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The Northern Highlands in the Nineteenth Century
No. 16


In February 1840 Queen Victoria was married to Prince Albert. The young sovereign had not at this time gained the hearts of the people as she afterwards did, and to her chagrin the allowance to her husband was cut down, by a combination of Conservatives and Radicals, to £30,000 a year. In June the youth Oxford attempted to shoot the Queen as she was driving out with the Prince from Buckingham Palace. The outrage roused the loyalty of the people, calling forth a unanimous expression of horror and indignation from all ranks of society.

The troubles of the Whig Government multiplied during the session. They managed, however, to pass the bill for Irish municipal reform. The House came into conflict with a firm named Stockdale, which brought an action against Hansard for publishing what they considered a libel in a Parliamentary paper. The firm succeeded in the Law Courts, but the House considered their conduct a breach of privilege, and committed the persons immediately concerned to custody. Heated discussions took place, and the conflict was finally ended by the passing of an Act which protected the publication of Parliamentary papers. In foreign affairs, Palmerston took a strong line in supporting the integrity of the Ottoman Empire against Mehemet Ali, and came near to embroiling the country with France. A quarrel also occurred with China over the opium question, leading to war.

The system of penny postage was brought into operation in January, though not without misgivings on the part of the Government. At first the change caused a loss to the revenue, but in a few years it was made up. The Chartist leaders Frost and his associates were convicted of high treason, but their sentence was commuted to transportation for life. In Scotland there was growing excitement over the Church question.

From the "Inverness Courier."
1840.

January 1.—By Treasury minute, dated December 26, January 10th was fixed as the date for bringing the penny-postage rate into operation.

Ibid.—Articles and letters appear on the Church question. Rev. Mr Cunningham and Rev. Mr Candlish addressed a large meeting in the Inverness Gaelic Church. A correspondent, speaking of the Daviot case, says that for many years the parish, with a large proportion of two adjacent ones, had been practically severed by religious dissensions from communion with the Church. It was no uncommon thing for the late pastor to preach to a handful on one side of the stream, while the multitude flocked to the tent of an itinerant preacher on the other side. When the vacancy occurred the people fixed their minds on one man (Rev. Mr Cook, Inverness), as best adapted by his special gifts to edify them. "But the efforts," says the correspondent, "to procure his services overshot the mark, and were justly deemed by Government a sufficient reason for rejecting an application in his favour, and striking his name from the list of candidates." It does not seem to have occurred, either to the minister or to the writer, that the best way to put an end to the schism was to give the people the candidate of their choice.

Ibid.—It is stated that the springs and wells which watered the Leys had been dried up since the date of the recent earthquake. This was on the south side of the valley. On the opposite side, at the farm of Kinmylies, the pumps failed to raise any water, and a supply had to be obtained from the river.

January 8.—At a public meeting held in the High Church, it was agreed by a majority to approve of a legal assessment for the support of the poor in the parish of Inverness. The Town Council and Kirk-Session had previously sanctioned the proposal.

Ibid.—An advertisement announces that a newspaper under the title of "The Witness" was to be published in Edinburgh. It was signed especially to maintain the cause of Protestantism and of Church Establishments, and the spiritual rights and privileges of the Church of Scotland." The same issue contains a report of the meeting addressed at Inverness by Rev. Messrs Cunningham and Candlish. No layman could be induced to take the chair, and the Rev. Mr Stewart, Cromarty, agreed to preside. A resolution was passed in favour of the Church claims, and petitions to Parliament were prepared and largely signed. On the opposite side a meeting of heritors and others was held at Nairn, which expressed alarm at the recent proceedings of the General Assembly and its Commission, especially in suspending the Strathbogie ministers.

Ibid.—The local Total Abstinence Society was conducting an active movement. A soiree was held on New-Year’s Day in the Northern Meeting Rooms. "The price of admission was 1s 6d, but this was far from being an obstacle in the way of attendance, as above five hundred were present."

January 15.—Hugh Miller, on his appointment as editor of the "Witness," was entertained to a public dinner at Cromarty on the 8th inst., and presented with a breakfast service. Mr George Cameron, Sheriff-Substitute of the eastern district of Ross-shire, was in the chair, and the croupiers were Provost Robert Ross and Mr John Taylor, Sheriff-Clerk. Miller’s pamphlets on the Church question had secured him his new appointment, but it is noted at the same time that his geological discoveries had already attracted the attention of men of science at home and abroad. "It was now necessary that he should leave his native town, of which he had long been the poet laureate, the historian, and geologist, and where he lived in universal respect for his private virtues no less than for his talents." Mr Carruthers was present from Inverness, and joined in expressing admiration for his friend. They had been acquainted for eleven years. Miller’s Poems had been printed at the "Courier" office, and many communications from his pen, including his Letters on the Herring Fishery, had appeared in the columns of the paper. The day after the dinner Miller left Cromarty for Edinburgh, carrying with him the best wishes of his friends and townsmen.

Ibid.—’The county of Inverness resolved to petition Parliament to increase the salaries of Scottish Sheriff-Substitutes. "The number of these functionaries is forty-nine. Their salaries vary from £150 to £400, making the average about £263. The sum total thus paid annually for supporting this important branch of the judicial establishment of Scotland is only £13,120."

Ibid.—William Howitt had issued a book entitled "Visits to Remarkable Places," in which the old halls, battlefields, and scenes illustrative of English poetry and history were delineated. This issue quotes a passage which describes Mr Howitt’s visit to Kilmorack, in August 1836, during the time of the summer Communion. There was a large open-air gathering in the church-yard. "With the exception that hardly one had a bonnet on, the young women were not much to be distinguished from those of our smartest towns. They all had their hair neatly braided, and adorned with a tall comb of tortoise-shell. Many of them had silk gowns and handsome worked muslin collars, and others were dressed in white. Every one carried on her arm a shawl, often of tartan, ready in case of rain to throw over her head. The married women wore no bonnets, but had caps supported by a sort of inner frame of stiff calico; and smart coloured ribbons, often pink, and as often gay tartan, showing through the cap. The old women, again, had large mob-caps. . . Many of them came thus unbonneted perhaps from a distance of seven or eight miles..... Sturdy shepherds with sunburnt features and their plaids wrapped round them, and gay fellows in full Highland costume, mingled with the throng in a more English garb..... A more serious and decorous congregation never was seen."

January 22.—A public meeting was held in the Town Hall to express disapproval of the action of the General Assembly in connection with the Veto Act. The resolutions bore that the Church should proceed "not by agitation in exciting the passions and prejudices of the multitude, but by calm and respectful application to the Legislature." Provost Cumming was in the chair. "Several gentlemen entertaining different opinions on this subject were present, but no attempt was made at opposition, nor was any mark of disapprobation evinced."

Ibid.—A paragraph states that the Chief of Glengarry was preparing to embark for Australia with his family and dependents. "He is constructing timber houses and furnishing himself with various agricultural implements and other conveniences for residence in that distant region. Mr Macdonell was compelled some time since to dispose of most of the property, which was heavily mortgaged and encumbered by his father, the late well-known Glengarry, whose character, in its more favourable lights, was drawn by Sir Walter Scott in his hero, Fergus M'lvor. We cannot regard this expatriation of the head of an old Highland family, with its clan associations, its pipe music, and its feudal associations, without some regret and emotion. These Celtic strains and legends will sound strange in the new world of the wanderers, so far removed from their native Loch-Oich, the Rock of the Raven, and the other magnificent scenery of the Glengarry mountains."

Ibid.—There is notice of a book entitled "The Black Kalendar of Aberdeen," which was designed to give an account of the most remarkable trials that had come before the criminal courts in that city from the period of the suppression of the rising of 1745. Many of these were from Inverness. It appears that on the suppression of the insurrection, a number of persons of desperate character who had been engaged in it commenced a series of robberies and outrages. The fate of one of the men is thus recorded—"In the month of July 1755, John Macmillan, or Breack Macevan Vaan, a stout Jacobite and renowned thief, was executed at Inverness. There were suspicions against this man that he had been accessory to a murder for which his brother had been hanged some years before; but he denied this crime at the gallows. He neither prayed for himself nor desired the prayers of others, but called for a glass of whisky, and having got it, held it up above his head and cried out, ‘Here is Prince Charles's health, and God send him safe to his own kingdom. I ask you all to witness that I am an innocently murdered man.’ He then spent his last breath in abusing all who had a hand in bringing him to justice, and especially the Sheriff, who, he said, had been a black sight to the names and families of Lochiel and Glengarry. Macmillan’s friends having got his body to bury after it was cut down, endeavoured, by bleeding and other means, to restore him to life, but without success." There were numerous trials of Roman Catholics. In April 1759, Neil Macfie was banished for life, by a sentence of the Circuit Court at Inverness, for being "habit and repute a Popish priest."

Ibid.—The death is announced of Principal Baird at the age of 79. He was the warm friend of education in the Highlands.

Ibid.—An extract is given from William Howitt’s work (noticed above), describing his visit to the battlefield of Culloden in August 1836. The moor was at the time "one black waste of heath," with exception of the grassy mounds that formed the graves. The road, he says, had been cut across the moor since the battle, right across the scene of action, and through the graves. The north wall of an enclosure, as is well known, screened the right flank of the Highland army. Mr Howitt mentions that "the mouldering remains of that old and shattered wall still stretch across the moor in the very course laid down in the original plans of the battle." The visitor was conducted through the battlefield by a young man named William Mackenzie, whose family occupied a hut in Stable Hollow at the time of the battle, and still lived on the same spot. "It had been called Stable Hollow ever since from a number of the English troopers after the fight putting up their horses in the shed belonging to it, while they went to strip the slain."

January 29.—On the previous Thursday a public meeting was held in Inverness to support the principle of non-intrusion in the Church. The attendance is described as "large and highly respectable," and finding that the Court-House could not contain the numbers who wanted admission, the meeting adjourned to the High Church. Mr Fraser of Abertarff was in the chair. Among the speakers were the Rev. David Sutherland, the Rev. Alexander Clark, and the Rev. Archibald Cook, of Inverness. On the 16th inst. a meeting on the same side was held at Forres, "which was attended by almost all the respectable people of the place." The meeting was preceded by a sermon from the Rev. Mr Macdonald, Urquhart. Resolutions were adopted declaring for the principle of non-intrusion and the independent jurisdiction of the Church in spiritual matters.

Ibid.—Mr Macaulay was elected one of the representatives of Edinburgh on his appointment as Secretary at War. The Editor publishes extracts from a private letter written by a young student to his father, descriptive of Macaulay’s appearance, manner, and oratory. The writer says that his first impressions on seeing the Secretary at War were those of unmingled surprise and disappointment. The hon. member was little and insignificant, restless and uneasy, and by no means intellectual in expression. "But the moment he got up to speak, these feelings were dissipated. From being uneasy and timid, he became calm and self-possessed and leaning gracefully on the table by his side, he began his speech with the utmost coolness, pronouncing every word slowly and distinctly, and with the most deliberate emphasis. His voice is remarkably clear, rich, and sonorous, and always exquisitely modulated to suit the sentiment he is uttering. As he fired with his subject, his countenance lost its dull and commonplace character, his slender form dilated into prouder dimensions, and his features were simple and natural, yet graceful and expressive. . . He seemed to me a scholar without pedantry, an orator without sophistry." The writer of this letter, we believe, was Mr Angus B. Reach.

February 5.—There is a long report of a large non-intrusion meeting at Dingwall. The Rev. James Macdonald, of Urray, was in the chair.

February 12.—Mr Macleod of Cadboll, who had been in failing health, announces that he is not again to seek the suffrages of the electors of the Inverness Burghs. This had been expected for a week or two, and the Liberals were now in treaty with Mr James Morrison, merchant, London, to contest the seat in their interest when a vacancy occurred. Mr Morrison was now in Inverness, accompanied by Mr Edward Ellice, M.P.

Ibid.—A meeting was held at Fetes to express disapproval of the attitude of the Church on the veto question. Mr J. M. Grant of Glenmoriston was in the chair, and several county proprietors were present. The general attendance seems to have been limited.

February 19.—This issue gives an account of the marriage of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, celebrated on the 10th inst. There were rejoicings at Inverness and other places.

Ibid.—Mr Morrison and Mr Edward Ellice, Jun., held a political meeting in Inverness. Mr Ellice was entertained to a public dinner by his old friends (he had contested the burghs against Major Cumming Bruce). A meeting in support of non-intrusion was held at Tain. There was a religions revival in Nairn which attracted some attention.

February 26.—Mr Macleod of Cadboll had resolved, on account of ill health, to resign at once his seat for the burghs, instead of waiting for the General Election. Mr Morrison, the liberal candidate, and his friend Mr Ellice, had taken leave of the electors, and gone as far as Edinburgh before they heard that a writ had been moved for. They immediately retraced their steps. The Conservative candidate was Mr John Fraser, Cromarty House, a native of Inverness. The contest promptly began, "but happily with the prospect of a speedy termination."

March 4.—The candidates for the representation of the Inverness Burghs were nominated on February 26th uIt., the ceremony taking place on the Exchange, "where a capacious and showy hustings had been erected." The crowd was very large, and "a few more mischievously disposed, had provided themselves with small shot, which were thrown about to the annoyance of many persons." The Liberal candidate was Mr James Morrison, merchant, London; the Conservative Mr John Fraser, Cromarty House. The polling took place on 3rd March, with the result that Mr Morrison was elected by 353 votes to 308; majority, 45. Forres was still the Conservative burgh of the group, the figures there being 71 for Mr Fraser and 55 for Mr Morrison.

March 11.—Comments and communications appear on the election. Mr Fraser brought charges of bribery, intimidation, and broken pledges, but the editor remarked with good humour that "the whole annals of electioneering can scarcely furnish a single instance of a defeated candidate, who acknowledged that he had been fairly beaten."

March 18.—The Master of Grant, M.P. for the county of Inverness, died suddenly at Cullen House on the 11th inst., from an affection of the heart. He had come North to make preparations for the funeral of his mother, who died on the 27th ult. The Master was only in his twenty-sixth year, and his death caused deep regret. There was great sympathy for his father, the Hon. Colonel Grant, who had lost both wife and son.

Ibid.—The Presbytery of Inverness had decided that the new church was to be called the West Church; and it is stated that every other matter about which there was any difference of opinion had been amicably settled.

Ibid.—At a meeting of the "legal administration," a motion was carried settling the principle that the sum required for the support of the poor of the parish of Inverness should be raised, one-half from heritors and proprietors, according to their real rent, and the other half from the inhabitants of the town and parish. This, it was stated, secured occupants from having to pay more than an equal share of assessment.

Ibid.—A paragraph in this issue states that Sir George Macpherson-Grant of Ballindalloch had purchased from Glengarry the estate of Glenquoich for £32,000. A subsequent paragraph, however, says that the purchase, though made by Sir George, was on behalf of Mr Edward Ellice, junior, M.P., who thus became one of the landed proprietors of the county.

March 25.—Mr Henry J. Baillie, yr. of Tarradale, came forward as candidate for the county of Inverness in the Conservative interest. The Liberals resolved not to contest the seat. "Mr Baillie is son of Colonel Hugh Baillie, member for Honiton, and is connected with a powerful and wealthy family in this neighbourhood. Colonel Baillie is proprietor of the estates of Tarradale and Redcastle, and his brother, James E. Baillie, Esq. of Bristol, is proprietor of Kingussie and Glenelg, in Inverness-shire. Their nephew, Evan Baillie, Esq. of Dochfour, is also a landed proprietor in this county." The editor adds: ‘We have heard nothing of the honourable gentleman personally except what is to his honour." On the 31st inst. Mr Baillie was duly elected without opposition.

Ibid.—Mr Paterson, Sandside, wrote suggesting measures for extirpating foxes, which were numerous and caused great damage among sheep. He said that he had sometimes lost two hundred sheep in one year from their ravages.

Ibid.—There was a trial of strength between Moderates and Non-Intrusionists in the Inverness Town Council in the election of an elder to the General Assembly. The Moderates triumphed by a majority of 12 to 6.

Ibid.—The Quarterly Journal of Agriculture gives an account of a series of improvements in the cultivation of waste land carried out by Mr William Genie on the farm of Proncy, county of Sutherland. The reclamations extended to 103½ acres, and the expense was £1504.

April 1.—There is a report of the nomination and election of Mr Henry Baillie as member for the county. The motion was made by Cluny Macpherson, and seconded by Mr Macallister, Talisker, Skye. There was afterwards a dinner in the Caledonian Hotel.

Ibid.—The funeral of the late Master of Grant and his mother took place on the same day. Their remains had been removed to Castle Grant, and were thence conveyed to the family burying-ground at Duthil, followed by a great gathering of friends and tenantry.

Ibid.—There was a rumour at this time that the Caledonian Canal was to be made over by Government to a joint-stock company. It was reported that terms had been prepared and "duly accepted," but the editor expressed doubts on the subject.

Ibid.—A branch of rural improvement was now much canvassed, namely, the drainage of land by tiles. It was stated that in the Northern Counties there was ample scope for this improvement. An agent visited the district to set forth its advantages. "In the manufacture of tiles the patent machinery introduced by the Marquis of Tweeddale has effected a vast change; and though the interest possessed in the trade by Lord Tweeddale has been purchased by a London company, the system is pursued with great spirit and success."

April 8.—"The Duke of Sussex is Earl of Inverness, and Lady Cecilia Underwood is now Duchess of Inverness. The Duke has long been married to Lady Cecilia, though contrary to an existing statute which prevents the Royal Family from marrying any person but a foreign Prince or Princess of a Protestant family." The dignity was conferred by the Queen by letters patent passed under the Great Seal. The Duchess was a daughter of the second Earl of Arran.

Ibid.—The foundation of a new Parish Church at Broadford, Isle of Skye, was laid on the 31st ult., with Masonic honours, by Mr A. D. Mackinnon of Corry. A branch of the National Security Savings Bank and a Benefit Society, to secure provision for old age and sickness, were now established in Inverness. The movement was extending to other towns.

April 15.—A despatch from Lieut.-Colonel Orchard, commanding a detachment of the army of the Indus, gives an account of the storming of the fort of Peshoot. Two young officers from the Highlands distinguished themselves, Lieutenant William Fraser Tytler, son of Sheriff Fraser Tytler, and Lieutenant Arbuthnot Dallas, son of Dr Dallas, of Inverness. The former showed conspicuous gallantry in bringing powder to blow up a gate, and the latter was particularly active in the commissariat department.

Ibid.—Mr W. Howard had retired from the representation of the county of Sutherland, and Mr David Dundas, of the Inner Temple, was elected in his place. Mr Dundas was a staunch supporter of the Whig Government.

Ibid.—Hon. Colonel Grant of Grant had intimated his intention of retiring, on account of domestic affliction, from the representation of the united counties of Elgin and Nairn, and Major Cumming Bruce of Dunphail came forward as the candidate in the Conservative interest. He was elected without opposition.

Ibid.—Mr Hugh Ross, of Cromarty, Provost of Tain, resigned office in consequence of the election of a non-intrusion Commissioner from that town to the General Assembly. He published a pamphlet giving reasons for his resignation, and discussing the Church question.

Ibid.—There is notice of a book by Miss Catherine Sinclair, of Ulbster, giving an account of a tour through the Highlands in 1839. It was a lively, gossiping volume. The disuse of kelp had produced great misery and destitution in Skye. Miss Sinclair saw many of the people wandering along the shore picking up shell-fish as their sole means of subsistence. In the Long Island Colonel Gordon of Cluny was about to begin the plan of improving the unenclosed commons on a large scale. In every family sons, brothers, or cousins were hurrying off to Australia.

April 22.—There is an article on the condition of the Highlands. Sir Robert Inglis had called attention in the House of Commons to the extreme distress which, he said, prevailed, remarking that in a great part of the country the people had taken a pledge of temperance, confining themselves to one meal a day. The editor said he could hear nothing of this so-called pledge, and there was not at the moment any sudden or unusual crisis of distress. The want of employment, however, was deeply felt, and emigration on a large scale would be a public benefit. The kelp trade was almost universally abandoned, and there were no extensive public works in progress. "The population has, therefore, far outgrown the means of decent subsistence; and thousands of our countrymen live constantly on the very verge of destitution, dependent solely on the potato crop." The Inverness Town Council soon afterwards adopted a petition to Parliament declaring that an extensive and properly organised system of emigration was "imperiously called for."

April 29.—A new rector, Mr Gray, had been appointed to the Inverness Royal Academy. He was previously Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy in King’s College, Fredericton, New Brunswick, and on his resignation of that post the Council expressed their deep regret at his departure, and their appreciation of his services. The selection of his successor at King’s College was left to Mr Gray, in conjunction with an eminent scientific man in this country.

May 6.—An account is given of an effort to introduce the capercailzie on the Breadalbane estates. Mr Fowell Buxton had received a pair from a friend in Sweden, which he kept in Norfolk. They bred, but in the hot weather all died except the cock, which was afterwards accidentally shot. In 1837 Mr Fowell Buxton was shooting on the Marquis of Breadalbane’s moors, and proposed to him to make another trial with the capercailzie. "Mr Buxton sent his gamekeeper all the way to Sweden on purpose to bring the birds to Scotland; and the same friend who had formerly assisted succeeded in procuring sixteen hens and thirteen cocks. Part of them died by the way, but the greater number arrived safe, and were conveyed to Taymouth Castle. Some of the birds were turned out in the autumn of 1837, and part were kept in a house. In the year 1838 a brace only were reared by the keeper, but two fine broods were seen in the woods. In the summer of 1838 sixteen hens were forwarded to Taymouth. In the spring of 1839, instead of attempting to rear any capercailzie, the Marquis’s game-keeper placed the eggs laid by the birds in confinement, in the nests of grey hens, who brought them up in a wild state." The experiment had so far answered fairly well, but the head-keeper did not feel assured of the final result. He says that the Marquis of Breadalbane had abstained from shooting a single capercailzie, and had even forbidden the shooting of any black-game in the neighbourhood of Taymouth, lest a young capercailzie might be killed by mistake; but others had not been so scrupulous. "I mention this," says the keeper, "because I am convinced that these birds cannot generally be established in the North of Scotland unless sportsmen will unite to preserve them for some years to come, and until their numbers are very much increased."

Ibid.—The Daviot case was discussed at length in the Synod of Moray. A motion was unanimously adopted affirming the deliverance of the Presbytery of Inverness to refer the case to the General Assembly.

Ibid.—The Inverness county meeting agreed to petition Parliament for an extensive and systematic plan of emigration, and gave it as their opinion that the surplus, amounting to about £11,000, of the fund collected for the relief of destitution in the Highlands in 1836-7 should be applied in promoting this object.

Ibid.—An antiquarian friend sends a series of extracts illustrating the value of rentals in the North in the beginning of the seventeenth century.

May 13.—The Earl of Aberdeen had introduced his bill on the Church question in the House of Lords. A correspondent in London expresses the conviction that it would never satisfy the non-intrusionists. It did not.

May 20.—The West Church, Inverness, was opened for worship on the previous Sunday. It was announced that the Rev. Alexander Clark would preach there permanently, instead of alternating with the other ministers in the High and Gaelic Churches.

May 27.—Mr John Fraser, formerly Provost of Inverness, was now residing at Sherbrooke, in Lower Canada. He took part in a meeting which was held with the view of providing means for erecting and maintaining a College at Kingston. The object apparently was to educate young men for the Colonial Church. Mr Fraser’s speech is reported at length.

June 3.—"We have devoted as much space as we could spare to an account of the proceedings of the General Assembly, which at present nearly absorb the attention of the public." The debate was on the case of the Strathbogie ministers who had been suspended from office by the Commission.

Ibid.—Mr John Grant had entered on the tenancy of the Caledonian Hotel in succession to the late Mr Wilson, who is described as a "paragon of landlords."

June 10.—The Daviot case came before the Commission of Assembly. The Commission ordered the Presbytery of Inverness to censure the presentee, Mr Simon Mackintosh, for having obtained an interdict from the Civil Courts anent the exercise of the veto, and to report the case to the August meeting.

June 17.—An advertisement dated from Fort-William announces that "the proprietor of some farms, now out of lease, on an estate on the confines of Argyleshire and Inverness-shire, is willing to treat with any gentleman desirous of converting about 20,000 imperial acres into a deer forest." One of the inducements held out is that, "by adding three or four thousand acres more, these farms might be brought almost into contact with an old established regular forest, which has been for a century or two strictly reserved from sheep and cattle, and is at present well stocked with deer." Another advertisement offers on lease the sheep walk of Glenquoich, but states that the deer forest of Glenloyne is excluded from it.

Ibid.—The attempt of the youth Oxford to shoot the Queen is reported. The outrage called forth warm feelings of indignation and loyalty throughout the nation.

June 24.—Improvements in the town are described, among which is mentioned the renovation of old buildings. The footpath known as the Ladies’ Walk had been raised, levelled, and embanked. The lower island had been dressed up, and rendered more pleasing by the removal of whins and the formation of walks. The islands are spoken of as "beautiful but neglected."

July 1.—There is a long description of "The Archimedes Steam Ship," which introduced the screw as a propeller. The vessel was engaged in an experimental voyage, and passed through the Caledonian Canal.

Ibid.—An abstract is given of a report on the Caledonian Canal by a Select Committee of the House of Commons. The Committee recommended that the Treasury should be empowered to grant the Canal on lease to a company for a period not exceeding ninety-nine years, without any annual return or rent, on certain conditions. First, the company was to pay the sum of £45,000, to be applied in discharging the debt on the canal. Second, the works specified in Mr Walker’s report for improving the canal were to be carried into effect by the company. Third, the company was not to be entitled to pay a dividend of more than ten per cent. until a reserve fund of £50,000 had been set aside; nor a dividend of more than fifteen per cent until the reserve fund reached £100,000. Stipulations were made as to rates.

July 8.—At a county meeting in Inverness it was resolved, under recent Acts of Parliament, to establish an efficient force of constabulary, and to authorise an assessment to be levied for the purposes of the Prisons Act. The meeting also approved, by a majority, of a scheme to carry out "the great coast road to Inverness." This, the report explains, was a new line of road from Castle Stewart to Nairn.

Ibid.—An entertainment was given to Mr Macdonald, the tenant of a new hotel, the Union Hotel in High Street. This building is now the Highland Club.

Ibid.—The Government had agreed to increase the salaries of Sheriff-Substitutes, according to a scale varying from £300 to £500 a year.

Ibid.—"The following instance of the imperfect state of communication in the North, about ninety years since, has been communicated to us by a gentleman well versed in local antiquities and general information. When the late Principal Macleod, of King’s College, Aberdeen, was desirous of returning with his mother and family to the island of Skye, he applied for a post-chaise in Aberdeen, but found that the only public carriage in the city, fit for the road, had gone that day to Arbroath. There was another vehicle, but it wanted a wheel, and the only person in Aberdeen that could repair it was laid up with drunkenness. The first coup-cart made in the North was constructed under the superintendence of the late Mr Welsh of Millburn, of ash grown in the island in the River Ness, about the year 1775. This article of daily use (formerly all the carts in the Highlands were made of rungs or small sticks, of the rudest description) was copied by Mr Welsh from a cart used in the transport of prisoners from Perthshire to be tried at our Circuit Court of Justiciary. The first straight furrow in ploughing land in the province of Moray was made by the late Mr Thomas Duncan, farmer, in Alves, about sixty years since. The worthy farmer marked out the straight lines by means of holes placed in the field, and his neighbours, when they saw these preparations for ploughing, thought Mr Duncan’s mind had fairly ‘gone ajee.’ The late minister of Dores, the worthy Mr Mackillican, used to declare that when he went first to College at Aberdeen, about eighty years ago, there was not a yard of stone dyke on the high road from Inverness to Aberdeen, excepting a small patch at Gordon Castle."

Ibid.—The previous week, the workmen who were engaged on the new buildings in Farraline Park (Bell's School) dug up nine entire skeletons at a depth of from eighteen to twenty-four inches. The bodies did not seem to have been regularly interred, and they were probably the remains of men who had fallen in fight.

lbid.—Mr Hugh Ross of Cromarty was entertained to a public dinner in Tain by members of the Easter Ross Farmer Society and other gentlemen. It is stated that Mr Ross’s property had not merely increased but multiplied in value since he came into possession of it; and his exertions, together with their stimulating effect on his neighbours, had completely altered the face of the country. The special object which the dinner was intended to celebrate was the establishment by Mr Ross at Phippsfield of a manufactory for bricks and drain tiles, which was now fully in operation.

lbid.—A quotation from an Ayr newspaper states that a vast and awfully increasing amount of distress existed in the large towns. From Ireland and from the manufacturing districts of England and Scotland the same tale came. It is stated that in the town of Paisley no less than 1200 workmen were almost wholly unemployed.

July 15.—There is a report of the trial of Oxford for shooting at the Queen. The jury found that the prisoner was "guilty of discharging the contents of two pistols at her Majesty, but whether or not they were loaded with ball we cannot decide, he being at that time labouring under an unsound state of mind." This being an uncertain verdict, the jury were sent back to reconsider it, and returned with a verdict of "guilty, being at the time insane." The prisoner was accordingly ordered to be detained during her Majesty’s pleasure.

Ibid.—At the Inverness Wool Fair the price of sheep was good and sales were extensive. The demand for wool was stagnant. The manufacturing districts were labouring under great depression, particularly as regards the woollen trade, which had been affected by the dulness of the American markets, the existence of hostilities with China, and the comparative stagnation of the home demand. Prices are quoted as follows :—Cheviot welders, 24s to 33s; ewes, 15s to 23s; lambs, 7s to 11s 6d. Blackfaced wedders, 15s to 22s 6d; ewes, 11s to 12s; lambs, 7s to 9s 3d. Cross wedders, 20s to 23s; ewes, 14s; lambs, 7s 6d to 8s; Leicester cross lambs, 14s. Blackfaced wool is quoted at 14s, and Cheviot white and half-bred, 23s to 26s. It is stated, however, that all the principal clips in the North remained unsold. One gentleman, who sometimes made purchases to the amount of £25,000, went away without buying a single fleece. Purchasers had resolved to take nothing except at a reduction of from 20 to 25 per cent on the previous year, and as farmers believed that the depression was temporary and accidental, they resolved to hold their fleeces.

Ibid.—The first annual meeting of the Caledonian Bank was held on the 7th curt. The profits of the first year, equal to 6 per cent., were carried to reserve. A sum of £100 was voted for a piece of plate to Mr Ross, Berbice, for his valuable services as acting manager, rendered gratuitously from the opening of the Bank.

Ibid.—There is notice of a religious revival in Ross-shire, similar to that which had taken place the previous year at Kilsyth. Deep feelings were manifested at the Communion services at Tarbat, conducted in Gaelic by the Rev. Mr Macdonald of Ferrintosh. At Tain Mr Macdonald preached on Sunday to an open-air gathering of not less than five or six thousand persons. The people were engaged night and day in prayer meetings.

July 22.—Provost Cumming reported that the Inverness jail had been delivered over to the County Prison Board on 1st July. The Clerk produced inventories of warrants, furniture, and books, which had been transferred along with the jail.

Ibid.—At a meeting of the Presbytery of Inverness, Mr Mackintosh, presentee to Daviot, made the declaration enjoined by the General Assembly of his regret for having applied for an interdict against seven communicants of that perish to prevent their exercising the veto. The Presbytery were unanimously of opinion that Mr Mackintosh’s statement was perfectly satisfactory.

July 29.—This issue contains a report of a case which excited great interest in the Highlands. Mr Donald Home of Langwell, W.S., and Mr Hugh Ross of Cromarty, had quarrelled over the settlement of accounts. At the time of the Highland Society Show in Inverness, in the previous October, Mr Ross sent a challenge to Mr Home, and because the latter did not accept, he called him a coward. This occurred in the Caledonian Hotel. Mr Home brought an action of damages, offering at the same time to accept an apology. He said that the dispute occurred in connection with professional matters, and he had acted all through honourably and within his rights. It was after the question between them had been settled that the challenge was sent. He could not fight with Mr Ross, who was an old man of 73, and uncle of his partner in business. The jury found for pursuer, awarding £500 as damages.

Ibid.—The Caledonian Canal Bill passed the House of Commons. It authorised the Lords of the Treasury to grant a lease of the canal rent free, for a period not exceeding 99 years.

August 5.—The following paragraph is quoted from the "John O’Groat Journal" :—"The Quebec Packet, Captain Stephen, left Cromarty on the evening of Friday, 17th curt., with goods and passengers. This is the third ship sent out this year to British America by Messrs Sutherland and Maclennan. We understand that the aggregate number of emigrants from the North, shipped this season by vessels chartered by the above-mentioned agents, amounts to no less than 403. Of these 248 are from Caithness, viz.—Ospray, 115; British King, 116; Quebec Packet, 17; total, 248." The same issue gives an account of a scheme for emigration to Central America.

Ibid.—The estates of Glengarry and Inverlochy are advertised for sale.

Ibid.—A meeting of subscribers to the fund for the relief of the destitute in the Highlands and Islands was held in Edinburgh on the previous Friday. The secretary, Mr Craigie, reported that the funds in bank amounted to £3200, of which sum £1300 belonged to the London Committee, transmitted to the Edinburgh Committee on the express understanding that it was to be applied in aid of destitution. After deducting this sum and implementing obligations, the Edinburgh Committee had £1700 at the disposal of subscribers. The Secretary had reason to believe that £4000 was at the command of the Glasgow Committee, who thought that the fund should not be diverted from its original purpose. Various proposals were submitted for the disposal of the Edinburgh funds, but in the end the meeting unanimously adopted a motion submitted by Mr Mackenzie of Applecross, resolving to act in concert with the Glasgow and London Committees, either for relieving destitution or promoting emigration. In course of the discussion, it was stated that distress continued to prevail owing to a partial failure of the potato crop, and the want of fuel. In consequence of wet weather, not a single peat had yet been got in.

August 12.—This issue gives an account of the attempt made by Prince Louis Napoleon to raise a rebellion at Boulogne.

Ibid.—An American clergyman, the Rev. A. G. Fraser, of New York, had raised a claim to the title and estates of Lovat. The paragraph states that he claimed to be descended from John, a younger brother of Lord Simon of the ‘45, but the particulars are confused. The famous incident of the stabbing of the piper (probably apocryphal in any case) is attributed to John. The question, however, had been brought before the Court of Session, and a Commission was sitting at Inverness taking the evidence of aged persons and of such documents as might exist.

lbid.—A vessel called the Nith was taking out emigrants from the Western Highlands to Prince Edward Island. At Uig 400 passengers went on board, and at Tobermory 150. The vessel proceeded to Staffa and lona, and was going thence to the Isle of Man.

Ibid.—At a county meeting in Inverness a scheme was adopted for the establishment of a force of constabulary. There were to be four district and fifteen ordinary constables, with three "superior officers" and one superintendent. The total cost of the force was estimated at £775 a year. The pay of ordinary constables was to be from £30 to £40. The county at the time was over-ran by vagrants.

August 19.—"The demand for shootings has this year been greater than usual, and rents have risen largely. Many gentlemen have returned South after travelling over the whole of the North in search of shooting quarters, without being able to obtain a nook or a cranny. One sportsman, a baronet, has been forced to locate himself at the foot of a high hill, over which he and his friends have to travel ere they reach their moor, making a daily journey of eight dreary miles." Among the sportsmen whose names are mentioned are the Marquis of Douro at Achnecarry; Lord Ward at Glengarry; Lord Macdonald and Captain Turnor at Castle Leod; Lord Selkirk at Upper Morar; Lord Lauderdale at Lochbroom; Mr St George Gore at Gairloch; Captain Inge at Applecross; Mr Horatio Ross at Craigdarroch; and the Messrs Gladstone at Achnasheen. Sport, however, had not been so good as was expected.

Ibid.—There is a report of the proceedings at the Commission of Assembly, at which it was resolved to libel the seven Strathbogie ministers. The Commission also (as reported in the next issue) resolved to frame a libel against Mr Edwards, presentee to the parish of Marnoch. They accepted the submission of the presentee to the parish of Daviot.

August 26.—The death is announced of Mr Rickman, Second Clerk of the House of Commons. "Mr Rickman was for nearly thirty years Secretary to the Parliamentary Boards of Commissioners for Highland Roads and Bridges, and of the Caledonian Canal, in which situations he always evinced a strong and enthusiastic interest in the improvement of the Highlands. He had made himself familiar with all our roads and bridges, our bays and harbours; and wrote upon the subject with the force and fluency of a man who puts his heart into his words."

Ibid.—"We saw lately a fine gold ring containing a miniature portrait of Prince Charles Edward Stuart, taken in 1744. The ring, as we were told, belonged to the Lord Macdonald of that day [Sir Alexander Macdonald], to whom it was presented by the Prince. It came into the hands of a sister of Lord Macdonald, resident in Moscow, and by her was presented to Mr Smith, merchant in Moscow, who, after a long residence in Russia, returned to his native district of Galloway, where he died. The ring is at present in the possession of Mr Nicholson, bookseller, Kirkcudbright. It is of French workmanship, and the portrait is beautifully executed in enamel."

lbid.—There is an account of a religious awakening at Alness, corresponding to what had occurred elsewhere in Rosss-shire. The Rev. John Macdonald of Ferintosh was the preacher. Prayer meetings had been previously established by the parish minister, Rev. Mr Flyter.

lbid.—On the 15th inst. the foundation-stone of the Scott Monument was laid in Edinburgh.

September 2.—Mr Duncan’s picture of Prince Charles Edward and the Highlanders entering Edinburgh after the battle of Prestonpans is made the text for an article over two columns in length.

September 9.—An account is given of the improvement effected by Sir Francis Mackenzie in the growth of different descriptions of grain on his estate of Conan. New seeds reared with success in the South were generally imported by Sir Francis, and the results carefully noted. Reclamations and improvements had also been going on in the valley of the Conon. Sir George Mackenzie was engaged in an attempt to alter the course of part of the river, by raising a huge embankment and cutting a new course for the stream. His object was to save the fields from occasional inundation, and to add a tract of good land to the estate. Mr Fowler of Raddery was also engaged in embanking and improving; "and next year there will be several fields won from the waste to greet the eye of those who travel by the new bridge to Contin and Strathpeffer."

Ibid.—There is an account of the death of Thomas Simpson, the Arctic explorer, who died, it was alleged, by his own hand, after shooting one of his companions in a camp four days’ journey from Fort Garrry. He was only thirty-two years of age, a man of robust constitution, and naturally of amiable disposition. His brother, Alexander Simpson, afterwards published a biography (Richard Bentley, 1845), in which he maintained that Simpson had been murdered by his companions, who were half-breeds.

Ibid.—It is mentioned that five editions of Thomas Campbell’s poetical works had been published within the last five years, ranging in price from half-a-crown to a sovereign. The popularity of his works at the time was very great.

September 16.—The Presbytery of Inverness met again to consider the Daviot case, from 80 to 100 parishioners from Daviot being present. The Moderator explained the Veto Act at great length in Gaelic. "It having been asked of the parishioners present if they understood what had been said to them, their answer, as translated to us, was that they understood it all before they came there, and that they had only come in obedience to the request of the Presbytery. Nothing further was done, and there was no other business before the meeting."

Ibid.—Mr Maitland Makgill Crichton addressed an anti-patronage meeting in Inverness. Rev. Mr Clark was in the chair.

September 23.—On the 9th inst. a whale was captured off the quicksands, in the Dornoch Firth, on the Tain side. The whale was 75 feet 4 inches in length, and its girth round the thickest part was 36 feet. The monster was "in the throes of death" when taken by fishermen.

Ibid.—At a meeting in Nairn it was resolved to establish a Savings Bank for the benefit of the town and county.

September 3.—Extracts are given from the proceedings of the British Association in Glasgow, bearing testimony to the value of Hugh Miller’s researches in the Old Red Sandstone, and to the outstanding merits of his papers on the subject, as published in the "Witness." The chief speakers were Mr Murchison (Sir Roderick) and Dr Buckland. Agassiz, who was present, proposed to name one of the specimens of fossil fish Dipterus Milleri. It was also stated that Lady Gordon Cumming had come forward as a distinguished and successful investigator in geology.

Ibid.—There is a notice of the work of the Inverness Dispensary. It had been in existence for eight years.—The painting of the Holy Family (attributed to Sasso Ferrato), which was hung in the Royal Academy, was suffering from the attacks of an insect. "Fortunately the circumstance has been discovered in time, before the insect had bored to any great depth, and the picture is now in the hands of Mr Macinnes, artist, whose taste is well known, and who will effectually protect this work of art from any further dilapidation." The picture is now in the Town Hall.

Ibid.—A Ross-shire county meeting discussed the expediency of appointing a constabulary force. The annual cost was estimated at £712. It was resolved to circulate the report of the Committee, and to delay consideration of it for a year.

October 7.—Wilson, a famous Scottish vocalist, gave three musical entertainments in Inverness the previous week. They are spoken of in terms of great appreciation.

Ibid.—The Northern Meeting was well attended. There were horse races on both days at the Longman. Friday was always reckoned the principal day of the Meeting, and on this occasion 150 dined and about 300 attended the ball and supper. Presents of game and fruit were sent to the Meeting from different quarters. Lord Lovat presented a fine stag and forty hares and rabbits.

lbid.—The Presbytery of Inverness met on the 30th ult. to moderate in a call to the Rev. Simon Mackintosh to the parish of Daviot. The call was signed by six heritors, by three communicants out of ten, and by 58 male heads of families—total, 67. Dissents were tendered by seven communicants, and a petition was presented against the settlement of the presentee, purporting to be signed by 194 parishioners, including 119 heads of families. The Presbytery adjourned consideration of the case.

Ibid.—Marshal Macdonald, Duke of Tarentum, died at his Chateau of Courcelles, aged 75.

October 14.—A paragraph records the death of an old woman, Mrs Batchen, Elgin, who was supposed to be 109 years of age. The actual date of her birth, however, had not been discovered. "It is said that she was in the service of Mrs Anderson of Arradowal (commonly called Lady Arradowal) at the time that lady entertained Prince Charles Edward on his passing through Elgin previous to the disastrous battle of Culloden, and that she gave out the ‘best Holland sheets the house could afford’ for the bed which the Prince was to occupy."

Ibid.—There is a report of the address delivered by Professor Agassiz at the meeting of the British Association, showing that glaziers formerly existed in the Highlands of Scotland.

Ibid.—A boat from Hopeman was upset by a squall in the Firth, and five of its crew of six were drowned.

October 21.—Interest was created by the discovery of iron and lead ore on the Duke of Richmond’s estate, near Tomintoul. The Duke was anxious to have both veins worked.

Ibid.—A case of what was believed to be murder had occurred in the parish of Knockando. A farmer named Alexander Tulloch had been found dead, bearing marks of violence. The culprit was supposed to be the man’s son-in-law, Peter Cameron, who managed, after he was arrested, to escape from the constables who had him in charge. A reward of £20 was offered for his apprehension.

Ibid.—The Inverness Farmers’ Society held a successful show of stock. At the dinner the best mode of cultivating turnips was discussed. The chief speakers were Mr Brown of Linkwood, Mr Geddes, Orbliston, and Sir Francis Mackenzie of Gairloch.

Ibid.—The Rev. Robert Williamson, parish minister of Croick, had accepted a call some time before to the Scottish Church of Pictou, Nova Scotia. There is in this number a notice of his induction to his new charge. A number of Mr Williamson’s former congregation, and others from the parishes of Croick and Assynt, engaged to accompany him to Nova Scotia. "He made the most judicious arrangements for their comfort and accommodation abroad, and procured a handsome sum to enable the humbler amongst them to emigrate. He got a vessel to come to Lochinver for them—the Deveron, Captain Maclean—which made the passage in 27 days to Pictou. Mr Williamson had every intention of accompanying his little Highland colony, but the state of his amiable lady’s health detained him a few weeks later, when he went by the British King, and had a most tedious voyage, a fever having broken out on board, which carried off several of the passengers. On Mr and Mrs Williamson’s arrival at Pictou, the passengers by the Deveron waited on their minister, to express to him their deep sense of the unremitting kindness of the captain, and no less that of the owner, Mr Watson, who made the voyage along with them. These poor, grateful Highlanders were clubbing their spare pence to purchase a silver snuff-box for Captain Maclean."

Ibid.—The amount of assessment in Inverness for the poor was £1600, but this was calculated for about five hundred poor, and to cover preliminary expenses. After investigation, only three hundred legal poor were placed on the roll. The permanent assessment was expected to be about £1000, at the rate of less than 1s per pound on occupancy and less than 4d on property. The population of town and parish was about 16,000.

October 28.—The death of Lord Holland is announced. "He was one of the steadiest and noblest landmarks of the Whig party."

Ibid.—The Glengarry estates were exposed for sale in Edinburgh on the 20th inst. "The estate of Glengarry was put up at £88,000, and after many offers was sold to Lord Ward at £91,000. The estate of Inverlochy Castle was exposed to sale at £68,000, and after a keen competition was knocked down to an English gentleman for £75,150." The latter purchaser was afterwards stated to be the Hon. Mr Scarlett, son of Lord Abinger.

Ibid.—A work issued on National Instruction showed that the average income of parochial teachers, from salaries, fees, and other emoluments, amounted to £47 5s 11d per annum, or about 18s 2d per week. Adding house and garden, their emoluments were about £1 per week.

November 4.—The Earl of Seafield died on the 26th ult., at the age of seventy-three. His lordship succeeded to the title and estates on the death of James, seventh Earl of Findlater and fourth Earl of Seafield. The Hon. Colonel Francis William Grant, brother of the deceased Earl, now succeeded.

Ibid.—The elections for the Inverness Town Council turned this year on the question of an assessment for the poor. The result was completely in favour of the "non-assessors," and also gave a majority of Whigs to the Town Council. A large number of the inhabitants resisted payment of the assessment.

Ibid.—A disastrous storm had swept over the Shetland Isles, causing great loss of life. The number of victims is not precisely stated, but many families had been left desolate.

Ibid—A private letter from a young man who emigrated in 1838 gives a deplorable account of the condition of New South Wales. The convict system had corrupted the community. "Emigrate," says the writer, "your redundant population must, but let them emigrate to shores not the receptacle of the winnowings of the most abandoned and thoroughly depraved of the human family."

November 11.—Attention is directed to the progress of geological science. "Mr Anderson, of this town, has just discovered, in the sandstone quarry at Castleleathers burn, at the base of the Lays, a layer abounding with the scales and portions of fossil fish, some of which must have been of great size." It is pointed out that the deposit is older than the coal measures, and that it would be imprudent to risk money in quest of coal. Mr P. Duff, Elgin, had been publishing a series of papers on the Geology of Moray, in the ‘Elgin Courant,’ and the Morayshire Literary and Scientific Association was carrying on its work with vigour and success. The editor suggested the formation of a scientific club in Inverness.

Ibid.—At a meeting of Inverness Town Council the question arose whether bailies were entitled to retain office during their term as Councillors. Provost Cumming held that they were, and moved the election of one bailie and treasurer to fill vacant offices. Mr Macandrew held that the uniform practice in Inverness was to elect the magistrates annually, and he moved that the Council should now proceed to elect four magistrates, a dean of guild, and treasurer. The amendment was carried by a majority of twelve votes to nine, and new magistrates were then elected. Provost Cumming announced that he had now determined to resign office, as he had been deprived of the co-operation of everyone of the gentlemen who were associated with him in the magistracy.

Ibid.—A curious question arose in connection with the Nairn election. There were six vacancies. Four candidates were duly elected, but other three had an equality of votes. One of the three intimated his resignation. but the Provost and Town-Clerk held that this did not entitle the remaining two to receive induction. The only way was to hold a fresh election for the two places. This was accordingly done.

November 8.—A large party of the directors and shareholders of the Caledonian Bank dined in the Caledonian Hotel, and presented Mr John Ross, Berbice Cottage, with a handsome piece of plate "in acknowledgment of his disinterested and valuable services as manager of the Bank at the period of its commencement, and subsequently as Chairman of the Board of Directors." Colonel Ross of Strathgarve was in the chair.

Ibid.—At a meeting of Dingwall Town Council, called for the election of magistrates, Bailie Charles Stewart was seized with an apopleptic fit, and died in half-an-hour. The business was adjourned. "Mr Stewart was a generous and kind-hearted man, much and justly esteemed by his fellow-townsmen."

November 25.—On the 21st inst., Queen Victoria gave birth to a daughter, the Princess Royal, afterwards Empress of Germany.

Ibid.—This issue gives an account of a drive to the Glengarry country. It relates the story of Evan M’Phee, who then lived as a "bold outlaw" in an island in Loch-Quoich. The story is preserved in the Highland Notebook.

December 2.—War had been going on for some time with Mahomet Ali, the ruler of Egypt, who claimed Syria. With the aid of the British fleet, the Egyptian forces were driven from Acre, and the town was once more placed in possession of the Turks.

Ibid.—The question was raised at the Inverness Town Council whether the resignation by Mr Cumming of the office of Provost involved the resignation of his seat at the Council. The point was referred to the opinion of counsel.

December 9.—With the permission of the British Government, the remains of the Emperor Napoleon were removed from St Helena to be deposited in Paris.

Ibid.—Duncan George Forbes of Culloden, great-grandson of the President, died at Forres on the 28th ult., at the age of 60. His remains were removed to Culloden House, and were interred on the 5th inst. in the family burying-ground in the Chapel-Yard, Inverness. A collision occurred on the occasion between two sections of the tenantry. The Ferintosh men claimed the right of carrying the body and surrounding the hearse in its progress. When the procession had gone about half-a-mile, part of the Culloden people sallied from a wood, armed with sticks, and endeavoured to drive their opponents from the hearse. They succeeded in dislodging the main body, but a few of the Ferittosh men held fast by the hearse, and did not relinquish their hold until they arrived at the burial plant. It was feared that the contest would be repeated in the churchyard, but the exertions of Mr John Macbean, messenger-at-arms, and the superintendent of police, prevented such a deplorable result. "The gentlemen of the district, and the respectable tenants on each side, carried the coffin, while the men from the country walked beside them. The whole of the surrounding walls, tombs, and monuments in the churchyard were covered with spectators, forming a novel and impressive spectacle."

Ibid.—The Presbytery of Inverness had another long sederunt on the Daviot case. It was ultimately resolved to refer it to the Assembly, with any further minutes which might be added before the first Tuesday of March.

December 16.—The Inverness High Church was re-opened on Sunday after undergoing repair. The table-seats had been displaced to make room for pews, by which additional accommodation was obtained. The church was also heated by means of stoves.

Ibid.—Counsel intimated their opinion that Mr Cumming, by resigning his office as Provost, did not resign his office as Councillor.

Ibid..—The Highland Society voted their silver medal to Sir Francis A. Mackenzie of Gairloch, for his report on the comparative values of wheat grown on Conan Mains.

December 23.—A meeting was held in a hall in Castle Street, which was addressed by a Chartist speaker from London, Mr Julian Harney. There was a charge of twopence for admission "to pay expenses." About ninety persons were present. The speech was followed by a free discussion, and it was found that the large majority of the meeting were opposed to the views of the speaker. In the midst of considerable confusion, the police-officers entered, and the orderly portion of the meeting withdrew. ‘We understand that after paying the expenses of the room Mr Harney had a balance of 1s 6d in his favour. A subscription was afterwards made by his supporters, which amounted to 2s 6d; and yesterday Mr Julian Hanney left town to proceed to Forres."

Ibid.—A series of articles on "Inverness in the Olden Time" begins in this issue. They are chiefly drawn from the burgh records. The convivial habits of the city fathers are depicted. The writer inferred that a royal birthday meant the consumption of six dozen of claret, but the Provost and Bailies shared their good cheer with other dignitaries and town officials. The amount spent for eating and drinking in the early part of the eighteenth century is estimated at £50 a year—a very considerable sum in those days. In subsequent issues there are notes on neighbouring towns as well as on Inverness.

December 30.—At a meeting of Inverness Town Council, Dr J. I. Nicol was elected a member of Council, in place of Mr Rennie, who had resigned. At the same meeting Dr Nicol was elected Provost of the burgh.

Ibid.—"On Wednesday week the estate of Barra, in Inverness-shire, was put up to sale in Paxton’s Exchange Coffee-House, at £36,000; and after various biddings was knocked down to Colonel Gordon of Cluny for the sum of £38,050."


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