MACKENZIES

Coul House

 

Lord Kintail, or Mackenzie of Kintail, was the hereditary title of the Mackenzie Clan Chief.  Kenneth was the first chief, or laird, to be created Lord Kintail, Kenneth Mackenzie of Kintail, in the Scottish peerage, by King James VI (the I of England) in 1609; and in 1623 his son Colin was created the Earl of Seaforth and Viscount Fortrose.

The present Mackenzie Clan Chief is now the Earl of Cromartie. The Mackenzie line is traced from the Norman Sir Other FitzOthoere, who arrived in England in 1066 and through his descendant Gerald FitzGerald, I Baron of Kintail created by King Alexander III in 1266. Gerald's son was Kenneth and his son, also Kenneth, was called Mack Kenneth, which was softened into the Gaelic Mackenzie. Ancient feudal loyalties meant that the next lower rank of barons, baronets and knights were expected to maintain a vassal power base in their own right, to be able to produce political support, armed men, food or weapons, or anything else a chief might want.

Near Strathpeffer and the current Clan Chief is Coul House in the village of Contin. This was the home of the Baronets of Coul and it is now a hotel.  There is a painting at Coul House recording a visit by Queen Victoria. She was the British monarch who assented, in 1867, to the British North America Act, which created the Dominion of Canada. Canadians celebrate her birthday, much to the surprise of the British who attach no importance to the 1867 events. Coul House is shown here. Ancient feudal loyalties meant that the next lower rank of barons and knights maintained a vassal power base in their own right, to support, armed men for their chiefs. Near Strathpeffer and the current Clan Chief is Coul House in the village of Contin.  This was the home of the Baronets of Coul now a hotel.  The photograph in the foreword is a painting at Coul House of Queen Victoria's visit.  In 1867, she assented, to the British North America Act, which created the Dominion of Canada.  Canadians celebrate her birthday, much to the surprise of the British who attach no particular importance to the 1867 events.  Coul House is shown below.

Sir Other FitzOthoere was a grandson of the Duke of Tuscany and an early supporter of Edward The Confessor. His descendants first helped conquer Wales and then Ireland and finally Gerald FitzGerald brought his followers to Scotland and was granted the Barony of Kintail in 1266.  Gerald's grandson changed his name to the Gaelic of Mackenzie.  Their historical high-point of power was 1700. The Mackenzie Earldom of Seaforth was first forfeited when the second earl led 3,000 men into the pro-Jacobite 1715 Rising, the earldom was returned and then forfeited again (they had trouble getting this right)! In c1695 the pretender, King James II, created Kenneth Mackenzie, Marquess of Seaforth.  The earldom of Cromartie survived Culloden and that earl is now Clan Chief. The earls of Ross were cousins. The Mackenzies lost power in the Scottish struggle for independence from England, dating from the Norman Conquest. A Mackenzie discovered an overland route to both the Arctic Ocean, and then also the Pacific Ocean in 1793. Three Mackenzies were Canadian Prime Ministers, and a fourth an Australian State Premier. Our Canadian family derives from a middle class son who emigrated from the Scottish Highlands. Some five Mackenzie generations helped to settle, defend, develop Canada, and truncate the English establishment mentality.

 

FAMILY COATS OF ARMS

             
 

Gerald FitzWalter's Coat of Arms

 

Gerald FitzGerald's Coat of Arms

 

Mackenzie of Coul Arms

 

 
             
 

Moore Coat of Arms

 

 

Wilson (Willison) Coat of Arms

 

 

Armstrong Coat of Arms

 

 

Our immediate Canadian luminaries were my Granny's family the Moores. Frank Moore was a New York State Lieutenant Governor, in the 1940s. The Moores are indeed an illustrious family, with many notable figures in British history.  They include Sir Thomas More Lord Chancellor for King Henry VIII and General Sir John Moor who was killed fighting the French at Corunna, Spain.  Sir Henry Moore was Governor of New York in 1766 and James Moore was Governor of South Carolina (c1707-1719) and dealt with the Indians, French and Spanish; as well as truculent settlers.

Through Eliza Jane Wilson, who married Henry Philip Moore and helped populate the British colony of Upper Canada, an additional set of historical pioneer stock became available. My uncle Murray married Mildred Armstrong. The first Armstrong was given that name for demonstrating a strong-arm(The ancient Armstrongs were reivers - or border raiders - in Southwest Scotland prior to Culloden.)  The Armstrongs also gave Canada many pioneer settlers and my cousins Mary Helen and Janet grew up in new Armstrong territory in Oakville Ontario, Canada - besides Colombia.  It was this Armstrong connection, which enabled my father to buy land beside his brother Murray after WWII.  My father's family grew up in Oakville and I consider Oakville home.

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