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11th January 2008


It's your Electric Scotland newsletter meaning the weekend is nearly here :-)

You can view what's new this week on Electric Scotland at http://www.electricscotland.com/update.html and you can unsubscribe to this newsletter by clicking on the link at the foot of this newsletter.

See our Calendar of Scottish Events around the world at http://www.electricscotland.com/familytree/calendar_help.htm 

CONTENTS
--------
Electric Scotland News
Scotland on TV
The Flag in the Wind
The Scottish Nation
New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845)
Good Words - Edited by the Rev Norman MacLeod
Clan Information
Poetry and Stories
Book of Scottish Story
History of Ulster
Reminiscences and Reflections of an Octogenarian Highlander
Sketches of The Character, Manners, and Present State of the Highlanders of Scotland
Transactions of the Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland 1881
Household Encyclopaedia
The Scottish Gael (New Book)
Scots-Irish in America
Report of the Committee of Relief of Knight Templar


ELECTRIC SCOTLAND NEWS
----------------------
I think folk are getting tuned into this newsletter as it always seems to be Thursday's when I get loads of emails in :-)

We're doing a bit of research on a gravestone at St Medden's kirkyard at Cothal, near Fintry on the north side of the Don River, 3 or 4 mile up from Dyce. This is as a result of letters going out from Stan Bruce about the condition of the property which you can read at http://www.electricscotland.com/webclans/dtog/st_meddens.html

The pictures of the gravestone can be seen here and we invite you to explore these to see if you can provide any further information on the stone or any other information on St Medden's kirkyard. In additon, on this page you'll also see copies of correspondence about the condition of the kirkyard and efforts to do something about it. As this kirk has connections with Clan Forbes I've put the link to this within their page.

This week I've found publications on the web that I had intended to ocr onto the site. Due to this I'm now checking online for each book that I intend to post up as there is no point in duplicating work already done. One is the 2 volume book on the Scottish Gael and the other was finding volumes 1 - 10 of the Scotch-Irish in America. See below for further information on these.

Christina McKelvie MSP has now got going with her weekly diary with two issues in this week. I'll place the links to those in the Flag in the Wind section below.

STV has worked with us this week to get the news feeds up on the site and you can now see these at http://www.electricscotland.com/news/scotnews.htm

You do need to wait just a wee while for the page to come up as it's drawing the feed from their site and it also includes pictures. The one major difference from the Scotsman is that most of these links will also provide a video feed. Note also that on this page I've provided a link to the 2 lunchtime TV news programs.

I've just heard from Julia at ScotlandOnTV that they are having a meeting on Friday to see how to embed videos onto Electric Scotland. I think this will make an excellent addition to the site and am looking forward to it.

I am also making more effort to obtain information on Scots in Asia and have created a section for them at http://www.electricscotland.com/asia/index.htm

Jim Wilkie sent in a wee article to get us started and you'll find a link to that on the page. David Thomson is also trying to find sources for us, the author of "A fisherman’s Reflections on a beautiful but troubled world". And having mentioned that I should also tell you that David continues to add additional material on various chapters of his book which you can read at http://www.electricscotland.com/thomson/reflections.htm

Also got in some new entries from Stan for our Historic Grampian page at http://www.electricscotland.com/historic/grampian.html

Stan has also sent in some recordings of some doric poems which you can listen to at http://www.electricscotland.com/poetry/banff/talk/index.htm



ABOUT THE STORIES
-----------------
Some of the stories in here are just parts of a larger story so do check out the site for the full versions. You can always find the link in our "What's New" section at the link at the top of this newsletter and pick up poems and stories sent into us during the week from Donna, Margo, Stan, John and others.


Scotland on TV
--------------
Visit their site at http://www.scotlandontv.tv 

Rabbie Burns, the changeable Scottish weather, and Islay...

We’re all extremely busy once again here at Scotland on TV, but we don’t mind because we’re preparing for one of our favourite events in the Scottish calendar, Burns Night. We’ll be creating our very own interactive Burns Supper, which will include music and readings, as well as all the things required for your own Burns Night so that you can be well-prepared at home. More of that very soon, but if you want to get ahead in your plans to celebrate Rabbie Burns’ birthday, take a look at our special Burns pages and videos:

http://www.scotlandontv.tv/scotland_on_tv/experience/Burns.html

Once again, here in Scotland, the weather has been a big talking point this week, with heavy rain, storms and winds reaching around 80mph. However, just last weekend there was enough snow for many of Scotland’s ski runs to be opened up for the start of the 2008 ski season. stv News reported from Cairn Gorm, where hundreds of eager skiers packed the mountain’s funicular railway to reach the slopes.

http://www.scotlandontv.tv/scotland_on_tv/video.html?Channel=News%20Sport&vxClipId=1380_SMG1670

Finally for this week, we’ve now collected together the series of videos we made last November (when it was nice and sunny) on Islay and you can find the page and links here:

http://www.scotlandontv.tv/scotland_on_tv/discover/Islay.html


THE FLAG IN THE WIND
--------------------
This weeks Flag is compiled by Richard Thomson and you might like to view the article on Privacy where it compares England and Scotland with, of course, Scotland coming out on top :-)

In Peter's cultural section he tells us...

Tonight ( 11 January 2008 ) the Moray town of Burghead will celebrate "Auld Hogmany" with an ancient fire festival -The Burning of the Clavie. The history of Burghead goes back some 1500 years when it was the site of an important promontary fort, one of the most magnificent centres of Pictish power. From the fort, built in the 4th or 5th centuries, have come stone slabs carved with Pictish motifs, including the famous Burghead bull - two examples of which are in the local museum. The present day Burning of the Clavie in Burghead is obviously a reminder of those far-off days. The word appears to be a corruption of the Gaelic 'cliabh' ( pronounced clee-av ), a basket, the fire being carried in a basket-like instrument which bears that name. The Clavie is packed with tar soaked sticks and mixed with peat, before being set alight and carried round the town by the "Clavie King" and his "Clavie Crew", followed by the residents of Burghead. It is then taken up Doorie Hill to the ramparts of the ancient Pictish fort and allowed to burn out. The embers are supposed to be lucky and are collected by the Clavie followers. The luck is said to last for a year. This column cannot pass the luck of the Clavie to you but can suggest a way to join with the good folk of Burghead in spirit! The traditional drink, in the past, for celebrating Hogmany in Scotland was Het Pint, of which Sir Walter Scott wrote -

'...it was uncanny and would certainly have felt it uncomfortable, not to welcome the New Year in the midst of his family, and few friends , with the immemorial libation of a het pint.'

The Het pint was traditionally carried through the streets at Hogmanay, in large copper kettles, known as toddy kettles, several hours before 'the chappin o the Twal'.

Het Pint

Ingredients: 4 pt mild ale; 1 teasp. grated nutmeg; 4 oz sugar; 3 eggs; 1/2 pt Whisky

Method: Put the ale into a thick saucepan, then add the nutmeg, and bring to just below boiling point. ( If it boils, the alcoholic content is considerably lowered. ) Stir in the sugar and let it dissolve. Beat the eggs very well, and add them gradually to the beer, stirring all the time so that it doesn't curdle. Then add the Whisky , and heat up, but on no account boil. Pour the liquid from the saucepan into heated tankards, back and forth so that it becomes clear and sparkling.

Peter also gives us the song "THE RED YO YO" by Matt McGinn which sure takes me back :-)

You can read the Flag, listen to the Scots Language, enjoy the Scots Wit and lots more at http://www.scotsindependent.org

Added Christina McKelvie MSP's newsletter for 4th Jan 2008 at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/mckelvie/080104.htm

Also added her newsletter for 10th Jan 2008 at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/mckelvie/080110.htm
 

The Scottish Nation
-------------------
My thanks to Lora for transcribing these volumes for us.

We are now on the Mac's with MacAuslane, MacBean, MacBane, MacBain, MacBeth, MacBrair, M'Coll, MacCorquodale and M'Crie

Here is the account of MacCorquodale...

MACCORQUODALE, otherwise Mac Torquil (the son of Torquil), Mac Corkle, or Corkindale, the surname of a Highland sept, the founder of which was Torquil, a prince of Denmark, who is traditionally stated to have been in the army of Kenneth the Great, on his coming over from Ireland to the assistance of Alpin, king of the Scots, against the Picts. Previous to Kenneth’s arrival, King Alpin, in a battle with the Pictish king, was killed, and his head fixed on an iron spike in the midst of the Pictish city, situated where the Carron ironworks now stand. King Kenneth offered to any one in his army who would pass the Pictish sentinels and remove the head, a grant of all the lands on Loch Awe side. Torquil, the Dane, undertook the hazardous enterprize, and brought the head to the king, for which act of bravery he was rewarded by a charter of the lands promised. This charter was for a long time preserved in the family, though the greater part of the lands had passed to other hands. shortly before the Revolution it was lent to Sir Alexander Muir Mackenzie, for his inspection, and was lost. At least it disappeared from that time. The name which is, in some places of the Highlands, still called Mac Torquil, is perhaps one of the most ancient in the county of Argyle. Donald MacCorquodale of Kinna-Drochag, on Loch Awe side, who died towards the end of the 18th century, was the lineal descendant of Torquil and the chief of the clan. His grandson and representative, John MacCorquodale, at one period resided at Row, Dumbartonshire.

You can read the other entries at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/nation/index.htm 


New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845)
------------------------------------------
The first volume I am dealing with is the one on Aberdeenshire. There are some 85 parishes in this volume and a write up on each.

This week have added...

Parish of Strichen at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/statistical/strichen.htm

Extent, &c.—The parish is about seven miles from east to west, and from two to three miles from north to south. It was erected into a parish in 1627, one division of it having belonged to Rathen, and the other to Fraserburgh. It is bounded by these two parishes, and also by that of Lonmay, Deer, and New Deer. The small stream of water called the North Ugie runs through the parish from east to west, and joins the other branch called the South Ugie about six miles below Strichen; and, both united, fall into the sea about a mile north of Peterhead.

There are throughout the parish a few spots of good land, but in general it is not of rich quality. There is no parish better supplied with moss for fuel. Little coal is used, and when used, the supply is from Fraserburgh. There is excellent granite for building, of which Strichen House, and the houses in Mormond village, are a fair specimen. There was formerly limestone worked, but it has now been given up, being of indifferent quality. Strichen House, which was built in 1821, and is among the largest private dwellings in the county, is surrounded by thriving wood of considerable value, particularly some fine old trees, which have been planted more than one hundred years.

The people resident in the village, and throughout the parish, are, in general, healthy; and some of them have reached a great age, being upwards of ninety. They are distinguished for their moral and correct conduct, and their orderly and industrious habits. They are constant in their attendance on religious ordinances, strictly observe the Sabbath, and have always shown a laudable desire for the religious education of their children, and not a few have had the benefit of an university education. In proof of this, there are alive at present, three clergymen of the Established Church, having the charge of parishes, and five probationers, all natives of this parish.

You can read the rest of this account at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/statistical/strichen.htm

On the index page of this volume you can see a list of the 85 parishes and also a map at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/statistical/volume12.htm 


Good Words - 1860 Edition
-------------------------
Edited by Rev. Norman MacLeod

You should note that as this is a weekly publication you'll find larger articles are continued week by week.

This week have added articles on...

Our Scandinavian Ancestors (Pages 273-277)
Idle Words (Page 277-278)
Reminiscences of Mission-Work in Ireland (Pages 278-282)
John Evangelist Gossner (Pages 282-287)
Charlie's Grave (Page 287)

Here is how "Our Scandinavian Ancestors" starts...

Few subjects possess greater interest for the I British race than the Scandinavian North, with its iron-bound rampart of wave-lashed rocks, its deeply-indented fiords, bold cliffs, rocky promontories, abrupt headlands, wild skerries, crags, rock-ledges, and caves,—all alive with gulls, puffins, and kittiwakes; and, in short, the general and striking picturesqueness of its scenery, to say nothing of the higher human interest of its stirring history, and the rich treasures of its grand old literature.

The British race has been called Anglo-Saxon; made up, however, as it is, of many elements— ancient Briton, Roman, Anglo-Saxon, Dane, Norman, and Scandinavian—the latter predominates so largely over the others as to prove by evidence, external and internal, and not to be gainsaid, that the Scandinavians are our true progenitors.

The Germans are a separate branch of the same great Gothic family, industrious, but very unlike us in many respects. The degree of resemblance and affinity may be settled by styling them honest, but unenterprising, inland friends, whose ancestors and ours were first cousins upwards of a thousand years ago.

To the old Northmen—hailing from the sea-board of Norway, Sweden, and Denmark—may be traced the germs of all that is most characteristic of the modern Briton, whether personal, social, or national. The configuration of the land, and the numerous arms of the sea with which the northwest of Europe is indented, necessitated boats and seamanship. From these coasts, the Northmen— whether bent on piratical plundering expeditions, or peacefully seeking refuge from tyrannical oppression at home—sallied forth in their frail barks or skiffs, which could live in the wildest sea, visiting and settling in many lands. We here mention, in geographical order, Normandy, England, Scotland, Orkney, Shetland, Faroe, and Iceland. Wherever they have been, they have left indelible traces behind them, these ever getting more numerous and distinct as we go northwards.

Anglen, from which the word England is derived, still forms part of Holstein, a province of Denmark; and the preponderance of the direct Scandinavian element in the language itself has been shewn by Dean Trench, who states that, of a hundred English words, sixty come from the Scandinavian, thirty from the Latin, five from the Greek, and five from other sources.

In Scotland many more Norse words, which sound quite foreign to an English ear, yet linger amongst the common people ; while, as in England, the original Celtic inhabitants were driven to the west before the Northmen, who landed on the east. In certain districts of the Orkneys a corrupt dialect of Norse was spoken till recently, and the Scandinavian type of features is there often to be met with.

You can read the rest of this at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/goodwords/goodwords137.htm

You can read the other articles at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/goodwords/index.htm 


Clan Information
----------------
Added the Utley Family Newsletter for Jan/Feb 2008 at http://www.electricscotland.com/familytree/newsletters/utley/11_1_JanFeb2008.pdf

Added the Christmas 2007 newsletter from Clan Cameron of Canada at http://www.electricscotland.com/familytree/newsletters/cameron/Cameronxmas2007.pdf

Got in a genealogical article, "20 Year Search Ends", by Keith Rattray at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/articles/rattray.htm

Got in some information on the name Currie from Ian who found a mention of one of his ancestors in our account of Currie in the Scottish Nation. I've added the account to the page which you can read at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/nation/currie.htm


Poetry and Stories
------------------
Added "The Scorpion" to Donna's Indian Lore page at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/america/donna/lore/scorpion.htm

Donna sent in a gardening article, "Master Pecan Grower" at http://www.electricscotland.com/gardening/gardening5.htm

John sent in a doggerel, "Aa Weered Up", at http://www.electricscotland.com/poetry/doggerel244.htm

Donna sent in a story, "Native Mother" at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/america/donna/lore/mother.htm

John sent in Chapter 67 of his Recounting Blessings at http://www.electricscotland.com/poetry/henderson/Chapter%2067.pdf

Got in some recordings of poems by the Bard of Banff which you can listen to at http://www.electricscotland.com/poetry/banff/talk/index.htm

Donna sent in "Memorial presentation for Wenona Flood" at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/america/donna/journal/journal93.htm



Book of Scottish Story
----------------------
Kindly sent in to us by John Henderson

The Book of Scottish Story - Historical, Humorous, Legendary, Imaginative
by Standard Scottish Writers Published by Thomas D. Morison, 1896

This week we have...

Miss Peggy Brodie
by Andrew Picken

Here is how it starts...

"If I were a man, instead of being a woman, as unfortunately I happen to be," said Miss Peggy Brodie to me, "I would call a meeting in public, on the part of the ladies, to petition the king for another war; for really, since the peace there is no such thing as any decent woman getting a husband, nor is there so much as the least stir or stramash now-a-days, even to put one in mind of such a thing. And the king, God bless him! is a man of sense, and understands what's what perfectly," continued Miss Peggy; "and I have not the least doubt that if he were only put in possession of the real state of the sex since the peace, he would give us a war at once, for it is cruel to keep so many women in this hopeless state."

"Indeed, mem," said I, looking as wise as I was able, "you may depend upon it, you are under a mistake."

"Don't tell me, sir," replied Miss Brodie; "you men think you know everything. As if I did not understand politics sufficient to know that the king grants all reasonable petitions. I tell you, Mr "What's-your-name, that the whole sex in Glasgow, from Crossmy-loof to the Rotten Row, and from Anderston to Camlachie, are in a state of the utmost distress since ever the peace;—and marriages may be made in heaven, or somewhere else that I do not know of, but there is none made hereaway, to my certain knowledge, since ever the sharpshooters laid down their arms, the strapping fallows!"

"I'm sure, mem," said I, "for a peaceable man, I have been sadly deaved about these sharpshooters."

"It's no for you to speak against the sharpshooters, Mr Thingumy!" said Miss Brodie, getting into a pet; "you that never bit a cartridge in your life, I know by your look! and kens nae mair about platoon exercise, and poother wallets, and ramrods, than my mother does! But fair fa' the time when we had a thriving war, an' drums rattlin' at every corner, an' fifer lads whistlin' up and down the streets on a market-day; an' spruce sergeants parading the Salt-market, pipe-clayed most beautiful! Then there was our ain sharpshooters, braw fallows, looking so noble in their green dresses, and lang feathers bobbing in their heads. Besides, there was the cavalry, and the Merchants' corps, and the Trades' and the Grocers' corps. Why. every young man of the least pluck was a soldier in these heartsome days, and had such speerit and such pith, and thought no more of taking a wife then, than he would of killing a Frenchman before his breakfast, if he could hae seen one."

"But, Miss Brodie," said I, "they were all so busy taking wives that they seem to have quite forgot to take you, in these happy times."

"Ye needna be so very particular in your remarks, Mr Thingumy; for it was entirely my own fault, an' I might hae gotten a husband any morning, just for going to the Green of Glasgow, where the lads were taking their morning's drill; for it was there a' my acquaintances got men, to my certain knowledge; and now it's naething but "Mistress" this, an' "Mistress" that, wi' a' the clippy lassocks that were just bairns the other day; and there they go, oxtering wi' their men, to be sure, an' laughin' at me. Weel, it's vera provoking sir, isn't it?"

"'Deed, mem," said I, "it's rather a lamentable case. But why did you not catch a green sharpshooter yourself, in those blessed days?"

You can read the rest of this story at http://www.electricscotland.com/books/story/story30.htm 

The index page of the book where you can read the other stories is at http://www.electricscotland.com/books/story/index.htm 


The History of Ulster
------------------------------
Have now started on volume 3 of this 4 volume set and have added this week...

IV. The Fortunes of War
V. The Triumphs of Tichborne
VI. The Scots Army in Ulster
VII. King Charles and the Confederates
VIII. Castlehaven's Invasion of Ulster

This is how "The Scots Army in Ulster" starts...

Ulster now was filled with troops. By the end of April there were 19,000 regulars and volunteers in garrison or in the field. Newry having been taken by Munro, and Dundalk by Tichborne, Magennis was obliged to abandon Down, and MacMahon Monaghan. Sir William Cole, who was the first to apprise the Government of the approaching danger, held Enniskillen throughout, while Captain Folliott held Bally- shannon. Sir William and Sir Robert Stewart, at the head of a daily increasing army, held undisputed sway over a wide stretch of country comprising the major portions of Counties Tyrone and Donegal. Londonderry and Coleraine also held their own, while Manor Hamilton, in the hands of Sir Frederick Hamilton, was in safe keeping.

Sir Phelim O'Neill, in desperation at the approach of the Scots, burned Armagh, "the cathedral with its steeple and with its bells, organ, and glass windows, and the whole city, with the fine library". In a severe action with Sir Robert and Sir William Stewart, notwithstanding the fact that both were professional soldiers, O'Neill was more fortunate than usual, a fact which perhaps may be attributed to the presence on the occasion of Sir Alexander MacColl MacDonnell, the famous Colkitto of the Irish and Scottish wars, who was considered by the Earl of Leven to be one of the most formidable leaders of the Irish. In an engagement in June with the same antagonists Sir Phelim suffered a severe reverse, his followers being put to flight with a loss of 500 slain, many wounded, and a large number of prisoners. The English in Ulster urged upon Munro the policy of following up this victory, and asked for assistance to that end; but the Scottish general refused aid, and the English, provoked thereby, attempted to carry on the war without Scottish help. But orders came from the Earl of Leven putting a stop to all proceedings until he should appear on the scene of action himself; and, it having been arranged when the treaty with the Scots was concluded that Scottish generals were to have sole conduct of the war, there was an immediate cessation of hostilities. The rebellion in Ulster had almost collapsed before the end of the year. The thousands who had rallied round the standard of Sir Phelim O'Neill were gradually reduced to a number of weak and disorganized bands of armed men seeking refuge in the woods. The English garrisons scoured the surrounding country, meeting with little opposition; where they did meet it they gave no quarter. Sir William Cole of Enniskillen stated that some 7000 of the rebels in his immediate neighbourhood had died from want and exposure. The ill success which continued to dog the steps of the insurgents must largely be attributed to the fact that they were without a leader to whom the profession of arms was familiar. Sir Phelim O'Neill was not lacking in courage, but the science of warfare as well as personal valour is needed in the field, and O'Neill was ignorant of the very rudiments of all that is required in a military commander. As a leader he was a failure, for he possessed neither the requisite knowledge of tactics nor the personal magnetism which makes men blindly follow their leader even "into the mouth of hell", and wildly fling themselves into the arms of death until

The foeman's line is broke,
And all the war is rolled in smoke.

In July, when Munro began to show some signs of activity and a renewal of hostilities was expected, a council of the Irish confederates was held, at which it was proposed to abandon a hopeless cause, and seek refuge on the Continent or in the Scottish Highlands. But at this moment, when the national cause seemed to be lost, when the Celtic population in Ulster was meditating wholesale emigration, "a word of magic effect was whispered from the sea-coast to the interior" Colonel Owen Roe O'Neill had arrived off Donegal with a single ship, a single company of veterans, 100 officers, some arms, and a large quantity of ammunition. The flagging hopes of the Irish rose once more.

You can read the rest of this chapter at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/ulster/vol3chap6.htm

The previous 2 volumes can be read at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/ulster/ 


Reminiscences and Reflections of an Octogenarian Highlander
-----------------------------------------------------------
By Duncan Campbell (1910)

This week we've added the following chapters...

Chapter XXXIX.
Feill Ceit
Chapter XL.
Remarks on Parish of Fortingall Church and Affairs
Chapter XLI.
A Disputed Settlement Lord Aberdeen's Act
Chapter XLII.
A Remove
Chapter XLIII.
Balquhidder
Chapter XLIV.
Civil History Notes

Here is the chapter on "Remarks on Parish of Fortingall Church and Affairs"...

BEFORE he died, Mr Macara had the satisfaction of getting missionary ministers placed in Rannoch and Glenlyon. This was a long step in advance of the catechist help of schoolmasters on which he had to rely before, but a quarter-of-a-century had still to elapse before Rannoch and Glenlyon were created into quoad sacra parishes. In 1804, Mr John Macnaughton, a native of the Glen, was the missionary minister at Innerwick, and Mr Alexander Irvine held a similar position at Kinloch Rannoch. The latter, as Dr Irvine of Little Dunkeld, was, when he died in 1824 at the premature age of fifty-two, prominent among the leaders of the Church of Scotland. Because he set his face as hard as steel against the narrow views and intolerance into which the revivalists plunged headlong, he has been classified among the Moderate leaders of the Church of Scotland; but in his preaching he was as fervently evangelical as any of the men who went out at the Disruption. His memory is still green in Little Dunkeld and Strathbrand as an eloquent preacher in English and Gaelic, and an indefatigable parochial worker. He was born at Garth, where his father was a farmer; licensed by the Presbytery of Mull as missionary at Kintra in July, 1797; removed to Rannoch in 1799; and, on Mr Macara's death, was presented to Fortingall by Sir Robert Menzies, whence he was transferred in fifteen months to Little Dunkeld. His marriage with Jessie, the younger daughter of Robert Stewart, Laird of Garth, and sister of General David Stewart, the historian of the Highland Regiments, was a romantic outcome of early boy and girl love. Caste feeling refused sanction to the marriage. The son of a small tenant, however superior in natural talents and scholarship, was not thought a fit mate for the bonnie daughter of the laird. So, as the straight- forward application for her hand was refused, the lovers made an elopement marriage, and the laird and his family soon became proud of their son and brother-in-law. The graceful, lively style of General Stewart's History owes much to Dr Irvine's revision and assistance. He was a ready debater, with flights of fancy and touches of humour to set off" solid arguments, an impressive preacher, and a whole-hearted Highlander who did much for Gaelic literature and the gathering of the Ossianic poetry which had come down orally from generation to generation.

Mr Irvine was succeeded, first in Rannoch and soon afterwards in Fortingall, by Mr Robert Macdonald, a younger son of the Laird of Dalchosnie, and uncle of General Sir John Macdonald. Mr Macdonald was licensed by the Presbytery of Mull in October, 1802, and ordained by the Presbytery of Abertarff in May, 1803, whence he removed to Rannoch. He was presented to Fortingall by John, Duke of Atholl, and inducted there in September, 1806. He died in February, 1842, in the seventy- second year of his age, and the thirty-ninth of his ministry. He prejudiced his position among the local gentry and among the common people like wise by marrying his servant maid, who, although uneducated, made a good wife for him. It was indeed said that she was a kind of guardian angel to him as long as she lived, and that after her death he deteriorated in respect to strict sobriety and diligent discharge of his ministerial duties. He took life easy, and was too much inclined to boon companion sociality, but never went so far as to lay himself open to Church discipline or censure. That he was a jolly good fellow nobody could deny, nor that he had talents and knowledge which would have given him ministerial influence had he made the most of them. But he was always far more liked as a man than he was respected or reverenced as a minister. He wrote the paper on his parish given in the "New Statistical Account of Scotland." I have seen other documents written by him, which showed that he could state a legal case or draw up a petition with singular ability. He was fond of Gaelic poetry, and possessed a great store of stories.

The rest of this chapter can be read at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/octogenarian/chapter40.htm

The other chapters added so far can be read at the index page of the book at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/octogenarian/index.htm 


Sketches of The Character, Manners, and Present State of the Highlanders of Scotland
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
by Major-General David Stewart (1822)

This week we've added...

Section 10
Expedition to Egypt in 1801—Landing at Aboukir—Battle of the 13th of March—90th and 92d Regiments lead the Attack—Battle of Alexandria—Surrender of Cairo—Surrender of Alexandria—Indian Army

Section 11
England—Highland Society—Reviewed by the King— March to Scotland—Reception—Recruits—2d Battalion added in 1803—March to England—EmbarkTor Gibraltar in 1805—Spain, 1808—Battle of Corunna, 1809— Return to England

And also made a start at the Appendix...

A, Parallel Roads
B, Ancient League between France and Scotland
C, Territories, Military Force, and Patronymic Designations of the Chiefs
D, War Cries, Signals, and Distinguishing Marks of the Clans
E, Feuds—Garth and Macivor

Here is the Appendix entry for "Ancient League between France and Scotland"...

Tradition states, that, in honour of this ancient alliance, and in compliment to the Lilies of France, one of the succeeding Kings of Scotland surmounted the lion on his arms with the double tressure, which has, ever since, continued to be the arms of Scotland. In consequence of a requisition from Charles VII. of France, founded, as it is said, on this treaty, the Duke of Albany, Regent of Scotland, in the year 1419, sent his son, John Stewart, Earl of Buchan, with 7,000 men, to assist him in his wars against the English. The Ear of Buchan, as a reward for the eminent service rendered by his army, was made Constable of France, which is the only instance of a foreigner receiving this distinction.

The late Lord Hailes was so remarkable for his accuracy and precision, that, on one occasion, it is said, he proposed to reject a law-paper, because the word justice was improperly spelt, the last letter having been omitted. This severity of criticism he carried through all his labours. In his remarks on the History of Scotland, he doubts the reality of this alliance, because it has been variously related by authors, and particularly by Hector Boece, a Scotch historian, (of a character very different from that of the accurate, honourable, and learned judge,) who indulges himself in detailing many improbable and fabulous events. Though doubts may reasonably be entertained concerning the authenticity of this alliance, it is evident that our ancient historians and chroniclers, when they thought it probable that such a treaty had really existed, must have believed that the Alpine kings had numerous and warlike subjects ; and hence we may conjecture, that the country was able to support a numerous population, which has been denied by modern economists. With regard to the credit due to traditions, it may be observed, that, in the absence of written. documents, they may be so unvarying in their tenor, and so confirmed by collateral circumstances, as to be entitled to a considerable degree of importance. Traditions, thus preserved and confirmed, are certainly preferable to the mere conjectures and hypotheses of modern authors, which are not so much founded on any authentic documents, as on the absence of them, and which often vary with the peculiar opinions and preconceived notions of each individual specialist. The want of written proof may, in many cases, be a good legal objection; but are we warranted, merely from the absence of proof to the contrary, in refusing all credit to what has, for ages, been handed down as the firm belief of our ancestors? These observations I have thought it necessary to offer, as I shall have occasion to refer to many traditions, for which I have neither written nor printed proofs, but which I have every reason to believe are founded on facts, although there may be some little difference in the relation,—not more, perhaps, than we have met with in the accounts given of the same work by the Edinburgh and Quarterly Reviews.

There is hardly any point of history, far less tradition, in which all men are agreed. Recent as the events are, we have contradictory accounts of the Peninsular campaigns, and of the battle of Waterloo. When, therefore, we every day hear discordant reports and versions of events that occurred within our own memory, can it be matter of surprise that the affairs of remote ages should be variously related, and can it furnish good grounds for rejecting the whole as fabulous? Many parts of our own national history, which we receive with implicit credence, will not perhaps bear that strictness of criticism which calls for present and written proofs. In the same manner, therefore, as I believe that there was a great and overwhelming victory gained at Waterloo, notwithstanding the discrepancy of minute details, so I am likewise willing to give credit to many parts of our traditional story, when these are not opposed to the principles of reason, and well-authenticated facts.

Whatever may be thought of the treaty with Charlemagne, the connexion between France and Scotland must be allowed to be of high antiquity, since it is noticed as the "Ancient League,'' as far back as the reigns of Baliol, Bruce, and Robert the first of the Stewarts, upwards of five hundred years ago. Now, as it is not disputed, that an amicable communication subsisted thus early, those who disbelieve the alliance between Charlemagne and Achaius ought to fix the period of the commencement of that friendly intercourse which continued uninterrupted till the Kings of Scotland removed to England, and united the rival kingdoms under one Crown. It should also be stated how far back the League must have extended, to have entitled it to the term of "Ancient" bestowed on it in the days of John Baliol, who was declared King of Scotland in the year 1292.

You can read the other chapters at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/sketches/highlandsketchesndx.htm 


Transactions of the Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland 1881
----------------------------------------------------------------------
This week have added another substantial article about The Agriculture of the Counties of Elgin and Nairn. Some 124 pages of the Transactions and here is how it starts...

The counties of Moray and Nairn, if among the smaller in Scotland, have long occupied a front place agriculturally. To say nothing at this stage of the dryness of the climate on the plains of Morayshire, of the richness of the landscape, especially in the Forres district, or of the kindliness of soil over the greater part of both counties, there are certain branches of rural industry in which Moray men have latterly elevated themselves and their county to a very distinguished position. The superiority of the Moray and Nairn barley, and often also wheat and potatoes, have long been topics of favourable comment among agriculturists and traders. In these respects the combined counties occupy the first place north of the Grampians, if not north of the Tay.

Much more celebrity still has been acquired for Moray in the department of cattle rearing and feeding, particularly from the great English Christmas fat shows. No fewer than three times during the last sixteen years has the great prize of the year for fat stock—the championship at Smithfield—gone to Morayshire, —to Earnhill in 1866, to Burnside in 1872, and to Altyre in 1881. No other Scotch or even English county has accomplished such a feat. Moray and Nairn have had their full share of other showyard honours, chiefly for cattle, and have also reared many pedigree animals, as well as fattened a large number of the primest beeves, annually for the great southern markets.

These two counties combined form the north-eastern and larger portion of the ancient province of Moray, which, roughly speaking, extends from Banffshire in the east to Ross-shire in the west, and from Perth in the south to the Moray Firth in the north. Morayshire is by far the larger of the two, and also the more important, from an agricultural point of view. It extends from north to south 40 miles, and from east to west 20; has an area of 531 square miles, or, according to the Ordnance Survey, 312,378 imperial acres, including lakes, rivers, and foreshores. In size it ranks eighteenth among Scotch counties, and constitutes 1/64th part of the entire area of Scotland.

This county is bounded on the east by Banffshire, from which it is partly separated by the river Spey, on the south by the upper or hilly districts of Inverness-shire, and on the west by the county of Nairn, while on the north it is washed by the German Ocean. The eastern extremity is in 57° 39' N. lat. and in 3° 7' W. long.; the western extremity in 57° 17' N. lat. and in 3° 45' W. long.; the most southern point in 57° 17'N. lat. and 3° 39' W. long.; and the extreme northern part of the county in 57° 43' N. lat. and 3° 16' W. long. Towards the centre of the county the N. lat. is about 57° 39', and W. long, about 3° 16'.

You can read the rest of this chapter at http://www.electricscotland.com/agriculture/page56.htm

The other articles can be read at http://www.electricscotland.com/agriculture/index.htm


Household Encyclopaedia
-----------------------
I have added a few more pages to the B's which you can see at http://www.electricscotland.com/household/b.htm

The index page of this publication can be seen at http://www.electricscotland.com/household/ 


The Scottish Gael
-----------------
by James Logan (1831)

I have added the complete book to the site. I was about to start ocr'ing this book in, which I have in 2 volumes, when I got in an email with the text of it attached. I decided to post it up on the site and have reformatted the Introduction although the various chapters are in the original text format. I have however split it up into the various chapters to make it a bit easier to read.

The Contents are...

Introduction
Object of the present work and account of its formation with some notice of ancient historical annals, etc.

Chapter I
Of the Celtic race, composing the various nations that formerly inhabited Europe

Chapter II
Britain, the origin of its ancient inhabitants deduced

Chapter III
Appearance of the country extent and productions of the Aboriginal forests.

Chapter IV
Celtic population, persons and dispositions of the Celts, their military education and institutions, anecdotes of their bravery and heroism, exploits of the ancient Caledonians and present Scots.

Chapter V
Customs in war and military tactics

Chapter VI
On the dress of the ancient Celts, and costume of the present Gael

Chapter VII
Of the arms and military accoutrements of the Celts

Chapter VIII
Of the architecture of the Celts

Chapter IX
Of animals, and the manner of hunting

Chapter X
Of the pastoral state and of agriculture

Chapter XI
Of the food of the Celts, their cookery, liquors, medical knowledge, health, and longevity

Chapter XII
Of the shipping, commerce, money, and manufacturers of the Celts

Chapter XIII
Poetry and Music

Chapter XIV
Religion, marriage ceremonies, and funeral rites

Chapter XV
Of the knowledge of letters among the Celts

Appendix

See a pdf file or the original book complete with illustrations (77Mb)

While I have scanned some of colour plates in the book into this text version I have also included a link at the end to a .pdf file of the book where you view the other illustrations. It is a 77Mb download but if you have broadband access you might wish to download it.

You can get to the book at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/gael/scottishgaelndx.htm


Scots-Irish in America
----------------------
As you know I had intended to add volumes 4 - 8 of this series but have found a list of volumes 1 - 10 already on the web and so have placed links to those at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/scotsirish/scotsirishndx.htm


Report of the Committee of Relief of Knight Templar
---------------------------------------------------
and Ancient and Accepted Scotch Rite Masons, Chicago, 1872.

Found a copy of this report and thought you might find it interesting. You can read it at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/ktj/reportofcommitte00comm.pdf

I also added "The Times of the Templars", a publication of the Priory of Saint Patrick which you can read at http://www.electricscotland.com/history/ktj/SMOTJNewsletterFall2007.pdf



And that's it for now and I hope you all have a great weekend :-)


Alastair
http://www.electricscotland.com 

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