Glen Mhor 1890's Muirtown Photograph


A fantastic and wonderfully crisp image from our friends as Am Baile which comes from the Lantern Slide Collection at Grantown Museum, with the following caption:

'A sailing ship at the Muirtown Basin of the Caledonian Canal, #Inverness, with the Muirtown Hotel and Glen Mhor Distillery beyond, 1890s'

This is a fairly unique perspective to date and we can try and date this even further. The pagoda looks like it is in operation, so we're already at September 1894 for a potential start date. Then, consider how new the stones of the malt barn appear - almost brand new and devoid of any wear and tear - considering how harsh the winters can be in and around Inverness, this is a good sign.

We know that the buildings which would appear in front of the distillery production site weren't in place by 1898, so another pointer, rather than being definitive. The bridge itself is the original Muirtown version, which was built in 1816 and replaced in 1935. In the distance we can see the original warehouse that depending on the perspective seems to be complete and running the length of the site - this would put the photograph from November 1895 onwards and given the lack of construction, likely to be 1896 onwards, as this is when planning application was made to extend it.

So, 1896-1899 would be my educated guess. I've approached the Grantown Museum for any additional information, but even without confirmation, this is a fantastic image and I love the gentleman on the bank with his dog looking across the water.

Being the thorough pain in the ass I am, I contacted Dan at the Grantown museum who kindly confirmed this was the only distillery image in a collection and 'the lantern slides were donated to us with out any further information, they are a bit of a random collection of highland scenes from an unknown (to us) photographer.'

Fortunately for us, this unknown photographer felt the need to capture this scene forever and in doing so, potentially the earliest known image of Glen Mhor in existence.