
ployed, as in the elaborate rafters, it gives an insight 
into the carpenter's work of that time, all the joints 
being formed by mortice, tenon, and pins. The 
internal arrangements are extremely simple. Huge 
fire places, to afford room for chains in the ingle- 
cheeks, stone benches in the window recesses, and a 
few presses, or stones in the thickness of the wall, all 
show that utility was studied. 

Originally a possession of the Earls of Angus, 
Inverquharity was given by charter, by Margaret, 
•Countess of Angus, to Sir Alexander Lindsay, of 
Crawford, in 1329. It continued in the possession of 
the Crawfords till 1405, when it was resigned in 
favour of Sir Walter Ogilvy, Carcary, Lord High 
Treasurer of Scotland. In 1420, Sir Walter conveyed 
the property to his brother Sir John, the founder of 
the Inverquharity branch of the Ogilvys. It passed 
by purchase, about 1790, to the family of Lyell of 

The Inverquharity Ogilvys seem to have, un- 
fortunately for themselves, been of a warlike 
disposition, as we find Sir Alexander, the third 


baron, was wounded at the battle of Arbroath in the 
year 1 4 4 •"> . After the battle the Lindsays were let 
loose on the Ogilvys 5 lands, which were pillaged, and 
the south-east wing of the Castle of Inverqnharity 
was razed to tin 1 Gjround. A brother of Inverquharity'i 
took part with the Lindsays, and had a gift from Earl 
Beard ie of Clova, Wateresk, and Cortachy. About 
1573 the following license was granted : — 

'•Rex — License be the King to Al. Ogilvy of fnercarity 
to fortifie his house, ami put ane Irne ybet therein — lames be 
thegraee.of God Kincre of Scottis. To all and simh-y oure 
liegies and subdita to qwhaia knowlage thir our Leiz — sail 
cum gretinge — Whit ybe vs to haue gevin ami granntit full 
fredome facultey and spele licen>-- to oure loml familiare 
squir Alex, of Ogilvy of Inercarity for to fortifie his house 
ami to strength it with an Irne yhet — Quharfor we straitly 
bid and commaunds that na man tak on hande to make him 
impediment Stoppinge na distroublace in the makinge Raisin 
hvninge and vysettinge of i he said yhet in his said house 
vnder all payue and charge efter may follow. Gevin vnder 
oure si net at Streviline the xxv. day of September, ande of 
oure regne the sevint yhere." 

Baron Ogilvy, of Lintrathen, was created Earl of 
Airlie in 1639, and in the following year the castles 
of Forter and Airlie were both burnt by the Marquis 
of \rgyle. It was from the latter that Lady Ogilvy, 
in the absence of her Lord, was expelled, an incident 
which suggested the touching old ballad of "The 
Bonnie House of Airlie." The place had been 
regarded as an almost impregnable natural stronghold, 
and had already, under Lord Ogilvy, who had been 
left in command by his father, the Earl, resisted 
a party under Montrose and Kinghorn ; but on 
Argyle's approach with 5000 men the garrison fled. 
The following is a copy of the original directing the 
famous " raid " referred to above. It has neither 
date nor place given, but addressed thus : — 


"For Dougal Campbell, Fiar of Innerarie" "Don^al— I 
mynd, God willing, to lift from this the morrow, and there- 
fore ye shall meet me the morrow at nicht at Stronnar, not in 
Strathardill, and caus bring alonges wt. you the haill nolt 
and sheepe that you have fundine pertaining to my Lord 
Ogilbie. As for the horsi's and maris that ye have gottine 
pertainiug to him, ye shall not fail to direct thame home to 
the Strone-moor. I desyre not that thoy be in our way at 
all, and so send thame the nearest waj" home. And albeit, 
ye be the langer in following me, zeit ye shall not faill to 
stand and demolish my Lord Ogilbie's house and farther, see 
how ye can cast off the iron yettis and uindowis, and tak 
doun the rooff ; and if ye find that it will be langsome, ye 
shall fyere it weill, so that it may be destroyed. 

" Bot you neid not to latt know that ye have directions 
from me to fyere it, onlie ye may say that ye have warrand 
to demolish it , and that, to mak the wark short, ye will 
fyere it. Iff yee mak anv stay for doing of tins, send forward 
the goodis. So referring this to your cair, I rest your 

(Signed) Argyll." 

Of the Angus gentry taken prisoners at Philip- 
hangh, there were Lord Ogilvy, Alex. Ogilvy of 
Inverquharity, and Andrew Guthrie, the Bishop's 
son. Lord Ogilvy escaped in his sister's clothes, 
Guthrie was beheaded, and young Inverquharity. a 
beautiful lad of eighteen, was hanged, upon which 
occasion Mr D. Dick, a Presbyterian minister, said — 
"the guid wark gaes bonnilly on." 

In 1690 Captain James Ogilvy, son of the baron, 
fought for James VII. at the battle of the Boyne, and 
afterwards went abroad. Enlisting in foreign service 
he fell in an engagement on the Rhine. He was the 
author of the beautiful song " It was a' for our 
richtfu' King." As several of the best collections of 
Scottish song do not contain this ballad, and as it is 
not so well known as it should, we think no apology 
is necessary for inserting the beautiful and pathetic 
lines : — 


" It was a' torn our richtfu' King 

Wi Left fair Scotland s wtrand ; 
It was a' for oor richtfa' King 

We e'er saw Irish Land, my dear, 

We e'er saw Irish land. 

Now a" i< done that man can do, 

And a i< done in vain : 
My love, and native land fareweel, 

For I maun cro*a the m dn, my dear. 

For I maun cross the main. 

I'll turn me right and round about 

Upon the Irish shore, 
An' gi'e my bridle-rejiis a shake, 

Wirii ' Adieu for evermore, my dear,' 

With 'Adieu for evermore.' 

The sodger frae the war- return-. 

The Bailor frae the main ; 
But I musl pairt frae my true love, 

Never to meet again, my dear, 

Never to meet again. 

When day is pane an' nicht i> come, 

An' a' fouk bound in Bleep, 
O think on him that's far awa". 

The lee lang night, an' weep, my dear, 

The lee Ian.!-' night, an' weep." 

The late Miss Dorothea Ogilvy, Broughty Ferry, 
daughter of the Hon. Donald Ogilvy of Clova (whose 
pater- nal grandfather was 7th Earl of Airlie), inherited, 
as did her brother, the late Donald Ogilvy, the poetic 
sifts of the family. Amongst several volumes of 
poems we might note " Doron," Poems by Dorothea 
and Donald Ogilvv, published at Aberdeen in 1865, 
and "My Thoughts" (Edinburgh, 1873). Miss 
Ogilvy has sung the loves, the joys, the rural scenes 
and simple pleasures of the romantic Glen Clova, in 
so sweet and so lovely a strain as to be admired 
throughout the length and breadth of the land : — 

Lone glens of sunny gleams, of sparkling, rushing streams, 
Where mountains rise in purple, green, and gold ; 

In your dusty woods at ihnvn I have roused the sleeping fawn, 
Where the fountains glimmered pure, and clear, and cold. 

'Mid the scattered rocks of grey, where the raven seek- his prey, 
" And the wind sweeps evermore around the cairn, 
The lakes lie deep and still, in the shadow of the hill, 
In a wilderness of heather, moss, and fern. 


Among the purple bells the heather lintie dwells, 
And the wailing curlew wanders wild and free : 

In each bosky birchen grove softly croons the cushet-dove, 
And the blackbird sweetly whistles on his tree. 

There many a crumbling keep crowns many a rugged steep, 
And many a moss-grown wreck of hut and hold. 

Memorial tomb and stone of generations gone. 
And of bloody fields in war-like days of old. 

The moorlands spreading wide in all their purple pride. 

Linns that foaming fall, and rise in silver spray ; 
E teh burnie's brattling ?inigr. thy hazel haughs among, 

Thy grand old mountains stretching far away. 

I see Glen Clova smile, and each dim and deep defile, 

Mantle rosy in the sitnset's crimson glow. 
Bach cot and hamlet white, in a blaze i f golden light. 

While the river mourns and murmurs far below. 

I've a rapture all my own. in the torrent's distant moan. 

In the bees' low drowsy hum amid the flowers, 
In the benies ripe and red. in the heather's fragrant bed, 

In the birch trees lending sweetness to the showers. 

Dear land of cakes and cairns, of broth and brosy bairns, 

Of kebbucks, parritch, sowens. and lansr kail- 
Here's a health to every class. Highland lad and Lowland las< v 
May their bannocks, peats, and whisky never fail. 

Before taking the reader to Clova, however, we 
might merely state that the lands of Downiepark and 
Kinalty were originally part of the Inverquharity 
estate. The fine mansion house is a prominent object 
before crossing the Prosen on the way to Clova. It 
stands on a terrace amid beautiful surroundings, over- 
looking the venerable castle of Inverquharity. About 
1880 the Earl of Airlie purchased the house and 
grounds from the trustees of Colonel Rattray's- 


Far from the stir of man 
Lies Clova' s lonely grlen, 
Tracked by the gray South Esk meandering towards the seas ; 
On either hand are seen 
Vast walls of living srreen. 
Spotted with crags that mar their verdant harmonies. 

Earl of South esk. 


A run through this picturesque glen will prove very 
enjoyable and interesting. The very spirit of peace 
ms hovering over 

The grand, towering mount;. ins. the bright, flashing fountatns, 

The cairns <>' the clansmen, sae loyal an' true ; 
The bright, dancing brooklets, the swei t, shady neukl 

The - .it. fleecy cloudlets that skip o'er the blue. 

Its wealth of flora tills with fragrance the soft summer 
air, and it has for many years been the happy hunting 
ground of botanist-. Several important works have 
been written on the subject of rare flowers and plants 
peculiar to this beautiful little glen AVe are told 
that in the year 1327 Bruce gave charters of Clova 
and other lands to his nephew Donald, 12th Earl of 
Mar. The lands continued in the hands of the Mar 
family till Countess Isabella, wife of the Wolf of 
Badcnoeh, resigned them in favour of Sir David 
Lindsay of G-lenesk in 1398. 

In i 445-46, when Thomas Ogilvy, a younger 
brother of the Laird of Inverquharity, joined the 
Lindsays against his own clan at the battle of 
Arbroath, '*Earl Beardie " gave Clova over to him, 
reserving the superiority to his own family. It con- 
tinued in this way till at least the years 1513-14 ; for 
at that date the seventh Earl of Crawford was infeft 
in the barony of Clova, as heir to his nephew, the 
previous Earl, and George, Lord Spynie, succeeded 
his father in the half of the same lands and barony as 
late as 1646. 

The conduct of young Inverquharity at Arbroath 
was, as might be expected, the signal for family 
hostility and revenge. A series of desperate feuds 
was speedily commenced betwixt the houses of Clova 
and Inverquharity, and the former being backed by 
the Lindsays, was always successful ; but, an arrange- 
ment being made in the time of the fourth baron of 


Inverquharity, these hostilities were brought to an 
end. This agreement was made in the true spirit of 
feudalism, by written indenture "at the Water-side 
of Prossyn," on the 26th of March 1524, in presence 
of various kinsmen and other witnesses, whereby the 
lairds of Inverquharity and Clova, under heavy pains 
and penalties, " remit the rancour of their hearts to 
others (each other), and shall live in concord and 
perfite charity, and sic-like efter the said sentence be 
given, as guid Christian men and tender friends should 
do, under the pain of eternal damnation of their souls, 
because that is the precept et law of God." In strict 
fulfilment of the conditions of the "Indenture," the 
laird of Clova, now weaned over to the side of 
his kinsmen, conspired against the noble-hearted 
Edzell, on his advancement to the peerage, when the 
Earldom was cancelled in the person of the " Wicked 
Master" — joined the Ogilvys in besieging the Castle of 
Finhaven, harried Crawford's lands, and otherwise 
tried to prevent his succession — a proceeding which, 
as already seen, was only prohibited by the peremp- 
tory mandate of royalt} 7 . 

The band had thus the desired effect, and the 
descendants of Thomas Ogilvy, the family traitor of 
1445, continued Lords of Clova and Cortachy till 
towards the close of the sixteenth century, when the 
former whs given to Sir David, third son of the first 
Earl c{ Airlie, who, like his older brother that fell at 
Inverlochy, bore a prominent part in the great civil 
commotions of his time. He erected a mansion at 
the Milton of Clova, several of the hewn stones of 
which were built into the walls of adjoining cottages, 
and the initials and date "D* O 1684 *I -G'," on one 
of the stones referred to him and his wife Jean 

The boundary of the old garden is yet traceable, 


but the foundations of the house are completely 
erased. It is not so, however, with those of the 
previous Castle or Peel, for it is still a prominent 
object on the west side of Benread, north of the 
Milton. The Peel commands an extensive and 
delightful view of the Glen, and consists of a frag- 
ment about twenty feet in height, with walls fully 
four feet thick. It is traditionally attributed to the 
time of the Lindsays, and the occupant, says the same 
authority, having rendered himself obnoxious to his 
brother barons, a party marched against him under 
night and set his castle on tire. Amidst the confusion 
and smoke attendant on the burning, the luckless 
baron fled to the adjoining mountain and took 
shelter, first under a large piece* of rock, still called 
the " Laird's Stane," and afterwards in the Hole of 
"Weems, a well-known cave in the face of a hill near 
Braedownie. Others ascribe the destruction of the 
Peel to the soldiers of Cromwell and Montrose ; but 
perhaps tbe real cause and time were in 1591, when, 
" vnder silence of night," five hundred "brokin men 
and sornaris houndit oute be the Erll of Ergyll and 
his freindis," entered Glen Clova in September, " in- 
vadit the inhabitants, and murthourit " and slew 
' three or foure innocent men and women and reft 
and took away ane grit pray of guidis." It is also 
worthy of note, that when Charles II. duped his 
keepers at Perth in 1650, he rode to Clova, in the 
hope of meeting Lord Ogilvy and some of his other 
friends : but ''finding very few to attend upon him, 
and very bad entertainment,'"' he returned to his 
captivit}^ on the following day. 

Clova— honoured by the late Queen Victoria and 
the Prince Consort with a visit in 1861, only a short 
time before the death of his Poyal Highness — was 
long an independent parochial district, but was united 


to the parish of Cortachy in 1608, on condition that 
the minister should receive the teinds of both, and 
preach on two Sundays at Cortachy, and on the third 
at Clova. From that period the parochial matters of 
both districts have been managed conjointly ; and the 
records, which begin in the year 1659, show some 
glimpses of the curious local customs of the age — 
such, for example, as when parties went to Church on 
the first Sunday after marriage, they were accom- 
panied by the inspiring strains of the Highland 
bagpipes ; and, in 1662, there was no sermon at 
Cortachy because of the minister being in Clova, at 
"the executions of Margaret Adamson, who was 
burnt there for ane witch." 

Loch Brandy. 

In days o' auld lang syne I wis, 
Maistlin' frae Adam's time to this 
The kintra o' the Ogilvys. 

The view from The Ogilvy Arms Hotel, so romanti- 
cally situated, and so comfortable within, is extensive 
and beautiful. Behind and before, the grand old 
mountains are glittering in the sun as in coats of 
burnished mail, while the long, meandering streamlets 
are flashing far away in avalanches of stone and rock 
in a lengthened maze of loveliest, living light. Such 
a picture — so extensive and so beautiful — would 
of itself abundantly reward the journey of a lon^, 
summer day. 

• Loch Brandy — a loch of surpassingly wild grandeur, 
from which issues a stream rejoicing in the same 
exhilarating name — is reached after a somewhat stiff 
climb to the top of the hill immediately above the 
hotel. But the sight will well repay the effort, and 
posts are placed at intervals for the guidance of 
visitors. As we proceed, the hills seem to increase 


in altitude, and the glens behind us appear to deepen 
into a more sublime profoundly. At length, between 

" Mountains thtt like giants stand, 
To sentinel enchanted Land," 

the loch seems to rise suddenly before us. A wild 
amphitheatre, it is girt with the wildest and most 
picturesque beauty, as with a girdle. Mountain after 
mountain rises on either shore, and down their sides 
streamlets dance from linn to linn, until they subside 
into sleep in the bosom of the lake. This rampart of 
cliffs, and peaks, and wildly jagged summits — a strange 
jumbling of the fantastic and the sublime — has a most 
impressive and imposing effect, In whirling wreaths 
the mists are rolling down the steeps ; shadows linger 
in the corries as if the " skreich o' day " still clung 
reluctant to depart from their silent and solitary 
recesses ; and, as if to deepen the charm, a sweet 
Sabbath calm rests over all, which subdues the soul 
to a perfect peace. 

It might be noted that the South Esk rises at the 
bead of Glen Clova, and, after a course of about 40 
miles, it falls into the German Ocean at Montrose. 
Lochs Brandy and Wharrel are its feeders, and so 
are the Whitewater, the Prosen, the Carraty, the 
Lemno, the Xoran, and the Pow. A visit to the 
source of the South Esk, by way of Glen Doll, would 
be greatly enjoyed. Its scenery is varied, and it is 
described as a botanical paradise, and is much visited 
by scientific men. 

But we must retrace our steps. May the wild 
flowers haunt thy loneliness ever as they do now — 
spring coming to thee with the primrose and the 
violet, summer with the wildling rose, and may 
autumn linger to the latest ere she lays her searing 
finger on the verdant fringe with which thou art girt. 


Along the flowery margin of the Esk we wend our 
devious way — the playful streamlets from the hill- 
sides realising, in the minutest feature, Burns' inimit- 
able description — 

" "Whiles over a linn the burnie play.-, 

As through the Glen it wimples, 
Whiles round a rocky scaur it strays. 

Whiles in a well it dimples. 

Now it is leaping in whiteness over some channel 
stone, now it sweeps sullenly 'neath some overhanging 
cliff, lichened and gray, or velveted with the greenest 
moss ; and anon it reflects in its glassy bosom some 
solitary birch or drooping group of saughs. There 
are many fertile slopes and green meadows, where an 
occasional wreath of smoke greets the eye of the 
wanderer. But on the mountain sides there are not 
a few ruined humble cots crumbling in slow decay, 
and covered with lichen and moss, 

" Like the dew from the mountain, 

The foam from the river, 
Like the bubble from the fountain, 

They're gone, and for ever." 

Glen Ogil. 

Whaur gowden blossoms o' the whin 

Fa' i' the deep resounding linn ; 

Whaur cowslips kiss the daffodils, 

An' roses redden by the rills ; 

Whaur tasselled broom o'erhangs tl e cairn, 

An' honeysuckle gilds the fern ; 

Whaur ivy climbs the granite walls, 

Aii willow- woo the waterfalls; 

Whaivr hoary mists and creeping clouds 

Wrap the blue hills in silver shrouds ; 

Whaur doon the rocks the burnies rin, 

An' rise in reek firae linn to linn. 

It is said that, probably towards the end of the 
15th century, the lands of Ogil, on the braes of 
Ancus, were possessed by the descendants of William, 
brother of the third and fourth Lords Glamis. 
Another authority asserts that James Fenton of Ogil 


was one of the arbiters in the dispute between the 
Ogilvys of Inverquharity and Clova, arising out of the 
desertion of his clan by a son of Inverquharity at the 
battle of Arbroath, for which service the Earl of 
Crawford gave him a charter of Clova. 

The Fentons of Ogil had acquired the estate 
of Findowrie in 1558. Four years before David 
Fenton sold Findowrie he and several others were 
charged for " abiding " from the raids of Leith and 
Liwder that year. David and his brother James 
were accused of the slaughter of William Carrour, 
and the mutilation of Thomas Carrour of his right 
hand. They were sons of Andrew Currour of Logie 
Mill. Whatever the Fentons may have been in early 
times, they appear to have become a wild, turbulent 
family in later years. In 1571 David Lindsay of 
Barnyard killed John Fenton. The slaughter of the 
Currours arose out of an ancient family feud, but the 
cause of the slaughter of Fenton is not known. Such 
outrages show the excited state of society in the latter 
half of the sixteenth century, and the little value the 
Angus lairds set upon the lives of their neighbours at 
that period. 

In 1585 Fenton of Ogil, Deuchar of that Ilk, 
Dempster of Careston, and David \Vaterston,portioner 
of Waterston and adjoining lands, were charged by 
the Bishop and Chapter of Brechin with having taken 
possession of, and built houses upon, and cultivated 
part of the commonty of the city of Brechin. Lord 
Gray, then Sheriff of the county, declared the whole 
muir to be a commonty belonging to the Bishop and 
Chapter, and to the citizens of Brechin. This common 
was of great extent, extending from the Gallows 
Hill of Keithock on the east, westward to the Law of 
Fern, being about eight miles in length by nearly one 
and a half in breadth. The City of Brechin draws 


feu duties from those parties who have buildings 

Ui The iands of Ogil are watered by the pellucid 
Xoran, which, rising in the southern ranges of the 
Grampians, flows through Glen Ogil, into Strathmore, 
and for some distance separates this parish from 
Fern. The Lyons appear to have succeeded the 
Fentons in Easter Ogil. They were proprietors in 
1684-5, when Ochterlony wrote his account of the 
shire, and for some time thereafter. It was acquired 
by the Grants, who built the old manor house in 
1744. One of the Lyons of Easter Ogil, in 1745, 
carried off the famous sword which belonged to 
Deuchar of that Ilk, in the parish of Fern, and 
because it was too long for his use, had some inches 
taken from its length. After the Eebellion the then 
laird of Deuchar recovered the sword from the Castle 
of Coul, where it had been left by Lyon. The 
property was ultimately acquired by the late James 
Forrest, banker and merchant, Kirriemuir, whose 
family still retain possession of Easter Ogil. James 
Forrest erected an excellent house on the site of the 
one built by the rebel laird. It is in the Elizabethan 
style of architecture, and is pleasantly situated 
among fine sylvan scenery on the eastern or left 
bank "of the crystal Xoran. 

The old Castle of Cossens, built by the branch ot 
the Lyons from whom this family of Glen Ogil are 
descended, is now a ruin. The arms of David Lyon 
of Cossens, impaled, are still to be seen sculptured on 
the north wall of what remains of the castle. Ihe 
late George Lyon of Glenogil sold the upper or high- 
land Glenogifto David Haig of Edinburgh, who built 
a fine residence, which he called Redheugb, <>n a 
picturesque site near the Xoran, and a short «^- t;inc ® 
to the east of St Arnold's Seat. The beautiful hill 


is wooded nearly up to the summit, and it is a com- 
manding object in the landscape. There is a large 
cairn on the top of the hill, but this proprietor 
removed many of the stones to build a wall. The 
prospect from the cairn is still one of the widest, most 
varied, and grandest which can be seen from any 
point on the Braes of Angus, and none should visit 
the district without ascending the hill to feast their 
eyes with the glorious views. David Haig died in 
1848. and was succeeded by his son, James Eichard 
Haig. From him the property passed to John 
Leveson Douglas Stewart, from whose representatives 
the late Stephen Williamson, M.P., bought the 
property. Mr Williamson died in 1903. 

On the north side of the Esk, near the place where 
the bridge of Shiellhill now stands, the Castle of 
Queich formerly stood. It was the residence of the 
Earl of Buchan, who owned some property in the 
parish. The situation was well adapted for the 
abode of a feudal chieftain, as it afforded him security 
from enemies. It was built on a precipitous rock 
overhanging the river, with a deep chasm on each 
side of it through which a stream pours down. It 
was therefore assailable from only one point. Xo 
vestiges of the Castle were to be seen when the Old 
Account was written, a humble cottage then occupy- 
ing the site of the lordly keep. 

The Old Castle of Wester Ogil stood near the 
junction of the burn from the west which falls into 
the Noran near the lower end of Glenogil, but the 
ruins of it have disappeared. A mansion has been 
erected a little to the north of the site of the old 
Castle, on a rising ground on the right bank of the 
Xoran. It is of two floors, with loftj T windows on 
the lower, or ground floor. The building is plain, but 
very chaste, the bold banks of the beautiful stream, 


the lawn, gardens, rich shrubbery, and thriving 
plantations around combining to form a pretty and 
picturesque scene. The falls on the Xoran, at a little 
distance from Glenogil House, add to the variety and 
attraction of the scenery. 

It may interest some readers to mention that the 
nervous disease, popularly called "loupin' ague," 
prevailed much in former times, especially in the Glen 
of Ogil district. The Rev. John Jamieson, Forfar, 
who wrote the "Old Statistical Account of Tannadice" 
in 1795-6, says: — "The most common distemper in 
the parish is the low, nervous fever, which may 
indeed be considered as the characteristic distemper 
of this country. Twenty or thirty years ago what is 
commonly called the louping ague greatly prevailed. 
This disease, in its symptoms, has a considerable 
resemblance to St Vitu* y & dance. Those affected with 
it, when in a paroxyism, often leap or spring in a very 
surprising manner, whence the disease has derived its 
vulgar name. They frequently leap from the floor to 
what in cottages are called the baulks, or those beams 
by which the rafters are joined together. .Sometimes 
they spring from one to another with the agility of ar 
cat, or whirl round one of them with a motion 
resembling the fly of a jack. At other times they 
run with astonishing velocity to some particular place 
out of doors which they have fixed on in their minds 
before, and perhaps mentioned to those in company 
with them, and then drop down quite exhausted. It 
is said that the clattering of tongs or any similar 
noise will bring on the fit." 

The Castle of Vane, Deuchar, Fern, <&c. 

Nor hill nor burn we pass along 
But has its legend or its song. 

The ancient Castle of Vane is situated on a 
precipitious rock on the north bank of the Xoran, 




which here flows through a romantic den, adorned 
-with many trees of great age and large size. Three 

stones, re- 
moved from 
the ruins of 
the Castle, 
have been 
built into the 
walls of the 
farm offices 
for preserva- 
tion. They 
appear to 
have been 
lintels of 
doors or win- 
dows, and 
they respec- 
tively bear 
the following 
legends : — 

Disce meo exemplo /> were. 

(Learn by niy example to be able to want the beautiful.) 

vs Placitis abstinvisce bonis. 

Anno Dom, 1678. 

( to have abstained with a good- will.) 

et sic '-rut. 
(It it is with me now, it was not so formerly/. 

There is an Earl's cornet, and the monogram, E.R.S., 
of Robert, Earl of Southesk, upon the first of the 
stones above mentioned. The Castle was originally 
of three storeys, with a circular tower containing a 
staircase in the south-west corner. It is built of red 
sandstone, and only small portions of the Castle are 
now of the original height. 

Tradition points to Cardinal Beaton as the builder 
of Vane Castle, but this is not the case, and he does 


not appear to have had any connection with it. In 
"Ancient Things in Angus," Carrie says :— " We 
have not been able to ascertain who were the owners 
of the lands of Vane previous to their coming into 
possession of the Abbey at the time of the Keforma- 
tion. Tradition assigns the erection of the Castle of 
Vane to Cardinal Beaton as a residence for one of his 
numerous mistresses. In the description of the 
parish of Fern, in the New Statistical Account of 
Scotland, the following paragraph occurs : ' In a deep 
pool of the Noran water, near the castle of Vane, a 
son of an ancient proprietor is popularly believed to 
have been drowned. The place is called Tammie's 
Cradle, and the name of the estate is ascribed to an 
exclamation of the father of the child upon the 
accident being reported to him : he cried, ' It's a' 

By the side of the stream, a little east of the Castle, 
is a large sandstone bearing a deep indentation 
resembling the hoof of a colossal horse. It is locally 
known as "Kelpie's Footmark," and is^ an object 
which excites the wonder of the superstitious people 
in the neighbourhood. The stone is of the pudding 
stone or conglomerate sort, and a pebble may have 
fallen out and left the depression. In the olden time 
the district was a famous resort of the Brownies and 
other supernatural beings. 

Deuchar and Auchnacree, a short distance to the 
north, are places of historic interest in this neighbour- 
hood. The pretty estate and mansion of Xoranside 
ought also to be mentioned. The present proprietor 
is Mr J. 0. Clazey. The mansion house of Deuchar 
stands on an eminence well up in the parish of Fern, 
and commands a. prospect of much beauty and extent, 
embracing a large portion of Strathmore, Finhaven, 
Turin, and the Sidlaws. Tradition says that Deuchar 

68 around thp: ancient city. 

of Deuchar received the lands from which they took 
their surname, and the designation "of that Ilk,' ; for 
services performed at the Battle of Barrie in 1010. 
Records show that Deuchars held the lands of Deuchar 
as vassals to Lindsay of Glenesk, lord of Fern, in 1379, 
But long prior to that period, indeed from earliest 
record, the property was possessed by a family 
named after the estate. It is said that Deuchar, who 
was with Keith at the Battle of Barry, was a man of 
gigantic stature, and of vast strength, having six 
fingers on each hand, and as many toes on each foot. 
While in pursuit of the Danes he fell by a stroke or 
thrust from some of the Northmen. Mrs Thomas 
Thomson, a daughter of the late Mr Mamie of 
Deuchar, is the present owner of Deuchar. 

The following curious local rhyme contains an 
enumeration of place-names in the district : — 

Deuchar sits on Deuchar hill, 
Dookii" doou on I3imie Mill; 
The Whirrock, an' the Whoggle; 
Th^ Burnroot, an' Ogle; 

Qaiecli.srrath, an' Turnafachie ; 
\\'atejhaughs, an" Druinliehariie. 

AVe have referred already to the prominent part- 
played by the men of Fern in the Battle of Saughs. 
Speaking of Fern, we might note that Macintosh, or 
Ledenhendrie. as he was usually called, from the farm 
he occupied, ever since " the battle " went armed 
with sword and pistols, as a protection against the 
attacks of the caterans or other enemies. In the 
church he laid his naked swords and pistols on the 
desk in front of his seat. On being expostulated 
with by the minister for carrying arms, he replied if 
he , had only spiritual enemies to contend with he 
would lay them aside, but he had once nearly lost his 
life by mortal enemies when unarmed, and he would 
therefore carry them till the day of his death. 



Ledenhendrie was buried inside the Church of Fern, 
but notwithstanding what he had done for the 
parishioners at the Water of Saughs, no monument 
was put up to mark the spot where they laid him. 
When the old church was taken down in the beginning 
of this century, a large, unhewn stone, with a hole in 
it was found. It was called Ledenhendrie's stone, 
and is set up in the graveyard a short distance from 
the front of the Church, at his supposed grave ; but 
there is no inscription upon it, or any evidence of its 
connection with the leader of the heroic youths of 
Fern at the battle of Saughs. Winter went to reside 
in Glenisla. It had been arranged between him and 
Macintosh that whoever of the two died first the 
other should attend the funeral, and have it conducted 
with the barbaric pomp of the age — the pibroch 
playing the coronach, and the mourners armed. 
Winter died first, and Macintosh kept his promise. 
A monument — the inscription of which we quoted on 
page 46 — was raised to his memory near the south- 
east corner of Cortachv Church. 


Careston Castle. 

Careston Castle is the next place of interest, and a 
visit to it completes our first tour. It stands on a 



beautiful lawn, amidst luxuriant trees. It was one of 
the most splendid baronial residences in Angus, but 
having passed through many families, and on account 
of neglect, more than from the wearing influence of 
the " tooth of time," it has suffered much dilapidation 
both within and without. The present proprietor, 
Mr W. Shaw Adamson, however, has, with great 
taste, done much to atone for this neglect. The 
principal rooms in the original castle have been taste- 
fully repaired, the valuable sculptures replaced in the 
former positions, and the staircase, walls, cornices,, 
doors, and windows restored as in the olden time. 

The Past, thy storied record bids its cherish, 
The Present, views thee with admiring eye. 

Ochterlony thus quaintly describes the place as it- 
existed two hundred years ago : — " A great and 

delicat house, well built, braw 
Ky *yh$ \ rjli' ^J\ lights, and of a most excellent 

T*!i n 

/w !$l V contrivance, without debait the 
1] A best gentleman's house in the 
j fi| yshyre; 

• HP 


much planting, delicate 
vardes and gardens 
with stone 
walls, ane 
e xcellent 
with ane 
range of ash 
trees on 
every syde, 
ane excel- 
lent arbour. 

for length and breadth, none in the country like it. 
The house was built by Sir Harry Lindsay of Kinfaines 


after (wards) Earl of Crawford." The author of 
the " New Statistical Account " says that the Castle 
was erected about 1400, but he gives no authority 
for the statement. 

In the preface to the Regi*trum vettt* de Aberbrothoo 
mention is made of Bricius as "judex" of Angus. 
In 1219 Adam was judex of the Earl's Court, and 
some years later his brother Keraldus succeeded to 
the office. The dwelling of Keraldus received the 
name of " Keraldistone," then Caraldstoun, and the 
office of judex becoming hereditary, and taking its 
Scotch style of " Dempster," gave name to the family, 
who for many generations held the lands of Caralds- 
toun, mid performed the office of Dempster of the 
Parliaments of Scotland. This is perhaps the most 
probable source from which the name of the estate 
and of the parish had its origin. 

Moniepennie, in his description of Scotland, pub- 
lished in 1612, mentions "the Castles and Towers of 
Melgund, Flemington, Woodwre, Bannabreich, Old 
Bar, with the parke, Carrestoun, and Balhall." These 
had all been existing, probably inhabited, and well 
known in the early part of the seventeenth centurv. 
The proprietors of Careston, prior to its passing to 
the Lindsays, may have resided on the site of the 
present Castle, and Sir Harry Lindsay had either 
made additions to the ancient castle, or taken it down 
and built a new one, which may be the most ancient 
portion of the present building. It is evident that 
its external appearance has been transformed at 
various dates, and the interior also frequently changed, 
some of the proprietors having ornamented the prin- 
cipal rooms in a very artistic manner. 

The Castle, as originally erected, must have been a 
grand and imposing structure. The front consisted 
of a centre building of three storeys, rlanked by two- 


wings of four Moors each, which project about twenty 
feet from the main building. The space between the 
projecting wings has been covered in with lead at the 
height of one storey, and forms a fine entrance hall 
and lobby. On the roof of this section there is 
a pleasant and safe promenade. One of the additions 
made by a former proprietor to the old Castle consists 
of lofty battlements and turrets. This portion of the 
mansion is very massive, and is the most castellated 
part of the edifice. One of the proprietors of Careston 
had found the Castle too small for his family, friends, 
and retainers. He was careful to procure increased 
accommodation, and adopted a novel mode of attain- 
ing his object. He incased a considerable part of the 
exterior walls of the Castle by building a new wall at 
some distance outwith the ancient walls. The space 
between the original and the modern walls was divided 
into floors and rooms, and covered with a roof. In 
this way the number of apartments in the Castle was 
increased, but some of the original rooms, instead of 
havinglight and air from without, as formerly, had only 
borrowed lights, which rendered them all but useless. 
The new outer apartments completely enclose the 
corbels of the turrets, and prevent them from being 
seen outside the Castle. The battlemented heads of 
the turrets rise above, and are seen over the top of 
this curious addition, but as the turrets are not seen 
in their entirety, their stunted appearance, and the 
objectionable outside building, tend to disfigure the 
external aspect of the grand old baronial Castle. All 
the principal rooms in the Castle and the old staircase 
were particularly rich in sculptured and other 
decorations. They chiefly consisted of armorial 
bearings, allegorical representations, and curious 
grotesque ornaments. Above what was at one time 
the grand entrance to the Castle, on the north side of 


the low building, are the arms of Carnegy of Balna- 

moon. The magnificent sculptures, figures, blazons, 
and other embellishments in the Castle were for 
ages the glory of the baronial walls of Careston, and 
the pride of the Lords of the barony. 

The dining and drawing-rooms, the grand staircase, 
and about half a dozen bedrooms are decorated with 
sculptures and heraldic bearings. The mantelpiece 
of the dining-room has the Airlie Arms in centre, 
with the motto, A Fin. On each side of these are 
nude figures with urns, from each of which a serpent 
is issuing. On the right and left of the fireplace are 
male and female satyrs. A well-executed sculpture 
of the Royal Arms of Scotland, around which are 
banners, shields, and other military trophies, and two 
nude human figures riding on lamas, adorns the 
mantelpiece in the drawing-room. Figures of a man 
and a woman, about life size, with cornucopia;- in 
their hands, festooned in a tasteful manner, and 
united by a Pan's head, decorate each side of the fire- 

The grounds in front of the Castle must have 
presented an extraordinary appearance to the aston- 
ished occupants on the morning of the 5th April, 
1645. Instead of the sheep and oxen which usually 
grazed in the spacious park, many hundreds of armed 
men, firmly bound in the arms of Morpheus, lay 
thickly strewed in all directions, while about one 
hundred caparisoned horses fed around them. These 
wearied men and horses were the heavy armed portion 
of the troops of the Marquis of Montrose, with their 
brave and impetuous leader at their head. On the 
evening of the 3rd April he left Dunkeld, and marched 
rapidly to Dundee, which he reached early the 
following forenoon. His troops at once stormed the 


town, and were proceeding with their work of 
destruction when Montrose whs informed that General 
Baillie with the Covenanting army was close at hand. 
It was with great difficulty that he got his drunken 
soldiery to leave so rich a town unsacked, and so much 
spoil behind. At last he got the troops to leave the 
town by the east, after setting fire to the Hilltown, as 
Baillie entered the town from the west. Monti 
proceeded towards Arbroath as rapidly as he could get 
the intoxicated men to move. He then altered his 
course, turned to the north-west, reached the South 
Efik, which he crossed at one of the fords near Balna- 
brei'-h. and onward to Careston Castle, on the lawn 
in front of which the men at once lay down, and 
immediately fell asleep, for they had had no sleep for 
two nights in succession. They had marched nearly 
seventy miles, skirmishing frequently on the way 
from Dundee to Arbroath, and they had stormed 
Dundee, and indulged in many excesses there. Xo 
wonder that after such a masterly retreat and so great 
fatigue their slumbers were profound, but they were 
not destined to be of long (Juration. Montrose had 
given Baillie the slip, and also Hurry, the other 
Covenanting General, who was lying in wait for him 
at Brechin, but this only stimulated their exer- 
tions to overtake him. On learning of their near 
approach, Montrose had his men roused again, but so 
overcome were they with fatigue -Hid sleep that they 
had to be pricked with swords before they could be 
awakened. Once on the move, they immediately 
made, for Glenesk, and were soon within its bounds 
and for the time being safe. Mr Adamson, father of 
the present proprietor, in making the alterations upon 
the Castle, found in the upper or attic floor three 
Queen Bess muskets, which doubtless had been left 
by some of Montrose's soldiers on the memorable 


occasion of their visit to Careston. These interesting 
memorials now add to the adornment of the grand 
staircase of the Castle. 

The people in and bordering on the Braes of Angus 
were very superstitious in the olden time. They 
firmly believed in ghosts, and many people, both 
young and old, would have made a long detour rather 
than pass alone in the dark spots supposed to be 
haunted by a ghost. A White Lady was one of the 
most common appearances which ghosts assumed, and 
few parishes were without one of these fair but 
dreaded apparitions. Careston was not behind its 
neighbours in respect of its supernatural visitors. It- 
had its White Lady, who had been wronged while in 
the body, and who, now that she was a spirit, was 
wont to traverse the district around the old Castle of 
Careston where the woods were close ; but though 
harmless, she was feared, and her haunts were 

Before leaving Careston, and returning to the city 
by what is known as the " high," or Barrelwell Road, 
we might note that the parish, formerly known as 
"Caraldstone," was only erected into a parish in 
1641 — it having previously formed part of the parish 
of Brechin. This was brought about on account of 
"ignorance of the tenantry," or on account of "the 
distance of their abodes from the Parish Church of 
Brechin." In the Reg. Epis. Bre., Careston is spelled 
no fewer than eighteen different ways. It is one of 
the smallest parishes in the kingdom — indeed it is said 
that there are only four smaller — and both the 
church and churchyard are correspondingly small. 

Although in our first trip our course has been 
occasionally of the zig-zag order, and we have on our 
homeward way necessarily had to go over the same 



ground which we had already traversed, we now don 
our "seven league boots," and find ourselves back to 
the Ancient City sometime within the bounds of 
" elders' hours." 


Seconfc Zlour. 

Aldbar, Ardovie, Melgund, and Flemington 

Castles ; Sculptured Stones of Aberlemno, 

Angus Hill, &c. 



Aldbar and its Castle. 

" Thus saith the preacher, ' Nought beneath the sun 
Is uew.' yet still from change to change we run.'" 

" There's not a heath, however wild, 

But hath some little flower 
To lighten tip its solitude 

And scent the wearv hour. 

second tour, we 
again hold west, 
diverging, how- 
ever, to the left shortly 
after passing the second 
Brechin Castle Lode;e. The 
first object calling our 

buildings and gate- way 
nels," now silent, but, " 
Lordie," a lively place 

attention is 
known as 
the time 
In the 


the range of 

" The Ken- 

of the Auld 

valley below 


is the shooting range of the Brechin Volun- 
teers, and while crossing the bridge over the 
South Esk we cannot fail to feast on the lovely 
surroundings. Above, we admire the richly wooded 
policies of Maulesden — to which we have already 
alluded — the tine mansion nestling almost on the 
bank of the river, with its delightful sylvan acces- 
sories, forming an excellent subject for the landscape 
painter. Below, we have a pretty " peep " of a 
portion of the Brechin Castle policies, the south bank 
of the stream here becoming quite percipitous until 
a short stretch brings it under the " Image " bridge, 
of which more anon. Altogether the circle of scenery 
visible from this " coign of vantage " is very pleasing 
■und varied. 

Little more than a quarter of a mile, keeping to 
the left where the road diverges, and we reach the 
neat entrance to the beautiful pleasure-grounds of 
Aid bar, belonging to Patrick Chalmers, Esq. This 
gentleman, with commendable kindness — as indeed 
will be found the case with most proprietors whose 
domains we visit — permits respectable strangers to 
have access to his picturesque grounds, and it is 
satisfactory to learn that the favour and his confi- 
denceare fully appreciated, and are very seldom abused. 
About half-a-mile from the gate-way, along a drive 
profusely fringed with verdure and under the shade 
of majestic trees, brings us to the castle, which stands 
close to the burn, at a singularly romantic spot, near 
a pretty waterfall. 

During the time of the " antiquarian laird," and 
more particularly towards the close of his life, large 
and important additions w^re made to the house, 
which, with a variety of other alterations and im- 
provements, greatly changed the general aspect of 
the building. It was divested of its feudal character, 



and instead of its being a gloomy fortalice. reared for 
safety rather than comfort, it became, to a great 
extent, a modern mansion of noble proportions, at 
the same time retaining its castellated appearance, 
and the character of a grand old baronial keep— the 
richly clothed sides of the ravine and the cascade 
lending variety and beauty to the surroundings. The 


principal entrance, formerly on the west, was changed 
to the east, and the old front ornamented with taste- 
fully laid out flower terraces and balustraded walls. 
A picturesque grotto, overshadowed by rocks and 
trees, and a number of rustic and other retreats were 
also formed, the whole combining to make the 
grounds of a truly charming nature. 

The oldest portion of the Castle of Aldbar was 
built by Sir Thomas Lyon towards the end of the 
16th century, and it is an excellent specimen of the 
Scottish baronial architecture of the period when it 
was erected. The tower is ornamented with the 


armorial bearings of the noble bouse of Lyon, of 
which Sir Thomas was a distinguished member, 
being Lord Treasurer of Scotland. It was he who, 
in 1582, when James VI. wept because he was 
detained in Puthven House, said "It is better that 
bairns should weep than bearded men." 

The period of the death of this bold baron is un- 
known, but it occurred some time after King James 
went to England, for, on hearing of Lyon's death, he 
is said to have remarked to the English nobles 
around him, " that the boldest and hardiest man in 
his dominions was dead ! " Sir Thomas Lyon left a 
son who succeeded to Aldbar, but, as he died without 
issue, the lands reverted to his nephew, the Earl of 
Kinghorn. who afterwards disposed of them to a cadet 
of the noble house of Sinclair. In 1670 and 1678, 
various portions of the estate of Albar were bought 
from Sir James Sinclair by Peter Young of Easter 
Seaton, grandson of that Sir Peter who was almoner 
to King James VI. His eldest son and successor, 
Sir James of Innerechtie, knight, was a gentleman of 
the King's bed-chamber, and father of that Peter 
Young of Easter Seaton, who (with consent of his 
wife, Isabella Ochterlony [perhaps of Wester Seaton] 
and his son Robert, as life-renter and fiar, and also 
with the consent of Robert's wife, Anna, daughter of 
Sir William Graham of Claverhouse), sold Easter 
Seaton and bought Aldbar as previously noticed. 

A romantic story is told of the last Young of Ald- 
bar. According to tradition, arrangements were 
made for his marriage with the daughter of a neigh- 
bouring proprietor. It is said that, in token of 
respect and in remembrance of her proposed wedding, 
the lady resolved to present her native parish with 
the rather odd gift of a mortcloth. That and her 
marriage dress, having been ordered from the same 


person in Edinburgh, were both sent together, and, 
by some unexplained accident, found their way to 
Aldbar, where the package was opened. Mr Young, 
who was probably of a nervous disposition, trok the 
matter seriously to heart, and sending the mortcloth 
and wedding dress to his bride, he hurried to Mont- 
rose, where, it is said, he committed suicide by 
drowning. His bride died soon after, and the ill- 
omened mortcloth was first used at her own funeral. 
It was soon after this sad occurrence that the lands 
of Aldbar were purchased by William Chalmers of 
Hazel head. 

It is said that when King Edward I. subdued Scot- 
land, the lands of Aldbar were in possession of a 
cadet of the Cramonds, or Kerramunds, of Midlothian. 
The Aldbar branch ultimately became chief of the 
family, and in 1541, soon after the event, James 
Cramond of Aldbar sold the original family properties 
of Over Cramond and Clairbar, to William Anderson 
of Craigcrook, and then the interest of the Cramonds 
in the Lothians ceased. The estate of Cramond T 
from which the family name was assumed, was held 
of the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, and AVilliam 
of Cramond, of the county of Edinburgh, who was 
clerk of the king's wardrobe in 1278, is recorded to 
have sworn fealty to King Edward in 1296, at 
Berwick-upon-Tweed, much about the same time as 
Laurence de Cramound, who is designed of the 
county of Forfar. Besides the lands of Aldbar, the 
Cramonds were early in possession of those of Mel- 
gund and Eddrochat or Kintrockat. They were 
related by marriage to some of the most influential 
families in Angus and the Mearns, and held their 
estates until the latter half of the sixteenth century, 
when their affairs became embarrassed, and, the lands 
being heavily mortgaged, John, Lord Glamis, who 


was Chancellor of Scotland in 1577, became the pro- 

Since 1296, when Lawrence de Cramond swore 
Edward I. of England, the baron; 
bar has been in the p »n of noted families — in 

that of the Cramonds till L577, and afterwards in 
those of the Lyons, the Sinclairs, the Youngs, and the 
Chalmers's. Thomas Ruddiman, the eminent gram- 
marian, taught for a short time in the Castle after 
finishing his University course . deen in 1694 

Mr Roberl Young of Aldbar, the great-grandson of 
Sir Peter Young, preceptor of James VI . ged 

Ruddiman to be the tutortohisson I > ivid. Ruddiman, 
within a year, however, accepted the office of school- 
master in the parish of Laurencekirk. 

In 1753, Aldbar was purchased by Wil iam 
Chalmers of Hazelhead, representative of the old 
Aberdeenshire family of Chalmers of Balnacraig, who 
amassed considerable wealth as a merchant in Spain. 
Indeed, it is said that the family can trace back their 
pedigree for considerably more than five centuries, if 
not, says Warden, to the time of King Alexander the 
First (1106-24). 

In 1765 Patrick Chalmers succeeded to the estate 
of Aldbar, on the death of his father, William. He 
was Sheriff of Forfarshire from 1769 to 1807. It 
may be interesting to know that he acted as Sheriff- 
Substitute for the whole of Forfarshire for the sum of 
.£150 a year. In 1785 he had the painful duty — for 
he was a man of much kindliness of heart — of pro- 
nouncing sentence of death on a young man who was 
found guilty of house-breaking and theft, adjudging 
" the pannel to be hanged at the west end of the Hill 
of Forfar, betwixt the hours of 1 2 mid-day and -4 in 
the afternoon." This was the last person in Scotland 
upon whom such a dread sentence was passed by a 


Sheriff. "The Shirra " died in 1824 in his 93rd 
year, and the property then came into possession of 
his only son, Patrick, who was born at Aldbar in 1777. 
He was for many years a merchant in London, and 
founder of the well-known firm of Chalmers, Guthrie 
& Co., Idol Lane. He married Francis Inglis, 
•daughter of John Inglis, merchant in London, and a 
Director of the East India Company. He died at 
Aldbar in 182G, when his eldest son, Patrick (born 
1802), Captain in the 3rd Dragoon Guards, succeeded 
to -the estate. From 1835 to 1842 he represented the 
Angus Burghs in Parliament, and was, altogether, one 
of our most distinguished Commoners. He rendered 
invaluable service to the burghs and county by the 
influential support which he gave to every measure 
conducive to their interests, and he was a model pro- 
prietor, believing and practising the maxim, that if 
property has its rights, it has also its duties, He did 
much to enhance the value and the amenity of his 
Castle and lands, and he did it with a philanthropist's 
delight in the employment which he thus gave to the 
artizan and labourer. A warm friend of education, 
he erected and endowed on his own estate one of the 
best schools in the shire. 

In the republic of letters, and more especially in 
the department of Scottish history and antiquities, 
Mr Chalmers occupied a high place, as is testified by 
his able assistance in the editing of several of the 
publications of the Bannatvne and Spalding Clubs, 
and, above all, by his magnificent volume on "The 
Ancient Sculptured Stones of Angus." This work 
was the means of directing more attention to the 
study of these remains of antiquit} T , which are to 
some extent peculiar to Scotland, and of which we 
are finding the districts we are traversing possess so 
many interesting specimens. The style, so admirable 


in its antiqueness, in which he raised from its ruins 
the old chapel in the beautiful and romantic Den of 
Aldbar, conveying to it from the parish churchyard 
the remains of his predecessors, and to which his own 
were added on his death in 1854, will tell posterity 
of his general culture, and of his accurate knowledge 
and exquisite taste as an antiquarian. 

Among the Bannatyne Books were the "Registers 
of the Abbey of Arbroath and of the Cathedral of 
Brechin."' Mr Chalmers was employed upon the 
latter work at the time of his death. This has since 
appeared under the title " Registrant Episcopatus 
Brcchinensis," and contains a memoir of Mr Chalmers 
by the late Mr Cosmo Innes, his fellow-labourer in 
both works. It was presented to the Club by his 
brother, the late Mr J. I. Chalmers. " It is a matter 
of regret," says Jervise, " that he was not spared to 
complete the ' Register,' since his vast local know- 
ledge must hive contributed greatly to its value and 
interest." But the two volumes did not appear 
until two years after his death. 

Failing health induced our zealous antiquarian to 
visit the Continent in the spring of 1854, but he died 
at Rome on 23rd June of that year. His remains 
were brought home, and interred in the Old Kirkyard 
in the Den of Aldbar. With an appropriateness 
which cannot but be admired, his grave is marked by 
a monument similar in design to those for whose pre- 
servation and illustration he contributed so much, and 
with which his name will continue to be associated. 

In the ruins of the chapel Mr Chalmers found a 
curious and interesting stone, which he transferred to 
the vestibule of his Castle, and of which Pinkerton 
thus wrote : — " It is well known that there exist in 
various parts of Scotland, but chiefly on the east side 
from the River Tay, singular erect stones, generally 


with crosses on one side, and upon the other sculptures, 
not ill executed for a barbarous age. Three are 
found at Aberlemno. That at the Chapel of Aldbar 
is singular, as, instead of horsemen and spears, there 
are two persons sitting, probably religious, and 
beneath them, a man seemingly tearing out a lion's 
tongue — perhaps Sajnson — and ^opposite to him a 
curious figure of an antique harp, and under these a 
man on horseback, a lamb, and other animals." 

The author of the Statistical Account of the parish 
remarks : — " It is most probable that this was either 
an altar piece, or that it was intended in some way 
to ornament the sacred edifice — whence it was taken. 
The subject is evidently a Scriptural one, although 
from the introduction of the harp, it is most probable 
that it was David, and not Samson, whom the sculptor 
designed to represent as achieving a victory over 
some beast of prey." 

The old chapel of Aldbar, as we have said, was long 
a ruin, but the portions of the walls that were stand- 
ing were repaired, and the old stones used, as far as 
possible, in the renewed building. The restoration 
was made by the father of the present proprietor, in 
accordance with the intention of his deceased brother, 
and off a plan approved of by him. The den is here 
about one hundred and fifty feet in depth, and the 
steep sides and the umbrageous trees make the chapel 
and its precincts an impressive and quiet spot, with 
its old graveyard surrounded by sylvan foliage and 
undergrowth of suitable evergreen shrubs, while the 
quiet peacefulness is only broken by the musical 
" tinkle o' the burnie " — 

There's the tinkle o' the burnies, the fragrance o' the flowers, 
The shaded blinks o' sunshine that bless the leafy bowers. 

As Colin Sievwright has it in his " Garland of Love 
Songs of Brechin and its Neighbourhood," in one of 


his numerous interesting historical notes — "The Don 
o' AJbar, one of those beautiful, romantic little 
ravines common throughout the howe of Strathmore 

and the braes o' Angus, is certainly one of the finest 
specimens of nature, aided by human art, that we have 
ever had the pleasure of seeing. Surely there is 
nothing better, and we know nQt of anything nearly 
so eood within the sound o' the bell o" Brechin. 

Down ili^ Den the* burnie tv>v 

An' violets busk the b 
And tufted broom, wi' gbwden bloom, 

- Alab a- 1 :;iw ; 

The birdies sing >perhymn 

A- sha< L( so' eveuing - 

Trees, shrubs, and wild flowers ; rugged rocks and 
rustic bridges ; shady nooks, and glorious beams o' 
sunshine ; singing birds, and rippling waters ; Castle 
Ha", and ancient church. Such we believe is the Den 
o' Aldbar still ; only that the little church has been 
restored, and once more, when the -disciples meet 
together on the first day of the week,' the voice of 
prayer and praise frequently awake the echoes of the 
Den, and rises, amid the dewy breath of even, to the 
great white throne of the Eternal Father." 

As we have thus seen, the highly gifted laird was 
succeeded by his brother, John Inglis Chalmers, who 
in 1S38 married Margaret, daughter of John Belling- 
ham Inglis of Yerehills, Lanarkshire. He died in 
1868. His son Patrick, the present proprietor, was 
born in 1841. Mr Chalmers was a lieutenant in the 
famous 59th Eegiment, and is a J. P. and Deputy- 
Lieutenant of the county. He resides chiefly at 
Aldbar, where for generations there has been a herd 
of pure polled Angus doddies, the members of which 
are well-known for the vigour of their constitutions 
and purity of descent, Since the present proprietor 
succeeded to the estate he has devoted great attention 


to the herd, and by judicious purchases from the 
best-known strains in Scotland — many of which were 
seemed at long prices — he now possesses a herd the 
surplus sales of which attract breeders from all parts 
of the country. 


Before setting out for Melgund Castle, a visit to the 
ancient residence of the Speids of Ardovie — rather 
less than two miles to the south, leaving Aldbar by 
the upper or south gate — would well repay the 
trouble. The house is a neat, old-style residence, 
with a flight of steps up to the doorway, and lianked 
by Corinthian columns, fronting the west. Over the 
doorway is a window with a triangular canopy, 
crowned with three antique vases. The building hits 
two wings, and the approach, by what is known as 
"the laburnum walk," is very prett}-. It is em- 
bosomed in a profusion of wood, in belts and clumps, 
and individual specimens of the most stately propor- 
tions. There are old lawns of the most velvety 
pasture, dotted with trees of great beauty ; there are 
gardens of rich luxuriance, bosky banks where the 
wild blossoms love to dwell, and the fern holds forth 
her freshest plumes. 

The lands of Cookston or Quygstone were occupied 
in 1410 by persons called William Johnston, Robert 
Adyson, John Alexanderson (Saunderson), and 
Nicholas Speid. The last named was ancestor of 
George Speid, who had the lands of Ardovie (or 
Auchdovie) from Sir Robert Carnegie of Kinnaird in 
exchange for his part of Cookston in 1549. From 
that date the Speids have continued to poss 
Ardovie. The old name of Speid (success) is thought 
to have been conferred on a remote progenitor for 
having performed some heroic feat in days of old. 


iC Cuikstone " (Cookston), we might note in passing, 
is said to have been a pretty extensive hamlet in old 
times. It had brick or pottery work from at least the 
middle of the seventeenth century, and a number of 
cinerary urns found in ancient stone coffins in this 
quarter seem to be composed of the same sort of clay 
as that which was got in the neighbourhood of 

James Speid of Ardovie was styled the ninth 
recorded generation of this ancient house. He died 
in 1853, and was succeeded by his brother John. 
This gentleman died some thirty years ago, and the 
present proprietor, Henry, has for many years 
resided in America. 

Over the doorway of the family burial vault in the 
old churchyard of Brechin, the family crest is 
sculptured in bold relief, and under it — " Speid of 
Ardovie, MDXIX.*' A stone, now inserted over the 
front door of the farm house of Mains of Ardovie, 
bears the shield of arms and initials, well sculptured, 
with the date 1636. The initials, if our memory 
serves us, stand for Robert Speid and his wife 
Christina Grierson, who was the daughter of Homer 
Grierson (or Grigorson) of Balluno (Ballownie), 
Stracathro, who married Isobel Doig of the Cookston 
family. This was an offshoot of the ancient family 
of Grier of Lag, Dumfriesshire, whose remote pro- 
genitor was Gilbert, second son of Malcolm, who died 
1374, said to be armour-bearer to the Earl of Douglas. 
On an ancient dove-cot in the Den of Ardovie is a 
slab with the letters "RS. M.G.-1743." Visitors 
should test the celebrated echo in this den, and also 
see the curious three wells, almost adjoining each 
other, and fed from different sources. 


Melgund Castle. 

The turrets are fallen, thp vaults are flown. 
And the bat rules the hulls they called their own. 

Leaving the grounds of Ardovie, and driving alon^ 
a pretty woodland path — 

Amang the knowes, where heather grows, 

And gently waves the tern ; 
Where summer rings the dead man's bell, 

Aboon the hero's cairn, 

we regain the high road little over a mile beyond 
where we left it at Aldbar Public School, and soon 
find ourselves, on the right, approaching Melgund 
Castle, the erection of which has been ascribed to 
Cardinal Beaton. 

The surname of Beaton (or Bethune) is said to be 
of French origin. The first mention of the familv is 
in the reign of William the Lion, between 1165 and 
1190, when Robert of Betun is found as a witness 
to a charter to De Quincy, a Xorman Baron, who 
nourished in Scotland betwixt these dates. Barons 
of the same name were at the celebrated inquest in 
1286 regarding the division of the pasture belonging 
to the barony of Panmure. David, Comptroller and 
Treasurer to King James IV., was father of one of 
the "Four Maries," who went to France with Queen 
Mary, and remained in her suite long after her 
return to Scotland. She became the wife of the first 
Viscount Stormont, and is thus commemorated in the 
beautiful ballad regarding the fate of Mary Hamilton, 
who, according to tradition, was executed at 
Edinburgh : — 

Yestreen the Queen had four Maries, 

The nicht she'll hae but three ; 
There was Marie Beatuneand Marie Seaton, 

And Marie Carmichael, and me. 

John Betune, elder brother of the comptroller, 
married Elizabeth Monypenny, daughter of the Laird 


' Jlllf ■I'-M,: L I ■ ' - ,"•$$' ■ 

/ < 






of Kinkell, and had six sons and five daughters. The 
third son was David, afterwards Cardinal of Scotland, 
and by far the most remarkable man of that or 
perhaps of any contemporary family in the kingdom. 
The history of this celebrated ecclesiastic need not 
be here dwelt upon. Although tradition assigns to 
him the erection of many of the castles in Forfarshire, 
that of Melgund, in the parish of Aberlemno, is the 
only one which it can be said, with any degree of 
certainty, that, he built. The castle in its general 
design bears a strong resemblance to that of Edzell, 
but had always been much inferior to it in grandeur 
and extent. Standing on the verge of a sleep bank, 
overhanging a pretty little streamlet (the Melgund) 
which meanders along the charming dell beneath, the 
castle consists of a massive square tower, connected 
with a variety of apartments in the eastern wing by 
means of a spacious room, which appears to have been 
the castle-hall. In the northeast angle of the east 
wing is a ruined tower. At the south-east angle the 
falling away of the bank has laid bare portions of the 
castle on that side. The ground floor had been 
vaulted in the same way as most old castles. In its 
palmy days the castle had been surrounded by exten- 
sive gardens and pleasure grounds, of which some 
traces still remain. 

The stalwart quadrangular tower is lichened and 
grey, and bears undoubted evidence of antiquity in 
its narrow windows and loopholes, while architectural 
remains in vitrious stages of decay are scattered around. 
Here we can muse in a vault, sympathise over the 
captives woes, thread the mazes of a narrow staircase, 
or pace the lordly hall where now the swallow has 
taken up his abode, and the winds are free to play, 
while the rank weeds are waving on the floor and 
trailing over the prostrate stones — 


" The lichene 1 walls look <mm and c 1 1, 

They totter all around; 
The carved work of ages old 

Lies withering on the ground; 
The casement'}- antique tracery 

Hm> wasted in the dew. 
And the cold breeze whistling mournfully 
Creeps keen and weirdly through." 

As in so many districts throughout Scotland, the 
dreadful storm in November 1893 made sad havoc with 
the stately "girdle of tall ancestral trees" leading to the 
ancient fabric. Previously, through the dense um- 
brageousness of the "green-robed senators," even the 
vertical radiance of noon sent with difficulty only a 
few golden beams to fret the mid-da} T gloaming, 

Tall trees they were 

And old, and had been old a century 

•re my day. None living could say ai;ght 
About their youth. . . . 

Altogether the castle is still a fine ruin. Initials 
and armorial bearings, supposed to be that of the 
Cardinal and Marion Ogilvy, are to be seen in 
different parts of the building. From the Beatons 
the barony passed, in 15S0, to Thomas Lyon, second 
son of the seventh Lord Glamis, who also owned the 
adjoining estate of Aldbar. On the decease of Mr 
Lyon's son John without issue, the estate of Melgund 
was acquired by Henry Maule, cousin of Patrick, first 
Earl of Panmure. Mr Maule flourished in the reigns 
of Kings Charles I. and II. He was a colonel in the 
British army, and an author and antiquary of some 
repute, and said to be the author of a " History of 
the Picts." He left an only daughter, wno died un- 
married about the year 1690, when his line of the 
Maule family became extinct. But he appears to 
have disposed of Melgund during his lifetime, for in 
the year 1678 we find a gentleman of the name of 
Murray designated of Melgund, and ranked among 


the minor barons of the county of Forfar at that 

Tradition has it that about the beginning of the 
eighteenth century his son, with his family, most un- 
accountably disappeared one night at supper time. 
The repast was set out in the hall, as usual, but none of 
the family ever entered the room to partake of it, nor 
was any one of them ever afterwards seen or heard 
of in Forfarshire. According to popular belief, the 
supper table, laden with the dishes and comestibles, 
remained for a long time untouched in the hall, no 
person daring to meddle with them. According to 
Carrie the elucidation of this mysterious circumstance 
is : — Mr Murray and his family were known to have 
espoused the cause of the dethroned royal family, and 
the laird had doubtless committed himself in regard 
to some of the secret transactions that preceded the 
abortive attempt of the old Pretender, the Chevalier 
de Saint George, to recover the throne of his ancestors. 
They had no doubt been duly apprised of the advance 
into Forfarshire of the royal army under the Duke of 
Argyll, in the month of February 1716 ; and in order 
to avoid arrest as a rebel the laird considered it 
prudent to depart, along with his whole family into 
voluntary exile. In consequence, the castle became 
neglected, and fell rapidly into decay. By a female 
descendant of Maule, through Murray of Phillip- 
haugb, the property came to the Earl of Minto, and 
from it his eldest son receives the title of Viscount 
Mel gund. 

Regarding the lands of Melgund, Jervise informs 
us that a William de Anaund did homage at Berwick- 
upon-Tweed, after King Edward returned from the 
north. It was this baron who figured so conspicuously 
at the defence of Stirling in 1305, and the lands of 
Melgund, in the parish of Aberlemno, were those for 


which he swore fealty. In the year 1354, David of 
Anand was one of the prisoners whom the English 
Commissioners engaged to use their influence to 
liberate without ransom. The same person or his 
son was forester of the ancient hunting forest of 
Plater near Finhaven, which he resigned in 1375, and 
in which he was succeeded by Sir Alexander Lindsay 
of Glenesk. In the year 1368, Anand appeared in 
Parliament regarding the falsing of a sentence of the 
Justiciary ; three years afterwards he was present at 
the coronation of King Robert II., and in 1391, a 
person bearing the same name and surname paid the 
sum of ,£30 to the King's Chamberlain as relief duty 
for his lands of Melgund. The family held these 
lands until the year 1542, when the heiress, Janet of 
Anand, with consent of her second husband, Balfour 
of Bahdmouth, sold them to Cardinal Beaton. 

Flemington Castle. 

We now steer our course across towards the village of 
Aberlemno — passing a goodly number of comfortable 
looking pendicles, over which the very spirit of peace 
seems to hover. ^Vending our way by Mains of 
Melgund and round the side of a belt of thriving 
trees, we reach the highway, known as the old Forfar 
road. Facing us to the right is the summit of Angus 
Hill, which shall yet claim our attention. For the 
present we hold to the left, and before referring to the 
celebrated "standing-stones" near the village would 
remark that there is a small castellated building 
situated a short distance to the eastward of the village 
of Aberlemno. It stands on the left bank of the 
rivulet called Henwellburn, which flows through the 
parish, and passes Melgund Castle. In the New 
Statistical Account of the parish it is said that the 
Castle of Flemington was a perfect specimen of a 


defensive mansion, being strong, stately and dungeon- 
like. It had been occupied by the proprietor until 
within a few years of 1842, the date of the report. It 
is now inhabited by the farm servants. 

In the time of King Alexander II. a knight called 
Bartholomew of Flanders, or the Fleming, settled in 
Angus. The property he owned is not known with 
certainty, but probably the lands of Flemington had 
belonged to him, and received their name from his 
nationality. Sir William Dishington had a grant of 
an annual payment from the lands of Flemington, 
and subsequently a member of that family had a 
grant of the property from King Robert III. The 
Rev. John Ochterlony, the last Episcopal clergyman 
in the parish, was subsequently proprietor of the 
lands and Castle of Flemington. He signalised 
himself by his Jacobite zeal, and from 1701 till 
1722, he was repeatedly ejected from the parish 
church on account of his persistency in again and 
again taking the pulpit and intruding himself upon 
the Presbyterian parishioners. When finally ejected he 
went to reside in his Castle of Flemington, and con- 
tinued to minister to those of his own persuasion 
until about 1742, when he left to take possession of 
the See of Brechin. Flemington was afterwards 
acquired by Mr John Spence of Bearehill, Brechin 
(now possessed by Mr Robert Duke), who was a 
grandson of Mr Ochterlony of Flemington. The 
property was acquired from him by Colin Bruce in 
1807. In the year 1809 Colin Bruce and his spouse 
sold the estate of Flemington to John Webster. He 
died intestate in 1830, and was succeeded in the pro- 
perty by his brother, Robert Webster. On his 
death, in 1836, his brother James succeeded to 
Flemington. He died in 1848, and by his trust dis- 
position and deed of settlement left Flemington to his 


nephew, Patrick Webster of Westiield, and his heirs. 
Near to this property is another small manor called 
Tillywhanland, adjoining the village of Aberlemno. 
Prior to the Reformation the estate belonged to the 
See of Brechin, and the Bishops of that diocese had a 
summer residence upon it, which has now entirely 

The Church and Parish of Aberlemno. 

A rural church— some scattered cottage roofs, 
From whose secluded hearths the thin blue smoke, 
Silently wreathing through the breezeless air, 
Ascended, minerling with the summer *ky, — 

And here and there a venerable tree 
In foliaged beauty. 

The Church of Aberlemenach (Aberlemno) belonged 
to St Andrews, and was dedicated by Bishop David in 
1242. It was dependent upon the Priory of Resteneth, 
and both church aud priory were attached to Jedburgh 
Abbey. David Lindsay of Pitairlie, a cadet of the 
noble house of Lindsay, Earls of Crawford, held the 
cure in the middle of the sixteenth centuiy, immedi- 
ately after the Reformation. He was at the same 
time minister of the churches of Forfar and Resteneth, 
his stipend for all the three being 200 merks, or 
£133 6s 8d Scots. 

As we have said, Aldbar (Gaelic Alt-barr, a high 
burn), was originally a distinct parish, but in the 
seventeenth century the parish was suppressed, and 
divided between the parishes of Aberlemno and 
Brechin. At the founding of the College of Methven, 
in 1433, Walter Stewart, Earl of Athole, granted the 
church of Aldbar to the College, and the Provost of 
Methven was thereafter rector of Aldbar. After the 
Reformation the Presbyterian minister of Methven 
called himself Provost of Methven and Chaplain of 
Aldbar, and he drew the tiends until the suppression 
of the parish. Lentil the abolition of patronage in the 


Church of Scotland the patronage of the Church of 
Aberlemno was alternately exercised by the Crown y 
and by Sraythe of Methven, the latter coming in 
room of the Provost and Canons of Methven. 

The site of an ancient Church is still visible close- 
to where the Lemno debouches into the Esk, and this 
may have been the ancient church of the parish, as it 
accords better with its name — the mouth of the 
Lemno. The present church was erected in 1722, 
partly on the walls of the ancient Roman church. 

The hills in the parish rise to a considerable 
altitude, Turin, the highest, being about 800 feet 
above the level of the sea, and 600 feet above the 
neighbouring lakes of Rescobie and Balgavies. Many 
stones, the ruins of an ancient stronghold, called Camp 
Castle, lie on the top of Turin Hill. The view from 
the summit is extensive, varied and beautiful. Turin 
is the diminutive of Tur, a castle, and signifies a little 
castle. It probably was so called to distinguish it 
from the royal castle, which stood in the vicinity of the 
hill, within which Donald Bane was confined by his 
nephew. King Edgar, The Lindsays are reported to- 
have taken the castle on the hill by force from the 

Celebrated Sculptured Stones. 

There is a pleasure on the heath 

Where warriors old have been. 
Where mantles gray have rustled by 

And swept the nettled green. 

The Parish of Aberlemno abounds in sepulchral 
remains and cairns, and stone coffins seem common. 
On Pitkennedy, some years ago, a stone coffin was 
found containing a clay urn, and near it was scattered 
a number of beads, of jet or cannel coal, of which 
more than a hundred were gathered, forming, it has 
been said, " a necklace, probably the most complete 


hitherto found in Scotland." A little west of the 
Castle of Melgund are three tumuli, large enough to 
cover a hetacomb of the slain. On clearing away the 
foundations of the old Castle of Woodray, in this 
parish, in 1819, another sculptured stone was dis- 
covered, and sent by Lord Minto's factor to Sir 
Walter Scott, and is now at Abbotsford. It has a 
cross and various animals on the obverse, and two 
men on horseback, animals, and the spectacle orna- 
ment, on the reverse, These remains are clearly 
enough the wrecks of war ; and, as the Statistical 
Account of the parish expresses it — "It is evident 
that the neighbourhood of the church has either been 
the scene of a succession of sanguinary conflcts, or 
else some great and protracted struggle has rolled 
hither and thither its tide of death over the adjoining 

The celebrated sculptured stones of Aberlemno, in 
a field close to the roadside, a little above the village, 
are considered to be monuments of the same dire 
visitation. "A few hundred yards to the north of 
the church " — we quote again from the Statistical 
Account — " there is a monumental stone, about eight 
feet in height, ornamented on one side with a cross, 
richly carved, and with two female figures in the garb 
and attitude of mourning. The other side is sculp- 
tured in relievo, with men, some on horseback and 
others on foot, intermingled with do^s. Near to this 
one are two smaller stones, which also have been 
ornamented ; but the hand of time has greatly 
defaced them." According to Mr Chalmers, this fine 
cross is said, by tradition, to commemorate the fall of 
a body of Danes on their retreat from the battle of 
Barry. The figure on the cross is less elaborately 
formed than the one on the stone in the churchyard, 
and the horsemen and other figures on the reverse 


appe a r to be engaged in the chase rather than in 
war. In a compartment underneath the hunters is a 
•centaur bearing a branch of a tree. Over them are 
crescent, sceptre, and other symbols. The figures on 
these stones are in relief. The adjoining stone is 
sculptured only on one side with symbols of the 
spectacle ornament, comb, and mirror, and others, all 
incised. If the other stone, which stands near the 
latter two, ever had any sculptures, they are now 

11 One of the most perfect," says the Statistical 
Account, " is in the churchyard. On one side there 
is a cross in bold relievo, and entirely covered with 
flowered ornaments. On the reverse, towards the 
upper part of the stone, is another ornament, having 
no obvious meaning, but intended for ornament only. 
Beneath it there are some figures of men on horse- 
back, armed cap-a-pie, with helmets. Two of these 
men seem to be flying, but a third appears as if he 
were stopped in his flight by three men on foot, the 
first of which bears in his hand a weapon of a round 
form ; the second has the same sort of weapon in his 
left hand, and in his right had a spear which he is 
pointing at the man on horseback. The third figure 
is nearly obliterated. Below these are two equestrian 
figures, one of which holds a baton in his right hand, 
while the other appears to be in the attitude of 
encountering him." It thus seems that the figures cf 
armed warriors, &c, on the one side of these stones 
were symbols of the conflict and the havoc of the 
war. About the cross on the other side there can be 
no dubiety. That consecrated symbol not only 
pointed to the work of Calvary, but told also of the 
faith which, even in that rude age, those who erected 
and adorned these stones had in the Saviour. Re- 
garding sculptured stones in general, Warden says : — 


" The rude uncivilised primeval inhabitants of 
Caledonia were well satisfied when they had reared a 
huge amorphous monolith, a cromlech, or other bold 
and striking memorial over the sepulchre of a revered 
chief, content that their enduring handiwork should 
tell its story to those of their kindred who succeeded 
them. This it may have done for generations after 
its artificers had themselves been consigned to the 
tomb, but untold ages have made such memorials 
dumb to us. As civilization advanced, and the arts 
improved, and as tools adapted for the purpose were 
procured, these standing monuments of a people's 
respect began to be hewn into a more seemly shape, 
and to be adorned with symbolic figures. This 
transition was natural and easy. At first these were 
rude, but with practice, and an improved taste, the 
desire sprang up for something more artistic, and 
with it the power and skill to gratify that desire. 
Many of the old obelisks, and some of the cross slabs 
have marginal embellishments, with heads and bodies 
and limbs of animals entwined with foliage, forming 
designs that would do credit even to modern artists. 
"Warriors on horseback and on foot, with their 
weapons ; and hunters with their dogs and symbols 
of the chase frequently appear. By the middle of the 
twelfth century, blazonry, or the distinction of 
nobility, of knighthood, and of others entitled to bear 
arms, or coats armorial, came into general use in 
Britain, and shortly thereafter such insignia began to 
be sculptured upon standing stones or obelisks, and 
on other monuments in Scotland." 

What, then, was the war that had desolated 
Aberlemno, and of which these sepulchral remains 
and sculptured stones are the memorials 1 It was 
the war with the invading Danes in the beginning of 
the 11th century. The Annals of Ulster make 


mention of a great battle at Aberlcmno in 697, in which 
" Conquar MachEcha M 'Maid win and Aod, the tall 
King of Dalerlaid," were slain. But it is not to be 
doubted that the remains and the stones with which 
we are now dealing, are chiefly, if not exclusively, the 
memorials of the battle at Aberlemno between 
Malcolm II. and the Northmen in 1012. One version 
of the story is, that it was fought with a detachment 
of the Danes, who were flying from Barry after their 
defeat there. Another version is, that the Danish 
host divided into three ; and one division landed in 
the Southesk at Montrose, another at Lunan B ly, and 
the third at Barry, and that when the last was over- 
thrown, one of the remaining divisions took to their 
ships and escaped ; but that the other, endeavouring 
to reach the mountains with the view of passing to 
Moray, was overtaken and cut off near Bcechin, which 
is understood to have been at Aberlemno. Which of 
these versions is to be preferred we do not wait to 
consider. Either sufficiently explains the monuments 
in question. Both agree in making Aberlemno one 
of the great battlefields of the shire. 
Forfar and District, 

" The ruins of a palace thee decore, 

A fruitful Lake, and fruitful Land much more, 

Thy precincts its contest) much straightened be, 

Yet Ancient Scotland did give Power to thee : 

Angus and other places of the Land, 

Yeeld to thy Jurisdicton and Command, 

Noblis unto the People Laws do give. 

P>v Haudy-Crafte the Vulgar sort do live. 

They pull of Bullocks-hydea and make them meet 

When tanned, to cover handsome Virgins' feet." 

To the tourist who can spare another day in this 
interesting district, we might here suggest a run of 
six miles to the County Town, from which Glamis 
Castle and other places can be "done." Forfar is a 
town of considerable antiquity. Authorities tell us 
that its name is derived from the Gaelic fuar, "cold," 


and barr, "a point" — that is the "cold point." In 
old writings the parish is designated Forfar-Restennet 
— Restinoth probably being the original parish. 

At Restennet there are the ruins of a Priory. It 
must apparently have been originally wholly sur- 
rounded by water and approached by a bridge. The 
spire of the priory, and part of the walls of the 
priory and chapel, are still standing, and a spot is 
pointed out as the burial place of one of Bruce's sons. 

Like other towns in the district, Forfar's chief indus- 
try is the manufacture of linens, although as far back as 
the sixteenth century, the staple trade of the town 
was shoemaking, the shoes made being that peculiar 
'kind called brogues. Johnstone, in his poetical pane- 
gyric on Forfar, published in 1642, gives prominence 
to the chief handicraft of the place. If Johnstone 
may be believed, Forfar may well boast of the an- 
tiquity of its shoe manufacture : — 

" The ancient Greeks their Boots from this Town brought. 
And also hence their Ladies' Blippers sought.'' 

From this manufacture came the designation, the 
Sutors of Forfar, and it helped to give point to the 
satire of Drummond of Hawthornden on the town. 
Visiting it in 1645, it refused to receive him, probably 
from fear of the plague, which was then prevailing in 
many parts of the country. He betook himself to 
Kirriemuir, where he got a hearty welcome, and 
where he played off a most ludicrous joke on 
the Magistrates of Forfar. Learning the cpuarrel then 
raging between Forfar and Kirriemuir about the 
Moor Moss, Drummond addressed a letter to the 
Provost of Forfar. That worthy somehow assumed 
that the letter was from the Parliament, then sitting 
at St Andrews, and convened the Council, with the 
parson, to see the document opened, and to hear it 
read, when its contents turned out to be as follows: — 




- 1 v€af i 


fr r 3 ) 


'• The Kxrriemarfans and the Forfarians m^t at Muir 31 as, 
The Kirriemarians beat the Forfarians back to the Or >ss : 
Hutora ye are, an' Rutora ye'D b 
Fye upon Forfar, Kirriemuir bears the gree ! " 

The parish church was erected in 1791, altered in 
1830 : and had a spire, 150 feet high, built in 1814. 
It may be of interest to some to know that the Rev. 
Dr Jamieson, author of several standard works of 
much value, including the well-known ''Scottish 
Dictionary," " Historical Account of the Cnldees," 
&c, was minister of the Secession congregation in 
Forfar from 1780 to 1797. In the Town Hall there 
are some excellent portraits by Raeburn. The old 
County Buildings, adjoining, were built in 1820. 
"The County Prison is outside the town, and close to 
it were erected the Sheriff Court Houses in 1871. A 
hall for public meetings was built in 1869, by Peter 
Eeid, of "Forfar Rock " celebrity, and presented to 
the town. In the Public Library is still preserved a 
" witch's bridle," an instrument formerly used for 
aragcrins; women burnt at the stake for witchcraft. 
The " bridle " is described as a skeleton iron helmet 
having a dart-shaped gag of the same metal, which 
entered the mouth and effectively "brankit '' the 
tongue. On the circle is punched — " 1681 Angus." 
With this the wretched victim of superstition was led 
to execution in the Witches Howe, where the public 
washing-green is now situated, The object aimed at 
in applying so dreadful a gag to those who were con- 
demned to the stake as guilty of witchcraft was not 
so much the purposed cruelty attending to it as to 
prevent the witches from pronouncing the potent 
formula by which it was believed they could transform 
themselves at will into other shapes. From 1650 to 
1662, in consequence of the passing of the celebrated 
Statute by James VI. for the punishment of witches, 
there were no fewer than nine victims of fatuous 


stupidity who suffered at the Witches Howe of 
Forfar. According to one document, a Royal Com- 
mission was addressed to the heritors and magistrates 
of Forfar to deal with certain women who confessed 
themselves guilty of witchcraft. One, for example, 
confessed — " That about three years, the last oatseed 
time, she was a meeting in the kirkyaird of Forfar, 
and that vr were first there the devill himself e in 
the shape of a black iron hieved man, and a number 
of other persons ; that they all danced together ; and 
that the ground under them was all fyre flaughter"; 
and on another occasion — "That after dancing a whyle, 
she and the other women went into a house and sat 
down, the devill being present at the head of 
the table ; that after making themselves mime with 
ale and aqueavitae, the devill made much of them all, 
and especiallie of Marion Rinde." 

The Town Council, with all due solemnity, 
approved of the care and diligence of an inn-keeper, 
who brought over " the pricker of the witches 
ibTrenneni" to assist in the detection of the suspected 
culprits. They had to secure the services of the 
Executioner and "scourger of the poore " of Perth to 
administer the extreme penalty of the law. Before 
the Rebellion of 1745 it is said there were not above 
seven tea kettles and watches in Forfar. 

The neighbourhood of Forfar is interesting. 
Forfar Castle, which formerly stood on an elevated 
site to the north of the town, was a royal palace, and 
though the exact date of its erection cannot be fixed 
with eertainty, it possessed more than usual historic 
interest from the fact of its being the supposed place 
of meeting uf the first Scottish Parliament, convened 
by Malcolm Canmore. 

Forfar Loch, a little to the west of the town, is 
nearly a mile in length by half a mile in breadth. 


Formerly of greater extent, it was partially drained 
at the end of the eighteenth century. At a public 
meeting held about the draining of the loch, the Earl 
of Strathmore said he believed the cheapest method 
of draining it would be to throw a few hogsheads of 
good '* mountain dew " into the water, and set the 
" drucken writers of Forfar " to drink it up. A 
number of weapons, &c, were then found, and were 
regarded hs evidence of the truth of the tradition that 
the murderers of Malcolm II. at Glamis Castle were 
drowned there while attempting to cross the ice. 

"We are told that Forfar basked for centuries in the 
sunshine of Royalty, beginning to do so as early as 
the reign of Malcolm Canmore (1057-109.3). On the 
concpaest of England by the Xormans, Edgar Atheling, 
the heir of the Saxon line, with his mother Agatha, 
and his sisters Margaret and Christian, sought and 
found refuge in the court of Malcolm. This led to 
Malcolm's marriage to the " beautiful, accomplished, 
and pious" Margaret, and they resided much in their 
Royal Palace or Castle at Forfar. Where it stood is 
not certain : but it seems not improbable that it is 
the foundation of it that is yet seen on Oueen 
Margaret's Inch — the artificial island near the 
northern shore of the Loch of Forfar. If that ruin 
marks the site of the Royal Castle, it is a place of 
singular interest. In it, it may be presumed, 
Malcolm, when he had defeated and slain 
Macbeth, held the assembly of his Maormors, or 
Great Barons, in which were passed several of those 
measures on which some have rested his claims to be 
reckoned a great legislator. In it, too, were doubt- 
less performed many of those good and holy deeds 
for which his consort was canonised. 

.Malcolm Canmore was a monarch of high patriot- 
ism, bravery, and energy, and his reign forms an 


important era in the history of Scotland. He 
had no education, but he worshipped at Margaret's 
feet with boundless respect and affection, and con- 
fided to her the chief care of the kingdom. As her 

rapher, Turgot, say.- — "Malcolm respected the 
religion of his spouse, was fearful of offending her, 
and listened to her admonitions. Although he could 
not read, he frequently turned over prayer-books, 
and kissed her favourite volumes. He had them 
adorned in gold and precious stones, and presented 
them to her in token of his devotion," 

It was in the reign of William the Lion (1165- 
1214) that the Old Royal Castle at Forfar was super- 
seded by the new one ; for, though Boece was long 
red at as a fabler for writing that "Forfar was 
strengthened with two roiall Castles, as the ruins doo 
yet declare," charter evidence of the accuracy of this 
assertion has been discovered. The New Castle 
stood on the Castlehill, that conical mound 
to the north-east of the town, now sur- 
mounted by a tower. It was that Castle which 
was the occasional residence of William the Lion, 
whom we read of as holding a Court and an 
Assembly at Forfar. His son, Alexander II., resided 
in it more frequently than his father had done, hold- 
ing Parliaments at ForfaF in 1225 and 1227, and giving 
charters dated from it till towards the end of his 
reign in 1249. 

In 1291, Gilbert de Utnfraville had the command 
of the O {Forfar: and when King Edward of 

England demanded its surrender he refused, 
declaring that he had the castle in charge from the 
Scottish nation, and that he would no it to 

Edward without a letter of indemnity signed by him, 
and by the claimants of the Scottish Crown and the 
guardians of the Scottish realm. In 129G Edward 


and his suite visited Forfar, and lodged in the Castle 
from the third to the sixth July — two Churchmen and 
four barons there doing the invader homage. In 
the following year, while Brian Fitzadam held the 
Castle for Edward, Wallace either captured it or 
it was deserted at his approach. But the English 
must have soon recovered it, for it was in their posses- 
sion in 1308, and, soon after, King Robert Bruce, 
assisted hy Philip, the forester of Platane or Plater, 
took it by escalade, put all the English in it to the 
sword, levelled it atid its fortifications to the ground, 
and it was never rebuilt. When Royalty after- 
wards visited the neighbourhood, it sojourned either 
in the Castle of Glamis or in the Priory of Restenuet. 
After he had demolished the Castle, Bruce had a 
house at Forfar, and tve may infer he was not a 
stranger there from the fact that, only two years 
before his death, he gave his falconer in the shire of 
Forfar, Geoffrey of Foullertoune, and Agnes, his 
wife, the lands of Foullertoune in Forfarshire. 

The names of many localities in the neighbour- 
hood are to this day memorials of the residence of 
our Kings at Forfar in those times. Such are the 
King's Moor, the King's Burn, the King's Seat, the 
Queen's Manor, the Queen's Well, the Palace Dykes, 
and the Court Road. The tenures by which certain 
farms in the neighbourhood were held are also 
memorials of the same thing. Tyrbeg, alias Turfbeg, 
and Balmashanner, were held on the condition of 
furnishing the Palace with three hundred cartloads of 
peats from these lands when the Court was at For- 
far ; and Heatherstack was held on the condition of 
furnishing heather fit for fuel to the Royal kitchen. 

Arel ibald Douglas, son of James, second Marquis 
of Douglas, was, by Charles II., created Earl of For- 
far in 1661. Archibald, second Earl of Forfar, was 


present at the battle of Sheriftmuir, in 1715, and 
died of his wounds at Stirling. The Earl left no 
issue, and the title and estates devolved on the Duke 
of Douglas. 

The devolution having been accomplished in 1688, 
a detachment of the forces of William and Mary was 
next year stationed at Forfar. The immediate 
neighbourhood was Jacobite enough not to be above 
the need of them for its peace and security ; but the 
special object of the detachment was to watch the 
movements of the rebels, who after the battle of 
Killiecrankie, swarmed for a time about the base of 
the Grampians, and were continually passing to and 
fro between Dunkeld and Brechin, though nowhere 
was the spirit breathed in the celebrated Jacobite 
song more rampant — 

He's pu'd the rose o' English loons, 
And broken the harp o' Irish clowns ; 

But our thistle taps will jag hi> thumbs — 
This wee, wee Geinnan lairdie. 

Forfar is the place which James VI. named as 
furnishing the model of Scotch hospitality, of which 
he made his boast to the English. On his way to 
London to succeed Elizabeth on the throne, he was 
entertained with great splendour in one of the 
English towns. The Mayor, in honour of the 
occasion, kept open house for several days ; and some 
of the courtiers ventured to hint that James must 
have seen few examples of such munificence among 
the narrow dignitaries of Scotland. " Fient a bit o' 
that are they,"' cried the King ; " the Provost o' my 
burgh o' Forfar, whilk is by nae means the largest 
town in Scotland, keeps open house a' the year 
round, and aye the mae that comes the welcomer." 
The Provost of Forfar at that time kept an ale house; 
so that James's words were literallv true. 


It was in Forfar that the famous case occurred, 
which led to the judicial decision that no charge can 
be made for the stirrup dram. Marshall tells of a 
brewster's wife having one day " brewed a peck o' 
maut," and set it to the door to cool, a neighbour's 
cow passing by drank the browst. The alewife took 
the case into court, when it was decided that, as by 
immemorial custom, nothing was ever charged for a 
standing drink or stirrup cup. the defendant ought 
to be assoilzied : the cow having swallowed the 
browst standing, and at the door. 

11 The Royal Burgh of Forfar : a Local History," 
by Alan Reid, F.S.A. (Paisley : J. & R. Parlane), 
1902, is a carefully prepared volume, containing a 
great amount of entertainins: information, and show- 
ing much thought and careful research. For the 
views of Forfar and Melgund, &c 5 we are indebted 
to Mr J. Macdonald, publisher, Forfar Review. 

The Castle of Qlamis. 

How rich with ley-end is our land ! 
Its hills and dales androck-irrit strand— 
Each doth it^ dread mystf-ri< ax< tale, 
Low ominous whisv>er in the irale : 
The Bcowling loop-hole donjon keep. 
The frowning walls that round it sweep, 
The stately castle old and grey, 
All chant some weird mysterious lay. 

This ancient baronial residence, the chief seat of 
the Earl of Strathmore, is styled by various authorties 
as one of the most interesting residences of feudal 
times in Scotland that has survived decay. It is 
situated about live miles west of Forfar, and, near to 
the old village of Grlarais, which contains many relics 
of former days. Millar in his " Historical Castles 
and Mansions of Scotland,"' says : — The main gateway 
is a triple-arched structure, battlemented, and sur- 
mounted by carved lions, rampant opposant, the 



heraldic " ig lation of tl 

more. A Dutch carver, Jan Van Sant Voort, who 
first appeared in Scot!.' ml. where he executed much 
of the ornamental work of Holyrood, is said to have 
carved in 1684, the gladi; nd the satyra and 

lions which adorn the principal gates. 

Shortly afterward the 

arboured foliage ceases, and hhe avenue is led between 
widej parks, terminating in the im ii g pile. 

On each smooth plain e: bordered on the 

right by the wood-crowned hills which form Grlen 

Ogilvie, and on the left by the river Dean and the 
distant slopes which enclose the Howe of Strath- 
more. The towering ridges of the Grampian Moun- 
tains, with their numerous intervening spurs, make a 

background of much grandeur. 


The immediate surroundings are grandly beautiful 
and picturesque — the scene and its accessories pre- 
senting the very choicest of those harmonious com- 
binations of colour and form which the landscape 
limner loves to gaze upon, and fondly endeavours to- 
transfer to the living canvas. On the lawn, in par- 
particular, a group of yew trees arrests the eye. 
They count their ages by centuries, but how many 
we cannot tell. Their fine trunks and wide-spreading 
branches twine in serpentine convolutions, and their 
dark foliage, thrown into relief by the rich green 
turf, render them striking objects when seen from 
the grounds, but much more so when viewed from 
the top of the Castle. The extensive vineries and 
gardens, on the other side of the Dean, appear from 
the summit glittering like rare gems with gorgeous- 
settings ; the windings of the river, spanned by three 
bridges, brighten the scene ; the spacious park, 
divided and sub-divided by fine carriage-drives, 
studded with many noble trees, and alive with herds 
of pure Angus Doddies ; and the thick woods beyond 
the Dean complete a foreground of exquisite beauty. 
Beyond, to the east and to the west, stretches the 
Yale of Strathmore. 

Apart altogether from its associations, the castle 
is suggestive of profound and solemn grandeur, and 
of perfect detail. Embosomed among sombre woods, 
as we have said, the vast pile proudly rears its 
castellated towers, the level nature of the surround- 
ing grounds, however, preventing its being seen from 
a distance. The surprise experienced is therefore all 
the greater when, entering the long and beautiful 
avenue by which it is approached from the south, 
with all its grandeur it bursts suddenly upon the 
view. There is such a rare combination of the 
various styles of the different ages of Scotch baronial 


architecture, that our admiration intensifies and 
deepens as we approach, The great tower in the 
centre, with its round roofed vaults, narrow orifices 
and thick walls, is the earliest period of castellated 
• nrv. while the rich cluster of cone-tapped 
turrets, and the wings that crouch beneath, are said 
to be the work of [nigo Joi 

The view from the central tower is of the most 
magnificent and attractive description. Indeed, it is 
■lv possible to conceive a prospect of greater 
loveliness or more luxuriant beauty. The whole 
Strath, in its length and breadth, lies stretched out 
beneath and around you, while the Sidlaws on the 
one haul, and the Grampians on the other, form 
most fitting hack-grounds to the picture, adding a 
mystic, weird-like sublimity to the scene. 

Here — Outlaw, like a sentinel grim. 

Lone Kuards The Grampian mountains dim. 

Which stretch acr - sea to sea 

In priori us. solemn majesty. 

There— cleaving high eth« real air. 

Loom Cairn-a-Month and dark Mount Blair ; 

And in the glack or yonder trlen : 

The wild wood- wave in Airlie Den ; 

While rugged hills of dreamy hue 

Dim mingle with the azure nine, 

.And reach in misty gloom afar, 

The confines dark of Lochnagar. 

In the surrounding grounds there were wont to be 
seen a number of statues and sculptured ornaments, 
most of which were erected by Patrick, third Earl 
Kinghorn, and first Earl of Strathmore, who did 
much to encourage the cultivation of a taste for the 
fine arts. Xone of these now remains, except a 
curious and richly-finished sun dial. 

The doorway at the base of the tower is flanked by 
pilasters, with richly-carved floral capitals. Immedi- 
ately over it the bust of Patrick, first Earl of King- 
borne, one of the reconstructors of the place, may be 


seen ; whilst along the upper walls of the wings the 
armorial hearings of the principal Earls since 1606 
are marshalled with those of their separate wives. 
Over the door the Royal Arms of Scotland, fully em- 
blazoned, have been carved. The heavy iron 
knocker on the oaken door bears the date 
"1689," when the principal work of reconstruction 
was completed by the first Earl of Strathmore. 
Within this door a heavily grated iron gate has been 
erected, which doubtless formed the guard to the 
entrance of the original Castle. 

Within the doorway three staircases appear, that 
to the right descending by a few steps to the vaulted 
crvpt, and then ascending to the old portion of the 
Castle known as " King Malcolm's Room." The 
dining-room, which occupies a flat of one of the wings, 
is one of the finest apartments of the Castle. The 
walls are of oak, panelled and decorated with the 
emblazoned arms of the Strathmore family and the 
noble houses with which it has been connected. 
Many interesting portraits are hung in the drawing- 
room, the subjects of each of them being connected 
in some way with the history of Scotland. The 
bedrooms include the room in which tradition asserts 
that King Malcolm II. died in 1033. Dispassionate 
historians, says Millar, have surmised that he died 
peaceably at this time, and was buried at Iona, and 
have even asserted that the stories of his assassina- 
tion are mere credence. Nevertheless, the room 
in which he expired, after being wounded on 
Hunter's Hill, may still be seen by the visitor to 
Glamis Castle. It is perhaps more interesting to 
examine the chamber in which Sir Walter Scott 
mused over these traditions, and strove to connect 
the Macbeaths of Shakespeare and of history. The 
chapel is, perhaps, the most interesting apartment. 


The, re exquisitely painted, and contain the 

Okl Testament Angels associated with the Expulsion 
from Paradise, Jacob's Ladder at Bethel, Raphael 
and Tobit ; and the New Testam igels of the 

Annunciation, the - the B m Shep- 

herds, the Temptation, Gethsemane, Calvary, and the 
Resurrection. The walls and v<»>i are divided into 
oblong panels, upon which numerous Biblical subjects 
have been painted. These were executed al the time 
of the building of the chapel (1688) by J. de Witt, 
guilty of the Holyrood Gallery of 

In " Ochterlony's Account of the Shire of Forfar," 
written in 1684, it is stated that '-the Castle of 
G-lamis is the Earl of Strathmore's speciall residence 
in the shyre _ eat and excellent house, re-edified, 
and furnished most stately with everything neces 
— with extellent gaites, avenues, courts, garden, 
bowling _ . parks, inclosures, hay meadows, and 

planting, very beautiful and pleasant. the 

house, and within the park, is the Yeat Bridge by 
which their whole peats are brought, and by which 
his Lordship is served from his mosses be-north the 
water in great abundance, and hath ane other little 
house there called Cossines. In a little distance to 
the Castle of G-lames is the towne thereof, all belong- 
ing to the Earl. It is a burgh of barronie, hath two 
great faires in it yearly, and a weekly mercat. There 
is a cunni rr are within the park, and dovecot at the 

There is a legend, which points to the top of the 
Hunter Hill as the spot upon which the first Castle 
ofGlamis was intended to be built. This resolution 
was frustrated by certain nocturnal "Little Folks" or 
fairies, who undid at night what the builders had 
done through the day. On this being frequently 


repeated, a, watch was set but though no destructives 
were seen, the work of the previous day was undone. 
At last a voice was heard proclaiming — 

" Build not on this enchanted spot. 
Where man has neither part nor lot, 
But build ye down in yonder bog. 
And it will neither sink nor shog." 

The earthly builders obeyed the weird speaker, and 
built the Castle where it now stands. Whether or 
not the present Castle was built on this site 
at the instigation of the "Fairy Queen' or of 
an earthly king or lord we cannot pretend to say, 
but there is no doubt the Castle of Glamis, for an 
unknown period, has stood where it stands to-day. 

The family of Lyon have occupied the Castle from 
the period when Sir John Lyon first acquired 
it until the present time, with the exception of 
a few years after Lady Glamis was murdered by 
James the Fifth for the crime of witchcraft, and the 
young lord forfeited, in 1537. For full and interest- 
ing details of the noble family of Lyon, and of the 
alterations in the ancient building, we would refer 
the reader to Mr Millar's ''Castles and Mansions."' 

It was in 1372 that Glamis came into the possession 
of the Lyons. Sir John Lyon married the Princess 
Jane, the second daughter of Robert II. ; and, as her 
dowry, the King gave her husband a charter of the 
lands of the thanedom of Glamis, to be held in Free 
barony. He was the founder of the present noble 
family of Strathmore, and fell in a duel with Sir 
James Lindsay of Crawford, at the moss of Balhall, 
near Brechin — the occasion of the deadly quarrel 
being, it is supposed, envy at the Royal favours 
which were heaped upon Sir John. On the execu- 
tion of Lady Jane Douglas, Countess of Strathmore, 
in 1537, Glamis was, as we have said, forfeited to 


the Crown ; and the Castle became for a season 

a royal residence. James V. lived frequently a 

The story of Lady -lane Dou - on • of the moat 

affecting in our annals. Th rhich -. 

accused is sometimes called witchcraft, and some- 
times c i spiring the Kind's death by poison. But, 
as Tytler has explained, in those I - lug 

and witchcraft were very commonly associate 
The real cha gainst ber was conspiring the 

Ki: ■ ath by j oison a 

Angus and hi who were 

traitors and rebels. S' 

demned to be burned atthe - on the C till 

of Edinburgh, she heard her sentence with unruffled 
composure, and endured i h inn Lovable firmness 
and fortitude — the crowd i _ on equally com- 

miserating and admiring h 

believed to be innocent, beii._ . led as a victim of 
implacable hate which the _ had conceived 

against all connected with the house of Douglas. 

Thi ther parties were apprehended as supposed 
accom] with her Ladyship. The first was her 

husband, Campbell, who, the d -y after her execution, 
trying to make his escape from th< m- 

burgli, was let down over tb r cord which 

being too short, he fell on th dashed 

in pieces. The second was the son she had borne 
to Lord, Grlamisj her first husband, now a boy sixteen 
: age, who lay in prison for five years, till the 
death of King dames, when his titles and estates 
were red to him as thi . • ith L d Grlamis. 

The third was an old priest, whom the King, when 
told - end of Campbell, on the Castle 

rock-. - I at liberty. 

The Strathmore family were ardently attached to 
the Stuart dynasty. John, the . .rl, fell fight- 


ing f or it at Sheriffmuir, in 1715. The Pretender 
spent the night of the 4th January, 1715, in the 
Castle of Glamis, when on his way to Scone, where 
he expected to be crowned ; and it was said that 
eighty beds were that night made up for his retinue. 

The full designation of the" title of the Strathmore 
family is ''Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorn, Vis- 
count Lyon, Baron Glamis, Tannadyce, Sidlaw, and 
Strathdichty." The present representative of the 
family was born in 1824. Lord Glamis was born in 
1855. and in 1881 was married to Nina-Cecilia, 
daughter of the late Rev. Wm. Cavendish Bentinck, 
a relative of the Duke of Portland. 

Like many other ancient castles, Glamis has long 
had a reputation for "hauntings " and " apparitions." 
Although the whole pile of buildings appears to 
suffer under the ban, there is one particular chamber 
which is especially known as "the Haunted Boom." 
Access to this ominous chamber is said to be now cut 
off by a stone wall, and none is supposed to be 
acquainted with its locality save Lord Strathmore, 
his heir, and the factor of the estates. This wall is 
alleged to have been erected recently, inconsequence- 
of certain mysterious sights and sounds which had 
been seen and heard. 

"There is no doubt, " writes a correspondent of Dr 
Lee. "about the reality of the noises at Glamis 
Castle. Some years ago, the head of the family, 
with several companions, was determined to investi- 
gate the cause. One night when the disturbance 
was greater and more violent and alarming than 
usual — and, it should be premised, strange, weird, 
and unearthly sounds had often been heard, and by 
many persons, some quite unacquainted with the ill- 
repute of the castle — his Lordship went to the 
Haunted Room, opened the door with a key, and 


dropped back in a (load swoon into the arms of his 
companions ; nor could lie ever be induced to i 
his lips on the subject afterwards." 

The Village of Glamis. 

There's ccrathie h - ■■ aweet 

Alanp thf Strath's green breast — 
The humble r<>t. the lordly -car, 

Outside of the Castle policies, but from the close 
proximity really forming part of them, arc the 
Church mis, with its spire seen through the 

surrounding trees, and the comfortable manse, be- 
yond which, to the north of the Hunter Hill, is the 
old and picturesquely situated village ot Glamis, 
embowered among trees and gardens. It is in the 
the Vale of Strathmore, and consists 
chiefly of two rows of houses, between which the 
highway from Forfar to Perth passes. The grave- 
yard around the Church, sloping nearly to the level 
of the den, is a quiet, sequestered resting place for 
the forefathers of the parish. The hamlet and its 
surroundings are tidily kept, and form a pretty 
picture in the landscape. 

The village of Glamis, apart from the historical 
associ if its neighbourhood, is one of the most 

beautifully situated of our sh hamlets. Built 

on the banks of a mountain rivulet, and at the base 
of a lofty pine-clad hill, surrounded by scenery of the 
most iful and attractive description, and nest- 

ling . icient and extensive woods, it presents 

a scene of retired and quiet seclusion from the busy 
world quite refreshing to the pent-up denizen of the 
crowded city. Standing on the bridge, the view on 
either side, although necessarily somewhat contracted, 
is very pleasing and beautiful. To the north appear 
the barley mill, the church, churchyard, and manse, 


the village stretching away to our left, and a finely 
wooded dell, with the water of the burn flowing 
fretfully through its midst, opening up its romantic 
beauties to our right. Southward — the brook, the 
rocky ravine, the smithy, and a few straggling cot- 
tages, amidst their trim gardens and kailyards, are 
the principal objects which attract the eye ; while 
high above the Hunter Hill, in all its luxuriant 
sylvan beauty, crowns the scene as with a diadem of 
•emerald, the happy birds meanwhile co-mingling 
their thrilling notes of gladness with the merry 
voices of the rustic urchins at play on the green. 

We have said that there are a number of interesting 
memorials of the past in and near the ancient village of 
Glamis. Nearly all of them are associated with the 
name of Malcolm II. Knox, in his u Topography 
of the Basin of the Tay," says — " There is to be seen 
in the churchyard of Glamis a rude mass, without 
inscription, which, according to tradition, is King 
Malcolm's gravestone, and there is every probability 
that he was buried under it. An ancient cross stands 
in the lower portion of the Hunter Hill, between the 
village of Thornton and the Kirkton of G-lamis. 
According to local tradition it is supposed to mark 
the spot where King Malcolm II. fell. Another of 
these crosses stands in front of, and only a few feet 
distant from the manse of Glamis, and is popularly 
associated with the same tradition regarding the 
death of Malcolm. On one of the arms is a raven- 
ous quadruped, and on the other a centaur with the 
legs and body of a horse, and the upper part of the 
body, arms, and head of a man, with a battle axe 
raised aloft in each hand. Below the arms are two 
human figures, with limbs in air, and heads and 
bodies in a caldron, underneath which are two men 
with axes in their hands. On the other side are the 

122 AROUND THE .' • I [TY. 

head sck of an animi ' ndcd from which is 

a circular di mds in ;i field at 

( >ut a mile i ; e of 

Glamis. ( m one side is i 3 rudelj I I 

chequered ; on the other side i>>nv men on horseback 
appear to be making the utm spatch One of 

the !• ampling under fool a wild boar; and 

on the lower part of th there is t] o of 

an animal resemblii It ha con- 

jectured by some that th. ibols repr 

officers of justice in pursuit of Malcolm's murderers. 
Such are the monui h is the reading 

their symbols in which Ave arc ill a 

more feasible be ofFen 

The Vale of Strathmore. 

. thy fiow 

The voice >>i love aws e — 


Although the most classical and historically in- 
teresting portion of the "Howe of Strathmore" is 
undoubtedly the Castle of Glamis and its surround- 
ings, the whole valley — independent of these associa- 
tions — is one of the most beautiful and romantic in 
Scotland. Surrounded on the south by the long 
rugged ridge of the Sidlaw Hills, and guarded on the 
north by the Grampian Mountains, the "Howe" 
luxuriantly nestling between, the great valley is 
almost unsurpassed in all that constitutes soft, yet 
rich grandeur. Hamlet, village, and castle combine 
with hill, wood, and stream to form a picture which, 
once seen, will not soon be forgotten. 

Strathmore (Strath Mohr), or the great Strath or 
Valley, in its widest extent, stretches from the 
German Ocean, in the neighbourhood of Lunan Bay 


in Angus, and Stonehaven in the Mearns, ngh. 
£ross the country to the centre of Dumbartonshire. 
It is only with the portion of this strath within 
Forfarshire that we have to do, and it is popularly 
toown as the Howe of Angus. Thts fair district is 
flanked by the southern outlying spurs of the 
Grampians, called the Braes of Angus, which form 
the southern section of the Highland division on the 
north, and on the south by the Sidlaw Hills, and 
their outlying fork like spurs or continuations on the 
east of the continuous chain of these hills \\ hen 
emercrin" out of the defile through the Sidlaws, near 
Ha bu m.n House, the Queen ami the Prince Consort, 
when proceeding to the Highlands ot Perthshire m 
1844 were so enchanted with its luxuriant loveliness 
that 'the Royal cortege was ordered to pause to afford 
sufficient time to master the details of such a beauti- 
ful picture, chased in framework so lofty and sublime. 
Gae wander Scotland's heights an' howes, 

ThSh^hSaa &, an' broomy knows 

Bv rashy glack an fen; 
Hand doon the banks o' burn or brook, 

How Loch, rowferryo 
Search everywhere for fairer aook 

Than beautiful Strathmore 
Owreilka knowe, doon ilka glade, 

Gae con them o'er and o er 
What age or winter e er could mde 

The beauty o' Strathmore . 

On the east the lower portion of the river North 
Esk is the boundary of this district, and the west 
border of the parish of Kemns bounds it on the 
west The length of the Strathmore division, as so 
defined, is about thirty-three miles and its breadth 
varies from four to six miles. This region is well 
watered by the Highland rivers which flow through 
Ibytbe chain of lakes which lie m the centre of the 
Howe, and which attest the existence of more exten- 


sive waters in remote times; by the outflow of these 
lakes, and by other streams which meander along 
the valley in various directions. These rivers, and 
lochs, and streams, diversify and beautify the 
scenery, and refresh and fertilize the land in their 
vicinity. In the northern district of Strathmore, 
hills of no great altitude rear their heads above 
the surrounding ground, and give a picturesque 
appearance to that section of the strath. Among 
these may be mentioned the Hill of Baldovie, and 
others in Kingoldrum, the hill of Kirriemuir, Deuchar 
in Fern, the White and Brown Caterthun, and 
Lundie, which adjoins them. Towards the eastern 
end and near the centre of the strath there are 
several ] imminent hills, the northmost of which are 
those of Finhaven. Farther south are Pitscandly, 
Turin, Balmashanner hills, and others. Farther east 
in the parishes of Dun, Logie-Pert and Craig, there 
are several pretty eminences. Adjoining some of 
these hills there are mimic ravines, worn out by the 
tiny burns which trickle down their sides. 

Writing on this favoured region Warden says : — 
" Strathmare is not a level plain, like the carses of 
Gowrie or Stirling. Strathmore is diversified by 
hills and dales, by gentle eminences and verdant 
meadows, tiny sparkling rivulets and bubbling 
brooks, gliding streams and flowing rivers. Its 

'CO o 

beauties are diversified by numerous mansions, each 
nestling cosily in its own quiet grounds ; others 
crown gentle eminences, commanding extensive 
prospects, ornamented with clumps of trees, and 
emerald lawns, with trickling brooks winding through 
them. Here and there are splendid castles, the 
magnificent seats of the great feudal nobles, or of 
commoners of ancient lineage, rearing their lofty 
heads, scarred by the storms of centuries, yet scathe- 


less, in the midst of spacious parks, studded with 
monarchs of the wood perhaps as old as the castles 
themselves. Throughout the county there also are 
castles and mansions, the creation of modern mer- 
chant princes, monuments alike of their successful 
industry and good taste, and surrounded by many 
emblems of wealth and comfort. Excellent roads 
run through and intersect the strath in many ways. 
The superabundance of old and stately trees on the 
one hand, and finely wooded hills on the other, with 
the splendid ancient baronial Castle of Glamis, and 
its extensive and charming grounds, combine to form 
a scene of rare beauty." 

Glen of Ogilvy. 

Tkere is a charm in footing slow across a silent plain, 
Where patriot battle hath been fought, where glory had the gain ; 
There is a joy in every spot made known in days of old- 
New to the feet, although each tale a hundred times be told. 

The Glen of Ogilvy apart from its quiet beauty, is 
rich in legendary and historical interest. It is said 
that St Donivald dwelt in it about the beginning of 
the eighth century. He had nine daughters who for 
their pious worth were canonised as the Nine 
Maidens. They lived in the Glen " as in an hermit- 
age, and led a most laborious, but abstemious, morti- 
fied life." They cultivated the ground with the 
labour of their own hands ; and ate but once a day, 
and their meal was barley bread and water. After 
their father's death Garnard, King of the Picts,, 
assigned them a lodging and oratory, and some land 
at Abernethy. Their reputation was such that King 
Eugen VII. of Scotland visited them at the Pictish 
capital, and made them large presents. They died 
there, and were buried at the foot of a great oak ; 
and so honoured were Donivald's nine " virgin- 
dochtors " after their death, as well as in their life, 


that their shrine at the Abernethy Allon-bacuth was 
much frequented by devour ] >ili_:iims down to the 
Reformation. Their feast is on the 15th June. 
Many churches in S i were inscribed to them, 

among which was Strathmartine. " The Xine 
Maidens' Well " is within the park of Glamis, not 
far from the do^ 


Barbaric dai ' i'< r, 

ta in days of yore, 

Laved i, I ►gilvy'. 

His daughters nine ;i 1< mple n 
To shell 
Within the Uleu of Ogilvy. 

l-burned ashes formed the floor, 
Tin- trunk* of i ines around the door 
Supporting walls of brunches I 
Turf-rooie I in Glen of Ogilvy. 

Poor barley breadand water clear, 
And that but oi - a rlay, I 
"Was all their fare from roar to year, 
Within the Glen of Ogilvy. 

A chapel built they rude at Glamis. 
From whence, like sound of waving palms, 
Arose on high the voice or psalms, 
Near by the Glen of Ogilvy. 

The hermit dead, they left the Glen, 
E'er shunning dread the haunts of men, 
In oratory sacred then, 
Far from the Glen of Ogilvy ; 

On Abernethy' s holy ground, 
From wh ir fame spread soon around, 

Although no more their songs resound 
in their loved Glen of Ogilvy. 

Nine maidens fair in life were they, 
Nine maidens fair in death's last fray, 
Nine maidens fair in tame ahv.iy. 
The maids of Glen of Ogilvy. 

And to their grave from every land. 
Come many a sorrowing pilgrim band, 
The oak to kis- whose branches grand 

Wave o'er the maid.~; or Ogilvy. 



Three centuries after their day the Glen of Ogilvy 
n-ain became famous in connection with ^ ilham the 
Lion. Kins; William was one day hunting in the 
Glen, and in pursuing the chase he got separated from 
his party, and was attacked by a band of banditti. 
Earl Gilchrist had three sons, who were partakers 
with their father in the murder of their mother, and 
against them, as indeed against all the Gilchrists, the 
Kino- had declared vengeance, and seized their lands. 
Thev betook themselves for safety to the forests and 
mountains and dens of the land, and hid in them for 
several years. They happened to be skulking in the 
Glen of'Oilvy on the memorable day when the free- 
booters attacked the King. They were close by, and 
seeing his danger rushed forward and rescued His 
Majesty. On learning who his deliverers were 
William pardoned them, restored them to their 
possessions, and added to these the Glen of Ogilvy, 
giving it to Gilbert, the brother of Earl Gilchrist ; 
and in honour of the place where they saved the 
Sovereign's life, they took the name of Ogilvy, which 
they have borne ever since. 

The Glen of Ogilvy was the retreat of Glaver- 
house at a very critical juncture in 1689. A con- 
vention of the "Scottish Estates acsembled in Edin- 
burgh on the 14th of March, and was about to resolve 
that James had forfeited his right to the crown, and 
to vote the vacant throne to William and Mary, when, 
to arrest proceedings if possible, Claverhouse suddenly 
appeared, alleging that the Covenanters had formed 
a plot to assassinate him, and demanding that all 
strangers should be removed from the town. This 
was at once refused, as it would have placed the Con- 
vention at the mercy of the Duke of Gordon, who 
held the Castle for James ; on which Claverhouse 
left the Assembly with indignation, and rode out of 


the city at the head of fifty troopers to raise an army 
to thwart the Revolution. 

Away to tin- hills, to the woods, to ther 

i own a usurper. I'll couch with The fox ; 

And tremble, false Whigs, though triumphant ye be, 
have ii it ~ccn the last "i my bonnt ti and me. 

After this fight from Edinburgh, Clavers took np 
his abode in his country seat of Dudhope, professing 
to live in quiet, and to oiler no opposition to the new 
Government : but he was in fact busily engaged in a 

treasonable correspondence with dames and the 
Highland chiefs, and was only biding his time to take 
the field. The Earl of Leven was therefore despatched 
with two hundred men to arrest him ; but, receiving 
timely notice of his danger, he retired from Dudhope 
to a small remote house in the Glen of Ogilvy ; and 
there he skulked till the approach of a body of 
dragoons compelled him to abandon his retreat, and 
take refuge in the Duke of Gordon's country, where 
he arranged with his Highland supporters for the 
intended rising. 

Kirriemuir and District. 

Wild, traditioned Scotland ! 

Its briery burns and bi 
Abound with pleasant memories, 

And tales of other days. 
It- story-haunted waters 

In music rush along, 
Its mountain glens are tragedies, 

Its healthy hills are song. 

Mr J. M. Barrie, through his immensely popular 
works on Scottish life and character, has in recent 
times made Kirriemuir a place of special interest to 
tourists. So we cannot be in the immediate neigh- 
bourhood v ithout seeing the now famous " Window 
in Thrums." " Thrums " is a quaint little town, with 
just enough left yet of the primitive " auld war! 
douceness ;; to blend pleasantly with the brisk energy 


of a small manufacturing centre. Its name is said to 
be derived from the Gaelic, and signifies " Mary's 
Kirk.' ; It is pleasantly situated on the north bank 
of the Gairy, fully five miles north-west from Forfar. 
It skirts the north side of the valley of Strathmore' r 
and its locality is discernible from a "considerable dis- 
tance, the Hill of Kirriemuir rising abruptly to a 
great height immediately to the north of the town. 

Kirriemuir is a burgh or barony, of which the old 
Earls of Angus were superiors, and consists of several 
streets, arranged and mutually connected in a manner 
similar to the arms and shaft of an anchor. It had 
undoubtedly been, in early times, a scattered hamlet 
round the church. In the year 1561 it contained 32 

inhabited houses, and the population was 124 the 

present population being fully 4000. The Parish 
Church was the first house in the town covered with 
blue slate. The spire was added to the church by the 
late Chas. Lyell, the eminent geologist, and is "seen 
through nearly the whole of Strathmore. 

Since the middle of the 18th century Kirriemuir has 
been the seat of an .extensive manufacture of brown 
linen. The years LSI 6-1 7 were peculiarly severe on 
the weavers in Kirriemuir. The manufacturers were 
not able to allow them more than five shillings, and 
there were instances where even a less sum than this 
was given and accepted for the weaving of a web of 
linen 146 yards in length. About this time an event 
occurred which forms an era in the history of the 
town. The discovery was made that persons could 
sell their own manufactured goods in any market 
town in the kingdom. A trial was made by a few 
adventurers, who confined the scene of their opera- 
tions to the neighbouring towns. In the years 1S18- 
19 and 20, the trade became general, and all who 
were possessed of capital or credit began to manu- 


facture such fabri they expected v. lit the 

home market ; and with these they visited most of 
the town- of England, and the most dis Mies 

and is] mds of Scotland. 

ginning of the las try, 1 >w, clay- 

built . with thatched roofs, wei I all 

over the town, and where two-storied houses made 
their appearance, outside stairs were the medium of 

:ent. Several of these app -een 

around the 11 . even the front of the Town 

House was I with one of them, from the top 

of which, on Sundays, the town's drummer ■itu- 

lated, for the sake of the country people, the novelties 
of the preceding week. 

The higher part of the town commands a magnifi- 
cent view of nearly the whols of Strathmore. From 
the hill above the Cemetery, so picturesquely situated 
and tastefully laid out, a charmii oe opens to the 

gaze. On the north and west are the far-stretching 
surgy sea of elevations, the mist-gathering mountain 
pinnacles, and the dark and vastly-varied forms of the 
Angus and Perthshire Grampians.. On the south, as 
far as the eye can reach, lies spread out the many- 
tinted valley of Strathmore, with its pleasing array 
of towns, castles, plantations, &c, flanked by the soft 
and luxuriant forms of the Ions: range of the Sid law 
Hills. On the east are the undulating heights of 
Finhaven hill, and, far beyond them, the Grampians 
of Kincardineshire belted on the horizon with the 
German Ocean. 

Referring to the diversified, extensive, and charm- 
ing nature of the view from this eminence, Guthrie 
says: — c> To the north the scene is inexpressibly 
wild and sublime, hill rising upon hill, and mountain 
upon mountain, stretching grandly away with their 
■cloud-covered summits, to the mvstic confines of 


classic Lochnagar, enshrouded with 'its steep frown- 
ing glories,' and casting around its gloomy shadow. 
Far away in the west, backed by the mountains of 
Perthshire, amidst a field of classic glory, bright and 
beautiful in the golden sunshine, rise Bircnan wood 
and lofty Dunsinane hill, associated for evermore with 
the matchless fancy and transcendent genius of the 
hard of Avon. To the south, beneath our feet and on 
either hand, lies in all its unparalleled beauty, the 
lovely valley of Strathmore, bright with its glittering 
streams and daisied meadows, luxuriantly fruitful in 
its orchard woods, and waving fields of corn ; and 
supremely rich in all the delicate tints and gorgeous 
hues of an eastern landscape, blent with the wilder 
beauties of mountain scenery as a fitting background 
of Alpine magnificence." 

Deeply interesting, as a voiceless relic of the past, 
is the "Standing Stone " on the hill of Kirriemuir. 
Above the surface of the ground the standing part 
is nine feet in height, while the lying portion is nearly 
thirteen feet in length. The purpose for which the 
stone was erected is unknown. Regarding the cause, 
however, of the stone having been split, into two, 
tradition saith that, after a most daring robbery had 
been committed by them, the robbers sat down beside 
the stone to count their gold, when the stone suddenly 
split into two, the falling part burying the robbers 
and their booty underneath. It is currently believed 
that, by lifting the stone, the treasure would be found, 
but to this day no one has had the courage to test 
the experiment ! 

There are two " rocking stones,' 7 or " stones of 
judgment," a short distance to the north-west of the 
hill. The most interesting feature in connection with 
these stones is this, that whereas Huddlestone, in his 
learned and elaborate notes to his edition of Tolland, 


authoritatively asserts that no two rocking stones are 

found together, these stones are in close proximity to 
each other. 

Several " Weem's Holes," or caves in the earth, 
have been discovered in the parish ; one on the top of 
the hill of Mearns, and another at Auchlishie. That 
on the hill is built of stone, and it about sixty or 
seventy yards in length. The other is a long sub- 
terranean recess, in which, when it was opened, a 
currah and some querns were discovered. 

The Den, to the east of the town, is a favourite 
retreat. The sweet little burn, the Game, which 
takes its rise in the loch of Kinnordy, runs with a 
happy ripple through its recesses. An excavation, or 
canal, in the red rock on the north bank of the 
stream, is called the " King's Chamber," but what 
tradition is associated with it we cannot tell. Guthrie 
gets over the difficulty by unravelling the mystery as 
follows : — " Taken in connection "rrith the admitted 
facts, that the lonely den was th« chosen resort of 
the ISpunkies, and that the neighbouring farm of Glass- 
weli was nightly haunted by ghosts and hobgoblins, I 
came at last to the sage conclusion, that as the elfins 
and fairies were presided over and ruled by a queen, 
the cave in the rock had been, and was the presence- 
chamber of the King of the Evil Spirits, where he, in 
royal state, gave audiences to his mythical subjects r 
and from whence were promulgated those terrible 
fiats of vengeance and destruction, which made men's- 
hearts to quake with fear, and the material world to 
upheave in volcanic throes of expiring dissolution ! " 

Nothing authentic is known respecting the early 
traditions of the town. Kirriemuir is very seldom 
referred to in history, although there is ample proof 
of its antiquity. That the territory had in early times 
been thickly populated there is not the slightest 


doubt, from the many Druiclic and other remains that 
are yet found in the locality. Almost every town in 
Scotland has some record of a battle having been 
fought in its vicinity. Some parties are of opinion 
that it was in the neighbourhood of Kirriemuir where 
the great battle between Gaigacus and Agricola was 
fought, and on page 102 we referred to the conflict 
between the " sutors of Forfar and the weavers of 

The Castle of Airlie. 

Bonnie sing the birds in the bright English valleys, 
Bonnie bloom the flowers in the lime-shelter' d alleys, 
Cloudless shines the snn. 'tis there ye'll see it fairly, 
Sweet blinkin' through the mist on the bomiie braes o' Airlie. 

The romantic beauty and historical interest con- 
nected with Airlie Castle is pretty well known, as it is 
a favourite resort of tourists and pic-nic parties. The 
Castle is perched on the point of the rocky promon- 
tory formed by the confluence of the Isla and the 
Melgum, the first ruuning north-west and the other 
north-east from the Castle. The lofty banks of the 
Isla are in many places rocky and very precipitous, 
w T ith natural trees or shrubs growing up in every 
-cleft of the rock, extending horizontally or obliquely 
from its rugged surface, hanging from every crevice, 
or trailing dow r n its iron face. In others they are 
clothed with lofty trees, among which is a profuse 
undergrowth of many varieties of bruslrwood and 
Alpine plants. Judiciously formed walks traverse the 
den in many ways, with seats at salient points, 
whence fine views are obtained. The banks of the 
Melgum are planted with cultivated trees of several 
varieties, growing luxuriantly on the sloping sides of 
the stream — nature on the Isla and art on the Mel- 
gum striving to outdo each other ; or rather each 
ravine by contrast bringing out the beauties of the 



other the better, and certainly the whole scene is- 
beautiful and romanl ic. 

The Castle of Airlio is I interesting memorial, 

the entrance md some other remains of the 

Ancienl over four hundred and seventy 

years old, having been erected about 1432. In that 

year Sir Wal- 
ter Ogilvy of 
Lintrathen ac- 
quired the 
lands of Air- 
lie, and ob- 
tained a Royal 
license, as was 
then requisite, 
him to erect 
his tower of 
:'«-> ' Airlie in form 
"/' of a fortalice. 
i g 6 After obtain- 
';-' ; _ ing the I 

permission, Sir 
J? Walter, who 


. was Lord High 

*• *'&'' .T Treasurer to 

7^« ,iKi Kins .lames 

1^ ' T 1 i 

' ^ <&$&%< . in proceeding 

*- - - - — — — - with the erec- 

tion of the structure. The site he fixed up- 
on was happily chosen, as extensive defensive 
works were not required, and it is extremely beauti- 
ful, picturesque, and romantic. A small promontory 
projects out from the mainland at the junction of the 
-tsla and the Melgum rivers. The latter winds past 

■jnd touk. 135- 

the east and north sides, and there falls into the Isla, 
which runs along its west front. The beds of both 
streams lie at a depth of quite one hundred feet be- 
low the summit of the promontory, and its three sides 
are all but perpendicular. All that was necessary to 
make the Castle a safe abode was a defence to the 
neck of the promontory. Here Sir Walter dug a deep 
ditch, from 20 to 30 feet in width, inside of which he 
erected a wall 10 feet thick, and 35 in height, having 
battlements on the top, a drawbridge across the ditch,. 
and the gateway protected by strong doors, with an 
iron portcullis to be let down at will. Inside of this 
ditch and wall the "Bonnie House of Airlie" was 
built, and here the Ogilvies of Airlie dwelt securely. 
Only part of the wall across the promontory ^now 
remains, with some modern buildings and a fine lawn 
within.' In 1458-9 Sir John Ogilvy, son of Sir 
Walter, resigned his lands of Airlie into the King's 
hands, and obtained from James II. a new charter of 
the Mains and Castle of Airlie, to be held blench tor 
a pair of pit spurs, or forty pounds Scots as the price 
thereof. Since then the Ogilvies have been in posses- 
sion of their Airlie estate, but the attachment of the 
familv to the Stuart cause put it in jeopardy oftener 
than once. In 1G40, while the Earl was in attend- 
ance upon King Charles I., the Earl of Argyle attacked 
Airlie's Castles of Forter and Airlie, took both, and 
burned them to the ground. It was this burning 
which is commemorated in the popular old ballad 
entitled " The Bonnie House of Airlie." 

Argyle has raised ahunder men, 

A nunde r men an' inairly, 
An' he's awa doun by the back o Dunkeld, 

To plunder the bonnie house o' Airlie. 

But the incidents related in the song took place at 
Forter Castle, Glenisla, where Lady Ogilvy was then 


residing, although tradition clings to Airlie Castle as 
the scene of Argyle'a cruelties, just as it tenaciously 
•does to the Castle of Grlamis as the locale of the mur- 
der of Duncan and the scene of the deadly combat 
between Macduff and the witches. 

Airlie Castle has also several weird " stories " told 
.about it and the family of Airlie. Here is one " nar- 
rated by an Englishman" — "A drummer boy" is 
said to go about the Castle playing his drum when- 
ever there is a death impending in the family. It is 
said that on l ( Jth August, 1S49, a young English 
gentleman was on his way to the Tulchan, a shooting- 
lodge belonging to the Earl of Airlie. He was 
mounted on a stout pony, having a stalwart High- 
lander for his guide across the wild Forfarshire moor. 
For about two hours darkness had fallen, when the 
welcome lights, issuing from the windows of the 
Tulchan, met our traveller's anxious gaze. At the 
same moment a swell of faint music smote suddenly 
upon his ear. The sound was that of a distant band 
accompanied by the drum, and appeared to emanate 
from the low ridge of ground below the hunting- 
lodge in front of him. As it was wafted in louder 
accents across the moor, he could not forbear from 
feeling that it had something of an eerie and unearthly 
-character about it. Astonished at such an unaccount- 
able occurrence in a spot where the Tulchan was the 
only house within many miles, and where bracken, 
brown heath, and morass outstretched far and wide 
upon every side of him, the young man called the 
attention of his guide to the strange burst of music 
which he had just heard. Muttering that such sounds 
were " no canny," and professing that to him they 
were inaudible, the Highlander urged on his pony to 
as great a speed as the weary beast could exert after 
a journey of twenty-five miles, and in a little while 


the two riders drew reins at the hospitable door of 
the lodge. Upon descending the Englishman learned 
that his friend and host, Lor4 Ogilvie (afterwards 
tenth Earl of Airlie) had been summoned to London 
on account of his father's dangerous illness. On the 
following day the ninth Earl of Airlie breathed his 
last in London, thus affording another testimony to 
the truth of the old tradition, that weird music and 
the sound of the drum haunt the dwellings of the 
Ogilvies prior to the death of a member of the 

The name of the parish of Airlie is said to have 
been Airdly, from the Gaelic Aird, signifying a ridge, 
which exactly describes the locality of Airlie Castle. 

There are some objects of antiquity in the parish 
"which deserve notice. At the Parish Church is an 
old aumry or press for holding sacred vessels. A 
gaunt human figure, in height about three feet, 
dressed in a loose habit, is built into the west gable 
of the church. There is nothing known regarding 
the stone, whence it came, or who the figure is in- 
tended to represent. St Madden's knoll and well are 
close by the church. It is a copious spring of fine 
water. In a document, dated 1-447, "the bell of the 
Kirk of St Madden of Airlie " is mentioned. On the 
farm of Barns a weem was discovered, nearly seventy 
feet long, which proved to be a very entire specimen 
of those ancient dwellings. 

Den of Airlie and "Reekie Linn." 

Now mark the varied coloured hue 
Of mountain flowers— some softly blue. 
And glistening bright with pearly dew ; 
Some blooming like the purple bell, 
Which loves the lonesome mossy dell ; 
While some, all hung with silver sheen, 
Lok pure as angels' robes, I ween, 
And gently humming sounds distil, 
Like distant song of flowing rill. 

138 l : THE AS CITY. 

. v. hate : 
W '"1 

rm : 

The picturesque Den, which is about four mile? in 
length- a considei art of it being a winding 

ravin. by all visitors. The lofty banks 

and rocky lichen-covered gray cliffs, the battlemented 
and I the pi : rocks and 

rough woodlands, tl - and dusky dells, 

choral with the melody of many warblers, form 

much grandeur and great 

imj The junction of the 

Melguni with the Isla at the base of 

the C: ck, other ravines of 

le beauty, and the famous 

:ie Linn'' add variety and 

interest to the magnificent scenery 

nnd "The Bonnie House o' 

Airlie." The percipitous banks of 

the ravine are beautifully clothed 

with a leafy labyrinth. From 

every crevice and level spot the 


mountain ash or : tree ; the graceful birch, 

its leaw - the slightest breath of air, and 

reflecting the light in the bright sunshine; the alder 
and othe] .-.nous trees; juniper, bramble; wild 

rose; ferns in great variety, foxglove, and other 
luxuriant vegetation, which delight in moisture and 
shade, assume their brightest garb as ihey bend their 
boughs or fronds to kiss the stream from whence they 
draw their nourishment. 

The hry-cov* i< d h< ary walls, whose fame, and love, and glory 
AuldHcotl i shall to the end, the bard-cmblazoned story. 

The Isla o'er its rocky bed rolls grandly through the dell, 
The songstei s fr< m their leafy bowers try who can best excel. 

The brushwood of the Den of Airlie consists largely 
of oak, and is remarkable as containing the most 


easterly remains of natural oakwood on the southern 
face of the Grampians. Its unrivalled scenery and 
historical association is also classic ground to the 
botanical student. 

Regarding the " Linn," it might be noted that at 
the entrance of the ravine some ledges of rock extend 
across the bed of the stream, over which the water 
rushes, forming small cascades. The stream now 
contracts in width, and tumbles over the " Eeekie 
Linn," falling into a deep black pool nearly one 
hundred feet below the brink of the cataract. As if 
stunned by the fall, the water here appears to rest a 
little to gain renewed strength before proceeding 
farther on the troubled passage upon which it has 
now entered. The fall is partially broken about half 
way down when the river is low, but when in high 
flood it bounds over the precipice at one bold leap, 
and is then one of the grandest waterfalls in the 
kingdom. At such a time the water shakes the 
ground in its neighbourhood, deafens the ear by its 
loud roar, and sends up a constant cloud of spray far 
above the lofty banks. Then, when the sun shines, 
many beautiful well-defined rainbows are formed out 
of the spray ; and the water, dashing over the Linn, 
sparkles like diamonds, and the spectator is fascinated 
with their lovely tints. From this rising spraj-, or 
reel; the fall takes its name. 

Tl; surroundings of the Reekie Linn are in admir- 
able keeping. A little distance above the fall the 
rocky I auks of the river rise high over the surface 
of the stream, and from the chasm at the bottom of 
the cataract to the top of the cliffs they are little 
shori. of two hundred feet in height, and nearly 
perpendicular. Immediately below the cataract, jut- 
ting rocks, at various elevations, project from the 
sides of the cliffs, points of advantage from which fine 


prospects of portions of the ravine may be safely 
viewed. As seen from the balcony of a rustic retreat, 
the fall and its accessories form at all times a picture 
of rare beauty, but when the river is swollen by heavy 
rains the cataract is a magnificent awe-inspiring 

About a mile below the Linn there is another fall 
called the "Slug of Auchrannie." Here the water, 
confined in a narrow, rocky channel, rushes with 
great rapidity down a steep declivity, and after a fall 
of about fifty feet settles in a deep pool. When the 
river is in flood the water is thrown with much force 
over the brink of the incline, and its volume is so 
broken that it appears to be quite a cataract of foam, 
white as snow, and extremely picturesque. Below 
this fall, as above it, rapid cascades, streams, and 
eddying pool succeed each other in quick succession 
down to the lower end of the Den. 


" 'Tis of the brave and good alone 

That good and brave men are the seed, 

Yet training qniekens power unborn, 

And cidture nerves the soul tor fame ; 

But he must live a lift- of scorn 

Who bears a noble name, 

Yet bltirs it with the soil of infamy and shame." 

The church of this interesting parish was in the 
diocese of Brechin. It was given by William the 
Lion to the monastery of Aberbrothock, 1211-14, 
although it is considered that there had been a church 
on the site ages before the erection of the one given 
to the Abbey by King William. The supposition is 
strengthened hy the discovery of fragments of ancient 
sculptured stones, with curious devices cut on them of 
a mixture of heathen and Christian character, and by 
an old scellach, or bell, made of sheet iron and coated 
with bronze, having been found there in 1843. A 


coffin slab, about six feet long, embellished with a 
cross in relief and a sword incised, lies in the burying 
ground. Flint weapons and other traces of the early 
inhabitants have been found in various parts of the 
parish, and there are some peculiar looking entrench- 
ments and stone circles upon the Scurroch Hill, to 
the west of the manse. 

The parish of Kingoldrum is bounded on the north 
and east by Kirriemuir and Cortachy ; by Airlie on 
the south ; and by Lintrathen on the west. Being 
situated on the Braes of Angus, the northern portion 
of the parish is mountainous, Catlaw (2264 feet) being 
the highest summit in it, and these are the frontier 
mountains of the Grampians, from which the prospect 
is most extensive and varied. 

The Melgum, after passing the Loch of Lintrathen, 
presents pictures of rare beauty. The descent of the 
stream is very rapid, and it suddenly enters a deep, 
narrow, and tortuous rocky channel, in passing 
through which it is precipitated again and again from 
a considerable height. Cascade thus succeeds cascade 
in quick succession, each having beauties all its own. 

The Abbots and monks made perambulations of 
this parish at three different periods, and the names 
of most of the various farms and hamlets at the 
earliest of these three perambulations, made more than 
six hundred years ago, are continued to the present 
time. The Abbots and monks had the sole risrht to 
hunt in the forest' of Kingoldrum, but no trace of the 
ancient Royal forest can now be discovered. The 
huge mountain, Catlaw, with its many summits and 
outlying ridges or shoulders, is largely covered with 
heath. Between these shoulders there are small 
glens, each with its little rill. A visit to Catlaw, and 
a little time spent wandering among the glens around 
it, is alike pleasing and healthful. High up on the 

11? AROl\\"l> THE AM'IKNT CITY. 

ride of Catlaw and the spurs running out from it, 
bright green spots are here and there to lie seen. 
Each is a clump of moss, and there is a spring, to be- 
come, as it trickles down the hillside, a tiny rivulet, 
then a little burn, swelling in volume as it proceeds 

On the subject of the old Castle of Balfour, Ochter- 
lonv says, 1684-5 — "The laird of Balfour, Ogilvy, 
hath the greatest interest in Kingoldrum — an ancient 
gentleman, with a great estate. It hath a great 
house built by Cardinal Beaton, and much planting." 
Notwithstanding the great things enumerated by 
Ochterlony, Ogilvy of Balfour is not among the barons 
of Angus enumerated by Edwards in 1678, the laird 
of Balfour never having got his estate erected into a 
barony, as he held oft 1 the Abbey of Arbroath, and 
not oil' the Crown. The Ogilvvs were in possession 
of Balfour for more than sixty yens before they 
received the charter from Cardinal Beaton. 

Walter Ogilvie, the father of James, the first of 
Balfour by the 1539 charter, was brother of Marion 
Ogilvy, the mother of the Cardinal's children, who 
thus had a deep interest in the Ogilvies. Ochterlony's 
statement that the Castle of Balfour was built by 
Cardinal Beaton is a popular error, as is the common 
report that the Castle of Clavpots and others were 
built by Beaton. It is more probable that Balfour 
Castle was built half a century earlier by Walter 
Ogilvy, the father of James of Balfour, than by the 
Cardinal. It was customary for the great mitred 
Abbots to have castellated messuages on their 
principal estates, and the Cardinal, or a previous 
Abbot, may have assisted the Ogilvvs in its erection, 
in order that he might have a lodging in it when he 
visited lands there. Fully half a century ago the Castle 
was a noble Gothic ruin, but Thomas Farquharson of 


Baldovie took down two wings of it to build a farm- 
house, which destroyed its beauty greatly. 

Bidding adieu for the present to the Howe of 
Strathmore, we crave pardon fc li Bring so long in 
our wanderings and explorations, during which we 
trust our love of Xature has been strengthened. It 
is high time, however, to resume our journey, and 
complete our circular tour, as previously planned, 
taking the reader back to where we diverged at Angus 
Hill, which we referred to on page 94. 

Angus Hill. 

A short distance eastward from the church of 
Aberlemno there is a hill designated the Hill of Angus. 
It was probably the place of rendezvous for the men 
of Angus when the country was infested with the 
Danes and other Northmen, and suffered much from 
their predatory incursions into the interior of the 

From Angus Hill, the South Esk, which we saw in 
its upper reaches, glistens in the valley below in 
many a picturesque bend. Indeed, it does not seem 
to know its own mind for two consecutive minutes, 
but keeps turning and winding, now hither, now 
zig-zagging fantastically from right to left, and 
occasionally even manifesting a decided inclination to 
retrace its steps. The bosom of the valley is of the 
most undulating description — now rising into gentle 
knolls covered with verdure, or plumed with patches 
and belts of timber; now sinking into water-worn 
hollows and dells, and anon spreading out into fertile 
meads and sunny slopes, where cattle in straggling 
groups are pasturing or lazily chewing their cud. 
At various points farm houses peer above their girdles 
of foliage, over which hover curling clouds of blue 


smoke— I er a i 'cne, which is 

rendered all the more pleasing by the contrast which 
.its quiet beauty offers to the stein and hoary 
grandeur of the hills rising in the distance. 

In our travels how many picturesque burns have 
we passed, which in by-gone days gave motion to the 
wheel, but which is now singing its eerie tune to the 
echoes of an unbroken solitude. A few stately 
trees, through which the blue smoke from the miller's 
hearth may have curled long ago, wave drearily over 
the spot. X" saucy gudewife, with plump bairn in 
her arms, now graces the door-cheek of the miller's 
dwelling, or watches with motherly pride a number 
of wee toddlin' things, with flaxen hair, who are 
tumbling before her on the green. But all is lifeless 
now. The cheerful din of the happer is heard no 
more, Nature has resumed her peaceful sway. The 
rank nettle waves on the site of the cheery but-an'-ben, 
and the rabbit may burrow undisturbed around the 
cold hearth stone. 






TTbirb XTour. 

Menmuir, via Pittendreich, Willie Mill's Burn, 

Bridge of Blackhall, The Cruiuk, Tigerton, 

Kirkton, West Water, Lethxot, Caterthun, 

Balnamoon, Little Brechin, Murlingden! 

ANY Laws or 
Mounds in the 
vicinity of 
Brechin go to 
prove that the 
Druids were a- 
poweiful body 
in this quarter. 
Huddleston, in 
his edition of 
" Toland's His- 
tory of the 
Druids," informs 
us that "the 
three farms close 
upon Brechin 
called Pitten- 
dreich, are identi- 
cal with Pit-an- 
druach, the burial 
place of the 
Druids." Among 
the hereditary 
offices that existed in feudal times, we find that of the 


office of blacksmith of the lordship of Brechin. A 
document, dated 29th April, 1M4, is published in the 
Miscellany of the Spalding Club for 1853, in which it 
is shown that " Richard Lindsay received nine nilots 
of good meal of every plough of the tenant of Pitten- 
dreich, and one fleece of an old sheep yearly/' 

Some antiquarians are of opinion that the battle 
between Agricolaand Galgacus must have been fought 
on the sloping ground now facing us, immediately 
south of the two hills of Caterthun— as a popular 
rhyme has it 

" Between thp Killivar and the r.uckler stane 
Tin re lies mony a bloody barn 

As the " Killivar Stane " is on the farm of Barrelwell, 
and the " Blawart Lap " and the " Buckler Stane " are 
on the farm of Longhaugh, and both being under the 
western hill of Caterthun, our antiquarian friends 
presume that the principal struggle had taken place 
at these points, where the Romans, beiniz; defeated, 
had heen driven eastward on their camps at Keithock 
and Slateford — the old name of the village of Edzell 
— both of which places will, in another tour, receive 
our attention. 

Around this neighbourhood there are a number of 
small, comfortable looking holdings, or " tackies," and 
we pass a number of old-fasbioned cosy looking 
straggling houses, with well cultivated and smiling 
gardens, known as Willie Mill's Burn. 

There stands the auld his-rrin' upon the brap-«ide, 
An canty bit garden wi' flowers in their pride, 
Weel watered an' tended, baith lily an' pea. 
How lovely they look by the bonnie birk tree. 

W T e cross the Bridge of Blackhall, or Blackha', over 
the Cruick, a fine trouting stream, which rises in two 
head streams at the northern boundary of the parish 
of Fern, and after a run of sixteen or seventeen 


miles, falls into the Xorth Esk near the mansion 
house of Stracathro, and within 200 yards of the 
confluence of the West Water with the same stream. 
The small elachaa known by the name of Tigerton, as 
well as the Kirkton, and "the church, being historic 
scenes, attract our notice. At the hamlet of Tigerton 
there was at one time an Episcopalian chapel or 
meeting house, which was " served " by the minister 
of Brechin. The parish tradesmen — merchant, shoe- 
maker, blacksmith, and joiner, are still to he found 

It is curious to note that, but for a passing notice 
relative to the King's (the last Alexander) gardeners 
at Forfar and Menmuir, the interesting fact of the art 
of horticulture having been known and cultivated in 
Scotland in those days would have been little else 
than matter of conjecture. These gardeners are the 
only ones mentioned in this part of -Scotland at that 
period, so that it is probable that both places were 
frequently resorted to by royalty. 

Lethnot and its Glen. 

Wp'11 hie up yon glen where the clear bumie wimples, 
Where wide-spreading willows entwine with the slaes; 

Where the kid and the iarahkin are sporting together, 
By Navar's soft streamlet and green gowany braes. 

A run through the Glen of Lethnot would here be 
very enjoyable, though it would take us considerably 
out of otir course. "Suffice it just now to say that, 
descending the slope of the hill, we enter the G-len of 
Lethnot at the Bridge of Peffray. This strath has 
one natural opening from the south, which is entered 
a little beyond Edzell, along the course of the West 
Water, and naturally divides the once_ separate 
parishes of Xavar and Lethnot, united 1723. We 
pass the old churchyard of Xavar, half a mile to the 


left, in the corner of a field, surround a rude 

stone dyke and a row of ash trees. The remains of 
the church are still traceable. 

A little to the east we observe the antiquated, 
semi-circular bridge at Drumcairn, which spans the 
West Water, and to the left the schoolhouse and 
school where the "little charge" are fitted for the 
varied duties of after life. 

Drumcairn stands on the broomy knowe, 

The burn comes jinkm' doon ; 
The auld kirk jouks i the hiddliu' howe, 

The ba' field beiks i' the sun. 

An' Clochie wons by the water side, 

Where the fragrant birken grows ; 
An' the braes are clad wi' the h»ather bells, 

An' the bloom o' the sweet wild roe 

A little further on, on the right, are the church and 
manse, and the lonely burying ground, where 

The rude forei the hamlet sleep, 

The stillness is broken only by the water rushing 
onward in its deep and rugged channel. Here and 
there are tiny cascades, dark pools, deep clefts of 
rock — the water now turning itself into foam and 
fury, and again falling into something like the placid 
sleep of an infant. Tradition bears that this parish 
had its Castle, called Dennyferne, which was one of 
the residences of the Lindsays. 

It might be mentioned that the largest tributary 
of the W^st "Water is the Water of Saughs, and 
towards the end of the seventeenth century its banks 
were the scene of the fierce and bloody conflict — the 
Raid or the Battle of Saughs — to which we referred 
at pages 45-48. 

The Church of Lethnot was dedicated to St Mary, 
and was formerly a Prebend of Brechin In 1591 
John Lindsay, son of John Lindsay of Barras, was 


minister, and became " servitour to the auld laird of 
Edzell, and was one of the eight followers of David 
Lindsay, 3-ounger of Edzell, who, clothed 'in geir,' 
made an attack, 5th July, 1607, on his cousin David, 
Master of Crawford, and killed his uncle Alexander, 
Lord Spynie, while endeavouring to heal the breach 
between them." 

Here, as in Glenesk, Episcopacy was held in great 
esteem, and the chapel, which stood at the Clochie, 
was burned in 1746. It was said that the soldiers 
forced the farmer, who was a Jacobite, to carry peats 
from his own hearth, and straw from his own barn, 
and, with drawn swords over and around, made him 
set fire to his own beloved Zion. 

Navar was always conjoined with Brechin in one 
lordship, and many of the Lords thereof ranked 
among the highest historic personages of their day. 
The first of them was David, Earl of Huntingdon, 
brother of William the Lion. Among his successors 
may be named his grandson, Sir William de Brechin, 
one of the great barons in the time of Alexander III., 
and one of the guardians of the kingdom in his 
minority ; his great-grandson, Sir David, who married 
a sister of the Bruce, and, after the battle of 
Inverury, espoused his cause, and continued faithful 
to it ; and his great-great-grandson, also Sir David, 
who suffered for his complicity in the conspiracy of 
Lord Soulis ; Sir David Barclay, who married 
Margaret de Brechin, Bruce's niece ; Walter, the 
second son of Robert II., by Euphemia Ross, 
who married the only daughter of Sir David Brechin, 
and was executed for the share he had in the death of 
his nephew, James I. ; David, Earl of Crawford, and 
afterwards Duke of Montrose ; James, Duke of Ross, 
the second son of James III., and afterwards Arch- 
bishop of St Andrews ; Sir Thomas Erskine, Lord 

150 AROUND THE A.\ , V. 

Brechin : the Earl of Mar ; and the Earls of Pan mure, 
who acquired Brechin and Navar by purchase, in 
1634. Such an illustrious galaxy of nobles should 
invest Navar with great historic inter 


In the "Land of the Lindsays" we are told 
the farmer of Wirren had long nursed his 
wrath against his neighbour, who had someh 
oftended him. Learning by which road that neigh- 
bour would one night return home at a late hour, he 
resolved to waylay him, and to have his reven 
him. The farmer's wife, dreading that mi 
in the wind, employed all her art of persuasion and 
entreaty to induce him to stay at home. At last she 
asked who was to he her companion in his absence, 
and was answered by her infuriated husband. "The 
Devil if he Likes : " And he did like. From the 
middle of the earthen floor of the room in which the 
poor woman sat the Devil rose and ted himself 

before her ! With admirable presence of mind she 
managed to slip her son, a mere boy, out at ck 

window for the minister. He, with some neighboi 
soon neared the house, when smelling the 
" bnmstane smeik," he returned to the manse for his 
gown and hands, and Bible. Boldly entering with 
his armour, he attacked the enemy, setting on him 
with his sword ; when, in the midst of a great volume 
of smoke, and uttering a hideous yell, the fiend 
shrunk aghast, and passed from view in much the 
same mysterious way as he had appeared. An in- 
dentation of the ground floor of the farmhouse was 
long pointed out as having been caused by the 
descent of Satan ! 

The victorious minister, it has been asserted, was 
the Episcopal minister of Lethnot, a Stuart devotee, 


who prayed for " the heads and patriots of the Rebel 
Armv, and that God might cover their heads in the 
day of battell ; " as also, " for his noble patron the 
Earl of Panmure, that the Lord might preserve him 
now that he was exposed to danger;" gave thanks 
for " King James the Eighth's safe landing in these 
his native bounds;" and entreated "that the army 
appearing against Mar's army might be defeated," 
&c. As may readily be supposed, for these and 
similar good deeds, Satan seems to have had a special 
pique at him. He even ventured to enter the manse, 
and to torment him there. If he sat in his study on 
an evening to. read or write, his book or paper was 
forthwith covered with darkness, and so faintly did 
the candle burn that he could hardly see from one end 
of the room to the other ! As he himself used to 
tell it, " One da}' when I sat down to my desk, the 
fiend took his stand just behind me, so that I could 
not get on with a word of my sermon. At length it 
occurred to me to write the first promise on a small 
slip of paper, and without looking over my shoulder, 
to throw it to my tormentor, saying, "Tak' that, 
Satan ; it's low water wi' ye noo ! " when he instantly 
departed, and has never troubled me in my study 

The minister of Lethnot was not so deft a soldier ; 
and. eventually, it fared very woefully with him. On 
a dark winter night, in the time of a great snowstorm,, 
and during a gust of wind which threatened to over- 
throw the manse, Beelzebub entered the study by the 
chimney, in the shape of a large black cat ! " How 
he found his way none could divine, for the minister 
didn't see him enter, and saw nothing of him save his 
long hairy fangs, which suddenly extinguished the 
candle ! Running in pursuit, however, he saw him 
clear the steep and narrow stair whieh led to the 


lower fial of the house, and falling from head to foot 
of it himself, Mr Thomson (such was the minister's 
name) whs so greatly injnred from bruises and fright 

that lie n< i ed ! " 

The accuracy of this item of the old traditional 
history of the parish has lately hem challenged in a 
convincing manner. The respected and gifted minister 
of the parish — tin- Rev. V. Cruickshank, who has pre- 
sided over ir since L854— haa written a work on the 
history and antiquites of Lethnot and Navar, in 
•which he has been able, after much painstaking re- 
search and thought, to simplify some of these tradi- 
tions, and at tli i same time furnish a book of much 
historical value. The above, no doubt, is one of the 
class of stories which, with a slight difference in 
detail, are found current in almost every district. In 
this case, however, there is a foundation in fact. 

The following account of the circumstances may 
not be so amusing, but it has at least the merit of 
being true : — 

The minister was not Mr Thomson, who was the last 
Episcopalian minister of the parish, and was deposed by 
the Presbytery of Brechin in 1710, for having taken part 
in the Mar rebellion, and thereby broken the condition on 
which he had been allowed to retain the living, and who 
was succeeded, not as the legal minister of the parish, but 
as the Episcopal clergyman of the district, by the Rev. 
David Rose, great grandfather of the distinguished Sir 
Hugh Rose, now known as Lord Strathnairn. The minister 
to whom the story relates was the Rev. John Row, the 
last minister of Navar, as a separate parish, and the first 
of the united parishes of Navar and Lethnot. He died in 
1745, and was buried within the kirk of Lethnot, a neat 
mural tablet marking the spot. He was a strong-minded, 
but thoughtful and sagacious man, who had a difficult 
position to fill during the unsettled times betwixt 1715 
and 1746, and filled it well. Earnest in promoting educa- 
tion in his parish, he strove to discourage as far as possible 


the superstitious ideas and practices which were then so 

At that time, and for lung afrer, the popular feeling, as 
is well known, f orb ale the burial of suicides in the kirk- 
yard. In one instance the minister made a strong effort 
to obtain the rites of ordinary sepulture for the body, and 
succeeded so far as to have it buried in the kirkyard after 
the sun was set, " between the sun and the sky," as the 
old saying is. There was a superstitious belief that who- 
ever stepped over a newly-made prave would meet with 
some great misfortune within a short time. Mr Row, 
thinking this a good opportunity of teaching his people a 
practical lesson as to the absurdity of such a belief, jumped 
three times over the grave. Returning immediately 
thereafter to the manse, which then stood close to the 
present south-west gate of the kirkyard, he went upstairs 
to his study, or chamber, as it was the custom to call it. 
It was not yet so da> k as to prevent his perceiving that 
some strange animal was in the room. Going outside the 
door he called downstairs to his servant girl to bring a 
lighted candle and a stick. She brought the candle, but, 
instead of the stick, a long-shafted straw fork. The 
mysterious animal turned out to be a large black cat, 
which, on seeing the light, bolted out at the open door. 
The minister, stepping back a pace or two to get a chance 
of a stroke at it with his somewhat unwieldy weapon, came 
against the frail wooden railing, which gave way, and, 
unable to recover his balance, he fell backward into the 
lobby beneath and broke his back. 

This is the true story of the black cat of the manse 
of Lethnot. The writer's informant was an old lady 
who lived till well nigh 90 years of age, and died in 
Edinburgh in 1880, retaining to the last her wonder- 
ful bodily vigour and the full possession of her men- 
tal faculties. She was the daughter of a former 
minister of Lethnot, and in her youth was well 
accpuainted with the woman (by that time of course 
aged) who as the minister's servant girl held the light 
for him. 


Probably the minister's untimely end, o< 
ler such circumstances, had ;i, Ecoi 

belief in old superstitions. It is cer vents, 

that years after his death, suicides continued to he 
refused the rites of Christian burial. S< le, it is 

supposed, between 1760 and 1780, the remains of two 
such poor unfortunate pe] i man and a woman, 

were taken to the top of Wirren, the highest hill in 
the ] and there interred. 

The two churches of Lethnot and Navar were 
within a mile of each ether, but - d by the 

West Water. "When the parisl nited, the 

mii. f Navar made it a condition of his bee 

minister of the united parishes that a bridge 
be erected to connect Navar with Lethnot to enable 
him to visit his parishioners in both districts. This 
was done, and the bridge has been of great service to 
the inhabitants of the whole district. Previous to, 
and till the union of the parishes, Lethnot and Lochlee 
we. by one minister, who preachei at 

Lethnot for once at Lochlee. The read the cle 
man took in going between his two churches was by 
the east side of the West Water, past Achourie and 
Clash of Wirren. It is still known as the Priest's 
Road. In former times it was the great road from 
Banffshire and the Western part of Aberdeenshire to 
Brechin and the low country. It was much frequented 
by smugglers, Highland shearers, and others up to the 
end of the first decade of last century. By this road 
JJrcChin nd Ballater are within thirty miles of each 
other. When the church of Navar was demolished, 
shortly after the union of the parishes, the bell dis- 
appeared, but it was subsequently discovered, and is 
now in the Museum at Arbroath, with a description 
by the Rev. Mr Cruickshank. It bears the date 1655. 


The church of Lethnot was rebuilt in 1827. It: 
occupies a site on which has doubtless been a 
place of worship from the earliest appear- 
ance of Christianity in the country, if not 
in old Druidical times. In the early part 
of the last century several pieces of silver coin were 
found in cleaning out a fountain near the church, 
which is known as St Mary's Well. These had been 
votive offerings, cast in by devou f worshippers before 
the Reformation. The baptismal font in use in 
Romish times was long turned from the holy purpose 
for which it was formed, and made to do duty as a 
watering trough. It was lost sight of for thirty 
years, but was discovered and claimed by the present 
minister of the parish, and now lies in front of the 


Manmure Church, or Menmur, as the name of 
Menmuir was variously spelled iu former days, was a 
vicarage in the Diocese of Dunkeld. It was dedica- 
ted to S. Aidan, and a fine spring in the vicinity 
bears his name. S. Aidan flourished in the seventh 
century. The present Parish Church was built in 
1842 to replace the old church, which was erected in 
1767. The Rev. J. L. Thomson was the much 
esteemed minister of the parish from 1875 till his 
lamented dsath in 1902, when he was succeeded by 
the present pastor, Rev. A. H. M'llwraith. At 
Lochtie, in the south-west district of the parish, there 
is a Free Church, of which the Rev. Alex. Monro has 
been the highly -appreciated minister since 1898 — 
having succeeded his father, the Rev. Geo. Monro, who 
had held the office with great acceptance by all from 

The parish is about five miles in length by about 


two in medium breadth. It is bounded by Stracathro 
and Lethnot on the north, on the east by Stracathro 
and Brechin, by Careston and Brechin on the south, 

and on the west by Fern. 

The earliest known charter of Menmuir is by King 
Robert Bruce, dated 1st May, 1319. It is a grant of 
the office of keeper of the forest of Kilgery, &c, to 
Peter de Spalding, a burgess of Berwick-on-Tweed, 
who, on the night of the 2nd April, 1318, by strata- 
gem delivered Berwick into the hands of the Bruce. 
The town and castle had then been for some twenty 
years in possession of the English. His wife was a 
Scotswoman, who no doubt encouraged him in his 
purpose to aid the Scots in taking that important 
border town. Spalding excambed his tenements in 
Berwir-k with the King for the lands of Ballourthy 
and ritmachy (Balzeordie and Pitmudie) with the 
above-mentioned office, and right to half the foggage. 
Spalding was subsequently slain by the Scots. 


Other portions of the thanedom of Menmuir were 
granted by David II. to several parties — notably John 
de Cullas, the first Collace of Balnamoon, a possession 
we will refer to later on. From 1360 to 1632 this 
estate was held by his race. He is said to have cost 
the rebels the loss of the battle of Brechin, for which 
the Earl of Crawford (Earl Beardie and the Tiger 
Earl) took terrible vengeance on him, harrying and 
desolating his lands, and resting with his men at the 
spot where, in honour of the noble savage, the village 
bears the name of Tigerton. John de Collace led, by 
his encroachments, to the inquest for fixing the 
boundary between his lands and those of the Bishop 
of Brechin, and was so lawless as to remove the land- 
marks which the Assize set between them. Eobert 


de Collace so fanned the long standing feud between 
Balnamoon and Brechin that it broke out in deeds of 
mutual violence. Along with fifty-two of his tenants 
he had to find caution to " underlie the law for col- 
lecting a large bod} 7 of armed men, and under night, 
going to the Roods of Brechin, destroying cairns, and 
fighting and slaughtering some of the inhabitants." 
Reprisals were made by a large body of the citizens, 
who attacked his servants, and destroj T ed some of their 
houses and cattle. This shows the lawless state of 
things at that period. 


David Lindsay, of Edzell, the ninth Earl of Craw- 
ford, purchased Balhall in 1555. It was in Balhall 
Moss, in 1382, that Sir James Lindsay, then chief of 
the Lindsays of Crawford, and High Justiciary of Scot- 
land, slew Sir John Lyon of Glammis. He seems to 
have envied Sir John for his favour with the King ; 
for he had risen to some of the highest offices of the 
State, and to be the King's son-in law. Meeting in 
the Moss of Balhall, they settled their quarrel with the 
sword, at the cost of Lyon's life. He was honoured 
by being buried at Scone in the sepulchres of the 
Kings. Lindsay fled the country ; but, though 
stained with blood, he retained his office of Justiciary, 
and, on performing a pilgrimage to the shrine of St 
Thomas a Becket at Canterbury, he was called home 
and pardoned. 

The Northern border of Balhall was the scene of 
another tragedy. The Laird and a neighbour had 
differed about the march between their lands. Wit- 
nesses were called in to settle the strife. One of them 
swore against Balhall, deponing "that the land on 
which he stood " (the disputed ground) was Balhall's 
neighbour's. Enraged at his falsehood, the Laird 


drew his dagger, and despatched him. The perjury 
of the scoundrel was proved by its being found on 
examination that he had filled his shoes with earth 

m the neighbour's land, to which he suited the 
words of his deposition. His name was Beattie ; and 
a cairn called Beattie's Cairn, and a ridge called the 
Misworn Rig, are said to be memorials of his guilt 
and punishment. 

There was till lately another cairn at Menmuir, the 
in imorial of a much more recent tragedy. Little 
more than a hundred years ago, Donald M 'Arthur, 
the Tigerton shoemaker, visited Brechin to make pur- 
chases for his marriage, and quarrelling with certain 
] arties in the town, was waylaid by them on his 
return home in the darkness of the night. Conceal- 
ing themselves in the wood of Findowrie, when 
Donald reached it they pounced upon him and 
savagely abused him ; and, a well-known highwayman 
coming up, they hired him with a paltry sum to com- 
plete Donald's murder. A cairn was raised to mark 
the spot where the murdered body was found, and as 
few passed by without adding a stone to it, Donald's 
cairn had attained an immense size when the presiding 
genius of agricultural improvements gave orders for 
its removal. "The bride died of great grief soon 
after the murder of her lover, and the peasantry were 
often alarmed by mingled cries of distress from the 
weird of the unfortunate shoemaker, while the 
favoured form of his betrothed hovered nightly 
around the cairn so long as any stones remained ! " 

There was a hermitage in connection with the grant 
of Kilgery, and the Chapel of the blessed Virgin Mary 
in the forest of Kilgery appears to have been part of 
the gift. It stood in a field near the Chapelton of 
Dunlappie. The chapel was, however, demolished, 


and the stones were used in building the farm stead- 
ing. A fine spring a short distance south of whese 
the chapel stood is still known as the Lady Well. 
The office of hermit of the chapel had been acquired 
by Hugh.Cominche. On 28th May, 1445, James II 
gave to John Smyth, citizen of Brechin, the office of 
hermit of the hermitage of the chapel of the Blessed 
Mary in the forest of Kilgery, with the hermitage, 
cemetery, and green, and three acres of land. In 
1461 John Smyth sold the lands, office of hermit, and 
other pertinents to William Somyr of Balzeordie for 
one merk of yearly rent from a tenement in Brechin. 
The hermitage of Kilgery was on the south of Brown 
Caterthun, and between it and the White 
Caterthun. The name is still retained there. . Among 
the South esk charters at Kinnaird are many relating 
to the hermitage and the office of hermit. 


The parish of Menmuir is rich in sepulchral re- 
mains. Many stone cists, enclosing urns, have been 
dug up in the Moss of Findowrie. About a mile 
north of the church is a cluster of burrows. On the 
line from the Caterthun to Keithock are frequent 
tumuli and cairns ; and there fragments of arms have 
also been found. As the couplet, somewhat different 
from that already given, has it — 

'Tween the Blawart Lap, and the Killievair Stan 
There lie mony bluidy banes. 

All these things tell of war ; of which it can hardly 
be doubted that the sculptured stones, found in the 
foundation of the old dyke of the churchyard, are 
likewise the memorial. According to the common 
tradition of the district, they tell of battle upon battle 
between the Picts and the Danes; but it is very 


lite ' int to a great battle fought 

in 1130 between David I. and Angus, Earl of Moray. 
Angus claimed the Scottish throne in right of Gruach, 
the grand-daughter of Kenneth IV., and the mother 
of Lulach, the grandfather of Angus. The men of 
Moray supported Angus in his claim, and coming 
southward at their head, he met the King in this 
neighbourhood, and was completly overthrown. 


Menmuir was as othordox as its neighbours on the 
subject of witchcraft. The Parochial records of 1-496- 
have this entry : — " Xo lecture this week, because the 
minister "was attending the Committee appointed by 
the Provincial Assembly for the trial of witches and 
charmers in their bounds." 

Notwithstanding all this diligence, the witches in- 
stead of diminishing, seemed rather to multiply, and 
the fairies were no less rife. Even less than a 
hundred years ago they were strongly suspected of 
having performed one of their pranks at Tigerton, 
viz., stealing a fine healthy infant from fond parents, 
and substituting for him a sickly ricketty one ! The 
wise woman of Tigerton knew how the suspicion 
might be tested ! Place the infant over a blaze of 
whins : if of fairy stock, he will fly away to Fairy- 
land ; if a human being, he will abide the fire, and 
suffer only a scaum ! The mother going from home 
for a day, left the infant in charge of a neighbour. 
The opportunity of bringing his species to the touch- 
stone of experiment was too good to be lost. A select 
company assembled in the " ben end " of the house. 
"A bundle of whins was lighted, and, stript to the 
skin, the poor child was placed upon the tongs, and 
held over the flame by two of the learned conclave. 
He screamed, as elder people would do in like cir- 


cumstances ; but, as he never attempted to fiy out at 
the chimney, he was declared by the devilish hags, in 
council assembled, to be merelv a human creature 
after all ! " 

Far abune the mystic rinf? 
Merry laverocks Jilt an' sins' : 
Down the sunny slopes o' Wirren 
Wimples mony a heilant burn, 

Blythesome as the simmer morn. 

The Hill of AVirren, which bounds the northern 
parts, was used in the ages of credulity and fanaticism 
as the burial place of suicides. On the very ridge of 
the hill numerous grave-shaped hillocks point out the 
resting places of those infatuated beings. At no- 
distant date, when a suicide was found on one of the 
farms in the neighbourhood, the farmer, rather than 
allow the body to be taken in at the barn door, had 
a hole struck out of the front wall for that purpose, 
and although the hole was built up " ower an' ower 
again, the biggin' wudna bide, but aye fell oot ! " 

A kettle filled wiih silver is said to lie in the Craig 
of Stoneyford, on the west side of the mountain, and, 
when the sun shines in full lustre, the bow of the 
kettle and its precious contents are often seen to 
glitter ! Many attempts have been made to secure 
this treasure, but without success. If the story is- 
correct, the searchers have little cause to complain, 
for, alike with the kettle of gold which is said to be 
secreted in the well on Caterthun, the reward is 
instant removal from this sublunary sphere — constant 
labour until the world ends, and perpetual wailing 
thereafter ! 

This district is famous as being the locality where 
the last wolf was seen in Scotland. A servant girl 
had been at the mill with a melder of corn. On her 
return she felt so overpowered by fatigue that she lay 
down on a bank to rest, and soon fell asleep. She 


slep f Boundly. until daybreak, when to her horror, she 
found a huge shaggy wolf lyii p Inside her. 

She quietly fled and set the neighbourhood in search 
of the delinquent, whose <i - amongst the 

Mocks in all parts of the glen had been severely felt. 
He was found nestling on t! Shank of Wirren, 

and was shot by the laird of Nathrow. 


srthun, thy matchless ring 
How shrill I attempt to sine ■' 
"When "ti- known that Learned men 

unable t;> attain 
Perfect knowledge as t<> h<>\v 
That rinu: was placed around thy brow. 

Caterthun is in the parish of Menmuir, and 
presents the finest and most interesting example of a 
British hill fort that is known. There are two of these 
forts on the summits of detached conical hills, about 
the line where the Grampians begin to swell into 
mountains. They are a mile distant from each other, 
and are familiarly known as the " Brown " and the 
*• White" Cater. The last mentioned is peculiarly 
interesting, being the better defined of the two. 
Rings of white stone encircle the one, and dark turf 
the other, and hence their names. The "White 
Caterthun is at an elevation of about nine hundred 
feet. Its area is oval in form, measuring more than 
five hundred feet in length, and two hundred 
in breadth. The wall enclosing this area is composed 
of large loose stones, and is at least twenty feet thick 
at the top, and about one hundred feet at the 
bottom. Outside the wall was at one time a clearly 
defined, broad ditch, with an earthen breastwork on 
its outer side ; and beyond this there was a double 
-entrenchment of wall and ditch running round the 
slope of the hill. 


The position, naturally strong, when thus fortified 
must have been impregnable to the assaults of such 
artillery as could then be brought to bear against it. 
Some think that the works on the Brown Caterthun 
had been thrown up by a besieging army, which was 
attempting to reduce the large camp on the White 
Caterthun. The elevation of Brown Caterthun 
is less, its dimensions smaller, and its walls are com- 
posed entirely of earth. 

Within the centre area of the White Cater are the 
foundations of a rectangular building, and a hollow, 
now nearly filled with stones, which appears to have 
been the draw-well of the garrison. The literal trans- 
lation of the word Caterthun is camp-town, and it 
forms one of the various native strongholds, which 
have been conjectured to have been the camp of 
Galgacus, the leader of the Caledonian host, which 
attempted to withstand the Roman invaders in 
the famous engagement of Agricola. 

The labour of amassing such a prodigious quantity 
■of stones as are here built, and of carrying them to 
such a height, is inconceivable, and would surpass 
belief if we had not, in the ruins of the fortress, 
■ocular demonstration of what the labour accomplished. 


Local tradition gets over the difficulty by asserting 
that the fort was erected for the abode of Fairies, and 
that the architects and masons were the Witches. A 
brawny witch, in the course of a single morning, 
•carried in her apron all the stones used from the 
channel of the West Water to the top of the hill; and 
how many more she would have carried, and how 
much larger the structure would have been, if her 
apron strings had not broken, no mortal knows. 
The string broke with the largest of the stones. It 


allowed to lie where it fell i be seen even 

now on the north slope of the hill. 

" They - ly sin. tin- Devil's mother, 

>ught these rugged ston e tier, 

Piled them round and built the King; 
Till one day her apron string 

"a the mighty weight 
' >. si 'iir thai even yet 
From tin- flowery bank- s.> green, 
« In the river may be - 


This great work has been the subject of much 
disputation amongst antiquarians. Some think the 
camp on the White Caterthun was a Druidical place 
of worship, and naturally derives the name by which 
it is known from the Gaelic — Caither-Dun^ the temple 
01- worship hill. But Miss Maclagan is of a different 
opinion, and thinks that the derivation of the name 
is from the ancient British word Cader x which signifies 
a fortress. Indeed there is now all but universal 
acquiescence in the opinion that they were forts, hill 
forts (as Cader-dun or Caither-dun signifies), erected by 
our remote ancestors for retreat and security in times 
of danger. When they were erected, aud who the 
race was that first named them, we know not. 

Huddlestone, who wrote his account in the year 
1S07, says : — " The chief object of the Druids was to 
have their temples on an eminence commanding an 
extensive prospect. Thus although Caterthun could 
only have been an indifferent fort against modern 
artillery, it was particularly well adapted for a 
Druidical cairn, commanding as it does a prospect at 
once grand and impressive. The extensive view from 
this hill of the low country to the eastward, and 
southward upon the vast expanse of the German 
Ocean, pointed it out as an eligible station for watch- 
ing the movements of the Romans, Danes, and other 


hostile invaders. The natives, having plenty of 
materials ready on the spot, demolished the cairn, 
levelled the summit of the hill, and built the stone 
dykes which presently surround it." 

When the Romans endeavoured our country to grain, 
But our ancestors fought, and they fought not in vain, 

11 Yet," says Carrie, " it is likely that the primitive 
works were erected long anterior to the first Roman in- 
vasion of Britain; and if the Druidical worship was ever 
celebrated there it was only an accessory pertaining to 
the residential and military encampment then existing 
upon the hill itself. We think that the camps are 
vestiges of pre-historic times." 

in his instructive pamphlet on " The Brechin 
District," the Right Hon. Jas. A. Campbell of Stra- 
cathro, in treating of the Battle of the Grampians, 
and the claims of the district as being the site of the 
battle, says : — 

On the lands of Keithock, two miles north of Brechin, 
on the farm of East Mains, there was a Roman Camp — 
the camp of Wardykes of Blackdykes. All traces of it are 
now almost entirely removed, but it was described at the 
end of the 18th century as in the form of an oblong square, 
with an area to accommodate 12,000 men, and otherwise 
presenting marked features. The road from Keithock 
gate towards Newton Mill, on the way to Edzell, passes 
through a corner of it. The camp extended to the bluff 
above Keithock Burn, towards the north. Between the 
camp and the hills there is ample room for the Roman 
army, and on the Caterthuns for the Caledonians. The 
strength of the case for this district is Caterthun. There 
we have a Caledonian camp — an oval area of two acres, 
surrounded by a wall or dyke of large stones, with lower 
circumvallations of earth-works on the summit of a hill, 
750 feet above the strath, with an adjoining hill (the 
Cater) with similar earthworks — and commanding an exten- 
sive view up and down Strathmore, and across to the coast 


ami the sea. It is situ as to command a \ 

of the passes from the hills. No one e«n look from Cater- 
thun without l>o;ti'_r satisfied that it was :i post of sa: 
and of observati 

The view from the top of Caterthnn on a clear day 
is extensive and magnificent (though in recent years 
greatly interfered with by an objectionable belt of 
dense trees). To the south is the city, and its 
my >und Tower, and tha venerabL 

spire of its Cathedral ; the Tower of Johnston on the 
Hill of Garvock, near Laurencekirk; and, in the 
further distance, Arbroath and if ancient Abbey ; 
the Bell Rock, th - ofTay and Forth, with the 

whole Valley of Strathmore from Perth to Aberdeen 
at our feet. 

Gratified by our visit to this mysterious and inter- 
esting relic of the past, a run down hill and we pa c s 
the old Mill of Balrownie and the miller's house, with 
the usual pleasing accompaniments of poultry and 
rosy-cheeked bairns frisking about the corn yard. A 
little under a mile brings us to the entrance, on the 
right, to the long winding carriage drive to 


The Laird, maun hae his ain again, 
The Laird shhll hae his ain again ; 
Let us loup an' hit in* fain. 
The Laird will hae his ain again. 

The mansion-house of Balnamoon — locally pro- 
nounced " Bonnymune " — is a fine old oblong build 
ing, believed to have been built about 1632, and en- 
larged and re-modelled in 1S2S. A stately edifice, 
albeit somewhat weather-worn, it is evidently the 
product of various periods, the more ancient portions, 
with their peaked gables, projections, and narrow 
closely set windows, approximating even to the 
picturesque. It is surrounded by splendid specimens 


of great hoary, ancestral trees, and by extensive and 
well kept pleasure grounds and gardens. Very beau- 
tiful are the many winding walks, terminating often 
in quiet foliage-shrouded cozy nooks, from which, here 
and there, rich fields are seen peeping hopefully and 
cheerfully, and picturesque groups of cattle are lazily 
chewing their cud. The pleasing quietude is broken 
only by the trickling of the burn in the wooded dell, 
and the glad music of the warblers of the balmy 


Here it may be interesting to briefly trace the 
lineage of the different branches of the Balnamoon 
family. V\e have mentioned that a member of the 
family of Collaee -who held the lands from the year 
1347 — acquired considerable notoriety for the part 
he took at the battle of Brechin in 1452, which re- 
sulted in the tide of victory being turned against his 
superior, the Earl of Crawford. Robert of that name 
sold Findourie in 1574, and one of his daughters was 
married to James Hollo of Duncrub, and became the 
maternal ancestor of the Rollo family. John Collaee 
— who in 1632 was served heir of his grandfather, 
John Collaee of Balnamoon, in half of the lands and 
barony of Menmuir, including Balnamoon and others 
■ — was the last of the family of Collaee who possessed 
the lands of Balnamoon. On a stone built into the 
west wall of Balnamoon house are the initials of John 
Collaee, with the date 1584. This is the only visible 
trace of the family in the district. John Collaee 
could not have long retained the lands of Balnamoon, 
for we find that Sir Alexander Carnegy, broth er- 
german to the first Earls of Southesk and Xorthesk, 
" had a charter of the barony of Menmuir in the same 
year - 1632." Sir Alexander Carnegy 's arms are 


sculptured on the family burying vault at the church 
•of Menmuir. He died in 1657, and was succeeded by 
his son, Sir John, who married, first, Lady Elizabeth, 
daughter of James, Earl of Airlie, by whom be had a 
son, .lames, who succeeded ; secondly. Miss Graham, 
daughter of Graham of Claverhouse. Sir dames died 
in 1002, while his son died in 1700, and was succeeded 
by his eldest son of the same name, who was fourth 
of Balnamoon. The latter, dying unmarried in 1704, 
was succeeded by his brother, Alexander, who having 
joined in the rebellion of 1715, forfeited his lands, 
which he, however', reacquired in 1728. At his death, 
in 1750, his son ime sixth of Balnamoon, 

and was known in history as the "Rebel Laird." He 
married Margaret Arbuthnott, heiress of Findowrie, 
and died in 1791. 

According to M'Gregor Peter's "Baronage of 
Angus and Mearns," the progenitor of the Findowrie 
family was Robert Arbuthnott of that Ilk, and his 
third wife Helen Clephane, who had charters of the 
lands of Findowrie, in conjunct fee and life-rent, and 
David, their eldest son, in fee, from Robert Collaiss 
of Balnamoon, on the 14th February 1574. In 1616, 
Robert, son of David Arbuthnott of Findowrie, 
wedded Margaret, daughter of "William Graham of 
Claverhouse, aud widow of Sir William Somyr, 
younger of Balzeordie. James Carnegy, Esq. of 
Balnamoon, " the rebel laird " of " 45," great-great- 
grandson of Sir Alexander, wedded Margaret 
Arbuthnott, daughter, or at least heiress, of Alexander 
Arbuthnott, the last of the lairds in the male line of 
Findowrie, through whom the estate came to Balna- 
moon. He died 1791. 

Many amusing anecdotes are related of the 
boisterous humour and conviviality of the " Rebel 
Laird." It was this laird of Bonnymoon, as it 

THIRD TOUR. }<\>j 

is locally pronounced, of whom the laughable story of 

the wig is told by Dean Ramsay. On returning 
home from a dinner party, where, by mistake, he had 
partaken of sherry brandy instead of port wine, his 
hat and wig fell off in Montreathmont Muir. The 
driver of his gig went out to pick them up. The 
laird was pleased with the hat but not the wig. and 
said — "It's no my wig, Hairy lad." Harry replied — 
" Ye'd better tak' it, sir, for there's nae waile of wigs 
on Monrimmon Moor." On reaching home, Harry, 
sitting in front, told the servant to "tak' out the laird." 
but no laird was there. He had fallen out on the 
moor unobserved by Harry, who at once went back, 
found the Jaird, and brought him home. A neigh- 
bouring laird having called a few days after, and 
having referred to the accident, Balnamoon quietly 
added, "Indeed I maun hae a lume (vessel) that'll 
Jiaud in.' 

On another occasion, Avhen returning home from a 
dinner party, accompanied by John, his servant, in 
passing the river at a ford, he fell into the water. 
" Whae's that faun V inquired the laird. "Deed," 
quoth John, " I witna, an it be no' yer Honour." It 
is said that on one occasion, in his cups, he mounted 
a stone wall and spurred his fancied steed the live- 
long night. One Sabbath morning two gentlemen, 
one a stranger in the district, called at Balnamoon 
and were invited to dinner. They joined in the fore- 
noon devotional exercises, which the laird conducted 
himself, and the stranger was much impressed with 
his piety and religious deportment. After dinner he 
pressed them to drink until they had to be carried to 
bed. The stranger said — " Sic a speat o' praying, 
and sic a speat o' drinking, I never knew in all my 

In Glenmark, Lochlee, a large natural cavity, 



with a small opening, is still known as " Bonnymune's 
Cave." Here the " Rebel Laird " long contrived to 
evade his pursuers. Many in the neighbourhood not 
only knew that Balnamoon resided there, but made 
him their welcome guest on all safe occasions; and, 
notwithstanding heavy bribes and the vigilance of 
spies, his hiding-place was never divulged. The parish 
minister — a sworn enemy of Episcopacy — is said to 
have heartlessly put the enemy on the scent of this 
famous fugitive. One cold, wet day, when he had 
gone to the adjacent farmhouse to warm himself, and 
while sitting by the wide chimney of the kitchen, a 
party of soldiers entered the house in search of him. 
The farmer, urging them to partake of his hospitality, 
gruffly ordered Balnamoon (who was disguised in the 
ordinary garb of a hind, and frightened to leave the 
spot) to go and clean the byres, and give place to the 
strangers. The hint was enough. Balnamoon "at 
once made himself scarce, and was soon safe in the 
retreat of his cave. He was ultimately arrested, 
however, but being set at liberty in consequence of 
some " misnomer," he retired to his family scat, As 
long as he lived he showed his gratitude to the worthy 
farmer of Glenmark, by making him his familiar 
guest when he came to the low country. 

Jervise, in his "Land of the Lindsays," takes 
Gillies to task for the stories he tells in his "Memoirs 
of a Literary Veteran 1 ' about the "Rebel Laird." 
"Of all these Carnegies," Jervise says, "the mosl con- 
spicuous was he who married the heiress of Findowrie, 
and who, with a company of vassals, borea prominent 
part at the battles of Preston, Falkirk, and Culli 
He was governor of Forfarshire on behalf of the 
Prince. Although he was remarkable for humour 
and conviviality, it is not to he concluded that he was 
the illiterate Goth who is said to have cut the fine 


old books of his ancestors to fit the crazy wooden 
shelves. It has been shown that he not only was 
married and left a family, but that he also, to a con- 
siderable extent, augmented his patrimony by pur- 
chase. And although it cannot be said on any 
authentic grounds that he was the author of the 
popular old song of " Low down in the broom " (which 
is generally ascribed to him), the intelligence to fulfil 
the important and trustworthy office, which he held 
duii-'ig " the forty-five," ill agrees with the sottish and 
illiterate character certain writers would give him. 

" The Kebel Laird " was succeeded by his eldest 
son, who died unmarried in 1810, when his nephew, 
•lames Carnegy Knox, son of the proprietor of Keith- 
ock and Markhouse, came to the property, and 
assumed the name Carnegy-Arbuthnott. He was 
ied to a daughter of Mr David Hunter of Black- 
. and by her he had a family of four sons and 
five daughters. He died in 1871 at the patriarchal 
age of 80 years, and was buried at Menmuir. His 
four sons all predeceased him. The eldest surviving 
daughter — Anne —succeeded to the estates. She died 
it two years after that event, and her next sister 
elen — became proprietrix. Through her liberality 
and public spirit, the name of Miss C'arnegy-Arbuth- 
of Balnamoon became a synonym for all that 
considerate and kind, and she was a liberal sup- 
porter of all public charities. She died in June, 
2, and the estates went to her sister, Mrs Mary 
Ann Jemima Capel Carnegy-Arbuthnott, widow of 
Mr Capel, East India merchant, Lon- 

don, ■ eldest surviving son, dames Cam 

Capel was married in 1894 to Ethel Lydia Hill, eldest 
daughter of Mr Arthur Gibson Hill, of Walton 
Brough, East Yorkshire. 

Before referring to Little Brechin — where we arrive 


a few minutes after again reaching the public road, 
which we left on entering the "drive" — it is worthy 
of mention that Balhall, a property in the neighbour- 
hood, is associated with families of distinction. We 
have already referred to the tragedy on "The Moss 
of Balhall," and also to "Beatrices Cairn," and the 
"Mis-sworn Rig," on the northern confines of the 
estate Previous to 1440 it was possed by Sir John 
( Hen of Inchmartin — a forbear of the same name being 
one of the ten barons selected to make the peace of 
Scotland with Edward I. in 1305. It was afterwards 
owned by Sir David Lindsay of Ed z ell, by a descend- 
ant of the old lairds of Aldbar — Hercules Cramond, 
and the Hon. David Erskine of Dun. It continued 
in that family until it was sold, along with the 
patronage of the church of Menmuir to Alexander 
Erskine, who became heir-male and chief of the 
Erskines of Dun, and died in 1855. Balhall then 
became the property of his two daughters, Mrs Ellis 
and Mrs West, who each received a portion of the 
estate, which was then termed Easter and Wester 
Balhall. Captain Wm. Scott-Erskineis now owner of 
the united properties, known as Balhall. 

Little Brechin. 

Some o' the hoosies are biggit wi' divots, 
An covered wi' wattles an' thatch ; 
An' O. sic bonnie kail-yairdies— 
A' bnskit wi' daisies an' thyme, 
Applerenzie, an' flow'ries, wi' n amies 
Banld Robin himsel' cou'dna rhyme. 

The earliest mention we find of Little Brechin is in 
the year 1728, in which } T ear the Town Council of 
Brechin resumed the practice, forborne for some years, 
of riding their marches. They also then feud off a 
piece of the Muir of Brechin to John Ogilvie, under 
the name of " Little Brechin," and the grant was soon 


followed by other feus. The village is within two 
miles to the north of the City of Brechin, and is about 
the centre of that tract of ground denominated 
"Trinity Muir," of which the Town Council of 
Brechin are the superiors. The incorporations be- 
came alarmed in case all the " common guid " was to 
be sold off, so that, to quiet them, the Council, in 
1729, voted a sum in name of a grant to the poor's 
box of the six trades, and as a consideration for their 
trouble in riding the marches. 

The village of Little Brechin consists of a number 
of cottages and small "holdings" and " lairdships/' 
scattered very picturesquely about. The only build- 
ings of any pretension are the public school and 
school-house, erected soon after the beginning of the 
days of School Boards. The houses are in the 
majority of cases plain, and of one storey, with fertile 
kail yairds attached to them, and lying "east and 
west of the road," with a strong tendency to avoid 
anything like orderly arrangement. 
Is our next point of interest. The estate has been 
owned by several well-known families, and in 1889 it 
was purchased by Ceo. M. Inglis, formerly of the 
well-known nitrate firm, Jas. Inglis & Company, 
Iquique, Chili. Mr Inglis is a- cousin of the gifted 
and genial author of " Oor Ain Folk," and other 
works— the Hon. James Inglis, of Sydney, at one 
time Minister of Education, New South Wales, re- 
garding whose forbears we will have something to say 
as we proceed. 

A reference to Murlingden would be incomplete 
were we to overlook its associations with the dreadful 
" plague " with which Brechin was visited in 164748. 
The session records state that " there was no session, 


neither collection, from the 4th A rn il, 1647, by 
in the Lord inflicted the burgh of Brechin with 
the affecting sickness, until the 7th November;" and 
even on the 7th November, when a collection is made, 
" there ia no session, by reason the ministers and elders 
are afraid to keep company," or, as the records of the 
"•ard session bear, " be reason the moderator and 
remanent sessions feared to convene under one roof." 
A stone in the old churchyard of Brechin records that 
in 1647, no fewer than six hundred died of the plague 
in Brechin in the course of four months. Another 
stone, placed between double columns, supporting a 
Saxon arch, records the death in that year of Bessie 
Watt, spouse oibaihii David Donaldson, and their 
daughters, Elspet and Jean, all of whom most prob- 
ably also died of the plague. 

Tradition asserts that the more deeply afflicted of 
the town's people were sent to the common muir, 
where huts were prepared for them, and that they 
were allowed to die unheeded, and be buried by their 
surviving fellow-sufferers. The latter pait of this 
Story, however much it may savour of inhumanity, is 
by no means improbable, and the first portion is cor- 
roborated by the kirk-session records, where entries 
occur, in the months of January and October 1648, of 
payments having been made by the kirk-session to 
several persons who are described as " lying in the 
sickness in the hwU." Record is silent as to the precise 
place of the exile of these unfortunate creatures, but 
tradition affirms that the estate of Murlingden, which 
was feued off the common muir, received its name in 
consequence, and was known of old as Mourningden. 
A burn runs through that den towards Cruick Water, 
and the sides of the den seemed at one time as if 
studded here and there with artificial works about six 
feet square, surrounded by low walls of mud or turf. 


Tradition also says that, instead of the weekly mar- 
kets being held in the town at that time, they stood 
upon the estate of Kintrockat, about two miles to the 
westward, and also that a caldron was used for puri- 
fying the money which was exchanged on these 

The pestilence seems to have continued in and 
around Brechin for the greater part of the year 1648, 
for in January the treasurer of the session takes credit 
for thirty shillings (Scots of course), " given to 
"William Ross lying in ane hutt ; " while in August it 
is twice recorded there was " no session be reasen the 
infection was begun again in the toun ; " and finally, 
in October, £'d 12s additional are given "to buy 
malt and meall to those in the hutts" " These huts," 
says Black in his " History," "are said to have been 
erected in the Glen of Murlingden, and before the 
present garden of that property was made out we re- 
member small mounds at different places which were 
reported to have been huts or houses pulled down 
over the inmates who had died there of the plague." 

Mr Colin Gillies, one of the former proprietors of 
Murlingden, was a man of great enterprise. He was 
not only a flour and corn merchant, but owned several 
extensive spinning, bleaching, and weaving factories 
in the counties of Angus and Mearns. He contri- 
buted the linen statistics to Sir John Sinclair's great 
work, and was for several years Provost of Brechin. 

Mr Gillies belonged to a remarkable family. His 
father, Robert, was a merchant in Brechin, and there 
was a large family of sons and daughters. John, the 
eldest, was the well-known historian of Greece, and 
author of many other works. Before reaching his 
twentieth year, he attained such proficiency in the 
Greek language that he was appointed teacher of 
the University Class during Professor Moore's last 


illness, and- would have succeeded to that chair 
Moore's death had he not preferred ;i journey to the 
Continent, whither he went as guardian to the sons 
of the Earl of Qopetoun. On the death of Dr Robert- 
son he was appointed Historiograph < i Royi I f< 
land, and died in L836, at the advanced age of ninety. 
Though his pursuits were of a classical and historical 
character, he had a clear perception of the ludicrous, 
and entertained his friends with couplet rip- 

tive of the peculiarities of the more singular character* 
of his native town, lie epitaphised a maternal re- 
lative, who was bred a shoemaker, but preferred the 
more exhilarating avocation of a courier, and other 
out-of-door exercises, to his immediate calling : — 

h:i Smith, shoemaker by trade. 
Who wore more shoes than ever he made." 

Dr Gillies' younges' brother, Adam, was Sheriff of 
Kincardineshire, and was raised tu the bench in 1811. 
He was a judge of high authority, of few words, and 
terfce argumentation. Unlike his learned predecessor, 
who loved to use the broad Scotch dialect, he affeeted 
an ignorance of it, and assumed the English accentu- 
ations. While on circuit on one occasion, a case came 
before him, in which some of the witnesses examined 
were natives of Brechin. In course of giving evi- 
dence, one of them, an old man who had known 
Gillies from his infancy, happened to give the name 
of the article hat the sharp provincial accentuation of 
het. His Lordship immediately interrogated the 
deponent — " What do you mean by a het, sir ?" "I 
thocht,'' said the unabashed witness, *' that your 
honour had been lang encuch aboot Brechin to ken 
what a het was ! " 

On leaving the pretty grounds of Murlingden by 
the same gate as we entered we hold direct for the 


Ancient City. Crossing the " Cattle Rake," which 
before the days of railways was the droving road be- 
tween Aberdeen and Perth, we ascend the hill, and on 
the right, before entering Brechin, pass the old estate 
of Cookston, now known as Cookston Farm. 

In 1766 the Dove "Wells of Cookston were pur- 
chased from the proprietor of that estate, and water 
introduced into the town by means of lead pipes, the 
expenses being defrayed by an assessment of Is per 
£, laid on for fifteen years. The water was of excel- 
lent quality, but increase of population in the course 
of a very few years led to the introduction of a 
supply from Burghill. This, too, soon became 
inadequate, and ultimately, in 1874, the Mooran 
Water supply was brought in, which has proved 
plentiful for the wants of the town. 

In 1694 Mr John Carnegie, laird of Cookston, and 
his son, are said to have "almost mastered the burgh " 
through a dispute about the giving off to Mr Carnegie 
part ot fc the adjoining Ljan. A Commission sat on 
the subject in Edinburgh, and the record narrates 
that " young Carnegie had, four years previously, 
struck Alexander Low, a burgess, in his own house, 
and had broke Bailie Cowie's cart, and therewith 
forced open his outer gate, and the windows of his 
house, and, finally, fired a gun at the worthy bailie 
when standing at his own window : and that Car- 
negie, being imprisoned for the riot, had broke the 
jail and come out of it with a cocked pistol and drawn 
sword; for all which he is directed to be prosecuted." 
But the minute holds out the olive wreath, provided 
the bailies and town-clerk can agree with Cookston 
regarding the Loan ; and we rather infer that such 
agreement had been made, for next day " James Car- 
negie, younger of Cookston," is created an honorary 
burgess, and we hear no more word of the matter. 


Passing under the new Forfar and Brechin Railway, 
we reach the Ancient City at the widely known 
North Port Distillery, an establishment erected on 
the site of the old Gallows Hill. 

\-sured of receiving ;i kindly and substantial wel- 
come, we enjoy the soothing quiet and pleasant re- 
flection that follow a well spent day, after having 
arranged on the next morning to seek out scenes 

Moeey crag and mountain grey, 

An rain-brew'd mates a-roarin'. 
Yield us delight. Then onward stray— 
They're there for your adorin'. 


f ourtb XEour. 

Trinity Village, Newton Mill, Inchbare, Ed- 
zell, The Mooran, The Woods of the Burn, 
Gllnksk, Tarfside, Lo.-hlee, Invermark 
Castle, The Queen's Well, &c. 

, -trsrt*- 


A.Y we intend 
4 1 to explore the 
*J_ sublime beauties 
of Glenesk and 
district. To enable the 
visitor to accomplish this 
all the more success- 
fully we commend him 
to furnish himself with 
our ' ; Historical Guide to 
Edzell and Glenesk Dis- 
tricts," which fully and 
attractively describes 
their picturesque 
scenery, antiquities, and 
curious tradition?. Thus 
necessary for us in this tour 
to touch briefly on the more outstanding features of 


provided, it is only 


A.a there are no hotels in "the Glen," it is neces- 
sary to provide "for man and beast before starting. 
Excellent provision ia made for the journey by all our 
local hirers. Mr Knowles' (Crown Hotel) four-in- 
hand coach, "The Olden Times, M is on the ground, as 
in the "good old coaching days," from June to 
September as advertised. Tourists and others, who 
travel by the Brechin and Ed z ell Railway to the 
popular health resort, will find Messrs Manson & 
Son's four-in-hand, " Tin; Ivanhoe," in waiting, as 
advertised. As there are many places of interest be- 
tween Brechin and Bdzell, we elect to go by coach. 
At the " Crown " we find the sleek and well-groomed 
horses impatient to start ; the red-coated driver 
handles the "ribbons"' with that calm expression of 
face that betokens entire confidence in himself and 
his team. The guard blows a blast on the horn, and 
we are off. 


Passing under the Forfar and Brechin Railway, 
we have, on the right, as we ascend " Unthank 
Brae,"' Glencadam House (the residence of ex-Provost 
Lamb), embowered amongst luxuriant foliage. One 
mile to the north of Brechin, on the left, we have 
Trinity Muir, notable as the site of the old-established 
markets for the sale of sheep, cattle, and horses — at 
one time ranking in importance to the Falkirk Trysts, 
but now fast dying out owing to the popularity of 
Auction Marts. There is also the collecting reser- 
voir of the Brechin Water Works. The Mooran 
Burn, which is the source of the supply, springs from 
the top of Craig Soales, one of the spurs of the highest 
mountain of the Grampian range, in the Glenesk 

About three miles from the source of the stream. 

182 ARCH M» THE A.N' i.N r CITY. 

and about two miles from ti. ' I an, arc 

the Brechin Water Works, the collecting reservoir 
being constructed in a naturally formed basin, almost 
entin-ly surrounded with hills. The water is con- 
veyed in pipes, by way of Edzell, to the reservoir at 
Trinity Muir, large enough to hold a Bix days' Bupply 
to the town, at the rate of 300,000 gallons per d 
The whole water route is twelve mile- in length, and 
the total cost of the scheme amount* 
The water was "turned on" at the Trinity Muir 
reservoir on the I October, 1^74, by Lord Dal- 

housie, C.B. I rlenmark). His Lord- 

ship • 1 to the tit: "ii the death 

of his cousin, Fox Maule, 11th Karl of Dalhousie, in 
1>74. Hediedat Dalhousie Castle in 1880, and the 
above was his first and only " public function" in 
Brechin, for although he had spent a long and honour- 
able career in the service of his country, he seldom 
spoke in his old age at public meetings. 

Trinity— a thriving and prettily situated village, 
next arrests our attention. Its site was sold by the 
Brechin Council in 1836 to a number of persons who 
erected neat residences. Recently quite a number of 
handsome villas have been built. It is the centre 
of numerous pleasant walks, and is accordingly a 
popular resort for summer lodgers. Half a mile 
further, to the right, is Temple wood (owned by Mr 
Geo. T. Henderson), formerly known as Cairnbank, and 
more anciently styled Templehill of Bothers, while 
a short distance of under a mile we find Huntly Hill, 
the seene of the Battle of Brechin, in 145l', to which 
we will refer in a subsequent tour. Another half-mile 
along the turnpike, and the road to the left leads to 
Edzell, Lethnot, and Lochlee, passing the ancient 
mansion-houses of Keithock and Xewtonmill. These 
properties are belong to Mr William M'Xab. 2se\v- 


tonmill was formerly owned by Captain Livingstone- 
Ogilvie, the representative of Sir George, sixth and 
last Baronet of Barras. This family obtained the 
baronetcy for their services in preserving the ancient 
Regalia 'of Scotland during the siege of Dunnottar 

On crossing the Bridge of Cruick, a fine view of the 
Grampians is obtained, with the celebrated fort of 
Caterthun, three or four miles to the left. About 
half a mile to the left is the Kirkyard of Stracathro 
(or valley of the king's battles), the scene of King 
John Baliol's penance to Edward I. in 1296. Pre- 
viously, in 1130, a battle was fought in the same 
neighbourhood between David I. and Angus, Earl of 
Moray, which ended in the defeat of the latter. 

We now reach the hamlet of Inchbare, with its 
rural Post Office, its general merchant and tailor's 
beild. The agricultural implements at, and the horse- 
shoe on, the door of another biggin' tells, in unmis- 
takable terms, where the smith is located, and we 
perceive at a glance where the joiner's establishment 
is by the bright-coloured carts without wheels strewn 
helplessly about on the ground, and the wheels with- 
out carts" lazily lying against the wall. The view up 
and down the'river 1'rom the West Water Bridge is 
very pleasing. 

All thing* are beautiful ; if we survey 

The mighty landscape, stretching faraway. 

VVe <ee the level valley seem to rise 

In beatuous lines, until it meets the skies. 

The sweet perspective of each grove, where trees 

Diminish as they rustle in the breeze. 

The wide-spread river looks a little rill. 

And shadowy azure gathers round each hill. 


A run of a little over two miles along a fine level 
road, and we pass through the Dalhousie Arch, 


- + \ ' 

F - - - . - ' ' 



erected in 1889 by the tenants on the Brechin Castle, 
Edzell, Lochlee, and Lethnot estate?, in memory of 
John William Ramsav, 13th Earl of Dalhousie, ao-ed 
40, and his Countess, Ida Louisa Bennet, aged 30, 
who died — the former on 25th, and the latter on 24th 
November 1887. The arch, which is 18 feet high, 
commemorates the memory of a much-loved and 
true-hearted nobleman, who devoted during his short 
life that personal attention to the affairs of his 

tenantry which, coupled with the absolute honesty 
of the man and his sincerity of purpose manifested 
in ail he did, endeared him to the hearts of all classes. 
In the structure the nature of the surrounding land- 
scape has been kept in view In the distance is the 
old, roofless, ivy-clad tower of the " Lichtsome 
Lindsays." In the crumbling walls and ruined tower 
of Edzell Castle we have the past vividlj 7 imaged in 
stone and lime — rigid, but with traces of decay. 
Beyond are the purple hills, in the bosom of which 
lie many a bonny glen. The design of the arch, too, 
partakes a good deal of what one might imagine the 


- i CITY. 

entra But 

altho tbe old 

. and oving 



We ]i.,-> lubrious 


healthful and roi 

Fifty years ago, the houses were mostly of one storey, 
thatched, and by no 1. rell built. Now, the 

march of improvement is conspicuous. It has a 
number of (but stiii too few for the requirements of 
the numerous visitors), superior bouses, instead of its 
former mud cottages, a Gas Work, Post Office, 
Bank, Established and United Free Churches, Schools, 
Literary Society and Eeading-Room, Bowling ;md 


Curling Clubs, Golf Course, three excellent hotel ; r 
and, during summer, a very fashionable society. 
Opposite the railway station, the magnificent 
Inglis Memorial Hall at once attracts the eye. It 
was erected and endowed by Colonel Robert Inglis, 
of Craigendowie, Reigate, in memory of his father 
and mother. Rev. Robert Inglis was the first 
minister of the first Free Church in Edzell the con- 
gregation of which removed in 1901 to th«; handsom • 
new place of worship in Dalhousie Street. The 
beautifully fitted up Memorial Hall buildings include, 


besides a spacious hall for entertainments and meet- 
ings, a library (well stocked by the generous donor), 
reading-room, Parish Council Chambers, &c. ; while 
in the tower there is a fine peal of bells. The hall 
was opened, amid much rejoicing, by the Colonel in 

The village mainly consists of two parallel streets 
with connecting thoroughfares. The cottages are 
neat, with little front plots smiling with many 


coloured tl- nd back gardens for vegetables. 

There are several handsome villas, with tastefully 
laid-out grounds and healthy-looking laburnum,»lilac, 
and mountain ash I About the middle of the 

principal, or High Street, a lane strikes off to 

ihf right, by which the river can be reached. The 

which arrests the attention here is the 

airy-lo >king suspension bridge for fool past over 

the North K<k. It coi not only the two hanks, 

hut also the counties of Forfar and Kincardine the 
river being the march of the two counties from above 
this place and downwards to the sea. About a mile 
below the su >n bridge, at Arnha', is a mineral 

well said to 1'.' of rare medicinal value. 

Pursuing our course up the right bank, we find the 
road gradually ascending, and the aspect of the rive* 
changing at almost every turn. The woods begin to 
gathe ut it, first on the one side and then 

on both, and the banks get higher. Xow the stream 
is spread over a rough bottom, and goes brawling 
along, and then it is sweeping on, dark and silent, 
under the overhanging woods — the foliage in all the 
glorious richness of summer being piled up in every 
variety of beauty. Far down below the path there 
are rich coronals of ferns, with tall fronds, while now 
and again a dripping tributary enters the stream from 
either side. By and by the banks get higher 
and higher ; thence different ranges of trees are 
seen on the opposite bank, and the river bottom be- 
comes rough and bold, with the cropped out strata 
of ha^d rocks, which, jutting out at an acute angle 
toward the north-west, catch the stream as it were 
right in the teeth. The rocks are worked into little 
caverns, and the stream is broken up into pools and 
eddies. A waterfall rushes down the rocky bank, 
bespangling the leaves of the trees with glittering 



drops, and filling the dell with sound. Here the path 
leads on to G-annochy Bridge. 

But at present Ave return to the village, one mile 
distant by the high road, which cuts through the 
centre of the common ground or muir. On the green 
is ample space for cricket and other games, and also 
a curling pond, while opposite the Panmure Arms 


Hotel is a flagstaff, and seats for invalids who may not 
be able to take long strolls. On the muir is also a 
handsome fountain, and a " Soldiers' Memorial," 
erected in 1902, in memory of local men who died in 
the South African War. 

Here we also find the church, with tower surmoun- 
ted by an open iron belfry of the most aerial type. 
In Vol. III. of Scott's " Fasti," we learn that the 
parish of Edzell was supplied by Mr Thomas Ramsay 
"reader," from 1567 to 1571. In 1644 David 


Fullarton was mil ; and, living in troublesome 

time 8, he had no sermon 30th Nov., 1651, "the 
English army having come to quarter, and scattered 
all the people and provyd coi n and - 

In 1714 the minister" (Rol y) found the doors 

of the church Bhut one Sabbath morning, by order of 
laird of Edzell, and therefore preached in the 
churchyard from th( Song fS lomon, iv. 16. "When 
hi^ co-presbyter, Mr Johnston of Brechin, went to 
preach that day four found the d< 

shui and barricaded, and not only so, but both beand 
the pe had brought with bim were inhumanely 

and barbarously treated, and rabbled by a great many 
people whom David Lindsay of Edzell hounded out 
and hired forthat purpose. The Lord's day following 
Mr <>. was stopt on his way to church by those that 
were with the laird, who did violently I eral of 

those who came with him, with - to the effusion 

of their blood, and thrust at the breasts of others, 
with naked knives and dirks, and violently beat them, 
and strike them with stones and rungs, and bruised 
them to that degree that some fainted, others lay dead 
on the ground for some time, and others they drove 
into the West- Water, running by the church, and 
:ed them to wade, and pass hither and thither in 
the said water, until they were almost drowned. 
David L. of Edzell gave the rabblers money, with ale 
and brandy, to intoxicate them that morninor." 

The Reverend George Low, the eminent naturalist, 
was a native of Edzell, his father filling the humble 
office of beadle of the parish. He was the author of 
"Fauna Orcadensis,"and accompanied Pennant in his 
famous Shetland tour. 

As a whole day might have been enjoyably spent 
around Edzell, we, for the benefit of those desiring to 



do so will before proceeding further, refer to some 
of the places of historical interest and great natural 

Edzell Castle. 

Green ivy deeds the roofless wa's— 

An" through ilka airch the t mpestbJaws : 

While here and there, in dusky raws, 

The feathered nation.-, 
O' howlets, kaes. an' huddy-craws. 

Haul consul! a nons. 

A mile to the left, along the Lethnot Koad, are the 
extensive and imposing ruins of Edzell Castle It 
stands in solemn dignity at the base of the lower 
range of the Grampian mountain-chain. Ancient- 
looking tree., mounds and grassy hillocks, quiet and 
impressive gloom, are the appropriate introduction to 


the silent and deserted ruin. 

With perhaps the 
exception" of "the Stirling tower, or the large square 
keep on the south side of the castle, the whole had 
been built by David, ninth Earl of Crawford, and his 
son, Lord Edzell. 

192 AROUND THE AX<1! V. 

-. taken as a who! . the 

most in. [initicent of any in the shin and 

Mearns, with perhaps the exception of Dunnottar, 
which rival them only in point of extent. Il 
to have bc< n admirably planned with a view to defence 
— loopholes being* . nd everyapproach 

and - immanded. 

The garden wall i.s ornamented by a number 
of elaborate carvings in stone, and forms one of 
the most interesting mem a I the kind in 
E itland. These artistic embellishments surround 
nearly half -an -acre of ground, which formed I 
Mower garden, and greatly interest the visitor. The 
walls have representations of estial deiti 

sculptured on oval panels. 

The castle, built at different periods, consisted of 
two stately towers conn< ler by what 1. 

a rang -it npai The 

t thick. The 
the tower c< of two damn, gloomy 

vaults, to which a glimmer of light is admits 
small apertur< to have been 

wards or prisons for holding condemned prisoners. 
The modern portion, which stretches from the keep 
northward, was the work of David of Edzell, and is 
now the most ruinous part. The foundations of old 
bathing rooms, at the south-west corner of the gardens 
were brought to light some years ago, and, together 
with the old picturesque summer-house, put into a 
good state of repair. The donjon, or Stirling Tower, 
to which we have already referred, is even yet an 
imposing and almost entire structure. The outer 
walls of the Castle are pretty entire; but the inner 
have suffered sadly, as have most of the vaults, which 
had been carried around the whole. Instead of 
being strewed with rushes, or decorated with tapestry 


as in the olden time, the acrid nettle, and other 
indigenous weeds, until recently, luxuriated on the 
floors and crumbling walls, and the screech owl and 
raven nestled in the crevices. 

Now, the smooth surface of the enclosed court or 
garden is beautiful with neatly-trimmed grass, and 
has a well-kept walk around it. Everything possible 
is now done to keep the ancient pile in preservation. 
The grounds have been trimmed with excellent taste, 
and the bare and solemn surroundings are in keeping 
with the sombre air of departed grandeur which 
pervades all ruins, while sympathising Nature sits 
silent around. 

The Castle of Edzell was honoured with the 
presence of Mary, Queen of Scots, on the 25th of 
August 1562, while her Majesty was on her well- 
known northern expedition to quell the Huntly 
Kebellion. It was on her return, accompanied by 
Lords Murray, Maitland, and Lindsay (the last of 
whom afterwards forced her to resign the crown at 
Lochleven), that she held a Council, and remained for 
the night, from which time the room where she slept, 
though its locality is unknown, was ever after called 
the Queen's Chamber. 

From the magnificent style in which cookery was 
conducted at Edzell Castle, and the liberality of its- 
owners to the poor, it was familiarly known by the 
title of "The Kitchen of Angus." Oxen were 
roasted whole, and everything conducted in a corres- 
pondingly sumptuous style. Each day, after the 
family had dined, the poor of the parish congregated 
in the courtyard, and, taking their seats on the stone 
benches (which still remain on both sides of the outer 
entrance passage), received their quota of beef from 
the hands of the lady or daughters of "the proud 
house of Edzell." 


The quaint old summer-house, in which a book for 
names will be found, is fitted up for the reception of 
visitors, of whom, since the ruins were cleared 
of rubbish, and otherwise put in order, there have 
been thousands annually. The house contains some fine 
specimens of oak carving preserved in frames. The 
room is fitted up with a stone table and seats, while 
the keeper occupies the upper floor, and courteously 
and very intelligently attends to the wants of the 
numerous visitors. 

On two occasions since the Castle was deserted by 
the Lindsays in 1715, has the great kitchen fire been 
kindled, and a dinner cooked for the proprietor. The 
first was on the 2nd October 1856, when Lord Pan- 
mure (Fox Maule, afterwards Earl of Dalhousie) was 
entertained within the flower garden by upwards of 
200 of his tenantry. Then, on 1st Nov., 1882, the 
late Earl, John William, entertained his tenantry to 
a, sumptuous banquet in a large marquee, erected in 
the ancient flower garden. The scene was one to be 
remembered. The gaunt skeleton-looking windows, 
and the niches above the elaborate carvings on the 
wall surrounding the old flower-garden, were lighted 
up by Padella lamps, and similar lamps were placed 
.at intervals on the tops of the ruin, and throughout the 
whole buildings. In the darkness of the night the 
effect was very striking. The gathering of the ten- 
antry in such a place, and the smoke seen re-issuing 
from the chimney of " The Kitchen of Angus " was 
worthy of the name of Ramsay, and of one who was 
not like his " forbear," " the Laird o' Cockpen," 
merely " ta'en up wi' affairs o' the State," but who 
dealt not only in kind words, but made good deeds 
the rule of his too short life. 

Weill at thy feet rnigrht hallowed Ceres bow, 
For countless debts her sons unto thee owe. 


Thy liberal hand supplied the needy day. 

And cheered the poor thro' life's sad chequer'd way, 

And with one voice, the wise of many creed-. 

Confessed thy worth, and hailed thy generous deeds. 

The honoured name was music to the ear— 

The needy'.- friend— and Scotland's pattern Peer. 


It is worthy of remark that the old kirk was per- 
haps the earliest slated of our landward churches. So 
early as 1641, we are not only informed that a pay- 
ment was made to " the sclaitter for poynting the 
kirk," but have a glimpse at the extras of over pay- 
ments of the time in the curious item of "mair of 
drink silver to his boy, 6d." The old bell of St Law- 
rence was lost sight of for a long lapse of years, and 
was accidently recovered by being dragged from the 
bottom of the old well of Durayhill, in the early part 
of the last century. It lay in the church down 
to the period of its demolition, and has since been 
completely lost sight of. 

The old kirk and kirkyard were within the same 
delta as the original Castle, by the side of the "West 
Water. Few rural burying grounds are more charm- 
ingly situated. Of the place of worship, where so 
many of the proud lords of Edzell and their humble 
retainers bowed the knee, there is little left. The 
vault was repaired by the Dowager Countess of 
Jrawford and P>alcarres in 1881. The vault under- 
neath, that was built with the aisle in or just before 
154 ( J, by David Lindsay of Edzell, the ninth Earl of 
Crawford, and in which he himself and his Countess 
were laid, was also cared for. It will be felt that 
the^e repairs were a becoming tribute due to the 
memory of one of the most honoured families in 
Forfarshire, and entirely agreeable to the great 
respect in which the name is still held. Down to the 


year 1818, when the presenl place of worship was 
erected at the village, the church stood within the 
burial ground. A broken octagonal-shaped font, about 
20 inches in diameter, of rude workmanship, is 
preserved within the aisle ; and also fragments of a 
tombstone, bearing the Lindsay arms, much defaced. 
These fragments are the only visible record of the 
Lindsays at the church of Edzell. 

The first Lindsay of Edzell was Sir Alexander, a 
lineal descendant of Walter of Lindsay, an Anglo- 
Norman, who came to Scotland about 1116. Sir 
Alexander acquired to lordships of Edzell, Lethnot, 
and Glenesk, by marrying Katherine, a daughter and 
co-heiress of Sir John of Stirling. Sir Alexander's 
eldest son succeeded to his mother's patrimony ; and 
in 1397, on the death of his uncle, Sir James Lind- 
say, of Crawford, he became chief of his family, and 
heir to the Lindsay estates in Clydesdale, &c. 
He married Elizabeth, daughter of Robert 
II., and was created Earl of Crawford, 21st 
April, 1398. The fifth Earl was created Duke of 
Montrose, a title which none of his successors appear 
to have assumed, and when it was claimed by the late 
Earl of Crawford, the House of Lords gave an adverse 
decision, owing to some real or supposed restriction 
in the patent. His Lordship, who died at Dunnecht 
House, 15th December, 1869, a^ed 86, was Premier 
Peer of Scotland. He was succeeded by his eldest 
son, Lord Lindsay, author of " The Lives of the 
Lindsays," and other interesting works. His Lord- 
ship died at Florence, in Dec, 1S80. His remains 
were brought to the family residence at Dunnecht, 
Aberdeenshire, and interred in a vault, which had 
been constructed shortly before, under his Lordship's 
directions. The sacrilegious rifling of the tomb, and 


the mysterious disappearance of the body in Dec., 
1881, will still be fresh in the memory of the reader. 

Sir David Lindsay left a daughter, who became 
the wife of the chief of the house of Dalhousie, and 
the mother of Sir Alexander Ramsay, a distinguished 
warrior. It is a remarkable circumstance that, after 
a period of more than five hundred years since this 
first inter-marriage of the families of Lindsay and 
Ramsay, a scion of the latter now owns the Castle of 
Edzell. In 1714 David Ramsay sold the Castle and 
estate of Edzell, and the estate of Glenesk, to James, 
fourth Earl of Panmure ; and so the ancient posses- 
sions of the Lindsays in Glenesk became merged in 
the extensive properties of the House of Panmure. 
The succession in the junior line failed at the decease 
of Fox Ramsay-Maule, second Baron Panmure in the 
Peerage of Great Britain, who became Earl of Dal- 
housie in the Peerage of Scotland on the decease of 
his cousin, the Marquis of Dalhousie, Governor- 
General of India. In consequence, the Panmure 
estates all reverted to the elder branch of the house 
of Ramsay which house is now represented by the 
youthful Earl, Arthur George Maule Ramsay, born 
at Brechin Castle, 1878. He was only in his 9th 
year at the time of the lamented death of his father, 
John William, 13th Earl of Dalhousie. 

Space will not admit telling at any length the 
story of the avaricious sexton who attempted to 
secure the jewellery which loaded the body of a lady, 
buried in the Lindsay vault, while in a trance. 
Bent on obtaining the treasure at all hazards, he 
went, under night, and soon suceeded in putting him- 
self in possession of the whole, except the massive 
rings which girded the swollen fingers. The idea of 
amputation flashed through his relentless mind, and 
instantly the fatal blade of his knife made a deep 


incision. A slight movement of the body followed, 
and the faint " Alas ! " soon staggered his valour. 
With a heart grateful for the restoration of life, she 
kindly permitted him to retain his sacrilegious spoil, 
and the sexton was never more heard of. This and 
other traditions, as well as particulars of the ancient 
proprietors of these lands, will be found detailed in 
our " Guide to Edzell and Glenesk Districts." 

It serves our present purpose, however, and it will 
interest the visitor, to refer particularly to Sir David. 
His early life was a striking contrast to that of his 
later years. Wheo young, he exhibted the hot- 
headed character of feudal times, and was indifferent 
to bloodshed. It has been said that later in life the 
sword, the pen, and the pruning-hook were equally 
familiar to his hand, as well as the geologist's ham- 
mer. He also had a taste for architecture and design, 
and his proficiency in literature is shown by the King- 
making him one of the Lords of Session ; while the 
extensive additions which he made to the Castle, 
begun by his father, - r :re still apparent in the ruins of 
those gigantic and :asteful structures. He re-built the 
garden wall in a style of architectural decoration 
almost unparalleled, representing the Theological and 
Cardinal virtues, the Seven Sciences, the Planets, &c., 
in the allegorical style and manner of the fourteenth 
century, the sight of which still calls forth the admir- 
ation of every intelligent visitor. 


The painful nature of the farewell visit of David, 
the last Laird of Edzell, is pathetically told as follows 
by Lord Lindsay, in his " Lives of the Lindsays " : — 

The Laird, like his father, had been a wild and waste- 
ful man, and had been long awa' ; deeply engaged with 


the unsuccessful party of the Stuarts. One afternoon the 
poor Baron, with a heavy heart, followed by one of a' his 
company, came to the Castle, almost unnoticed ; a few 
servants had been the only inhabitants for many months. 
The broken-hearted ruined man sat ail night in the large 
hall, sadly occupied — destroying papers sometimes, some- 
times writing, sometimes sitting mournfully silent — unable 
to fix his thoughts on the present or to contemplate the 
future. In the course of the following day he left the 
Castle in the same manner in which he had come ; and , 
turning round to take a last look of the old towers, he 
drew a last long sigh, and wept. He was never seen here 

He had two sisters, Margaret and Janet. Janet, 
who had been followed- in her walks about Edzell by 
a pet iamb, fell the victim of a vile seducer, and died 
in England in infamy. Margaret became the wife of 
"Watson of Aitherny, in Fife, and her visit to Edzell 
Castle Lord Lindsay has also told most touchingly : — 

c ' Year after year passed away, and the Castle fell to 
ruin — the pleasance became a wilderuess, and the name of 
the old proprietors was seldom mentioned, when a Jady 
arrived one day at Edzell, in her own coach, and drove to 
the Castle. She was tall and beautiful, and dressed in 
deep mourning. ' When she came near the ancient 
burying-place,' says the same faint voice of the past 
(tradition), " she alighted and went into the chapel. The 
poor lady wept sore at the ruin of her house and the fate 
of her family. After a while she came out, and was- 
driven in a coach up to the Castle ; she went through as 
much of it as she could, for stairs had fallen down and 
roofs had fallen in. She found her way to what in for- 
mer days had been her own room, and there, overcome 
with sorrow she sat down and wept.' And such was the 
end of the ' proud house of Edzell.' " 

The hospitable fire was cpienched, the hearth was soon 
rendered desolate, and the place became the common ren- 
dezvous for traffickers in illicit goods. Thus the cherished 
abode of a long race of the most powerful barons of the 


Kingdom was reduced bo its present condition ; ana the 
courtyard of the Castle no longer echoes with the war-cry 
of tli" mailed warrior issuing to battle, or rings with the 
tramp of his charger." 

After many a glance at "the ancient tower of 
Edzell," as Sir Walter Scott calls the old pile, we 
climb up the rising ground behind and rapturously 
e on the beautiful scene it commands. At our 
feet lies the noble Castle, and a little beyond are the 
picturesque kirkyard and the birch-fringed banks of 
the river. Here, in the summer evenings, noble 
maidens of the olden time would doubtless sit enjoy- 
ing the fine pros nd probably Mary, Queen of 
Scots, also sat here on the occasion of her visit in 
Time, however, will not permit us to linger. 
Suffice it to say that if we keep the line of the pictur- 
esque and pleasant road along the side of the West 
Water for three or four miles we reach Lethnot at 
the point we left it in our last tour. 

Yellow whins and hells of blue 
Mil - The turf's green hue, 

While the thistle in it< pride 
Wu« the wild rose by its side. 

The Bridge of Mooran. 

We have a special feast of good things in store when 
we start our next tour, so that, as we have a rich 
treat as we journey onwards to-day, we hope our 
friends on reaching the Gannochy Bridge will merely 
stop for a few minutes and view T the prospect up the 
Xorth Esk — the lower part between this and Edzell 
having already been described — reserving until to- 
morrow investigating the folk-lore of a scene where 

Beauty aud wildness meet together— 

Blend 'with the rocks, the woods, and heather. 


Driving from Edzell to Glenesk, and just as we 
come in sight of the ivy-clad shooting lodge of 
Gannochy, to the left, the road to the Bridge 
of Mooran leaves the highway, and enters Glenesk on 
the west side of the river. As this is a scene of wild 
beauty not until recently known by tourists, we 
would do well to draw attention to it, as no more en- 
joyable drive or walk for an afternoon from Edzell 
could, amongst the many in the district, be suggested. 
It shows the Glen from a different standpoint than 
the Glenesk Road, and from the elevation attained 
you obtain wide and sweeping vistas of the beautiful 

As Ave proceed, the aspect of the country gradually 
changes from lowland fertility to the "land of brown 
heath and shaggy wood." The glen opens out between 
the hills, and glimpses of the silver waters of the Esk 
are caught between the glades of birch and hazel that 
fringe its banks. On the right, Mount Battock rears 
his bare bluft' crest above his lesser satellites. On the 
left the spurs of Wirren creep down into the valley, 
forming beautiful green holms and sequestered 

Past the farm of Dalbog, cultivation ceases, and we 
now enter a region sacred to muirfowl and black cock 
— a wilderness solitude, the silence of which is 
unbroken save by the bleating of the sheep on 
the hills, and the rushing of the mountain stream over 
its rocky bed. 

A more delightful spot for a picnic than the 
plateau beside the bridge could not be desired. Here 
the rugged and the picturesque are admirably 
combined, and form a scene of natural beauty that 
would well repay the pencil of an artist. At this 
point the Mooran joins its waters with the North Esk. 
The Mooran, scarcely more than a Highland burn, 



cuts it> way through a dee]), narrowfglen, the banks 
of which are clothed with Dirks and hazel, tin 
which the brawling stream is seen rushing i 
a boulder-strewn bed. A quaint old bridge of one 
arch spans the ravine about fifty yards from the 
meeting of the waters. Here the Esk has worked 
for itself a passage through a rocky barrier, and its 


tracted toa few 

feet, rolls on, 
black and sul- 
len, between 
the sandstone 
ramparts that 
rise, rug. 
and precipit- 
ous, on either 
side to a height 
of fifty or sixty 
feet. A den:=e 
growth of 
.birch, rowan, 
aider, and pine 
wave on the 
summits and 
upper slopes 
of the lofty 
brig o' mooeax. banks, their 

umbrageous shadows overhanging the stream 
in many parts. At various points of its course 
jutting crags on either side send the living 
stream with greater rapidity to the right or 
left, singing in chorus with the moaning of the wind 
among the trees, or hissing and roaring in unison 
with the wild howling of the breeze when boreas is 
making himself heard and felt. On the opposite side 




(the site of the old Castle of Auchmull, to be referred 
to as we wend our course up Glenesk), the character 
of the river, and of the country through which it 
flows, becomes quite changed. Its upland freedom is 
curtailed, and its waters are confined between steep 
and lofty rocky walls. The deep gorge into which it 
now enters commences near the Bridge of Mooran 
and is continued through the property of The Burn, 
some distance beyond. 

The rank vi ion on little level spots under jut- 

ting rocks, the lofty cliffs covered with lichens which 
harmonise with the colour of the rock, the waving 
which here and there spring from the clefts and 
dells on each side of the stream, and other acces- 
sories unite to increase the picturesque grandeur of 
this wild gorge. Scarcely anything can surpass the 
impressiveness of the rocks at this place, which, apart 
from the surrounding birks of Corneskorn, are shaded 
by clusters of other trees of surpassing elegance and 
beauty. About two miles up the hill road, and over 
a stretch of heather, the visitor will find the simple 
"intake" of the Brechin water supply referred to on 
page 182. 

The Burn. 

Resuming our route where we left it — at the 
Gannochy, and, after a short distance, turn- 
to the left, we are soon overshadowed by the Woods 
of The Burn — the beautiful and romantic residence 
of Colonel Chas. MTnroy, C.B. As the grounds are 
private, special permission has to be obtained from 
the proprietor to walk through the woods and by 
the river-side. On both banks of the river there are 
fine walks, which are connected by a suspension 
bridge. In several places the paths are cut out of the 
solid jasper-veined rocks, and thus 



We walk on stairs b< th up and (Iowa 

On {.'tins mi^ht^THce th' Impei al Crown. 

Tne burn is de-cribed as a place for which Nature 
has done much, by cutting out a pass about six miles 





p s m^ 


/ ^ 


in length, and surrounding it with 
heathy hills, and pouring through it 
the North Esk, a rapid mountain 
stream, which, from the nature of the 
rocks through which it flows, assumes 
the colour of dark purple wine, and, 
after rain, becomes "black as blood, 
mingled with ink." Art has done her 
part in covering the sides of the pass 
with the richest and most varied 
woodlands ; in spanning the stream 


with, here and there rustic foot-bridges, over- 
looking cataracts, up which you can often 
see the salmon leaping as if no wings of 
spray. The whole is surmounted with an old tower, 
standing lonely, at the very head of the pass, 
on its lofty crag, and looking down in pensive 
pride on the gorgeous chaos of hills, woods, crags, 
and waters ; Avhile the lofty mountains in the back- 
ground give grandeur to the landscape of an indescrib- 
ably romantic and picturesque nature. The tower 
referred to is known as " The Doulie Tower/' and is 
popularly believed to be an ancient erection for defence 
or offence ; but as a matter of fact it was built as a 
summer house overlooking the river, before the trees 
grew up, bv Lord Adam Gordon aoout 1796. 
5 The late Rev. George Gilhllan said that, if he had 
the choice of a spot to die at, and were disembodied 
spirits permitted to chose srme particular scene for 
an eternal sanctuary, his should be found by the side 
of those clustering woods. 

Down to about the year 1780, when Lord Adam 
Gordon (Commander-in-chief of the forces in Scot- 
land, and brother of Lord "Lewie Gordon," cele- 
brated in Jacobite song), bought the Burn, this 
beautifully-ornamented and wooded place was almost 
destitute of trees or shrubs, or of any sort of cultiva- 
tion. Xo sooner, however, had his Lordship acquired 
possession than the work of improvement began, and 
as has been well said, by his disinterested labours, be, 
within a score of years, "created a desert into an 
Arcadian grove." Under his skilful treatment the 
grand natural scenery that had hitherto blushed un- 
seen became a thing of beauty which has been a joy to 
many a tourist who has since visited the charming spot. 

We are now winding ourselves into the bosom of 



»un tains which, at a distance, appeared as an 
effectual barrier against all intrusion. The wayside is 
[y fringed with the graceful birch and the 
row; n, while the modest wayside flower nestles humbly 
"low dooii amang the broom. " About a mile and a 
half above the Woods of the Burn, we arrive at the 
Bridge of Auchmull. Opposite the Burn of Auch- 
mull, but almost lost to the view of the traveller, on 
the wrsr side of the river, are, as we have seen, the 
Bridge and Burn of Mooran, the vicinity of which is 
perhaps the most romantic part of the North Esk. 
As we proceed, its windings open up new views, and 
a continual succession of pictures in every variety of 
colour, richly painted and drawn by the hand of 
re. These possess much of one character, yet 
are diversified by details which the Master 
painter knows so well how to throw off with match- 

lm&^j$ ^ ess g k^ an( l indescribable 
'tjjl effect No deformities of ex- 
pression, no inconsistencies or 
incongruities mar the picture ; sun and shade are 


profusely mixed together, giving endless changes to 
the varied scenery. 

The hills are not generally abrupt, and being 
crowded together, they present a rounded outline. 
They embrace, however, many a picturesque glen, 
cheered with its native burn, glowing with wild 
flowers, and sending up the peaceful smoke from the 
cottages (now, it is to be regretted, much fewer in 
number than in former years), in the midst 
of a cultivated patch. Flocks of sheep speck 
the sides of the mountains, while the deer -may 
occasionally be seen against the sky line peering from 
their summits. 

Our road now necessarily lies along the river s 
banks, from both of which the heath-clad hills rise 
abruptly, leaving but contracted haughs for the labour 
of the husbandman. Four miles from Gannochy 
Bridge, on the right, stood the old Castle of Auch- 
mull, where young Lindsay took refuge after the 
murder of Lord Spynie, in the High Street of Edin- 
burgh in 1607. This Castle was occupied by the 
farmer down to 1772, about which time he found it 
so inconvenient that he offered to bear the cost of a 
new house, provided the proprietor would allow him 
the wood and iron, and other materials of the Castle, 
with which to erect it. Unfortunately, this was 
acceded to, and ere long the famous refuge of the 
murderer of Lord Spynie was sadly mutilated ; and 
the work of destruction once begun, had only its 
limits in the complete annihilation of the stronghold. 
Only a small portion of the foundation is now trace- 


"We're round the knowe, whaur Druid folk 
Corninuned aneth their sacred oak, 
And shattered rocks o' ponderous size, 
A least lor geologic eyes ! 


Whether they've drappit frae the skies, 

It muk's nae odds ; 
There's here what could macadamize 

Our country's roads. 

About seven miles from the Gannochy, we find our- 
selves descending into a beautiful valley, formed by 
an unusual recession of the mountains. Just as we 
begin the descent we find, on the right, and at a short 
distance from the road, a farm-steading, and in its 
immediate vicinity, the remains of two of those stone 
circles which have been called Druidical. These 
" Stannin' Stanes"of Colmeallie, as they are called 
in the district, are thought by some to have been 
temples, or places of heathen worship ; by others, 
again, that the} 7 were used as primitive places of 

The circles of Colmeallie had been of the common 
concentric kind. The outer enclosed an area of forty- 
five by thirty-six feet, and consisted of from fifteen to 
twenty stones, including three large slabs in the centre, 
which are supposed to have formed the altar. Some 
of the boulders are of great size and weight. The 
largest lies on the ground, and is nine feet live inches 
long by seven feet five inches broad. 

There are many conjectures as to the use of these 
singular remains, but the general belief is that they 
were used for purposes of ordeal. The priests are 
said to have made the people believe that the rocking 
stones could be moved by the gentlest touch of those 
whose breasts were pure, but remained fixed and 
immovable when approached by traitors or other 
wicked individuals. 

Near a place called " Johnny Kidd's Hole," in 
Glenmark, and within the recollection of some of the 
oldest inhabitants, the Kocking Stone of Gilfumman 
was an entire and interesting object. This stone was 
long considered an infallible revealer of future 


events; but some sacrilegious individuals having 
turned it off its magic pivot, the spell was broken. 

We now cross the Turret, which has its source in 
the springs of Mount Battock, and is the boundary 
line of the parishes of Lochlee and Edzell. On the 
east side of this water, between the bridge and the 
Esk, the shooting lodge of Millden, belonging to 
Lord Dalhousie, stands on a rising ground, sur- 
rounded with trees. The extent of the building T 
with its cone-roofed turrets, gives it quite a castellated 

Here the "live and let live" Lord Panmure, who 
built the lodge, delighted to spend the summer during 
his later years, and hold familiar intercourse with his 
tenantry. He occasionally wandered incog., and, dis- 
guised as a tramp or beggar, would journey through 
his extensive possessions. In connection with these 
wanderings we give, in our " Glenesk Guide" several 
humorous stories. 

The bold mountain range, apparently terminating 
on the opposite side, is VVirren Hill, which stretches 
away towards the west. We are now getting upon a 
high level ; and, looking around, are struck with the 
appearance of a conical protuberance on the brow of 
a hill, at a considerable distance before us towards 
our left. That is Craig Maskeldie, rising from the 
western end of Lochlee. 


A number of ancient funeral cairns have been 
found in various parts of the Glen. But the most, 
conspicuous cairns are two modern erections, the one 
upon the Rowan Hill, and the other upon the 
Modlach. The former, which is pyramidical in its 
form, was erected by Fox Maule, Earl of Dalhousie, 



in honour of the ancient family of Maule ; and the 
latter, which consists of a tower, with a place for 
shelter, was built by the Freemasons of Lochlee. 

AVe are now moving along the side of the Hill of 
Modlach — i.e., the law, or the hill of the court of 
justice, which may have Veen so named from the 
baron's court having assembled there. On the top of 

the hill stands the Mason's Tower, which has for some 
time attracted our attention. The brethren of the 
mystic tie (St Andrew's Lodge, Xo. 282, Tarfside) are 


said to occasionally walk to it in procession on the 
annual feast of tbeir patron saint. This road was wont 
to be much steeper than it is now, for instead of 
winding along the side of the Modlach, it went 
over the hill. Here many unfortunate travellers 
lost their lives in snow-storms. It was mainly with 
the laudable view of lessening the number of these 
•calamities that the Lodge of St Andrew erected this 
Tower, and had recesses formed at the base of it, 
where benighted travellers could shelter in com- 
parative safety. 

Before coming to the pretty little clachan of Tarf- 
side, we find our way agreeably fringed with the 
graceful birch and the rowan, forming a pleasing con 
trast to the steep rugged barrenness we have ex- 
perienced for the past few miles. These are known 
as the Birks of Ardoch, among which, on the braeside 
on our right, is snugly ensconced the cottage appro- 
priately called The Retreat, which was built by the 
late Admiral Wemyss, and is now occupied as a shoot- 
ing lodge. 


A little further on we reach the well-sheltered and 
pleasantly-situated Free Church Manse ; then the 
Free Church itself (Rev. J. Paul, minister), with its 
handsome tower, forming a suggestive feature of 
the landscape. Two beautiful stained glass windows 
are on each side of the pulpit — the one erected in 
memory of Lord Dalhousie by his sister, Lady 
Christian Maule, the other whs presented by the 
family of the late Rev. Dr Ghithrie. On the right 
hand we come to the neat buildings comprising 
the parish school and teacher's house — a striking 
■contrast to the hut appropriated to both these 
purposes in former times. Close by, and on the 



same side, we find a two-storied house, the upper floor 
of which is the St Andrew's Masonic Lodge. The 

lower floor of the building was occupied as a school, 
under the superintendence of the Society for the Pro- 
pagation of Christian Knowledge as early as 1760. 

On the opposite side of the road there are a few 
cottages, forming the village of Tarfside, now the only 
hamlet in the parish. Here we find also the merchant 
and the post office, where we can purchase 

. . . . hani and treacle, needles and teas. 
Loaves and razors, coal scuttles and cheese ! 

and, doubtless, the shoemaker and the tailor — those 
handicraftsmen that are necessary for the convenience 
of every rural district. 

"We get a glimpse of the neat Episcopal chapel, 
parsonage, and school on the right as we cross the Tarf T 
a little above its junction with the North Esk. The 
modern chapel — the Church of St Drostan — was erected 
in 1880 by Lord Forbes, as a memorial of his dis- 
tinguished relative, the late Eev. Alexander Penrose 
Forbes, D.C.L., who for many years presided over the 
See of Brechin. In the east end of the church are 
three windows filled with stained glass — the Good 
Shepherd in the centre, and on the right and left St 



Andrew and St Peter. We now cross the Bridge of 
Tarf, which, according to the quaint entry by the poet 
Hoss in the parish register, for the purpose of 

... 4s£ V^ 



allowing the poor " to pass and repass in quest of 
their living," and for people " coming and going to 
and from the church." The Tarf is a fine specimen 
of a mountain torrent, and the scene at the Bridge 
of Tarfside, when the river is in high flood, is ex- 
tremely grand. 

Besides the old footpath, or Priests' Road, from 
Ponskeenie — a picturesque old bridge of three arches 
near Dalbrack — to Lethnot, there is a rugged road 
through Glenturret to Charleston of Aboyne. An- 
other road leads from Lochlee by Glenmark and 
Mount Keen to Ballater ; &c. Though seldom 
travelled, save by tourists, it was by the last-named 
route that the late Queen Victoria and the Prince 
Consort and suite came from Balmoral to Fettercairn. 



We are now four miles beyond Millden, and within 
five of Lochlee. As we ascend the rising ground, we 
can still trace the remains of what had been numerous 

happy little 

now marked 
by tumbling 
walls and a 
solitary tree. 
V> e also note 
the " grey 
cairns " that 
are so numer- 
ous along the 
side of the 
Rowan Hill 
on our right. 
This hill is 
as the scene of conflict between the foil wers of Bruce 
and those of Corny n, Earl of Buchan. The artificial 
looking cairns which we now pass are called "the graves 
of the slain/' Indeed, the name of the hill is said to 
have had its origin in the adventure of that day, when, 
as tradition runs, the king rallied his forces by calling 
out Row-in ! 

Through the ravine on the opposite side of the Esk r 
flows the romantic Effock. It tumbles down a beauti- 
ful glen on the south side of the river, a mile below 
the head of the North Esk. Another mile brings us 
to the Branny, which hurries its tributary waters 
from our right to the Esk, and in the angle formed by 
the road and the stream, we find the Parish Church 
of Lochlee, encompassed by its graveyard. 

The parish church and manse (Rev. Mr Stewart, 
minister) were both erected in the year 1803. Since 


then, with the exception of old residenters, who still 
have a natural desire to lie beside their kindred in 
the solitary old burial ground at the edge of the Loch, 
the modern kirkyard has become the common place of 
burial. Some of the tablets here are of more than 
ordinary interest, arising from the circumstances of a 
painful nature which they record. One marks the 
grave of an Aberdeen youth who perished amongst 
the snow; another records the death of two brothers 
who fell over a wild precipice while collecting their 
father's sheep. Here also is an obelisk to the memory 
of the Rev. David Inglis (grandfather of the Colonel 
Inglia referred to on page 1ST), who died in 1837, 
after fully thirty years' service in the " Glen," and 
who was a man of very charitable and benevolent 
disposition. It has been said that no minister ever 
approached closer than Mr Inglis to the beautiful 
description that Goldsmith has left of his father in 
" The Deserted Village." 

A little onward, and the Mark — a larger tributary 
than the Branny — comes rolling from the same side, 
and in the angle formed by it and the Lee stands the 
tower of the old Castle of Invermark. The meeting 
of the rushing waters, the bright foliage of the wav- 
ing trees, the walls of the towering keep, and the 
noble mountains by which this spot is surrounded 
unite in forming a scene of wondrous beauty. 
The Lee and the Mark, which had been previously 
joined by the Branny, here unite their waters, and 
become the North Esk. 

Gang forrit to the steep rock's broo— 
The angry torrent's roarin' Ion, 
Splitting the quaking crags, and through 
This ghastly rent. 
His everlasting, wild halloo 
Is upward sent. 

The Mark is considered the finest specimen of a 


mountain torrent within the whole boundary of the 
parish, and traverses a distance of ten or twelve miles 
through a singularly romantic district, which in many 
places presents an almost insurpassable wildness, and, 
in others, flat and undulating swards of the richest 
grass. In its course there are about a dozen different 
falls, but only half that number are more than 
cascades, though all have their own peculiarities, and 
each in its w&y is pretty. The Mark is joined by the 
Ladder Burn, and other bums from Mount Keen, 
and from the other lofty summits which form 
the watershed separating Glenesk from the Vale 
of the Dee. Here, and in other parts of G-lenmark, 
rugged, lofty precipices rear their scarred bald 
heads high in air, frowning defiance, inspiring awe, 
and casting their dark shadows over the stream and 
its carpeted emerald banks. Seen at a little distance 
they appear to bar the way and stop farther progress, 
but as they are approached, the rugged paths open up, 
and admit to other and kindred wilds. Glenmark is 
also interesting on account of its historical and tra- 
ditional associations. 

The 0)d Castle of Invermark. 

The most picturesque parts of Glenesk are in the 
neighbourhood of Invermark, where is yet to be seen 
the roofless and ivy-clad old stronghold of the 
" lichtsome Lindsays," with its curiously-constructed 

The surrounding landscape is of a very remarkable 
character, and will amply repay a visit. The 
Castle buildings occupy the crest of a small grassy 
mount, and had originally been a place of consider- 
able strength. It commands the opening of several 
glens, and formerly, when garrisoned by the feudal 



retainers, was well calculated to afford security to the 
inhabitants of the country lying around. 

The Castle is supposed to have been built in 1526. 
It was within this building that the ninth Earl of 
Crawford died, in 1558, bequeathing his soul "to the 

Omnipotent God, and the 
whole Court of Heaven," and 
his body to be buried " in 
his own aisle within the 
Church of Edzell." The 
Castle, at a later 
period, was one of 
the resorts of the 
above Earl of Craw- 
ford's unfortunate 
grandson, when 
skulking from the pursuit of 
justice for the murder of Lord 
Spynie. After the forfeiture 
of the Earl of Panmure, it be- 
came the property of the York Buildings Company, 
and now, instead of the banner of the Lindsays, the 
mountain rowan waves from the crumbling wall. 

Aii ancient house, and a noble name, 
An honest heart, and a spotless fame 
By xht* viper's sting, and the demon of play, 
■'11 he bligh for ever and aye. 

Down to the beginning of last century, the Cas 
was in much the same state of preservation as during 
the palmy days of the Lindsays, being entered, we 
are told, by a huge drawbridge — one end of which 
rested on the door sill of the second floor, and the other 
on the top of a strong isolated erection of freestone, 
which stood about twelve feet south of the front of the 
tower. This was ascended on the east and west by a 
flight of steps, and the bridge being moved by 


machinery, the house was rendered inaccessible at the 
will of the occupant. 

The heavy door, of grated iron, which was erected by 
Royal permission, is now reached by a flight of worn 
stones. This door is said to have been manufactured 
of iron found in the neighbourhood, and smelted at a 
place called Bonnie Katie, on the banks of the Tarf, 
where Lord Edzell had a furnace. 

We may here mention that, in 1593-4, smelting- 
houses were erected in various parts of this district 
for " minerals of gold, silver, brass, and tin." Sir 
David Lindsay and his brother, Lord Menmuir, were 
so eager to ascertain the extent of these, that miners 
were brought from Germany and other places. 

Early in last century the Castle was surrounded by the 
old offices, which were tenanted by shepherds, while 
the main building was occupied by two maiden ladies, 
but when the present church and manse were reared 
in 1803, the offices were torn down, and the tower 
completely gutted, to assist in their erection. 

The manse is said to occupy the site of the 
famous public-house of Drousty, which had 
been as welcome to the traveller over Mount Keen, as 
the castle was terrible to the hostile invader. 

The bard of " The Minstrel,''" in his poetical address 
to his old friend Ross, after complimenting him 
on the beauty of his " Helenore," takes occasion to 
speak thus of the inn : — 

But ilk 

The tales and sauL ■ : shall learn ; 

And chiels shah come i ( 'aim 

O* Mount, richt 
If Ross will he so kiii> in 

Their pint at Drousty. 

The only floor now in the Castle is that formed by 
the roof of the vault. The dark dungeon below, into 
which only a faint glimmer of light is admitted 



through those loop-holes common to the baronial 
remains of the period, is reached by a crazy stair, but 
presents nothing worthy of note. It is thought pro- 
bable that the site of Invermark Castle had been that 
of previous strongholds, from the fact that it com- 
mands the important pass of Mount Keen to Deeside. 
The garrison of Invermark, though tending greatly 
to diminish the number of invasions by the trouble- 
some Cateran, does not appear to have been altogether 
effectual, for in one of their inroads they are said to 
have carried off about half of the cattle and sheep in 
the Glen. In the language of Ross in his 
" Helenore " : — 

Nae property these ho lest shepherds pled, 

And <ill alikp, and all in common fed. 

But ah ! misfortune ! while they feared no ill, 

A crowd of Ketrrin did Their forest fill: 

( >n ilka r-ide they took it in wi 1 care ; 

And in the ca' nor cow nor ewe did spare. 

'["lie sakelesa shepherds stroove wi* mi'-rht an* main 

To turn the dreary chase, but all in vain ; 

They had na< j maughts for sic a toilsome task, 

For bare-fac'd robbery had put aft' the mask. 

In the neighbourhood of the parish manse we have 
Lochiemore, where the shop of the general merchant 
once held out its varied commodities. A saying con- 
nected with this place indicates the manners of a 
former age. When one neighbour asked another, 
" AVeel, are ye gae'n to the kirk the morn'?" the 
answer would not unfrequently be, "I dinna think it, 
man : for there's neither snuff at Lochiemore, nor 
good ale at Drousty ; as they had taken the oppor- 
tunity when in the neighbourhood to replenish the 
mull, before going to church, and to prove the quality 
of the ale at the close of the service. The receptacle 
of " snuff and tobacco" is now swept away, and the 
manse has supplanted the ale-house. Here the 
minister kindly gives the use of his stables — a privi- 



lege that is very gratefully taken advantage of by 
visitors for their tired horses. 

But now we observe on the brae before us the 
handsome shooting quarters, twice honoured by the 



late Queen Victoria, called Inveimark Lodge. It is 
sheltered among the natural birches, and commands 
an extensive view. 

This is a spot of rare beauty — the rocky mountains 
of Invermark forming the background. The Lodge, 
nearly twenty-three miles from the city of Brechin, 
overlooks the Loch and the water of Lee — " the auld 
kirkyard," the peak of Craig Maskeldie, and a variety 
of other points of great natural beauty, with a gently 
slopinglawn to the south making up a complete picture 
of Highland scenery. Composed of rough native rock, 
it is built in the fine picturesque style of old English 
architecture; and, while harmonising beautifully with 


the surrounding cliffs, forms a pleasing contrast to the 
towering ruin of Invermark Castle. It was built in 
185-i ; and about the same time the whole north 
western part of the Glen was thrown into a deer 
forest, which, united with the royal preserves of 
Balmoral and those of the Earl of x\irlie on the 
north-west, and those of the Marquis of Huntly on 
the north-east, forms one of the finest and most exten- 
sive sporting fields in Great Britain. 

Leaving Invermark Lodge, we can either turn to 
the right towards " The Queen's "Well," or the left, 
and visit the ruins of the old church and the Loch. 
We prefer taking the former route first. 

A nicely laid-out walk takes us past the shooting 
targets, and through the birches to a wooden bridge 
across the Mark, about half a mile distant from the 
Lodge, where we get on the path to 

The Queen's Well. 

Looking up Glenmark, which we have already 
alluded to, and which stretches away in a north- 
westerly direction, reminds us that most of the roads 
that the visitor might take, in proceeding from the 
upper districts of Deeside into Glenesk. would con- 
verge in this beautiful Glen. Perhaps the chief 
attraction of this locality to the tourist is " The 
Queen's "Well," so named on account of its sweet 
waters having refreshed the Royal party on their 
visit to Lochlee over the hills from Balmoral. In 
commemoration of this event, and the death of the 
Piince shortly afterwards, the Earl of Dalhousie (Fox 
Maule) had the memorial erected. The well has been 
surrounded with six flying buttresses composed of 
granite, which, rising to the height of nearly twenty 
feet, form by their union an imperial crown, sur- 
mounted by a cross. The structure is ten feet in 



On the right, Mount Keen towers 

width between the buttresses, and the water flows 
into a basin, bearing in raised letters, the following : 

Rest, traveller, on this lonely green, 

And drink and pray for Scotland's Queen— 

a request loyally complied with by visitors to this 

enchanting spot. A black marble slab, inserted in 

one of the buttresses, is thus inscribed : 

Her Majesty, Queen Victoria, 

and His Royal Highness the Prince Consort, 

visited this Well and drank of its refreshing waters, 

on the 20th September, 1861, 

the year of Her Majesty's great sorrow. 

From the Well the view of the Glen is magnificent. 

aloft over the 
which sur- 
round this part 
of the Glen, 
the arena of 
some mighty 
Huge shoul- 
ders, project- 
ing from the 
monarch moun- 
tain of the 
the lofty crags 
on the south 
side of the 
Glen, seem to 
lock and inter- 
lock into each 
other. On the 
(a northern 




a terrific precipice 



round the 

many hundred 
base of which 

shoulder of Crai: 

feet in height, 

the Mark flows. On the east, high mountains rear 

their heads, the only egress from the green lawn-like 

valley being along the edge of the stream as it flows 

downwards to fraternize with the Lee at Invermark. 


Retracing our steps towards " The Loch," we are 
first attracted to the ruins of the old church, situated 
at the north-east corner of the loch. There 
had been nothing striking about the style of its archi- 


tecture, but from its peculiarly romantic situation, it 
possesses many picturesque attractions, which render 
it specially interesting. 


To the lover of Scottish poetry, the auld kirkyard 

of Lochlee must be ever dear, as containing the ashes 
of Alexander Ross, the parish schoolmaster, and 
author of the delightful pastoral poem of " Helenore, 
or the Fortunate Shepherdess," and its vicinity as the 
place where he spent the greater part of his quiet and 
uneventful life. 

Ross was born in the parish of Kincardine O'Xeil, 
and was nearly 70 years of age before he published his 
poems. His salary was one hundred merks, 
or £5 lis 3d sterling, six bolls of meal, and 
feal and divot in the hill of Invermark, 
together with six acres of arable land, in lieu of the 
two crofts and pasture of twenty sheep. As session- 
clerk and precentor, he is reckoned to have had about 
£2 more, and a trifle for the school fees of five or six 

The humble headstone the poet placed in the old 
churchyard at the grave of his wife, Jean Catanach, 
is read with interest by the visitor who enters the 
hallowed spot. There, too, the body of her eminent 
husband, who, as we have observed, taught the 
" noisy mansion " of the parish for upwards of fifty- 
two years, was laid on the 29th of May, 1784, at the 
ripe "age of eighty -four. A granite tablet was erected 
by subscription in memory of this remarkable man, 
who has furnished us with so graphic and faithful 
delineations of the manners and customs of an age 
which has passed by comparatively unrecorded. It 
bears the following inscription : 


To the Memory of 

Alexander Ross, A.M., 

Schoolmaster at Lochlee. 

Author of " Lindy and Nary ; " or, 

" The Fortunate Shepherdess," 

and other Poems in the Scotch Dialect. 

Born, April 1699, 

Died, May 1784. 



Laigh it was, yet sweet, though humble, 

Deck'd wi' honeysuckle round ; 
Clear below, Esk's waters rumble, 

Deep glens murmuring back the sound. 

The humble dwelling of the poet is still represented 
by the rude walls of his cottage and schoolhouse. 
They are just a park-breadth north of the kirkyard. 
The ruins are behind the walls that form a sheep- 
cot, but cannot be seen from the road. It. had 
been the very minimum of humble dwellings, 
and consisted of only a ground floor, divided 
into two small rooms — the largest not ten feet 
square. One of these was considered sufficient 
for the school of the parish. There Ross sat 
during many dreary winters hearing the lessons of 
his charge. The other apartment was the kitchen, 
parlour, nursery, study, and bedroom of the humble 
and contented bard, where he reared a numerous 
family, and wrote poems and songs which will live as 
long as the Scottish dialect is understood. 

The romantic descriptions of rural life and 
manners of the early part of the 18th century 
with which " Helenore " abounds, are familiar 
to all lovers of national poetry. Dr Jamieson, in his 
" Scottish Dictionary," has paid Ross a high tribute, 
as one of our Scottish classics, by drawing largely on 
his works in illustration of our vernacular. His 
fiongs, : ' The Rock and the AYee Pickle Tow," 
" Woo'd an' Married an' a'," and many others, are 
known and admired wherever the Scottish tongue is 

Chambers, in his "Scottish Biography," says — "In 
Aberdeenshire and in Angus, the Mearns and Moray, 
there is no work more popular than ' The Fortunate 
Shepherdess.' It disputes popularity with Burns and 


the Pilgrim's Progress ; is read, in his idle hours by 
the shepherd in the glens, and wiles away ^the weari- 
ness of the long winter night at the crofter's fireside." 
On its appearance, Beattie predicted that — 

Ilka Meatus and Angus bairn 

Thy tales and sangs by heart shall learn. 

The prediction has been amply verified, and a hope 
which Ross expressed in one of his unpublished poems, 
has been realised : — 

Hence, lang, perhaps, lang henc« may quoted be 
My namely proverbs lined wi' blythsome glee ; 
Some reader then may say, ' Fair fa' ye Ross,' 
"When, aiblins, I'll be lang, lang dead an' gane, 
An' few remember there was sic a ane. 

Dr Longmuir, in describing in his edition of the 
poet's works, a visit to the hut, says ; — 

We do no know how it may affect others, but we confess 
we should have enjoyed more pleasure in finding the 
cottage still inhabited— perhaps by some lone widow of 
the glen, turning a loop before the door of the house in 
which so much had been written in a cheerful spirit and a 
Christian strain, whilst some kind neighbour would of an 
evening have "delved in the yard," and preserved the 
poet's kt bed o' camowyne," than in seeing the walls, bulg- 
ing to their fall, employed as part of a sheep-fold, and 
overgrown with nettles. 

As the late Lord Dalhousie is understood to have 
prevented these walls from being entirely removed, 
would it not be a suitable tribute to genius if his 
successor were to go a step further, and preserve them 
from the inevitable effects of neglect 1 


Lochlee is in several respects the most interesting 
of the Forfarshire lochs. As the Lee from the north 
flows in at the west end and out at the east, the Loch 


may be said to be a depression and expansion of the 
river, where it pauses awhile after its turbulent and 
restless run through the wild moors, glens, and gorges 
it has traversed in its downward journey from its 
home on the mountains. It is somewhat more than a 
mile in length, and about half a mile in breadth. 
In some places the Loch is about sixteen fathoms 
deep, except at the western extremity, where a pro- 
cess of silting has evidently been for ages gradually 
going on. For a considerable distance from the 
margin, the " sand-bed," as it is appropriately called, 
is not covered by above two feet of water, but the 
next step might suddenly plunge the unwary 
explorer into a depth of as many fathoms. 
The greatest depth, however, shows what an 
immense hole thus forms the bed of the Loch, 
and forcibly suggests the idea of its having one day 
been the mouth of a volcano — 

Thae shapeless, rnony-nookit blocks- 
It we can credit learned folks 
"Were hirsled 1'rae the impending rocks 

By lichtnin' rent ; 
Or by some warld-convulsing shocks 

In times unkent. 

Warden in his description of the Loch, says : 

The banks of the Loch are boulder strewn, a few 
stunted indigenous trees lead a precarious life on spots 
on its borders, heath and briar, fern and bent thrive 
near its margin, grouse and other upland game inhabit 
its mountains, and the adder is well known in the district. 
Nowhere can the beauties of the morning and the evening 
sky be better seen than by a spectator low down on the 
margin of the Loch, or high up on its romantic banks, 
with the tiny rocky promontories and bays around them. 
Its rough banks and their varied clothing, and the 
adjoining mountains from base to summit, are depicted 
on its smooth and silvery face. The evening sky, seen 
from an elevated spot, appears to clothe the still lake 
with a dress of shining gold, changing with the altering 



tints of the heavens to streaks of rosy hues, to shades of 
brilliant purple, fading gradually away as darkness draws 
on How changed the scene when the fierce storms, so 
frequent in the Highland glens, sweep over the Loch. 

With little warning the wind comes through the glens 
w£? mighty force,°c>vers the surface of the water with 
a white surf, dashes the angry waves against the bank,, 
and throws the wild spray far out on the hill sides. 

The Loch is surrounded by high hills, which sink 
down abruptly upon its brink It lies deep 
in the bottom of the valley, at the head of Glenesk. 
Its waters are hemmed in by Craig Luck on the 
north, and by Craig Our and other lofty summits on 
the south, while Craig Maskeldie and its neighbours 
tower away to the west, Mount Keen (the highest 
summit in the parish of Lochlee) is seen to the north- 
west and north, and Mount Battock to the east-the 
former rising considerably over 3000 feet, and the 
latter to a^ height of about 2555 feet. From 
Mount Keen is seen much of the central course ot 
the Dee a large portion of Aberdeenshire beyond, 



the lofty Cairngorm summits, the sea of mountains tO' 
the south and west, and portions of Glenesk ; from 
Mount Battock, the eastern portion of the vale of the 
Dee and Aberdeenshire, the Kincardineshire moun- 


tains and the ocean beyond, and the course of the 
Tarf, and central parts of Glenesk are seen. The 
view on a fine day well repays the labour, but 

Whae'er the rugged sides would climb, 
Maim hae gride breath and strength o' limb ; 
Your water-wagtail Cockney slim — 

He mount them .'—whew ! 
Hyde Park, an' level roads for him— 

This winna do ! 

The Eagle's Craig has bold, abrupt, and lofty faces 
on the north and east round which the Lee runs, but 
the southern side of the mountain, called " The Rock 
of the Eagles/" is a terrific precipice, which confronts 
you in walking up the glen. It rears its bare crown 
more than a thousand feet above the Unich and the 
Lee, which meet in front of it. The circular wall 


of cleft and furred rocks of Craig Maskeldie, which 
encircle Carlochie, and stretch away beyond it on 
both sides, is a giant enclosure of vast magnifience. 
From the top of the lofty precipice the view down 
into the cauldron at its bottom is impressive, while 
the outward prospect on all sides is extensive and 
varied. Every high mountain for a considerable dis- 
tance around is seen, and to the south objects beyond 
the Grampian range are visible on a clear day. 
Nearer at hand the course of the burns in the valleys 
and ravines can be traced, and the beautiful Lochlee, 
and the ruined church, with the Castle of Invermark, 
and the fine grounds of Invermark Lodge, form a 
charming picture. 

The Unich and the Lee are the original tributaries 
of the North Esk — the former rising some seven or 
eight miles south-west of the Loch, and the latter 
from four to five miles north-west. They are both 
united immediately under the northernmost ridge of 
Craig Maskeldie. These two hurried, sparkling- 
streams are known from thence, for a distance 
of four miles, by the name of Lee. The Lee 
has its fountain head in the Cairn of Lee, 
and after running two or three miles through an ele- 
vated muirland region it comes over the north-east 
shoulder of the Eagle's Craig, forming many pretty 
cascades and cataracts in its restless course. The 
clear sparkling stream has cut its tortuous way 
through granite rocks, and tired with the violent 
exercise it finally lands in a pretty glen, where it 
meets the L T nich. 

This stream has two heads, the one in the Lair of 
Aldararie and the other in Cairn Derg. Uniting, the 
burn runs rapidly through a wild and winding rocky 
Highland district, receiving in its course the Long- 
shank and other burns. It then enters into a deep 


gloomy gorge, which it h;is worn out for itself between 
Craig I >.iin])h on the north and Craig Maskeldie on the 
Booth, from which it emerges in front of the terrific 
precipice of the Eagle's Craig, in the cliffs of which 
these famous birds of prey still have their eyrie and 
yearly rear their young. The precipitous 
cliffs, between which the stream forces its 
way, are very Lofty, and approach so closely to each 
other that it is all but impossible to fathom its depths, 
or scale the heights of either of them. Leaving the 
dark ravine by a bold leap <>f about fifty feet, the 
water, white as snow, falls into a deep pool at the 
bottom of the cataract. The high crags by which the 
cataract is surrounded form an exceedingly sublime 
scene. The Eagle's Craig securely guards the White 
Lad;/, as the fall is aptly called, from northern 
intruders. A high and picturesque shoulder of Craig 
Maskeldie, which, viewed from near the bottom of the 
Eagle's Craig, shows a singularly beautiful and 
curious outline. The stream, when viewed from 
below the fall, appears to emerge from a 
cavern in the mountain, and the water 
tumbling over the cataract is the first announce- 
ment, of the presence of a river in the rocky 
wild. At the foot of the cascade the scene changes 
as if by the magic of an enchanter. Above there is 
a chaos of bare rocks, below there is an open glen 
with a beautiful green sward, through which the 
Unicl peacefully, to be united with the Lee a 

little way down the glen. As the Lee, they flow down 
the quiet but lovely glen for a couple of miles. 

A little below the junction of these rivers, on the 
south, and about four hundred feet above their 
channel, the immense basin-shaped cavity, scooped 
from the very heart of Craig Maskeldie, is a natural 
curiosity of some interest. This is the site of Car- 


lochie, whose beautiful little lake reposes in the 
bosom of the rugged mountain. The loch 
is about a mile in circumference. The water 
is of crystal purity, and the overflow finds 
an outlet at its eastern shelving bank, whence it 
descends by leaps and bounds to the Lee. The lofty 
cliffs are of ten beautifully mirrored on the surface of 
the Loch, and, when clear of mist, every projection 
and crevice of the surrounding rocks is revealed in a 
halo of beauty. Here, if the traveller has patience to 
scramble over huge tablets of rock, he may stumble 
upon the narrow entrance to a dark recess, called 
"Gryp's Chamber," where a notorious reiver of that 
name is said to have dwelt for many years, carrying- 
on a system of lawless plunder. Another 
noted spot — a hollow near the top of the 
hill — bears the name of " The Bride's Bed," and is so 
called, it is said, because of a young and beautiful 
bride having lost her life there, when crossing the hills 
from Clova. 

At the south-west corner of the Loch is the old 
farmhouse of Inchgrundle, which, for more than 
twenty years, formed the autumn home and High- 
land resting-place of the late Dr Thomas Guthrie. 
He had a great affection for " The Glen," as he in- 
variably called it ; and he was often seen musing 
on the banks, or rowing his lonely boat in the midst 
of the Loch by sunlight, and moonlight too. 

The loch is noted for its "char," and Dr Guthrie once 
humorously remarked that he believed the monks 
introduced it as a delicacy for the sake of fast-days, 
little thinking that they were providing food and 
recreation for a Presbyterian minister. The Loch, 
he said, like the Lake of Galilee, and all such moun- 
tain girded waters, rose on a sudden. Like a hot 
angry man, it was soon up, and soon down, and soon up 


again. I >r ( Juthrie occasional]}' preached in the open air 
by Invermark, when his audience — peer and peasant, 
rank, and power, and beauty, within long walking 
distances, and some few beyond— would hang spell- 
bound on his words. It must have been thrilling to 
hear weather-beaten shepherd folks and stately 
noblemen joining together in pealing out the Old 
Hundred among the solemn grey hills, bringing 
vividly to imagination the scenes witnessed in still 
ravines, on heather braes, and bare hillsides, during 
the covenanting times, when our forefathers con- 
versed with God, with buckled sword and open Bible, 
ready, in face of tire or death, to hold their conscience 

"We are now for the present at the end of our 
journey. We have had pure air, and healthful 
exercise for the limbs and for the mind too. 
"We have experienced pleasure in clambering up the 
steep and craggy mountains, and exploring the 
Druidical remains, built at an early age by the sons 
of devotion amid the splendour of immensity. "We 
have traversed through long sheep-tracts and foot- 
paths, skirted with bright golden broom, and crossed 
purling streams by rustic bridges. We have looked 
on the airy mountain tops, now half -buried in mist, 
then lit up with a bright sun — the near hills sharp 
and clear, while the distant masses were enveloped in 
dark and grey vapour, which added to their mystic 
grandeur, and ^increased their gloomy vastness. In the 
words of the old Scottish Gaberlunzie : — " Consider 
yoursel' daunderin' aboot aniang the hills, the fou' 
flowing tide o' thought rowin' through your bosom ; 
— to lie down on the crisp heather, an' gaze up into 
glory, watching the varying shapes o' the pearly 
cluds, floating through the blue ether, an' the sma' 
black specks o ; music warbling an' winging in mid- 


air like so many blessed spirits, blending heaven and 
earth together ; to listen to the heather Unties 
around ye chirming an' keeping up the chorus, and 
hear the low, sweet, and harmonious notes o' the 
bonny hillside warblers o' auld Scotland echoed frae 
the choirs aboon ;— to gaze upon the mountains 
towering to the lift, bold, rugged, an' gigantic, yet 
tapering wi' airy form an' graceful elegance, their 
sides a 3 thickly studded wi' bonny green spats o' rich 
verdure; thack-roofed cots, wooded knowes, dark 
ravines, an' sparklin' waterfa,s ;— to see a' these grand 
features alternately in light an' shadow, the rays o' 
light dancin' an' flickering an' playin' at bo-peep, 
amang the heights an' howes, an' the cluds throwin' 
fantastic shadows across the green slopes an' the dark 
ridges — it is amang scenes like these whaur the wan- 
derer feels his ain greatness, an' his ain littleness, an' 
whaur he may weel exclaim in the emphatic language 
o' Scripture—' It is good for us to be here.' " 

tfiftb Hour. 

The Gannochy, The Burn, Balbegno, Fettercairn, 
Fettercairn House, Fasque, Thornton Castle, 
Laurencekirk, Inglismaldie, Luthermuir, Upper 
North Water Bridge, Old Church and Church- 
yard of Pert, Looie Pert, Stracathro, &c, &c. 

The Qannochy. 

AYIXG again gone 
over the same road 
by way of Edzell, 
we hold direct to the 
Gannochy. AVhen we 
diverged in our last 
tour, and visited the 
Bridge of Mooran, we 
merely attempted to 
give an " inklin " of 
the grandeur of the 
scene from our start- 
ing point to-day — 
the Gannochy Bridge. 
Here the river is seen struggling and rushing, and 
leaping through its rugged channel, and with the 



precipitous and lofty banks, adorned with trees, 
shrubs, and wild flowers, a scene is produced in no 
small degree picturesque. The bridge, built in 
1732, and widened in 1795, unites the rocky banks 
of the Xorth Esk by a single arch, which spans the 
foaming stream seventy feet below. The tale of 
the ghostly visitor, whose humanity urged the 

erection of the 
bridge, and 
whose engineer- 
ing skill pointed 
out its proper 
site, adds the 
necessary in- 
gredient to ren- 
der it one of 
the most inter- 
esting spots in 
the district. 

The magnifi- 
cent view from 
the bridge has 
long been an 
object of ad- 
miration. The 
M owing river, its 
rocky bed and 
gaxxochy bridge. banks, and the 

luxuriant foliage by which they are clothed, 
form a scene romantic and picturesque in 
the extreme, and few can cross the stream 
without stopping to view and admire the beautiful 
pictures presented on either hand. Here the 
geologist, the botanist, and the lover of the pictur- 
esque will each be delighted. 

The traditional origin of the Gannochy Bridge 


might be briefly told. A worthy farmer, who had no 
family, was understood to be very wealthy ; and, as 
his neighbours had often experienced the incon- 
venience of round-about roads and the dangerous 
nature of the fords of the North Fsk, and were also 
aware of his weak side and heavy purse, they adopted 
the wily scheme which induced him to confer this 
boon upon the district. During the winter of 1731, 
when several lives were lost in the river, the spirit of 
one of those unfortunate individuals is said to have 
called upon him on three successive nights, and im- 
plored him to erect a bridge, and thus save farther 
loss of life. Unable to find peace of mind, or with- 
stand longer the request of this nocturnal vfsitor, the 
farmer set about erecting the bridge at the very spot 
which the spirit had indicated. 

Such is the story current in the district, but here 
are facts : The bridge was erected in the year 1732 
at the sole expense of James Black, tenant of the 
farm of Wood, in the immediate vicinity. He em- 
ployed a mason to prepare the materials and erect 
the stonework of the bridge, but he constructed the 
parapets with his own hands. The expense of the 
erection amounted to 300 merks, about .£200 Scots 
money. At his death he left fifteen merks, to 
accumulate at interest, for the maintenance of the 
bridge. On his tombstone was inscribed the follow- 
ing appropriate couplet : 

Xo bridge on earth can be a bridge to heaven ; 
Yet let to generous deeds due praise be given. 

Black's bridge, although ample for the require- 
ments of the time when it was built, was soon found 
to be too narrow for the traffic that passed along it. 
It was therefore widened in the year 1795, at the ex- 
pense of the Hon. William Maule (Lord Panmure) 


and Lord Adam Gordon. At present it is under con- 
sideration to have the bridge again widened. 

Balbegno Castle. 

Passing the lodge and gateway leading to the 
mansion house of The Burn, already referred to, on 
our way to Fettercairn — a village with many interest- 
ing associations — we are first attracted to Balbegno 
Castle on the left. It is memorable as the residence 
of Ranulphuss the king's falconer, whose descendants 
are now represented by the noble family of Kintore. 
The castle was built by Wood, the hereditary con- 
stable of the castles of Kincardine and Fettercairn, 
and his wife Jean Irvine (1569), whose initials are 
below the south window of the tower. 

Jervise says : From 1539 (how long before I am 
not aware), the lands of Balbegno were held by 
Woods until about 1687, when they were sold to 
Andrew, second brother of the Earl of Middleton 
(Doug. Peerage), whose son, Eobert, married a sister 
of John Ogilvy, advocate, son of Ogilvy of Lunan. 
It is now the property of Sir John Gladstone, whose 
grandfather bought it from the Hon. Donald Ogilvy 
of Clova. 

The Castle of Balbegno which is in good preserva- 
tion, contains an interesting hall with groined free- 
stone roof. Some of the bosses present grotesque 
ornaments, others floral, and one bears the Irvine 
arms. The ceiling has two shields, charged re- 
spectively with the Scotch lion, and the Wood arms. 
The vaulted compartments, of which there are six- 
teen, are occupied by mural paintings of the coats and 
mantlings, &o., of as many Scotch peers. Upon the 
bartizan" are three medallion heads, one male, with 
hat, &c, and two female. A male head with beard 
and helmet is over the garden door. These are all 


boldly carved in freestone, and in the same style as 
the famous "Stirling Heads." Several shields, with 
arms, possibly those of the founder of the Castle and 
his lady, are upon different parts of the house. The 
date 1569 is upon a carved panel on the south side, 
near the top of the house. About the end of the 18th 
century, the Ogilvys made an addition to the east side 
of the Castle, by which the original entrance and 
front were spoiled. 

The Middletons were by far the earliest lay pro- 
prietors in the district, for there is authentic evidence 
of their existence from at least the year 1221. 

It is said in Law's Memorials that one of the 
Lairds of Balbegno was a companion in arms with 
Middleton long ere he had acquired much fame, and 
that before entering the field of battle on one occasion 
they agreed, in the event of either of them being 
killed, that the other should return and give the 
survivor some account of the other world ! It is 
added that Balbegno fell ; and one day, while Middle- 
ton was a prisoner in the Tower of London, and just 
as he had finished reading a portion of Scripture, 
Balbegno's ghost appeared, and taking him by the 
hand, said — " Oh, Middleton, do you not mind the 
promise I made to you when at such a place, such a 
night on the Border ? " But, without giving him 
any account of "the other world," it is added that 
Balbegno prophesied Middleton's future greatness, 
and vanished from his view exclaiming — 

" Plmnashes above, gramashes below. 
It? no "wonder to see how the world doth go." 


We'll etch the vernal landscape as it spreads 

At radiant morn, charm.' d with these varied views ; 

The model village, nestling half concealed. 

The cultured gardens, glittering in the dew, 


The healthy husbandman, who bends 
To dress the grateful soil ; the quiet sheep 
Which on the adjacent mountain seem to hang 
Then- fleeces on its sides. 

The village of Fettercairn is quite a model, bring- 
ing to our recollection the poetic "Auburn'"' of 
Goldsmith. Queen Victoria and the Prince Consort 
spent a night here in September, 1861. They were 
passed off as " a marriage party from Aberdeen. " 
The route pursued by her late Majesty and Pri-nce 
Albert and their suite extended over sixteen miles, 
and may be given for the benefit of those who wish to 
go over the ground. The Royal party having driven 
from Balmoral to the Bridge of Muick, in the neigh- 
bourhood of Ballater, there took ponies and proceeded 
along a cart road, used for driving peats from the hill 
of Pullach, through which, extending about a mile r 
there is scarcely a road at all, and then entered a 
bridle-road, which conducted them into Glenesk. 
About six miles and a half from the Bridge of Muick r 
the road crosses the Tanner, wending its way towards 
the richly-wooded Glen, to which it gives its name. 
The road from this point to its highest elevation, on 
the shoulder of Mount Keen, is very steep ; and there 
the Earl of Dalhousie (Fox Maule) met Her Majesty 
and party on the boundary of his extensive property, 
at a distance of seven miles and a half from the 
Bridge of Muick. For upwards of a mile the descent 
is steep and rugged ; and hence this portion of it is 
called The Ladder. 

The party then reached Glenmark House, which is 
now occupied by one of his Lordship's keepers, and 
there took luncheon. Her Majesty, having taken a 
sketch of Craig Doon, which lies to the north, re- 
sumed her journey. About three hundred yards 
from the keeper's house, and close by the junction of 
the Ladder Burn with the Mark, in the centre of a 



strath of verdant sward, the Queen was arrested by a 
beautiful mountain spring. She stopped and partook 
of its cooling waters. In commemoration of this 
-event, and the death of the Prince shortly after- 
wards, the neat fountain as we have already seen, 
was erected. In honour of the visit to Fettercairn, 
a stone arch. Hanked by battlemented towers, has 
been erected at the end of the bridge. That night 
the villagers little thought that they had reposed so 
near " the head that wears a crown," and their con- 


sternation next morning cannot be easily conceived, 
when they found that their Queen had eluded the 
hearty expression of their loyalty. It soon, how- 
ever, took a more permanent form than that of loud 
huzzas — in the fine memorial arch, which commemo- 
rates the royal visit. The Queen's room and bed are 
still shown to visitors at the Ramsay Arms as they 
were occupied by Her Majesty, although the hotel is 
very greatly enlarged, and all modern inprovements 


for the comfort of visitors have been added by the 
courteous and intelligent proprietor, Mr Ireland. 

In addition to the common trade of a rural village, 
Fettercairn has a widely-known distillery, and several 
large fashionable looking shops. There are numerous 
neat cottages, with beautiful garden plots, and the 
whole place has a fine picturesque look about it. 
One of the chief buildings is the Public Hall, erected 
in 1890 by public subscription, and equipped not 
only with a spacious hall, but with library, reading 
and recreation rooms, &c. For salubrity of climate 
the village is said to be almost unrivalled in the 
country, and Fettercairn, with its neat and trim 
houses, roses and honeysuckle trailing round almost 
every door and window, and gardens aglow with 
flowers, delights every visitor. There are numerous 
fine shady walks around the village, which is alto- 
gether a very pleasant summer resort. 

One or more intermediate tours might here be 
suggested, as we will have occasion to note shortly, 
so that should time permit and our visitors feel in- 
clined, they can do several, and spend the night under 
the kindly care of the " Eamsay Arms." 

A neatly carved and turreted fountain tower stands 
in the square as a memorial to Sir J. H. Stuart 
Forbes, Bart. The old Market Cross of Kincardine 
surmounts an octagonal flight of steps, and has an 
iron rivet, to which criminals were chained by the 
jougs. The Cross of Fettercairn was possibly erected 
by the Earl of Middleton at the time he obtained an 
Act of Parliament to hold a weekly market there. 
He received this privilege in 1670 — the date upon the 
cross — but long before that, St Mark's fair (named 
doubtless in honour of the saint to whom the kirk 
was dedicated), was a market of considerable import- 
ance. A. C. Cameron, LL.D., was for many years 


the gifted teacher of the Public School. An anti- 
quarian of repute, he has written a valuable "History 
of Fettercairn and District," and is also the author of 
the school " Geography of Kincardine," and other 

Fettercairn was a niensal church of the Archbishop 
of St Andrews. In 15G7, Patrick Bouncle was 
minister of Fettercairn, and of the three adjoining 
parishes of Fordoun, Xewdosk, and Conveth (Lau- 
rencekirk) at a salary of 24 lb., " with the support of 
the Priour of St Androis." John Thorn was reader, 
or schoolmaster, with 24 merks a year. I)avid 
Strachan, afterwards Bishop of Brechin, was some- 
time minister at Fettercairn ; also William Chalmers, 
who presented a congratulatory address to Queen 
Anne from his brethren in the Episcopal Church. 
The present place of worship (Rev. W. Anderson), 
which stands upon a rising ground in the kirkyard, 
and close to the village, was built in 1803. A hand- 
some spire, or belfry, was added in 1838. In old 
times, the bell was suspended from a tree, which 
stood upon the " Bell Hillock." 

On a burial stone in the churchvard, surrounding 
a representation of our first parents at the forbidden 
tree is this couplet : 

Adam & Eve by eating the forbidden tree, 
Brought all mankind to sin and misery. 

It would appear that Fettercairn is not so rich in 
"witch lore" as some parishes we have passed through. 
However, the parish minister of Marykirk, speaking 
latery at a social tratherino;, stated that he had been 
told by old persons of a minute in a parish record 
which read thus : " Xae sermon here this day — the 
minister bein' awa at Fettercairn burnin' a witch.' 7 
As James E. Watt, author of " Poetical Sketches of 
Scottish Life and Character," puts it — 



" \t Marykkk, in days of yore, 
Ae Sabbath morn the auld kirk door 
A curious inscription bore, _ 

Addressed to puir and ricii. 
Tn wkilk the minister made mane, 
That there that day he coidd preach nane, 
As he to Fettereaim had gane 

To burn a wicked witch— 

A has wha had for mony a year 
The kintra side kept in a steer, 
Till her ill deeds, dune far an near, 

Gar't countless fingers itch 
To get her tethered to a post, 
'Mang lowin' whins an' peats to roast, 
fill she sud yield her sinfu ghost, 
As it becain' a witch." 

Leaving the village, and within half-a-mile-on the 
rio-ht— Fettercairn House, the seat of Lord Clinton, a 
JandsoD of the late Sir John Stuart Forbes, is seen 
nestlin- around fine old trees. It was once the pro- 
perty of the Earl of Middleton, whose initials and the 
date 1666 still mark the oldest portion of the mansion. 
\ little over a mile, to the left, we get an excel- 
lent view of the magnificent residence of Sir John 
Gladstone Fasque House is a fine specimen of 
castellated architecture, around which cling many 
associations of the Gladstone family. It was for 
manv years the home of Sir Thomas Gladstone, who 
died in March, 1889, and lies hid away from the gaze 
of the ubiquitous tourist. A spacious park, studded 
with ^iant rhododendrons and majestic firs and other 
trees of great dimensions and rare grandeur, sur- 
rounds it To the south-west of the house is an ex- 
tensive lake, which adds greatly to the attritions of 
the demesne. The house was built in lbOS-9, at a 
cost of £30,000 by the late Sir Alexander Ramsay, 
the seventh baronet of Balmain. Fasque estate, 
which had been held by the Ramsay family, was 
purchased in 1828 by Mr John Gladstone (the late 
V E Gladstone's father), who in 1846 was created a 
baronet by Sir Robert Peel), and who was succeeded 



in the title and estate by his eldest son, Sir Thomas, 
on his death in 1851. Between his elder brother and 
Mr Gladstone, as is well known, there was politically 
a gulf that kept them wide as the poles asunder; yet 
there was a personal friendship between the two that 
united them in the closest bonds of affection and 

The site of the house is a very fine one, standing as 
it does on the wooded slope of a minor branch of the 
Grampian range, and commanding to the south a 
magnificent view of the far-famed Howe o' the 
Mearns. The house is built of the red-stone found in 
the locality, and in brilliant sunshine the warm 
colour of the stones imparts to it a fine appearance. 
The property extends from Fettercairn village to 
Deeside, a distance of fully sixteen miles. " The 
greater portion of the 'estate lies in the Grampian 
range, and consists of heath-clad hills intersected by 
numerous small straths. The estate of Glendye was 
purchased by Sir Thomas Gladstone in 1865 from the 
Earl of South esk. 

St Andrew's Episcopal Church, which stands a little 
to the eastward of the house of Easque, was built by 
Sir John Gladstone, and consecrated and opened, 28th 
August 1847. The original building has been greatly 
improved by the erection of a new chancel, which was 
consecrated by Alexander, Bishop of Brechin, 15th 
April 1869. It is in the early English style of archi- 
tecture, with deep splayed lancet windows, The east 
window, which contains representations of St Andrew 
arid the four evangelists, &c, is a fine specimen 
of art. 

Leaving the woods of Fasque, the Burn of Garrol 
is crossed, and we now enter the historic Parish of 
Fordoun. On the right hand side, and only a short 
distance from the road, is the site of the " town " and 


palace, or castle of Kincardine. The town is said to 
have extended from the ground at the foot of the 

castle to the vicinity of Fettercaim House. It was 
in 1531-2 that the fourth Earl Marisehal obtained a 
charter for making the town of Kincardine "The 
principal and capital town of the county." But it 
onlv maintained that position for about 80 years — 
the Sheriff and his Deputies petitioning for the re- 
moval of the courts to Stonehaven, for want of 
accommodation at the county town. It had its 
church, its burial place, its east port, its west port, 
and its market cross — the last of which was carried 
off to Fettercaim, and has been alread}^ described. 
The graveyard still remains, but no interments have 
been made for a considerable time. There is no re- 
cord when the palace or castle was built, or when it 
was last occupied. It was a royal palace previous to 
the death of Kenneth III. in 994, being occupied by 
that monarch at the time of his murder by Finella. 


One version of the story of the murder of Kenneth 
we might here briefly give. It is said that the King 
had put to death the son of Finella, for treason com- 
mitted by him in an insurrection in the Mearns. 
Finella was the wife of the chief of the Mearns, and 
a daughter of the Maormor or Earl of Angus. In 
revenge for the death of her son, she hired a band of 
ruffians to assassinate the King ; and they accom- 
plished their purpose at a hunting match at Stra- 
cathro, into which they lured him. Justice pursued 
the murderess. She took refuge in the beautiful and 
romantic Den-Finella, which has derived its name 
from her. When overtaken there, according to one 
class of chroniclers, she was apprehended and 
executed, while it is said by others that she com- 


mitted suicide by leaping from the rocks into the 
deep gully, into which the Burn running through the 
Den tumbles from a height of 105 feet, at the point 
where the turnpike road now crosses it. 

Dr Cameron, of Cullen, the well-known antiquarian, 
in his " Stra'finla Top," says : — 

Kenneth III. (971-995), like his father and grandfather, 
also met his end in this locality. Tighernac, in recording 
his death, merely says he was slain by his own subjects, 
to which the Ulster Annals add "by treachery.'' The 
latter Chronicles state that he was slain at Fotherkern by 
the treachery of Finvela (Finella), daughter of Cunchar, 
Earl of Angus, whose only son Kenneth had killed. 
Later historians represent that Finella caused him to be 
shot by an arrow from a wonderful piece of mechanism 
she had erected in her castle. 

As throw the Mernys on a day 
The Kyng was rydand hys liilrh way 
Oft' hys awyne curt, all suddenly 
Agayne him ras a cumpany, 

In to the town oi Fethyrkerne. 
To fecht wyth bym thai ware sa yherne 
And he agayne thein faueht sa fast, 
But he thare slayne was at the last. 

Wynton, c, 1420. 

It is further related that Finella, whose family 
claimed independent rule in the Mearns, "havino- 
compassed the death of Kenneth the Third, who had 
been taking vigorous steps to reduce to submission 
the Maormors of both Mearns and Angus, fled from 
Kincardine Castle on being warned of the near 
approach of the king's troops. While on G-arvock 
Hill information was conveyed to her that the king's 
men had left Kincardine on her track with sleuth 
hounds. On hearing this she made swiftly for the 
upper end of the gorge, since called Den Finella, in- 
tending to put the hounds at fault by wading down 
the water. Various conditions, arising from the par- 
ticular season of the year, combined to render this 


idea futile. In this dilemma she swung herself into 
the treetops, which are said to have beeo singularly 
interlaced here, and. passing from one to the other, 
traversed a considerable portion of the Den before 
descending. She thus gained time to escape to the 
both dogs and men were completely puzzled 
on reaching the head of the In after years 

popular belief has affirmed that the Den, at stated 
times, is haunted by the spirit of Finella and the b. 

of bloodhounds at night/' Through the courtesy 
of the proprietor of the M 6 mdard t we are 

able to give an excellent picture of the Falls. 

Our grandsii 

:i» into night, 

When si stern old Garvock Hill, 

. 1 down Denfinell dark, 
And onward pass towards the wintry sea. 

Standing on the termination of a small ridge, and 
surrounded by a morass, the Castle of Kincardine 
seems to have been a place of considerable strength, 
and foundations that remain show that it had been of 
quadrangular shape. Kincardine Castle "was a 
royal residence is evident from the fact that there are 
in its vicinity the King's Park, Castlegreen, and 
Gallow Hill. As showing the originally substantial 
nature of the building it may be mentioned that the 
walls are from six to eight feet thick. It is stated 
by Lord Hailes that it was in this palace that John 
Baliol resigned his crown to Edward I. of England, 
2d July 1296, although that is open to dispute. 

In him the hills 
'Circling Kincardine town inspired no thought f 
Of independence carried by the sword, 
Or freedom in impenetrated glens ; 
But Edward's slave was verily no king, 
For Scots are free— a sympathetic pidse, 
Inspired by the freedom of the hills, 
Throbs through the nation's being as one man, 




I defensive at each other's equal rights 
A- Lnst the power ol shameless perfidy. 

About a mile further, on the West flank of Finella 
Hill, overlooking the Fordoun rivulet, we pass the 
site of Green Ca < ^ een Cairn, supposed to have 

been the abode <>f the notorious Finella), and what 
has been regarded as a Caledonian or Pictish fort, 
but more probably it had been a camp where soldiers 
hail been stationed to guard the Cairn o' Mount 
Road, as it commands an extensive view of it both 
ways, while it was used as a military road to the 
Highlands. The view here for about a mile and a 
half is magnificent, the hills rising on either side till 
we arrive at 

"The Clatterin' Brig." 

which has long been the trysting place for many a 
pic-nic and excursion party, a broad meadow by the 
side of the stream being well adapted for this pur- 

Athwart the lower glens by Birnie's Sjlaek, 
And flippant on the hill- danced fairy hands : 
Each moonlight saw theni glide from mountain irorge, 
And speed in flight where " Clatterin' Bri^*' now stands. 
They murmured with the murmur of the stream. 
They breathed a night-song with the lonely bird ; 
Returning in their elfin triumph home 
When every life awaked from restless sleep. 

But for the sake of those who would like to do 
Cairn o' Mount, we would here crave the company of 
our readers, and ask them to dismount, and walk to 
the summit, a distance of nearly three miles. The 
road is fairly good, however, and the extensive and 
charming view from the top will repay the toil. 

The earth was made so various, that the mind 

Of desultory man, studious of change, 

And pleased with novelty, might be indulged. 

Prospects, however lively, may be seen 

Till half their beauties fade : the weary sight, 

Too well acquainted with their smiles, slides off 

Fastidious, seeking less familiar scenes. 


Here you can see Montrose, the Bell Rock, and 
most of the fertile Howe of the Mearns, while, to the 
north, the famous Cloch-na-Ben bounds the horizon. 
From the summit of the Cairn to the Brig o' Dye is 
about eight miles — almost entirely downhill, and at 
times exceedingly steep. The scenery through which 
the Dye flows is very pleasing, and the panorama ot 
river, hill, forest, and heath is something to be 
remembered. Four miles or so further is the inn of 
Feughside on an elevated plateau. Here a magnifi- 
cent view is spread around by a narrow circle of hills, 
in which Cloch-na-Ben now lying direct south, is in 
the centre. 

This excellently appointed inn, comfortable, tidy, 
and reasonable, is situated exactly on the confines of 
the parishes of Strachan and Birse, 9h miles from 
Aboyne, 6 from Kincardine : Xeil, and 6 from 
Banchory. Far up the river looms the famous forest 
of Birse, from which till its junction with the Dee 
the Feuch " turns and twines," to use the vigorous 
and poetical language of the gifted Grilfillan, " as if in 
agony of reluctance to leave a scene so fair." " This 
is," says a recent visitor, "an ideal place for lounging 
about at and consuming unlimited tobacco under pre- 
tence of rishing. One of us fished with indefatigable 
zeal, another .somewhat intermittently, and between 
the two as many trouts were captured as made a grand 
show beside the fowls next morning at breakfast. 
We then took the road on foot, which runs alongside 
of the river till its rocky rush into the Dee at 
Banchory, having traversed from the Gannochy 
Bridge to the Bridge of Feuch — both alike for 
scenery — the whole length of the county of Kin- 
cardine. From here we hired to Stonehaven, the 
capital of the county, a distance of sixteen miles, 
which we reached by a beautifully diversified route 


called the "Slug Road," from one part of which we 
could see the Bugarloaf-like trip of Bennachie towering 

above his confreres in the distance." 

Glen of Drumtochty. 

We resume our journey at the "Clatterin' Brig," 
after having explored t lie limekilns and the well, at 
which we are asked to believe that a certain Dominie 
Young and his jolly company were wont to carouse, 
after a cock-fight, pouring ten to a dozen 
bottles of whisky into the well to resale 
themselves t<> their hearts' content. On fording 
the Burn of Slack, the route, as will be seen 
on the right hand side of our illustration, leads up a 
sharp incline, where the hill scene that meets our eye 
is very picturesque, and affords a view of the entrance 
to the Slough of Birnie, on whose shores it is said the 
parsely fern grows abundantly. At Grlensaugh Lodge 
(Miss Donald, proprietrix), the scene changes from 
rugged hills, and we get a brief "peep" of beautiful 
and interesting landscape, over the Howe of the 
Mearns and on towards Brechin. It is only a glimpse, 
however, and a sudden turn of the road brings to 
view the Loch of Glensaugh, with swans and wild 
ducks skimming its surface. The Loch is stocked 
with trout imported from Loch Leven. The route 
now skirts the loch, and on the left is Bright's "Well, 
which is said to possess wonderful virtues, and where 
amidst a profusion of ferns and the wild rose many an 
enjoyable picnic has been held. 

M'e now enter the Glen proper, and for about four 
miles we are assured that the lover of nature will feel 
enchanted. At every step new combinations of land- 
scape greet the eye, while on every bank and brae, 
and in every bosky dell there is a profusion of wild 
flowers. Wooded slopes and grassy meadows tend, 



along w.ith the natural formation of the narrow Glen, 
to form pleasing and ever changing scenes. For 
botanists this ia a favourite resort. About sixteen 
different varieties of ferns are said to be found within 
the circle of one mile. 

An object of interest, on the right, is the entrance 
to Friars Grlen, where are still to the remains 

of a house said to have been connected with the Black 
Friars of Aberdeen. Here also tradition has it that 
John o' Fordoun wrote one of the oldest histories of 
Scotland. The Priest's Well can also be distinctly 
traced, the water of which joins the course of the 
Luther, forming a small burn, which looks, as has 
been happily said, as though a blessing still existed 
in it, the meadows through which it passes having a 
freshness and greenness not to be found around. 

A little further on there comes into view the 
Bplendid modem mansion, in the castellated Gothic 

s t y 1 e, o f 
Castle, erec- 
ted at a cost 
of over 
£30,000, af- 
ter designsby 
Gillespie Gra- 
ham. It is 
the beautiful 
residence of 
Captain J. S. 
Gammell of 
About a 
mile to the 
north-east of the present Castle of Drumtochty 
stood the Castle of Glenfarquhar, the home of 

JSP ' ---- ^ 


1 I 

j ||» 


the Falconers. The road is also in sight leading 
to the moor to which Paldy- Fair has been 
relegated— 6th July is St Palladius Day in the 
calendar — but railways and other causes have shorn 
the fair of much of its pristine greatness. It was 
held, as appears in record, in 1506, in the open space, 
now considerably circumscribed by the churchyard, 
in front of Fordoun Parish Church. Thereafter, 
there is some reason to believe, it was held on Gil- 
bert's Hill, overlooking the village of Auchinblae. 
As cultivated land increased in value the stance was 
transferred to the barren moor on the top of the 
Harescha, and a single day is now sufficient to trans- 
act the business that aforetime engaged for three days 
a large part of the population of the neighbouring 

Continuing, we pass the lodge, adjoining which is 
the church of St Palladius and burying ground. The 
church, with the large statue of the patron saint, 
presents an imposing appearance. 

After about four and a half miles of a very pleasant 
drive, we now leave the romantic Glen of Drumtochty, 
and are again in the open country. Herscha, or 
Harescha Hill, meets the eye. On the point first 
seen is a stone circle, and a little to the west is a 
stone cairn, while, farther to the left is the valley 
and range of hills of Glenfarquhar. 


In thee, sweet Auchinblae, whose ample street, 
By houses lined hi fascinating rows, 
Ascends in graceful slope— a village placed 
To bask in noon-day sun. 

Another mile and we enter Auchinblae, and a halt 
is made at the Kintore Arms — a comfortable Hotel, 


long kept by a relative of Donald Dinnie, the famous 

Auchinblae appears first in record about 1506. The 
village is pleasantly situated among the hills at a 
height of 400 feet above sea-level, has an air of ideal 
ruralism, and has for many years been a popular 
health resort. Indeed, it has been styled "a very 
paradise of retirement." It is famed for its beautiful 
surrounding walks, and it is said that for over ten 
days a different direction may be selected every day 
without any of the same ground being walked over. 
Thus on all hands you have beautiful landscapes to 
please the eye and brighten the hours, and many 
country roads on which to ramble. Auchinblae has 
an abundant supply of water and excellent sanitary 
arrangements ; also a neat public hall, spacious re- 
creation park, lawn tennis courts, golf course, &c. 
Part of the village being built on a somewhat steep 
slope, with the gardens rising in terraces, imparts to 
it much of a continental appearance. 


As our route has hitherto been round a consider- 
able portion of the base of Finella Hill, or Stra'finla, 
and we cannot linger over the many places of interest 
in the district, the next best thing for us to do, so as 
to get an idea of the attractions of this centre, is to 
ascend the hill, and have a look from the summit. 
This can be done by an easy ascent, and will only 
take little more than half an hour. The view is 
magnificent. Across the " Howe o' the Mearns " lies 
Laurencekirk, with Garvock Hill and Johnstone 
Tower ; towards the east the valley of Arbuthnott, 
with Bervie raised defiant on the coast. The sea 
view from this is remarkably fine, whilst the line of 
the Forfarshire and Fifeshire coasts can be clearly 


followed with the friths of Forth and Tay, and Mon- 
trose and its lofty steeple ; while beyond, the hills of 
Glenesk and Sidlaw boldly rear their heads. 

The leading features in this lovely panorama are so 
graphically and attractively unfolded by Dr Cramond 
in his " Stra'finla Top," already alluded to, that we 
cannot do better than give some selections from these 

Directly north of us, on the south side of the Bervie 
stream, is Gaerlie Hill, where the Rev Mr Menzies of 
Fordoun recently discovered the remains of primitive 
dwellings. Towards the south side we see the road ascend- 
ing to the Goyle. on the top of which the parishes of 
Fordoun and Strachan meet. For several miles the 
boundary between the parishes of Fordoun and Strachan 
is the watershed between the Water of Dye, which flows 
into the Water of Feugh, and thereafter into the Dee ; 
and on the Fordoun side the Luther and its tributaries, 
and farther north the Bervie. Near the northern 
boundary of the parish of Fordoun rises the Cowie, which 
falls into the sea near Stonehaven. The Luther, after 
flowing through the Howe past Pitarrow, to the west of 
the village of Laurencekirk, joins the North Esk in the 
parish of Marykirk. Our view to the north is bounded by 
the regularly shaped hill Kerloak, from which a view may 
be obtained of a great part of Aberdeenshire, and, it is 
asseited, even of the distant Lammermuirs. A little to 
the south of Kerloak, rises the Bervie, a favourite stream 
with anglers. It forms the boundary between Fordoun 
and Glenbervie on the north- east, and for a short dis- 
tance between Fordoun and Arbuthnott. It then enters 
the parish of Fordoun, and when near Fordoun Station 
diverges to the sea, past the seat of the Viscount 
Arbuthnott. the Castle of Allardyce, and other localities 
of note. In the latter part of its course it separate* the 
parish of Arbuthnott from Garvock and Bervie, and falls 
into the sea at Bervie. Bervie is the only Royal burgh 
in the county. Here in 1242 landed David II. with his 
Queen Johanna from France. In the same direction may 


be seen the village of Drumlitliie, and were it not for the 
intervening heights a view might be obtained of the old 
Church and Churchyard of Fetteresso, remarked by 
travellers between South and North as so charmingly 
sitmted among overshadowing trees. That, too, is the 
direction of Stonehaven, or Stanehyve, as it is familiarly 
termed, and the ancient Castle of Dunottar, ever to be 
associated with the sufferings of the Covenanter*, and the 
preservation of the national regalia. 

Dr Cramond recalls, before descending from his 
stand-point on the top of the hill, some of the notable 
persons whose progress might have been discerned 
as they marched from south to north along the Howe. 
He says : — 

About 210 a.d. might probably have been seen the dense 
mass of the Roman army, under Severus, on its way from 
the camp at Wardykes. near Keithock, towards Raedykes, 
near Stonehaven. Edward I., with a large arm}', was at 
the Castle of Kincardine on 11th July, 1290, and on his 
return journey the following month and he was again 
there on 17th August 130:}. Robert II visited in passing 
the same Castle in 1375 and in 1383, and James V. was 
probably there in 1526. Mary Queen of Scots marched 
north with an army in 1502, and the Queen Dowager a 
few years before. In 1644 Montrose made his presence 
felt as he marched through the Mearns with his whole 
army, and the following year, as he advanced from Drum- 
lithie to Fettercairn, plundering and burning all the way. 
A century later and we see the army of the Duke 
of Cumberland burning the Episcopal Churches and 
crushing the rebels. Much of the land within our 
view formerly belonged to the Church. The Carmelites 
or White Friars <*f Aberdeen, as we have seen, he'd the 
superiority of the property of the Friars' Glen, gifted to 
them in 1402 by Fraser of Frendraught. 

Most of the parishes in this county lay in the Diocese of 
St Andrews, but Glenbervie was in that of Brechin. 
Fordoun (St Palladius) and Fettercairn (St Mark) were 
mensal churches belonging to the Archbishop of St 


Andrews. Arbuthnott (St Ternan) was a prebate of the 
Collegiate Church of Kirkheugh, St Andrews. Laurence- 
kirk and Mary kirk were dedicated respectively to St 
Lawrence and the Blessed Virgin Mary. The hill on 
which we have our stand is specially studied by the 
inhabitants of the district as a prognosticator of the 

When Stra'finla puts on its hat, 

What does Wirren say to that .' 

From Knock Hill, east of the Harescha, a charming 
view is obtained. Scattered over the hill, says Dr 
Cramond in his instructive and well-reasoned sketch, 
may be seen large boulders well-suited for burial 
circle purposes, and a single boulder, " The Court 
Stone," evidently the remains of such a circle, still 
stands in one of the fields. An attempt has been 
made to associate this stone with the death of Dun- 
can II., and if this could be proved it would be 
exceptionally interesting, for it would be the sole 
contemporary memorial in Scotland erected to a 
Scottish Sovereign. This much at least is certain 
that he met his death at Mondynes. Other parishes 
in Scotland may boast themselves the birth-place of 
greater men than can Fordoun, but no district in 
Scotland has seen the death of so many Sovereigns. 
Donald, King of Alban (889-900), was killed in a 
battle between the Danes and the Scots. 

Over Fotherdun upon the brink of the waves he lies, 
In the east, in his broad, gory bed, 

says St Berchan. Dr Skene identifies this with the 
parish of Fordoun, although referring to Dun Fother 
or Dunottar as the locality. 

Following the line of the Luther, we pass Drum- 
sleed Woods, where traces apparently of an old en- 
campment are visible. So early as the 13th century 
part of the rents of Drumsleed were gifted for the 
support of the bridge at Brechin. Still following the 


same river line, we recognise the farm of Pitarrow by 
a tall chimney stalk and the old trees around. The 
old mansion-house of Pitarrow was demolished in 

2, and interestii estroyed; but, in spite 

of all, a feeling of bygone times pervades the pla 

No more honoured name Is associated with the 
parish oi Fordoun than that of George Wishart, the 
martyr, and there can he no reasonable doubt that he 
he son of James Wishart, the Laird of Pitarrow, 
Clerk of Justiciary, the King's Advocate in the r< 
of James IV. The family of Carnegie, afterwards 
Earl nf Soiuhesk, succeeded the Wisharts in Pitarrow. 

The buildings immediately south of Pitarrow, are 
the Mill <>f Conveth, a name thai appears in charters 
from the earliest times. Conveth was the name of 
the parish of Laurencekirk till the 18th century. The 
word "Conveth," means a due collected by a lord 
from his vassals, perhaps on journeys. The adjoining 
parish of Mary kirk also changed its name about the 
same time from Aberluthr.ot, and the next adjoining 
parish of Ecclesgreig, or Greg's Church, became St 
Cyrus, so named after St Ciricus, the Martyr. 

Laurencekirk, of which more afterwards, lies well 
exposed to our view. It was the creation of Lord 
Gardenston, who in 1789 erected it into a burgh of 
barony, as Earl Fife a few years later erected Macduff. 
It was widely famed for the manufacture of snuff 
boxes, the special varnish and the secret hinge being 
the peculiarities. The firm, named Stephen, was 
appointed " Boxmakers to Her Majesty." 

Xot far off is Haulkerton — that is, the hawker's 
town, referring to the King's Hawker or Falconer. 
The family of Falconer has been associated with that 
estate for centuries. Garvock Hill, running from 
north to south, forms the eastern boundary of the 


Further south, but hid from view, is Brownie's 
Kettle, or Sheriff's Pot, the reputed scene of one of 
the most improbable stories anywhere to be met with. 
Briefly, the story is : — " In 1438, while James II. was 
residing at Redcastle, Inverkeilor, on a hunting 
excursion, he was waited upon by five Mearns' barons, 
with great complaints against Sheriff Melville of 
Glenbervie, for the too rigorous exercise of his 
authority. The irascible Monarch being often 
annoyed by such complaints, passionately exclaimed : 
— " Sorra, giff he were sodden and supped in broo ! " 
They quickly withdrew muttering — "As your Majesty 
pleases ! " They soon laid a plot to carry out the 
King's words as if they were a command : they 
planned a hunting party to meet at a place in the 
Forest of Garvock (long since transferred to the 
shades of oblivion), at a place now known by the 
names of " Brownie's Kettle," or " Shirra's Pot," a 
little to the east of Easter Tullochs farm, on the 
roadside over the hill to Bervie. These rude barons 
had ordered a caldron to be filled with water, and boiled 
early on the morning ; the Sheriff being unsuspicious 
was unattended, and when the hunters came to the 
kettle each and all pretended great surprise, and 
looking in all around, these five "barons tumbled the 
Sheriff into the boiling caldron, and each, being pro- 
vided with a horn spoon, took a sup of the filthy 
broo ; thereby pretending to obey the King's com- 


The Parish Church !— Behold its ancient spire 
Peeping from forth the tall ancestral elms, 
Beneath whose shade thousands are sleeping well 
In undistinguish'd and forgotten graves : 
"While here and there are old grey stones inscribed 
With quaint memorials— images of Death— 
Time with his sandless hour-glass and his scythe 
And legends of high hopes for ever crushed— 



young loves blighted, and of elder ties 
Dissolved, not broken— Scripture texts, 
old epitaphs, and rudely chiselled rhymes. 

The parish church (Rev. Robert Galbraith), is a 
handsome Gothic building, erected in 1829. Around 
it centres much that is of interest to the antiquary. 

In the churchyard is the old chapel of the patron 
saint, Palladius, regarding whom, it is said that, in 
the year 432, he was sent by the Pope Celestine " to 
the Scots believers in Christ? " St Palladius' Well " 


is pointed out in the manse policies. As the old 
ballad puts it : - — 

" 'Twas here he proclaim'd the glad tidings of Life, 

And first gave us Bishops, they say ; 
But after a long and holy career, 

He sank to his cold bed of clay. 

And within yonder chapel, just over our head-. 

We aix- Told that hia reh.cs do lie; 
And that the poor ] ilgrima with long staves and gowns, 

Came here from all airts of the sky ; 

There knelt they and worshipp'd for days upon end, 

And fared but from barely stored scrips ; 
Nor had they a measure of wine- but alone 

This water to moisten their lips. 

And this crystal stream— thou ma) \st smile, but it's true, 

Was long thought so wondrous pure, 
That the deadliest wounds of body or soul, 

From ir- virtues received a cure ! " 

On a tablet fixed over the entrance to the old 
chapel it is recorded that it was built A.D. 452. We 
will not stop to dispute this subject, which has en- 
gaged the attention of the learned in such matters, 
but would merely add that it was dedicated by 
Bishop de Bernham in 1244. In 1630 we read of 
" the church of Sanct Palladius, vulgarly called Pade 
Kirk,'"' and Dr Cramond mentions the oldest district 
reference to the chapel that he has met with as in a 
charter dated 1603, whereby the King confirmed to 
John Wishart of Pittarrow " Sanct Pallades chappell 

. . . to remain in all future time as the proper 
burial place of the said John Wishart and his heirs.'' 
Inside the chapel now stands one of the famous 
sculptured stones bearing the spectacle ornament, 
riders on horseback, and other symbolic figures ■ 
also part of an inscription which the Earl of Southesk 
considers to be " Oeidernoin." There are other old 
stones within the chapel, also the parish bier, few 
specimens of which are now to be seen in Scotland. 
On the outside of the north wall is a cup-marked 



stone, very rarely to be found on a building of any 

An old building that served as a school and school- 
house stands in a corner of the churchyard. The 
building is said to have cost about £28 (.£340 Scots). 
By the original plan it was to have a thatched roof, 
but when the walls were erected the heritors altered 


Page 257. 

the plan so as to have a slated roof, and Sir James 
Carnegie of Pittarrow proposed a tax on gravestones, 
which^ he understood was then not unusual, so as to 
cover the additional expense. One wonders what those 
heritors would think were they to see the present 
buildings and equipments, the cost of which, erected 
in 1891, was £2717. Beattie, the author of "The 
Minstrel," was schoolmaster of Fordoun from 1753 


to 1758. In his "Ode to Retirement" he thus 
describes the neighbourhood of the Parish Church : — 

Thy shades, thy silence now be mine, 

Thy charms my only theme, 
My haunt the hollow cliff whose pine 

Waves o'er the gloomy stream- 
Whence the scared owl on pinions grey 

Breaks irom the rustling boughs, 
And down the lone vale sails away 

To more profound repose. 

Nestling in a delightful position on the further side 
of the burn is the Free Church manse. The senior 
pastor (the Rev. John Philip) received, in 1894, a 
public testimonial on the occasion of his jubilee as 
Free Church minister of Fordoun, and again in 1904, 
on the occasion of his diamond ministerial jubilee. 

A very enjoyable day might be spent in making 
a circular tour of the Kincardineshire villages and 
places of interest, starting from Fordoun on to Stone- 
haven, and along the coast to St Cyrus, from which, 
over the Hill of Garvock, we arrive at Laurencekirk, 
the next halting place in our present tour. 

Between Auchinblae and Fordoun Station is the 
estate of Redhall, with its fine old mansion house 
cozily embedded amongst luxuriant beeches. 


The estate of Monboddo is beautifully wooded, and 
has a fine mansion house, about a mile and a half 
east of Auchinblae, where Dr Johnston visited Lord 
Monboddo, a meeting, as described by Boswell,, which 
represents all parties in a pleasant light. The 
romantic old mansion was erected by Colonel Irvine, 
the founder of the family of Monboddo, in 1685, and 
considerable additions were made to it by Lord 
Monboddo. Mr Irvine-Burnett's maternal aunt, 
Elizabeth Burnett, who died of consumption, on the 


17th June, 1790, at the early age of twenty-three 
3, has been immortalised by Burns. Her monody 
begins : — 

" Life n«'er exalted in bo rich a prize 
Aa Burnett, lovely from her n;»r i \.- skies ; 

Nor envious <l>'ith so triumph' d in a blow. 
As that which laid the accomplished Burnett 1 >w." 

Lord Monboddo and his daughter were the first to 
give Burns a hearty welcome to Edinburgh, and he 

never forgot the kindness thus shown to him. The 
poet had a warm invitation to Monboddo House while 
he was in this, the district of his ancestors. When a 
mere buy. it is said Burns had been over at Stone- 
haven on a visit to his relatives there, and had been 
amusing himself fishing in the Carron, when one of 
the proprietors ordered him off. He is said to have 
stood for a few seconds "like one bewitched," and 
then muttered the following couplet — 

Y<mr water's we \ youi 
There's iiiy rod, an' Rob's awa. 

— pitching his rudely constructed rod into the stream. 
The proprietor is said to have made enquiries about 
the lad, and " took an interest in him ever after- 

It is to the woods and walks of Monboddo and to 
the generous disposition of the proprietor thereof 
(Capt. J. C. Burnett), that Auchinblae owes so much 
of its attractiveness. 


The Churchyard of Glenbervie, which is romantic- 
ally situated about a mile west of the village of 
Drumlithie, is of considerable interest owing to its 
containing the remains of several of the ancestors of 
our national poet. In the neighbourhood — Bogjor- 


gan farm— William Burness was farmer, father of 
the author of " Thrummy Cap," one of the most 
popular of chap books. He was a relation to Robert 
Burns. The Parish Church was built in 1826, hav- 
ing formerly occupied a position nearer the water of 
Bervie, where still stands the churchyard, and not 
far off is Glenbervie House, the fine old seat of Mr J. 
Badenoch-Xicolson. Glenbervie Castle is of unknown 
antiquity, and occupied the site of the present neat 
mansion house. In the twelfth century, it belonged 
to the Mel vi lies, and more recently to the Douglases, 
Earls of Angus. The Douglas burial aisle in the 
graveyard contains a curious monument with a Latin 
inscription, renewed in 1680, recording the brave 
deeds and alliances of the lairds and ladies of Glen- 
bervie, as well as their descent from Hassa, a German 
(730 A.D.). It was to Glenbervie that Edward I. 
marched from the Castle of Kincardine in his jour- 
ney North. This parish was the fatherland of Burns, 
and four tombstones in the graveyard mark the 
burial-place and record the names of his ancestors. 
His grandfather, Robert Burness, was farmer, first in 
Kinmonth, and then at Clachnahill, Dunnottar. 


Here it may not be inappropriate to remark that 
much might be said of the " men " the Mearns has 
produced. Their ability has, in fact, become pro- 
verbial— " I can dae fat I dou. The men o' "the 
Mearns can dae nae mae." The native of the dis- 
trict has no more genuine pleasure than pointing out 
to the stranger the different localities, humble enough 
in some cases they may be, all over the district, 
where men now risen to eminence were born or 
brought up. It has added many to the learned pro- 
fessions, especially clergymen, bishops, and judges. 


The Judges that have been connected with the dis- 
trict include Sir David Falconer of Newton, Lord 
President of the Court of Session (1682), Lord Mon- 
boddo, Sir James Falconer, Lord Phesdo, and Lord 
Gardenston. As we have seen, Sir John de Fordun, 
author of the celebrated "Scotichronicon," and the 
most trustworthy of our historians, is supposed to 
have been bora at, and to have assumed his name 
from, "the ancient town of Fordoun, about 1350." 
The ancient house of Falconer (keepers of the royal 
falcons of Kincardine palace), gave three senators to 
the College of Justice. Cadets of the Burnetts of 
Leys, and of the Douglases of Tilquhilly, were Bis- 
hops of the See of Salisbury, and were considered the 
greatest men of the age in which they lived. Dr 
John Arbuthnott, the intimate friend of Pope, was 
born at Kinghorn. Dr Beattie, author of " The 
Minstrel.'" was born of humble parents at Laurence- 
kirk ; and David Herd, whom Sir Walter Scott calls 
the editor of the first classical collection of Scottish 
song, was born on the farm of Balmakelly. Marykirk. 
His chief work was a valuable collection of " Ancient 
and Modern Scottish Songs, Heroic Ballads," &c, 
which he industriously gathered, and edited with 
much judgment and care. The collection was pub- 
lished at Edinburgh, first in one volume in 1769, and 
next in two volumes in 1772. Sir Walter Scott, in 
his Introduction to the " Minstrelsy of the Scottish 
Border," acknowledges his obligations to him for the 
use of MSS., containing nearly a hundred songs and 
ballads, published and unpublished ; and to these he 
often refers in his Xotes to the Minstrelsy. Regard- 
ing Lord Monboddo, author of " The Origin and 
Progress of Languages," &c, it is sufficient to remark 
at present that, though somewhat eccentric, he was 
one of the greatest scholars of the age, and his table 


was open to all votaries of literature and art. To him 
and his daughter, " the fair Burnett," Burns owes 
a deep debt of gratitude. 


At a recent re-union of natives of Kincardineshire 
in Glasgow, a Stonehaven gentleman, in the course 
of an interesting and comprehensive speech, said : — 

There are 33 counties in all Scotland, and in the order 
of population, Kincardineshire comes in as '23rd. As a 
matter of fact the whole population of our county is only 
little over 35,000, and I have no doubt the whole of these 
could be transferred from Kincardineshire to Glasgow, 
without causing serious inconvenience. But in spite of 
these disadvantages and drawbacks it cannot be said of 
Kincardine that it is an insignificant or uninteresting 
county. On the contrary, it is a county full of historical 
associations, and possesses many and great natural 
beauties and attractions. We have Dunnottar Castle, 
one of the most interesting of the historical remains of 
Scotland. With this fine old ruin tradition has associated 
the name of Sir William Wallace ; here were enacted 
some of the most stirring scenes in the Covenanting 
struggle ; the soldiers of Cromwell besieged it in 1651 ; 
and here was concealed for a short time the Regalia of 
Scotland, afterwards removed to the Parish Church of 
Kinneff in a way that was highly creditable to female 
ingenuity. We have the old churchyard of Dunnottar, 
also associated with the covenanting struggle, and the 
scene of the labours of Robert Patterson, who had been 
immortalised by Sir Walter Scott in "Old. Mortality." 
These, taken from one small corner of Kincardineshire, 
are sufficient to show you how rich and varied are the 
historical associations of our county. On the other hand, 
in these days the natural beauties and attraction of Kin- 
cardineshire have become more and more appreciated, 
with the result that several places are now fashionable 
and favourite summer resorts, and this I think is particu- 
larly so with the county town I may be per- 



mitted to Bay, without giving offence, that the hillsides 
and braesidea and seasides — if 1 may use such a word — of 
Kincardineshire are B far greater change to the jaded 
citizens of Glasgow, and that our climate is more bracing 
and invigorating than the somewhat relaxing climate of 
the west. 


Drumlithie is an old and irregularly built village 
and burgh of barony. Its Episcopal Chapel was 
burnt by the Duke of Cumberland in 1 7 4 * *> , and the 
clergyman imprisoned with others in the county jail. 
A Mrs Effy Turnbull gave the congregation a house 
for a chapel in 17 , .<l\ when they removed from the low 
thatched building which had been sufficient for their 
worship when the penal laws were severely pressed. 
According to Nisbet, the Turnbulls were first settled 
in Teviotdale, and had a charter from Robert I. of 
the lands of Bedrule, in that district. Hector Boece, 
who attributes the origin of the name to a period 
long after the first assumption of it, says that a 
person called Ilul>> turned a wild bull and wrung off 
its head, when it was about to attack King Robert the 
Bruce, who was hunting in the forest of Callender, 
for which he received certain estates, and thereupon 
assumed the name of Turnbull. In 1689, there were 
Turnbulls designed of Stracathro and of Smiddyhill 
in Angus, one of them, Andrew, collecting the rental 
of the bishopric of Brechin for the years 16S9-91 ; and 
in 1698 John Turnbull succeeded his father, also John r 
in the property of Stracathro. 


To the seeker after health, rest, or pleasure, few 
summer resorts can compare with Stonehaven. We 
are told that it possesses manifold attractions for "all 
sorts and conditions of men " — a splendid bay, num- 


erous walks along the coast, beautiful shaded paths 
and woods in several directions, drives through some 
of the prettiest scenery one could desire to see, places 
of rare historical interest ; all this, along with fishing 
in the clear-running streams — the Cowie and the 
Carron — boating, fine roads for cycling, recreation 
grounds, tennis and bowling, combined with the re- 
freshing breezes from the German Ocean, all go to 
make a sojourn here pleasant and healthful. 

The water supply is plentiful, and of most excellent- 
quality. The town is in every way suited to the 
wants of those who desire to enjoy the luxury of a 
country retreat, and at the same time to participate 
in the comforts of a modern town. Indeed there are 
few places that can offer such advantages of scenery 
as the county town of Kincardineshire, and the large 
number- of visitors and the frequency of their return 
afford tbe best possible proof that Stonehaven 
possesses attractions of which few watering-places can 

The Old Town (which is situated in the parish of 
Dunnottar, of which the Kev. Mr Barron is minister), 
says a writer on " Stonehaven as a summer resort," 
with its busy fleet of fishing boats, will well repay a 
visit, especially should the herring fishing be at its 
height. Several of the houses are at least two 
or three hundred years old, and have witnessed many 
stirring scenes. They may have been the abode of 
those who were butchered by Montrose, or they may 
have witnessed the triumphal march of Charles II. to 

In the High Street are the market cross ; the 
tolbooth or court house and prison down to 1767 ; the 
house of Provost John Clark, which alone escaped 
Montrose's burning in 1645, and lodged the Duke of 
Cumberland in 1746 ; St James' Episcopal Church, 


which served the Duke for a stable, and the elegant 
county courthouse, rebuilt in 1867. 

The new town, founded by Robert Barclay of Urie, 
stands between Carron and Cowie on the "Links of 
Arduthie" in Fetteresso parish (of which the Rev. J. 
Robertson is the minister), and is joined to the old 
town by a bridge on the Carron. The town contains 
a spacious square, with wide and regular streets, 
ral of them named after members of the Barclay 

The old pier was built in 1700 by George, 9th 
Earl Marischal ; and the new one in 1825. By Acts 
of the Scottish Parliament in 16(J0 and 1G07, the seat 
of the sheriffdom and county courts, previously, as 
we have already remarked, at Kincardine, were trans- 
ferred to Stonehaven. 


The view from the beach is very fine — the bay, 
from the two outstretching headlands, Downie Point 
on the south and Carron on the north, extending 
nearly a mile. The bathing ground is considered a 
very safe one. and visitors may take an easy walk to 
St Kieran's Well, there to drink the mineral waters. 
On the south side of the bay the rocks rise to 
a, height of nearly 300 feet for about ten miles along 
the coast, while the many caverns to be met with will 
interest the explorer. The antiquarian cannot fail to 
find many objects worth)' of his observation while in 
this neighbourhood. A walk of a mile or so will 
bring him to the old Kirk o' Cowie, with its pictur- 
esque burying-ground. A short distance south of 
this, on a well-marked promontory, will be seen a few 
stones supposed to be the site of the Thane of Cowie's 
Castle, which was believed to have been erected by 
Malcolm Canmore. 


The Parish Church of Dunnottar, which in 1903 
•was opened after undergoing reconstruction, is one of 
the oldest ecclesiastical establishments in Scotland. 
Originally built on the Castle Rock of Dunnottar, it 
was consecrated on loth May 1276 by Bishop 
Wishart, of St Andrews, successor to the famous 
David de Bernham, and was dedicated to Bridget of 
Kildare. The castle was captured by Sir William 
Wallace, who, setting it on tire, burned to death 
within its walls the panic-stricken soldiers of the 
English garrison, who had fled to it for sanctuary. A 
hundred years later Sir Robert Keith, ancestor of the 
Earls Marischal, having conceived the idea of enclos- 
ing the entire rock within the enceinte of his fortress, 
thereby appropriating for secular purposes the church 
and graveyard, was excommunicated by Pope Bene- 
dict XIII. To escape the Papal ban he removed the 
Parish Church to its present site, where, however, it 
continued to share in no small measure the fortunes 
of the house of Marischal. Beside it stands the tomb 
of George, fifth Earl, the munificent founder of 
Marischal College, Aberdeen, in which place of sepul- 
ture not only he, but many generations of the war- 
like Keiths, were gathered to their rest. Beneath 
the west wall of this tomb the graves of William 
Ogilvy of Lungair and Catherine, his wife, recall the 
heroic defence of Dunnottar by their son, Georo-e 
Ogilvy of Barras, whose gallantry a n d courage saved 
the regalia of Scotland from falling into the hands of 
the Cromwellian army. A few paces distant is the 
Covenanters' Stone, a monument rendered doubly in- 
teresting from the fact that by its side Sir Walter 
Scott first encountered Robert Paterson, better known 
as " Old Mortality.'' It is rather curious that although 
Paterson spent his time to keep green the memory of 
others, no trace was ever found of\yhere he was buried. 


The old Churchyard where Sir Walter Scott's 
"Old Mortality "did bo much to preserve the memory 
of others, will l»e found worthy of a visit ; while 
Malcolm's Mount, a thickly-planted knoll, where 
•lin I. is believed to have been slain and buried 
in the year 953, and Rae Dykes, the site of a Roman 
Camp, carry the mind to bygone ages. 

Try Castle, a fine old mansion on the banks 
of the dry, with magnificently wooded grounds, 
is about a mile north of Stonehaven. The Barclays 
of Ury flourished as far hack as 1110. David de 
Berkeley (1438) of Mearns and Mathers was 
in the "affair" of murdering Robert Melville of 
Grlenbervie, Sheriff Principal of Mearns, upon which 
occasion he built the castle of Kaim of Mathers, 
"where the family lived awhile, for their better 
security/' Captain Barclay Allardice of Ury suc- 
ceeded his father, Robert, M.P. for Kincardineshire, 
in 1797. He was noted as a pedestrian and driver ; 
his ordinary walking pace was six miles an hour ; but 
his great feat was his celebrated walk of 1000 miles 
in 1000 consecutive hours. He could lift half a ton 
from the ground, and set an eighteen stone man on 
the table with one hand. 

The estate was sold in 1854 (on the death of the 
Captain) to Sir Alex. Baird, who is now Lord 
Lieutenant of the county. 

Fetteresso Castle, about two miles from Stone- 
haven, is a very elegant and delightfully situated 
mansion, with a portico, on the canopy of which the 
family crest is richly sculptured in bold relief. It is 
one of the residences of Mr R. W. Duff, whose father, 
Sir Robert Duff, Governor General of New South 
Wales, died in Sydney in 1895. 



Dunnottar Castle. 

There hung the huge portcullis, there the bar, 
Drawn on the gate, defy'd the war. 

Oh great Dunnottar, once of strength the seat, 
Once deem' d impregnable, thou yield' st to fate : 
Nor rocks, nor seas, nor arms, thy pate defend— 
Thy pride is fallen, thy ancient glories end. 

AYhen lance and spear, claymore and dirk were tbe 
favourite weapons of war, few castles could lay 
claim to greater strength than Dunnottar, fully a 
mile south-west of Stonehaven. The peninsula upon 
which it stands rises to a considerable height above 

the sea, and the stormy waves of the German Ocean 
break into foam upon three sides of its base. 

The ruins consist of the great tower, 40 ft. high, 
oher broken towers and turrets, the palace, the 
chapel, the court-yard well, long ranges of roofless 
buildings and broken arches, dismal halls, damp 
vaults, and gruesome chambers. Tradition reports 


that the Picts had a fort on this rock. It was held 
by the English in li M .»7. when 4000 of their forces 
were driven in by Wallace, who, according to Blind 
Harry, forced his way by a window still shown, and 

" Burnt up the kirk and all that was therein, 
Attoun the rock th<- lave ran with great <lin ; 
te hung on era--, right dolefully to dee, 

ter'd in the sea." 

Edward Baliol garrisoned the rock with English 
soldiers, but it was retaken, in 1336, by Sir Andrew 
Murray, the Regent, and Sir Robert Keith, grandson 
of " the gallant Keith," of Bannockburn. Sir William 
Keith, grandson of the above Sir Robert, built the 
tower and the older parts. When William became 
4th Earl in 1530, the family lands were extensive, 
not only in the Mearns, but throughout all Scotland. 
George, the 5th Earl, was the founder of Marischal 
College in 1593. In 1645, William, 7th Earl, 
Andrew Cant, and fifteen others of the Covenanting 
clergy, took refuge in the Castle at the approach of 
Montrose and his troops. In 1650, Charles II. 
visited Dunnottar, and the Scottish regalia were 
brought to it for safety. In 1651, the Earl, on leav- 
ing for the wars, made Ogilvy of Barras governor, 
and he, with two officers and forty men, held the 
Castle, the last in Scotland, against Cromwell's forces 
till May 1652, when famine compelled them to sur- 
render. Being unable to deliver up the regalia, 
secretly removed by Mrs Granger of Kinneff, he was 
imprisoned, and his lady threatened with torture. 
From May to August, 1685, Dunnottar was used as a 
state prison for one hundred and sixty-seven Coven- 
anters, of whom forty -five were females, from the 
west of Scotland. They were thrust into a damp 
dungeon, now called the " Whig's Vault." Of 
twenty-five who tried to escape, fifteen were retaken 


and tortured — some to death — by the boot, rack, and 
thumbkin. The rings are yet shown to which 
prisoners were chained, and the "Martyrs' Monu- 
ment" in the ancient churchyard serves to preserve- 
the tradition. The monument owes its preservation 
chiefly to Paterson, the hero, as we have said, of 
Scott's celebrated novel of " Old Mortality." It wa& 
here, in the summer of 1788, while Scott was spend- 
ing a few days with Mr Walker, then minister of the 
parish, that he met with Paterson busily employed 
iu restoring the inscription on this tomb, and it was 
his singular taste and veneration for the Covenanters 
that suggested, long afterwards, the idea of one of 
the best of Scott's works. It was also" during Scott's 
stay at the manse of Dunnottar that he saw Kate 
Moncur, a Crawton fishwife. It was affirmed by 
those who knew her that she was the original of Meg 
Mucklebackit, "The Antiquary." In 1689 the 
fortress was occupied by government troops. After 
the rebellion of 1715, and the forfeiture of George, 
the 10th Earl, this stronghold was dismantled. 


They tell how Scotia keeps with awe 

Her old Regalia bright, 
Signs of her independent law 

And proud imperial right. 

It is said that one of the Kenneths had a royal 
residence in the parish of Kinneff, and that the name 
was assumed from that circumstance. It will interest 
the visitor to the quaint old church, however, to refer 
to the preservers of our regalia — Rev. James Granger 
and his' wife. Granger was appointed minister 
in 1639, and Jervise tells the story in his "Memorials" 
as follows: — "The old church of Kinneff was v 


it is well known, the place where the regalia were 
concealed for a time dining the civil wars. It is said 
that these were carried from the Castle of Dunnottar, 
at the very height of the siege, by being hid about the 
person of Mrs Granger, who was aided in her enter- 
prise by the lady of Governor Ogilvy. When they 
were safely conveyed to Kiimerr', they were buried 
below the pulpit of the church, and carefully watched 
there by the minister and his wife. They were 
restored to the Government at the Restoration ; and, 
as a proof of their sense of Mrs Granger's service, the 
Estates of Parliament ordered payment to her of 
2000 merks Scots 'out of the readiest of his Majestie's 
rents.' Mr Granger was interred within the church, 
and a monument, with Latin inscription, now much 
mutilated, records the share he had in preserving the 
ancient honours of the kingdom. Besides the 
Granger's monuments, there are several others, 
of which the most generally interesting one is to the 
memory of Sir George Ogilvy of Barras, Governor of 
Dunnottar Castle at the time of the siege above 
referred to, and his lady, Elizabeth Douglas. Like 
that of Mr Granger, this tablet bears an inscription, 
recording the part which the Ogilvys bore in the de- 
fence of the castle and in the preservation of the 


Before touching on Bervie, Allardyce House, 
Arbuthnott, and Parkside might be mentioned as 
beino- places of some historical note. A family of the 
name of Allardyce flourished from 1300 to 1800, 
when the estate fell by marriage to the Barclays of 
Ury. Arbuthnott House is a building of the 16th 
century. The belfry of the church (Rev: Chas. 
Dunn, minister) is still an object of great interest 
for the student of ancient church architecture. The 

FIFfH TOUR. 281 

church, dedicated to St Ternan, has a burial aisle 
built by Alexander Arbuthnott (1538-83), principal 
•of Kind's College, Aberdeen, and in it a statue of 
Hugh le Blund, the founder, in the 13th century, of 
the Arbuthnotts. Fable says that he received large 
additions to his estates in consequence of having 
killed some wild animal that frequented the district, 
and, says Jervise, a cannon hall, preserved in the 
awmrie of the aisle, is shown as the stone with which 
Sir Hugh killed the animal. About 1482 a James 
Sibbald was chaplain of St Ternan, and wrote the 
Psalter, and other beautifully illustrated and illumina- 
ted church service books, still to be seen in Arbuthnott 
house. John Arbuthnott, M.I). (16G7-1735), phy- 
sician to Queen Anne, the friend of Pope, Swift, and 
others, and the greatest wit of them all, who, 
according to Swift, " knew his art, but not his trade,'*' 
is said to have had his birth and early education 


It has been said of the little hamlet of Bervie that 
it lies upon a kind of shelf on the hillside as peacefully 
and as contentedly as a babe in its mother's lap. It 
possesses also a distinct advantage in being a railway 
terminus, and, as has been said in an admirably 
written and comprehensive sketch by its historian, D. 
Brown Anderson, "the tired traveller, or the wearied 
man-of-the-town finds himself in a quiet haven —no 
jostling in Bervie — the abode of that restful peace 
which only the wearied know how to enjoy — possibly 
as fine a place as any in Scotland for sick nerves." 

It has, however, seen stirring times. Kins David 

II. landed at Bervie with his Queen Johanna on 4th 

May, 1342, and founded a chapel here. The site of 

the house in which the royal pair slept is still pointed 




■ ''.-■-■ 



out in Market Square. The King gave the town its 
first charter, which, having been lost, was renewed by 
King James VI. in 1595. In the interval, however, 
in or about 15G7, the Regent Moray conferred upon 
Bervie the honour of burning it to the ground 
because it remained true to Catholicism and Queen 
Mary. The Duke of Cumberland slept a m'o-ht 
in the Manse when on his way to Culloden. A lono- 
peace then settled upon Bervie. 

The first linen yarn mill in Scotland was erected 
here in 1790. Hallgreen Castle, a stronghold of the 
sixteenth century, with thick walls and a modern 
addition, stands on an eminence within the burgh, 
and belonged at one time to the Raits, whose coat of 
arms, and the date of 1683, remain on an inside 
ceiling. The Carmelites had a seat at Friars' Dubbs 
(now the site of the public school) till 1567, when it 
and the town were burnt by the Regent Moray. 

Mr Anderson, in the article from which we have 
quoted, anticipates us in our trip from this" point 
round the coast to St Cyrus. He says : — "There is 
nothing finer than the walk by Craig David to 
Kinnetf. By the winding path we look down to the 
right on a tine "expanse of ocean, the white sails of 
the boats wooing the morning breeze, a large steamer 
far at sea, while hugging the shore are fishermen's 
boats returning home. Onwards the path leads by 
caves and rocks, and then rounds the point from 
which the small sea hamlet below the church and 
manse of Kinneff-is seen basking in the sun. The 
transition is so swift as to come with the force of a 
surprise. Bervie commands the entire section lyino- 
between Stonehaven and Arbroath and westwards 
across Strathmore to Auchinblae and Glenbervie. 
Running down the coast by rail I am reminded, too, 
that the district is also rich in song and story. St 


Cvnis takes us to Beattie's grave. It is impossible 
to forget the glint of his grave got from the 
car window through a rent in the cliffs near St Cyrus. 
At Montrose appears his ' Ketty Pert,' at Ferryden 
his ' Jamie West,' and on the main line between 
Montrose and Craigo the words of the witch's invoca- 
tion in 'John o' Arnha' ' runs irresistibly through 
the mind so incongruous is the association of unholy 
rites with the lovely retreat of Martin's Den : 

" Will-O-wisps ! wirryeov. 
Warlocks wv your hart pows, 

At three-quarters after ten 
Hover rotind auld Martin's Den.'' 

Benholm Tower is a turreted castle of the 15th 
century, with walls and battlements five feet thick. 
It was owned by the Earls Marischal. The estate of 
Benholm was sold about -±0 years ago to Mr Mathe- 
son, and given in exchange to Lord Cranstoun for 
his entailed estates in Ross-shire. An equivalent 
acreage of Benholm being in this account entailed, it 
passed, in 1869, on the death of Charles, eleventh 
Baron Cranstoun, to the Baroness de Virte, as heir of 
entail. The entail was afterwards thrown off, and 
part of the property was sold to the late Mr William 
Smith ; Stone of Morphie. This, the Castle portion, 
is now owned by Mr James Rust, while the entailed 
part, on which there is no mansion, belongs to the 
Hon. Pauline Smily Cranstoun Cranstoun, Isle of 
Wight. It is supposed that the Tower of Benholm 
was built by Lord Airlie ; and if so, it is three 
centuries old. It is an imposing square pile, about 
eighty feet high ; its walls are about five and a half 
feet thick ; and it has massive battlements and turrets 
at each corner, over-topped by a pent-house. It 
stands on what was originally a peninsula. Its east 
and south sides were defended by one of the small 


streams which run through the parish, and its west 
by a deep trench or moat ; till a passage was latterly 
formed over the moat, in opening a new approach to 
the mansion. Rev. John Nicoll is minister of the 

Brotherton Castle, within a mile of Johnshaven, is 
the beautiful residence of Miss Katherine Scott. 
" Scott's Garden " at Brotherton is stated to have 
been the hiding-place of the Chevalier St George 
when on his way to Montrose in 1716, to embark for 
France. The Scotts are a very ancient family. 
James Scott of Logie. Logie-Pert, a cadet of the 
house of Balweery, Fife, amongst others, purchased 
the estate of Brotherton, 1570, and gave it to his 
third son, Hercules, born 1621. According to Sir 
Robert Douglas, the first of his family who assumed 
the name was Richard Scott, son of " Uchtredus filius 
Scoti," who is so designed in the foundation charter 
of the Abbey of Holyrood house. The castle is a 
magnificent edifice, in the Scottish baronial style, and 
is delightfully situated on rising ground overlooking 
the sea. The policies are well kept, and present a 
charming appearance. A deep and richly wooded 
romantic ravine, through which a streamlet ripples, 
divides the parish of Benholm from the parish of 
Bervie, and debouches into the sea at the foot of the 
gardens. The older portion of the building, on the 
east side has a circular turret, and the walls in some 
places are about six feet in thickness. 


Johnshaven is an irregularly built fishing village, 
and a coastguard station. Some sixty years ago it 
was more a manufacturing than a fishing village. In 
almost every house at that period the " click " of the 
shuttle might have been heard. "With the advent of 


steam, however, the hand-loom had to give place to 
the power-loom, and the old-fashioned weavers, 
Hamlet-like, finding their occupation gone, had either 
to leave for larger centres of population, or become 
fishermen. The present villagers are a hardy, well- 
behaved race, and it is said that from few, if any, 
villages on the whole coast have so many first-class 
sailors gone forth. It is said that the natives suffered, 
along with many others, for their loyalty to the 
Stuarts during the '45, and there is a tradition that 
the Duke of Cumberland's soldiers plundered the 
village, and burnt the fishermen's boats for having 
sent out provisions to the Pretender's ships. 

Lauriston Castle (Mr D. S. Porteous, proprietor), is 
nearly two miles north of the sea ; and there is a story 
of an unexplored cave on the shore, with much the 
same fable as that accorded to the Forbidden Cave, 
near Arbroath. It is said that a blind piper lost his 
way, and, entering the cave, wandered until he came 
below the kitchen-hearth of Lauriston, when, accord- 
ing to one version of the story, he was heard to 
sound his pibroch for some days, but the music be- 
coming gradually weaker, it ceased at last altogether, 
and at that time the minstrel died : according to an- 
other version he is still occasionally heard ! 

The estate of Lauriston belonged about 1243 to Sir 
John Strivelyn, who granted the chapel, together 
with a pound of wax yearly to the prior and canon 
of St Andrews. Tradition asserts that the Straitons 
(who appear pretty regularly in the Scotch Parlia- 
ment) possessed Lauriston from a very remote period. 
In the year 1411, it is recorded that, along with 500 
knights and burgesses of the counties of Forfar, Kin- 
cardine, and Aberdeen, " Alexander Straton de 
Laurenston " fell at Harlaw, while fighting on the 


side of the Duke of Albany. The fall of Straiton is 
thus noticed in the well-known ballad : — 

" And thare the Knicht of Lawrie toon 

Was -lain into his armour scheen." 

The romantic valley or ravine of Den Finella forms 
part of the property of Lauriston, and, as we have 
already said, tradition affirms that it was so called 
because Lady Finnella, the reputed assassin of King 
Kenneth III., was overtaken here by her pursuers, 
when, rather than fall into their hands, she committed 
self-destruction by throwing herself from the rocks 
into a deep gorge, whence the water leaps from a 
height of about seventy feet. The stream is crossed 
at this point by a stone bridge on the turnpike road 
between Montrose and Bervie, and by another for 
the Montrose and Bervie section of the North 
British Railway. The banks of the den, where the 
hart's-tongue fern grows luxuriantly, are tastefully 
adorned with wood, and laid out in walks : and at 
all times, but more particularly when the stream is 
in flood, few places in the neighbourhood are better 
worth a visit from lovers of botany or romantic 

Towards the close of the 18th century, a singular 
fate overtook the villnge of Miltonhaven. or Milton of 
Mathers It stood on a low, shingly beach, and was 
protected against the ocean by a projecting ledge of 
limestone rock. This was quarried for lime to such 
an extent, that the sea broke through, and. in 1795, 
carried away the whole village in one night, and 
penetrated 150 yards inland, where it has maintained 
its ground ever since, the new village (of Milton of 
Mathers, provincially called Tangleha') having been 
built further inland, on the new shore. 

The Kaim or Camp of Mathers is another historic 


scene in this neighbourhood. It stood on a rocky 
peninsula overlooking the sea, where its ruins may 
yet be traced. Till lately, by reason of the encroach- 
ment which the sea is here making on the land, they 
indicated an old fortress, strongly built, and strongly 
defended, and occupying a most inaccessible position. 
The tradition is, that the Kaim belonged to the 
ancestors of the Barclays of Ury ; and that it was the 
refuge of that membei of the family, who, as we have 
seen, was deeply implicated in the horrible murder of 
Melville, Sheriff of the Mearns, and was outlawed 
therefor. We may, without mortal sin, accept the 
tradition : though the author of the *' Agricultural 
Survey of the Mearns " obviously had no great faith 
in it. He remarks (but his making Finella Queen 
rather sinks his authority), "the origin of the Kaim 
of Mathers is generally cited in testimony of the 
truth of the extraordinary manner of Melville's death, 
just in the same way as Queen Finella's journey from 
Fettercaii n to Den Finella on the tops of the trees is 
alleged, as proof positive that the country was then 
thickly covered with wood." 

Now woe betyde the erutl deed '. 

And woe betyde the pain ! 
And grant good (iodde that never more 

The lycke niay come agaiu ! 

Ecclesgreig, the magnificent residence of Captain 
F. G. Forsyth-Grant, occupies, it should have been 
noted, a tine site on the Hill of Ciiggie. 

St Cyrus. 

The oldest part of this picturesque and popular 
watering place stands on high ground some distance 
from the east side of the road, but the more modern 
portion is almost connected. With its well kept 
garden plots in front of the grouping of neat cottages, 


embosomed in rich flowers and covered with gay 
creepers, the line that skirts the west side of the 
road has a very inviting appearance. The Parish 
Church (Rev. E. Davidson) is on a prominent site, 
and its spire is seen at a great distance. In connec- 
tion with this parish there are several ancient funds. 
The Straton Fund, being of a curious nature, is 
worthy of mention. The interest of £750 is divided 
annually into four equal parts, and given to the 
oldest, the youngest, the tallest, and the shortest 
brides married in the St Cyrus Established Church, 
who have acquired a settlement in the parish — six 
weeks constituting a settlement, the sum being about 
£7 to each of the four candidates. 

Perhaps in few places is there such a happy com- 
bination of all the circumstances that make the sea 
beautiful as at St Cyrus. From where the sun rises 
in the east all round to where he stands at noon is 
the great expanse of the ocean. Even the fields in 
the distant East Lothian can be seen with the aid of 
a telescope. Turning the eye inland, Montrose is 
seen beautifully situated, with the glancing basin of 
the South Esk behind. A prospect of the sea north- 
ward is ever cold and bleak, but here the view is 
towards the smiling south. Then the sunny braes of 
St Cyrus are from 200 to 300 feet in height, lower- 
ing gradually towards the North Esk. At the north- 
east they recede, and leave between them and the sea 
a pleasing expanse of bents and sands. 

There were two chapels within the parish used as 
preaching stations, one at Chapelfield, and the other 
at Mathers, the path to which passes along the top of 
the braes, which is still called the "Priest's Bridge. ,r 
The priory itself probably stood a little south from 
the Kirkyard, in the direction of the river, which 
about a century ago rolled its floods along the foot of 



the braes, and entered the sea at their eastern base. 
It must have swept away part of the site on which 
the priory stood, and at one time endangered the 
Kirkyard itself. 


At the foot of these braes, says the biographer of 
George Beattie, poet and humorist, and author of 
" John o' Arnha'," is the Auld Kirkyard. There is 

■o ft 

a&fc$fe& Jfei^— 


something, we know not what, in our unconscious 
nature, which lures us to spend an hour in an old 
churchyard. There are few old churchyards so 


interesting from situation, or from old associations, 
as the Auld Kirkyard of St Cyrus. The spot can 
lay claim to great antiquity. At a very early date 
this was a Culdee settlement. Strange that this 
place, now so lonely, should once have been a busy 
centre of human life. Here, in the Middle Ages, the 
monks of the priory were busy studying the fathers, 
copying MSS., engaged in the duties of the cloisters, 
and waiting for preferment in the church. The 
youthful and aspiring students once walked here by 
the river side, or crossed to make an expedition to 
Montrose, an ancient town, and then more than now 
a port for foreign ships. Here the barons and their 
retainers gathered weekly to hear the chanting and 
solemn services of the church. But all are gone 
now. No more the bell tolls for matins and vespers, 
the intrigues of churchmen are over, and though the 
sea still breaks on the yellow sands, and the river 
flows on with a never ending stream, the former 
haunts of learning have long been deserted. Xot a 
stone of the buildings is left, and even the traditions 
respecting those times have perished. But of the 
generations who lived then in this spot, of their 
manner of life, and the things in which they took an 
interest, of their sowing and their reaping, and of all 
their labours under the sun, not a trace is to be 
found. They have gone to that world of which the 
Culdecs told them, and nothing now remains but— 
the Auld Kirkyard. 

Doubtless the monument of the deepest interest in 
the sequestered old burying place is that over the 
grave of George Beattie, near the south-east corner, 
erected about a year after his death by " the friends 
who loved him in life and lamented him in death." 
A marble tablet on the north-east face bears an in- 
scription which shows the estimate formed of him by 


those who knew him well. The pathos of its simple 
-wording accords but too well with his touching story. 
A wild honey-suckle, which has grown up in the 
enclosure, entwines its branches within the railings, 
and hangs its clusters of fragrant blossoms over the 

George Beattie was born in 1785. He studied law 
and began the practice of it in Montrose in 1807. 
His talents and his rare social qualities soon gained 
him a large share of public respect and affection. His 
society was courted by all classes of the community ; 
and he was the life and soul of every company in 
which he mingled, and of every circle in which he 
moved. A disappointment in love upset his mind, 
and brought his bright life to a premature and tragic 
close on the spot where his remains now rest, 29th 
September, 1823, in the thirty-eighth year of his age. 
Much the lengthiest and the chief of Beattie's poems 
is " John o' Arnha' : a Tale." The hero was John 
Findlay, one of the town officers of Montrose. As 
the poem introduces several places and scenes of in- 
terest in this district, we give a summary of the 
principal points : — 

John, the hero, has been at Montrose fair, and setting 
out late at night for his native Arnha , falls in with a 
witch, with whom he has some parleying. He loses his 
way in the darkness, and finds himself beside the North 
Esk, where he falls foul of the Water kelpie. Before they 
engage in mortal combat, John rehearses his exploits, 
that the Kelpie might know what sort of enemy he had to 
deal with. Then they grapple, and the unearthly 
monster, finding himself overpowered, loudly calls for 
help. At this call, the witches and warlocks appear, to 
hold their orgies, and work their horrid spells in St 
Martin's Den — and legions of goblins, demons, and 
spectres, hasten to the scene, accompanied by the shades 
of those whom John had slain in his numerous encounters. 


But, before they make an end of Arnba', Satan bids them 
lead evidence. The infernal court begins its sitting with 
music, and then evidence being led, the whole crew 
assaulted John, but ere they could make an end of him, 
the grey cock sounded his clarion, the morn appeared, 
and their hour was past. At the Ponage Pool John lost 
his way in the gloom, and, plunging through bogs and 
ditches, found himself in presence of the Kelpie, beside 
the pool. The Ponage or Pontage Pool is named from 
having been the place of a ferry, and is the abode of the 
Kelpie. The Por>l is recognised at once from the red 
brae on the north side, at the foot of which it lies. 
Martin's Den, where the witches held their incantations, 
is a wooded ravine, which enters the broad valley from the 
south side, further up the river. Its edges are pictur- 
esquely hung with the tangled roots of trees and bushes. 
On the left hand ^ide, looking downwards, and just besirle 
the torrent bed, the cool, perennial spring, called St 
Martin's well, bubbles up among the stones. Proceed- 
ing down the den, the traveller surblen'y finds himself 
out of the leafy darkness from the thick trees, in the 
bright sunshine of the open vale of the Esk. Logie Kirk 
is a little to the west of this, and lies at the foot of the 
brae on the same side of the valley. The ancient kirk- 
yard is enclosed by a line of overhanging trees, and con- 
tains a number of old tombstones. The Auld Kirk has 
been repaired in the former antique style, and is used a* 
a place of sepulture. 

The creations of Beattie's genius are certainly of 
the wildest and most singular character, in which the 
grotesque and the ludicrous are strangly mingled 
with the grand and the horrible. What can exceed in 
energy his description of the dance of the ghosts and 
the skeletons ? — 

The very prhaists play'd antic pranks, 

They screicht an' shook their spindle-shanks, 

Clappit their wither' d hands and leuch 

Till mid the din of dance and battle, 

Their banes were heard for miles to rattle, 

And aye's they fell to crockinition, 

Their wizzent timbers stoured like sneeshin , 


And new like duds athwart the lir'r, 
Aa choaJdn' thick as yowden diitt. 

The thunder roar'd— the sweeping blast 
Their reekit, riven rags, blew past, 
An' show'd tlieir parchment thro' the glim, 

-tit, squalid, swarth, and grim ; 
The >kin hung down in .-hrivell'd flaps, 
lake spleuchans o'er their teethless chaps ; 
Thro' skinny lips their blasted breath 
Mix'd wi' the wind, and snielt of death. 

I >uring the tenth and the early part of the eleventh 
centuries, the Danes committed much havoc on the 
east coast, burning Montrose in 9S0, and Brechin in 
1012, but were checked at Luncarty, Aberlemno, and 
Barry, where the founder of the Keiths is said to 
have slain Camus their leader. Tradition bears that 
they were finally defeated at Commieston ; and 
there, in the "Sick Man's Shade," at the "Stone of 
Morphy " and "Dannie's Den," a number of stone 
coffins and bones have been found. 

The lands of Morphie and Canterland, it may be 
briefly remarked, were owned for a short time by the 
Lindsays, having been previously, about 1329, held 
by Fraser of Cowie, the trusty follower and relative 
of Bruce, and hence anciently called Morphyfraser. 
They were sold to Sir Robert Graham in 1629, and 
subsequently destined by will to the Barclays of 
Balmakewan, the present proprietor being Mr Barron 

The adjoining property of Canterland was long 
owned by a family surnamed Ramsay, who held it 
under the superiority of the Cathedral of Brechin. 
From the Keiths it passed to the Lindsays — the last 
of that name who held it being John, nephew of the 
murderer of Lord Spynie ; and the laird of Edzell and 
Glenesk having died without issue in 16-48, he was 
succeeded by John of Canterland. He was Sheriff 
of Forfarshire, a person of great worth, and a friend 


of the Covenant, for which, says Jervise, he suffered 
great losses. He died in 1671, and from his grand- 
son the family possessions of Edzell and Glenesk fell 
to the Earl of Panmure in 1714 — "and the once 
powerful race of the Lindsays of Glenesk is now 
represented as proprietors in their native shire by the 
family of Kinblethmont, who are sprung from a 
sister of the last Lord Spynie." 

But here we have now, on our way to Laurence- 
kirk, to cross the Hill of Garvock. The first mention 
of the Hill is made in 1282, when Hugh Blond, lord 
of Arbuthnott, gave the patronage of the Monastery 
of Arbroath, "in pure and perpetual alms." The 
present church (Rev. William Stephen) was erected 
towards the close of the 18th century. Some years ago 
an old cen.s")- was found under the floor, and is now 
preserved in the manse. Bishop David Mitchell of 
Aberdeen, who superintended Archbishop Spottis- 
wood's " Church History " through the press, was the 
son of a small farmer in this parish, arfd Bishop John 
Strachan of Brechin was hovn at Bedford, Garvock. 
A hollow to the north-east of the church is said to 
have been the place where the old barons, already 
referred to, boiled " an' suppit " their Sheriff, and an 
oblong spot, near the old site of St James' Fair is 
known as the " Packman's Howe," where two pack- 
men " fell out," killed each other, and were buried 
where they fell — their packs being still " seen in the 
gloamings dancing about the fatal hollow ! " 


In recent years Laurencekirk has grown in popu- 
larity as a summer resort. It enjoys a fine climate, 
and, like Auchinblae, it has its charms and facilities, 
and very pleasant surroundings. Its authorities are 
enterprising, and ever willing to add to the attrac- 


tions of the town. Nature has done much all around. 
The view from the Hill of Garvock is grandly im- 
pressive. A fine picture is spread out, backed by the 
Grampian peaks, robed in pines, and capped with 
red-tinged heather. Below stretch* out the fields for 
miles and miles on either side, varied in colour as one 
of our own native tartans. The whole country 
presents a pleasing aspect — " one glory of cultiva- 
tion," as Pennant, in 1772, in his memorable "Tour 
in Scotland," prophesied the district would become. 

The credit of having founded the village of Lau- 
rencekirk, as well as of having erected the burgh, 
has usually been given to Lord Gardenstone ; but, 
though his Lordship's merits were great in the way 
of enlargement and improvement, it is certain that 
the village was in existence more than a century be- 
fore he had acquired an interest in the parish. The 
parish church (Rev. Thomas Scott) was renovated 
and tastefully modernised during 1895. It was 
erected in 1804 on the site of an earlier church, built 
in 1626 : but a sacred building, dedicated to Christian 
worship in 1244 stood on a site known as the Chapel 
Knap, near the Mill of Conveth. It had doubtless 
belonged to the Culdee Church, which had existed 
for centuries before the Church of Rome dominated 
the country. 

The name of Laurencekirk (formerly Conveth) 
must have been in common use during Ruddiman's 
(the eminent biographer and grammarian) official 
connection with the parish, 1695-1700 — the first 
edition of his Rudiments (1714) bearing on the title 
page that he had been " sometime schoolmaster at 
Laurencekirk;' The name of Ruddiman is fondly 
remembered there to this day, and Laurencekirk is 
proud that once her sons and daughters constituted 
the pupils of Scotland's "greatest grammarian." 


The first occurrence of the name of "Laurence- 
kirk" in the Presbytery records is under date 10th 
September 1701, after which, with one or two excep- 
tions, the name of Conveth is dropped The first 
start to growth and prosperity was given to the 
village by the advent of Lord Gardenstone as pro- 
prietor of Johnston. So early as 1772, David 
Beattie, his factor, appeared at a meeting of kirk- 
session " to purchase the loft belonging to the poor, 
in consequence of the increasing size of the village." 
When his Lordship purchased the estate of Johnston, 
Laurencekirk was a mere clay-built hamlet of 54 in- 
habitants. He built an elegant inn, with a library 
and museum, a town hall, an Episcopal chapel, a 
spinning mill with a bleachfield on the Luther, and 
established the linen manufacture. Portraits of the 
original feuars are to be seen in the Gardenstone 
Hotel. In 1779 he wrote to them his famous letter 
of admonition, and obtained a Crown Charter, erect- 
ing the village into a burgh of barony, and empower- 
ing the feuars every third year to elect a bailie and -4 
councillors, to hold markets and collect customs. 
His Lordship's energies, says the late Rev. W. R. 
Fraser, formerly of Maryton, in his " History of 
Laurencekirk," were first moved in this direction by 
a feeling which, in a Preface to his "Letter to the 
People of Laurencekirk," he has described in these 
characteristic terms : — 

" In ancient and heroic days, persons of the highest 
ambition aspired at a character of being the founders of 
societies and cities. I have produced an elegant proof of 
this in a quotation from Virgil ; and it is finely illustrated 
in a story related by Plutarch (I think) of Themistocles. 
A man of quality in ancient Greece, who seems to have 
possessed a modern taste of distinction and pleasure, asked 
Themistocles if he could play on the lute ? No, said he, 
but I can raise a small village to be a flourishing city." 



Encouragement was given to strangers settling in the 
village who were likely to promote its industry ; and it 
soon became a centre of attraction to handicraftsmen and 
others from all parts of the country. According to 
tradition, only one branch of industry was at a discount 
in those early days of the village. A hatter had come 
from a distance to judge for himself what encouragement 
was likely bo be given to a person in his peculiar line. 
The few days of his stay included Sunday, when he went 
to church, and observed that the only hats in the congre- 
gation were the minister's and his own. Disappointed, if 
not disgusted, he left the village early on Monday morning, 
resolved to prosecute the sale of hats elsewhere. 

It was the rapid increase of the population from so 
many different sources that the Aberdeen Professor had 
in view when he penned the famous rhyme, 

" Fi"ie .^rnV beginnings Rome of anld 

Becani a gn Lai city. 

'Tw - retauld, 

By bankrupts, ads, banditti. 

Quoth Tammas, then the time may come 
When Laurencekirk will equal Home."' 


Lord Gardenstone was the author of several books of travel 
and "Miscellanies in Prose and Verse." He was Kector 
of Marischal College, Aberdeen, 1788-89. His lordship's 
attire was usually of the plainest description ; and there 
is a story related of him which arose from this habit. On 
a journey from London he was outside passenger on a 
coach in the inside of which there were some ' ' young 
bucks.' At the end of a certain stage they took break- 
the outside traveller being shown into an inferior 
room, rhe young genllemen in the best apartment, 
being seated for breakfast, received a civil request through 
the waiter that they would allow their fellow-passenger 
to join them. A haughty repjy was given that they 
were not in the habit of keeping company with outside 
passengers. His lordship then ordered a magnum I 
of claret, which he shared with the landlord, giving in- 
structions for a postchaise-and-four to be put in readiness 
for him in the meantime. The landlord at the end of the 


next stage, who knew Lord Gardenstone, received him 
with all due respect to his rank ; he had timed his jour- 
ney so that the gentle youths were eye-witnesses of his 
reception. As might have been expected, when the 
tables were thus turned, the pretentious "bucks" 
developed into fawning suppliants. A polite note was 
addressed to his lordship, craving forgiveness, and re- 
questing the honour of his company afc dinner. But to 
the note the only reply was a verbal message, that " he 
kept no company with people whose pride would not per- 
mit them to use their fellow-travellers with civility." 

His lordship's eccentricity assumed the still stranger 
form of a strong affection for pigs. To one he was so 
much attached that he allowed it to share his bed ; and, 
when good feeding and rapid growth made it too cumber- 
some a bedfellow, it was lodged in comfortable quarters 
in the apartment. During the day time it followed him 
about like a dog. David Cowie, Mains of Haulkerton, 
had occasion to see his lordship one morning, and was 
shown into his bedroom. He stumbled in the dark upon 
some object, from which a loud grunt proceeded, followed 
by another voice from the directiun of the bed, "It is 
just a bit sow, poor beast, and I laid my breeches on it 
to keep it warm all night." 


We have already referred to the celebrated nature 
of the Laurencekirk snuff-boxes. Mr Fraser gives 
several examples of their fame, and tells that many 
years ago an Aberdonian in India met an English- 
man, who asked him if Aberdeen was in Scotland. 
Being informed that it was, he rejoined, " Oh, you 
come from Scotland ; do you know a Mr Laurence 
Kirk who makes snuff-boxes 1 " The maker was 
Charles Sfciven, a name-son of the Pretender. His 
father was spoken of as a "gryte Jacobite," and the 
principles implied in that distinction seem to have 
been engrafted in the family. When the Duke of 
Cumberland had destroyed the Episcopal Chapel at 


Stonehaven, the members of the persuasion were in 
the practice of meeting for divine service in the house 
of .lean Stiven. It was unlawful for more than five 
persons over and above the household so to meet; 
and an evasion of the law was attempted by the per- 
mitted number assembling in a room, with a clergy- 
man officiating, while the rest of the congregation 
occupied another within reach of his voice. 

Stiven was brought under the notice of Lord 
Gardenstone, who induced him to remove to Laurence- 
kirk — a likely place, whenitissaid nearly everybody, 
male and female, indulged in snuff. Lord Garden- 
stone consumed it in large quantities. He carried it 
usually in a leather pocket, made for the purpose, in 
his waistcoat. His lordship's u*e of the article was 
so liberal, that the folds of his waistcoat became a 
repository of snuff to the villagers, who, when con- 
versing with him, helped themselves. It was cus- 
tomary for a lady in the position of a farmer's wife to 
receive a box filled with pure taddy as one of the 
first presents on the occasion of her marriage. For 
many years a thriving trade was carried on, and at 
one time there were three establishments devoted 
to the manufacture. 

The present mansion-house of Johnston was erected 
in 1S05 for a summer residence by Mr James 
Farquhar, a London merchant, who purchased the 
estate on the death of Lord Gardenstone. Alexander 
Gibbon, ad vocate, Aberdeen, succeeded to the possession 
of Johnston on the death of his uncle, Mr Farquhar. 
Mr Gibbon's only child became the wife of 1). A. 
Pearson of Xorthcliffe, Writer to the Signet in Edin- 
burgh. Mrs Pearson, through her maternal grand- 
mother, is a direct representative of the line of 
Barclay of Mathers. Her succession to the estate 
gave to the number of landed proprietors in the 



parish, a lineal descendant of John, brother of 
Humphrey de Berkeley, the earliest one on record, 
whose possessions in the twelfth century included a 
portion of the lands which are now attached to John- 

Before leaving Laurencekirk mention might be 
made of Thornton, two miles to the west. 


This ancient residence, with magnificent grounds 
studded with grand old trees and surroundings of 

ix. /v- 

great natural beauty, has been added to at various 
times. What is known as the Round Tower is sup- 
posed t be the oldest portion. On the Square 
Tower there is a slab inserted bearing the following 
inscription :— " The above now perishing date of this 
tower is 1531. Alexander Crombie, 1834." Over 
the entrance door is the date 1662. The back wing 
facing the garden was erected about 1847. 


The first mention of Thornton in the history of the 
country was about 1204, when the name of Laurence 
of Thornton is mentioned in a deed by Henry, Abbot 
of Arbroath. In 1296 it is recorded that John De 
Thorontone did homage to Edward I. at Berwick- 
upon-Tweed. We further find that Valentine of 
Thornton received a charter from King Robert the 
Bruce of the lands of Thornton. This is the last 
mention of the Thorntons of Thornton until 1893, 
when the late Sir Thomas Thornton became possessor 
of the estate. Sir Thomas, who was knighted in 
189-4, was Town Clerk of Dundee, and died in 1903. 
He was succeeded by his son, William. 

The estate was carried by a daughter — Agatha — to 
Sir James Strachan of Monboddo, by whom she had 
two sons. The younger received Thornton, and was 
subsequently knighted by Robert II. The estate re- 
mained in the hands of the Strachans for a long 
period, and through their valour the Strachans of 
Thornton rendered their name famous in history. In 
1572 the then laird's name appears as having a seat 
in Parliament ; and in 1574 he was appointed Com- 
missioner for Kincardineshire to superintend the 
" making of wapping shawings," which was then 
ordered to take place throughout Scotland twice a 
year. In 1606 the property fell into the hands of 
Alexander Strachan, who was a Commissioner of 
the 1 Exchequer in 1630. The term by which the 
Mearns men are so well known took its rise during 
an engagement under Robert the Bruce, in which one 
of the Strachans of Thornton took a very prominent 
part. At a very critical time he most successfully led 
the Mearns men to the charge, and so well pleased 
was'the King that he exclaimed — " Well done, men 
o' the Mearns." 

From the Strachans the estate passed to the Forbes 


family, and subsequently to the Fullertons, one of 
whom sold it to Lord Gardenstone. In 1804 his 
Lordship's successor, Francis Gordon, sold it to Alex. 
Crombie of Phesdo, who was followed by the Eev. 
Dr Crombie, London — a man of some literary fame. 
On the death of his son, Alexander, who enlarged the 
castle, the estate went to Alexander Crombie, W.S., 
Edinburgh, who greatly enlarged the ancient castle 
and adorned the grounds, rendering Thornton one of 
the most attractive places in the district. 

The burial place of the Thornton families was the 
aisle built on the south-west wall of the parish kirk 
of Marykirk in 1615. This house of the dead is now 
dilapidated, but it was originally a very ornate 
structure, and had a beautiful monument to Dame 
Elizabeth Forbes, Lady of Thornton, and her husband 
Sir James Strachan, Bart. The old statistical 
account says : — " The pillars, images, and other 
designs were finely cut, elegantly ornamented, and 
highly finished." Xear the centre of this monument 
is a Latin inscription, but it is so defaced with age, 
and by a burning occasioned by the Covenanters at 
the time of the Revolution, that it is no longer legible. 
On the ceiling of the aisle, which is of oak, there is a 
long list of the names of honourable families, with 
their coats of arms beautifully inscribed, with which 
the family of Sir James Strachan were connected. 
In the east end of the aisle there is a font, and on the 
north-east wall of the church there are two porches 
near to each other, in which were preserved the 
sacred utensils. At this entry, lie the stocks almost 
consumed by age, and on the outside of the church, 
formerly attached to the wall, are the jougs." 


Sauchieburn is the next point of historic interest. 


Here a Chape] was erected in 1774 for the Rev. John 
Barclay of Fettercairn, the founder of the Bereans. 
The name was assumed from the ancient Bereans, 
whose example they professed to follow in building 
their faith upon Scripture alone. Mr Barclay 
was succeeded by Mr Macrae, grandfather of Rev. 
David Macrae, formerly of Dundee. Another of his 
grandsons was the founder of the Congregationalist 
body in Laurencekirk. Here are homeh T incidents 
connected with three of the pastors of the Sauchieburn 
Bereans : — David Low, a shoemaker at Laurencekirk, 
succeeded the first pastor. When asked by a curious 
neighbour what stipend the congregation allowed 
him, he replied i " I dinna get nae steepin ; they 
dinna even come to me for their shoon ? " John 
Todd, farmer at Butterybraes, was the next pastor. 
His discourses were alike practical and seasonable. 
About the time of Yule he never failed to warn his 
audience : " My freen's, beware o' cairda an' dice, an' 
that bewitchin' thing the totum.'' William Taylor, 
carrier at Fettercairn, was at first associated with 
John, and afterwards sole pastor. His services were 
of a homely description, making up in fervour for any 
lack of polish. While his colleague survived, the 
duties of the day were occasionally divided. When 
Y\ illiam had performed his share, he usually ended 
with a remark such as, " Xoo, John, ye'll come up an' 
lat's see daylicht through the Romans." The weekly 
service was continued until about 1840. Soon after- 
wards the kirk and site were disposed of for the sum of 
£14 sterling. The congregation was speedily reduced 
to two aged females. When one of them had gone to 
her long home, the other remarked with feeling, 
"Ah, sir ! when I gang too, the Bereans '11 be clean 
licket aff ! " William Leiper, a travelling tailor, a 
man of sincere, if somewhat fanatical religious 


convictions, wrote a long poem on the subject of the 
Sauchieburn people. The verses, which were set to 
the tune of " Coleshill," are somewhat as follows : — 

As Israel to the promised land 

Front Pharoah s wrath did turn 
From Fettercaira a chosen band 

Gae'd south to Sauchieburn. 

Syne carnal men and flesh pots foul 

The Lord's ain iouk did spurn, 
And gospel manna for the soul 

They sooked at Sauchieburn. 
Beneath the shade o' scented birks 

They went ilk Sabbath morn : 
A people zealous of gude wirks, 

The saints o' Sauchieburn. 
And sweet as honey in the mooth, 

And savoury as rresh herrin', 
Was aye the word o sacred trath 

\yhen preached at Sauchieburn. 
The hale world lay in guilt and sin, 

Except a chosen cum, 
That pointedly did worship in 

The kirk at Bauehieburn. 

The yill-hoose stood across the road. 

And earnest souls did yearn 
For a gill o' the best an' a brief abode 

At the inn o' Sauchieburn. 

An' syne refreshed, they thocht nae mair 

That man was made to mourn, 
An' journeyed hame richt tree irae care 

That day at Bauehieburn. 


Luthermuir is a scattered village, built since 1800 y 
on a muir or common, and inhabited chiefly by 
crofters and handloom weavers, now greatly reduced 
in numbers, though a faint echo of the buzzing and 
rattling of the primitive loom of former days can still 
be heard. The place has a peaceful air about it, and 
we can see the smoke from the small pendicles lazily 
lingering for a little, and then getting lost in the blue 
of the hills beyond. 


The lands of Balmakewan were owned bv Allan 


Fawsyde from about 1327 to 1371. They were sub- 
sequently in the Arbuthnott family till their 
acquisition by Lord Menmuir, the firs^ Lindsay of 
Balcarres, who was proprietor in 1580. The mansion, 
which is pleasantly situated amid fine old trees and 
policies, near the junction of the Luther and North 
Esk, was tastefully renewed and enlarged by the 
late proprietor, Mr James F. Lowe. 

The original mansion was built by Dr Thomas 
Gillies (a member of a celebrated Brechin family), who 
amassed a large fortune abroad, and on returning 
home purchased the estate. On page 176 of this 
work we referred to this gentleman, who, though of 
eccentric habits, was a man of great benevolence. 


This quiet and cosy-looking little village lies very 
pleasantly on the side of the Xorth Esk, and contains 
the parish church and manse (Rev. J. C. M'Clure), 
a number of well-built modern houses, the remains of 
an ancient market cross, and a homely, hearty, 
old-style roadside inn. Comfortable little holdings 
seem to rise almost out of the bed of the river, as in 
a broad stretch it quietly ripples along, glistening 
like burnished silver, under the long and graceful 
railway viaduct ; and all the gardens are so gay and 
trim as to suggest to the visitor that the love of 
flowers must be universal in this country-side. The 
gate-way to Kirktonhill House is in the village. It 
is a quaint old edifice, and occupies a commanding 

A correspondent informs us that not many years 
ago old people then alive talked of the church only as 
" Mary." How a village arose here can be easily 
understood. The famous well near the church, like 
that of St John at Balmanno House, is one of the 



purest and most' refreshing water, and was of old 

believed to have excellent healing properties for the 


injured or diseased, whilst the sheltering hill above it, 


combined with rural loveliness all around, formed a 
scene where nature evidently intended a village to 
arise. The people seeking abode naturally came to a 
spot possessing so many advantages, and ere long 
houses, humble although they were, arose, and in 
greater number than now exist. The land was 
cultivated into crofts, and cottages and ale-houses, as 
old records attest, stood on what is now the finely 
sloping lawn of Kirktonhill, and along the quickly 
flowing burn which bounds it. 

Marykirk village is said to have been the first 
place to see a valuable esculent — the potato — intro- 
duced in the district, an Irishman, whose name is for- 
gotten, having in 1727 come from Kilsyth, where it 
had been for some time cultivated, and reared it in 
his little garden, without being able, however, for a 
time to get the villagers to share in his liking for it. 


The lands of Craigo adjoin Marykirk. TheFullar- 
tons owned part of the property in the 16th century, 
and it was in possession of various proprietors pre- 
vious to the purchase of the estate by the present 
owners. The policies of Craigo are extensive, and 
plantations spread out to a considerable distance in 
all directions around the mansion, leaving an open 
park in front. Some of the trees are remarkable for 

Craigo House is a large building three floors in 
height, with a long frontage. The entrance is in the 
centre, the door being surrounded by a small portico, 
the front of which is supported by four Ionic pillars. 
Right and left of the doorway there are four windows 
on each floor, all of comparatively small size. There 
is a wing extending back from the centre of the .house, 
behind which are ranges of offices. David Carnegie, 


Dean of Brechin, who died in 1594, was great-grand- 
son of Sir Robert Carnegie of Kinnaird. He pur- 
chased Craigo, and was ancestor of this branch of the 
Carnegies. David Carnegie, third of Craigo, received 
a Crown charter of half the lands of Craigo, 1705 ; 
and another of the lands and Barony of Logie-Mon- 
trose, 1713 ; and another of the lands of Meikle and 
Little Dysarts, 1739. He married Margaret Demp- 
ster, heiress of Logie and Dysart, in Angus, and of 
Ballindean, in Perthshire, by whom he had eight 
sons and eleven daughters. Thomas Carnegie in 1785 
disponed Craigo, Logie, &c, to his son David and his 
other sons, whom failing, to Elizabeth, Anne, Clemen- 
tina, and Helen Carnegie, his sisters, equally among 
them. David Carnegie succeeded his father in Craigo, 
in 1793. He married Isabella Agnes, daughter of 
George Macpherson of Invereshie, and by her had 
three sons and seven daughters. 

In 1881 these properties, and Logie Mills and 
Bleachfields, in terms of the settlement of their late 
brother, Thomas, in 1851, came into the possession 
of Misses Ann Grace Carnegy, Agnes M. Carnegy, 
Rev. Thomas Bain, Coupar Angus, in right of his 
wife, Mrs Agnes Carnegy or Bain, and Miss Elizabeth 
Carnegy, the latter of whom, who was the sole 
survivor of the family and owner of the lands of 
Craigo, Dysart, Balwyllo, Pitforthie. &c, died in 
1901, and was succeeded by Sir George Macpherson 

Mr Fraser writes thus of the highly esteemed 
ladies of the Craigo branch, who were remarkable for 
their longevity : — 

Mrs Margaret Carnegie of Craigo, aged eighty-seven 
years complete ; born in Montrose ; never had a fever ; 
her eyesight entire to the last. Her sister, Miss Carnegie, 
was also born in Montrose, and lived for the most part in 


it, till her death, aged eighty-one years complete. Very 
healthful all along, and did not lie in bed one day till her 
death, memory and judgment entire to the last. Their 
grandfather, David Gardyne, Esq. of Gairden, had twenty 
daughters and four sons, all by one lady, Elspet Arbuth- 
not of Arbuthnot. They lived sixty years in the married 
state: died at eighty- six years. Both had their memory 
and judgment vigorous to the last. They had six daugh- 
ters married to gentlemen of fortune, in the counties of 
Angus and Mearns, and lived to between eighty-six and 
ninety years. They were brought up in a cold house, the 
Castle of Gairden, and had no fire 3 in their rooms till 
married. Miss Carnegie's aunt, Lady Nicolson, lived till 
ninety-two years complete ; vigorous as to body and mind 
till her death ; and on her deathbed signed a deed of 
entail sixty times with her own hand. Her sister, Lady 
Arbeikie, lived eighty-eight years complete, and was 
cheerful with her friends the night before her death, 
knowing herself dying. 


There were two different churches in this district 
called Logie — Logie-Montrose, and Logie-Dundee. 
The first stood, as we have seen, near St Martin's 
"Well, in a hollow on the west bank of the Xorth Esk. 
Some years ago it was converted into a burial vault 
by Carnegy of Craigo. In 1565, William Gray, a 
relative of the father of the celebrated James Mel- 
ville, was minister of the parish, as well as of the 
parishes of Pert, Menmuir, and Fearn, down to about 
1574, with a stipend of £188 15s 6d, out of which 
he paid the reader of Logie the sum of =£20 a year. 

1 he present church of Logie-Pert is situated near 
the middle of the united parishes. It is a neat, rect- 
angular building, with four large round-headed 
windows in the south wall. It contains a very fine 
organ, purchased through the energetic endeavours of 
the present popular and gifted minister of the Parish 


— the Rev. James Landreth — from All-Saints (Epis- 
copalian) Church, Edinburgh, to which it was gifted 
by Dean Ramsay of the " Reminiscences." The 
spacious manse is situated on the brink of a pretty 
den, through which the Gallery Burn ripples, and 
stately old trees shelter the building, and lend beauty 
to the scene. 

The old kirk of Pert, which is on the highway, 
near the Upper North Water Bridge, is a very 
picturesque ruin, bearing a marked resemblance to 
" Alloway's auld haunted kirk," and, adds Jervise in 
his " Memorials," as in the vicinity of that place a poet 
of world-wide fame was born in a clay-built cottage, 
so here, in a similar tenement, on 6th April 1778, 
James Mill, the historian of British India, was born. 
He was, says John Morley, M,P., "a great, strong, 
sinewy, strongly-knit soul, if ever there was one." 
His father was a humble crofter, and the house in 
which Mill first saw the light stood for many years 
near the south end of the Xorth Water Bridge. It 
is said that Mr Mill owed his early success to the 
kindness of Sir John Stuart of Fettercairn ; and Mr 
Mill's son, the distinguished writer on political 
economy, bore the name of his father's patron. 

In the romantically situated Kirkyard of Pert are 
to be seen a number of tombstones erected over the 
graves of members of the Mill family, amongst them 
one bearing the name of James Mill, crofter, which 
stands near the road that passes the west side of the 
sequestered God's-acre. The old crofter was an 
Episcopalian, and attended a small church belonging 
to that denomination which stood at Rosehill, not far 
from the Xorth Water Bridge, but which was de- 
molished after the late Sir John Gladstone, father of 
the celebrated statesman, placed the beautiful chapel 


he erected at Fasque at the disposal of the Episco- 
palians belonging to the district. 

Dr Bain, in his "James IN til 1 : a Biography," says : 
— The spot of his birth is not far from being a central 
point in that part of Strathmore, extending into the 
two counties of Forfar or Angus and Kincardine or 
the Mearns, called " Howe of Angus," and " Howe of 
the Mearns." The strath or plain is from four to six 
miles wide, and lies between the Grampians, here 
rising to an average of nearly two thousand feet, and 
a line of coast hills of much lower elevation. 

Of the various bridges on the River North Esk the 
oldest and most important is the one that gives the 
name to Mill's birthplace ; a three arch stone bridge 
built about three centuries before his time, on the 
great central line of communication from the north 
of Scotland to the south • the bridge near the sea for 
the coast road being built only in the end of last 
century. The river is for a great part of its course 
the boundary of the two counties of Forfar and Kin- 
cardine. The parish of Logie-Pert, a union of two 
older parishes, ratified by Act of Parliament in 1661, 
Logie and Pert, lies along the right bank of the 
North Esk, and is the last of the Forfar parishes 
northward. Across the river is Marykirk, lower 
down St Cyrus — the coast hills and coast parish. 

The oldest historic scenes in Logie-Pert are marked 
by a number of tumuli. Three of these are on the 
Laws of Logie, about a mile to the west of the House 
of Craigo ; and there is a fourth on Leighton Law, 
on the border of the parish of Montrose. 


The North Water Bridge is a scene to which 
a melancholy interest attaches. Built at his own 
expense by the famous reformer, Erskine of Dun, 


little did he think of the use that was to be made of 
it in the next age, in the persecution of his ecclesias- 
tical followers. Argyle's invasion in 1685 ended in 
his capture and execution ; but to a Government 
whose tyranny, civil and religious, was fast becoming 
intolerable, it created great alarm, during which the 
Privy Council ordered all the Covenanters who were 
in confinement to be sent to Dunnottar Castle for their 
safe custody. Like a flock of sheep for the slaughter, 
they were driven to their prison on foot, their hands 
tied behind their backs, and all manner of indignity 
and cruelty heaped upon them. At night they were 
crammed together in unwholesome apartments in 
jails, where they happened to be within the reach of 
these. One night they passed between the parapets 
of the North Water Bridge, which was guarded at 
both ends to prevent their escape. Regarding this 
structure local tradition says : — 

John Erskine dreamed that unless he should build a 
bridge, where three waters. ran in one, he would be 
miserable after death. Going out in a pensive mood one 
day and walking along the banks of the North Esk. he 
met an old woman near the spot where the bridge stands, 
and asking the name of the place, she told him it was 
called Stormy Grain, where three waters ran in one. Re- 
cognising this to be the spot to which his dream alluded, 
he immediately set about building a bridge there. After 
the bridge was founded and partly constructed, a spate in 
the river carried it away. He commenced to the bridge 
again, and again it was carried away. This so discouraged 
him that he kept his bed. While there he one day saw a 
spider commence to weave a web, but it fell down. A 
second attempt also failed, but it succeeded in the third 
attempt. Encouraged by this he commenced a third time 
to build the bridge, and succeeded in erecting the hand- 
some structure which has stood every flood to the present 

In old times a great market was held at the North 



Water Bridge upon Sabbath as well ek days. 

The Brechin Presbytery Records, of date L2th 

ber, L 643, state that the Sabbath was profaned 
by- the market held there, and the minister of Pert 

irdained to take notice of those who frequented 
the fair, and inform their ministers that they might 
be punished as Sabbath breakers. 


Gallery House is a massive-looking old mansion, 
weather-beaten by the storms of centuri a rich 

variety of tints. It was erected by the late Mr 
Foulerton of Gallery and Thornton, from whom the 
! >a\id Lyall, Esq., purchased the estate of ( Sallery. 
It is snugly situated on the southern bank of the 
North Esk, about a mile west from Marykirk village. 
The building is of three storeys, consisting of a cen- 
tral portion, in the middle of which is the entrance, 
surmounted by the family arms. There are wings on 
each end. which project forward some distance beyond 
the main front. From the side of the westmost of 
these a range of buildings is carried some distance 
farther to the west, and half hidden by trees, which 
are not surpassed in size by many in Angus, and throw 
an air of dignity over the scene. 


Towers and liattlements it - 
Bosom' d high in tufted trees. 

Inglismaldie Castle is a noble old mansion, beautifully 
embowered amongst gigantic firs, picturesque policies, 
and ancient gardens. Few buildings can boast of a 
setting more impressive than that of the historic 
home of the Falconers, for here the elements of the 
antique and the beautiful blend together till they 
grow into one harmonious whole. The castle was 


built in the 17th century by Carnegie of Xorthesk, 
but has been much added to at various periods, 
especially by the present Earl. It was for centuries 
the seat of the Lords Falconer of Haulkerton, and is 
now the seat of their representative, the Right Hon. 
the Earl of Kintore, late Governor-General of South 
Australia, who is the 13th Lord Falconer and the 
10th Earl of Kintore. He was born in 1852, and 
married Lady Sydney Montagu, daughter of the 
Duke of Manchester. Her ladyship's artistic tastes 
are widely known, many fine specimens of intricate 
embellishment in hammered brass and iron work 
being seen in the castle. Many of these have been 
thought out by the Countess, and measured with a 
handicraftsman's accuracy, and executed from her 
designs by the local blacksmith. A magnificent oak 
carved screen was erected by a local man near Inglis- 
maldie, from Lady Kintore's own designs and 
measurements. The beautiful carved gates were pro- 
cured in Brittany, the pillars modelled by the car- 
penter, and the carved figures picked up by degrees. 
The surname of Falconer originated from the office 
of keeper of the king's hawks or falcons, and Hawkers- 
town had its name from being the place of their 
residence. These lands are about a mile north of 
Laurencekirk, near the site of the old Castle of Kin- 
cardine, where William the Lion and other Scottish 
kings sometimes resided ; and William Auceps is 
believed to have been keeper of the hawks to King 
"William, and to have received the lands of Haulker- 
ton for his services. Wilielnius Auceps, or William 
the Hawker, is the first recorded of the noble family 
of Falconer. He appears in an undated charter, sup- 
posed to belong to about the close of the 12th 
century, and by this he gives certain lands, situated 
on the banks of the Luther, to the church of Maring- 


tun (now Marykirk). This grant was confirmed, as 
was the custom of the times, by laving a turf, cut 
from the land, upon the altar of the church. 

Shortly after 1693 the Earls of Kintore acquired 
the lands of Dunlappie, and held them until about 
1860, when the Earl of Kintore divided the lands 
into six portions, and sold them to as many proprie- 
tors, all of whom had previously been tenant farmers. 
It is said that four of these portions were possessed 
by parties named Martin, on whom the following 
triplet was composed — 

" Crawhill, an' Ba'hill, 
Rochie, an' the Greens. 
A' thae three are Men'-.'' 

Of these, Dunlappie is now held by Wm. Harper ; 
Cairndrum, by the representatives of the late Geo. 
D. LeightoD ; and Reidhall, by David Reid. The 
lands of Lundie, now belonging to Capt. Dudley 
Stewart, R.X., are in front of Brown Caterthun. 
Near Lundie House (on which extensive alterations 
and improvements have recently been made lry the 
new proprietor) is a romantic den, in which bracken 
grows luxuriously to a height of from four to five 
feet. From the top of Lundie Hill the prospect is 
extensive in nearly all directions, and both pleasing 
and grand. It is said that Lundie was at one time 
an oak forest, and that the timber grew there of 
which the rafters of the Church of Brechin were 
made. When the rafters were removed and sold, 
some of the wood was made into snuff-boxes and 
household ornaments. In allusion to this tradition, 
the following lines by the late Alex. Laing, Brechin, 
the author of a volume entitled " Wayside Flowers," 
and of the song, "The Standard on the Braes o' 
Mar," were written and put on some of the orna- 
ments, &c. : — 


This box was made from an oaken log, 

That was brought from the forest of Lunette Bog 

At the foot nt the famous Caterthun, 

Full seven hundred years bygone. 

And since that time, till lately, stood 

On Brechin church a rafter good, 

As, by this relic, you well may see 

It was sound at heart, as sound could be. 

Which is more perhaps, than may be said 

Of you wh< > have this inscription read. 

The property of Auchinreoch — formerly called 
Mnirton— was retained by the Turnbulls when they 
sold Stracathro. The present fine old mansion was 
built by the last laird of that name, who became 
embarrassed, and had to sell the property to Archi- 
bald Gibson, who changed the name of the property 
from Mnirton to Auchinreoch. Archibald Gibson 
had been a merchant in Calcutta. His brother, 
Alexander, was in the medical service, and Conserva- 
tor of Forests in India ; and another brother, "\\ illiam, 
was a medical practitioner in Montrose. Archibald 
died in 1859, and Alexander in 1867. The estate 
is now owned Mr Alex. Gibson, a merchant of Peru, 
and grand-nephew of the former proprietor, l)r Alex. 
Gibson ; and the lands] of Chapelton now belong 
to the trustees of the late George Miln, solicitor, 
Arbroath. The Rev. F. Cruickshank, in his " Foot- 
marks in Stracathro/' says : — 

" Auchinreoch "' is a recent name which has taken the 
place of the former one of "Mnirton." The late Dr 
Gibson, when he bought the property, being interested as 
a man of cultivated mind in the fact that it had formed 
part of the battlefield of Stracathro, desired to perpetuate 
the memory of the great historical event by the name of 
"Auchinreoch, the field of the king." What king he 
meant does not matter much. He showed much better 
taste in making the change than some other persons who 
do away with ancient and significant names, because per- 
haps they are not very euphonious, substituting those 
which have either no meaning at all or a misleading one. 


Tlic farm of Newton, one of the properties acquired 
by the Right Hon. Jas, A. Campbell of Stracathro, 
owned at one time by the Livingstons, and from 
which Lord Newton assumed his judicial title, lies to 
the west wan 1 of the church of Stracathro. It be- 
longed to his Lordship, who was raised to the Bench 
in 1806, and was esteemed one of the Lest lawyers of 
his time. He possessed a great fund of humour and 
anecdote, became excessively corpulent, and died at 
Powrie H<> 

The old suppressed parish, of Dunlappie, an estate 
now owned by William Harper, is stated to have had 
an older proprietary history than any other in 
the county, having probably been gifted by King 
Malcolm TIL to his valorous adherent Macduff, Earl 
of Fife, who is traditionally credited with having 
slain King Macbeth, and thereby restored the throne 
to Malcolm. The Abernethys were the superiors of 
Dunlappie (then Dunlopyn) in the 12th and 13th 
centuries, at which time they probably had a fort- 
alice upon it, for tradition has it that when they 
returned from the Crusades they " found that the 
Lords of Edzell had taken forcible possession of their 


It stands pinbosomed in a happy valley. 
Crowned with high woodlands where the Druid oak 

Stood, like Caractacus, in act to rally 
His host, with broad amis 'gainst the thunder stroke. 

There are not a few important passages in the 
history of this parish and district. An interesting 
and comprehensive treatment of some of these is 
given by the Eight Hon. James A. Campbell of 
Stracathro, in his " Brechin District : Some Passages 
of its Early History ; " by Rev. F. Cruickshank, of 
Lethnot ; and by Surgeon-General Don. 


On page 183 we have already mentioned that the 
churchyard of Stracathro is of historic interest, being 
the scene of King John Baliol's penance to Edward 
I. in 129G. Previously, in 1130, a battle was fought 
in the same neighbourhood between David I. and 
Angus, Earl of Moray, which ended in the defeat of 
the latter. According to Tytler and others, the 
Danes who survived the battle of Aberlemno in 1012 
are said to have passed through Stracathro in their 
flight northward ; and tradition likewise speaks of a 
battle fought here at a very distant period between 
three kings — Pictish, Scottish, and British or Danish 
— in which all three fell. These bloody conflicts may 
account for the numerous sepulchral remains found 
throughout the parish of Stracathro. 


Mr Campbell thus refers, in his " Brechin District/' 
to this great battle, the importance of which is shown 
by its being mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 
and the Annals of Ulster : — 

David I. had become King of Scotland in 1124, on the 
death of his brother Alexander. His Queen was the 
Saxon Princess Margaret, sister of Edgar Atheling. It 
was during his reign that the Norman Conquest of 
England took place, and partly owing to the position of 
his kingdom, and partly to his connection with the 
Saxons through his Queen, his territory was largely fre- 
quented by those to whom the Norman rule in England 
was not acceptable. On entering upon the government 
of the lowland portion of Scotland, he had been followed 
into that territory by many of his Norman friends and 
companions, and had irtroduced Norman customs. When 
he received the further promotion of becoming King of 
the whole of Scotland, he was ready to give an extension 
to the feudal customs and policy with which he had thus 
become familiar. But his policy was not favourably 
received by the Celtic portion of his people, and in the 


north the opposition was headed by two grandsons of 
Lulach the successor of Macbeth— Angus and Malcolm. 
The former was known as Angus the Ma or m or or Earl ; 
and his brother Malcolm tried to pass himself oft as a 
natural son of tl e late King Alexander. These rallied the 
Celtic hosts and passed south over the Mounth with an 
army of 5000 men." King David was in England when 
news of the insurrection "reached him. Tim battle was 
fought within a mile of the Roman camp at Keithock— on 
the lands of Newton and Auchinreoch. The result was 
that 1000 of the King's men, and 4000 of the rebels, were 
slain. The rebels were completely discomfited, and their 
leader Angus was killed. As to the part taken by King 
David, there are different accounts. One account would 
imply that he wa* present and in command of his army, 
but another account, probably a more correct one, says 
that his army was led by his cousin, Edward the Constable. 
After the battle the King's army pursued the remainder 
of the rebels over the Mounth, and invaded and subdued 
the district of Moray. In the words of the chronicler, 
" thus David's dominions were augmented, and his power 
was greater than that of any of his predecessors. " 

The Church of Stracathro (or Stracalherach) — 

signifying " the strath or valley where the King 
fought" — was a parsonage of the Cathedral of Brechin, 
and the residence of the Chanter. The present 
church (of which the Rev. R. Grant has been the 
much esteemed minister since 1851) w T as built in 
1791, and was recently considerably modernised. It 
is a neat and comfortable place of worship, having 
two double pointed windows in front, and a belfry on 
the west gable. 

The Session Records of 1 715 show that the Jaeobites 
carried matters with a high hand in Stracathro — the 
factor, however, spoken of in the following extract, 
being at one time a licentiate in the Prelatic Church: — 

November 2d, Mr John Davie, factor to the Earl of 
Southesque, intruded on the minister's charge by taking 


the keys of the church, ordering the Kirk officer to ring 
the bells at the ordinary time of day, the people being 
warned the day before to wait on, and join in, the worship 
of a pretended fast or humiliation day for success to the 
Pretender's arms, and that under the pain of taking each 
man, master and servant, to the camp at Perth ; which 
warning so prevailed that it brought the whole parish 
together at the time appointed to the church, when and 
where Mr Davie himself came at the head of near eighty 
men under arm?, with beating drums and flying col. urs, 
and preached a little in the church, and after that kind of 
worship was over, he mustered up hi* men again at the 
kirk gate, and on their front went to Kinnaird. 

Alexander Laing, who was originally a flaxdresser, 
educated himself, and became schoolmaster of Straca- 
thro. He perished near his own house during a 
snowstorm in 1854. Laing wrote the well-known 
ballad, "The Raid o' Fern, or the Battle of Saughs," 
and other poems. In 1840 he addressed the follow- 
ing lines to his namesake, the gifted author of 
" Wayside Flowers," in allusion to the occupations of 
their respective grandfathers, the date of their own 
birth, places of baptism, and their names, trades, and 

Our grandfathers rang our parish bell, 

Inviting all to worship God : 
They toll'd their neighbours' funeral knell, 

Now both rest low beneath one sod. 
In eighty-six to life we came, 

And both were spiinkl'd at one font ; 
Our names and surnames are the same ; 

And both have view'd, not climbed the mount. 
To one profession both were bred— 

Both still are in the land of grace ; 
Grant when we make the grave our bed, 

That we may see our Father's face. 

Surgeon-General Don, in "Archaeological and other 
Notes on Stracathro and its Neighbourhood," sug- 
gested by the Rev. F. Cruickshank's " Historic Foot- 
marks in Stracathro," says : — 


" Tlie Northumbrian Anglo Saxons, who ultimately 
supplanted both Picts and Scots in the lowlands, were a 
most masculine race ; for thirty years in the seventh 
century they actually had the latter nations south of the 
Grampians under tribute ; and it was the keeping them in 
subjection which led to Eigtrid's invasion, and his 
destruction at Dun Nechtanin 685. This battle, of which 
many of our countrymen perhaps never even heard the 
name, was really (next to Bannockburn) the chiefest 
turning point in our history : hut for the destruction of 
the Saxons, they would probably have overran the entire 
lowlands in the seventh century ; in which case only our 
mountains, rivers, and chief natural features would have 
retained Celtic names ; and we should not even have had 
the name Scotland, much less the familiar pits and bals ; 
all our homesteads, hamlets, and towns, with rare excep- 
tions, would, as in England, have borne Saxon names ; 
and instead of wonderful variety there would have been 
only dead uniformity. It wou'd be interesting but 
unprofitable to speculate which might have been, philo- 
logically and historically, had the Saxons triumphed in 
685 ; suffice for us to note that their time had not then 
come, but was delayed until the eleventh century. It 
then did come in the form of the Notman Conquest, an 
event usuall} 7 associated with momentous consequences to 
England only, but which in reality equally affected 
Scotland. It was through it that Malcolm Canmore came 
to marry the Saxon princess Margaret, and through her 
that many of the best Saxons of England found their way 
to Scotland ; and by her son, David I., that their 
supremacy was finally asserted at the Battle of Stracathro 
in 1130. David's policy may be summed up in the twin 
endeavour to plant Roman monasticism, and diocesan 
episcopacy in the religions, with Saxon colonisation and 
Norman feudalism in the secular system of our country. 
He succeeded in both." 

" In the interpretation of certain Celtic place names in 
and about Stracathro, I have been fortunate in securing 
the opinion of an accomplished Gaelic scholar — Dr 
Cameron of Fettercairn . He interprets the oldest spelling 
of the parish itself ' Stracatherach,' as the ' valley of the 


warriors,' which, as he remarks, is quite in keeping with 
its historical surroundings ; at the same time it is also 
' very good old Gaelic for the mossy valley of bogs and 
marshes,' which would express the early condition of the 
country along the course of the Cruick. . . . The high 
banks overlooking the Kingford bore the Celtic name 
' Portsoy,' which means the ' sitting or resting places of 
those about to cross the ' port ' or ' ford,' it was, in fact, 
the place where travellers took off their nether garments 
preparatory to a wade. The next name is Saxon ; the 
bridge over the Cruick near the Manse, is called the 
' Chanter's brig,' being the spot where the singers from 
Brechin Cathedral pissed with a chanting sing-song to the 
affiliated church of Stracathro." 

The lands of Stracathro belonged to the Cathedral 
of Brechin, and appear to have been in the hands of 
the Chapter until the Reformation, when they were 
given off to Captain Robert Lawder. After being 
owned by several families it remained in the hands of 
the Turnbulls from 1656 until 1764, and was again 
in the possession of two or three different owners, in- 
cluding a Dr Mackenzie of Jamaica, and of Patrick 
Cruickshank, who had also acquired a fortune in 
Jamaica. His heir, Alexander Cruickshank, built the 
present mansion-house, and, according to Warden, 
made a deer park, and laid out the fine existing 
gardens. Mr Cruickshank's trustees sold the property 
in 1848 to Sir James Campbell, long the head of the 
well-known firm of J. & W. Campbell, merchants, 
Glasgow, who received the honour of knighthood in 
1842 on the occasion of the birth of the Prince of 
Wales, at which time he was Lord Provost of 
Glasgow. Lady Campbell died in 1873, and her 
husband in 1876, and a handsome granite monument 
stands to their memory in the quiet churchyard. 
The present proprietor, the Right Hon. James 
Alexander Campbell, LL.D., is the Member for the 


Universities of Glasgow and Aberdeen — a model 
landlord in every sense of the word, and one of the 
ablest and most consistent upholders of the Church of 
Scotland. As a writer (A. T. L.) on " Men of Mark" 

well says : — 

A pood cause finds in him a ready champion ; and when 
once bis sympathies are enlisted and his judgment is con- 
vinced, bis energy goes forth in prompt and enlightened 
activities. His contributions to Parliamentary debates 
have ever been marked by sagacity and insight, and have 
displayed a fatuity not only of acute thinking, but also of 
vigorous and incisive expression. The cause of education 
has no more sympathetic and enlightened friend. His 
speeches on educational matters have been characterised 
by thorough grasp, by rare practical wisdom, and by a 
fresh' es3 and suK'gestiveness that were stimulating and 
helpful. Himself a man of lmh culture, a remarkable 
linguist, aed an enthusiastic student of literature, he is 
fully al ve to the inestimable benefits of knowledge, and 
he lias a clear comprehension of the true methods for its 


The mansion-house of Stracathro is beautifully 
situated on the right bank of the North Esk, near the 
confluence of that river with the West Water and 
the Cruick. Over the entrance, which is in the centre 
of the facade, there is a massive portico, supported in 
front on two fine Corinthian columns at each side, 
and four pilasters, of the same order of architecture, 
at the back of the portico, The floor of the portico, 
which is slightly raised, is reached by steps in front 
and on each side. The centre of the building is re- 
cessed, the two wings surmounted by balustrades, 
projecting a little way beyond. Xeat buildings of 
one storey, with handsome doorway in the centre of 
each, the front of which is on a line with the back 
wall of the house, project on each end of it, and have 



a pleasing effect, as they help to lighten the massive 
appearance of the structure. Beyond the one storey 
building forming the west wing, and a continuation 
of the line, is a handsome conservatory, stocked with 
a wealth of floral beauties. Extending from the 
building, apparently on the level of the main floor, is 


a stone terrace, some ten feet in width, running the 
length of the house, and surrounded on the exposed 
side and ends by a stone balustrade. Behind the 
mansion the contour of the grounds admits of variety 
in the ornamentation, and this, with great taste, has 
been turned to good account. 

All round is a profusion of gorgeous flower-beds, 
not to speak of the wealth of glass-houses which are 
evidently attended with such care and skill that one 
feels on seeing the specimens of floriculture and of 
the fruit world that they hold the season at their 
service. Then there are stretches of lawn of the 
most enchanting kind, studded with great chestnuts 


and other umbrageous trees, some of them sylvan 
giants and woodland beauties, which seem to be at' 
home in the rich soil. The eye rests on a highly 
cultivated country, dotted with homesteads of the 
most complete and modern design, proofs, if such 
were needed, of " the laird's " well-known solicitation 
for the comfort of his contented tenantry. The far- 
extendii i crests and distant hills appear to 

sleep on the horizon like a cloud, with the blue sky 
above, which seems enhanced by the velvety verdure 
at ones feet, all going to form a truly delectable and 
alluring sight. 

But it is time to leave this beautiful domain, for 
the evening mist will soon begin to rise over the 
lawns. We therefore retire by the finely sweeping 
avenue, and are soon again on the highway, within 
an hour reaching the Ancient City. 

5i£tb XTour. 

Trinity, Cairnbank, Huktly Hill, Dun Church, Dun 

House, Broomley, Montrose, Ferryden, Craig House, 
Rossie Castle, Lunan Bay, Redcastle, Afchmithie, 
Arbroath, Friockheim, Montreathmont Muir, Mary- 
ton, Bonnytun, Farnkll Castle, Kinnaird Castle, 
and Brechin Castle. 

(5| HEO 

BEOUGHOUT our present tour the elements 
4 of the beautiful in nature will ao-ain be 
^-J- attractively blended with what is rich in an- 
tiquarian and historic interest. Leaving Brechin by- 
way of Trinity, within half a mile along the turnpike, 
we diverge to the right, and enter a shady road. 
\Ye first reach Templewood, formerly Cairnbank 
House, which is a fine modern mansion, in the 
Elizabethan style, erected in 1839 by Mr George 
Smart, and now owned by Mr G. T. Henderson. 


When grappling close, the thick ranks for to break, 
What dreadful havoc broadswords there do make ; 
Such various deaths are terrible to tell. 
Heads dipt in two on different shoidders fell ; 
The gushing blood from every woxuid does spout, 
Where death can enter in, or life come out. 
Long in suspense the doubtful batl le stood. 
Till Brechin's green was deeply dyed with blood 
Which ran in purple sluices to the flood. 


The late Mr D. D. Black considers that the old 
name of Cairnbank was the Templehill of Keithcck, 

which, in 14 14, was conveyed to Bishop Carnoth of 
Brechin, by David Conan, to be held of the master 
of the hospital of St John in summer. Speaking of 
Bishop Carnoth, we may in passing refer to a dispute 
during his reign which appears to afford some evi- 
dence" of the period when either the steeple or the 
round tower of Brechin was erected. Mr David 
Ogilvy, rector of the parish church of Lethnot, having 
failed to pay a sum, said to have been due from the 
income of the church of Lethnot to the Bishop and 
chapter of Brechin, was repeatedly cited to appear 
before the consistorial court. He treated the sum- 
monses very lightly, and neglected to appear : but a 
court was held by Robert Wyschart, rector of Cnyk- 
stoun. as substitute of the Bishop, at Brechin, on the 
9th of February 1425, when it is recorded as having 
been proved that Lethnot was liable in 28 merks 
annually to the church of Brechin : and that in part 
payment of this debt, Henry de Lechton, vicar of 
Lethnot, had delivered to Patrick, Bishop of Brechin 
(1344-84), ' a large white horse, and had also given a 
cart to lead stones for the building of the belfry of 
the church of Brechin ' in the time of Bishop Patrick, 
and which cart was made by Elisha Wright, then re- 
siding at Finhaven. 

It will be recollected that the Earl of Douglas was 
murdered by James 11. in Stirling Castle, in February 
14:52, because he refused to break a league which he 
had formed with the Earls of Crawford and Boss. 
In consequence these noblemen joined the Douglasses 
in open rebellion to the royal authority. Alexander 
Gordon, Earl of Huntly, was advancing with a body 
of troops consisting of his own vassals, and of the 
clans Forbes, Ogilvy, Leslie, Grant, and Irving, with 


the intention of joining the ro} T al standard, when he 
was encountered, on 18th May 1452, at the Hair 
Cairn, near Cairnbank, by the Earl of Crawford, sur- 
named " The Tiger," from his fierce temper, and 
" Earl Beardie," from his immense hirsute append- 
age. Crawford was in command of the " bodies of 
Angus," and of the adherents of the rebels in the 
neighbouring counties, headed by foreign officers. 

A full account of the battle is given by Lindsay of 
Pitscottie, and Mr Campbell in his ''Brechin District" 
thus refers to the encounter : — 

Huntly"s men fought to gain the crest of the hill ; 
Crawford's to resist them and drive them back to the 
strath. For some time there was a stubborn and cruel 
6ght, with no certain advantage to either side. A reserve 
of fresh men was then brought forward by Crawford. 
These having the advantage of fighting on higher ground, 
rushed fiercely doAvn upon the royalis's and beat back 
their vanguard. This gave spirit to the rest of Crawford's 
troops, who charged the more impetuously on that part of 
the line which seemed to be yielding. Victory appeared 
now to be C3rtain to the Tiger Earl, when an unexpected 
event turned the fortunes of the day. Among Crawford's 
troops was a body of men under John Collace or Colless 
— Pitscottie calls him Collict — of Balnamoon. They 
were the best armed of the Angus troops — having battle- 
axes, long spears, and broadswords; they were the men 
"in whom the whole hope of victory stood." But their 
leader had a grudge against Crawford. He had been 
disappointed the day before of a favour he had expected 
from him, and now he took his revenge by deserting him 
in the very moment when victory to Crawford's aims 
seemed certain. Collace passed over to the side of the 
royalists, taking the troop of axe men with him. Others 
of Crawford's men followed, and the battle was thus lost 
to the Douglas party. The Tiger Earl, deserted by those 
" on whom he lippened most, was compelled to flee for 
the safety of his life." The Earl of Huntly gained the 


battle for the King, but " got not the same without great 
slaughter of his folk." 

After the battle the Earl of Crawford retired to his 
castle of Finhaven, about six miles west of Brechin, 
and is reported to have declared, in the frenzy of 
disgrace, that he would willingly pass seven years in 
hell to obtain the glory which fell that day to his 
antagonist, or as tradition has it, " that he wad be 
content to hang seven years in hell by the breers o' 
the ee " — the eyelashes. After his defeat Crawford 
'turned his vengeance from the royalists towards 
those who had deserted him, wasting their lands and 
burning their castles, and he was left at liberty to do 
so, as Huntly was obliged, immediately after the 
battle, to return home to protect his own lands from 
the ravages of the Earl of Moray. 

The Battle of Brechin entirely broke up the 
Douglas and Crawford confederation ; and about a 
year after the battle the Tiger Earl made his submis- 
sion to the King. 

It is worthy of note that the Earl of Huntly, who 
gained such a victory for the King at the Battle of 
Brechin, was afterwards the innocent occasion of his 
sovereign s death. It was to celebrate the arrival of 
Huntly, at the siege of Roxburgh, A.D. 1460, that the 
King ordered all the guns to be fired. One of them 
burst, and the King was killed by the accident. 

In the old Statistical Account of Scotland, under 
the parish of Menmuir, the Rev. John Waugb 
writes : — 

"When the Earl of Crawford fought in this engagement 
to revenge Lord Douglas' murder by James II., there 
was in his army one Collace of Balnamoon. This man 
being affronted at not receiving a promise of the lands of 
Fern from Crawford, in their eventful victory, left him 
while the combat was yet doubtful, and brought over to 


Huntly and the royalists the best part of his commander's 
forces, consisting of battle axe, long spear, and broadside 
men. This turned the fortunes of the day, and forms a 
very important fact in the history of that time, as several 
writers acknowledge it was a most critical event to James, 
and established his crown, which, till that decisive engage- 
ment, had only tottered on his head. 

Mr Campbell in his " Brechin District " says : — 

The place at which the battle was fought was named 
Huntly Hill — after the vicarious commander. The site 
was a most favourable one for Crawford's party. It com- 
manded a full view of the country along which Huntly's 
army approached ; it was an ea^y position to defend, and 
a difficult one to assail. As you stand at the Hair Cairn, 
and look in the direction of Brechin, you see a gently 
sloping tableland, giving ample room for the easy develop- 
ment of troops all screened from the view of those 
approaching from the north. Looking on the other side, 
you see a steep declivity extending along the hill for a 
considerable distance, up some part of which the attacking 
force, from the strath on the north , must come. You see 
the application of the words of Lindsay of Pitscottie, with 
reference to Crawford's troops, that they took " thair 
advantage of the brae syd." 

The view from the summit of the ridge which rises 
between the valley of the South Esk and the valley of 
the Xorth Esk would require the pen of a Ruskin to 
depict. The fine mansion of Stracathro and the 
beautifully wooded grounds by which it is surrounded 
lie at your feet, with the long level valley, dotted 
with picturesque cottages and substantial farm houses 
extending to the north and west, and lending ever- 
changing light and shade to the charming picture. 
The course of the North Esk, with its sylvan fringes, 
until lost in the rich foliage of the AVoods of the Burn 
like a long and gentle arm, stretches lovingly over 
the shoulder of many a verdant knoll ; the ]:>retty 


village of Edzell, with the remains of its castle, hoary 
with ngej to the left the Caterthuns, and towering 
over all eral ranges of the Grampians. 

But we cannot longer tarry, for although the 
prospecl is very pleasing, and tempts one to linger, 
we have many a pretty scene before us on which to 
feast our eyes. Descending the hill, and passing 
between the dense woods of Dun, we reach the 
Church of J >un and I>un House 

Dun House. 

Bow aweitlie ahonne the morning sunne 
T"|K»n the boanie Ha' -house o 1 Dun ; 
Siccan a bien ami lovelie abode 
Mil lit wyle the pilgrime art' hi^ roade. 

The Church of Dun belonged to the Cathedral of 
Brechin, and became attached to the foundation of 
the Nunnery of Elcho, established by Sir David 
Lindsay of Grlenesk. In 1583 the vicarage of Dun 
(a chapel elected for pilgrimage) and the parsonage of 
Eglisjohn (traces of which still remain near the house 
of Langley Park — were united into one parish. The 
present church (Rev. Alexander Anderson) was 
erected a short distance to the westward of the old 
church, within the grounds of the House of Dun, 
which is finely situated on a plateau, having in front 
a spacious park gradually sloping down to the high- 
way, between Brechin and Montrose. Erected in 
175.8, from designs by the elder Adams, it is an 
elegant structure, the entrance being under a portico 
adorned with Ionic pilasters. The windows open 
out on a pretty terrace and a charming flower garden. 
The noble trees in and around the park are worthy of 
special attention. They are of great size and variety, 
including Wellingtonias, Auracarias, and other modern 
sorts, but perhaps the chief ornaments of the beautiful 


domain are the magnificent oaks, elms, beeches, 
chestnuts, and limes to be seen in all directions, 
raising their heads sixty or seventy feet above the 
ground. The present mansion superseded an older 
one, and it is probable that the larger trees may have 
been planted in the infancy of the previous house, 
which in its turn took the place of the ancient Castle 
of Dun, which stood within the present garden, near 
the kirkyard, where an old arched gateway, constructed 
of stone, and with thick walls, prettily covered with 
ivy, still marks the site of the old baronial residence. 
As we have it the old ballad, "The Ghost o' Dun": — 

Once on a time, near yon eeaport, 

An ancient castle stood, 
Hard, by a little winding stream. 

That gurgled through a wood. 
Projected towers erect on high 

Stood by the little stream. 
Where minstrels oft were heard to blow 

And honours to proclaim. 

Those splendid walls, so vast on high, 

Stood far above the trees. 
With waving colours on the towers 

That turn'd still with the breeze. 

Now minstrels and towers are gone, 

Their form is seen no more. 
Nor waving colours on their tops 

Seen from the eastern shore. 

The old house of Dun was sacked by the Marquis of 
Montrose in the time ot the Civil War. Erskine was 
obnoxious to the Marquis in proportion to his influence 
and zeal as a leader of the Covenanters. Having 
been pillaged by the Royalists under Irvine of Drum, 
the people of Montrose, fearing another visit, had the 
most portable and valuable of their goods removed to 
Dun House for security. Hearing of the store 
deposited there, Montrose could not resist the 
temptation of attacking it while passing from Athole 
through Angus, gutting the house, and plundering it 


The Den of I hin is a pretty ravine to the west of 
the house, extending to about a mile in length, 
through which a rivulet, having its rise in Dun's 
Dish, flows. The walks through the I >en afford a cool 
and pleasant retreat, even in the middle of a bright 
summer day. The greenhouses, vineries, &c., on the 
right bank of the Den, are reached by a footbridge 
thrown across the ravine. Immediately to the south 
of it is the picturesque graveyard, in which are the 
ruins of the old ivy-covered Church, and many old 
tombstones. At the entrance a solemn-looking tree 
of gigantic proportions threatens the destruction of 
several tasteful stones around it — the decayed trunk 
leaning over considerably. We can imagine this to 
be the tree under which the ghost had a conversation 
with the miller, and revealed the secret of its 
distress : — 

I by my brother's hand did fall ; 

He .-hot me with hia gun : 
And from tin- stately tree I fell, 

And there my glass was run. 
"When great Dunnottar fought with me, 

And showed his mighty pride ; 
And said he'd take his daughter back, 

Who should have been my bride. 
And at this tree she died with me, 

And there our vows were paid ; 
And in a tomb not distant far 

Our bodies two were laid. 
But thrice this mighty tree shall fall, 

And twice be raised again, 
Before that I come back to Dun, 

Or cross the eastern main. 

To the north of the common graveyard is a square 
plot of ground, enclosed by a lofty iron railing, inside 
of which are deposited the remains of members of the 
Erskine family, including Archibald, Marquis of Ailsa, 
and Margaret Erskine of Dun, Marchioness-Dowager 
of Ailsa. 

Dun's Dish we passed on the summit of the ridge 
to the north of the mansion. It is a small lake, ex- 


tending to about 40 acres, with clear water in the 
centre, surrounded by a considerable extent of marshy 
ground. It might be made a pretty lake at little 

John Erskine of Dun, the future Superintendent, 
appears to have been in some way connected with 
the murder of a young priest in the bell tower at 
Montrose. Strange to say the tragedy tended to 
accelerate the fall of Popery in Scotland. For the 
murder of a priest a heavy assythment had to be 
paid by those concerned to the parents of the priest, 
besides a severe penance. He had been a good son 
of the Church before the murder, now he had a 
pilgrimage to make to some distant shrine before he 
could obtain absolution. While in the performance 
of the pilgrimage he made the acquaintance of some 
of the leading Reformers on the continent. Approv- 
ing of their religious views, he joined the Reformers 
and returned to Scotland to aid in the dissemination 
of the Protestant doctrines among his countrymen. 
Great events sometimes flow from trivial causes. 
The imposition of a pilgrimage upon Erskine brought 
to Knox and the other Reformers his powerful aid, 
and the Reformation. 

It is believed that John Knox preached at Dun 
when on a visit to his friend, John Erskine, the 
Superintendent of Angus and Mearns, and the pulpit 
in use is popularly supposed to be the one which he 
then occupied. It has the date 1615 upon a shield, 
which bears the Erskine and Wishart arms. Above 
is the injunction — " Preach the Word." The old 
house, or Castle of Dun, in which it is said that 
Knox visited Superintendent Erskine, stood, as we 
have said, within the present garden of Dun, near 
the graveyard. 


In the year 1555, the great Reformer, at the invi- 
tation of John Erskine of Dun, spent a month at his 
residence, and is said to have preached every day. 
The inhabitants, high and low, of Angus and M earns 
flocked to hear him. The result was that the Pro- 
testant faith made great progress, and the fervent 
appeals of Knox made so powerful an impression on 
the minds of the leading families that they bound 
themselves by a solemn pledge to renounce the 
Popish communion, and maintain with all their in- 
fluence the right of Protestants to have the pure 
doctrine of the Gospel taught. He not only preached 
but administered the Lord's Supper in the simplicity 
of the Reformed mode ; while in the mansion house 
Erskine, Knox, Melville, Durham of Grange, and 
others often met to take counsel and to unite in 
supplicating heavenly guidance and blessing in the 
great enterprise in which they were embarked. 

The lands of Dun were Crown property in the 
time of King William the Lion, who granted them to 
John of Hastinkes or Hastings. He was owner of 
lands in the Mearns, and was Sheriff, and also 
Forester of that county from 1163 to 1178. The 
barony of Dun was then granted to Alexander 
Bruce, the King's nephew, but it afterwards passed to 
David of Strathbogie, who sold the lands to Sir 
Robert Erskine, who is much extolled for bis loyalty 
and fidelity to King Robert II. Wynton, in the 
following lines, states that he was the main instru- 
ment in bringing the Stewarts to the Scottish 
Throne : — 

" Robert Stewart was made King 
Specially through the helping 
Of gude Sohir Robert Ersking." 

Four of the Erskines of Dun fell on the fatal field 
of Flodden. Although the family, like many other 

sixth Tori;. 337 

baronial houses in Scotland, was much weakened by 
that disastrous battle, the Erskines. in the immediately 
succeeding generation, had a wonderful vitality. In 
the year 1588 four generations of the family were all 
living and in manhood. At the same time as these 
four lairds were living upon the estate there were 
five ladies, the wives or the widows of lairds, who 
also derived their living from the estate. John 
Erskine of Dun was born in 1509, and died in 1589. 
He thus lived in the time of five Soverigns, and of 
seven Regents of Scotland. Members of the family 
of Dun have twice occupied seats in the Supreme 
Court under the title of Lord Dun. David Erskine, 
Lord Dun, was one of the Commissioners of Justiciary 
who tried certain of the Magistrates and Town 
Council of Dundee for petit treason during the 
Rebellion in 1715. Sir Thomas Erskine, a cadet of 
the family of Dun, was for many years, prior to 
March, 1543, secretary to King James V. Shortly 
before the end of the 16th century David Erskine of 
Dun married Jean, eldest daughter of Sir Patrick 
Maule of Panmure, and sister of Patrick, first Earl 
of Panmure. He died at an early age, leaving by 
her two sons. Their uncle Robert, who lived at 
Logie, and his three sisters determined in 1610, to 
poison the two boys, that he might succeed to the 
succession. They administered a draught to each of 
their two nephews. One of the boys died, but the 
younger survived. One writer, in the course of 
lengthy details of the tragedy, says : — 

With the view of removing these obstacles, Robert and 
his three sisters, who lived together at Logie, determined 
to poison the " two zoung boyis." For this purpose two 
of the sisters crossed the Cairn o' Mounth and met with 
" ane notorious witche and abuser <>f the people," called 
Janet lrwing, from whom they received a quantity of 

AROUND Tin; \n< i km i i iv. 

herbs, with injunction! how to use diem. They "steipit 
thame amangia ail] ane lang space," and after much 
deliberation as to whether the doae should be administered, 
they resolved in the affirmative ; and " about mydsomer" 
in 1610 the murderers " pa gidder furtfa of Logy," 

along with the eldest <>f tlu-ir two victims, to the house of 
Ilia mother in Montrose, where she and the other son 
were living for a time, an there the " poysoneable drink 
■wes mini Mid given ko their " brother son 

The uncle wraa tried and convicted, and executed 
at Edinburgh. The three aunts of the murdered 
boy were sentenced to have their heads -truck from 
their bodies at the .Market Cross, Edinburgh. Two 
of them, [sabella and Anna, suffered the penalty, but 
Helen was banished for life, 

John Erakine, the last male descendant of the 
Erskinea of Dun, died in 1812. He was succeeded 
in the estate by his daughter, Margaret, who was 
married to Archibald, 12th Karl of Cassilis. John 
Kennedy, their second son, on inheriting the estate, 
assumed the additional surname of Erskine. He 
married Lady Augusta Fitzclarence, daughter of 
King William IV., and died at Pisa in 1831, leaving 
a sou, William Henry Kennedy-Erskine, whose only 
son, John William Henry, is the present Lord of the 
Baron v of Dun. 

Here an extension of tour might be suggested. On 
arriving at the highway between Brechin and Mon- 
trose — instead of steeringour course over the South Esk 
a short distance below, and completing our tour after 
endeavouring to do justice to Kinnaird, the magnifi- 
cent residence of the Earl of Southesk — we will direct 
our course towards Montrose, continuing our journey, 
as indicated at the head of this chapter, through a 
very interesting district rich in national beauty and 
historic lore. A run of four miles will bring us to 


the beautifully situated and clean and salubrious 
town of Montrose. Before starting, however, we 
•cannot help referring to the graceful and romantic 
old bridge, of three arches, over the South Esk near 
the railway station, which was erected by the grand- 
father of the Marchioness of Ailsa, and was only 
completed a few months before his death. It bears 
this inscription : — "This bridge was founded on the 
7th June 1785, and finished on the 27th January 
1787 by Alexander Stevens." 

The lands now called Langley Park, with those of 
Broomley, anciently included in the barony of Dun, 
was given to the See of Brechin by Sir John Erskine 
of Dun in 1409. At that time they were known as 
Eagles John. Broomley has again become the property 
of the Erskines of Dun, but Langley Park has become 
a distinct estate. Towards the end of the century the 
estate was acquired by the family of Cruickshank, 
members of which also purchased Stracathro, Keithock, 
Glenskenno, &c. The family continue to possess 
Langley Park, the mansion house of which 
stands on an eminence on the north side of 
the highway between Brechin and Montrose. 
Over the entrance is a balcony supported by fluted 
Doric pillars. In the vicinity of the house there are 
several very fine birches. Two large old yews are to 
the north of the front door, and many magnificent 
beeches adorn the approach from the highway to the 
mansion. The crowning glory of the place, however, 
is a Spanish chestnut tree of extraordinary size and 
beauty. The ground on which it stood appears 
to have been lowered, and the soil removed, leaving 
a sloping mound around the trunk. Immediately 
above this mound the tree is about 26 feet in circum- 
ference. Huge arms branch off in all directions, ex- 


tending bo a great distance, and some of them 
are turned down, and ound. 

B • reaching Montrose we find ourselves in the 
neighbourhood of the pretty little village of Hillside, 

iburb," which perhaps ere long may he 
connected by a tramway. I snugly amid 

fine tre< bly trimmed hedges, and sheltering 

shrubberies. Thee md villas are p mely 

situated on the sunny southern slope of the rising 
ground to our left. Bach building b garden — 

from the quaint thatch-roofed cot of the humble 
resident, with its carefully tended little plot, to the 

rdens and grounds of the retired men of 
business. A visit would prove very pleasing, for in 
few places are to be seen flowers growing in such gay 
profusion and perfection. Bowever, 

Pity turn- her eye from tl. 

- thai humble human pride; 
Where prostrate rea< >n— dire disea - 
Hi- found a home at Sunnysi . 

Almost adjoining Hillside, to the east is a palatial 
building around which many sad memories cluster — 
Sunnyside Asylum, erected 17">7, at a cost of about 
1 M '. As the number of patients yearly increase, 
(the average number being from 500 to 600) additions 
have from time to time been made. The grounds are 
spacious and cheerful, and many forms of light work, 
amusements, entertainments, and holiday excursions 
are freely provided with the object of bringing rays 
of sunshine into clouded minds. 


O, a bonnie wee toon is the toon o' Montrose. 
A canty wee toon is the toon o' Montrose : 
Enriched by the sea an' adorned by the rose, 
There are unco few toons like the toon o* Monti- 
It has routh o' auld hooses wi' quaint gable ends, 
An' its Draw modern steeple far skywards ascend- ; 
It< wide- si 'reading Links are baith fragrant an' free, 
While its borders are washed by the surf o' the sea. 


A broad sheet o' water, where Naiads nucht dwell, 
Lies its basin— the nrunekeekin' in't at hersel', 
A largess o' lustre richt lovingly throws 
On the hamely hoose-taps o' the toon o' Montrose. 

It is said that, as early as 980, Montrose was 
attacked by the Danes, who destroyed both the town 
a.nd the Castle, and massacred the inhabitants. The 
Castle occupied a strong portion about a mile above 
the point where the South Esk falls into the sea. 
"The invaders," says Buchanan, "set sail for the 
mouth of the Eiver Esk, where they landed their 
forces, seized and plundered the nearest town on the 
coast, and murdered the citizens without distinction 
of age or sex." 

William the Lion made the Castle of Montrose an 
occasional residence, dated charters from it, for the 
space of twenty years, from 1178 to 1198. On the 
7th July, 1296, Edward I. of England came to 
Montrose by Arbroath and Earnell, and continued in 
it till the 12th of the month ; receiving the homage 
of many barons and clergy from all parts of the 
country, including several from the neighbourhood. 
Next year "Wallace rescued the town out of the hands 
of the English, and demolished the Castle, which, it 
would seem, was never rebuilt. In 1303. Wallace, 
then near the end of his career, landed at Montrose, 
having been solicited to return from France to oppose 
Edward. Montrose had its Convent, built and 
dedicated in 1230 to the Virgin Mary. David II. 
was twice at Montrose in 1369, first in October and 
next in December ; where he confirmed the charters 
which David I. had granted to it, and conferred on it 
several new privileges. 

It was from the port of Montrose that Sir James 
Douglas, with a numerous retinue of knights and 
squires, set sail for Palestine in the spring of 1330, to 
fulfil the last charge laid on him by his deceased 


er, King Robert Bruce. The charge was to 
carry the King's heart to Jerusalem, and to dej 
it in the Holy Sepulchre, which he had vowed that 
he would he a crusader to recover from the Saracens. 

We bore the e 1 Lord James away, 

Ainl the priceless heart he bore, 
An<l heavily we steered our -hi]> 

Towards the Scottish shore. 

Montrose has always held a comparatively high 
educational position. Its schools were famous even 
as early as the days of The Bruce ; and he granted 
twenty shillings out of the public revenue for their 
support. Since the revival of learning in Scotland, 
rammar School has turned out many first-class 
scholars : four of whom were Fellows of the Royal 
Society of London. This supposes first-class masters : 
among whom was David Lindsay, son of the Laird of 
Edzell, afterwards Bishop Lindsay. It was he who 
mounted the pulpit and tried to restore order, when 
Janet Geddes hurled her stool at the Dean's head, as 
he be^an to read the services in St Giles's Cathedral, 
exclaiming, u Villain ! dost thou say mass at my 
lug I " 

The inhabitants of Montrose were among the first 
in the country to embrace the Reformation : which 
may be traced to the influence exerted on them from 
Dun, and to the copies of the Holy Scriptures, which 
their merchants, who had much intercourse with the 
Continent, brought home with them in spite of legal 

Li 1548, in the war in which England courted 
Scotland for the heart and hand of Mary to Edward, 
the English attempted to land their fleet in the mouth 
of the South Esk at Montrose. As they were en- 
deavouring to land, Erskine of Dun, with the darts- 
men and other light troops which he himself led, 


attacked them with great spirit and vigour, and drove 
them to where his other two bands were concealed. 
In the civil war of the seventeenth century, Montrose 
was the scene of some sharp passages between the 

The plague visited Montrose in 1648, and, from 
May that year to February, 1649, filled it with 
lamentation and woe. Crowds fled from the infected 
town into the country : and a large proportion of 
these who remained in it died. A tumulus, still 
pointed out on the Links, immediately north-east of 
the town, is said to be the place where its numerous- 
victims were interred. 

Montrose figures somewhat prominently in the 
Rebellions of the next century. At the Cross of 
Montrose, in 1715, the Earl of Southesk proclaimed 
the Chevalier St George, under the title of James 
VIII. of Scotland. The night of the 3rd February 
James spent in a house at the south end of the High 
Street of Montrose. There he wrote to the Duke of 
Argyle the letter intimating that he had consigned to 
certain magistrates a sum of money, to repair so far 
the loss which his unfortunate adventure had caused 
the country. In 1745, Prince Charles Edward re- 
peated the attempt of his father to recover the king- 
dom. Montrose sympathised with him, as also did 
the county, which was then strongly Jacobite and 
Prelatic. There was keen contention between the 
loyalists and the rebels, as to which of them should 
have Montrose for their headquarters. The loyalists 
had it first ; but it would seem that the rebels drove 
them from it. It was the Duke of Cumberland who 
crushed out the rebellion in Montrose, as elsewhere. 
AVhen he visited the town in 1745, he found the 
spirit of Jacobitism virulent and ascendant in it. 
The boys made bonfires on the 10th of June, the 


Pretender's birthday; and "Jacobite gentlewomen 
got on white gowds and white roses, and made a 
procession through the streets." As it was ladies 
that offered the affront, the military officers in the 
town had gallantly overlooked it ; but Cumberland 
was a man of another mould. The commanding 
officer he ordered to be broken on account of his 
leniency ; and he threatened '"because the inhabitants 
are nourishing up their children to rebellion, to cause 
them to be whipped at the Cross, to frighten them 
from their bonfires." 

So much for the antiquity of Montrose and the 
historic interest attached to the town. But it has 
many stronger attractions to tourists and summer 
visitors, and although, as was once said by the Chair- 
man at an annual re-union of natives in Glasgow, "it 
is unco wee for its age," it has made considerable 
progress in other respects. " The Jews believed that 
the name of a child would have a great influence in 
shaping its career," and so he was inclined to think 
that the name of the good old town — or its mottoes 
at least, " must have had a considerable influence on 
it." The motto, which means " The sea enriches, and 
the rose adorns," has been amply verified in the case 
of Montrose — in the harvests of the sea and its fishing 
wealth, and in the beautiful adornment of its public 
gardens and links. The speaker also mentioned, as 
we have hinted, that Montrose was not only among 
the first towns in Scotland to embrace the Reforma- 
tion and to propagate its principles, but it was also 
the first that could boast of ever having female bur- 
gesses, for in 1751, the Ladies Jean, Mary, and 
Margaret, daughters of Lord Falconer of Haulkerston, 
were raised to that dignit} 7- . Another speaker at one 
of these annual gatherings — the late ex-Provost 
Lackie, one of Montrose's most esteemed citizens, said — 



Let us hope they appreciated the honour, and held the 
corporation in greater esteem than did Miss Carnegie, 
when a deputation of the Town Council waited upon her, 
and solicited a subscription for the purposo of raising a 
small bat*ery at the water mouth for the defence of the 
town. One of the representatives having addressed her 
she said, "Are ye ane o' the Toon Cooncil ? : ' He re- 
plied, " I have that honour, mam," to which she rejoined, 
"Ye may hae that profit, but honour ye hae nane." 
There seems to h-tve been no doubt left in this lady's 
mind regarding the profits of members of the Town 
Council, for it is said she was very much opposed to pay- 
ing taxes, and one day receiving a notice of such payment, 
signed by the Provost, she broke out and said, "I dinna 
understand thae taxes ; but I just think that when the 
Provost's wife wants a new gown her man sends me a tax 

The very name of Montrose has given rise to many 
conjectures — the French Minstrois, three hills ; the 


>»'_1 J6— ' 


Gaelic "Munross," but the most likely one is that of 
" Montis Rosarum." It had another name, "Celurca." 


Wind- in ills must have been deemed of some importance, 
foi in the eighteenth century a man of the name of James 
Young was sent to Holland by the magistrates, bo learn 
the best method of constructing and working windmills. 
When it received its charter is not positively known, per- 
haps in the reign of David I. At any rate burgesses of 
Montrose sre mentioned in 1261-62. Twelve of their 
number went to Berwick and took the oath of allegiance 
on behalf of themselves and the Burgh. The town was 
visited in 177-J by Br Johnston, who cared for nothing 
Scotch, but on whom the town and its surroundings 
seemed to have left a good impression. It was also 
visited by our national poet in 1787, he having relatives 
in the town. I must confess that we have not shown the 
same energy or the same enterprise as has been manifested 
by other towns in the country ; still, I do not think there 
is any appearance of the fulfillment of the old rhyme— 

Bonny Mxmross will be a n 

Dundee will be ding d< 
Forfar will b still, 

And Brechin a braw Bur^htoon. 

The town of Montrose has been the birthplace of some 
eminent men, such as Joseph Hume, the great Reformer ; 
Alexander Burgess, the great scholar : James Burgess, 
who distinguished himse f in India : James Duke, Lord 
Mayor of London. It is well spoken of in the 17th 
century as a goodly town, clean, and regularly built. 
Well, 1 think no one will deny that it still sustains the 
same reputation. 

As particulars are given of the objects of interest 
in and around Montrose in the admirable "Tourists 7 
Guide " published by Mr D. P. Davidson, bookseller 
— to whom we are greatly indebted for several local 
illustrations, as well as to the enterprising publishers 
of the Montrose Standard newspaper — we do not re- 
quire to go at any length into such details. 

As a holiday resort, and as a retreat for those in 
search of health and sea-bathing, few places are so 
favourably situated, or offer more varied facilities. 


Nature has been admirably seconded by Art, for the 
site of Montrose and its surroundings are most 
picturesque. It is seen to most advantage from the 
south — from the high ground above Ferryden, or 
from Eossie Braes. 

To a person approaching from the south, and com- 
ing in view of the town from the high ground 
traversed by the public road in the parish of Craig. 
the line sweep of the broad river fringed with ship- 
ping, docks, and variform edifices stretching out to 
the sea on the right ; the large circular Basin, set 
round with richly cultivated fields and forming the 
foreground to a far-spreading expanse of luxuriant 
landscape on the left — the town, lifting up several 
imposing structures, and retiring in a large broad 
field of architecture in front — the receding prospect 
behind it exhibiting a fine variety of swell, hill, and 
plain, and of mansions, fields, and woods, till the eye 
ceases to discern distinctive features — and the dark, 
vast amphitheatre of the Grampians, piled shelvingiy 
against the sky, and forming a stupendous mountain- 
bulwark, at about twenty miles distant — altogether- 
present one of the most diversified and magnificent 
views in the kingdom. 

A gallant captain writes, in 1567, of the town in 
high-flown language when he calls it "a beauty that 
lies concealed in the bosom of Scotland, most delicately 
dressed up, and adorned with excellent buildings, 
whose foundations are laid with polished stones, and 
her ports all washed with silver streams, that trickle 
down from the famous Esk." Although this is per- 
haps somewhat fanciful, without doubt Montrose is 
entitled to be classed as one of the most clean and 
salubrious towns in Scotland, the spacious High Street 
being admired by all visitors. 



The Town House, which as we enter the street 
seems to terminate a very pleasing and imposing 
vista, is a large four storey building, with arcade 


below, and balustrade around the top, decorated on 
the west front with the armorial bearings of the 
burgh. It contains council room, court room, and 
commodious halls. 

The old bell tower of the burgh was of great anti- 
quity : supposed to have been built by the Picts at a 
veiy early date. Inside the tower were bells and a 
clock, and on three sides of the parapet was a wooden 
dial plate, about 5 feet square, with hands to indicate 
the time. It was removed in 1830-31 to give place 
to the new and magnificent edifice which w r as built in 
1832-4, from a design by Gillespie Grahame, of Edin- 
burgh. The present steeple is of elegant design and 


graceful proportions. It rises to a height of about 
210 feet ; with four pinnacles at the corners, 32 feet 
high each, connected with the spire by flying but- 
tresses. The Parish Church, which is a collegiate 
charge (Re vs. J. Xiblock-Stuart and Hugh Callan)is one 
of the largest in Scotland. We are told that towards 
the end of the eighteenth century negotiations were 
in progress by the kirk session and heritors for the 
erection of a new church for the wants of the burgh. 
The consideration of this matter appears not to 
have been premature, for the enlargement and 
renovation of 1643 seem to have been of a temporary 
nature. In 1690 a meeting of the kirk session and 
magistrates was convened, in " order to consider the 
ruinous state of the quier, as also to fall upon such 
methods as it may be repaired." The only work that 
was done on this occasion was the supporting of the 
roof and galleries and the propping up of the walls 
K with trees brought from Edzell." With this im- 
provement, the building continued to exist until 
December, 1790, when it was pulled down to make 
room for the present church, which covers the same 
site. Its interior, with two tiers of galleries, is some- 
what antiquated, although there is a handsome 
organ. Doubtless the interior of the old fabric will 
soon be altered to meet modern requirements. Much 
information concerning the Parish Church and anti- 
quarian matters connected with the town and district 
are given by the local historian, Mr James G. Low, 
in his " Memorials," and other works affording evi- 
dence of painstaking research. 

Besides its famous artists, Montrose has also its 
poets, some of whom have warbled sweetly. We 
have already quoted from J. E. Watt, under the 
heading "Montrose." His volume of verse, " Sketches 
of Scottish Life and Character," has deservedly 


gained for him wide admiration. We have also 
referred to Alexander Smart's " Rambling Rhymes," 
and other works, but there are also James Bowick'fl 
11 Montrose Characters," Miss Potter, a thoughtful 
writer, J. Marshall, and others. 

The " G-uid Tolbuith," spoken of by Guynd, which 
stood in the middle of the High Street, is now re- 
moved, and the site occupied by a colossal statue of 
Sir Robert Peel. Near by is a statue of the late 
Joseph Hume, M.l'., who was of humble origin — his 
mother being left a widow with a large family. To 
help to maintain and educate them she took up a 
crockery business. Joseph, after receiving a fair 
education, was apprenticed at the age of 13, to a 
surgeon and druggist, and afterwards went to Edin- 
burgh as a medical student. Having finished his 
curriculum, he was, in 1797, appointed Marine 
Assistant Surgeon in the service of the East India 
Company. He continued to advance himself in his 
studies, and having acquired the native languages, he 
was appointed, during the Mahratta War, to the 
office of Persian interpreter in the army. 

Speaking of the spacious beauty of the High Street, 
we might summarise the following particulars from 
materials supplied in a very exhaustive paper by ex- 
Provost Japp, who has so long and so favourably been 
identified with all that has in view the welfare of 
the burgh. He says : — 

Our High Street owes its beauty to the fact that High 
Street on the west side, and Murray Street on the east, 
were thrown into one by the removal in 17-48 of a row of 
thatched cottages which ran up the centre of the present 
street. In a quaint poem on the subject by James 
Bowick, he says — 

The roofs were made o' auld stob thaek, 

The wa's o' plaistered fir ; 
So down they came wi' mony a whack 

That ruddied wi' the virr. 



"What like was Montrose (or Munross) in not very distant 
times ? At first a straggling village, mostly of fishermen, 
sailors, and officials of the Castle, it spread along the 
bank3 of the South Esk, under the protection of the fort 
or castle, which in remote times stood on Castle or Con- 
stable Hill, where now stands the old Baths and Infirmary 
at Bridgend. It gradually spread up the slopes, and as 
far north in time as the North Port at the narrow of High 
Street and Trades' Hall. 

In the fine view of the town by Miss Ochterlony, pub- 
lished in London, 1810, you have the old timber bridge, 
with drawbridge at its southern end. No bridge existed 


till this was built in 1794. The ferry at Ferryden was up 
till that time the only means of reaching the south. The 
wooden bridge stood till 1827, and the present Suspension 
Bridge was founded 10th September, 1828, and finished 
next year. The upper chain on the east side gave way 
at a boat race on 19th March, 1830, when some lives were 


lost. In Miss Ochterlony's view we also see the Horo- 
lodge Hil 1 , which occupied the south end of Hill Street. 
On its top stood a massive pillar, with sun dial, and it 
formed a favourite outlook for the seamen. Also east- 
ward stood the Windmill Bill, on which was the windmill 
belonging to the town — once a source of revenue in grind- 
ing corn and malt. 

The Old Steeple was at first without a spire— the 
weathercock and vane are in the Museum, and bear date 
1694. and also the rude iron works of the old clock, the 
church ad joining it beim built in 1791, replacing an old 
Gothic structure dedicated to St John. 

The Academy, as we have said, has been the 
nursery of many famous men, including Sir William 
Burnett, M.D., James, and the late Sir Alexander 
Burnes — the latter relatives of the National bard ; 
John Leech, an old Latin poet ; Dr George Keith, 
author of the "Farmers Ha'"; David Buchanan, an 
eminent Classical scholar ; Alexander Smart, author 
of "Rambling Rhymes," &c. ; G. P. Chalmers, 
A.R.A., a young artist of great merit, who met a sad 
end in Edinburgh. It is also noted as the cradle of 
the Greek language in Scotland, which was taught by 
M. Marsilliers, who was appointed and maintained by 
Erskine of Dun at his own expense, and was succeeded 
by his own pupil, George Wishart, another eminent 

The Museum, facing the Mid Links, is a handsome 
building, in the Grecian style. It was erected in 
1845, mainly by the liberality of Lord Panmure, and 
is well worth a visit. It contains many rare objects 
of great interest. Connected with the Institution is a 
Natural History and Antiquarian Society, and the 
Public Subscription Library is accommodated in the 
new addition which was erected some years ago. The 
beautiful Melville and Panmure Gardens, between th e 


town and the wide range of Links, are admired by 
all visitors. 

Dorward's House of Refuge was founded and en- 
dowed by a wealthy merchant of that name, for the 
education of orphan children, and the protection of 
aged men and women belonging to town and parish 
of Montrose. The building is in the Flizabethan 
style, and was erected in 1839. The Public Library 
— one of the many Carnegie gifts of a similar nature 
— was erected in 1904, and occupies a prominent site 
at corner of High Street. 

For a £olf course Montrose stands almost unrivalled. 
Indeed, as far back as 200 years ago, it was placed 
next to St Andrews in excellence, while recently a 
high authority declared it to be one of the three best 
in Scotland. The great stretch of beautiful links 
also supplies excellent facilities for cricket and other 
games. For sea-bathing the authorities have pro- 
vided the most modern comforts — the magnificent 
sandy beach extending four miles in one continuous 
stretch along the margin of the German Ocean. This 
also affords delightful and invigorating walks, while 
all around is very pleasing and diversified Amongst 
the places of interest — outwith our route, and which 
can only be mentioned here — are Kinnaber (with its 
waterworks), Charleton, Xewmanswalls, Broomiield, 
Rosemount, Hedderwick, &c. 

Passing down Bridge Street — at the back of which 
is the West End Park, reclaimed some years ago 
from the muddy waters of the Basin — we leave the 
town by crossing the Suspension Bridge already 
referred to, which truly beautiful and airy -looking 
structure was designed by Captain S. Brown, R.N. 
On the erection of this bridge, the middle of the arch 
of the old stone bridge across the southern, or narrow 
channel of the South Esk was also removed and sup- 


planted by a revolving draw bridge, by which moans 
vessels passed up and down the Basin to a small port 
at Old Montrose, where, at one time goods were 
frequently shipped and delivered, but since the for- 
mation of the railway that harbour has gone entirely 
ont of use. 

In the mutter of railway accommodation Montrose 
is well served. The Caledonian route skirts the 
town on the east, and a more modern line, wrought 
in conjunction with the North British system, on the 
west. This line begins at the south end near the 
Caledonian Company's Station at Arbroath, thence 
almost due north through the parish of St VTgeans, 
and, - shall see as we proceed, past Inverkeillor 
to Lunan Bay. where it first emerges on the coast. 
From this point the sea is kept in sight nearly all the 
way to near Ferryden. Though much beautiful 
scenery is passed on the route, the most magnificent 
is undoubtedly that when the train crosses the 
bridges over the Esk — when the Montrose Basin lies 
exposed in all its splendour on the west, and Mon- 
trose on the east. 

The view looking up the river over the tidal Basin, 
with the long stretch of hills in the background, 
through the greater part of which we have already 
traversed, is very pretty, especially by moonlight, 
and when the tide is well up, the silver streaks rip- 
pling on the bosom of the great sheet of water have a 
tine effect, while occasionally it seems, when the sun 
is in its full splendour, to be converted into a huge 
expanse of molten gold. 

The Basin in its sparkling pride. 
Stretching its wide bosom far and wide, 

A lake of gold : 
Where verdant hills, on either side 

Their charms unfold. 

The Basin, a nearly elliptical area of about seven 


miles in circumference, is described in Davidson's 
*' Guide" as one of the grandest sights a tourist can 
witness — the small riplets on the water dancing and 
glittering in the sunshine, while the water being skirted 
all round with richly cultivated fields, and the reced- 
ing prospect behind exhibiting a fine variety of hill 
and plain, alternated with mansion houses and green 
woods, backed by the shelving Grampians, render the 
scene perhaps one of the best and most varied that 
can be met with in Scotland. Passing along the 
second of the two bridges which span the South Esk, 
a good view is got of the Suspension Bridge. The 
prospect below, towards the ocean, will also command 
admiration. The picturesque and quaint, old-w T orld 
fishing village of Ferryden is seen opposite the docks, 
perched, terrace after terrace, in fantastic lines, on 
the face of the dark grey rocks. Although the in- 
habitants have fallen away considerably during 
recent years, owing to the line fishing having suffered 
by the introduction nf trawling, there is still a popu- 
lation of about 1300. A brave, hardy race, these 
Perts, Wests, Mearns, Patons, and Coulls are pro- 
gressive in many respects, and are noted for their 
simple habits, kindly nature, sobriety, and musical 
gifts. They are as fine specimens of their class as 
can be found anywhere round our coasts, or for that 
matter in any part of the world. They are broad 
hacked and strong limbed, and remarkably intelligent. 
Their houses are marvels of cleanliness, as even the 
passer-by can observe, and a look inside shows how 
thoroughly good housewives the women folks are. 
They sue trig and trim, hardworking and cheery, 
even when times go hard with them. 

The boats the men go to sea in are all th;it could 
be desired. Finely modelled and swift, large, and to 
the full seaworthy, their craft are to them as the 


apple of their eye, and no expense is spared to have 
them supplied with the latest improvements, 

•' To win the bairnies' bread." 

The boats often put out in the early morning, and 
are caught in a gale, so that lines have to be 
abandoned and the harbour sought with all speed. 
Scarcely a winter passes without the lifeboat being 
called out to stand by at the bar till the last boat 
fleeing for safety is into smooth water. Despite the 
trials'ofa prolonged timeof adversity, the line fishermen 
of Ferryden have shown themselves to be possessed 
of pluck and resource and the capacity to adapt them- 
selves to shifting conditions. 

According to the late Andrew Douglas, its historian, 
Ferrvden "owes its existence to the ancient and im- 
portant commercial and manufacturing town of Mon- 
trose, on the opposite bank of the South Esk." The 
oldest house in the village, which consisted of mud 
walls, thatched with rushes and straw, belonged only 
to the early part of the 18th century. The forbears of 
James West were the next colonists of Ferryden, 
after David Pert and family, and they came from the 
same quarter,— the shores of the Moray Firth — 
hence, probably the great redundance of the names of 
Pert and West. 

Let us now, merely in a summary way, direct 
attention to several places around the coast, bringing 
us in sight of Lunan, which, with Redcastle, &c, we 
will reach by an inland route. 

A short distance down the river, two lighthouses 
are passed on the north bank— the two, when taken 
in a line from the sea, marking the entrance to the 
port. At the entrance to the river itself, stands a 
magnificent round tower— the Scurdyness Lighthouse 


— erected by the Board of Trade in 1870, at a cost of 
about £2700. Scurdyness forms one of the points for 
the measurement of the breadth of Scotland, the 
distance from it to Ardnamurchan Point, on the west 
coast, being 1 10 miles. 

[Jsan House, the seat of George Keith, Esq., is 
delightfully situated on an eminence south east from 
the village of Ferryden. The harbour of the small 
fishing village of Usan, about two miles round the 
coa- is narrow gorge in the rocks, and only capable 
of admitting one boat at a time, the boats being 
anchored bow and stern in a single row. As in most 
fishing villages, traces of superstition still linger here. 
Recently a woman had to appear before the Sheriff in 
a case of defamation of character, having blamed a 
neighbour for purloining an article of dress. On 
being pretty openly questioned and sharply rebuked 
by the Sheriff, the woman's face began to betray some 
concealed emotion that agitated her mind, the cause 
of which she seemed unwilling to reveal. At last she 
fixed her eyes on the Sheriff, and spoke as follows, 
with as much earnestness as if they had been the last 
words she was to utter, "A" that I ken aboot it, my 
Lord, is just this — when Mary's name was mentioned 
the key ran three times round aboot the Bible, 
that's a' I ken aboot it." The Sheriff answered, " I 
believe you are perfectly honest my good woman ; 
you should not be so very, particular about your 
character, that is you should not give any heed to the 
idle talk of your neighbours, who have brought for- 
ward nothing to injure your character in the slightest 
degree." ''That's a' very gude, me Lord," replied 
her ladyship, " but in oor toon, a puir body has nae- 
thing, me Lord, but their character to depend on." 
"It is the same everywhere," replied the Sheriff, 


' ; but go away home, I believe you to be a perfectly 
honest and respectable woman." 

It is a remarkable fact that the only family name 
in the village of Usan is Paton, and it also enjoys the 
reputation of having been the origin of that world- 
wide saying, so dear to the Scot at home and abroad, 
" We're a' John Tamson's bairns." The origin of 
this familiar saying is reported to have taken place in 
one of the numerous public houses, so common in the 
parish previous to the passing of the Forbes Mac- 
kenzie Act. The house was kept by a certain John 
Thomson. John was one day, along with several 
others, helping to prolong the time and finish another 
bottle, when his wife, wondering what was making 
him stay so long in the other end of the house, 
eventually ushered herself into the room where our 
heroes were busy with the " Xut Brown Ale." After 
having delivered herself of a harangue of righteous 
indignation, she was compelled to withdraw, having 
failed to inveigle John from his potation. After she 
had retired the company sat for a .short time unable 
to say a word, when all of a sudden the dreadful 
silence was broken by the following exclamation from 
the redoubtable John : — " Drink awa' lads ! an' never 
mind — my wife's nae man ava, for we're a' John 
Tamson's bairns." 

At the fishing port of Usan began the " Cadger's 
Road," which reached westward to the market cross 
of Forfar. It was the road by which the king's 
purveyor travelled daily with a supply of fish for the 
royal table when the court abode at Forfar. The 
Kings always reserved a right of road for the royal 
cadger in the grants of land made by them in that 
district, from the seashore at Usan onwards to Forfar, 
11 in breadth the length of a mill wand." According 
to Huddlestone, " before roads and wheeled carriages 


were brought to their present state of perfection, the 
conveyance of a mill stone was attended with g 
labour and. difficulty, A long rounded piece of wood, 
called the mill-wand, was thrust through the centre 

of the stone ; then a number of men took hold of 
each end of the wand, and rolled the millstone along 
on its hem. from the quarry to the mill." The width 
indicated must always have been sufficient for the 
single cart. From an account of the 
proceedings or an ancient Baron-Court in Perthshire, 
we learn that the miller had to provide dinner for 
the tenants when they brought home the runner, or 
upper-stone, and the laird the dinner when they 
brought home the bed, or under stone. The cottars 
had to make the road fit as often as need required. 

The " I Path " passed through Montreath- 

niont Moor — a large tract of country, partly situated 
in the parishes of Aberlemno, Farnell, and Kinnell. 
About the year 1780, the Moor was parcelled out 
amongst the conterminous proprietors, who claimed 
certain rights of common upon it, each receiving a 
share proportionate to the size of the estate. 

The parish of Craig comprehends two titularities — 
Inchbrayock ("the church island," as the church 
formerly stood upon the island, on the site still used 
as the parish burying ground) or Craig, and St 
Skeoch or Dunninald. In 1618 they were united, 
and took the name of Craig. Saint Skeoch, or the 
Church of Doninad (Dunninald) belonged to the 
Priory of Resteneth. The church stood upon a cliff 
between Usan fishing village and Lunan Bay, and 
there is still a small graveyard on the picturesque 

St Skeoch grey rock stands frowning o'er 

The troubled deep ; 
A structure formed by nature's hand, 
A bridge with wave-worn arches planned, 


"Whose echoing depths the surges spanned, 
Where wind and wave 

Their voices rai-e in concert grand. 

When tempests rave. 

The saint of this name is supposed to have been one 
of the twelve disciples of St Columba. The present 
church of the parish (Rev. Robert Scott) was built in 
1799. It stands on a commanding position, and the 
lofty square tower is a prominent object for many 
miles around, while from its summit the view of sea 
and river, hill and plain, is truly grand. Over the 
entrance are the words, " Enter His Gates with 

Dunninald Castle is delightfully situated amid 
noble trees, near by the frowning rock of St Skeoch. 
It is the seat of the daughter and heiress of the late 
Sheriff' Arkley, wife of Captain Stansfeld, late of the 
Scots Greys. The Den of Dunninald is a romantic 
sylvan breach opening towards the sea, formed by a 
small streamlet, and thickly wooded. The coast line 
between this and Lunan Bay is of bold precipitous 
cliffs, of old red sandstone. 

Black Jack's Castle occupied the top of a perpen- 
dicular rock rising nearly 300 feet above the ocean, 
near Boddin Point. The foundations are still visible 
upon the rock, which is reached by a narrow neck of 
land. Mr A. H. Millar, in his " Castles and Mansions 
of Scotland," says : — 

The Keep of Dunninald, which then crowned the cliffs 
of Boddin Point, was in the possession of James Gray of 
Invergowrie, a son of Patrick, Lord Gray, and one of the 
rude^nobles of the time, fearless alike of God and Kincr. 
In 1579 this reckless freebooter had gathered together m . 
his fortress of Dunninald — usually styled " Black Jack " 
— a band of ruffians worse than himself, and ready for any 
exploit which the unsettled state of the kingdom would 
permit. The ancient fortress of Redcastle had often 


awakened his envy, and, at the time of which we speak, 
he was aware that the old lord was dead, and the new 
heir far away from his patrimony, so he deemed this a 
fitting period to make an attack upon the fort. r \ he 
inmates of Redoastle were the Dowager Lady Innermeith, 
her second son, John Stewart, and her daughter Marjorie, 
the wedded wife of Lindsay of Yayne Castle, and as the 
Lord of the Manor was not then present, it is likely that 
the retainers were few in number. Terrified at the fate 
which seemed to await them, the inmates of the Castle 
sought refuge in the tower, and though its construction 
enabled them to defy the attempts of these bandits t > 
execute vengeance upon them, they were compelled to 
witness, even from their safe retreat the destruction of the 
lower portion of the Castle by fire. The forethought of 
the first Lord Innermeith who had possessed the Castle, 
had prompted him to build the tower which he erected 
separate entirely from the rest of the building, else the 
Lady and her children would have been consumed in the 
flames which lose all around her. 

But when the ladye paw the fib 

( tome flaming owre her heid. 
She wept and kissed her children twain, 

Said " Bairn-, we been but deid." 

The ruthless marauder, who had thus warred upon innocent 
women, finding he could not carry the tower of the castle. 
by assault, withdrew at length 'o his keep, carrying with 
him such spoil as he could easily obtain. 

Taking up our route where we left it to refer to 
Ferryden. Arc, we keep to the right, and drive along a 
lovely road, skirting the Basin. As we ascend the 
brae, a prettily situated little bit of public recreation 
ground, tastefully laid out with shrubs and with 
secluded winding paths, shaded by fine old trees, 
arrests attention. This is Rossie Public Gardens, 
liberally provided by a former proprietor, for the en- 
joyment of the inhabitants of Montrose and Ferryden. 
As we proceed, we are charmed with the quiet beauty 



and the charming situation of a number of cozy- 
looking, quaint cottages that nestle romantically on 
the ledge of the Basin. They are embowered in rich 
greenery, shaded by grand old trees, and are aglow 

with roses, and brightly-coloured creepers form fantas- 
tic arches around every porch and doorway, while the 
great expanse of water, valleys, and hills beyond 
presents a view that must command admiration. 

A small portion of the old Castle of Craig is still 
preserved within the grounds of Rossie, and Craig 
House is an old, heavy-looking, ivy-clad mansion 
surrounded by high walls — the quaint portcullised 
entrance being flanked by towers. It was the seat 
of Baron David Wood, progenitor of the Woods of 
Bonnyton Castle. 

Rossie Castle, the residence of the proprietor of the 
estate, Edward Millar, Esq., is a splendid castellated 
mansion, erected by the late Hercules Ross, Esq., of 
Rossie. With battlemented towers, and large square 
towers on each corner of the main building, with 
bartizans around the top, the Castle presents an 
imposing appearance. It is very pleasantly situated 
amid noble trees, trim lawns, and extensive and rich 
gardens. The estate was an ancient feudal barony, 


and many of the usual appendages of u barony court 
Are to be found in the locality. A held near the 
castle is still called the Lawfield, which shows it to 
have been the seat of the .Justice Court of the 
regality. Balgove, the name of an adjoining farm, 
is, we are told, the Anglicised form of the Gaelic 
Balgobb, literally the withy house or prison. Govan 
Hill, situated rather more than a mile to the west- 
ward, was the withy hill, or place of execution. In 
ancient times the gallows was always a growing tree, 
from one of the branches of which the culprits were 
suspended. The condemned persons were led to the 
place of execution, having their hands tied together 
with green withs. Old people generally call a bad, 
worthless fellow a " cheat the widdy," because he has 
so far escaped his merited punishment. 

Towards the west end of the estate there is a lofty 
wooded hill called Kinnoul Hill, which appears to have 
been the chief beacon-station in the district. There 
is a tradition concerning the hill, to the effect that an 
ancient baron of Rossie and his son waylaid the 
King's cadger, for which offence they were tried and 
-executed on the lofty summit of Kinnoul Hill. It 
would appear that they exhibited a natural reluctance 
to mount the scaffold under the fatal tree. The King 
himself superintended the execution, and seeing their 
dilatoriness, he called out to them, " Mount, boys ! " 
to which circumstance is ascribed the derivation of 
the name of Mountboy, which lies on the south side 
of the hill. 

Ac the south-western base of the Hill of Kinnoul, 
snugly embowered amongst the woods, is situated 
Rossie Reformatory, a place for the detention and 
education of refractory boys. From this admirably 
conducted institution many a well equipped lad has 

blXTH TOl'R. 365 

been sent into the world who would have otherwise 
sunk into a career of crime. 

Many years ago a lady of the Ross family, then of 
Rossie Castle, enamoured with the beauty of the 
situation, built a white-wailed cottage of two storeys 
on the steep southern slope, to which she occasionally 
resorted to enjoy the scenery in summer. The 
cottage — like a shooting lodge — is now the residence 
of tbe Governor, and for a time, at the commence- 
ment, was the only building available for the inmates 
and officials, until the present edifice was erected. 

Tbe Institution was opened in May, 185 7 — the 
founder, under the advice of the Earl of Southesk and 
others, being Lieutenant-Colonel Macdonakl Macdon- 
ald of St Martins and Rossie, who alone gave £1165 
towards buildings, furniture, &c. Since then over 
700 have passed through the Institution, every one of 
whom, in some way or other, had broken the law. 

Many a notorious character commenced real life in 
Rossie, and it is doubtless a great recompense to those 
philanthropic gentlemen who commenced the work to 
know that they have been instrumental in making 
good men of not a few. Many of the old lads are 
now holding responsible places. Several of them are 
large employers of labour, two are ministers of the 
gospel, one a doctor of divinity and Principal of a 
College in one of our Colonies, and, strange as it may 
seem, one some years ago held the post of Governor 
in a Reformatory. 

Lunan Bay and Redcastle. 

Redcastle proudly aye doth keep 
It- villi! o'er the mighty deep, 
And in the track of Sol 8 bright ray 
Serenely smiles sweet Lunan Bay. 

The roadside as we approach Lunan is beautified 
with carefully tended flowers and ferns, and as far as 


the property extends rows of Norway maples and 
black Italian poplars, and Corsican pines beautify the 
surroundings. There are few places on the east coast 
that present greater attractions as a bathing resort 
than the Bay of Lunan. These advantages have 
earned for it the title of the Scarborough of Scotland; 
but hitherto the great hindrance in its development 
has been the want ot adequate house accommodation. 
The wide extent of beach, flanked on either side with 
beautiful and romantic rocks, the picturesquely 
situated hamlet of Torshaven, the commanding ruins 
of Redcastle, and the bold fantastic cliff's of Dysart 
are features of natural beauty which strike every 
visitor to the Bay. There is also plenty of scope for 
the followers of Isaac Walton in the immediate 

The whole district lying between Montrose and 
Arbroath abounds in objects of much interest to the 
antiquary, while the scenery in several parts is grandly 
impressive. The author of " Traditions and Stories 
of Scottish Castles," writing on the subject of 
Eedcastle, says : — About seven miles north of 
Arbroath the east coast-line of Scotland suddenly 
deviates westward and forms the vast semi-circular 
sweep known as Lunan Bay. Beyond Auchmithie, 
the fishing village rendered famous by Scott in the 
"Antiquary," the cliffs of old red sandstone and trap 
which form the sea-limits terminate in the Bedhead, 
whose summit reaches an altitude of about 270 feet. 
North from Redhead the promontory of Boddin 
Point forms the extreme limit of Lunan Bay, which 
circles around betwixt these two capes in one long 
stretch of sand. AVere a line carried from the one 
point to the other it would be found that the shore in 
the centre of the bay runs nearly three-and-a-half 


miles inland, whilst it extends fully three miles north 
and south. 

At the bottom of the hill, and before we reach the 
bay, nestling amid fine old trees, is the mansion-house 
of Lunan, the residence of Colonel William Blair- 
Imrie. The old mansion-house — which had several 
mural coats-of-arms of the Ogilvys of Inverquharity 
and Guthries of Guthrie, and the date 1664 — was 
pulled down, and a new one built in 1825. It was 
considerably enlarged during the minority of the 
present laird, when the garden and beautiful lawn, 
extending to about five acres, were laid out. These 
grounds, planned with taste, adorned with great an- 
cestral trees, and kept up at considerable expense, 
have for many years been thrown open to the public. 
The only restriction is that a stop has been put to 
pic-nic parties being held there on Sunday — not 
visitors, who can find, as the genial and respected 
laird lately said, " while wandering about a well kept 
garden on a Sunday afternoon, that flowers are quite 
as much stamped with the impress of divinity as 
Calvinistic sermons — they can, in addition, practice 
the virtue of self-denial by more frequently acting on 
the principle of ' touch not, taste not, handle not,' 
than they have hitherto done." As the crow flies, 
the distance between Lunan Bay Station and the sea- 
beach is only about 400 yards ; but as it is a mile by 
the road, the proprietor has formed a broad footpath 
through Buckie Den to the beach. Though some- 
what steep, this walk is a singularly attractive one, as 
it passes several cascades of water, and is surmounted 
by a thicket of black thorns. Xearly a mile to the 
north of the house, and standing on high ground, is 
an obelisk, 45 feet in height, erected in 1850 to the 
memory of the late Brigadier James Blair, father of 
Colonel Blair-Imrie. 


Upon the summit of a grass-covered hill near the 
central point of the bay stand the remains of 
Eedcastle. Around the base of the mount, and 
stretching far into the interior, the water of Lunan 
flows on in its course to the sea, and dividing at the 


foot of the hill, it separates its current into innumer- 
able little rills which make their way through the 
sand until lost in the ocean. The beach for a great 


distance is formed of fine sand, unbroken by rock or 

From the peak of Redcastle a magnificent panorama 
of the eastern portion of Forfarshire may be seen. 
Although it does not stand very high, compared with 
Redhead or Boddin, its position at the north of the 
river enables the spectator to obtain a view of the 
valley of the Lunan, and to overlook, thereby, some 
of the most fertile portions of the shire. Westward 
the spurs of the Grampian Hills forming Glen Isla, 
Glen Prosen, and Glenesk, may be detected upon a 
clear day enclosing the scene, whilst Mount Blair in 
solitary grandeur limits the south western view. 
Within the range of vision lie the fertile lands of 
Angus, extending in gentle undulations as far as the 
eye can reach, and varied with field and woodland in 
a manner scarcely to be equalled elsewhere in Scotland. 
With the fertility of the Lothians is combined some 
of the grandeur of the Ochil district, and the grain- 
bearing lands and pastures are relieved in artistic 
efl'ect by the remains of the ancient forests of Angus. 
Seaward the view is unlimited. The wave which 
breaks upon the beach at Lunan Bay has sped 
through the waste of waters from the distant shores 
of Norway or Denmark, and the North Sea laves 
without obstruction the rock-bound coasts of each of 
these widely separated lands. 

Yonder bright the bay, 
The bonnie, Bonnie bay, 
Yonder bright the bay, 
The bonnie bay of Lunan. 

Sparkling white with silver waves. 
Girt with high wild rocky caves, 
Mermaids sing o'er Beamen's graves, 

In the bonnie bay of Lunan. 

It is remarkable that very little information con- 
cerning Redcastle can be gathered from the pages of 


history, although Mr A. H. Millar, through the recent 
researches of the Royal Commission upon Historical 
Manuscripts, has been enabled to tell us, in his 
" Castles and Mansions," its tragical story more com- 
pletely than any previous historian. 

Tradition points to William I. as the builder of the 
castle for a hunting seat. Ochterlony says it was the 
residence of William I. when he built the Abbey of 
Arbroath. It is certainly one of the oldest castles in 
Forfarshire. There is the traditional deep dungeon, 
of which the oldest inhabitants in the neighbourhood 
have often heard but never seen. The Witches' Pool 
to the north, and the Gallows Hill to the west, con- 
stitute the most striking feudal appendages of the 
barony. The Gallows Hill, placed in the appropriate 
neighbourhood of the AVitches' Pool and Ironshill, is 
a large conical mound covered with trees, and is 
perhaps the most perfect specimen of the kind which 
this or any country contains. 

The first subject found in possession of Pedcastle 
is Henry de Baliol, chamberlain to King William I., 
and grand-uncle to King John Baliol. He married 
Lora, daughter of Philip de Valonis de Panmure, with 
whom he got in dower the lands of Panlathy and 
Balbinnie, in the barony of Panmure and parish of 
Arbirlot. There were two witchpools attached to the 
castle — an artificial one, now filled up, a short distance 
south of the Gallowshill ; and another, a little to the 
westward of the castle. The latter was a naturally 
formed pool in the river-bed, which by shifting its 
course left the pool dry, but the place still retains 
the name of Witchpool. The purposes for which 
these pools were used were the ordeal of water-trial, 
and the punishment of female delinquents. 

Redcastle was in a tolerable state of repair so late 
as the year 1748, at which time the slates and joists 


belonging to it were removed to Panmure. After- 
wards the castle buildings became a common quarry 
to all the tenants in the neighbourhood. 

Sad are the ruthless ravages of time : 
The bulwark' d tim*et frowning once sublime 
Now totters to its basis, and displays 
A venerable wreck of other days. 

According to Fraser's " History of the Carnegies of 
Southesk," the last inhabitant of Redcastle was the 
Rev. Mr Rait, of the family of Rait of Hallgreen, in 
the Mearns, who, at the Revolution in 1688, was 
Episcopal minister of Inverkeillor. When deprived of 
his living he took up his residence in the square tower 
of Redcastle, and continued to perform religious 
services for the parishes of Inverkeillor and Lunan. 

It was at Redcastle, during the beginning of the 
18th century, that the curious incident occurred which 
is recorded in Jervise's "Epitaphs." 

Under the apprehension that it was intended to bring 
him up as an agriculturist, the first William Imrie of 
Lunan quitted, while quite a youth, iiis father's house in 
Aberdeenshire, without communicating his design to any 
one, and started for London, walking along the coast road 
until he reached Redcastle. Having mounted the hillock 
on which the old ruin stands, he lay down, fell asleep, and 
dreamt that he was laird of Lunan. tie went to England, 
sailed several times to India, married a woman with money, 
and became the owner of a hotel in Fountain Court, 
Strand, London. The hotel was at that time the favourite 
resort of the Forfarshire lai'ds when they went to London. 
The incident at Redcastle left a deep impress'on on 
William Imrie's mind, and having become rich in London 
he returned to Scotland, where in 1759 he realised the 
dream of his youth by purchasing the estate of Lunan. 

After settling at Lunan Mr Imrie was instrumental 
in bringing thither Robert Huddleston, who, in 1789, 
was appointed to the office of parochial schoolmaster. 


Mr Hud dies ton relieved the drudgery of tuition by 
the love of letters, which, during his intervals 
of leisure, he wooed to some purpose, having carved 
his name on the literary annals of his country. In 
1814 he published a new edition of Toland's "History 
of the Druids,"' which bears internal evidence of deep 
study. He edited also Holinshead's " Scottish 
Chronicles," and was a constant contributor to the 
magazines and periodical press. A small tombstone, 
with a modest inscription, marks his resting-place in 
the Lunan Churchyard. 

Colonel Blair-Imrie, the present genial and much- 
esteemed laird, recently prepared for private circula- 
tion a beautiful and painstaking volume, giving 
an interesting history of the family. The Colonel is 
very pleased to allow visitors access to his magnificent 
gardens and to the grounds surrounding his finely- 
situated mansion. He is the twenty-eighth proprietor 
of these lands, which were formerly called "The 
Barony of Inverlunan," and had been constituted 
into a " free barony " by Robert II. on the 4th 
January 1377. In the parish church of Lunan there 
is attached to the reredos a brazen support for 
a baptismal font, and likewise a sand-glass stand of 
the same material. Each of these articles bears an 
inscription in these words : — "Given to the Church 
of Lunan by Alexander Gavin, merchant there, and 
Elizabeth Jamieson, his spouse, 1773." A bell which 
used to be rung at funerals is also in the possession of 
the minister (the Rev. Alex. Fridge), and bears a 
similar inscription. The historj 7 of the donor of these 
gifts and his family is very remarkable. This 
Alexander Gavin was for many years beadle of the 
parish of Lunan. Among the duties that devolved 
upon him in that capacity, were the keeping and pre- 
paring the baptismal font for service, the turning the 


sand-glass during sermon, and the ringing the hand- 
bell as he walked before the company of mourners 
who bore their departed friends to their last resting- 

The father of Alexander Gavin was named James Gavin, 
and he also held the office of beadle. It happened, while 
James held the appointment, that a Dutch vessel was 
wrecked in the Bay of Lunan, and the beadle, taking pity 
on the destitute condition of the castaway skipper, invited 
him to share the hospitality of his } umble abode. This 
kindly offer was readily accepted, and the acquaintance, 
so strangely formed, resulted in the marriage of the Dutch 
skipper with the beadle's daughter, Catherine Gavin. 
Soon thereafter the skipper with his wife left for Holland, 
where he renounced his seafaring life, and betook himself 
to the less dangerous and more lucrative pursuits of com- 
merce. A f ter Catherine's departure, Alexander succeeded 
his father in the office of beadle, and seems to have made 
a livelihood from the profis of a small shop. He married 
Elizabeth Jamieson, and had a son n med David. Thus 
David Gavin, while quite young, was invited to Holland 
by his uncle and aunt ; he became in course of time a 
partner in the business carried on by his uncle, and 
married his cousin, the skipper's daughter, who, however, 
soon thereafter died. Having by industry and intelligence 
amassed a considerable fortune, David Gavin leturned to 
Scotland, made his father comfortable for the remainder 
of his days, and purchased, along with other property, the 
estate of Langton in Berwickshire. In 1770 he married 
Lady Elizabeth, daughter of the Earl of Lauderdale, and 
by her had three daughters. One of these, Mary Turner, 
married John, fourth Earl of Brsadalbane, and was the 
late Dowager Marchioness, and mother of John, fifth Earl 
(secord and last Marquis) of Breadalbane, and of Lady 
Mary, who was married to Richard Plantagenet, second 
Duke of Buckingham. Alexander Gavin, the kirk-beadle 
of Lunan, was thus the father-in-law of an Earl's daugh- 
ter, the grandfather of a Marchioness, and the great- 
grandfather of a Marquis, and of a Duchess. The family 
of the last are, the Duke of Buckingham, the lineal 


descendants of a daughter of Henry IT., and thus remote 
heirs to the British throne. 

The Rev. Walter Mill, parish priest of Lunan 
immediately before the Keformation, was the last 
martyr who suffered in Scotland for his religious 
opinions. Having renounced Popery and embraced 
the principles of the Keformation, he was, in 1568, 
apprehended at Dysart by two priests in the service 
of Archbishop Hamilton, brought to St Andrews and 
imprisoned in the Castle. All means to shake his 
constancy having been tried, he ended by saying, 
" You shall know that I will not recant the truth, for 
I am corn, and not chaff. I will not be blown away 
with the wind, nor burst with the flail, but will abide 
both." So great was the sympathy with him, that 
Provost Patrick Learmonth refused to do the part of 
temporal judge : and not a rope would any individual 
supply to bind the victim to the stake. His last 
words were, " I shall be the last that shall suffer 
death in this land for this cause,'' and these proved 
prophetic. A monument to his memory was erected 
inside the old church of Lunan in the year 1818. 
When the present church was built in 1845, the 
monument was destroyed, and another one was placed 
in the new church in 18-i v . 

The Church of Inverkeillor (formerly Ethie) was 
built towards the end of the seventeenth century. 
At a later period part of the back wall was removed, 
and the Anniston Aisle added. In this addition and 
in the two ends there are galleries, each of which has 
a stair for itself inside the Church. The one in the 
east end is the Xorthesk gallery, the front of which 
is very dark oak, with some quaint but beautiful old 
carvings upon it, and the Northesk arms in the 
centre. In the west end is the Kinblethmont gallery. 



The Church (Rev. Andrew Halden) is surrounded by 
a graveyard, embosomed among old trees. The 
burial vault of the Northesk family is attached to the 
east end of the Church. Inverkeillor, which is a 
clean, well-built and airy-looking village, was known, 
in the old coaching days as Chance Inn. 

The mansion-house of Anniston is an elegant 
structure, consisting of a centre building, flanked with 
extensive wings. It occupies a beautiful situation on 
a fine piece of table land in the parish of Inverkeillor, 
about a mile south-east of the village, close by the 
road which leaves the Arbroath and Montrose turn- 
pike road at Chance Inn, and leads to Ethie Castle. 
It is the residence of the widow of Colonel Rait, C.B. 

Knockwinnock of " The Antiquary. 

Ethie Castle. 

Ethie has in recent years been greatly enlarged, 
and restored, under the skill and fine antiquarian taste 
of Dr R. Anderson, the eminent architect. The seat 
of the Earl of Xorthesk, it is supposed to be the 

It was not 
built by Car- 
dinal Bea- 


ton, but was 
one of his 
favourite re- 
side nc es ; 
and, not- 
withst and- 
\ ing several 
addi tions 

made since his day, it is yet in much the same state 
as it was when he occupied it. A mansion of 
such antiquity as that of Ethie could not fail to 


gather round it singular traditions. So attached to 
Ethic Castle was the Cardinal, that he did not leave 
it on his murder. His ghost lingered about it. and, 
indeed, it still does so. " It is still reported," as an 
indisputable fact, that "at a certain hour of the night 
a sound is heard resembling the tramp of a foot, 
which is believed to be the Cardinal's.'' The haunted 
room, which is in one of the attics, has long been un- 
occupied. It is always kept locked, and few have 
been privileged to enter it. The learned author of 
the " History of the Carnegies " once explored the 
mysterious room, and found a veritable trace of the 
Cardinal in the form of a large oak cabinet, the only 
article of furniture in the apartment. 

The estate is finely wooded ; and although placed 
within easy distance of the grandest marine scenery 
on the east coast of Scotland, it is yet completely 
sheltered from the rough sea breezes, thus combining 
much variety of feature in landscape with almost 
perfect seclusion. In the vicinity of the house is a 
large tumulus or hillock, known as the Corbie 's Knowe^ 
which is supposed to have derived its name from the 
Danish ensign, a black raven (the well-known cog- 
nizance of the Scandinavian rovers) having been 
planted upon it during some incident connected with 
one of the numerous expeditions of those bold adven- 
turers in this part of Scotland. 

During the reign of David EL, on 17th June 1329, 
Walter Maule of Panmure disposed of the lands of 
Carnegie, in the barony of Panmure, to John de 
Bohnard, who thereupon adopted Carnegie as his 
family surname, instead of, as previously, Bonhard. 
This gentleman— who acquired considerable property 
in Angus — was the ancestor of the Earls both of 
Southesk and Xorthesk. David Carnegie, designated 


of Panbride, sixth in descent from the said John de 
Carnegie, was the father of David, first Earl of 
Southesk, and of John, first Earl of Xorthesk, betwixt 
whom he divided his properties. John Carnegie was 
created Lord Lour in 1639. But, disliking this title, 
he prevailed upon King Charles II. to alter it in 1662 
to that of Earl of Xorthesk. His youngest daughter, 
Lady Jean Carnegie, married "William Grahame of 
Claverhouse, by whom she was the mother of the 
famous John Grahame of Claverhouse. William, 
seventh Earl, was third in command at the memorable 
battle of Trafalgar, fighting under the leadership of 
Lord Nelson. 

The present peer, David Carnegie, 10th Earl of 
Xorthesk, was born in 1865. He succeeded his father 
in 1891, and married, 1894, Elizabeth Boyle, daughter 
of Major-General George Skene Hallow es. 

The mansion-house of Kinblethmont, which a 
number of years ago took the place of an ancient 
structure, is pleasantly situated. The estate of 
Bo j' sack is of considerable extent. It forms the 
extreme north-western portion of the parish of Inver- 
keillor, culminating at the farm of Knowes, where 
three lairds' lands and three parishes meet, viz., the 
lands of Boysack, Middleton, and Cononsyth. and the 
parishes of Inverkeillor, Kirkden, and Carmyllie. 

The first owner of Kinblethmont of whom there is 
certain mention was Richard de Melville about the 
year 1188. After the estate had passed out of the 
possession of the Lindsays it belonged for a short 
time to the Earl of Kinnoul, who sold it to David 
Carnegie, second Earl of Xorthesk, for behoof of his 
second son John, with whose descendants the 
property still remains. Mr H. A. Fullarton Lindsay- 
Carnegie is the present laird. His wife, Mrs Lindsay- 



Carnegie, is a highly-gifted lady, and takes a warm 
and substantial interest in all that pertains to the 
welfare of the people in the district. 


The visitor to this quaint old fishing village will be 
ready to echo the words of the artist who cried as. 
his eyes fell on Auchmithie — " Commonplace ! Why, 
it's glorious, every step you take shows something 
quaint and beautiful ! " 

Just between sea and sky seems to swing the 
village of Auchmithie as you round the clifYs that so 
gloriously break the coast line beyond Arbroath. Up 
there in the quaint village you find a people whom 
the mighty whirling of the hoary world has left un- 
disturbed in their primitive and simple ways. As 
Mr J. M. M'Bain says in his " Arbroath : Past and 
Present " — a work of much general interest, and 
faithfully recording the social progress of the burgh, 
while rich in story and anecdote — they are the lineal 
descendants of the immortal " Mucklebackets," whose 
simple manners and curious habits are worthy of 
careful study. 

Swans, SwaaoMes, Watts, CargUls, who since the Flood, 
Have burrowed in Auchmithie. 

The wondering eyes of bairns peer at you from 
beneath masses of tangled gold, and of brightest red 
are cheeks above tattered blue. The white-crested 
waves dash themselves against the rocks, ever 
hollowing out deeper caves and breaking more and 
more the line of mighty cliffs. Round the cliff head 
the road sweeps, and ere you have followed its wind- 
ings you are apt to think it breaks off short just over 
the rocks that stand up sheer from the ocean. 

However dark the winter morning, however deep 



the snow wreaths, the boats are launched, and the 
men put forth to sea. Theirs to fight the white 
riders on the waves for the sake of the women and 

weans at home ! It is not so many years since the 
women launched the boats and carried the men 
aboard, wading often over the waist in the surging 


foam. It was done that the men might set out dry 
on their perilous and arduous toil. For a day's out- 
ing no more beautiful ground can be dreamt of than 
the round from Arbroath to Lunan Bay by 

The lands of Auchmithie were owned by John 
Beaton of Balquhargie in the 16th century ; but these 
and many of the neighbouring lands have long been 
the property of the Earls of Northesk. The village 
was burned by some fishermen in the end of the 
seventeenth century. Referring to the fact of this 
romantic looking village being rendered almost 
classical by Scott, on account of its being generally 
identified with Mussel-Craig of "The Antiquary," 
we are told that Sir Walter lived several weeks in the 
village inn, then kept by Mrs Walker, who for half a 
century occupied the house, and who was as well 
known in the district as Scott's typical landlady of 
the olden time, Margaret Dods. Luckie Walker has 
been gathered to her fathers, but the house is now 
considerably enlarged and improved, and lovers of the 
grand and picturesque, after satisfying their tastes 
amidst the wild scenery along the coast, can, as of 
3 T ore, have their more prosaic cravings satiated with 
an excellent fish dinner by the present host, Mr 
Baillie The bedroom said to have been occupied by 
Sir Walter is shown to the admirers of the immortal 
'• Wizard." Greatly through the exertions and 
influence of Mrs Gilruth, Seaton of Auchmithie, a fine 
harbour was made some years ago. 

Seaton House, the residence of the Hon. F. K. 
Bruce, is a massive structure, within two miles of 
Arbroath. In former times the chapel and burying- 
ground of St Ninian, Bishop and Confessor, stood at 
the Den of Seaton. The site of the chapel is marked 
by a spring, called St Ninian's, or St Eingan's Well. 


Arbroath and its Abbey. 

The wreck of centimes is buried here ; 

The very monuments are hoar with age ; 

The empty tower that sentinels them ill 

Wails when the gusts wild wander o er the eaith. 

And areata the rusty gate with caielets rime. 

Until recent times the usual appellation of this 
town was Aberbrothoclc, from its situation on the mouth 
of a small turgid stream called the Brothock, which is 
here poured into the sea. The present name is 
a commodious abbreviation of the word. It is the 
seat of a Presbytery of eleven parishes. Little is 
distinctly known of the origin of the burghal privi- 
leges of the little seaport town which arose in the 
immediate vicinity of the Abbey, on account of the 
loss of charters in the troubles during the minority of 
James VI. It is generally understood that the town 
was constituted a royal burgh by the same monarch 
who founded the Abbey. 

Arbroath has a population of about 23,000, its 
principal industries being linen, bleaching, and boot 
and shoe manufacture. From being a place of small 
importance it, like some other towns in Forfarshire, 
gradually rose into consequence from its manufactures 
and exports. From being a quiet little country town, 
it has become, in recent time, a bustling place of 
business. The Town House, situated in the widest 
part of the old-fashioned looking, and somewhat 
tortuous High Street, has a handsome Grecian front. 
In this building both the Trades, and the Guildry 
have commodious public halls, and it also contains 
public reading rooms and library. The town also has 
a too little known museum, with a more rare and 
valuable collection than most local institutions of this 
sort possess. The Parish Church (Rev. W. J. N. 
Service) was destroyed by fire in 1892, but a hand- 
some edifice has taken its place. There is also the 



Abbey Church (Rev. Andrew Douglas) and several 
other quoad sacra churches. 


The history of this ancient town and district, with 
the interesting historical associations connected with 
the grand old Abbey, has been most exhaustively 
treated by Mr George Hay, Mr J. M. M'Bain, the 
Rev. J. Moffat Scott, and others, not forgetting the 
late Mr Buncle (of the Guide newspaper) in his richly 
artistic, large album of splendid etchings, entitled, 
" The Round 0." The writings of these gentlemen 
are so well known, and so very highly valued that we 
do not require to devote so much space to Arbroath 
and its Abbey as we might otherwise have done, but 
would express our indebtedness to their researches. 

Although nothing very definite is known of the 
history of Arbroath previous to the reign of " William 
the Lion," there is reason to believe that it was 
an inhabited place prior to that. Its Church (St 
Vigeans) is known to have existed before William's 


accession, and there is every probability that it was 
the site of a hamlet before the foundation of the 
Abbey in 1178. One of the earliest endowments of 
the monastery was the village of " Aberbrothock, 
with all the shire thereof and the church of the 
village, namely, Aberbrothock, with its tiends and 

There is much in and around Arbroath of interest 
to visitors. Sir Walter Scott thought so when he 
selected the town and its neighbourhood as the scene 
of one of his most interesting novels, Arbroath being 
the "Fairport" of the "Antiquary." With his 
magic wand, says Mr M'Bain, he has thrown an air 
of enchantment over our cliffs and caves which has 
enticed many of his admirers to visit the spot which 
he has thus made classical. 

With many picturesque and quaint nooks, and 
intimately associated in Scottish literature with the 
curious " Antiquary " of our greatest romancer, 
Arbroath is perhaps best known as the seat of a noble 
monastery that sheltered kings and nobles, monks and 
pilgrims, in other days, and witnessed many stirring 
scenes and notable events in our country's history. 
The Abbey stands at the head of the High Street, 
and commands a magnificent view of sea and land. 

This great religious house was founded by William 
the Lion in 1178 and finished in 1213. It was 
intended for the redemption of the King's soul ; but 
it was dedicated formally to St Thomas a Becket, 
Archbishop of Canterbury, who was murdered by 
four knights in 1170, at a pillar of his own cathedral. 
Before the erection of the Abbey of Aberbrothock, 
there was no hospice or asylum along the rugged 
coast of Angus and Mearns ; and King William's 
noble house supplied a deeply-felt want. While it 
was a sanctuary for the sacred service of God and the 


cultivation of piety and the arts of peace, it was also 
an hospital »le asylum for homeless pilgrims and 

Constructed chiefly in the early English style of 
Gothic architecture, the Abbey of Aberbrothock was 
unsurpassed by any in Scotland. The church of the 
monastery was spacious, forming a Latin cross. 
Originally it possessed a lofty central square tower 
and spire and two western towers, one of which still 
stands 100 feet high, sentinelling the town, and 
locally known as Saint Thomas. Over the fine circular 
gateway, once rich in ornament and pillar, there was 
a choir gallery, and above it " a beautiful rose- 
window/" There were twelve altars, with their 
chapels, and the sacristy contained many precious 
vestments of gold and silver, a pastoral staff, and a 
fine mitre. Outside the church were two refectories, 
a dormitory, a chapter-house, a library containing 
over two hundred books, an ample and well-furnished 
hospice, an infirmary, and " many gardens wide and 

Xow the abbey is a great ruin ; but the western 
tower, the high altar, the southern wall, and the gable 
with the celebrated Saint Catherine wheel window, 
known as " the Round 0," the gateway, the pend, 
and the weather-worn Regality Tower, "grinning," 
as Mr Moffat Scott says, " like some monstrous 
dragon over the busy street," remain to proclaim the 
greatness and glory of the ancient pile. " The 
monastery of Aberbrothock," says Dr SamuelJohnson, 
''is of great renown. Its ruins afford ample testi- 
mony of its ancient magnificence. I should scarcely 
have regretted my journey had it afforded nothing 
more than a sight of Aberbrothock." 

The Abbey of Arbroath was exceedingly rich in 
goods and lands. William the Lion and Alexander 


II. conferred on it splendid gifts, and many of the 
nobles of Angus followed their good example. The 
property included salmon-fishing on the Taj, the 
North Esk, and the Dee ; the ferry-boat at Montrose; 
a salt work at Stirling ; license to cut timber in the 
royal forests ; and the linings of no fewer than forty- 
six churches ! The income of the abbey, in money 
and victuals, could not be less than nine thousand 
pounds — an enormous sum in those days. 

Not only did the abbots treat their visitors at 
home with a profuse liberality, but they maintained 
hostilages at Dunnichen, Dundee, Aberdeen, Edin- 
burgh, and Peebles, for the accommodation and 
entertainment of their friends and servants. At 
Stirling there were spacious lodgings and stabling for 
thirty horses. 

Upon the dangerous insulated reef, at the distance 
of twelve miles from the coast, called the Inch Cape 
Rock, and in modern times the Bell Rock, one of the 
abbots attached a bell, which, at high water, when 
almost bidden by the breakers, was rung by the lash- 
ing of the waves, and warned, by its tolling, the sea- 
men who were sailing near its dangerous vicinity. 

When the rock was hid by the surge's swell, 
The mariners heard the warning "hell : 
And then they knew the perilous rock, 
And blest the Abbot of Aberbrothock. 

The ingenuity and science of modern times have 
rendered the Bell Rock one of the most serviceable 
light-house stations on the east coast of Scotland. 
But, at the period to which we refer, the abbot's bell 
was all that indicated the dangerous existence of the 

The historical associations of the abbey are 
interesting. Before the high altar William the Lion 
was buried amid a nation's tears in 1214. Within the 



monastery Edward I. of England, bent on subjugating 
Scotland, rested in 1296, when Abbot Henry paid 
him a most reluctant homage. Here Robert Bruce, 
the hero-king — ^^= ^ ^=— --. - 

and patriot, =s8 

prayed before 
he fought the 
battle of Ban- 
nockburn, and 
here he so- 1 
journed during 
the autumn of 
1317. Thefirst 
Scottish Par- 
liament that 
proudly asser- 
ted the nation- 
al indepen- 
dence and de- 
fied Pope John 
XXII. when he 
threatened to 

cate the king bell rock lighthouse. 
and people if they refused to acknowledge the English 
sovereignty, met 'in the great church in 1320 ; and 
Bruce presided over it, and signed the letter that 
staggered the Pope. Here, too, were educated two 
great men—John Barbour, the father of Scottish 
poetry, and Alexander Myln, Dean of Angus, and the 
first president of the Court of Session. Within the 
walls was carefully preserved for centuries the 
speckled banner of Saint Columba of Iona, the famous 
Culdee symbol carried to battle on great occasions. 
Foremost amongst its Abbots were Ralph de 


Lamley and Bernard de Linton. The former was a 
good man in a bad time, and when he became Bishop 
of Aberdeen was wont to travel afoot throughout his 
diocese preaching the Cross ; the latter was a states- 
man, scholar, and soldier, and fought by the side of 
Bruce at Bannockburn. 

In 1815 the Barons of Exchequer took measures to 
arrest the dilapidation of the venerable pile, which 
had been going on during two centuries and a half of 
neglect, and in the chancel, immediately before the 
high altar, the clearing away of the rubbish laid bare 
an effigy covering a stone coffin, in which were the 
bones of a person of goodly stature ; and there does 
seem good reason for regarding these as the ef^gy, the 
coffin, and the bones of William the Lion. 

The Battle of Arbroath dates in the fifteenth 
century. It was fought in 1446, between the 
Lindsays and the Ogilvys. The occasion of it was 
the Abbey Chapter's choosing Ogilvy of Inverquharity 
as chief Justiciar in their regality, in place of the 
Master of Crawford, afterwards known as the Tiger 
Earl, and Earl Beardie. As the combatants ap- 
proached each other, the Earl of Crawford, being 
anxious to avert the intended combat, suddenly 
appeared on the field, and, galloping up between the 
two lines, was mortally wounded by a soldier, who 
was enraged at his interference, and ignorant of his 
rank. The Crawfords, infuriated at the loss of their 
chief, attacked the Ogilvys with a desperation which 
soon broke their ranks. They were almost entirely 
cut to pieces, and five hundred men, including many 
noble barons in Forfar and Angus, were left dead on 
the field. Edward I. of England thrice visited 
Arbroath, and rested in its Abbey, and in 1858 James 
V., when only sixteen years of age, and attended by 
alarge retinue, was entertained in theAbbey of Arbroath. 


Away to the north is a stretch of rocky coast, where 
Scott has laid the scene of the adventure of Sir 
Arthur and Miss Wardour. The lofty cliffs present 
many scenes of beauty and grandeur, and, with the 
exception of two or three tiny bays, extend onward 
to the Redhead. They vary in height from 100 to 
150 feet, and the Redhead is about 260 feet high. A 
footpath leads along the top of the cliffs to Auch- 
mithie, affording many picturesque views of the pre- 
cipitous rocky coast, the outlying shelving rocks, over 
and upon which the restless waves are ever breaking, 
and the boundless ocean beyond, while a beautiful, 
richly cultivated country lies behind you, over which 
towers, and chimneys, and the lofty ruins of the 
Abbey of Arbroath stand boldly out. The rocky 
bulwark is perforated by several caves, some of which 
extend more than two thousand feet into the cliff. 
Some of these caves are accessible at all times of the 
tide, others at low water, others can only be reached 
from a boat, and the entrance of one or two is some 
distance up the face of the rock. Wild legends are 
told of some of these caves. At one period a large 
smuggling trade was carried on along the east coast, 
and the caves were often occupied by the smugglers, 
and made the receptacle of contraband goods. In 
one or two places, outside the cliffs, isolated pillars 
stand out bold and gaunt, the softer rock -which had 
surrounded them having been washed away. The 
most curious of all the wild scenes on this rocky 
coast is the Geary or Gaylot Pot, in a field not far 
from Auchmithie. It is a huge pot, about fifty yards 
in diameter. At high water in easterly storms the 
water is impelled into the pit with extreme violence 
and loud noise, and the water boils, and surges, and 
froths in an extraordinary manner. The bottom of 
the pit can be reached at low water, as the soil slopes 


down from the north-west side, but in other parts the 
rocks are all but perpendicular. 

Mr Hay, in his admirable " History of Arbroath 
gives a graphic description of the caverns and cliffs 
between^ Arbroath and Auchmithie. A long, narrow 
inlet with a huge rock in the entrance, is known as 
Dick'mont Den. In it there are several caverns, one 
of which is large, and has two entrances from the 
Den and one from the sea. Looking down from tne 
top of the cliffs when the tide is in and the sun 
shining, there is seen at this cave the appearance as of 
two large eyes, which have been locally named the 
" Devil's E'en." There is a very distinct echo in the 
Den Among the many objects of interest here, 
there is also the Stalactite Cave, famous for its 
beautiful natural pendants; the Needle E'e, the 
Mason's Cove, a spacious grotto to which the 
"brethren of the mystic tie" from time immemorial 
made, and to which they still continue to make pil- 
grimages, and in the recesses of which they perform 
some "of their mvsterious ceremonies. A visit to 
these and other points of interest with which that 
part of the coast abounds will amply repay any effort 
that may be undergone in its accomplishment. Mr 
Bain, describing the scene, says :— 

A par; from the romantic spell thrown around this part 
of 'the coast, one cannot resist a feeling of sublimity 
arising in his mind as he walks along those cliffs or 
descends to and explores those wonderful caves. The 
beautiful panorama which lies stretched before him is 
perfectly enchanting. The German Ocean here and there 
studded with fishing boats, while near at hand and in the 
distance may be seen the white sails of many a merchant- 
man To the right he sees the Firth of Tay and the 
sands of Barry, where, in the early days of our Scottish 
history Camus, the Danish commander, landed his 
soldiers in the vain attempt to conquer our country. The 


coast of Fife, with its hill and dale, add variety to the 
scene. From any point may also be seen that wonderful 
beacon, the Bell Rock Lighthouse, as, like a faithful 
sentinel, it keepR watch and ward over the lives of our 
hardy mariners. To the naturalist our beautiful cliffs have a 
special charm. Professor Balfour and other distinguished 
botanists have scrambled along their grassy and rocky 
slopes to pluck the carline thistle, the sweet milk vetch, 
the seaside gromwell, and the lovely maiden pink, and to 
admire their rich and varied maritime flora. To the 
geologist they have proved no less attractive. Hugh 
Miller investigated their grandly-piled masses of old red 
sandstone and conglomerate. They fired Sir Charles 
Lyell with so much enthusiasm that when tottering on the 
verge of the grave he insisted on getting into a boat at 
Auchmithie and gazing on them with a last fond look. 

The Town Council, with most commendable spirit, 
have recently made the access to the cliffs very easy, 
and at the same time enhanced the beautiful sur- 
roundings, by the formation of footpaths and graceful 
bridges over ravines that formerly made the visit 
somewhat fatiguing and of a switchback nature. 

The bridging and extension of the paths along this, 
perhaps one of the most romantic seaside walks in 
Scotland, will, as we have already hinted, no doubt 
be prized by all visitors to " Fairport." In this con- 
nection, it is satisfactory to note that the Town 
Council is moving, though somewhat tardily, in the 
direction of making the town, which has so many at- 
tractions, better known to tourists and summer 
residents, now in these days of cheap and speedy 
travelling, a numerous class of people. Besides its 
"lions," already referred to, it has a fairly good golf 
course, a stretch of sands to the west sufficient to give 
Arbroath a good reputation as a watering place ; the 
Common is an extensive and excellent health-giving 
recreation ground ; while the geologist and the 


botanist find themselves in a veritable Garden of 
Eden. As was recently said by the editor of the 
Herald, now that Hospitalfield, Sir Walter's " Monk- 
barns," had been thrown open to the public (tickets 
of admission to be had at the Guide office), Arbroath 
and neighbourhood should be more and more attrac- 
tive to readers and students of Scott. 

But we must now crave pardon for lingering so 
long over these cliffs and caves, sandy and rocky 
shore, ruined castles, and far-stretching ocean. "We 
are sure, however, that they will form a grand gallery 
of pictures, which will long remain treasures in 
memory's storehouse. 

Hospitalfield—" Monkbarns." 

Monastic buildings were not complete without their 
hospital. The hospital attached to the Abbey of 
Aberbrothock was situated about a mile to the east- 
ward of the Monastery. It was endowed with lands 
in its vicinity, which are now part of the present 
estate of Hospitalfield. It appears to have been sold 
about the time of the Reformation, when the monastic 
houses were abolished, as Marion Ogilvy was 
proprietrix of Hospitalfield about 1565. 

The mansion of Hospitalfield, which was erected on 
the site of the Hospital, is about one and a half miles 
from Arbroath. The old mansion house remained 
without much alteration from its first erection until 
about the middle of the last century, from which 
time the late proprietor, Patrick Allan Fraser, did 
much to improve it. Mr Fraser, through his wife, 
acquired considerable property, and, out of respect to 
her, he, with her consent, resolved to erect a fitting 
memorial in commemoration of her. Shortly after 
Mrs Fraser's death he acquired ground in the centre 



of the Western Cemetery, and erected the memorial 
in the form of a mortuary chapel ; the entire 
building is the conception of Mr Fraser. It is a noble 
and unique structure, rich in ornament, and likely to 
tell its story for many centuries. 

Mr Fraser resided for some time in Rome, and 
became a member of the British Academy of Arts 
there. He was elected President of ihe Academy, 
and discharged the duties of the office while there. 
He was an artist of repute, and the mansion is 
adorned with some beautiful paintings by himself, and 
others by most of the leading painters. There are 
also fine examples of the old masters. Many choice 
objects of virtue and exquisite statuary, finely 
arranged, certify to the refined taste of the proprietor, 
who died in 1890. 

Speaking of the mansion, a writer in the Queen 
says : — "' Those familiar with the identity of 

mansion, with 
the " Monk- 
barns " of Sir 
[Walter Scott's 
: novel, "The 
'will find anew 
interest in the 
purpose to 
[w h i c h 'the 
[residence of 
[Mr Jonathan 
[Oldbuck ' is 
now devoted. 
By the will of ' the last laird of Monkbarns,' it 
is provided that an art school shall be erected at 
Hospitalfield, and that the mansion-house, with its 

blXTH TOUR. 393 

wooded surroundings, will form a retreat for students. 
Meanwhile permission to view the grounds and 
galleries has been accorded to the public, on the 
Fridays of July, August, and September, in the hope 
that thereby artistic taste will be stimulated as a pre- 
lude to the scheme of art education to be ultimately 
adopted. The main building, with its lofty barbican, 
standing in trirnly kept grounds, is a model of Scoto- 
Franco architecture, and there is no more interesting- 
house in the county. Eeplete with quaint structural 
devices, rich ornamentations, arcaded galleries and 
balconies, floral wood carvings, corbel brackets, and 
heraldic designs, Hospitalfield will form a unique 
home of art, enhanced as it is by an almost classic en- 
vironment. Patrick Allan-Fraser, ' the last laird of 
Monkbarns," was a man who rose from obscurity to 
distinction by his brush. He was a pupil of Robert 
Scott Lauder, and Sir William Fettes Douglas and the 
late Calder Marshall were amongst his artistic 
colleagues. Should Hospitalfield. which is a per- 
manent mark of his beneficence to art, be well cared 
for by posterity, it cannot fail to become a resort of 
the curious and intelligent traveller." 

St Vigeans. 

The church of St Vigeans (Rev. William I >uke. D.P., 
F.S A. Scot.) is very picturesquely situated on a knoll, 
about a mile from Arbroath. The existence of 
numerous sculptured stones of the Celtic period 
render it probable that a church and buryiug-grdund 
have existed here from the first introduction of 
Christianity into the country. It seems to have been 
dedicated to St Fechin, an Irish bishop, who died a.d. 
664. Its local name of Aberbrothock, as the parish 
church of the shire, or w T hole surrounding district 


was retained in common use down to the suppression 
of the neighbouring monastery, and the erection of 
the town of Arbroath into a separate parish — but now 
under the Parish Council regulations designed 
Arbroath and St Yigeans — after the Restoration. 

The numerous fragments of sculptured stones of 
the Celtic period that stand in the porch, or have been 
built for preservation into the walls, give a singular 
interest to this venerable church, while the learning 
and researches of the esteemed minister have enabled 
him, in his writings on the subject, to throw much 
light on these relics. The Droston stone combines 
the symbols of pagan times with a finely chiselled 
cross. It is unique in further bearing an incised in- 
scription in the early Celtic language of the country. 
The inscription on it, Dr Duke says, is " the only 
specimen of the Pictish inscription that has come 
down to us. It speaks of a stone as erected to 
I>roston, son of Voret, of the race of Fergus, and a 
Pictish King Droston was killed at the Battle of 
Blathmig or Blethmont, a mile or two off, in the year 
729 : the inscription is on the edge of the stone.' 7 
Here rests the dust of Peter Young, tutor of King 
James YI. under George Buchanan. James made 
him a Privy Councillor and Kings Almoner, conferred 
on him the estates of Seaton and Dickmontlaw, and 
knighted him Sir Peter Young of Seaton. He died 
in 1628, and was buried in a vault at the back of the 
church of St Yigeans, the new aisle of which has a 
tablet to his memory. Sir Peter's father was John 
Young, a burgess of Dundee, and his mother 
Margaret Scrimgeour, of a branch of the Dudhope 
family, and from him sprung the Youngs of Seaton, 
Ochterlony, and Aldbar. 

In the days when the transport of weighty materials 
was difficult, the erection of buildings in elevated 


situations must have been an arduous task. Hence 
the general consensus of opinion which ascribed all 
gigantic labours to supernatural agency. Satan is 
often associated in old legends with the erection of 
churches and abbeys. The recollection of the assist- 
ance he gave in building the old Church of St 
Yigeans is still perpetuated by the well-known 
couplet : — 

^air back and sail' banes 

Carryin' the kirk o' St Vigeans stanes. 

St Vigeans seems to have possessed sculptured 
stones of almost every variety of character that is 
found elsewhere in the north-east of Scotland. 
Besides the Droston Cross, there are two fragments 
that contain examples of the spectacle ornament, one 
of them quite primitive in its simplicity, the other 
highly ornamental. The representations of the cross 
are numerous, and of very diverse design. The 
earlier discovered stones are described and illustrated 
in the late Dr Stewart's book, " Sculptured Stones of 
Scotland," Vol. II. An account of those that were 
found during the restoration of the Church in 1871 
was prepared by the minister of the parish for the 
Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, and is printed 
with relative plates in the ninth volume of their 
11 Proceedings." 

A short distance from the mount on which the 
church of St Vigeans stands, there is another eminence 
of about the same height on which is the farm 
of Bridgeton. On the top, according to the Old 
Account of the parish, there was a very remarkable 
echo proceeding from the east end of the church. It 
is said the echo repeated very distinctly six syllables 
and in a calm evening eight syllables, or a line of the 
Psalms in metre, and did not begin to reverberate till 


the voice of the speaker had ceased. When the 
speaker moved a few yards from^his first station two 
echoes were repeated, and proceeding a little further 
three echoes were repeated. The growth of trees 
about the church, • however, and other alterations 
appear to have destroyed the echo. 

Letham Grange. 

The extensive estate of Letham Grange includes 
the united properties of Letham, New Grange, and 
Peebles. The Lire Mr James Fletcher purchased the 
property in 1877, and shortly after he acquired the 
estate of Fern, referred to in our first tour. He built 
a splendid mansion at Letham Grange, in wh ; ch he 
incorporated the earlier house, built in 1830 by Air 
Hay, the previous owner, close to the site of the old 
mansion house of Xew Grange. It is charmingly 
situated, is surrounded by grand old trees, and a park 
diversified by many a shady neuk, verdant knowe, 
and clumps of spreading monarchs of the wood. 
From the railway between Arbroath and Guthrie an 
excellent view of the house and grounds is obtained. 
Mr Fitzroy C. Fletcher, who succeeded his father in 
the estates, and died in 1902, was a very popular 
landlord, and fitted up a riding school, making 
many improvements on the property, which added 
greatly to its amenity and beauty. His widow still 
resides at Letham Grange and Fern during part of 
the year. 

Colliston Castle. 

The lands of Colliston were part of the possessions 
of the Abbey of Arbroath, and appear to have been 
alienated from the covenant in the early part of the 
sixteenth century, as Gilbert Eeid of Colliston is 
mentioned in 1539. 


Henry Guthrie is designed of Colliston 1568-9. 
Bishop Guthrie, who acquired Guthrie from the old 
family, was of the Colliston Guthries, and so are the 
Guthries of Guthrie of the present time, but the 
estate has been for a considerable time in possession 
of the family of Chaplin, the present owner being Mr 
Peebles Chaplin, who succeeded to the estate in 1883. 
Mr Warden says that the Castle of Colliston was 
erected in 1583, two years later than the neighbouring 
castle of Braikie, and it still shows, through subse- 
quent additions, all the interior arrangements of a 
gentleman's " fortified" house of the period. 

Mr Chaplin, who takes a great interest in anti- 
quarian researches, holds, according to an ancient 
Latin charter, signed by the monks of the Abbey, 
that "the principal mansion-house of Colyston," was 
in existence in 1545. Extensive additions of a very 
tasteful nature were made some years ago 
at a cost of nearly £5000. The elements of 
the antique have been skilfully preserved, while 
the modern portions so blend with them as to 
produce a harmonious whole. Several ancient 
stones are built into the Avails, these having 
been discovered by Mr Chaplin during building 
operations. It is conjectured that the stones had at 
one time been taken from an ancient religious temple 
which is known to have existed in the vicinity of 

Colliston Parish Church (Pvev. Alexander Mills) 
was built in 1S70 by the minister and kirk-session of 
St Vigeans, to supply the religious requirements of a 
large "and populous" district of the parish.^ It is 
situated at the junction of the road from Colliston 
Station with the Arbroath and Forfar road, about 
three miles from Arbroath. The site of the church, 
manse, and adjoining public school was given at a 


nominal feu-duty by the proprietor of the estate of 
Colliston. The village, with the usual inn, merchants' 
places of business, tailor, shoemaker, &c, with flower- 
embosomed garden plots, is neat and attractive. 


Friockheim is a pleasantly situated, quiet-going 
place, recently, like " Thrums," made more exten- 
sively known than ever it was before by the inimitable 
and widely popular delineations of Scottish life and 
character, entitled " Cruisie Sketches," and other 
works, by ' ' Fergus Mackenzie " It also possesses all 
the attractions of a health-resort, and is likely, as 
such, to grow in favour. In the neighbourhood are a 
number of interesting historic old mansions we will 
refer to 'before taking up our route where we left it 
at Maryton to do the coast scenery and other adjoin- 
ing points of importance between Lunan and 
Arbroath. Should the visitor wish it, however, he 
can now, as will be seen on consulting our map, cross 
to Farnell and Kinnaird by way of Montreathmont. 
Some four or five hundred acres of the Moor of 
Montreathmont, one of the great Royal forests of 
Scotland, la}* in the barony of Kinnell. It was there- 
fore, frequently honoured with the visits of Royalty, 
in pursuit of the pleasures of the chase. In 1617 
James VI. paid it one of those visits, residing 
at Kinnaird Castle, the seat of his favourite, Lord 
Carnegie ; and it would seem that he enjoyed himself 
for eight days in hunting in his Royal forest in that 

The ground upon which the village of Friockheim 
is built was part of the barony of Gardyne, but it was 
parted with to the Rollocks in 1604. The lands came 
into the possession of Miss Elizabeth Ogilvy, who 


sold them in 1792 to David Gardyne for his brother 
Charles. The land was feued in the early part 
of this century. The village was at first named 
Friockfeus, but by public advertisement, dated 22nd 
May, 1824, it was changed from "feus" to "heim," 
with the consent of T. Gardyne, the superior. 

Jervise informs us that, apart from William 
Gardyne, who did homage to King Edward, until 
1408 the name of Gardyne or Gairn is not met with 
in Angus, but of that date it is recorded that Alex- 
ander Gardyne acquired the lands of Borrowfield, 
near Montrose, on the resignation of William, and his 
descendants held that estate until 1615. In 1409 the 
laird of Borrowfield is also a witness to a charter of 
half the lands and brewhouse of Kinnaird, which 
Duthac de Carnegie received in dowry with his wife, 
Mariota, one of the three co-heiresses of Richard de 
Kinnaird. The chief of the Borrowfield branch fell 
at the battle of Arbroath in 1445-6, fighting in support 
of the Ogilvys. 

During the following century, branches of the 
family were designed of the different properties of 
Lawton, Leys, Legatston, and Tulloes, in Forfarshire 
— all in the neighbourhood of the parent house. 
After this, notices of them become more plentiful, 
chiefly, however, in the annals of our criminal trials, 
and in regard to " deidle feuds" which took place 
between them and their neighbour, Guthrie of that 
ilk. This course of lawless revenge and bloodshed, so 
characteristic in our feudal times, continued over 
several generations with great loss of life and pro- 
perty to both families, and became so serious that 
the king was called upon to interpose between them. 
In 1682, Gardyne was acquired by James Lyell, 
ancestor of the present proprietor, who is the repre- 
sentative of Lyell of Dysart. Gardyne, Middleton, 


Cotton of Gardyne, Friock, and Legatston belonged 
to the Lyells till near the middle of the 18th century, 
when James Gardyne of Law ton bought Middleton, 
Friock, Legatston, and Cotton of Gardyne. 

Gardyne Castle is situated about four miles east 
from the parish church of Kirkden. It is a large and 
elegant building, parti}' old and partly modern. The 
old portion is a good example of the castellated 
architecture of the sixteenth century. It is roman- 
tically situated upon the west side of Denton Burn, a 
tributary of the Vinny : and the Moot or Gallows- 
hill, still forms a prominent object in the landscape. 

In ancient times the parish of Kirkden was called 
Idvies. The estate of Idvies embraces the greater 
portion of the western end of the parish, and the 
estates of Pitmuies and Gardyne, with some other 
properties, the principal one of which is Middleton, 
constitute the eastern portion of the parish. The old 
church of Kirkden was taken down, and a new 
church erected in 1825 (Rev. John Boyle). 
When the new church Avas built the parish was more 
populous than it now is, even in the portion that still 
remains to it ; and besides this diminution, in the 
year 1825, the district church of Friockheim — since 
1870 a quoad sacra parish church— was formed out of 
the original parish of Kirkden. 

The Castle of Braikie is situated in the parish of 
Kinnell, at an elevated point about equidistant 
from Arbroath and Brechin, by the line of the old 
road connecting the two towns. Soon after the battle 
of Bannockburn, the barony of Kinnell (which was 
the name it bore in ancient times) was granted by 
King Robert the Bruce to Fraser, chief of the clan 
Fraser. The estates appear to have gone out of the 
family of Fraser about 1650. In 1688, Charles 
Carnegie, fourth Earl of Southesk, was infeft in the 


office of baron in the barony of Kinnell, and also of 
the barony of Bolshan. Soon after the year 1695 the 
barony of Kinnell was sold by the Southesk family to 
James, fourth Earl of Panmure. 

By the year 1 760 the castle had ceased to be 
occupied by the family to whom it belonged. The 
housekeeper in charge, about sixty years ago, was an 
old woman nick-named Castle Jean, who had her own 
version of the history of the castle, and everything 
pertaining to it. She was always impatient of con- 
tradiction, and altogether independent of authorities. 
When questioned as to when and how the castle was 
built, she generally replied : 

Be it cheap or be it dear, 

The house was biggit in ae year : 

which version she is said to have sometimes altered 
to — 

Be the meal cheap, or be it dear. 
Braikie frizel was biggit in ae year. 

The word '' frizel " appears to be a corruption of 

The Castle and Barony of Guthrie, in the parish of 
G-uthrie, about equidistant from Arbroath and 
Forfar, are now, and for many years have been, the 
residence and property of the family of Guthrie of 
that ilk. The original castle, which was of great 
strength, consisted of a square tower, about sixty 
feet in height, with walls ten feet thick. The old 
part of what now forms the pile of castle buildings 
stood a few yards eastward of the ancient tower- 
fortress. About 1818 the intermediate space was 
filled up by the erection of a Gothic building, the 
whole then forming a commodious and elegant modern 
mansion. The grounds around the castle are taste- 
fully laid out and ornamented, the Lunan water 


winding its onward course directty in front of the 
castle, while behind it the wood-crowned hill of 
Guthrie rises to an elevation of 500 feet. The 
erection of the castle is ascribed to Sir Alexander 
Guthrie, who, together with his son, fell in the fatal 
battle of Flodden field, along with King James IV. 
and the flower of his nobility. 

The Church of Kinnell (Rev. D. Macarthur) is 
situated in a district a large part of which was the 
Royal Forest, referred to on page 398. It contains 
an interesting relic of the battle of Arbroath (page 
387) at which the leader of the Ogilvys, the laird of 
Inverquharity, was slain. He was buried in the old 
church of Kinnell, in what was called the ' Ogilvy 
Aisle,' on -which there was this inscription : — 

"Wlrile girse grows green and water rins clear, 
Let nane but Ogilvys lie here. 

The ground on which the Ogilvy aisle stood was 
opened about thirty-five years ago, when the remains 
of a man of gigantic size, according with the descrip- 
tion given of Inverquharity, were found. Ogilvy's 
boots and spur long hung in the church aisle. The 
boots, much decayed, are said to have been there 
until about the beginning of the 18th century. The 
spur has been preserved, and is fixed in the vestibule 
of the present church. 


Maryton Parish Church from the time of the 
Reformation, had as its first minister Richard 
Melville, eldest brother of the distinguished Reformer, 
Andrew Melville ; and if the same building had con- 
tinued until 1642, when a new church is said to have 
been built, it had as its two last ministers the nephew 
and grand-nephew of the Reformer, who were also 


successive lairds of Baldovie. That is the church to 
which two references are made in the quaint words of 
the autobiography of James Melville, who was the 
son of Richard. We find him on one occasion 
saying :— 

I remember a certain day my father send me to the 
smeddy for dressing of hewkesand someyron instruments, 
the way lying hard by Mariekirk, wherein my father 
pretched, 1 bagoud to wearie soar of my lyff ; ard as my 
custome haid been fra my bernheid to pray in my hart, 
and mein myesteitt to God, coming foment the kirk, and 
linking to it, the Lord steirit up an extraordinar motion 
in my hart, and which made me atteans, being alean, to 
fall on gruiff to the ground and pour out a schort and 
earnest petition t*> God that it wald please His guidrjpsto 
offer occasion to continue me at the scholles, and inclyne 
my father's hart till use the saming, with promise and 
vow that whatever missour of knawledge and letters He 
w-dd bestow upon me, I sould, by His grace, imploy the 
saming for His glorie in the calling of the ministrie ; and 
rysing from the ground with joy and grait contentment in 
heart, again fell down and worship] >ed, and sa past on, 
and did the errand, returning and praising my Cod, 
sinking sum P.-alms. . . . Going a day to Bonitone, 
I past by the kirk of Maritone and place where I haid 
prayed and vowed to God, the same cam in my memorie, 
with a grait motion of mind and determination to pay my 
vow, giff God wald gift the grace and mayen. 

The present neat ivy-clad church, which was 
opened by James Wilson, minister of the parish, in 
1792, underwent considerable alterations in 1818, 
when one of the two galleries it then contained was 
taken out. Mr Wilson removed to Faniell in 179-4. 

The church, like churches generally in olden times, 
had been unprovided at first with pews — the practice 
being for everybody that wished to sit down to bring 
his seat along with him. The seats were sometimes 
an occasion of bickering, as the following minute of 


1727 will testify: — "It was reported by some that their 
seats were misplaced without any of their order, 
therefore the session ordered their Beddle in presentia 
to sett the Stools belon^-incr to the women in such 
places of the church as they judged most proper, and 
to prevent trouble or disturbance, afterwards they 
discharge any person whatsomever to alter any of the 
same without an order from the session, or some 
member of the same.' - ' It is not said whether the 
" beddle " had any difficulty in carrying out his 
instructions. If the spirit of Jenny Geddes had 
developed itself among the women, to whom the stools 
belonged, the poor man would have been sorely 

The late Rev. Mr Fraser, who, by his writings, 
did much to make known in a popular style the 
ancient history of the parish, as well as of the 
counties of Forfar and Kincardine, retired from the 
active duties of the ministry at Maryton, and lived in 
Montrose for some year.-, where he died in 1897, his 
successor being the Rev. li. Henderson. 

Mr Fraser, in his " Maryton Records of the Past," 
tells us that the lands of Maryton were originally 
constituted what was called an abthen, that is, pro- 
perty of or connected with an abbot or abbacy. The 
church was called St Mary's of Old Montrose, and was 
dedicated to the Virgin. It is said to have been a 
vicarage of the Cathedral of Brechin ; but, with all 
its belonging.-, it was given at a very early date to the 
Abbey of Arbroath. The earliest charter known is 
one between the years 1178-98. These gifts were 
made and confirmed by kings (notably King William 
the Lion), popes, and bishops of Brechin — one of the 
latter bearing the name of Hugh — and the presenta- 
tion embraced the church of Auld Munross, with its 
chapels, lands, tithes, oblations, and all their just 


pertinents, as well as a grant to the monks of the said 
Monastery of Arbroath of the right to convert to their 
own use, and for their sustentation, all the rents and 
profits of that church, and to appoint in the same 
church such chaplains as they pleased. 

Church collections during last century were made 
for many very different purposes, such as " For helping 
John Jamieson, a poor man, to buy a cow ;" "For 
William Teveotdale, a lame chapman from Craig, who 
had been robbed, &c." The Session of Maryton were 
sorely exercised sometimes with the small bits of coin 
that formed a part of the contributions. Here is one 
extract in 1727 — "The rest of this collection, viz., 
12s 8d, being all Doitts, was putt into the Box." 
The same year Margaret Birnie, a poor woman, com- 
plains that so much of her money, at last distribution, 
was " doitts," and so of little, or almost no use to 
her. The schoolmaster one year referred payment of 
his salary till another time, " in regard the money 
we had by us was in Brass." Another time we find 
" the Minr. and Sess. advising there should be a 
comitee, viz., two or three of the elders, for taking 
out some Doitts, or halfpennies, for the payment of 
the Presbytery Bursar, and his discharge to be got 
up when he receives it." 

Old Montrose. 

Old Montrose is a place of considerable interest. 
It was from the town of Montrose that Lindsay, the 
origiiial Duke of Montrose, took his title : but it was 
from their old seat of Old Montrose, Maryton, that 
the Grahams took their several titles of Lord, Earl, 
Marquis, and Duke. They were an old family, the 
first of them who settled in Angus being David : ;of 
Graham, who was the grandfather of the patriot, Sir 


John Graham, who fell at the battle of Falkirk, 
fighting with Wallace for the independence of 
his country. The Great Marquis of the seventeenth 
century was bom at Old Montrose in 1612; and the 
part which he acted in the Civil War of his day is 
well known. After swearing the Covenant, and 
being for a time a zealous supporter of the Presby- 
terians, he deserted them, and went over to the side 
of Charles. At Philiphaugh he was captured, and 
conveyed a prisoner to Edinburgh, where he suffered 
a cruel and ignominious death. Who can read, with- 
out feelings of admiration, those lines which he wrote 
with the point of a diamond on his prison window 
the evening before his execution ! 

Let them bestow on every airth a limb. 
Then open all my veins— that I may swim 
T<> Thee, my Maker, in that crimson lake — 
Then place my parboil" d head upon a stake ; 

itter my ashes— strew them in the air— 
Lord ! since thou knowest where all those atoms are, 
And confident thou'lt raise me with the just. 

The ancient house of Old Montrose, in which the 
great Marquis of Montrose is supposed to have been 
born, was a plain, white-washed building. Becoming 
ruinous, it was mostly pulled down by the father of 
the Earl of Southesk, when the present farmhouse 
was built, about sixty years ago. A portion of the 
old house exists as part of the offices attached to the 
stables, which stand close by the public road, near 
the north entry to the house. Two old gate posts are 
at the entrance. 

Speaking of " Powis," Mr Fraser says there is no 
evidence of its ever having formed a separate 
possession — and the Powis of Old Montrose, a name 
by which it is generally known, would suggest that 
it formed a part of the original barony of Auld 
Munross. The name of Powis is evidently from Pow, 


the old word for stieam or burn. The Pow-bridge 
has an interesting history of its own. It was built 
first in 1617, while King James was visiting at the 
Castle of Kinnaird, and enjoying the hunt in the 
royal forest. And the purpose for which it was 
erected, according to the Session Records of Brechin, 
was for " leading his Majesty's provision " while he 
was the guest of his favourite, the Earl of Southesk. 

A handsome Free Church (Rev. Mr Fair weather), 
with manse and other buildings, was erected on a 
prominent position in the vicinity of Old Montrose. 
This church is adorned with a neat spire, which is 
seen from a considerable distance. The surrounding 
scenery is beautiful, and the church and spire form a 
pleasing feature in the landscape. 

^Maryton Law, which commands such a magnificent 
view of the surrounding district, is supposed to have 
been vitrified. It is one of those eminences which 
are popularly believed to have been used as sites for 
the administration of justice. 

The Right Honourable the Earl of Southesk, K.T., 
whose unwearied and learned researches in connection 
with the antiquities of the district — " Pict's " or 
"Earth Houses," "Laws," "Cairns," &c. — have attrac- 
ted the attention of high authorities, says : — 

The tumulus called Maryton Law stands about twenty 
feet higher than the level of the surrounding sui'f ace. Its 
lower portion seems to be a natural knob on the summit 
of the eastern extremity of the hill-ramre of Careary, upon 
which has been raised a considerable cairn of rather large 
stones mixed with earth, near whose top, and exactly in 
the centre, the ancient interment has been made. 
In the vicinity of that fine spring, the "Lady Well," 
stand?, at the side of the Arbroath and Brechin road, the 
elevation termed Green Law — a tumulus of unusual 
height and circumference. Many years ago 1 excavated 
this mound. No signs of ancient work appeared, but 


pretty far down we civ ountered a ponderous, misshapen 
stone embedded in clayey soil— proof that the mound was 
not artificial, for what people would laboriously carry a 
huge boulder merely to throw it anyhow into an earth 
heap they were raising ? My conclusion is, that if ever 
there was an interment at Green Law, it was made in a 
comparatively shallow deposit on the top of the natural 
elevation, as at Maryion Law. Some forty or fifty years 
ago, a small earthenware pot and other remains (now in 
the Montrose Museum) were discovered in the rising 
ground within a stone's throw to the south. . . . The 
Ardovie "Three Laws," the Bertie's Den hillock, where 
the pot-bottom was found, several hillocks near it, and, 
lastly, the Green Law itself, run all on a continuous west 
to east line, and are apparently moraines deposited by a 
glacier in its progress to the sea, many large boulders of 
a sort differing from the old red sandstone of the district 
being found at intervals in the same track— notably one of 
huge dimensions lying close to the road at the foot of 
Green Law. Monrommon (or Montreathmont) Moor, now 
wooded, but formerly a wide heathery waste, has probably 
been the scene of many a battle and many a burial, but 
few traces of these now remain. Such burial-mounds as 
are visibl • have been long ago explored, as the only battle 
relic known to me is a man's wrist-bone, severed fr< m the 
arm at one stroke, which was found by Mr Carnegie of 
Redhalland myself among the roo'sof a prostrated spruce 
tree within a few yards of the " Battle Well : '— a portion 
perhaps of some warlike Lindsay or Ogilvy shorn off 
during the retreat and pursuit after the Battle of 
Arbroath. It may be more ancient — but bronze or flint 
could not cut so clean. ... In this Deer Park f 
Kinnaird, not far from the Brechin Lodge, there is a low 
rise known as the Corbie Hillock. Hearing, some years 
that sandstone slabs had been found near the base 
when drainage was going on, I made excavations in the 
mound itself, and on the south side, about half way up, 
disco\ered a group of five or six cists. Some showed 
deposits of black, burnt matter ; in one a coarse, half- 
baked earthenware vase with " herring bone pattern " 
markings. At the bottom of one of the cists was a lame 


block of white quartz. This may have been deposited 
significantly — there is reason and precedent for thinking 
so— quartz as a fire stone, a spark-maker, was viewed by 
some of the old races as a type of divine creative force. 

My other most notable excavations were at Fithic. 
The first of these consisted in removing the remainder of 
the soil accumulated in a " Pict's House," or "Earth 
House," which had been discovered and partly opened by 
the tenant of the farm many years ago. This burrow, 
like others of its class, formed a narrow strongly-curved 
tunnel, gradually descending from the surface entrance to 
a point seventy or eighty feet distant, where the depth 
attained to about ten feet. The first portion of this 
passage was walled with large standing slabs (two of which 
now do duty as field gate-posts near the farm steading), 
then for a short way came a casing of rubble work, but for 
the rest of the distance the natural shaley clay was left 
unlined. Whether burrows of this type were used as 
winter dwellings, as temporary hiding places, or as 
granaries, is uncertain; they are pretty numerous in Angus 
and other Pictish territories Many yet retain their 
roofing of stone slabs ; in the Fithie example the roof 
seems to have been formed of planks, as socket holes for 
supporting posts had at intervals Veen cut in opposite 
pairs into the solid floor. . . . The second excavation 
in that neighbourhood was at Fithie Law, which occupies 
a commanding position near the Farnell and Renmuir 
road, in a southerly direction from the farm buildings of 
Fithie and the site of the ancient castle of the Fithies of 
that ilk. This must have been a grand tumulus, the 
tomb of some chieftain of importance. 

Bonny ton or Bonnington was once the seat of 
the family of Wood. "The foundation of the castle 
they inhabited," says the "Statistical Account" of 
the parish, " is still to be seen ; and of a moat 
or broad ditch by which it was fortified, the vestige 
still remains." 

King William the Lion paid two visits to the 
northern part of Scotland, and each of them was to 


quell a rebellion. The King in his journeyings on 
these expeditions had probably rested with his troops 
at Montrose, where there was a royal castle, as he 
dated charters at it between 1178 and 1198. The 
gatekeeper of the castle was a man named Crane, for 
which he had the heritable fee of the lands of Iny- 
aney, situated on the south side of the South Esk, in 
what is now the lands of Maryton. His son Swayne, 
and grandson Simon, successively succeeded, and on 
the death of the latter without male issue, his five 
daughters made a joint claim to those lands. Their 
right was questioned, but an inquest was instituted 
in 12G1-2, and an assize, consisting of eighteen of the 
chief barons of the county, gave decision in favour 
of the five co-heiresses. 

Until a recent date the Den of Fullerton was called 
by the name of Ananie, but for many years the name 
has not been given to any lands in the parish, and it 
is now extinct. The Fullertons were proprietors of 
the third part of Ananie, which they sold to the 
Grahams of Old Montrose, and the Lady Magdalene 
Carnegie was life-rented in them, in Maryton, Old 
Montrose, &c, in terms of her marriage contract with 
the Earl of Montrose in 1629. 

About 1640 Sir John Wood of Bonny ton married 
Lady Mary Ogilvy, third daughter of James, second 
Earl of Airlie. The old Castle of Bonnyton is 
supposed to have been erected in the year in which 
the baronetcy was created. Its site is well known, 
but no description of it is known to exist. It is said 
to have fallen down in 1785. It was surrounded by 
a moat. The only remains of the castle are two 
slabs which were built into the farm offices. On one 
is a carving of the arms of Scotland, and on the other 
that of the family of Wood. Both are dated 1666. 
A parishioner of Maryton, whose grandmother was a 


cottager in Bonnyton, has heard her speak of a report 
which Mas common in her younger days, that the 
Woods disappeared somewhat mysteriously from the 
parish. One evening they were known to have sat 
down to supper, and next morning they had 
disappeared, never again to be seen in the parish, and 
vei}' little heard of until Sir James, as it has been 
stated, was found to be sojourning in another part 
of the county. This tradition so much resembles 
the story of the last descendants of the Murraya 
of Melgund that they probably have a common 
origin, and may be called legends. 

The lands of Fullerton and Ananie were purchased 
bv Sir David Carnegie in 1789, and since then they 
have remained in possession of the noble family of 
Carnegie of Kinnaird. 

A small outlying section of the parish of Maryton 
is in the old Moor of Montreathmont, and there is a 
tradition that the union was formed in a romantic 
manner. When Lady Magdalene Carnegie was 
espoused to James Graham, the first Marquis of 
Montrose, she claimed from her father, the Earl of 
Southesk, something for pin money, in addition to her 
dowry, and he agreed to give her as much of the moor 
as she could walk round within a given time. The 
lady, perhaps with a view of getting a large slice of 
it, walked too far in a direct line, and found, when 
half the given time was almost gone, that to reach the 
starting point she could not make a long lateral 
diversion, and her perambulation, therefore, included 
a long narrow strip, which is the description of 
Grahamsfirth to the present time. 

The lands of Fithie lie a little to the south-east of 
the Church of Farnell. In the first half of the 
thirteenth century, if not earlier, they belonged to a 
family who assumed a surname from them. Fithies 


of that Ilk appear to have been vassals of the Bishop 
of Brechin, to whom they paid feu for their lands. 
In early times there appears to have been a Castle of 
Fithie (referred to by the Earl of Southesk in the 
quotations we have given from his Lordship's 
"Notes"), the only part of which now remaining 
forms the back wall of a cottar's dwelling. An old 
gravestone which now covers the supposed grave of 
King William the Lion, in Arbroath Abbey, has a 
shield charged with the armorial bearings of the 

The Lyells, ancestors of the family of Lyall, formed 
the lands of Carcary, on the Southesk estate, for 
upwards of two centuries. The same race farmed the 
lands of Fasque, Scotston, and Canterland, in the 
Mearns, in the 17th and 18th centuries. 

Farnell Castle and Church. 

I do love these ancient ruins ; 

We never tread upon them but we set 

Our toot upon some reverend history. 

The old castle of Farnell is a fine stronghold on the 
north side of the picturesquely situated Parish Church 
(Rev. T. A. Cameron), about a mile from Kinnaird 
Castle. Overlooking the Den of Farnell, and 
surrounded by grand old trees, the ancient pile is in 
a good state of preservation. Ochterlony, in 1685, 
describes Farnell as being then an " extraordinary 
sweet place, with delicate yards and much planting." 
The lands of Farnell belonged to the Cathedral of 
Brechin, and the castle was a palace or country 
residence of the Bishops of that Diocese. It was also 
at one time the seat of the Ogilvies of Airlie ; and is 
now kept in repair by the Earl of Southesk, as a 
comfortable almshouse for the old people and the 
poor connected with the estate and the parish. To 



their sustenance and comfort the noble Earl and 
Countess administer, and the use to which the noble 
family of Southesk devotes this interesting old 
building reflects the highest honour upon them. 

The Castle of Farnell was visited by Edward I. in 
his tour through the Kingdom, on 7th duly, 1296. 



Long prior to that period, vassals of the Bishop of 
Brechin assumed their surname from the lands, and 
Duncan of Ferneyel (Farnell) is a witness to charters 
of the Earl of Angus from 1214 to 1227. 


On 23rd May, 1570, and previous to the purchase 
of Farnell, Lord Ogilvy obtained a report by John 
Meldrum, vicar of Farnell, and others regarding the 
place of Farnell, and it was then in a very dilapidated 
condition, the great chaliner, the inner chapel, the 
chapel, and all the other apartments being utterly 
uninhabitable. The Airlie family retained the pro- 
perty until 1623, when James, Lord Ogilvy, sold it 
to David, Master of Carnegie. The Master of 
Carnegie died without male issue in 1633, when his 
father, David, Lord Carnegie, succeeded to Farnell, 
and these lands have ever since continued to form 
part of the Southesk estates. 

The castle has not been occupied as a baronial 
residence for considerably over a century. Lady 
Carnegie, grandmother of the present Earl, had it 
repaired and converted, as we have said, into a home 
for poor persons who had formerty been employed on 
the estate. The castle is a plain building of three 
store vs in height, with a circular staircase on the 
front, which faces the south. 

Farnell Church is of unpretending, yet elegant 
design. Erected in 1806, it is altogether a more 
tasteful structure than most parish churches. The 
plans of the church (anciently Farneval, a deanery of 
Brechin Cathedral, the vicar holding the offices of 
Dean of the Church of Brechin) were designed by the 
Dowager Lady Carnegie. The name of the parish 
signifies " the burn of arns." Many alders still grow 
on the banks of the stream which flows past the 
church on the north, and also of the Pow on the south 
side. With its pretty surroundings, it forms a most 
agreeable rural picture, and at once arrests the notice 
of the stranger. It is begirt with a kirkyard so 
green and quiet that one would almost wish to lie 
down in its verdant lap, and be at rest. Then there 



is the burn below, wimpling along its own little vale 
of flowers, with generally a group of urchins from the 
school close by, paidlin' in pursuit of the minnow, the 
eel, or the "beardie" — their gleeful voices falling 
with a fitful music on the ear. 

PF "' \ u --- a !-• 

m -h% 

In 1574 Farnell, Cuikston, and other four churches, 
were served by one minister. The present parish 
consists of the old parish of Farnell, and part of 
Cuikston, afterwards Kinnaird, this addition having 
been made to it when that parish was suppressed. 



Near the end of the sixteenth century the church 
became ruinous, and a new one was built by David 
Carnegie of Kinnaird in the immediate vicinity of his 
Castle" David Carnegie died before the new church 
was completed, but in his will, made on 15th April, 
1598, the day before his death, he ordained that his 
eldest son and successor should complete the " wark 
of the Kirk of Kinnaird." In 1870 the churchyard 
of Farnell was extended, and improvements made 
upon it. In these operations a line of coffins was 
discovered on the east side of the church. They had 
been carefully constructed of stone slabs. The heads 
of two crosses were also found, one of which was 
pierced with four holes, but the other was a plain 
cross in low relief on one side of a circle, and on the 
reverse whs a similar figure, but in an unfinished 
state. There were also found two coffin slabs, the 
one having a smooth surface without ornamentation, 
and the other having on it a sword much defaced, the 
base of a cross incised, with some old English letters 
in relief. In the wall of the churchyard a dedication 
cross is built. 

The foundations of the old Parish Church of 
Kinnaird can be traced, in an enclosure surrounded 
with trees, a short distance in front of Kinnaird 
Castle. The burial place is not now used as such, but 
it still contains several well sculptured gravestones 
and other memorials of the past. 

About a mile north from the church is a knoll 
called Rumes Cross, and the church may have been 
dedicated to Saint Eumon or Rumold. A monument, 
with a representation of the Fall of Adam and Eve, 
and a beautifully interlaced cross, was found upon 
the site of the Old Church, and was presented to the 
Montrose Museum by the Earl of Southesk. 


Kinnaird Castle. 

Lo ! princely mansion, hall ami tower, 
Proclaim the spell of beauty's power ; 
Here, ancient, modern art combine, 
To raise a shrine almost divine. 

Nothing can be more striking than the beauty of 
the canopy of grand old trees through which we 
approach Kinnaird Castle. There are various stately 
avenues, with laced and interlaced branches meeting 
in a trellised archway above, where the lights and 
shadows are beautified, and the glimpses which 
one standing in the entrance to the great aisle of 
trees obtains are truly delectable. Perhaps the most 
striking approach to the lordly home of the uni- 
versally esteemed Earl of Southesk is by the East 
Gate from Bridge of Dun, although the scene by the 
Farnell Gate is one that will be admired by the ever 
welcome visitor. Indeed, the Castle, with its rare 
delicacy and splendour of structure, forms the 
termination of many a beautiful vista, for Xature has 
been admirably seconded by art in the surrounding 
Deer Park, which is formed of beautifully diversified 
ground — shady neuks and verdant knowes, while 
clumps of great spreading trees dotted about here 
and there lend artistic boldness to the landscape. If 
in early summer, amid the gold of the oak twigs and 
the brown of the beech buds, there is a right royal 
carolling of birds. " Thrush is heard calling to 
thrush." The cuckoo breathes its sweet plaintive note 
far and near. The low, gentle cooing of doves, and 
the melodious fluting of blackbirds attunes the visitor 
to all manner of placid thoughts. At one moment a 
pheasant whirrs through "the undergrowth, and 
squirrels may be seen climbing the gnarled trunks to 
their nests in the oak hollows, while little white-tailed 
rabbits scamper across the road with a ridiculous 
affectation of alarm. 


In the noble owner's own words, in one ot his sweet 
little poems — 

Now sweetly sound the cushat's notes, 
And far around then 1 softness floats, 

While up on the top of the highest tree 
The valiant thrush sings loud and free. 

But the park has also its later beauties, which the 
Earl suggestively depicts in his " AVinter Glories " — 

'Tis the winter of the year. 

A silent, sad November day ; 
The beech is brown, the oak is sere, 

The asli is sallow gray. 

The blackbird on the balustrade 

Beside the golden-olive moss, 
His morning feast has yonder made 

Where crimson berries cross. 

The shaggy cattle hi the park 
Move gently on like mystic dreams, 

And o'er the herbage dun and dark 
Then- silvery softness gleams. 

And through the orange fern, the deer 

Amid the fir-trees idly stray ; 
The beech is brown, the oak is sere, 

The fir is green alway. 

The lands which form the territorial Earldom of 
Southesk extend from the basin of Montrose on the 
east to the western extremity of Montreathmont 
Muir on the west, a distance of fullv eight miles. 
The southern division of the Kinnaird estates com- 
prehends the lands of Baldovie, Fullerton, Bonnyton, 
part of Carcary, Upper and Lower Fithie, Bolshan, 
Kinnell, and others, comprehending the lands of 
Baldovie on the east, to the parish of Kinnell on the 
south-west, and is in length seven and a half miles. 
The northern division comprises the portion north of 
the river South Esk, and extends from Balwyllo on 
the east to Brechin on the west. 

On 17th July, 1532, the lands of Kinnaird 
and Little Carcary were first erected into a barony by 


James V. by a charter under the Great Seal to 
Robert Carnegie of Kinnaird, on his own resignation, 
with the manor of Kinnaird, and the salmon fishing 
of the same on the water of the South Esk, and the 
commonty of the Muir of Montreathmont, with the 
exception of an eighth part of Kinnaird, and an 
eighth part and a sixth of Little Carcary, to be called 
the barony of Kinnaird. The reddendo is a silver 
penny, if asked, and also the keeping of the King's 
ale cellar within the shire of Forfar, when he should 
happen to reside there. A new erection of the barony 
of Kinnaird was made by Queen Mary, by a charter 
under the Great Seal, 25th March, 1565. 

Many interesting historical events have taken place 
within the walls of Kinnaird Castle. We have 
already referred to the first visit King James paid to 
the Castle, then in possession of David Carnegie, 
afterwards first Earl of Southesk. The time was 
spent by the King in hunting upon Montreathmont 
Muir, and he seems long to have remembered with 
pleasure the joys of the chase in which he shared 
during the brief holiday. David Carnegie received 
the honour of knighthood from the King, and in 1616 
his own patriotic services and those of his father and 
grandfather were rewarded by a Royal Patent 
creating him Lord Carnegie of Kinnaird. The room 
in which the Chevalier slept in 1715, and which is 
probably the same as was occupied by King James 
VI. and Charles I. and II., on the occasion of their 
visits to Kinnaird, is still intact in the Castle. It was 
at the Coronotion of Charles I. in Holyrood (1633), 
that Lord Carnegie was raised to a higher dignity in 
the Peerage by the title of Earl of Southesk, as 
a reward for the faithful services performed by him 
and his forefathers to the reigning family. He died 
full of years and honours in 1658, his life having 


extended over the stormiest period in Scottish 
history. The last royal visitor to Kinnaird Castle 
was the hapless Chevalier de St George, the son of 
James VII. 

There are few names that have been longer 
connected with Forfarshire or more honourably 
distinguished in history than that of Carnegie of 
Kinnaird. From information drawn from the 
11 History of the Carnegies of Southesk " — printed for 
private circulation by the present Earl of Southesk in 
7 — and also from charters and documents still in 
existence, we find that the family name in its present 
form of Carnegie dates from about 1340, when it was 
first assumed as a territorial title ; and that the 
ancestors of the earliest Carnegie have been recorded 
from about 1210 under the title of De Balinhard. 
From the time of their first introduction to the 
estate of Kinnaird in the year 1401 the family 
seat of the Carnegies has been on or near the site 
of the present Castle ; but the building- has under- 
gone frequent transmutations, and the existing 
structure, as shown in our illustration, cannot in any 
degree resemble its predecessors, though retaining 
many portions of them in the basement and elsewhere. 

From charter evidence we find that a mansion-house 
existed in connection with the lands of Kinnaird in 
the fourteenth century, which appears to have 
belonged to a family designated De Kinnaird from 
that place, and quite distinct from the ancestry of the 
present Lord Kinnaird, whose designation was taken 
from another property of identical name. There is 
reason for supposing that about 1400 this family 
terminated in three co-heiresses, who seem to have 
held a joint proprietary in part of the estate for 
several years. One of these sisters, called Mariota de 
Kinnaird, is traditionally believed to have married 


Duthac de Carnegie, almost certainly brother of John 
de Carnegie, the first "of that Ilk." In 1409 Mariota 
resigned that portion of the property to the Regent, 
Robert, I Mike of Albany, in transference of it to the 
above-mentioned Duthac, who had obtained a small 
portion of the estate in 1401 from Richard, son of 
Brice Ayre. By a charter dated 21st February 1409, 
the Regent conferred '"the lands of the half of the 
town of Kynnard and superiority of the brew-house 
thereof " upon " Duthac de Carnegie and his heirs [to 
be held] of our Lord and King and his heirs in feu 
and heritage for ever."' Mariota expressly reserved 
to herself and her heirs " one house and one acre of 
land lying near the same and called ' lie chemyst,' " 
but no trace of this portion of her property can now 
be found, and in the course of a few years this, with 
the whole of the lands of Kinnaird. came into the 
possession of the Carnegies. The estate has remained 
in the latter family, except during the short period of 
the attainder and forfeiture, from that time until 

Sir John Carnegie of Kinnaird, Knight, took up 
arms under the Earl of Huntly in behalf of Queen 
Mary, and was in consequence deprived of his Castle 
of Kinnaird, which was committed to the charge of 
James Haly burton. Provost of Dundee, and by him 
was given over to the keeping of John, Lord Glamis, 
in obedience to an ordinance of the Regent Murray. 
The Queen was very grateful to Sir John for his 
sufferings on her behalf, and wrote him a very kind 
letter, dated from Chats worth, 11th June 1570. 

After the Battle of Sheriffmuir Lord Southesk 
consistently adhered to his party. When the 
Pretender (King James YIII. of the Jacobites) landed 
in Scotland in the winter of 1715-16, with the view 
of supporting his pretensions to the British Throne, 


be visited the Earl of Southesk at his Castle of 
Kinnaird, at which he held a Court, and from which 
he issued manifestoes, warrants, and other documents 
to his adherents. 

From the first acquisition of the lands of Kinnaird 
by the Carnegie family, the Castle of Kinnaird had 
been their principal residence. The House of 
Kinnaird is mentioned in a charter dated 1409. In 
the five hundred years which have passed since 
then it has been enlarged again and again. It 
was burned to the ground by the Earl of Crawford 
(Beardie, the Tiger Earl), in 1452, because 
Walter de Carnegie (who afterwards re-built it), had 
dared to support the King in the battle of Brechin. 

In 1555 Sir Eobert Carnegie, the fifth laird, made 
great additions to the Castle. David, first Earl 
of Southesk, made additions to it. Charles, the 
fourth Earl, intended to enlarge and renovate the 
mansion in 1698, but death prevented the work from 
being carried out. Then came the forfeiture of the 
estate, and the misfortunes which followed the 
support which Earl James had given the Pretender at 
Sheriffmuir in 1715. During the expatriation the 
Castle became decayed, and required to be repaired, 
but there was little done to it for many years. 

About 1790 Sir David Carnegie began to make 
alterations and additions to the Castle which com- 
pletely changed its appearance," and made it perhaps 
the largest mansion in Angus. He left it a huge, 
square building, with lofty square battlements. This 
plain, though imposing, structure, however, did not 
satisfy the enlightened and classic taste of the present 
noble Earl, and a few years after his accession to the 
family honours and estate, he resolved to remodel the 
house within and without. Plans were obtained from 
Mr Bryce of Edinburgh ; a beginning was made in 








II I EC ;• C <r < ■*>. 


1854-, and the work, carried on more or less 
vigorously during the intervening years, was brought 
to its completion in 1862. The Castle, as it now 
stands, forms a nearly perfect square, and very much 
presents the appearance of a French chateau of the 
olden time — with its massive towers capped by steep 
and lofty roofs ; its long stretch of balustraded 
balconies and terrace walls ; its many windows — 
mullioned and plain, dormer, lay, and oriel : its 
quaintly carved coats of arms, blazoning the alliances 
of its owners since, as already stated, the days of 
Duthac and Mariota. 

The general effect of the building, says Mr A. H. 
Millar, in his " Castles and Mansions," viewed from 
any quarter, is very striking. It does not belong 
exclusively either to the Classic or Gothic styles of 
architecture, but may be classed with the numerous 
Scottish mansions, of which G-lamis is a noble 
example, in which those styles are mingled with a 
greater or less predominance of the one or the other 
element. Kinnaird, however, bears, a more distinctly 
French appearance than the older houses in Scotland 
of a kindred or similar type. 

The position of the old gateway is now occupied 
by a fine stone staircase which rises from the terraced 
garden and gives access to the dining-room and 
drawing-rooms by a balustraded balcony upon which 
the windows of these apartments open. Much 
dignity is imparted to the flanking towers by the high 
sloping roofs which have been erected above the 
former towers, and these serve to give the whole 
building that quaint appearance which designedly 
recalls the French chateau of the sixteenth century. 

The interior of the castle, with its rare and valuable 
art treasures, books, &c, is carefully and interestingly 
described by Mr Millar in his work alread} T referred 


to. The pictures alone number nearly 200, including 
the Albert 1 Hirer engravings, and are fairly repre- 
sentative of the principal Schools of Painting, many 
of them having special historical interest, in addition 
to their intrinsic value. In addition to over 40 
portraits of members of the Carnegie family, the 
other paintings include notable productions of Italian, 
Dutch, Flemish, and other artists. A catalogue of 
the paintings is given in the " History of the 
Carnegies, Earls of Southesk." 

From the platform of the central tower the view 
is enchanting, and we gaze with delight on the wide 
and varied expanse of land and sea which on either 
hand meets the admiring view. On the north the 
Grampian mountains form a noble background, and 
towards the front of the intervening undulations, 
the City of Brechin comes into sight. Stretching 
westwards, we descry the immense woods of 
Montreatbmont Muir, once a barren, heath-covered 
plain. Its flat outline, we observe, is picturesquely 
broken in the distance by the rocky heights of Turin. 
To the east from the foot of the Castle bank, extends 
a rich and level vale, along which, on the northern 
side, the river South Esk finds its way to the tidal 
lake commonly called the Basin ; and bounding this 
estuary on the long promontoiy which shuts out the 
German Ocean, stands Montrose, with its lofty, well- 
proportioned steeple rising clear against the open sky. 
Immediately before the west and principal front of 
the Castle, lies the deer park stretching in one level 
sweep to woods which combine with those of 
Montreathmont Muir. At this part the deer park is 
a mile across, but it does not maintain an equal width 
in its whole north and south length of more than two 
miles. Within its area are contained 800 acres. 
Large woods of varying age and growth, and many 


young plantations shelter herds of red and fallow 
deer, in number generally limited to from 50 to 60 
for the former, and 400 to 500 for the latter, which, it 
may be mentioned, are the direct descendants of those 
mentioned by Ochterlony in his account of the 

In the conservatory on the terraces, in artistically 
arranged plots, and in numerous " borders " around 
the beautifully situated gardens a little below the 
Castle, are many rare specimens of exotic and 
indigenous plants in flourishing condition. The 
policies and deer park contain a space of 1314 acres 
in all, bounded on three sides, for over four miles, by 
a substantial wall, and on the fourth side by the 
river South Esk, the entire circuit being more than 
six miles. Xo visitor can fail to be impressed 
by the immense size, fine symmetry, and great 
beauty of the numerous trees near the Castle (two of 
these of great age being known as "Adam"' and 
" Eve,"" the former with a girth of 20 feet at 4 feet 
from the ground, though his top is now considerably 
decayed), as well as with the splendour of the house 
and gardens, and the picturesque beauty of the 
extensive policies by which they are surrounded. 

The Carnegies of Southesk are not only famous as 
the inheritors of a very ancient name, but are equally 
distinguished by their brilliant talents and literary 
acquirements. Sir Robert Carnegie adopted, from 
choice, the law as a profession, and prosecuted it 
successfully while the Earl of Arran was Regent of 
Scotland, during the minority of Queen Mary. 
Arran, indeed, consulted Sir Robert, and relied on his- 
advice and assistance during a great part of his 
regency. He made him a Senator of the College of 
Justice, and one of the Privy Councillors of the 


Regent. Notwithstanding the numerous important 
offices he held, he found leisure to write a work on 
the law of Scotland, which is quoted by Sir James 
Balfour in " Practicks of the Ancient Law of 
Scotland." Sir Robert married, in the year 1527, 
Margaret, daughter of Guthrie of Lunan. Of this 
marriage there were eight sons and eight daughters. 

Mr David Carnegie of Colluthie and Kinnaird, who 
was also bred to the law, took a prominent part in 
the civil business of Scotland, and was appointed on 
many commissions by King James VI. • David, first 
Earl of Southesk, inherited the talents of his father 
and grandfather for public business, and like them 
passed a long and active life in the service of his 
country. James, second Earl of Southesk, also took 
an active part in the civil and religious controversies 
which then occupied the attention of the country. 

Tradition saith that his fame as an expert swords- 
man was attributed to the gift of supernatural power. 
He is said to have studied the Black Art at Padua, a 
place once famed for its seminaries of magic. There 
is also a tradition that at Earl James' death, the devil 
carried him away in a coach and six, and plunged 
with him into a well near the family burying-ground. 
The adjoining valley is still known as the " Deil's 
Den,'' and it is said that on stormy nights the Earl 
sometimes drives past his former home in the equipage 
provided for him by his Satanic Majesty ! 

James, fifth Earl of Southesk, is supposed to have 
been the brave Carnegie who is the hero of the 
popular song — " The Piper o' Dundee." The subject 
of the song appears to have been the proceedings of 
a private meeting held at Dundee for the purpose of 
favouring the Jacobite cause. 


There was Tullibardine and Burleigh, 
And Struan, Keith, and Ogilvie, 
And brave Carnegie, wha but he, 
The piper o' Dundee. 

Sir David Carnegie, grandfather of the present Earl 
of Southesk, very early gave promising indications of 
literary talent and poetic genius. At the general 
election in 1 784, he was elected Member of Parliament 
for the group of Burghs consisting of Montrose, 
Brechin, Aberdeen, Bervie, and Arbroath. Again, at 
the general election in 1796, Sir David was elected 
member for the county of Forfar. He continued 
to represent the latter constituency till his death, 
which took place in 1805. At the early age of six 
years, Sir James succeeded his father, having been 
born at Kinnaird in 1799. Like his father, Sir 
David, he became the representative of the Montrose 
district of Burghs. 

Lady Charlotte Elliot, who was a sister of the 
present Earl, was one of the most accomplished and 
charming women of her time. She wrote some of our 
most popular sacred songs — including " Just as I am, 
without one plea " — and published several selections 
of her poems, under the titles " Stella, and other 
Poems, by Florenz " (1867); "Medusa, and other 
Poems" (1878), &c. These contained many jjroduc- 
tions of remarkable beauty. 

James, sixth and present Earl of Southesk (and but 
for the attainder, ninth Earl), was born at Edinburgh 
on the 16th of November, 1827. He received the 
earlier part of his education at the Edinburgh 
Academy, and, in 1841, became a cadet at the Royal 
Military College at Sandhurst, where he passed 
examinations which entitled him to a commission 
without purchase. In 1845 he was gazetted to an 
ensigncy in the 92nd Highlanders ; and on 23rd 
January 1846, he obtained a commission in the 


Grenadier Guards, in which he remained for three 
years. It being the great ambition of his life to see 
his family reinstated in their ancient family honours, 
Sir .lames Carnegie, in the year 1853, renewed the 
claim originally made by his father and grandfather 
to the titles of Earl of Southesk and Lord Carnegie. 
The Committee of Privileges resolved that the claim 
to the titles had been established, and Lord Southesk 
was placed on the roll of Peers in Scotland, with the 
same precedency as if no forfeiture had taken place. 
In L869, a peerage of the United Kingdom was con- 
ferred on Lord Southesk, under the title " Lord 
Balinhard of Farnell," which gives a hereditary seat 
in the House of Peers. In the same year he was 
made a Knight of the Order of the Thistle. From 
1*49 to 1856, Lord Southesk was Lord Lieutenant of 

Although the Earl has never taken a very prominent 
part in public affairs, his published works — not to 
speak of his valuable and learned papers to antiquarian 
and scientific societies, pamphlets, &c. — are consider- 
able, and prove that he has inherited the polished 
culture and literary genius of several of his ancestors. 
He has also distinguished himself as a traveller ; for, 
during the year 1859 he travelled in the Far West of 
America, and in 1875 published a most interesting 
account of his adventures and experiences in a large 
volume, entitled " Saskatchewan, and the Rocky 
Mountains : a Narrative of Travel through the 
Hudson's Bay Territories.'"' The work at once became 
popular, was admired for the easy and gracefully 
flowing style in which it was written, and became a 
standard work of modern travel. Attached to this 
volume are several very refined and enlightened 
critical articles on Shakespeare. A reverential 
student of Shakespeare, and an enlightened liberal 


patron of the drama and fine arts, he is considered an 
authority in literary and artistic circles. 

In 1892, the honorary degree of LL.D. was con 
f erred on Lord Southesk by the University of St 
Andrews. In 1893 was published "Origins of Pictish 
Symbolism." This is the most important work in the 
antiquarian line produced by his Lordship, and it is 
the only actual book by him on these subjects-his 
other writings on them being in various antiquarian 
journals and newspapers. . 

In 1862 he published a romance bearing the title ot 
<< Herminius." " Britain's Art Paradise » appeared in 
1871 being notes on pictures exhibited m the Loyal 
Vademy for that year. In rapid succession we have 
in' 1876, "Jonas Fisher; a Poem m Brown and 
White" which soon ^vent through two editions and 
- Greenwood's Farewell, and other Poems. In 1877 
his Lordship gave to the world ■' The Meda Maiden 
and other Poems." The- latter, along with Jonas 
Fisher," has perhaps secured the greatest amount ot 

public favour. , , 

In addition to the poetical works mentioned there 
should be named "The Burial of Isis and other 
Poems," published in 1884. This book besides con- 
taining various new poems, incorporated all those in 
"Greenwood's Farewell " and " The Meda Maiden 
volumes that the author wished to preserve, and gave 
them with various emendations. 

The«e works show that the poet has thought deeply 
and justly on many things, the roots of which lie in 
us and aronnd us, and that he has given utterance 
to ideas and fancies which will breed others m the 
minds of his readers. His fine, tender, cultured 
touches, refined subtlety of feeling vigour, and 
pathos, have secured for him a good place among oui 
present day poets. He finds poetry in all created 


existence — in man, and in every object that surrounds 
him ; in the sweet and hallowed influences of Nature; 
in every leaf, bud, and Mower ; in the gentle influences 
of love and affection. He sings in pure language of 
the light ray that comes down upon the stream or 
hill : of the birks in the summer valleys : and in a 
low and mournful dirge, he sings over the perishing 
flowers of summer. He feels the whispering of Divine 
love, and finds utterance of praise to the Creator in 
serenely calm and beautiful words. 

Lord Southesk married, first, in 1849, the Lady 
Catherine Xoel, third daughter of the first Earl of 
Gainsborough, who died in 1855. His Lordship 
married, secondly (1860) the Lady Susan Catherine 
Mary Murray, eldest daughter of Alexander Edward, 
sixth Earl of Dunmore. 

Charles Xoel, Lord Carnegie, eldest son of the Earl 
of Southesk, was born in 1854, and married (1891) 
Ethel Mary Elizabeth, only daughter of the late Sir 
Alexander Bannerman of Elsick, Bart. Lord Car- 
negie is Colonel of the F. & K. Militia Artillery, and 
a Deputy Lieutenant of Forfarshire. 

The Hon. David Wynford Carnegie, youngest son 
of the Earl of Southesk, met his death in Nigeria, in 
1900, from a wound by a poisoned arrow. He was 
born in 1871, and between 1892 and 1897 led two 
exploring expeditions through the sandy deserts of 
Westralia, his discoveries and adventures being 
graphically related in the remarkable volume by him. 
entitled " Spinifex and Sand." Short as had been 
his career, Hon. Mr Carnegie bade fair to become one 
of the most patient, humane, and successful of modern 
explorers, capable of enduring fatigue without a 
murmur, and of inspiring his comrades with some 
measure of his own enthusiasm, and his tragic end 
caused profound regret. 


We leave Kinnaird Castle with the feeling that 
surely such a residence can well be called a " Meet 
nurse for a poetic child." Lord Southesk loves this 
quiet retreat. At the celebration of his 60th birth- 
day, and in the course of his reply to the toast of his 
health, he said — " My greatest love is for the place of 
my birth. I wish to live here, and I love to live 
among you. I have a sincere desire to live on the 
kindliest terms with all with whom I have to do. ,r 
From this, from his written works, and from his 
actions, it is well known that Lord Southesk is a 
nobleman of universal humanity. His sympathies go 
forth to every form of human life. His is a beautiful 
and gentle nature, full of tenderness, and singularly 
imbued with sweetness and light. 

We cannot fail to feel that his Lorship must often 
have felt inspired, when, raising his head from his 
manuscript to meditate over a more harmonious 
arrangement of a line, his eye would catch such a scene 
as the following, amongst many others, which he has 
graphically described — 

And the mellow green hillocks with flowerets were gay. 
And the song-birds sing softly their paradise lay, 
And quick gleams of delight on the water-waves play — 

Sweet shrubs bedeck the strand ; 
And the roses all glowing, the lilies all fair, 
And the fruit trees of fragrancy raptiire the air. 

"Mong the hills and the rivers, the trees and the flowers, 

Where all hath tender charms ; 
Where the butterflies hover on opaline wing, 
And the birds, iridescent, low melody sing, 
Where are lovely small creatures, most sweet to behold. 
In the tintings of ivory, and russet, and gold 

Of their delicate fur. 

The burial vault of the Southesk family is on a 
rising ground to the south of the Castle of Kinnaird. 
It is surrounded by ivy-clad walls ; the entrance is by 
a handsome gateway, flanked by stone panels. The 
Southesk arms are carved on the north panel, and the 



Southesk and Lauderdale arms impaled are on the 
south. The burial vault, having an arched roof, 
is near the centre of the enclosure, with an ornamental 
stone cross placed over the entrance. Several monu- 
ments and tablets with inscriptions in memory 
of members of the family are upon the walls. The 
present Earl had the walls and grounds put into 
a state of good repair. An avenue of large trees 
leads from near the lake to the burying place, 
and while it is secluded, there are, as in the case 
throughout the beautiful grounds, " peeps " that 
afford a pleasant look out on smooth lawns and 
clustering thickets, cut up by the quiet footways 
which so lavishly adorn the surroundings of the 

The Ancient Bridge of Brechin and its 

We leave the charming Kinnaird grounds by the 
Xorth, or Brechin Gate, and soon come in view of the 
approach to the Ancient City by the old bridge. As 

we purpose devoting 
iv i the remainder of our 

WVy '> tri P t0 W in S a visit 
'!$!/«' t0 Brechin Castle, we 
turn to our left, and 
enter the grounds at 
the lodge, only a few 
f yards distant. Before 
doing so, however, the 
Bridge and its sur- 
roundings might be referred to. 

Distinguished visitors, ancient as well as modern, 
have expressed themselves as deeply interested not 
only in the historic associations and hoary antiquities 


of Brechin, but are also charmed with the beauty of 
its surroundings and approaches— the romantic dells 
and richly-clad braes, its fair sloping and fruitful 
gardens, and the South Esk winding along its skirts, 
pleasing to the eye, and investing it with a beauty all 
its own. 

John Ochterlony of Guy ml describes the city in 
1682 as "a very pleasant 'place, a royal burgh, and 
extraordinaire good land about it. It lies very 
pleasantlie upon the north side of the water of South 
Esk, which runneth by the walls thereof, wherethere 
is a large well-built stone bridge of two arches." 

Viewed from whatever quarter, the entrances to 
Brechin are extremely beautiful, while the Cathedral 
spires and Round Tower rising from amongst the 
trees present imposing and attractive objects. The 
city is picturesquely situated on the sunny slope of a 
richly-wooded valley, and thus, besides its antiquarian 
associations, the district possesses charms of a scenic 
description, which will abundantly repay a visit from 
the poet or the painter. From the "keystone o' the 
brig" you can at a glance take in the stretch of the 
river between you and the castle rock. Immediately 
to the right, and on a still higher elevation, rise 
the grey steeples of the eatludral, with the various 
spires and turrets of the churches and schools peeping 
out among the trees. To the east the tall, smoking 
chimneys show the sites of the seats of the industries. 
Above the Bridge there are several pleasantly 
sheltered walks, either up the brae to Burghill, or by 
the low road to Stannochy and round to the west 
entrance to Brechin. The view from the "lee-side'' 
of the "Hill-wood," or "Burghill," after walking 
among rlickerino- shadows, presents many charms to 
the lover of landscape beauty. The town has the 
appearance of being built on terraces, with the ever- 


lasting hills as a solemn-looking and impressive 
background. We see the Castle, crowning the steep 
banks of the Esk, which here rise up suddenly as if 
for the special reception of the proud old fortress, 
with its weather-beaten walls and towers shadowed 
by noble trees, and wreathed about with twining ivy. 
This is a scene we can feast on under the delicious 
shade of the overhanging boughs, which spread their 
leafy arms, as if to screen us from the radiance of 
" the lord of day." 

The Bridge of Brechin is supposed to be one of the 
most ancient stone bridges in Scotland, " but there is 
no tradition when or by whom it was built." It 
seems to have been in existence early in the thirteenth 
century, for amongst the records of Arbroath there 
is said to be a disposition granted by Stephen of 
Kinnardsle}' about 1220, in which he depones to 
Gregory, Bishop of Brechin, "for the sustenance of 
the Brechin Bridge." It has been the south entrance 
to the city for at least six or seven hundred years. 
Its praises were sung in Latin verse by a poet who 
wrote thus in 1642 (although modern poets and 
artists too have attempted to depict its situation in 
verse and on canvas) — 

This fertile town doth twixt two rivers stand, 
One to the north, one to the southward hand ; 
The waters down betwixt the rocks do glyde, 
Buth Bridges have, and many Foords beside. 

The poet, however, has here taken considerable 
license — the North Esk, evidently the other "river" 
referred to, being about six miles from Brechin. In 
1786 the north arch was rebuilt, but we understand 
the other arch is the original one. The bridge is still 
a solid-looking structure, and it is likely to stand for 
ages to come. During a long course of years it has 
been severely tried by many floods, but it has 


bravely withstood every assault, and calmly surveyed 
the torrent, while many more modern bridges on 
other parts of the stream have been swept away. 

Above the bridge the river is overhung by the um- 
brageous trees, which are reflected as in a mirror on 
its unruffled surface. Below, however, the waters 
seem to become instinct with new life, and murmur 
sweetly among the channel stones as they pass with 
a fine sweep into the verdant recesses of the Kmnaird 
policies, giving and receiving beauty. Xo more 
•charming woodlands could be wished for, and no more 
delightful seclusion could be found for long summer 
evening rambles. In speilin' the richly wooded braes, 
every change of position reveals a new picture to the 

In the annals of witchcraft, the bridge is spoken of 
as the meeting-place of a noted witch and his Satanic 
Majesty. In 1650, a poor woman, named Jonat 
Coupar, was brought before the Brechin Kirk-Session 
charged with witchcraft, no fewer than nine witnesses 
giving evidence against her, one of these deponing 
that he saw a " branded dog meett Jonat Coupar 
whill she was going alongst the bridge of Brechin, 
and that he lap upon her, but he could not tell if shee 
kissed the dog or not." Another deponed that "shee 
saw ane dog halsse Jonat Coupar upon the Bridge of 
Brechin, and that she heard her say, '"What now, 
gossip? She was afterwards imprisoned, and in her 
confession declared that " the grew hound which met 
her on the bridge "was the Divell." The result was that 
" Jonat," either for her glib tongue, or her ignorant 
superstition, was burned at the Witch Den. 



Brechin Castle. 

Our ancient castle rears its massive crest, 

And sweetly .-hades the winding streamlet's breast, 

Where noble Manic resisted Edward's laws, 

Ami tell, alas, in that eventful cause. 

On the line of the carriage way leading to the Castle 

by the massive west entrance gate — cathedral-like in 

its shadowy grandeur — there is a luxuriant avenue of 

i " green-robed senators," through the dense 

f\ tzkj unibrageousness of which the vertical 

H^Im. radiance of noon sends with difficulty 

j i. ; 3hjv stray golden beams to fret the sweet 

^jfy&J mid-day gloaming. At the end of 

iK^k'/HS^i this picturesque vi 

^,%^@fc:'' mt0 view. lnou L 

ffi "Tiy^jd^'-r devoid of architectural adorn- 

(^'(fA^afel ments, it is a princelv-looking 

A circular "tower at 
the north-west- 

sta the castle comes 
gh, to some extent, 

ern angle, a 

the north-west angle, rise over 
This is the principal facade ; and in 

. pediment in the 
centre and an- 
other tower at 

the west front, 
its centre, 

directly underneath the pediment, is the main 
entrance. Its numerous narrow windows bear un- 
doubted evidence of antiquity, but although it has a 
distinctly " auld warl " aspect, it is not by any means 
a " howlet, haunted-looking biggin," with mere frag- 
ments of weather beaten walls showing the remains 
of a once lordly mansion, with weird stories and 
superstitions attached to its history. Neither does it 
contain a resident ghost, nor are there secret and 
tortuous vaulted passages connecting it with the 
Cathedral, as is stated by tradition to exist between 
the latter and Maisondieu ruins. 




James, the fourth Earl of Panmure, gave the castle 
a new front, and upon the shields on the pediments 
are fine carvings of the bearings of the family, with 
crests and supporters. Above is the date 1711, and 
below are the initials of Earl .lames and his Countess, 
Margaret Hamilton. These refer to the fourth Earl, 
who was attainted in 1715. It was still further en- 

_ d by the first Lord Panmure, whose favourite 
residence it was, and Avho died there in 1853. More 
recently both the interior and exteiior were much 
improved — first under the direction of Colonel the 


Hon.. Laudeidale Maule, and afterwards by his 
brother, the late Fox Maule, who was subsecprently 
Earl of Dalhousie. 

Five or six centuries ago, the castle, which then 
occupied almost the same site as the present noble 
building, was surrounded by water. The South Esk 


swept past on the south and east of the bottom of the 
perpendicular rock on which the structure still stands. 
On the west there was a natural or artificial ditch, as 
shown in our view engraved from Slezer's Theatrum 
Scotice, and on the north and east is a natural fosse, 
through which the Skinner's Burn runs, and which 
had evidently been converted into a moat in turbulent 

The lawns of closely-cropped velvety turf are 
extensive, and they are beautifully studded with 
numerous tall ancestral trees — sylvan giants of lofty 
stature and goodly proportions. In the policies the 
visitor is charmed with a variety of landscape features 
of a most attractive nature. Indeed, with their sug- 
gestion of human care, and with interest at every 
step, they are in every way a fitting environment. 
The view from the battlemented wall facing the river,, 
or from the tower (on which is the flagstaff from the 
Redan, presented to Fox Maule, who was Secretary 
of State during the Crimean War), is such as would 
take a summer clay to describe. In close proximity 
is • seen the grey old Round Tower and Cathedral 
spire uprearing their heads between openings in the 
dense mass of stately trees. Before you is the 
South Esk, meandering through rich alluvial meadows 
— now in sun, now in shadow — past mansions and 
comfortable farm houses, until it flows under a 
chaste bridge near the castle, known as the " Image 
Bridge," in the abutments of which there are fine 
statues, costing, it is said, £100 each. The river, 
flowing in majestic grandeur, is lost to view at the 
ancient Bridge of Brechin after several picturescpie 
turnings. Looking from the tower, the whole 
city has a fine appearance, while the spires 
of Montrose glisten in the sun, and the 


German Ocean closes in the view to the south 
like a lake of crystal. The serrated ramparts of 
the Grampians to the north bound with their wild 
beauty the far stretching line of vision. 

Altogether the circle of scenery from this "coign 
of vantage " is of a rich and most varied description. 
Viewed from the north bank of the river, immediately 
below, or from the Bridge, as already stated, the 
castle forms an exceedingly picturesque object. It 
appeals to rise out of a cluster of thick trees and 
shrubbery, over which its upper floors are seen, with 
the square tower in the centre — one of the finest 
sights on which the eve could wish to rest. 

In the beautifully-situated gardens, approached 
from the castle by trimly-kept walks, things " rich 
and rare " seem to be collected from every country 
and clime, and the visitor is courteously shown all 
imaginable curiosities — indigenous and exotic plants 
in nourishing condition. Time would fail us to 
enumerate the leading features of the blooming 
■wealth, to name which would puzzle a Linmeus. 
Away on the opposite rising ground is Burghill, the 
summit of which is thickly wooded, while its fore- 
ground is intersected with rich fields and picturesque 
clumps of trees. Indeed, there are hundreds in our 
own good city — admirers of nature, too, in a fashion- 
able way — who have never dreamed that such scenery 
exists almost at their own threshold. 

>7ature has greatly favoured the situation of the 
gardens. They are intersected with finely shaded 
walks and rich flower beds. There are several good 
specimens of the ancient Cedar of Lebanon in front of 
a line of well-stocked " greenhouses," while withii 
the walls, in quiet secluded retreats, there are artis 
tically laid out "rockeries," containing quaint-looking 


pieces of sculpture, and an aviary well-stocked with 
gaily plumaged birds. 

Brechin Castle has a history that tells of 

Days when Scotland dealt in war, 

And wild her banners flew, 
And England drove her bloody ear. 
Which thundered on the hills afar, 

In deep and deadly hue. 

The castle was in 1296 occupied by Edward I. for a 
purpose most humiliating to Scotland. On the 10th 
of July of that year he there received the homage of 
King John Baliol, and the resignation of the crown 
and kingdom. 

The English king to Brechin tower 

Passed on in conquering state, 
Where Baliol stricken in his pride, 

Stood singly at the gate. 

A suppliant for lands and life, 

A beggar for the grace 
Of one that, as a rebel serf. 

Now spurned him from his face. 

His vassalage to Edward proving too pilling to be 
tolerable, Baliol solemnly renounced his allegiance to 
him, sending to his Court Henry, Abbot of Arbroath, 
with the instrument of renunciation. This gave 
Edward the pretext waited for putting an end to the 
separate and independent existence of Scotland as a 
kingdom, and annexing it to his English dominions. 
He entered Scotland with an army to which it could 
offer no resistance, and when he had proceeded as far 
as Perth, Baliol felt himself reduced to the necessity 
of sending him a message offering submission, and 
imploring peace. Edward directed him to repair to 
Brechin Castle, where he would learn from the 
Bishop of Durham the terms on which mercy could 
be extended to him. He must not only abdicate his 
throne, but he must do so in a manner the most de- 
grading. We are told that, " divested of his royal 


robes, and crown and sceptre, he was compelled to 
stand as a criminal, with a white rod in his hand ;" to 
" confess that, misled by evil and false council, as he 
averred, and through his own simplicity, he had 
greviously offended his liege lord ;" to "recapitulate 
his various transgressions;" to iC acknowledge the 
justice of the English invasion and conquest;" and to 
" resign his kingdom, its people, and their homage, 
into the hands of their liege lord, Edward." All 
this humiliation only saved his life ; for he was forth- 
with sent a prisoner to the Tower of London, 
and thus ended his brief, inglorions, and wretched 
reign. In returning to the north, into which he had 
gone as far as Aberdeen and Elgin, Edward again 
visited Brechin Castle, and spent in it the night 
between the 4th and 5th of August, 1296. In 1297 
Wallace drove the English from this stronghold, 
after which the castle was held in the Scotch interest 
by Sir Thomas Maule. 

During the wars of the Independence, as well as 
the subsequent troubles of the times of Mary, the 
Castle was a place of note. It was besieged by the 
English under Edward I. in 1303, and was for twenty 
days gallantly defended by Sir Thomas Maule, an 
ancestor of the Panmure family. 

He livit qnhen Briton's breach of faith 

Wrought Scotland nieikle wae, 
And aye his sword taiild to their cost, 

He was their deidly fae. 

Hie on a rock his castle stude, 

With halls and touris a hicht. 
And gvddly chambers fair to se, 

Qnhair he lodged niony a ktiicht. 

Edward was on his way north to subdue Scotland. 
Finding the castle garrisoned, and the gates shut 
against him, he summoned Sir Thomas to surrender, 
but he refused, and the King, chagrined on account 


of this being the only opposition he met with in his 
march northward, at once laid siege to the building. 
The "War Wolf," capable of throwing stones of two 
or three hundred pounds weight, was brought 
against the besieged. The engine was planted on the 
east side of the deep ravine which then ran between 
the city and the castle. Notwithstanding this and 
the strong force the King had with him, Sir Thomas 
Maule made a gallant resistance for three weeks. At 
last, while he was standing on a bastion directing the 
defence, he was struck on the breast by a missile, and 
died on the evening of the same day. When his men 
saw that he was mortally wounded, they asked if they 
might surrender. He replied, " What, cowards, 
yield up the castle ! '' and then expired. Xext day 
the garrison capitulated, and it appears to have then 
been destroyed. 

The tower on which Sir Thomas stood is still 
pointed out, and near the spot there is now built a 
scjuare tower, which adds much to the general 
appearance of the castle from this point. Though a 
Maule of Panmure happened to be military commander 
of Brechin at Edward's invasion, it was not until 
1642 that the lordship of Brechin became the pro- 
perty of the Maules. In the interval it was in many 
different hands. For a while after the War of 
Independence it continued in the possession of Lords 
of the Huntingdon line. 

The Earl of Panmure joined Mar in the revolt of 
which he raised the standard in 1715 : and, at the 
Cross of Brechin, he proclaimed the Pretender King 
of Great Britain, as James VIII. of Scotland and III. 
of England. He and his brother Harry Maule of 
Kelly greatly distinguished themselves on the field of 
Sheriffmuir. The Earl, badly wounded, fell into the 


hands of the enemy, and owed his rescue to his 
brother's bravery : — 

" Brave Mar and Panmure 
Were firm I am .-me; 

The latter was kidnapped awa', man, 
With brisk men RDOOt, 
Brave Hairy retook 

His br rfeher, and laugh 1 d at them a', man." 

"Finding a little boat at Arbroath, he went off in it 
for France," and while there he made collections of 
charters and other muniments relating to his remote 
ancestors, and these documents were the basis of the 
Registrum de Panmure which form an authentic history 
of the family from 1066 from 1733. 

The Maules have an unbroken descent in the male 
line for 760 years. Their history (for full particulars 
of which we refer the reader to our " History and 
Guide to Brechin") is traced as far back as the days of 
King Edgar. We are told that one Gaurin de Maule 
came from Normandy with the Conqueror in 1066, 
and that the family is in reality descended from him. 
The first of the old Lords de Brechin was Henry, son 
of the Earl of Huntingdon, who assumed the surname 
of Brechin ; and it is thought that a fortress was 
erected by his father on the site of the present 

By the marriage of Sir William, son of Walter de 
Maule of Panmure, who nourished in the reign of 
David II., to Marion, a grand-daughter of Sir David 
Barclay of Brechin, the Maules became related through 
the ancient Lords of Brechin to David, Earl of 
Huntingdon, and the Royal family of Scotland. The 
noble house have thus had long connection with the 
Ancient City. 

In order to show how their interest in it originated, 
it is necessary to make some reference to the previous 
holders of the lordships of Brechin. Sir William de 


Brechin founded the Chapel of Maisondieu, " for the 

salvation of the souls of William and Alexander 
Kings of Scotland . . . and for the welfare of 
his own soul/' He was one of the most illustrious 
barons in the time of Alexander III., and his only 
child. David, married a sister of the Bruce. David, 
third in succession, entered into a conspiracy 
with William of Soules to deliver the town of Berwick 
to the English ; but the plot was discovered, and he 
was executed for the crime in 1321. Some authorities 
have it that Sir David was only privy to the plot, and 
that he rather condemned the undertaking. Margaret, 
his sister and heir, married Sir David Barclay, who 
became Lord of Brechin, and was slain at Aberdeen in 
1350. His son, David, succeeded to the lordship, 
and he is believed to have been murdered "by the 
contrivance " of Sir William Douglas of Leddisdale. 
His only daughter, Margaret, was married to the 
Earl of At hole, second son of Robert II , who kept 
possession of the lordship of Brechin after the death 
of his wife and their son. The Earl was executed for 
the part he took in the murder of James I. James 
III. granted " the whole lands " of the lordships of 
Brechin, Xavar, <S:c, to his son, James Stewart. 

The lordship of Brechin was purchased by Patrick, 
first Earl of Panmure : and although the property 
was lost to the family through forfeiture to the Crown 
on the execution of the Earl of Athole, it was again 
repurchased for the family, and has ever since been 
in their possession. Patrick, who died in 1671, wrote, 
in his old age, a " History of Sir William Wallace." 
George, third Karl, was a Privy Councillor to Charles 
II. and •l.unes VII. James, fourth Earl, bought a 
mansion in the Canongate of Edinburgh, and made 
improvements at Brechin. ' He was much opposed to 
the Union of Scotland and England. The Dowager 


Duchess, Jean, mother of Earls George and James, 
lived to see both of them in the possession of the 
honours of the family. The Pretender was enter- 
tained at Brechin Castle on 22nd January 1716. 

The Hon. Harry Maule married twice, but all his 
family by both wives died unmarried, with the excep- 
tion of .lane, by his first wife, Mary Fleming, 
daughter of William, fifth Earl of Wigton. This 
daughter, in 1720, became the wife of George, Lord 
Ramsay, eldest son of the sixth Earl of Dalhousie, 
and from this marriage descended the Hon. William 
Ramsay Maule, afterwards Lord Panmure, and the 
late Fox Maule, and the present Earl of Dalhousie. 

In 1764 Earl William purchased the family estates 
in Forfarshire for £49,157 18s 4d. The race of 
Maule ended, in the male line, with Earl William, 
who died in 1782, and the property thus descended 
to the family of Lady Jane as above. In this way 
the Ramsays acquired the large and beautiful estates 
of the Maules. 

Here it might be stated that, after the attainder of 
1716, the title having been conferred on the nephew 
of the forfeited Earl, he distinguished himself at the 
battle of Fontenoy, and in other engagements. He 
was remarkable in the senate for the liberalit} T of his 
views during a somewhat illiberal period, and at home 
for kindness to his tenantry and servants, and his 
princely liberality to the poor. His Lordship, as was 
the custom of the time, had bakers and brewers of 
his own at Panmure House and at Brechm Castle, the 
gatgs of which were open " to all the vagrant train." 
To each poor wanderer he ordered a loaf of bread and 
a chopin of beer. 

George, eighth Earl of Dalhousie, succeeded to the 
properties of his uncle, William Maule, Earl of 
Panmure, in the peerage of Ireland, at his death in 


1782, and he retained possession of them during his 
lifetime. In terms of the entail created by his grand- 
uncle, Earl William Maule, the Panmure estates 
devolved in fee upon the Hon. William Ramsay, 
second son of George, Earl of Dalhousie, on the death 
of that nobleman in 1787. He was then in his six- 
teenth year, and assumed the name and arms of 
Maule of Panmure, and lived to possess them fully 
sixty-four years. He married in 1794, Patricia 
Heron, daughter of Gilbert Gordon of Halbeaths, 
and by her he had three sons and seven daughters. 
Of these the eldest, Patricia, was married to Gilbert 
Young ; Elizabeth was married to Sir Alexander 
Ramsay of Balmain ; Georgina, to W. H. Doubiggin ; 
while Lady Christian Maule was the last of the family. 
The Hon. William Maule of Fearn, the youngest son, 
married Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Binny of 
Fearn and Maulesden, to which properties he suc- 
ceeded. He died in 1859, leaving several daughters 
— his only two sons having predeceased him. The 
second, Lauderdale Maule, while Assistant Adjutant- 
General in the Crimean War, died of cholera in 1854. 
William, Lord Panmure, represented Forfarshire in 
Parliament from 1796 to 1831, wh^.n he was created 
a British Peer by the title of Baron Panmure of 
Brechin and Xavar. Although he never shone as an 
orator, he was a nobleman of shrewd and discerning 
parts, had great tact in managing county business, 
was devoted to field sports, and was of a kind, social 
disposition, and fond of practical jokes. He was the 
helper of the poor and the friend of genius. His 
Lordship contributed an annuity of £50 to the widow 
of our national poet, He was the first to move 
in rewarding the heroic conduct of Grace Darling ; 
and in our first tour we referred to his gift to the city 
of the Mechanics' Institution. 


His convivial habits and love of amusement 
were often made the subject of scandal, and many 
stories are still current regarding his erratic doings. 
Some of these are doubtless mere oral traditions, 
exaggerated in their transmission from sire to son, 
having a modicum of truth garnished by the fanciful 
imagination of scandalmongers. The madcap freaks 
indulged in may appear incredible to modern ears. 
"We have only space to give one example. In Dundee 
one night he seized a waiter who had displeased him 
in some way, and threw him over a window into the 
backyard. Fortunately the poor fellow escaped with 
slight injuries, but he felt the indignity very keenly. 
He complained to his master, who mildly remonstra- 
ted with the lordly delinquent. " Is he dead V said 
Maule. " Xo, your honour, he is not much hurt, but 

he considers that he has been insulted, and " 

" "Well, hang it, can't you put him in the bill at your 
own figure 1 " retorted his Lordship, waving him out 
of the room. 

When it was resolved, in 1806, to modernise the 
Cathedral, an Edinburgh architect proposed to 
demolish the Round Tower, and utilise the stones in 
building the walls of the new aisles. Xo wonder that 
the Cathedral was quite disfigured by improvements (?) 
planned by an architect of this stamp. Fortunately, 
Lord Panmure and another heritor rejected the plans, 
and threatened to hang any one from the top of 
the Tower who removed a stone from it. Through 
the prompt action of his Lordship, we have still the 
glory of Brechin entire. 

The records of almost every contemporary institu- 
tion in Forfarshire which had for its object the 
alleviation of distress, or the improvement of the 
people, testify to the liberality of his gifts. The 
"Live and Let Live Testimonial" upon the hill of 


Downie, in Monikie, erected by his tenantry, shows 
their appreciation of him as a landlord : while the 
granite obelisk " erected by the People " over his 
grave under the shadow of the graceful steeples of 
Brechin Cathedral, is a proof that the inhabitants 
were not unmindful of his kindness towards them. 

His Lordship died on 14th April, 1852, in his 82nd 
vear. He was in the eighteenth generation from the 
first Sir Peter Maule of Panmure and his wife 
Christian de Valoniis, and is believed to have been 
longer in possession of that property than any of his 
predecessors. The Hon. Fox Maule, eldest son of 
Lord Panmure, succeeded his father in 1852. In 
early life he retired from the army, and married the 
Hon. Lady Montague, daughter of Lord Abercromby. 
On the death, in 1860, of his cousin, the Marquis of 
Dalhousie, his Lordship, through the failure of heirs- 
male, became the 11th Earl of Dalhousie, and Laird 
d' Cockpen. Soon after, he resumed the family name 
of Ramsay in addition to that of Maule. He was 
long a member of the Privy Conned, and held the 
offices of Vice President of the Board of Trade, 
Lender-Secretary for the Home Department, Secretary 
of State for War Department, and President of the 
Board of Control. As Secretary-for-War from 1855 to 
\ when the Crimean War and the Indian Mutiny 
tged all his energies, the name of Lord Panmure 
was much before the public; in 1842 he was elected 
Lord Rector of Glasgow University. He had a rare 
combination of business talent, and was a very 
eloquent speaker. Dying in his 73rd year at Brechin 
Castle, in duly, 1^74, he was buried in the family 
vault, at Panbride. 

Leaving no issue, Fox Maule was the last Baron 
Panmure, but was succeeded by his cousin, the Hon. 
George Ramsay, C.B., second son of the Hon. John 


Ramsay, fourth son of the eighth Earl of Dalhousie. 
He was born at Kelly House, in 1805, entered the 
Royal Navy at the age of fourteen, and after seeing 
not a little service in all parts of the world, was 
appointed Admiral in 1875. In the same year he was 
elevated to the Peerage under the title of Baron 
Ramsay of Grlenmark. In 1^4 -1 he married Sarah 
Francis, daughter of William Robertson of L 
House. County of Edinburgh (who died at Stourbank, 
Nayland, Colchester, in May 1904) — a highly-gifted 
lady, respected and esteemed for her ever kindly 
interest in all around her, and for h r warm-hearted 
generosity. By her he had four sons — John William, 
born 1847, George Spottiswoode and Arthur Dal- 
housie, both deceased, and Hon. Charles Maule, born 
He died at Dalhousie Castle in July 1880, and 
was buried in the family vault at Cockpen. Reference 
is made to his public career on page 182. In kindli- 
ness of heart, and the freedom of his intercourse with 
his tenants and others with whom he came in contact 
in the course of his rambles, he reminded old people 
much of his uncle, William, Lord Panmure. 

Earl George was succeeded by his eldest son, the 
Hon. John William Ramsay, as thirteenth Earl 
of Dalhousie — Baron Ramsay of Dalhousie, and Lord 
Ramsay and Carrington in the Peerage of Scotland, 
and Baron Ramsay of Grlenmark, County of Forfar, 
in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. His Lord- 
ship entered the navy at the age of fourteen. 
Having served in the Britannia, he passed out of the 
training ship at the top of his batch of cadets. After 
five or six years at sea as midshipman, he distin- 
guished himself by passing the best examination of 
his year for the rank of Lieutenant. The next four 
years saw him on board H.M.S. Galatea, commanded 


by H.E.H. the Duke of Edinburgh, whom he accom- 
panied twice round the world. 

It was at this period that his determination and 
foresight came strongly to the front. Xot content 
with the knowledge of the world which he had 
diligently stored up hitherto, he, at the age of 
twenty-seven, entered Oxford University. After two 
years' hard study (in 1877), at the earnest request of 
the Prince of Wales, he became commander of the 
training ship Britannia, at Dartmouth, on board of 
which the Prince's sons were to be educated. While 
there he married the Hon. Lady Ida Louisa Bennet. 
younger daughter of the Earl of Tankervillc. When 
his Lordship stood for Liverpool, she proved herself 
a worthy descendant of the Lords of Chillingham and 
the Dukes of Gramont and Manchester. He often 
delivered as many as four speeches in one day, and 
then it was that her Ladyship was ubiquitous with a 
presence that attracted, and an influence that thrilled 
the bitterest opponent with admiration. When raised 
to the Upper House, he at once came to the front, 
being appointed a Lord-in-AYaiting and the represen- 
tative of the Home Office. In 1881 his Lordship was 
placed on the roll of Knights of the Thistle, and 
invested by Her late Majesty with the insignia of the 
Order. He was the happy possessor of that gentle- 
manly frankness of manner which is somehow 
characteristic of sailors, and which in his case was the 
reflection of a singularly loveable nature. He had 
youth, cheerfulness, and shrewdness, with unaffected 
good sense, and seemed to " have a pleasant way of 
regarding the place as a sailor's mess, and a 
members he came in contact with as shipmates ; yet 
he never gave the impression that he was for a 
moment unmindful of the important interests depend- 
ing upon the proper navigation of the vessel of 


State/' His speeches and actions on many and varied 
occasions showed breadth of vision, -rasp of detail, 
and energetic administrative ability. He went out 
into life with the idea that his career would have to 
be of his own carving, and, given the talent of 
indomitable perseverance, he did everything well. 
Than the Karl and Conntess no previous proprietors 
of the Castle could have been more popular, or iden- 
tified themselves more with the welfare of the people. 
They thought more of the duties than of the 
privileges of the high position it was their lot — for too 
short a period -to till. They were ever ready to give 
their aid and influence to every charitable object, and 
his lordship was a munificent supporter of the public 
institutions of Forfarshire. At all meetings with his 
tenantry distinct evidence was given of the excellent 
spirit that subsisted between them, and he showed 
this by a warm friendliness, goodness of heart, frank 
generosity, and an enlightenment that gave practical 
effect to the business truth that the interests of 
owners and occupiers are really one, and that pros- 
perity, to be substantia], must be shared by both. In 
proof of this nobility of heart, it is only necessary ^o 
add that he on one occasion said that of all the money 
he had received from his tenants, he had spent much 
more than it all in improving their circumstances 
and surroundings, and had never expended a penny 
of it upon himself. 

On the occasion of the opening of the City Hall, 
Brechin, on the 16th October, 1883, his Lordship was 
presented with the freedom of the Burgh. Provost 
Lamb appropriately referred to the close relations 
that had for centuries existed between the proprietors 
of the Castle and the town, and the hereditary and 
traditional ties that had so long united them, which 
had been strengthened since his Lordship's accession. 


In the course of an able and happy reply, the Earl 
referred to his high appreciation of the advantages of 

belonging to a community which has an undoubted 
history, and said that the burgh had a history nearly 
as old as the history of Scotland. He adverted to 
the wars of Edward I., and of the Covenanters in the 
seventeenth century, when Brechin was the head- 
quarters of the Covenanting army. When that cause 
had finally triumphed, and was sullied by the 
surrender to the English of Charles I., among the 
four Commissioners who protested w,°.s the Commis- 
sioner for Brechin burgh. His Lordship touched on 
the humiliating incident in Scottish history, of which 
the Castle was the scene — the surrender of Baliol, bur, 
he added, "a few years afterwards the Castle had its 
revenue. Sir Thomas Maiile — who seems to have been 
a very tough old gentleman— inflicted such a check 
en the English King as spoiled the enterprise on 
which he embarked. Your mode of evincing: vour 
kindly feeling to me in these days, though srmewhat 
different to that employed by your predecessors, is 
none the less sincere. Looking over your burgess 
rolls I am proud to find that, since the beginning of 
the present century, of all the men who have had the 
honour of being admitted to that roll no less than 
one-third are of my own family. On the ground 
that you and vour colleagues reffird me as vour 
hereditary friend, I am proud and grateful to accept 
the freedom of this burgh/' 

Lord D.dhousie's last public appearance in Brechin 
was on the 19th October, 1886, when he presided 
over a meeting held to promote the construction of a 
railway between Brechin and Edzell, when he 
indicated his desire to promote the undertaking as 
far as lay in his power. Particulars of the career of 
Lord and Lady Dalhousic, and of the esteem in which 


the}' were held throughout the country at large, are 
given in a memorial volume we issued, bearing the 
title " One in Life and in Death." 

Two noble types of beauty and strength, and in the 
absence of external accident, an event so pathetically 
tragic as the death of the Countess in her 30th year 
— so lovely and accomplished ; and of the Earl, 
twenty-four hours after, in his 40th year, so fruitful 
of usefulness and so full of promise — scarcely lives in 
the memory of man. 

Two years before, Lord and Lady Dalhousie took a 
voyage to Xew Zealand for the benefit of his 
Lordship's health. Indeed, it may be said that he 
fell a victim to his high sense of public duty, for the 
illness which laid him aside from active work was in- 
duced by public labours, which overtaxed the energies 
of his body and mind. It was hoped that absence 
from political turmoil, residence at a health resort 
abroad, and, finally, a transatlantic tour would restore 
his vigour. On his return to this country it was un- 
derstood that he had derived much benefit from the 
voyage : but fully a year before his death his health 
again gave way, and he joined Lord and Lady 
Brassey on board their yacht the Sunbeam, intending 
to accompany them on the voyage which for Lord 
Brassey had such a melancholy termination. Lord 
Dalhousie, however, "was unable to go farther than 
the Mediterranean, where he left the Sunbeam and 
proceeded to Switzerland, remaining there for a con- 
siderable time, and next proceeded to visit his 
brother, the Hon. Charles M. Bamsay, in America, 
whence he was returning when the fatal illness over- 
took both himself and his Countess. 

Lady Dalhousie, along with her husband, came 
ashore at Havre in very indifferent health. Her 
illness rapidly developed into blood-poisoning, and in 



a few days many were startled by the news of her 
death, which took place on 24th November, 1887. 
The lamentable illness and death of the Countess gave 
the Earl a shock which his system was unable to 
stand, and intense grief ended in an apoplectic attack 
which proved fatal only twenty-four hours after. 
Thus the beautiful young mother and the devoted 
father, both in the hey-day of life, expired on a 
foreign shore, leaving five orphan children under the 
age of nine. 

Their bodies were brought to Scotland and interred 
in the same grave in the old churchyard of Cockpen. 
The care of "the youthful Earl and his four brothers 
devolved upon their much-loved grandmother (the 
widow of the 12th Earl), and upon the Hon. C. M. 
and Mrs Ramsay. 

The present Earl, Arthur George Maule Ramsay, 
was born on 4th September, 1878. He has succeeded 
to an honourable name and to great position and 
power, and he is likely to prove himself worthy of 
the best traditions of his family. He was for a time 
connected with the F. & K. Artillery, and, receiving 
a commission in the Scots Guards, served through 



part of the war in South Africa with that regiment. 
His Lordship, however, resigned his commission in 
1903, on the occasion of his marriage in July to Lady 
.Mary Adelaide Willoughby, youngest daughter of 
the Earl of Ancaster. 



**g Ml TO HELL BROTHERS % |*« 


English and Scotch Blankets. Down Be 1 Quilts. Lancashire 
Flannels. Scotch Lamb's Wool Underclothing. 

Dressmaking and Mantlemaking under skilled management 

fchow Room, Fitting Rooms, and Work Rooms all on 

"i he ground floor. 



Ironmongers a nd Oil .Merchants 

Have always in Stock a Large Assortment of 


Open and Close Ranges, Dining and Drawing Room 

Grates, Stoves, Fenders. Ashpans, and Fireirons. 



LAMPS, suitable for Mansion or Cottage. 

Burning and Lubricating Oil of best qualities. 

Eley and Joyce's Sporting Ammunition. 

Annealed and Galvanised Fencing Wire and Staples. 

Washing, Wringing, Mangling, and Mincing Machines. 

Brushes of every description. Baths. 

Brass and Iron Bedsteads and Chair Beds. 

Children's Cribs, Mattresses, and Perambulators. 

Sole Agents for Brechin and District for 

Bradbury and Wilcox & Gibb's Sewing Machines. 

Farm Implements at lowest prices. 

Bicycles— All the Best Makes at List Prices, with 

Usual Cash Discount. 

Drawings and Price Lists on application. 

Swan Street, Brechin 

Every description of TINSMITH WORK done on the 
Premises by First-Class Workmen. 




Nearest to the Golf Coarse, and five Minutes' 
from Caledonian and [IB. Stations 

Persona! Maaagemi JOSEPH SMITH, Proprietor 

THE ESK rlOTEL, Fenryden. 


fff HIS Compact Hotel, situated on the Bank of the 
*^% S nth Ek. commands a Splendid Panoramic 
* View of River and Mountains. 

First-Class Accommodation for Vi-itcrs or Families. 
On"' t Road to the Braes and Scurdjn jhthouse. 

LL'XCHEONS and TEAS at Moderate Char; 
Liquors of Finest Quality. 

JAS. CALDER, Proprietor. 

H. LAMB & 6©. 

-: * BUTCHERS • :- 
18 NEW WYND (opposite Star Hotel) and 74 MURRAY STREET 


Fresh Supply Daily of Beef, Mutton, Lamb, at very 

reasonable prices 

Also, Fo-vvLs, Corned Beef, Pickled Tongue 

Finest Mild Cured Hams . Fresh Sa.usages daily 

Orders called for and delivered in Town and Neighbourhood 

every morning if desired 

Town and Country Customers can rely on their Orders having 

strict attention and prompt delivery 

MONTR< 3 . 

Teleplione No. 17 


Ladies' Tailors 
54 High Street, MONTROSE 

This Department is under the charge of a thoroughly 
competent Cat: 

AU Garments Perfectly Cut and Tailored by workmen 
of recognised abihty. 

Patterns and E-rmiates on request by return of ] 

Close Saturdays, 2 p. in. 

around th:: ancient city 


95 High Street, Montrose 

Hold the Most Up-1 >-date Stock of 


To be found in any Provincial Town 

KstablisbcJ* over Ifonlf a Century 


(terror, (&Mtv, iirtur* gvmt ^lal:rv 
63 Murray Street, MONTROSE 

A Highly-Perfumed Scent of Great Refinement, prepared 

from English Lavender Flowers 


(From Duncan, FlocTcart, S- Co., Edinburgh) 

Chemist and Druggist, Montrose 


©read and Biscuit Baker, Groceries 

ar^d ^rouisions 




Grocer and Wine Merchant, 


2 Castle Street, jnONTROSE. 

High-Class Groceries and 
. . provisions . . 

Wines and Spirits of Guaranteed Ma1 
Mait Liquors ia Excellent Conditi . 


:ker $ ' Scotch 

Old Giendronac'j . . aQ( j | a j Value), 

O'd Glenmorangle . - 6d > 

and He 6d ^er Gallon. 
Gleniivet. ... ili S ^ J 1/s ou - 

Agent for And. iflelrOSe (55 LO., toHMttuXinf 




Family Bread and Biscuit Baker 

204 High Strest; MONTROSE 

Marriage an J Cirisieciaj Cakes tastefully ornamented 


Tea Bread and Biscuits of all kinds. Dishes Covered, etc. 


Dispensing Chemists Photographic Dealers 


Telephone No. 25. Telegrams— Star Stables, Montrose. 


-% /AO NT ROSE U- 

Alexander!*, spence 

Jobmaster and Horsefyipep 

Mr Sl'EKCB gives his personal attention to all Orders entrusted 
to him. By keeping only First Class Horses. Carriages, fee., he 
hopes to ruerit a continuance of the public support; 


Ml Uppers of tbe 

When in Montrose should Pay a Visit to 


Where Choice Samples of 

Old fenglisft CDftta, 6las$ 
Peipfer, Curios t etc 

May be found, including fpecimens of 

2)evbv» f Gbelsea, lowestott, anfc> 3Bow 

At Moderate Prices 

aW^BEi"' KA" 

^X All those in Search of Kd^ 

©Id O ak Ghairs, ghests, Tables 
D ressers, Joint Stools, etc. 

Should write or go to 

J. G. LOW 

106 High Street, MONTROSE 


cX^r. 11. L. SINCLAIR x^x, 

BoolLseller anci Stationer 


78 High Street, MONTROSE 

Li^-t of Furnished Houses and Apartments 

Local Views and Pictorial Post Cards 

J, G. M'LEHN, 

|1astrii gaiter niti (Confectioner, 

15 Castle Street, MONTROSE. 

M'LEAN S FAMOUS PIES and BRIDIES are unsurpassed 

SB f\\i BSL 1 ^ 1 !SfiB 



A large and varied selection of Useful and Fancy Goods. 
All Best Makers represented, and at Lowest Prices. 

Dinner Sets, Tea Sets, Dessert Sets 
Toilet Sets, Trinket Sets. 

Miniatures in Montrose Coat of Arms Ware. 
Doulton's Dutch Ware. 

Visitors to Montrose should make a point of 
seeing our Windows. 

»> ■ < «•■ 

Smith's Buildings, Montrose 






Made Daily from Finest Materials 



91 High Street, MONTROSE _ 





MARMALADE— One Kind, One Quality- 

AU our Own Make, from Wholesome Fruit 
and Pure Sugar 



The Martyr Graves of Scotland. By the late Rev. J. 
H. Thomson, Hightae. Revised and Edited by Rev. 
Matthew Hr: With an Introduction by D. 

Hay Fleming, LL.D. With numerous Illustrations. 
Demy 8vo, cloth extra, price 7s GJ. 

The Misty Isle of Skye. Its Scenery, its People, its 
Story. By J. A. MacCuxloch. Crown 8vo, cloth extra. 
With a Map and Twenty Full-page Illustrations. 4s net ; 

Emeralds Chased in Gold ; or, The Islands of the 
Forth ; T >ry, Ancient and Modern. By John* 

!>;• KSON, I . . Author of "Ruined Castles in 

Mid-Lothian." With numerous Illustrations. Trice 6s. 

Sketch Book of the North. By George Eyke-Todd. 
With Illustrations by A. S. Boyd, A. Monro, S. Reid, 
and Harrington Mann. Fourth and Cheaper Edition. 
Foolscap 4 to. cloth, price 5s. 

Scotland, Historic and Romantic. By Maria Hornor 
Lansdale. With over I wenty Full -page Portraits and 
Thirteen Coloured Maps. Large crown 8vo, price 7s 6d 
net ; postage, 56. 

Sir William Wallace. By Pi Murison. Price 

Is 6d net : postage, 3d. 

Robert The Bruce. By Professor Murison. Price Is 6d 
net ; postage. 3d. 

John Knox. By A. Taylor Innes. Price Is 6d net ; 
postage, 3d. 

Robert Louis Stevenson. By Margaret M. Black. 

Price Is 6d net ; postage, 3d. 
Jsmes Watt. By Andrew Carnegie, LL.D. Post 8vo, 

art canvas, Is 61 net. Extra gilt, gilt top, 2s net : 

postage, 3d. 







I ONTROSE, on the East Coast of Scotland, within 
1 12 hours of London and 3 hours of Edinburgh, 
offers many attractions to Golfers, and to Visitors 
generally, on the outlook for desirable Summer Quarters. 

The Splendid Golf Course (18 holes), which is one of 
the oldest in the kingdom, is of large extent (3£ miles), 
and stretches along the Links in close proximity to the 
sea, and is open to all. The Tariff rate is very low. The 
Course is capitally laid out, and kept in good order ; while 
the well-devised hazards, in which the natural advantages 
of the Links and Bents have been taken advantage of, 
add to the interest of the game. 

Ladies' Golf Courses, also open to all visitors at a very 
small charge, have been laid out on the Links, and are of 
a very interesting character. 

Sea Bathing.— The extensive and beautifully clean 
Sands provide great facilities for Sea Bathing, which have 
been taken advantage of by the Corporation to provide a 
safe and commodious Bathing Station, with coaches aud 
other appliances. 

The Fine Spacious Links, close to Sea, and far- 
reaching Beach, afford opportunities for recreation of a 
most desirable and health-giving nature. A handsome 
Pavilion, for the use of Visitors and others, has been 
erected by the Town Council on the Bents. 

The Town is healthy and well kept, with good Water 
Supply and approved Drainage System. 

M( >ntr. >s i also forms a convenient centre for Excursions 
to the neighbouring country, which is of great natural 
beauty and interest. 


For Rcallp Fine WDiskies 



Salfefcer, (Mcndronacb, (Men ©rant, Special Scotch, iccb Slot* 

Stewar'e, Srown'0 jfcru* (Crown, TOeber'a Q.O.O., 

Tbcnr^ XEbomeon'o, Olc- Srtsb, etc. 

All kinds of GROCERIES & PROVISIONS at lowest possible prices 





Large Stock of English and Foreign Goods 
of Best Quality, at Lowest Possible Pri 


Please Cail and Inspect the Stock. Register for Servants 


163 JE3Iig-li Street, Montrcse 

Telei>lione No. 24. 

D. & W. SCOTT 

Tobacconists, Cigar and Cigarette Importers 

The Celebrated "Scots Wha Hae" Smoking Mixture— Tin 

in tlu Mt 

High-Class Cigarettes [Hand-Made)— Specially R comm nd d. 

Agents for " L. k Co " Brinr Pip. 



jfamilv 0rxcn ai^ Italian TJQlarebouBemen, $mportewi of mines 

Brandies, ant foreign liqueurs 





HMOb^Class pastry Cook anfc Confectioner 

Smith's Buildings, New Wynd, MONTROSE 

British and Continental Pastries in endless variety. 
All kinds of Table Dainties to order. 

Telegrams— Lackie, Montrose." Teleplume—'Ro. G. 


(D. & J. W. LACKIE) 

Ironmonger, Iron Merchant, Brass Founder 
Brass Finisher, Tinplate Worker 



118 Murray Street, MONTROSE 

Ibair XUork fcone in all its branches. Switches, jfnnges^ctc. 
Combings mafcc up. 

Tobaccos, Cigars, and Cigarettes by^Best Makers, 


Famous for Splendid Value 
given ifl Gem ral Grocery 


Stock Fresh and Well 
Sel« cted. 

Lowest Possible Trices. 

Bonus given on all 

Cash Purchase 


(Successor to GEORGE LOW) 

Grocer and Wine jVIerchar 

Lists of Furnished Houses and Apartments on application. 




Humber, Swift, Premier, Rover, Singer, 

Triumph, Raleigh, Sparkbrook. 

We cordially invite ;.ll Cyclists to inspect our carefully- sele cted 

Stock of these World-Fwmous Cycles— Fitted with Free Wheels, 

Two Brakes, and Two or Three Speed Gears as desired. 

Prices from £5 17s 6d to £16 16s. 


We are in a position to supply the Leading Makes 
of Motor Cars and Carriages at Lowest Prices. 

Our Garage and Works in South esk Street nnd Lotver TAEX.ur 
Street, Montrose, will accommodate upwards of 100 Cars. 


Cvcle /ifcafccrs anD /lector jEncunecrs 

20 Castle Place and 133 High Street, MONTROSE 

21 Clerk Street, BRECHIN, and 

.Station Road, EDZELL 


■The Wlieeleries, Montrose. 
Milne, Cycles, Brechin. 

Telephone- 32. Montrose 
2.S, Brechin 



WatcfynTaker, Jeweller, and "Dentist 

140 High Street, MONTROSE 


/©ember of pharmaceutical Society 


MAP of 





The size oi each Sheet is 20 

by 25 in. 
Price, in Cloth Case, 1 each 
Sheet; or Mounted on Oloth, 
in Cloth Case, 1 6 each Sheet. 

Vap, giving il" 
\ tent post 
i address. 



Edina Works and 
20 South St. Andrew Street 


And 7 Paternoster Square 


»<«fy The -\ ._ ^SA.rtT...... 



Wm. Black & Son 

Cabinetmakers and Upholsterers 
Licensed Appraisers, funeral Undertakers 

30 Clerk Street, Brechin 

For Best of Scotch Whiskies 


h« W /A. ROSS^ 
Tea, Wine, and Spirit Merchant 



Plasterer and Concrete Worker 

Yard^Commerce Street 

Orders in Town and Country punctually attended to 



Incorporating CHRISTIE & CAMERON 
Cabinetmaker, Upholsterer, and Undertaker 





WHILE thanking the General Public and Visitors 
for the kind support extended to the above 
Stores since they were opened .-even years ago. we 
wish to take this opportunity or placing before them a 
number of our leading lines :— 

Wiltshire and Ayrshire Bacon. 

Pindon Haddocks, Smoked Fish, and Kippered BTerring3. 

a Fish — Haddock, Salmon, Halibut, Cod, etc., in th 
Belfast and American Hams. 

Cheddar, Stilton, Gorgonzola. ami Camenibert Che 
Cambridj - Pork Pies, and Devonshire Cream. 

Danish Butter Salt and Frpsh . only the finesl 
Tongues. Sardines, Tinned Meats, etc . a large selecti 
Tiuned Fruits— Peaches, Pears, Pine Apple, Apricots, Toma- 

Ginger for Tabh . Crystallized, Glace, and in Syrup. 

veppes' Table Waters. 
Duncan Flockhart & Co.'s Celebrated Edinburgh Waters, in 

Lte, Bottles, and Syphons 
Gilbert Rae's Famed Dunfermline (rim; r Be v. 
Rose's Lime Juice, Lime Juice Cordial, and Lei S ish. 

Chocolates, Biscuits, and Confections in great vari 
Bananas, Lemons, Tomatoes. All other Fruits in the;. 
Daily supplies of Fresh Butter and Eggs 

all of highest grades. 
l: , We would draw special attention To our BLENDED Te.^ 

1 10 and -2 6 per lb. Substantial reductions made on 

parcels of 5 lbs. and upwards. 
Sauces, Pickles, Chutnies, etc. 

Perfumes, Patent Medicines, and Proprietary Art: 
Tobaccos, Cigars, and Cigarettes. 

Brushes, Enamelled Ware. Soufflet Cases, Didi Papdrs, etc. 
Crockery and Glass in great variety. 
E.P. (roods --Cruets. Teapots, Jam Spoons, Butti r Knives, Cake 

Baskets, Jelly Dishes, and a tine assortment of useful 

articles for Birthday and Marriage Pre» 
Pocket and Table Cutlery— a large lot to select from. 
Razors, 8tropes, Brushes. 

All the above are of first-rate quality, and are quite 
in keeping with prices charged in large centres. 

All Goods delivered by our messengers Free of 

A Visit to the above Stores will repay anyone. 

A. JACK, Proprietor 




ieas, groceries, axvi jvo^\s\ox\^ 

High Street, EDZELL 



Licensed Gamedealer and Poulterer 

15 High Street, EDZELL 



Post Office, EDZELL 

Pictorial Post Cards a specialty 


Grocer, Wine & Spirit Merchant 
11 Union Street, Edzell 

THHbisftfes, lUines, anO JBecrs ot finest quality 




J a\\ot and ao\o\\uev 





Satin Hats, Felt and Tweed Hats. Scotch Bonnets, and 
Tweed Caps. 

Gloves. Shirts. Fronts. Collars, Cuffs, Scarfs. 



Knickerbocker Hose made to order. 



Ladies' Jackets, Mantles, and Ulsters, and Gentlemen's 

Clothing tastefully and fashionably made to measure. 

A Perfect Fit in all cases Guaranteed. 


Agent for the United Kingdom Temperance and General 
Provident Institute. 



^Q Bread and Biscuit Baker 8^ 




Mathers Brothers 

Central Studio, Edzell 

fjclftag flBidgcts— 12 for One Shilling 

Speciality— picnics and other Outdoor Oreups 

Bmateurs' undertaken ana all "Requisites supplied at 

lowest prices 


Bakers and Confectioners 

Migl^ Street, EOZEI^U 


Picnic Parties supplied on the shortest notice 


/iDembcr of pharmaceutical Society 


Stationer, newsagent, ant) General flfcercbatit 









ThisOld-E ' llcUy 

Furnished, ai <1 is now m 
Ideal district for Driving and Cycling, and fw p tne 

famous Glenesk and Drumtochty Glens. Golf bourse. 
Fishing C.T.C. Headquarters. Posti its Diancnee. 


Term- Moderate. E. Ikela>d. Propnet >r and Manager. 





Of a very High Standard of Quality may 
be seen in our range of Lovely 


They are sti eked in all sizes and in a variety 
of design-, and are Linens which any Lady 
will be pro 1 1 to pDSsess. 

:-■ undest 


Ask for Samples. The Prices are most 

-«cj>— «>- 



1-jirieii ]Vl6ii-iuu±*6LOtuL2rer 



The Latest Medical Discovery for the Relief and Cure of 


Lumbago, Sciatica, Neuralgia, Gout, Eczema, &c. 
effectively cured. 

Sold in 8-oz. Bottles (containing twelve days' supply} at 2 9, and 
16-oz. Bottles containing twenty-four days' supply 
at i »>, post : 



Phillips' Stomach and Liver Specific for Indigestion 
Biliousness, &c. 

In Bottles at 1 H and 2 9, post free. 

Toientieth Century Embrocation 

For Rheumatism, Sprains, Bruises, Colds 
in the Chest, &c. 

In Bottles at 1 and 1 10, i 




To be had from Chemists and Patent Medicine Vend 
None genuine unless the signature, "Jas. Phillips," is printed 
across the Label on each Bottle. 


Winter's Scotch Tweeds 
and Homespuns 

Outdoor Wear on Mountain, Moor, 
Road, or River. A choice range of these 
High-Class Scotch Fabrics now in stuck. 

Ladies' Costumes, Coats, Cloaks, and Capes 
Gentlemen's Fishing, Shooting, and Golf Suits 
Highland Capes and Travelling Coats 

Made by Skilful and Experienced Artistes in 
my own Workrooms. Ladies and Gentle- 
men are waited upon at their re by 
Experienced Fitter when so desired. ■ 

Scotch Plaids and Rugs 
Handloom Linen 
Woolley Scotch Wincey 



CORTACHY, Kirriemuir 




H v<: ancient Cttte ,T Sporting Warehouse 


Fi] „ f Every Requisite for Shootixg, Fishing, 

and liOLt. 

Repaira neatly and expeditiously executed. 

Tryoiu - >rt ? ?*' 

WestWater Cruick, South Luther, Bervxe, Lunan, 

ilee and other Scotch Lochs. 



3 Church Street and 59 Montrose Street, BRECHIN 

Beef, fl&utton, ana porft of excellent qualities 

Hairdressers and Tobacconists 

Swan Street, Brechin 
Branch-High Street, Edzell 


Suiider and luarrymaster 



TRINITY VILLAGE, near Brechin 

^f)e yrirjify pofcl ys?ill tc fourjd by Visitors rcplefe 
■yu'iin every corrjjorf. //lodcr-afc c-rjarqes 

o>r,e ai)J a (fJuarier AMiles |rorr) Torecrir) Oiafiorj 

r7ir)G--riole (^Toij bourse. lOracinq /iip 
vi.r)arrr)irjq vX/gqI^s 

IJueilify quarernicca in Violas, wlrjos, Opirils, 

arid riles 

CHARLES HOOD, Proprietor 


Telegmphic Address—" G .*' ' "•" 
]u>ne-No. 19. 



Coach and Carriage Builders 
and Motor Engineers 

G ,4 R A G E 

4§>j Official IRcpaircvs to tbe automobile Club ^h 

jBpare parts, petrol, Site, etc. 

-.its for the Principal Makes of Motor C.irs. 

All Makea of Cars efficie itly Repaired by Practical Motor 

0a8l lV . are Driven by Members of our Staff entirely 

at Customers' Own Risk. 

» < ♦ 





St. Ninian's Square, Brechin 

1birib=Cia5o XUorfc at "{Reasonable prices 
Ucetb {painlessly Svtracteo b\? tbc 3i£> of Gas 


Established over 70 Years 

Jas. M. Strachaa 

d of the Late Samuel 






Wine and Spirit Merchant 

47 Market Street Brechin 


INDIAN AND CEYLON TEAS, from 16 to 2 6 per lb. 
All Spirits of the Best Quality only kept ih Stock 


Est ah 1 is h ed 1 8 7.~> 



Sco\cV%dsV^WAer ^uie^etcVatA 


Slcu^s of the moat famous distilleries 
. ", , 21 per Gal. 4? per Doz. 

Extra Special Blend ... ... « * :7 

Blend No. l.V.V.O. ... ... - ^ 35 „ 

Blend No. 2, V.O. ... JJJ " 

^^Yea^Old NOKXII Per. Matored in Sherry Wood, 
3 6 per ijotue. 

We hold a large stock of the following Vintages :-Heidseiek, 
Pon^eryVMoet & Chandon, Giesler 6, Mnmm a, etc. 

Brandy, Cherry Whisky, etc. 

BeanncVolnay, Macon Harvest Bnrgnndy, Red, Whit*, and 

T " ltiUa - HOCKS 

Xeirstein, Marcobrunn, Rndeaheiiner, and Sparkling Moselle. 


,~ A ■} fi npr Bot. * I P er ^ oz ' 

Sandeman*8l896 Vintage... ... 3 6 per tfot. ^ 

Offley'S •• — 9 6 .mil 3 .',' 30 and 36/ „ 

Dow's ... ••• 


20 to 40 per Doz. 

Old Dry Solirea ... . ■>- 

Pull Choice Dinner Wine ... ••• m: 

Rich Old Wine ... ... 36 

Excellent Deaaert Wine 

Agent for the "Big Tree" Californian Wines 





Pocket History of Brechin and Tourists' Guide. 

"With Plan of City and Illustrations. Fourth Edition. 

Illustrated. By post, 1/3; I loth, 1 '.'. 

A nice literary feeling pervades the honk, wMch is enriched 

with many curious traditions and pretty • picturesque touches; 

;. we do not remember to ha abounding 

to the same extent in folk-lore and other matter likely to it: " 

the reader at a distance from the region describ Herald. 

Historical Guide to Edzell and Glenesk Districts. 

With Illustrations. Picturesque Scenery, Antiquities, 

and Traditions. Fifth Edition. By post.*9d ; Cloth, 1/3. 

The painstaking and cultured editor enables the visitor to see 

fane poems and great histories in the old churches, towers, and 

mansions. Indeed, instead of being a mere formal guide-book, it 

i> lighted up with a sentiment which adds much t<> it> value.— 

Brechin Faces of the Olden Trme» By Win. 

S iev wright. By post. 2 6. Only a few copies. 

Brechin of To = Day. By Vatliek. With Introduction by 
[>. H. Edward-. With Illustrations. By post, 9d ; 
Cloth Extra. 1 
In all braid Scotland, there ia no "borough to *n'* to compare 
with " ye Ancient City.'" — D 

City Ports : Brechin in Olden and Modern Times. By 
post. 7d. 

Mysie's Life Secret: A Forfarshire Story. By post. 1. 
By A. Nicol Simpson. 

Modern Scottish Poets. With Biographical and Critical 
Notice-. By post. 3 3 : Cloth Extra, 4'o. Only a few 
copies of the 12th, loth, 14th, loth, and 16th Series can 
now be had, for which early application is necessary. 
Each volume complete in itself. 
Desei tes a place hi the shelves of every student of current 
Scotch literature. — Scotsman. 
Will form a standard work. — Literary World. 
A work of permanent value. — Dundee Adverti 

Historic Footmarks in Stracathro. By Rev. F. 
Cruickshank, A.M. With map. By post, 1 2. 

Tales, Legends, and Traditions of Forfarshire. By 

Alex. Lowson. With Illustrations. By post, 4 6. 



Archaeological Notes on Early Scotland. With Plac 
Names relating more particularly to this district. By 
Surgeon-General W. G. Don. By post, 1/3 ; Cloth. 2 :;. 

John Guidfollow, or the Murder of the Earl of Strathmore. 
A Mystical-Historical Romance of Forfarshire. By post 5 6. 

James Tacket. A Humorous Tale of Scottish Life. By 
Alexander Whamond. Seventh Edition. By post, 2/6. 

A capital Tale it i- for those who can enjoy a hearty laugh.— 

Life, Letters, and Poems of George Beattie. Third 

Edition. By post. 2 li. 
The Brechin District. Some Passages in its Early 
History. By James A. Campbell of Stracathro, M.P. 
By post, 1 . 
One in Life and Death. In Memoriam : The Earl and 
if Dalhousie. With Genealogy of the Bal- 
housie Family. By post, 6d ; Cloth, 1 . 
Tourists' Guide to Montrose and District. With 

Illustrations and a Map. By post, 1/. 
The Raid o' Fearn. By post. 4d. 
Poems and Songs. Bv the late James Guthrie, Edzell. 

With Portrait. 1 6, Post Free for 9d. 
Montrose Characters. Their Peculiarities and Eccentri- 
cities. Curious Illustrations. By post. 2 . 
The Kaim of Mathers. A Historical Tale. By post, 3d. 
The Ghost of Dun. A Romance. By the author of the 

" < rhaist of Fernden." By post, 3d. 
A Description of the County of Angus in the Year 

1678. By post, 6d. 
Historical Scenery of the East Coast of Scotland. 

By post, 3d. 
The Story of Saint Palladius and his Chapel at 

Fordoun. By post, 4d. 
Montrosiana. A Collection of Local Anecdotes. Parts 1, 

•1, and 3. By post, 3. ! ,d each. 
Brechin Cathedral. Its History. With a Survey of the 

Religious Bodies that have Worshipped on its Site. By 

the Rev. James Landreth, M.A. Scarce. By post, 6d. 

j/ • r v, and otheis 1 > be l<a<i at the Advertiser Office, 

, so that early appl - iry. 



♦ ► • A* — 


JEroivje and Silver AeDalltst 


Trunks, Portmanteaus, Hat Cases, etc. Waterproof Garments, 

Cushions, ice. Carriage Aprons and Leggings in great variety. 


(Late W. Duxcan & Co.) 

S^ocer, iea, NNuie, axvi ^\r\\ u\ercViati\ 

1 High Street, Brechin 



























?— i 





' — 









i — 1 


































Cycles, Motor Cycles, Motor Ca •-, tor 6 ale or Hire. Ace -- 
Petrel, Oils, Grease 3 , etc. 


Strict i ersonal atte.i.i ra to all inqoiries, instructions, and o 





• — -^> — • 

Evcrg Comfort. Cbarges /jftooerate. 

Sccommooation for Cyclists. 3Laoies' IRoom. 

flMcnics ano at fbomcs Catcreo tor. 



56 High Street, Breehin 

Ice Chamber on most approved principles 



eraiea water 

Only Filtered Spring Water and Purest 
Ingredients used 

Manufactory : 34 CITY ROAD, BRECHIN 



(Commercial and General Fancy) 

e^CALL AT 3^X3 




IFtewspapers ano /lfcaga3ines oelivereo tmmeoiatelg 
on publication. 

Estimates Given for all Kinds of Work. 


Large Range always ou hand, at Prices Unequalled 
in the District. 


Personal Attention to all Orders. 

JBook anD d&agaaine IReaDing Club. 

Terms— One Guinea per annum ; subscription com- 

mencing at any time. 



v&t M. MITCHELL 3^>.o 

4© ZE-BIig-la. Street, Brecriin 

Hot Pies daily. Porter and Ales 


J\or\\v jov\ c^>rev)er^ 


Tea Dealer and Confectioner 

General and iTancg Goofs fflsercbant 
111 Hlgli Street, Brec]ain 

Try our Choice Blend of Tea— Nothing Finer 


Fruitsper ai|d Gonfectionep 


Choice selection of Fruits, Flowers, and Vegetables in their season 

Orders by post promptly attended to. 



























£ -c 

5 H a 

O <i. 

^ O pj 

<—! -l- 2 r-i 

.2 £ pi 

P= P 5 

- g _ 

I? II 

§ = a 

c ^ 3 

r- ,2 O 

§ •§ o 

CD *J 

:C - 

■ >-. 

•rH (b 











P* o 

] 1 -4-> 






a 4 





















(Successors to Chas. Middleton & Sons) 

plumbers, (Basfitters, anfc Electricians 


Large Assortment of INCANDESCENT GOODS-Giobes, 

Burners, and Mantles, at very Moderate Prices. 

Orders for Jobbing in Town or Country punctually attended to. 



Iron and Brass Pounders, Millwrights, 
and Engineers 

Commission Agent?, Beltings, etc. 

BRECHIN FOUNDRY, Montrose Street 

(William Daf.gie, Licensed Valuator) 

Bit/id Sheppefe 


6 Clerk Street, Brechin 


Saddler 4 and * Harness * Maker 

34 St. David Street, BRECHIN 

Skilful and prompt attention to all Orders in Town or Country. 




Toilet Requisites 

±J*-*>*Jf*ni-y-r*~^ is a high-class Toilet Soap prepared 
■with the finest ingredients ;.nd guaranteed free from rancid fat, - 
excess of alkali »nd objectionable colouring and perfuming 
it for ten I an ideal Soj p for the 

Nursery. Boxes, l - each; Single TabL ts, 4d. 

OL,or\l!l^L< gives an abundant and lasting lather 
that mak - and a pleasure. Sticks, 6d each. 

44 C C C A JK\ A I " CREA - M . -"■ unique Toilet Preparation 
c/L,unulU L# Ior keeping the Skin smooth and • >rt 
at all ■ year. It isneitl 7 nor sticky, but is 

readily absorbed by the Skin, rendering* it smooth and supple. 
Rem .. irritation caused by exposure to 

cold wind - ch ; Sample Jars, 6d each. 

4 t C C C A ]\1 1} I > » HAI R TOXIC is one of the nicest ap- 
*-* "-«»JrtniuL« plications for promoting the growth 
of the Hair and for giving it a soft and silky appearance. It 
contains n not leave the hair dry as many 

strong .spirit u - do. It removes dandruff and 

mak _ for the hair. Bottles, 1 6 each. 


O L,or"4iTl\_/ L# DER makes a cleansing and refreshing 

wash for the Hair. It does not contain any Btrong alkali nor 

other injurious ingredients. It will be found to leave the hair 

Packet , Id each. 

(4 CCC A JVtOI " DENTIFRICE, a non-gritty, non- 
OL*Oi\lrlv/L* Doisonous, antiseptic Tooth Powder, 
int to use and an efficient cleanser and preserver of the 
9d each. 


JOHN MUTTON, m.p.s. 

ffamiip an& Dispensing Cbemist 





Montrose Street, Brechin 

All Orders in Town or Country personally attended to. 



plumbers, ©astltterr, 3BeUbangers, 1bot 
Mater ano Sanltarg Engineers 

27 Market Street, 3RHCHIN 

All Orders in Town or Country punctually attended to. 

"Wm. Fraser 

e^>( SLATER te 

Successor to the 

33^5, City ^Lof^cS., :02?e«3lil2^ 

rs from the Country punctually attended to 
Estimate- given 


Yard : Eastbank, off Southesk Street 

(Opposite St. Ninian's Square) 

•♦► « ^» 




j> r*% 


(Famiiy ana Sggp Commercial) 


Centrally Situated. Old Established. 

First Class Accommodation for Families and Tour: 
Replete with every Modern Convenience and Comfort, 
Charges Moderate. 'Bus attends all Trains. 

■ BJt > ' I * H » 

jioi?s3 Hiring in all its Branches. 

Excellently appointed Vehicles of every description. 
Careful and Intelligent Drivers. 

The famous Four-in-Kand Coach. "Olden Times," runs 

to Lochlee every Monday. Wednesday, and Saturday 

during Season. Particulars on application. 



59 High Street, Brechin 

Cathedral View Ware— a large selection of articles, 6d each. 

Heraldic Ware. Brechin Cathedral Plaques. 



{popular Gasb 2)raper 



TKHboiesale Grocer, Uca fl&ercbant, an& 
Salt Jinporter 

Market Street, Brechin 




Ijturscvgmeit, jleebsmen, anb ^ovists 

Den Nursery, Brechin 

XXlreatbs, JSouquets, Spravjs, etc., artistically maoe up of tbe 

Choicest jflowers 

^forest ani» Ornamental urces ant> Sbrubs, tftoses, etc. 


■Under IRoral 




If yon wish the British Empire to be always the 

Head, and nut the Tail of other Powers, Feed 
your Children on 


*ezvr flour* 

A Perfect Food within itself for making Blood, Bone, 
and Muscle. 

Excellent for Thickening Soups. Gravies, etc. 

Gruel made from this Oat Flour is a splendid remedy 
for those suffering from Chill. 

Sold by all the Leading Grocers. 

•»- • 

Balbirnie Mills, Brechin 




74 Kigln Street, BRECHIN 

All kinds of Boots and Shoes kept in stock. Best Quality. 


lESg-fesLfelis^eg^. 178Q 

C. cMiteL^ell & Son 

Family Grocers, Whisky Merchants 

Brandy, uOine, anc) Cigar Importers 


h & 


bailor and QIatfyiep 

Every requisite for Gentlemen's Wear kept in stock. 
Ladies' Jackets and Ulsters made to order. 
Agent for Sandon Suits for Boys and the genuine Wheeler dt Wilson 
Seiciwj Mach\ 


Highest toss fcroeeri 


♦■ > • < ♦ 


Jamttj) l&Mm f Italian ftotott&ettum 

TO»* nn-(] Spirit ^Imhnnl 

4 High Street, Brechin 

V/S/TORS ^«mi^ 

Should not leave the District 
without calling at 


flic-ftacs for Presents, from 6d to 10s 6d each 

Badge Ware cuith Brechin Arms 

Vieois of Brechin, Edzell, and Surrounding 

Thousands to choose from, at 

Norman Anderson's 

(Successor to D. B. MACKIE) 

103 High Street, Brechin 



Cabinetmaker and Upholsterer 

Maisondieu Lane, BRECHIN 


Monumental Sculptor 

Monuments and Headstones executed in Granite, 
Marble, or Freestone, and fitted up in any part of 
the country. 

Letter-Cutting fit all its branches. Restoration . 
of Old Stones and Repairs carried through with 

The Cleaning of Granite Monuments a specialty. 
Letter-Cutting in Granite, Stone, or Marble. 

Designs Prepared and Estimates given. Personal 
attention to all departments of the business. 

On receipt of letter, parties at a distance can have 
all information and work promptly done. 

Southesk Street, BRECHIN 


H. O. Soeteb, Esq., London, writes as follows regarding three 
old gravestones in Farnell Churchyard : — " The inscriptions, 
which were much worn in places, have been carefully reproduced 
by you so as t< i preserve the character of the originals. The 
stones have been carefully treated, and may be pointed to as 
excellent examples of restorative work." 


\Na\cWaVer, ^JevteUev, axvi 0^\\c\axi 
36 St. David Street, BRECHIN" 



family Bread and Biscuit Baker 


45 High Street, Brechin 

Rusks, Shortbread, Marriage and Christening Cakes. 
Biscuits and Fancy Bread of every description. 

Fine Bread and Fancy Bread dailj% 






fost ar^d Job Blasters 

Commercial Stables, BRECHIN 


Glenesk Stables, EDZELL 

Ladies and Gentle- 
men's Lessons in Riding 
and Driving given under 
personal supervision. 

Horses Jobbed by 
the Month or Year. 

Four-in-Hand Coach 
'runs from June to end 
of September on Mon- 
day, Wednesday, and Saturday fin comieotion with trains) from 
Edzell to Lochlee. Seats may be booked from all Railway Stations. 

Telegrams or Letters sent to Brechin or Edzell will have 
prompt attention. 

Telephone No. 14. Telegrams— " Manson." 




Very Old Scotch Whisky 


To be had from all Grocers and Spirit Merchants in 
our Labelled and Capsuled Bottles 

Sole Proprietors 


JLu IB X T :h: 



ol- ■■ i -)