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Despatch from General Monk to Oliver Cromwell
(with references to Clan Cameron and Lochaber)
July 1654

"MAY ITT PLEASE YOUR HIGHNESSE,--

Wee are now returned back thus farre after the Enemy under Midddleton, who by a teadious march have harras't out their horse very much; both Highlanders and Lowlanders begin to quits them.  They are now about Dunkell, but wee heare they intend to march towards the Head of Lough-Lomond.  Wee shall doe our best to overtake them in the Reare, or putt them to a very teadious march, the which wee hope will utterlie breake them.  I desire your Highnesse will be pleased to give order That care may bee taken that the Irish forces that are att Loughaber may continue there, for a yeare: I finde they are very unwilling, being they were promist (as they say) to returne within 3 or 4 monthes; but being that providence hath ordered That that partie should come into those parts itt will bee a great deale of trouble to shippe them away, and to shippe other men to Releive them in that place; and truly the place is of that Consequcnce for the keeping of a garrison there for the destroying of the stubbornest enemy wee have in the Hills, that of the Clan Cameron's and Glengaries, and the Earle of Seafort's people, that wee shall not bee able to doe our worke unlesse wee continue a garrison there for one yeare; For in case we should withdraw that Garrison towards the winter from thence, these 3 clans doe soe over awe the rest of the clans of the Country that they would bee able to inforce them to rise, in case wee should withdraw our garrisons, and nott find them imployment att home the next Summer before there will be any grasse for us to subsist in the Hills: In case we should putt in some of our owne forces there and return the others into Ireland wee shall not have shipping to doe both, besides the unsetling of one and selling the other will be a great inconvenience to us: This I thought fitt humbly to offer to your Highnesse, concerning which I shall humbly desire to have your Highnesse speedy Answer what you intend to doe with the Irish forces, and in case you doe intend the Irish forces shall stay there, I desire you will please to write to L. Col. finch who commands the Irish Forces under Col. Brayne that they may stay there, for I finde they are something unwilling unless they putt your Highnesse to that trouble, and therefore now the letter may be speeded to him as soone as may be if your Highnesse thinke fitt.  Col. Morgan is att present about ye Bray of Marre, and Col. Twisleton neere Glasgowe with Col. Pride's Regiment.--

I remain, &c., GEORGE MONCK.

Editor's Notes: Written while General George Monk was at Ruthven Castle.  Taken from his Proceedings in the Hills from June 9 to July 1654.  This letter was preserved in Alexander Macpherson's Glimpses (1893) which was reprinted by Clan Macpherson Association in the 1980s.

The location, "Loughaber," referred to in the fourth sentence is "Lochaber." 

See the associated letter from Monk, also in the Clan Cameron Archives.