Timeline

3000 BC to 2000 BC

Neolithic people in the Black Isle raising cattle, sheep and pigs, and cultivating wheat and barley

1179

Ormond Castle may originally have been one of the two royal castles erected on the Black Isle by William the Lion in 1179

1297

Andrew de Moray escaped from the English in the Spring of 1297 (Ormond Castle in existence at this time). Died of wounds later the same year.

1338

The third Andrew de Moray died at Ormonde Castle

1560 Alexander Peddar appointed vicar of the church in Avoch

1563

Dunbar family leased from the Bishop of Ross “three fourths of the town and lands of Avach with the mill and multures”  - so meal mill already present

1614

John Mackenzie, Archdeacon of Ross and minister of Killearnan fined for raiding the harvest in Avoch. He was fined £100

1660s

The lands of Pittanochtie (later known as Rosehaugh) were acquired by grant by Sir George Mackenzie, the son of Simon Mackenzie of Lochslin Castle

1670

A new church was built on the site of the previous church, and present site of the Parish Church

1683

First written record of potatoes in Scotland by John Reid, gardener to Sir Goege Mackenzie of Rosehaugh in his book “The Scots Gard’ner” Reid recommends its use as a garden vegetable and gave instructions for its cultivation.

1696

Run-rig system of farming known to be in use at Fortrose (etching of the area shows it)

1711 Rev Alexander McBean appointed to the Church in Avoch; his appointment was opposed and he was prevented from entering the church. He had to be ordained and inducted in Rosemarkie

1720s

Donald Sinclair (Donald the Sailor) took cargoes of salt and tallow from Caithness to Avoch

1740

Record of “walk” mill in Avoch

1762

First house on site of Rosehaugh built - initially a modest L-shaped building, on the lands known by the two names of Pittanochtie and Rosehaugh

1763

Small’s light chain plough invented (a Scottish invention)

1764

Alexander Mackenzie born in Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis

1774

Alexander Mackenzie set sail for New York on the “Peace and Plenty”

1777

First appearance of turnips in Scotland - from Sweden - hence the name “swedes”

1789

Mackenzie started in the first of his expeditions from Fort Chipewyan on Lake Athabasca, to open up new trading routes for the fur trade

1790

The first substantial house at the site of Rosehaugh was built by Roderick Mackenzie

1792 Avoch church enlarged "giving accommodation for 600"

1793

Mackenzie traces route across Canada to the Pacific Coast near Bella Coola where he inscribed on a rock, “Alexander Mackenzie from Canada by land, 22 July 1793”; Potatoes recorded as a common crop in the Statistical Account of the time.

1802 Mackenzie knighted

1807

James Jack born in Elgin

1810

 31-ton sloop “Gracie”, built in Avoch

1812

Mackenzie married Geddes - she was 14 at the time, Mackenize was 48. He bought the estate of Avoch,

1814

Avoch harbour was built by Sir Alexander Mackenzie

1817

Sea wall between Avoch and Fortrose was built. The inexperience of the contractor led to delays but it was finished ahead of schedule  - with money to spare.

1818

First record of a school at Killen

1822 Manse for Avoch church built

1828

Open moor grazing land at Mulbuie divided up between neighbouring estates

1830s

Last use of run-rig system of farming in the Black Isle

1832

Cholera in the village; Sir Alexander Mackenzie died

1840

The burn powered three meal mills and one wool carding mill. Avoch mill produced oatmeal until the late 1940s. Turnips common in Avoch as a crop.

1841

80-ton schooner “Rosehaugh”, built in Avoch by D Davidson

1846

Potato blight spread to the Highlands; food riots in Avoch

1852

James Jack married Frederica Mary Stephen in London. Frederica was the widow of Lieutenant Alexander Macleod Hay of the 58th regiment who had died in 1849.

1854

Geddes Mill, the woollen factory opened by Alexander George Mackenzie

1855

James and John Jack changed their name to Fletcher

1857

James Douglas Fletcher born, the fourth child of James and Frederica Mary

1860

Tenancy of Geddes Mill passed to John Shaw, an Englishman. It employed 67 people in total including 9 wool sorters, 16 power loom weavers, 3 woolen cloth teasers, 5 wool spinners and a dyer.

1864

Rosehaugh House and lands were bought by James Fletcher. At this time the estate extended to 6,400 acres

1870

Current building of the Parish Church built

1871

The “droonins” - fishing disaster in the firth

1873

Free Church (now Tower House) opened

1874

Land acquired from James Douglas Fletcher for school to be built

1878

Caroline Violet May Hope, only child of Colonel Montagu Hope and Constance Maud, only daughter of James Fletcher, was born

1879

First boat of the Zulu design, “The Nonesuch”, built at Lossiemouth

1883

Avoch minister receives gift of money for the most needy families after  failure of the herring and garvie fishing

1893

James Douglas Fletcher commissioned Flockhart to remodel Rosehaugh House. This was to take until 1902

1894

Black Isle Railway opens

1895

James Douglas Fletcher formed the Avoch Tweed Mill Company

1896 Church hall for Avoch Parish Church built

1902

Remodelling of Rosehaugh House completed

1906

The harbour was rebuilt

1908

Geddes Mill closed as mill and reorganised into living accommodation which had no running water and outside “privvies”

1909

James Douglas Fletcher married Lilian Maud

1914

Outbreak of World War I. HM Inspector of Schools advises that practical Household Economy lessons be introduced - Killen was unable to do so because of lack of water supply so offered gareding instead

1922

Nursing services started in schools

1923

By this time, electricity had reached Dingwall, Invergordon and Foddery only

1927

James Douglas Fletcher died

1929

The pit system of conveniences in schools was replaced by a pail system

1932

Combine harvester arrived in Scotland - to Black Isle some time after this

1940s

Geddes Mill building demolished

1941

According to a report in this year, the number of verminous heads in the County was “a disgrace”.

1948

Start of National Health Service

1950

Clever Lassie” was the last Zulu in Avoch; Campaign against tuberculosis through innoculation

1951 Black Isle railway closed to passengers

1953

Lilian Maud Fletcher died and was buried alongside her husband.

1959

Rosehaugh House was demolished

1960 Black Isle railway closed
1967 Last minister for Avoch parish appointed (Rev Finlay Macleod). The church then linked with Fortrose and Rosemarkie

1970s

Last coal boat comes to Avoch harbour

1984/85

Killen School closed