"There's a cauld, cauld place they ca' The Cabrach."
Well now, why do they call it The Cabrach? There is some diversity of opinion here ; some philologists assert it to be a Gaelic word, others deny that there is any Gaelic at all in its composition, but as so many of the place-names in the neighbourhood are Gaelic, there is no reason why this too should not be Gaelic, and those who think it is so make out a much better case than the others. Even among those who agree as to the Gaelic origin, however, two or three quite different interpretations are given, and these we shall now consider.
It must be borne in mind that Celtic place-names are almost invariably descriptive, either of the country itself or of some local happening ; for instance "Tom-bain", the white knoll, "Tom-ballie", the spotted knoll; and "Auch-mair", the field of the mair (or officer). In Irish Gaelic there is a word closely resembling Cabrach, namely, Cabragh or Cabrogh (bad land) ; but the natives of the Cabrach deny that the land is bad, asserting that the fault lies in the British climate, not the soil, for in good years the harvests are more abundant than in places commonly thought to be far superior in productiveness. Perhaps early settlers, attempting in vain to cultivate the boggy lands, might give such a name in disgust, but it is not likely that it would continue in use, for "It's an ill bird that fouls its own nest", and the Cabrach people are, above all, attached to their home.
An entirely different meaning is "Deer-thicket". Now, some of the land may not be the best for farming, but it is of a nature well suited for deer, and from time immemorial large herds have made it their home. Originally it was a royal deer forest, and part of it is now included in that of the Duke of Richmond and Gordon. In the district, too, are found names which confirm the probability of this explanation. Glenfiddich means full of deer ; Badchier, hind's thicket ; while the Buck of the Cabrach undoubtedly refers to a stag rearing his head above his fellows, as this hill towers above its neighbours. In this connection there is an interesting tradition. As we shall notice later, at one time the Cabrach, now treeless and bare, abounded in thickets and coppices, well suited for lairs of the deer, and for nurseries for their young. When these disappeared, the herds left the Cabrach and did not return, and as their departure was a great loss to the district it was determined to try to get them back. A certain Johnny Stewart was deputed to perform this difficult task, and he, having suspicions that a large number had taken refuge in the forest of Glenmore, in Inverness-shire, went thither in search of them. Soon he came upon a herd and began driving them across the hills on the forty-mile journey to the Cabrach, a seemingly impossible feat. Anyone who has had experience of the keen scent, the shy habits, and the fleetness of foot of the Highland deer, can readily understand how nearly they baffled their driver. Often after, with infinite labour, having succeeded in getting them safely over the hill, he would himself reach the summit, only to see them rushing back along the valley below, and all his work to be done over again. However, Johnny must have had unlimited patience as well as a deep knowledge of wood-craft, for he succeeded at last in bringing all his captives home to the Cabrach, where they and their descendants have lived ever since.
We referred above to the Cabrach having formerly been well wooded, and this brings us to another variation of the meaning of the name, and one which seems most likely to be the true one. In "The New Statistical Account" the Rev. James Gordon gives the meaning as "timber-moss", and later writers speak of it as a derivative of "CABAR", a tree, a word still in use, applied to the pole or tree which is "tossed" at Highland games. The suffix ACH is also in common use, and signifies a place or field ; therefore Cabrach is "The place of trees". It is worth while noticing that, although there is no authentic account of the Cabrach woods or their destruction, yet it is a common belief in the district that the hills were at one time covered with trees ; it is even said that so thick were they that once a man travelled from Finglennie in Rhynie, to the Gauch, in Cabrach, without touching ground, swinging himself along on their branches. Evidence of the existence of these traditional woods is found when cutting peats, for roots and stumps are constantly dug out, often showing marks of fire, and in the case of whole trunks, mostly laid in one direction, as if by a gale. The story of how they came to be thus destroyed is as follows:-
In the year 1263, Alexander III. repelled the invasion of the Norsemen, under King Haco, at the battle of Largs. Before, and for some time after the battle, terrible storms raged, which did Alexander good service in fighting against the sea rovers ; but as well as being a soldier, the king was a forester, and when he turned homewards he began to think that perhaps his beloved trees had suffered in the gales which had helped him, and in his anxiety to hear about the trees, he forgot to inquire first for his wife, Margaret, who had given him a son in his absence. Naturally, the Queen was angry, and in her anger took a lasting vengeance, for she ordered the royal forests to be set on fire ; the wind helped, and for days the conflagration raged until scarcely a trace of her rivals remained, and The Cabrach, the place of trees, became what it is to-day, destitute of all but a few birches by the river-side, and some trees recently planted.
In attempting to trace the history of the Cabrach, it will very much simplify matters if we continue to preserve the distinction between the Upper and Lower districts, and consider each separately. And first as to the Upper Cabrach. From the earliest records it seems to have been a royal forest, and may have been reserved, like the neighbouring Strathaven, for the grazing of the king's horses. However that may be, it is certain that it formed part of the Crown lands prior to 1374, when King Robert II. granted to Wm. Douglas "all and whole the lands and forest of the Cabrach and a half davit of the lands of Auchmayre", &c. From this time the Cabrach changed hands frequently, till it finally came to the family of the Duke of Gordon, in whose possession it now is. In 1397 it again appears in a charter. At that time Sir James Sandilands made a donation of lands, including Cabrach, to George, Earl of Angus. In these words is concealed a whole chapter of Scottish family history, and the Cabrach is brought in touch with the romantic career of that remarkable man, Alexander Stewart, bastard son of the Wolf of Badenoch. William, first Earl of Douglas, had a daughter, Isabel, who inherited his great estates. She became Countess of Mar in her own right, as heir to her mother, sister and heir of the Earl of Mar, and married Sir Malcolm Drummond, brother-in-law of Robert III. Earl Douglas also had a natural son by Margaret Stewart, Countess of Angus in her own right, his sister-in-law. This son, George, not being legal heir to his father, became Earl of Angus, as heir to his mother ; while Sir James Sandilands of Calder, being the nearest male heir to his uncle, Earl Douglas, ought to have succeeded to the Douglas title and entailed estates. On the advice of friends, however, he voluntarily surrendered his claim in favour of his cousin George, as the charter shows, and the King undertook to ratify any grants of land made to the said George, either by Sir James or by George's half sister, Isabel. In 1404, Isabel, who was to remain in possession of her estates during her lifetime, bestowed them, with her hand, on Sir Alexander Stewart. Her first husband had been murdered in Kildrummy Castle (it was believed at the instance of Sir Alexander), who then besieged the castle and compelled the widowed Countess to marry him, and to grant him a charter, giving him her lands and making him her absolute heir, to the exclusion of her own heirs. The King refused to confirm such a charter, and another was substituted, in which Isabel voluntarily took Sir Alexander Stewart as her husband, and made him life-renter of her estates, with remainder to her own heirs. Thus, The Cabrach, as Isabel's death, became the property of Sir Alexander Stewart, now Earl of Mar, an exemplary landlord, leader of the victorious forces at Harlaw, and a prominent figure in Scottish politics. At his death, the nearest heir to his wife was Robert, Lord Erskine, who established his claim to the Earldom in 1438, but failed to obtain possession of the estates, which were seized by the Crown. In 1435 we have an indenture between "Sir Robert Erskine and his son on the tapart and Sir Alexander Forbes on the tothir", in which Forbes promised to help the Erskines to regain their rights, he to receive as a recompense, in the event of success, "the lordship of Auchindoir, with pertinences thereof, donacion of the Kyrk, the Buk and the Cabrach, with a half davach in fre forest annexed to said lordship". As Sir Robert, though succeeding to the Earldom, did not become the owner of the estates, Sir Alexander was given certain lands in Strathdee instead, and the Cabrach remained the property of the Crown. In 1457 the Erskines' claim was upset and the Earldom, as well as the lands, was annexed by the Crown, in the possession of which they remained for half-a-century, twice within that period being given to younger members of the royal family. In 1508 the final donation of the Cabrach was made to Alexander, third Earl of Huntly, who had performed great services to the King. In the same year it was sold to the Earl's kinsman, James Gordon of Auchmyll. In the charter of this sale the boundaries of the Cabrach are defined. By the year 1539 the Cabrach had come back to Huntly, who exchanged other lands for it with his uncle, and it has remained in the undisputed possession of the Huntly Gordons ever since, the present representative of the line being the Duke of Richmond and Gordon.
The following is a brief account of the Duke of Gordon's descent from Sir Adam Gordon, who got Strathbogie:-
Sir Adam, of the family of Gordon in Berwickshire, was a loyal friend of Robert Bruce, who gave him the lands of Strathbogie in 1327. From this time the Gordons increased in power and prosperity until a great part of the North of Scotland was theirs. Sir Adam died in 1312; his son, Sir Alexander, was killed at the battle of Halidon Hill in 1333 ; and his grandson, John, who succeeded his father in the title, was killed at Durham at the battle of Neville's Cross in 1346. Sir John was the first to receive the designation "of Huntly". Adam, his second son, was taken prisoner, along with the King, at the same battle. The heir, Sir John, was killed at Chevy Chase in 1388, and his brother Adam fell at Homildon Hill in 1402. It is noteworthy of these five in lineal succession that four were killed in battle, and one taken prisoner with his king. From Sir Adam, the descent is in the female line, for his elder brother's two sons, the famous "Jock and Tam", were illegitimate. His daughter Elizabeth married a Seton from the South of Scotland, and from her are descended the Seton-Gordons, the ducal line. Alexander Seton-Gordon was created first Earl of Huntly in 1449. He obtained from the king Badenoch and Brae Lochaber, and by his marriage the Bog of Gight, became possessed of the estates of Touch, Fraser, Aboyne, Glentanar, Glenmuick and Clunie, and the Bog of Gight. He was succeeded by his son George, who built Gordon Castle, and he in turn was succeeded by his eldest son, Alexander, the same to whom the forest of Cabrach was granted for his faithful service. Alexander was followed by his grandson George, who was Chancellor of Scotland in 1549, and who was killed at the battle of Corrichie. The fifth Earl was George, and also the sixth. To the sixth Earl came a further advance in the peerage. He was created Marquis of Huntly in 1599. The second Marquis was captain of the Scots Guards maintained by the King of France, and was beheaded by the Covenanters in 1654. He was succeeded by his son Lewis, whose son George was created Duke of Gordon in 1684. The fourth Duke, Alexander, married the famous Jane Maxwell, of Monreith, in 1767. He was created Earl of Norwich in 1784 and died in 1828. His son, as Marquis of Huntly, with the assistance of his mother, raised the regiment of Gordon Highlanders. He it was who was known as "The Cock of the North" ; his portrait by Raeburn hangs in Gordon Castle and offers a marked contrast to the portraits of his ancestors which also adorn the walls, for it "lives". With the death of "The Cock of the North" in 1836, the title of Marquis of Huntly passed to the Aboyne branch of the family, and that of Duke of Gordon became dormant, for he left no heir male. Charlotte, daughter of Duke Alexander, had married Colonel Lennox, who became Duke of Richmond, and her son, Charles Gordon Lennox, who, on the death of his father, became Duke of Lennox in the peerage of Scotland, Duke of Richmond in the peerage of the United Kingdom, and Duc d'Aubigny in the peerage of France, succeeded to the Gordon estates. His son Charles succeeded him these titles in 1860, and for him the title of Duke of Gordon was revived in 1876. At his death in 1903, his son, Charles Henry Gordon Lennox, Earl of March, became Duke of Richmond and Gordon and owner of the estates, his chief seats being Gordon Castle at Fochabers, and Goodwood House in Sussex.
The Lower Cabrach has passed through almost as many changes of ownership as the Upper Cabrach. At the present time it is divided among four landlords : the Duke of Richmond and Gordon, who owns the Dauchs of Blackwater and Corinacy ; Mr Leslie, the laird of Lesmurdie ; Mr Grant of Beldorney, to whom the farms of Belcherry and Soccoch belong ; and Mr Taylor of Milltown.
Lesmurdie, which now comprises the land on the left banks of the Charrach burn and the Deveron, from the Glacks of the Balloch to Forteath, at one time extended to the Linnburn, and included the third part of Invercharrach, and Achnastank in Glenrinnes. As early as 1473 we find a Strathauchin in Lesmurdie, and from him the main part of the estate has come in unbroken succession to the present owner.
At that date, George de Strathauchin of Losmothie bought from Lawrence Nudry of Ovirestead a third part of Belchere, Envercheroch and Auchnastank. Thirty-nine years later, Alexander Strathauchin divided his estate and granted to his eldest son, George, and his wife, the lands of Eastertoun of Losmordy, and a third part of Inverquherach, Auchnastank, and Balkery. In 1539 George Strathauchin had a mind to increase his portion in the Cabrach, and accordingly bought the remainder of the lands of Balchery from John Gordon, part owner of Auchnastank. In 1549 there was a James Strathauchin in Lesmurdy, who by a charter granted by Queen Mary, of the lands of Thombayne and Wester Losmordy, with the mill thereof, still further added to the family possessions. He appears to have let the mill soon after to one Alester M`Graycht, but on the said Alester's death without heirs, in 1562, escheat of the mill, lands and all movables was granted to the Strathauchins. In 1664 the Lesmurdie estate became the property of James Stewart of the family in Auchorachan, Glenlivet, a branch of the Stewarts of Athole. He married Elizabeth, one of the four daughters of the last Strathauchin, who died without male heirs, and by disposition from his wife, her sisters and their husbands, acquired the lands. His son, Alexander, succeeded him and conveyed the estate to James Stewart of Auchorachan, his brother, in life-rent, and to James's son Alexander, in fee, in 1697. James Stewart of Auchorachan, thereafter of Lesmurdie, married Margaret, eldest daughter of Alexander Duff of Keithmore, and thus allied himself with the family of the Earl of Fife. His son Alexander, fourth of Lesmurdie, had a daughter who married James Leslie of Kininvie. Her brother, Francis, succeeded his father in 1758, and he sold Lesmurdie to his second son, William, who died before his father, and was succeeded by his son, Major-General Francis Stewart, who married in 1795 Margaret, daughter of Sir James Grant cf Grant. His son, Captain James Stewart, who died unmarried in 1874, was the last of the family of Stewart to own Lesmurdie. It then passed to the descendants of his father's brother, Major-General William Stewart, who had a family of one son and three daughters. One of these daughters married Lieut.-Colonel Simon Fraser Mackenzie of Mountgerald, in 1841, and had one daughter. Another married George Abercromby Young Leslie, Esq., of Kininvie, and had two sons and three daughters. Miss Mackenzie and the eldest son of Mrs Leslie became joint-heirs to the property of their cousin, and Lesmurdie fell to Colonel Leslie's share. At his death in 1913 it passed by will to his second son, Archibald S. Leslie.
Invercharrach was in
time past a barony, and included in its
lordship, beside the farm lands now known by that name, the several
farms and crofts of Badchier, with Tomnavoulin and Crofthead. Its palmy
days, when the castle was standing, and the tenants of the various
farms and crofts rendered service to its owner, were about the 13th and
14th centuries. At a later period it was divided into three parts,
belonging to different persons and included in different estates. The
earliest mention of such a division is 1473, when "a third part of
Envercheroch" was sold to George de Strathauchin by Lawrence Nudry of
Ovirestead, and this third continued to belong to the Lesmurdie estate
until 0000. It is mentioned again in 1527, when Alexander Strathauchin
granted it to his son George, and in 1578, 1607, and 1663 it appears in
the Lesmurdie charters. Thereafter no
mention of it is made until 1725, when, according to the a record in
Cabrach Session Minutes, the laird of Lesmurdie was in residence at
Invercharrach. The first entry of Invercharrach in the rental of the
Gordon-Richmond estates occurs in 1750, so that apparently it was
acquired by the Gordons between 1725 and 1750. It is probable that the
register of the sale was among the lost Lesmurdie papers.
Of the remaining two-thirds we have the following records:-In 1488, John Craigmyll of Craigmyll, Lord Portioner of Inverquherach, sold to Sir James Ogilvie of Deskford the lands of Inverquherach &c. In 1517, Alexander Ogilvy got a Royal Charter of Glenfiddich and a third part of Invercharrach, &c., and the lands of Findlater, Deskford, Keithmore, Auchendoun, and other lands, with fishings on the Deveron and water of Ythan, the Constabulary of Cullen in the counties of Banff and Aberdeen, and the lands of Balehall and others in Forfar, were incorporated into one free barony, called the barony of Ogilvie, "to him and his heirs male of his body". In 1535, Alexander Ogilvy of Keithmore was confirmed in a half part of Inverquherach and forest of Etnach, otherwise Blackwater.
These Ogilvies were the ancestors of the Seafield family. On Alexander Ogilvy's death, his widow married Sir John Gordon, a son of the Marquis of Huntly, and a distant cousin of her own, she having been the daughter of Adam Gordon, Dean of Caithness. Alexander Ogilvy had left his lands to Sir John Gordon, on condition of his assuming the name and arms of Ogilvy, leaving entirely out of the succession his own son by his first wife, Lady Janet Abernethy, daughter of Lord Saltoun. Naturally the son, James Ogilvy of Cardale, considered himself very badly treated, and, in view of the Charter of 1517, unlawfully disinherited, and a series of quarrels arose between the families of Ogilvy and Gordon. The Queen took James Ogilvy's part and called upon Sir John Gordon to surrender the castles of Auchendoun and Findlater. This he declined to do, even refusing the Queen admittance to the latter, though it is not said that she applied in person. He defeated the troops sent out to take possession of Findlater, but shortly after the battle of Corrichie, in which the Gordons were on the losing side, he surrendered, and was afterwards executed in Aberdeen. As a consequence his possessions were forfeited to the Crown, and in a Charter of 1563 Queen Mary granted the lands of the baronies of Findlater, Deskford, &c., to James Ogilvy. But the Gordons still continued to claim part of the lands, therefore a process of arbitration was entered into, and a decree given that the lands of Findlater and Deskford were assigned to James Ogilvy, while Sir Adam Gordon, brother of Sir John, got Auchendoun and Keithmore, which included the second third part of Invercharrach.
We have still to dispose of the remaining third, so we turn to a MS. history of the Gordon family, written about 1731, and find therein that after the battle of Glenlivet in 1594, George, first Marquis of Huntly, bought Invercharrach and Blackwater, but no mention is made of the seller. In another place it is said that Invercharrach, Blackwater, and Glenfiddich were in the possession of the Marquis of Huntly in 1638.
Next come two very puzzling records, the first a Retour of Succession : "1662, Aug. 28. Anna Forrester, haeres Willielmi Forrester, sartoris burgenis burgi Vicicanona-corum, patris, in terries templariis, et terries dominicalibus de Garfullie ... Badchett (vel Badchier) dimidietate terrarum de Inercharrach (vel Inner channachie) tertia parte terrarum de Bellecherrie, cum juribus patronatum".
The second is from the General Register of Sasine, and sets forth that on July 2nd, 1781, Alexander Duke of Gordon gets a Renunciation, May 4th , 1781, by Alexander Penrose Cuming of Altyre, of "parts of the barony of Auchendown, viz., Clunymore, Smithstown, and Old Screen, Tullachallum, Invercharrach, Badchier, Brigfoord, Laggan, and Dryburn, Forrest of Blackwater, Over and Nether Ardwells, and Teinds, par. Mortlich and Cabrach, and of his liferent right, in two Disp. and Assig., Sept. 22nd 1772 and Mar. 14th 1774".
It is possible that these lands had been transferred to the Cumings by a marriage treaty, and that in default of issue they had returned to the possession of the Gordons, but Anna Forrester and her father remain a mystery.
Soccoch and Belcherrie.-These two farms are between the Lesmurdie estate and the boundary between the Lower Cabrach and Glass. They belong, with Greenloan, which is included in Soccoch, to Mr Grant of Beldorney, in Glass. They both came to the Grants in 1792, when "Wm. Grant, Counsellor at Law, London, was seised, Jan. 20th, 1792, in third part of Belcherrie, comp. Succoth, par. Mortlich, now Cabrach, &c". (Register of the Great Seal, Feb. 3rd, 1792.) Previously Soccoth had belonged to Alexander Duff of Keithmore, the ancestor of the Fife family, who, with his kinsman, Duff of Braco, was insatiable in regard to land. With monotonous regularity the records read, "formerly belonged to so-and-so, now to Duff of Braco." The Duffs acquired Soccoch in 1650, and it ranked as a gentleman's seat, for it is given under a list of Manors in a description of the parish written about 1730. Before 1650 Soccoch belonged to the Gordons, the Birkenburn branch of which family had it for some time. There was a George Gordon in Soccoch towards the end of the 16th century, who married a daughter of Alexander Gordon of Tulloch, Chancellor of Murray, but its history previous to this is, so far as we have been able to discover, unrecorded.
Belcherrie comes in for much more notice. It, like Invercharroch, has been divided into three parts, and of these one-third belonged from an early time to the Gordons, to one of the many branches of the family descended from "Jock" Gordon. Somewhere about the middle of the 15th century a daughter of Robert Gordon of Belcherrie married Thomas Gordon, a grandson of Alexander Gordon of Buckie, and a generation later there was a William Gordon in Belcherrie, a natural son of Gordon of Pitlurg. Both Buckie and Pitlurg were descended from "Jock" Gordon, but they could never agree as to which was the elder branch. The next mention of this third part is in 1627, when George Gordon of Beldorney was served heir to his father, Alexander Gordon, and Belcherrie appears in the list of his lands. In 1638 his son George succeeded him, and after that there is a gap of nearly a century, when in 1730 there is a Sasine to Jas. Gordon of Beldorney of the lands of Belcherrie, "sometime pertaining to the deceased Mr Robert Maitland". (Banff Field Club Transactions, Feb. 12th, 1909.) In 1776 Charles Edward Gordon, eleventh and last Laird of Beldorney, sold the lands and castle of Beldorney, with Belcherrie and Soccoch to Thomas Buchan of Auchmacoy ("A Glass Farmer's Diary"), who in 1792 sold them to Sir Wm. Grant, Master of the Rolls.
The second third belonged to the Lesmurdie family, who bought it from Lawrence Nudry in 1473. In 1527, Alex. Strathauchin of Lesmurdie gave the third part of Belcherrie to his son George, and in 1539 the said George bought "three eastern parts". In 1578, when another Strathauchin became heir, there is still mention of the third part only, so evidently "the said George" did not keep his three eastern parts. In 1607 Alexander Strathauchin became heir to his uncle James, and in 1663 the four daughters of the last Strathauchin became joint heiresses. After the transfer of the lands to the Stewarts through the marriage of one of the heiresses to a Stewart, the records cease, and as has already been explained, no more are available.
There yet remains a part of Belcherrie, and this we think must be that referred to in the entry under the Great Seal of June 22nd, 1488, when John Craigmyll of Craigmyll, for a certain sum paid in ready money, sold certain lands, including Balkery, to Sir Jas. Ogilvie, of Deskford. In 1535 Alex. Ogilvy and Eliz. Gordon had these lands confirmed to them, and after this Belcherrie's history is the same as that of the part of Invercharrach which had belonged to the Ogilvies. The mysterious Anna Forrester again makes her appearance, for Belcherrie is included in the above mentioned charter, "tertia parte terratum de Bellecherrie, cum juribus patronatum".
Blackwater appears several times in the foregoing charters. It included, beside the forest, the farms of Upper and Nether Ardwell, and Shenval. It will be seen that Blackwater was held by Alex. Ogilvy in 1535, and was bought by the Marquis of Huntly in 1594, while it appears also in the charter of Renunciation by Alex. Penrose Cuming. This is the only place in which the Ardwells are mentioned separately, and Shenval is not mentioned at all.
Corinacy.-The Daugh of Corinacy extends from the Raigie burn to the burn of Bank, and comprises all the land on the right bank of the Deveron between those two tributaries. It is obvious that the term Daugh was not used in its strict sense as meaning 416 acres, for there are several thousand acres in Corinacy, probably the arable land only was counted. This piece of land belongs to the Duke of Richmond and Gordon, and has apparently been in the possession of the Gordons since the 17th century. Before that nothing relating to it has been discovered. One of the farms is named Hillock of Echt, and this name is derived from the Barony of Echt-Forbes, of which Corinacy seemingly formed part, being in the possession of the Forbeses of Echt, near Aberdeen. The two families, Forbes and Gordon, appear to have owned Corinacy at the same time. There are three possible explanations for this:-first, two Gordons had the "superiority" while the Forbeses had the land ; second, that the two not being on friendly terms, as is well established, the Gordons gained possession of the lands by force, the Forbeses still keeping up their claim ; and third, that each owned part. The available records are as follows, and we give them without further comment, hoping that some light may yet be shed on this point:-
Jan. 9th, 1610. Robertus Forbes de Phynnersie, haeres masculus Joannis Forbes de Echt, filii patrui, in 40 solidatis terrarum villae et terrarum de Corronasie, cum pendiculis, vocatis, Thomnavin, Glascorie, and Dalreauche. Nov. 23rd 1681. Thos. Forbes of Echt, nephew of Thos. Forbes, by eldest half brother, succeeds to barony of Echt-Forbes, comprehending 40 solidatis of lands of Correnssies, with Hillock, Thomnavin, Oldtown, Newton, Glascorrie, Dalreoch called Bank, and lands in Aberdeen and Kincardine.
1664. Roll of Freeholders of Banffshire. "The Laird of Gight for his lands of Corronassie". This entry is repeated twice every year until 5th Oct. 1683, when the name is changed to the Marquis of Huntly for his lands of fforest of Boynd, &c., and Corronassie.
Jan. 23rd, 1796. Alex., Duke of Gordon, gets Renunciation, dated Jan. 6th, 1796, by Benjamin Gordon of Balbithan, of the superiority of Cofforach, par. Rathven, Davoch lands of Correnacie, par. Mortlich, Tynet and Mill, par. Bellie, Mill and Mill lands of Correnacie, par. Mortlich, and teinds, and of his liferent, in two Disp. and Assig. Sept. 19th, 1771, and Sept. 27th, 1773.