Scotland's Weekly Email Newsletter
Electric Scotland newsletter meaning the weekend is nearly here :-)
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See our Calendar of Scottish Events around the world at
Electric Scotland News
The Flag in the Wind
The Scottish Nation
Poetry and Stories
New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845)
Book of Scottish Story
Merchant and Craft Guilds
History of Glasgow
Reminiscences of a Highland Parish
The Scottish Historical Review
Some New Recipes
Beth's Newfangled Family Tree
ELECTRIC SCOTLAND NEWS
I always meant to mention this but when I send out the newsletter I
always get some of these "out of office" replies. I confess that
from them, out of sheer curiosity, I often go to the web address
just to see what company you're with. I'm always very impressed on
the range of companies you work for. Some of them do things I
wouldn't even have thought about and so it's a kind of education in
a way :-)
I also note some of you sure take lots of holidays or are out of the
office a lot :-)
Seems I'm a zombi... went to get blood taken this week and after
trying in four different places on my body they could still not find
any blood. So now have another appointment where someone else will
try to extract some :-)
Attended the University of Guelph meeting that I mentioned last
week. The talks on the Saturday were very good and one in particular
was so good that I am going to get a copy of the powerpoint
presentation. I was given permission to use it and Dr Graeme Morton
is meant to be emailing it over to me but haven't heard back from
him as yet. Just hope he hasn't lost it! You can see some of the
pictures I took of the event at
I didn't note down the speakers name but will definately follow up
on some of the things he was telling us.
I might just add that I got some Pictures of Otago which I'd been
seeking for some time since I did the book about settling in Otago
in New Zealand. My thanks to Kim who was giving a talk at the
meeting for providing these and you can see them at
The move is now on for us to go to Michigan... we're just waiting
for a firm date from our new ISP (Verizon). Once they can confirm
the date for installing our new double T1 leased line we'll be ready
to announce the move date. It will be during October and we're
trying for the 17th but might need to move that forward a week. I'll
update you once I know as we'll be down 24 hours on the day of the
I'm still hoping that Steve will get our new site search engine up
and running. I know it's now many months since I first announced
this but ever hopefull now that Steve's divorce is now final. Should
he get down to it we may be down for a very short while since I'm
told we need to bring down the server to install the software and
get the first indexing done.
This week I put in my application to become a Canadian Citizen. In
actual fact you can hold dual citizenship so I don't need to give up
my British citizenship. Given the long lines going through customs
it actually makes a lot of sense keeping British citizenship as that
way I can go into any of the European Union countries as a local :-)
I do feel that as Canada has treated me very well the least I can do
is become a Canadian citizen.
I have found many British people here that have Permanent Landed
Status and have been here for some 30 plus years yet never taken out
citizenship. Not sure I agree with that but that's of course their
choice. I'm told the process can take up to 15 months so still a
while to go.
Am due to start on a new book next week and you can get to choose
which one it will be. The books you can choose from include...
The Sea of Galilee Mission of the Free Church of Scotland
Published for the Jewish Committee of the Free Church of Scotland
The Pioneers of Old Ontario
By W. I. Smith and Illustrations by M. McGillvray (1923) (I
personally found this book very enjoyable and it has lots of
illustrations of old pioneer life.)
A signatory to the American Declaration of Independence by David
Walker Woods (1900) (An interesting account and the people of
Ryegate in Vermont can thank him for selling his land to them.)
Reminiscences of Cromar and Canada
By Donald Robert Farquharson (Remembering what life was like in old
Scotland and then an account of emigration and settling in Canada.)
The Story of the Scots Stage
By Robb Lawson (1917) (Don't have anything on the site about the
Theatre in Scotland so this is new information for the site.)
Sketches of North Carolina
Historical and Biographical, illustrative of the Principles of a
portion of her Early Settlers By Rev. William Henry Foote (1846)
(Quite an account of lots of old Scots and Scotch Irish settlers in
Notes and Sketches illustrative of Rural Life in the 18th Century
By Wm. Alexander (1877) (The book was based on a lecture the author
gave to local people about what life was like for their grandparents
John Knox, A Biography
By D MacMillan, M.A. (1905) (We've all heard of John Knox and so I
figured it was time to get up a biography about him as he had a
major affect on the religious life of the Scots.)
MacKenzie, Selkirk, Simpson
The Makers of Canada, By Rev. George Bryce, D.D. (1910) (These are
biographies of Scots who made a major impact on Canada.)
Old Time Customs
Memories and Traditions and Other Essays by John Burgess Calkin, M.
A. LL.D. (1918) (This is actually a look at the old customs of folk
that emigrated to Nova Scotia.)
If I don't get any feedback I'll just pick one at random :-)
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 Ian Goldie.
[Electric Scotland Note: You know I often wonder why the Flag
doesn't give more positive news about Scotland and some of the
things that Scotland is achieving with the new SNP Government. For
example, in the last week it looks like we'll exceed the 31% target
for electricity from renewable energy by 2011. Scottish Power has
also commited many millions toward building wave and tidal power
stations. Scottish school children are to get free healthy school
meals. Crofters are going to get more power to decide on their own
priorities. Surely positive stories like these would do far more to
promote the idea of Independence as they demonstrate what Scotland
is achieving under an SNP led government.]
In Peter's cultural section I thought for a change I'd bring you his
dates in history...
3 October 1721
Birth of Rev. John Skinner, poet, theologian, Episcopalian minister
at Longside in Buchan, at Balfour in the Parish of Birse,
Aberdeenshire. His song ‘Tullochgorum’ was regarded by Robert Burns
as “the best Scotch song ever Scotland saw”, (letter from Burns to
Skinner October 1787).
3 October 2007
Detectives investigating the disappearance of 15-year-old Falkirk
schoolgirl Vicky Hamilton, who went missing in 1991, searched a
house in Southsea, Hampshire, England.
4 October 1956
Scotland’s High Constable, the Countess of Erroll, unveiled a cairn
at Loch nan Uamh commemorating the departure of Prince Charles
Edward Stewart from France on 20 September 1946. As the Countess
unveiled the cairn, its builder John MacKinnon of Arisaig played a
Pibroch in salute.
4 October 2007
The missing Leonardo da Vinci masterpiece ‘Madonna of the Yarnwinder’,
stolen in 2003 from Drumlanrig Castle, was following a raid in
Glasgow. Four men were arrested in connection with the theft of the
£37 million painting.
6 October 2007
Demonstrations took place in Edinburgh and Glasgow in support of the
protesting monks in Burma. The cities joined 700 others around the
world in the Amnesty International’s Global Day of Action.
7 October 1922
The largest salmon caught by rod in the UK was landed by Georgina
Ballantine from a boat on the Glendelvine stretch of the River Tay
in Perthshire. Her salmon was a massive 64lb.
8 October 1908
‘The Wind in the Willows’ by Edinburgh-born writer Kenneth Grahame
was first published and has never been out of print since.
9 October 1745
Pitsligo’s Horse, with an estimated strength of 100 to 200,
commanded by Alexander, 4th Lord Forbes of Pitsligo, joined the
Jacobite army in Edinburgh. Lord Pitsligo was a member of the
Prince’s Council and following the Jacobite defeat at Culloden was
hidden by his tenants in Aberdeenshire until his death in 1762.
9 October 2003
The Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh was officially opened by Her Royal
Highness The Princess Royal. The £190 million hospital was a modern,
purpose-built replacement of the outdated Victorian building at
Lauriston Place, Edinburgh, and the first patients were treated in
You can read the Flag, listen to the Scots Language, enjoy the Scots
Wit and lots more at
Christina McKelvie MSP's weekly diary for this week can be read at
The Scottish Nation
My thanks to Lora for transcribing these volumes for us.
We're now onto the S's with Stoddart, Stone, Stormont, Strachan,
Strang and Strathallan.
An interesting account of Strang which starts...
STRANG, STRANGE, or STRONG, a surname originally of Fifeshire. An
ancient family of this name possessed, at one time, the estate of
Balcaskie, parish of Carnbee, in that county. John Strang of
Balcaskie, married, before 1362, Cecilia, sister of Richard
Anstruther of that ilk, and received from the latter certain
tenements in Anstruther.
In 1466 William Strang of Balcaskie was one of an assize of
perambulation for clearing of marches. In 1482 John Strang of
Balcaskie and Ewingston had a charter to these lands, which were, in
the same year, acquired by George Strang, probably his father, from
George Porteous, portioner thereof, in exchange for the lands of
Whiteside and Glenkirk,
John Strang of Balcaskie is mentioned in 1514 and 1521. He had a
son, George, who, in 1517, formed one of a jury who made a valuation
of Fifeshire. George predeceased his father, leaving a son. John
Strang of Balcaskie was slain at Pinkie in 1547, and was succeeded
by his grandson.
In 1605 a son of the family joined the expedition to the Lewis, for
the colonization of that island and improvement of the fisheries. On
the destruction of the expedition this gentleman settled in the
John Strang of Balcaskie, born before 1578, had a son, Thomas, who,
in 1641, was served heir to his great-grandfather, slain at Pinkie.
After the sale of Balcaskie, in 1615, he became colonel of
Cochrane’s Scots regiment.
Sir Robert Strange, the eminent engraver, a memoir of whom is given
below, was the fourth in lineal descent from Sir David Magnus Strang
or Strange, sub-chanter of Orkney from 1544 to 1565. Sir David is
assumed to have been a younger son of the Strangs of Balcaskie, of
which, however, there is no proof.
You can read the rest of this account at
You can read all these entries at
Poetry and Stories
Another poem from John Henderson called "Bonny Annie" which you can
John has also sent in another pdf file in his "Village Cricket"
We also have some new poems and articles from Donna, Alastair and
others in our Article Service at
New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845)
Having now concluded the Aberdeenshire volume I intend to make a
start at the Lanarkshire volume next week. In the meantime I got in
the Penicuik account from the Edinburgh volume with thanks to Alan
McKenzie for that.
You can read this account at
I might add that we have a book on the site about Penicuik at
The index page for the New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845)
can be found at
Book of Scottish Story
Our thanks to John Henderson for sending this in for us.
This week have added...
Here is how it starts...
The name of Colkittoch often occurs in the history of the great
rebellion in the reign of Charles I. By some he is denominated
Macdonald of Colkittoch, by others Colkittoch, and by many he is
confounded with his son. His name was Coll, or Colle, Macdonald: he
was a native of Ireland. His father was Archibald Macdonell, who was
an illegitimate son of the Earl of Antrim. With the aid of his
partisans, Coll took violent possession of the island of Colonsay,
one of the Hebrides, having driven away the Macfees, who had held it
for many centuries. Coll was denominated Kittoch, or, more
correctly, Ciotach, from his being left-handed. Coll had
distinguished himself in the unhappy disturbances in lreland, and
when Lord Antrim sent troops to Scotland as auxiliaries in the royal
cause, he served as an officer under his own son, Allister, or
Alexander, who had the chief command of the corps. The father and
son were well qualified for this service, both of them being well
known in the Highlands, and connected by blood or marriage with some
of the best families in that country.
Coll was noted for his strength and prowess, though tainted with the
cruelty too familiar to his countrymen at that time. He fought in
all the battles in which the Irish auxiliaries were engaged under
Montrose; he was also concerned in their plundering expeditions in
Argyllshire, where private revenge was unfortunately added to the
horrors of war. Many of the lyric compositions of those days extol
his bravery and his bloody vengeance on his antagonists, the
Campbells, though it seems he was on very friendly terms with some
of that name.
Coll had possession of the Castle of Duntroon, and having placed a
garrison in it, he went to another quarter ; but in his absence it
was taken by stratagem. He was ignorant of this misfortune, and on
his return he steered his boat direct for the castle. His own piper
was then a prisoner there; and knowing his master’s boat, to warn
him of his danger, he played a tune which he composed for the
purpose; and so accurately did the sound correspond with the
meaning, that Coll understood the intention, and avoided the castle.
You can read the rest of this at
The other stories can be read at
Merchant and Craft Guilds
A History of the Aberdeen Incorporated Trades by Ebenezer Bain
More chapters up this week including...
The Convener Court — The Old Registers —Convener Court Book —
Statutes of Convener Court—List of Office-Bearers
Dr. William Guild and the Trades—his Literary Work--Signing the
Covenant—Notes on Trinity Monastery—Gift to the Trades—Trinity
The Bursars' House—Action in Court of Session—Financial Statement
Trades Hospital—Charter of Administration—Decreet of Declarator
Patron—Master of Hospital—Lists of Patrons, Masters of Hospital,
Relics and Reminiscences of Old Trades Hall—Inventory and
Description of Antique Chairs —Collection of Portraits—New Trades
Hammermen Trade—The Crafts Associated as Hammermen—Seals of Cause—"Tryar
of Gold and Silver "—Statutes of the Trade—
Baker Trade—Bakers', Marks—Price of Wheat and Bread—Seal of
There is an interesting old poem about the Bakers...
When from the shades of Night and Chaos came,
This vast round Globe, and Heav'n's all beauteous frame,
The same dread Word that stretch'd the ample sky,
And bad bright Orbs in myriads rowl on high,
Commanded from the fertile womb of Earth,
The vegetable kinds to take their Birth;
Each various fruit: and chief the gen'rous grain,
The favour'd race of Mankind to sustain.
Obedient at his call each springing field,
Verdant with Life abundant Harvests yield,
Which, ev'n tho' ripe, were crude in some degree,
For Heav'n provides, but man the cook must be:
By careful art, and all-correcting fire,
Refin'd and Bak'd, they answer'd each desire;
Diffusing strength thro' all the human frame,
And aiding, with glad-warmth, the vital flame.
Hence comes the swain's brisk mein and healthful air,
And that gay bloom that crowns the sprightly fair;
Then, let the BAKER with due praise be crown'd,
And Floreant Pistores echo round
So old, so universal is our Trade,
So useful, that the staff of life is Bread
And, what immediately does life sustain,
Of ev'ry art the precedence should gain.
In various forms we work the yielding paste,
To strength adapt it, and to curious taste
And while we rev'rence Heav'n's Omnific Pow'r,
We imitate His works in miniature;
As from the formless chaos of the paste,
Which, with fermenting fluids we conjest,
Loves rise, like worlds, from our creating hand,
And various figures rise at our command.
O'er our fair Labours, artful we diffuse,
Choice cordial sweets, and rich ambrosial dews,
Consign'd to the deep oven's glowing cell,
They, in their mimic Purgatory, dwell,
Till time suffice, then forth they come releas'd,
Fragrant to smell and grateful to the taste.
In mathematick form the pye we rear,
Which, like some sumptuous castle does appear,
Beasts, fowls, and fruits, the Magazines supply,
Which round the crusted walls we fortify.
Magnificently roof'd it stands in state,
Till scal'd and plunder'd by some potentate.
Without our aid, what regal table's spread?
What Hero fights without the strength of Bread?
Round the wide world, our labour still is dear,
To soldier, sailer, peasant, prince, and peer.
The priest and lawyer's vocal lungs we aid,
And help the merchant to pursue his trade.
What Nymph so lovely, or of birth so high,
But will to pastry her soft hands apply;
And who the occupation shall despise,
Which ev'n the fair disdain not to practise.
But higher yet, our honours we pursue,
Angels ate bread, and angels bak'd it too
Abram, the friend of God, in Mamre's plain,
Three angels once did kindly entertain.
Fine flour his princely spouse did knead and bake,
And social they, of human food partake.
And once Elijah, wand'ring in the wild,
By haughty Iezebel's proud threats exil'd,
As stretch'd beneath a juniper he lay,
Slumbring and faint, and far from human way,
An angel, Heav'y-descended, form'd a cake,
And to divine refreshment bid him wake.
Tho' we have angel's sanction, yet our cause
Fresh lawrels from the prince of angels draws;
When, here on earth, he taught us how to pray,
Give us our daily Bread he bid us say;
Nor is it foreign to our honour'd trade,
That with five loaves, five thousand souls He fed.
He too, the mystick presence did consign
Of his own flesh and blood, to bread and wine,
Ev'n He, by whom the numerous worlds were made,
Partook on Earth the sustenance of Bread;
And after his ascention from the grave;
When to the twelve He his third presence gave,
Them fishing on Tiberian waves, He call'd,
And to the shore, their loaded netts they haul'd;
When to a fire, and bread thereon prepar'd
By His own hands, which He amongst them shard.
While thus with noblest Trades we boast our part,
Nor yield to any in the sphere of Art,
May He, the Sun of Righteousness, display,
On all our actions his celestial ray;
May we in peace our daily bread possess,
And smiling Providence our labours bless;
Contented may we live, and die resign'd,
And, in the skies, a crown of glory find.
You can read the rest of this chapter at
The index page can be found at
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're
make a start at the second volume.
Early Council Record—Navigation of the River Clyde—University's
Exemption from Taxes and Subsidies—Vicarage of Colmonell—Seal of
Cause to Cordiners
Duke of Chatelherault, Bailie of Regality—Protection to Archbishop
—Progress of Reformation—Attacks on Churches and Monasteries—Treaty
with England—Return of French Army—Departure of Archbishop Beaton—Meeting
Economic Effects of the Reformation
Queen Mary's Reign—The Battle of Langside
The Transference of Church Property under Mary and Moray
The Regent Lennox—Capture of Dunbarton Castle
The Preface for volume II starts...
WITHIN the last ninety years most important additions have been made
to the documentary evidence readily available for a complete History
of Glasgow. In 1843 the Maitland Club published the entire extant
Registrum Episcopatus Glasguensis containing the charters of the
bishopric from the twelfth century till the middle of the sixteenth.
Three years later the same club published the Liber Collegii Nostre
Domine, documents dealing with the affairs of the Church of St. Mary
and St. Anne, now the Tron Church, and Munimenta Fratrum
Predicatorum de Glasgu, the documents of the monastery of the
Dominicans or Friars Preachers in High Street. In 1854 it published
the muniments of the University, and in 1875 the Grampian Club,
under the name of Diocesan Registers, published a series of
Protocols of the Cathedral Chapter, of the years 1499 to 1513, and
the Rental Book of the Archbishops from 1509 to 1570. These
collections of documents furnished authentic and fairly complete
material for a history of the bishopric and city of Glasgow down to
the time of the Reformation. Twenty years later, in 1876, Sir James
Marwick, then Town Clerk, began publishing the Burgh Records, or
minutes of the Town Council, from the year 1573. Under the authority
of the Council itself the publication was supplemented by a series
of the protocols of the Town Clerks from 1530 till 1600. At the same
time Sir James published, in three quarto volumes, Charters and
Documents, the actual legal deeds upon which the material fortunes
of the city had been built. The civic records which were thus made
readily accessible provide detailed data of unquestionable kind for
a history of Glasgow from Reformation times downward.
On the rich store of facts contained in these publications Sir James
Marwick set to work, and in several compilations—an elaborate
introduction to Charters and Documents, The River Clyde and the
Clyde Burghs, and Early Glasgow—threw parts of the information into
narrative form. But Sir James died in 1908.
After that event the publication of the Burgh Records was continued
by Mr. Robert Renwick, Town Clerk Depute and Keeper of the Register
of Sasines, and completed down to the year 1833, when the provisions
of the Reform Bill came into action, and the old Town Council of
selected members gave place to a new popularly elected body. The
publication of the records was finished in 1916. Shortly afterwards,
in view of the highly interesting and valuable information embedded
in these old minutes, Dr. Renwick (he had received the degree of
LL.D. from Glasgow University in 1915) was invited by the Town
Council to compile a comprehensive History of Glasgow. This
invitation, though he was then seventy-five years of age, he was
persuaded to accept, and forthwith set about the task. The work was
planned to occupy four volumes—(1) from the earliest times till the
Reformation, (2) from the Reformation till the Revolution; (3) from
the Revolution till the passing of the Reform Bill; (4) from the
passing of the Reform Bill till the present time.
You can read the rest of the Preface at
The index page of the book is at
Reminiscences of a Highland Parish
By Norman MacLeod D.D. (1871)
Made some good progress on this book and have up the following
The Boys of the Manse and their Education
The Manse Boy sent to College
The Manse Girls and their Education
The Minister and his Work
Some Characteristics of the Highland Peasantry
Stories of Snowstorms for the Fireside
Here is the first story from "Stories of Snowstormes for the
I. - OLD JENNY OF GLEN IMMEREN.
When the sheep were sent to the hills, the shielings were no longer
of any use, and so they fell into ruins. But for many a year one hut
remained far up in Glen Immeren, inhabited by "old Jenny." How she
came to live there we never heard. Perhaps she had been there when a
child with her father and mother, and with others who had passed
from her sight, but not from the eye of her heart: and so she would
see forms among the hills that others saw not, and hear voices of
the old time whispering in her ear, or echoing among the knolls that
others heard not. Thus in the lonely glen Jenny was not alone. And I
think she knew One who was more real to her than all those dreams of
heart—One who was her Father in heaven, and ever present with her.
It is certain, however, that Jenny was singularly respected. When
she came down from the glen once a year to the "big house," the
laird's wife brought her into the dining-room and chatted with her,
and gave her something from her own hand to eat and drink as a
pledge of friendship. The minister visited her regularly; and she
came as regularly to see the family, and would remain for days a
welcome guest in the kitchen. Besides this, she was often sent for
to nurse the sick, and there were few houses which had not received
her advice and assistance in time of trouble; for Jenny knew a
remarkable collection of "cures,"—that is, medicines made up from
plants and roots,—as remedies for those accidents and diseases which
were common in the country. These "cures" were at one time familiar
to many in the Highlands, and until educated physicians settled
there, they were the only sources of relief to the sufferer; and
very good service they did. By such means old Jenny became a sort of
public character. No one passed her cottage, on the way across the
mountains to the thickly-peopled valley on the other side, without
calling on her and giving her all the news of the district.
A goat and a few hens were all Jenny's property. But then she got
wool from one family, and meal from another, and her peats from a
third; so that she 'lived in such comfort as no forced poor-law ever
gave, or can give; for charity did not injure self-respect, and
every gift was a sign of kindness. Spring was the trying season,
when the winter had almost exhausted all her means of living. The
meal was nearly done—potatoes were not then so common among tile
poor—the pasture was scanty for the goat ; and Jenny was sometimes
forced to take a journey to visit her kind neighbours down near the
sea-coast, driven, like a vessel in a storm, for shelter to a
friendly harbour. Well, it so happened that one day a dreadful
snowstorm came on just as she was planning an excursion to get some
meal, and when her but was almost empty of food except the little
milk she could get from her goat. For a long time that snow-storm
was a sort of date in the parish, and people counted so many years
before or after "the great storm." Never had they seen such a
constant and heavy fall with such deep snowdrifts. When the heavens
at last became clear, the whole face of the country seemed changed.
It was some time before the thought suddenly occurred to a
shepherd—"What has old Jenny been doing all this time?" No sooner
was her name mentioned than she at once became the theme of
conversation among all the cottages in the Highland hamlet nearest
Glen Immeren, and throughout the parish. But for many days, such was
the state of the weather that no mortal foot could wade through the
snow-wreaths, or buffet the successive storms which swept down with
blinding fury from the hills. Jenny was given up as lost! When the
minister prayed for her there was deep silence in the small church,
and manly sighs were heard. At last, three men resolved, on the
first day the attempt was possible, to proceed up the long and
dreary glen to search for Jenny. They carried food in their plaids,
and whatever comforts they thought necessary—nay, they resolved to
bring the old woman home with them, if they found her alive. So off
they went; and many an eye watched those three black dots among the
snow, slowly tracking their way up Glen Immeren. At last, they
reached a rock at an angle, where the glen takes a turn to the left,
and where the old woman's cottage ought to have been seen. But
nothing met the eye except a smooth white sheet of glittering snow,
surmounted by black rocks; and all below was silent as the sky
above! No sign of life greeted eye or ear. The men spoke not, but
muttered some exclamations of sorrow. "She is alive!" suddenly cried
one of the shepherds; "for I see smoke." They pushed bravely on.
When they reached the hut, nothing was visible except the two
chimneys; and even those were lower than the snow-wreath. There was
no immediate entrance but by one of the chimneys. A shepherd first
called to Jenny down the chimney, and asked if she was alive; but
before receiving a reply, a large fox sprang out of the chimney, and
darted off to the rocks.
"Alive!" replied Jenny; "but thank God you have come to see me! I
cannot say come in by the door; but come down—come down."
In a few minutes her three friends easily descended by the chimney,
and were shaking Jenny's hand warmly. Hurried questions were put and
"Oh, woman! how have you lived all this time?"
"Sit down and I will tell you," said old Jenny, whose feelings now
gave way to a fit of hysterical weeping. After composing herself,
she continued, "How did I live?" you ask, Sandy. "I may say, just as
I have always lived—by the power and goodness of God, who feeds the
"The wild beasts indeed," replied Sandy, drying his eyes; "did you
know that a wild beast was in your own house? Did you see the fox
that jumped out of your chimney as we entered?"
"My blessings on the dear beast!" said Jenny, with fervour. "May no
huntsman ever kill it and may it never want food either summer or
The shepherds looked at one another by the dins light of Jenny's
fire, evidently thinking that she had become slightly insane.
"Stop, lads," she continued, "till I tell you the story. I had in
the house, when the storm began, the goat and hens. Fortunately, I
had fodder gathered for the boat, which kept it alive, although,
poor thing, it has had but scanty meals. But it lost its milk. I had
also peats for my fire, but very little meal; yet I never lived
better; and I have been able besides to preserve my bonnie hens for
summer. I every day dined on flesh meat too, a thing I have not done
for years before; and thus I have lived like a lady."
Again the shepherds were amazed, and asked in a low voice, as if in
pity for her state, "Where did you get meat, Jenny?"
"From the old fox, Sandy!"
"The fox!" they all exclaimed.
"Ay, the fox," said Jenny; "just the dear, old fox, the best friend
I ever had. I'll tell you how it was. The day of the storm he looked
into the chimney, and came slowly down, and set himself on the
rafter beside the hens, yet never once touched them. Honest fellow!
he is sorely miscalled; for he every day provided for himself, and
for me, too, like a kind neighbour, as he was. He hunted regularly
like a gentleman, and brought in game in abundance for his own
dinner—a hare almost every day—and what he left I got, and washed,
and cooked, and ate, and so I have never wanted! Now that he has
gone, you have come to relieve me."
"God's ways are past finding out!" said the men, bowing down their
heads with reverence.
"Praise Him," said Jenny, "who giveth food to the hungry!"
The other chapters can be found at
The Scottish Historical Review
I have added several more articles from these publications...
The History of Divorce in Scotland
Seems there were a lot more reasons accepted for a divorce
settlement in Scotland.
Scotsmen Serving the Swedes
Quite an account of Scots who did great service for the Swedes.
The Hospitallers in Scotland in the Fifteenth Century
THE Knights of S. John of Jerusalem, and their brethren the Templars,
were popular Orders in their early history, and as fighting forces
of trained warriors their services during the Crusades and in
support of the Latin kingdom of Jerusalem are recognised as
valuable, and would have been still more so but for the jealousy and
frequent quarrels between them.
Interesting discussion on the History of Divorce which starts...
THE variety of divorce laws in the United States is a favourite
subject for observation and animadversion. Newspaper and magazine
writers are fond of pointing out that in the State of Washington the
Court can grant divorce, if satisfied that, for any cause, the
parties can no longer live together; that New York has divorce only
for adultery; and that South Carolina has no divorce at all. We are
apt to forget how great is the dissimilarity between the divorce
laws of England, Ireland, and Scotland. The ignorance of
well-educated people on the subject is astounding. An English
squire, university bred, recently asked me why I had been made a
member of the Royal Commission on Divorce in England. 'You know,' he
gravely said, 'you can't have had any experience; and this
Commission is confined to England. You have no divorce at all in
Scotland. You are like Ireland!
Consider how important the differences are: First, in England and
Scotland divorces are granted by courts of law; in Ireland the
remedy can be obtained only by Act of Parliament. Second, in England
divorce is given only for adultery; in Scotland desertion, wilful,
without lawful excuse, and so long continued as to imply a permanent
abandonment of the marital relation, is considered sufficient ground
You can read more of this article at
The other articles can be read at
Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario
Our thanks to Nola Crewe for sending us another biography from these
This week we have the biography of Alexander Julien which you can
Some New Recipes
Allison Shaw sent us in some of her favourite recipes this week
which we've added to our Visitors Recipe page at
The recipes are at the foot of the page and include...
Fire in the Hole
Deep Dark Chocolate Cake
18 Karat Cake
Beth's Newfangled Family Tree
Edited by Beth Gay
The October issue is now available on the site with the usual
reports from the Scots-American community.
And that's it for now and hope you all have an enjoyable weekend :-)
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