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Go Tell the Bees That...

This page may contain MAJOR SPOILERS about Aidan McCallum from the latest book in the Outlander series, Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone. Read at your own peril!


Aidan McCallum is the son of Amy McCallum Higgins and Orem McCallum, and the stepson of Bobby Higgins.

Personal History

As a young boy, Aidan moved with his family from Thurso, a village in the north of Scotland, to the Royal Colony of North Carolina. They all survived the long voyage, but his father Orem slipped and fell off the side of the mountain where he built their home, breaking his neck and leaving his young family without a man for protection. Aidan's brother, Orrie, is born a week later.[3]

Events of the Novels

A Breath of Snow and Ashes

Aidan and his mother struggle in their new home. Not long after his father's death, a frog gets into the family's milk. A guilty Aidan flees, but is apprehended by Roger MacKenzie. From that point forward, Roger is able to obtain more support for the struggling family and Aidan comes to idolize Roger.[3]

In summer of 1774, Claire diagnoses Aidan with appendicitis and performs a successful appendectomy, finally putting her ether to the test.[4]

Aidan also becomes fast friends with Jemmy MacKenzie and Germain Fraser, who are about his age. Roger makes them toy cars and they become frequent playmates. After learning that Germain must move with his family to New Bern, Aidan, Jem, and Germain decide to run away and live in the woods. They take Germain's brother Henri-Christian Fraser along with them. However, Roger retrieves them and explains that Germain and Henri-Christian must go with their family.[5]

In late 1776, Aidan watches his mother marry his new stepfather, Bobby. He seems to like Bobby, who carves a new spinning top for him as a gift.[3] Later that year, Aidan is forced to say goodbye to Jem and Roger as the MacKenzies, too, leave the Ridge.

An Echo in the Bone

Aidan and his brothers play with their stepfather while taking a spring bath.[3]

Written in My Own Heart's Blood

Aidan continues to live on the Ridge with his family. His mother gives birth to a third baby, Rob Higgins, named for Aidan's stepfather. Aidan also befriends Lizzie Beardsley's eldest son Rodney Beardsley.[6] Aidan and Orrie are at the Ridge to meet Fanny Pocock, Jamie and Fraser's new foster daughter, and watch as Claire Fraser performs surgery on Fanny.[7]

Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone

Aidan continues to live on the Ridge with his family, and is overjoyed at the return of his friend Jem to the Ridge. But in 1779, when Aidan is 12,[1] his mother is tragically mauled by a bear. He and his brothers are nearby during the attack, and sob as she dies a short time later. Aidan is permitted to accompany Jamie and the other men as they hunt and kill the bear. After Jamie shoots the bear, Aidan attacks it at close range and kills it.

Despite his grief, Aidan continues to enjoy being reunited with his friends Germain and Jem, as well as his new friend Fanny. Aidan is later present at the wedding of his stepfather to Silvia Hardman, who has three daughters herself.[8]


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Physical Appearance

As a child, Aidan is small, bony and "feral as a wild cat."[9]


  • Aidan is an Anglicized form of Aodhán,[10] from the old Irish name Áedán, a diminutive of Áed (Aodh)[11] which meant "fire".[12]
  • McCallum is a Scottish surname, meaning in gaelic "Servant or son of Columba".[13]



  1. 1.0 1.1 Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone, chapter 27.
  2. Age as of the end of Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 A Breath of Snow and Ashes, chapter 38.
  4. A Breath of Snow and Ashes, chapter 50.
  5. A Breath of Snow and Ashes, chapter 68.
  6. Written in My Own Heart's Blood, chapter 137.
  7. Written in My Own Heart's Blood, chapter 138.
  8. Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone, chapter 155.
  9. An Echo in the Bone, chapter 8.
  10. Behind the Name: Aidan - accessed 28 May 2016
  11. Behind the Name: Aodhán - accessed 28 May 2016
  12. Behind the Name: Aodh - accessed 28 May 2016
  13. McCallum (surname) - accessed via Wikipedia 28 May 2016