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Weekly Mailing List Archives
16th February 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
Micro Button Advertiser - Great Scot offering 15% discounts
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
Scots Minstrelsie
History of Scottish Medicine to 1860
Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario
Scottish Canadian Newspaper
Vacation Packages for Scotland
The Greatness and Decline of the Celts (New book)
The Plantation of Ulster
Campbell, James R. (Obituary)
Gettysburg: The American Culloden - A Clan Tragedy?
Early Lauder knights
Donna Flood
When God Paints

I was away in Toronto for most of this week and while there attended a christening of a new grandson (Graeme) of Nola and Harold with their daughter Torry and son-in-law Craig.

Also got an invite to the US Consulates home in Toronto for a small media event. In actual fact it was quite an interesting meeting and four of the Consulate staff had some Scots ancestry :-) We had Canadians from Iran, India, Pakistan and Estonia there and of course myself from Scotland!

Managed to get back to Chatham on the Wednesday which with all the snow took 4.5 hours instead of the usual 3 hours due to that huge dump of snow. Was glad to see that Derick had cleaned my drive for me while I'd been away.

I also noted with interest that Nola was heading off on the Wednesday for around 3 weeks in Israel. Brave lady :-)

Mind that each Thursday I add around 8 pictures from Scotland to the site index page and currently I am working on my trip to the Isle of Skye. I also posted up two very high resolution pictures of Edinburgh that Morag sent in to me.

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.

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 and perhaps get an early birthday or christmas present while you are there.

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

It's Ian Goldie's turn this week and amongst other articles he includes...

SNP Leader Alex Salmond MP today (Sunday) welcomed the support of eminent economist Professor David Simpson, who has added his name to the growing list of senior academics and business people who back the economic case for Independence.

Writing in today's Sunday Times, Professor Simpson, who was the founding Director of the Fraser of Allander Institute and was chief economic advisor to Standard Life, set out the positive case for Scottish Independence from an economic perspective. Professor Simpson also dismissed Labour's scaremongering attacks on the economics of Independence.

The full text of Professor Simpson's article is as follows...

Independence for Growth

David Simpson

A growing number of people in Scotland today seem to share my view that if the economy is to flourish so that we can escape from our culture of dependence, that is most likely to be brought about by political independence. Only a sovereign government can undertake the internal arrangements and negotiate the international agreements necessary to serve and protect Scotland's interests.

Much recent discussion on the economics of Scottish independence has centred on the budgetary position in any one year, whether that be the Government's own estimates, which look at the outturn figures from two years ago, or alternatively independent calculations for the current financial year. According to the latter, the non-oil budget deficit for this year is likely to be somewhat less than the official estimate for two years ago, while we know that the oil revenue estimate is more than £ 10 billion, and Treasury forecasts show continuing high oil revenues in future years. Such is the strength of oil revenues in the current financial year that it might even be that Scotland is one of the few countries in the world currently recording a fiscal surplus.

However, the central issue of the economic prospects for an independent Scotland cannot be addressed by concentrating on current fiscal arrangements budgetary balances, important though those may be. The real economic argument about Scottish independence must rather focus on whether the policy initiatives that independence would make possible could create a more rapid and sustainable rate of growth than has been the experience of the Scottish economy over the last generation.

Thus, even if the budgetary balance at the date of independence were to be positive, then wrong- headed economic policies would soon produce a rake's progress, and the consequent dissipation of that advantage. On the other hand, even if the budgetary balance at that time were negative, wise policies would produce within a very few years a transformed fiscal position.

Incidentally, I find it strange that the existence of a continuing non-oil deficit should ever be regarded as an argument for the political status quo, since that surely illustrates the failure of past and current economic policies in Scotland.

The debate on the economics of independence cannot be conducted as a balance sheet exercise in any single past year, however interesting that might be to the main participants. The key issue is what happens after the date of independence, and what really matters then is the rate of growth of the economy. Here, any objective measurement of the last 25 years will tell us that something fundamental needs to change if Scotland's position, and the performance of the Scottish economy, is to be improved over the next generation. Our rate of growth has been a little under 2 per cent, decidedly less than the UK as a whole, and only half the average rate of growth of small western European countries.

These differences may seem minor in any one year, but over a decade they make a decisive difference to economic prospects and welfare.
Thus, from a position of budgetary penury in the 1980s, the Irish finance minister now sits in Dublin commanding a substantial budget surplus, thanks in no small measure to their low Corporation Tax strategy boosting economic activity. The only remaining problems for Ireland are how to disburse this largesse in a sensible and non-inflationary way.

Across our east coast in Norway the Norwegian finance minister succeeded perhaps better than any country in the world in avoiding the "resource curse" of having too much of a good thing by investing the oil wealth in a capital fund which will last almost forever.

Some people would argue that somehow Scotland would find it impossible to pursue such competitive and successful economic policies. However, the evident success of our near neighbours makes it difficult to sustain such an argument.

If Scotland does decide on independence, our future will lie not in the stars but in ourselves, in our ability to build a competitive economic structure, to determine policies suitable for Scottish economic conditions, and to encourage an economy based on long term growth, not short term thinking.

It is on these aspects that the policies of the various parties towards the Scottish economy should be judged, and it is on these factors that the economic case for independence must rest.

Economic growth and, in particular, growth in sustainable employment are largely the result of decisions taken by businesses. An independent government cannot directly create profitable commercial opportunities but it can help companies to realise these by pursuing business friendly policies. This is all the more important because we are living in a world of increasing mobility of capital and enterprise where there is intense competition between governments to create tax and regulatory environments that are friendly to business.

The best way that a government can help businesses plan for future growth, in addition to providing low corporate taxes, is to do whatever is in its power to reduce the range of uncertainty affecting business decisions. An independent government is in a much stronger position than a devolved administration to achieve this objective because it has direct control over its budget, regulatory system and international economic relations.

Peter included a wee article on sweeties which I include here...

The Scots, as we have noted previously, are famous, indeed infamous, for having a sweet tooth. This is sadly reflected in both dental and heart problems but does not stop Scots 'soukin awa' on all types of sweeties. The Border towns are particularly famous for having their own local brand of sweets - Hawick for Hawick Balls; Jedburgh for Jeddart Snails; Peebles and Galashiels for Soor Plooms; if we take back the town of Berwick, then Berwick Cockles can be enjoyed again; and Moffat gives us Moffat Toffee. Melrose, in the past, gave as Coltart's Candy ( pronounced Coolter ) which is still remembered in a song written by Robert Coltat ( an early form of advertisement ! ) himself. The chorus of 'Coulter's Candy' goes -

'Ally bally, ally bally bee,
Sittin' on yir mammy's knee,
Greetin' for anither bawbee,
Tae buy some Coulter's Candy.'

Melrose based Robert Coltart was a colourful travelling man whose famous candy attracted bairn as if he was a Scottish Pied Piper. The candy was aniseed-flavoured but the recipe and custom seem to have been lost following Coltart's death in 1890. The recipe for Coltart's Candy might no longer be available but we are able to provide a splendid recipe for Creamy Toffee which will delight bairns of all ages!

Creamy Toffee

Ingredients: Half-pound sugar; quarter-pound margarine; 4 tablespoons syrup; 1 small tin condensed milk

Method: Put sugar, margarine and syrup in pan, heat until melted, then add condensed milk, bring to boil, stirring all the time. Keep stirring for 20 minutes after it comes to boil. Test ball in cold water and pour into greased tin.

Footnote: A vast improvement in the dental health of young children was reported earlier this month - perhaps the Scottish diet is changing!

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 Fillans, Fincastle, Findlater, Findlay, Fingland and Finlay.

Here is a bit from the Fillans entry...

FILLANS, a surname evidently having the same origin as St. Fillan – the root also fo Gilfillan – (which see), and probably derived from the Saxon word fyllan, to fill, although, doubtless, a Gaelic origin may also be assigned to it, the famous saint mentioned, whose name has been given to so many chapels and pools in Scotland, and is associated with so much absurd superstition, having lived so far back as the seventh century. He was abbot of Pittenweem, but having turned a hermit, he died in the wolds of Glenorchy in Argyleshire in 649. In the old monkish legends regarding him it is stated that while engaged in transcribing the Scriptures, he left hand was observed to shine with so much splendour as to afford him light enough to enable him to proceed with his work, as he used to spend whole nights in that exercise. Lesley, in his seventh book, says that this wonderful arm afterwards came into the possession of Robert the Bruce, who enclosed it in a silver shrine, which he ordered to be carried at the head of his army, but that previous to the battle of Bannockburn, the king’s chaplain, with the view of preserving it from the English, took it out and deposited it in some place of security. While, however, the Bruce was addressing his prayers to the empty shrine, it was observed to open and shut suddenly; and, on inspection, the saint was found to have himself deposited his luminous arm in its old place, as an assurance of victory! The belief in the power of St. Fillan in the cure of lunacy was long held in the Highlands, and the superstitious observances by which his aid was supposed to be procured, were for centuries performed at his chapel and pool in Strathfillan, Breadalbane. There is a village in Perthshire of the name of St. Fillan.

You can read more of this entry at

You can read the other entries at

The Celtic Monthly
A magazine for Highlanders

Added the July 1912 issue at 

This contains...

Lieutenant-Colonel George J. MacFarlane, The Medical Book of Dunolly, Gaelic Proverbs, Memorial to Scotland's National Patriot - William Wallace, The War Song of The Hays, The Sons of Rob Roy, The Late Alexander Carmichael LL.D, Fionn's Wars with the MacGregors, Cameron's "Isle of Skye", Notes on the Celtic Year, The MacFadyens, Famous Highland Bowman, Celtic Notes and Queries, H. Cameron Gillies M.D., Our Musical Page.

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 IV
Georgia in the New Nation, 1865 - 1909

The History of Alabama - Chapter I
Colonial and Territorial, Alabama, 1540 - 1819

The History of Alabama - Chapter II
Alabama from 1819 to 1865

The History of Alabama - Chapter III
Reconstruction in Alabama

Here is how Chapter I - The History of Alabama, Colonial and Territorial, Alabama, 1540 - 1819 starts...

The Alabama-Tombigbee Basin and Its People.

THE division of territory embraced within the state of Alabama has had a long and eventful history, but not under the modern name. It has been subject to five flags, besides the Indian occupation, and during each period has been connected with other districts and enjoyed a different name. There is no doubt, however, as to the unity of the river basin which makes up the main part of the modern state. The sources of the Coosa lie in Georgia and those of the Tombigbee in Mississippi, and the great bend of the Tennessee has been added on the north for good measure; but the Alabama-Tombigbee basin, nevertheless, makes up a unit, economic as well as historic.

Alabama a Geographical Unit.

If one will take a map of America he will find that, although the Mississippi receives many large tributaries on the west from its source to its mouth, there are none of any volume on the east side below the Ohio. The great Apalachian mountain system comes to an end before it reaches the Mexican Gulf or the Mississippi, but its foothills and highlands throw all streams southward instead of permitting them to reach the Mississippi River. It does more, for, while there are a number of rivers flowing to the Gulf, the watershed and hill country are so pronounced as to make in the Alabama-Tombigbee drainage system a basin greater and of more diversified interests than any other east of the Mississippi. Geographically speaking, there would be room for three Gulf commonwealths between the Mississippi and the Atlantic, and for only three, excluding the Florida peninsula, which is sui generis. The rivers draining to the Atlantic must cause the population of that district to have their interest centred on the ocean, while those near the Mississippi would look, in their turn, to the west. Intermediate between the two there should be a state looking to the Gulf at the mouth of Mobile River. And such has been the course of events.

The physical basis of history includes as its main factors climate, soil and rivers. In this instance the climate is mild, permitting of ice, but with summer weather prevailing over half the year. Geologically the soil shows several belts. One runs in a limestone crescent, beginning near the Ohio mouth and ending near the Atlantic, cutting across the Gulf-bound rivers. This is the fertile Black Belt, producing cereals, especially maize, and nut-bearing trees, although wheat and cotton were not native. Northward was the rough country between the Gulf rivers and the Tennessee Valley, abounding in minerals, but not of much importance in early days. Southward of the Black Belt was the low Coastal Plain, made up largely of sand, and covered with pine forests. The river basins were alluvial and their vegetation luxuriant. Large game, such as deer, bear and, in early times buffalo, abounded, birds were numerous, the beaver plentiful, and fresh and salt water fish to a large extent determined the course of migration and settlement.

The Indians.

The Indians built their habitations mainly upon the bluffs of the rivers, where water and fish were abundant and near which the maize grew with little cultivation. The origin of the Indians is still unsettled. Those of the Al abama- Tombigbee basin were mainly of three stocks. To the west were the Choctaws, and north of them on the sources of the Tombigbee lived the Chickasaws. These two tribes were of the Muscogean race, as was the other great division which now concern us, the Muscogees proper, on the Alabama River and its sources.

There is some reason to think that the Indians of historic times were preceded by other of a higher state of culture. Not that remains are extensive enough to justify any theory of Mound Builders, or that some works found on the Gulf necessarily call for an Aztec origin, but up on the Black Warrior River, at what has been called Moundville, have been found evidences of a civilization superior to that anywhere else near the Gulf. There are numerous large mounds, and from them has been taken pottery of a high grade, many rare stone implements, and in particular a bowl or vase representing a bird so well executed as to earn the title of the Portland Vase of American archaeology.

The Indians were in the stage of culture known as barbarism, claiming descent through the mother, and having a gens ("iksa"), phratry and tribe organization well developed. They were in the transition from the hunting to the agricultural state, but were prevented by the absence of cattle from developing the intermediate pastoral condition, which elsewhere has been almost essential in the advance to civilization. They used pottery but not iron. Like all primitive peoples, religion entered into almost every act of their life. Animism - the belief that every object has life, a faith marked by the use of totems - prevailed, rather than the monotheism often attributed to them. War and hunting were the principal occupations of the men, while the women were the agriculturists. They had not developed an alphabet, and their traditions, which were many and full of interest, were transmitted with the aid of wampum belts from generation to generation.

What would be the effect on these natives of the advent in their country of races further advanced in culture? Would the contact be as a spark to inspire or a fire to consume?

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 now completed the final two chapters of this book including...

The Ross's of Kinross, Uigg and Eldon
Rev. Samuel MacLeod and Other Families

Again good genealogy in these account and here is a bit from the final chapter...

Norman MacLeod, one of the 1829 settlers, died in Uigg in 1837, aged 75. His wife was Margaret, daughter of Donald Macphee of Skye. His parents were, Neil MacLeod and his wife Sophia Nicholson.

Mr. and Mrs. MacLeod were accompanied to P.E.I. by their children, Samuel, Roderick, John, Murdoch, Mrs. Angus Macdonald, Mrs. James Macdonald, Mrs. Cameron and Neil, who lived in Vernon River.

I. SAMUEL taught school in Pinette and Flat River. There he married Margaret Currie, who had emigrated to that district with her family from Mull, Scotland. From 1840 to 1870 he was minister of the Baptist Churches in Uigg and Belfast. He died on August 23, 1881, aged 85. His wife died on February 27, 1902, aged 95. Their children were:
1. NORMAN, d. July 1928, aged 91, married, with issue: Hammond, Samuel, George R. (McGill), Asst. City Engineer. Montreal, married Margaret Furness, with issue; James D. (B.A. Acadia), minister, married, with issue;
2. MALCOLM, d. April 29, 1903, aged 64, married Esther Robertson, East Point, d. Sept. 12, 1923, aged 73, with issue:
a. SAMUEL, on the old homestead, married Miss Vaniderstine, with issue, among others, Florence;
b. ELLA;
c. ALEXANDER R. (B.A. McGill), Rhodes scholar, barrister-at-law, Vancouver, married, with issue;
e. DUNCAN, married with issue;
f. HADDON SPURGEON (Guelph Agr. Col.);
3. JAMES (McGill), M.D., Charlottetown, married Margaret Alma Gates, d. 1927, with issue, among others, Dr. MacLeod, Moose jaw;
4. DUNCAN (B.A. McGill), barrister-at-law, Charlottetown, unmarried;
5. SARAH, wife of William MacLeod, Bridgetown, Dundas, with issue;
6. MARY, unmarried;
II. RODERICK, d. June, 1888, aged 85. His wife Catherine, d. Dec. 2, 1882, aged 75. Among their issue were:
1. MALCOLM, K.C., for two generations the leader of the bar, and the outstanding man on the Island;
2. JOHN, unmarried;
3. ANN, d. March 4, 1905, aged 58, wife of Alexander Martin, M.P., Valleyfield, b. March 14, 1842, d. April 13, 1921, with issue: Albert J. (Dal. Cornell), C. E. Montague, Belle, wife of H. W. H. Knott, barrister, Montreal;
4. KATHERINE, died 1929, unmarried.
III. JOHN, married Rachel, daughter of Donald Gordon. She died January 11, 1915, aged almost 98. Without issue;
IV. (BIG) MURDOCH was born in Skye in 1815, and died July 29, 1889. On October 6, 1837, he married Margaret Gunn in Miramichi, N.B. She died August 26, 1916, aged one hundred all but two or three months. They had several children. Of these John Murdoch, one of the most successful farmers on P.E.I., lives on the old homestead. He was born April 20, 1848. He married his cousin, a daughter of "Little" Roderick MacLeod of Uigg Rear, sister of the late judge Neil MacLeod, of Summerside. Their son and only child, Otis, with his wife Evelyn MacLeod and children, live with them. Another son of Big Murdoch is William MacLeod, a well-known resident of Bridgetown, Dundas, P.E.I.

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...

District of Strathlorne
Broad Cove Shore and Broad Cove Banks

Here is some of the information contained in the account of District of Strathlorne

The name of Strathlorne was conferred by an Act of the provincial legislature, and was first intended to apply to the valley formerly called Broad Cove Intervale. Now the statutory appellation is extended to the whole municipal district. The territory consists, however, of several distinct sections whose baptismal names defy all changes. We have Black Glen, Strathlorne, North Ainslie, Loch Ban, Campbellton, Black River, North Highlands, Sight Point, Broad Cove Banks and Inverness town.

Along the coast this district runs from the Northeastern boundary of Poplar Grove at Sight Point to the Southwestern boundary of Broad Cove Marsh at Deepdale. It is essentially a Highland district. Nowadays we do not hear so many of the mountain melodies "When the kye comes hame", nevertheless, the succulence of the Gaelic mouthful has not all disappeared. Nor will it, if we are true to type. Otherwise, we shall have our deserts.

There is a Protestant church and a resident minister at Inverness and at Strathlorne. The new Catholic parish of Inverness comprises all of this district except Campbellton and Loch Ban. Studied harmony exists between the different denominations. In numbers the Catholics preponderate, but the majority is not large. There is no sectarian striving for such majorities here. You will hear the church bells of Inverness at Strathlorne, and those of Strathlorne at Inverness, and they sound so much alike that you cannot tell the difference. No jar, no break, no discord. Picture to yourself the delight, on a fine Sunday morning, of hearing this tolling testimony of peace and concord, borne upon the balmy breezes from the valley to the sea. These people are more than Catholics or Protestants; they are Christians all. If exceptions there be, they are so few and ill-advised that good men are ashamed to notice them.

The common schools of this district are not, we regret to say, a shining success. The schools of Inverness town are, of course, an exception. These always maintain a high standard of efficiency. But there are ten rural schools and school sections within this district, not one of which can be called a sparkling institution. Fifty years ago we could find here and there in the rural communities, a clever and creditable school, conducted by a smart and competent young man in the heyday of his ambition. No such thing today. All the country schools of the present day would seem to be of a kind; and over them all, or the most of them, there would seem to hang the chilling spectre of mediocrity, gaunt, grey and hopeless. For this deplorable state of things there are three main causes: 1st, all our young men of talent and education have totally abandoned the teaching profession in this County; 2nd, the pecuniary support provided for our schools is. woefully inadequate; 3rd, there is a marked apathy and indifference among trustees, parents and people, towards our country schools and school children. Woe unto posterity, if these things do not change.

Nearly all the people of this district are farmers who own the land they till. Those who live near the shore, also, engage in fishing at certain seasons. In recent years the young folk have taken to mining at Inverness where there are excellent deposits of bituminous coal. Farms are looking up here, and will continue so to do if care and prudence hold sway. In years gone by the farms here suffered by reason of the exodus of the young people who had to go abroad for employment. The reason for that exodus has ceased to exist, but the call for efficient service at home has grown, and is growing. We trust our sensible farmers, as well as our laborers will realize the opportunities that have come to them. We trust both farmers and laborers will realize that their strength and hope are wrapped up in their fidelity to their own vocational work.

You the rest of this chapter at

You can read the rest of the chapters at

Scots Minstrelsie
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...

My Collier Laddie
He's A Cronie O' Mine
Turn Ye To Me
The Bonnie Wells O' Wearie

You can see these at 

History of Scottish Medicine to 1860
by John D. Comrie (1927).

I have up another four chapters which you can read at

Chapter VII - General Practice in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries
Impediments to progress Anderson's Scots Pills - Professional fees - Military Surgeon's emoluments - Richard Wiseman, "the father of English surgery" - The new cure of fevers - Pharmacopoeia issued by the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh - Animal substances introduced - Irregular practice by mountebanks - Medical literature - Smallpox epidemics - Inoculation adopted in Scotland - Sibbens and croup - Account-book of Dr. William Cullen - The whey cure - Description of an 18th century Scottish country practitioner.

Chapter VIII - The Eighteenth Cenury Voluntary Hospital Movement
First Scottish Voluntary Hospital - Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh - Payment of hospital staff - Clinical lectures - First children's hospital - Institutions for sick poor - Town's Hospital and Glasgow Royal Infirmary - Aberdeen Royal Infirmary - Dumfries Infirmary - Montrose, Dundee, Paisley, Inverness, Greenock, Perth and Stirling Infirmaries - Asylums for the insane.

Chapter IX - The Medical School of Aberdeen
Foundation - "Mediciners" at King's College - Diploma of M.D. degree - Medical Officer of the Burgh - Skeen's treatise on the plague - The Gregorys - Marischal College - Lecturers on medicine - "Burning of the burking-house" - Aberdeen Medical Society - The University of Aberdeen.

Chapter X - The Early Medical School of Glasgow
Salaried Medical Officers - Peter Lowe - Faculty of Physicians and Surgeons - Code of rules - Prosecution of quacks - Medical library formed - William Cullen and Joseph Black.

Biographical Record of the County of Kent, Ontario
Our thanks to Nola Crewe for sending in more of these...

McKay, John C. at
McDonald, Captain Allen H. at

Here is the account of John C. McKay...

JOHN C. McKAY (deceased). No one looking over the prosperous farms of Howard township, County of Kent, Ontario, and all ignorant of its history, would imagine what a wilderness it once was, and that within the memory of many of its present citizens. One of the sturdy pioneers, now deceased, to whom so much is owed by the present generation, was John C. McKay, a farmer on Concession 3, who was born in Prince Edward Island, in February, 1839, son of John and Mary McKay natives of Scotland, who settled at Prince Edward Island. There the father died and his widow married John Oliver; she died in Chatham township, leaving two children by her first marriage: John C., and Robert, who lives at McKay’s Corners, in Harwich.

John C. McKay came to Chatham when a young man, and learned the carpenter’s trade, which he followed for a number of years, building houses all over the county. IN 1860, he married Miss Mariah McCann, of Harwich, born in 1844. Soon after his marriage, he purchased his present homestead, all of which was wild land. Beneath the huge trees, he built a small log cabin, in which the family made their home for some years, until it was burned down, and he replaced it with another, which served as a residence until 1892, when he built the large brick residence , in which his widow now makes her home. Here he passed away in May, 1901.

His first wife died April 14, 1885, the mother of twelve children, eight of whom are still living: (1) John, the eldest, born in 1863, married Miss Rose Clark, in 1887, and they have four children, Ethel, Rhoda, Olive May and Valetta; they reside in Harwich on his farm. (2) James, born in 1865, is unmarried and is engaged as a carpenter at New Orleans. (3) George, born in 1869, is a tailor of Leamington. He married Miss Gowey, of Ridgetown, and has two children, Harold and Georgia. (4) Walter, born in 1869, in Howard, is a tailor of Essex. He has been married twice, first to Miss Robson, of Leamington, who bore him one child, John C. McKay, now deceased. By his second marriage he has one child, Clara. (5) Robert, born in Howard in 1871, married Mamie Mow, of Harwich township, where he resides on a farm. He has one daughter, Flossie. (6) Anna, born in 1873, in Howard, married Joseph Miller, a resident of Chatham, and has three children, Jessie, Neta and Zeta. (7) Bertha, born on the homestead, in 1875, married James Baker, and resides in Dresden, Ontario. She has four children, Byron, Irvin, Eva and Grace. (8) Mary, born in 1877, and educated in the Howard schools, near the home built by her father, is unmarried and is a most charming young lady, and an important factor in the social life of the community.

In January, 1889, Mr. McKay married Miss Jennie McEachran, the estimable daughter of Neil and Mary (Smart) McEachran, prominent pioneers of Harwich township. Neil McEachran was born in Argyll, Scotland, and his wife Mary (Smart) was born in England, but they were married in Canada, and were among the early settlers of Harwich, where Mr. McEachran died; his wife survives and is still residing on the homestead. Mrs. McKay was born in October, 1865, and educated in the home schools of Harwich, where she remained until her marriage. Mr. And Mrs. McKay settled on his farm, and he at once began making extensive improvements until it is now one of the best in County Kent. Two children were born to this marriage, Neil, born March 12, 1890; and Jennett, born November 15, 1895.

Mr. McKay was a member of the Presbyterian Church, as is also his wife, and that body owes much of its prosperity to both. Politically, he was a member of the Reform party, and took an active part in local affairs. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge at Chatham, and was buried with Masonic honours, his funeral being a large and imposing one. At his death Mr. McKay bequeathed to his children no trivial example, no darkened ideals. The influence of his character reaches beyond the term of his own existence. His public life – the relation which he bore to the general community – was such as to stimulate others to high and noble deeds.

You can read other biographies at

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

April 2, 1891 at

April 9. 1891 at

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The Greatness and Decline of the Celts
by Henri Hubert (1934).

Have made a start at this new book and my thanks to Alan McKenzie for doing this book for us.

Here is the substantial foreword to the book for you to read here and we also have the first chapter up as well.

I HAVE already explained and justified the division of Hubert’s work on the Celts into two volumes. With the present volume we find ourselves in the La Tène period. It begins by describing a new expansion, then a retreat, the florescence and decline of the
Celtic world. It is about 500 B.C. that the La Tène civilization appears with an increase of the population, which descends from the heights into the plains, an advance in technical processes, and a growth of prosperity which give rise to the great historical expeditions. The movements which now take place are different from those described in the previous volume, about which we have little direct information. From definite evidence it can be seen that operations now assume a “coordinated, concerted, and, one might say, political character”, and that is a great novelty among the Celts. All round the circumference of the Celtic world this activity manifests itself - first in Italy, the Danube Valley, and Britain, and then in Eastern Europe and Asia Minor, the south-west of France, and even in Spain. They found settlements, or rather the previous inhabitants mingle with them, and they contribute and receive in varying proportions. But what the advanced bodies receive - for example, the idea of a political life in Italy, and intellectual and moral culture in Greece - will benefit the whole Celtic world, doubtless in different degrees. The Celts “enter the history of the world”. “Unsettled and unruly elements,” bands of barbarians, “great companies,” will still break in; the energy, courage, and “roving spirit” of the Celts will make some of them mercenaries in great demand, freelances scattered among many peoples. “Mercenary service was a regular Celtic industry, and a well paid one”. But the mass of the race is settled, and the Celts are involved in the politics and economics of the whole world. Being both inventive and receptive, they are agents for the unification and progress of mankind. There are, it is true, Gallic Celts and British Celts, Celts of the Danube and Germany and Italy; but a Celtic civilization has grown up which is comparatively homogeneous and comparatively native in its character.

From the end of the third century onwards the Celts are in conflict with Rome on every side. Their civilization stands face to face with a different, and in some respects higher, civilization, while from behind they are pressed by a people of lower culture, the Germans, with whom, as we know, they have a real “intimacy”. The more active the civilizing and political influence of the Celts is in Germany, the harder they will be pressed by their neighbours, to be finally driven back. There was a twofold process - “a process of assimilation of the German world on the one hand, but on the other, as a result of that very assimilation, a process of penetration by the Germans into the Celtic world”. The Cimbri, Teutones, Suevi were Celticized Germans, mixed with Celts to a various extent.

You can read the rest of this foreword and the first chapter at

The Plantation of Ulster
by Boyd Gray.

Got this interesting article from Boyd Gray who is running the Summer School in Northern Ireland. Here is how it starts...

One of the most important turning points in Irish history was the Flight of the Earls. On 14th September 1607, Hugh O’Neil, the Earl of Tyrone, and Rory O’Donnell, the Earl of Tyrconnell, along with a small party of their family and followers, boarded a small ship at Rathmullen and sailed for Spain. The reason for the earls’ flight is hard to determine. There is some suggestion that O’Neill believed the new Lord Deputy of Ireland, Sir Arthur Chichester was attempting to usurp him. But King James had reassured O’Neill in 1606 that his fears were unfounded.

There are also suggestions that in fact James was on the verge of arresting the earls for treason but no proof of this has ever been found. Some historians argue that O’Donnell and his kinsman, Maguire, were intent upon joining the Spanish forces in their war in the Netherlands. Whatever their intention at the time, they never returned and this left the way clear for King James I to seize their land and inaugurate the most ambitious plantation ever undertaken in Ireland. Hundreds of thousands of lowland Scottish planters arrived over the next hundred years and changed the character of Ulster forever.

The land confiscated by the Crown after the Flight of the Earls was allocated to specially chosen undertakers from the lowlands of Scotland and the border areas of northern England. The most important region designated for plantation was The Laggan Valley, prime farmland running south from the Foyle and Swilly estuaries. It was divided into two parts: Lifford and Portlough and was awarded to the Cunningham and Stewart families from Ayrshire. They brought tenants with them and leased them farms at low rent. Only a few of the native Irish received any land and many moved west to the Barony of Kilmacrenan.

You can read the rest of this article and get the link to his Summer school at

Campbell, James R.
Got in this obituary...

James R. "Jim" Campbell died peacefully at his home in New York City on Friday February 9th around 2 pm. Jim was battling lung cancer that was diagnosed in August of 2006.

A native of Ohio who served in the United States Air Force and was a graduate of Yale University, Jim worked in the transportation industry and was the former VP of Human Resources for the Long Island Bus Company. He was a devout Christian who loved his service as a deacon of the Episcopal Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City.

Jim was a proud Scottish-American and was very active in New York's Scottish Community. He was a member of Saint Andrew's Society of the State of New York. He worked tirelessly on the National Tartan Day New York Committee and helped with the National Tartan Day parade. Jim was the 73rd Chief of the New York Caledonian Club, and he was very active as Chairman of the Finance Committee and the former New York City Trustee for of Clan Campbell (North America).

Jim will be sorely missed by his friends and the New York City Scottish-American community. A memorial service will be held on Wednesday February 14th at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in Manhattan.

Gettysburg: The American Culloden - A Clan Tragedy?
Dave Chagnon sent in this article and here is how it starts...

Six years ago, when my family and I were touring in Scotland, one of the tems on my “Must Do” list was to visit the moors of Culloden at dawn to commune with the ghosts of the lost Highlanders bound through eternity to inhabit that sad place. I imagined a toast in their honor with a wee tot of Uisghe Beathe.

When it became apparent that dawn came awfully early in those northerly lands (around 02:20 AM when we were there), this dream, like the dream of those who fought there in support of the Jacobite cause, was doomed to failure. I did visit Culloden later in the day, however, and I did have that toast to the ghosts of those who died there 260 years ago. Let’s let the idea of Culloden rest for a bit…

Recently, I had occasion to visit family in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Having the opportunity, I took a day to wander over the hills of the site of the American Civil War [see Note 1] Gettysburg Nation Military Park, just 70 miles west down the Lincoln Pike (US Hwy 30). It was a magnificent day, cool, breezy, big puffy clouds tacking across a Delft blue sky, gorgeous autumn foliage all aflame. Although the main attractions and information centers had their usual quota of crowds, out on the gentle slopes of Seminary Ridge and Cemetery Ridge, and the steeper sides of Culps Hill, Little Round Top and Big Round Top, a man could wander at will and actually commune alone with the past.

I was standing near the crown of Cemetery Ridge next to the famous “Copse of Trees”. This was the focal point that my Great Great Grand Uncle, Robert E. Lee, had chosen as the primary target for the Confederate assault on Day Three of the battle. This action is more commonly known as “Pickett’s Charge” [See Note 2]. I looked over the gentle rolling slope towards the tree line of Seminary Ridge nearly a mile away to the west. I could “see” the long lines of those 12,500 incredibly brave, doomed men of the Confederate Divisions start the advance that would see 50% of their number remain on the field just an hour after the “charge” was broken by the guns of the Union defenders.

As I stood there, leaning on my trusty walking stick, my view became blurred, due, no doubt, to the gusts of wind cresting the ridge from below. Suddenly I became lost in time, unsure if I was at Gettysburg, or if… at Culloden six years ago. An unseen hand reached from the sky and slapped me.

The parallels and similarities of the two events, separated by all the years of two and a half centuries and all the miles of half a world, were as clear to me as if etched on a US Park Service panel in front of me. It was down-right spooky. What follows is my attempt to make these similarities and parallels just as clear to you, too. I make no claims to being a scholar of either the history of the American Civil War, or of the history of the various and sundry Jacobite rebellions in Scotland. I have, however, read more than one book about both of these areas of interest along with many more about the history of the land of our ancestors’ birth in the Old World and the land of our forefathers in the New World. I will certainly take no offense if one of the readers of this article takes umbrage with my observations or wishes to debate the subject. These are, after all, just my own thoughts on the matter and my own “high level” view of events about which many thousands of books have been written. This is not intended to be a detailed, foot-noted, rigorously pursued, academic treatise. The reader should note there is a lack of consistency in the historic records concerning the details about both battles, particularly in such areas as exact numbers of combatants, killed-in-action, wounded, missing-in-action and captured. I’ve used what I feel to be reliable sources for the numbers I quote. I guarantee anyone with a computer and Internet access could come up with different numbers in about 30 seconds. In any event, the exact numbers themselves are irrelevant to the points I am trying to make.

You can read the rest of this account at

Early Lauder knights
by Gregory Lauder-Frost, FSA Scot.

Greogry sent in this account which starts...

The founder of the ancient Scottish family of Lauder was a Norman mercenary knight named Sir Robert de Lavedre (for origins of this surname and its early spellings see The Lauder Surname in The Scottish Genealogist Volume XLV number 2, Edinburgh, June 1998) who was recruited at the English Court by Malcolm Canmore to assist the latter to recover his father’s crown from the usurper Macbeth. Proceeding to Scotland in 1057 Sir Robert was involved in many skirmishes and battles, notably at Dunsinane, and Birnham Wood where, according to J.Stewart Smith writing in The Grange of St.Giles (Edinburgh 1898) he "signally distinguished himself by his prowess in the field against Macbeth". Sir Robert received for his services estates and lands in the Lothians, Berwickshire, and Moray, the latter being part of Macbeth’s own properties. The early Lauder family had an ancient coat of Arms which was simply a shield with a white background bearing a griffin rampant. There would later be cadet variations on this.

In 1138 numerous minor Scottish/English conflicts and arguments resulted in the major Battle of the Standard at North Allerton in North Yorkshire. Joanni Lavedre, filio secunda de Laudertown, a descendant of the first Sir Robert Lauder, is recorded as being amongst the mounted knights under Prince Henry, King David’s son, on the Scottish right. This was a defeat for the Scots and John Lauder and many others barely managed to escape.

In 1188 another descendant, Sir Robert de Lavedre appears on the scene as on of the Scottish nobles who accompanied King William the Lion’s brother David, Earl of Huntingdon, to fight in the Third Crusade. As an emblem of his presence in Palestine, Sir Robert, upon his almost miraculous return, got for his personal crest a Saracen’s head on a sword.

You can read the rest of this account at

Donna Flood
Donna sent in a journal entry about the dedication speech made at the college today as one of my paintings was hung in the lounge. You can read this at

She also sent in a poem, The Rain is a Haze at

When God Paints
I received a collection of 11 pictures in an email and thought I'd share them with you at

And finally a wee security tip I got in...

Tip from Neighborhood Watch Coordinator

Put your car keys beside your bed at night. If you hear a noise outside your home or someone trying to get in your house, just put the black box on your key ring facing your car and then press the panic button for your car. The alarm will be set off, and the horn will continue to sound until either you turn it off or the car battery dies.

This tip came from a neighborhood watch coordinator. Next time you come home for the night and you start to put your keys away, think of this:

It's a security alarm system that you probably already have and requires no installation. Test it. It will go off from most everywhere inside your house and will keep honking until your battery runs down or until you reset it with the button on the key fob chain.

It works if you park in your driveway or garage. If your car alarm goes off when someone is trying to break in your house, odds are the burglar or rapist won't stick around .... after a few seconds all the neighbors will be looking out their windows to see who is out there and sure enough the criminal won't want that.

And remember to carry your keys while walking to your car in a parking lot. The alarm can work the same way there.

This is something that should really be shared with everyone. Maybe it could save a life or a sexual abuse crime.

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


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