Making History: Find the Unknown Martyr’s Grave

It is a historical puzzle and it needs your help to resolve it: an unknown ‘Martyrs Grave’ on Thompson’s map of 1828/32…

The grave appears to lie east of the Avisyard Burn and west of the Guelt Water, probably the Peat Syke, and perhaps, but not at all certainly, to the west of the Blood Burn/Blood Moss and the Shiel Burn. Has it been destroyed by opencast mining?

It lies in Old Cumnock parish, Ayrshire.

The area can be found on this zoomable OS map.
These old maps of Ayrshire may be of use.

Any thoughts on it will be gratefully received. Please share it with your friends.

Good night and good luck!

Advertisements

~ by drmarkjardine on June 14, 2012.

6 Responses to “Making History: Find the Unknown Martyr’s Grave”

  1. I’m a Cumnock boy now living in East Kilbride but my parents are still there. I think the grave is here 55.448708,-4.226711 (stick them in to google maps) I’m sure there’s no open cast there, yet. It lies between the old farm of Little Auchingibbert and Meikle Auchingibbert on the current OS map. It’s just outside of Craigens and Netherthird areas of Cumnock. It is still there and I believe it is for a John McGeachan. I was shot trying to rescue a Presbytrerian Minister from a troop of Dragoons. If I remember correctly from what my dad told me when I was younger. I will check the story with him if you like?

    Thanks
    Tookie

  2. Sorry jumped the gun a bit there. I’m the wrong side of Avisyard Hill. Yes it is right in the middle of an opencast or looks to be the grave is on what was Rough hill/ Roughill moss near the old farm of High Garleffin. Also noticed on that map a circular wood there are two in that area but all togther sparse now one is called Highmount Plantation the other Lowmount.

    Not sure if any of that is a help. Let me know. My dad is full of local knowledge and if he doesn’t know he may know some-one who does.

    Thanks again
    Tookie

  3. Had a look here http://gis.south-ayrshire.gov.uk/mapsWosas/mapSMR.htm and they don’t have it marked on the site. I spoke to my dad but it’s not one he knows about but he’ll ask about.

  4. I had always assumed this was a map-maker’s error since McGeachan’s stone isn’t shown by Thomson (1828) at Meikle Auchingibbert. If you look at Ainslie’s Map (1821) the positioning of Ivesyard, Garleffin and Auchingibbert is well off and I wonder if Thomson’s has been influenced by that map.Thomson doesn’t show either of the Martyrs’ stones in New Cumnock or Barrhill, Cumnock but does show Wellwood at Muirkirk, Mauchline and Airds Moss. The Blood Moss, Blood Burn couplet is interesting and there is another such coupling in the south of the parish near Carcow ( although I’m saving that for Barbour’s ‘Bruce and the sleuth-hound’ episode in New Cumnock!). There is a Blueboots Moss and Burn near Carsgailoch too. The reference to Cameronsike is interesting. Scots ‘sike’ is generally a ditch containing a burn, and there are a host of them in the parish of New Cumnock. However, ‘siket’ is often mentioned as a boundary in perambulations of lands and Cameronsike’s linear form certainly suggests a boundary, probably of Cameron’s property (like Mitchell Sike near Craigman). Although we do know from the Earl of Airlie’s letters (July 1680) that Cameron and his men were at Corsencon, three miles east of Cameronsike.

  5. I had always assumed this was a map-maker’s error since McGeachan’s stone isn’t shown by Thomson (1828) at Meikle Auchingibbert. If you look at Ainslie’s Map (1821) the positioning of Ivesyard, Garleffin and Auchingibbert is well off and I wonder if Thomson has been influenced by that map.Thomson doesn’t show either of the Martyrs’ stones in New Cumnock or Barrhill, Cumnock but does show Wellwood at Muirkirk, Mauchline and Airds Moss. The Blood Moss, Blood Burn couplet is interesting and there is another such coupling in the south of the parish near Carcow ( although I’m saving that for Barbour’s ‘Bruce and the sleuth-hound’ episode in New Cumnock!). There is a Blueboots Moss and Burn near Carsgailoch too. The reference to Cameronsike is interesting. Scots ‘sike’ is generally a ditch containing a burn, and there are a host of them in the parish of New Cumnock. However, ‘siket’ is often mentioned as a boundary in perambulations of lands and Cameronsike’s linear form certainly suggests a boundary, probably of Cameron’s property (like Mitchell Sike near Craigman). Although we do know from the Earl of Airlie’s letters (July 1680) that Cameron and his men were at Corsencon, three miles east of Cameronsike.

  6. […] boy is also probably not in the “missing martyrs’ grave” to the east of Cumnock, as it is probably a mapping error for the grave of John McGeachan/Mackechan […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s