MacQueen’s battle with the last Wolf

The Last Wolf?

The Last Wolf?

One of the visitors to our site has told us about a MacQueen legend. She found it on a microfiche taken from a book published in the about Clan MacQueen, which is now sadly out of print. There were a couple of Clan MacQueen legends in this book. One was a love story where a MacQueen ran off with a lass from a clan that was promised to a lad of another clan.

The other was about a wolf that had been ravaging in Clan Chattan area and finally killed a young MacKintosh lass. The Chief of Clan Chattan called the clan levies out to search. First the levies were to report for a gathering then a search strategy would be made. The MacQueen was on route to the gathering coming through a gap in the mountains, when he came upon a wolf. There the wolf attacked him, he was forced to kill the wolf or be killed himself. He severed the head and took it with him to the gathering. He was many hours late when he finally entered the gathering due to his encounter with the wolf. The gathered clan levies jeered him and the Clan Chattan Chief admonished the MacQueen. The MacQueen said not one word, reached into his ruck and pulled out the wolf’s head in a flourish and tossed it at the chielf’s feet. The MacQueen turned and walked away and returned to his home.

As it happens, the book noted that this was the last recorded killing of a wolf on the Island of Alba and the MacQueen is supposedly credited with his kill. Pretty sad as the wolf’s head is on the coat of arms for the MacQueen’s.

The version I have read tells of hunter named MacQueen, of Pall-a-chrocain, on the river Findhorn, in 1743. MacQueen was a giant of a man, and renowned as a deer hunter. He died in 1797,

The land had become the hunting ground for a great black beast. The beast had already killed two children, and it was the Laird of MacIntosh who summond a meeting to discuss what was to be done. The men arrived at the meeting except MacQueen. Eventually he arrived.

“What kept you?” asked MacIntosh sarcastically.

“I brought him for you”, replied MacQueen, tossing out the severed head of the last wolf from under his plaid.

Has anyone else heard this legend?


About Amanda Moffet

I run with Rodger Moffet. Live in Edinburgh and love travelling around Scotland gathering stories.

View all posts by Amanda Moffet →

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9 thoughts on “MacQueen’s battle with the last Wolf

  1. James

    I once lived at Moy, quite near where this is supposed to have taken place and have read this story before.
    I’m reading “The Last Wolf” by Jim Crumley, and according to him, I now understand this story to be fiction, first appearing in Sir Thomas Dick Lauder’s ‘Account of the Great Moray Floods of 1829″.
    There is another even more unlikely local legend of a woman killing a wolf with a griddle, which also is supposed to have occurred on two or three occasions in different places. Poor wolves have had a bad press. There are some in the Wildlife Park at Kincraig and I have heard them howling in the winter. Very eerie and wonderful.

  2. Joseph C. Keller

    It’s long enough that the MacQueens have had no chief. So I’m stepping up and declaring myself chief. Two of my great grandparents were Queens from Virginia. There is a court in Scotland claiming to have jurisdiction over clan chiefdoms but they are closed indefinitely due to the Covid19 hoax and don’t even list a mailing address, only email. If they’re closed like that then they don’t have jurisdiction. If this court were any good, they would have found a chief for the Clan MacQueen by now.

    If someone thinks they should be chief instead of me, they can write me (physical mail, not email). Maybe I’ll abdicate in their favor.

    My address:

    16201 620th Ave
    Roland, IA 50236 USA

    • Richard Michael David MacQueen

      How about this?
      Your can be Chief of the USA MacQueens. I’ll take care of the Canadian MacQueens. Anyone else care to step up we can handle this old school. Over a game of Cribbage.


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