He was a soldier alongside his father and brother at the age of eighteen.
He was a farmer, whose respect for the Highland way of life won him a place in the legend of the country.
He was an outlaw, a thief, or a dedicated family man, depending on how you look at it.
His knowledge of literature, as well as politics, was considerable, particularly in a time when illiteracy was common.
Rob’s mother Margaret’s health faltered and then failed during Donald’s time in prison. By the time Donald was finally released, his wife was dead, and his reason for living also gone. The Gregor chief would never return to his former spirit or health.
Now, his parents and the way of life his clan had relied upon was swept away by political winds. His own political convictions were being formed.
He despised needless bloodshed and fought against the injustice that plagued his clan. He was to become a hero of the Highlands.
Rob worked with his brother’s cattle watch and developed his own trade in cattle. He married his sweetheart, Mary Helen MacGregor of Comar, and set about building a home for his family.
Fair and Honest
A raid on the herdship at Kippen landed Rob in jail and friends were able to help him escape. He returned home to Mary and their infant son James.
It was Rob’s personality and facility for leadership that earned him respect. Known as a fair and honest businessman and considered the best swordsman in the land.
Rob had been doing business with the Marquis of Montrose for ten years, borrowing cash from him to help his cattle trade. One of Rob's agents absconded with one thousand pounds. Montrose pressed his advantage, hoping to claim Rob's land. After a determined search for the thief, Rob but escaped.
In 1715, Rob led his clan to battle in support of the Jacobites. Charged with treason but again escaped from prison. He lived the rest of his life as an outlaw, taking protection from allies and making a narrow escape from enemies.
Rob Roy died at home at the age of 63. He was buried in the small churchyard in Balquidder.
Last updated: Friday, September 17, 2021 12:46 PM