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The Argyll Papers

Inveraray Castle

The Argyll Papers include around 1500 manuscript and printed maps and plans dating from the 17th to the 20th centuries. These reflect the historically extensive landholding, political and public responsibilities of the Campbell family, Dukes of Argyll. The maps and plans collection is of national significance due to its wide ranging subject matter, its chronological depth and the importance of the architects, surveyors and cartographers represented.

The printed material (approx. 500 items) includes full sets of the principal 18th and 19th century marine and county maps of Scotland, including rare examples such as an early imprint of George Langland’s Map of Kintyre (1793, revised 1798) and unbound proof impressions of John Thompson’s Atlas of Scotland (1832). There are also working sets of 1st and 2nd edition OS maps annotated with unique information about land management, tenants and crofters.

The manuscript material (approx. 1000 items) includes a large number of architectural plans and estate surveys with a small but significant group of road and military maps. Significant architects include Roger Morris, John Adam, Robert Mylne, Anthony Salvin, William Nesfield and Ian Lindsay. Around 300 estate surveys depict the landscapes, settlements and natural resources of Inveraray, Tiree, Iona, Mull, Morvern, Lismore, Kintyre, Rosneath and some American estates in great detail. This group includes formative records of Scottish agricultural improvement, reflected through the work of 18th century landscape surveyors, including Daniel Paterson, William Douglas, James Turnbull, George Langlands, John Kirk, James Richmond, Charles Abercrombie and John Waterstone.

The military maps include an interesting first-hand depiction of the Battle of Culloden (1746) and a detailed map of Gibraltar Bay, showing military stations, Spanish lines and other details (1779).


The Archives, Argyll Estates, Cherry Park, Inveraray PA32 8XE

Main contact

Alison Diamond

Telephone number

01499 302698, 07943 667673


Opening hours

Mon to Fri, 09.00 to 17.00


By appointment only.


Self-service photography permitted (without flash). Charges apply.


List of maps and plans available at Inveraray Castle.

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