TIMEWARP 1901-25 Moidart History Group - Comann Eachdraidh Muideart

The Moidart Timewarp
by Tim Roberton

In which the Mallaig railway was built, Kinlochailort changed its name, Queen Victoria died, the First World War took place and Dorlin Estate changed hands.

1901 Queen Victoria died, to be succeeded by Edward VII who reigned for nine years.

1901 On 31 March, the first service ran on the Mallaig Railway. One of the main reasons behind its creation was to get fish from the West Coast to London. But the promoters had overlooked a vital factor, namely the reluctance (and indeed the refusal subsequently) of local labour to break the Sabbath. Fish, originally destined for Billingsgate on a Monday morning was held back by militant religious activists. After supplying a police escort for one or two of the early shipments, the railway company gave way to local pressures and discontinued the Sunday freight service. The West Highland Railway By John Thomas, page 108.

1901 Sheep were cleared from Glenforslan to make way for deer. De tha dol May & June 1998 Sandy MacDonald (1892-1982)

1902 In June, the Arisaig and Moidart Parish Council petitioned for a railway siding at the viaduct at Lochnamuagh. It stated that cod and herring abounded in season as well as lobsters, whelks and mussels. The populace had missed out by the coming of the railway, both passengers and goods because "before the Mallaig Railway opened, MacBrains Steamers called four times a week through the whole year at Rhu"…."in summer, every day". Now there was nothing.

At this same meeting, J Charles Stewart suggested that alternative meetings could be held at Glenfinnan to help Moidart members, but this was not accepted. Notes made at Inverness Public Record Office from the Minute Book of the Arisaig and Moidart Parish Council, 11 April 1896 to 30 March 1906.

1902 Logs and registers for Kinlochmoidart School are available from HC Archives 1902-1956-1961. They also have under reference R13/B19 Education Committee files relating to Moidart Schools (as the records are stored off-site, notice is required first). The Index is in “Education File 2”. Inter alia files relate to Kinlochmoidart and Kinlochmoidart Coul Side School. Inspectors’ reports are also available under R13/B21 for Eilean Shona. - Gordon Barr

1902 Particulars of Sale of Loch Shiel Estate (8,800 acres of which 8,200 either forest or hill grazing), offered for auction May 1902 …..“with regular fishing, over 80 salmon and 1,200 sea trout should be taken on the Dorlin side of the river, besides a large number of brown trout. A salmon of 41lbs, a sea trout of 11 lbs., and a brown trout of 7 lbs. have been taken within the last few seasons on the fly….The Loch Shiel Estate was bought from Clanranald by Alex MacDonald of Glenaladale, and afterwards inherited by Archibald Macdonald of Rhu.

There was no mansion then. Dalilea,- associated with the great Gaelic Poet, Alasdair MacMhaihhstir Alasdair – was the only suitable house for the proprietor, but it was let with the farm on a long lease. He continued, therefore, to live at Rhu. After his death the property came to Alexander, who, not succeeding in management, induced Mr Hope Scott to buy it for £24,000. Mr Hope Scott did much to improve the property, and built Dorlin House, which was completed in 1864. The house is now thoroughly modernised…..Mr Hope Scott was succeeded in 1871 by the late Lord Howard of Glossop, who, during the twelve years he lived there also added to the value of the property. He died in 1883 and was succeeded by his only son. The present owner is Mr William E Corlett….It should be mentioned that Castle Tioram is not included in the sale. It is still owned by a Macdonald, a Mr Jas Wiseman Macdonald, Counseller-At-Law, Los Angeles, California.” Copy Particulars of Sale, Knight Frank & Rutley, Bonnalie/Impey Papers Ref 27

1903 The Arisaig and Moidart Parish Council were advised by the Inspector that the paupers' house at Kinlochmoidart was in a very dilapidated condition, and he submitted a letter from Mr. J Charles Stewart, in which he stated that Mr. R Stewart of Kinlochmoidart was willing to let a cottage to the Parish Council for a rent of two pounds per annum. The Council agreed to this. Also, paupers' clothing quotations were received from four sources. Shortlisted were H MacDonald of Moidart and Matheson & Sons of Arisaig both of whom were appointed. Men's and boys' suits (from 30/-) were to be supplied. Notes made at Inverness Public Record Office from the Minute Book of the Arisaig and Moidart Parish Council, 11 April 1896 to 30 March 1906.

1905 Arisaig and Moidart Parish Council received a letter from Father MacIntosh stating that the roof of the apartment occupied by Lexie MacDonald at Langall Poorhouse required repairing. Also perhaps proper flooring should be put in and the walls wood-lined. The Inspector was instructed to have the roof made watertight. Notes made at Inverness Public Record Office from the Minute Book of the Arisaig and Moidart Parish Council, 11 April 1896 to 30 March 1906.

1906 The Hon Bernard Edward Fitzalan Howard, eldest son of Lord Howard of Glossop came of age. The party was deferred to the autumn because Lord Howard was ill. The Oban Times 1906, Bonnalie/Impey Papers Ref 28

1910 King Edward VII died and was followed by King George V who was to reign for twenty six years.

1914Lord Howard and Mr Stewart of Kinlochmoidart used to alternate with an Industrial Show and Highland Games. This stopped when the war started. De tha dol May & June 1998 Sandy MacDonald (1892-1982) The laird of Kinlochmoidart used to reserve the seaweed to himself. De tha dol May & June 1998 Sandy MacDonald (1892-1982)

1915 MacDonalds lived at Port na Bhata until then. When they died, Lord Howard of Glossop pulled the house down. De tha dol May & June 1998 Sandy MacDonald (1892-1982)

1920The Moidart Postman, Ton, spoke of the houses and people on his round in the 1920's which ran from Dorlin, through Mingarry, Dalnabreac, Langal and on to Dalilea before turning over the hill and going on to Loch Moidart. This was recorded in a single session with John Dye and the houses and their inhabitants were as follows:-
Dorlin1 – MacDonald, 8 people (8 adults)
Keeper’s Cot – Matheson, 6 people (2 adults 4 children)
Baker’s House – MacDonald, 6 people (5 adults 1 pensioner)
Fishery – MacDonald, 5 people (2 adults 3 children)
Dorlin House – MacDonald, 2 people (2 adults)
Garden Cottage – MacInnes, 7 people (2 adults, 5 children)
Square 1 – MacDonald, 2 people (2 adults)
Square 2 – Macdonald, 2 people (2 adults)
Cliff Farm – MacKintosh, 7 people (2 adults, 5children)
Camus Dorche – MacKintosh, 2 people (2 adults)
Oak Point – MacDonald, 5 adults (2 adults, 3 pensioners)
Clan Cottage – Harrison,4 people (2 adults, 2 pensioners)
MacGregor’s – MacGregor, 8 people (2 adults, 6 children)
Torquill’s Cott – MacDonald, 5 people (5 adults)
Corbett’s – Corbett, 6 people (6 pensioners)
Blacksmith’s – MacDonald, 8 people (2 adults, 6 children)
Shiel Cott – MacDonald, 18 people (2 adults, 16 children)
Crosshill 1 – MacDonald, 5 people (4 adults, 1 child)
Crosshill 2 – Maclean, 2 people (2 adults)
Blain – MacDonald, 3 people (2 adults, 1 child)
Smiddy – MacDonald, 6 people (6 pensioners)
Drumfearn – MacLellan, 4 people (1 adult, 3 children)
Mingarry Point – MacDonald, 5 people (2 adults, 3 children)
Burnside – MacDonald, 10 people (2 adults, 8 children)
Min. Cott – MacDonald, 8 people (1 pensioner, 7 children)
School – MacPherson, 1 person (1 adult)
Priest’s House – MacIntosh, 2 people (2 adults)
Deeke – MacDonald, 6 people (6 adults)
Cnoc Breac – MacLaren, 5 people (2 adults, 3 children)
D’Breac 1 – MacDonald, 4 people (2 adults, 2 children)
Denny’s – MacEachen, 4 people (4 adults)
Mo’ Ruadh’s – MacDonald, 4 people (4 pensioners)
Weaver’s House – MacDonald, 3 people (2 adult, 1 child)
D’breac 2 – MacVarish, 2 people (2 adults)
D’breac 3 – MacDonald, 10 people (8 adults, 2 pensioners)
D’breac 4 – MacDonald, 5 people (2 adults, 3 children)
Langal 1 – Cameron, 9 people (2 adults, 6 children)
Langal Croft – MacDonald, 2 people (2 adults)
Langal 2 – MacDonald, 7 people (2 adults, 5 children)
Poor’s House – MacDonald, 6 people (6 pensioners)
Austin’s Croft – MacNaughton, 2 people (2 adults)
Dalilea Croft – Grant, 7 people (2 adults, 5 children)
Dalilea Farm – MacKintosh, 3 people (3 adults)
Cuil – (Family from Tighnabruaich), 8 people (2 adults, 6 children)
Ardmolich – MacMaster, 9 people (2 adults 7 children)
Crasg – MacDonald, 3 people (2 adult 1 child)
East Lodge – Kennedy, 6 people (2 adults 4 children)
Kinlochmoidart Croft No1 – 2 people (retired)
Torloisg – A keeper on Kinlochmoidart Estate, 2 people
Brunery Farm – Mackinnon, 6 people (2 children 4 adults)
Brunery House – No recollection
Kinlochmoidart School – Boyd, 1 person (adult)
Kinlochmoidart Croft No2 – MacDonald, 2 persons (adults)
Kinlochmoidart Croft No3 – Empty
Rock Cottage – MacNeil, 3 persons (1 adult 2 children)
Glenmoidart House – Lees, 1 person (adult)
Garden Cottage – Shivers, 1 person (adult)
Kinlochmoidart House – Stewart, 3 persons (adult)
Square No1 – MacPherson, 2 persons (adult)
Square No2 – An estate worker, 1 person (adult)
Iron House - MacDonald, 5 persons (adults)
West Lodge – Smart, 8 persons (2 adults 6 children)
Kinlochmoidart Farm – Smith, 2 persons (adult)
Clifton Cottage - MacGregor, 1 person (adult)
Kinacarra – MacDonald, 7 persons (2 adults 5 children)
Mill House – MacDonald, 2 persons (retired)
Caolas – 2 shepherds were there sometimes (adult)
Egnaig –2 adults called “The two old men of Egnaig” but variously called by the surname Kelly or MacDougal and referred to by the Christian names of Alastair, or Angus or Archie. They worked on the roads locally. Information from John Dye.

1924  Lord Howard of Glossop died and Dorlin sold to Sir Alexander MacGuire De tha dol May & June 1998 Sandy MacDonald (1892-1982)

Mid 1920s Katie MacNeil from Samalaman, servant to Dr Symers MacVicar of Shona Bheag, where he lived with his sister, fell from her bicycle on Shiel Bridge into the water and drowned. She was visiting relatives in Moss. – John Dye


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