Members of the Cherokee Nation Visit in 2010

International Clan Grant Gatherings are traditionally held every five years with the first being in 1985, when members of the overseas Clan Grant Societies of Australia, Canada, NZ and the US come to Scotland to meet with their fellow Grants. The last International Gatherings was held in 2010 - Click here for the Events Programme of 2010.

Our next International Gathering will be held on Fri 7th - Thurs 13th August 2020.


Friday, 7th August 2020
Evening: Drinks and Registration at Duthil

This is where you will be given your Programme and lanyard which will act as your ticket for the week – a warm welcome awaits you all!

Saturday, 8th August 2020
Day: Abernethy Highland Games

March to the Opening Ceremony of the Games and meet with fellow Grants at the Clan Tent.
(Please note: your ticket will NOT include entry to the Games as it is open to all, and some Grants may not want to take part.)

Saturday Evening:
Dinner & Ceilidh with the Monadh Ruadh Band at The Peregrine Suite, Macdonald Resort, Aviemore.

This should be a fun evening and coaches have been booked to take you to and from Grantown and Nethybridge.

Sunday, 9th August 2020
Morning: Free

Afternoon: Visit to Grantown Museum
The special research room for visiting Grants should be up and ready by then. Not only that, but the Museum’s special Summer Exhibition will be all about Clan Grant.

Monday, 10th August 2020
Morning: Visit to Ballindalloch Castle & Lunch

The seat of an important branch of the Grant family and a lovely place to visit – described as ‘The Pearl of the North’.

Monday Afternoon: Glenfarclas Distillery
There had been a request to include a visit to Ballindalloch Distillery but the numbers allowed are so small that this will not work for us. So how about Ballindalloch in the morning with lunch, and a visit just up the road to Glenfarclas Distillery where Sir Patrick’s special blend is made.
Check out the website: Glenfarclas

Monday, 10th August
Highland Genealogy: Highland Archive Centre

A visit to the Highland Archive Centre and Family History Room in Inverness, who are very keen to show us around.

Tuesday, 11th August 2020
Day: Monarch of the Glen Tour

LIMITED PLACES – maximum 50 . We are busy working out a booking system that is fair. Includes Newtonmore, Dalwhinnie Distillery & Ardverikie Castle “Glen Bogle”, and Lunch at Dalwhinnie Community Café. For those of you who loved The Monarch of the Glen TV Series, this is a special chance to visit the site of the original Glen Bogle! We
are lucky that this has been arranged for us, as they do not usually do tours.

Tuesday Evening: Free

Tues 11th or Wed 12th August
Light Lunch or Afternoon Tea on the Strathspey Steam Railway

Dinner is not possible as they only do it on Fridays, but we can book lunch at 12.45 or afternoon tea at 14.45. The trip lasts approximately an hour and a half.

Wednesday, 12 August 2020
Day: Jacobite Boat Trip to Urquhart Castle

This is the second most visited site in Scotland and a very important Grant stronghold. You might catch a glimpse of Nessie too if you are lucky!

Thursday, 13 August 2020
Day: Self-guided Tours

Tour Suggestions: Culloden Battlefield, Fort George, Cawdor Castle, Highland Folk Museum, Highland Wildlife Park, Activities at Rothiemurchus. Let us know if a small group wants to get together for a particular outing and we will see if we can find a source of mini buses for you, but let us know in GOOD time – payment will need to be completed by the end of May.

Thursday Evening:
Community engagement event: “Beating Retreat” at The Square, Grantown

This is a military style ceremony associated with closing the camp and thus appropriate for the end of the celebrations – it will give us a chance to celebrate with the citizens of Grantown too.

Followed by: Clan Grant Supper at The Grant Arms Hotel, Grantown
Booking will be required – we may not all fit in here, but there are other nice venues in Grantown such as the Craiglynne Hotel and the Garth Hotel, so no one need go hungry!


The Abernethy Highland Games (2010)

By Gavin Musgrove.

Excerpts from an article which appeared in the Badenoch and Strathspey Herald (The Strathy) in August 2010

Members of the Cherokee Nation begin the march to the Aberthnethy Games
Members of the Cherokee Nation

THIRTY members of one of the most famous native North American tribes added a dash of colour to proceedings at a record-breaking Abernethy Highland Games at the weekend.

The Cherokee Nation tribesmen and women, including their Principle Chief, Chad `Corntassel` Smith - accompanied by eight massed pipe bands led the parade of Clan Grant members into the showground in Nethybridge.



Principle Chief, Chad `Corntassel` Smith and Bobby Smith
Principle Chief, Chad and Bobby Smith

The chief was the guest of honour on Saturday, and had the job of officially opening the 130th Games. The historic links between the Cherokees and Clan Grant span nearly three centuries. Many members of the Cherokee Nation are descended from Ludovick Grant of Creichie (Aberdeenshire), who was captured at the siege of Preston in the 1715 Rebellion. He was subsequently transported to Charlestown, South Carolina, as an indentured servant. On the completion of his seven year sentence, he became an Indian trader and married a Cherokee woman.

Members of the Cherokee Nation march into the Games Arena
Members of the Cherokee Nation

Chief Smith told the Strathy: "I`m not sure if I would call this home, but it is certainly nice to be among the Scottish people. They are very hospitable, generous and kind. "I am the sixth great grandson of Ludovick. He integrated into the Cherokee nation very early, so the connection is tenuous, but it is very interesting to see where people come from. "We have a great commonality with the Scottish sense of community; a sense of regaining language and preserving culture."

Around 50,000 members of the Cherokee nation are believed to be descended from Ludovick Grant.

Lord Strathspey, Clan Chieftain, said that they had given the Cherokees a traditional Highland welcome by toasting their arrival the previous night. He said: "It is very special to have them here. We have been trying to get them over for a while."

Lord Strathspey initiated the Cherokees` visit while on a trip to Atlanta in 2008, when he met a descendant of Ludovick and first suggested they should consider a visit.

A total of 180 Clan members, including representatives from Australia, Canada and the US have taken part in this year`s visit to the Grant heartlands.

Memory of a lifetime

By Merv Grant

This report appeared in Standfast Magazine, Issue No. 37, Winter 2011 (re. the 3rd International Gathering 2010)

The Clan Line Up
The Clan Line Up, 2010

The sun was shining brightly as we stood around talking quietly amongst ourselves waiting for the call. The day I had constantly looked forward to since first presenting the Australian flag to our Chief back in 2006 had finally arrived. Now I was only moments away from carrying that flag on behalf of all the `Aussie Scots` in the grand parade at this year`s International Gathering of the Clan Grant. My father would no doubt be watching from on high and feeling very proud that our family hadn`t forgotten its roots even though he passed away forty five years ago.

All of a sudden my conversation with Paul Grant, the Chief`s standard bearer, was interrupted when the Parade Marshal called out `fall in`. Under Chic Grant`s direction we were soon sorted into our appropriate places according to rank and nobility and surprisingly I found myself up near the front amongst the other flag bearers in the fourth row.

Cherokees march into the games, 2010
Cherokees march into the games, 2010

Immediately behind the flag bearers were all the men wearing kilts, followed by representatives of the Cherokee Nation with all the other Clan members bringing up the rear. Of course the Right Honourable The Lord Strathspey, Sir James Grant of Grant, Chief of Clan Grant, was up front marching directly behind his standard. From a spectators point of view it must have looked very impressive as we got ready to move off.

Up in front of the main parade the massed pipe bands started playing and the hair on the back of my neck stood up. I have always loved the sound of the pipes and drums, particularly the drums with their steady beat heralding a pipeband`s approach long before the pipes came within hearing distance. Today it was slightly different, the music sounded more personal and I thought of dad as I readied myself for the command `quick march`.

The International Clan March, 2010
The International Clan March, 2010

Then the call came and we were off. Those of us who had done military service automatically stepped off on the correct foot with the others not so sure but a quick shuffle soon had everyone in step and we set off down the road with Chic calling out the step - left, left, left right left. How quickly things like that come back to you, it seemed just like yesterday when I was doing my two year national service back in the mid sixties.

Down the road we marched keeping time to the beat of the bass drum with spectators on both sides of the road parting to allow us through, accompanied by clapping and cheers. As we approached the main gate and entered the arena the move forward was temporarily halted but we all kept marking time before stepping off to march the remaining few yards into the arena itself.

Earlier in the morning when I had looked out of our B&B window opposite the ground it had been a hive of activity with people setting up their stalls and food vendors cooking away getting ready before the hungry public arrived. Now the boundary fence all around the ground was lined with over four thousand people, in some places at least four or five deep, clapping, waving flags and cheering out loud. As we marched onto the ground suddenly someone called out `go Australia` and I turned my head to smile and gave the unknown person a thumbs up. I felt very proud to be out there carrying our national flag knowing everyone was watching.

The Welcome Ceremony 2010
The Welcome Ceremony 2010

After marching right around the arena once, the official party including the flag bearers, wheeled into the centre of the ground where the formal welcome ceremony was to take place. At Chic`s direction the flag bearers fanned out into a half circle in front of the microphone with our Chief standing in the centre waiting patiently for the officials to get themselves organised. Soon the official speeches were over and all the flag bearers were marched off the arena.

The parade was over in a flash but the memories will stay with me forever. Like Sir James always says, "it is great to be a Grant".


The Chief with the Bandolier and Bag presented to him by the Cherokee Nation
The Chief with Bandolier and Bag
presented to him by the Cherokee Nation
   Emily with Quaich presented to the Cherokee Nation
Emily with Quaich presented
to the Cherokee Nation