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Baldoon Castle

Bladnoch, Scotland
By Saoirse Redgrave

In the small riverside town of Bladnoch, Scotland, the townâ??s one road takes visitors close to the ivy-draped ruins of Baldoon Castle. The castleâ??s ruins are not the only ruined thing lingering in the area, thereâ??s also the broken-hearted, and some say–mentally insaneâ??ghost of young Janet Dalrymple. People report they sometimes see Janet drifting among the ruins in the nightgown she wore on her wedding nightâ??the same gown that became covered in blood under mysterious circumstances that very night in 1669.

The eldest daughter of Sir James Dalrymple, First Viscount Stair, Janet, like so many of her peers, was forced by her parents into an arranged marriage. Many women her age willingly went to the altar to cement better family alliances, but Janet was already in love, and supposedly secretly betrothed, to the nearly penniless Archibald, Lord Rutherford. Faced with a loveless politically arranged marriage, Janet admitted her promise to Archibald. Her parents would not relent with their plans and finally, Janet was forced to tell Archibald she was to marry another.

At the kirk of Old Luce, not far from Carsecleugh Castle, Janet was accompanied by her two brothers to her wedding, and certain heartbreak. She was wed to David Dunbar, heir to Baldoon on a hot summer day.

The events leading to the haunting vary, depending on who told the tale. Some supporters of Dunbar felt certain Janet simply went insane with her disappointment and viciously stabbed her husband as there was no one closer at hand to blame for the fact sheâ??d never be with her love, Archibald. Others claimed Archibald himself was concealed in the bridal chamber and stabbed the bridegroomâ??narrowly escaping through the window and into the garden as Dunbar lay bleeding. Yet a third version of the tale claims David wounded Janet, and he is found to be insane. Locals sometimes add additional spice to the story by claiming it was the Devil himself who attacked David Dunbar and tormented Janet until she lost her mind.

Regardless of what version of the tale you choose to believe, in the end, hearing shrieks and terrible wails, the door to the bridal chamber was broken down and Janet and David were both foundâ??him stretched near the threshold, her in a corner–both bloody. David recovered from his wound and never talked about that night to anyone. He later remarried. Janet was not so fortunate to have another chance at love or marriage.

She died on September 12, 1669. She never spoke about the events of that night, either, and was considered by many to have utterly lost her mind.

Her story was later immortalized by the talented Sir Walter Scott in his â??The Bride of Lammermoor.â? People still claim her ghost can be seen on some hot summer nights, but most often she can be viewed on the anniversary of her death.

11 comments on this haunted house. Share your story »

11 Comments

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SYDNEY says:

March 24, 2009, 6:26 pm

Me my brother and sister belive thet this house is huanted.
We feel that aghost is here. and there are marks all around!

We are 10,9,and6.Sydney Brendan Kyley.

LeeAnna, says:

October 5, 2009, 4:12 pm

wow, i htink it’s haunte i’m in alaska and all of the storie’s i’ve read,was amazing!!! it is haunted every storie is i am 9 i feel no1 should meet bloody mary if you say her name three time’s in the ark she iwll murer you so beware

PAIGE says:

October 30, 2009, 5:14 pm

i

beleve in all of thes ghost stories thir are sspeirits

Tania Crook says:

November 19, 2009, 10:59 pm

wow i believe these storys and i beleave you too lee ann you dont wanna say candy man either!!

Sarah K. says:

January 9, 2010, 1:51 pm

Why can’t you say candy man ive never heard of that one…
and i would love to visit this place and see for myself if the storys are true.

hannah says:

March 8, 2010, 7:14 pm

i trust all of you my mom had a scary house like that be for my house is haunted i see shadows of a man hear.

Charity says:

March 20, 2010, 8:08 pm

I’ve been told many stories about Haunted ****. I beileve in it if it was fake or real. I am scard of ghoust!!

Zoe says:

August 5, 2010, 12:34 pm

What exactly is candy man? I don’t get it. I just heard about it today and to be honest have never heard of it before. BTW: I’m 12.

Melanie says:

October 4, 2010, 7:29 pm

candyman is an old urban legend that if you say his name 3 times in a dark bathroom mirror he is supposed to come to you and attack you but there is no proof that it really works.And for the place in scotland to be haunted i’m pretty sure it is if someone has passed away at a tragic death,hope this helps everyone out,happy haunting’s everyone :-)

Karen says:

November 24, 2012, 3:26 pm

As a decendant (my mother was a Dalrymple and James & Janet are both in my geneological line, I find this story faciniting. I plan on eventually visiting the land of my ancestors and reading the Bride of Lammamore. To have found these names and dates and stories in my families research is amazing to me, and I want to learn even more.

Esmeliz says:

December 26, 2012, 6:21 pm

@Karen,how did you research your family? because ive been trying to reseach my family for months and have come up with nothing!

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