It's your Electric Scotland newsletter meaning
the weekend is nearly here :-)
You can view what's new this week on Electric Scotland at
http://www.electricscotland.com/update.html and you can unsubscribe to
this newsletter by clicking on the link at the foot of this newsletter.
See our Calendar of Scottish Events around the world at
Electric Scotland News
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The Flag in the Wind
The Scottish Nation
The Celtic Monthly
The Southern States of America
Skye Pioneers and "The Island"
History of Inverness County, Nova Scotia
History of Scottish Medicine to 1860
Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario
Scottish Canadian Newspaper
Establishing of Social Contacts
I got in an email from Deana...
I run a former pupils site and one of my members has asked for samples of
the funny little Valentine verses we wrote to cover a sheet of paper and
send to the object of our desire. It seems he has promised his granddaughter
he will make one for her.
I could only
remember the one we put on the envelope...."Postie, postie dinna tarry, take
this to the one I'll marry".
I've sent out a plea through my mailing list,
but I wondered if you'd know anyone who has kept a page or two and can share
them with him?
I'd appreciate any help you can offer.
And so if any of you know any of these verses do email me with them and I'll
pass them on and even add a page to Electric Scotland to keep them for
As you likely noted in the news this past week has been very very cold. On
Friday evening I was begining to feel a touch cold so went to check my
thermostat reading only to find it was at 56 degrees. No wonder I was
feeling a touch cold. Of course it would be a Friday evening so it was off
to search for a 24 hour heating company. Well they came out pretty quick but
couldn't fix the problem but would be back on Saturday through the day. I
had by this time dropped to 44 degrees and when they returned on Saturday
they worked out it was the board that was duff but couldn't get a new one
until Monday! Sheesh! So out I went to purchase a couple of heaters and
managed to get the heating back up to 51 degrees.
So there was me freezing the rest of Saturday, Sunday and they finally
turned up on Monday at 5pm. Well they fixed the problem and in a few hours I
had myself up to 70 degrees and it was real nice to be warm again. Off to
bed around midnight but thinking to myself that it wasn't quite as warm as
it had been. Checked the thermostat and it was down at 62 degrees!!! Well I
wasn't about to get another high bill by calling someone out after hours so
quickly got to bed to keep warm and in the morning it was back down to 52
degrees. Called the folk out and they turned up in around an hour and seems
the striker they replaced was faulty so they replaced that and heating is
now back to my normal 68 degrees. Hopefully this time it will stay fixed! I
can confirm that work does not go well when you are freezing! I think we
were down to -18 in Chatham.
I might add that my feet felt they were in a block of ice and so I switched
on my oven and let my shoes toast up in it and it's remarkable how good you
feel when your feet go into some nice warm shoes [grin].
I thought I'd also mention that I was fed up with my Norton/Symantec anti
virus products so decided a few months back to delete it from my system and
have since used the Trend anti virus product. I must say I've been very
happy with it and in particular the anti-spam. In fact over the past 4 weeks
I have not found one genuine email in the spam folder and so have decided
not bothering to check that folder any more and instead just delete it each
day. I only mention this to alert you to the fact that if you were to send
me an email and don't get a reply within 48 hours then please email me again
but this time use a different subject line just in case the last one did get
caught up in my spam.
And having said that about email I have to confess I have not been quite as
diligent with answering emails as I usually am but am trying to catch up.
Answering emails actually takes a chunk of time out of each day. Usually if
it's just a quick question I will answer as it comes in but where it is more
complex I pass it over and come back to it later in the day. Only problem is
they seem to be stacking up a bit so doing my best to catch up :-)
Also... I do reply to some emails but the reply gets sent back with the
comment.... the user is not known at this address. This seems to be
happening more frequently for some reason. I'm just wondering if this is
because the person has changed their email address but not changed their
Reply address? There are two fields here... E-Mail Address and Reply
Address. So perhaps you might check that just in case you left your Reply
Address as your old E-Mail Address.
Mind in a previous newsletter I told you about the special Scottish Tour
that Dr. Graeme Morton of the University Guleph was putting on... well he
now has the official brochure produced which you can view at
And as it is going to be Valentine's Day on the 14th I might just point out
that Grower Flowers are offering great deals on Flowers and Special
Valentine Gift Baskets which you can view at
I note with interest the time taken to get an appointment for an eye
specialist in Chatham. I phoned today for an appointment and the earliest
date they could give me was 19th April. Mind you from what I understand it's
hard to get quick appointments for any specialist these days. I only mention
this as I used to get an annual eye test back in Scotland and had forgotten
all about that. What reminded me was attending a Scottish Studies Foundation
Board meeting where I had forgotten my reading glasses. I was lent a pair to
try and read the previous minutes and found everything was sharper than I
remembered my own glasses to be... and hence this appointment :-)
ABOUT THE STORIES
Some of the stories in here are just parts of a larger story so do check out
the site for the full versions. You can always find the link in our "What's
New" section at the link at the top of this newsletter and pick up poems and
stories sent into us during the week from Donna, Margo, Stan, John and
Micro Button Advertiser - Great Scot
Sally at Great Scot is offering all our USA vistors 15% off any purchases
made before February 19. As Sally already offers some very competitive
prices this is a great offer. All you need to do to get your 15% discount is
add the phrase HEATHER IN THE GLEN at the comment section when you check out
and 15% will be taken off your bill.
Sally also offers a time payment plan for purchasing a kilt which is $75
down and $60 a month on credit card. You get your kilt before the payments
are up and they don't charge interest. They just want folks to be able to
afford a kilt :-) Also, payment plan for folks who want more than the kilt
is $200 down and $75 month. Note that the 15% discount offer does not apply
to time payment plans.
Check out all the items available such as Highland Dress for men and women,
Scottish Clan Crests & Family Coat of Arms, Blankets & Scarves, Celtic
Jewelry, Pewter Crafts, Gifts and Needlework and lots more. They even offer
Tartan Yardage - Over 700 Scottish wool tartans for those who want to sew
their own kilt, up-holster furniture or decorate the castle with the flair
of the Highlands. The tartan cloth comes from Lochcarron in Scotland.
On their website, you can see samples of all of the colors and styles of
tartan fabric they offer. Once you've decided which colors you want, click
on the link marked "Yardage." There, you will find tartan ribbon and six
different weights of tartan fabric from which to choose.
So do visit them at
http://www.greatscotshop.com and perhaps get an early birthday or
Christmas present while you are there.
THE FLAG IN THE WIND
Mind that The Flag is now in two sections (1) Political and (2) Cultural.
The political section is compiled this week by Jim Lynch where he is
muttering about having to do another Flag due to him getting the schedule
mixed up [grin]
I noted a wee foot in the mouth note...
According to what we read in the English press, there is a growing demand
for an English parliament, and a growing resentment at the “perceived” cost
to England of Scotland.
How ironic, and a mirror of the poll tax; when this was imposed in Scotland
we protested and marched against it, to no avail. When it was imposed in
England, they rioted in the streets, and it was abolished; how odd if
England’s reaction leads to Scottish Independence.
The political section of the Flag is heating up as it's less that 3 months
to the Scottish Elections so here you can read what is going on from an
Independence point of view.
Peter in his Cultural section reminds us about Valentine's Day and here is
what he had to say...
A notable date this week is, of course, engraved on the hearts of romantics
world-wide, St Valentine's Day, on 14th February. Scotland can claim a close
affinity to the Saint as his remains lie in a Glasgow Church - the church of
Blessed John Duns Scotia in the Gorbals. The notorious 'Glasgow Kiss' has
nothing to do with the Saint or with romance, indeed quite the opposite!
Scotland's most famous romantic poet, Robert Burns, wrote of St Valentine's
Day in his poem 'Tam Glen'
"Yestreen at the valentines' dealing
My heart to my mou' gied a sten' ;
For thrice I drew ane without failing,
And thrice it was written - Tam Glen."
And our most famous novelist, Sir Walter Scott, wrote of St Valentine's Day
in 'The Fair Maid of Perth' -
"Tomorrow is St Valentine's Day, when every bird chooses her mate. I will
plague you no longer now, providing you will let me see you from your window
tomorrow when the sun first peeps over the eastern hill, and give me right
to be your Valentine for the year."
A romantic time of year requires a romantic recipe - love and chocolate
traditionally go together so why not make for your Valentine the 'naughty
treat' Death by Chocolate. But remember this is a calorie loaded traybake
and that a little goes a long way!
Death by Chocolate
Ingredients: 1.5 oz (35 g) Ratafia Biscuits; 2.5 tablespoons liquid glucose;
half pint (330 ml) double cream; 8 oz (225 g) plain chocolate; 2.5
Method: Crush biscuits and sprinkle over base of seven inch square tin. Melt
together chocolate, glucose and rum. Beat cream and fold in chocolate
mixture. Pour in tin. Cover with cling film and set in refrigerator. Cut in
VERY small pieces - remember calorie count!
I firmly believe that Peter's Dates in History section makes a great read
each week and as he archives all those in a special section you can browse
thousands of past entries. Here is the list from this weeks issue...
9 February 1784
The Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland was formed in Fortune’s
Tontine Tavern, Edinburgh. The objects were defined on 11 January 1785:
1. An enquiry into the present state of the Highlands and Islands of
Scotland, and the condition of their inhabitants.
2. An enquiry into the means of improvement of the Highlands by establishing
towns and villages; by facilitating communication through different parts of
the Highlands of Scotland; by roads and bridges, advancing agriculture and
extending fisheries, introducing useful trades and manufactures; and by an
exertion to unite the efforts of the proprietors, and call the attention of
the Government towards the encouragement and production of these beneficial
3. The Society shall also pay a proper attention to the preservation of the
language, poetry, and music of the Highlands.
9 February 1853
Owing to ill-health Alan Stevenson resigned as Chief Engineer to the
Northern Lighthouse Board. He had succeeded his father, Robert Stevenson, to
the post in 1844 and was responsible for the design and construction of ten
new lights including Skerryvore in Argyll. He was, in turn, succeeded by his
brother David Stevenson.
9 February 1990
Evelyn Glennie, musician, and Sir James Black, scientist, were named Scots
of the Decade.
9 February 2006
Liberal Democrat candidate Willie Rennie pulled off a surprise win in the
Dunfermline and West Fife Westminster by-election following the death of
Labour MP Rachel Squire.
13 February 1784
William Burness, father of Robert Burns, died at Lochlea. His son wrote his
“The pitying Heart that felt for human Woe;
The dauntless heart that fear’d no human Pride;
The Friend of Man. To vice alone a foe;
For ‘ev’n his failings lean’d to Virtue’s side’.”
From his tombstone in Alloway Churchyard.
13 February 1931
The Scottish Youth Hostels Association was formed.
14 February 2006
After a 0-0 draw Gretna defeated First Division side Clyde (3rd round
victors over Cup holders Celtic) in a 4th round Scottish Cup replay at
Raydale Park, Gretna. The Second Division club reached the last eight of the
Scottish Cup after only being in the Scottish League for four years.
15 February 2006
Singer KT Tunstall, St Andrews, took the award for Best British Female Solo
Artist at the annual Brit Awards held at Earl’s Court Arena in London.
You can see all the Dates in History at
You can read the Flag, listen to the Scots Language, enjoy the Scots Wit and
lots more at
You can view MSP Linda Fabiani's weekly diary at
Email Linda at
The Scottish Nation
My thanks to Lora for transcribing these volumes for us.
Now moved onto the F's and added this week are Farquharson, Fenton, Fenwick,
Fergus, Fergushill, Ferguson, Ferme, Ferrier and Fife.
Some quite long accounts this week and here is how the account of
FARQUHARSON, the surname of one of the Highland clans, a division of the
great clan Chattan; particular badge of distinction, the foxglove or red
whortleberry; rallying cry, cairnna-chuimhme, ‘the cairn of remembrance;’
chiefship claimed by Farquharson of Finzean, on the ground of being heir
male of the clan, of which the heir of line is Farquharson of Invercauld. It
had large possessions in the district of Baremar, in the south-west
extremity of Aberdeenshire, and also, at a later period, in Perthshire.
The immediate ancestor of the family of Invercauld was Farquhar or Fearchard,
a son of Shaw Macduff of Rothiemurchus in Strathspey, lineally descended,
according to tradition, which has been accepted by Nisbet (Heraldry, vol. i.
p. 283, and App. vol. ii. p. 26), and generally adopted, from a younger son
of the ancient thanes of Fife, but without good grounds, as from the MS. of
1450, discovered by Mr. Skene, the Farquharsons, like the Machintoshes and
all the other branches of the great native sept of clan Chattan, appear to
have been, from the beginning, a purely Celtic race. Shaw Macduff joining
the Macphersons, was very active in the expulsion of the Cummings of
Badenoch, and is said to have obtained several large grant of land from
Robert the Bruce. It is certain that his son Farquhar, who lived in the
reigns of Robert the Second and Robert the Third, settled in the Braes of
Mar, and was appointed bailie or hereditary chamberlain thereof. The sons of
the latter were called Farquharson, the first of the name in Scotland. It is
stated in Skene’s History of the Highlanders (vol. ii. p. 177) that the
leader of the clan Yha, in the celebrated conflict on the Inch at Perth in
1396, with the clan Quhele, is by old authorities styled Sha Fercharson.
Farquhar’s eldest son, Donald, by his wife, a daughter of Patrick Duncanson
or Robertson, first of the family of Lude, had an only son, Farquhar, who
married a daughter of Chisholm of Strathglas, and died in the end of the
reign of King James the Third. The younger sons of this Farquhar settled in
the Braes of Angus, and founded there several considerable families of the
name. His eldest son, Donald, married a daughter of Duncan Stewart, commonly
called Duncan Downs Dona, of the family of Mar, and obtained a considerable
addition to his paternal inheritance, for faithful services rendered to the
Donald’s son and successor, Findla or Findlay, commo9nly called, from his
great size and strength, Findla Mhor, or great Findla, lived in the
beginning of the sixteenth century. His descendants were called MacIanla or
Mackinlay. Before his time the Farquharsons were called in the Gaelic, clan
Erachar or Earachar, the Gaelic for Farquhar, and most of the branches of
the family, especially those who settled in Athol, were called MacEarachar.
Those of the descendants of Findla Mhor who settled in the Lowlands had
their name of Mackinlay changed into Findlayson. [Family MS. quoted by
Douglas in his Baronage.]
Findla Mhor, by his first wife, a daughter of the baron Reid of Kincardine
Stewart, had four sons, the descendants of whom settled on the borders of
the counties of Perth and Angus, south of Baremar, and some of them in the
district of Athol. By his second wife, Beatrix, a daughter of Gardyne of
that ilk or Banchory, he had five sons and five daughters. He was killed,
bearing the royal standard, at the battle of Pinkie in 1547.
You can read more of this entry at
You can read the other entries at
The Celtic Monthly
A magazine for Highlanders
Added the June 1912 issue at
The Chief of the Clan MacPhail, Sketches of Life and Character, Scottish
Clans Association, Stornoway and the Lews, The Religion in the Gaelic
Language, The Land for the People, The Sons of Rob Roy, The Cape Breton and
Nova Scotia Highlanders, Fionn's Wars with the MacGregors, Notes on the
Celtic Year, Celtic Notes and Queries, Gaelic Proverbs.
You can see the issues to date at
The Southern States of America
Published in 1909.
Added this week are...
The History of Georgia - Chapter II
Georgia in the Federal Union, 1776 - 1861
The History of Georgia - Chapter III
Georgia in the Confederacy, 1865 - 1865
Here is how The History of Georgia - Chapter III starts...
The election of a President by a purely sectional party, which had in
various ways shown undisguised hostility to the South and her institutions,
a party, which for the first time since the formation of the government was
represented in but one section of the Union, excited in Georgia and the
other South Atlantic and Gulf states a feeling of genuine alarm.
All agreed that the South was in great peril. The only point of difference
was as to the remedy.
The conservative sentiment of the people of Georgia was shown in the
presidential election of 1860. The most pronounced Southern rights Democrats
carried the state by a plurality vote, polling for Breckinridge and Lane
51,893 votes, while the united vote for the Bell and Everett and Douglas and
Johnson electors was 54,435. After the result of the election became known,
the tide began to set strongly toward secession, which was stoutly advocated
by Howell and Thomas R. R. Cobb, Henry R. Jackson and Francis S. Bartow,
while Alexander H. Stephens, Herschel V. Johnson and Benjamin H. Hill stood
just as firmly against it.
The Georgia legislature met early in November and, influenced by Gov. Joseph
E. Brown, began to take measures for the defense of the state by creating
the office of adjutant-general, to which position Henry C. Wayne, of
Savannah, was appointed, by authorizing the acceptance of 10,000 troops by
the governor, and by the purchase of 1,000 Maynard rifles and carbines for
coast defense. The legislature also provided for an election on the first
Wednesday in January of delegates to a convention which should determine
what action the state should take in this emergency.
The secession of South Carolina on Dec. 20, 1860, added to the enthusiasm of
those Georgians who favored immediate secession. Popular approval of the
action of the South Carolina State Convention was manifested in the large
cities and towns of Georgia by bonfires, the ringing of bells and the firing
of cannon. Volunteer companies that had been organized by act of the
legislature began to offer their services to the governor, and many new
companies were formed even in December, 1860. The zeal of the Georgia
militia had shown itself as early as Nov. 10, 1860, when a convention of
military companies, presided over by John W. Anderson, heartily endorsed the
recommendations of Governor Brown looking to the defense of the state
against possible aggression.
Before the assembling of the State Convention, which was called for Jan. 16,
1861, the people of Georgia became alarmed because of the removal, by Major
Anderson, of the Federal garrison from Fort Moultrie to Fort Sumter, with
the plain intention of subsequently using that strong fortress as a means
for accomplishing the coercion of South Carolina. Governor Brown being
advised that the people of Savannah would probably seize Forts Jackson and
Pulaski, decided that it was advisable to occupy them with state troops, so
as to prevent their seizure by the citizens on the one hand or by a hostile
force on the other hand, before the Georgia Convention could decide on the
policy which the state should adopt in this emergency. Under instructions
from Governor Brown, issued Jan. 2, 1861, Col. A. R. Lawton, commanding the
First Volunteer Regiment of Georgia, having selected details from the
Chatham Artillery under Capt. Joseph S; Claghorn, from the Savannah Guards
under Capt. John Screven and from the Oglethorpe Light Infantry under Capt.
Francis S. Bartow, 134 men in all, went by boat on the morning of January 3
to Cockspur Island and seized Fort Pulaski without resistance from the few
men there stationed, who were allowed to continue in their quarters without
restraint. These proceedings were reported to General Totten, at Washington,
by Capt. Wm. H. C. Whiting, of North Carolina, afterwards a major-general in
the Confederate States service.
You can read the rest of this chapter at
The book index page is at
Skye Pioneers and "The Island"
by Malcolm A. MacQueen (1929).
Have continued with the Belfast family histories including...
Donald Ban Oig MacLeod of Murray Harbour Road
The MacQueens of Orwell
The Martins of Uigg and Murray Harbor Road
The Martins of Newton, Belfast
Donald Nicholson of Orwell
These histories really contain some excellent information as well as good
genealogy. There is an excellent account within the account - The MacQueens
Malcolm Macqueen was one of the first children born in Belfast. After living
with his widowed mother on the river farm until about 1833, he leased, and
afterwards purchased from Louisa Augusta, Lady Wood, wife of Sir Gabriel
Wood, and Maria Matilda Fanning, daughters of Governor Fanning, the
homestead fronting on Fletcher's road, a short distance east of Orwell
cross-roads. To this new farm he moved, across the frozen Nicholson marsh,
the frame dwelling house, which was used until 1859, when a nine-room house
was built. This was the home of the family until in 1895 it was replaced by
the one now in use.
Of average height, he was a man of powerful physique. In an age when books
were possessed by the few, memory was cultivated to a degree that is not
thought necessary today. In this respect he was a marked man. There was
stored in unusual measure in his retentive memory the folklore of the
distant Highlands, as well as a complete knowledge of his native Belfast. He
was as true a Highland Seannachie as if he had been born and lived in Skye.
His wife, Margaret Martin, of Newtown, was a woman of delicate body, and
refined intelligent mind. Fortunately refinement of mind and manner is not
confined to those living in luxurious surroundings. Mrs. Albert Jenkins
recently spoke of her and others of her neighbors, who were born in an age
when wants were few, as possessing innate refinement and gentility of manner
to a degree equalling, if not surpassing, that aimed at in modern ladies'
Their son, John Angus, was born on the old homestead on which he died, near
Orwell cross-roads. He was even more characteristically Highland than his
father. In a community where honesty was as common a quality as chastity, he
was distinguished for it to a degree that made business relations with him a
thing of mathematical exactitude. He was outspoken and uncompromisingly
honest. No act inconsistent with the strictest integrity was ever imputed to
him. In all his relations with his fellow men he was distinguished by a
virtue, defined as "punctuality." Four generations came and went and he was
still in the same place. He is reported never, in that time, to have missed
a Sunday in church, and never to have been late for service. The regularity
of his life made him an unchanging and continuing institution in the
If there was any announcement to be made in church that was omitted from the
minister's agenda, he would calmly arise in his pew, and facing the audience
amend the omission in an unembarrassed tone. He knew the Bible from cover to
cover, and was satisfied with nothing less than a Scriptural sermon. One day
he became impatient at the wanderings of a clergyman into politics, and is
reported to have rebuked him, almost in the words of Queen Elizabeth, who
"when the Dean of Saint Paul's, at a public sermon, enunciated some
observation that displeased her, threw open the window of her private
closet, in which she always worshipped, and shouted to him `leave that
ungodly digression and return to your text.' "
To him character was the one and only test of worth and position. He
recognized no other ground for social distinction.
Possessing the variable Highland temperament, he would pass from brooding
melancholy to Highland gaiety with electric speed. The changing moods of the
elements awoke in him a ready response, and he watched the varying phases of
wind and sky, foretelling with mystifying accuracy what the elements had in
store. In an age of superstition, living among people who inherited and
believed in it, he was practical to an unusual degree, and scorned what he
could not demonstrate from actual experience.
Order was a passion with him, and the child who failed to return to its
designated place any instrument or tool, was the recipient of a well earned
rebuke. Deceit and dissimulation were entirely foreign to his nature. No one
was ever left in doubt as to his estimate of him. It seemed perfectly
natural and proper to disclose frankly his likes and dislikes. One possessed
of so many virtues is usually austere and uncompromising by nature. For
their virtues such men are respected, to a certain extent feared, and to a
less extent loved. His physical strength was great almost to the end. In all
his long life he was never treated by a physician. At seventy-eight his
striking pale blue eyes could detect an open rowboat at Point Prim seven
miles from where he stood.
His wife, Isabella Nicholson, had an insatiable appetite for the things of
the mind. With the ardor for education that characterises the Scottish
people, she engaged in the daily tasks, not infrequently with an open book
or newspaper clipping beside her, to be perused at every favorable
opportunity. Her knowledge of history, and of the involved inter-relations
of families, not only in her native province, but among the great in foreign
lands, was so intimate that she was known among her friends as the
"historian." The death of five of her children after reaching maturity
failed to crush her indomitable will; each recurring blow of fortune seemed
to strengthen her power to meet the one to follow. With her own temper in
complete subjection, she was wont to rebuke the ill tempered and passionate
in the words, "greater is he that controlleth his temper than he that taketh
You can read the rest of this account and see the genealogy at
You can read all the chapters at
History of Inverness County, Nova Scotia
By J. L. MacDougall (1922)
Inverness County is part of Cape Breton in Nova Scotia. I am now up to the
District Sketches which contain a ton of genealogical information. You can
read the chapters at
The Districts added this week are...
The Catholic Parish of Princeville
Here is some of the information contained in the huge account of Port
Port Hood has always been the shiretown of Inverness County, formerly the
name was given to the port alone, but is now applied to e whole municipal
district as well. Both town and district are important communities in this
County, the former, largely for its memories, the latter, for its growth and
solid strength. No doubt Port Hood was made the shiretown on account of the
harbour on which it is built. On any other ground the selection would seem
illogical and unfair, in such a long, loose-jointed municipality as
At the time of the early settlement the harbour of Port Hood was very
different from what it now is. There was then a substantial neck land
connecting the northern end of the inner Island with the main-land. The arm
of the sea which ran into that neck of land from the South constituted an
ideal harbour of refuge. The port was then an admirable fishing station, and
such stations meant much to our pioneer fathers. That early harbour also
facilitated communication with Pictou and Prince Edward Island, and this
communication was keenly desired in the days of Auld Lang Syne.
In the course of the years that neck of land was worn away by the sea and
the storms, giving two entrances to the harbour. Then this safe and
satisfactory haven was laid open to the full force of the Northern blast.
The shifting sands of the neighborhood were stirred into action and
mischief. These drifting sands were sent churning through that new found
channel, settling down betimes into bars of danger in the very middle of the
The most distressing marine disaster we ever witnessed occurred near the
centre of Port Hood Harbour. It was late in December 1877. On a certain
evening several schooners entered this harbour in a stiff north-westerly
wind, and cast anchor under the lee of the Island. During the night the wind
rose into a living gale, and the sea was lashed into rank insanity. Some of
those vessels broke away from their mooring's, and were again made fast with
perilous difficulty. One of them, "Maggie B.", of Port Hastings, Murdoch
MacLennan, master, drifted in towards the shore, and was stranded on a
dangerous sand bank in the middle of the harbour. It was a night of terror.
No attempt at rescue was possible. The frost was intense, the wind was
terrific, it was snowing and drifting, the ship listed and stuck, the sea
was rolling mountains high, the spars, hull and rigging screamed and
strained, death to all was imminent. Three of the crew lowered a boat and
made off for the beach: the boat was swamped, the men were drowned. The rest
of the crew and passengers stood by the wreck, and suffered pitifully till
removed the following afternoon by daring men from the shore. All were badly
frozen. One lady passenger, a Mrs. Roberts of West Newfoundland, was so
badly frozen that her limbs had to be amputated. Her husband, the Captain
and all aboard were painfully frost-bitten.
That tragedy of the home seas left some heart-aches in Inverness that will
abide for ever; it has sent several souls to eternity for whom all the
wealth of creation were not a ransom. And yet, the condition of Port Hood
Harbour, instead of being improved, has been going from bad to worse ever
since. Poor Doctor MacLennan, made while in Parliament, a very practical
effort to relieve the situation here; but that strong and steadfast servant
died too soon. Port Hood awaits his fitting successor.
You the rest of this chapter at
You can read the rest of the chapters at
Started work again on the final volume 6 of this publication complete with
sheet music. The index page is at
To volume 6 I added...
O Wat Ye Wha's In Yon Toun?
The MacGregor's Gathering
Sound The Pibroch
You can see these at
Added the Winter 2007 newsletter for the Clan MacIntyre at
History of Scottish Medicine to 1860
by John D. Comrie (1927).
I have up another two chapters which you can read at
Chapter V - Early Public Health Regulations and the Plague - Early
Regulations, 1498 - Notification made compulsory - Convictions - Isolation -
Cleansing infected clothing and houses - Buriers of the dead - Charities for
plague-stricken poor - Appointment of a Medical Officer - Recurrences in the
XVIth Century - Immunity in Aberdeenshire, Sutherlandshire and Liddesdale at
Chapter VI - The Surgeons of Edinburgh in the Seventeenth Century - Advance
of the Guild of Surgeons and Barbers - Surgeon-Apothecaries Royal College of
Surgeons of Edinburgh incorporated - Double and Triple qualification -
Instruction in Anatomy - Convening House built New Surgeons' Hall -
Pitcairne and Monteath - Eliot, first "Professor of Anatomy" - The Monros at
Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario
Our thanks to Nola Crewe for sending in more of these...
McLachlan, Duncan at
Cruickshank, James at
Here is the account of James Cruickshank...
JAMES CRUICKSHANK is a prosperous general farmer and ex-reeve of Zone
township, residing on Lot 5, Concession 4, where he owns a fine farm of 150
acres to which he came in 1853, having purchased it from John E. Brooks,
land agent. The property was then all a wilderness, and he had to make a
clearing in order to erect his little cabin on the spot where now stands his
handsome brick residence, which was put up in the fall of 1897.
Mr. Cruickshank was born March 6, 1832, son of James and Janet (Marnes)
Cruickshank, of Aberdeenshire, Scotland, where they remained until 1833, and
then emigrated to Canada, settling in Howard township, County of Kent,
Ontario, where they took up 100 acres from Col. Talbot. Later the father
purchased 250 acres, and there he died in 1867, aged 63 years, while the
mother died in 1879, aged 69 years, and they are buried in the Morpeth
cemetery. They were members of the Presbyterian Church. The father held many
minor township offices, became very prominent and was especially active in
educational matters. His children were as follows: James; Alexander, who
died in Zone township, on an adjoining farm, in 1881; John, a retired farmer
of Aylmer, Ontario; Mary, of Zone township, widow of John Tinney William,
who died in Howard township, on the old homestead; Elizabeth, who died in
1891 at Brown City, Michigan, wife of John Brewster.
James Cruickshank has been twice married, his first union in 1858, in the
township of Howard, being to Elizabeth Bullock. One child was born to them:
Rachel E., who married Alonzo Grawburg, a farmer of Sanilac, Michigan. On
November 5, 1866, Mr. Cruickshank was married in Florence, Ontario, to Mary
A. Maynard, and she bore him children as follows: Mariah married William
Dickson, a farmer of Zone township; Sarah J. married John W. Southerland, a
driller of Petrolia, Ontario; James is at home with his parents; Hester A.
is at home; Jeanett married Charles Hubble, a contractor and builder of
Thamesville; Mary I. Is at home; Ada M., a school teacher, is also at home.
Mrs. Cruickshank was born in Harwich township, daughter of Manel and Esther
Maynard, both of Canada, the former of Nova Scotia. They were married in the
County of Kent in an early day, there beginning life as pioneer farmers. On
January 1, 1865, in this same locality, the father passed away aged 58
years, and he was buried in the English cemetery of Harwich township. The
mother resides in Howard township, and is advanced in years, having been
born in 1817. She is a member of the Baptist Church as was her husband.
Until his marriage Mr. Cruickshank remained with his parents, and then
located on his present farm, where he has since remained. In politics he is
a Conservative and is very active in local affairs. For eight years he
served as township reeve; seven years he was assessor and also township
collector, and for about 30 years he has been in the township council,
having been one of the first to be elected to that office. Being very deeply
interested in educational matters, he has served upon the school board for a
number of years as member, secretary and treasurer and trustee. Fraternally
he is a member of the Orange Lodge. His farm is one of the best cultivated
in the township, and his home is a very pleasant and comfortable one. Having
firmly established himself in the confidence of the neighbourhood, he is
highly regarded and is justly considered as one of the representative
farmers in his section of the County of Kent.
You can read other biographies at
Scottish Canadian Newspaper
Added another issue of this newspaper...
March 26, 1891 at
This issue has an interesting account of Baroness Nairne.
From Nola Crewe
Got in a homily that Nola gave on 14th January 2007 which I thought I'd
share with you.
You can read this at
Margo has been back in touch and sent in another of her children's stories
called Captain Blackheart - Iceberg
I’ve never felt this cold in all of my life. My toes are so numb; I am
afraid to touch them for fear they’ll fall off. My fingers are stiff and
holding this pen is a chore. How did the Treasure Hunter find herself in
such a mess? The last time I wrote was two years ago. I know a captain is
supposed to write daily, but nothing much has happened since we left Skull
Island, until a week ago. Just in case something happens, I will fill you in
on the events that have taken place over the last few days.
The Treasure Hunter sailed the South Pacific. We were having a grand time,
stopping at all the tiny islands, enjoying the company of the natives and
eating until we were stuffed. The trade winds carried the scent of tropical
flowers on it. What a joy those months were! One particular morning a
strange wind blew our sails, taking us in a south-easterly direction.
“Cap’n, I don’t like this one bit. I’ve never heard of winds comin’ from the
northwest before, not this far south. We may end up in South America, or
worse, havin’ to go around the Cape of Good Hope!” Silverear stood at the
railing, eyeglass in hand.
“Aye, Silverear. There is something rotten brewing. Look at that sky. I’ve
never seen olive green clouds. Can’t you put Grub and Zeedal on the sails
and turn us around, or at least easterly?” I pulled the spyglass from
Silverear’s hands. “What’s all over this spyglass? You been at the papaya
again? Learn to wipe your hands. This is disgusting.” I reluctantly wiped it
off on my jacket. “I don’t like this. Do your best to turn this ship
It was no use. The wind kept howling, carrying us further and further south.
A thin layer of ice formed on the deck and just about everywhere else on the
ship. I sent Dungheap and Ribeye to start chipping it off, but it was no
use. Eventually the wind stopped blowing. We took down the sails and with no
other choice, let the current carry us to our doom. Supplies began to spoil
and we were forced to toss the rotten fruit over the side.
A knock came at my cabin door. Chappy stuck his head inside. “Beggin’ your
pardon, Cap’n.” I looked up. “Cap’n Blackheart, there are icebergs floatin’
all ‘round the ship. Dungheap’s up there tellin’ the crew stories. He says
that only a small part of the ice is above water. The rest is below the
surface, waitin’ to crush the hulls of unsuspectin’ ships. The crew’s a bit
And you can read the rest of this at
Establishing of Social Contacts
I had occasion to go through the book The Scottish Week-End at
This is somewhat tongue in cheek publication which is fun to read and
amongst all the interesting information I found...
A NOTE ON THE ESTABLISHING OF SOCIAL CONTACTS
and as it discusses how to progress a love affair thought this might be fun
to read over the Valentine weekend :-)
THE matrix or prime condition of a holiday is the abatement of labour.
Energy is thereby released for other and more genial purposes, whether
actual of the body or speculative of the mind, which for the greater part of
the year, in the greater proportion of mankind, is spent in the quotidian
offices of a mercantile, professional or industrial occupation. In the
perdurable words of the Bishop, that is, a vacation provides both time and
inclination. It is true that people who are brutish by nature, or in whom
the felicities of curiosity and imagination have been starved by the
mechanical circumstance of their environment, will squander this happy
increment on the golf-links or the tennis-courts; and the muscular
explosions that propel a volley or a forehand drive, as also the mental
exertion required to equate windage and the parabolic drift of a slice, will
sensibly hinder their perception of the aphrodisiac quality of leisure. Yet
this quality cannot be disputed, and whatever may be said for the use of
Arabian skink, eringoe root, the durian, the brains of sparrows, civet and
nux vomica, it seems probable that the exploratory instinct and happy
fantasy of love will find in idleness a more healthy nourishment than in any
of these reputed specifics; and while there is a sufficiency of young men
and women, their nature not yet perverted by athleticism, who have the
virtue to perceive and the grace to admit the aggravation of amativity that
should in all cases accompany a holiday-but especially in the months of July
and August and September-it is clearly desirable that knowledge of the
preparatory strategy and preliminary tactics of a love-affair should be more
generally diffused. For in spite of the growing easiness of manners and the
diminishment of formality there are still many who find difficulty in
accosting a stranger without embarrassment-which is more ruinous to love
than great ugliness or a sour breath-and of these many, some, could they but
cross with courtesy and determination the frontiers of non-acquaintance,
would make gentle, trustworthy and pleasing companions.
How, then - with what passport, that is, or recognisable yet decent
countersign - should these frontiers be approached?
With discretion, in the first place. Let there be some period of diligent
yet concealed reconnaissance during which the active or approaching party
may assure himself that the objective is truly desirable and not patently
beyond his reach; that it is not ineradicably habituated to nourishment and
entertainment outwith his financial resources; that it is not surrounded by
lovers already too strongly entrenched to be dislodged within the duration
of a summer holiday; that it is not indissolubly joined to an ailing parent
or a bespectacled friend.
Having satisfied himself on these points, the approaching party should
behave with fortitude and resolution: but fortitude in a mask of gaiety,
resolution in a garment of ease. Let him smile, but not lickerishly or with
too gaping an aspect. Let him speak clearly, but on some trivial subject,
for many young women, though agreeable to all the senses, have no more
intellect than a pullet, and like a pullet from a thundering blue charabanc
will flee squawking from any word upon the impasse in Ethiopia, the harmonic
resources of Hindemith, or the incoherence of the Zeitgeist. As introductory
gambits or forcing bids for a sentimental friendship, topics such as these
have only a limited appeal; they may serve in Bloomsbury, but in Arran or
Dunoon a comment on the weather is more generally acceptable, while a
well-timed reference to sea-bathing or ballroom-dancing will establish a
reputation, not easily shaken, for fluency and savoir vivre.
In the manner of the suitor - as he has now become - there should be
apparent a courteous inclination to humour and amuse the object of his suit.
To a strong and primitive nature this may be tedious, but a modern holiday
resort is generally too populous to permit the more urgent approach of
Solutre and the mammoth-hunters. A self-doubting and timorous mind, on the
other hand, will be tempted to exaggerate its complaisance, and show anxiety
to please: a fault more mischievous than the ash-plant. A safe course
between violent Scylla and fawning Charybdis may be found in some small and
seemingly careless display of generosity, such as the purchase of wine or
sweetmeats. Mr Norman Douglas has said that chocolate is "of no value as an
endearment, an incentive working not upon body but upon mind; it generates,
in those who relish it, a complacent and yielding disposition". Mr Nash, the
American poet, debating as rival allies the cocoa-bean and the grape, has
clearly observed, and in a memorable poem succinctly described, their social
But celerity in coming to the goal of desire will not be over-estimated save
by the fool, the vulgarian and the base disciple of efficiency. The wise
man, the gentle and the ingenious, will rather recall with favour the
pleasant verses of Ben Jonson's friend, Sir John Roe, who sang:
Dear love, continue nice and chaste,
For if you yield, you do me wrong;
Let duller wits to love's end haste,
I have enough to woo thee long.
And yet to woo by wit, for the long fourteen days of holiday, one-only
chance-got littoral acquaintance, might muscle-bind invention, or dehydrate
it, make it sinewy and dry; do not emulate the limpet, that is doomed by
lack of vision to fidelity, and grows in time so weary of faithfulness it
will change its sex. Rather recall the virtuosity of that musician who,
playing but one tune, could play it to perfection on thirty-seven different
And that's all for now and I hope you and your families all have a great
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