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John Shiell1

M, #9545, b. 3 December 1806
  • Birth*: John Shiell was born on 3 December 1806 at Kelso, Roxburghshire, Scotland.1
  • He was the son of Anthony Shiell and Jean Holme.1
  • Misc*: On 13 May 1862 at Kelly Castle, Arbirlot, Arbroath, Forfarshire, Scotland, John Shiell was involved with the Restoration of Kelly Castle. (newspaper report) — As our readers are aware, this romantically-situated old house has during the last eighteen months been in process of restoration, preparatory to its being occupied by Mr Shiell, writer, Dundee, of the firm of Messrs Shiell & Small. When the work was begun, the Castle was in a ruinous condition, having been uninhabited for many years. Now that the work of restoration is about completed, the venerable building, although maintaining the same exterior may very properly be said to have renewed its youth so far as all its interior arrangements are concerned. From tower to basement, the whole
    edifice has been overhauled, and its numerous apartments have been finished with care and skill. The principal contractors have been — for the mason work, Mr Gordon, Arbroath; wright's work, Mr. Brownlee, Dundee; and the painter's work, Mr Drummond, Dundee. The dining and drawing-rooms are handsome apartments. The floor of each is bordered with inlaid wood. In the centre of the drawing-room ceiling is a large circular shield, on which are carved the dates of the various epochs in the history of the Castle, and the ciphers of its successive possessors. The first is 1442, O (Ouchterlony, and the year in which the Castle is supposed to have been built); 1614, I (Irvine); 1697, M (Maule); and 1864, J. S (Shiell). Round the cornice of this room, there are also the shields and cipher of Dalhousie, Panmure, Ouchterlony, Ramsay, Maule, Irvine, and Shiell. A large garden is being laid out around the Castle, which for a place of residence enjoys the immense advantage of over-hanging the beautiful Den of Kelly, the most picturesque spot in all this neighbourhood. We understand that Mr Shiell will enter upon the occupation of the Castle in the course of a week or two.2
    Kelly Castle, Arbroath - taken by RLS c2003
  • Misc: Archaeological Notes
    N064SW 8 60793 40163.

    (NO 6078 4016) Kellie Castle (NR)
    OS 1:10000 map (1975)

    For Kellie Castle, Dovecot, see NO64SW 67.

    Kelly (D MacGibbon and T Ross 1889) or Kellie (G M Ramsay, owner) Castle, which was also known as Auchterlony, was the seat of the Elliot family from the 14th to the 17th centuries but the building itself appears to date from the late 15th century at the earliest. After standing in ruins for some time it was restored in the mid-19th century and is still occupied.
    The castle consists of a large tower-house overlooking a courtyard on the W. The tower-house, 4 storeys high and massive, may date from the late 15th century, but architectural detail suggests that it is more likely to be contemporary with the ranges of 16th century buildings which flank the courtyard. These are 2 storeys high on the N, S and W, where there is a modern entrance archway. The east range abutting the tower on the N is 3 storeys high. At the outer angles of the W range there are round towers with conical roofs.
    The whole building shows only slight evidence of its 19th century restoration, e.g. a few window insertions and some outbuildings on the N. In general it still retains its early character.
    Visited by OS (JLD) 6 June 1958

    Architectural Notes
    Kellie Castle


    See "Registrum de Panmure" Vol. 1, edited by John Stuart - historical notes and photograph.


    Scottish Record Office:

    Panelling the principal rooms at Kellie Castle. Contract between Henry Maule of Kellie and Henry Wright in Dounie.
    Contract witnessed by Alexander Edward, architect.
    1699 GD 45/18/1233
    Mason work at Kellie Castle.
    Contracts between Henry Maule of Kellie and James Thomson, mason in Edinburgh.
    1701 GD 45/18/1236
    Alterations to house.
    They include work on fireplaces and windows and the lowering of the kitchen and cellar floors.
    Two letters from Alexander McGill at Aberbrothock.
    1705 and n.d. GD 45/14/332


    University of Dundee Archives;
    Collection of drawings held at University of Dundee Archives
    Dated '13th May 1862'
    Address '30 Reform Street, Dundee' James MacLaren
    Proposed minor alterations
    Drawing No 1 Missing
    2 Dining Room Floor Plan including ceiling layout
    3 Drawing Room Floor Plan including furniture plan
    4 Attic Plan and Section
    5 South Elevation
    6 Section C-D
    7 Section A-B
    8 West Front.3
Last Edited: 26 Aug 2012


Father*: Anthony Shiell1 b. c 1775
Mother*: Jean Holme1 b. c 1775


  1. [S56] International Genealogical Index (IGI) (Salt Lake City, Utah, USA: International Genealogical Index), C11793-6 [Jan 2012].
  2. [S40] From RLS [Jan 2012].
  3. [S49] Website Web Site online (www.) http://canmore.rcahms.gov.uk/en/site/35644/details/kellie+castle/&biblio=more [Aug 2012].