Laird of Dunans Castle?
I’ve been interested in my genealogy for some time now and have gotten pretty far back on part of the family. I’ve discovered I have deep roots in Virginia (perhaps as far back as Jamestown but I have to verify that story) and, according to my DNA test, my ancestors are mostly from England, Scotland, and Ireland (with just a touch of Scandinavian). Not much of a surprise there. One of the big mysteries in the family tree, though, is where my Stuart ancestors originated. That was one of the reasons why Lana and I went to Scotland in September 2018. I wanted to see the lands from which my ancestors may have hailed. I didn’t do any genealogy research while I was there but it was a little surreal to sit in Edinburgh Castle having tea with Lana while surrounded by the names of the Stuart Kings and Queens.
Am I a Laird?
This post is not about my genealogy, though. It is about a Christmas present Lana gave me. How she found it, I don’t know, but she purchased a square foot of the grounds of a castle in my name. According to my understanding, since I am now a Scottish landowner, I am entitled to be referred to as a Laird!
What? Me a Laird? Well, yes and no. The title is decorative, meaning that while I may use it, it holds no true legal recognition. A Laird (or Lord) recognized by the Court of Lord Lyon would legal have standing, but buying a square foot of land doesn’t make me a qualify me as a Laird (I’m not sure the Scottish Land Register would even recognize a square foot of land as property). Regardless, as noted in the photo below, if I’m ever in Scotland again, I’ll have to visit Dunans Castle and see my plot of land. I doubt I’ll ask them to use the title, though.
Do I look the part?
I couldn’t leave this post without a picture of me taken while I was in Scotland (Inverness to be exact). Lana convinced me to rent a kilt and have my picture taken while in full regalia. While Lana was taking my picture, three women from Germany and two from Alabama wanted to have their picture made with me. From my picture below, I guess I look the part!
The purchase of the plot of land at Dunans Castle helps restore the property, which burned in a fire in 2001. Originally owned by Clan Fletcher, it now belongs to Charles and Sadie Dixon-Spain. This picture, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons, shows the castle. Pretty impressive!
What do you think? DoI look like a Scottish Laird? Leave me a comment and let me know!