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Letter from Colin Campbell of Glenure
to The Lord Chief Barron of His Majesty's Exchequer in Scotland
regarding his inability to collect rents from Lochaber Camerons
November 20, 1750

Fort William

My Lord, - I came here to levy the Rents of Mamore, a part of the Forfeited Estate which formerly belonged to the Deceast Donald Cameron of Lochiell, on which your Lordship and the other Barons were pleased to appoint me factor for the Crown.  Upon the Possessors Refusing to make any payments, I obtained Decreets against them for the Rents, Before my Baron-Bailie Deput.  But I soon found in this country of Lochaber That a Decreet or any other Legal Step to Levy the King's Rents is a matter of Redicule and Treated as such.  I then sent out amongst the Tennents to Cease (seize) and Poynd their Effects for payment of the Rents as the Law directs, But soon found my Error, and that the Law or the Crown's ffactor is no more regairded by these Barbarians thain if there were no Law or Government in Great Britain.  They told the Baron-Bailie officer and other servants I sent with him, and that in my own presence, That if they Dared touch or cease any Part of their Effects for payment of His Majesty's Rents they would beat out their Brains.  Your Lordship will see by what I have said, That I have taken all the Legal Steps in my power to Recover His Majesty's Rents, and that nothing will doe with these Ruphians (amongst whom ther's scarce a man but was in the Rebellion) without the concurrence of the Troops to support me and the People I imploy in the Execution of my office.  And to encourage the Tennents in their obstinacy for which there was no great occasion, There was a message delivered them in my own presence from Mr. Cameron of Fassifern, Brother to the Deceast Donald Cameron of Lochiell, and who, I believe, is by this time at Edinburgh, That if they Durst pay any rent to me, the Crown's ffactor, it must be at their perral; As I could not trust any Person in this Country to carry this letter to your Lordship, I apply'd to Lieutenannant Collonel Welsh, who commands the Troops here, and who cheerfully gave me the Bearer, a soldier in the Regiament.  I Therefore hope if your Lordship expects or Inclines I should levy these Rents for his Majesty you'l apply for ane order from General Churchill or the Commander-in-Chief in Scotland to the Commanding Officer at Fortwilliam To support me with a party of the Troops for keeping the Peace and Preventing any Insults being offered me or any I imploy in the Execution of  my office, and Transmitt such orders to the Commanding Officer here by the Bearer, without which I shall never goe to call for these Rents again, as I know it would be very idle as well as dangerous for me to doe it.  Your Lordship will be Pleased to Honour me with your commands and answer by the Bearer, and I ever am, My Lord, your Lordships most obedient Humll. Servant,


Editor's NotesIt does not look as though the Camerons of Lochaber were willing to give their rents to the Crown, especially when requested by a Campbell.  Despite the aftermath of the 1745 Rebellion/Uprising, they still had a good deal of fight left in them - perhaps too much.  Colin Campbell of Glenure was the son of Patrick Campbell of Barcaldine by his second wife, Lucy, daughter of Sir Ewen Cameron of Lochiel.  He was shot to death on May 14, 1752 in the wood of Lettermore, in Appin.  As is well known, the story is the basis for Robert L. Stevenson's novel "Kidnapped."  It was put forth by Cameron of Glen Nevis that John Cameron of Fassifern had a hand in this murder.  It is extremely doubtful that he would have had involvement in the death of his 1st cousin (see Fassifern's Memorial for additional details) although, as may be seen above, Campbell of Glenure had his suspicions of Fassifern...

From "A Selection of Scottish Forfeited Estates Papers: 1715; 1745" - Scottish History Society, 1909, Vol. LVII.  Mr. Campbell's original spelling has been left intact.