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Again another picture, this one from yesterday, taken during one of my weekly country walks with equally old friends, this time approaching the ruins of Carmichael House after a light snowfall. Although it was dry and sunny, the temperature was still around -5蚓.

This rather majestic ruined house lies just a short distance from the small village of Carmichael in South Lanarkshire. The Carmichael clan dates back at least as far as the 12th Century and still survives to this day, the current Chief of Carmichael being Richard Carmichael of Carmichael, 30th Chief of the Name and Arms and 26th Baron of the lands of Carmichael in Lanarkshire, Scotland.

There is only one source of the name Carmichael and that is territorial or geographic in origin from the northern edge of the Southern Uplands in Scotland. An ancient hill fort or caer in a prominent location close to the main route north from the border was chosen by the good Queen Margaret in the year 1058 as the site of one of her first six churches established in the see of Glasgow. Due to the prominence of the site, she dedicated the church to St. Michel and the district and its peoples became of Caermichel when surnames were necessitated in the thirteenth century.

During the fourteenth, fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, Carmichaels travelled widely some to Galloway where they became kinsmen of the Stewarts of Galloway and later moved northwards settling in Lismore and Appin as kinsmen of the Stewarts of Appin and the McDougals. Others went to Holland where Robert Carmichael the armourer still has descendants known today as Carmiggelts.

Further movements to Ireland in 1690 and to the Americas from 1650 onwards resulted in the world-wide spread of the name. Events such as the emancipation of slavery when released slaves in Carolina took the name of their Scottish plantation owner employer gave a mixed race element whilst the highland clearances moved many Scottish Carmichaels abroad. After Culloden many macghilliemichels (gaelic for sons of the servant of St Michael) changed their name to Carmichael.

At present, the Carmichael estate still thrives with much cattle and sheep rearing, farming and a delightful visitor centre and farm produce shop open to the public.

Here, however, are the ruins of Carmichael House, or at least the east wing (you can see just a part of the west wing behind it to the left), a castle on this site having been ruined around 1660 and subsequently rebuilt as this mansion house from 1734 to 1750. The house fell into disrepair by 1950 although recent works have taken place to stabilise its ruined walls.

ISO 100, 1/160 sec at f/7.1, focal length 18mm.

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Additional Photos by John Cannon (tyro) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1985 W: 427 N: 7659] (30513)
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