National Geographic : 1968 Mar
Land of lonely grandeur, the Highlands extend across northwest Scotland. Place names strange to the Anglo-Saxon tongue evoke visions of clansmen, staunch in loyalty to their chief, following a proud piper to battle. Today their descendants have dwindled, and only those whose love for the land outweighs their desire for prosperity stay to till the harsh soil. At harvest time in Scoraig, the entire family must lend a hand (below). In the Highlands, the two are never very far apart. Not far enough, I was soon to discover, in the minds of progressive Highlanders. I drove a dozen miles to Moy, to meet with such a man. ST ARTAN TWILIGHT!" said The Mac kintosh of Mackintosh. "Too many peo ple think the Highland sun set at Cul loden, and they look backwards, hypnotized by nostalgia, into the fading colors of its after glow. I mean, pride of race and culture is well and good, and I share it, but emotionalism can obscure the real issues of today." Lachlan Mackintosh, present Chief of Clan Mackintosh and Laird of Moy Hall, is as directly related to the events of Culloden and "the '45" (the uprising of 1745) as any man alive. He gestured toward a painting of a lovely lady on horseback. "My ancestress, Lady Anne. Keen supporter of Prince Charles and the Stuart cause. She was jailed after Culloden. Now, her husband was on the other side. He was a regular officer, which meant he had to serve the king, who ever the king might be. "Here was a family split over the issues of the '45," said The Mackintosh. "So were the Highlands. Not everyone felt the revolt was necessary. Perhaps it was the hideous rape of the country afterwards that makes Highland ers look back upon Culloden as the end of everything. Charles stopped the clock on April 16, 1746, and for some it hasn't moved since. But you mustn't stop clocks. Time goes on without you, if you do." He stared thoughtfully at the painting. "We've got to realize now, even if some High landers didn't then, that the clan system had pretty well had it even before Culloden. The clans were tribes, you know, blood-related, living in their own territories, growing and making what they needed, and raiding each other for fun and profit. Clansmen didn't need jobs or gold or anything but bare essentials, so the hills and glens became overpopulated. "Then they began to realize that there were other ways of life-easier ways, with more amenities. But these were based on money. To get it, the Highlanders had to leave the glens. "That was a sad thing, but perhaps-in the end-not entirely a bad thing. Every summer I see Rolls-Royces roll up to my door carrying Americans of Highland descent. Are they not better off than they would be if their ancestors had stayed in the hills?" I pondered the point as I drove back toward Inverness in an icy rain streaked with snow. 409 EKTACHROMEBY WNFIF n PARKSn N.G.9 .