Kilmorgan Castle from Jennifer Ashley Books - Location in Scotland

lainey

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I am just about finished reading The Stolen Mackenzie Bride - Jennifer Ashley, and it is one of my favourites of the series. There are some really harrowing parts of the story, and there is a surprising amount of tragedy especially in the later parts of the book. There are some light spoilers in this post, nothing story-breaking but I talk about a later event in the book so don’t read on if you don’t want to know anything about the story at all. I thought this was too much of a diversion from the point of the Romance Novels thread to post there so I started another thread.

Being from Scotland, I thought I would share some interesting information about the locations in the book. The book is set in 1745 which was the beginning of the Jacobite rebellion. The military roads with Malcolm and Mary travel on in the book are real roads, some of which still exist today. Here is a map of some of General Wade’s military roads:
1627417124441.png
Many of these roads are part of popular trekking routes across Scotland, for example the Great Glen Way which runs from Fort William to Inverness. A famous military road can be viewed from the Rest and Be Thankful Viewpoint not far from Loch Lomond. Here is a photograph of one of the Military Roads that runs from Arrochar to Inverary:
1627417165810.png
And another from Crieff to Aberfeldy:
1627417218599.png
Perhaps you can better imagine some of the scenery Mary saw for the first time when travelling to Kilmorgan Castle with Malcolm and seeing as this last picture is a photo of the GOOD military road, you can understand why they had to abandon the horse and carriage once they got north of Inverness and on to the old tracks.

Kilmorgan Castle, the home of the Mackenzies is a real castle. Except it’s not called Kilmorgan Castle (Kilmorgan is in Ireland) it is called Castle Leod. Known as the seat of the Mackenzie Clan, here it is:
1627417263753.png1627417275631.png
In the penultimate battle written about in the book, I’m assuming Jennifer Ashley is talking about the Battle of Culloden (1746) where Charles Edward Stuart was defeated by the British government. It is said that 12,000 troops were brought in to deal with the Jacobites and the battle lasted little over an hour with between 1,500 and 2,000 Jacobites being slain, compared to only 300 government troops.

Here is Google maps showing Leod Castle, Inverness and Culloden Moor:
1627417305970.png
Of course, the Kessock bridge wouldn’t have been there during the story so they would have had to walk around via Beauly. It’s about an 8 hour walk from the castle to Culloden and that’s “Google time” which I feel is like the same as a jog.

Here is a photo of a small croft on “Culloden Battlefield”:
1627417343021.png
I write “Culloden Battlefield” in inverted commas because apparently the visitor centre and battlefield everyone walks around isn’t actually the battlefield at all and the real battlefield is somewhere West of the tourist site. If you speak to anyone from Inverness and the surrounding area they will likely tell you the same story though I can't find anything on the internet to confirm this.

As an interesting aside, I visited Auchinleck house today, an 18th Century Scottish Country Villa. It was built in around 1760, so about 14 years after the story in the book. This will give you an idea of where the rich lairds of Scotland would have lived (complete with Highland cow):
1627417381447.png
Anyway, I hope you found seeing these pictures as interesting as I did. It helped me visualise parts of the story better and it was nice to know that Jennifer Ashley had done her research and included details like the day of the battle being foggy. I made the pictures thumbnails because I didn't want to slow down the page loading time for people by adding huge images.
 

Voyageur

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
In the penultimate battle written about in the book, I’m assuming Jennifer Ashley is talking about the Battle of Culloden (1746) where Charles Edward Stuart was defeated by the British government. It is said that 12,000 troops were brought in to deal with the Jacobites and the battle lasted little over an hour with between 1,500 and 2,000 Jacobites being slain, compared to only 300 government troops.
Thanks for the background.

The Battle of Culloden was an early film I had viewed in youth, and it made an impression to be sure (it was brutal). Here is the trailer, and below is the documentary:


 
I am just about finished reading The Stolen Mackenzie Bride - Jennifer Ashley, and it is one of my favourites of the series. There are some really harrowing parts of the story, and there is a surprising amount of tragedy especially in the later parts of the book. There are some light spoilers in this post, nothing story-breaking but I talk about a later event in the book so don’t read on if you don’t want to know anything about the story at all. I thought this was too much of a diversion from the point of the Romance Novels thread to post there so I started another thread.

Being from Scotland, I thought I would share some interesting information about the locations in the book. The book is set in 1745 which was the beginning of the Jacobite rebellion. The military roads with Malcolm and Mary travel on in the book are real roads, some of which still exist today. Here is a map of some of General Wade’s military roads:
View attachment 47614
Many of these roads are part of popular trekking routes across Scotland, for example the Great Glen Way which runs from Fort William to Inverness. A famous military road can be viewed from the Rest and Be Thankful Viewpoint not far from Loch Lomond. Here is a photograph of one of the Military Roads that runs from Arrochar to Inverary:
View attachment 47615
And another from Crieff to Aberfeldy:
View attachment 47616
Perhaps you can better imagine some of the scenery Mary saw for the first time when travelling to Kilmorgan Castle with Malcolm and seeing as this last picture is a photo of the GOOD military road, you can understand why they had to abandon the horse and carriage once they got north of Inverness and on to the old tracks.

Kilmorgan Castle, the home of the Mackenzies is a real castle. Except it’s not called Kilmorgan Castle (Kilmorgan is in Ireland) it is called Castle Leod. Known as the seat of the Mackenzie Clan, here it is:
View attachment 47617View attachment 47618
In the penultimate battle written about in the book, I’m assuming Jennifer Ashley is talking about the Battle of Culloden (1746) where Charles Edward Stuart was defeated by the British government. It is said that 12,000 troops were brought in to deal with the Jacobites and the battle lasted little over an hour with between 1,500 and 2,000 Jacobites being slain, compared to only 300 government troops.

Here is Google maps showing Leod Castle, Inverness and Culloden Moor:
View attachment 47619
Of course, the Kessock bridge wouldn’t have been there during the story so they would have had to walk around via Beauly. It’s about an 8 hour walk from the castle to Culloden and that’s “Google time” which I feel is like the same as a jog.

Here is a photo of a small croft on “Culloden Battlefield”:
View attachment 47620
I write “Culloden Battlefield” in inverted commas because apparently the visitor centre and battlefield everyone walks around isn’t actually the battlefield at all and the real battlefield is somewhere West of the tourist site. If you speak to anyone from Inverness and the surrounding area they will likely tell you the same story though I can't find anything on the internet to confirm this.

As an interesting aside, I visited Auchinleck house today, an 18th Century Scottish Country Villa. It was built in around 1760, so about 14 years after the story in the book. This will give you an idea of where the rich lairds of Scotland would have lived (complete with Highland cow):
View attachment 47621
Anyway, I hope you found seeing these pictures as interesting as I did. It helped me visualise parts of the story better and it was nice to know that Jennifer Ashley had done her research and included details like the day of the battle being foggy. I made the pictures thumbnails because I didn't want to slow down the page loading time for people by adding huge images.
How wonderful!! Thank you for posting this! I lived in Kiltarlity, just outside Beauly, for 7 years. I know these places...and I've lived in a castle!
 

jhonny

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Thank you for sharing this, lainey!

I happened to be reading The MacKenzie series, and about the same time I also was watching this series called Outlander, which in its second season is all about the Jacobite rebellion, so It's interesting to know a little more about where the events actually took place.
 

Mililea

Jedi Council Member
FOTCM Member
Thank you for sharing. :love: That's exactly how I imagined it when I read it. Unfortunately I have only been to Ireland and not Scotland. I like the rugged, vast landscape. It has always held a fascination for me.:flowers:
 

Rabelais

Dagobah Resident
FOTCM Member
Thank you lainey. I just finished the Mackenzie series, and this adds some good background. Ashley painted a very accurate image in my mind's eye.
 
Top Bottom