The writing of this History
of Fettercairn was first suggested to the author in 1882, after delivering a
public lecture on the subject. He hesitated very much to take up the
suggestion, from the fear that the task would prove too formidable for his
time and resources; but on the other hand, from a sympathetic feeling
towards all that concerned the past and the present of the parish, he
resolved to proceed and do his best to collect and record in a permanent
form such details as could be gathered from the various sources of
information. Had the idea of collecting materials for such a work been
entertained forty or forty-five years ago, the author could have given with
greater fulness and accuracy a record of local history and traditionary
incidents now forgotten, by committing to writing the recollections of old
people living, many of whose traditionary tales have now escaped his memory.
While the indulgence of the
reader is craved for errors detected or mistakes discovered, neither pains
nor labour have been spared to make the History as full and correct as
possible. The main object has been to preserve and diffuse a knowledge of
the history, antiquities, and traditions of the parish; and it is hoped that
the effort will be favourably received.
The author offers no apology
for mixing up the narrative of events with anecdotes and with minute details
of local matters which may appear of little interest to general readers,
because the work has been prepared chiefly for the people of Fettercairn. He
may be charged with trespassing on the parish of Fordoun by having included
a general account of the Castle and lands of Kincardine; but from their
proximity to and connection with Fettercairn, no history of it could be
Many persons besides those
noticed in the body of the work have kindly helped with information ; but
only a few can be specially mentioned, although all are gratefully
Thanks are due to Sir John R.
Gladstone, Bart, of Fasque, not only for being the first to suggest the
work, but for his interest in its progress; also to his relative, Robert
Gladstone, jun., Esq., Liverpool, for revisal of the notes on the Gladstone
family. For the chapters on Church and School, the author is much indebted
to the Rev. John Brown, Clerk to the Presbytery of Fordoun, for access to
the Presbytery Records, and also to the Rev. William Anderson for taking
extracts from the same. The more recent inscriptions in Fasque Chapel were
kindly communicated by the Rev. Andrew H. Belcher; several valuable
documents were supplied by the Rev. James C. M'Clure; searches in the
Register House, Edinburgh, were made by the Rev. A. I. Ritchie; and some
interesting reminiscences have been received from the Rev. John Falconer and
from Mr David Prain, Fettercairn.
The following works, among
others referred to in the book, have been consulted: Scott's Ecclesiae
Scoticanae; the works of Andrew Jervise, F.S.A.; History of the Carnegies;
Biscoe's Earls of Middleton; Dr. Cramond's Annals of Fordoun; Dr. Marshall's
Historic Scenes; Robertson's Index of Records and Charters; the Black-book
of Kincardineshire; Spalding's "Memorialls of the Trubles in Scotland"; the
Exchequer Rolls of Scotland; and the Kincardineshire Retours.
Chapter I.—Geography and
Situation—Extent—Boundaries—Surface Levels—Geological Features—Colonel
Imrie's Survey—Rocks—Iron ore.
II.—Topography—Antiquity of Village—Etymology of name
Land divisions and soils—Morass—Swamps—Ague—Watergirt fortalices —
Greencairn — "Fethyrkerne Towne" — Origin — Site — (Three
Baronets)—Antiquity—Etymology of Fettercairn—Mr Foote's theory-Twenty forms
of the name—Inference.
Population, past and present—Increase and decrease—Newdosk Section —Census
table (1891)—Males increasing—Employment—Agriculture-Distillery—Other
industries—Inns and hotels.
IV.—History prior to 994 a.d.
Early unrecorded events — Conflicts — Roman Invasion — Caledonian Tribes—The
Maormors—Kings slain—Battles—Picts' houses—Kenneth III. - Assassination -
Fenella — Legend — Wyntoun's Chronicle—Fettercairn odious.
V.—History from 994 to 1600
Wars and battles -Kincardine Castle and Edward I.—Wallace's victories,
&c—Blind Harry's Chronicle—Bruce and Comyn—English and Scotch at Ballyvernie—Fettercairn
Antiquarians—Neudos and Knights of St. John—David II.
and his Queen at Kincardine-----A royal marriage—Robert
II.—"Earl Beardie" and his forces—James.IV.
and Queen Margaret at Kincardine and Aberdeen — Fettercairn a free
burgh with markets—James V. and Kincardine
town—Visits of Queen Mary and James
VI.—History from 1600 to 1698
Troubles of the Covenant—Spalding's Memorials—Montrose's raids— At
Fettercairn—"Fire and sword"—Counter marchings—General Baillie —Death of
Montrose—Note, "Colkitto of Antrim "—Earl of Errol and train a night at
Fettercairn—Their expenses—Cromwell's troops at Edzell —Foraging
expeditions—Balbegno—Covenanters and North Water Bridge —The Laird of
Balfour and Church seats -A minister "blooded."
VII.—History from 1698 to 1747
The old village hostelry—Reputed royal lodging—"Randall's Knap"— Story of "Kirky
Croll or Pin the Wuddie"—The stolen watch—Duke of Cumberland's troops—Rebels
after Culloden—Petition and complaint-Rebel fight at Fettercairn—Minister
hurt Schoolhouse burnt—Kirk Session Registers destroyed.
VIII.—History from 1747 to 1861
Queen Victoria's Reign—Coronation rejoicings and Church
building-Introduction of gaslight—A joint-stock company—Curling Club
-Subscription Library—Rejoicings at marriage of Miss Forbes—Volunteer
IX.—History from 1861 to 1898
Visit of Her Majesty Queen Victoria and the Prince Consort - Extract from
Her Majesty's Journal—Ramsay Arms Hotel—A few incidents— Rejoicings at the
Prince of Wales' marriage—Telegraphic communication —Fire at Fasque House—
Majority of Captain, now Sir John R. Gladstone— Of the Hon. Charles F.
Trefusis—The Queen's Jubilee—Grand Bazaar for a Public Hall-Distillery
burnt—Golf Club—The Queen's Diamond Jubilee.
Part Third—The Parish and
prior to the Seventeenth Century
Scotland divided into Parishes—Four thanedoms—Fettercairn the leading one
—William the Lion's Hawker—Luthra—Balbegno—"Waytinga"—Rents in kind—Valued
rentals—Countess of Ross—"Wolf of Badenoch"—His doings—Donald, Lord of the
Isles—Crown lands— Strachan of Thornton and rents—Earl of Rothes— Kirklands
and Thomas Ogston—Adam Hepburn and Elizabeth Ogston—Successors—Kirk
Commissioners—Kirklands sold—Levingstone of Drumhendry—Bishop's Rents—Farms
of Fettercairn—John Tulloch—Robert Rate—Toothpicks —Crofts of Kincardine—Lands—Earl
of Rothes—James Strachan—Earl of Middleton and Lands of Fettercairn.
XI.—John Earl Middleton and his successors
Name of Middleton Descent— Middle ton of .Caldhame—His sons— John Earl of
Middleton—His career—His wife Qrizel Durham—Family— His death at
Tangier—Charles, second Earl—Forfeiture—Family—Two Sons—Admiral Byng— Earl
of Strath more—Principals of King's College-Janet Gordon of Beaton—Brigadier
Middleton—His son and Lady Diana Grey—Fettercaira estate sold to Mrs Emilia
Belsches—Note, Middleton descendants.
XII.—Families of Belsches, Stuart and Forbes
John Clerk, a Refugee in Fettercaira 300 years ago—Ancestor of the Clerks,
Baronets of Penicuik—Of Emilia Belsches—Clerk's descendants, Merchants in
Montrose and Paris—Margaret Clerk and Belsches of Invermay—John Belsches and
Mary Stuart—Sir John Wishart Belsches —Name of Stuart—Lady Jane Leslie—Miss
Stuart—James Mill, Historian of India—Sir Walter Scott—Miss Stuart,
prototype of Matilda in Rokeby —Sir William Forbes-Dr. Beattie, "the
Minstrel"—Sir William's character—James Skene and Sir Walter Scott's "Marmion"—Dr.
W. F. Skene—Sir William, seventh Baronet—His sons—Sir John Hepburn Stuart
Forbes—Lord Clinton—Family—Hon. Charles F. Trefusis-Lady Jane Grey Trefusis—Family.
XIII.—Newdosk or Balfour
A Thanedom -Knights of St. John—Robert the Bruce—Reginald de Chen—Grant to
Lindsay of Crawford—Rents—Earl of Angus—Charter to Lindsays —To Sir John
Wishart of Pitarrow—Lands sold to Sir John Straton of Lauriston—Advowson of
Fettercaira Church—Successive Owners — Lindsay of Edzell — Descendants of
Stratons — Forbeses of Balfour—Captain Forbes, the "Daft Laird
"—Anecdote—Sir John Stuart.
XIV.—Balbegno, Balnakettle and Littlestrath
The Woods, thanes of Fettercaira—Original name, De Bosco—Notable Men -Grant
of lands to Andro Wood and Mariota Moncreife—Charter by James
IV. and English translation—Admiral Wood—His
bust—John Wood —Woods of Craig—Walter Wood and Lady Helen Stewart of Atholl
—A royal descent — Walter and Sir John Wood — Precept of Oliver
Cromwell—Andrew Wood—Andrew Middleton of Caldhame—Major Wood and John
Lindsay—John Wood, Colinsburgh—John and Mrs Wood, Carlisle—Andrew and Robert
Middleton—John Ogilvy of Lunan—Wife and daughters—Dr. Brisbane—Hon. Walter
and Donald Ogilvy- The Woods, proprietors of Balnakettle and Littlestrath—Lands
sold—Andrew and William Fraser —The Reida, ministers of Banchory Ternan—
Distinguished men—Dr. Thomas Reid—Revs. Alexander Leslie and Dr. Leslie of
Fordoun—Leslies of Birkwood—Miss Paterson—William Straehan, proprietor—Lady
Pliesdo—Her son, John Falconer —Her message to the Kirk Session—James
Falconer of Monkton, and Sir Alex. Ramsay Irvine—Peter Falconer—Viscount
Arbuthnott—David Scott-Rev. Dr. Pirie—Sir Thomas Gladstone and Fasque
XV.—Balmain and Fasque
Owners in reign of James III.—"The good old rule"—"Earl Beardie" and his son
the Duke of Montrose—The King's favourites at "Lauder Brig"—Pitscottie's
narrative—John Ramsay—His career and intrigues— Perkin Warbeck—Margaret of
England—Lands of Balmain—His son and successor William Ramsay— David Ramsay
and Catherine Carnegie-Rev. Andrew Ramsay—Sir Gilbert and Grizel Durham—Sir
David-Property destroyed—Compensation—Sir Charles and Elizabeth Falconer
—Marriage contract and seventeen witnesses—Retour of holdings in Barony of
Balmain—Diralands of Fettercaim—Sir David and Sir Alexander —Improvers—Trees
planted at Fasque—Sir Alexander R. Irvine—A great agriculturist—New
appliances—His character—Sir Thomas Ramsay, seventh Baronet, Sheriff Burnet
as Sir Alexander Ramsay, first Baronet of United Kingdom, and Elizabeth
Bannerman—Seven sons—Their training and career—Admiral Sir William, K.C.B.—A
death—Dean Ramsay -"Any tail "—Building of Fasque House —Sir Alexander,
second Baronet—Portrait—Tenantry—Fasque sold—Sir Alexander, third
Baronet—His family—Offices of honour—Sir Alexander Entwistle, fourth Baronet
Lady Ramsay and family—A long connection closed.
XVI.—Balmain and Fasque (continued)
Purchase by John
Gladstone—Baronetcy in 1846—His ancestry—Herbert de Gledstan—Edward I.—Sir
William de Gledstanes— His son—Gladstones in Forfarshire—Eminent
men—Lanarkshire branch—John Gladstones of Toftcombs — Thomas of Leith —Sir
John —His career — Enterprise — Character—Improvements at Fascine—Family—Sir
Thomas—Additional estates—Public affairs—Character—Lady Gladstone and
family—Sir John R. Gladstone—Military career.
XVII. —Disclune, Arnhall and The Burn
Durrysclune—Early proprietors—Stratons—David Carnegie, first Earl of
Southesk—James, second Earl, a hero of the Covenant—Robert, third Earl—CharJLes,
fourth Earl—Rental Book—Farms and their rents—James, fifth Earl—Rebellion of
1715—"Piper o' Dundee"—York Building Co.— Sir James Carnegie—Highland
Raiders—Lord Milton—"Catching fish at Arnhall"—Fontenoy and
Culloden—Barclay of Urie—His letter—Sir David Carnegie—Disposal of the
Estates—Popularity of the Carnegies— Lord Adam Gordon—Military
career—Marriage—"For lack of gold," &c. —Great
improvements—Anecdote—Alexander Brodie—His improvements —His daughter, the
Duchess of Gordon—John Shand—Drainage of the moss—"Muckle ditch"—William
Shand—Colonel M'Inroy—Life and character—Popularity—Colonel Charles M'Inroy—Primrosehill—Captain
XVIII.—Dalladies, Drumhendry and Capo
Lands of Delany or Dullachy and Trembleys or Turnbulls—Stratons and
Carnegies—Turnbulls of Stracathro—Dr. Turnbull- His career
-Frugality—Jocularity—Lord Panmure his friend—A conditional vote-Kay's
Portraits — "Shoes blackened" —A considerate landlord —Miss Page Turnbull
Robertson — Present owners — Levingstones of Dunipace— Drumry and Luthra—John
Wood—Andrew ftaitt—David, Principal of King's College—Colonel Rait—Lord
Falconer—Castle of Haulkerton— Keith-Falconer, Earl of Kintore—The present
Earl and Countess— . Lord Inverurie.
Part fourtb.— Antiquities:
Buildings, Ancient and Modern
XIX.—Antiquities and Old Buildings
Roman road—King's ford—Station of Tina—Causewayend— "Coupers' avenue"—Dr.
Don's Roman Iter—Hill of Esslie—Roman outpost—Castle and garden—Old house of
Balmain—Underground passage—Greencaim and other vitrified forts—Dimensions—Fenella's
Castle—Sir Walter Scott's letter—Copy and fac-simile—William the
Lion—Randolph the Falconer —Balbegno Castle—John Wood—Carved and Stirling
heads—Admiral Wood's—Wood and Barclay Arms-The ceiling—Scotch peers—Dungeon
—Moot hill, or "Tod hillock"—Mort-town-hole—"Taed's nest," or hangman's
dwelling—Balfour House—The Stratons—Stones for Fasque House—Fasque Old
House—Douglas's description and expression—"The Octagon a pasteboard
cage"—The Chinese bridge—Balnakettle Old House—Old trees.
XX.—Antiquities and Old Buildings (continued)
Market Cross—Shape and dimensions—Jougs and Branks—Earl Middleton's Cross—Ogston'a
(1504)—Kincardine Cross—Others in Scotland— Marykirk—Edinburgh—Scott's
Marmion—Castle of Kincardine—Dimensions—Position—History—Kings and Queens of
Scotland—Kincardine town and St. Catherine's graveyard -Astone cist and its
contents—"The Deer Dyke."
XXI.—Bridges, Fords, and Ferries
Roman bridges—Bridge building a Church work -Fords and Ferries of the North
Esk—King's ford boat—Edzell Kirk Coble—Lower North water Bridge—Marykirk
Bridge—John Erskine of Dun and Northwater Bridge —James Black and Gannochy
Bridge—His Charities - Jervise's story - Walter Strachan's—"Black's grey
mare"—Millstones and the Kirk Session—Bridge doubled by Lords Adam Gordon
and Panmure—Flood of 1829 —"Loups' brig" — Auchmull Bridge and John Shand —
Church collections for bridges—Vacant stipend for the village bridges—Roads
from the village and Blackiemuir Bridge.
Fettercairn House, old, new and newer parts -1666, 1829, and 1877— Fasque
House—Grand outlook—1809—£30,000—Builders, 1/6 a day—A fire—The Burn
House—Fine situation—The Royal Arch—Subscriptions-Design by
native—Outlines—Much admired—Expressions of loyalty-Forbes Memorial
Fountain—Water supply-Sir Thomas Gladstone—Page Design by David Bryce, R.S.A.
— Description — Site — Lady Clinton-Inscription — Public Hall —Bazaar and
Funds —Andrew Carnegie-Contributions—John Milne, Architect—Library -Billiard
Table—Sir John R. Gladstone—A success—The
Manse—Schoolhouse—Houses—Shops-Site of village—"Provost's House"—"Whisky
Part fifth—Church and
XXIII.—Churches and Churchyards
Parish Church—Elevated site—Early occupation—Druidical Temple—
Pre-Reformation Kirk—Mr Foote's account—Balbegno Aisle -The Woods'
Vault—"Bell hillock"—Tames Lyalland "King James"—New
Church-Addition—Steeple—Sir John Gladstone—Wind storms—Turrets—Burials in
Churches—The Churchyard—Enclosures—Old memorial stones—A series of
Inscriptions—Dr. Gilbert Ramsay's benefactions—A lost stone— "Sandy Junor"—The
Cairn Well—Tree-planting—Mrs Ritchie's Memorial —Sir Alexander Ramsay's
XXIV.—Churches and Churchyards (continued)
The Free Church—Site—Managers
and Sir Alexander Ramsay—"Cold water"—St. Andrew's Episcopal
Church—Site—Building and Consecration —Chancel added—Bishop of Brechin—Captain
J. N. Gladstone—East window— Latin Inscription—Children of Hon. W. E.
Gladstone—The vault—Later interments—New oriel windows and mural brasses of
Gladstones, Forbes and M'Inroy—Newdosk Churchyard—St. Drostan's
Well—"Piper's shade"—"Cardinal's pool"—Other old place-names-Headstones of
Alexander Adam, Colonel M'Inroy and John Nicol— Chapelton of Arnhall—St.
Martin and "Linn Martin"- Ruins of Chapel — Carvings — Earls of Southesk —
Episcopal minister — Disused graveyard—Ash trees.
XXV.—Beadles and Kirk Officers
Beadle's various duties—Andrew Low, James Stephen—His emoluments —Hand-bell,
table cloths and cups—Summons to deliver up arms-James Lyall, first, second
and third—A strayed ewe—A dog hanged—A clockin' hen—Youths' pranks—The bell
lost—George Watson, James Barron, John Column—"Nothing doing in the Kirkyard."
XXVI.—Ministers before and after the Reformation
David Setone, "persone" 1491—Alex. Rait, vicar—James Strachauchin —His
letter to Thomas Strachauchin, a cousin—Bricius "persona de Neudonasse"—John
Col lace, the last of Newdosk—Cadets of landed families—Witch burning and
verses—Patrick Bouncle—Salary, etc.— Adam Walker and Sir David Wood—John
Thorn and David Straton, readers—James Lindsay—Visit to Paris and
Geneva—John Collace— Alex. Forbes, A.M.—Bishop of Caithness and of Aberdeen—Straton
families—His public offices—"Collie"—Letter from James
VI. to the Page Presbytery—William Wischart, A.M.—David Strachan,
A.M., Bishop of Brechin—William Chalmers, A.M.—Hercules Skinner, A.M.-His
debts —Visitation by order of Archbishop Sharpe—Humorous Practice— The
preacher "wan throu" -Mr Skinner the last Episcopal minister-David Ramsay,
A.M.—Heritors and Church sittings—List of Elders.
Anthony Dow, A.M.—A long ministry—His elders Their duties-Fast
day—Tokens—Mendicants' Badges-Glebe-Schoolmaster's ridges-Davidson, the
rebel freebooter—John Barclay, A.M., Assistant—His
Popularity—Publications—An anecdote recalled—Mr Barclay and the
Presbytery—Certificate refused -The people's petitions refused-A Disruption—Berean
Church at Sauchieburn -Other congregations—Mr Barclay's death—James Macrae-
Berean lay preachers- Anthony Glen-William Taylor—John Todd—Oratory—Stipend-
Robert Foote—Induction opposed—Insult and abuse—"Foote's wind"— Excellent
ministry—His sons—Publications—Elders—James Keyden-Resignation—Anecdote—John
Muir—Elders—Alexander Whyte, A.M.— Tutor and Schoolmaster—Publications—Pithy
Sayings—Anecdotes-Elders ordained—Adam-Inch Ritchie—His
family-Improvements-Translated to Whitekirk—William Anderson -Popular
call—His family —Gratifying improvements. Free Church—"Ten years' conflict
"—Excitement and unkindly feelings—David Paton—Ancestry—Family—Middleton
portraits—Faithful ministry—Robert-Henderson Abel -Removal to South
Africa—John-Ramsay Macmillan, A.M.—Efficient ministry. Episcopal Church—Mr
Teed—Alexander Irvine—Charles Aitken-Popularity-Good works—Assisted by Rev.
Alexander Somerville— George Frederick Hardman Foxton—Andrew Holmes Belcher,
A.M.— Long and creditable ministry.
XXIX.—Schools and Schoolmasters
The Reformers and Acts of Parliament—John Thorn—Immediate successors
blank—Alexander Morrice -Heritors' Assessments—Salary-James Watson and
Alexander Strachan—John Gentleman—Favoured the Rebellion -Deposed—Alexander
Strachan—John Melville John Law-Robert Milne -James Bate—David >'iddry—John
Gordon—" School bed " —Cock-fighting-Clattering Brig School and "Dominie
Young"—John Harper—Mr Foote's account—David Adamson and "Bawbie Harper"—
Peats, "stour" and gunpowder pranks—Class-books—James Nicholson-Alex. Inglis,
LL.D.—Rev. James Low—Archd. Cowie Cameron, A.M., LL.D. - Donald M'Kinven,
A.M. Other Schools—Dalladies—Lady Harriet's- Inch School—Hannah Gold, LL.A.
-Free Church School—Thomas Bruce -Alexander Murray -Transferred to Inch—Adam
Moodie—Oldmains' School—David Durward, A.M.—Francis Birse -Lady Gladstone's
new school—Certificated teachers Page — Mary Munro-Dame Schools—Bible and
Catechism—119th Psalm — Proper names—" A pass-bye."
Families and Persons - Miscellaneous
Disappearance of old family names—Notices of a few—The Austines, Valentines,
Falconers, Duries, Strachans, Wallaces, Mackies—Respective
descendants—Smiths, numerous —Don, recurring.
XXXI.—Eminent Men (of the Past)
Churchmen and Statesmen—Hon. W. E. Gladstone—Rev. Andrew-Ramsay, A.M., and
Latin Poem (translation)—Rev. Alex. Peter, D.D.— Very Rev. Dean Ramsay—Rev.
James Foote, D.D.—Rev. Alex. L. R. Foote, D.D.E. B. Sheriffs, M.D.—John L.
XXXII.—Eminent Men (of the Present)
Rev. Alex. Roberts, D.D., Professor, etc., St. Andrews—Rev. John Falconer of
Ettrick—Alex. Whyte, Naturalist—David Hall, A.M., Sheriff-Substitute of
Ayrshire—Alex. Cameron, Monikie, Dundee—Hugh Knox, Buittle, Castle
Douglas—William Craniond, A.M., LL.D., Cnllen—His publications—Rev. Thos.
Nicol, A.M., D.D., Edin.—Honours, Publications—George Harris, Chapel,
Kirkcaldy—Rev. Charles Durward, A.M., D.D. of Scoonie, Leven—Rev. Alex. M.
Scott, A.M., Aberdeen—Rev. J. Fawns Cameron, of Blairingone, Dollar—Robert
Milne Murray, M.D., Lecturer, etc., Edinburgh—Publications—David Prain, M.D.,
Superintendent of Indian Botanical Departments—Rev. Alex. Middleton, A.M.,
B.D., of St. Margaret's, Arbroath—George Robb, A.M., Buenos Ayres— George R.
Croll, A.M., Dunkeld—George Harper, A.M., Slains, Aberdeenshire—William
Abernethy, A.M., Coupar Angus.
XXXIII. —Administration of Justice
Sheriff Court, Stonehaven—Fettercairn Sunday rioters—Margaret Thow —Theft
and Mischief—John Cowie—The "Laird of Balmain's trees"— Katherine Hampton
and "her little brother "—Thefts—The Jougs, etc. —William Edminstone .and
his "sons—Housebreaking, theft and sheep stealing—His trial and
execution—Agnes Muffat—John Erskine—Theft-Execution—Resetters kicked and
banished—John Low—Cattle stealing— Baron Court—Kirk Session and cases of
slandering—Village lock-up ami " Archie Milne "—Charles Dinnie.
Registers. Bequests, and Savings Bank
Old Register Books—An older one lost—Burning of Schoolhouse—A Marriage
Proclamations Register lost -Morgan Case—Free Church Births Register—Quaint
entries in old Registers. Page Bequests. —James Black's—Provost
Christie's—Sir Alexander Ramsay Irvine's — Valentine's — Glen's — George
Cooper's — James Smith's — Mrs Callum's—James and John Johnston's. Ramsay
Bursaries.—Rev. John Ramsay and St. Andrews Bursaries— Dr. Gilbevt Ramsay
and Aberdeen Bursaries—Savings Bank.
XXXV.—Meteorology, Woods and Plantations
Forty years' observations—Highest, lowest and mean temperature-Average
rainfall—Heaviest shower—A flood—Rainiest week, month and year—Driest
year—Barometer, highest and lowest readings—Destructive gales—A theory.
Woods and Plantations —Ancient woods — Stately trees—Fasque beeches felled
and re-set (1838)—Again felled (1893)—A silver-flr and other trees in Den of
Fasque—Fettercairn woods—Lady Jane's wood—Ash, self-planted—Mr Muir's
planting—Woods of Balbegno, Balfour and The Burn—Spanish Chestnut—Yews,
hollies, and laburnums—Robbie's tree— "The Baker's" or "Teetotal tree"—Its
XXXVI.—Agriculture and Old Customs
In end of seventeenth
century, death and famine—Waste lands—No roads—Rude implements—Note, The
rigwoody and ropes from tree roots —Gaud8men and oxen—Old pro verbs—No
drainage—Wicker creels—Bear-seed time—Horses in single file—Toothed reaping
hooks—Threshing, winnowing, and milling—Failure of crops, 1681—Bad years of
last century —"Snawy hairst"—Food supplies—Meal "girnal"—Farmhouses, mere
hovels, and rudely constructed—Improved farm buildings—Food of the people—Kail
brose—Sowens—Servants' wages—Balnakettle farm lease (1768)—A crofter's
account of his old place. Markets—When and where held—Term
markets—Holidays—David Hughes—Usual scenes—Discontinued—Anecdote.
Number of homesteads—Names Celtic and Saxon—Celtic, on the dry spots—Saxon,
on the wet lands improved—List of Celtic place-names and their meanings.
XXXVIII.—Anecdotes of Fettercairn Worthies
Mearns men have keen sense of humour—Dean Ramsay—Mr Inglis's Collections
largely from the Mearns—John Gove's old gun—James Fearn in a park—Rob Jack
and the window shutter—" Nae the same ass ava" —"Caulk's nae shears"—"On a
new found," and "A gill o' the very warst"—The laird and his tenant—"A
slockenin' o' drink"—Tall pCas— "Auld thievin' banes"—Old firearms—Willie
Clark's sentiments—"A saxpence did mair guid"—A nonagenarian's new suit—He
wanted snuff and came to the kirk—Johnnie Mathers' daughter—Johnnie Webster
and the Rev. Dr. Leslie—Webster and his turnip hoe—Nancy and Mary, two
opposite characters—Mary's hoard—A surprise. Conclusion, "Sweet Auburn" and
The three pictures below were provided by Aberdeenshire Libraries
Fettercairn Village 1905