Mugdock Castle, Strathblane – Clan Graham
Under the control of the Grahams since the mid-13th century, Mugdock Castle would remain the family’s seat for a large portion of their history.
Originally part of the medieval region of Lennox, the lands on which the castle would be built were originally granted to David de Graham of Dundaff. Wasting no time in constructing a fortification, the early structure of the castle would be completed by 1372 and would be erected into the Barony of Mugdock in 1458.
Rising up through the ranks of Scottish nobility, the Grahams would soon be created Earls of Montrose and would extend their castle to reflect this standing. This would continue throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, as the clan sought to make their seat a reflection of their high power. Sadly, the castle would be sacked in 1641, with the chief of the clan, James Marquis of Montrose, languishing in prison. Thankfully, James would soon be released and he would be able to repair the damaged castle.
This would not be the end of the castle’s involvement in war though, as it would again be sacked after the Grahams raised the royalist standard in 1644. After this, the Marquis of Montrose would be captured and the castle passed under the control of the Campbell Marquis of Argyll as Montrose was executed in 1650. Thankfully, the family would regain control of their seat in 1661 as Argyll was also executed and, in the aftermath of this return, the family would spend two years building a new mansion within the old castle walls, creating a more modern living space for them to enjoy.
Using the mansion as their home for a further 100 years, the Grahams would eventually abandon Mugdock in the 18th century with the old mansion demolished and replaced by another. This mansion would also fall into disrepair and was demolished before the castle was passed to public control in the 1980s. Today, it and the surrounding lands can be visited by the public as part of a country park.