Morton Castle

Morton Castle, Dumfries and Galloway


Near Thornhill


B road off A702



Morton Castle is built on a strong site by the side of a small loch which was dammed in the late 18th century. It consists of a ruined 15th century hall castle with an unusual triangular courtyard.

It gives the appearance of a much larger castle than it actually is and is in a never bleak and isolated location.

~ History ~

1100's ~ Dunegal, Lord Nithsdale builds himself a stronghold at Morton.

It later passes to the Adairs.

1357 ~ The Treaty of Berwick secures the release of King David II requires the Scots to destroy thirteen castles in Nithsdale, including Morton Castle owned by Sir Thomas Randolph.

1459 ~ The lands in the hands of the Earls of March build themselves a new stone castle on the site. The Douglases acquire the lands and castle and are made Earls of Morton.

1581 ~ James Douglas, 4th Earl of Morton and Regent for King James VI, is executed after being implicated in the plot to murder Darnley.

1588 ~ King James VI leads an expedition against the Catholic Maxwells. Morton Castle is taken and burned, and returned to the Earls of Morton, the fourth earl's attainder having been reversed.

1608 ~ The castle is sold to William Douglas of Coshogle, who sells it in turn to William Douglas of Drumlanrig ten years later.

1714 ~ The castle is partially occupied as a hunting lodge.

1715 ~ The castle is abandoned