Having lost his father in infancy, he passed part of his youth with the Marquess of Argyll at Inveraray, leaving his guardian about 1647 to take up his duties as Chief of Clan Cameron, a position in which he succeeded his grandfather. In 1653, Lochiel joined the Earl of Glencairn in his rising on behalf of Charles II, and after the defeat of this attempt he served the royalist cause by harassing General George Monck, 1st Duke of Albemarle.
In 1681, he was knighted by Charles II, and in July 1689, he was with Viscount Dundee at the Battle of Killiecrankie. He was too old to share personally in the Jacobite rising of 1715 but his sympathies were with the Stuarts, and his son led the Clan Camerons at Sheriffmuir.
Lochel had three wives and many children:
Lochiel, who died in 1719, is called by Macaulay the "Ulysses of the Highlands". He was a man of enormous strength and size. An incident showing his strength and ferocity in single combat is used by Sir Walter Scott in Lady of the Lake (canto v.). Lochiel's son and successor, John, died in Flanders in 1748. John's son Donald, sometimes called gentle Lochiel, joined Charles Edward, the Young Pretender in 1745, was wounded at the Battle of Culloden, and escaped to France, dying in the same year as his father. The 79th (The Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders) Regiment of Foot was raised from among the members of the clan in 1793 by Sir Alan Cameron of Erracht (1753-1828).
This text has been adapted from the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica.