It is interesting to see historical connections and I am able to link famous events with my humble family history.

The Scottish connections continue with King Charles I (son of James I & VI). He was not a successful King and had his head chopped off in 1649. Charles’ son, James II did slightly better, but he was eventually deposed and slunk off to France. The double act of William & Mary (Protestant) replaced James II (Catholic). The Scots did not like this, as they wanted a Catholic King. Onto the stage come the Jacobites.

The Jacobites believed in a lot of things, including Catholicism and opposition to tax laws. But they mainly seemed to be opposed to the English. They supported Bonnie Prince Charlie (grandson of James II), who sailed from France to Scotland to claim the throne.

Historically France had a very close relationship with Scotland. In 1745 two Frenchmen, a father and son, arrived in Scotland to join the Jacobite army. They joined Clan Chattan and prepared for battle.

At the battle of Culloden on 16 April 1746, the Jacobite army of Bonnie Prince Charlie was defeated (in 1 hour) by a British government force on Drummossie Moor, near Inverness, in the Scottish Highlands. It was the last pitched battle ever fought on British soil.

Afterwards many Jacobites were captured, imprisoned, executed or deported. The two Frenchmen had survived the battle and fled to Aberdeenshire. They changed their name to Thomson and were my many greats grandparents. Bonnie Prince Charlie fled back to France, with the help of Flora Macdonald, and he never returned to Scotland.

The English were thoroughly fed up with the Scots, and in a series of Acts of Parliament it was declared that nobody in the Highlands could carry weapons, and wearing the ‘highland dress’ including the kilt, was made illegal. The laws were repealed 36 years later. But by then kilts were no longer ordinary highland wear.