Search just our sites by using our customised search engine

Unique Cottages | Electric Scotland's Classified Directory

Click here to get a Printer Friendly PageSmiley

Lairds and Lands of Loch Tayside

TO the east of Cloichran lies the twenty-pound land of Ardeonaig, which, with the exception of a portion of the old commonty of Corryghavie, formed until recently a detached part of the Parish of Killin, to which it was annexed in 1617, having prior to that date constituted an independent parish. It is now in Kenmore parish.

At a very early period the whole of the lands of Ardeonaig was in the possession of the old Earls of Lennox. Duncan, the eighth Earl, had three daughters, the eldest of whom was Isabella, Duchess of Albany, whose husband and two sons were executed at Stirling in 1425. Margaret, the second daughter, married, in 1392, Sir Robert Menteith of Rusky, by whom she had a son, Sir Murdoch. The latter had by his wife, Christian Murray of Tullibardine, three children—a son, Patrick, and two daughters, Agnes and Elizabeth. Patrick died without issue, when the heirship of the lands of Lanarky and Rusky devolved on his two sisters. They also succeeded to the lands of Ardeonaig, on the death of the Duchess of Albany—their grand-aunt—when the Lennox Partition took place.

Napier of Merchiston married Elizabeth, the younger daughter of Sir Murdoch Menteith, and through her acquired the wester half of Ardeonaig, which comprehended the lands of Tullichcan, the middle third of Ardeonaig, and the ten-merk land of the wester half of the haugh, with the fishings in Loch Tay opposite these lands. The Napiers were also proprietors of the barony of Edinbellie, to which Wester Ardeonaig was annexed. In the Roll of the Landlords and Bailies of 1587, the laird of Merchiston is mentioned. He was Sir Archibald Napier, father of the celebrated inventor of logarithms, a portrait of whom hangs in the Barons’ Hall at Taymouth Castle. An ancestor of his married Annabell, daughter of Sir Duncan Campbell, second laird of Glenorchy. From the Napiers the lands are said to have passed into the hands of a family of the name of Macgregor, whose descendants held them until they were acquired by Alexander Campbell, second son of Patrick Campbell of Mur-laganbeg and Edinchip.

This Patrick was a natural son of Sir Duncan Campbell, seventh laird of Glenorchy, who bestowed on him the two-merk land of Murlaganbeg in Glenlochay, which had formerly been in the possession of a John Monteith. Sir Duncan afterwards, in 1620, conveyed to him the eight-merk land of Edinchip in Balquhidder. Patrick held, under his father, the office of forester of Mamlorn. In 1661, he was killed at Ardeonaig in an encounter with a band of Macgregors. His eldest son, by his wife, Grissil Campbell, daughter of the laird of Glenlyon, succeeded to Murlaganbeg and Edinchip. The former property remained in his family till 1744, when it was disposed to Lord Glenorchy. Alexander, second son of Patrick, was the first of the Campbells of Ardeonaig. He, also, married into the Glenlyon family, his wife being a daughter of Captain Robert Campbell of Glencoe notoriety. His eldest son, Colin, about 1720, succeeded as second laird of Ardeonaig. He married Catherine, daughter of Campbell of Duneaves, by whom he had six sons1

‘Colin’s eldest son, John, became a captain in the army. He married Alice, daughter and heiress of Campbell of Kilpunt. She had two sisters of whom Elizabeth, the younger, was twice married, her first husband having and two daughters. He appears to have got into monetary difficulties, and had to dispose of his lands. This was sometime previous to 1734, in which year Wester Ardeonaig came into the Breadalbane family, having been excambed by Patrick Campbell of Barcaldine, the then proprietor, for the lands of Achacha, Achinryer, and others in Argyllshire, up till then in the possession of the Earl of Breadalbane, who retained the superiority of them.

The following is a list of the old names of the different possessions in Wester Ardeonaig :—Wester and Easter Tullichcan, Cromaltan, Blarnadark, Croftshennach, Croftnacabber, Croftna-beallie, Craggan, Dalcroy, Ballinloan, Balinaw, Mains, Margdow, Nether Tombane, Bealloch, Upper Tombane, Braentrian, Leck-eorn, and Newton.

The mansion of the property was called Mains Castle, and stood on the holding of that name. From what remains of it, it does not appear to have been a large structure. We have no account of the founder, but in all probability the last occupant had been Colin Campbell, the second and last laird of his family, after whose time the castle had been allowed to fall into decay, and most of the stones removed and used in the erection of other been Ewen or Hugh Campbell,1 a brother of Colin. John acquired the small estate of Lochend on the Lake of Menteith, to which his son, also named John, succeeded. The latter served for a time in the Royal Marines, and was afterwards appointed Chamberlain on the Nether Lorn estates of the Earl of Breadalbane. Having sold Lochend, he purchased Kinlochlaich in Appin, which was thenceforth called Lochend after his former property. He left a number Of descendants.

Mrs. Campbell, Boreland farm, Fearnan, who is descended from a younger son of Alexander, first laird of Ardeonaig, has in her possession the charm stone of that family. It is oval in shape, and has a reddish mottled appearance. It was believed to possess a talismanic power of warding off and curing bodily diseases.

“Kenmore, April 22, 1739. This day there was eighteen pence Given into the Box for the use of the Mortcloath To the funerals of Hugh Campbell, brother German to Coline Campbell Late of Ardeonaig, who died at Chestell in Glenlyon, & was Interred at fortingall yesterday, a poor Gentleman.” (Kenmore Kirk Session Records buildings in the vicinity. The garden and orchard lay betwixt the castle and the burn of Ardeonaig. Close by there are some very old elm, ash, and sycamore trees.

The old commonty of Corryghavie above alluded to, lies in the parish of Comrie. It was held in common by the tenants of Wester Ardeonaig and Derry on Lochearnside, but disputes having arisen regarding the pasturage, it was divided between the proprietors of these lands, and the northern portion was added to the hill grazing of Newton.

Agnes, the elder daughter of Sir Murdoch Menteith, was married to Sir John Haldane, of Gleneagles, who by his wife, succeeded to the easter half of the lands of Ardeonaig, with fishings in Loch Tay, and the right of patronage of the church, by turns. About 1612, Sir James Campbell, of Lawers, acquired Easter Ardeonaig, by purchase from James Haldane, and thenceforth the lands were annexed to the barony of Lawers. Towards the end of that century they came into the possession of the first Earl of Breadalbane.

Described as the ten-pound land of Easter Ardeonaig, the property embraces the lands of Succoch, Finglenhaugh, Led-chraggan, and the twenty-shilling land of Carie. These lands have for a number of years back been merged into two farms, but were formerly divided into the following possessions:— Tomour, Succoch, Finglen, Tynaline, Twenty-shilling land, Led-chraggan, and Margnadallich alias Dali, Croftdunard, Margmore, Margbeg, Margnacranag, Licknie, and Aldvine (Allt Mheine) croft. The last five constituted the Twenty-shilling land of Carie. The meal mill of the property in Finglen is still worked.

The old church of Ardeonaig, situated within the burying ground in Twenty-shilling land, was called Cill ma Charmaig. Only the east gable of it is now standing. The stone font which belonged to it is preserved within the graveyard. Considering the antiquity of the place, the latter contains few tombstones, none of which bear dates prior to the middle of last century. For sometime after the Reformation, the parishes of Kenmore, Ardeonaig, Killin, and Strathfillan were under the charge of one minister.

Return to our Book Index Page


This comment system requires you to be logged in through either a Disqus account or an account you already have with Google, Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo. In the event you don't have an account with any of these companies then you can create an account with Disqus. All comments are moderated so they won't display until the moderator has approved your comment.

comments powered by Disqus