Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Archibald MacDonald

According to Thee Complete Barontetage by George Edward Cokayne, and Burke's Peerage, Baronetage and Knightage, by Charles Mosley, Archibald MacDonald was the son of Donald Gormeson MacDonald and Mary MacLean. He married Margaret MacDonald, the daughter of another Archibald MacDonald.

They had a son named Sir Donald MacDonald 8th of Sleat.

The following is from The History and Traditions of the Isle of Skye
 By Alexander Cameron:

In the time of Donald Gormeson of Sleat a fierce feud existed between the MacDonalds of Skye and the Mackenzie of Kintail. A variety of causes contributed to aggravate this feud, such as the opposition of the Mackenzies to the pretensions of the chiefs of the MacDonalds to the forfeited titles and estates of the Earldom of Ross, and the Lordship of the Isles; the death of Donald Gorme of Sleat at the siege of Elandonnan Castle; and the two clans having taken opposite sides in the bloody disputes between Roderick MacLeod, Baron of Lewis, and his reputed son Torquil Connaldagh of Cogeach, whose mother was daughter of John Mackenzie of Kintail, and the first wife of Roderick Macleod, but whom he divorced on her eloping with John Macgilliechallum of Raasay, as before stated. It then transpired that the Breitheamh, or Judge of the Lewis, was suspected to be the father of Torquil Connaldagh, and Roderick consequently disowned and disinherited him. The Mackenzies took up the cause of Torquil,their kinswoman's son, who had married a daughter of MacDonald of Glengarry and became a powerful warrior. Donald Gormeson MacDonald of Sleat (whose mother was daughter and heiress of John Mactorquil MacLeod, the cousin and predecessor of Roderick MacLeod, as Baron of the Lewis, gave his assistance to Roderick. Several conflicts ensued between Roderick and Torquil, and their dissensions were carried on for a series of years. In the meantime (1541) Roderick MacLeod married Barbara Stewart, daughter of Andrew Lord Avandale, by whom he had a son also named Torquil, but surnamed Oighre, or the Heir, to distinguish him from Torquil Connalldagh, or Connanach, as he was sometimes styled. Torquil Oighre grew up to be a brave warrior, but at the early age of twenty-four, his war like career was suddenly terminated, he having, about the year 1566, with two hunded of his followers, perished at sea, “by ane extraordinarie great storme and tempest,' while on their way from the Lewis to Troternish in Skye. Upon this event Donald Gormeson MacDonald of Sleat took steps to have himself recognized a the next heir of the Lewis, after Roderick MacLeod, on the ground of the alleged confession of Hugh or Uisdeen, the Breitheamh of the Lewis, that he was the father of Torquil Connanach. This appears from a protest taken by Donald MacDonald Gorme, preserved in the charter chest of Dunvegan, dated 22d August 1566. Roderick MacLeod of Lewis, however, afterwards married a sister of Lachlan MacLean of Duart, by whom he had two sons, Torquil Dubh and Tormod, who afterwards contended with Torquil Connaldagh for possession of the Lewis. Torquil Dubh married a daughter of Tormod MacLeod of Dunvegan. In August 1569 Donald Gormeson MacDonald of Sleat and Colin Mackenzie of Kintail were obliged in presence of the Regent and Privy Council at Perth, to settle the quarrels in which they and their clans had been engaged. The families thereafter continued on friendly terms, the son and heir of Donald Gormeson (Donald Gorme Mor), having married a daughter of Colin Mackenzie of Kintail. The following incident relative to the friendly terms existing between the MacDonald family and Christopher Macrae, a dependant of the Mackenzies of Kintail, and a son of Macrae who shot Donald Gorme at Elandonnan, is related in a MS. History of the Macraes, written in the seventeenth century:---”Christopher was a great favourite of MacDonald, and did him a piece of service which he could not forget, which was thus—Donald Gorme Mor who was married to Mackenzie's daughter, having gone with his lady south, and staying longer than he expected, was necessitated to borrow money which he promised to pay on a certain day, and being obliged to go home in order to get the money, left his lady at Perth till his return. Meantime Christopher (who was a drover), having sold his drove and hearing that his master's daughter, Lady MacDonald, was in Perth, he went to visit her, and being informed of the cause of her stay and that of MacDonald's going home, told her he had money to answer all her demands, and men sufficient to convey her home, and advised her to clear all and set out immediately; not doubting but she might overtake MacDonald at home, and prevent his having the trouble and risque of getting south. And so it happened, for she gladly accepted the compliment. They early next day went homewards, and having arrived the second day after MacDonald, he was greatly surprised, till the lady informed him what Christopher had done. MacDonald and his lady insisted on his staying some days, and entertained himvery kindly, and on the day they were to part, Christopher being still warm with drink, called for a large cupful of strong waters, proposing, as a compliment, to drink it all to Sir Donald's health. MacDonald, thinking himself bound to return the compliment by drinking so much to Christopher, said:---'I trust you don't mean to kill me by taking such a quantity of the liquor;' to which Christopher answered, 'Sir and is it not natural, since it was my father that killed your father' [should be grandfather.] While MacDonald only smiled, and said it was true, some of the bystanders, his attendants, drew their dirks, threatening to be at Christopher, and would have undoubtedly killed him, had not Sir Donald interfered, and convoyed him safe to his boat. Christopher was afterwards ashamed of what he said, but MacDonald and he continued fast friends.”{

A few pages further along, it says that “A yearly pension of 1000 marks, Scots, out of the fruits of the Bishoprick of Aberdeen, then vacant, was conferred by the King in the same year on Donald Gormeson of Sleat, for his good and faithful service.” And then, “Donald Gormeson of Sleat died in 1585, and was succeeded by his son Donald Gorme Mor, a powerful warrior, and no mean diplomatist. He entered into a treasonable correspondence with Queen Elizabeth of England. In a letter to her dated March 1598, preserved in the State Paper Office, he styles himself “Lord of the Isles of Scotland, and chief of the Clandonald Irishmen;” and offers upon certain “reasonable motives and considerations” to inform her of the movements of her enemies in Scotland, to persuade the Isles to throw off all allegiance to the Scottish Crown, and to raise an insurrection to fasche King James. He would also disclose Scottish practices, and how the Northern Jesuits and priests pushed forward their diabolical, pestiferous, and anti-christian courses. His services were not, however, accepted. He had scarcely assumed the chieftainship of Clan Donald, when, through the treachery of two of his kinsmen, Huisdean Macghilleasbuig Clerach and Macdhomnull Herrach, he was plunged into one of those bloody feuds so common at the period, and which at length became so widespread and serious as to call for the interferrence of Government. …..This disastrous feud was only put an end to on Donald Gorme Mor MacDonald of Sleat, Angus MacDonald of Islay, and Sir Lachlan MacLean, while in Edinburgh on the invitation of the King and Council, being seized and imprisoned in the Castle, wher they were detained until they paid fines imposed by the King, and procured sureties for their future peaceful conduct. This happened in the year 1591. The fine imposed on Donald Gorme Mor was L4000/

This same book refers to a brother of Donald Gorm MacDonald, son of Donald Gormeson, having a brother named Hugh or Huisean Macgilleasbuig Chlerach. It says that he was a man of great personal strength, to which he added cruelty and deceit. “He at first possessed the confidence of his kinsman, Donald Gorme, who sent him as factor to North Uist.” When he arrived there he took the land of a clan called MacVicar, because he believed it should be in the possession of his family.

The book says that Donald Gorme discovered that Hugh Huisdean intended to overthrow him. When Hugh discovered that his plot had been discovered, he left in his galley to North Uist, to escape. While he was there, he wrote two letter, one was to his brother claiming loyalty to him, and the other was to a tenant of his brother asking for his assistance in plotting against his brother. The letters got mixed up and the wrong one got sent to his brother. So his brother sent a large party of men to capture his brother Hugh. They took him prisoner to Skye. He was imprisoned in a vaulted dungeon in the castle of Duntulm, and allowed to die of thirst. In his agony, it is said that he crunched a pewter jug, left in his cell, to powder.

Since the books mentioned previously on the peerage, name Donald Gormeson's son as Archibald, I am assuming that this story referring to Hugh Uisdeen, means Archibald is the same person.

According to a DAR lineage book, from 1926 Archibald MacDonald married Margaret MacDonald. The Celtic Magazine: A Monthly Periodical Devoted to the Literature, History ...‎ - Page 427
by Alexander Mackenzie, Alexander Macgregor - 1881 says that a Ranald, son of Allan or Clanranald, married Maria, daughter of Archibald MacDonald, brother of Donald Gorm Mor, and sister of Sir Donald MacDonald 8th of Sleat. It says that she was forcibly seized and ravished by Sir Lachlan Mackinnon of Strathardale.

The last Macdonalds of Isla By Charles Fraser-Mackintosh says that Margaret MacDonald, daughter of Angus MacDonald, married Archibald MacDonald, younger son of Sleat, with issue Donald who succeeded his uncle in 1616.

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