monument sits at the head of Loch Shiel, Lochaber, 17 miles
west of Fort William on the A830.
It was here that Prince Charles Edward Stewart ("Bonnie
Prince Charlie") gathered his supporters and raised
his standard at the start of the 1745 Jacobite Rising. Sailing
from France, he landed on Eriskay in the Outer Hebrides
on 23 July 1745. French ships joined him with supplies and
artillery. He then went on campaigning for his cause to
reinstate the exiled Stuarts on the throne, landing at Borrodale
near Arisaig on 25 July. Finally, at Glenfinnan, on 19 August,
an army of over 1000 men was there and the standard of the
Prince's father, called by his supporters "King James
VIII of Scotland and III of England", was raised.
some victorious skirmishes, his army entered Edinburgh and
Charles as Regent of the three kingdoms took up residence
at Holyrood. On 17 January 1746, the Jacobites won their second
(and last) victory at Falkirk before their eventual defeat
on 16 April 1746 by the troops of the Duke of Cumberland ("Butcher
Cumberland"), George II's youngest son, at Culloden.
The Monument was designed by Scottish architect James
Gillespie Graham, built in 1815 by Alexander Macdonald
of Glenaladale (who died before the completion of the monument
in 1815 at the age of 28).
The stone tower originally had a two-storeyed bothy, the "shooting
box" (for the use of fishing and shooting parties), abutting
one side. It was removed in the 1830's, when the octagonal
perimeter wall was built and the statue of a Highland chieftain
was added on top. The statue, carved by stone mason John Greenshields
(1792 - 1835), a friend of Sir Walter Scott, derived from
an engraving by James Logan in 1831.
(the image on the left depicts
part of an engraving of Loch Shiel showing the shooting box
abutting the tower (c) by NTS)
can climb a narrow staircase inside the tower, which leads
to an open top with great views all around.
Since 1938 the monument is in the care of
the National Trust for Scotland. They also run the nearby
visitor centre, where you'll find displays and an audio programme
about the 1745's Rebellion to the final defeat at Culloden.
for more images
James Gillespie Graham (1776 - 1855), born in Dunblane,
was one of the most successful architects of the 19th century.
He designed for instance St. Andrew's Cathedral in Glasgow,
St. Mary's Cathedral in Edinburgh, Armadale Castle on Skye,
Duns Castle in Berwickshire, Murthly Castle in Perthshire, Inverary
Courthouse in Argyll, Torrisdale Castle in Argyll.
This panel by the National
Trust for Scotland tells us:
|Raising the Standard
– where did it happen?
Monument (1) commemorates the raising in 1745 of Prince
Charles Edward Stuart’s standard, and is a memorial
to the sacrifice of Highland people in the Jacobite
Rising. It was erected in 1815, and the site at the
head of Loch Shiel was chosen for dramatic effect.
In fact, the Standard was raised on higher ground. Those
who witnessed the event said that the Prince and his
companions landed at Slatach (2), crossed the River
Finnan and climbed a small hill. On recently rediscovered
slabs of rock on high ground above the river, are inscriptions
and symbols carved probably in the mid-19th century,
claiming it to be the spot where this ceremony took
place (3). However, many believe that Torr á
Choit (4), the hill behind the National Trust for Scotland
Information Centre, was the point where the Standard
Only the site of the Monument belongs to the Trust –
the other alternatives are on private ground
click on image
an enlargement of
the depicted map
on image for an enlargement of the memorial panel
are three panels like this one built into the perimeter
wall around the monument, with inscriptions in Gaelic,
Latin and English. The panels date from the 1830's.
ON THIS SPOT WHERE
PRINCE CHARLES EDWARD STUART
FIRST RAISED HIS STANDARD,
ON THE XIX DAY OF AUGUST MDCCXLV
WHEN HE MADE THE NOBEL AND GALLANT ATTEMPT
TO RECOVER A THRONE LOST BY HIS ANCESTORS.
THIS COLUMN WAS ERECTED BY
ALEXANDER MACDONALD, ESQUIRE, OF GLENALADALE
TO COMMEMORATE THE GENEROUS ZEAL
THE UNDAUNTED BRAVERY, AND THE INVIOLABLE FIDELITY
OF HIS FOREFATHERS AND THE REST OF THOSE
WHO FOUGHT AND BLED IN THAT
ARDUOUS AND UNFORTUNATE ENTERPRISE
THIS PILLAR IS NOW.
ALSO BECOME THE MONUMENT
OF IT’S AMIABLE AND ACCOMPLISHED FOUNDER
BEFORE IT WAS FINISHED
DIED IN EDINBURGH ON IV DAY OF JANUARY
AT THE EARLY AGE OF XXVIII YEARS.
The National Trust for Scotland