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Sheep Clipping 13 June 1870


Balmoral, Monday, June 13, 1870

Drove off at half-past eleven on past J. Thomsonís house. Here, in the nearest adjoining field, close to the wall, all the sheep (mine) were in a pen, and James Brown, the shepherd, and Morrison, my grieve at Invergelder, assisted by others (one, a brother of the Morgans), took them out one by one, tied their legs together, and then placed them on the laps of the women who were seated on the ground, and who clipped them one after the other, wonderfully well, with huge scissors or clippers. Four were seated in a sort of half-circle, of whom three were Mrs. Durran, Mrs. Leys (both these did their work admirably), and Mrs. Morrison, who seemed rather new at it, and had some difficulty with these great heavy sheep, which kick a good deal. The clippers must take them between their knees, and it is very hard work. Four other women were sitting close under the wall, also clipping. Then the sheep were all marked; and some, before being clipped, had to have their horns sawn to prevent them growing into their heads. It was a very picturesque sight, and quite curious to see the splendid thick wool peel off like a regular coat.


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