Keppoch House Revisted


The McDonnell Keppoch House

George Graham has kindly added the photos of my gt gt gt grandparents to his site here. He’s also put me straight about where the used to live as it seems that there’s more than one Keppoch House in Scotland. As mentioned in an earlier post about my MacDonnell of Keppoch Ancestors, I thought that it was the Keppoch House that Country Life mag had once said was one of the Ten Best Houses in Scotland.

But as George pointed out The McDonnal Keppoch House was located in Inverness-shire, Parish of Kilmonivaig, (see the Census on his site here, which ties in with what my gt gt gt aunt Frances McDonnell of Keppoch said about the house:

“Our old home where we passed our infancy and youth was a large simple country house, built after the war of Prince Charles Edward Stuart to replace the 2nd castle of Keppoch, burned to its foundations by the Hanoverian armies. The Roy, a rapid and rocky torrent with wooded banks wound around it, and joined its waters with those of the Spean below one of the large lawns, brightened up with beds of flowers which stretched in front of the house.”

And as George also points out you won’t find the River Roy anywhere near that other Keppoch House in Dumbartonshire, but it is right behind the location for the Keppoch House up in Inverness-shire, in the Parish of Kilmonivaig, running down into the River Spean.

The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland has an entry for Keppoch House in Roybridge, which has the following to say:

Keppoch House, c.1760-5 Traditional West Highland laird¿s house built by Ranald Macdonell, 17th Chief of Keppoch, to replace the earlier house destroyed after the `45. (For more on the Macdonells of Keppoch, see p.73). More generously proportioned than is usual, the two storeys are raised up over an exposed basement. Later 19th-century additions included the prominent gabled porch reached by a flight of steps, the flanking bi-partite windows, plate glass and canted dormers. Large walled garden, its once formal Victorian design of paths radiating out from a central hexagonal fountain now grassed over. This was the successor to the famous Garadh nam Pearan – Pear Garden – of Keppoch, destroyed by Cumberland¿s troop’s in 1746 (one pear tree is said to survive). Barn, c.1750. An exemplary model of the Lochaber bank barn, its great whitewashed range (formerly lofted inside) pierced by slender rounded windows with louvres, and alternating pairs of slit vents.

The entry even gives the Latitude, Longitude (56.887232N, 4.844086W), which I managed to plot on Google Maps here. It also had the two photos I’ve included in this post. Great to have found it.

Barn at Keppoch House





2 thoughts on “Keppoch House Revisted

    1. I’m pretty certain my great great grandmother Christina Mary ‘Theresa’ McDonnell lived there as child with her siblings. She may have even been born there. Theresa he was the daughter of Angus McDonnell of Keppoch and Christina MacNab who lived all their married life at Keppoch from what I understand, although by that time it was being rented from the Macintosh family.

      Angus and Christine were both great great grandchildren of Alexander the Keppoch Chief who fell at Culldoen. They married in 1835 and he died in 1855, and she later lived in London, but my great great grandmother was married there in 1877 (see here)

      You can see some portraits and a photo of Angus and Christina here

      You can see photos of George Keith Maitland and Christina Mary Theresa McDonell here

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