Culzean castle on the Ayrshire coast is the most visited property of the National Trust for Scotland. Built in the late 16th century above a network of caves, the castle became a centre for smuggling during the 18th century. Sir Thomas Kennedy, 9th Earl of Cassillis, went on an extended grand tour in the 1750s and returned full of ideas as to how to improve his vast estates and home. His brother and heir commissioned Robert Adam to create his masterpiece and became bankrupt as a result. The estate was rescued when wealthy American cousins inherited it in 1792. Archibald Kennedy, 1st Marquess of Ailsa, completed the house and lavished money on the property. Produced in association with the National Trust for Scotland, this volume tells the whole history of the castle. Michael Moss has carried out extensive research, drawing on estate records, original plans and family correspondence to create a major history of the castle and an account of the running of a Scottish country estate.
Michael Moss is Research Professor of Archival Studies, University of Glasgow