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-------- Electric Scotland News
The Flag in the Wind
The Scottish Nation
Clan and Family Information
Poetry and Stories
New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845)
Book of Scottish Story
A History of the Scotch Poor Law
The Life of John Duncan
History of Glasgow
History of Banking in Scotland (New Book)
25 years of Village Cricket
Kinlochbervie (New Book)
Commemorative Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario
Settlers Dedication in Winnipeg
ELECTRIC SCOTLAND NEWS
I got a few comments back from my article last week and a few agreed
and a couple didn't and one wanted to be removed from our list. Such
is the life of a newsletter editor :-)
This week I've been told about an article on "The Scotland Funds" by
Published Date: 10 August 2008
By Eddie Barnes
A SCHEME to raise millions of pounds for good causes from wealthy
members of the Scottish Diaspora has collapsed amid bitter claims of
a lack of Government support and allegations of incompetent
The Scotland Funds was created three
years ago with the aim of tapping into the goodwill of the millions
of Americans who claim Scottish descent.
Money raised would have been handed
over to projects in Scotland, but it folded last week, having raised
Another article from the Mail on Sunday sent to me by Ranald
SCOTLAND'S tourist industry is facing an economic crisis as new
figures reveal the market has barely grown in ten years.
Growth in the hotel and catering market has been stagnant since
1998, while the industry in England has boomed.
Figures compiled by Glasgow and Strathclyde University economists at
the Centre For Public Policy for Regions (CPPR) show Scotland is
being outstripped by its southern neighbour, where growth has
increased by nearly 40 per cent in the past decade.
The statistics will make grim reading for the Visit Scotland's
national tourist agency, which has thrown millions of pounds at
schemes to attract people to stay in Scotland's hotels and eat in
the country's restaurants.
The poor level of financial growth. (less than 3 per cent.) is
revealed through an analysis of the Scottish Executive's own
statistics and casts doubt on VisitScotland's goal of increasing
turnover from £4.1 billion to £6.2 billion by 2015.
The figures also undermine the Executive's objective of matching the
UK's level of overall growth by 2011.
You can't help but wonder how GlobalScot is doing as you can tell
absolutely nothing from their web site. It's a very hush hush
It looks to me that the SNP are doing a great job of governing in
Scotland and making real progress domestically. In my view however
they still have no real plan to build International links or make
contact with the Scots Diaspora around the world in any meaningful
way. Anyway.., enough of this for a while at least :-)
I did in fact go to the Fergus Highland Games on Saturday and got so
drookit that I had to leave early. I got absolutely soaked with a
massive downpour and thunder and lightning storm. And so not much to
report I'm afraid.
The Illinois St. Andrews Society hosts the Scottish North American
Leadership Conference to serve as an educational forum bringing
together the leadership of the Scottish community to share views,
ideas, experiences and best practice.
I've been asked to give a talk at this Conference (24-26 October
2008) which I've agreed to do. I believe it's to be in Chicago so if
you're around might see you there.
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 or on our site menu.
THE FLAG IN THE WIND
This weeks Flag is compiled by Richard Thomson in which he tells us
that the SNP now have a 19% lead over Labour.
In Peter's cultural section he hasn't done his usual Scottish
Traditions section so I'll give you his Scottish Dates for this
15 August 1540
The foundation stone of the Scott Monument, Princes Street,
Edinburgh, was laid. The monument, in honour of Sir Walter Scott,
cost £15,650 and was designed by George Meikle Kemp.
15 August 1920
A surrendered German torpedo-boat broke its moorings and badly
damaged the rail bridge over the River Forth at Alloa.
15 August 2007
Jack McConnell, the former First Minister of Scotland, resigned as
the leader of the Scottish Labour MSPs. He continued as MSP for
Motherwell and Wishaw but announced plans to take up a new position
as British High Commissioner for Malawi in 2011.
15 August 2007
Angela Kelly, East Kilbride, received a cheque for £35,400,000 after
winning the Euro Millions Lottery, making her Scotland’s
biggest-ever lottery jackpot winner.
16 August 1745
Prior to the raising of the Jacobite banner at Glenfinnan the first
military engagement of the 1745 Jacobite Rising took place when
Donald MacDonell of Tirnadris, with eleven men and a piper from
Keppoch’s clan, prevented two companies of the 1st Royal Regiment of
Foot (later the Royal Scots) from crossing the High Bridge over the
River Spean. The Hanoverian force consisting of some 85 men had been
sent from Fort Augustus to reinforce the garrison at Fort William.
16 August 2006
Scots tennis sensation Andrew Murray clinched the biggest win of his
career against world number one Roger Federer, Switzerland, in the
Cincinnati Masters. The young Scot inflicted Federer’s only second
defeat in 2006, winning in straight sets 7-5, 6-4. In their only
previous meeting Federer defeated Murray in his first APT final in
Bangkok in October 2005.
16 August 2007
Electoral history was made when voting took place in Scotland’s
first council by-election under a proportional representation system
in Aberdeen’s Midstocket-Rosemount ward following the death of
Conservative councillor John Porter. The by-election was won by
Scottish National Party candidate John Corall.
17 August 1648
The Scottish Army of the Engagement and English Royalists, under the
Duke of Hamilton, were defeated at the Battle of Preston by Oliver
Cromwell’s parliamentary forces in the major battle of the Second
English Civil War.
18 August 1957
J Norman Barclay, Helensburgh, became the first man to cross the
Irish Sea on water-skis - the journey took him one hour and 20
21 August 2007
Wendy Alexander was the sole-nominee to replace Jack McConnell as
the leader of the Scottish Labour MSPs.
The Scottish Nation
My thanks to Lora for transcribing these volumes for us.
We're now onto the S's with Scot, Scott, Scougal, Scrimgeour, and
A very substantial account of Scott this week which starts...
SCOTT, originally Scot, a surname conjectured to have been at first
assumed by, or conferred on, a native of Scotland, and afterwards
adopted as a surname, when surnames became in use. Uchtredus filius
Scoti, that is, Uchtred, the son of a Scot, is witness to an
inquisition respecting possessions of the church of Glasgow in the
reign of Alexander I. (1107-1124); also to the foundation charter of
the abbey of Holyrood by David I. in 1128, as is also Herbert Scot,
and to that of the abbacy of Selkirk in 1130. He was called
Uchtredus filius Scoti, to distinguish him from others of the same
Christian name, probably Saxons or Normans. His son, Richard, called
Richard le Scot, is witness to a charter of Robert, bishop of St.
Andrews, founder of the priory of that place, who died in 1158.
Others bearing this surname, living in that and the following
century, are mentioned by Douglas and Nisbet as occurring in old
charters. John Scott was bishop of Dunkeld from 1200 to 1203, and
Matthew Scott, bishop of Dunkeld, held the office of chancellor of
Scotland from 1227 to 1231.
The above-mentioned Richard le Scot is said to have had two sons,
Richard, whose name appears in the Ragman Roll as Richard le Scot de
Murthockston, and Michael. The former was ancestor of the Scotts of
Murdockstone, of whom came the Buccleuch family, and the latter was
progenitor of the Scotts of Balwearie in Fifeshire, now represented
by the Scotts of Ancrum, baronets.
The younger son, Sir Michael Scott, was possessed of a considerable
estate in Fifeshire in the reign of William the Lion. From the
chartulary of Dunfermline, it is ascertained that he married
Margaret, daughter of Duncan Syras of Syras, and obtained with her
the lands of Ceres. He had a son, Duncan, who succeeded him and who
had two sons, the younger of whom was named Gilbert. The elder son,
Sir Michael Scott, was knighted by Alexander II., and was one of the
assize upon a perambulation of the marches between the monastery of
Dunfermline and the lands of Dundaff in 1231. By his wife, Margaret,
daughter and sole heiress of Sir Richard Balwearie of Balwearie, he
got that estate in the parish of Abbotshall. He had a son, Sir
Michael Scott of Balwearie and Scotscraig, the famous wizard, of
whom a memoir is given below. In the Ragman Roll is the name of
Michael Scott, one of the Scottish barons who swore fealty to Edward
I. of England in 1296, said to have been this learned personage. He
had two sons: Sir Henry, and Duncan Scott, proprietor of lands in
Forfarshire, and progenitor of the Scotts in the North.
Clan and Family Information
The Clan Munro of Australia Newsletter for August 2008 is available
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 Logie-Coldstone
I might add here that I am currently working on a book called "Cromar
and Canada" which is a story of the Farquharson, Stewart, Maitland
and Fletcher folk that were all resident in this Parish but later
emigrated to Canada. In that book is a considerable account of this
The account starts...
The parish of Logie-Coldstone is principally situated in Cromar, a
district of Aberdeenshire comprehending part of five parishes, and
forming an extensive amphitheatre amid that range of mountains and
hills which runs between the rivers Dee and Don for a considerable
part of their course.
At some remote period, a great portion of this district seems
evidently to have been the site of a large lake or chain of lakes
(two of which still subsist), fed by several rivulets, which now
wend their way sluggishly through it, occasionally inundating the
lower grounds to some extent, when swollen by much rain, or by the
sudden dissolution of the snow, which falls abundantly on the
surrounding hills during the winter. Since this evanished lake burst
the barrier which confined it on the south, several tumuli or mounds
have been formed in different places of its site, by the drifting of
the finer particles of sand which covered its bottom, while the flat
ground around them consists generally of coarser gravelly deposits,
interspersed with patches of peat-bog.
Book of Scottish Story
Our thanks to John Henderson for sending this in for us.
This week have added...
The Miller of Doune: a Traveller's Tale
This week we have up Chapter 4 of this tale and here is how it
An’ now the folk set aff for their ain hames, an’ the miller and his
family crackit wi’ their neebours till they parted at the road that
led to the mill; and then nane o’ them said onything, for they were
a’ busy wi' their ain thoughts; an’ when the miller gaed into the
kitchen, the robin chirped and chirped, for he aye fed it, an’ it
was glad to see him.
The miller gets some seed in his hand, an’ as he’s feeding the
robin, his heart begins to swell, an’ his ee to fill, an` he says, "Bairns,
wha wad hae thought it; I say," clearing his throat, "wha wad hae
thought it, bairns, that sae muckle gude wad hae fa’en to oor lot,
an’ a’ coming out o’ saving the life o’ a bit burdie ?"
"An’ wha kens, father,” said Jeanie, "but ye may be now rewarded for
a’ the gude that grandfather Thomas did, an’ about which ye hae
often tell’t us ? For ye ken there’s a promise to that effect in the
Bible, an’ as the Bible canna lie, I ken wha’ll hae a gude chance
"Ye’re right, Jeanie," quoth the miller, "ye’re very right ; and gie
me doun the Bible, and l’se read it to you.”
Just as it was dune, the door flees open, an’ in comes Geordie
Wilson, clean out o' breath wi’ running.
"What’s the matter now, man?” says William.
"I’m sure it’s something gude," says James; "I ken by his ee.”
"Ou aye, ou aye," cries Geordie, "grand news! grand news!" an’ he
gaspit for breath.
"Tak a wee thought tirne," says James; "and now tell us."
A History of the Scotch Poor Law
By Sir George Nicholls, K .C. B. (1856)
We have now completed this book as there were few chapter although
each was quite large. Here is a bit from one of the chapters...
THE chief characteristic of Scottish Poor Law administration, as
contrasted with that of England, is the pertinacity with which all
claim to relief on behalf of the able-bodied poor has been resisted.
The General Assembly in their Report of 1839 however, admit "that
the situation of people destitute of employment was not to be
overlooked, and that many cases might occur in which men of this
class ought to obtain temporary relief in times of occasional
sickness or unusual calamity, although not as a matter of right."
With this view, it is said, a certain proportion of the church
collections has from an early period been placed at the disposal of
the kirk sessions, "in order that they, at their discretion, may be
enabled to afford assistance for a time to such industrious persons
within their bounds as should happen, owing to temporary sickness,
or to a casual failure of work, to be in difficulty and straits:"
This arrangement rested for a long time on usage only, but was at
length sanctioned by the proclamation of 1693, afterwards ratified
by parliament, "by which one-half of the church collections was left
to the disposal of the kirk sessions, for the purpose in part as has
since been held, of being so applied." Such, it is further said,
"are the rules of the law of Scotland on this subject--such the
origin and foundation of the distinction between those who are
called the `ordinary' and those who are denominated occasional'
poor. The latter receive temporary assistance only from the charity
of the parish, bestowed at the discretion of the kirk session,
during the pressure of want. Of the former a roll is made up, in
terms of the Act of 1579 and subsequent statutes, and altered at
stated periods according to circumstances by the kirk session in
each parish, and such of the heritors as may act with them. The poor
whose names are thus en- rolled, are entitled to periodical
allowances permanently and as a matter of legal right."
Here is how the account starts on Kelburne Castle, Ayrshire...
N all the west no fairer prospect can be had than is commanded by
one standing above the pretty little watering place of Fairlie on
the Firth of Clyde. I have studied it at all seasons and in all
moods of weather: beshrew me if I can tell which becomes it best—a
clear winter day, when the fantastic fairyland of Arran gleams
snow-clad beyond the blue-waters in almost unreal splendour —a
summer morning, when the sea lies pearly calm and the eastern rays
reveal every glen and corrie, every shattered peak and shadowed
cliff in the brotherhood of Goat Fell,—or again in September, when
that outline whereof the eye never wearies is cast in purple,
clear-cut silhouette against the saffron west, while the dusky isles
of Cumbrae and Bute fill in the quiet middle distance. In all its
aspects it is a perfect landscape, and although the lord who built
his tower in the sixteenth century on the brink of Kelburne Glen,
may have had in view strategic rather than aesthetic considerations,
it happened here, as it has happened in many another instance, that
both purposes were best secured on the same site.
The central tower of Kelburne Castle is dated 1581. It may have been
built—probably was soon the site of an earlier keep—but it was not
many years old when Timothy Pont, to whom we owe such an intimate
knowledge of Scottish topography before the union of the Crowns,
described it in the following words." Kelburne Castell, a goodly
building veill planted, hauing werey beutiful orchards and gardens
and in one of them a spatious Rome adorned with a chrystalin fontane
cutte all out of the living rocke. It belongs heretably to Johne
Boll [Boyle] Laird thereof."
The Life of John Duncan
Scotch Weaver and Botanist with Sketches of his Friends and Notices
of the Times
By William Jolly (1883)
Have now added more chapters from this book...
Chapter XV - Their First Botanical Studies
Charles's first impressions of John; their friendship; John begins
Scientific Botany; his first gatherings: their self-denying
enthusiasm; their wider excursions; Benachie and its plants; "the
winter of the big storm" of 1837-38; their peripatetic
philosophising at the gates of Whitehouse; John's midnight walk of
thirty miles to the Loch of Skene; the happiness of their joint
Chapter XVI - Difficulties, Dumps and Dimples in their Joint Studies
Difficulties in deciphering plants; the Grass of Parnassus made out;
their want of text-books; their studies in the inn at Mayfield;
Hooker's Flora and its history; "Flora" and "Bacchus": opposition in
the kitchen at Whitehouse; the irritable housekeeper; her
persecution of the botanists Charles's hilarity and tricksiness with
John; John's boots and bonnet stolen; debates and bumps; high jinks
and games; John's Jew's-harp; their friendship and intimacy.
Chapter XVII - John's early Experiences in his own Botanical Rambles
Botany becomes a passion; his explorations on the Don; his
enthusiasm the astonishment of his neighbours: finds the Bladderwort
in Tillyfourie Moss; does not want a better road; "the man maun be
daft!": the Water-lily in the Loch of Drum; John nearly drowned; he
wins the plant; its after history: finds the Royal Fern and the
Moonwort: his ardour and endurance; often out all night; his Spartan
fare; his walking powers; trespassing and gamekeepers; the "Scotchlarchia
Joseph's ear!" and bucolic stupidity and contempt. 1836-1840.
Chapter XVIII - Further Intercourse with Charles Black
Charles marries and removes to Edinburgh; John visits him there; in
the Botanic Gardens; his "thief-like" examination of the plants
there; fishes for the "Water-soldier" in Duddingston Loch; the
sights of Edinburgh he visited; evenings with his friends there: the
Blacks return to Whitehouse; Charles's great herbarium arranged;
their curious mode of doing it; the history of the herbarium the
Blacks remove to Aberdeen; Charles Black and Thomas Edwards, the
Scotch naturalist, meet; John's visits to Charles there. 1838-1846.
Chapter XIX - Other Friends of the Weaver at Netherton
His friends few but fit—Forbes the schoolmaster; merry times at
Coulterneuk: James Black, Charles's brother; becomes John's
companion; his impressions of John then: Willie Beveridge of the
Craigh; becomes great friend of John's; John at the Craigh; John
puzzled for once; Beveridge's after successes and present position :
James Barclay, the painter; his relations to John; becomes a
Jack-of-all-trades: other friends; the intelligence then existing in
Chapter XX - Ecclesiastical Movements in the Country; and John's
Constitutionally and enthusiastically religious; his religion of the
old Covenanting type; intense hater of prelacy and Popery; his
contrast to Charles Black and discussions between them;
anti-patronage and anti-Erastian advocate: the Disruption; John's
advocacy of it; controversies at Netherton; relation of
Aberdeenshire to the Free Church; the Free Church in the Vale of
Alford; new religious zeal roused; John's keen activity; John in
church; remains a staunch Free Churchman: his study of Theology; his
opinions of the great Reformers. 1836-1881.
Chapter XXI - His Botanical Wanderings in the South
John's harvesting a means of wide Botanising; extent of his
wanderings; his adventures and observations; visits Glasgow,
Paisley, Dunfermline, Dundee—the Rest Harrow—Perth, Arbroath,
Montrose, St. Andrews—Viper's bugloss—Fife, Kelso, Coldstream,
Northumberland and its burr; his returns homewards; his wages and
their payment: John at Dunbog in Fife; his botanical assistants
there; long walks and flowers: his expenses; a god-send to his
entertainers: comes to a breadless Highland hut; food produced in an
hour; the "quern" and Biblical hospitality: spinning of linen by the
distaff; the use of the bare thigh!; its relation to modesty: his
encounter with two tramps in Fife; falls among Highland "tinklers";
their honesty and hospitality. 1836-1864.
The History of Glasgow
By Robert Renwick LL.D. and Sir John Lindsay L.D. in 3 volumes
We are now making progress with these volumes and this week we have
Landed Possessions of the Church
Building of Cathedral and Early Dedications
Bishop Herbert—Cathedral Organization—Somerled's Invasion
Episcopate of Bishop Ingelram—Barony Courts—Erection of Burghs—Rutherglen
Bishop Joceline—Additional Lands—Condition of Serfdom
Establishment of the Burgh of Glasgow
Early Streets and Buildings—Possessions of Religious Houses
And here is a bit from Chapter XIV... I might add that I was born in
Rottenrow Hospital :-)
By general assent Rottenrow is regarded as the oldest street in
Glasgow, and the opinion that it occupied the line of a Roman
highway may also be accepted as sound. The Roman road from the
south, through Clydesdale, approached Rottenrow by the street, which
having crossed the Molendinar Burn by a bridge was, in contrast to
other lanes which led to fords, named Drygait, or in its Latinised
form, Via Arida.
The precise route of the Roman road westward, after leaving
Rottenrow, is not definitely known, but that it passed through
Partick is probable, both on account of its destination being in
that direction and from the fact that the westward continuation of
Rottenrow is called in early title deeds the way which led to "Partwich."
[Lib. Coll. etc. p. 258.]
This Partick road must either have crossed, or, for a short distance
northward, joined the track long known as the Cow Lone, and in
modern times called Queen Street, with its continuations of Buchanan
Street and Garscube Road. The cattle which daily left the town and
took their way along this old track reached the outskirts of their
destination at Cowcaddens, [In the earliest preserved report on
perambulation of the town's marches (i June 1574), the Cow Lone is
called "the passage that passis to the quarrell and muir and the
commone pasturis " (Glasgow Rec. i. p. 13).
A short distance north of Rottenrow the road divided Little
Cowcaddens on the east from Meikle Cowcaddens on the west. These
lands were in the possession of the Bishop's rentallers, and being
described as a 6s. 8d. land and a 13s. 4d. land respectively, may be
regarded as together extending to about 52 acres. Little Cowcaddens,
separated from the Subdean's lands of Provanside by Glasgow burn, on
the south, had the rentalled lands of Broomhill on the north.
Mieikle Cowcaddens had the parson of Erskine's lands of Blythswood
on the south, the boundary being somewhat on the line of the present
Sauchiehall Street, and the rentalled lands of Woodside on the west.
On the north were Summerhill and Wester Common, belonging to the
community, and embracing the quarries and pasture land to which the
burgesses had access by the Cow Lone and its continuation.
Philologists are divided in opinion as to the origin of the name
Cowcaddens, which appears in the Bishops' Rental book as "Kowcawdennis"
in 1510, "Cowcaldens" in 1552, and elsewhere in varying forms.
Available information seems too scant for arriving at a satisfactory
definition.] adjoining which, on the north, was the Summerhill,
where one of the burgh's open-air courts was annually held. Here the
magistrates and community were wont to assemble on the first day of
a week about the middle of June, and to pass resolutions on their
common affairs, while the more active exercise of "wapinschawing"
was sometimes combined with the day's proceedings.
At the east end of Rottenrow, where it joined the Drygait, these
streets were intersected by the roadway leading northward to the
cathedral and beyond, and southward to the market cross. To the
north there were probably several buildings occupied by churchmen
and their dependents, but towards the south, where sufficient open
space was left for accommodating the Black and Grey Friars when
these bodies were planted in Glasgow, the built area must for a long
time have been small in extent. South of the market cross was the
Walkergait (an early name for the present Saltmarket Street): it was
obviously so called from its being regularly traversed by the
weavers and other workers in cloth who frequented the Waulk Mill,
which derived its water power either from Camlachie Burn or
Molendinar Burn, or from both combined, below the point of their
confluence. At the foot of Walkergait the Bridgegait turned off to
the crossing over the River Clyde which led to the old village of
History of Banking in Scotland
By Andrew William Kerr (1908)
It is a commonplace that Scotland was the second industrial nation
achieving its industrial revolution hard on the heels of England and
adopting much English technology and expertise to push forward its
industrial development. What is not so clearly appreciated is that
Scotland was the first modern banking nation and that many of the
structures and techniques of banking were developed in Scotland
during the industrial revolution and subsequently adopted in
England, and indeed, in many other parts of the world.
This book will thus guide you through the Scottish banking history
and at the conclusion of the book we'll be posting up a handbook of
the Chartered Institute of Bankers in Scotland. They have allowed us
to post this handbook onto the site which will bring us more up to
date on banking developments.
I might add that it is very refreshing to find a Scottish
organisation that is willing to work with us to add quality content
to the site. This is most rare!
Being the story and traditions of a remote Highland parish and its
By Alexander MacRae
This is a short book and so completed this week. Here is what the
Forword has to say...
THIS little book has been prepared at the request of some young
people who wish to preserve the traditions and to promote the
welfare of their parish. Their generous public spirit has helped to
put it within the reach of all.
Several recent events have suggested its publication and seem to
make its appearance timely. The passing of the parish as the unit of
civil administration has provided the parochial historian with his
opportunity. The union of the churches holds the promise of unifying
the religious and social life of the community. The change in the
proprietorship of the parish has prompted reflection and awakened
hope. Natives, who are dispersed throughout the world, and whose
hearts are bound to the old home by tender spiritual ties, rejoice
to rehearse the tales of their grandfathers and to hear of the
doings and of the dreams of youth.
To tell the truth,
For such as take to scorning
The friends of their youth
And the places they were born in,
I have something,
That, like the light of morning,
Sweeps such vapours of the night,
Though dense they lie,
Clean off my sky.
He that forgets
The hand that rocked his cradle,
And filled life's plate
From love's o'er-flowing ladle,
That forgets those
Who, in the shelter of the gable,
Played marbles with him,
When he was young,
Let him be hung!
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