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TITLE
Farm Life on the Lovat Estate (1 of 20)
EXTERNAL ID
KIGHF_COLIN_MACRAE_01
PLACENAME
Hughton
DISTRICT
Aird
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
INVERNESS: Kiltarlity and Convinth
DATE OF RECORDING
9 March 1982
PERIOD
1980s
CREATOR
Colin Macrae
SOURCE
Highland Folk Museum
ASSET ID
41207
KEYWORDS
audios
estates
farms

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Colin Macrae was born and brought up on the Lovat Estate, at Hughton, Eilean Aigas, near Beauly. His family were farmers for the Lovat Estate.

In this audio extract Colin talks about the main items in his diet when he was a boy.

Interviewer: Now, Mr Macrae, what were the main items in your diet when you were a boy?

Colin: Oh well, our main item was, in the morning, was usually brose in the morning and, and, you know how that was made; it was made by just you put the meal in a bowl with a pinch of salt and than added boiling water to it and stir it up you see? That was our main breakfast. And eh, oh well, dinner time, I suppose, we'd have rabbits two or three times a week, often, if you could catch them, you know? It was a, it was a, I think, looking back we would have had many hungry days if you didn't have, didn't have plenty rabbits about. And then, there was one, in the summer time, or after the autumn, after the potatoes were up was, we always had plenty milk, you know, so we would have perhaps just potatoes and milk - mashed potatoes - a big plate on the middle of the table, a big ashet of mashed potatoes. Everyone sat round it with their knife and just had a bowl of milk and they dipped their spoon in it and that was the usual diet, you know, when you hadn't got anything else. I mean you had - there were no deep freezes in those days - but there was meat would have been, if you had any meat, extra like, you would salt it - you had what you call a salter; it was a barrel and you would put them in a brine of salt and put your meat in that, you see, and kept it there, for the winter and just use it. And then, we very often we had, we shared a big barrel of salt herring, you know? I remember my mother used to write to my uncle who was Colin Macrae at Morar, he always sent a barrel of herring to us, you know, and that would do us, did us the whole winter right on till the spring.

Interviewer: How much of the food that you ate was produced at home?

Colin: Oh well, quite a lot of it really, quite a lot of it, like all the oatmeal and like that was produced at home and milk, cheese, butter and crowdie and so forth, you see, made from the milk. And occasionally we would kill a sheep, or a pig, sometimes a stirk. A stirk, you know, we would kill that. If you couldn't use it all you would, perhaps some of your neighbours would take some of it, you see? Kill a pig occasionally and that was then cured and hanging up in the kitchen, you know, and it was, the hams were hanging up there, you just get it occasionally, if you required it. And then very often at night we would just have porridge and milk again you see, it was the, always porridge and milk at nights that was for supper, you know?

(Image - A Stretch of the River Beauly with Eilean Aigas on the Left © Copyright Stanley Howe, licensed for reuse under Creative Commons Licence 2.0)

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Farm Life on the Lovat Estate (1 of 20)

INVERNESS: Kiltarlity and Convinth

1980s

audios; estates; farms;

Highland Folk Museum

Highland Folk Museum: Farming at Eilean Aigas

Colin Macrae was born and brought up on the Lovat Estate, at Hughton, Eilean Aigas, near Beauly. His family were farmers for the Lovat Estate. <br /> <br /> In this audio extract Colin talks about the main items in his diet when he was a boy.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Now, Mr Macrae, what were the main items in your diet when you were a boy?<br /> <br /> Colin: Oh well, our main item was, in the morning, was usually brose in the morning and, and, you know how that was made; it was made by just you put the meal in a bowl with a pinch of salt and than added boiling water to it and stir it up you see? That was our main breakfast. And eh, oh well, dinner time, I suppose, we'd have rabbits two or three times a week, often, if you could catch them, you know? It was a, it was a, I think, looking back we would have had many hungry days if you didn't have, didn't have plenty rabbits about. And then, there was one, in the summer time, or after the autumn, after the potatoes were up was, we always had plenty milk, you know, so we would have perhaps just potatoes and milk - mashed potatoes - a big plate on the middle of the table, a big ashet of mashed potatoes. Everyone sat round it with their knife and just had a bowl of milk and they dipped their spoon in it and that was the usual diet, you know, when you hadn't got anything else. I mean you had - there were no deep freezes in those days - but there was meat would have been, if you had any meat, extra like, you would salt it - you had what you call a salter; it was a barrel and you would put them in a brine of salt and put your meat in that, you see, and kept it there, for the winter and just use it. And then, we very often we had, we shared a big barrel of salt herring, you know? I remember my mother used to write to my uncle who was Colin Macrae at Morar, he always sent a barrel of herring to us, you know, and that would do us, did us the whole winter right on till the spring.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: How much of the food that you ate was produced at home?<br /> <br /> Colin: Oh well, quite a lot of it really, quite a lot of it, like all the oatmeal and like that was produced at home and milk, cheese, butter and crowdie and so forth, you see, made from the milk. And occasionally we would kill a sheep, or a pig, sometimes a stirk. A stirk, you know, we would kill that. If you couldn't use it all you would, perhaps some of your neighbours would take some of it, you see? Kill a pig occasionally and that was then cured and hanging up in the kitchen, you know, and it was, the hams were hanging up there, you just get it occasionally, if you required it. And then very often at night we would just have porridge and milk again you see, it was the, always porridge and milk at nights that was for supper, you know?<br /> <br /> (Image - A Stretch of the River Beauly with Eilean Aigas on the Left © Copyright Stanley Howe, licensed for reuse under Creative Commons Licence 2.0)