Scotsman Archives

An accident resulting in the loss of three lives took place between Appin and Lismore on Wednesday evening.

It was pay-day at the limestone quarry on Sheep Island, off Port Appin, and some of the men were more or less under the influence of liquor. Five of them proposed to cross over to Lismore in a boat of 10 ½ feet keel. Mr Maclachlan, manager of the works, interfered, and succeeded in locking up one of the men, while the other four, named Donald Black, Alexander Macgregor, Alexander Buchanan and Dugald Carmichael, launched the small boat, but they had scarcely put off when they commenced quarrelling and one of them jumped overboard.

The noise of the quarrelling in the boat attracted the attention of a young man named Hugh McIntyre, who hurrying down to the water’s edge, saw the occupants of the boat were hardly in a fit state to manage the boat and jumped in to pilot it across to Lismore.

Shortly after another dispute arose, which ended in a fight and the boat was capsized. Carmichael was saved by a shepherd putting off a boat from Lismore and Buchanan by Dr Buchanan of Appin but Macgregor was found dead in the boat while McIntyre and Black had sunk. Black and Macgregor were married and leave families. McIntyre was unmarried.

Additional information:

It’s believed that the men had been drinking that day at the Inn at Point on Lismore, before going to Sheep Island. When one of the bodies was eventually retrieved from the water, a heel mark impression was found on the side of his face. The Inn at Point was closed and no other has ever opened since.

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