h /l/W PRINCE CHARLIE'S PILOT. M P3 . FH ^ X e W "e S p 03 s a - o - - a a H PRINCE CHARLIE'S PILOT. A RECORD OF LOYALTY AND DEVOTION. BY Mi: ED BY UNI\ ' . ' -"0 LIBR/ MASTER NEGATIVE NO.: ..3.5.9.. 1 ..?.?! W AN MACLEOD BARRON. \ 488374 ZS. 3. 43 INVERNESS: ROBT. CARRUTHERS & SONS, 33*7 CONTENTS. Map Inidfi Front Cover PAGE. Introductory 3 How Donald Maoleod and Murdoch Maoleod came to Serv Prince Charlie 11 On Stormy Seas 27 Among Friends and in Danger from Foes 35 What Befel at Stornoway 43 Wanderers Once More ... ... ... ... ... ... 53 On a Desert Island Gl Chased by a Ship of War 73 How Donald and Murdoch Met John Murray of Broughton and Heard of the Loch-Arkaig Gold 85 Perils by Land and Perils by Sea 101 The Net Tightens .. ... Ill A Woeful Parting ; The Net Closes on the Prince's Pilot .. 119 The Tender Mercies of the Hanoverians 129 The Blackest Page in British History ... ... 141 How it Fared with the Highland Prisoners in London ... 151 Feted in London ; Returning Home 161 Bishop Forbes and Donald Maoleod Meet .. 173 Edinburgh Outdoes London ; Donald and Ned Burke Meet Again 187 Home with Honour... 199 NOTE. THIS story of Prince Charlie's Pilot first appeared in the " Inverness Courier," and in response to numerous requests is now published in book form. INTRODUCTORY. PRINCE CHARLIE'S PILOT. -* I. HIGHLAND History, Highland story, and Highland legend have for more than a century now presented a fertile field to the poet, the romancist, and the novelist, but the field is not yet nearly exhausted, and he who digs deep enough may still find rich stores of material. To the serious student of Highland history the field, indeed, seems merely to have been stripped of its more obvious treasures, while others quite as valuable, though not so apparent, have been passed by. No one who examines these treasure- houses of Highland history, "The Lyon in Mourning " and " The Wardlaw Manuscript," to name only two out of a large number of similar publications, can doubt the truth of this, for often though these have been raided to provide material for the story- writer and the enthusiast, yet in their pages are still to be found treasures innumerable. Of the Wardlaw Manuscript especially is this true, for it deals with a period which does not make the same appeal to the 4 Prince Charlie's Pilot. imagination as does the '45, and in consequence few save those historically inclined have taken the trouble to read it for themselves. Yet it is a book which to the lover of the curious, the picturesque, the romantic, and the herioc, is a veritable gold-mine, and a book which, thanks to the admirably edited volume by Mr William Mackay in the Scottish History Society's Publi- cations, is easily accessible to anyone who desires to dip into its pages. The same may be said, though with reserva- tions, of the three volumes of "The Lyon in Mourning," published by the same Society. Into these there is packed a record of heroism and a tale of romance, to which there is no parallel in the whole field of literature. But unfortunately, so far as the ordinary reader is concerned, the editing is rather inadequate ; and invaluable as the book in its present form is, both its interest and its value would have been very much enhanced had it been supplied, for example, with notes of the copiousness and of the accuracy of those which form so important a part of the Society's three volumes of " Papers relating to the Scots Brigade in Holland." It is certainly somewhat curious that the two volumes of the Society's publications most in demand should be the least adequately edited of the Introductory. 5 whole series, and should both relate to the '45, viz., "The Lyon in Mourning" and the " List of Persons concerned in the Rebellion." The latter, in addition to the editor's analysis and notes, has a preface by Lord Rosebery, in which he finds it necessary to warn the reader against certain conclusions of the editor, conclusions which it may be said are so palpably absurd that they ought never to have appeared in a volume issued by a learned Society. But while the editing of these publications leaves some- thing to be desired, the matter contained in the books themselves is of incalculable value, and the Scottish History Society in publishing them has put all lovers of the Highlands, all lovers of the heroic and the romantic, and all lovers of the History of their own land, under a deep debt of gratitude. A supplementary volume to the " Lyon in Mourning" is "The Itinerary of Prince Charles Edward Stuart, 1745-46," compiled by that most erudite of living writers on Jacobite subjects, Mr W. B. Blaikie. It is a marvel of careful and painstaking work, and is edited with a skill which is beyond praise. It is somewhat of a pity that the Itinerary should be available only in the form of a Society publication. Unlike the other books I have mentioned, it makes its 6 Prince Charlie's Pilot. appeal as forcibly to the everyday reader as to the student, and as it is not a large volume, the Scottish History Society would confer a boon on large numbers of people if they would for once depart from their rules and issue it in a manner and at a price which would make it available to that large public to whom the adventures of Prince Charlie are of perennial interest. The volumes of the Scottish History Society are not, however, the only volumes in which in- formation of historic and romantic value regard- ing the Highlands abounds. There is, for ex- ample, Sir ^Eneas Mackintosh's little-known " Notes on Strathdearn, and the Town and Neighbourhood of Inverness," a volume small but full of interest from the first page to the last ; there are the late Dr Fraser-Maekintosh's publications, "Antiquarian Notes" and "Letters of Two Centuries" in particular, which cast many a side-light on men and manners of bye- gone days ; there are the numerous Tours in the Highlands, most of them comparatively well- known ; there is the less well-known Journal of Bishop Forbes, the compiler of " The Lyon in Mourning;" there are the hundred and one clan histories, all more or less interesting in their own way ; there are books like the valuable and ex- tremely rare life of Duncan Forbes of Culloden, Introductory. 1 published in London in 1748, and the Manu- script of Major Fraser of Castle Leathers ; and there are collections of Family Papers, of which by far the most interesting to a Highland reader is the famous " Culloden Papers." Then, too, there are the Transactions of learned societies like the Inverness Gaelic Society and the Inver- ness Field Club, the usefulness of the former of which, by the way, would be very greatly en- hanced if the Society were to issue a complete index to the twenty odd volumes which now stand to its credit. It has recently fallen to my lot to examine for certain definite purposes most of the above- mentioned books, as well as many others of a more accessible, and therefore of a more popular nature, and various unpublished records and manuscripts. The wealth of unused material which I came upon suggested to me the idea of utilising some of it in compiling a series of articles which, while preserving strict historical accuracy, should aim at presenting the more romantic or the more picturesque side of High- land history. That, briefly, is the raison d'etre, the why and the wherefore, of the present volume ; and, as the most romantic period of Highland history is udoubtedly the '45, I make no apology for devoting this book to the tale of 8 Prince Charlie's Pilot. a grey-haired old hero and his gallant schoolboy son, both of whom played a not unremarkable part in that fascinating drama a drama which Lord Rosebery, with his usual felicity of expres- sion, has described, not unfairly, as the last burst of chivalry. HOW DONALD MACLEOD AND MURDOCH MACLEOD CAME TO SERVE PRINCE CHARLIE. II HOW DONALD MACLEOD AND MURDOCH MACLEOD CAME TO SERVE PRINCE CHARLIE. THE tale begins in Inverness in the expiring days of Prince Charlie's brief glory, and, in order to get the correct setting for the story, it is necessary to glance for a moment at the stirring happenings which kept Inverness in a perpetual state of excitement and enthusiasm during the weeks which preceded the grim tragedy of Culloden. On the 18th of February 1746 the army of Prince Charles Edward Stuart entered Inverness. As his troops, with pipes playing, marched into the town from one side, the Hanoverians, under Lord Loudon, made a hasty exit from the other, and speedily placed Kessock Ferry between themselves and the triumphant Jacobites. From then until just before the Battle of Culloden, the Prince's troops made Inverness their head- quarters, and from the 3rd of March to the 10th, and from the 21st of March to the 13th of April, Prince Charlie himself lived in the town in the 12 Prince Charlie's Pilot. house of the Dowager Lady Mackintosh in Church Street. Feeling in Inverness was divided. Some of the more prominent townsmen were staunch Hanoverians, others were enthusiastic Jacobites, but, so far as the bulk of the populace were con- cerned, their sympathies were almost entirely on the side of the Prince. As usual, Prince Charlie cast the glamour of his personality over every- one with whom he came in contact, and as several gallant sous of Inverness had shared the glories of the campaign, it did not require much to blow the fire of Jacobitism, always pretty strong in the town, into a fierce flame. For many months Inverness had known the presence of a half-hearted Hanoverian army, an army to many of whose leaders the cause in which they were engaged was distasteful, and an army whose sympathies, so far as the rank and file were con- cerned, were mainly with the Prince they were in arms against. To them succeeded the Jacobite army, ardent and devoted, and the romantic figure of the Prince himself, the young chevalie^ gallant, debonair, and charming. And we may be sure his cause lost nothing from the tales of those townsmen who had borne a part in the great adventure, or who, on his appearance in Inverness, hastened to throw in their lot with him. A Martial Atmosphere. 13 There was Captain Cuthbert, a member of the old Inverness family of the Cuthberts of Castle- hill, a brother, indeed, of the then Laird, though an officer in the service of France. He had served throughout the campaign in Lord John Drummond's Regiment. There were the Erasers of Fairfield, father and son, the former an ex- Provost of the town, and a Major in the Prince's army ; the latter, Charles, at one time a Lieuten- ant in Cornwallis's Regiment, from which he sold out, joined the Prince, and became Adjutant- General to the Jacobite army. There was, too, Lachlan Mackintosh, a merchant of Inverness, who, abandoning the counter for the field of war, had become Lieutenant-Colonel of the Clan Chattan Regiment. An active and enthusiastic Jacobite, he is reported to have enlisted many men. Then, there was Bailie John Stuart, al- ways an ardent Jacobite, who, probably on the Prince's appearance at Inverness, put his fortune to the touch, joined the Jacobite army as a volunteer, and made himself " very active" in the Prince's service. These were all men well known in the town, but there was many another besides. We know, for example, of John Gumming, described as a "Residenter" (a good old word still happily with us), who volunteered and got an officer's 14 Prince Charlie's Pilot. commission ; of Hugh Fraser, a merchant in the town, who acted as an Adjutant, and was killed, probably at Culloden ; of Alexander Grant, a writer, who laid aside the pen for the sword, and received a Captain's commission ; of John Mac- arthur, a brewer, who marched with the army into England, and was subsequently taken prisoner and cast into Carlisle gaol ; of Donald Macdonald, also a brewer, who, though a Chelsea pensioner, did not hesitate to carry arms as a Lieutenant in the Prince's army ; of John Mac- lean, another writer who found an officer's sword more to his liking than the pen ; and of Alex- ander Macdonald, another residenter, who served as a volunteer. But, truth to tell, the good folk of Inverness required no encouragement to show their Jacobite sympathies. The coming of the Prince's army enabled them to come out in their true colours, and the presence of their fighting fellow-townsmen only served to stimulate the enthusiasm for the Jacobite cause which the great majority of them undoubtedly felt. The boys of the Grammar School, needless to say, were among the most ardent of Prince Charlie's supporters. The fathers of many of them were out with the Prince, hardly one of them but had a brother or uncle or cousin carrying arms in his service. Day by day as The Coming of the Pilot. 15 they went down Church Street to the Grammar School in Dunbar's Hospital they passed the Prince's lodging, and many a time, doubtless, they saw him and cheered him to their heart's content. Among them, probably, was young Lachlan Mackintosh, who had made an adventu- rous journey to Moyhall to warn the Prince on the night of Lord London's attempted surprise, and among them certainly was Murdoch MacJeod, son of Donald Macleod, tenant of Gualtergill, on Loch-Dunvegan in the island of Skye. Murdoch's father had not gone out, nor had his chief, and only a few weeks before many of Murdoch's friends and relations were in Inverness with Lord London's army. But that did not damp the boy's enthusiasm. If his chief and his own people had not gone out there were many gallant Macleods serving with the Prince, and, doubt- less, when Lord London's army was in Inverness Murdoch knew as well as anybody that if the rank and file of the clan had their way they would have been fighting for the Prince, not against him. Then one fine day, when Lord Loudon's army was still in Inverness, Murdoch's father came to town. He had come to take a cargo of meal to Skye, but the weather proving stormy, and the company in which he found himself 16 Prince Charlie's Pilot. doubtless proving vastly entertaining, he pro- longed his stay until the day of the Jacobites' arrival. Even then he betrayed no desire to go away. Meeting his own chief, the Laird of Macleod, on the bridge, he resisted even his commands to leave Inverness. They argued the matter until, when near the gate of the bridge, they began to hear the pipes of the Prince's army playing very briskly. Whereupon the Laird thought it well to argue no longer, and betook himself hastily away. Donald proceeded into the town, where presently he met the Macdonalds of Glencoe, who took him prisoner and demanded his broad- sword. Donald was not very willing to part with his trusty weapon, and, luckily for him, the old Laird of Mackinnon came up when the argument was still in progress. Mackinnon recognised him at once, took him by the hand, asked very kindly for his welfare, assured the party that Donald was an honest man, and offered to go bail for him. Whereupon Donald was allowed to keep his claymore and depart with his friendly neighbour. After this, accord- ing to his own story, he had no great inclination to leave Inverness, but sauntered about among his good friends and acquaintances in the army. The Pilot's Son. 17 From all of which it is very plain to see on which side his sympathy lay. Early in April ^Eneas Macdonald, brother of Kinlochmoidart, was sent by the Prince to Barra in order to recover and transport to Inver- ness about 380 in gold, which had been landed on the island in the previous December. For his companion and pilot he chose Donald, and a week or two before the Battle of Culloden the two set out on their dangerous mission across a sea "swarming with sloops of war, boats and yawls full of militia." The die was now de- finitely cast. Donald had for good or ill made up his mind to join his fortunes with those of the Prince. There was one person at least who regarded Donald's decision with enthusiastic approval, and that was his son Murdoch. No doubt he chafed greatly at being left at school in Inverness when his father departed on such high adventure in the Prince's cause, but after all he had his com- pensations. There was first and foremost the Prince himself, whom Murdoch worshipped with all a boy's fervid devotion. Then there was the army, the continual going and coming of armed men, the tales of the fights of Prestonpans and Falkirk, the talk of the doings at Edinburgh, ard of the wonders of England, the expectation 18 Prince Charlie's Pilot. of coming battle, and all the glow and anticipa- tion of coming victory. And there were his own friends and neighbours from Skye with the army, and his clansmen who had risked all for the Prince the gallant Old Trojan, Macleod of Bernera, and the brave sons of Raasay among others. It was all one long round of excitement for Murdoch, and we may be sure he did not trouble the Grammar School very much just then. At last came news that the enemy was really approaching, that the decisive battle could not long be delayed. Inverness was afire with excitement, armed men hurried through her streets, the sound of the great war-pipes filled the air. Murdoch could no longer be restrained. The good Macleod blood in him was roused to boiling point, the prospect of immediate battle swept him away in a frenzy of enthusiasm, and so the boy of 15, in the quaint expressive words of his father, " got himself provided in a clay- more, dirk, and pistol, ran off from the school, and took his chance in the field of Culloden Battle." There is something in the picture of the gallant young school-boy that strikes the im- agination. We feel we should like to know how he got himself provided " in the claymore, dirk, The Flight from Culloden. 19 and pistol," and how he conducted himself in the field of battle. There is something both of boy and of Highland warrior in that touch which tells us of the claymore, the dirk, and the pistol, and we may be sure that in the adventures which befell him after the battle, the treasured weapons were not suffered to be cast aside. For if we do not know what Murdoch did on Drum- mossie Moor, we do know of the adventures that came his way thereafter. The day was lost and won, and Prince Charlie was in flight with 30,000 on his head. We know how he crossed the Nairn at Faillie, and how, riding by Aberarder and Farraline, he reached Gortuleg House, and met for the first and last time the arch-plotter, Lord Lovat. Thence, by Fort- Augustus, he rode to Invergarry Castle, which he reached in the small hours of the morning after the battle, and, after some hours' rest, proceeded by Loch Arkaig to Glen- Pean, where he spent the night. Next day, the 18th of April, late in the afternoon, he started on foot across the hills for Glen-Morar, and arrived on the following day, utterly tired out, at a small house near a wood on the Braes of Morar. On the 20th he walked by Glen- Beasdale to Borrodale, and either at Borrodale 20 Prince Charlie's Pilot. House or in the woods in the vicinity he spent the next five days in comparative safety. Meanwhile JEneas Macdonald and Donald Macleod had safely, though not without in- numerable adventures, run the gauntlet of the sloops of war, and the boats and yawls full of militia, and landed with the gold in Kinloch- moidart. There they remained for four or five days, and were thinking of setting out for Inver- ness with the treasure, when a letter arrived from the Prince conveying the news of Culloden, and ordering ^neas Macdonald to meet him at Borrodale. Thither, accordingly, ^Eneas hurried, and thither, on April the 21st, Donald Macleod, in answer to a summons from the Prince, also betook himself. When he came to Borrodale, the first man he met was the Prince in a wood all alone. On seeing Donald approaching " Are you Donald Macleod of Gualtergill in Skye ? " asked the Prince. " Yes," answered Donald, " I am the same man, may it please your Majesty, at your service. What is your pleasure with me ? " " Then," said the Prince, " you see, Donald, I am in distress. I therefore throw myself into your bosom, and let you do with me what you like. I hear you are an honest man and fit to be trusted." Prince and Pilot. 21 In after days when Donald told this story to Bishop Forbes, the worthy Bishop says, " he grat sore, the tears came running down his cheeks," and he said, " Who the deil could help greeting when speaking on such a sad subject." Is it any wonder that Prince Charlie was served with fervid devotion when he inspired in his followers such a spirit as that ? And served by Donald Macleod with a devotion and whole- heartedness that knew no discouragement he was. The Prince wished Donald to carry letters from him to Sir Alexander Macdonald and the Laird of Macleod. Donald was staggered, as he well might be. The Prince explained that he was really convinced that these gentlemen, in spite of all they had done (and they had done a good deal), would do all in their power to pro- tect him. This was altogether too much for Donald, and he told the Prince plainly that he would not carry the letters. He would not undertake the task if he were to be hung for refusing. " What," said he, " does not your Excellency know that these men have played the rogue to you altogether, and will you trust them for all that! No, you mauna do it." In the end Donald's arguments prevailed, and abandoning his intention of throwing himself 22 Prince Charlie's Pilot. upon the protection of Sir Alexander Macdonald and Macleod, the Prince agreed to seek refuge in the Hebrides in the hope that there a ship might be found to carry him to France, or, failing that, to Orkney. To Donald the care of the expedi- tion was entrusted, and he straightway set about finding a boat suitable for the purpose. A better and a trustier guide could not have been found. He had known the West Coast and the Islands all his life, he was a sailor born and bred, and he had already given ample proof of his devotion. In spite of all that had happened he was still ready, as he said, to do anything in the world for the Prince, and to run any risk ; and so, " he most willingly undertook to do his best in the service he now proposed." Meanwhile, what of young Murdoch, whom we left with claymore, dirk, and pistol, bravely taking his chance in the field of Culloden Battle? Like young Kinlochmoidart, who declared for Prince Charlie when his brother and Clan- ranald and others of the chiefs still held back, Murdoch's devotion was personal to the Prince himself. It was Prince Charlie of the glamorous personality, the romantic leader of a gallant campaign, the beau-ideal of chivalry and daring, who had captivated his young imagination, and now, when the battle was irretrievably lost, it A Dramatic Meeting. 23 was to him he turned. Others might seek safety in flight hither and thither, but for Murdoch where the Prince was there would he be. And so he found means to trace the road the Prince had taken, and followed him from place to place, with a courage and a devotion that have some- thing in them at once pathetic and sublime. How he did it unfortunately we do not know. But one likes to imagine the hero-worshipping youngster, still clinging to his claymore, his dirk, and his pistol, following in the footsteps of his Prince, and coming at last to his idol's feet. For so it was. Whether on foot or on horse, whether trudging manfully over mountain and moor, or riding perchance on the horse of some unfortunate who lay in death on Culloden battlefield, Murdoch made his way to distant Borrodale, and when his father went to arrange for a boat to carry the Prince to safety, he was startled to find the son whom he had left, as he thought, at his books in the Grammar School at Inverness. It must have been a dramatic meeting, the father, who had already put all to the touch for the Prince, meeting on this desolate part of the West Coast his son in arms and a fugitive, yet inspired by the same spirit which was at that very moment leading the father to risk life and 24 Prince Charlie's Pilot. fortune in a desperate effort to save the Prince from his enemies. "And this was the way," said Donald to Bishop Forbes, " that 1 met wi* my poor boy." HOW THE PRINCE AND HIS COMPANIONS FARED ON STORMY SEAS. III. HOW THE PRINCE AND HIS COM- PANIONS FARED ON STORMY SEAS. DONALD, on whom the life and fortunes of the Prince now depended, lost no time in obtaining a boat. Borrodale's son John, who had taken part in the rising, had not been heard of since the Battle of Culloden, but a stout eight- oared boat which belonged to him was put at the disposal of the Prince and his companions. Then a crew had to be found. Here was Murdoch's opportunity, and of course he jumped at it. If he could serve Prince Charlie in no other capacity, he could at least pull an oar in the boat which was to bear him to safety, so he became a member of that gallant little company which served the Hope of the Stuarts so faith- fully, and to whom he owed so much. Their names deserve to be remembered so long as the story of the '45 has power to stir men's blood. The oarsmen were Roderick Macdonald, Lachlan Macmurrich, Roderick Maccaskill, John Mac- donald, Duncan Roy, Alexander Macdonald, 28 Prince Charlie s Pilot. Edward Burke, and the intrepid boy of fifteen, young Murdoch Highlanders all inspired by the true Highland spirit. At the helm was staunch old Donald Macleod, with the snows of 68 winters on his head ; at his feet lay Prince Charlie, and scattered about the boat were the Prince's companions, Captain O'Sulli- van, Captain O'Neil, and Allan Macdonald, of the family of Clanranald, a clergyman of the Church of Rome, who had abandoned the paths of peace for the fields of war. It was in the twilight of a Saturday even- ing, the 26th of April 1746, that the little company entered on the first stage of their adventurous voyage. Donald Macleod had made every preparation for the journey, and knpwing what manner of perils they had to encounter had taken the precaution of laying on board a firlot of meal, and a pot wherein to boil it should the necessity arise. From which it is clear that Donald, at least, was entering on the adventure with his eyes open to all its risks. As evening drew on Donald began to dislike the looks of the weather, and by the time the moment came for embarking, he was so certain a wild storm was brewing that he begged the Prince not to set out that night. "I see it coining," said he, in answer to the Prince's A Night of Tempest. 29 question, but Prince Charlie not being endowed with the weather lore of the Highlander saw it not, and insisted on embarking. So as darkness was falling the little party went on board the boat, which lay hard by Borrodale House in Loch-nan-Uamh, a spot full of memories for the Royal fugitive, for here he had landed just nine months before. Fate surely never played an unkinder trick than when she led the Prince, who had gambled so bravely for a crown, to leave in desperate flight the land whose throne he had shaken, at the very spot where, full of high hopes and on high adventure bent, he had first set foot in the kingdom of his fathers. Donald Macleod's fears of a wild night were soon justified. They had not rowed very far when a violent tempest arose, the worst, said Donald afterwards, he had ever experienced on the coast of Scotland. The wind blew a hurri- cane, rain came down in torrents, thunder roared incessantly, and flash upon flash of lightning illumined the storm-tossed scene. As time went on the storm grew worse and worse, till it seemed as if nothing could save them. In this strait the Prince " wanted much to be at land again," and asked Donald to steer directly for the rock which runs for three miles along the shore of Loch-nan-Uamh. " For," said he, " I had rather 3.0 Prince Charlie's Pilot face cannons and muskets than be in such a storm as this," But to accede to his request was impossible. It would have meant turning right in the teeth of the gale, and if, by any chance, they succeeded in reaching the neighbourhood of the rocks, nothing could save the boat from being stove in and themselves from being dashed to pieces. Donald, good old sailor that he was, was going to take no risks of that kind. He saw clearly where alone their hope of escape lay, though a slender hope it was. To the Prince's anxious question what had he a mind to do, Donald made fine answer " Why," said he, "since we are here we have nothing for it, but, under God, to set out to sea directly. Is it not as good for us to be drowned in clean water as to be dabhed in pieces upon a rock, and to be drowned too ? " So out to sea they set, with Donald, a vigi- lant heroic figure, steadfast at the helm. All was now "hush and silence" in the boat. Not one word was uttered as they were carried tempestu- ously along " expecting every moment to be overwhelmed with the violence of the waves, and to sink down to the bottom." To make matters worse they had neither pump, nor compass, nor In Wretched Plight. 31 lantern with them, and the night turned so pitch dark that for the greater part of the way they knew not where they were. Their course, too, was a perilous one. To the left lay in succession the islands of Eigg, Rum, and Canna. To the right, for many miles, was Skye. In the pitch darkness that prevailed they might find them- selves at any moment flung on one or other of these inhospitable coasts. But, " as God would have it," said Donald in all reverence, " by peep of day we discovered ourselves to be on the coast of the Long Isle, and we made directly to the nearest land, which was Rossinish, in the Island of Benbecula," It was not, perhaps, the landing-place Donald would have chosen, but their plight was such that there was nothing else for it. For eight hours they had been tossed about at the mercy of wind and wave ; they were, everyone of them, soaked to the skin, cold, hungry, wet, and miserable ; and the gale had not yet blown itself out. In such weather and on such a coast to effect a safe landing was no easy task, but, thanks to Donald's skill, it was at last, though with great difficulty, accomplished, the whole party getting safely ashore, and the boat being hauled up on dry land out of reach of the sea. Eight hours had passed since they had embarked, 32 Prince Charlie's Pilot. and in that time they had been driven a distance of 80 miles. The storm continued to rage for four hours after they landed, but, luckily, they found an uninhabited hut into which they crowded. A fire of driftwood was quickly lighted, round which they dried their soaking clothes and warmed their chilled bodies, while an old sail was spread on the bare ground to serve as a bed for the Prince, who, after all he had come through, " was very well pleased with it, and slept soundly." Then was old Donald's foresight in providing a pot and a firlot of meal abund- antly justified. Other food there was none, but by and bye some of the party, going out to forage, came on a cow grazing peacefully not very far away, and in no long time there was beef as well as meal for the pot. HOW THEY FELL AMONG FRIENDS AND WERE IN DANGER FROM FOES. IV. HOW THEY FELL AMONG FRIENDS AND WERE IN DANGER FROM FOES. THE day passed quietly. They were in Clan- ranald's country ; they must for the time being have given the slip to their pursuers ; and it was the Sabbath. After such a night of storm they might, therefore, well be excused if they thought their presence was not likely to be observed. As it happened, however, a herd of Clanranald's had seen the strangers, and he hastened to his master's house, seven miles away, with the news. Unfortunately there was that day enjoying the hospitality of the chief a Pres- byterian minister, in whose narrow soul the chivalry of his race found no abode the Rev. John Macaulay, minister of South Uist, and grandfather of Lord Macaulay. The herd came in full of his news. A band of richly dressed strangers had landed at Ros&inish and taken refuge in the empty hut. So ran his tale, and neither Clanranald nor Macaulay had much difficulty in guessing who the strangers were. 36 Prince Charlie's Pilot. But each kept his suspicions to himself, and each, unknown to the other, sent a messenger to enquire who the storm-tossed wayfarers might be. Macaulay's messenger, passing himself off as coming from Clanranald, learned that the strangers were the Prince and his party. He also discovered that there was a plan afoot to procure a ship at Stornoway, whence, in the guise of shipwrecked mariners, the fugitives were to sail for France or Orkney. Back to the minister he hastened with the news, and Mac- aulay, unworthy scion of a gallant clan, straight- way hastened to make arrangements for the capture of the Prince. It was not his fault that he escaped the eternal disgrace which success would have attached to his name. As soon as Clanranald's messenger returned with his tidings the old chief set out hot foot for Kossinish. As companion he had the parish schoolmaster, his children's tutor, Neil Mac- Eachainn, who was bye and bye to render the Prince devoted service, and who was in the after days to give to the service of his adopted country, France, his son, the gallant Marshal Macdonald. Clanranald found the fugitives deep in the discussion of their plans, and was forthwith ad- Friends and Foes. 37 mitted to their confidence. The old chief ap- proved of the Stornoway scheme, and as it was advisable to lose as little time as possible, it was arranged to set sail as soon as evening began to fall. It was now Tuesday, the 29th April. Nearly a fortnight had elapsed since the fatal day of Culloden, and the seas were known to be alive with Government vessels on the look- out for fugitives. So Clanranald bade the Prince farewell, and the little party embarked once again in the eight-oared boat which had served them so bravely. It was Donald's intention to make for the Island of Scalpa, where he had good friends with whom he hoped the Prince might lie in safety until the ship at Stornoway was ready. Accordingly they bore northwards through the night, and two hours before day- break they landed on Scalpa. According to the agreed-on plan 'Sullivan now became the figurehead of the party. He was the master of the shipwrecked vessel and the Prince was his son. Donald's friend, whose hospitality they were now to seek, was a Camp- bell and a Hanoverian, but Donald vouched for him, and to his house accordingly they went with their tale of shipwreck. They reached it a little before break of day, tired and cold and hungry after their all-night journey, and cer- 38 Prince Charlie's Pilot. tainly to that extent at least looking their part. They were received with true Highland hospi- tality, Donald's immediate request for a large fire being at once granted, and the best enter- tainment the house could provide being placed before them. Campbell was married to a sister of a staunch Jacobite, Donald Roy Macdonald, brother of Baleshair. She certainly knew who her visitors were, and it would have been strange if her husband had remained in ignorance. In- deed, in Buchanan's "Travels in the Western Hebrides" (1793) it is stated that he did much more than merely close his eyes to their identity. " It was well known," says Buchanan, " that this gentleman was strictly loyal and well attached to the reigning family, yet the enormous sum of 30,000 could not bribe him to act the infamous part required." According to Buchanan, an armed party, accompanied by the Rev. Aulay Macaulay, father of the beforementioned Rever- end John of evil memory, landed on the island determined to secure the person of the Prince. "Mr Campbell scorned the bribe, and expostu- lated much against the infamous attempt .... But when he found that they still persisted in spite of reason he assured them that he himself would fall in his cause rather than give up the man that entrusted him with his life, or entail Highland Chivalry. 39 shame on his posterity. With that view he despatched his son to give them intelligence of their danger." Whereupon the minister and his friends " sneaked off from the island, ashamed and disappointed at the loss of the money, which they already had devoured in their thoughts, and divided to every man in his due proportion." The story bears the stamp of truth upon it, and is quite in keeping with all we know of Camp- bell and the Macaulays. Donald Macleod stayed only one night in Scalpa. On the 1st of May he borrowed a sail- ing-boat from Campbell, and taking with him young Murdoch and the rest of the crew, he set out for Stornoway. It certainly says a lot for the confidence he reposed in his Hanoverian friend that he was not afraid to leave his preci- ous charge, whether his identity was known or unknown, in his keeping. But of a truth Donald was a sound judge, and moreover he knew his own people. It should never be forgotten that Prince Charlie owed his escape to Hanoverian as well as to Jacobite, that men who had refused to carry arms for him when fortune seemed to smile on the great ad- venture, risked their all to save him when he was a hunted, helpless, fugitive ; that women whose nearest and dearest were in arms for the 40 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Government, risked life and reputation, risked home and fortune, in order that for him a way of escape might be found. It was to political foes, as much as to political friends that Prince Charlie owed his escape. Nay, it was to political foes even more than to political friends, for when the doors were closing inexorably upon him it was Hugh Macdonald of Armadale and Flora, his step-daughter, who opened them, and it was Kingsburgh who gave him asylum in the hour of his dire need. That is the supreme fact in the story of Prince Charlie's wanderings. It is that which lifts the tale of Highland chivalry to its greatest heights. That his friends should aid him, should risk life and all that life held is grand but not surprising ; that among the poor and the outcast and the hunted no man should have been found to betray him in spite of the offer of wealth untold or the threat of savage vengeance, is an eternal tribute to the nobility of the Highland nature. But that those who were his political foes should save him, in the full knowledge of the price they might have to pay, is sublime. It is when judged by that standard that the Macaulays arid their like fail dismally, it is when judged by that standard that they stand condemned at the bar of High- land history. WHAT BEFEL AT STORNOWAY. V. WHAT BEFEL AT STORNOWAY. WE left Donald and his son Murdoch voy- aging to Stornoway. The latter rau&t have had adventures enough during the fort- night that had elapsed since he had taken his chance in the field of Culloden Battle to satisfy even the most romantic boy. But Murdoch was of the true heroic breed. Never once did the youth of 1 5 flinch in the face of the dangers which beset him, and he stuck by his father and the Prince through good and ill report in a manner and with a courage which are beyond praise. They arrived in Stornoway in due time, and Donald straightway set about his business. A ship was after some trouble found, a bargain was struck, and on the evening of the 3rd of May the Prince received by the hand of a trusty messenger the joyful news of the success of the mission. Next day, accordingly, he left Scalpa, accompanied by O'Sullivan, O'Neil, Edward or Ned Burke, and a guide. They landed at the head of Loch-Seaforth, whence a long walk lay 44 Prince Charlie's Pilot. before them to Stornoway. In good spirits they set out ; but the guide lost his way, night came down, and in the darkness they wandered into a tangle of rivers and mosses and bogs, from which they were unable to extricate themselves until many weary hours had passed. At last, utterly worn out and soaked to the skin, they reached a spot two miles from Stornoway, where they took shelter under a rock on the moor of Arnish, while the guide hurried to the town to find Donald Macleod and inform him of their plight. Donald lost no time in hastening to the aid of the fugitives with a welcome supply of refresh- ments, and straightway conducted them to the house of Mrs Mackenzie of Kildun, hard by IStornoway, where they were received with true Highland hospitality. At last their troubles seemed well-nigh over, the hour of escape was close at hand. But it was not to be. At almost the last moment the door closed in their faces, and they became wanderers by sea and land once more. It happened in this wise. The Rev. Aulay Macaulay, minister of Harris, whose attempt to seize the Prince at Scalpa had so signally mis- carried, had warned the Rev. Colin Mackenzie, minister of Lewis, of the fugitives' intention to obtain a ship at Stornoway, an intention which In the Midst of Alarms. 45 he had learned from his spying son, the minister of South Uist. Thus it was that Donald Mac- leod experienced much difficulty in obtaining a vessel, but when he sent word to the Prince on the 3rd of May he had succeeded in purchasing a small brig for the exorbitant sum of 500. When he returned from Kildun in the forenoon of the 5th of May, however, to make the final arrangements, he found that his plans had gone agley, and that Stornoway was in an uproar. The streets were full of excited people, two or three hundred Mackenzies had assembled in arms in front of the principal inn, and a drum was beating the assembly. To use his own words he " could not understand at all what was the matter that occasioned such a sudden rising of men," but shrewdly guessing that it had something to do with the Prince, he went boldly into the room where the gentlemen were " that had taken upon themselves the rank of officers," and demanded to know what was amiss. His reception was not pleasant. He was greeted with an outburst of abuse and reproach ; he had brought "this plague" upon them; and " everyone of them cursed him very bitterly and gave him very abusive language." Donald was amazed, as well he might be, but at last he gathered that they had been " well assured that 46 Prince Charlie's Pilot. the Prince was near at hand with five hundred men ; that he intended to seize by force a vessel at Stornoway, and that this would expose the good people of the town to the hazard of losing both their cattle and their lives." Donald was filled with righteous wrath, but he kept himself in hand, and very gravely asked how such a notion could ever have entered into their heads. " Where, I pray you," said he, " could the Prince, in his present condition, get 500 or 100 men together ? I believe the men are mad ! Has the devil possessed you altogether ? " The devil had not, but the Macaulays, father and son, had, as he was very plainly told. Whereupon Donald, in vast indignation, cursed these informers very heartily, " and spared not to give them their proper epithets in strong terms." Then, his feelings slightly relieved, he bent himself to the task of persuasion. "Well, then," said he, " since you know already that the Prince is upon your island, I acknowledge the truth of it ; but then he is so far from having any number of men with him that he has only two companions with him, and when T am there I make the third. And let me tell you further, gentlemen, if Seaforth himself were here, by God, he durst not put a hand to the Prince's breast." Attitude of the Mackenzies. 47 It must have been a picturesque scene. Donald, stern and indignant with flashing eye and bitter words, fronting the roomful of Mac- kenzies, while outside the drum beat and the townspeople stood to arms. Truth to tell the Mackenzies were in a difficult position, veritably between the devil and the deep sea They had had enough of rebellion in the '15, when the title and estates of Seaforth had been forfeited ; and though the latter had been restored to the Earl's son, Lord Fortrose, the ancient title was still in abeyance, though Lord Fortrose was known all over the north as Seaforth. Moreover, the clan had remained loyal during the '45 ; it had even supplied men to Lord London's Northern Army, and however much the secret sympathy of the Mackenzies might be with the Stuart cause, they were committed to the support of its enemies. Their chief, too, had issued stringent orders to them to remain loyal. He had far to much at stake to do anything, or even to connive at anything, which might be construed into re- bellion. Old Donald was quite well aware of this and appreciated the difficulty in which the men of Stornoway found themselves. With true Highland chivalry he desired Bishop Forbes " to remark particularly for the honour of the honest Mackenzies in the Lews (notwithstanding the 48 Prince Charlie's Pilot. vile abusive language they had given him) that they declared they had no intention to do the Prince the smallest hurt, or to meddle with him at present in any shape." They were merely " mighty desirous he might leave them and go to the Continent (i.e., to the mainland), or any- where else he should think convenient." And Ned Burke was equally emphatic. " The Mac- kenzies," he said, " proved very favourable and easy, for they could have taken us if they had pleased." It is impossible not to sympathise with the Mackenzies. So far, much against the grain probably, they had kept clear of the rebellion, and now they feared, with good reason, that they were to be made the unwilling instrument of the Prince's escape. They did not wish the Prince to be captured, but they had no desire to feel the weight of the Government's wrath for supplying him with the means of escape. In those days the most innocent actions were too often construed into complicity with rebels, and the Mackenzies judged they were doing enough when they disregarded the golden opportunity which offered of capturing the Prince. Here he was, a helpless fugitive, in their very grasp, witli 30,000 on his head. They had but to stretch forth their hands and the great prize was theirs. The Honour of the Mackenzies. 49 But they made no effort in that direction. They were nominally his foes. In one sense, to cap- ture him was their manifest duty. By letting him go they were running the risk of the Government's wrath. But to their honour they took that risk. They would not aid his escape ; they would not permit the bargain about the ship to be carried out; they would not even lend Donald a pilot to conduct him over to the mainland. But no Mackenzie would go a yard to capture him, not even though 30,000 and a Government's favour awaited the doer of the deed. Well might Donald ask Bishop Forbes to remark this particularly "for the honour of the honest Mackenzies." They were the Prince's enemies, but they let him go. And with good reason did Donald curse, in the bitterness of his spirit, " that devil of a minister who did us a' the mischief in his power," for had the Macaulays, father or son, acted according to the principles of the religion they professed, or had they even acted up to the standard of their poorer neigh- bours in the Islands, there cannot be any doubt that no obstacle would have been placed in the way of Prince Charlie's sailing from Stornoway. Thus, by the strange irony of circumstances, the Macaulays are unconsciously responsible for the halo of romance which has grown round the 50 Prince Charlie's Pilot. head of the man they sought to hound to his death, and for a tale of heroism, of devotion, and of chivalry to which there is no parallel in history. HOW THEY BECAME WANDERERS ONCE MORE. VI. HOW THEY BECAME WANDERERS ONCE MORE. WHERE meantime was young Murdoch, and what part was he playing in the troubles of the 5th of May ? He had been left with the boat when his father had gone to Arnish, and soon he had worries enough of his own to absorb all his energies. The men who had manned the oars throughout the adven- turous voyage consisted, as we have seen, of Murdoch himself, six Highlanders from Borro- dale, and Edward or Ned Burke. The last named deserves special mention. A native of North Uist, with but a scanty store of English, he had betaken himself to Edinburgh, there to earn his living as a carrier of sedan chairs. When the Jacobite army entered the city, Ned Burke, eagerly answering to the call of his blood, joined the Prince, served throughout the rest of the campaign, and after the Battle of Culloden acted as Prince Charlie's guide from the battlefield to the West Coast, a duty which he performed with great gallantry and devotion. 54 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Ned remained thereafter with the Prince, sharing his dangers for upwards of two months, until at last, on the 20th of June, it was deemed advisable for the little company, who had gone through so much together, to separate, and Burke, the Macleods, and the other companions of Prince Charlie's Island wanderings bade him a sad farewell. Ned succeeded in eluding cap- ture, and after the Act of Indemnity was passed, he returned to Edinburgh and resumed his occu- pation of carrying the city bucks and dames in sedan chairs. He died in 1751 while still engaged in this humble work. "Honest Ned Burke," Bishop Forbes calls him, and as "Honest Ned Burke " he lives in history. No man ever deserved the proud title better. Think of this man, a humble Highland chair man in the city of Edinburgh, unable either to read or to write, the guide and companion of a Prince on whose head was a price of 30,000, the sharer of his arduous toils and his pressing dangers, carrying often the fugitive's life in the hollow of his hand, yet never faltering in his devotion, never failing in the hour of danger, and returning in the end to finish his days at the lowly occupation which he had deserted to follow Prince Charlie's fortunes. Times without number he had but to stretch forth his hand, and wealth beyond the Doubts and Fears. 55 dreams of avarice was his. Times without num- ber he had the opportunity of stepping from days and nights of dire danger to years of safety and comfort. Yet he wavered not, and he died, as he had lived, a poor, lowly man. There is a simple grandeur in the picture of this friend and companion of a Prince, this Bayard sans peur et sans reproche if ever there was one, carrying the beaux and belles of Edinburgh in their chairs like any ordinary poverty-stricken mortal, before which the imagination can only bow in rever- ence. Ned Burke, however, had riot accompanied Donald Macleod in Campbell's boat from Scalpa to Stornoway. He had stayed with the Prince, probably because neither O'Sullivan nor O'Neil, Prince Charlie's remaining companions, spoke Gaelic, and throughout the anxious hours of the 5th of May he was with the Royal fugitive at Kildun. To young Murdoch, therefore, fell the task of looking after the boat and the boat's crew in Stornoway, and a difficult task he soon found it to be. His father had gone in the early hours of the morning, and very soon after his departure Stornoway was in a tumult. Men were rushing about with arms in their hands, drums were beating, noisy groups were gathering in the neighbourhood of the boat, excited Mac- 56 Prince Charlie's Pilot. kenzies kept accusing Murdoch and his com- panions of bringing the Prince and 500 men down upon them, and all manner of wild talk and threats was being indulged in. In the midst of such excitements, the day drew on. On Murdoch's young shoulders a grave responsibility rested. That some serious hitch in their plans had occurred was only too apparent, and if the worst came to the worst the boat was their only means of escape. So he lay all day in the harbour a prey to conflicting doubts and fears. Rumour succeeded rumour, men came and went, definite news of his father or of the Prince there was none, and sudden and deadly danger seemed never far away. Then came what must have appeared to Murdoch as the crowning misfortune. Some of the boatmen began to show signs of weakening. They had passed through dangers enough during the past ten days, and now they had hundreds of armed Mackenzies threatening them with open violence, and filling their ears with fear- some tales of what would befal them if they con- tinued with the Prince. By this time tales of the awful atrocities committed by Cumberland's men had penetrated to the islands, and we may be sure they lost nothing in the telling to the men of Borrodale. It was little wonder some of To Sea once more. 57 them began to wish they were well out of the adventure. After all they had done their share nobly. They had faced danger by sea and land, they had already had far more of hardship and of peril than they had counted on. They had, too, their wives and families to think of, to say nothing of themselves. And now they were faced with unknown dangers, greater probably than any they had passed through. In vain Murdoch expostulated. Two of the Borrodale men were past persuading. They had done all that could fairly be demanded of them, and as the day drew to its close they took themselves quietly away. Donald meanwhile had returned to Kildun with his ill news, and there he found the Prince in a fever of expectation, which had prevented him from taking the sleep he so sorely needed. His disappointment at having the cup dashed from his lips at the last moment was naturally great, but urgent though the necessity was for immediate flight, tired nature could no longer be denied, and he resolutely refused to set out again until he had had a night's repose. Donald reluctantly was compelled to agree, and hardened old warrior that he was, straightway set about getting things ready for an early start. To Murdoch, waiting anxiously in the fast- falling 58 Prince Charlie's Pilot. darkness in Stornoway, word was brought perhaps by Donald himself, that they were safe from danger for the moment, but that they must take to the boat again at daybreak. So at mid- night the boat, with its attenuated crew, was brought round to just below Kildun House ; a cow which had been killed during the day was cut up, and its head and various other portions placed on board ; two pecks of meal and plenty of sugar and brandy \vere added to the store ; and at the last moment their hospitable hostess handed Ned Burke "a junt of butter betwixt two fardles of bread." Thus provisioned, and with a companion of their former voyage in the shape of a wooden plate for making the meal into dough, they set out on their travels once more, at 8 o'clock on the morning of Tuesday, the 6th of May. But whereas formerly they had voyaged northward to Stornoway and hope, they were now returning southward to Benbecula, and they knew not what. ON A DESERT ISLAND. VII. ON A DESERT ISLAND. Now began for Murdoch the most desperate stage of his adventures in the Prince's cause. He had faced death in many forms in the field of Cullodeu Battle, he had since run great risks by sea and land, but he had not yet known what it was to be in constant danger by day and night, to be the quarry of eager, cruel men, to know no respite from relentless pursuit, and to- feel the toils ever tightening round his com- panions and himself, and especially round the Prince, whose safety was their chief concern. For the hunt was now up in earnest : the blood- hounds had scented the quarry from afar, and to the Western seas were hastening sailors and soldiers, ships of war, and companies of redcoats r all fired by the one ambition, that of capturing the fugitive on whose head were 30,000 pieces of gold. Everywhere the hunters swarmed. Their ships and boats covered the waters round the islands, soldiers and militia spread them- selves in eager search over the face of the land. The Prince and his companions carried their 62 Prince Charlie's Pilot. lives literally in the hollow of their hands. Only by the most unceasing vigilance, the most un- remitting skill, and the most unfaltering courage could they by any possibility win through. It was a situation which called for qualities of the highest, and in it the intrepid boy of 15 proved himself a man among men. The little company was reduced to ten, when, after trying to fling their foes on a false scent by giving out that they were bound for Seaforth's country on the mainland, they left the hospitable house of Kildun. The Prince, O'Sullivan, O'Neil, Donald Macleod, Murdoch, Ned Burke, and the four remaining boatmen made up the party, but Donald Campbell's boat was lighter and easier to handle than the old eight-oared boat, so the two runaways were not missed unduly. Indeed, so superior to the old did the new boat prove, "such a fine, light, swift-sailing thing," that the Prince would not part with it when at last they came to Scalpa, where their old craft lay, and it continued to be their ark of safety so long as the little band of fugitives remained together. The start from Kildun was unpropitious. Once again the elements were against them, and they set out in the teeth of a contrary wind and a very hard gale. Great caution was neces- An Island Refuge. 63 sary, and a strict look-out was kept, for no less than four ships of war were known to be in their near neighbourhood. So southward they sailed, with Murdoch, Ned Burke, and the boatmen at the oars, keeping as close to the land as the weather permitted, in the hope that they would thus elude the notice of any vessel lying out at sea. For some hours the voyage proceeded uneventfully, nothing occurring to alarm them. Then, as they rounded Kebock Head, the four ships came into view lying off the point, but the boat, stealing along under the shelter of the land, escaped observation, and pre- sently they were able to breathe freely again. The close proximity of the warships, however, showed them the danger of holding on their southward course in the meantime, and old Donald, on whose shoulders the responsibility rested, steered the boat for the deserted island of luhbard, which lies low and desolate in the mouth of Loch-Shell. The island was a place much used by fisher- men for drying fish, and as the boat drew near its occupants could see several men engaged in this occupation. Luckily, however, a very healthy fear of the press-gang pervaded those parts, and the fishers, taking the approaching boat for a man-o' -war's, departed so hastily that 64 Prince Charlies Pilot. they left all their fish behind. This proved a veritable godsend to the wanderers, for with plenty of " good, dry fish," and a sufficiency of brandy and sugar to mix with the water of the " very good springs " which they found upon the island, they were in no danger of starvation, even should they be compelled to stay there for some time. Two things were necessary for the safe continuance of their journey favourable weather and an offing clear of the enemy's ships, Accustomed as they now were to the bufferings of the wind and sea, they were ready to take their chance of the former, but they could take no risks with the latter. The days were lengthening rapidly and the hours of darkness becoming ever shorter, so that the chances of a hostile ship espying them were by no means slight. Four days and nights were spent upon " the desert island" before it was judged safe to continue the voyage. For shelter the party slept in the rude huts which had been erected by the fishers, " little huts of houses like swine's huts," Ned Burke calls them. The best of these was of course selected for the Prince, but even it was " a low pityful thing," and " so ill-roofed that they were obliged to spread the sail of the boat over the top of it." Bedding or furni- The Fugitive Prince. 65 ture of any description, there was none, and they had only the bare ground to stretch them- selves on, " without any covering upon them at all," when they lay down to sleep. Luckily, however, they found heath and turf enough to make a fire, and on the first night they were able to warm still further their chilled bodies by converting some of their treasured brandy and sugar into hot toddy. An earthen pitcher left behind by the fishers in their sudden flight was utilised for the purpose, but on the second night, says Donald regretfully, it " by some mischance or other was broken to pieces, so that we could have no more warm punch," a remark which illustrates as well as anything the straits to which they were reduced. It is difficult sometimes for the casual reader to understand the difference between the Prince Charlie of the days before Culloden and the Prince Charlie of the months of wandering which followed the fatal battle. Though much has been written of the Prince's bearing in the days of his first success and in the days of his bitter retreat, it is round the personality of the wanderer that the web of romance has woven itself, and it is Prince Charlie the hunted fugitive, whose memory lingers still in the High- lands, and who has cast a spell which will last 66 Prince Charlie's Pilot. as long as time itself. The reason is simple. Prince Charlie, the leader of the Highland army, the head of an armed rebellion, carried great responsibilities on his shoulders, and was in the eyes of most of his followers, however gay and debonair he might sometimes be, a man apart, a Prince to be treated only with respect and reverence. Prince Charlie, the fugitive, cast care and responsibility from him like a discarded cloak, and with them cast the outward trappings of royalty. Henceforth he was far more man than Prince, and though his faithful Highlanders never forgot that he was their Prince, yet it was the man himself who laid them under that spell which has given to the world the most alluring of all its romances. For the Prince, a fugitive, forgot that he was a Prince, and remembering only that he was a man in whom the blood of youth coursed generously, gave full rein to all the gay recklessness in the face of danger, all the spirit of camaraderie, all the joy of living, which went to form so large a part of the mysterious personal charm which was the gift of the unhappy Stuart race. Already Murdoch and his companions had obtained many glimpses of this new Prince, but it was on the desert isle of luhbard that they saw him come to full fruition. During the four A Princely Cook. 67 days and four nights of their stay, he threw him- self heart and soul into every little happening. He helped Ned Burke with the cooking, he con- cocted new dishes out of their scanty store of food, he kept up their spirits with story and jest. When on the first night the brandy punch circulated, he called for toasts, giving himself " the Black Eye," Louis the Fifteenth's second daughter, for whom he seemed to have a special affection, and discoursing freely on the Court of France. A semblance of royalty was kept up at meals, it is true, but it was only a semblance, the Prince and his friends sitting on the bare ground round one large stone, which served as a table, and the boatmen squatting round another. But it was the Prince who cooked a meal of fish when all the others save Ned Burke were asleep, and it was he who, less fastidious than Ned, made him produce Mrs Mackenzie of Kildun's junt of butter from its resting-place "betwixt two fardles of bread." Ned thought the butter would not serve the purpose at all, for " it was far from being clean, the bread being crumpled into pieces and wrought in amongst it, and there- fore he thought shame to present it." But the Prince laughing at him made him produce it, and when the fish were sufficiently cooked the rest of the company were awakened to share in the 68 Prince Charlie's Pilot. entertainment. Donald, like Ned, did not like the look of the butter even in its cooked condi- tion, "for it was neither good nor clean. But the Prince told him he was very nice indeed, for that the butter would serve the turn very well at present, and he caused it to be served up." Whereupon " they made a very hearty meal of the fish and the crumbs of bread swimming among the butter." On another occasion, when Ned was pre- paring to bake some bannocks, the Prince, who was an interested onlooker, said he would have a cake of his own contriving. He told Ned " to take the brains of the cow and mingle them well in amongst the meal when making the dough," and this they would find to be very wholesome meat. His directions were obeyed, and, said Donald, " he gave orders to birsle the bannock well, or else it would not do at all." When the cake was fully fired, the Prince himself divided it among his friends, and, according to Donald, the novel royal bannock " made very good bread indeed." Thus four days and nights slipped past in an atmosphere of camaraderie and good fellow- ship which did much to restore the spirits of the little company and bind them more closely to one another and to the Prince for whom they A Princely Intention. 69 were daring so much. But their situation was very far from being secure, for at any moment one of the ships, whose sails they could descry in the distance, might think fit to land a party on the island. So when on the fifth day, the 1 Oth of May, they gazed out on a sea on which no sail was visible, they eagerly got ready for a renewal of their voyage. The boat was launched, the sail was taken from " the low, pityful hut " to which it had made a roof for the royal head ; as their provisions were nearly exhausted, two dozen of the dried fish were put on board, and after another long eager look round the horizon, the wanderers put out to sea once more. South- ward they bore, Scalpa their destination, for the Prince insisted on steering their course directly to that island, as he was determined to return thither " in order to pay his respects to honest Donald Campbell for the remarkable civilities he had shown him." Scalpa was reached without misadventure, but, as they were about to land, four men were seen coming towards them. Ned jumped ashore to reconnoitre the strangers, but not liking their looks " he thought fit to return with speed to the boat," and putting his hand on the gunwale jumped aboard, "and stayed not to converse with them." It turned out that honest Donald 70 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Campbell was not at home, he having, in the expressive words of Donald Macleod, " gone a- skulking for fear of being laid up, an account or rumour having passed from hand to hand that the Prince had been in his house, and that the landlord had entertained him kindly." So Prince Charlie's princely intention of turning aside in the midst of pressing danger to pay his respects to honest Donald Campbell for his re- markable civilities was defeated, and he sailed away from Scalpa full of regrets " at missing his hospitable friend." HOW THEY WERE CHASED BY A SHIP OF WAR. VIII. HOW THEY WERE CHASED BY A SHIP OF WAR. As the presence of the fugitives in the neighbourhood of Scalpa would now be suspected, it behoved them to make what speed they could away from its shores. But the wind had fallen completely, and Murdoch and his companions had to bend to the oars and row with vigour. Night had now fallen, and all through the hours of darkness the oarsmen toiled strenuously, till, when day broke, they found themselves many miles south of Scalpa. It was, perhaps, during this arduous night's rowing that the Prince kept up the hearts of the rowers by singing them songs, an incident which certainly happened at least once, and probably frequently, during his voyaging with Donald Macleod. Another gallant Macleod, Captain Malcolm Mac- leod of Brea, tells of how, on a subsequent occasion, the Prince sang "a merry Highland song" to encourage another crew, and Flora Macdonald, of immortal memory, has placed on record that on the voyage from the Long Island to Skye he sang " The King shall enjoy his own 74 Prince Charlie's Pilot. again," " The twenty-ninth of May," and various other songs. So in the darkness of this May night, when the weary rowers toiled at the oars, we may imagine the Prince, sitting in his usual place at the feet of old Donald, whom neither weariness nor storm nor danger could tear from his place at the helm, trilling lightsome songs to cheer the oarsmen on their way. As day broke the wind luckily rose, and the sail being hoisted, the rowers were able to get a welcome rest. They were all quite worn out and faint for lack of food, and the only food remaining was a little meal. But to tired and hungry men this was better than nothing, and they proceeded to make it into dramach or stapag by mixing it with salt water. The Prince was greatly interested in the operations. Re- marking that this was a kind of meat he had never seen before, "he behoved to try it how it would go down," and, according to old Donald, ate of it very heartily, " and much more than he could do for his life." Moreover, added the old man, " Never any meat or drink came wrong to him, for he could take a share of everything be it good, bad, or indifferent, and was always cheerful or contented in every condition." The stapag, at any rate, he termed no bad food, and when he had finished it, he opened one of the A Stern Chase. 75 few remaining bottles of brandy, and gave to every one of the delighted boatmen a dram. The dawning day had brought wind, but it also brought clanger. The brighter it grew, the more risk they ran of being espied, and as they careered along under full sail every eye was on the alert for the first sign of a vessel. Soon their fears were realised. As they were passing Loch -Fin isbay, in Harris, a warship, with all sails set, hove in view. She sighted the little boat, and immediately a long and stern chase began. Things looked to go hard with the fugitives, for a space of only two musket shots separated them from their pursuer. So Murdoch and the boatmen seized the oars again, and strained every nerve to increase the distance between them. But the warship was tenacious, and the chase went steadily on. Their chance of escape looked small. Their pursuer did not seem to be gaining on them, but neither were they shaking her off, and they could not row for ever. In this extremity the Prince cheered them greatly by his courageous words and bear- ing, and urged them to desperate efforts by assuring them that he would never be taken alive. Hours passed and miles slipped away, till, as they neared the Point of Rodel, Donald, with his usual skill, steered them into shallow, 76 Prince Charlie's Pilot. broken water, where the warship dared not follow. The pursuit for the moment was baffled, but it had lasted for nearly three leagues, and all danger was not yet passed. The pursuing vessel, though it had aban- doned the chase, had no intention of letting the fugitives escape altogether, and, as the boat stole along among the rocks and creeks, the warship followed in deeper water. To land was to invite capture. There was nothing for it but to hold on, and trust to the now fast-ebbing tide driving the warship farther out to sea, and so enabling them to lose themselves among the rocks and shallows. The warship, apparently saw this possibility, for altering her course again, she clapped on sail, and endeavoured a second time to make up with them. But the ebbing tide foiled her, and presently, to the fugitives' infinite relief, she gave up the attempt and stood out to sea. They had now to cross the Sound of Harris, a place where it would go hardly with them if they were sighted. But by the time it was necessary for them to leave the shelter of the land, the warship had disappeared, and they were able to make the dangerous crossing in safety, Benbecula was their objective, and in Clan- ranald's country they thought they could find a safe hiding-place until a sure means of escape Another Desert Island. 77 for the Prince was found. So along the east side of North Uist they coasted and past Loch- maddy, where, to their horror, another warship came into view lying inside the mouth of the loch. Again the oars were seized, and the sail stretched to its uttermost, but by this time night was beginning to fall, and the vessel, apparently, did not see them, for she made no effort to follow them, and rowing desperately they were soon out of sight. This was, for the time, their last peril ; and it was well it was, for even that gallant crew could hardly have stood the strain of another chase. So, taking full advantage of the welcome hours of darkness and of every shelter afforded by the land, they stole quietly along, until, on the following day, May the eleventh, they ran into Loch-Uskavagh, and landed on a small island lying close to the shore of Benbecula. Here they spent three nights in considerable discomfort, for they had scarcely landed when the wind veered round and blew a hard gale, and a deluge of rain came down. For shelter they had only a poor grass-keeper's bothy, " which had so laigh a door," says Ned Burke, " that we digged below the door and put heather below the Prince's knees, he being tall, to let him go the easier into the poor hut." But they 78 Prince Charlie's Pilot. bore with their discomfort philosophically even though the hut was so wretchedly small that the Prince asserted the devil had left it because he had not room enough in it for the gale which brought the rain likewise drove the enemy's ships off the coast, and as long as it lasted they were safe from unwelcome attentions from that quarter. The respite was only temporary, how- ever, and it was of urgent importance that a secure place of retreat should be found until a means of escape to France or elsewhere presented itself. Accordingly a messenger was sent to Clan- ranald to acquaint him of their condition, and the period of waiting was spent in providing themselves with food by shooting and fishing. The results were eminently satisfactory, and though they lacked the wherewithal for the proper cooking of the proceeds of their skill, they " dressed them in the best shape they could, and thought them very savoury meat." into these diversions the Prince threw himself heartily, and Donald Macleod relates how he even indulged in the joys of crab-catching. " It happened then to be low water," he says, " and one of the boatmen went in among the rocks, where he caught a large partan, and taking it up in his hand he wagged it at the Prince, who was at some distance from him. The Prince In Glen Corodale. 79 then took up a cog in his hand, and running towards the lad desired to share in his game." Unfortunately a leaf of the manuscript is missing at this point, and when the narrative resumes, Donald is engaged with more weighty matters than the tale of the Prince and the partan. Late on the second day of their stay on the island Clanranald arrived, accompanied by the laithful companion of his former visit to the Prince, Neil MacEachainn. Neil was tacksman of Glen Corodale, a small valley lying between the two highest hills in South Uist. Though it could be approached both by land and sea, it was very difficult of access either way, and had this advantage, that in the event of the Prince's hiding-place being discovered, there were two doors of escape. So after some discussion Glen Corodale was decided upon ; word was sent by Neil to his brother Ranald to have the place prepared for the Prince's coming ; and when darkness had fallen on the evening of May, the 14th, the Prince and his personal attendants set out with Neil as their guide to walk the 15 or 20 miles which lay between them and their place of retreat. The boat, however, was not abandoned. Donald undertook to bring it safely round to Corodale, and so he and Murdoch, while the Prince was tramping wearily over 80 Prince Charlie's Pilot. mountain and moor and bog, brought it, with the boatmen's aid, to the beach below the glen. It was with a feeling of supreme content that Prince Charlie arrived, at 6 o'clock in the evening of the 15th of May, at Neil Mac- Eachainn's house in Glen Corodale. Here, for the time, he was safe. In the centre of Clan- ranald's country he need fear no sudden danger, and his quarters, plain though they were, were palatial compared with the places in which he had been compelled to lay his head of late. His spirits in consequence went up with a bound, and with them came a renewal of the hope that all might yet be well. We have it, on Neil MacEachainn's own authority, that " he always flattered himself that the Highlanders were still upon foot to hinder the enemy from harassing their country, and conceived great hopes that they would be able to stand it out until they got a relief from France." So now that his own most pressing danger was past for the time, he yearned for tidings of what was befalling on the mainland, and eventually Donald Macleod, trusty and dependable always, whose stout old heart knew no fear, departed in honest Donald Campbell's boat in search of Lochiel and Murray of Broughton, with instructions to deliver certain letters, to ascertain how affairs stood, and to Donald goes to the Mainland. 81 bring back with him a much-needed supply of money and brandy. With Donald, of course, went Murdoch and the hired boatmen, but Ned Burke stayed with the Prince to attend to his personal needs in Corodale. So the greyhaired father and his schoolboy son embarked on yet another adventure in the Prince's cause, an adventure which was to bring them under the shadow of the Loch-Arkaig gold, and into con- tact with Murray of Broughton, who had not yet sold his honour for his life. HOW DONALD AND MURDOCH MET JOHN MURRAY OF BROUGHTON. AND HEARD OF THE LOCH-ARKAIG GOLD, IX. HOW DONALD AND MURDOCH MET JOHN MURRAY OF BROUGHTON, AND HEARD OF THE LOCH-ARKAIG GOLD. OF the details of Donald's voyage in quest of Lochiel and Murray we unfortunately know little, but Donald was a modest man where his own exploits were concerned. It was, however, an adventurous voyage, for he had to make his way over a sea swarming with hostile boats ; and the fact that he took eighteen days on the journey from Corodale to Loch- Arkaig and back speaks volumes for the perils he had to encounter and the care he had to exercise in order to avoid capture. He landed in Moidart, and there Murdoch was left in charge of the boat, while Donald, accompanied by a cadet of Clanranald's, James Macdonald, started in search of the Prince's friends. Now it must be remembered that the fugitives during their wanderings had received no news of the fate of the leaders of the Rebellion, or of how matters stood on the main- land. So Donald, when he landed, had a diffi- cult task before him. He had to ascertain the 86 Prince Charlie's Pilot. whereabouts of Lochiel and Murray, and he had to convey to them the Prince's letters. Neither was easy of accomplishment, for the whole country-side was terror-stricken, the redcoats having swept over it and left a trail of devasta- tion behind them. Everywhere there was deso- lation, houses burned down, crops destroyed, fertile fields laid waste, and everywhere there were companies of redcoats eager to kill or capture on the slightest excuse. Lochiel, the true stainless hero of the '45 on the Jacobite side, as was President Forbes on the Hanoverian side, had witnessed from the wilds, whither he had been compelled to betake himself, the whole of his fair country swept with fire and sword, and had seen the smoke of the burning homes of himself and his clansmen ascending to Heaven. Keppoch, Kinlochmoidart, and many another district had shared the same fate, and so it was that the Prince's messenger found himself in a land, which he had left six weeks before fair, peaceful, and smiling, now given over to desola- tion and horror. But Donald was not the man to flinch in the face of difficulty or danger. He had undertaken to see Lochiel and Murray, and see them, if they were in the flesh, he would. In no long time he picked up traces of their whereabouts. He heard how a number of the A Ruined Cause. 87 Jacobite leaders had been seen in the district ; how Lovat was rumoured to be in hiding in the neighbourhood of Loch-Morar or Loch-Arkaig ; how Lochiel, young Clanranald, Lochgarry, Bar- risdale, Mackinnon of Mackinnon, Colonel Roy Stuart, and various others were in the country of the Camerons or Clanranald with a small body of men ; how a bare fortnight after he had left Borrodale with the Prince two French war vessels had arrived oft' Arisaig, had fought and driven off", after a fierce battle, three British war- ships, and had landed a fabulous sum of money in gold ; and how a few days later they had sailed for France carrying with them the gallant Duke of Perth sick unto death, Lord John Drum- moncl, Lord Elcho, Sir Thomas Sheridan, and one or two others. He learned also how Lochiel had refused the proffered means of escape, choos- ing rather to share the dangers and sufferings of his clansmen, and how others fired by his spirit had followed his example. In all probability at this juncture he fell in with Bishop Macdonald, of the family of Morar, who was lurking in the woods between Loch-Morar and Borrodale, and from his lips learnt that the men for whom he was seeking were gathered in desperate plight at the head of Loch-Arkaig. At anyrate find them he at last did, and just in time. They had endea 88 Prince Charlie's Pilot. voured to rally the clans again and had failed ; they had been hunted and harassed by the enemy ; they had a few days earlier been nearly surprised by a vastly superior force ; they were slowly but surely being hemmed in by their pur- suers ; " they had the melancholy and dismal prospect of the whole country on fire ;" and they had only a small body of men quite insufficient to defend them. So reluctantly, and with heavy hearts, they had determined to accept the inevit- able and disperse. The game was played out, the Prince was gone, the power of the clans was broken, and nothing now remained but flight. So the irrevocable decision was made, and " whilst every one was consulting what corner of the country would be the most proper where to conceal themselves," Donald Macleod arrived with the Prince's message. It was Lochiel Donald sought, and it was Lochiel he found. To Lochiel he told the tale of the Prince's plight, and how he was then in the Island of Uist eagerly waiting for a chance of procuring a vessel in which to escape to France. So far no vessel had been found, and Donald was charged to enquire if one could be provided on the mainland. Lochiel hastened to Murray with the news, and soon the little com- pany were deep in discussion of the situation. The Loch-Arkaig Gold. 89 The letters which Donald and his companion, James Macdonald, carried made it clear that if the Prince stayed much longer in the Isles, " he would in all probability be taken." Murray, not yet traitor, was greatly stirred by the thought of such a possibility, and determined to cross to Uist at once to endeavour to bring the Prince to the mainland, where, he thought, he would be safer. Lochiel approved of the design, and after talking the matter over with Donald and his companion, it was arranged that they should meet at the spot in Moidart where the boat lay. The journey thither was not without danger, so, in order to lessen the chance of attracting attention, Murray, his secretary, and Major Kennedy went by one route, while Donald and his companion, Donald carrying a letter from Lochiel to the Prince, went by another. It is clear that at this stage Donald knew nothing of the Loch-Arkaig gold, or rather he was not aware that the gold which had been landed from the French vessels had been trans- ported to Loch-Arkaig. For he had been charged by the Prince to bring back a supply of money, and it was not until he returned to Moidart that he asked Murray to provide him with it. But the Loch-Arkaig gold had already begun to cast its baneful shadow over all who had anything to 90 Prince Charlie's Pilot. do with it, and though Donald and Murdoch never came under its influence, they saw its shadow, and came in contact with the men who laid the beginnings of that spell of such evil omen in Highland history. To Murdoch, waiting anxiously by the boat on the shore of Moidart, came, on the evening of the second day after his father had left Loch- Arkaig, three strangers, one gallant and chivalrous in bearing, one weary and ill, with care stamped on every line of his face and on the very carriage of his figure, one evidently in some way the servant of the other two. They were Major Kennedy, John Murray ofBroughton, and Murray's secretary, Stewart. They were astonished to find only Murdoch and the boat- men, where they had expected to find Donald Macleod and James Macdonald, for they had been detained a night on the way by a sharp attack of the illness from which Murray had suffered since before the Battle of Culloden. Murdoch's surprise was equally great. Here were three strangers claiming to be friends of his father, and by whose showing his father should have been there at least a day before. If their story was true, what had befallen his father ? If it was not true, who were they, and what danger did it portend ? So the night Murray of Broughton. 91 passed in anxious doubt and fear, the three strangers sleeping in the hut of one of Clan- ranald's men, who, either knowing or guessing who they were, and seeing in their possession a strong box, jumped to the conclusion that they were trying to make away with the treasure whose arrival was known to all the countryside, and to the custody of which young Clanranald had preferred a special claim. Luckily the next morning brought Donald, and with his arrival most of the atmosphere of suspicion vanished. It lingered only in the mind of the Clanranald man, who still suspected they were trying to deprive his chief of his just rights, though later in the day Murray of Broughton, ill and broken, began to suspect in Donald's belated request for money for the Prince, an attempt to obtain some for himself. The suspicion, of course, was absurd, but as Murray himself pled afterwards, he knew neither Donald nor his companion, he believed that the Prince had plenty of money, and he himself had with him barely sufficient for his own needs. But perhaps his best excuse is that he was a broken man, whose judgment and fortitude had alike been shaken by severe illness and pro- longed hardship. Be that as it may, he refused the request for gold, and angrily demanded why 92 Prince Charlie's Pilot. he had not been asked for it at Loch-Arkaig, where there was a plentiful supply. To which the sufficient answer is that Donald knew no- thing then of the Loch-Arkaig gold, or if he did doubtless imagined that to ask for any of it was unnecessary, seeing he was to convey Murray himself to the Prince. On the shore of Moidart, however, Murray's plan fell through. His breakdown on the short journey from Loch-Arkaig had shown how unfit he was for the trials and dangers of the voyage to Uist, and reflection seems also to have con- vinced both Donald and Major Kennedy, that to take him would be to expose the whole party to unnecessary risks. For he knew no Gaelic, and in the extremely likely event of the boat being challenged or its occupants examined, his pre- sence would be fatal. They could serve the Prince best by returning speedily and safely, and Murray's presence would not conduce to either. The argument is clearly Donald's. He had had enough of non-Gaelic speakers in the case of O'Neil, and repeatedly in the course of his con- versations with Bishop Forbes, he expresses him- self strongly on the subject. Moreover if the Prince, as was almost certain, would have to take to flight again, Murray's presence would be both an incubus and a positive danger. There was Donald and Murray. 9$ also a possibility that when they returned ta Corodale they would find the Prince gone, for " when they were coming away there was a meal ship on the coast, which a gentleman of the country (Macdonald of Boisdale) was endeavour- ing to engage to carry him off." Boisdale's attempt, as it turned out, failed, but Murray must have marvelled at the spirit which led Boisdale who not only had not come out him- self, but throughout the whole campaign had successfully prevented Clanran aid's men in Uist from joining the Prince to risk life and fortune for the royal fugitive, whom he had declined to help in the noonday of his glory. For his chivalrous behaviour Boisdale, his other services forgotten, suffered imprisonment at the hands of the Government, from which Murray was shortly to buy life at the cost of honour. At the moment, however, these things were still on the knees of the gods. Boisdale was still at liberty, and Murray was still a man of honour, ready to risk life itself for the Prince he had served so faithfully and so well. So, con- vinced that to go in person to his master was in- advisable, he wrote him a letter acquainting him with the position of matters, pointing out the danger he ran of being taken in Uist, and begging him, if he were still on the island, to come over to 94 Prince Charlie's Pilot. the mainland on receipt of the letter. Donald and his companion agreed to return immediately with the Prince if he were willing to come, and if not to communicate with Murray, but circum- stances rendered this impossible, and Murray eventually left the West Coast in the belief that the Prince had succeeded in escaping in the ship which Boisdale had been endeavouring to obtain lor him. Before sailing Donald asked for money for the Prince, and it was then that Murray's un- worthy suspicions were aroused. Donald him- self dismisses the episode briefly. He says he " got no money at all from Murray, who said he had none to give, having only about sixty louis d'ores to himself, which was not worth the while to send." But that Murray afterwards felt his re- fusal required some defence, the long explanation in his " Memorials," already referred to, shows. Donald was more successful in his quest for the other necessity desired by the Prince. He failed to get any cash, but he managed to obtain some brandy. It was a more plentiful com- modity on the West Coast than gold, and he " found means, without much ado, to purchase two anchors of brandy at a guinea per anchor." Then they took leave of Murray and Major Kennedy, and while the boat sped on its way to Traitor or Avenger? 95 Uist and Prince Charlie, John Murray turned his weary footsteps back to the path of hardship And suffering, which was to break the last rem- nants of his spirit, and bring him in the end to lasting infamy. But on that June evening when Murdoch, with the wondering eyes of a boy gazed on the stricken figure of the Prince's secre- tary, on the man who was deep in all the Prince's secrets, and whom his royal master re- garded as " one of the honestest, firmest men in the whole world," he saw only a man who had served the Prince with courage and devotion, and who, but a few short weeks before, had de- clined with Lochiel the opportunity of safe escape to France, because the Prince he loved was still a hunted fugitive. In after years when the name of John Murray of Broughton was held in horror by all good Jacobites, and by many another who had more cause to blush for shame than the man they affected to despise, Murdoch's thoughts must often have gone back to that farewell scene on the shores of Moidart. Perhaps he found it in his heart to pity the man for whom fate had been too strong, but it is not likely that he, more than any other Jacobite, regarded him as any- thing save the worst of mankind. And yet there is something to be said for Murray of 96 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Broughton. Though he turned King's evidence, he brought no loyal Jacobite to the block. No man who had followed Prince Charlie was one whit the worse for anything the ex-secretary did or said. As the late Mr Fitzroy Bell points out in his introduction to Murray's " Memorials," it was those who had betrayed his Prince that he in turn "betrayed." "The English Jacobites had caused, in Murray's eyes, the ruin of the whole campaign. Their failure to rise and join the Prince had, day after day, from Carlisle to Derby, caused the bitterest disappointment, and at last resulted in the disaster of the retreat ; and this after all the plottings and promises of years. Again, Murray argued, his country, through them, was the scene of cruelties un- exampled in civilised warfare, his Prince was a fugitive, his friends dead or exiled, and nothing was left but revenge on the false friends, for the open enemies were unassailable." Prominent among these false friends was Lovat, and him Murray helped to bring to the block, but " he did nothing to bring into jeopardy any single individual who had borne arms with Prince Charles." So when, in reading the tale of heroism which has gathered round Prince Charlie's wanderings, the figure of Murray of Broughton flits across the page, it is well to Murray's Devotion to the Pvince. 97 remember that the man whose name has been bracketed with that of Judas for a hundred and fifty years betrayed neither his own nor the Prince's friends, and refused to save his own life, when he might have done so with honour, because of the duty he felt he owed to his master. These things do not excuse his conduct, but they lighten the blackness of the picture ; and while we follow the two Macleods and those others who, cast in more heroic mould, stood by their faith to the last, we may spare a thought for the weaker vessel who under storm and stress went down. OF PERILS BY SEA AND PERILS BY LAND. X. OF PERILS BY SEA AND PERILS BY LAND. THE return journey to Corodale was accom- plished without misadventure, and on the second or third of June Donald was with the Prince once more. He found him in good spirits. His place of refuge had not been dis- covered, he had received visits from many of his friends in the Islands, and he had spent the days of waiting in shooting and fishing, a welcome change after the hardships he had endured. Donald returned at an opportune moment, how- ever. The hunt was closing in on the royal fugitive. The remoter isles had been searched and drawn blank, and the hunters were now concentrating their forces on the Southern Hebrides. About the time of Donald's return Hugh Macdonald of Baleshair an officer in the Hanoverian Militia and Macdonald of Boisdale arrived with alarming tidings of the enemy's movements. Baleshair had been sent by Lady Margaret Macdonald, the wife of Sir Alexander Macdonald, to warn the Prince that a number of companies had been sent to each end of the Isles 102 Prince Charlie's Pilot. with orders to sweep the country before them until they met, while Boisdale brought news of the landing of two parties of Hanoverian troops on Barra, a bare 20 miles away. Baleshair, not knowing definitely where the Prince was to be found, had gone direct to Boisdale, and the two had set out by different routes for Corodale to warn the Prince of his danger. But Prince Charlie was not greatly perturbed by the news. On learning that the troops landed in Barra consisted, for the most part, of Macleods and Macdonalds, " he said he was not in the least concerned, as they were Highlanders, and more especially such" (i.e., Macleods and Macdonalds). So instead of taking to flight immediately, he insisted on Baleshair and Boisdale staying the night, and then took place the famous carouse which lasted three days and three nights, and ended with Charles merrily chanting a de profundis over the sleep- ing forms of his friends. It is Baleshair himself who tells the story, and though he does not mention the names of all who were present, we gather indirectly that Donald Macleod and James Macdonald were of the party, and that it was the brandy they had brought from Moidart which provided the materials for the jollification. In spite of the Prince's unwillingness to The Hanoverian Militia. 103 believe that any danger was to be apprehended from the Macleod and Macdonald Militia, his situation was extremely serious. Not all the Macleods and Macdonalds \*ere animated by the same spirit as those who had befriended him, and moreover they were stiffened in their duty to the Government by the presence of detach- ments of redcoats and companies of Campbell, Grant, and Munro Militia. It was the Camp- bells, the Grants, and the Munroes, indeed, whom Donald most dreaded, for, unlike the Macleods and Macdonalds, they were not un- willing Hanoverians, and were as anxious to lay the Prince by the heels as any redcoat. "The Militia were the worst of all," said Donald, " for they knew the country so well. He was positive that the redcoats could have done but little, particularly in taking those that were skulking, had it not been for the Militia, viz., Campbells, Munroes, Grants, &c., &c., who served to scour the hills and woods, and were so many guides for the redcoats to discover to them the several corners of the country, both upon the continent and on the islands." And now a large force, Ned Burke says fifteen hundred, had landed in Benbecula, and were guarding the fords ; another contingent was daily expected to cross from Barra to Boisdale, only a few miles away, and 104 Prince Charlie's Pilot. two ships of war were cruising off the coast in the vicinity of Corodale, while hostile vessels of many sorts and sizes patrolled the waters be- tween them and Skye. It was only a matter of days before South Uist would be over-run and their hiding-place discovered, and then nothing could save them, for every avenue of escape would be closed. So on the sixth of June, reluctantly and in low spirits, " committing our- selves to Providence, the Prince, O'Sullivan, O'Neill, Donald Macleod, Edward Burke, and the boatmen went on board the barge, to be sure melancholy enough, having none to trust in but the Providence of God only, we escaped narrowly by Ouia Island to Benbecula in Clanranald's country." Thus says Ned Burke, and it must have been a desperate situation indeed which brought his reckless spirit so low. Their barge was still Campbell's boat, and the oarsmen were the same who had borne themselves so manfully since their departure from Stornoway. The Island of Ouia, on which they now found themselves, is a little rocky island off the south-east corner of Benbecula, a place bare of cultivation and without cover of any sort. Their only shelter was a large cave in the side of a cliff, and here they concealed them- selves for foar days and nights. But the hunters Two Narrow Escapes. 105 did not leave even Ouia unvisited, and " one Hamar Macleod landed near our quarters, which, the Prince being informed of, asked of Edward Burke, ' Is this a friend or foe T To which Ned answered, * He never was a friend to your family/ But by good providence Hamar happened to go off without making any search, and we did not think proper to go the same way with him, not knowing what the event may have been." Whether Hamar's visit was the cause or not we do not know, but a day or two later, on the 10th of June, the Prince and O'Neill left Ouia and made their way to Rossinish, where Lady Clanranald was, and where they would be less exposed to sudden danger than on the island. But the enemy were now everywhere, and the Prince had only been at Rossinish three nights when " he got information that it was advisable he should go back again to the place from which he had come. But he knew not well what to do, as the boats of the Militia had been all the time in the course between Ouia and Rossinish." In this strait Donald Macleod came again to the rescue. He and O'Sullivan had remained in Ouia with the boat, and had managed to keep them- selves well informed of the enemy's movements. So they speedily learned of the Prince's pre- carious situation at Rossinish, and setting sail 106 Prince Charlie's Pilot. under cover of night they eluded the vigilance of the patrols and brought him safely away. They now hardly knew where to turn. It was no longer safe to remain in the neighbour- hood of Benbecula ; escape to North Uist or Skye was impossible, and they had no know- ledge of what had happened in South Uist since their flight from Corodale. In their desperation they decided to take their chance of the last, and accordingly, when they left Rossinish, the boat was headed for Corodale. The hours of darkness were few, so the oars were called to the aid of the sail, and throughout the night Murdoch and the boatmen rowed strenuously. If any en- couragement to their labour was necessary, they received it in the shape of two men-of-war which hove in view, but luckily they were not pursued, and so escaped that danger. Then a very violent storm, accompanied by a heavy rain, came on, which forced them to abandon the attempt to make Corodale, and put into a small creek at Uishness Point, two and a half miles north of their destination. There, in a narrow cleft in the rock a few yards above the beach, they spent the whole of the 13th of June, the storm raging furiously all day. But they could not linger where they were a moment longer than was necessary, for the enemy were less than A Precarious Situation. 107" two miles away ; so as soon as darkness had begun to fall and the wind to moderate, they got on board the boat again. But Corodale was not now their objective. They had determined to make for Loch-Boisdale, in the hope that Macdonald of Boisdale would be able to find them a safe hiding-place in his country, So past Corodale they bore, and through the narrow channel of Kyle Stuley, three miles north of Loch-Boisdale, Day was breaking when they emerged from the narrow waters, but they had not gone far when one of the party swore he saw a boat full of marines right across their course. Donald, laughing at his fears, declared it was a boat- shaped rock which he knew well, but neither the Prince nor his companions being convinced, the boat put about, and headed again for Kyle Stuley. As it turned out, it was well that the false alarm had been raised, for Donald himself tells us that as it got lighter they saw three vessels within cannon shot of the shore, while Ned Burke says that fifteen sail in all were espied before they reached the welcome shelter of Kyle Stuley. Their situation was now precarious in the extreme. They had not only the numerous ships and boats to fear but a number of the 108 Prince Charlie's Pilot. enemy were upon the land hard by, and it is not surprising to read that in the circumstances the fugitives " knew not what to do." Kyle Stuley is a narrow, rocky channel between South Uist and the small island of Stuley, and if by any chance a party landed on the island or a boat went up the channel, their discovery was certain. But it was the only shelter available, and as they lay all day close under the island, striving so to merge the boat in the rough contour of the shore as to render it invisible to a casual passer-by or to keen eyes on the land opposite, they could only hope that the Kyle would escape the enemy's visitation, and pray for night to come. And so the long day drew slowly to a close, till as the shadows began to lengthen they breathed freely once more. But in June in the Hebrides there is little real darkness, and so when at last they were able to leave the shelter of Kyle Stuley, they had to steal along carefully lest by an evil chance any of the enemy's boats should be keeping a sharp lookout. But fortune favoured them, and in the small hours of the morning of the 15th of June they ran into Loch- boisdale, and landed in safety on the island of Calvay. THE NET TIGHTENS. XL THE NET TIGHTENS. CALVAY is a small rocky islet with a ruined castle perched on the topmost rocks, and to the castle the wanderers made their way. Then, as now, the castle was a tumbled ruin, but its walls provided a welcome shelter, and a fire was soon blazing merrily. The pot, that faithful companion of their voyagings, was brought up from the boat, and while it was boiling Ned Burke went out to pull some heath for the Prince's bed. The whole party were very much fatigued, and as they waited for the food to cook, they looked forward with pleasurable antici- pation to a much-needed rest. But it was not to be. Donald Macleod, who, vigilant as always, had been keeping a sharp eye on the sea, suddenly startled his companions by announcing that two French ships of war were approaching. In great excitement everybody rushed to see them. Expectation and hope surged in the Prince's breast, every eye was fixed excitedly on the distant vessels. They drew nearer. Hope began to give way to doubt, doubt to fear, fear at last to the certainty that the ships were 112 Prince Charlie's Pilot. English, not French. Gone was the hope of safety, and as it went came the realisation of immediate danger. No longer was Calvay a safe resting-place. Weary and hungry as they were they must take to flight at once. So the Prince and three companions crossed to the mainland of South Uist, and took to the mountains and the heather, while the others got hastily into the boat and rowed up the loch. Happily the ships of war had seen nothing to excite their curiosity, and by-and-by they stood away from the loch. But the fugitives dare not return to the island, and it was only when night fell that they all met again by the side of the boat " wherein they had still some small provi- sions." Their outlook was now of the blackest. They had good cause to know that they were environed on every side by enemies, and now, crowning misfortune of all, they learned that Boisdale, to whose skill and friendship they had looked to save them, was taken. Suspected in some way of complicity in the Prince's escape, he had been seized shortly after leaving Coro- dale, and was even now a prisoner in his captor's hands in Barra. Well may the Prince have imagined that all his efforts were in vain. With Boisdale taken his last hope seemed to vanish, In Desperate Plight. 113 and now any day might see the end. But while there was life there was hope, and though the net looked tight round him he was not yet in the hands of his enemies. Meanwhile there seemed no chance of escap- ing from the neighbourhood of Loch-Boisdale. So the Prince and his three companions, taking with them the sails of the boat, retired again to the hills, and for two nights slept in the open fields, with only the sails for covering. On the third night it was judged safe to return to the boat, and, rowing further up the loch, the next two days were spent partly on the hills and moors and partly on the loch. In spite of the rigour of the pursuit the Prince was not without friends in the district, and Mrs Macdonald of Boisdale, among others, contrived to send him four bottles of brandy, " and every other thing she could procure that was useful for him and his attend- ants." He and Donald had hopes, too, that Boisdale would be set at liberty, but these were doomed to disappointment, for after they had been four or five days in the neighbourhood, " one came and told the Prince (to his great sorrow) that Boisdale was still to be detained a prisoner, and that there was no appearance of his being set at liberty. This," continues Donald, " with other distresses that were still 114 Prince Charlie's Pilot. increasing upon him, made the Prince resolve upon parting with his attendants for the greater safety. There were at that time two ships of war in the mouth of Loch-Boisdale, for whom they durst not make out of the loch to the sea. Besides, there was a command of above five hundred redcoats and militia within a mile and a-half of them. All choices were bad, but (under God) they behove to remove from the place where they then were, and to do their best." Good cause indeed had Captain Alex- ander Macdonald, the famous Gaelic bard, to say, as he said afterwards to Bishop Forbes, " the Almighty only knows, and the divine dispenser of human providence allenarly knows, what in- expressible perplexity of mind, and anguish of soul and body, his Royal Highness and his small retinue laboured under when taking it into their serious consideration that they were now encom- passed by no less than three or four thousand bloody hounds by sea and land, thirsting for the captivity and noble blood of their Prince, the ap- parent heir of Great Britain, France, and Ireland." It was when matters were in this state, when the end seemed only a matter of hours or days, that a way of escape, a dangerous, desper- ate way, suddenly presented itself. Among the officers of the Skye Militia who were engaged, Flora Macdonald to the Rescue. 115 though half-heartedly it is true, in the hunt for the Prince, was Hugh Macdonald of Armadale, in Skye, whose step-daughter, Flora, lived with her brother at Milton, on the west coast of South Uist, only a few miles away from Loch-Boisdale. Flora herself sympathised with the Prince, while Armadale, like most of the Skye Macdonalds, was at heart on the side of the fugitive, whom nominally he was in arms against. Armadale was even then in the Long Island in command of one of the parties who were searching for the Prince, and it was he who conceived the plan which enabled the Royal fugitive to evade his pursuers, and brought immortal renown to Flora Macdonald. To the depressed little company came one day a messenger with Armadale's proposal. Briefly, it was that Charles, in the guise of an Irish serving-woman, should accompany Flora Macdonald to Skye, where her mother lived, and whither Flora was to proceed on the pretext that the presence of so many soldiers in the neigh- bourhood of Milton made her nervous. Arma- dale in his official capacity would provide passes for Flora, her serving-woman, and a man-servant, which last was to be Neil MacEachainn, who would act as guide and escort. The Prince at the moment the plan was communicated to him was on the top of Ben Gill 116 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Choinnech, which he had ascended with his companions to " consult for the most expeditious methods to leave South Uist," this lofty place of conference being chosen because " from its emi- nence they might have an ample prospect," and thus run little risk of being taken unawares. To Charles, weary, harassed, and well-nigh despair- ing, the proposal came like a breath from heaven, and we hardly need Neil MacEachainn's assur- ance " that the scheme pleased the Prince mightily, and he seemed very impatient to put it in execution " It was a gambler's chance it is true, but it was the only chance, and the man who had gambled so daringly for a kingdom was not likely to fear to stake his life on one last desperate throw of the dice. Accordingly no time was lost in falling in with Armadale's pro- posal and making the arrangements necessary for putting it into instant execution. It was in the morning of the 21st of June that the plan was mooted, and soon after sunset on the same day the Prince was on his way to meet the gallant girl whose name was soon to ring over the world as the heroic saviour of the last hope of the Stuart line. The hour for the parting of the Prince and the men who had served him so well through seven weeks of peril by sea and land had come. OF A WOEFUL PARTING, AND OF HOW THE NET CLOSED ON THE PRINCE'S PILOT. XII. OF A WOEFUL PARTING, AND OF HOW THE NET CLOSED ON THE PRINCE'S PILOT. IT was on the evening of the 21st of June that Prince Charlie bade farewell to his faithful followers on the shores of Loch-Boisdale. For seven long adventurous weeks they had borne hardship and privation together, had faced death in many forms together, had dared greatly and struggled manfully together, and now that the hour of parting had come, the Prince and the peasant alike were filled with sorrow. The humblest boatman among them all could scarce refrain from tears, while gentlemen like O'Sullivan and Donald Macleod thought it no shame to show their grief openly. Donald himself tells us that it was a woeful parting, and even after the lapse of two years he wept sorely when he spoke of it to Bishop Forbes. But not even at the hour of parting did the Prince forget the duty he owed those who had stood by him so nobly. Calling the boatmen, he ordered O'Sullivan to pay to each of them a shilling sterling, a large sum in those days, for 120 Prince Charlie's Pilot. every day they had been with him, and as they went from his presence they carried with them, as a material reminder of the perils they had endured and the Prince they had succoured, more money than they had ever possessed in their lives. To Donald he gave a draft of sixty pistoles to be paid by John Hay of Restalrig " if he should happen to be so lucky as to meet with him ; " and then, the final farewells at last said, Donald, O'Sullivan, and the rest walked slowly away, leaving the Prince and O'Neil gazing silently after them ere setting their faces towards Flora Macdonald and the frail hope of safety she offered. It is easy to picture that farewell scene, for it has been described more than once by those who were actors in it, and by those who heard of it at first-hand. It was the dusk of a June night, with a full moon shining from a summer sky, when, with tears running down their faces, Donald, O'Sullivan, and Murdoch, and the rest looked, most of them for the last time, on the Royal features they had come to know so well, and then, with laggard step and many a back- ward glance at the two fading figures standing so silently amid the heather, disappeared slowly and one by one in the soft Hebridean twilight. And as Prince Charlie and they vanish from each The Fugitive Prince. 121 other's sight amid the silence and the gloom, the Prince likewise vanishes from the story of the two Macleods, the gallant father and the no less gallant son. But before we leave him standing there amid the slow-gathering darkness, we may glance at two pen-pictures, which will serve to convey to us some idea of his personality and appearance as these appeared to Donald and his son during their weeks of sojourning with him. Bishop Forbes is the authority for the first. " Donald Macleod," says he, " said the Prince used to smoke a great deal of tobacco ; and as, in his wanderings from place to place, the pipes behoved to break and turn into short cutties, he used to take quills, and putting one into another, and all, said Donald, into the end of the cuttie, this served to make it long enough, and the tobacco to smoke cool. Donald added that he never knew, in all his life, any one better at finding out a shift than the Prince was when he happened to be at a pinch ; and that the Prince would sometimes sing them a song to keep up their hearts." The other is Hugh Macdonald of Baleshair's description of the Prince as he appeared when Baleshair came upon him without warning at Corodale early in June. " His dress was then a tartan short coat and vest of the same got from 122 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Lady Clanranald, his night-cap linen all patched with soot drops, his shirt, hands, and face patched with the same, a short kilt, tartan hose, and Highland brogues, his upper coat being English cloth." The very simplicity of these two pictures, chosen almost at random out of numbers which exist of Prince Charlie during the period of his wanderings, shows us more vividly than many a much more elaborate description could do what manner of man it was that won for himself such tried and devoted service. Murdoch had seen the Prince in all the glory of his Koyal state in Inverness ; he had seen him amid the noise and smoke and turmoil of Culloden Battle ; he had seen him a hunted, desperate fugitive with a price on his head ; he had seen him wretched and hungry and weary and forlorn ; yet there can be no doubt that the memory which he cherished as long as life lasted, and on which he most loved to dwell, was not the memory of the courtly Royal youth clad in bright raiment, but the memory of the gay, reckless comrade of their island wanderings, who found joy in a clay euttie. who was never at a loss at a pinch, and who in times of stress was able to turn from his own cares to cheer the sharers of his perils by singing them a song. And when in his mind's A General Dispersal. 123 eye Murdoch conjured up the vision of the Prince, we may be sure he saw him oftenest as he sat at old Donald's feet in the eight-oared boat, clad perhaps in the kilt and tartan which he wore with such gay abandon at Corodale. On the shores of Loch-Boisdale the men who had carried the Prince through so many perils held a hasty consultation. It had already been decided that the best chance of escape lay in the party splitting up, and this plan they now proceeded to act upon. Donald Macleod was for sticking to the boat, with such of the boatmen oe were of a like mind, and finding some of them willing, he got on board and headed her towards the south. The others dispersed in various directions, and shortly after they had taken fare- well of the Prince, the little company was scattered in flight, some to seek refuge among the neighbouring Macdonalds, others to try to run the gauntlet of the hunters and escape over the North Ford to North Uist. The men who accompanied Donald, how- ever, soon began to fear that the boat afforded little chance of escape, and in no long time he found himself with only one companion, " upon which he was obliged to sink the boat and do the best he could to shift for himself." At this point we lose sight of Murdoch. It is even un- 124 Prince Charlie's Pilot. certain whether he was the one companion left with Donald in the boat, or whether his father, judging that few suspicions were likely to be aroused by a boy of 15, had thought it better that he should endeavour to return to Skye by another route. At all events, when Donald him- self fell into the hands of the Militia a fortnight later he was alone, and we hear nothing more of Murdoch. This silence on the part of the old man, how- ever, is not surprising. In his story he is con- cerned only with the adventures of the Prince, and he passes over everything else. Indeed, at his first meeting with Bishop Forbes, the Bishop states that " honest Donald modestly said he would very willingly grant my desire " (i.e., the Bishop's request for an account of his wander- ings with the Prince), "for all that he had to say would take up no great time it would easily be contained in a quarter of a sheet of paper." It was only the Bishop's persistence which led to the gradual unfolding of Donald's tale, and it took several meetings between the two before Bishop Forbes succeeded in obtaining all the information he wanted. At their second meet- ing, "when we were in James's house," says the Bishop, " I began to ask some questions to which Donald gave plain answers." After asking Farewell to Murdoch. 125 several questions, Donald, looking at James Macdonald with a smiling countenance, spoke in Erse to him ; and James, laughing very heartily, said to me " Do you know, sir, what Donald was saying just now ? He says you are the uncoest cheel he ever met wi'; for if you go on in asking questions so particularly, and if he shall tell you all the nig-nacs o't, he believes, indeed, his account will take up much more time and paper than he imagined." But more of that anon. Meanwhile it is of interest as showing how un- willing Donald was to talk of his doings, and how difficult it was to obtain from him anything relating to his own or his son's exploits. From the point of view of the present narration this is particularly unfortunate, for it is tantalising in the extreme not to know how Murdoch succeeded in making his safe return to Gualtergill, and of the adventures which befel Donald during his fortnight's wanderings in the Long Island. These latter Donald, with characteristic modesty, dismisses in a sentence or two. After the boat had been sunk, " It was not possible," he proceeds, " for an old man like him to keep himself any considerable time out of grips, especially as the troops and militia at last became so very numerous upon the different parts of the Long Isle. The militia were the 126 Prince Charlie's Pilot. worst of all, because they knew the country so well . . . and served to scour the hills and woods, and were as so many guides for the red- coats to discover to them the several corners of the country, both upon the continent and on the islands. July 5th. Donald Macleod had the misfortune to be taken prisoner in Benbecula by Allan Macdonald of Knock, in Slate in Sky, a lieutenant." That is all we are told of a fort- night's wanderings, which brought the old man of 68 from Loch-Boisdale to Benbecula through a country swarming with foes. But even these bald sentences hint in no uncertain way at adventures not a few, and of dangers en- countered from prowling red-coats and militia ere Lieutenant Allan Macdonald of Knock laid his eager hands upon the person of Prince Charlie's pilot. Not even then were Donald's adventures at an end, for many a weary month was to elapse, arid many a vicissitude of fortune was to be encountered before he looked again on Gualtergill in the Island of Skye. HOW DONALD EXPERIENCED THE TENDER MERCIES OF THE HANOVERIANS, XIII. HOW DONALD EXPERIENCED THE TENDER MERCIES OF THE HANO- VERIANS. THERE is no page in the history of the '45 which fills the impartial reader with greater wonder than that which sets forth the tale of the treatment meted out by the victorious Hanoverian Government to its captured foes. Terrible though the atrocities committed by Cumberland, his officers, and his men were, they were to a certain extent committed, if not exactly in hot blood, at least in the reaction following on a series of crushing defeats culmi- nating in overwhelming victory, and though that in no way condones the excesses, it goes a little way to explain them. But the treatment ac- corded to the prisoners was a deliberate act of cold-blooded and fiendish cruelty, long drawn- out and callously persisted in long after all necessity for any display of severity had passed away. It was the act, too, of the responsible Government of the day, the mean and cruel revenge taken by the Government of a country which prided itself on its greatness and its 130 Prince "Charlie's Pilot. civilisation, on the humble adherents of a cause which, whatever its political merits or demerits, had practised no cruelty towards those who were in arms against it, and had conducted a brilliant campaign with a humanity and a studious regard for the rights of non-combatants, which has hardly a parallel in the whole history of warfare. Yet this cause was the cause of reaction, and it was the cause of progress which, in the name of progress, covered itself in the hour of victory with everlasting infamy. The Jacobites trium- phant were merciful, chivalrous, and generous to a fault. The Hanoverians triumphant were cruel, merciless, and bloodthirsty men in whose bosoms the last spark of humanity seemed to have expired. Donald Macleod, as we have seen, was captured on the 5th of July, and on the same day there also fell into the hands of Donald's captor two Catholic priests, one a Mr Forrest, and the other better known under his military title of Captain Allan Macdonald. Their captor, Macdonald of Knock, treated them with extreme severity, and though Captain Allan Macdonald was his own blood relation he took from him a sum of sixty guineas, " and would not give him one single shilling to purchase necessaries with." Donald and the priestly captain were old friends. Companions in Misfortune. 131 The latter had formed one of the little band of fugitives who accompanied the Prince in the eight-oared boat from Borrodale, and though he had left them at Scalpay, he rejoined them at Corodale, and remained with them until the woeful parting on the shores of Loch-Boisdale. There he and Donald had sought safety by different ways, little suspecting that they would next meet as prisoners in the island of Ben- becula. From Benbecula Donald and the two priests were sent to Barra, in order to be examined by General Campbell, but the General had left the Island, and they were accordingly sent to Portree. There they were joined by another gallant High- lander who had helped in Prince Charlie's escape, Captain Malcolm Macleod of Brea, cousin of Macleod of Raasay. He had come into the Prince's Odyssey an hour or two after Flora Macdonald and Neil MacEachainn had bade him farewell, and had remained with him for four days, going with him to Raasay, returning with him to Skye, and thereafter being his sole com- panion and guide during the long and arduous walk to Ellagol in Mackinnon's country. At Ellagol the brave old chief of the Mackinnons insisted on making himself responsible for the Prince's safety, and Malcolm, fearing that his 132 Prince Charlie's Pilot. presence would add to the fugitive's danger, parted from him. Mackinnon's plan was to carry the Prince across to the mainland a plan which he safely accomplished and Malcolm's farewells were said by the side of Mackinnon's boat on the shores of Loch- Sea vaig. His last service to the Prince was to light a " cutty " lor him by means of a piece of flaming tow, which scorched the Royal cheek in the operation. Another of the Prince's cutties Malcolm managed to secure for himself, and it and a silver shoe- buckle, which the Prince presented to him at parting, were in his possession when he was captured a few days later. The silver shoe- buckle he kept all through his imprisonment, but the cutty he gave in London to a fellow- prisoner, Dr Burton of York, who had a case made for it, and cherished it as his greatest treasure. The meeting of Donald and Malcolm must have been dramatic. Both had risked every- thing for the Prince, and both were now in the clutches of the men who were hunting him with an eagerness that knew no bounds. Both had played a considerable part in helping the Prince to evade these very hunters, and both were now on their way to pay the penalty of their loyalty. But meanwhile they had a lot to talk about, and In Barbarous Hands. 133 we may imagine with what eagerness Donald listened to the tale of the adventures which had befallen the Prince since their parting at Loch- Boisdale, and with what interest he heard of the heroic devotion of Flora Macdonald. From Portree Donald and Malcolm were presently sent to Applecross Bay, where General Campbell had now been ascertained to be. To their exceeding misfortune he was on board the sloop Furnace commanded by Captain John Ferguson, one of the most barbarous of all the barbarous men whom the Government had turned loose on the Highlands. Already he had achieved an unenviable notoriety in northern waters for his wanton cruelty, and there is, unhappily, only too much evidence to show that his evil reputa- tion was well deserved. It was to the tender mercies of this fiend that the chivalrous pre- servers of the hunted Prince were now to be committed. But they had first to face the ordeal of a searching examination at the hands of General Campbell. General Campbell had come north in com- mand of the Argyllshire Militia, and he and his men had proved invaluable to the Hanoverian troops. Indeed, without their aid, the redcoats could have accomplished little in the way of hunting out fugitives, and it is not surprising, 134 Prince Charlie's Pilot. therefore, that they were hated with a bitter hatred throughout the Highlands, a hatred in- tensified of course by the fact that they belonged to the Clan Campbell. But General Campbell himself was a Highland gentleman he was afterwards the fourth Duke of Argyll and as such was incapable of the gross discourtesies of the Aberdonian Ferguson. So- when Donald Mac- leod was brought before him he treated him with respect, and it is plain from Donald's own account of the interview that he bore his inquisitor no ill-will. The interview took place in the cabin of the Furnace, to which Donald was brought as soon as he was taken on board. He had been a man for some time much desired of the Hano- verians, for they thought that he, if anyone, could throw some light on the Prince's whereabouts. So General Campbell now examined him "most exactly and circumstantially." But Donald neither could nor would tell him anything of consequence. Of his own adventures he spoke freely, and of the journeyings of the Prince while under his guidance, for, as he himself afterwards said, " he could easily give all his own part of the adventure without doing the smallest harm to the Prince, as he then knew that the Prince had set out some time before A Clear Conscience. 135 from Skye to the Continent (i.e., the mainland), and was out of reach of General Campbell and hie command." But, needless to say, of this knowledge Donald made no mention. When first asked if he had been with the Prince, " Yes," said Donald, " I was along with that young gentleman, and I winna deny it." " Do you know," said General Campbell, " what money was upon that young man's head ? No less a sum than thirty thousand pounds sterling, which would have made you and all your children after you happy for ever." To which Donald made indignant answer. "What then?" he replied. "Thirty thousand pounds ! Though I had gotten't I could not have enjoyed it eight and forty hours. Con- science would have gotten up upon me. That money could not have kept it down. And though I could have gotten all England and Scotland for my pains I would not have allowed a hair of his body to be touched if I could help it." It was characteristic of Donald that when relating this to Bishop Forbes, he desired him " particularly to remark, for the honour, of General Campbell, and to do him justice, that he spoke these words, ' I will not say that you are in the wrong.' ' 136 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Had General Campbell remained on the sloop, the prisoners would probably have been treated fairly well. But he left it shortly after Donald and Malcolm came on board, and Fergu- son had thenceforth the ordering of things his own way. The prisoners, of whom there were many, were confined in a dark quarter of the ship under the deck, where they were not allowed a candle of any kind. For beds they had the choice of lying without any covering upon cables, boards, or stones. The only exer- cise they were allowed was between 9 and 10 in the morning, when they were permitted to walk among a number of sheep, with sentries on both sides of them. The food was both bad and insufficient. Each prisoner was given only half rations, and even those were served in " foul nasty buckets." Their treatment in other respects was just as bad, the captain vying with the crew, and the crew with the captain, in heaping indignities upon them. No attention was paid to their bodily needs. They were rebels. Let them die like vermin. When their clothes wore out, they got no more. They could lie on the stones in the darkness in their rags. And so it was for many weeks while the Furnace cruised up and down the Highland coast. At last her course Miserable and Naked. 137 was shaped for London, and when Tilbury was reached, the prisoners were transferred to another vessel. Surely now their plight would be better. It could only be on the ships of cruel captains, far away from the civilising influence of London and England, that such things as they had suffered could be. But if such were the prisoners' thoughts they were speedily disillu- sioned. Their latter state was worse than their first. Off Tilbury Fort, within sight and sound of London, they lay for months together in a most deplorable state of misery, " their clothes wearing so off them that many at last had not a single rag to cover their nakedness with." They were treated there, adds Donald, " with the utmost barbarity and cruelty, with a view (as they suppose) to pine away their lives, and by piecemeal to destroy every single man of them. And, indeed, the design had too great success, for many of them died." Sickness of course was rampant. At one time all those who were on the same ship with Donald and Malcolm were so sick " that they could scarce stretch out their hands to one another. Old Mackinnon held out wonderfully, although a man of upwards of 70 while others much younger, and, to all appearance, stronger too, were dying by pairs, as at last there was a general sickness that raged 338 Prince Charlie's Pilot. among all the prisoners on board the different .ships, which could not fail to be the case when (as both Donald and Malcolm positively affirmed) they were sometimes fed with the beeves that had died of the disease which was then raging amongst the horned cattle in England." For ten months did Donald endure the hardships of the prison ships, but he left them with his spirit, though not his health, unbroken, and his loyalty to the King over the water un- impaired. For those who had treated him and his friends so cruelly, he had only one wish. " God forgive them," he said ; " but, God, let them never die till we have them in the same condition they had us, and we are sure we would not treat them as they treated us. We would show them the difference between a good and a bad cause." THE BLACKEST PAGE IN BRITISH HISTORY. XIV. THE BLACKEST PAGE IN BRITISH HISTORY. BAFFLED in their efforts to capture the Prince, the Government and its officers wreaked their vengeance on every person to whom the remotest suspicion attached, either of having borne arms in his service or of having held out a helping hand to him in the day of his distress. In their fury they spared neither age nor sex. They shot, they hung, they murdered guilty and innocent alike ; they inflicted unnameable in- dignities and horrid tortures on old and young, on men, women, and little children ; they burned and destroyed and swept whole districts clear of corn and cattle, so that the fate of those who survived was often worse than that of those who were murdered ; they kept no faith with " rebels " who were foolish enough to put their trust in the Hanoverian plighted word ; and their prisoners by breach of faith, like their prisoners by right of capture, they consigned to loathsome prisons or transported to the slavery of the colonies. As the days slipped into weeks and the weeks into months, and the Prince was 142 Prince Charlie's Pilot. still at large, the net was cast wider and wider in the hope of entangling in its meshes one weak vessel who might perchance betray him. But it was cast in vain, for though it brought many fish to the ravenous Hanoverian maw, it brought none such as it so eagerly desired. Thus it was that Donald Macleod in far- away London soon found that he was among friends, though among friends in like parlous condition with himself. On board the ship on which he found himself were his old friends and neighbours - - Mackinnon of Mackinnon and Malcolm Macleod of Brea, as well as many another whom he had known in happier days ; while on the same or one of the other prison ships lying off Tilbury were old Clanranald, Macdonald of Boisdale, Captain John Mac- kinnon, Macneil of Barra, young Gordon of Glenbucket, Dr John Macdonald of Kinloch- moidart, and many more. Of these, Clanranald iind Boisdale at least had taken no part in the rising, and had kept a large part of the Clan Donald from going out. But they had had pit} on the Royal fugitive, and because of that H generous Government repaid the debt they owed them by imprisonment in a rotting hulk. Equally hard was the case of Kingsburgh, who for one night's hospitality suffered a confinement Cheated and Starved. 143 of twelve long months, partly in Fort- Augustus and partly in Edinburgh Castle, while others, like Bishop Forbes himself and the Rev. James Taylor, of Thurso, were thrown into prison upon mere suspicion. To the last-mentioned, the Kev. James Taylor, we owe a graphic description of the treatment accorded to the captives in the prison - ships at Tilbury. His narrative fills up some of the gaps in Donald Macleod's story, for he and Donald were for several months fellow-prisoners on the "James and Mary." From the parson we learn that Donald and his friends had to sleep for months in the common hold of the vessel among the litter left by the horses of a cavalry regiment which had some time before been brought over in the " James and Mary " from Holland, and that the insufficient supply of food allowed them by the Government was rendered still less " by the avarice and villany of the victualler," who cheated them of at least one-fourth of their daily allowance, while that which did reach them was of such evil quality that they could hardly partake of it. " But they were obliged to use such victuals or starve ; and even such of the prisoners as had money were greatly straitened to obtain healthy provisions by the boundless avarice of the soldiers and 144 Prince Charlie's Pilot. backwardness of the sailors to bring them off honestly from Gravesend." One other description may be quoted to complete the picture. It is from the pen of William Jack at one time a merchant and after- wards a messenger in Elgin. He had joined the Prince, fought at Culloden, been taken prisoner a few weeks after the battle, and conveyed to Inverness, where he was put on board one of the Government ships which lay, full of prisoners, off Kessock. A few weeks later he was sent to London, and after an imprisonment of nearly a year was transported to the Barbadoes. The letter is dated from Tilbury Fort on the 17th of March 1747, and is addressed to friends in Elgin. Its essential parts follow " This comes to acquaint you," he writes, " that 1 was eight months and eight days on sea of which time I was eight weeks upon half a pound and twelve ounces of oatmeal and a bottle of water in the 24 hours, which we was obliged to make meal and water in the bottom of one old bottle. There was 125 put on board at Inverness on the " James and Mary " of Fife. In the latter end of June we was put on board of a transport of 450 tons called the " Liberty and Property," in which we continued the rest of the Terrible Mortality. 145 eight months upon twelve ounces of oat shilling as it came from the mill. There was 32 prisoners more put aboard of the said " Liberty and Property," which makes 157, and when we came ashore we was but 49 in life ; it would have been no great surprise if there had not been one conform to our usage. They would take us from the hold in a rope, and hoist us to the yard-arm and let us fall in the sea in order for ducking of us, and tie us to the mast and whip us. This was done to us when we was not able to stand. I will leave it to the readers to judge what condition they might have been in themselves with the above treatment. We had neither bed nor bedclothes, nor clothes to keep us warm in the day-time. The ship's ballast was blaclj earth and small stones, in which we was obliged to dig holes to lie into for to keep us warm till the first day of November, when every man got about three yards of gross ham filled with straw, but no bed clothes. I will not trouble you any more till I see you. There is none in life that went from Elgin with me but William limes in Fochabers. James Brander Smith died seven months ago. Alexander Frigg died in Cromarty Road. John Kintrea that lived in Longbride died also. " During all this time I was but in a bad 146 Prince Charlie's Pilot. state of health. But blessed be God I'm in a pretty good state of health at present in spite of my enemies. . . . Be so good as to acquaint the clerk that I left playing at cards, that he will see his friend very soon . . . and that Mr James Falconer is in good health, and re- mains on board of a ship called the " James and Mary " lying off Tilbury Fort." (This was the vessel on which Donald Macleod was imprisoned). " P.S 1 keep full as good heart as ever, and has done during all my confinement, yea even when I was in a very bad situation. If it had not been so, I should not be in life, for the fish of the sea should have got my bones to gnaw, for they could not have got anything else. From such another sight, good Lord, deliver me ! for it's impossible to describe the condition we was all in, for you should have thought we had no in trails within us, and all our joints of our body as perceptible as if we were cut out in wood or stone. William, be so good as give my service to your brother, wife, and daughter. God be with you all." A man of spirit was William Jack, and a man of grim humour, in spite of all his sufferings. All the statements he makes are amply corro- borated from other sources, even to the hoisting Wanton Murder. 147 of the sick men to the yard-arm and ducking them, while the generous allowance of half a pound of meal per day to each prisoner is a matter of sober, horrid fact. As to the ducking we may cite another witness, John Farquharson of Aldberg, better known as "John Anderson, my Jo," who wrote an exceedingly graphic account of the doings of Cumberland's soldiery in Inverness, and the treatment accorded to the prisoners. Farquharson, it should be said, was sentenced to death, but succeeded in making his escape out of the hands of the messenger to whose care he was entrusted in London. He is speaking of the sufferings endured by the prisoners, of whom he was one, on the voyage from Inverness to London. " At last," he says, " by hunger, bad usage, and lying upon the ballast and twixt decks exposed to all weathers, they were seized with a kind of a plague, which carried them off by dozens, and a good many of those who would have out- lived their sickness were wantonly murdered by the sailors by dipping of them in the sea in the crisis of their fevers. This was the sailors' diver- sion from Buchan Ness Point till we came to the Nore, They'd take a rope and tie about the poor sick's waist, then they would haul them up 148 Prince Charlie's Pilot. by their tackle and plunge them in the sea, as they said, to drown the vermin ; but they took special care to drown both together. Then they'd haul them up upon deck, and tie a stone about on the legs, and overboard with them. I have seen six or seven examples of this in a day." Many more examples of the severity with which the prisoners were treated might be given, but enough has been said to enable anyone to form a fairly adequate idea of what their suffer- ings were, and of the truth of Donald Macleod's remark that they were treated " with the utmost barbarity and cruelty." HOW IT FARED WITH THE HIGHLAND PRISONERS IN LONDON. XV. HOW IT FARED WITH THE HIGHLAND PRISONERS IN LONDON. DONALD Macleod himself had rather more than his share of the general ill-treatment of prisoners, for while many of his companions were removed early in the winter from the prison ships and placed in the custody of messengers in London, Donald was kept on board the " James and Mary " till April or May 1747. For a period of eight months his quarters were " in a dark place of the ship," first on the "Furnace' and afterwards on the "James and Mary," " where they were not allowed the light of a candle of any kind from the 1st of August 1746 to the day upon which Lord Lovat suffered, being April 9th (Thursday), 1747." The wonder is that the old man of 68, accustomed to the free, fresh breezes of the West, survived his long months ol incarceration in that dark and noisome hole. Throughout it all, however, Donald kept a stout heart, and found time to pity his less fortunate companions, and especially the Grants from Glenmoriston, who, having surrendered and delivered up their arms at 152 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Inverness on a promise of indemnity, were straightway seized and consigned to unspeakable horrors in the holds of the prison-ships. The treatment of these Grants moved Donald to great indignation, and little wonder. Some 80 or 90 in number, they had surrendered on honourable terms, but no sooner had they given up their arms than the terms were broken, the pledges of Cumberland were thrown to the winds, and the men themselves were treated with the same harshness and cruelty as fell to the lot of those taken with arms in their hands. Sent to London, they were distributed among the ships at Tilbury, and there Donald found many of them. "Finer and stouter men," he says, " never drew a sword," but such was the rigour of their confinement that more than 60 of them died, and the Government, their rancour still unsatisfied, consigned the survivors to the slavery of the Barbadoes, whence only two of them returned. "It was most lucky," said Donald with truth, " that a greater number had not surrendered at the same time ;" and he added, with equal truth, "that the treatment of the Glenmoriston men became a warniog to others not to follow their example." Thus Cumberland's base betrayal of his humble foes recoiled on his own head, for " their fate did Blood Lust Satiated. 153 prevent many surrenders that otherwise would have happened." The dismal winter months passed slowly and dreadfully away, and with the advance of spring Donald's hopes began to revive. There were signs that the Hanoverian lust for revenge was becoming glutted, and with the passing of the possibility of danger, the voice of public opinion was beginning to make itself heard. It was not, however, until Lovat's grey head had fallen that the conscience of England found courage sufficient to make the Government feel that the time for mingling mercy with judgment had come, and by then the Battle of Culloden was nearly a year away and the hulks and the prisons were still full of the suffering victims of the Government's fear and fury. But even then the Government was reluctant to let its captives go. The prison doors opened slowly, and too often opened only to transport some poor wretches from the horrors of their dungeon in civilised England to a life of slavery in one of England's colonies. But Donald was one of those to whom fortune at last turned a smiling face, and when on a day in April or May 1747 he set his foot on drv land once more, it was to / f exchange the vileness of the prison-ship for the comparative comfort of a messenger's house. 154 Prince Charlie's Pilot. There, he tells us, he was kept "but a short time," and bids us take notice that he was set at liberty "upon a most happy day, the 10th of June 1747," that being the birthday of the Old Chevalier, the King over the water. The system of confining State prisoners in the hands of messengers was then very common in England. It had its advantages and its o o disadvantages, but from the point of view of the prisoners it was infinitely preferable to being shut up in any of the loathsome dens which were at that time dignified by the name of prisons. The messengers were officers of the Court, corresponding somewhat to messengers-at-arms or sheriff-officers in Scotland, and were respon- sible for the safe custody of the persons com- mitted to their care. Subject to that proviso they were permitted to treat their prisoners pretty much as they pleased, and if a prisoner were fortunate enough to be possessed of a little money, he was well-nigh certain to find himself in comparatively comfortable quarters. He lived in the messenger's house, had his own room, could arrange for his own food, and was usually permitted to receive his friends. If he cared to give his parole he might even be allowed to wander about London as he pleased, and in other respects his comforts were only The Making of Evidence. 155 limited by the length of his purse or the good nature of his goaler. There was of course some method in this seemingly generous treatment of State prisoners. Among other things, it gave the Government an opportunity of discovering who were the suspect's friends and correspond- ents, and of surrounding him with a network of spies who might gather information of value from his conversation and actions. Donald Macleod's friend, Malcolm Macleod of Brea, gives an amusing example of this. When brought to London Malcolm was by some mistake thought to be his cousin, the Laird of Raasay, who had led out the Raasay Macleods and joined the Prince shortly before the battle of Falkirk. When he was examined, however, the mistake was discovered, for the Government had a particular description of Raasay, which could in no way be made to fit Malcolm. They were accordingly in a quandary. Revenge on Mal- colm they were determined to have for the assistance he had given the Prince, but they dare not bring him to trial on that charge alone. Public opinion had already made Flora Mac- donald a popular heroine, and compelled the Government to treat her well, and the same feeling, together with the English love of fair- play, would not have tolerated proceedings in 156 Prince Charlie's Pilot. London against a man simply because he had helped the Prince when he was a fugitive. If Malcolm were to be tried, therefore, it must be on a proper charge of treason, in his case on a charge of having carried arms in the Prince's service. That he had done so the Government were morally certain, but evidence was lacking, and they therefore set to work to try to obtain it. Malcolm himself tells the story of their endeavours with dry humour. He was at this time iri the custody of a messenger, and the Government " sent the evidences to visit him to see if they knew him, and if they did not know him, to endeavour to fish something out of him by entangling him in his talk." He goes on " Particularly one, Urquhart, came to him in a very kind and familiar manner, and enquiring about his welfare. Captain Macleod told him that he had the ad- vantage of him, for that he was at a loss to know who it was that favoured him with such a kind visit, not remembering he had ever seen the face before. ' Oh, Mr Macleod,' said Urquhart, ' don't you remember to have seen me at Edinburgh at such a time ?' It happened very luckily for Malcolm that he had never been in Edinburgh about that time, and therefore he assured Urquhart that he behoved to take him From Enemies to Heroes. 157 for some other person. Urquhart still insisted that he was sure he had seen him before, particularly at Inverness at such a time. The Captain still kept him off with long weapons and discreet returns ; so that neither Urquhart nor none of his kidney could gain any ground upon him at all. There being no evidence to be found against him, he had the benefit of the indemnity. Accordingly he was liberated out of the messenger's hands upon July 4th, 1747, together with Clanranald, senior, and his lady, Boisdale, John Mackinnon, my Lady Stewart, &c." Donald Macleod does not seem to have been subjected to any ordeals of a like nature, for soon after he was placed in the messenger's cus- tody the Government decided to take no further steps against him, and he was released. To this they were compelled by the force of public opinion. The Jacobite prisoners had become the fashion in London, and the people who had been afraid to risk their skins for the cause to which many of them had pledged themselves were now tumbling over one another in their anxiety to extol the courage and virtues of those who had saved the Prince. Flora Macdonald was the heroine of fashionable London; Donald Macleod found him- self on a pinnacle of fame which must have well- 158 Prince Charlie's Pilot. nigh dazzled him ; and he and his friends were feasted and feted in a manner which would have turned the heads of smaller men. London for a season could think and talk of little but the gallant Highlanders, and it was only with ex- treme reluctance that at last she let them go. HOW LONDON FETED THE PRINCE'S PILOT, AND HOW HE RETURNED TO HIS NATIVE LAND. XVI. HOW LONDON FETED THE PRINCE'S PILOT, AND HOW HE RETURNED TO HIS NATIVE LAND. DONALD MACLEOD, though one of the first of the heroes to be released, was one of the last to leave London. For this there were several reasons. He was weak after his long confinement, he had fallen among friends, who treated him with the utmost kindness, and he was destitute of the means necessary for the long journey to the north of Scotland. SD he perforce was compelled to bide his time, and spent the interval of waiting very pleasantly among his old friends and his new acquaintances in the Metropolis. Chief among the latter was John Walkingshaw, a Scotsman long resident in London, and well known for his Jacobite pro- clivities. In the dark days which followed Culloden many a poor Scotsman had cause to bless his name. His house, his purse, and his services were all at the disposal of his exiled fellow-countrymen, and many and great were the kindnesses he lavished upon them. It was at his house that Lady Balmerino found an 162 Prince Charlie's Pilot asylum after the execution of her husband, and it was within the same hospitable doors that the old Laird of Mackinnon, his brave kinsman, John Mackinnon, Donald Macleod, and many more were received as honoured and ever welcome guests. To Donald Macleod especially did John Walkingshaw show kindnesses innumerable. The heroic devotion of the old man had touched his imagination as it had touched the imagination of countless others, while the simplicity and the modesty of his bearing won for him a very warm place in \Valki ngshaw's heart. "The Prince's Pilot," as he had come to be known, had many enthusiastic admirers in London, but none more so than his kindly host, who dubbed him " the faithful Palinurus," and, when the time for his departure at last came, presented him with a memento at once valuable and flattering, in the shape of " a large silver snuff-box, prettily chessed," a description of which, from the pen of Bishop Forbes, happily survives. " The box " writes the worthy Bishop, in whose affections Donald seems to rank next the Prince, "is an octagon oval of three inches and three-quarters in length, three inches in breadth, and an inch and a quarter in depth, and the in- side of it is doubly gilt. Upon the lid is raised the eight oared boat, with Donald at the helm, and A Handsome Gift. 163 the four under his care, together with the eight rowers distinctly represented. The sea is made to appear very rough and tempestuous. Upon one of the extremities of the lid there is a land- skip of the Long Isle, and the boat is just steer- ing into Rossinish, the point of Benbecula where they landed. Upon the other extremity of the lid there is a land skip of the end of the Isle of Sky, as it appears opposite to the Long Isle. Upon this representation of Sky are marked these two places, viz., Dunvegan and Gualtergill. Above the boat the clouds are represented heavy and lowering, and the rain is falling from them. The motto above the clouds, i.e., round the edge of the lid by the hinge, is this OLIM HAEC MEMINISSE JUVABIT APRILIS 26to 1746," which may be rendered With joy will he in after days recall these things. " The inscription under the sea, i.e., round the edge of the lid, by the opening, is this QUID, NEPTUNE, PARAS ? FATIS AGITAMUR INIQUIS" What hast thou in store, oh Neptune ? We are the sport of unkind fate. " Upon the bottom of the box are carved the following words DONALD MACLEOD OF GUALTERGILL, in the Isle of Sky, THE FAITH- FULL PALINURUS, Mt. 68, 1746. Below these words there is very prettily engraved a dove, with an olive branch in her bill." 164 Prince Charlie's Pilot. The box was truly, as the good Bishop says, " an excellent medal of Donald's history," and Donald valued it highly. When he showed it to Bishop Forbes it was empty. " Why," asked the Bishop, " have you no snuff in it 1" " Sneeshin in that box !" replied Donald in amazement. " No, the deil a puckle sneeshin shall ever go into it till the King be restored, and then, I trust in God, I'll go to London, and then will I put sneeshin in the box and go to the Prince and say, ' Sir, will you take a snee- shin out of my box ?' " For two mouths after his release did Donald remain in London, and these two months aff- orded him some slight compensation for all that he had suffered. The simple old Skyeman found himself the hero of the moment ; his tale was in everybody's mouth, and no gathering of Jaco- bites was complete without the romantic figure of the Prince's Pilot. At many a London table, and in many a fine lady's drawing-room had he to tell the story of his adventures and answer eager questions about the Prince, until at last his tongue grew weary with constant repetition, and he began to long for peace and quiet. At no time, moreover, did he like to talk in English. Gaelic was his language, and though he knew Fellow Exiles in London. 165 English passing well, he never felt at home in it. Happily, even in London, he had many oppor- tunities for speaking in his beloved native tongue, for the Capital was full of Highlanders, most of them in like condition with himself. Flora Macdonald, of course, was there, and Clan- ranald and his lady. There, too, were Boisdale and the two Mackinnons, the loyal old laird and his gallant kinsman, Captain John ; and Kin- lochmoidart's two brothers, the banker ^Eneas, with whom Donald had gone to Barra for the Spanish gold, and his brother the surgeon, who had proved a friend in need to his fellow - sufferers on the prison-ship on which he was confined. With his one-time fellow-prisoner, Malcolm Macleod of Brea, who lived to excite Dr Johnston's admiration, Donald was particu- larly friendly, while o other Highland sufferers in the cause, Macdonalds, Frasers, Macleans, and the like, there seemed no end. Most of these Donald saw constantly, especially at John Walkingshaw's house, where exile met with exile, and experiences were exchanged in the kindly Gaelic tongue. There was only one episode during those two months which Donald did not like to re- member. He discovered that his Chief, Macleod of Macleod, was in London, and like the good 166 Prince Charlie's Pilot. clansman he was, he promptly went to call for him. He had seen him last on the bridge of Inverness, when, with the pipes of Prince Charlie's advancing army ringing in their ears, Macleod had done his best to persuade Donald to fly from the temptation which he knew would presently await him in the town. But Donald had turned a deaf ear to all argument, and the last he saw of his chief was his retiral with more haste than dignity across the bridge. Much water had flowed beneath the bridge of Inver- ness since then, but Donald imagined that in far-away London his Chief would be ready to let bygones be bygones. Grievous was his dis- appointment, for Macleod refused even to see him, and when at a later date Donald accosted him in the streets of Edinburgh, he turned his back upon him. No doubt Macleod, who, only after much hesitation, had given a half-hearted allegiance to the Hanoverians, felt that the less he had to do with rebels of Donald's fame the better for his standing with the Government. But the slight, as he fancied it, rankled in Donald's mind, and he recounted it to Bishop Forbes more in sorrow and wonder than in anger. Donald was almost the last of the exiles to leave London. His friend Malcolm Macleod left The Homeward Road. 167 in July in the company of Flora Macdonald, with ^hom he shared a postchaise to Edinburgh, acting as her escort on the journey. It is signifi- cant of the widespread fame which was hers, that it was deemed advisable for her to travel under an assumed name, in order to avoid attracting the attention of the populace. The story of her heroic deed had rung through the length and breadth of England, and such was her fame that her friends feared if her journey were known she would be subjected to manifold annoyances at the hands of staring crowds. So as brother and sister, Mr and Miss Robertson Flora Macdonald and Malcolm Macleod travelled from London to Edinburgh. A fortnight or so later Donald Macleod looked his last on London, and with a heart full of joy turned his face to the North. Nearly 18 mouths had flown since he had seen his wife and family, and as in those days the post between Skye and London was slow and precarious, what tidings he had been able to obtain were but small and scanty. Like many of the other re- leased prisoners he was without a penny, and was dependent on the generosity of John Walk- ingshaw and other London Jacobites for the very bread he ate. Thus did the Hanoverian Govern- ment treat its captured foes when at last it 168 Prince Charlie's Pilot. granted them a reluctant release. It cast them stripped and destitute on London to sink or swim as best they might the last cruel act in the long list of cruelties which it had been its delight to practice. So it was only at long intervals, and in ones and twos and threes, as the opportunity offered, that the exiles were able to make a slow return to their native land. Some, by the kindness of friends, were able to make the journey to Edinburgh by postchaise ; some secured by one means or another a horse ; some even set out on the long road on foot ; and some found among the sea-dogs at the Port of London kindly Scots skippers who were willing to give to their stricken countrymen a passage to their own land. Into the hands of one of these last Donald seems to have fallen, thanks, probably, to the good offices of John Walking- shaw, for on the 17th of August 1747 we find him newly arrived in Leith in the house of a good Highlander James Macdonald, joiner, the kinsman and friend of Macleod of Raasay, and many other Highland gentlemen. Of James Macdonald Bishop Forbes tells a story, which well illustrates the closenesss of the ties of friendship and of clanship which existed among Highlanders in those days. After Culloden the Island of Raasay had been swept Practical Loyalty. 169 with fire and sword, and " plundered and pil- laged to the utmost degree of severity, every house and hut being levelled to the ground." But in the laird's house there were some fine windows " all of oak," and when the house was razed to the ground, these were carefully pre- served by the destroyers and put on board a ship of war for sale. "When the ship came to the Road of Leith/' says Bishop Forbes, "James Macdonald, joiner, and a kinsman of Raaza's, went aboard, and bought the windows, which were all done with crown glass, choosing rather they should fall into his hands than into those of any indifferent person, because he could account for them to the owner when a proper opportunity should offer. 1 saw the windows in James Macdonald's house." What John Walkingshaw had been to the exiles in London, James Macdonald was. to an even greater degree, to the Highland Jacobites who found themselves in Edinburgh. Was he not a Highlander and a Highland gentleman himself? So his doors were ever open to his suffering compatriots, and within them many a weary exile found a safe asylum. Donald, accordingly, he received with open arms. Was he not " the Prince's Pilot," and a Skyeman to boot ? So at long last Donald found himself on 170 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Scottish soil once more, and in the company of friends who would see to it that the troubles and trials of the heroic old man were over. OF BISHOP FORBES, AND HIS FIRST MEETING WITH DONALD MACLEOD. XVII. OF BISHOP FORBES, AND HIS FIRST MEET ING WITH DONALD MACLEOD. IF there was one man in Scotland who was anxious, above all others, to meet Donald Macleod it was he who has been referred to constantly in these pages as Bishop Forbes. In 1747, however, the Rev. Robert Forbes, M.A., was not yet a Bishop. He was one of the clergy- men of the Episcopal Church of Scotland in Leith, an office which he had filled since December 1735. Born in 1708 in the parish of Rayne, in Aberdeenshire, Bishop Forbes, to give him the name by which he is known in history, was sent at an early age to Marischal College, Aber- deen, where he graduated Master of Arts in 1726. He subsequently proceeded to qualify for orders in the Episcopal Church of Scotland, and was ordained a priest of that body in June 1735. When Prince Charlie landed, Bishop Forbes was, accordingly, in the prime of his manhood, 37 years of age, and a clergyman of ten years standing. Like all his brethren of the Scottish Episcopal Church, he was an en- 174 Prince Charlie's Pilot. thusiastic Jacobite, and as soon as the news of the raising of the standard reached Edin- burgh, he determined to join the Prince. He very soon found some friends of like mind with himself, and early in September in the com- pany of two fellow-clergymen, two Jacobite gentlemen, and two men-servants, he set out for the Highlands. Fortunately, perhaps, for himself, however for the Hanoverian Govern- ment showed no mercy to clergymen who had joined the Prince, several of them actually suffering death at the hands of the executioner the little band of travellers was arrested on suspicion, near Stirling, on 7th September 1745, and clapped into Stirling Castle. There they were kept till 4th February 1746, when they were transferred to Edinburgh Castle, from which the Bishop was released on the 29th of May following. Of his own treatment while a prisoner he does not tell us much, but the following episode shows that he had no more reason to love the Hanoverians, at least after the advent of Cumberland, than any other captive. On Sunday, the 2nd of February 1746, Cumberland entered Stirling in pursuit of Prince Charlie's retreating army, and orders were forth- with given for the transference of the prisoners Bishop Forbes' Experiences. 175 in the Castle to Edinburgh. What then ensued, Bishop Forbes describes " from my own eyesight and experience." Early in the morning of the 4th of February " some prisoners in the Castle of Stirling," he writes, " were, by Cumberland's orders, sent off under command, to the Castle of Edinburgh." The party, of whom he himself was one, "were taken out of the Castle of Stirling at nine o'clock in the morning, and kept standing on the street of Stirling till betwixt two and three in the afternoon, as so many spectacles to be gazed at, though not one of them had been taken upon or near a field of battle. Lord Albemarle, coming up to Captain Hamilton of Hamilton's Dragoons, who com- manded the party, asked him who these were that were placed behind the front rank. The captain answered they were prisoners. Then Albemarle, with a volley of oaths, asked why they were not tied with ropes. The captain replied they were gentlemen, * Gentlemen,' said Albemarle, ' damn them for rebels. Get ropes and rope them immediately." Captain Hamilton ventured to expostulate, and " begged leave to inform him that they were taken up only upon suspicion, and added he could venture to say there was not anything to be laid to their charge. Albemarle still cried 176 Prince Charlie's Pilot. to have them roped, and swore if one of them should happen to escape, Captain Hamilton should pay dear for him. Accordingly they were tied two and two by the arms, the gentlemen laughing at the farce, and excusing Captain Hamilton, who declared his being ashamed of such a piece of duty. While Albemarle was bullying and roaring, one of the gentlemen spoke these words : ' It is exceedingly like a Dutch- man/ Cornet Forth (one of the command) said he was persuaded it was orders. As soon as the gentlemen were out of Stirling, Captain Hamilton desired them to throw away the ropes ! " In Edinburgh Castle Bishop Forbes met many other prisoners, and it was perhaps when listening to their experiences that the idea occured to him of collecting information from the mouths of those who had taken part in, and . could throw some light upon, the events and incidents of the Rebellion. The idea, in its be- ginning probably only an intention to collect matters of interest to the friends of the cause, grew into a plan to collect all available evidence ; and when at last, probably late in 1746, it took concrete shape, it resolved itself gradually into a resolution to collect every scrap of information which could throw light on any of the person- alities or events of the Rebellion, and especially 177 Origin of the " Lyon." on the personality of the Prince and his wander- ings after Culloden, on the enormities perpe- trated on his adherents, and on the adventures and sufferings of those who had followed or be- friended him. The whole collection extends to ten manu- script volumes, the first of which bears the date 1747, and the last 1775. The earlier volumes show very clearly the growth of the Bishop's plan, for they begin with a copy of a letter, dat^d 23rd October 1746, "from the Rev. Mr Robert Lyon to his Mother and Sisters," and continue for the first 120 pages to give the last letters and dying speeches of various gentlemen who suffered at the hands of the executioner for their loyalty to the Stuart cause. It is only in July 1747 that the scope of the collection begins to widen, when Bishop Forbes receives " a genuine and full account of the Battle of Culloden, with what happened the two preceding days, together with the young Prince's miracul- ous escape at, from, and after the battle . . ' to his return to the Continent of Scotland from the Western Islands on the 6th of the succeeding July. Taken from the mouths of the old Laird of Mackinnon, Mr Malcolm Macleod, &c., and of Lady Clanranald and Miss Flora Macdonald, by John Walkingshaw, of London, or Dr John 178 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Burton." Shortly after the Bishop received this precious document, he read it to Alexander Mac- donald of Kingsburgh at a gathering in Lady Bruce's house in Leith on the llth of July 1747, and Kingsburgh having made some corrections upon it, then proceeded to tell his own story, which Bishop Forbes carefully took down. To the collection of letters and speeches of the cause's martyrs, the " genuine and full account of the Battle of Culloden, &c.," obtained by John Walkingshaw or Dr Burton, was then added exactly as it was received by Bishop Forbes ; and then follows the account of the meeting with Kingsburgh, the latter's observations on the narrative read to him, and his tale of his own adventures and sufferings. Thus the Bishop's plan began to come to its full development, and henceforward the collec- tion is a collection of living human documents. Narratives written by the narrators themselves ; interviews between the Bishop and various of the heroes of the '45, whom he subjected to long and close examination ; letters passing between the Bishop and many of those who had been out with, or had aided, the Prince ; meetings with people who had something worth telling good citizens of Inverness, who described what they had seen in the town before and after Culloden, A Labour of Love. 179 officers who had served the Hanoverians, and were not afraid to tell what they had seen or heard, and persons of every condition in life who could contribute a mite of information to the Bishop's hoard ; all these and many other things besides journals, poems, epitaphs, and the like are set out at length and with extraordinary care and precision in the worthy Bishop's manu- script volumes. The collection of every possible bit of information relating to the '45 and the Cause became, indeed, the passion of his life, and down to the very month before his death, in November 1775, he continued to add to his collection, and to chronicle every scrap of news which had any bearing on the Prince or the Cause which lay so near his heart. The last entry is a letter, dated 16th October 1775, from Bishop Gordon, London, the conclud- ing paragraph of which runs thus : " Indeed, sir, I am of your opinion that the American affair, as things appear at present, looks formid- able enough to shake the Empire of Britain, tho' it be purposed, as I am assured, to have an army of 40,000 effective men, besides every other requisite in America in the Spring." A far cry from the dark days of '46, but not even Bishop Forbes or Bishop Gordon foresaw that " the Empire of Britain " was to find her most 180 Prince Charlie's Pilot. loyal sons in America in the men and the children of the men whose sufferings in and whose devotion to another lost cause it had been Bishop Forbes's sorrow and joy to chronicle. Inscribed on the first volume is the title by which the collection is known, with a sub- title which explains the Bishop's intentions. It runs "The Lyon in Mourning, or, a Col- lection (As exactly made as the Iniquity of the Times would permit) of Speeches, Letters, Journals, etc., relative to the Affairs, but more particularly the Dangers and Distresses of (?)," it being considered wise in those days not to mention the Prince, either in speech or writing, by name. Why the name " The Lyou in Mourning " is not definitely known, but it is conjectured, probably with truth, that it refers to the heraldic emblem of Scotland, the Scottish Lion. The collection remained in the Bishop's keeping till his death, a jealously guarded and much valued possession, and it was not until 1834 that any part of its contents was pub- lished to the world. In that year certain of the papers and narratives in it, amounting to about one third of the whole, were printed by Dr Robert Chambers in his well-known, but now scarce work, "Jacobite Memoirs of the Rebellion of 1745." On his death, Dr Chambers be- A High Ideal. 181 queathed the Manuscript to the Faculty of Advocates, in whose library in Edinburgh it is now carefully preserved, and in 1895 it was printed, exactly as it had been left by Bishop Forbes, by the Scottish History Society. Of the collection itself it is impossible to speak too highly. Bishop Forbes's declared aim was to make it "as compleat and exact as possible for the instruction of future ages," and to see that every act and incident was " carefully recorded and transmitted to posterity, according to truth and justice." No trouble therefore was spared in the effort to obtain full and accurate information. If there were more than one actor in a particular episode, the narrative of each was obtained, discrepancies were pointed out, and explanations asked ; and the whole, narratives, criticisms, and explanations, were then set down, so that the reader might compare them for him- self and form his own judgment. It was a high ideal the Bishop set before him. " I never chuse," he says, " to take matters of fact at second-hand if I can by any means have them from those who were immediately interested in them," and this ideal he succeeded in carrying out. It is this which gives the Lyon in Mourn- ing its unique place in Scottish historical litera- ture, and sets it among the world's great books. 182 Prince Charlie's Pilot. After his release in May 1746, Bishop Forbes went to reside in Leith in the house of a wealthy member of his congregation, who was an ardent Jacobite, an old lady of 77, Lady Bruce, widow of ir William Bruce of Kinross. Here he abode till his marriage in 1749, and here the greater part of the Lyon was written. In Lady Bruce's house the Bishop was in his element. Her hospitality was as unbounded as her Jacobitism was enthusiastic, and her house was the scene of many a Jacobite gathering and many a supper-party, at which the company listened spell-bound to the tales of those who had suffered for the cause. For thither it was that those who had anything to tell came to Bishop Forbes, and then the word went forth to all the " friends," and as the night went on the hero of the occasion found himself telling his tale to an ever increasing circle of eager listeners. Such was the man to whom James Mac- donald lost no time in sending Donald Macleod, for by the time of Donald's arrival the Bishop's plan was in full swing, and every Jacobite for miles round knew of his zest for information. So on "Monday, August 17th," writes the Bishop, "betwixt six and seven at night, 1747, Deacon William Clerk, taylor, came to see me, and did me the favour of bringing along with Donald and the Bishop. 183 him Donald Macleod (tenant at Gualtergill in the Isle of Skye, under the Laird of Macleod) the honest and faithful steersman of the eight oar'd boat . . . who had the Prince among his hands, and was employed in going upon his errands for nine or ten weeks after the Battle of Culloden." Thus does the worthy Bishop record his first meeting with the Prince's Pilot, for whom he was rapidly to acquire a deep and lasting affection, and on whom, by the power of his pen, he was to be- stow deathless fame. With the bringing together of these two staunch supporters of the exiled Stuarts, the story of Donald Macleod draws near a close. But before we resume the thread, interrupted of necessity in order to introduce Donald's bio- grapher to the reader, a line or two may be devoted to Bishop Forbes's subsequent career. In 1762 he was raised to the Episcopal hierarchy as Bishop of Ross and Caithness, and in that capacity paid two visits to the north, the par- ticulars of which may be read by the curious in his " Journals," which he kept with great care, and which were published some years ago. He died at Leith on the 18th of November 1775, in the 68th year of his age, in spite of disillusion and disappointment, a Jacobite to the last. HOW EDINBURGH OUTDID LONDON. AND HOW DONALD MACLEOD AND NED BURKE MET ONCE MORE. XVIII. HOW EDINBURGH OUTDID LONDON, AND HOW DONALD MACLEOD AND NED BURKE MET ONCE MORE FROM Bishop Forbes Donald received a warm welcome, but "after the usual compliments and some little chit-chat" the Bishop, with characteristic ardour, came straight to the subject which lay so near his heart. Would honest Donald favour him with an account of the adventures of the Prince and himself during their wanderings in the Western Isles ? Donald modestly replied that he had nothing very much to tell, but if Bishop Forbes wished it he would very willingly grant his desire, "for all that he had to say would take up no great time it would easily be contained in a quarter of a sheet of paper." He added, how- ever, that he had heard that the Bishop had been employing himself in collecting "these things," and he would like to hear all the accounts he had gathered together before telling his own story. To this the Bishop rather demurred, on the ground that it would take up too much time, but he had a copy of O'Neil's 188 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Journal in his possession, and if Donald liked he would read him that. Donald readily agreed, expressing himself as " anxious to know what O'Neil advanced in his journal," as he had been " along with him in company all the time he had attended the Prince after the Battle of Culloden," and could therefore "judge where O'Neil was in the right and where in the wrong." He quite plainly shared the general dislike and distrust with which O'Neil and the other Irish officers were regarded by Prince Charlie's Highland followers, feelings which it may at once be said were amply justified. Not that these officers were unfaithful to the Prince, but they were adventurers, with all to gain and nothing to lose, and it was owing largely to the malign influence which they exercised over their Royal master that the '45 ended in such utter ruin. His point gained, the Bishop next proceeded to ask Donald "if he would indulge him the freedom of asking questions at him," without which, as he sapiently observed, he could assure him, from experience, "there was no taking of journals from one with any tolerable exactness." The fact was Donald's remark about the quarter sheet of paper had alarmed him, and he saw that if he was to get the old man's story with any fullness, he must draw him out carefully. Plain Answers. 189 Donald soon quieted his fears on that score. He would allow him ask any questions he thought fit to propose. But even with that assurance the Bishop could not let Donald go. He was literally bubbling over with eagerness to hear the old man's tale, and so he asked permission to accompany him to James Macdonald's house, and there spend the evening with him, Donald of course assented, and by-and-by, he and his host and the Bishop, had settled down to a long night's talk, during which the Bishop naively confesses he put many questions, " to which Donald gave plain answers." No wonder Donald laughingly observed in Gaelic to his host that his questioner was " the unco-est chiel he had ever met." Before the Bishop took his departure on this the first night of his acquaintanceship with Donald, he had learnt enough to see that in him he had found a treasure, and thenceforward all his observations regarding him bear the marks of affection and esteem. The evening's conversa- tion, too, left him all afire with eagerness to get Donald's story written down in detail, and he did not say good-night till he had arranged to meet him for that purpose on the following 1 hursday at James Macdonald's house. Behold him, then, soon after nine in the morning of 190 Prince Charlie's Pilot. the appointed day entering the room in which Donald and two other Jacobites were awaiting him, and being greeted with Donald's eager enquiry had he brought 0' Neil's Journal with him. " For," said he " the deil a' word will I give you till I hear O'Neil's Journal. From all I've heard about it I'm afraid it is far from being right." So the Journal was at once produced, and Donald listened eagerly while the Bishop read it aloud. It was not long before he had fault to find with it, and before the end his honest indignation was aroused. It was full of errors. It con- tained complete mis-statements of fact, it omitted much of importance, and it made it appear as if it were to O'Neil alone that the Prince's safety was due. He took far too much praise to him- self, said Donald. " What the deil could O'Neil do for the pre- servation and safety of the Prince," he asked wrathfully, "in a Highland country, where he knew not a foot of ground and had not the language of the people. And sic far 'd o' him," he added, " for he was no sooner from the Prince than he was taken prisoner." Donald's criticism of O'Neil's Journal is entirely true. It is from first to last a most un- The Telling of the Tale. 191 generous document, just such as one would ex- pect from one of the braggart Irishmen who were Prince Charlie's evil genius. It is noteworthy that it was so regarded at the time, and Malcolm Macleod voiced the general opinion when he re- marked that he could not have a good opinion of O'Neil " when he was not at the pains to call for Donald Macleod, his companion in distress, whom he could not fail to know to be in London at the very same time he himself was in it, and to whom he could have easy access at any time he pleased." The reading of O'Neil's Journal over, Donald's two friends took their departure, but Malcolm Macleod happily came in just then, and, acquainted as he already was with the Journal, added his own criticism to Donald's. Then they settled down to the real business of the day. Donald, who did " not much like at any time to speak in Scots," began by observing that he would rather express himself in Gaelic, and as James Macdonald as well as Malcolm Macleod was now present, it was agreed that he should do so, and that Malcolm and James should interpret. So sentence by sentence the tale was told, Donald speaking in Gaelic, Malcolm or James translating, the Bishop writing and reading every sentence carefully over as it was completed," in order 192 Prince Charlie's Pilot. to know of them all if he was exactly right." From time to time the procedure was interrupted by an eager question from the Bishop, a discussion as to dates or the precise order of events, or a re- minder by Malcolm, who knew the story of Donald's adventures by heart, that some interest- ing fact was being omitted. From time to time, too, Donald expressed himself in Scots in- stead of in Gaelic, for the Bishop's questions were of course couched in that tongue, and so in a mixture of Gaelic and Scots the tale was slowly unfolded. It was a long task, but the interest of neither narrator nor listeners ever flagged. Donald was living over again some of the great hours of his life, and encouraged by the sympathy and the promptings of his audience, he searched his memory for every possible detail. As for the audience, they hung on his words, and as hour succeeded hour Jacobite after Jacobite dropped quietly in, until, when at last between 10 and 11 o'clock at night the tale came to an end, the company in the room in James Macdonald's house had increased to 16 or 17 in number. Of the tale thus rescued from oblivion by Bishop Forbes, it is only necessary to say that its truth and accuracy have never been open to the slightest doubt, for not only does it bear the impress of truth upon its face, but it has been The Ties of Clan. 193 corroborated in the most astonishing way from various independent contemporary sources. As to the manner of its telling, we need only quote the opinion of Bishop Forbes, written 18 months later, when comparing Donald's account with another, and revised, copy of O'Neil's Journal which he had seen. He says " I am persuaded anyone will find the Captain's account of things dull and wanting when put into the balance with that of the old honest Palinurus, whose simple unadorn'd sayings have a peculiar energy and beauty in them." Edinburgh at this time numbered among its inhabitants many Highlanders, among whom the ties of clan and kinship were strong. Scarcely a family in the north but had a son or brother or cousin in the law or in business or married in Edinburgh, and the hospitality of these to their friends from the north was un- bounded, bo Donald speedily found a score of doors open to him, and so long was he de- tained "in and about Edinburgh by the civilities and kindness ot friends," that two months elapsed before he was able to resume his journey to Skye. If his memories of London were mostly of a sombre hue, of Edinburgh he had none but the happiest recollections. In Edinburgh Donald met again one of the 194 Prince Charlie's Pilot. companions of his wanderings in the person of Ned Burke. Ned was back at his old work of carrying sedan chairs, and it must have been like a breath from the western seas for him to encounter Donald again. One likes to imagine the meeting, the feted Highland hero of the moment, and the humble Highland chairman, who had been sharers of uncommon perils, and had stood the test of uncommon temptations, and who had seen each other last as hunted, desperate fugitives on the shores of South Uist. What a meeting it must have been, and what a babbling of Gaelic must have ensued. One September day Donald, who was living at this time with friends in Edinburgh, was to dine with a certain David Anderson, who resided in the Links of Leith. As he did not know Mr Anderson's house he sought out Ned Burke, and brought him with him as his guide. On enter- ing, he informed his host who his guide was, and Ned was thereupon desired " to come inside and get his dinner." While he was eating, Bishop Forbes went out to converse with him, and pre- sently returned with a paper in which was set forth Ned's account of his wanderings with the Prince. As soon as the company heard of it they clamoured for it to be read, and the Bishop, complying, noticed that at several points Donald Donald and Ned's Journal. 195 frowned somewhat, and when the reading was finished he asked that Ned Burke should be brought in, as he was not pleased with his account of things. Ned, accordingly, was sent for, " and after a pretty long and warm debate betwixt them in Gaelic," it was found that Ned had omitted to mention several things, which, seeing that he was an entirely uneducated man who knew hardly any English, was not surpris- ing. As a result, however, Bishop Forbes arranged to meet him some other time, and go over his Journal with him, and Ned, keeping his appointment, an extremely interesting account of his adventures was obtained, which forms an admirable corollary to Donald's narrative. Dinner in those days was an afternoon institution, supper being the evening meal. On the same day as he dined with David Anderson, Donald had an appointment to sup with Lady Bruce, and when there " spoke much in com- mendation of Ned Burke as being an honest, faithful, trusty fellow. He said in the event of a Revolution Ned would carry a chair no more, for he was persuaded the Prince would settle an hundred pounds sterling a year upon Ned during life." On the same night a pleasant surprise came Donald's way. He had arrived in Leith utterly destitute, and " had not wherewith to 196 Prince Charlie's Pilot. bear his charges to Sky." So Bishop Forbes, with his usual energy, had a contribution set on foot for him in and about Edinburgh, concerning which, he says, " I own I had a great anxiety for my own share to make out for honest Palinurus, if possible, a pound sterling for every week he had served the Prince in distress ; and I thank God I was so happy as to accomplish my design exactly." According to the Bishop's computation, Donald had served the Prince for ten weeks, and, accordingly, into Donald's hands, at Lady Bruce's, was put the sum of ten pounds sterling, a sum sufficient in those days to carry him pretty far. HOW THE PRINCE'S PILOT RETURNED IN HONOUR TO GUALTERGILL IN THE ISLE OF SKYE. XIX. HOW THE PRINCE'S PILOT RETURNED IN HONOUR TO GUALTERGILL IN THE ISLE OF SKYE. IT was not until the 23rd of October that Donald set out for Skye, and when he did he carried with him the respect and the good wishes of every Highlander and Jaco- bite in Edinburgh. A striking evidence of this is to be found in a letter which he carried for Bishop Forbes to Lord Arbuthnot. The latter had written the Bishop some weeks before be- speaking hie aid for one William Baird, who was lying under sentence of death in Carlisle goal, and Bishop Forbes took advantage of Donald's northward journey to reply. The Cvssential parts follow. Beginning with a remark about his delay in writing, the Bishop goes on : " But to tell the truth, as I had a view of this bearer, I de- layed writing till I could do it with a good grace. And sure I am I could never do it with a better one than at present, when I gladly embrace the opportunity of affording your lordship the happiness to salute one of 200 Prince Charlie's Pilot. the first men in the world. I know, my lord, you feel a sensible pleasure beyond many in the world in conversing with worthies, men of rigid virtue and integrity, and such indeed this man is. " Know then, my lord, that this will be put into your hands by the renowned SCOTS PALINURUS, Donald Macleod, tenant at Gualter- gill. . . . Take a view, my lord, of this truly noble, though poor, worthy in this single point that he had the courage and integrity of heart to despise the tempting bait of thirty thousand pounds sterling, and not only so, but that in spite of the infirmities attending the hoary head he struggled through as great dangers and difficulties of life for the preser- vation of ? as it is in the power of the most fertile fancy to paint ; and then I leave it to your lordship to draw the immortal character of this amiable instance of heroic virtue. " I dare venture to say that no man of bowels can hear Donald's interesting story with- out a mixture of joy and pain, and even without shedding tears. Well do I know all the several parts of it, and the more I think upon it to the greater height is my admiration raised of the wondrous good man." From all of which it is evident that Bishop Forbes at least held, not Home once More. 201 only Donald's exploits, but Donald himself in very high regard. And so at long last Donald Macleod returned to his wife and family at Gualtergill, in the Isle of Skye. Many months had passed, and many strange things had befallen him since, in the month of February 1746, he had sailed into the port of Inverness with a view of taking in a cargo of meal for the inhabitants of fckye. Well, indeed, might Bishop Forbes apply to him, "' in a literal sense, the words of the blessed Apostle : * In journeyings often, in perils of water, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the weather, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils among false brethren ; in weariness and painful- ness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.' " But he had his reward, for as long as the story of Prince Charlie has power to charm, so long will the name of Donald Macleod live as the embodi- ment of the Highland virtues of constancy, courage, devotion, and unswerving fidelity. For nearly two years after his return to Skye did Donald live. But his health was pro- ably undermined by all he had gone through, and in July 1749 a report reached Bishop Forbes that he had died in the preceding month. 202 Prince Charlie's Pilot. Whereupon the worthy Bishop full of grief com- posed a brief epitaph in the manner of the day r and sent it to the " Caledonian Mercury "and the " Evening Courant." The latter, he records in- dignantly, refused to insert it " unless half a crown should be given ; but the publishers of the ' Caledonian Mercury ' did insert it with- out any lure or bribe." Early in September, however, he had a call from young Raasay, who assured him that Donald was alive and in good health, but a week or two later he received a letter from Malcolm Macleod, dated 18th Sep- tember, in which it was stated that " poor Donald Macleod is dead about ten days ago." So the good Bishop did not think it necessary to correct in the public prints the error into which he had unwittingly fallen, and we may accord- ingly bring the tale of the Prince's Pilot to a fitting conclusion by quoting the epitaph which his friend and admirer composed on the first rumour of his death. " Acre perennius," (more lasting than brass), he heads it. " Some time last month died at Gualtergill, in the Isle of Skye, aged 72, DONALD MACLEOD, of late so well known to the world by the name of the FAITHFUL PALINURUS. In the decline of his life he gave a strong proof how An Epitaph. 203 much he despised the gilded dust, that idol of the times. ' O had I Virgil's or great Homer's pen, I'd sing the praises of the wondrous man. Firm as a rock he stood the shocks of fate. And bravely scorn'd to be a tool of State.' " The adventures of Prince Charlie after he parted from Donald Macleod are too well known to require telling here, but it may be well to devote a few lines to a brief summary of his wanderings, in order that the period he spent with Donald may be placed in its proper per- spective. It was on the 21st of April that the Prince put himself in Donald's hands, and it was exactly two months afterwards, on the 21st of June, that they parted. He was, therefore, for sixty-one days in Donald's keeping, and when it is remembered that the wanderings around which so much romance has gathered lasted altogether for five months, the extent of the debt which he owed to his " Faithful Palinurus" is immediately apparent. For more than a third of the whole period during which he was a hunted fugitive, his safety depended on the devotion and the vigilance of the gallant old man. On the 28th of June the Prince was taken in charge by Flora Macdonald. Her dangerous 204 Prince Charlie's Pilot. duty it was to get him through the ring of foes which hemmed him in on every side, and though she was only with him from the evening of the 28th to the evening of the 30th of June, the nature of the task she undertook and so success- fully accomplished, rightly won for her undying fame, for it was owing to her courage and in- genuity that he escaped from a seemingly fatal situation, and reached Skye in safety. From Skye, by the help of certain Macleods and Mackinnons, he was conveyed to the Mainland, and there, from the 7th of July to the 20th of September, he remained. It is impossible here to tell the tale of those eleven weeks, or to set down the names of all those who took a hand in the dangerous game of saving him. Macdoiiald of Morar, Macdonald of Borrodale, Macdonald of Glenaladale, Cameron of Glenpean, the famous eight men of Glenmoriston, Cameron of Clunes, Dr Cameron (Lochiel's brother), the Rev. John Cameron, Macdonald of Lochgarry, Lochiel, and Cluny, all in their turn, bore a noble share in the difficult task, and when, on the 20th of September 1746, the ship which bore the Prince to France and safety spread its sails to the wind, he left behind him to guard his interests the last of his succourers, the loyal and faithful Cluny. Thus in the tale of Prince Charlie's wanderings Noble among the Noble. 205 are enshrined some of the noblest names in Highland history, and it is not too much to say that chief among them shines resplendent that of Donald Macleod, who, amid all the galaxy of gallant figures whose memory makes the '45 dear to men's hearts, stands forth as the beau- ideal of whole-hearted and romantic devotion.