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Weekly Mailing List Archives
20th July 2007

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

You can view what's new this week on Electric Scotland at 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 

Electric Scotland News
The Flag in the Wind
The Scottish Nation
New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845) (new book)
Scottish Canadian Newspaper
Proceedings of the Scotch-Irish Fouth Congress at Atlanta, GA., April 28 to May 1, 1892
History of Scotland
Commemorative Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario.
Good Words - Edited by the Rev Nornan MacLeod
Perth on the Tay

Some of you will likely know John Henderson from his doggerels and his Recounting Blessings series which he mainly writes from his retirement home in Cyprus. Well he took time to visit me in Chatham while on his Canadian visit and we had a good natter.

John is big on genealogy and his trip this year is to touch base with family members in Canada and the USA that he's discovered from his research.

This week also sees me making a start at the New Statistical Account of Scotland published in 1845 and more of this below.

Last Saturday I visited the Chatham Highland Games and met up with clans MacKenzie, Rattray, Wallace, MacIntosh and Elliot. I took a wee selection of pictures and some videos which you can see at

On the previous evening I also took some pictures of the flowers in the park which you can see at

I might add that there were so many pipe bands that it was hard to fit them all into the parade square at the end of the event so I wasn't surprised to hear that they may move the event to another larger location next year.

I also got my laser surgery for both my eyes this Thursday. I'm told they'll need to see me in around 8 weeks to ensure all is healing as it should.

Jeanne and Michael Craig got a press pass on behalf of Electric Scotland for the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games on the same weekend and I hope to bring you lots of pictures next week of the event. Michael did send me a couple of pictures of the band Albannach and I did a wee page about them and included three music tracks which you can view at

Also got in another update on the History of Clan Munro at

Clan Wood Society has a new web site at

Clan MacKenzie of Canada has sent in an update of their DNA database which is an excel spreadsheet which can be found at

And finally... I have made a change to the newsletter list by adding a new list called ES Weekly News. All I'm doing with this list is sending out a weekly announcement with one simple sentence such as...

This is to let you know that this weeks ES weekly newsletter for x date can be read at... and then give you the url for the newsletter on the web site. Hopefully this will get to those that aren't able to get the newsletter.

I have also done a change to the page where you can sign up for the newsletter to bring this new option to you. I might also add that on that page you can also unsubscribe to either newsletter. Of course if you are getting this newsletter you don't need to do anything to keep getting it :-)

I should add that those that do get the newsletter will this week get a second one telling you of this new option as I'm obviously hoping to reach the ones that don't get it with this simple text message :-)

Oh yes! I got my railings up at long last so my steps to the house are now complete and so it's now onto other projects which I hope won't take as long. I might add that the quality of the work has been excellent :-)

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.

Mind that The Flag is now in two sections (1) Political and (2) Cultural.

This weeks Flag is compiled by Richard Thomson and this week he's speculating on the next UK election.

In Peter's cultural section we have an interesting recipe...

The inspiration for this new column came from the historic canoe journey made by Oliver Brown Award winners, Sir Alastair M Dunnett and James ( Seumas ) Adam, from Bowling on the Clyde to Skye in 1934. The expedition led to them being known as The Canoe Boys and the foodstuff which provided the back-bone of their diet, a foodstuff which had sustained Scots for centuries, was oatmeal. They preferred to have it, at least twice a day, in the form of oatmeal brose rather than as porridge. An account of how they made their brose was provided by Sir Alastair M Dunnett in 'Quest By Canoe', the story of their adventure published in 1950 and reprinted in 1995.

Oatmeal brose was the true foundation of the expedition, and the correct method of making it must be put on record. A quantity of coarse oatmeal - with salt 'to taste' as they say - is placed in a bowl and boiling water poured over it. The water must be boiling hard as it pours and there should be enough of it to just cover the oatmeal. A plate is immediately placed over the bowl like a lid. You now sit by for a few minutes, gloating. This is your brose cooking in its own steam. During this pause, slip a nut of butter under the plate and into the brose. In four or five minutes whip off the lid, stir the mass violently together, splash in some milk and eat. You will never again be happy with the wersh and fushionless silky slop which passes for porridge. This was the food whose devotees staggered the legions of Rome; broke the Norsemen; held the Border for five hundred years; and are standing fast on borders still. It is a dish for men. It also happens to taste superbly. We ate it twice a day, frequently without milk, although such a simplification demands what an Ayrshire farmer once described to me as a 'guid-gaun stomach'. He is a happy traveller who has with him a bag of oatmeal and a poke of salt. He will travel fast and far.'

Note: Me (Alastair), being a bit of a softy, confess to liking a wee bit of sugar in mine :-)

You can read the Flag, listen to the Scots Language, enjoy the Scots Wit and lots more at

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

Now onto the H's with Herd, Herriot, Heron and Herries added this week.

Here is a bit from the Heriot account...

HERIOT, a surname derived from a legal term, hariot or heriot, being, under the feudal system, a due belonging to a lord at the death of his tenant, consisting of his best beast, either horse, ox, or cow. In some manors, the best goods, piece of plate, &c., are called hariots. The word heriot, in the Saxon, also meant a provider of furniture for the army.

The name is old in Scotland. According to Buchanan, in the time of Edward Baliol’s brief usurpation, William, John, and Gilbert Heriot, safely conducted Robert the Steward out of the reach of his enemies, when eagerly sought after by the English. The lands of Trabrown in East Lothian were granted by the earl of Douglas to John Heriot about 1423, and they continued in the possession of his descendants till the end of the reign of Charles the First. Of this family was the celebrated George Heriot, founder of Heriot’s Hospital, of whom a memoir follows. The lands of Elphonston in East Lothian afterwards came into their possession, and these they called Trabrown. The Heriots of Niddrie-Marischal belonged to the same family.

HERIOT, GEORGE, founder of a magnificent hospital at Edinburgh, was the son of a goldsmith of high respectability in that city, a descendant, as already stated, of the Heriots of Trabrown. He is supposed to have been born in June 1563. Being bred to his father’s business, to which in that age was usually added the occupation of a banker, he was, May 28, 1588, admitted a member of the incorporation of goldsmiths. At the age of twenty-three he married Christian, daughter of Simon Marjoribanks, a substantial burgess of Edinburgh, with whom he received a portion of 1,075 merks, but who appears to have died a few years after, without children. In 1597 he was appointed goldsmith to Queen Anne, consort of James VI., and soon after he was constituted goldsmith and jeweller to the king.

On the accession of James to the English throne, Heriot followed the court to London, and, by diligent application to business, he amassed considerable riches. Several of the accounts of jewels furnished by him to the queen are given in constable’s Memoirs of Heriot, published in 1822. He took for his second wife Alison, eldest daughter of James Primrose, clerk to the Scottish privy council, grandfather of the first earl of Rosebery. By this lady, who died April 16, 1612, he had no issue. His own death took place at London, February 12, 1624, and on the 20th of that month he was buried at St. Martin’s in-the-field. By his will, dated January 20, 1623, he bequeathed the greater part of his wealth to the clergy, magistrates, and town-council of Edinburgh, to found and endow an hospital in that city for the maintenance and education of poor fatherless sons of freemen. He also left legacies to all his relations, and to two natural daughters, with remembrances to many of his friends and servants.

The magnificent Gothic structure of Heriot’s Hospital, from a design by Inigo Jones, was begun July 1, 1628. The building was interrupted by the troubles of the period, but was renewed in 1642, and finally completed in 1650, at a cost of £30,000 sterling. It has long formed one of the noblest public ornaments of the city of Edinburgh. After the battle of Dunbar, Cromwell took possession of it as a military hospital. In 1658 General Monk restored to the governors, and, April 30, 1659, thirty boys were admitted. The number afterwards regularly increased, and in 1854 one hundred and eighty boys were maintained and educated in the Hospital. By the will of the donor the governors were directed to purchase lands in the vicinity of Edinburgh for the benefit of the institution; and, from the great rise in the value of such property in that neighbourhood, the revenues have very much increased, particularly within the present century. In 1837 the annual income amounted to £14,355, and the expenditure to £11,235. The Governors having procured an act of parliament for the purpose, applied the surplus to the erection of schools in various parts of Edinburgh for the education of children of poor inhabitants of that city, those of burgesses having the preference. Certain statutes for the government of the Hospital were drawn up by Dr. Balcanquhal, dean of Rochester. There is a statue of the founder in the court of the institution, and a portrait of him in the Governor’s room. A miniature statue of him by Salter was erected at the south-west corner of the Scott monument, Princes Street, Edinburgh, in April 1854. Subjoined is Heriot’s portrait:

George Heriot was a great favourite with James the Sixth, who gave him the designation of ‘Jingling Geordie,’ under which name he figures as a prominent character in Sir Walter Scott’s novel of ‘The Fortunes of Nigel.’

You can read the rest of this entry at

You can read the other entries at 

New Statistical Account of Scotland (1845)
Have made a start at this huge publication which will likely be with us for a few years. The first volume I am dealing with is the one on Aberdeen. There are some 85 parishes in this volume and a write up on each. The thing about the 1845 publication is that we get not only the history of the area but also some information on the industry in each parish. Most of the parishes will have the same sections such as...

Topography and Natural History, Civil History, Population, and Industry.

Under Topography and Natural History you will usually find sections such as "Name" of the Parish, it's "Extent and Topographical Appearances", its "Climate", its "Geology, Mineralogy, &c".

Under Civil History you can find "Parochial Registers", details of "Proprietors", "Mansion Houses", "Antiquities", "Famous People", etc. and notes on General history of the area.

Under Population you will find details of numbers of residents and how this has changed over the years.

Under Industry you will find details such as Agriculture, Rent, Farm buildings, Manufacturers, Means of Communication, Ecclesiastical State, Education, Poor and Parochial Funds, etc.

Clearly we will have fairly huge sections on the larger towns and cities and of course smaller accounts for the wee parishes. This week you will see two such diverse accounts of the City of Aberdeen and the Parish of Peterculter.

To give you a flavour of the accounts here is how the Parish of Peterculter is described...

I.—Topography and Natural History.

Name.—The latter part of the name of this parish is variously written, Coulter and Culture; in the oldest register of the parish, it is uniformly rendered Culter. Some think that this word is a Gaelic compound consisting of Cul, the back, and tir, the country; i. e., the back country, (the parish being situated on the north side of the river Dee.) Others account for the name by what they suppose to have been the original orthography of the parish, viz. Petri Cultura. When Popery was the established religion, chapels were erected on the opposite sides of the river, and dedicated to the respective Saints Mary and Peter. To these saints were consecrated not only the chapels, but also the nearest wells, the one called St Mary's, and the other St Peter's well. At a small distance from the church there is a high steep bank called Peter's Heugh.

Extent and Topographical Appearances.—From the east, on which it is bounded by the parishes of Banchory-Devenick and New-hills, this parish extends south-west and west nearly 7 miles. Between these extreme points, on the western boundary, it is indented by the parish of Drumoak; so that its mean length does not much exceed 5 miles. It is in several places nearly 5 miles broad, its mean breadth, however, does not exceed 4 miles. Its figure is so very irregular, that it would be difficult to compute its superficial contents. It is bounded on the south by the river Dee, with the exception of the small farm of Insch, which lies beyond the river. The surface of the parish is very rugged and uneven. It is divided by the burns of Leuchar, Culter, and Murtle, into several distinct parts, and it has numerous slopes, and hollows, rocky hills, marshy and mossy flats interspersed.

The southern division, with the exception of a small district of flat haugh, rises in a gentle slope from the banks of the river, and contains the mansion-houses of Culter, Murtle, Binghill, Countesswells, and Bieldside, with their respective grounds, gardens, and woods. The situations of these are most beautiful, and the exposure excellent. The farms in this district are in a high state of cultivation. There is almost no waste land. The soil is in general of a sandy early nature. In some places, there are fields of loam with sandy subsoil.

As we retire from the river towards the centre and back of the parish, the land becomes high, hilly, rocky, and exposed, large tracts remain waste, covered with furze, broom, heath, and moss. Considerable improvements have of late years been effected, more especially towards the west, on Upper and Nether Angustown. The soil in this western division still continues of an early, thin, sandy nature, with a bottom of gravel and rock; but on the northern back district, it partakes more of moss and clay.

Climate, &c.—The banks of the Dee are noted for their salubrity of air, and many places on them have of late years become favourable retreats for invalids during the summer season. In this parish the variation of climate is considerable. On the banks of the river the southern exposure, the thin, dry, sandy soil, the shelter afforded by the numerous enclosures and small plantations,— all combine in giving effect to the rays of the sun, in rendering the temperature high, the air most salubrious, and the climate remarkably genial.

In the garden of Murtle, beautifully situated in a sheltered den, the peach ripens every year in the open air, and the crops are as early here as in any part of the county.

In the higher and back districts of the parish, the reverse is the case ; the situation is more bleak, the land in many places damp and marshy, the temperature low, and the climate proportionably more unfavourable; the crops are consequently later, the snow is often deeper, and frost more intense than on the river side.

On the 4th of August 1829, the river Dee (which is every sea-son subject to great and sudden floods) was flooded to an extra- ordinary degree. The haughs of Mill-timber and Murtle, in this parish, (though enclosed by embankments of extent and strength sufficient for the usual rises of the river,) were covered to the depth of many feet: the soil and growing crops were seriously damaged, and great quantities of hay in cocks were floated away. [See Sir Thomas Dick Lauder's Account of the Moray Floods.]

Geology, Mineralogy, &c.—In many places large projecting rocks, and immense blocks of irregular, hard, irony stone are to be met with on the surface. These are considered fit for nothing but for building fences. In the south-west and west divisions, granite is found, both on the surface and in quarries. In the latter division, there is a quarry of considerable extent, from which formerly stones were driven to Aberdeen. This trade is now discontinued.

In the mosses, the traces and remains of forests are met with Wood, &c.—Large, tracts of the parish are under wood. The late Colonel Duff of Culter, and the late Mr Gammel of Countess-wells, planted a great extent of surface on their respective estates. These plantations are very thriving, and consist chiefly of the larch and Scotch fir, to which the soil seems most congenial. Around Culter House there is a cluster of beech, chestnut, oak, ash, plane, and pine trees,—perhaps the oldest, largest, and most beautiful that is anywhere to be met with in this or in any of the neighbouring counties. One of the beeches measures round its trunk 14 feet, rises between 80 and 90 feet high, and spreads its branches 75 feet. A few of these trees have been lately cut down.

You can read the rest of this account at

The account of the City of Aberdeen is at

On the index page of this volume you can see a list of the 85 parishes and also a map at

Scottish Canadian Newspaper
Added another issue of this newspaper...

September 17, 1891 at

This issue carries an article about James M'Cartney, a famous Ayreshire inventor, on the first page.

You can see all the issues to date at

Proceedings of the Scotch-Irish Fouth Congress at Atlanta, GA., April 28 to May 1, 1892
Added several more sections to this volume...

First Session of the Congress at

Opening exercises
Dr. J. N. Craig's address, introducing Gov. Northen
Address of welcome by Gov. Northen
Mayor Hemphill's address of welcome
President Bonner's response to the address of welcome
Presentation of gavel to President Bonner
Mr. Grady's letter to Mr. Bonner and the reply
Remarks by Dr. Macintosh and ovation to President Bonner
Col. Adair introduced by President Bonner
Mr. Henry Wallace introduced

Second Session of the Congress at

Devotional exercises
Prof. H. A. White introduced
Prof. George Macloskie presented
Dr. Henry Quigg introduced
Mr. Frank L. Stanton's poem read
Maj. Charles H. Smith introduced
Col. G. W. Adair's impromptu address

Business Meeting at

Report of the Executive Committee
Treasurer's report
Report and remarks of Col. John W. Echols
Report and remarks of Mr. Helm Bruce
Discussion of reports
Report of Nominating Committee
Dr. Maxwell's presentation of Jacksonville's invitation
Meeting of the Executive Council

Third Session of the Congress at

Devotional exercises
Hon. Patrick Calhoun introduced
Maj. Charles W. Hubner's poem read
Mr. Helm Bruce delivers an address

Fourth Session of the Congress at

Devotional Exercises
President Bonner introduces Dr. J. H. Bryson
Impromptu address by Col. G. W. Adair
Petition to close World's Fair
Capt. G. B. Forbes, Rev. Samuel Young, Hon. David D. Roper, and Mr. I. W. Avery introduced for short addresses

These are mainly smaller accounts as the actual presentations are made in Part II of the volume but interesting smaller accounts can be found such as...

President Bonner:

It seems to me not only superfluous but almost ridiculous for a stranger to introduce Col. Adair to an Atlanta audience. I will let his own bright and smiling countenance be the introduction. [Applause.]

Col. G. W. Adair:

Mr. Chairman, Ladies, and Gentlemen: I thought that when I sprung this suit yesterday morning that it could not be sprung any more this spring. [Laughter.] I had no idea of being brought out this way, particularly after "Bill Arp," who is a professional wit and orator and lecturer, and known all over the face of the earth, and a good deal in Ireland and Scotland. I don't think I can venture to speak against the dinner bell. I am a sort of practical business man, and I never try anything like holding a crowd against the attractions of a dinner bell. I tried it once at a ball, and busted.

Our distinguished friend from Princeton rather attacked me for not having mentioned our excellent Mayor, W. A. Hemphill, as being a Scotch-Irishman. I examined the list of our Society and his name was not on it, and I omitted him. But I can say one thing which I think will be to the satisfaction of my friend from Princeton, and that is that from the number of Scotch-Irish badges I see springing up around me, if Hemphill is not a Scotch-Irishman now he will be before the next Mayor's election. [Laughter.] In fact, this thing is sort of taking somehow. I meet people out here who I know are Scotch-Irish as well as I know that I am, and may be a little better, and they are beginning to take an interest in this meeting. In fact, there is an amazing ignorance among the people on the subject, and they need education, and they need line upon line, precept upon precept, and they need a heap of these short, ten minute speeches, and a great many nice paragraphs turned by our able reporters and editors to build this thing up and let it be understood. In investigating the subject upon which I had the pleasure of reading a paper yesterday, I was astonished at the magnitude of the whole field. It grows—it is grand. The fact is that when you subtract what the Scotch-Irish have done for this country from the sum total, there is nothing left; nobody else has done any thing. I always thought that the Plymouth Rock fellows were great men, and I had heard something about the Cavaliers of Virginia, and I had read something about Oglethorpe, who brought over those English gentlemen who could not settle their tailors' bills in the old country, and I had heard about De Soto coming over here among the Indians hunting for the " Spring of Life," and about the Spaniards who had settled at St. Augustine, and the Acadians and the French at the mouth of the Mississippi, and I never heard anything about the Scotch-Irish. My father, in his good old conversational way around the hearth of our country cabin, used to talk about being a Scotch-Irishman, but I didn't know what it meant until this thing was sprung on me. But now I find that we have done great things, we have done almost everything, not only in the nation, but right here in Atlanta, as I tried to show you yesterday; and I want to urge upon everybody who attends this meeting to mention this matter to your Scotch-Irish friends and tell them something about it; go to talking shop. I am talking good sense. Get your friends and bring them up to the captain's office and let them join the Society, and this gathering will be the nucleus of a grand social, intellectual, and historical Society that will go out and do a vast deal of good all over the country. If we will do our duties as our distinguished President has done his, and Dr. Macintosh and these other gentlemen, if we will do in our humble way what we, as Scotch-Irishmen, ought to do, the time will come when we will have in Atlanta, and other cities as well, Societies whose influence will go out over the states and the interest will be such that a man may even venture occasionally to speak against a dinner bell. [Applause.]

You can get to the index page of this volume at

History of Scotland
In 9 volumes By Patrick Fraser Tytler (1828)

Now completed the seventh volume with...

Chapter V (Pages 397 to 424)
Regency of Morton

Proofs and Illustrations (Pages 427 to 471)
From Unprinted Manuscripts

In the proofs section we get the get the sense of a murder mystery...

IT has long been known, that some of the principal supporters of the Protestant cause in Scotland were implicated in the assassination of Riccio; but it has hitherto been believed that their great ecclesiastical leader Knox was not privy to this murder. From the language, in which the event is told in his history it might be inferred, indeed, that he did not condemn the assassination of one whom he regarded as a bitter enemy to the truth. After this manner above specified, says he, "to wit by the death of David Rizzio, the noblemen were relieved of their trouble, and restored to their places and homes, and likewise the Church reformed, and all that professed the Evangel within this realm, after fasting and prayer were delivered;" but in weighing this passage it is to be remembered, that although the Fifth Book of Knox's history was probably composed from notes and collections left by the reformer, it was not written by him.

The late Dr. Macrie, his excellent biographer, has this sentence upon the subject, which from the authority deservedly attached to his life of Knox may be taken as the present popular belief upon the point. ''There is no reason to think that he (Knox) was privy to the conspiracy which proved fatal to Riccio. But it is probable that he had expressed his satisfaction at an event which contributed to the safety of religion and of the Commonwealth, if not also his approbation of the conduct of the conspirators."

As Dr. Macrie had not the advantage of consulting those letters upon thirt subject which I have found in the State Paper Office, and by which the whole secret history of the conspiracy against Riccio has been developed, we are not to wonder that he should have spoken so decisively of Knox's innocence of any previous knowledge of the plot. I shall now state as clearly as I can, the evidence upon which I have shed in the text that he was precognizant of the intended murder - adding, at the same time, Rome letters which may be quoted in his defence.

You can read the rest of this chapter at

As all the chapters are .pdf files I'll just point you at the index page of this publication where you can read the rest of the chapters at

Commemorative Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario.
My thanks to Nola Crewe for typing these up for us.

We got two bios in this week...

Cuthbert, Alexander
Watson, Neil

The biography of Neil Watson shows how a family spread far and wide... here is the first couple of paragraphs in which we see Scottish folk ending up in the West Indies, USA and Canada...

NEIL WATSON, one of the most prominent citizens of Mull, County of Kent, and who has been an import factor in the advancement of that place, is a worthy member of one of the most respected families in the country. He was born June 10th, 1853, on the old farm in Harwich township where his parents settled in 1839, and has passed all his life in the country. The Watson family was established in 1830, by three brothers, Robert, John and James Watson, who came from Argyllshire, Scotland, where the late James Watson was born in January, 1800. His parents were James and Jane (Ferguson) Watson, both also natives of Scotland.

Landing at Quebec, James Watson soon afterward settled on land near Toronto, and there engaged in farming for five years. In February, 1833, he was united in marriage with Miss Mary McVicar, daughter of John and Mary (McNair) McVicar, the former of whom was born in Argyllshire, Scotland, in 1782, and the latter a few years later. They came to Canada in 1832, on a sailing-vessel, and settled in Vaughan township, near Toronto, where they were among the first settlers. There John McVicar died in June, 1864, and his widow in September, 1865. Of their family three died young, in Scotland, and the others were: Neil emigrated to the West Indies and died there; Margaret, the eldest daughter, came to Canada, and married John McEachran, who settled and died near Toronto, leaving two surviving children – Colon, of the State of Washington, and Donald, of near Toronto; Susan, born in Scotland, is the deceased wife of Colon McEachran, who settled and died near Toronto; James settled as a farmer on Lake Huron, and died there (he married Bell Maloy, and their only daughter, Mrs. Mary Livingston, lives in Briston, Ontario); Angus, who was a merchant at Kingston, Ontario, married Susan Birmingham, of Kingston, and died there, leaving children – John, a prominent journalist of Detroit, and Annie, the wife of John Armor, of Detroit; Donald, born in Scotland, married Mary Armour, of Vaughan township, and moved to Harwich, there both died, leaving children – John, who died in Toronto (unmarried), and Mary, who married and settled in Canada; Flora, deceased, married Donald Armour, who is also deceased, lived near Toronto, and was the mother of twelve children – Donald and Angus (twins), Alexander, Maggie, Flora, Susan, John (deceased), James (deceased) and four who died young; Mary, who married the late James Watson, was born May 29th, 1815, and was educated in the schools of Scotland.

The rest of this bio can be read at

The other bios can be read at

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...

Easy Confession, A True Story (Pages 14-15)
Little Things (Page 15)
Good Words for Every Day in the Year (Pages 15-16)
The True Rest for Man - Exposition of Matthew XI. 28-30. (Pages 17-19)
In Memoriam - Professor George Wilson (Pages 19-23)
God's Glory in the Heavens (Pages 23-25)

Here is how the article "The True Rest for Man" starts...

The True Rest for Man

Exposition of Matthew XI. 28-30.

The persons here addressed are those who are in want of rest, the weary and the heavy laden.

This description is applicable, more or less, to every man, until he finds rest in Christ. We do not say that men know why they are not finding rest, or that they will accept of the explanation of their condition which is given by Jesus; far less that they will receive from Him the rest which He is willing to impart. What we assert is, that men are seeking a rest for their being, which they do not find.

A very remarkable instance of this condition, so natural to all men, is that of Solomon. He, the great king, the great conqueror, the great merchant, the man of taste, of learning, and of wisdom pre-eminent, records in the book of Ecclesiastes, his many and varied labours in order to find repose for his great mind and heart. He says, for example:—

"I sought in mine heart to give myself unto wine, yet acquainting mine heart with wisdom; and to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was that good for the sons of men, which they should do under the heaven all the days of their life. I made me great works; I builded me houses; I planted me vineyards; I made me gardens and orchards, and I planted trees in them of all kind of fruits: I made me pools of water, to water therewith the wood that bringeth forth trees: I got me servants and maidens, and had servants born in my house; also I had great possessions of great and small cattle above all that were in Jerusalem before me: I gathered me also silver and gold, and the peculiar treasure of kings and of the provinces: I gat me men singers and women singers, and the delights of the sons of men, as musical instruments, and that of all sorts. So I was great, and increased more than all that were before me in Jerusalem: also my wisdom remained with me. And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them, I withheld not my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labour: and this was my portion of all my labour. Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun." (Eccles. ii. 3-11.)

That is, he found no rest; yet if any man could have found it in the creature, or in life without God, it was Solomon. No doubt, after all this sad experience, he discovered at last where repose was to be found, as well as where it was not; for he thus sums up the results of all his labours, "Hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man."

In this weary and restless state Jesus Christ finds every man; all seeking rest, each in his own idol, but none in the living God; each following his own path, but all departing from God through unbelief; and to every man Jesus says, "Come to me, and I will give you rest."

The rest of this article can be read at

The book index page is at

Perth on the Tay
A Tale of the transplanted Highlanders by Josephine Smith (1901)

You should note that many of the conversations in this book are in "Broad Scots" and so you might find some of this hard to read. Should you persist you'll likely get into the flow and hopefully enjoy this book.

Now up to chapter 14 and I thought I might give you this whole chapter to read here to give you a flavour of the book...

"His stately mien as well implied
A high-born heart, a martial pride,
As if a Barons crest he wore,
And, sheathed in crimson, trod the shore."

ALL, this time Rob was learning his life lesson, All though one would watch him closely to guess it.

A fine manly lad he was, head set squarely on his shoulders, step firm, yet springy with the elasticity of youth.

Already he was boss—and over men nearly three times his age, compelling respect and obedience.

Sandy would have marvelled, had he seen him. Where had he learned this woodcraft, and how had he got this knowledge of human nature? for a colonel of a regiment, or a captain at sea, with a crew collected from the four quarters of the globe, 'have no more need for special qualifications for the office than has a shanty boss, are no more autocratic in their power, nor have they a greater diversity of men to keep at work and at peace. Accidents happen ; enmities are bred and nurtured; sides are taken; something very like vendettas are established between factions, and this in the heart of the primeval forest. A cool, steady head—and yet, paradoxical as it may seem, a quick and ready one—was required, besides a practical idea of what a tree standing would make in square or round timber. (Heavy shipments of square timber were made in those days; now, very few rafts of square timber reach Quebec.)

Rob was all of these things. He was good on an emergency, he held out well, and could out-guess many a man fifty years in the limits on how many feet a tall pine would cut.

Oh! those days in the sweet pine woods, resting on Nature's calm heart; thinking deep, solemn thoughts; gathering strength to wrestle with the many phases of human passion. Is there a living germ of pure, true humanity, it is fed, nourished, developed. But not even the quiet shadows of the vast pine forest can resuscitate a dead germ; and this is why Rob had warring elements to curb in this domain where he was absolute monarch.

Once, and once only, did he have to demonstrate this.

There was everything there—English, Scotch, Irish, French, with two or three Indians: big, brawny red-shirted men, with heads in yellow and red, brown and black, and eyes that in their normal condition were blue, and black, and gray; but Sunday found many of them more noticeable for the red streaks caused by bursted veins, and not over half the men went to work of a Monday morning. All day Sunday cards were played, sometimes harder than wood was chopped through the week.

"Terry Magane, ye spalpeen! ye've an ace up yer sleeve!" started the row which, for as long as he lived established Rob's supremacy in the shanties. He never gave up lumbering until the years crept on him that make all men want to lay aside the axe and take up the staff. After a few years as shanty boss he became boss of the limits—one of Canada's lumber kings, a power in the land, and an employer to whom his men would rather go than to each other.

"Bad cess to yez fer a lyin'------!" a blow followed the sentence, in process of which the cause of the dispute fell from Terry's sleeve to the floor.

At this Terry's friends, mortified at the exposé, considered the only way out of it was to "bate" Mike's following until their memory would carry them no further back than to the smart of their bruises. Without waiting for preliminaries, each man set to work on his own account; the shanty floor (this shanty was floored with boards) groaned under their heavy tread as they swayed back and forth, some "in holts" wrestling, some fighting with their fists; the non-combatants, in imminent danger of being trampled under foot, edged away as fast as they could and scrambled up into the bunks. L,-------'s shanty was all in one, a building seventy-five feet long, the huge fire-place at one end, where the sweetest of bread was baked in big, round, flat-bottomed kettles with iron lids, and where pork and beans that it makes one hungry to think of were cooked, for a Boston chef can do no greater justice to this dish than a Canadian shanty cook.

Batiste had finished cleaning up after supper, had ranged his pots and kettles in their corner, and was just now trying to, so far as possible, efface himself, lest evil befal him from the fight now progressing without the slightest regard to army tactics. Squeals were heard from the other Frenchmen, as they were endeavoring to do the same: it was not their fight, and where they could not get in a rap without receiving one in return, they were remaining strictly neutral, though an effort to gain strictly neutral territory took them to the floor on all-fours, away from the fists and brawny arms of the beligerents. The table, a not very secure structure, was upset, the round blocks used as seats were rolling about on the floor; the Indians were in a far corner of the dormitory, sitting on the floor with their knees drawn up to their chins, grunting disapproval of the whole affair—tomahawks would have settled matters much more satisfactorily.

With the fighting men, the more they fought the harder they fought; bones were broken through ugly falls over the rolling blocks; three or four men were hanging on to their opponents with bull-dog tenacity. Matters had reached a serious stage when Rob arrived. He had been perhaps a quarter of a mile away, thinking over the happy, care-free past, planning for a useful future; even though what his heart cried out for were denied him, he still had a place to fill in the body politic, and, please God, he would fill it as a man should. Sounds of strife reached him: there was need for action immediately —thought could wait. Five minutes brought him to the shanty door. Nearest him was a powerful, maddened Irishman, clutching by the throat, and fast choking the life out of, one of his own countrymen.

"Maguire, ye're killin' yon mon! leave go!" yelled Rob; but Maguire paid not the slightest heed.

Another man, McIntyre, hauled his victim between Rob and Maguire.

"Be jabers! 'tis a foine fight intirely, an' we'll not stop fur that babby! Yez wur all in the shanties whin he was in his cradle!" landing the blows thick and fast—his opponent, blinded from blood-trickling wounds, rarely making a return blow tell. Rob squared himself, planted his left foot firmly forward, caught McIntyre round the waist, bent him over and rested him on his own hip until he secured the right hold, then flung him away among Batiste's kettles, as easy as another man would handle a bag of chaff; turned, with a side rush against Maguire's arm, broke his grip on the other's throat, then straight from the shoulder he struck him a smart blow on the chest; and Maguire fell, a heap of over two hundred pounds of pretty rough citizenship, jarring the shanty and rattling the pots until McIn-tyre was roused from his uneven couch.

"Gin there's ony mair fechtin' in this shanty, I'll tak a haun in 't mysel'! Ye're oop here tae work, no' t' murder ane anither. Pick oop yon table ye hae thrawn doon, 'n the bit blocks ; wash yersel's 'n sit doon like Christians, an' no be rampin' roun' like wild beasties!"

There was no "if you please" about it, and there was that in Rob's demeanor which showed he intended to be obeyed. He was a bad man to handle as he stood there, thin, lithe, wiry, every muscle firm and hard as steel, and there was a disagreeable look in his eyes, they were Douglas eyes, and monarchs had quailed before them ere now.

Maguire and McIntyre were picking themselves up dazed, and in a muddled fashion were trying to figure out how it all came about. Without a word the men turned to do as they were told. Long years after Rob's performance was talked of as "Th' purtiest thing iver ye see'."

A man was despatched for Dr. Wright, everybody turned in and helped everybody else, the fight was over and ever after that Rob was in every sense the Boss.

When spring came he went to Quebec with some rafts, then on to Boston to confer with a firm of ship-builders. More than a year passed before he saw the Ninth Line again. Letters had been received giving a hint of the estrangement between the families and something of the cause; Sandy said in substance that Margaret had flouted Phemie because Douglas wanted to marry her; but as Sandy also wrote Phemie did not want the lad, he somehow got the idea it was because Phemie had said no to Douglas that Margaret was incensed. Rob's position in the matter was that of some of our politicians. Phemie was his sister, it was quite natural he should espouse her quarrel, no matter what the cause; but Margaret was Jean's mother, and this so far as Margaret's side of the affair was concerned, was an "extenuating circumstance."

It mattered not that Jean had preferred someone else to him, she was Jean still. How glad he was now that he had never told her of his hopes, her soft woman's heart would have always had this to sorrow over. For there was but one fair woman for him; when he could not have her near him he'd have none. But he'd not waste his life; bye and bye he would like to go to her (happen she'd hae lads o' her ain then)—a choke always accompanied this thought—and she would clasp his hand and say, "Rob, ye hae dune weel" And he knew she would not say this unless he had done well—not in the amassing of wealth or the gain of position and influence, but in living as knowing it is not all of life to live, living that the call might be, "Friend, come up higher."

Among the men there had been no attempt at "preaching," no effort to change their hereditary religious views, no cant. When a Roman Catholic priest came up, as they did several times during the season, every opportunity was given that their ministrations might bear fruit of good behavior. Once Elder Case came; his years were telling on his once robust frame but the downright, positive, abrupt, convincing manner was there—and how the Indians welcomed him.

They each helped Rob himself, and strengthened his hands. Insensibly a change came over "the gang." Father McCarthy's practical talks, that never beat about the bush or etherialized earthly sins; Elder Case's sterling livable piety; and Rob McGregor's every-day-in-the-week example had a wholesome active effect—by Spring the place became known as "McGregor's praying shanty." If there was not much praying out loud there was hymn singing, which, done in the proper spirit, has just as Christianizing effect.

Rob had written Douglas, but in his mistaken views of the situation, had said things that hurt Douglas sorely, so his letter was not answered; therefore in a year not a word of any sort relating to Jean had reached him. Early in the golden October of forty-one, he again turned his face for "juist a look in at hame."

You can read the rest of the chapters at

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


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