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Thread: MacLaren

  1. #1
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    MacLaren

    Name:  Double Track.jpg
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    Hoping for some help from the tartan experts here. I sometimes see the MacLaren tartan, (I'm told once known as the Regent tartan,) depicted with the "double tracks" not unlike Black Watch, but this is not what is commonly produced by Locharron or the other mills as MacLaren. Does anyone know if this is an earlier version of MacLaren or simply done in error?
    Thanks in advance for your thoughts.
    Cheers,

    David
    "I'm not crazy about reality, but it's still the only place to get a decent meal."
    Grouch Marx

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    If you wish to research Tartan there are two pretty good sources.

    The Scottish Tartans Authority is a private listing that was for many years considered "The" authority on the subject.
    Our own figheadair (Peter Eslea MacDonald) is the historian to the Authority.

    http://www.tartansauthority.com/

    Established by an act of the Scottish Parliament in November 2008 The Scottish Register of Tartan was officially launched, and the first design listed on 5 Feb 2009.

    https://www.tartanregister.gov.uk

    There are currently 6 designs listed on The Register under the name "MacLaren".

    The design in your post may be #2574 on The Register with this description -

    The sample is labelled MacLaren in a collection from Wilson's of Bannockburn, but it is believed to be a naming error. It is normally known as Hunting Grant. Wilson's Hunting Grant is a marriage between Black Watch and the Regent sett, later known as MacLaren. Wilsons of Bannockburn a weaving firm founded c1770 near Stirling,
    Last edited by Steve Ashton; 16th September 19 at 10:40 AM.
    Steve Ashton
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  4. #3
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    MacLaren

    Thanks Steve, the description is somewhat confusing in that it states "Wilson's Hunting Grant is a marriage of Black Watch and the Regent sett," but according to the register Hunting Grant, (or Grant Hunting,) is Black Watch without the red and yellow lines of the Regent sett. Regardless, I can't help but wonder how the modern MacLaren sett came to be simplified excluding the double tracks.
    Thanks again for your input.

    Cheers,
    David
    Last edited by kiltedsawyer; 16th September 19 at 12:48 PM.
    "I'm not crazy about reality, but it's still the only place to get a decent meal."
    Grouch Marx

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    Pattern No232 or Regent became MacLaren at some point shortly after the Prince Regent became King Goerg IV. It is similar to, or vice-versa, the Ferguson, both Wilsons' designs, as was the Grant, Hunting . This Grant, Hunting sett should not be confused with the 42nd tartan which a number of other families also wear.

    It's a jump to say that the MacLaren is a simplified version of the Grant, Hunting; It could equally be described as a simplified version of Royal Stewart in a 'hunting form'. The truth is that there were a number of variations on a theme produced inthe early 1800s and the MacLaren and Grant are but two.

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    Clan Grant uses the Gov. set #2, or Black Watch as their hunting tartan;usually attributed to the fact that one of the six original companies was recruited and commanded by Col. William Grant of Ballindalloch and after his death commanded by by the brother of the Chief of Grant, Major George Grant.
    The tartan posted above (the one that looks very close to Black Watch with yellow and red stripes added) probably became attributed as the Grant hunting tartan during the Highland revival due to it being the tartan of the 1st Strathspey Regiment and perhaps the 97th Regiment of Foot as well. Both regiments were raised in the last decade of the 18th C. by Sir James Grant of Grant. All that aside, calling it "Grant Hunting Tartan" probably came from the Wilson's books rather than any common usage.

    Not that any of that has any bearing on the MacLaren tartans...

  8. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Monkey View Post
    The tartan posted above (the one that looks very close to Black Watch with yellow and red stripes added) probably became attributed as the Grant hunting tartan during the Highland revival due to it being the tartan of the 1st Strathspey Regiment and perhaps the 97th Regiment of Foot as well. Both regiments were raised in the last decade of the 18th C. by Sir James Grant of Grant. All that aside, calling it "Grant Hunting Tartan" probably came from the Wilson's books rather than any common usage.
    Although it has been postulated that one or other of these two Grant related regiments may have worn this sett, there is no evidence to support this. The fact that a piece of the 42nd tartan was found in a 97nd Knapsack points to their use of the standard Government sett.

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  10. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by figheadair View Post
    Although it has been postulated that one or other of these two Grant related regiments may have worn this sett, there is no evidence to support this. The fact that a piece of the 42nd tartan was found in a 97nd Knapsack points to their use of the standard Government sett.

    huh. not sure what happened. Must have deleted a phrase when proofreading. It should have read as follows (missing phrase bolded)


    "The tartan posted above (the one that looks very close to Black Watch with yellow and red stripes added) probably became attributed (most likely apocryphally) as the Grant hunting tartan during the Highland revival due to it being the tartan of the 1st Strathspey Regiment and perhaps the 97th Regiment of Foot as well. Both regiments were raised in the last decade of the 18th C. by Sir James Grant of Grant. All that aside, calling it "Grant Hunting Tartan" probably came from the Wilson's books rather than any common usage."

    There is no real evidence the tartan in question was used by either regiment. Dropping the bit about it being the stuff of fables makes a difference. My intent was to lay the origin of the connection to the Grants with the old Wilson's books rather than any historical precedent. Should have left out the whole bit about the regiments in hindsight; it's irrelevant to the argument from the get-go. Thanks for catching that one...

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  12. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by figheadair View Post
    It's a jump to say that the MacLaren is a simplified version of the Grant, Hunting; It could equally be described as a simplified version of Royal Stewart in a 'hunting form'. The truth is that there were a number of variations on a theme produced inthe early 1800s and the MacLaren and Grant are but two.
    Thank you sir, what I did not make clear was that it seems the MacLaren sett currently woven by most if not all the mills seems to be a simplified version of the tartan pictured in the original post. They have dropped the double tracks. Personally, I like the sett with the double tracks, but it appears it would have to be a special order.

    Thanks again,
    Cheers

    David
    "I'm not crazy about reality, but it's still the only place to get a decent meal."
    Grouch Marx

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    Quote Originally Posted by kiltedsawyer View Post
    Thank you sir, what I did not make clear was that it seems the MacLaren sett currently woven by most if not all the mills seems to be a simplified version of the tartan pictured in the original post. They have dropped the double tracks. Personally, I like the sett with the double tracks, but it appears it would have to be a special order.
    I think it would be wrong to assume that the MacLaren is a simplified Grant, Hunting. Both patterns were included in Wilsons' 1819 Key Pattern Book, the former as No232 or Regent and the latter simply as Grant. There is nothing in their notes about the origins or either or which came first.

    And yes, the Grant would need to be a special order.

  14. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Monkey View Post
    All that aside, calling it "Grant Hunting Tartan" probably came from the Wilson's books rather than any common usage."
    No, Wilsons' 1819 Key Pattern Book simply calls it Grant.

    My intent was to lay the origin of the connection to the Grants with the old Wilson's books rather than any historical precedent. Should have left out the whole bit about the regiments in hindsight; it's irrelevant to the argument from the get-go. Thanks for catching that one...
    The 42nd connection with the Grants is first noted in the Cockburn Collection (1810-15). Of the four specimens of 42nd tartan in the Collection, No 4 is named Grant of Grant.

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