Ross is a region of Scotland, a former earldom and, under the name Ross and Cromarty, a county. The name Ross derives from a Gaelic word meaning "headland" a reference to the Black Isle. Another possible origin is the West Norse word for Orkney – Hrossey – meaning horse island. Ross is a historical comital region predating the Mormaerdom of Ross, it is a region used by the Church, with the Presbytery of Ross being part of the Synod of Ross and Caithness. Excavations of a rock shelter and shell midden at Sand, Applecross on the coast of Wester Ross have shown that the coast was occupied by Mesolithic hunter-gatherers, it may be doubted whether the Romans effected a temporary settlement in the area of the modern county. In Roman times, for long afterwards, the land was occupied by Picts, who, in the 6th and 7th centuries, were converted to Christianity by followers of Saint Columba. Throughout the next three centuries the natives were continually harassed by Norwegian Viking raiders, of whose presence tokens have survived in several place-names.
At this time the country formed part of the great province of Moray, which extended as far as the Dornoch Firth and the Oykel, included the whole of Ross and Cromarty. William, the 4th Earl of Ross, was present with his clan at the Battle of Bannockburn, a century the castle of Dingwall, the chief seat on the mainland of Donald, Lord of the Isles, was captured after the disastrous fight at Harlaw in Aberdeenshire, which Donald had provoked when his claim to the earldom was rejected; the earldom reverted to the crown in 1424, but James I soon afterwards restored it to the heiress of the line, the mother of Alexander Macdonald, 3rd Lord of the Isles, who thus became the 11th Earl. In consequence, however, of the treason of John Macdonald, 4th and last Lord of the Isles and 12th Earl of Ross, the earldom was again vested in the crown. Five years James III bestowed it on his second son, James Stewart, whom he created Duke of Ross in 1488. By the 16th century the whole area of the county was occupied by different clans.
The Rosses held. The county of Ross was constituted in 1661, Cromarty in 1685 and 1698, both being consolidated into the present county in 1889. Apart from occasional conflicts between rival clans, the only battles in the county were at Invercarron, at the head of Dornoch Firth, when Montrose was crushed by Colonel Archibald Strachan on 27 April 1650. Ross lies south of Sutherland and the Dornoch Firth, west of the North Sea and the Moray Firth, north of the Beauly Firth and Inverness-shire and east of The Minch. There are a number of small islands off the area's west coast, among which are: Gillean in the parish of Lochalsh Crowlin Islands in Applecross Eilean Horrisdale, Isle of Ewe in Gairloch parish Isle Martin and Tanera More, of the Summer Isles group in the parish of LochbroomThe area of the mainland is 1,572,332 acres. On the North Sea side of the county the major firths are the Beauly Firth and the Moray Firth, which separate the Black Isle from Inverness-shire. On the Atlantic coastline—which has a length of nearly 311 miles —the principal sea lochs and bays, from south to north, are Loch Duich, Loch Alsh, Loch Carron, Loch Kishorn, Loch Torridon, Loch Shieldaig, Upper Loch Torridon, Gair Loch, Loch Ewe, Gruinard Bay, Loch Broom and Enard Bay.
The chief capes include Tarbat Ness on the east coast, Coigach, Greenstone Point, Rubha Reidh and Hamha Point on the west. All the southern boundary with Inverness-shire consists of a rampart of peaks, many of them Munros: An Riabhachan, Sgurr na Lapaich, Carn Eige, Mam Sodhail, Beinn Fhada, Sgurr Fhuaran, The Saddle. To the north of Glen Torridon are the masses of Liathach, Beinn Eighe, Beinn Alligin and Beinn Dearg. On the northeastern shore of Loch Maree rises Slioch, while the Fannich group contains six Munros, the highest being Sgurr Mor; the immense isolated bulk of Ben Wyvis, forms the most noteworthy feature in the north-east, An Teallach in the north-west appears conspicuous, though less solitary. Only a small fraction of the west and south of the area is under 1,000 ft in height. Easter Ross and the peninsula of the Black Isle are comparatively level; the longest stream of the mainland portion of Ross and Cromarty is the River Orrin, which rises from the slopes of An Sidhean and pursues a north-easterly course to its confluence with the River Conon after a run of about 26 miles, a small part of which forms the boundary with Inverness-shi
Alexander of Islay, Earl of Ross
Alexander of Islay or Alexander MacDonald was a medieval Scottish nobleman, who succeeded his father Domhnall of Islay as Lord of the Isles and rose to the rank of Earl of Ross. His lively career before he attained the earldom of Ross, led Hugh MacDonald, the 17th century author of History of the MacDonalds, to commemorate him as "a man born to much trouble all his lifetime". Alexander allied himself with King James I of Scotland against the power of the Albany Stewarts in 1425 but, once the Albany Stewarts were out of the way, Alexander found himself at odds with the new king. War with King James would prove Alexander's undoing, would see the King's power in Scotland increased, but at the Battle of Inverlochy Alexander's army prevailed against the forces of the King. Alexander died in 1449, having extended his family's landed wealth and power, he was buried, not in the Isles of his ancestors, but at Fortrose Cathedral in his mainland Earldom of Ross. Alexander was the great grandson of King Robert II of Scotland and inherited his father Domhnall's alliance with King James I of Scotland against the power of the Albany Stewarts, who by the time James returned to Scotland from English captivity in 1424 ruled more of Scotland than King James could.
By 1425 James had decided to destroy the Albany Stewarts once and for all. In May of this year, Alexander attended the Stirling parliament, sat on the jury of 21 knights and peers which ordered the execution of Murdoch, Duke of Albany, along with his son Alexander and his ally Donnchadh, Earl of Lennox. However, the destruction of the Albany Stewarts removed the main reason for the co-operation between the King and the Lord of the Isles, it is possible that, as Michael Brown believes, James acknowledged Alexander's control of the earldom of Ross as a reward for his support against Albany, as in 1426 Alexander used the style "Master of the Earldom of Ross". However, Richard Oram takes a different view, sees Alexander's adoption of this title and occupation of much of the earldom as a provocation towards James, since it had passed to him after the death of John Stewart, Earl of Buchan and Ross in 1424, James was entitled the hold the earldom. Alexander's use of this title, if it were provocation, would have been compounded in the king's mind by the fact that Alexander's uncle John Mór MacDonald was harbouring and protecting James Mór, the son of Duke Murdoch, while James Mór was claiming James' throne.
At any rate, the king had adopted a more hostile attitude towards Alexander. In 1428, James travelled into the north of Scotland both to assert his authority in Ross and to bring order to the north. James requested a meeting with Alexander, in August Alexander travelled in good faith to meet James at Inverness, where James was holding court. James however, in an act typical of his kingship, imprisoned Alexander, his mother Mariota and around fifty of his followers, including his uncle and heir-designate John Mór, in the tower of Inverness Castle. Included among the other prisoners were Alexander's most important Ross allies; the head of the Munros himself, George Munro, may have been arrested, but if he was he was released. William Leslie and John de Ross of Balnagown, two important landowners and kinsmen of Mariota, were imprisoned, as were the heads of the Wester Ross Lochalsh MacMhathain and the Kintail MacChoinnich kindreds. Most of these men, including John Mór, seem to have been released within a short time, although James took a few back to the south with him.
According to Michael Brown and the 17th century History of the MacDonalds, James attempted to do a deal with John Mór offering him the Lordship of the Isles, to which he was heir and for which he had revolted against his brother Domhnall decades before. John however refused to negotiate. Furthermore, King James' plans met disaster when his messenger James Campbell attempted to arrest "Johannis de Insulis" and killed him in the attempt. King James tried to distance himself from the killing, had Campbell hanged. Before the end of 1428. Alexander was released on a promise of good behaviour; as soon as he was released, Alexander was at war with the king. Domhnall Ballach, son of his uncle John Mór, may have been seeking revenge for his father's death, if this was the case, he was supported by his other uncle Alasdair Carrach, Lord of Lochaber. Together, these two men, the two most important nobles in the lordship helped pressure Alexander into war. In Spring 1429, Alexander's forces advanced on Inverness.
Although Maol Choluim Mac an Tóisich, head of Clan Chattan and custodian of the castle, managed to hold Alexander off, Alexander was still able to burn down the burgh. Alexander, was planning to support James Mór, son of Duke Murdoch, in his claim on the Scottish throne. James Mór had become a serious threat to King James, not because was he to have the support of Murdoch's former vassals in Lennox and Fife, but because he had obtained the backing of the King of England, angry that King James was ignoring his superior status and the terms of his release from captivity in England several years before. Now James Mór had the support of Alexander
Clan Mackay is an ancient and once-powerful Highland Scottish clan from the far North of the Scottish Highlands, but with roots in the old kingdom of Moray. They supported Robert the Bruce during the Wars of Scottish Independence in the 14th century. In the centuries that followed; the territory of the Clan Mackay consisted of the parishes of Farr, Tongue and Eddrachillis, was known as Strathnaver, in the north-west of the county of Sutherland. However, it was not until 1829 that Strathnaver was considered part of Sutherland when the chief sold his lands to the Earls of Sutherland and the Highland Clearances had dire consequences for the clan. In the 17th century the Mackay chief's territory had extended to the east to include the parish of Reay in the west of the neighbouring county of Caithness; the chief of the clan is Lord Reay and the lands of Strathnaver became known as the Reay Country. Historian Angus Mackay in his "Book of Mackay" compares two different genealogies of the early chiefs of the Clan Mackay.
The first is by Sir Robert Gordon, a 17th-century historian and the second by Alexander Mackay of Blackcastle, an 18th- to 19th-century historian who had access to the charters and historical documents of the Mackay chief's family. Both genealogies have similarities but there are significant differences given for the ancestry of the Mackay chiefs. Gordon's genealogy claims that the chiefs of the Clan Mackay shared a common ancestor with both the chiefs of the Clan Forbes and chiefs of Clan Farquharson. Historian Angus Mackay gives evidence that explains that Gordon's theory of the connection to the Forbeses was due to an strong alliance between the two families that began during the 16th century in a long feud with the Gordon family; the Blackcastle MS shows that the Mackay chiefs were related to the Farquharsons but gives a different connection to that given by Gordon. Angus Mackay analyses what evidence is available to support each of the two genealogies and concludes that the one given in Alexander Mackay's Blackcastle Manuscript is by far the most accurate.
The Blackcastle MS claims that Iye Mackay, 1st chief of the Clan Mackay, born in about 1210, was a descendant of Malcolm MacHeth, 1st Earl of Ross who died in about 1168. Malcolm MacHeth, Earl of Ross may well have been related to the early Mormaers of Moray. According to Angus Mackay, sometime in the 1160s, the MacHeths and their supporters after conflict with king Malcolm IV of Scotland fled northwards over the hills of Ross into Strathnaver, where they were welcomed by the Norse Harald Maddadsson, Mormaer of Caithness, an enemy of the king. In 1215 the MacHeths along with the MacWilliams retaliated against the king but were defeated by Fearchar, Earl of Ross and the grandson of Malcolm MacHeth, Kenneth MacHeth was killed. According to Angus Mackay it is possible that from this Kenneth MacHeth the Stathnaver Mackays are descended, that Iye Mackay, 1st chief of Clan Mackay may well have been his son or nephew. According to the Blackcastle MS Iye Mackay's son was Iye Mor Mackay, 2nd chief of Clan Mackay who married a daughter of Walter, Bishop of Caithness in 1263.
According to Major General Stewart the Mackays were amongst the clans who supported Robert the Bruce at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314. In the 14th century, in 1370, chief Iye Mackay, 4th of Strathnaver and his son were murdered at Dingwall Castle by Nicholas Sutherland of Duffus, head of one of the junior branches of Clan Sutherland. Much bloodshed followed, including a retaliatory raid on Dornoch in 1372; the cathedral was once again set on fire and many Sutherland men were hanged in the town square. After this, the feud quietened down. In 1403 the Battle of Tuiteam Tarbhach was fought between Clan Mackay and Clan MacLeod of Lewis: Chief Angus Mackay, 6th of Strathnaver had married the sister of the MacLeod of Lewis. MacLeod found that his sister had been mistreated and he decided to spoil Strathnaver and Brae-Chat in Sutherland but in the ensuing battle MacLeod was killed. In 1411 Donald of Islay, Lord of the Isles challenged the Stewart royal family for the Earldom of Ross. Chief Angus Du Mackay, 7th of Strathnaver joined the Stewart Confederacy and the Battle of Dingwall took place in which Donald of the Isles defeated Mackay.
However, Angus Du Mackay married a sister of Donald of the Isles, granddaughter of Robert II of Scotland, indicating how important the Clan Mackay had become. In 1426 the Battle of Harpsdale took place where Chief Angus Du Mackay, 7th of Strathnaver, with his son Neil, laid waste to Caithness; the inhabitants of Caithness assembled and fought Angus Du at Harpsdale, where there was great slaughter on both sides. Soon afterwards James I of Scotland came to Inverness, intending to pursue Angus Du Mackay who submitted himself to the King's mercy, gave his son Neil as a pledge of his future obedience; the King accepted, sent Neil Mackay to remain in captivity on the Bass Rock, in the Firth of Forth. In 1431 the Battle of Drumnacoub took place where Angus Du Mackay, 7th of Strathnaver defeated the Clan Sutherland who were led by Angus Moray. In 1437 a conflict known as the Sandside Chase took place where men of Caithness were overthrown by Neil Bhasse Mackay, 8th of Strathnaver after his release from the Bass Rock.
In 1464 the Battle of Tannach took place where the Clan Mackay, under Angus Roy Mackay, 9th of Strathnaver, the Clan Keith defeated the Clan Gunn of Caithness. In the late 15th century the Clan Mackay and Clan Ross had long been at feud; this resulted in the Battle of Tarbat in 1486 where the Mackays were defeated by the Rosses an
A Scottish clan is a kinship group among the Scottish people. Clans give a sense of shared identity and descent to members, in modern times have an official structure recognised by the Court of the Lord Lyon, which regulates Scottish heraldry and coats of arms. Most clans have their own tartan patterns dating from the 19th century, which members may incorporate into kilts or other clothing; the modern image of clans, each with their own tartan and specific land, was promulgated by the Scottish author Sir Walter Scott after influence by others. Tartan designs were associated with Lowland and Highland districts whose weavers tended to produce cloth patterns favoured in those districts. By process of social evolution, it followed that the clans/families prominent in a particular district would wear the tartan of that district, it was but a short step for that community to become identified by it. Many clans have their own clan chief. Clans identify with geographical areas controlled by their founders, sometimes with an ancestral castle and clan gatherings, which form a regular part of the social scene.
The most notable gathering of recent times was "The Gathering 2009", which included a "clan convention" in the Scottish parliament. It is a common misconception that every person who bears a clan's name is a lineal descendant of the chiefs. Many clansmen although not related to the chief took the chief's surname as their own to either show solidarity, or to obtain basic protection or for much needed sustenance. Most of the followers of the clan were tenants. Contrary to popular belief, the ordinary clansmen had any blood tie of kinship with the clan chiefs, but they took the chief's surname as their own when surnames came into common use in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, thus by the eighteenth century the myth had arisen that the whole clan was descended from one ancestor, with the Scottish Gaelic of "clan" meaning "children" or "offspring". The word clan is derived from the Gaelic word clanna. However, the need for proved descent from a common ancestor related to the chiefly house is too restrictive.
Clans developed a territory based on the native men who came to accept the authority of the dominant group in the vicinity. A clan included a large group of loosely related septs – dependent families – all of whom looked to the clan chief as their head and their protector. According to the former Lord Lyon, Sir Thomas Innes of Learney, a clan is a community, distinguished by heraldry and recognised by the Sovereign. Learney considered clans to be a "noble incorporation" because the arms borne by a clan chief are granted or otherwise recognised by the Lord Lyon as an officer of the Crown, thus conferring royal recognition to the entire clan. Clans with recognised chiefs are therefore considered a noble community under Scots law. A group without a chief recognised by the Sovereign, through the Lord Lyon, has no official standing under Scottish law. Claimants to the title of chief are expected to be recognised by the Lord Lyon as the rightful heir to the undifferenced arms of the ancestor of the clan of which the claimant seeks to be recognized as chief.
A chief of a clan is the only person, entitled to bear the undifferenced arms of the ancestral founder of the clan. The clan is considered to be the chief's heritable estate and the chief's Seal of Arms is the seal of the clan as a "noble corporation". Under Scots law, the chief is recognised as the head of the clan and serves as the lawful representative of the clan community. A clan was made up of everyone who lived on the chief's territory, or on territory of those who owed allegiance to the said chief. Through time, with the constant changes of "clan boundaries", migration or regime changes, clans would be made up of large numbers of members who were unrelated and who bore different surnames; those living on a chief's lands would, over time, adopt the clan surname. A chief could add to his clan by adopting other families, had the legal right to outlaw anyone from his clan, including members of his own family. Today, anyone who has the chief's surname is automatically considered to be a member of the chief's clan.
Anyone who offers allegiance to a chief becomes a member of the chief's clan, unless the chief decides not to accept that person's allegiance. Clan membership goes through the surname. Children who take their father's surname are part of their father's clan and not their mother's. However, there have been several cases where a descendant through the maternal line has changed their surname in order to claim the chiefship of a clan, such as the late chief of the Clan MacLeod, born John Wolridge-Gordon and changed his name to the maiden name of his maternal grandmother in order to claim the chiefship of the MacLeods. Today, clans may have lists of septs. Septs are surnames, families or clans that currently or for whatever reason the chief chooses, are associated with that clan. There is no official list of clan septs, the decision of what septs a clan has is left up to the clan itself. Confusingly, sept names can be shared by more than one clan, it may be up to the individual to use his or her family history or genealogy to find the correct clan they are associated with.
Several clan societies have been granted coats of arms. In such cases, these arms are differenced from the chief's, much like a clan armiger; the former Lord Lyon King of Arms, Thomas Innes of Learney stated that such societies, according to the Law of Arms, are considered an "indeterminate cadet". Scottish clanship contained two distinct concepts of heritage; these were
Battle of Logiebride
The Battle of Logiebride or Logie-Riach known as a Tumult in Ross was more of a small skirmish rather than an actual battle. The disturbance is said to have taken place on 4 February 1597 at the Logie Candlemas market near Conan House between men of the Clan Mackenzie against men of the Clan Munro and the Bain family of Tulloch Castle. John MacLeod, brother, of the chief of the Clan MacLeod of Raasay was in dispute with the Bains of Tulloch Castle. In the ensuing battle men from the Clan Munro sided with the Bains while men from the Clan Mackenzie sided with MacLeod; the earliest account of the Battle of Logiebride was that by Sir Robert Gordon, living at the time of the battle, in his book the History of the Earldom of Sutherland written in the early 17th century. Gordon states that in 1597 a "tumult" happened in Ross at a fair in Laggiewreid which put all the neighboring counties of Ross into combustion, he states that the quarrel was between Alexander Bain. Gordon goes on to state that the Munros assisted Bain and the Mackenzies assisted John Macgillichallum, killed along with John Mac-Murdo Mac-William, three others of the Clan MacKenzie.
Alexander Bain escaped but on his side John Munro of Culcraggie, with his brother, Hutcheon Munro, John Munro Robertson were killed. The Munros and Mackenzies prepared to invade each other but were reconciled by friends and neighbors. John Mackenzie of Applecross write an account of the battle in his manuscript history of the Mackenzies in 1669. Mackenzie of Applecross stated that the year 1597 there fell out again an accident between the Mackenzies and Munros. John M'Gillichallum, the brother of the Laird of Raasay claimed the lands of Torridon that belonged to the Bains of Tulloch, he alleged. Bain of Tulloch having died the lands went to his son Alister. Alister having got laws against John came prepared with men in arms including all of the Bains and part of the Munros to the Candlemas market at Laggievriid. John not knowning that laws were against him was at a merchant's shop buying some commodity when Alister Bain came up and struck him with a two handed sword killing him instantly. A Mackenzie was struck through the back from behind and killed.
The alarm was thrown up and the Bains and Munros fled in confusion with the Bains heading to the hills and the Munros to Foulis ferry. Two Mackenzies coming from the market at Chanonry and having heard what had happened killed thirteen Munros between Laggie and Mulchaich and Alister Bain's men were killed where they were seen; the Mackenzies having gained laws against the Munros for the killing of their kinsman burnt the lands of Lemlair. The Bains submitted themselves to the Mackenzies and the Munros were reconciled by the mediation of friends; the Wardlaw manuscript was written in about 1674 by James Fraser. Fraser states that the battle took place on the 4 February 1597 at the Candlemas fair called Bridfaire in a town called Lagy Vrud, in Ross upon the river of Connin; the quarrel began between John Mackillchallim, a Mackleud, brother to the Laird of Rasey and another gentleman, John Bain, brother of Duncan Bain, Baron of Tulloch, near Dingwall. Fraser states that John Mackillchallum was a vile, proflagat fellow, ravaging robber, picking quarrells with all men, he frequented markets for the purpose of taking advantage of poor chapmen and merchants and robbing their shops without resistance.
He was a relation of the Mackenzies and was patronized by them. At this fair he had 7 bold followers with him. John Bain, a gallant courageous gentlemen, saw him abuse a merchants wife and take away his goods by violence. Bain challenged him, commanding him to give it back or he would make him do it. After verba verbera from words to swords, John Bain draws upon him and gave him two or three deadly wounds. Three Mackenzies were killed. Upon John Bain's side were killed John Monro of Cularge, Hugh, his brother and John Monro Robertson; the chase run down the firth towards the mill of Arkaig and the wood of Milchaich, where many were wounded and some slain. John Bain with his Fraser amour bearer deliberately escaped to Lovat; the next morning Fraser, Lord Lovat dispatched James Fraser of Phopachy to King James, being at Falkland, with an account of what had happened. The King sent John Bain full remission and personal protection and a warrand and power to charge the Laird Mackenzie of Kintail with intercommoning, all the accomplices of John Mackilchallim.
A Munro family tree dating from 1734 only mentions two casualties and agrees with the original account written by Sir Robert Gordon that John Munro of Culcraggie and Hutcheon Munro were killed in the battle. The Munro tree of 1734 does not mention the thirteen Munro casualties mentioned by historian Alexander Mackenzie in his books the History of the Mackenzies and the History of the Munros of Foulis. Historian John Anderson published an account of the battle in his book Historical Account of the Family of Fraser in 1825. Anderson quotes from the MSS of Mackenzies. Anderson's account is similar to that given in James Fraser's Wardlaw MS. Anderson states that a different colour is given in the account by the Mackenzies, but they agree on the main points. Alexander Mackenzie published an account of the battle in his book
Clan MacDonell of Glengarry
Clan MacDonell of Glengarry is a Scottish clan and is a branch of the larger Clan Donald. The clan takes its name from Glen Garry where the river Garry runs eastwards through Loch Garry to join the Great Glen about 16 miles north of Fort William, Highland. Glengarry is in Lochaber, part of the ancient Kingdom of Moray, ruled by the Picts. Ranald was the son of John of Islay, Lord of the Isles, Ranald himself had five sons. One of them was Alan, the progenitor of the Clan Macdonald of Clanranald and another was Donald. Donald married twice: firstly Laleve, daughter of the chief of Clan MacIver, by who he had one son named John. Donald married secondly a daughter of the chief of the Clan Fraser of Lovat by whom he had two more sons and Angus; the first son, died without heirs and was therefore succeeded by his half-brother Alexander. Alexander is sometimes considered the first true chief of Glengarry but is regarded as the fourth. Glengarry did not play an important part in the politics of Clan Donald until the late fifteenth century.
Traditional rights of the chiefs were being replaced with feudal relationships in which the Crown was the ultimate superior, as part of the royal policy to pacify the Scottish Highlands. Most of the chiefs submitted to James V of Scotland and the Clan Macdonald of Clanranald accepted charters in 1494; however Alexander of Glengarry did not receive a charter, suggesting that he continued to have a rebellious attitude at this time. In 1531 he submitted to royal authority and was pardoned for past offences, he received a Crown charter on 9 March 1539 for the lands of Glengarry, half the lands of Loch Alsh, Loch Broom and Strome Castle. This did not stop Alexander following Donald Gorm Macdonald of Sleat in trying to reclaim the Lordship of the Isles. Donald Gorm was killed attacking the rebellion collapsed. Subsequently Alexander of Glengarry was amongst the island chiefs who were tricked into meeting James V at Portree and was imprisoned at Edinburgh where he remained until the king died in 1542.
Glengarry himself died in 1590. His son was Angus, politically astute and used the influence of his father-in-law, the chief of Clan Grant, to gain a charter from James VI of Scotland, regaining his ancestral estates in 1574. In a bond of manrent, dated 1571, between Angus MacAlester of Glengarry and Clan Grant, Glengarry makes an exception in favour "of ye auctoritie of our soverane and his Chief of Clanranald only "; this is held by Clanranald of Moydart as an acknowledgment by Glengarry of the Captain of Clanranald as his chief. The Battle of Morar was fought in 1602 between the Clan MacDonell of Glengarry and the Clan Mackenzie. Angus's son was Donald, 8th chief of the Clan MacDonell of Glengarry, reputed to have lived for over one hundred years. In March 1627 he obtained a charter under the great seal. Donald did not always enjoy royal favour as a year earlier he had been invited to join Lord Ochiltree, the king's representative, on board a ship to discuss the royal policy for the isles.
They as a result were arrested and imprisoned. During the Scottish Civil War, Donald was too old for active campaigning so effective leadership passed to his son, Aeneas, 9th chief of the Clan MacDonell of Glengarry, he became chief on the day that his grandfather died, the same day that James Graham, 1st Marquis of Montrose won his great victory at the Battle of Inverlochy, Aeneas was with Montrose at that victory. He was with Montrose at the subsequent victory at the Battle of Auldearn. Five hundred men of the Clan MacDonell of Glengarry were with Montrose at his most impressive pitched battle, the Battle of Kilsyth, where they routed General Ballie; when Montrose was defeated at the Battle of Philiphaugh he was sheltered by Aeneas at Invergarry Castle. Aeneas was devoted to the Stuart cause and led his men into England only to be defeated at the Battle of Worcester in 1651, he escaped. At the Restoration, Aeneas was rewarded with the title Lord Macdonell and Aros. During the Jacobite rising of 1715 the Clan MacDonell of Glengarry fought for the Stuart cause at the Battle of Sheriffmuir.
When the captain of the Clan Macdonald of Clanranald was killed, Alasdair of Glengarry is said to have rallied the Highlanders by throwing up his bonnet and crying Revenge today and mourning tomorrow. In 1716 Alasdair was raised to the peerage as Lord Macdonell by James Francis Edward Stuart, but this title was of course only recognised by the Jacobites; the fighting force of the Clan MacDonell of Glengarry is given as 500 men in 1745. During the Jacobite rising of 1745, Alasdair Ruadh, thirteenth chief of Glengarry, was captured by an English frigate when travelling from France to join the rising, he was imprisoned in the Tower of London and not released until 1747. However, six hundred of the Macdonells of Glengarry joined Prince Charles under the command of MacDonell of Lochgarry and were involved in many of the battles including the Highbridge Skirmish, the first engagement between Government and Jacobite troops during the uprising of 1745 to 1746; the Macdonells of Glengarry fought at the Clifton Moor Skirmish and Battle of Prestonpans in 1745 where they were victorious.
The following year they fought at the Battle of Falkirk, the Battle of Culloden. In the late 18th Century, the majority of the Clan MacDonell of Glengarry emigrated to the historic Glengarry County, Ontario as a result of the Highland Clearances as well as settling in parts of Nova Scotia and oth
Battle of Achnashellach
The Battle of Achnashellach was a Scottish clan battle said to have taken place in the year 1505, in the Scottish Highlands at Achnashellach. It was fought by the Clan Cameron against the Clan Munro. Little is known of the events concerning the Battle of Achnashellach as there is little contemporary evidence to support it; however the Clan Munro records that "Sir William Munro of Foulis was sent to Lochaber on the King's business and was killed in an engagement between the Camerons and MacKays at a place called Achnashellach in 1505". Aside from this there is little evidence of the battle, however it is Clan Cameron tradition that they defeated a joint force of Munros and Mackays. Alexander Munro, a cadet of the Munro of Obsdale branch of the Clan Munro had to write a birth brief to Charles I of England in the 17th century which mentions his ancestor William Munro of Foulis and states that he was killed by treachery; this birth brief was published in Alexander Mackenzie's History of the Munros of Fowlis in 1898 and states: William Munro of Foulis, plainly a knight most valiant for leading an army at the command of the King against certain factious northern men, he perished by treachery.
Andrew Munro of Coul wrote an MS History of the Munros in about 1717, published in 1805 in the book Chronological and Genealogical Account of the Ancient and Honorable Family of the Fowlis. This has a brief account of the skirmish stating that Munro was killed by Cameron and that: the house was surrounded and refused to surrender; the memoirs of Ewen Cameron of Lochiel were published in 1842 and in the author's introduction chapter, which gives a history of the Clan Cameron, the following is mentioned regarding the feud between the Camerons against the Mackays and Munros during the chiefship of Ewen Cameron of Lochiel. Besides the other wars wherein Locheill was engaged, he had a ruffle with the Barron of Rea, Chief of the Mackays, a people living many miles north of Lochaber. What the quarrall was, I know not, but it drew on an invasion from the Camerons, that ane engagement wherein the Mackays were defeated, the Laird of Foules, Chief of the Monros, who assisted them, killed upon the spot.
Donald Gregory's book History of the Western Highlands and Isles of Scotland from AD 1493 to AD 1625, published in 1881, with quoted source, gives an insight into the circumstances in Scotland, in the years prior to the battle: A. D.1502: A commission was afterwards given to the Earl of Huntly, the Lord Lovat, William Munro of Fowlis to proceed to Lochaber and let the King's lands of Lochaber and Mamore, for the space of five years, to true men. At the same time, the commissioners had strict instructions to expel all broken men from these districts, which, in the state of affairs at that time, was equivalent to an order to expel the whole population. Similar directions were given relative to the lands forfeited by MacLeod of Lewis. Alexander Mackenzie wrote an account of the Battle of Achnashellach in his book History of the Munros of Fowlis in 1898. Mackenzie quote's Gregory's book for the events of 1502 as mentioned above, the Lochiel Memoirs given above. Sir William is said to have been killed in the prime of his life, in 1505, at a place called Achnashellach or Achnaskellach, in Lochaber, by Ewen "MacAlein Mhic Dhom'huill Duibh", XIII. of Lochiel, in a raid, thus described in Lochiels Memoirs.
Besides the other wars wherein Lochiel was engaged, he had a ruffle with Baron of Reay, Chief of the MacKays, a people living many miles north of Lochaber. What the quarrel was I know not, but it drew on an invasion from the Camerons, that an engagement wherein the MacKays were defeated and the Laird of Fowlis, Chief of the Munros, who assisted them, was killed upon the spot. In 1502 a Royal Commission had been given to the Earl of Huntly, Thomas fourth Lord Lovat, Sir William Munro of Fowlis, to proceed to Lochaber and let the King's lands of Lochaber and Mamore for the space of five years to true men, this is what led to the raid and the collision with the Camerons in which Sir William was slain. John Stewart of Ardvorlich wrote a brief account of the events surrounding the Battle of Achnashellach in his book The Camerons, A History of Clan Cameron, without quoting a source: There is tradition that the Clan Cameron took part in an expedition to the country of the Mackays in Sutherlandshire and that they defeated a joint force of Munros and Mackays but the object of this enterprise is not clear.
Sir William Munro of Foulis was the Earldom of Ross. In 1505 he was killed by "Ewen McAllan Vicoldui" at Achnashellach; as Ewen MacAllan had supported the rebellion of Donald Dubh in 1503 and as Achnashellach is only 12 miles from the Castle of Strome in Lochalsh, which he was constable, it seems that Ewen was acting in support of Donald Dubh when Munro was killed. Alister Farquhar Matheson writing in 2014, but with no quoted source gives more details of the battle. According to Matheson the Earl of Huntly, James IV of Scotland's commander in the north, called on his deputy, Sir William Munro of Foulis to lead a punitive expedition against the rebel MacDonalds of Lochalsh; the Mackays of Strathnaver demonstrating their loyalty to the king, joined Sir William Munro's force. There is a tradition that the Clan Sutherland contributed a regiment as the Earl of Huntly's son, Adam was married to Elizabeth, the heiress to the earldom of Sutherland. Ewen Cameron, chief of Clan Cameron was hereditary constable of Strome Castle on behalf of the MacDonalds and he gathered a force to protect the lands of MacDonald of Lochalsh.
Matheson tradition is that one of Cameron's officers was Alasdair MacRuairidh, chieftain of the Clan Matheson Nor