Patrons of Piping – The Mackintosh

Alfred Donald Mackintosh
Alfred Donald Mackintosh.

• From the March 2000 Piping Times.

By Jeannie Campbell

The Mackintoshes are part of Clan Chattan and claim descent from MacDuff, the Earl of Fife. They were supporters of the Bruces and acquired the lands of Moy in the 14th century. Malcolm, the 10th chief, fought at the Battle of Harlaw in 1411 on the side of the Lord of the Isles but did not continue his support, taking no part in the Battle of lnverlochy in 1431.

The piobaireachd, Mackintosh’s Lament is thought to have been composed in the early 16th century on the death of a chief. Lachlan the 22nd chief‘ fought on the Jacobite side in 1715. His successor, Aeneas the 23rd chief had accepted a Hanoverian commission so did not support the Prince in 1745. His wife Anne, daughter of Farquharson of Invercauld and cousin of Lord George Murray the Jacobite General, raised the clan for the Prince, earning for herself the name Colonel Anne. Her involvement led to an important event in piping history. On February 16, 1746 the Prince arrived at Moy Hall to spend the night. Lord Louden was in lnverness and decided to launch a surprise night attack with the intention of capturing the Prince. He had his own regiment and men from the Independent Companies, a total of about 1,500 men.

The Dowager Lady Mackintosh was in lnverness at the time and hearing of Lord Louden’s plans she decided to send a warning. She chose a 15-year-old boy, Lachlan Mackintosh, who was able to slip out of Inverness, avoiding the troops, and carry the warning to Colonel Anne. She alerted the blacksmith Donald Fraser, and he, with four companions went to meet the approaching troops. By shouting, running about and firing their guns in the darkness the five men gave the impression of being a sizeable force and Lord Louden’s troops turned and fled back to lnverness. Only one man was killed at the Rout of Moy, but he was MacLeod’s piper Donald Bàn MacCrimmon, who was with Lord Louden’s men. It is not known what part was planned for a piper in a surprise night time attack, perhaps he had gone along in the hope of seeing the Prince.

Alfred Donald Mackintosh, the 28th Chief of Mackintosh.
Alfred Donald Mackintosh, the 28th Chief of Mackintosh.

In 1847 Prince Albert made a visit to Inverness. The Mackintosh paraded 200 clansmen in the town and piper Malcolm Bruce played The Prince’s Salute as they marched in three divisions to greet the Prince at Tomnahurich Bridge. The Prince was then welcomed at the Town House by Provost Simpson, visited the castle, and finished. a full day by attending the Northern Meeting Ball. Alfred Donald Mackintosh was born at Moy Hall in 1851. and educated at Brighton and Cheltenham College, then Sandhurst, before joining the 71st Highland Light Infantry. He became the 28th Chief in 1875 on the death of his elder brother. D.S. Macdonald was Piper to The Mackintosh in 1872 (see Piping Times, October 1998) and Hugh Fraser followed him in 1880. William M. MacKenzie, the composer of MacKintosh’s Banner, was Piper to The Mackintosh in the 1880s and in 1887 was presented with a full silver mounted Henderson bagpipe. A Henderson price list from 1888 shows a price of £36 for their top of the range silver mounted bagpipe.