Sir James Fergusson of Kilkerran Bt (1904-1973), for twenty years Keeper of the Records of Scotland, was a distinguished historian and author whose many original explorations of events, figures and families prominent in Scottish history still bring the past fascinatingly to life.
In the first of three books, Lowland Lairds, he presents a broad portrait of country gentry, with closer studies of Alexander Forester of Stirling, the rascally baron; Alexander Nisbet, the historian of heraldry; George Fergusson, Lord Hermand, the eccentric farmer-judge; James Nasmyth, 'the Lairdís Lawyer'; Thomas Maule of Panmure, a sixteenth-century sportsman; the Craufurds of Crosbie; and Boswellís friend, William Nairne.
In the eighteenth century, Scotland was still backward in accepting and practising the new agriculture.
Sir Jamesís account of the work carried out by his own ancestors - including Sir Adam Fergusson - at Kilkerran in Ayrshire is drawn from his extensive family papers. It tells the story of the development of a country estate typical of many in Scotland at the time.
Originally published in 1949.