The eventful history of the Island of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides stretches back to the time of the Norse invaders. Over the centuries, Lewis has seen a succession of powerful landlords come and go, and this ground-breaking book recounts the long-fought struggle over the land. It also describes many aspects of the islanders’ way of live over the years – agriculture and fishing, education in Gaelic and English, the Church and the people, law and order and smuggling, emigration and the armed services are just some of the topics included in this wide-ranging survey. Combining original research with a deep personal knowledge of the subject, Donald Macdonald’s Lewis: A History of the Island is a remarkable example of local history.
A novel of the Iolaire disaster by Donald S Murray
In the small hours of January 1st, 1919, the cruellest twist of fate changed at a stroke the lives of an entire community.
Tormod Morrison was there that terrible night. He was on board HMY Iolaire when it smashed into rocks and sank, killing some 200 servicemen on the very last leg of their long journey home from war. For Tormod a man unlike others, with artistry in his fingertips the disaster would mark him indelibly.
Two decades later, Alasdair and Rachel are sent to the windswept Isle of Lewis to live with Tormod in his traditional blackhouse home, a world away from the Glasgow of their earliest years. Their grandfather is kind, compassionate, but still deeply affected by the remarkable true story of the Iolaire shipwreck by the selfless heroism and desperate tragedy he witnessed.
A deeply moving novel about passion constrained, coping with loss and a changing world, As the Women Lay Dreaming explores how a single event can so dramatically impact communities, individuals and, indeed, our very souls.
A a comprehensive collection of stories, from the The Outer Hebrides. Some are wellknown tales, and some have been collected by the author, but all are retold in the natural voice of a local man. You will find selkies and waterhorses, and encounter the bluemen of the stream, who test the eloquence of mariners who venture into the tidal streams around the Shiant Islands. There are tales from islands now uninhabited, like the archipelago of St Kilda, and their yarns from bustling harbors. So grab a copy and dive in.
Over six years, Madeleine Bunting travelled north-west, returning again and again to the Hebrides, exploring their landscapes, histories and magnetic pull. With great sensitivity and perceptiveness, she delves into the meanings of home and belonging, which in these islands have been fraught with tragedy as well as tenacious resistance. The Hebrides hold a remarkable place in the imaginations of Scotland and England. Bunting considers the extent of the islands’ influence beyond their shores, finding that their history of dispossession and migration has been central to the British imperial past.
By Francis Thompson. The essential guide for the discerning tourist and island devotee, the “Pevensey Island Guide: Lewis & Harris” describes everything the visitor needs to know about the islands’ heritage, landscape, climate, flora and fauna. It contains fascinating information on all the key places of interest, from areas of outstanding beauty such as the mountains, freshwater lochs and moorland to historical landmarks such as the Callanish stone circle. It is illustrated with over 100 superb colour photographs showing every aspect of the island and its people.
As Chamberlain, or manager, to Sir James Matheson, the then owner of the Island of Lewis, John Munro MacKenzie was the man in virtual control of the everyday lives of its people.
His Diary for the year 1851, when he was half-way through a six-year engagement as Chamberlain, gives a vivid and at times disturbing picture of the issues of the day: the poverty that engulfed much of the populace, the emigration that was seen as one solution, the rigid stratification of the social structure of the mid-nineteenth century. The Diary is published exactly as it was written, and will be a revelation of the recent history of the island and an evocative resonance to the events that helped to shape its present.
The magnificent Callanish stones have captured the imagination for centuries. From Martin Martin to Lady Matheson and New Age Travellers, they have been the source of fascination and speculation. In turn, they have given rise to innumerable theories about their purpose, and why such an impressive prehistoric monument should be located in Lewis and on this particular site.
This booklet by Ian McHardy, a professional archaeologist and historian, sets out some important new ideas, drawing on folklore in Scotland and the Celtic world more generally. He demonstrates the value of looking across disciplines, using insights from physical science as well as traditional beliefs and folklore, to shed new light on this age-old subject.
This new, thoroughly updated second edition of Bradt’s Outer Hebrides: The Western Isles of Scotland, from Lewis to Barra by experienced writer and journalist Mark Rowe is the only full-size guide to focus solely on the islands of Lewis, Harris, St Kilda, Berneray, North Uist, Benbecula, South Uist, Eriskay, Barra and Vatersay. Masses of background information is included, from geography and geology to art and architecture, with significant coverage of wildlife, too, as well as all the practical details you could need: when to visit, suggested itineraries, public holidays and festivals, local culture, plus accommodation and where to eat and drink. Walkers, birdwatchers, wildlife photographers, beach lovers and genealogists are all catered for, and this is an ideal guide for those who travel simply with curious minds to discover far-flung places of great cultural, historical and wildlife interest.
This inspirational guidebook describes 50 varied walking and backpacking routes on the Scottish Hebrides islands, set out in a larger format, and illustrated with a range of stunning photographs. The 50 walks are spread across both well-known and remote islands; from Skye, Mull, Rum, the Uists and Barra, Ulva, Iona, Eigg and Muck and more besides. Most of the walks provide a full day for experienced walkers, with a few multi-day backpacking adventures as well as some shorter routes.
The walks also include Hebrides classics, like the Trotternish Ridge, Ben More, Skye and Rum Cuillins, the Paps of Jura and full circuits of smaller islands. Each walk combines clear route description with mapping and spectacular photography, while also advising on the route’s facilities, public transport access, length and terrain. The result is a collection of the very best walks with which to uncover the wild and rugged beauty of the Hebrides.
Illustrated croft history of the village of Swordale.
In 1973 David Christie moved house from Essex to Scotland, but it wasn’t till 1974 that he discovered the joys of sailing on Calmac’s ships. An initial sail on King George V at Oban in her last season was a great introduction but mostly, over the next three years, I focussed on Queen Mary on the Clyde, now safely back in Glasgow at the Science Centre. Most of the Clyde piers are covered, with emphasis on Rothesay. Ferries also feature with old and new on the Rothesay and Dunoon runs and the smaller boats at Largs. The west coast features with Oban as the main terminal, then Mallaig, before a session on the pre-bridge Skye ferries. A single visit to Ullapool finishes this journey back to the seventies.
Two books available together for the special price of £20. Normally sold separately for £12.99 each. Lewis in History and Legend The West Coast deals with the west coast of the island, from the boundary with Harris in Uig Parish, up to the Butt of Lewis, the most northerly point, and out to the furthest-flung outliers of the island, the Isle of Rona and the rock of Sulisgeir.
Lewis in History and Legend the East Coast deals with the townships on the east coast of the island, and Stornoway, the commercial and administrative capital of the island.
This book documents the history and families of the village of North Dell. Includes photographs.
This book documents the history and the families of Bhataisgeir (Vatisker), with rentals from the Seaforth Estate Papers and Ordnance Survey.
The Isle of Lewis, the largest and the most northerly of the islands of the Outer Hebrides, has had an eventful story from prehistoric times through to the present. Evidence of human occupation stretches back to 3000 BC, explicit in the iconic silhouettes of the Standing Stones at Callanish. After the Vikings left in the ninth century, the clans of West Scotland quickly moved in, and Lewis was the site of many feuds between the Morrisons, the MacAulays and the MacLeods. The island operated largely independently until it was purchased by the MacKenzies in 1600 and was finally drawn into Scotland
This register comprises an index to the marriages recorded in the Old Parish Registers for the Parish of Barvas on the Isle of Lewis. The OPR for Barvas Parish commences in 1810 and is the most comprehensive of all the OPRs in rural Lewis. This index contains over 1000 marriages from the Barvas OPR and a further 150 marriages in that parish obtained from other sources.
ISBN: 1 872598 37 4
Croft History Isle of Lewis Vol 28, Carloway Part 2. Kirivick, Knock Carloway, Borowston and Laimshader
This book documents the history and the families of Cirvhig (Kirivick), Cnoc Charlabhaigh (Knock Carloway), Borghastan (Borowston), and Laimsiader (Laimshader) with rentals from the Seaforth Estate Papers and Ordnance Survey and Lewis Estate Maps.
BILL LAWSON’S 60TH BOOK
The Isle of Lewis, the largest and most populous of the islands of the Outer Hebrides, has had an eventful history which stretches back thousands of years. In this eagerly awaited second volume of Lewis in History and Legend, Bill Lawson deals with the townships of the east coast of the island, from Tolsta in the north to the boundary with Harris in the south, and with Stornoway, the commercial and administrative capital of the island.
In his own inimitable style, he traces the story of the island from earliest times to the present day, describing the landscape and the physical remains of the past. More importantly, however, he excels in charting the history of the people themselves, weaving his way through the centuries with stories drawn from documented sources, oral tradition, Gaelic song and from his own experiences of many years travelling around the island and researching the history of its families.
The result is a unique insight in to the way of life and history of an island.
Bill Lawson founded the genealogy centre Co Leis Thus? and is genealogical consultant to Northton Heritage Trust, which now runs this research service. He has written sixty books on the genealogies and history of the western Isles. He regularly researches and lectures in North America and Australia. He lives in Northton, Harris.
ISBN: 9781841583693 Imprint: Birlinn
This book, the second of a series on different parishes in the Western Isles, is suitable for those with a specific interest in genealogy, and also those with a more general interest in the history of these interesting and beautiful islands off the Atlantic coast of Scotland.
ISBN: 1 872598 47 1
This book documents the history and the families of Calanais and Gearraidh na h-aibhne with rentals from the Seaforth Estate Papers and Ordnance Survey and Lewis Estate Maps. Includes old photos.
Tales from the village of Sheshader, Isle of Lewis.
ISBN: 1 872598 02 1
This book, the third of a series on different parishes in Lewis, is suitable for those with a specific interest in genealogy, and also those with a more general interest in the history of these interesting and beautiful islands off the Atlantic coast of Scotland. Read the rest of this entry »
Second book in the series covering the villages of Ness in North Lewis.
Tales from the village of Sheshader, Isle of Lewis.
This register comprises an index to the marriages recorded in the Old Parish Registers for the Parish of Lochs on the Isle of Lewis. The OPR for Lochs Parish, which at that time included the areas of Carloway and Shawbost, does not commence until 1831. The index contains over 600 marriages from the Lochs OPR and a further 400 marriages in that parish obtained from other sources.
ISBN: 1 872598 21 8
This book documents the history and the families of Taobh Loch Reusort, Mealasta, Breanais, Islibhig, Mangurstadh with rentals from the Seaforth Estate Papers and Ordnance Survey and Lewis Estate Maps.
Register of Emigrants from Barvas Parish (including Ness) on the Isle of Lewis, giving details of over 300 emigrant families. Listed by destination. 101 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 38 2
This colourful guide presents the story of life in Lewis and Harris from the appearance of the first stone age hunter-gatherers up to 10,000 years ago, to the crofters of the last century. It offers a vivid account of the development of the islands, suggesting some of the most rewarding places to visit and providing clear descriptions of each site.
Dr Christopher Burgess has been County Archaeologist at Northumberland County Council since 2002, but for many years has led campaigns of archaeological survey and investigation in the Outer Hebrides and especially in Lewis, leading to significant advances in our understanding of the human landscape of the islands.
A Register of Emigrant Families from the Western Isles of Scotland to the Prairie Provinces of Canada
Includes information on emigrants to Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba including the Killarney, Saltcoats, Wapella and Clandonald settlements from Lewis, Harris the Uists, Benbecula and Barra. Read the rest of this entry »
The latest in the Lewis Croft History series. Illustrated and giving a history of the area and a detailed history of the families.
Detailed account of the crofts and the people of these villages from pre-crofting
to the present. Maps and Old Rentals.
The landscape of the Outer Hebrides, with its stark cliffs, ghostly mists and lonely beaches, has become a definitive character of Peter May’s Lewis trilogy. In Hebrides, readers will accompany him on an odyssey in prose and images, through a history of the Vikings’ ‘Long Island’ and his own deep personal connection with the islands that influenced his bestselling work.
Travelling as if alongside his protagonist Fin Macleod, he describes the island life – as bewitching as it is treacherous – his encounter with the bird-hunters of Sula Sgeir, the savage seas of Ness and the churches of Eriskay. With extracts from the trilogy and specially commissioned photographs, this book places his writing and characters within the land that gave them form.
Paul Murton has spent half a lifetime exploring some of the most beautiful islands in the world – the Hebrides. He has travelled the length and breadth of Scotland’s rugged west coast and sailed to over eighty islands.
From the lush shores of Gigha to the towering cliffs of St Kilda, he explores the islands’ breathtaking scenery and and introduces their colourful history, culture, myths and legends. He also meets some of the people who live there and make the Hebrides tick, from crofters, fisherman, tweed waulkers and clan chiefs to peat cutters, gin distillers, black pudding makers and even a parrot rescuer.
This volume covers the Croft History of the villages of Acha Mor (Achmore) and Loch a’ Ghainmhich (Lochganvich). 123 pages.
ISBN: 978 0 9560848 3 5
Following the tracks, holloways, drove-roads and sea paths that form part of a vast ancient network of routes criss-crossing the British Isles and beyond, Robert Macfarlane discovers a lost world – a landscape of the feet and the mind, of pilgrimage and ritual, of stories and ghosts; above all of the places and journeys which inspire and inhabit our imaginations.
Illustrated detailed history of this Lewis village and the people.
ISBN: 978 0 9560848 2 8
This is the second part of the Croft History on Tolsta, Isle of Lewis. This volume covers Tolastadh (Tolsta) Part 2 and Am Baile Ur (Newholdings). 132 pages.
ISBN: 978 0 9560848 0 4
In 1918, as the First World War was drawing to a close, the eminent liberal industrial Lord Leverhulme bought – lock, stock and barrel – the Hebridean island of Lewis. His intention was to revolutionise the lives and environments of its 30,000 people, and those of neighbouring Harris, which he shortly added to his estate. For the next five years a state of conflict reigned in the Hebrides. Island seamen and servicemen returned from the war to discover a new landlord whose declared aim was to uproot their identity as independent crofter/fishermen and turn them into tenured wage-owners. They fought back, and this is the story of that fight. The confrontation resulted in riot and land seizure and imprisonment for the islanders and the ultimate defeat for one of the most powerful men of his day. The Soap Man paints a beguiling portrait of the driven figure of Lord Leverhulme, but also looks for the first time at the infantry of his opposition: the men and women of Lewis and Harris who for long hard years fought the law, their landowner, local business opinion and the entire media, to preserve the settled crofting population of their islands.
This is the first of two parts on the Croft History of Tolsta, Isle of Lewis. This volume covers Gleann Tholastaidh (Glen Tolsta) and Tolastadh (Tolsta) Part 1. 160 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 54 4
A Description of the Western Islands of Scotland Circa 1695 and a Late Voyage to St Kilda: Description of the Occidental i.e. Western Islands of Scotland
One of the greatest travellers in Scotland, Martin Martin was also a native Gaelic speaker. This text offers his narrative of his journey around the Western Isles, and a mine of information on custom, tradition and life. Martin Martin’s wrote before the Jacobite rebellions changed the way of life of the Highlander irrevocably. The volume includes the earliest account of St Kilda, first published in 1697 and Sir Donald Monro, High Dean of the Isles, account written in 1549 which presents a record of a pastoral visit to islands still coping with the aftermath of the fall of the Lords of the Isles.
This volume contains the Croft History for the villages of Leumrabhagh (Lemreway), Orasaigh (Orinsay), Stiomrabhagh (Stimerway), Isgein (Eishken), Am Pairc (Park) and Ath Linne (Aline). 178 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 52 8
This book celebrates the land buyout by Urras Oighreachd Ghabhsainn. The volume covers the Croft History of the villages of Borgh Mheadhanach (Mid Borve), Am Baile Ard (High Borve), Mealabost Bhuirgh (Melbost Borve), Gabhsann bho Dheas (South Galson) and Gabhsann bho Thuath (North Galson). 152 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 51 X
This is the Croft History for Liurbost (Leurbost), Isle of Lewis, covering the villages of Liurbost (Leurbost), Am Baile Ur (Newholdings) and Crothaigearraidh (Croigarry). 174 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 49 8
This is Part 2 of the Croft History for Coll, Isle of Lewis. This volume covers Coll 53-88 and Upper Coll. 107 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 45 5
History of the villages of Coll and Upper Coll – scene of land-raiding after the First World War. 247 pages.
(Volumes also available separately)
Volume 10 covers Coll 1-52 and Volume 11 covers Coll 53-88 and Upper Coll.
ISBN (Volume 10): 1 872598 44 7 ISBN (Volume 11): 1 872598 45 5
This is the first part of two volumes on the Croft History of Coll, Isle of Lewis. This volume covers Coll 1-52. 140 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 44 7
The Croft History for Barabhas Uarach (Upper Barvas) and Bru (Brue), Isle of Lewis. 131 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 41 2
The Croft History for Mealabost (Melbost) and Braigh na h-Uidhe (Branahuie), Isle of Lewis. 153 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 39 0
The Croft History for Griomsiadar (Grimshader), Isle of Lewis. 69 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 36 6
The Croft History for Ranais (Ranish), Isle of Lewis. 125 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 32 3
The Croft History for Tolastadh a’ Chaolais (Tolstachulish) and Dun Charlabhaigh (Doune Carloway) in Carloway, Isle of Lewis. 138 pages wirebound.
ISBN: 1 872598 24 2
The Croft History for Crosbost (Crossbost) on the Isle of Lewis. 90 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 20 X
The Croft History for Cuisidar (Cuishader), Sgiogarstaidh (Skigersta), Eorodal (Eoradale) and Am Port (Port of Ness) in Ness, Isle of Lewis. 136 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 16 1
Includes Pabail – a word picture, croft histories of Pabail Uarach (Upper Bayble), Pabail larach (Lower Bayble), Cnoc na h-lolaire (Eagleton) and a guide to photographs. 171 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 12 9
Includes Sheshader – a word picture, crofting pattern, croft histories and a guide to photographs. 87 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 00 5
Tales and Traditions of the Lews is a marvellous pot pourri of local history, myth and legend from prehistoric times to the present day.
The Church of the MacLeods of Lewis. History of the church, stories of individual residents of the parish going back to 1498 and gravestone inscriptions. 44 pages.
ISBN: 1 872598 06 4
The main theme of the book is death – death of a father, of an identity, of a sense of self, of a language. In tandem with that, The Nessman is also about the agent of Colin’s personal destruction – alcohol.
Yet the book is not a depressing read. It is hilariously funny, brilliantly observed and written with an astonishing ear for dialogue and eye for character. Colin’s knowledge of himself as he spirals towards destruction is unsparing and unsentimental. The result is an extraordinary and moving portrayal of a people and a culture.
This is the first book in English of the people of Ness and it is one of the first novels in which a Gaelic writer has, with utter confidence, made English his own language too.
The Guga Hunters tells the story of the men who voyage to Sulasgeir each year and the district they hail from, bringing out the full colour of their lives, the humour and drama of their exploits. They speak of the laughter that seasons their time together on Sulasgeir, of the risks and dangers they have faced. It also provides a fascinating insight into the social history of Ness, the culture and way-of-life that lies behind the world of the Guga Hunters, the timeless nature of the hunt, and reveals the hunt’s connections to the traditions of other North Atlantic countries. Told in his district’s poetry and prose, English and – occasionally – Gaelic, Donald S. Murray shows how the spirit of a community is preserved in this most unique of exploits.
ISBN: 9781841586847 Imprint: Birlinn