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It will thus be seen that John Mackintosh's acquisition included a stretch of country some ten miles in length from north to south and varying in breadth from one mile to three miles, practically the whole strip between the Isla and the Forfar and Perth county march, from Carn-na-Glasha in the north to Mount Blair in the south, with arable ground along the Isla and its western affluents and with space for the shearing and pasturing of large herds of cattle. The document declares that the bounds and glens lying be-east the water of Isla are not included in the disposition, but belong to the lands of Craignitie, and it makes an important reservation to Lord Airlie, his heirs, of a portion of the land on the west of the stream " that part of the glens above written called Candelochan " [or Canlochan], between the stream of that name (which joins with the Canness burn to form the Isla *) and the corrie and burn of the Glas, including the hill of Monega. The ground thus reserved from the feu is found later to have come into John Mackintosh's possession, but the arrangement is vague and no original record of it can be traced. That some such arrangement existed, however, is clear from an Act of Parliament, of 1661 to be noticed hereafter, and from it proceeded much subsequent trouble and misfortune !.
It will be necessary to refer again to this reservation, but before quitting the subject of John Mackintosh's acquisition in Glenisla it may be well to glance at his probable reason for leaving the district in which his family to all appearance had taken firm root and prospered. From certain indications it is evident, as already suggested, that like many others of his class in later times he carried on an extensive business in cattle and, perhaps, horses. For such a business Glenshee would afford excellent facilities, being within easy reach on the one hand of his supplies of stock from the hills and glens, and on the other of good markets in the Lowlands, especially those connected with the continental trade from the seaports of Angus and Fife. But as his operations expanded under his exertions and good management it may well be imagined that he would find himself " cabined, cribbed, confined" in Finegand.
To meet his growing needs he had as has been seen, taken additional holdings in that glen from time to time, a circumstance which of itself points to his flourishing condition, and had even obtained a footing in Glenisla; but these seem to have proved insufficient and little more than makeshifts. Therefore, when an opportunity was offered to him of exchanging his several scattered holdings for one compact property of greater extent and not less conveniently situated, not to mention its being somewhat less exposed to the forays of marauding caterans from the west, it can readily be imagined that any considerations of sentiment at leaving the home of his fathers would be more than counterbalanced by those appealing to his business instinct.
Some idea of the extent of his wealth in cattle after his removal may be gathered from the mention, in the Act of Parliament in 1661 already referred to, of his having pastured yearly in the " forest and glen of Glascorie " alone (otherwise the " reserved " lands of Canlochan, which were not included in his feu) no fewer than "above fyvescore oxen and twenty milk kyne," besides horses, and this during a period when his occupation of that comparatively small space was in dispute. On the whole it would seem that his operations in cattle, the days of sheep in the Highlands were as yet afar off, were of considerable magnitude and importance for the time in which he lived, and that he was one of the pioneers in the great industry of cattle breeding and droving which for a long period was the staple industry of the Highlands.
Of John's part in the Great Civil War we have few traces, but these leave no doubt that after a period as an active and prominent Royalist he changed sides. He joined Montrose soon after the fight at Tippermuir (1 Sept. 1644), probably on the great leader's march through Angus, As " John McColmy " he appears in a list of those with Montrose at the Law of Dundee on 4 Sept.,* and there is a tradition that in the fighting at Aberdeen he captured Sir William Forbes of Craigievar, while on 11 Feb. 1645 he was " forfaulted for the invasion in the North " with twelve others, including Montrose himself, Alaster Macdonald " MacColkittoch," and Lord Airlie and his sons. Montrose and his Times (Maitland Club) ii. 167; Fam. of McCombie, P. 157 ; Scots Acts Parl. vi. Pt. 1 pp. 317-322.
After a rapid series of wonderful marches and brilliant victories, broken only by the disaster of Philiphaugh, Montrose in July 1646, under the authority of King Charles, then in the hands of the Covenanting army, arranged with Major-General Middleton, the Covenanting commander, terms for a cessation of hostilities, and under these terms, which provided for the safety of the lives and properties of most of the Royalists, John Mackintosh laid down his arms. In a "Roll of these to whom the Major Genll. has given Remissions and Assurances upon their enacting themselves betwixt and the 1st of November 1646 "John Mcintosh of Finnagund " is found, together with his neighbours " Robt. Mcrichie of Delmongie and William Farqrsone of brochderg." The remissions were confirmed by the Parliament on 5 Jan. 1647, in spite of strenuous opposition from the Covenanting Assembly, who thought the terms too lenient, and so John Mackintosh became secure against all pains and penalties for his period of " malignancy." Scots Acts vi. Pt. 1. p. 670. But from the fact that he was heavily fined after the Restoration: (Scots Acts vii. 426) being excepted from the Act of Indemnity Of 9 Sept. 1662 so far as concerned a payment of 1800 pounds ($l5O sterling) as well as from certain expressions in the Act of 3 May 1661 in favour of Lord Airlie, it may perhaps be understood that after his pardon he was not content with a merely passive compliance with the Covenanting party.
The latter mentioned Act refers to his having " great power with the late usurpers as their intelligencer and favourite," and to his " moyen and favour with the English usurpers " ex parte expressions, however, which may have had only slight justification. The historian of the family attributes his change of sides to his marriage with Elizabeth Campbell, a great grand-daughter of Donald Campbell, last Abbot of Coupar and a younger son of the second Earl of Argyll, killed at Flodden in 1513; but if Elizabeth was his wife in 1644 and if the Campbell connection had the influence claimed, it is not easy to account for his joining Montrose at all.
Sir Æneas Macpherson, a strong Royalist and Jacobite of later times, says that "John Mclntoshe of Forter commonlie called McCommie was a brave loyall gentleman, and behaved very worthily in the King's service, words which seem to imply that he, Sir Æneas, was either satisfied of John's good inclination to the cause or was ignorant of his having deserted it. * It would almost seem as if too much had been made of the Campbell influence on John's conduct, and perhaps the most likely cause of his change is that which seems the most obvious, that having at the King's own command laid down his arms and accepted the Remission and, Assurance of 1646, he felt that he could not with honour again fight on the royalist side, while at the same time the interests of his family called on him to acquiesce in and support the form of Government which to all appearance had finally supplanted the monarchy and under which the country had entered a period of such security and prosperity as had never before been known in its history.
Looking at the matter in this light, therefore, he may fairly be credited with conscientious motives in making the change, and with courage in adhering to it when made, Still, living as he did among the ultra-Royalist Ogilvies, it is likely that; his conduct, however really honourable and sensible, not to say patriotic, would be resented by his neighbours, and perhaps the legend on a stone built into his house at Crandart was intended to express his sense of this and his determination to live it down.
The legend is " I shall overcom invy vith God's help. To God be all prais, honour, and glorie 1660." The stone is now at Balharry, some miles distant from Crandart down the Isla.
Reference has been made to proceedings in Parliament instituted by-Lord Airlie against John after the Restoration These related to the forest and glen of Glascorie, or Canlochan, which as has been seen were specially reserved to Lord Airlie in the feu charter of the Forter lands in 1659. The circumstances are somewhat obscure; apparently there is nothing among the Airlie muniments to throw light upon them, and the only available source of information appears to be two Acts of Parliament dated 3 May 1661. Scots Acts vii. 193. As briefly summarised in these Acts the main facts appear to be that at some time during the Commonwealth period John Mackintosh had acquired the reserved lands on wadset for a fixed term, and with them the earl's royal letters of free forestry * over them, these letters, however, to be restored to the earl on the redemption of the wadset. John's contention was that the wadset had not been redeemed within the term, and that consequently the wadsetted lands had become his absolute property, together with the royal "letters" which applied to them. The supplication of the earl and his son, as narrated in one of the Act seems to ignore this contention, and proceeds as if John had had no rights whatever, of wadset or otherwise, in respect of the lands. It refers simply to the original reservation of the forest and glen, and treats him as a mere trespasser, "notwithstanding of the which reservation, the said John McIntosh alias McComie, having great power with the late usurpers as their intelligencer and favourite, has these severall years bygone encroached within the meiths and marches of the said forrest, and has pastured yeerly thereon above fyve score oxen and twenty milk kyne with diverse horses." It goes on to speak of an action raised by the earl in the Sheriff Court at Forfar for " cognition of marches," of which John McComie, " be his said moyen and favour with the English usurpers," had managed to procure the suspension, while he had " continewed yeerly sensyne pasturing his goods and cattell upon the said forest and eating and destroying the haill grasse thereof, to the supplicant's great hurt, prejudice, and heavie oppression."
All this is somewhat vague and unsatisfactory, but as no attempt was made to traverse John's explicit statements as to the wadset and his right to the letters of free forestry applying to the wadsetted lands, the inference is that his contention was legally unassailable. The conclusion therefore must be that in deciding against him the Estates were actuated by considerations of political partisanship rather than of law and equity: indeed that this was expected seems evident from the fact that the case was brought before Parliament instead of before an ordinary court of law. The first Act decrees that the royal letters of free forestry should be restored to Lord Airlie, and this was done. The second Act of the same date states that " His Majesty, with advice and consent of the Estates of Parliament," having considered the Earl's supplication and seeing that the defender " had proposed no reasonable cause " why it should not be granted, remits to the Sheriff of Forfar to settle the " meiths and marches " of the forest, thus in effect depriving the "defender" of the use of the ground to which he was entitled not only as absolute proprietor in consequence of the non-redemption of his wadset, but even under the wadset itself.
It is interesting to observe that the two eminent lawyers who some years later represented John Mackintosh before the Court of Justiciary were engaged in this case also, but on different sides, Mr. George Mackenzie acting as procurator for John and Mr. George Lockhart representing Lord Airlie.
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