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Code of
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Title: Lindsaig Ownership
Posted by: Craig McClay Wilson
Date: 10 April 2007

For those interested, below is a detailed description of McLea ownership of the estate at Lindsaig.  It appears that the McLea estate was not a feudal barony held "of the crown", but could have been a barony granted by Argyll. Note the connection between the McLeas from Inverary through Lindsaig to Bute. Obtained this information from a researcher located in Scotland.
Craig

LINDSAIG

Landholding in Scotland

Landholding was feudal.  This meant that there was an superior or overlord and a vassal.  A vassal held his land in feu from the superior and so long as the vassal paid the annual feu duty, he was the virtual owner of that land.  Each time land changed hands, permission had to be got from the superior.  This took the form of a precept of sasine which was merely a letter written by the superior to the baillie to give sasine of the property to the new owner.  So, a precept does not actually indicate ownership, although it implies this.

Giving of sasine took place on the actual lands.  A baillie (appointed specifically for that occasion and not to be confused with a magistrate in a burgh) would meet with the new owner or his procurator (representative) on the lands and the precept would be read out to those present which included witnesses, and then the new owner or his procurator was given a handful of earth and stones by the baillie which signified that he was now infeft or seised in the property.  Also present would be a notary who would note down the details and would then draw up an Instrument of Sasine which he would then have recorded in the relevant Register of Sasines for the particular county

Register of Sasines for Argyll

These start in 1617 and go up almost to the present day, although the feudal system was abolished about 3 years ago and has been replaced by the Land Register.  Unfortunately, there is a gap in the Register for Argyll between 1657 and 1673.

Prior to 1617

Prior to the start of the Registers of Sasines, there is the Register of the Great Seal, but records in it only involve land held directly from the Crown and not land held from vsuperiors of the Crown.  There is therefore no record of the McLeas of Lindsaig, as they held that property from their superior, the Earl of Argyll.  The Earl of Argyll’s papers are still held by the family, although there is a Survey of them in the National Register of Archives, but the survey produces no mention of Lindsaig.  The Register of the Great Seal records a charter of Lindsaig among many other lands to Archibald, Earl of Argyll on the 16 March 1610 (RMS vii, no.265) and also in a charter of Nova Damus to Archibald, Earl of Argyll on the 15 October 1667 (RMS xi, no. 1105), but both these involve the superiority.

An Account of the Name of McLea

This Account appears in the Scottish History Society’s, 3rd series, no. 22 – Highlands Papers, vol iv, p. 91ff.  It was written by Duncan McLea, minister of Dull in 1743 and added to by his son, Dr Archibald McLea, minister of Rothesay.

In a footnote, a precept is referred dated 26 December 1634 issued by Lord Lorne in favour of Archibald McEnlay, son and heir of Donald Moir Maconlay for infefting him in the lands of Lindsay (p.103)

Unfortunately a precept, as you will have noted above, was only a stage in the process of granting sasine and so, as no record appears in the Register of Sasines for Argyll shortly after that date, it would appear that no record of sasine having taken place was ever recorded officially.  There is also mention of another precept issued by Marquis of Argyll in favour of Katharine Uchiltree (Ochiltree), spouse of Donald Moir McOnlay dated 4 January 1647-8 (ibid).  Again, this is just a precept and not an actual Instrument of Sasine.  It is likely to have involved giving of a liferent to her, in terms of a contract of marriage.

The Lands of Lindsaig

These consisted of East and West Lindsaig, Taynaluig, the mill of Lindsaig and Cranunachan.  They were in the parish of Kilfinan, Bailliary of Ardmenoch and Lordship of Cowall.

Register of Sasines of Argyll (RS)

Donald McLea of Lindsaig

The first record of the McLeas of Lindsaig appears in the Register of Sasines on the 27 November 1697.  It is written in Latin and records Donald McLea of Lindsaig fulfilling the terms of his marriage contract with Agnes Wark (RS10/3 f.23).  The details of what he had granted her in 1697 are repeated in sasine dated 26 August 1720, by which time he was dead.  She had been given the liferent of his house and yard, malt kiln, barn and byre and also a piece of land belonging to the house, together with a piece or half rood belonging to the kiln which were all part of the 6 merkland of Lindsaig called the Change house which were then possessed by Neill McLea, his brother.  She was also to get the mill and mill land and houses, multures and knaveships (income of the miller), then possessed by John Hill, miller, as well as 4 cows, a horse and 10 sheep grazing at the Change house, as well as 2 cows grazing at the mill (RS10/4/2 f.465 recorded 26 August 1720).

There is an earlier record of Donald McLea or more correctly Donald Mconlea of Lindsaig in the records of Argyll Sheriff Court.  In 1680, he raised criminal letters of perjury against Donald Ochiltree in Tawlar who owed him £16 Scots for 2 bolls of meal.  He had earlier taken Donald Ochiltree to court where he had admitted the debt, but had been unable to pay it then.  At this subsequent action, he had denied owing Donald Mconlea anything; hence the action for perjury (SC54/17/2/10/22)

Unfortunately, it is not possible so far to link Donald with the earlier Archibald.

John McLea of Lindsaig

Donald McLea as recorded above was dead by August 1720 and his heir was John McLea of Lindsaig, a merchant in Inveraray.  On the 8 April 1727, he wadset (a type of mortgage) his lands of Cranunachan to Mr John Campbell of Otter for 2,000 merks, agreeing to repay the debt by Whitsunday 1748 and by so doing redeem those lands (RS10/6 f.19)

On the 26 September 1730, his wife, Katharine Campbell was infeft in a liferent of £100 Scots out of the two Lindsaigs by John McLea in terms of their marriage contract (RS10/6 f. 395)

John McLea was made a burgess of Inveraray on the 18 October 1718 (The Burgesses of Inveraray, 1665-1963, ed. Elizabeth Beaton and Sheila MacIntyre (Scottish Record Society publication, 1990)

John McLea had died by 1745, when his underage eldest son, Alexander became heir.  As he was under age, four curators (guardians) were chosen for him two from his father’s side and two from his mother’s.  They were the Rev Mr Duncan McLea, minister of Dull and John McLea, his son and Archibald Campbell of Stonefield and John Campbell, his son, respectively.

The Edict of Curatory recording the above is in the records of the Sheriff Court of Argyll (SC54) and also included with it is a Judicial Inventory of the heritable and movable estate which belonged to his father.  The heritable estate consisted of the lands listed above under ‘The lands of Lindsaig’ which gave a yearly rent of £640/-/8d, although feu duty of £100 was due to the Earl of Argyll, as well as tack duty (rent) of a tenement in Inveraray of £16 (it consisted of a house and 2 shops with a back house and brewery) and an annuity payable to Katharine Campbell of £100 and so the total income from the heritable property was actually £424/-/8d.

His father, John McLea had also entered into a co-partnery with Giles Campbell, daughter of the deceased Colin Campbell of Braglen in 1743, but Alexander McLea his heir was in no position to carry this on, having been apprenticed to John McJarrow, a surgeon in Ayr.  His father also had tacks of various other lands from the Duke of Argyll.  The papers also include a long list of the contents and furnishing of his parents’ house. (SC54/6/2/6/2)

It would appear that Alexander died within 6 years after that, for in 1752, his brother, Archibald McLea, second son of the deceased John McLea and Katharine Campbell became heir to the lands of Lindsaig and he too was underage and there is an Edict of Curatory recording that his curators were Mr John McLea, minister of Lochgpoilhead and Archibald McLea, his son, student of humanity at Auchinloch near Glasgow on his father’s side and Mr Archibald Campbell of Stonefield, advocate and Mr John Campbell younger of Stonefield, his son, also an advocate on his mother’s side (SC54/6/2/8/3).  The Rev Duncan McLea had died on the 26 July 1749 (Fasti Ecclesiae Scoticanae, vol 4, p. 176).  This source gives the Rev McLea’s father as Archibald McLea, merchant in Rothesay.

Lindsaig thereafter was sold by Archibald McLea to Duncan Ochiltree.  Duncan Ochiltree is mentioned as being bankrupt in 1775, two of his creditors being Archibald McLea, late of Lindsaig and Mr John McLea, minister of Lochgoilhead (Unextracted Process of the Court of Session – James Ferrier v creditors of the estate of Lindsaig, 29 January 1778)

** This Thread has ended - Please do NOT attempt to resurrect it! **

Replies

Title:Date:Posted By:
Lindsaig Ownership10 April 2007Craig McClay Wilson
   Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield11 April 2007Young Bachuil
      Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield11 April 2007Kyle MacLea
         Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield11 April 2007Craig McClay Wilson
            Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield12 April 2007Craig McClay Wilson
               Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield12 April 2007Kyle MacLea
                  Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield12 April 2007Kyle MacLea
                     Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield12 April 2007Craig McClay Wilson
                        Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield12 April 2007Kyle MacLea
                           Lindsaig Ownership and Stonefield12 April 2007Andrew Lancaster
   Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald05 December 2007Kyle MacLea
      Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald07 December 2007Craig McClay Wilson
         Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald08 December 2007Kyle MacLea
            Lindsaig Ownership: More on Rev. Duncan MacLea08 December 2007Kyle MacLea
            Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald08 December 2007Craig McClay Wilson
               Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald08 December 2007Kyle MacLea
                  Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald08 December 2007Kyle MacLea
                     Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald10 December 2007Craig McClay Wilson
                        Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald10 December 2007Kyle MacLea
                           Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald10 December 2007Craig McClay Wilson
                              Lindsaig Ownership: Rev. Duncan MacLea and his father Archibald10 December 2007Kyle MacLea
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   Lindsaig Ownership10 April 2007Kyle MacLea
      Lindsaig Ownership10 April 2007Donald (Livingstone) Clink
         Lindsaig Ownership10 April 2007Craig McClay Wilson
            Lindsaig Ownership11 April 2007Kyle MacLea
               Lindsaig Ownership11 April 2007Craig McClay Wilson
               Lindsaig Ownership11 April 2007Craig McClay Wilson
                  Lindsaig Ownership11 April 2007Kyle MacLea
                     Lindsaig Ownership12 April 2007Andrew Lancaster
                        Lindsaig Ownership13 April 2007Kyle MacLea
               Lindsaig Ownership17 February 2008Ken McClay
                  Lindsaig Ownership17 March 2008Kyle MacLea
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   Lindsaig Ownership15 April 2007Donald (Livingstone) Clink
      Lindsaig Ownership16 April 2007Kyle MacLea

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