A Laird of Glencairn is from the Scottish highlands – the place where life was defined by a constant battle against nature as well as conquerors.
The Landscape & History of Glencairn
The Picts and Scots, who settled in this area, successfully kept Roman and Viking conquerors at bay and largely protected their Celtic lifestyle and clans from the influence of Englishmen, who have been moving north since the 11th century. Even though Scotland has been under the English crown since the 12th century, they still attempt to keep the English influence to a minimum.
The name Glencairn is quite characteristic of Scotland and simply means “Valley of Cairn”. Cairns are mounds of stones which are fairly common in Scotland and of course valleys can be found in mountainous areas. As the name indicates, this region has been inhabited for thousands of years because cairns date back to the Stone Age. The plot of land to which the title “Laird of Glencairn” is tied is situated near the Grey Cairns of Camster. These two very well preserved Neolithic burial mounds are about 4,500 years old and a popular place to visit.
Not far from Glencairn is the “Cairn of Camster”, a burial site where chiefs of the highlands were put to rest. Names of nearby towns such as Lybster, Camster or Scrabster indicate the Viking’s influence in this area. The Vikings founded settlements along the coast and used those as starting points for conquests farther inland. There is also one famous person who was born in the Glencairn area: John Oswald who signed the American Declaration of Independence as a representative of Great Britain.