Please Sign In | Register
Google pluspinterestShare on Stumble UponShare on RedditFacebookShare on Tumblr
TITLE
Farm Life on the Lovat Estate (4 of 20)
EXTERNAL ID
KIGHF_COLIN_MACRAE_04
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
41210
KEYWORDS
audios
estates
farms

Get Adobe Flash player

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 illegal whisky making.

Interviewer: Now do you know of anybody in the area making their own wine, or making whisky?

Colin: Oh well, they wouldn't, they certainly never made wine. I think it would be an insult that any man in this area to drink wine at that time, it was all - but I heard plenty of making, making whisky although we never, I never, of course, you would never see it being made; it was one thing that was done very secretly and - But, it was made right up, I believe, in some remote places until just almost till the beginning of the war, you know?

And there was a story, there was a story told about when the excisemen, or the 'gaugers' as they used to call them, at that time, the word got round that they were coming, and this lady she had a baby, you know, and she had a baby in the, in the cradle, and she was keep rocking it, and at the same time, sort of pinching it to make it cry, and the whisky was all hidden in the bottom of the cradle.

But, they got the word of them coming and they started out the old midding, you know, where they kept the byre - probably was joined onto the house - and the midding was close by, and the men went about and dug bits up in the midding to put them off the track. And when the excisemen came up they saw this had been disturbed and they were very suspicious, so they went digging it all day and the old wifie was rocking the baby, it wasna well, by the way, and the whisky was there. They spent a long time digging it up but they never came on anything but they weren't very popular with the smell. Those people, was on their clothes for a long time afterwards.

Aye, there used to be an old lady up the glen there who kept what was known as a 'shebeen' - she'd be selling whisky - and anyone - Oh, she wouldn't sell it to everybody, she had to know them (probably, she was afraid of the excise people) but she had no education whatsoever, as far as reading or writing, but apparently she had a stick, and she put a notch on it, a certain mark, but he knew everybody. She never lost out on it - she always got her money, you know? Mmm-hmm.

(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)

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

Farm Life on the Lovat Estate (4 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 illegal whisky making.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Now do you know of anybody in the area making their own wine, or making whisky?<br /> <br /> Colin: Oh well, they wouldn't, they certainly never made wine. I think it would be an insult that any man in this area to drink wine at that time, it was all - but I heard plenty of making, making whisky although we never, I never, of course, you would never see it being made; it was one thing that was done very secretly and - But, it was made right up, I believe, in some remote places until just almost till the beginning of the war, you know? <br /> <br /> And there was a story, there was a story told about when the excisemen, or the 'gaugers' as they used to call them, at that time, the word got round that they were coming, and this lady she had a baby, you know, and she had a baby in the, in the cradle, and she was keep rocking it, and at the same time, sort of pinching it to make it cry, and the whisky was all hidden in the bottom of the cradle. <br /> <br /> But, they got the word of them coming and they started out the old midding, you know, where they kept the byre - probably was joined onto the house - and the midding was close by, and the men went about and dug bits up in the midding to put them off the track. And when the excisemen came up they saw this had been disturbed and they were very suspicious, so they went digging it all day and the old wifie was rocking the baby, it wasna well, by the way, and the whisky was there. They spent a long time digging it up but they never came on anything but they weren't very popular with the smell. Those people, was on their clothes for a long time afterwards.<br /> <br /> Aye, there used to be an old lady up the glen there who kept what was known as a 'shebeen' - she'd be selling whisky - and anyone - Oh, she wouldn't sell it to everybody, she had to know them (probably, she was afraid of the excise people) but she had no education whatsoever, as far as reading or writing, but apparently she had a stick, and she put a notch on it, a certain mark, but he knew everybody. She never lost out on it - she always got her money, you know? Mmm-hmm.<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)