Please Sign In | Register
Google pluspinterestShare on Stumble UponShare on RedditFacebookShare on Tumblr
TITLE
Castlebay, Barra, from the northeast. 1909
EXTERNAL ID
QZP99_94052_11_05
PLACENAME
Castlebay
DISTRICT
Barra
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
INVERNESS: Barra
DATE OF IMAGE
1909
PERIOD
1900s
CREATOR
J Valentine & Co.
SOURCE
Edinburgh and Scottish Collection, Edinburgh Central Library
ASSET ID
38679
KEYWORDS
islands
bays
harbours
fishing
boats
Castlebay, Barra, from the northeast. 1909

A view over Castlebay, with Kisimul Castle in the background. Castlebay is the main settlement on the island of Barra in the Western Isles. Barra was owned by the clan MacNeil from 1427 until 1838 when they were forced to sell to Colonel Gordon of Cluny. Cluny cleared most of the residents from the island but after his death in 1856 Castlebay became a centre for the herring industry. About 400 boats were based in Castlebay and there were also gutting, curing and preserving facilities associated with the industry.

In 1937 Robert MacNeil, an American who had been recognised as the 45th Chief of the Clan MacNeil, bought back most of the land that had been sold to Colonel Gordon of Cluny. He restored Kisimul Castle, the former MacNeil stronghold on a small island in the bay. His son, Iain MacNeil, leased the castle to Historic Scotland in 2000 for the yearly rent of £1 and a bottle of whisky.

The major archive of monochrome topographical views by James Valentine & Co. is held by the University of St Andrews Library. For further details of this collection please contact the Library, or refer to Special Collections at St Andrews


This image can be purchased.
For further information about purchasing and prices please email
Edinburgh Central Library

For guidance on the use of images and other content, please see the Terms and Conditions page.
High Life Highland is a company limited by guarantee registered in Scotland No. SC407011 and is a registered Scottish charity No. SC042593
Powered by Capture

Castlebay, Barra, from the northeast. 1909

INVERNESS: Barra

1900s

islands; bays; harbours; fishing; boats

Edinburgh and Scottish Collection, Edinburgh Central Library

I F Grant Photographic Archive

A view over Castlebay, with Kisimul Castle in the background. Castlebay is the main settlement on the island of Barra in the Western Isles. Barra was owned by the clan MacNeil from 1427 until 1838 when they were forced to sell to Colonel Gordon of Cluny. Cluny cleared most of the residents from the island but after his death in 1856 Castlebay became a centre for the herring industry. About 400 boats were based in Castlebay and there were also gutting, curing and preserving facilities associated with the industry.<br /> <br /> In 1937 Robert MacNeil, an American who had been recognised as the 45th Chief of the Clan MacNeil, bought back most of the land that had been sold to Colonel Gordon of Cluny. He restored Kisimul Castle, the former MacNeil stronghold on a small island in the bay. His son, Iain MacNeil, leased the castle to Historic Scotland in 2000 for the yearly rent of £1 and a bottle of whisky.<br /> <br /> The major archive of monochrome topographical views by James Valentine & Co. is held by the University of St Andrews Library. For further details of this collection please contact the Library, or refer to <a href="http://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/specialcollections/"target="_blank">Special Collections at St Andrews</a> <br /> <br /> <br /> This image can be purchased.<br /> For further information about purchasing and prices please email<br /> <a href="mailto: central.edsc.library@edinburgh.gov.uk">Edinburgh Central Library</a>