Nairn Shire

Nairn Shire

Nairnshire, Scotland 1884

They came from Nairnshire

Alexander Douglass, b. ca 1723 came from Ardclach Parish and his wife Christian Grant came from Cawdor Parish. Both of those are on this map. The map is part of the Ordnance Gazeteer of Scotland, done by Frances Groome in 1882-4. This was a century after our ancestors had left Scotland, but it depicts clearly the area they came from. Though the map does not draw Parish lines within the shire, Cawdor and Ardclach parishes lay adjacent to each other. The villages or hamlets were only a few miles apart. The heavy lines within the shire boundaries indicate various changes in area that happened over time.

You need to look at this site for yourself. It is a wealth of information and brings history up close. My thanks to Jennie Trerise for telling me about this website: www.visionofbritain.org.uk

Those of you more familiar with Shakespearian works than I, may remember “All hail MacBeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Cawdor!” The small “cas” near Cawdor on the map denotes the spot where the ruins of the Cawdor castle stands. It still is widely advertised as a tourist attraction. The villagers lived across a deep divide, a ways from the castle, but there remain indications in the village of Cawdor of their close association with the castle and its occupants.

Pamela Stewart, Quine’s researcher, said that no ships would have sailed from Nairn. Looking at the map of Scotland in my Atlas, I suspect that the water was too shallow at Nairn for large ships to put in and that is why the Douglass family sailed from Inverness. Inverness is only about 15 miles southwest of Nairn. Both Nairn and Inverness lay on the Moray Firth, a long arm of the North Sea that reaches in to join the effluence of the River Ness. Inverness is situated at the mouth of the river.

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