Scotland Sketchbook, Post 29, Kilberry Castle and Stones, Kilberry, Scotland
Turning left onto a gravel drive we first came upon The Kilberry Stones which are on display under an open-air shelter. Kilberry has been a sight of Christian worship since the early 14th Century, as evidenced by the stones, which were once housed in the Campbell Mausoleum next to the remains of the church’s foundation at Kilberry Castle. They are now maintained by Historic Scotland.
We drove on down the drive to the castle, gathered up my watercolor sketch book of our Scotland trip, and had the joy of meeting John Campbell, Laird of Kilberry Castle! I told him of my quest to see the lands where my Campbell family were born, married, and had worked before immigrating to Canada. I explained the research help that Duncan and the Friends of the Argyll Papers were providing, and that I had met the Duke of Argyll at the Inveraray Games the day before. Yes, I know, some shameless name dropping, but this was a once in a lifetime opportunity, right?
John Campbell was very gracious in telling me how to find the border (a burn or small stream) between the current Campbell of Kilberry owned lands and the Ormsary lands at Crear which are now owned by the Lithgow Estate. He also told us how to find the Kilberry Church ( which we unknowingly had passed as we headed to Kilberry, as it Iooks very much like a two story home). I showed him the watercolor painting that I did of an early 20th Century photo of Kilberry Castle that I had found on line, and asked him about the couple standing in front of the castle. To his astonishment, John said it was his great aunt and uncle, the mother and father of Miss Marion Campbell (who I had read about in my research). He showed me the original photo from a family album…more serendipitous blessings! Thank you, John Campbell, for being so warm and helpful to us on such an important day in our journey! I am so grateful!