As mentioned in my previous post, my ancestor Aonghus Ban Innse of Inch (Fair-haired Angus of Inch) married Christina Macdonald, of Achnacoichine. She was the daughter of Archibald Macdonald, 3rd of ‘Achnacoichine’ according to my cousin Hamish’s family tree (source: Burke’s Landed Gentry, 1937, under “Macdonell of Keppock”). I was interested in the spelling of Achnacoichine because the Clan Macdonald of Keppoch entry on the Wikipedia shows Achnancoichean as being a one of the ‘Principal Cadet Families’. I had been struggling to find Achnacoichine, but thanks to comments from Doug on my Fantasy ancestry road trip to the highlands – part 1 post I realised spelling might be part of the problem, e.g. Inch is also spelt Insch and Insse. I found a reference on the Clan Cameron Reference Guide below that made me think that Achnancoichean was another spelling of Achnacochine:
ACHNACOCHINE / ACHNACOICHINE/ ACHADH NAN COTHAICHEAN:
“Field of the Disputants.” This location was once a favored rendezvous place for cattle reivers, while on their way to foras in either Perthshire or Strathspey. Located southeast of Achluachrach, in the Braes of Lochaber.
I found this photo of the Achnacochine or Field of the Disputants on the Glenrothes Hillwalkers Club Photo Gallery site before finding the ruins marked on the map above in The East Highland Way – Amenities Guide by Kevin Langan on ISSUU below:
- Achnacochine or Field of the Disputants
I’m not sure if this is where my Macdonald of Achnacoichine ancestors hail from but, I have plotted it on GoogleMaps. It’s very close to the ancient burial grounds of my Keppoch Ancestors at Cille Choirill, and you can cross the Spean on the Monessie Gorge suspension bridge nearby, which would make a great walk.
- The Monessie Gorge suspension bridge
- Achnacochine is also in close proximity to where my other ancestors lived in the region around the same time, which are all located between Roybridge and Laggan (e.g. Keppoch House, Torgulbin, Garvabeg, and Sherrobeg – see Fantasy ancestry road trip to the highlands – part 1 post). I’ve also noticed that many of the other principle cadet families of the Macdonald of Keppoch’s hail from nearby, such as Bohuntine, Cranachan, Fersit, Inverroy, and possibly Gellovie in Badenoch. Aberarder, Murlaggan and Tulloch seemed to be further away though, and I haven’t found Dalchosnie, Tullochrom, Clianaig, Tirnadris and Killiechonate yet.
- Notes: I’ve done some cross referencing on spelling but not sure I’m any the wiser for doing so. Most of the sources I’ve found use Achnancoichean rather than Achnacochine:
- Melville Henry Massue Ruvigny Et Raineval’s The Jacobite Peerage, Baronetage, Knightage, and Grants of Honour, Extracted …:
Angus Ban married in Kilmonivaig in Lochaber in, 31st Marh 1752, Christina, daughter of Archibald Macdonald of Achnancoichean in Lochaber.
- Alexander Mackenzie’s History of the Macdonalds and Lords of the Isles; with genealogies of the principal families of the name:
Angus Ban, married on the 31st of March, 1752, Christina, daughter of Archibald Macdonald of Ach-nan-coichean
- Volume 3 of The Clan Donald by the Reverends Angus and Archibald MacDonald:
This family is descended from Angus, fifth son of Alastair nan Cleas X. of Keppoch, who gave him as a hostage to the Earl of Argyll in 1595. There was another family at Achnancoichean, descended, according to MacVurich, from John Cam, a natural son of Sir Alexander Macdonald of Lochalsh, known as ” Sliochd an larla,” no doubt on account of their descent from Alexander, Earl of Ross.
Volume 3 of The Clan Donald on Archibald IV of ‘Achnancoichean’:
He had several sons who emigrated to America, one of whom Angus, and a daughter, Christina, who married Angus Ban of Inch.
There seems to be some consistency in the spelling of ‘Achnancoichean’, although not sure this destroys my theory about this family hailing from ‘Achnacoichine’ on the Spean. I noticed the spelling my cousin Hamish uses (e.g. Christina Macdonald, of Achnacoichine), and it’s also used on the Clan MacFarlane Genealogy.info site who cite the following:
- Macdonald genealogy, Roddy Macdonald of the Clan Donald Society of Edinburgh (no longer online)
- E-mail, From Don Thompson rec: 12 Dec 2012 MacFarlane information from Bruce MacFarlane & the Andersons from Mabel Manz
- Stirnet Genealogy, Peter Barns-Graham, Macdonald06
Angus Macdonell or Macdonald of Insch, 17th of Keppoch d after 1819 m. Christina Macdonell or Macdonald dau of Angus Macdonell or Macdonald of Achnancoichean