Hugh McBean was the head of the family and was born in Kilmallie, Inverness in around 1840. Hugh married Christina Sinclair on 23rd January 1872. Christina was born in 1850 at Kilmore, Argyll. She was the daughter of John Sinclair, a farmer. Upon marriage Hugh lists his occupation as coachman and Christina is a housekeeper.
By 1901 the census lists Hugh as a farmer and caretaker at Inverawe House. By this time the couple had ten children: - Christina, Donald, Margaret, Euphemia, John, Isabella (Belle), James Munroe, William, Jeanie and Mary.
Three of their sons served and died in the Great War. James, John and William were all killed.
James Munroe McBean was born at Ardchattan on 8th May 1885. He was a gamekeeper and undergardener before signing up. He served with the 13th (Scottish Horse) Battalion, Black Watch, where he rose to the rank of Sergeant. He was killed in action on 17th October 1918 aged 32. He is buried at the Highland Cemetery, Le Cateau in France.
John McBean was born on 21st May 1880 at Ardchattan. He lived at Kilmelford with his wife Annie at the time of his enlistment. He signed up as a Gunner with the Royal Field Artillery. He was wounded whilst service with C Battery, 232 Brigade and died of his wounds on 24th December 1917, aged 36. He is buried at Ruyaulcourt Military Cemetery in France.
William McBean was born on 17th September 1887 at Ardchattan. He was serving in the 11th Battalion of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders as Acting Captain when he was killed by a sniper on 12th May 1916 at the age of 28. He is remembered with honour at Vermelles British Cemetery in France. His father presented a bed in Dungallan Military Hospital in his memory. There is also a stone granite seat in Taynuilt that was erected by the officers of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders at the mount of the Awe on the Inverawe side. The seat is now situated at the foot of Church Brae, Taynuilt.
Mrs Christina McBean had lost three of her four sons during the Great War. She was invited to unveil the Taynuilt War Memorial on 24th November 1921.
During the Great War James and William corresponded with their sister Jeanie who kept some of these letters. Jeanie was born on 23rd March 1892 and died on 16th August 1985.