13.09.2004 – Day 2: McCaig’s Tower


McCaig’s Tower

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McCaig’s Tower is a prominent tower on the hillside (called Battery Hill) overlooking Oban inArgyll, Scotland. It is built of Bonawe granite taken from the quarries across Airds Bay, on Loch Etive, from Muckairn, with a circumference of about 200 metres with two-tiers of 94 lancetarches (44 on the bottom and 50 on top).

The structure was commissioned, at a cost of £5,000 sterling (£500,000 at 2006 prices usingGDP deflator), by the wealthy, philanthropic banker (North of Scotland Bank), John Stuart McCaig.

John Stuart McCaig was his own architect. The tower was erected between 1897 and his death, aged 78 from Angina Pectoris, on 29 June 1902 at John Square House, Oban, Argyll.

McCaig’s intention was to provide a lasting monument to his family, and provide work for the localstonemasons during the winter months. McCaig was an admirer of Roman andGreek architecture, and had planned for an elaborate structure, based on the Colosseum in Rome. His plans allowed for a museum and art gallery with a central tower to be incorporated. Inside the central tower he planned to commission statues of himself, his siblings and their parents. His death brought an end to construction with only the outer walls completed.

 

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Der McCaig’s Tower oberhalb der Stadt ist der nicht fertiggestellte Nachbau des Kolosseums in Rom. Der ortsansässige Bankier John Stuart McCaig ließ das Monument 1897 bauen, um die einheimischen Arbeiter während der arbeitsarmen Wintermonate zu beschäftigen und seiner Familie ein Denkmal zu setzen. Weder der geplante Turm im Inneren des Bauwerks noch die Statuen der Familie McCaig wurden jemals fertiggestellt, da alle Mitglieder der Familie bis 1904 starben oder verarmten. Seit einigen Jahren ist der Innenraum dieses Folly als Parkanlage hergerichtet und die Aussichtsplattform kann bestiegen werden.

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