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Memorial for Ffasfern (Cameron of Fassifern)
August 1753

Augt 1753

AFTER I was some days prissoner at Fort William, when I represented my Innocence to Governour Campbell and Captain Scott, they being sensible of it gave me a Protection dated 23rd May 1746.  When his Royall Highness the Duke came to Fort William where I was at that time Prissoner I was introduced to Collonell York by Major Coffild to whom I gave a Petition and Memoriall to be presented by him to his Royall Highness which Colonell York very civily accepted and desired me to send him ane express next day to Fort Augustus which accordingly I did with a letter to him the Copy of which [is] to be seen dated 1st June 1746 allso the Copy of my Petition and Memoriall to his Royall Highness.  I received by the return of my Express a leter from Colonell York dated June 2nd allso a letter of the same date to Governour Campbell from Sir Everad Fawkener ordering my liberation, of which I have ane attested Copy.  Accordingly I was sett at liberty and next day Captain Scott came to my house in his way to the Isles with a party where he received some Arms and lodged them in my house as by his certificate dated the 8th June allso a letter of the same date to me ane other leter from him dated the 6th June desireing the favour of me to keep some Rebell horses Certificate from Governour Campbell dated the 11th June acknowledging that the Arms and horses were returned, Copy of a leter from me to Colonell York upon my being liberate.  Some few days after I was liberate a Party from Lord George Seckviles [also known as Lord George Germain] Camp at the head of Locharkak took up out of a ffarm of mine above a hundred head of cows of which I sent ane Express to acquaint Captain Scott, he sent me a return dated 8th June I immediately waited of Lord George but he would not return my Catle so went from that to ffort Augustus to complain to Collonell York, in the mean time while I was soliciting about these Catle my wife came to ffort Augustus and told me that Collonell Corwallace came to our house with a Regiment of men whom she entertained the best she could and they caryed of sixty of my hill horses and all our sheep and goats.  When I acquainted Collonell [York] of this he assured me immediately to write a petition representing my Case to his Royall Highness which he would deliver, which I saw him deliver, and next day when I waited of him he told me that he was sory to tell me that my wife had ruined me for that one of the officers that was at my house with Collonell Corwallace did tell his Royall Highness that he heard my wife say that it was owing to her that I was not engaged in the Rebellion for that she had made me grant a bond of 1000£ to Governour Campbell obligeing myself not to engage in it and that she was sory for what she had caused me do as I was as ill treated as the Rebells, and that it was owing to this information that my catle were not returned.  I assured Collonell York that my wife never said any such thing nor had it not to say as it was both ridiculous and false and beged as she was in the place that the Gentleman and she should be brought face to face or that the other Gentlemen that were present should be asked if they heard her express herself in that manner.  The Collonell advised me not to give myself any further trouble about the Catle that were taken away but that I should go home and take care of what was remaining and accordingly procured me a pass dated the 12th June.  Some time therafter I sent a Compliment of such things as I thought would be acceptable to Collonell York in return of which he sent me a leter dated the 9th July, there is allso a Certificate from Achchalider, dated 6th ffebry 1746, also a leter from Governour Campbell dated the 9th Octbre 1746.  I believe these two are for litle use.  The next Party that came to my house was commanded by one Mr. Dalrymple a relation of the president Dalrymples who told me he was ordered to take up all the Catle in my neighbourhood and in Ardgour but that he was ordered not to cary of [any of my own] or of my tenants Catle and desired I should send a [servant] with him who would let him know my Catle and my [tenants] which accordingly I did.  Next day Mr. Dalrymple returned [with] a great number of Catle but not medle with any of mine.  After that time there was none of my Catle taken away, all the officers that came upon parties to that Country having the same orders, which I'm persuaded was owing to his Royall Highness being made sensible that I was unjustly accused.  By all which it's evident that my conduct in the 1745 and 1746 was without exception otherwise Collonell York and Captain Carrolin Scott would not have befriended me so much as they did.

In the winter 1746 I came to Edn [Edinburgh] about my own private affairs and was told after I was some days there by a friend of mine that there was a warrand comeing out against me upon which my Agent [John Macfarlan, W.S.] waited of My Lord Justice Clerk and asked him if it was so and upon what acctt. His Lordship owned that there was ane information against me by Governour Campbell, upon which my Agent made his Lordship sensible that it was all owing to malice and design in the Governours son in law McLauchlin [John Maclachlan of Greenhall] who made of the Governour what he pleased upon which I was no further troubled at that time.  This McLauchlin continued always to do me clandestinly all the bade offices in his power whose Character is known by all that heard of him.  In winter 1748 I came the North road to Town to advise about Lady Lochiel and her Childrens' Claims and other Claims upon some of the forfeited Estates, and in the end of Harvest 1749 I came from my own house in company with Donald Cameron the North road to Town which was the last time I travelled that road.  When Mr. David Bruce came to survey the Estate of Lochiel he held his Courts at my house and I appeall to himself if I did not do him all the service in my power in assisting him in the execution of his office, and I allso appeal to Mr. Patrick Campbell ffactor apon the Estate of Lochiel if I did not assist him all in my power to levy the Rents and sett the Lands and as he knows perfectly weel by my concurring with him I dissobliged the whole country.  In the end of Harvest and beginning of Winter 1751 Collonell Crawford who commanded then at Fort William sent Captain Johns and Mr. Gardiner to my house with orders to bring all my papers to Fort William and me Prisoner there which accordingly they did and brought every paper I had in my house, not only mine but every paper they found in my wife's drawers and in my Cousine Peggy Cameron's drawers.  Next day all my papers were read and examined by Mr. Douglass the Sherife, Mr. Gardiner, the Agitant and Captain Johns, and after the narrowest examination they could make, haveing found nothing in them that they could in the least challenge were all returned to me and I was sett at liberty upon giveing a Bond for my compearance in six months if desired.

When I was Prissoner at Fort William in 1746 I heard Captain Scott frequently say that he wanted to aprehend Glenavash [Alexader Cameron of Glenevis] as he was informed that he was in Company with the Enginer that came to take over of the ffort when they began the sige and in the time of the sige was offering rewards to those that would kill any within the ffort and continued still with the Rebells and had a Company of men commanded by his brother the whole time of the Rebellion mostly his own tennants and that he received after Collodin [Culloden] 120 Luidors from Doctor Cameron as the Arrears due his company and 160 Luidors from Charles Stewart.

Some time after Glenvash came home from his Imprisonment in Edn Castle either in the 1747 or 48 the first time he came to my house he told me that as he was going in to his boat at Marybrough Governour Campbell and Mclauchlin his son in law in a manner forced him to go and dine with them and after dinner that they called him to a Closett where they pretended a great deal of friendship for him and that his answer to them was how could he believe them as Generall Campbell showed him a leter from the Governour wherein after laying a great deal to his Charge he said that besids that his son in law had much more to lay to his Charge, and that the Governour's answer was that it was that villant Douglass wrote that leter and that he signed it without knowing the Contents of it, and that then Mclauchlin said he thanked God he was in good friendship with the whole Country except ffassfern [Cameron of Fassiefern] and that he was very indifferent about him and Glenavash said that his answer to him was how could he expect to be in friendship with the Country and be at variance with Fassfern.  Its very well known that while Glenavash was prissoner at Inveraray at Glasgow and Edn that he made it is business in all companies to run down the Governour and McLauchlin.  Some time after Glenavash had this conversation with me at my own house, I was informed that he and Mclauchlin had Joined in Copartnership of trade, and hapning to meet him in August 1749 at Culchenas [Cameron of Cuilchenna] buriall after the Interment he and I and a great many others returned to Culchena's house where we took a hearty Glass; at which time I told him I was surprised after what he told me at Fassfern that he should join in Company with Mclauchlin he began to vindicate Mclauchlin and denyed that he had told me a word of the conversation at ffasfern which provoked me so much that I threw a glass of punch in his face and tossed him over on the bed wheron we were sitting.  Immediately Blairmacfildich and younge Kenloch appeared for Glenavash and blustered a good deal however he and his two friends were turned out of the Room and did not appear till next morning and then ther was no more mention of it.  Its to be observed that at my own house at the head of Locharkak and in all places where I had occation to see Glenavash his conversation was mostly running down Mr. Douglass and calling him a thousand Villants and that the Country would never be hapy while he was in it.  The greatest dispute betwixt us allways was he running down Mr. Douglass and I takeing his part.

Mrs. Cameron [probably The Gentle Lochiel's widow, Ann Cameron, who was known to have returned to Scotland for a brief time, before October 1754] came to my house in Winter 1751 and told me at Glenavash's desire she was come to receive pyt of money due by him and his brother.  I told I would not interfire betwixt them, she went to Glen's [Glenevis'] and when she returned to my house she told me Glen would not give her one halfe peny.  She sent severall messages to him and to his brother upon that subject but all to no purpose.  About the time she was leaving the Country she then threatned she would put the debt in other peple's hands.  Some little time befor this hap'ned the barbarous murther of Glenuire [Colin Campbell of Glenure].  There was a precognition taken upon Oath of Glenavash Blarmcfildich and Kenloch when the rest of the Country was sworn and they deposed then that they knew of none that had any manner of hand in that murther by advice threatning or otherwise.  In about eight days after this first Oath, Glen, Blair, and Angus, Glen's brother, sent a message to me by William Steuart if I would not keep Mrs. Cameron from putting her threats in execution that they would ruin me, which accordingly they attempted by the second Oath they gave quite contrary to the first.  Upon my hearing of this I went directly and waited of Collonell Crauford and Barcaldine and showed them Blair's leter to me and represented to them the malice of these people against me.  They both seemed to be satisfyed of the falsehood of what Glen and his Knights of the Post declared.  The precognitions in Mr. Mcfarlans hand will show the threatnings and suborning of witnesses against me.  Charles Stevart told me that in Spring 1752 at Drimnifallies [Cameron of Drumnasail/Drimnasally] buriall Duncan Cameron Toullie insinuate to him that he would have what money he desired provided he would make discoveries against me.

About the end of Harvest 1752 there was a party went from Lagan Achdrom to search Glen's house for Arms when they found five or six Guns.  They brought himself and his Arms into Fort William.  It is to be observed that Glen's rentale does not intitle him to cary Arms though he qualifyed, and instead of being prosecute for the Arms found with him, in a few days therafter he got warrands for six stand of Arms.  The next attempt he made upon me, being disapointed in the first, was in Winter 1752.  He came to the Shirif Mr. Douglas and swore to him that, having left Marybrough at twelve of the clock at night in his way to his own house, within pistole shote of the Garison, there was a priming burnt at him and when he went forward a short mile further two men mett him and asked him if he was Glenavash to whom he answered, what if he was, upon which they fired two shott at him.  Its to be observed that he was then two miles from his own house that he did not call at any of these houses nor return to Fort William but went straight to his own house and neither his cloaths nor his horse touched.  Upon this there was ane order to take precognitions of every one he suspected and the first question asked at each of them was if ever they heard me threaten him or proposed to do him ane Injury.  Notwithstanding of the strictest inquiry that he could make it came to nothing and though there was people, close to the place he pretended he was fired at watching a Corps, there was none of them heard a shott, so that all he gained by this adventure was that every person belived that he perjured himself, beside it can be proven that a few nights after the shoting match he traveled home all alone under night.  And when this second attempt upon me failed he has now made a third in which, though he has put me to a great deal of expences and trouble, yet I hope he will be disappointed as I understand after the strickest enquiry he could point out of Evidence against me that they could lay nothing to my charge.  Its to be observed that Duncan M'Vicar Collector of the Customs at Marybrough was the only person allowed to be present at the first examinations and directed the Judge what questions he was to ask those that were examined, and at the second examination Glenavash pointed out the witness and, I'm told, directed the Judge as to the Questions.  Its to be observed that this M'Vicar has been most intimate with Glenavash these severall years and they go hand in hand in everything and when Blair and young Kenloch gave the last oath in regard to Glenuire M'Vicar made it his business to represent to every person that Blair and Kenloch were men of good Characters and never known to tell any thing that was false, particularly to Corronan, to whom he made some insinuations about me and to old Kenlochlivin desiring him to stand Glens friend against me.  And in the time that Mr. Douglass and he had a law plea he threatned he would do me all the hurt in his power which William Stewart Merct in Marybrough can testify and severall others and Doctor M'leran residenter there.  The sd M'Vicar has got possession last Whitsunday of the Lands I was dispossessed of and wants to ruin me in order he may get all my possessions in that Country.

Its to be observed that Blairmacfildich is cousine german to Glenavash and maryed to his Cousine German and received some of the pretender's gold from him, and young Kenloch is in love with Glen's Daughter and received of the Pretender's gold from Glen by which he has forced him to say or do whatever he directs them. To be remembered to ask Sanders Cameron Possessor of Inveriskilivulin what he has frequently heard C: Cr. [Colonel Crawford] direct him in regard to me and Glen.

To be enquired of Doctor Mcleron what he heard the Doctor of that Regiment say in regard to ane expression of Co. Cr. in a publick Company of his Officers.  To be enquired of Charles Steuart what was proposed to him by C.C. Captain Steuart, and Collector M'Vicar if he was offered any money or if he received any.

The Captain that was stationed at Erit [Erracht] and Sherife Douglass can testify it was I put them on the schem of employing Sanders Cameron to aprehend the thievs which has had very good effect in civilizing the Country.  All the Gentlemen in the Neighbourhood of the Country where I live can testify that I always contributed all in my power to curb all disorders in the Country and to discourage theft and depredations and my behaviour in the 1745 and 1746 is without exception as is attested by his Royall Highness the Duke, my Lord Breadalbine, Collonell York, and Captain Carroline Scott and the deceast Governour Campbell and I belive all the officers that have been at Fort William since will attest my Character, particularly Major Pim Captain Scott, Captain Duprisinie, and the rest of the officers stationed there at present.

To be observed that when we were at Lithgow in our way here in presence of Captain Duprisinie and the other officers and Charles Steuart talking of a woman in Glasgow Glen said that the servant he had with him at present offered to him to take off that woman's head for five guinaes and comeing up to the Castle in Coach pointed him to us and said there is the man offered to take off the woman's head.  His name is McMillan he is a cliver fellow, which shows what kind of man Glen is and what rascally servants he keeps.

Editor's Notes:  John Cameron of Fassifern's "Memorial" was written with the intent of detailing his persecution down to that date.  After being kept prisoner in Edinburgh Castle until January 1755, John was sentenced (not by a Criminal Court, but by the Court of Session) to ten years banishment from Scotland.  An account of Donald Cameron of Clunes's testimony in Fassifern's case may be read elsewhere within the Clan Cameron Archives.  John  would eventually return to Fassiefern, where he lived out the remainder of his life (deceased, 1785, with burial at Kilmallie.)  It is left to the reader's imagination how relations with the Camerons of Glen Nevis must have proceeded.

This Memorial was published, among other places, in vol III of  the Scottish History Society's "Highland Papers."