Scottish clans of Loch Lomond. Of all the world's tribal organisations and costumes, those of the Scottish Clans are the most celebrated. The word 'clan' which is Gaelic for children, has been adopted everywhere as a synonym for 'tribe', and in distant countries the decendants of ancient Scottish patriarchs cleave to their kinship as enthusiastically as any native Scot.
For clansmen of Scotland the loyalty to their clan was the strongest loyalty of all. It is said that Scotland did not create the clans but the clans created Scotland.
Over the centuries the following clans have had associations in and around the Loch Lomond area:
Buchanan : Colquhoun : Cunningham : Drummond : Graham
Lennox : Macfarlane : Macgregor : Macnaughton : Stewart
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Here's to it!
The fighting sheen of it!
The yellow, the green of it,
The white, the blue of it,
The swing, the hue of it,
The dark, the red of it,
Every thread of it!
The fair have sighed for it,
The brave have died for it,
Foemen sought for it,
Heroes fought for it,
Honour the name of it,
Drink to the fame of it
The Clans that occupied the lochside in 1603, were the Buchanans, the Macfarlanes, the Colquhouns and the Macgregors. Between them, bitter inter-clan disputes were rife, so much so that laws were passed curtailing the Macgregor's cattle stealing activities.
The body chosen to enforce this law was drawn mainly from the Colquhoun clan who, rather unique among the clans at this time had gained themselves a name of respectability with the authorities as upholders of law and order.
The Macgregors held their lands by tradition, but the Campbells, flaunting an official grant, demanded rent from the Macgregors, and when this was refused, they began to seize land. The Macgregors means of survival became cattle stealing.
The situation was fraught with danger. No love was lost between the Macgregors and the Colquhouns and when the Macgregors joined with the Macfarlanes in a cattle raid on Colquhoun land under moonlight, things came to a head.
Sir Humphrey Colquhoun was assassinated after this raid and his successor, Alexander decided to bring the Macgregors to heel, once and for all.
Enlisting help from the Buchanans, a force of some 300 well armed, well mounted, country gentlemen, as it were, set out to engage the lawless Macgregors.
Unfortunately, Allister Macgregor, had word of their advance and being well schooled in the art of guerilla warfare had laid down plans to engage the Colquhouns in Macgregor terrain.
The Campbell chief encouraged the resulting bitterness and on 18th February 1603, the Macgregors met the Colquhouns at Glen Fruin.
Sixty Colquhoun widows appeared in front of James VI at Stirling each with the bloody shirt of their husband in her hand and the King was so moved that he outlawed the Macgregors and proscribed their very name. It was not until 1663 when the act of outlawry was reversed, by Charles II as a reward for services rendered to Montrose. Full legal rights were not finally restored until 1755, under George II.