Shiaba was a crofting township on the Ross , owned by the Duke of Argyll it had been home to some130 people and their forefathers until the then Duke cleared the land in 1847 to enable the more profitable activity of sheep farming.
Below in words and pictures the story unfolds
To the Duke of Argyll
Upon learning of the Duke's plan's the tenants sent this petition.
This letter accompanied the petition
Once the last crofting tenant was cleared from the land, a new tenant took over the land for the purposes of sheep grazing, after 3 years this tenant left and the land at Shiaba became part of Scoor Farm.
From the census records and emigration records which we have in our archives we can see what happened to the people of Shiaba in the ensuing years. Some moved to other townships within the locality but many emigrated over seas to Canada and the USA.
This is the approach road to Shiaba, on the horizon you can see the gable end of the house which was inhabited by shepherd James McLean and his family, this was vacated in 1937. This was the last house to be inhabited at Shiaba. In the foreground the ruins of what was once the schoolmasters house and garden can be seen.
In this picture we can see the ruins of the many homes in the village area. Following the clearance of the township stones were taken from the ruins and used for various things including sheep fanks and dry stone dykes.
a scheduled ancient monument . It's designation means that it is
protected under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. The
prior consent of the Scottish Ministers (scheduled monument consent) is
required for any works which will lead to damage, demolition or destruction
of the monument, any works of repair, removal or alteration and addition,
and any flooding or tipping. This does not however stop existing agricultural land
use on the site, such as ploughing, cropping or grazing where this already
Unfortunately, this does not mean that the monument will be actively
conserved. This remains the responsibility of the owner, although there is
no mechanism under the Act to require owners to carry out conservation
This site is of major importance as Shiaba is a physical testament to life not only on the Island but in Scotland in the 1800's.
If you are interested in learning more about Shiaba and the other townships of the Ross please visit the centre.
We are open from April until October, but are available for visits by appointment outwith the summer season.
Admission £1.00 (GBP)
Ross of Mull Historical Centre
ISLE OF MULL
TELEPHONE/FAX 44 01681 700 659
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