Annotation:Easter Elchies

Find traditional instrumental music

Back to Easter Elchies

EASTER ELCHIES. Scottish, Reel. F Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AAB. An 18th century melody composed by William Marshall (1748-1833). Easter Elchies (as opposed to Wester Elchies) was an estate built in 1754 by Lord Elchies on a height on the west bank of the River Spey, a mile to the west of Craigellachie. The site was a ford used by cattle drovers until the Telford's iron bridge at Craigellachie was built. The estate was bought four years later by the 6th Earl of Findlater (d. 1770). Moyra Cowie (The Life and Times of William Marshall) relates that the 6th Earl's successor made an unfortunate jest at the expense of the Jane, Duchess of Gordon. It seems that a ship had been built called The Duchess of Gordon, replete with copper sheathing on its underside to help deter rot and marine animals, as was the inovation of the era. James Ogilvy, 7th Earl of Findlater and 4th Earl of Seafield (1750-1811), was overheard to remark to Brodie of Brodie the "I aye kent the Duchess had a brass neck and a brazen face, but I niver kent she had a copper arse." Jane was not amused, and pursued the matter in the courts. Findlater fled to his estate in the German country of Saxony, and never did return to Scotland. The famous Macallan distillery, founded in 1824, is at Easter Elchies and produces a fine single malt whiskey. The manor house has been converted to distillery offices.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Cranford (Jerry Holland's), 1995; No. 161, p. 46. Kerr (Merry Melodies), vol. 3; No. 158, p. 19. Marshall, Fiddlecase Edition, 1978; 1822 Collection, p. 58. Stewart-Robertson (The Athole Collection), 1884; p. 243.

Recorded sources: Boot Records, Jerry Holland - "Master Cape Breton Fiddler" (1982).

See also listing at:
Alan Snyder's Cape Breton Fiddle Recording Index [1]

Back to Easter Elchies