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Recollections of a Speyside Parish
By James Thomson (1902)


James Thomson

Preface

FOURTEEN years ago the first edition of my "Recollections of a Speyside Parish" were issued in book form. The criticisms passed upon it by the press, and the favourable reception it met with by the public, were a pleasant surprise to the Author. The issue was soon sold out, and he thinks the present a favourable time for the issue of a second and enlarged edition. The social and domestic conditions of life on Speyside have undergone such a revolution since the Author's boyhood, that he feels sure the inhabitants of Strathspey cannot fail to be interested in a record of the obscure and simple lives of the people before the iron horse invaded the Strath. The present generation cannot possibly realise how homely and primitive the modes of living were sixty years ago. The Author rejoices in the marvellous advance that has taken place during that time in all the conditions of life amongst the people of his native district. His earnest desire is to put on record the impressions left upon his mind by the sayings and the doings of the people among whom he spent his early days. Their homely joys and the vicissitudes of their every-day life left upon his mind impressions that death alone can efface..

Contents

Chapter I.— "The Muckle Spate"
Chapter II.— "The Hoose-Heatin'"
Chapter III. — The Old Miller
Chapter IV.— Hatton and the Fairies
Chapter V..— Village Worthie
Chapter VI.— "The Banker"
Chapter VII.— The Minister
Chapter VIII.— The Minister and his Housekeeper
Chapter IX.— The Old Kirk of Aberlour
Chapter X.— The Penny Wedding
Chapter XI.— Johnny Rusell and the Bottle O' Barm
Chapter XII— The Watch-House and Duncan MacPherson's Ram
Chapter XIII.— Lummies and the Mad Sow
Chapter XIV.— The Water Kelpie and Will I' The Wisp
Chapter XV.— The Last of the Gordon Lairds of Aberlour
Chapter XVI.— The Howdy and the Bone Doctor
Chapter XVII.—The Kailyard..
Chapter XVIII.— Under the Dominie's Jurisdiction - The Parish Doles
Chapter XIX.— The Packman and the Sweetie Wife
Chapter XX.— The Nameless Bush
Chapter XXI.— A Model Schoolmaster
Chapter XXII.— Parish Benefactors
Chapter XXIII— Emigration - Modes of Travelling - Illuminants
Chapter XXIV.— Our Mither Tongue - Funeral Practices
Chapter XXV. — Willox the Wicthfinder - Tomintoul - Willie Wason
Chapter XXVI.— Rustic Life in the Highlands - The Princes of Eilean Aigas
Chapter XXVII.— Strathspey Music
Chapter XXVIII.—The Fireside and the Burnside
Chapter XXIX.— The Cripple Wife of Fife Keith: and other Beggars
Poems

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