Press Gangs Balaich a’ Chnuic Ard
Recently I spent a most enjoyable afternoon in the company of Calum Ferguson and his wife Sandra and, with the ‘lilting voice of a sennachie’, Calum entertained us all afternoon with stories in both Gaelic and English. One of the stories he told us took us to the Cnoc Ard in Ness and to a story that he had first heard more than sixty years ago - a story that he never forgot.
The fugutive Mac an t- Strònaich
The Comann Eachdraidh received this story from Donald Macritchie, Dòmhnall Ghinneis, a number of years ago. Donald stated, “My mother was born in 1870 and her grandmother's sister was alleged to have been chased by Mac an t-Srònaich over the moors in the area known as Na Leitrichean. She was chased towards the Creag Ghorm. In those days most of the settlement of North Tolsta was situated beside Allt na Muilne at the northern boundary of what is now New Tolsta.
The earliest recorded occupants of the Glen (as far as we have been able to trace) were Angus Murray and his son John. Records show that they paid rent to farm in the Glen c.1830. Angus Murray moved to Tong and his son John became tenant at 6 Tolsta and a son Angus became tenant at 11 Tolsta.
Jane of Gibraltar ￼
Geodha an t-Soithich, Tolsta Head
On 19 th May 1821, the Scooner, ‘Jane', registered in Gibraltar and belonging to a Jewish merchant, set sail from Gibraltar with her captain Thomas Johnson and the mate Peter Heaman. The other members of the crew were Francois Gautiez the cook, Johanna Dhura an Italian, Andrew Cameliar a Maltese cabin boy and Peter Smith, Robert Strachan and James Paterson. Her destination was Babia in Brazil.
Fishing pre-1890 style
"The Tolstonians did not fish out of Giordail before 1890. They fished out of Garry. Men from Point fished out of Giordail and Port nam Bothag. There is a place over from the pier called Port mhic Chailein Thorcuill, after a man from Knock, Point and the bothies there were occupied by the men from Point.