Of the pioneers who laid stone on stone in this secluded spot nothing is kenned. The keep is the first evidence of its lairds' existence, for it is older than 1477 when Robert Lamont of Ascog makes his bow as a witness at Acharossan with Gilchrist son of the coroner. He is styled i of Ascog in this book as his forebears are unknown, though generations must have come and gone on the loch side ere he emerged from the mists. They must have held their estates of the chiefs at least from 1472, when Ascog entered the Crown Charter to JOHN VIII. The cadet's next appearance was in 1498 when he saw Gilchrist take possession of Inverneilbeg in the company of young Coustoun and an Angus, probably vii of Monydrain whom DUNCAN VII bade him infeft in 1511. Not long after Robert's "carnal" daughter Elspeth married John Bannatyne of Acharossan, and in harvest 1516 at Corra, the richest steading of the lairdship, Robert set his lion seal in red wax upon a bond to his goodson obliging himself for tocher to be paid at the three Beltanes following (the old Druid May day festivals). The amount was £60 Scots, with "a.gret kov in ilka merk of the for sad sovm of monze," i.e. 90 cows, "and geve the ko plesis nocht the said John Bannachtyn the said Robert Lamond (sall) lay dvn a merk of monze for ilk ko at plesis nocht." The bride's father was also to sustain her in meat and clothing till the tocher was paid, to induce a quick settlement. She in her turn had a liferent of Acharossan which she carried to her second husband, also John Bannatyne, of Scarrel in Ettrick Bay. About the same time Robert witnessed sasines for the Argyll family at Skipness and at Otter, and his final appearance in record was in 1520 when at Inveraray with Sir JOHN X and Ardlamont he supported Maclachlan's request for protection.

Soon after he made his last ferry, and it was a John Lamont of Ascog, probably his grandson, who backed with that same Ardlamont Sir JOHN X's protest against MacCailein on Dunoon hill in 1540. When the Crown sued for non-entry dues of the barony of Inveryne in the next year this John ii (to our ken) was vassal in a £20 lairdship of some half-dozen steadings, centring round the keep and stretching south to include the modern Ascog farm and bay. In order of rental value they were Corra (7.5 merks), Kilbride and Derybruich (6 each), Ascog proper and Achadalvory (4 each), and Achourk-more (2.5). Next to Ardlamont he was the bienest cadet, and seems to have been the only Lamont able to meet his obligations. It even looks as if he pledged the farm of Ascog to Maclachlan to raise 200 merks for the chief, only to find the lender deny the reversion and set up a kinsman with the style "of Ascog" in an attempt to secure the lands for all time. A tuilzie resulted between red tartan and green, and it was alleged that Maclachlan "cumin to John Lawmont of Askog's tennentis callit Mcilchois and Mcilwon in Ouchter moir, and siclyk to the other man of the said John's in Eskok callit Mcintagart, and bund ransonit and spulzet them in maner of sorning." This was one of the disputes Argyll decided in favour of Clan Laomainn in 1548. Next year John ii was witness for Knockdow at Inverchaolain, and in 1553 sat on the jury at Renfrew which apprised the estates of his fellow-cadets for non-payment of the royal dues. With him was Angus Lamont of Derybruich, described in record as a brother of Sir JOHN X. But for this one would jalouse Angus as Ascog's brother, for the steading which was his in property was within the lairdship. On the death of the last Ardlamont at this time John ii was reckoned his heir as "sister's oe" (grandchild), which leads to the inferences that John ii was a grandson and not a son of Robert i, and that the latter's wife was of Ardlamont. Most of the inheritance was already dissipated, and. Ascog was wise enough not to take up an elusory mid-superiority of Evanachan, which he abandoned to the chief. Later evidence, however, relates a spuilzie of 18 horses from Ardlamont and S. Auchagoyl by the next laird and that laird's father (presumably John ii), which was probably an attempt to take over his kinsman's moveables.

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©2011 The Clan Lamont Society of North America