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The History of Blairgowrie
Chapter XIV


CURIOUS, INTERESTING, AND AMUSING.

A Blairgowrie in America—A Curious Despatch from India—A “Blair Chiel’” Mayor of Dunedin—A “Blair Highlander” in Russia—Pennant's Description of Blair—Copy of a Burgess’ Circular—Waterloo Heroes connected with Blairgowrie—An Interesting Operation on the Ameer—Blairgowrie in 1800—Blairgowrie 50 Tears Ago—Statistics of Death Rate—“Blair Walter Curlin’ Stanes”—Blairgowrie Instrumental Band—The Hymn Tune, "Blairgowrie”—Forest of Clunie Farms—The Catty Mill—Carsie Scutching Mill—Baldornoch Slate— Merchants’ Pic-nic—St Fink—Benachallj Monument—Parish Kirk Elders—Copy Letter from the Young Chevalier—The Bridge of Craighall-The Priest’s House—The Ash Trees—Parish Church— Illuminated Clock—Athletics—An Inducement to Feuars on Blairgowrie Estate — Montrose Disbands his Army near Blairgowrie — Genealogy of the Family of Blair—Blairgowrie Volunteers in 1804— Interesting Despatches from India, 1858 -A Local Violin Maker, &c.

A Blairgowrie in America.

IN a pamphlet issued in 1882 by the Scottish American Land Company, descriptive of the State of Iowa, it is stated that “at Blairgowrie, a farm owned by Mr Adamson, of Pitlochry, Scotland, we saw a lot of steers, about 600 in number, in good condition.”

There is also a place named Blairgowrie near Chicago.

A Curious Despatch from India.

“We hereby certify that the ‘Neilsonian’ cauliflower, produce of the seeds supplied by Mr Neilson, merchant, High Street, Blairgowrie, are very fine. These vegetables have of late daily graced the Worshipful Festive Board, anti their great size, beautiful whiteness, and delicacy of taste and appearance, have invariably called forth complimentary comment.

“Given under our Worshipful hand and holograph, at our Castle of Tarooshek, in the province of Scinde and Valley of the Indus, this fifteenth day of February, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-nine.

“R. Cowpar, Captain, H. M.’s 1st Bombay Fusileers, Dep. Commissioner of Hydra-bad, and Her Majesty’s Justice of the Peace for the island of Bombay and its dependencies, &c.”

A “Blair Chiel’ ” Mayor op Dunedin.

The “Otago Guardian” of 2nd July, 1874, says:— “After one of the sharpest contests ever known in Dunedin, Mr Keith Ramsay has been elected Mayor of this city. . . In the year 1862 Mr Ramsay emigrated from Blairgowrie to New Zealand, and that he had in so short a time risen to the highest municipal dignity in the City of Dunedin speaks volumes for his industry, perseverance, and sterling worth, and reflects honour on his native town of Blairgowrie.”

Again, the “ Otago Guardian ” of 29th July, 1875, reports that at a meeting of the City Council, on 28th July, the following resolution was, on the motion of Councillor Walter, the Mayor-elect, passed unanimously:— “That this Council desire, on the eve of the retirement of Mr Ramsay from the Mayoral Chair, to thank him for the courtesy and impartiality he has always manifested during his term of office, and wish that at no distant period he may be found taking an active part in the affairs of the city.”

Mr Ramsay was entertained to a banquet in the Free Church School, James Street, by his old schoolfellows, while on a visit home in 1898.

A “Blair Highlander” in Russia.

On the occasion of the coronation of the Czar in 1856, at Moscow, John Saunders (MacAlister), a native of this district, attended as piper and valet to the Duke of Sutherland, who represented the Queen. The “Daily News” correspondent states that “MacAlister, the Dukes piper, was in attendance in the ante-room at Lord Granville’s ball in full uniform, kilt and philabeg, it being the intention of the noble host that, in some interval of the dance, the Russian guests should be made acquainted with the peculiar characteristics of Highland music; but the bardic soul of MacAlister was impatient of restraint. He shouldered his pipes and, striking up a pibroch, marched into the centre of the brilliant ring, round which Dukes and Duchesses were at that moment dancing.

“I watched the effect (says the correspondent) of this strange music on the unaccustomed ears of the Russians with great interest. They were at first evidently astounded, the officers putting their hands to their ears, and the ladies crossing their hands and gazing on the kilted Aeolus in mute surprise. But soon it became evident that there was a sympathy between the warlike race on the one hand and the warlike music on the other; and when the Grand Duchess Constantine, one of the most beautiful women in Russia, retired to another apartment, she sent for MacAlister, who played ‘ The White Cockade ’ in a manner that elicited Her Imperial Highness’ commendation. From that moment he became the fashion, and several times in the course of the evening played again to admiring audiences. MacAlister, since his arrival, has been quite a lion among the Russians, who follow him in crowds through the streets, thinking him to be the chief of all the foreign ambassadors, and that, with a fastidious refinement of hauteur, he prefers walking on the ground, as none of the carriages are grand enough for his notions of personal dignity.”

Pennant’s Description of Blair.

Pennant, on his Scottish tour, states that in passing through the district of Blairgowrie, it was a proverbial remark that “the inhabitants wanted fire in winter, water in summer, and the grace of God all the year round.”

Copy of a Burgess Circular.

“Blairgowrie, 10th Nov., lS6t.

“Sir,—As you are, by the Titles of your Property in the Barony of Blairgowrie, bound to contribute to the Town’s Funds; and, as you appear to be in arrear. to the extent under noted, I have to request that payment of this arrear be made to me within ten days. No further notice will be sent. One year at Is.

“ I am, Sir,

“Your most obedient servant,

“Pro ALEXANDER ROBERTSON, “Town Clerk.

“Jno. Heron.”

Waterloo Heroes connected with Blairgowrie.

Lieutenant-General Sir William Chalmers, eldest sou of William Chalmers of Glenericht, served in Sicily, in the Walcheren expedition, and throughout the Peninsular War, being present at seventeen engagements. He commanded a wing of the famous 52nd Foot at Waterloo, and had three horses shot from under him. He was knighted by the Queen on her first journey to Balmoial through Glenericht in 1842, was created a G.B. and K.C.B., and Colonel-in-Chief of the 78th Highlanders. He died in 1860.

Colonel Sir Colin Campbell, 5th son of John Campbell of Melfort, by Colina, daughter of John Campbell of Achalader, was educated at Perth Academy, and first served as a midshipman on board of an East Indiaman. Two years later he was serving as a Lieutenant in the 3rd battalion of the Breadalbane Fencibles, and in 1799 was appointed Ensign in a West Indian regiment. Again, Campbell exchanged to the Ross-shire Buffs, and displayed great gallantry at the siege of Alnnednuggur, under Sir Arthur Wellesley. He was severely wounded at Assaye, and afterwards accompanied Wellington to the Peninsula, where he got a staff appointment. For his services in Spain he obtained the Gold Cross with six clasps, and was made a K.C.B. He accompanied Wellington to Belgium, and at Waterloo was commandant at headquarters. _

John Young served as a trooper in the 6th Inniskilliug Dragoons, and took part in the glorious charge of the Union Brigade at Waterloo. He had the W aterloo and two other medals, and after leaving the army settled down in Blairgowrie as a porter. “ Watery,” as he was familiarly called, appeared occasionally at Masonic processions bearing a rather lengthy sword. On the 18th of June he used to decorate the windows of his house in Tannage Street -with laurel. He was buried in Blairgowrie Cemetery with military honours.

William Tyrie, son of James Tyrie, farmer, Milton of Clunie, enlisted in the 42nd Highlanders and served in Spain. At Quatre Bras, Tyrie received two severe wounds from a Lancer, but his assailant was almost immediately killed by a mounted British officer.

An Interesting Operation on the Ameer.

In 1880 Dr G. G. MaeLareu (novr of Falcon House, Blairgowrie), Civil Surgeon at Dehra Doon, India, achieved a successful operation on the right eye of the ex-Ameer of Afghanistan, Yakoob Khan, at Mussoorie. A fleshy excrescence of some years’ gathering was removed, by which complete recovery of his imperilled vision was secured.

Blairgowrie in 1800.

Blairgowrie, a village and parish in the County of Perth. The village was created into a Burgh of Barony in 1634, of which Colonel Macpherson is Superior. The parish extends in an irregular form, in length about 11 miles, and about 3 in breadth. It is divided into two districts by the Grampians, which form the northern boundary of the Valley of Strathmore. The hills are covered with heath, and there are considerable tracts of muir, moss, and natural wood. The arable soil is generally a stiff loam, and part is gravelly. The Isla, Ericht, and Ardle are the rivers, which abound with trout and salmon. The Ericht is a very rapid river, and has some very fine cascades; its banks are highly ornamented, and many gentlemen have put down summer quarters in its vicinity. There are many lakes of different sizes, some of which when drained have yielded great quantities of excellent marl. There are two freestone quarries, but the stone is of inferior quality; and muirstone abounds in every part. There are several chalybeate springs, one of which is particularly resorted to. Considerable quantities of household linen are manufactured. The new method of husbandry is practised here with great success. Newton House, the birthplace of the justly - celebrated George Drummond, Esq., six times elected Lord Provost of Edinburgh, is a fine old mansion, commanding an extensive prospect. There are several cairns and druidical circles in the parish. Population returned to Sir J. Sinclair, 1651.—“Gazetteer of Scotland,” 1803 : Printed in Dundee.

Blairgowrie 50 Years Ago.

The old town existed at the Hill, but at the beginning of the century a move was made to the low ground. High Street, Allan Street, and the Croft were laid out, and formed the first streets of the new town. There had been many houses alongside the High Street (part of the old turnpike road from the south country to the north), for nearly a century before. The High Street at this time extended from the Cross to Rorry Street. There was nothing beyond this but land, except M‘N&b’s ale-house (the Dreadnought). All north from the High Street was land. The old Parish School was the first building in John Street, and Geddes’ house the first in James Street. The houses in High Street and Allan Street were small, with no mutual gables in those days, but built writh narrow slits between each. Leslie Street was all garden ground, aud the Wellmeadow in grass for grazing purposes. From the top of what is now David Street a broad belt of old oak, plane, and elm trees extended west beyond the Castle of New ton to the march of Ardblair, and returned by the Gallowbank, where only a remnant of that sylvan grove remains to remind us of departed scenes. An old avenue of beech and elm, which formed the approach from Perth Road to the Castle, has also been swept away.

“Blair Wattrr Curlin’ Stanes.”

These mineralogical treasures are found in the Ericht from the Red Brae up to the Strone Brig. Belonging to the trap family, they usually consist of quartz, hornblende, and augite; felspar and iron pyrites are also sometimes detected. The stones are generally in small blocks, and it is a rare occurrence to get a block to yield a pair of stones. The colour, when freshly broken, . is dark green, -with a bluish tinge running through, but when the stone has been polished, the colour becomes a very dark green. These curling stones, though now not so much sought after as formerly, form a grand tool on which a curler may rely. They possess many virtues which every good curler wishes his own curling stones to have; they are hard, tough, have fair specific gravity (neither too heavy nor too light), are not “sookin’ ” stones (a grave objection open to almost all curling stones), take a grand polish, give grand “chappin’” blows, and receive them equally well. On the ice they are unequalled.

Blairgowrie Instrumental Band.

This band was organised about the year 1329, and was composed of the following members: — William Scrimgeour (Leader), James Heron, Andrew Davie, John Clark, James Robertson, John Saunders, William Buttar, William Chalmers, John Small, John Robertson, Robert Duncan, and Andrew Mitchell. The instruments used were:—Clarionets, key bugles, llutes, French horn, bassoon, serpent, trombone, and bass drum. As to the uniform, it consisted of white trousers, blue jacket with scarlet facings, and a blue bonnet with red baud, surmounted by a bunch of feathers.

For nearly 30 years this band continued to exist, and on the institution of the Volunteer force in 1859, the members then wrere patriotic enough to enlist, and the band—men and instruments—was at once made available for the local corps. Over these Joseph Simpson was appointed baud-sergeant, a position he held for 1(5 years, when he resigned. At that time there were some four clarionets and two flutes in tli8 band, besides the usual brass, some 16 in all, the intention having been to shape itinto a reed band. “ Joe ” Simpson played the euphonium, at which he was a recognised adept.

Alexander Ambrose joined the corps in 1859 (although the books only credit him at 15th September, 1801), and was in the band up till June, 1885, when he retired, after being band-master for eight years.

William Hebenton joined the band in October, 1804, and was associated with it for nearly 30 years, 8 of which he was band-master.

Several years ago, however, the Volunteer Baud was broken up and a Pipe Band instituted for the Volunteers.

In 1S94 a Town’s Band was organised, and Mr Heben-ton undertook the duties of leader and instructor. He is a good player of the clarionet. He continued in office for about two years, when Mr Neill was appointed.

The Hymn Tune “Blairgowrie.”

In “ The Life and Letters of the Rev. Dr Dykes,” published 1898, there appears the following (page 157):— “ On February 22nd he wrote a tune for the marriage of a friend, to the words—

‘The voice that breathed o'er Eden.’ ’’

The friend was Rev. F. W. Davis, of the Rectory, but the hymn tune, which Dr Dykes named “ Blairgowrie, was written for the marriage of the Rector s eldest sister to Lieut. A. R. Davis Tosswill, of the old /5th Regiment of Foot, now known as “The Gordon Highlanders.” Dr Dykes presented the copyright of the tune to Rev. F. W. Davis.

The Forest of Clunie Farms.

Over fifty years ago there were quite a lot of 4aim• and crofts in that district now known as the Forest of Clunie. The old folks were wont to sum up a few in the lines—

“Easter Bog, Wester Bog,
Dullater Bog, and Bog Mill,
Whistlebare, an’ Shirra’ Muir,
An’ bonnie Birkin’ Hill."

The farm of Dullater was tenanted by one Donald Keir, whose daughter (Charlotte Keir), kept a public-house in Balmoral Road, Rattray, for many years.

The Catty Mill.

A short distance off the main highway to Dunkeld, near the entrance to Ballied, existed a distillery known as Catty Mill. David Brown, farmer of Marlee, was the last distiller in occupancy, about the year 1849. The buildings were very extensive, with a long range of malt barns, several worms, anti a large number of stills, while a gauger resided permanently. Traces of the ruins may still be seen.

Carsie Scutching Mill

Was in the occupancy of Donald M'Intosh in 1800; the remains of the lade are still visible. The mill was afterwards turned into a sawmill by William Culross. A Farina Mill, occupied by James Ogilvy, of Blairgowrie, now stands near its site, but on the other side of the burn.

Baldornoch Slate.

For many years prior to 1850 a famous slate quarry was in operation at Baldornoch, in the vicinity of For-neth. The slates were of excellent quality, and had in large sizes. One building, at least, in Blairgowrie is covered with them—the First Free Church. One day, while the workmen were at dinner, the sides of the quarry fell in and covered up all the working plant, rendering the quarry useless, as it was never afterwards worked.

The Merchants’ Pic-nic.

In 1864 the merchants of Blairgowrie convened and successfully carried out, along with their friends, a pic-nic to Cxlamis Castle; again, in 1865, to Meikleour; and the last, in 1860, to Murthly Castle. The writer has before him an interesting photo, of the group on the last occasion. Many of the familiar faces are with us to-day, but, alas! the majority have “crossed the bourne which knows no returning.”

St Fink.

About half-way between Blairgowrie and Alyth, to the north of the highway, lies a small estate known as St Fink. About the year a.d. 720 a chapel existed here, dedicated to Saint Fyncan, Fynoana, or Phink, one of the nine virgin daughters of Saint Donevald of the Den of Ogilvy. They were known as the nine maidens, although Boece only gives seven as their iiumber. Boece thus writes:—“ Donevald had vii docli-teris, quhilk levit with him in gret penance, on beir breid and wattir. They eit nevir bot anis on the day: and the residew thairof occupyit in continewal labour and orison. Thir holy virginis efter deceis of their fader . . . (came to) . . . Abernethy, whare tliay leiffit ane devote life, and wur buryit at the rute of ane aik, quhilk is halden yit in gret veneratioun amang the pepil.” Saint Fincana’s day was 21st August. Several sculptured stones have been unearthed from time to time at St Fink, but whether or not they belonged to the chapel cannot be determined.

Benaohally Monument.

On the summit of Benachally stands a cairn, erected in 1830 by ;Messrs M'Intosh for Sir John Bisset of Reicliip. On taking out the “ found ” the workmen unearthed a skeleton of a man over six feet in height. It was generally believed to be the remains of an English trooper who was reputed to have been murdered there in 1715 or 1745. His horse was observed for several days saddled and bridled wandering in the Forest of Clunie. He was on his way to the north with gold to pay the English soldiery when he met his fate, and it is said that the gold of the murdered trooper went to purchase an estate in the Stormont, which passed into the hands of many proprietors in the course of a century, every one of whom failed to prosper.

Parish Kirk Elders Ordained in 1821 William Maepherson, Blairgowrie House; David Kidd; 'Thomas Soutar, Netheraird; *George Chalmers, Hillton of Manse; "Thomas Soutar, schoolmaster; and *John Baxter. Those marked * were in oflice at the Disruption, 1813. Ordained in 1841 :—Robert Chalmers, Nether Clayquliat; James Low, Muirton; George Playfair, Parkhead; Robert Johnstone, schoolmaster; Peter Chalmers, precentor; James Cdwpar, M.D.; John Connacher (afterwards missionary at Constantinople).

Letter from Young Chevalier.

Copy of letter from the young Chevalier to the laird of Oraighall, dated Blair in Athol, 2nd September, 1745:—

“It is now some weeks since I arrived in this country, with a firm resolution to assert His Majesty’s right, and as I am now got so far into the country, with a good body of the King’s loyal subjects, I now require you may join the Royal Standard with all the expedition possible, when you may depend upon meeting with my favour and friendship.

“Charles, P. R.”

The summons did not, however, meet with the expected response from the young laird.

The Bridge of Craighall.

In 1613 Silvester Rattray, then minister of the parish of Rattray, petitioned the Privy Council for the erection of a bridge at Craighall. The petition was granted, and an order was issued for a subscription to build the bridge; but the matter went no further. Travellers to and from the north had to ford the river at the Coble Pule and again at Craigmill until the bridge was built in 1810.

The Priest’s House.

This domicile, occupied by the hereditary beadles of the Parish Church, stood in the south-east corner of garden at James Street House. The low house on opposite side of street was built for the beadle after “The Priest’s House” was demolished by Robert Robertson, nearly fifty years ago. The old beadles, John MacLachlan and his father, resided here many years. At the south-west corner of the garden stood another small house, long occupied by Allan Heron, the first letter carrier in the town.

The Ash Trees.

Before James Street was formed, there was a path loading from the Hill of Blair westwards to Brown Street, passing the front of “The Priest’s House” The south side of the path was marked by a hill bank, and a row of beautiful ash trees, long since removed, but still remembered by many old inhabitants.

Parish Church.

Rev. J. W. Foyer, elected assistant minister of Parish Church, May, 1867 ; transferred to Kilry, August, 1877.

Illuminated Clock.

In September, 1869, a new clock with transparent dials was set up in spire of South Free Church. It was lit with gas at night for several years.

Athletics.

Early in May, 1860, the Athletic Games Association was formed, with James Small, President; James Playfair, Vice-President; James Isles, Secretary. The first games were held in July in a park near Altamont, which were a great success. The surplus 'revenue amounted to over 92.

An Inducement to Feuars on Blairgowrie Estate.

Town Feus.

As a special inducement and benefit to the Feuars on Blairgowrie Estate, all parties building a dwelling-house thereon of the value of 100 w ill be entitled (in terms of an arrangement between the late Allan Macpherson and the Railway Company), to a free first class pass over the Caledonian Railway from Blairgowrie to Perth and Forfar and intermediate stations.

Montrose Djsbands his Army near Blairgowrie.

In 1616, King Charles I., having surrendered to the Scottish army, immediately thereafter wrote to Montrose commanding him to disband his forces. Montrose refused to obey the first order, but to a second and more peremptory one he yielded a reluctant consent. Preparatoiy to disbanding his army, Montrose appointed it to rendezvous at the Haugh of Rattray, near Blairgowrie, at which place, on the 30th July, 1646, he discharged his men after addressing a feeling and animated oration to them, in which, after giving them due praise for their faithful services and good behaviour, he told them his orders and bade them farewell, an event no less sorrowful to the whole array than to himself, and, notwithstanding he used his utmost endeavours to raise their drooping spirits and encourage them with the prospect of a speedy peace, and assured them that he contributed to the King’s safety and interest by his present submission no less than by his former military attempts, yet, falling on their knees, with tears in their eyes, they beseeched him that he would take them along with him wherever he should go. They were, however, disbanded as Montrose had then enough to do to provide for his own safety. The reason is not given why Rattray was chosen for this last rendezvous of his army, but probably he was actively supported by Rattray of Craighall, which may account for the scene of his valedictory address, and he seems to have been marching and countermarching between Brechin and Perth, looking for a favourable opportunity of attacking that portion of the Parliamentary army which was commanded by General Baillie of Jerviswoode.

Genealogy of Family of Blair.

Blairgowrie Volunteers in 1804.
Lieut.-Col. Macplierson.
Capt. Hogg.
1st Lieut. James Scott.     2nd Lieut. James Dick.

Sergeants—
Thomas Johnston, Robert Douglas, Duncan Keay. Drummer, George Drummond.

Corpl. John Fleming.

Pvt.

David M‘Lagan.

Pvt.

Jas. Anderson.

"

John Anderson.

"

John Bisset.

"

Robert Butter.

"

Chas. Cameron.

"

Alex. Crighton.

"

Geo. Chalmers.

"

David Chalmers.

"

Peter Chalmers.

"

James Dick.

"

Wm. Duncan.

"

Peter Drummond.

"

Robt. Dow.

"

John Davie.

"

Hugh Fraser.

"

Jas. M‘Nab.

"

James Fenton.

"

Sam. M‘Dougal.

"

D. Farquharson.

"

John M‘Intosh.

"

Alex. Fleming.

"

Andrew M‘Donald.

"

Alex. Falconer.

"

Alex. M‘Omie.

"

Jas. Gow.

"

Andrew M‘Gregor.

"

Geo. Gilruth.

"

Alex. M‘Gregor.

"

Jas. Galloway.

"

Adam M‘Gregor.

I

Interesting Despatches from India.

Copy of despatch from Sir James Outram, India, of 17th January, 1858, in which is the following honourable mention of Capt. (now Lieut.-Gen. Sir) J. C. Rattray of Craighall:—

. . . “Much credit is also due to Capt. Rattray (of Her Majesty’s 90th), commanding the infantry, to Lieut. Gully, commanding the battery of No. 1 advanced outpost, and to the officers anil men of their post, for their vigilance and alertness in checking and punishing the enemy at every opportunity.”

In the “Homeward Mail” of August 19th, 1858, we find the following record of the distinguished services of Capt. Rattray:—

“We are glad to chronicle an important success gained by Captain Rattray, on the 5th of July, at Kusma, six miles N.N.E. of Dinapore, over 400 rebels led by Judar Sing. Our force consisted of 150 Sikhs and 50 cavalry, and, with the loss of only two wounded, cut up upwards of 100 of the enemy.

“The present mail brings us additional particulars of the capture of Gwalior and the pursuit of the rebels; we also learn that Capt. Rattray has defeated the rebels at Kusura in the Benares district, and that General

Roberts had caused the enemy to vacate Jeypnre, and was marching in pursuit.”

The following is a copy of Capt. Rattray’s despatch after the action :—

“After a march of six hours I came up to Judai Sing’s force at Kusma, consisting of about 100 men; they awaited our approach very steadily. I immediately attacked them with 150 Sikhs and 50 cavalry. I completely routed them, killing upwards of 100 of them, a great many of whom were sepoys. We pursued them until nearly dark. The cavalry cut up nearly fifty. Judar Sing escaped with difficulty. The country was entirely under water, otherwise none would have escaped. Only two of my men wounded.”

A Local Violin Maker.

James M'Intosh was born in the year 1801 at Carsie, near Blairgowrie, at which place his father, Donald M'Intosh, was a lint-miller. He was the grand-nephew of Robert M'Intosh (“ Red Rob ”), the famous Edinburgh violinist and composer (1745-1807). Coming of a good stock of violin players and violin makers, it is not surprising that his work should be much above average. There is nothing of the amateur noticeable about even his early works; the cutting is all done with a firm hand as if the maker kne%v exactly what he wanted, and had the skill necessary to produce the effect. His early violins (1842) are rather high and Stainer-like in build, the sizes being 14, 8, 4i, 6j. The liarro'Miess of the upper bout is there very noticeable. These violins are marked w ith imitation purfling, the scroll is well cut, and the back generally in one piece, and cut “ on the slab. The tone is large and telling, with something of the sharpness of the Stainer quality. His later violins (1869) are nearer the Stradivari model, neatly purfled, and more artistic in appearance. All his violins are covered with spirit varnish, thinly laid on, and of a grey colour. The wood is always good, and frequently of fine figure. Altogether M'Intosh made 204 violins, 10 violas, and 33 violoncellos, the last also having whole backs of w'ell-marked maple, and being fitted with pegs and tail-pieces of his own making. His violins have a label printed from types on white paper, with the last line hand-written:—

“James M‘Intosh,
Violin maker, Blairgowrie,

March, 1842.”

M‘Intosh, who was a skilful violin player as well as a violin maker, died at Blairgowrie in 1873.

His son, James, tenanted the farm of Boatlands, near Coupar Angus, and William for many years carried on a successful business as draper in Allan Street.


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