The Oban Times, 17 August 1901
BY MRS.DUNCAN CAMPBELL OF GLENFEOCHAN,FOR HER FATHER, HUSBAND,
AND BROTHERS AND THREE SONS, WHO WERE KILLED AT THE BATTLE OF INTERLOCHY IN 1645
By Dr. Keith N. MacDonald
If the whole of Oban were to turn out and walk down Glenfeochan, I very much doubt if they could find any trace of the above lament. They would be more likely to meet with the last music-hall ditty, and broken Gaelic, than with the vigorous language and music of their forefathers. Even the famous Rev. Patrick MacDonald of Kilmore and Kilbride, who lived so near the place and who published his “magnum opus” of Highland music in 1784 seems to have missed it. We have to go to the Colonies for these long-lost things. It is a singular instance of the truth of tradition, in this case backed up by history, but even if it were not, I would sooner believe the traditional account. This poor woman was deprived in one day of her father, husband, four brothers, three sons, and nine other relatives, besides having had her corn and barley burnt, and her cattle and sheep slaughtered, for which she blames the Marquis of Argyll for having gone on board his galley the night before the battle, and left his kinsman to their fate on that memorable occasion.* She also says that it was the Irish contingent under Alasdair Mac Cholla, that gave strength to the MacDonalds – who were formidable enough without such assistance – to win the day.
That the Campbells fought with valour there can be no doubt, they were outnumbered and outmanœuvered, and having been forsaken in their hour of need by their proper commander, the disastrous result was not to be wondered at. Had the Marquis taken the lead of his army, and had the Irish remained at home, there is no saying how the battle might have ended. That’s but doing bare justice to the Campbells.