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A typical croft house in the rural Highlands

An example of a typical 19th century croft house in the Highlands.

Crofts are smallholdings which came into existence as part of the process of the Highland Clearances. Coastal strips and other disused pieces of land were used to re-house highlanders who were evicted from their homes during a time of economic reform. However, highlanders were still vulnerable to eviction and many of the victims of the clearances were desperate to aqcuire more land. This discontent led to a protest campaign during the 1880s which was headed by a political group known as 'The Highland Land League'. Rent-strikes and illegal occupations of sheep-farms were amongst the actions taken by the group. After years of campaigning, the Crofters Act of 1886 was passed by the government, giving crofters legally guaranteed security of tenure.

A woman can be seen outside the croft, spinning yarn. The spinning wheel replaced the earlier 'drop spindle' which was used to hand spin wool in the early part of the 18th century. To the right of the first door can be seen a hand woven basket, an example of a craft which was prominent among the crofting community


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A typical croft house in the rural Highlands

1880s

croft houses; Highland Clearances; Highland Land League; Crofters Act of 1886; spinning wheels; spinning; drop spindle; basket weaving

Highland Photographic Archive (IMAG)

Joseph Cook Collection

An example of a typical 19th century croft house in the Highlands. <br /> <br /> Crofts are smallholdings which came into existence as part of the process of the Highland Clearances. Coastal strips and other disused pieces of land were used to re-house highlanders who were evicted from their homes during a time of economic reform. However, highlanders were still vulnerable to eviction and many of the victims of the clearances were desperate to aqcuire more land. This discontent led to a protest campaign during the 1880s which was headed by a political group known as 'The Highland Land League'. Rent-strikes and illegal occupations of sheep-farms were amongst the actions taken by the group. After years of campaigning, the Crofters Act of 1886 was passed by the government, giving crofters legally guaranteed security of tenure.<br /> <br /> A woman can be seen outside the croft, spinning yarn. The spinning wheel replaced the earlier 'drop spindle' which was used to hand spin wool in the early part of the 18th century. To the right of the first door can be seen a hand woven basket, an example of a craft which was prominent among the crofting community <br /> <br /> <br /> This image can be purchased.<br /> For further information about purchasing and prices please email the<br /> <a href="mailto: photographic.archive@highlifehighland.com">Highland Photographic Archive</a> quoting the External ID.