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A biography of the last ancient clan chief of Clan Macneil, Roderick Macneil. This book as about the transformation of a highland chieftain into an officer and a gentleman. It's the story of General Roderick Macneil, the last hereditary chief of his Clan. Brought up on the remote island of Barra, as a young man he survived the horrendous Napoleonic campaigns (Corunna, Walcheren, Waterloo). When he became chief in 1822 he introduced the industrial revolution to the Western Isles and went bankrupt in spectacular fashion. He re-invented himself and led a charmed life in the Indian Army, before returning to live out his retirement in a fine house overlooking Hyde Park.
Keith Branigan has carried out archaeological and historical research on Barra for over 20years and written many books reporting his discoveries. His researches into Barra's past have taken him to Nova Scotia, Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island. With colleagues from Sheffield University he has discovered and recorded almost 2000 archaeological sites on the Barra islands and excavated fifty of them. He is currently Professor Emeritus of Archaeology & Prehistory at the University of Sheffield.