Isobel Alison Transported to Edinburgh in 1680 #History #Scotland
A woman’s journey to martyrdom begins, in Kinross…
Isobel Alison had brought news and provisions from Perth to the assassins of Archbishop Sharp when they were in hiding at Bridge of Earn in early May, 1679. It is not clear if her captors knew that. In her interrogations, the authorities were clearly interested in her connections to them, but homed in on her later meetings with John Balfour of Kinloch and David Hackston of Rathillet in the year before her capture, i.e., in 1680, rather than May, 1679. They were also interested in her connections to Donald Cargill and James Skene.
27 November, 1680:
‘Issobell Aillisone warditt by command of my lord chancier who was apoynted to be transported ffrom Kinrose to the Tolbuith of edr and wardit. This done by ordor of major Johnstoune [of the Town Guard] by a missive under his hand’. (Book of the Old Edinburgh Club, VI, 150.)
On her way to Edinburgh Tolbooth, Alison was held in Kinross Tolbooth. On the Canmore website, the clock tower that survives appears to be from the old pre 1742 parish church. It is not clear if it was used as the tolbooth, but other websites suggest that it was. Pittenweem did have a tolbooth spire incorporated into a church.
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