As is so often the case with such names, there's an interesting story - this is it.
A few hundred yards past The Porter's Lodge, at the end of the public road, there's a stone shed with a slate roof looking out towards the islands of Rum and Eigg.
This was the goods shed for Arisaig Pier which used to stand here but has now completely crumbled away. Before the railway to Mallaig was built in 1901, Arisaig Pier was the port of call by steamers for the Arisaig - Morar area given that Mallaig and its harbour (like Kyle of Lochalsh) didn't exist before the railway.
The pier was away out here, about 3-4 miles by road from Arisaig Inn at the end of the road from Fort William, because the loch the village sits at the head of - Loch nan Ceall - has a narrow, shallow and reef strewn entrance unsuitable for steamers to enter as the Google Earth image below shows ...
and the 1858 Admiralty Chart confirms:-
So the MacBrayne's steamers, Claymore (1881-1931) and Clansman (1870-1909), on their weekly trips from Glasgow - which were the main means of conveyance of passengers and goods to the remote parts of the West Highlands before road transport became prevalent in the 1930s - didn't go up the loch. Nor, even, did they come alongside the pier at its mouth because Arisaig was a ferry call - i.e. where the steamer lay off shore and a small launch (the ferry) went out from the shore to meet it.
The eponymous "porter", then, was the ferryman who had acquired his alternative job title because, amongst his duties, was lugging the trunks of passengers - very often gentry visiting the various "big houses" in the area during the season - in and out of the ferry. And the "lodge" was not just where the "porter" lived but also the waiting room for steamer passengers.
|A ferry coming out to a ship I know, although you can't see it, to be the Claymore at an unidentified location|
Steamers stopped calling at Arisaig when Mallaig harbour - where they could get alongside - was opened with the arrival of the railway in April 1901. Apparently, MacBrayne's offered their redundant ferryman, Donald MacKinnon, another job in Glasgow but he declined it. Presumably, if his descendants were still living there in the 1960s, they sold him the equally redundant Porter's Lodge - one would like to think at a pretty cheap price as compensation for not having offered him a new job at Mallaig!
|The Claymore at Mallaig|