Carnock House was a 17th century tower house, probably incorporating earlier work, of which nothing now remains.
The lands of Carnock were originally part of the lands of Erth or Airth which were granted by David I to the Abbey of Holyrood in 1128. By the end of the 12th century the lands were owned by the d’Erth family and in the 13th century Erth was subdivided into Erth, Elphinstone, Carnock and Plane.
In the 15th century Agnes d’Erth married John Livingston of Manerstoun. Their daughter, Agnes Livingston, married Alexander Forrester of Torwood in 1463 and was given a share of the lands of Carnock and Plane.
Part of the lands of Carnock were owned by the Somerville family and another part by the Drummonds. Early in the 16th century Thomas Somerville exchanged a seventh of the lands of Carnock for land in the south-west of Plane which Alexander Drummond of Carnock owned. In 1528 Alexander was forfeited for his involvement in a plot against James V.
The family’s estates were later restored and Alexander was succeeded by his son, Robert Drummond, who in 1542, along with his wife, Agnes Kirkcaldy, bought some land in Plane from David Somerville.
Alexander’s second and third sons, Alexander and Charles, acquired Midhope Castle from Sir James Hamilton of Crawfordjohn some time after 1560. Alexander was a lawyer who worked for John Stewart, 4th Earl of Atholl, George Gordon, 5th Earl of Huntly and George Gordon, 6th Earl of Huntly. Charles was Provost of Linlithgow and married to Janet Hamilton.
Robert Drummond acted as curator to Lord Elphinstone, managing his affairs, and in 1565 Robert’s brother, Alexander Drummond of Midhope was accused of adultery with Margaret Drummond, wife of Robert Elphinstone, 3rd Lord Elphinstone and daughter of Sir John Drummond of Innerpeffray, and of “the theftuous destruction, stealing, intromitting, wasting, disponing and concealing from Lord Elphinstone” of goods and money to the value £20,000 over the previous three years. The matter apparently wasn’t taken further however and doesn’t seem to have gone to trial, with good relations between the two families seemingly continuing.
Robert Drummond’s stock rose and between 1579 and 1583, as Sir Robert Drummond of Carnock, he was Master of Work to the Crown of Scotland.
In the 17th century Carnock passed to the Nicolson family and in 1634 Sir Thomas Nicolson of Carnock bought part of the lands and barony of Plane from James Somerville. In the second half of the 17th century the upper floors of the hall house at Plane were apparently demolished to provide stone for a new wing at Carnock.
The house was demolished in 1941.
Alternative names for Carnock House
Carnock Castle; Carnok; Crammok; Crannok; Kernok; N. Carnock; Nether Carnock