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The History of the Highland Clearances
Inverness-Shire - Glengarry


By ALEXANDER MACKENZIE.

Glengarry was peopled down to the end of last century with a fine race of men. In 1745, six hundred stalwart vassals followed the chief of Glengarry to the battle of Culloden. Some few years later they became so disgusted with the return made by their chief that many of them emigrated to the United States, though they were almost all in comfortable, some indeed, in affluent circumstances. Notwithstanding this semi-voluntary exodus, Major John Macdonell of Lochgarry, was able in 1777, to raise a fine regiment—the 76th or Macdonald Highlanders—number being 1086 men, 750 of whom were Highlanders mainly from the Glengarry property. In 1794, Alexander Macdonnell of Glengarry, raised a Fencible regiment, described as "a handsome body of men," of whom one-half were enlisted on the same estate. On being disbanded in 1802, these men were again so shabbily treated, that they followed the example of the men of the "Forty-five," and emigrated in a body, with their families, to Canada, taking two Gaelic-speaking ministers along with them to their new home. They afterwards distinguished themselves as part of the "Glengarry Fencibles" of Canada, in defence of their adopted country, and called their settlement there after their native glen in Scotland. The chiefs of Glengarry drove away their people, only, as in most other cases in the Highlands, to be themselves ousted soon after them.

The Glengarry property at one time covered an area of nearly 200 square miles, and to-day, while many of their expatriated vassals are landed proprietors and in affluent circumstances in Canada, not an inch of the old possessions of the ancient and powerful family of Glengarry remains to the descendants of those who caused the banishment of a people who, on many a well-fought field, shed their blood for their chief and country. In 1853, every inch of the ancient heritage was possessed by the stranger, except Knoydart in the west, and this has long ago become the property of one of the Bairds. In the year named, young Glengarry was a minor, his mother, the widow of the late chief, being one of his trustees. She does not appear to have learned any lesson of wisdom from the past misfortunes of her house. Indeed, considering her limited power and possessions, she was comparatively the worst of them all.

The tenants of Knoydart, like all other Highlanders, had suffered severely during and after the potato famine in 1846 and 1847, and some of them got into arrear with a year and some with two years' rent, but they were fast clearing it off. Mrs. Macdonell and her factor determined to evict every crofter on her property, to make room for sheep. In the spring of 1853, they were all served with summonses of removal, accompanied by a message that Sir John Iacneil, chairman of the Board of Supervision, had agreed to convey them to Australia. Their feelings were not considered worthy of the slightest consideration. They were not even asked whether they would prefer to follow their countrymen to America and Canada. They were to be treated as if they were nothing better than Africans, and the laws of their country on a level with those which regulated South American slavery. The people, however, had no alternative but to accept any offer made to them. They could not get an inch of land on any of the neighbouring estates, and any one who would give them a night's shelter was threatened with eviction.

It was afterwards found not convenient to transport them to Australia, and it was then intimated to the poor creatures, as if they were nothing but common slaves to disposed of at will, that they would be taken to North America, and that a ship would be at Isle Ornsay, in the Isle of Skye, in a few days, to receive them, and that they must go on board. The Sillery soon arrived. Mrs. Macdonell and her factor came all the way from Edinburgh to see the people hounded across in boats, and put on board this ship whether they would or not. An eyewitness who described the proceeding at the time, in a now rare pamphlet, and whom we met a few years ago in Nova Scotia, characterises the scene as heart-rending. "The wail of the poor women and children as they were torn away from their homes would have melted a heart of stone." Some few families, principally cottars, refused to go, in spite of every influence brought to bear upon them; and the treatment they afterwards received was cruel beyond belief. The houses, not only of those who went, but of those who remained, were burnt and levelled to the ground. The Strath was dotted all over with black spots, showing where yesterday stood the habitations of men. The scarred half-burned wood--couples, rafters, cabars—were strewn about in every direction. Stooks of corn and plots of unlifted potatoes could be seen on all sides, but man was gone. No voice could be heard. Those who refused to go aboard the Sillery were in hiding among the rocks and the caves, while their friends were packed off like so many African slaves to the Cuban market.

No mercy was shown to those who refused to emigrate; their few articles of furniture were thrown out of their houses after them—beds, chairs, tables, pots, stoneware, clothing, in many cases, rolling down the hill. What took years to erect and collect were destroyed and scattered in a few minutes. "From house to house, from hut to hut, and from barn to barn, the factor and his menials proceeded, carrying on the work of demolition, until there was scarcely a human habitation left standing in the district. Able-bodied men who, if the matter would rest with a mere trial of physical force, would have bound the factor and his party hand and foot, and sent them out of the district, stood aside as dumb spectators. Women wrung their hands and cried aloud, children ran to and fro dreadfully frightened ; and while all this work of demolition and destruction was going on no opposition was offered by the inhabitants, no hand was lifted, no stone cast, no angry word was spoken." The few huts left undemolished were occupied by the paupers, but before the factor left for the south even they were warned not to give any shelter to the evicted, or their huts would assuredly meet with the same fate. Eleven families, numbering in all over sixty persons, mostly old and decrepit men and women, and helpless children, were exposed that night, and many of them long afterwards, to the cold air, without shelter of any description beyond what little they were able to save out of the wreck of their burnt dwellings.

We feel unwilling to inflict pain on the reader by the recitation of the untold cruelties perpetrated on the poor Highlanders of Knoydart, but doing so may, perhaps, serve a good purpose. It may convince the evil-doer that his work shall not be forgotten, and any who may be disposed to follow the example of past evictors may hesitate before they proceed to immortalise themselves in such a hateful manner. We shall, therefore, quote a few cases from the pamphlet already referred to:---

John Macdugald, aged about 50, with a wife and family, was a cottar, and earned his subsistence chiefly by fishing. He was in bad health, and had two of his sons in the hospital, at Elgin, ill of smallpox, when the Sillery was sent to convey the Knoydart people to Canada. He refused to go on that occasion owing to the state of his health, and his boys being at a distance under medical treatment. The factor and the officers, however, arrived, turned Macdugald and his family adrift, put their bits of furniture out on the field, and in a few minutes levelled their house to the ground. The whole family had now no shelter but the broad canopy of heaven. The mother and the youngest of the children could not sleep owing to the cold, and the father, on account of his sickness, kept wandering about all night near where his helpless family lay down to repose. After the factor and the officers left the district Macdugald and his wife went back to the ruins of their house, collected some of the stones and turf into something like walls, threw a few cabars across, covered them over with blankets, old sails, and turf, and then, with their children, crept underneath, trusting that they would be allowed, at least for a time, to take shelter under this temporary covering. But, alas! they were doomed to bitter disappointment. A week had not elapsed when the local manager, accompanied by a posse of officers and menials, traversed the country and levelled to the ground every hut or shelter erected by the evicted peasantry. Macdugald was at this time away from Knoydart; his wife was at Inverie, distant about six miles, seeing a sick relative; the oldest children were working at the shore; and in the hut, when the manager came with the "levellers," he found none of the family except Lucy and Jane, the two youngest. The moment they saw the officers they screamed and fled for their lives. The demolition of the shelter was easily accomplished—it was but the work of two or three minutes; and, this over, the officers and menials of the manager amused themselves by seizing hold of chairs, stools, tables, spinning-wheels, or any other light articles, by throwing them a considerable distance from the hut. The mother, as I said, was at Inverie, distant about six or seven miles, and Lucy and Jane proceeded in that direction hoping to meet her. They had not gone far, however, when they missed the footpath and wandered far out of the way. In the interval the mother returned from Inverie and found the hut razed to the ground, her furniture scattered far and near, her bedclothes lying under turf, clay, and debris, and her children gone ! Just imagine the feelings of this poor Highland mother on the occasion! But, to proceed, the other children returned from the shore, and they too stood aside, amazed and grieved at the sudden destruction of their humble refuge, and at the absence of their two little sisters. At first they thought they were under the ruins, and creeping down on their knees they carefully removed every turf and stone, but found nothing except a few broken dishes. A consultation was now held and a search resolved upon. The mother, brother and sisters set off in opposite directions, among the rocks, over hills, through moor and moss, searching every place, and calling aloud for them by name, but they could discover no trace of them. Night was now approaching and with it all hopes of finding them, till next day, were fast dying away. The mother was now returning "home" (alas! to what a home), the shades of night closed in, and still she had about three miles to travel. She made for the footpath, scrutinized every bush, and looked round every rock and hillock, hoping to find them. Sometimes she imagined that she saw her two lasses walking before her at some short distance, but it was an illusion caused by bushes just about their size. The moon now emerged from behind a cloud and spread its light on the path and surrounding district. A sharp frost set in, and ice began to form on the little pools. Passing near a rock and some bushes, where the children of the tenants used to meet when herding the cattle, she felt as if something beckoned her to search there; this she did, and found her two little children fast asleep, beside a favourite bush, the youngest with her head resting on the breast of the eldest! Their own version of their mishap is this: that when they saw the officers they crept out and ran in the direction of Inverie to tell their mother; that they missed the footpath, then wandered about crying, and finally returned, they knew not how, to their favourite herding ground, and being completely exhausted, fell asleep. The mother took the young one on her back, sent the other on before her, and soon joined her other children near the ruins of their old dwelling. They put a few sticks up to an old fence, placed a blanket over it, and slept on the bare ground that night. Macdugald soon returned from his distant journey, found his family shelterless, and again set about erecting some refuge for them from the wreck of the old buildings. Again, however, the local manager appeared with levellers, turned them all adrift, and in a few moments pulled down and destroyed all that he had built up. Matters continued in this way for a week or two until Macdugald's health became serious, and then a neighbouring farmer gave him and his family temporary shelter in an out-house; and for this act of disinterested humanity he has already received some most improper and threatening letters from the managers on the estate of Knoydart. It is very likely that in consequence of this interference Macdugald is again taking shelter among the rocks or amid the wreck of his former residence.

John Mackinnon, a cottar, aged 44, with a wife and six children, had his house pulled down, and had no place to put his head in, consequently he and his family, for the first night or two, had to burrow among the rocks near the shore! When he thought that the factor and his party had left the district, he emerged from the rocks, surveyed the ruins of his former dwelling, saw his furniture and other effects exposed to the elements, and now scarcely worth the lifting. The demolition was so complete that he considered it utterly impossible to make any use of the' ruins of the old house. The ruins of an old chapel, however, were near at hand, and parts of the walls were still standing ; thither Mackinnon proceeded with his family, and having swept away some rubbish and removed some grass and nettles, they placed a few cabars up to one of the walls, spread some sails and blankets across, brought in some meadow hay, and laid it in a corner for a bed, stuck a piece of iron into the wall in another corner, on which they placed a crook, then kindled a fire, washed some potatoes, and put a pot on the fire, and boiled them, and when these and a few fish roasted on the embers were ready, Mackinnon and his family had one good diet, being the first regular meal they tasted since the destruction of their house!

Mackinnon is a tall man, but poor and unhealthy-looking. His wife is a poor weak women, evidently struggling with a diseased constitution and dreadful trials. The boys, Ronald and Archibald, were lying in "bed"—(may I call a "pickle" hay on the bare ground a bed?)—suffering from rheumatism and cholic. The other children are apparently healthy enough as yet, but very ragged. There is no door to their wretched abode, consequently every breeze and gust that blow have free ingress to the inmates. A savage from Terra-del-Fuego, or a Red Indian from beyond the Rocky Mountains, would not exchange huts with these victims, nor humanity with their persecutors. Mackinnon's wife was pregnant when she was turned out of her house among the rocks. In about four days after she had a premature birth ; and this and her exposure to the elements, and the want of proper shelter and nutritious diet, has brought on consumption from which there is no chance whatever of her recovery.

There was something very solemn indeed in this scene. Here, amid the ruins of the old sanctuary, where the swallows fluttered, where the ivy tried to screen the grey moss-covered stones, where nettles and grass grew up luxuriously, where the floor was damp, the walls sombre and uninviting, where there were no doors nor windows, nor roof, and where the owl, the bat, and the fox used to take refuge, a Christian family was obliged to take shelter! One would think that as Mackinnon took refuge amid the ruins of this most singular place, that he would be let alone, that he would not any longer be molested by man. But, alas! that was not to be. The manager of Knoydart and his minions appeared, and invaded this helpless family, even within the walls of the sanctuary. They pulled down the sticks and sails he set up within its ruins—put his wife and children out on the cold shore—threw his tables, stools, chairs, etc., over the walls—burnt up the hay on which they slept—put out the fire, and then left the district. Four times have these officers broken in upon poor Mackinnon in this way, destroying his place of shelter, and sent him and his family adrift on the cold coast of Knoydart. When I looked in upon these creatures last week I found them in utter consternation, having just learned that the officers would appear next day, and would again destroy the huts. The children looked at me as if I had been a wolf; they crept behind their father, and stared wildly, dreading I was a law officer. The sight was most painful. The very idea that, in Christian Scotland, and in the nineteenth century, these tender infants should be subjected to such gross treatment reflects strongly upon our humanity and civilization. Had they been suffering from the ravages of famine, or pestilence, or war, I could understand it and account for it, but suffering to gratify the ambition of some unfeeling spectator in brute beasts, I think it most unwarranted, and deserving the emphatic condemnation of every Christian man. Had Mackinnon been in arrears of rent, which he was not, even this would not justify the harsh, cruel, and inhuman conduct pursued towards himself and his family. No language of mine can describe the condition of this poor family, exaggeration is impossible. The ruins of an old chapel is the last place in the world to which a poor Highlander would resort with his wife and children, unless he was driven to it by dire necessity. Take another case, that of Elizabeth Gillies, a widow, aged 6o years. This is a most lamentable case. Neither age, sex, nor circumstance saved this poor creature from the most wanton and cruel aggression. Her house was on the brow of a hill, near a stream that formed the boundary between a large sheep farm and the lands of the tenants of Knoydart. Widow Gillies was warned to quit like the rest of the tenants, and was offered a passage first to Australia and then to Canada, but she refused to go, saying she could do nothing in Canada. The widow, however, made no promises, and the factor went away. She had then a nice young daughter staying with her, but ere the vessel that was to convey the Knoydart people away arrived at Isle Ornsay, this young girl died, and poor ti's idow Gillies was left alone. When the time for pulling down the houses arrived, it was hoped that some mercy would have been shown to this poor, bereaved widow, but there was none. Widow Gillies was sitting inside her house when the factor and officers arrived. They ordered her to remove herself and effects instantly, as they were, they sad, to pull down the house! She asked them where she would remove to; the factor would give no answer, but continued insisting on her leaving the house. This she at last positively refused. Two men then took hold of her, and tried to pull her out by force, but she sat down beside the fire, and would not move an inch. One of the assistants threw water on the fire and extinguished it, and then joined the other two in forcibly removing the poor widow from the house. At first she struggled hard, seized hold of every post or stone within her reach, taking a death grasp of each to keep possession. But the officers were too many and too cruel for her. They struck her over the fingers, and compelled her to let go her hold, and then all she could do was to greet and cry out murder! She was ultimately thrust out at the door, from where she crept on her hands and feet to a dyke side, being quite exhausted and panting for breath, owing to her hard struggle with three powerful men. Whenever they got her outside, the work of destruction immediately commenced. Stools, chairs, tables, cupboard, spinning-wheel, bed, blankets, straw, dishes, pots, and chest, were thrown out in the gutter. They broke down the partitions, took down the crook from over the fire-place, destroyed the hen roosts, and then beat the hens out through the broad vent in the roof of the house. This done, they set to work on the walls outside with picks and iron levers. They pulled down the thatch, cut the couples, and in a few minutes the walls fell out, while the roof fell in with a dismal crash!

When the factor and his party were done with this house, they proceeded to another district, pulling down and destroying dwelling-places as they went along. The shades of night at last closed in, and here was the poor helpless widow sitting like a pelican, alone and cheerless. Allan Macdonald, a cottar, whose house was also pulled down, ran across the hill to see how the poor widow had been treated, and found her moaning beside the dyke. He led her to where his own children had taken shelter, treated her kindly, and did all he could to comfort her under the circumstances.

When I visited Knoydart I found the poor widow at work, repairing her shed, and such a shed, and such a dwelling, I never before witnessed. The poor creature spoke remarkably well, and appeared to me to be a very sensible woman. I expressed my sympathy for her, and my disapprobation of the conduct of those who so unmercifully treated her. She said it was indeed most ungrateful on the part of the representatives of Glengarry to have treated her so cruelly—that her predecessors were, from time immemorial, on the Glengarry estates—that many of them died in defence of, or fighting for, the old chieftains—and that they had always been true and faithful subjects. I asked why she refused to go to Canada?

"For a very good reason," she said, "I am now old, and not able to clear a way in the forests of Canada ; and, besides, I am unfit for service; and, further, I am averse to leave my native country, and rather than leave it, I would much prefer that my grave was opened beside my dear daughter, although I should be buried alive! "

I do think she was sincere in what she said. Despair and anguish were marked in her countenance, and her attachment to her old habitation and its associations were so strong that I believe they can only be cut asunder by death! I left her in this miserable shed which she occupied, and I question much if there is another human residence like it in Europe. The wigwam of the wild Indian, or the cave of the Greenlander, are palaces in comparison with it ; and even the meanest dog-kennel in England would be a thousand times more preferable as a place of residence. If this poor Highland woman will stand it out all winter in this abode it will be indeed a great wonder. The factor has issued an ukase, which aggravates all these cases of eviction with peculiar hardship; he has warned all and sundry on the Knoydart estates from receiving or entertaining the evicted peasantry into their houses under pain of removal.

Allan Macdonald, aged 54, a widower, with four children, was similarly treated. Our informant says of him:—"When his late Majesty George IV. visited Scotland in 1823, and when Highland lairds sent up to Edinburgh specimens of the bone and sinew—human produce--of their properties, old Glengarry took care to give Allan Macdonald a polite invitation to this 'Royal exhibition.' Alas! how matters have so sadly changed. Within the last 30 years man has fallen off dreadfully in the estimation of Highland proprietors. Commercially speaking, Allan Macdonald has now no value at all. Had he been a roe, a deer, a sheep, or a bullock, a Highland laird in speculating could estimate his `real ' worth to within a few shillings, but Allan is only a man. Then his children; they are of no value, nor taken into account in the calculations of the sportsman. They cannot be shot at like hares, blackcocks, or grouse, nor yet can they be sent south as game to feed the London market."

Another case is that of Archibald Macisaac, crofter, aged 66; wife 54, with a family of ten children. Archibald's house, byre, barn, and stable were levelled to the ground. The furniture of the house was thrown down the hill, and a general destruction then commenced. The roof, fixtures, and woodwork were smashed to pieces, the walls razed to the very foundation, and all that was left for poor Archibald to look upon was a black dismal wreck. Twelve human beings were thus deprived of their home in less than half-an-hour. It was grossly illegal to have desstroyed the barn, for, according even to the law of Scotland, the outgoing or removing tenant is entitled to the use of the barn until his crops are disposed of. But, of course, in a remote district, and among simple and primitive people like the inhabitants of Knoydart, the laws that concern them and define their rights are unknown to them.

Archibald had now to make the best shift he could. Na mercy or favour could be expected from the factor. Having convened his children beside an old fence where he sat looking on when the destruction of his home was accomplished, he addressed them on the peculiar nature of the position in which they were placed, and the necessity of asking for wisdom from above to guide them in any future action. His wife and children wept, but the old man said, "Neither weeping nor reflection will now avail; we must prepare some shelter." The children collected some cabars and turf, and in the hollow between two ditches, the old man constructed a rude shelter for the night, and having kindled a fire and gathered in his family, they all engaged in family worship and sung psalms as usual. Next morning they examined the ruins, picked up some broken pieces of furniture, dishes, etc., and then made another addition to their shelter in the ditch. Matters went on this way for about a week, when the local manager and his men came down upon them, and after much abuse for daring to take shelters on the lands of Knoydart, they destroyed the shelter and put old Archy and his people again out on the hill.

I found Archibald and his numerous family still at Knoydart and in a shelter beside the old ditch. Any residence more wretched or more truly melancholy, I have never witnessed. A feat, or turf erection, about 3 feet high, 4 feet broad, and about 5 feet long, was at the end of the shelter, and this formed the sleeping place of the mother and her five daughters ! They creep in and out on their knees, and their bed is just a layer of hay on the cold earth of the ditch! There is surely monstrous cruelty in this treatment of British females, and the laws that sanction or tolerate such flagrant and gross abuses are a disgrace to the Statute book and to the country that permits it. Macisaac and his family are, so far as I could learn, very decent, respectable, and well-behaved people, and can we not perceive a monstrous injustice in treating them worse than slaves because they refuse to allow themselves to be packed off to the Colonies just like so many bales of manufactured goods?

Again:-

Donald Maceachan, a cottar at Arar, married, with a wife, and five children. This poor man, his wife, and children were fully twenty-three nights without any shelter but the broad and blue heavens. They kindled a fire, and prepared their food beside a rock, and then slept in the open air. Just imagine the condition of this poor mother, Donald's wife, nursing a delicate child, and subjected to merciless storms of wind and rain during a long October night. One of these melancholy nights the blankets that covered them were frozen and white with frost.

The next case is as follows:-

Charles Macdonald, aged 70 years, a widower, having no family. This poor man was also "keeled" for the Colonies, and, as he refused to go, his house or cabin was levelled to the ground. What on earth could old Charles do in America? Was there any mercy or humanity in offering him a free passage across the Atlantic? In England, Charles would have been considered a proper object of parochial protection and relief, but in Scotland no such relief is afforded except to "sick folks" and tender infants. There can be no question, however, that the factor looked forward to the period when Charles would become chargeable as a pauper, and, acting as a "prudent man," he resolved to get quit of him at once. Three or four pounds would send the old man across the Atlantic, but if he remained in Knoydart, it would likely take four or five pounds to keep him each year that he lived. When the factor and his party arrived at Charles's door, they knocked and demanded admission; the factor intimated his object, and ordered the old man to quit. "As soon as I can," said Charles, and, taking up his plaid and staff and adjusting his blue bonnet, he walked out, merely remarking to the factor that the man who could turn out an old, inoffensive Highlander of seventy, from such a place, and at such a season, could do a great deal more if the laws of the country permitted him. Charles took to the rocks, and from that day to this he has never gone near his old habitation. He has neither house nor home, but receives occasional supplies of food from his evicted neighbours, and he sleeps on the hill! Poor old man, who would not pity him—who would not share with him a crust or a covering—who?

Alexander Macdonald, aged 40 years, with a wife and family of four children, had his house pulled down. His wife was pregnant; still the levellers thrust her out, and then put the children out after her. The husband argued, remonstrated, and protested, but it was all in vain; for in a few minutes all he had for his (to him once comfortable) home was a lot of rubbish, blackened rafters, and heaps of stones. The levellers laughed at him and at his protests, and when their work was over, moved away, leaving him to find refuge the best way he could. Alexander had, like the rest of his evicted brethren, to burrow among the rocks and in caves until he put up a temporary shelter amid the wreck of his old habitation, but from which he was repeatedly driven away. For three days Alexander Macdonald's wife lay sick beside a bush, where, owing to terror and exposure to cold, she had a miscarriage. She was then removed to the shelter of the walls of her former house, and for three days she lay so ill that her life was despaired of. These are facts as to which I challenge contradiction. I have not inserted them without the most satisfactory evidence of their accuracy.

Catherine Mackinnon, aged about 50 years, unmarried; Peggy Mackinnon, aged about 48 years, unmarried; aand Catherine Macphee (a half-sister of the two Mackinnons), also unmarried; occupied one house. Catherine Mackinnon was for a long time sick, and she was confined to bed when the factor and his party came to beat down the house. At first they requested her to get up and walk out, but her sisters said she could not, as she was so unwell. They answered, "Oh, she is scheming;" the sisters said she was not, that she had been ill for a considerable time, and the sick woman herself, who then feebly spoke, said she was quite unfit to be removed, but if God spared her and bestowed upon her better health that she would remove of her own accord. This would not suffice; they forced her out of bed, sick as she was, and left her beside a ditch from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., when, afraid that she would die, as she was seriously unwell, they removed her to a house and provided her with cordials and warm clothing. Let the reader imagine the sufferings of this poor female, so ruthlessly torn from a bed of sickness and laid down beside a cold ditch and there left exposed for seven long hours, and then say if such conduct does not loudly call for the condemnation of every lover of human liberty and humanity. Peggy and her half-sister Macphee are still burrowing among the ruins of their old home. When I left Knoydart last week there were no hope whatever of Catherine Mackinnon's recovery.

I challenge the factor to contradict one sentence in this short narrative of the poor females. The melancholy truth of it is too palpable, too well-known in the district to admit of even a tenable explanation. Nothing can palliate or excuse such gross inhumanity, and it is but right and proper that British Christians should be made aware of such unchristian conduct—such cruelty towards helpless fellow-creatures in sickness and distress.

The last case, at present, is that of Duncan Robertson, aged 35 years, with wife aged 32 years, and a family of three children, Very poor; the oldest boy is deformed and weak in mind and body. requiring almost the constant care of one of his parents. Robertson was warned out like the rest of the tenants, and decree of removal was obtained against him. At the levelling time the factor came up with his men before Robertson's door, and ordered the inmates out. Robertson pleaded for mercy on account of his sick and!imbecile boy, but the factor appeared at first inexorable; at last he sent in one of the officers to see the boy, who, on his return, said that the boy was really and truly an object of pity. The factor said he could not help it, that he must pull down. Some pieces of furniture were then thrown out, and the picks were fixed in the walls, when Robertson's wife ran out and implored delay, asking the factor, for heaven's sake, to come in and see her sick child. He replied, "I am sure I am no doctor." "I know that," she said, "but God might have given you Christian feelings and bowels of compassion notwithstanding." "Bring him out here," said the factor; and the poor mother ran to the bed and brought out her sick boy in her arms. When the factor saw him, he admitted that he was an object of pity, but warned Robertson that he must quit Knoydart as soon as possible, so that his house would be pulled down about his ears. The levellers peep in once a week to see if the boy is getting better, so that the house may be razed.

We could give additional particulars of the cruelties which had to be endured by the poor wretches who remained----cruelties which would never be tolerated in any other civilized country than Britain, and which in Britain would secure instant and severe punishment if inflicted on a dog or a pig, but the record would only inflict further pain, and we have said enough.

Retribution has overtaken the evictors, and is it a wonder that the chiefs of Glengarry are now as little known, and own as little of their ancient domains in the Highlands as their devoted clansmen? There is now scarcely one of the name of Macdonald in the wide district once inhabited by thousands. It is a huge wilderness in which barely anything is met but wild animals and sheep, and the few keepers and shepherds necessary to take care of them.


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