St. Monance is a very ruined 15th century castle which was altered and extended in the 16th and 17th centuries. Not much remains except vaulted cellars, part of a block with thick outer walls and a large round tower, as well as fragments of a walled courtyard and other buildings.
It was originally a property of the Kinloch family, but passed to the Sandilands of Cruivie. The Sandilands became bankrupt and sold the castle in 1649 to the Covenanter General Sir David Leslie. Leslie served under Gustavus Adolphus, and joined the army of Covenanters in 1643. He fought at Marston Moor in 1644 and defeated the Marquis of Montrose at Philiphaugh in 1645. However, he was defeated by Cromwell at Dunbar in 1650, and was captured at the Battle of Worcester in 1651, after which he spent nine years in the Tower of London. He died in 1682. The castle passed to the Anstruthers, then to the Bairds of Elie.
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View our extensive collection of castle postcards (circa 1900).