The Clan Ross by tradition fought at the Battle of Largs in 1263 in support of Alexander III. Clan Ross fought against the English at the Battle of Dunbar (1296) where their chief, the Earl of Ross was captured. This meant that for a short time they sided with the English but he later supported Robert the Bruce of Scotland fighting at the Battle of Bannockburn 1314.
The charter that gave the Rosses Balnagowan land was in 1374. They held these lands for over 300years. The earldom of Ross passed through a female line to the MacDonalds and that later led to dispute between two rival claimants, the Lord of the Isles and the Duke of Albany. This resulted in the Battle of Harlaw 1411, where the Clan Ross fought as Highlanders in support of the Lord of the Isles against the Duke of Albany.
The earldom of Ross remained with the Lord of the Isles until that lordship was forfeited to the crown in 1476.
Through the 15th century there was a feud with the Mackays which resulted in a slaughter of Mackays at the battle of Tarbat 1486. The Mackays united with clan Sutherland and revenge came a year later at Auldicharish where the Rosses were severely defeated. The Mackays were soon raiding Ross lands again until in 1496 James IV order them both to stop or be fined. This did little good but it did end when the Mackays feuded with the Clan Sutherland.
The 2nd Lord Ross was killed at Flodden 1503 fighting on the Scottish side. The chief Ross 9th of Balgowan (d.1592) is recorded as a man of violence and utterly unscrupulous as was his son the 10th of Balgowan (d.1615).
David Ross 12th of Balnagowan signed the National Covenant at Inverness on 26 April 1638. and was present at the defeat of James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose in 1650. He led a few of the clan at the battle of Worcester 1651 where he was captured and impisoned in the Tower of London where he died in 1653.
Clan Ross in the Jacobite rebellions, 1715 and 1745, were protestants and government supporters. In the 1715 they joined forces with the Munroes. In 1719 they fought on the government side defeating the Jacobites at Glen Shiel.
In the ’45,Alexander Ross the Pitcalnie chief raised a Ross Independent Company to garrison Inverness Castle against the Jacobites. The earldom of Ross passed through a female line, and that later led to dispute between two rival claimants—the Lord of the Isles and the Duke of Albany. This resulted in the Battle of Harlaw 1411, where the Clan Ross fought as Highlanders in support of the Lord of the Isles against an army of Scottish Lowlanders who supported the Duke of Albany
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