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Weekly Mailing List Archives
3rd April 2009

Alastair McIntyreElectric Scotland's Weekly Email Newsletter

Electric Scotland - The No.1 Scottish History Site The Aois Community brings you message forums and lots of community services
Electric Scotland's Article Service where you can add your own stories and articles  Send a postcard from our ScotCards service


Dear Friend

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. In the event the link is not clickable simply copy and paste the link into your browser.

See our Calendar of Scottish Events around the world at

Electric Scotland News
The Flag in the Wind
New Statistical Account of Scotland
Clan and Family Information
Poetry and Stories
Book of Scottish Story
The Concise Household Encyclopaedia
Children's Rhymes, Children's Games, Children's Songs, Children's Stories
Social Life in Scotland
Robert Burns Lives!
The Writings of John Muir
Home and Farm Food Preservation
Parish Life in the North of Scotland
Fraser's Scottish Annual (New Book)

Our vbulletin - Aois Celtic Community - is making strides toward being available again. We'd like to get around a dozen people to test out the facilities and work with us to check all is as it should be. What we require is simply for you to test out the messaging service and a few of you should be able to try out the Blog, RSS feed and the Project Management plug-ins. We'd also like some of the testers to try out the personal messaging in your own private message area and also to post up some pictures in the Picture Gallery.

Based on the prior release we noted only a few forums were used so we'll likely keep new public forums to a minimum to start with.

During the testing phase we will be bringing in other plug-ins including our Arcade system, TV & Radio, Chat, etc. so we'll be interested in your comments as we add additional features.

Should any of you that become testers in this phase be interested in becoming moderators please let us know. Moderators will need to be people that will visit the service most days and can help us spot any spammers and help to deal with them. In this way we hope to avoid the $5.00 fee we'd considered charging.

We already have the basic system up with enhanced search facilities over the old system. I would also note that since we've been down the software people have added a backup system which runs every 24 hours ensuring everything is backed up. This of course means should the system crash we should be able to restore quite quickly.

I've also today downloaded some 1Gb of arcade games and they have been transferred to our server for Steve to install.

To get onto the testing team you should email and then you'll interact with Steve who will be responsible for getting everything working. Please contact him by close of the day this coming Monday or earlier if possible.


I've removed the JS Comment system from the site as at first we were inundated with mostly useless comments from lots of school kids and when we changed the system to one where you needed to sign in comments went close to zero. I had hoped that this would become a useful service but seems we're not yet in a position where people want to use such a service. This is not to say we won't bring it back at some point.


I would appreciate your feedback about what books you'd like me to focus on in the months ahead. I have been doing a few books on pioneering and intend to do one more. After that I will likely only do others where I believe it brings new knowledge to us. Most of what I've found does come from Canada but that's just because they are out there.

I've found a couple of books by Scots that did amazing things in various parts of the world. One is about a Scot who was a mover and shaker in Canada to start but then spent most of his life in the USA eventually becoming a US Senator. The other is about a Scot who earned the V.C. and he writes of his time in the Himalayas. As I'm quite interested in reading these myself I think I'll also publish these on the site.

I'm getting more interested in biographies recently and believe that some of them give us an insight into what Scots actually did around the world and at home.

Also... you may remember that I made available "The Castellated and Domestic Architecture of Scotland" in 5 volumes as pdf files. I'm considering whether I should work on these to bring up individual html pages of each castle. You might take a look at the current page at

Towards the foot of the page I've created some links to individual castles by posting up pictures of the actual pages. Most are just one or a few pages so they should load quickly. Please let me know if this is of interest to you and I may consider doing all 5 volumes that way.

As always I'll keep my eye out for new topics such as one I found recently about "The History of the Linlithgow and Stirlingshire Hunt 1775-1910". As we have nothing on the site about Fox and Hounds I thought it would be appropriate to publish this book onto the site.

And so do please get back to me on what you'd like to see in the months ahead as it would be a huge help to me.


I'll likely be heading in to Toronto next week to attend the "Scot of the Year" award and I may also attend the SSF AGM on the Saturday as well.


I've been told about an old book about Robert Burns which apparently has been sitting on a shelf in a home for a long time and seems to have been ignored. The person that contacted me has offered to snail mail it to me and if it looks to be interesting I'll scan it up onto the site.


We've changed our Privacy Policy to reflect the new "Interest-based advertising" that Google are rolling out this month. This is the text we've added...

We use third-party advertising companies to serve ads when you visit our website. These companies may use information (not including your name, address, email address, or telephone number) about your visits to this and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. In particular Google, as a third party vendor, uses cookies to serve ads on our site. Google's use of the DART cookie enables it to serve ads to our users based on your visit to our sites and other sites on the Internet. Users may opt out of the use of the DART cookie by visiting the Google ad and content network privacy policy at

You can also watch a video explaining this policy and how to opt out or how to select categories of advertising you'd like to receive. This can be viwed at

Some of the stories in here are just parts of a larger story so do check out the site for the full versions. You can always find the link in our "What's New" section at the link at the top of this newsletter or on our site menu.

This weeks Flag is compiled by Jennifer Dunn in which she has produced two articles, one on the public housing situation in Glasgow and the other on bookies shops.

In Peter's cultural section he is telling us about Easter...

The date of Pasch ( Easter ) is that of the Jewish Passover, which, in turn, coincides with the great pagan festival that celebrated the Spring Equinox - thus Easter is the season of renewal in nature. In pagan times, offerings were made to the Goddess of Spring. The Scandinavians called her Frigga; the Saxons, Eastre or Ostara, whence the English name Easter. In Scots, however, Easter is called Pasch or Pesse, a derivative of the Hebrew pesach, passover, and in Gaelic,Caisg.

Like the Passover, Easter was a lunar date - that of the first Sunday after the full moon, following the Spring Equinox, hence the old Scots rhyme -

First comes Candlemass,
Syne the new mune;
The neist Tyseday aifter that
Is aye Fester Een.
That mune oot
An the neist mune fou,
The neist mune aifter that
Is aye Pasch true.

The custom of baking cakes in honour of their gods and goddesses was widespread among the pagan peoples; the Egyptians made a cake marked with a cross in honour of the Moon; and in Greece and Rome bread similarly marked was used in the worship of Diana, the round bun representing the full moon and the four quarters. After the introduction of Christianity, the cross became a Christian symbol and the Hot Cross Bun became a feature of Good Friday - this year 14 April. In Scotland the Hot Cross Bun is usually more highly spiced than the English variety and has a kenspeckle cross of pastry on the glossy brown surface. Marilyn's recipe makes twelve Hot Cross Buns in readiness for Good Friday.

Hot Cross Buns

Ingredients: 1/2 level teasp sugar: 5 tablesp lukewarm water: 3 level teasp dried yeast: 1 lb strong plain flour: 1 level teasp salt: 1 level teasp mixed spice: 1/2 level teasp cinnamon: 1/2 level teasp nutmeg: 2 oz butter: 2 level tablesp castor sugar: 4 oz mixed dried fruit: 2 oz chopped mixed peel: 5 fl oz lukewarm milk: 1 large egg, beaten: a little extra milk: 2 oz shortcrust pastry: Glaze - 2 tablesp milk: 2 level tablesp sugar.

Method: Dissolve sugar in the water, sprinkle yeast on top. Leave in a warm place until frothy, about 20 minutes. Sift flour, salt and spices. Rub in fat lightly. Stir in castor sugar, fruit and peel. Hollow the centre. Pour milk, egg and yeat liquid into hollow. Mix to soft dough. Knead on floured surface until smooth and no longer stickie, about 10 minutes. Cover and put in a warm place until double in size - about 2 hours. Turn on to floured surface, knead until smooth. Cut into 12. Knead each piece into a smooth ball, place on greased baking sheet, cover and leave until almost double in size. Preheat a hot oven ( 220 deg C, 425 deg F, Gas 7 ), centre shelf. Roll pastry out thinly, cut into narrow strips 2 to 3 in long. Brush buns with milk, place pastry crosses on top. Bake 20 - 25 minutes until they sound hollow when tapped on base. Dissolve sugar in milk, boil 1 minute. Brush hot buns with glaze. Cool. Eat and enjoy on Good Friday.

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

Christina McKelvie MSP's Weekly diary is available at

New Statistical Account of Scotland
Being accounts of the Parishes of Scotland produced in 1845.

This week have added the Parish of Heriot to the Edinurgh volume.

Exieni and Boundaries.- The figure of this parish is an oblong square form, extending geographically 61/2 miles by 35/8. It contains 235/8 square miles, and is bounded on the south, by Stow; on the west, by Inverleithen; on the north, by Temple and Borthwick; and on the east, by Stow and part of Fala. It is strictly pastoral, and may well be denominated a parish of hills; one acre in ten only being arable. The highest hill is that of Blackup Scars, on the north-west point, and is the most lofty in the county, being 2 193 feet above the level of the sea, and not less, I should think, than 1000 above the stream at its base. The next to it is that of Dewar, in the south-west corner, which is 1654 feet in height. These hills are called the Moorfoot, and are a branch of the Lammermuir and Soutra, from the east, stretching toward Peebles on the west. The land on the banks of the Heriot is rich and fertile, and, where well farmed, extremely productive. The want of a suitable road to the top of the parish for the conveyance of lime has been long felt; and if ever accomplished, must enhance considerably the value of property, - there being many acres either not at all or indifferently cultivated, for want of proper access; and where lime has reached, there is the most marked difference.

You can read this account at

All the other Parishes we have up so far can be found at

Clan and Family Information
A new web site had gone up for Witherspoon / Wotherspoon which you can see on our page at

Poetry and Stories
John sent in another poem, "Entente Cordiale!" at

And of course more articles in our Article Service from Donna and others at 

Book of Scottish Story
Our thanks to John Henderson for sending this in for us.

This week have added a new story...

The Court Cave: a Legendary Tale of Fife

This is a 3 part story and the second part starts...

On entering the cave he found himself in the interior of a high-roofed cavern, of considerable extent, partly exposed to the seaward side by two arched openings between the lofty recesses of rock which support the roof, that towards the east being the smaller and lower of the two; and the other rising in height nearly to the roof, affording a view of the Firth, and admitting light to the place.

The inhabitants of the cave had ranged themselves along the north and inner side. Nearest the western entrance, stretched on sacks, sheepskins, cloaks, and other nondescript articles of clothing, sat, or rather lay, ten or twelve men, with rather more than double that number of women, all busily engaged in drinking ; farther off, some ragged crones were busily superintending the operation of a wood fire on a suspended pot; while, farther off still, a few bare-backed asses, and a plentiful variety of worse clad children, were enjoying their common straw.

Arthur was immediately introduced to the company of carousers, some of whom received him with a shout of welcome, but others with evident dissatisfaction; and he overheard, as he seated himself, what seemed an angry expostulation and reply pass between his conductor and one of the party. This individual, who was evidently the chief of the gang, was an aged man, with a beard of silver gray, which, as he sat, descended to his lap, entirely covering his breast. His head was quite bald, with the exception of a few hairs that still struggled for existence behind his ears, and this, added to the snowy whiteness of his eyebrows, and the deep wrinkles in his brow and cheeks, would have conferred an air of reverence on his countenance, had not the sinister expression of his small and fiery-looking eyes destroyed the charm. On each side of him sat a young girl--the prettiest of the company; and the familiar manner in which they occasionally lolled on the old man’s bosom, and fondled with his neck and beard, showed the intimate terms on which they lived with him.

The rest of the men were of various ages, and though all of them were marked with that mixed expression of daring recklessness and extreme cunning which has long been "the badge of all their tribe," they attracted (with one exception) little of Arthur’s attention. Of the women, the very young ones were extremely pretty, the middle-aged and old ones, more than equally ugly. Young and old, pretty and ill-favoured, all were alike deficient in that retiring modesty of expression without which no face can be accounted truly lovely, and the want of which darkens into hideousness the plainness of homely features. They joined freely in the draughts, which their male companions were making from the horns, which, filled with wine and ale, circulated among the company, and laughed as loud and joked as boldly as they did.

The rest of this story can be read at

The other stories can be read at

The Concise Household Encyclopaedia
Added four more pages on Copaiba, Copal Varnish, Copenhagen Ware, Copper, Copper Nucleinate, Copper Sulphate, Copying, Copying Ink, Coral, Coral Spot, Corbel, Cord, Cordon, Coreopsis, Corer, Coriander, Cork, Corkscrew, Cork Sole, Corn, Corncake, Corn Cob, Corned Beef, Corner Cupboard.

You can read about these at

Children's Rhymes. Children's Games, Children' s Songs, Children's Stories
A Book for Bairns and Big Folk by Robert Ford (1904).

The pages we have up this week are...

Children's Songs and Ballads
Cowe the Nettle early
The Wren's Nest
Robin Redbreast's Testament
Children's Humour and Quaint Sayings
Schoolroom Facts and Fancies
Children's Stories
Blue Beard

Here is "Robin Redbreast's Testament" for you to read here...

We began with the robin in this, I hope, not wearisome but entertaining Melange of child-songs. We have never, indeed, got at any time far away from the lively and interesting little fellow; and, that being so. perhaps no item could more fittingly close the series than the very old song of

Robin Redbreast's Testament

Gude-day now, bonnie Robin,
How long have your been here?
I've been bird about this bush
This mair than twenty year!

But now I am the sickest bird
That ever sat on brier;
And I wad mak' my testament,
Gudeman, if ye wad hear.

Gae tak' this bonnie neb o' mine,
That picks upon the corn;
And gie't to the Duke o' Hamilton
To be a hunting-horn.

Gae tak' these bonnie feathers o' mine,
The feathers o' my neb;
And gi'e to the Lady o' Hamilton
To fill a feather-bed.

Gae tak' this gude richt leg o' mine,
And mend the brig o' Tay,
It will be a post and pillar gude,
Will neither bow nor gae.

And tak' this other leg o' mine,
And mend the brig o' Weir;
It will be a post and pillar gude
Will neither bow nor steer.

Gae tak' thae bonnie feathers o' mine,
The feathers o' my tail:
And gie to the lads o' Hamilton
To be a barn-flail.

And tak' thae bonnie feathers o' mine,
The feathers o' my breast;
And gie to ony bonnie lad
Will bring to me a priest.

Now in there came my Lady Wren
Wi' mony a sigh and groan:
O what care I for a' the lads
If my ain lad be gone!

Then Robin turned him roundabout,
E'en like a little king;
Go, pack ye out o' my chamber-door,
Ye little cutty quean.

Robin made his testament
Upon a coll of hay .
And by cam' a greedy gled
And snapt him a' away.

We are now embarking on the final part of this book which are the children's stories. You can read the other pages at

Social Life in Scotland
From Early to Recent Times by Rev. Charles Rogers in 3 volumes (1884)

I now have up this week a couple more chapters from Volume II...

Chapter XII.
Church Discipline

Chapter XIII.
Public Sports

Here is how the chapter on Church Discipline starts...

In pre-Reformation times the Scottish Church exercised a system of penance, which, while fortifying ecclesiastical authority, was believed to conduce to social order. When social offences were not dealt with directly by the Church, the sentences were, nevertheless, executed under clerical supervision. On this subject the Burgh Records of Aberdeen supply some curious particulars. In 1523 John Pitt, tailor, who had refused to join the Candlemas procession, and conducted himself rudely towards a magistrate and certain burgesses, was sentenced by the Town Council to appear on the following Sunday in St Nicholas Church, "bareheaded and barefooted," and there to publicly acknowledge his offence. In performing his act of penance, he was to wear on Isis breast a pair of shears, and, in the time of high mass, to carry a wax-candle as an offering to Saint Nicholas and thereafter, on his knees, humbly to beseech the officiating priest to remit his fault. About the same period Bessie Dempster, convicted before the Town Council, by a jury, for aspersing David Reid, was sentenced to undergo various indignities, in which were included that next Sunday she should go before the procession in her shift, and entering the church with a wax-candle in her hand, should offer it "to the holy blood light," and then, on her knees, beseech the magistrates and the good men of the town to request Reid to forgive her. At Aberdeen, in times immediately preceding the Reformation, such sentences were common.

While abnegating the doctrine, and renouncing the ritual of the Popish Church, Scottish Reformers adhered to the Catholic discipline, omitting only those forms of penance which bordered on superstition. And that discipline might be effectually maintained, it was ruled by the first General Assembly, in December 1560, that elders should be chosen in every parish to constitute, along with the minister, a, local consistory, or parochial court. At ordination elders did not surrender their position as laymen, nevertheless they were privileged to elect one of their number as a ruling elder to exercise in Presbyteries and Synods an equal authority with the minister. To the General Assembly, elders are delegated as members by Presbyteries, Town Councils, and the Universities.

You can read lots more from this chapter at

You can get to the index page of the book at

Robert Burns Lives!
By Frank Shaw

This week Frank is featuring Sunday Post articles on Robert Burns. He starts by telling us...

I wish to thank Alan Morrison, Editor, The Sunday Post, for his permission to use the two articles below. The writers, Sarah Johnson and Clark McGinn also agreed for their articles to be reprinted on Robert Burns Lives! Clark recently had one of his articles to appear on this website under the title of “Inspiration on Inaugural Day”. Sarah's article on the two Burns Clubs that are built alike focuses on the Atlanta (USA) Burns Cottage. Both are excellent writers. My thanks to all three for their permission.

These articles are posted on the site in a .pdf file which you can get to at

We also got in an article by Patrick Scott - "The Immortal Memory" which can be read at

All other articles by Frank can be read at

The Writings of John Muir
This week have up...

My First Summer in the Sierra...

Chapter I. Through the Foothills with a Flock of Sheep
Chapter II. In Camp on the North Fork of the Merced
Chapter III. A Bread Famine
Chapter IV. To the High Mountains
Chapter V. The Yosemite
Chapter VI. Mount Hoffman and Lake Tenaya
Chapter VII. A Strange Experience
Chapter VIII. The Mono Trail

As I guess quite a few of you have visited The Yosemite here is how that chapter starts...

July 15. Followed the Mono Trail up the eastern rim of the basin nearly to its summit, then turned off southward to a small shallow valley that extends to the edge of the Yosemite, which we reached about noon, and encamped. After luncheon I made haste to high ground, and from the top of the ridge on the west side of Indian Canon gained the noblest view of the summit peaks I have ever yet enjoyed. Nearly all the upper basin of the Merced was displayed, with its sublime domes and canons, dark upsweeping forests, and glorious array of white peaks deep in the sky, every feature glowing, radiating beauty that pours into our flesh and bones like heat rays from fire. Sunshine over all; no breath of wind to stir the brooding calm. Never before had I seen so glorious a landscape, so boundless an affluence of sublime mountain beauty. The most extravagant description I might give of this view to any one who has not seen similar landscapes with his own eyes would not so much as hint its grandeur and the spiritual glow that covered it. I shouted and gesticulated in a wild burst of ecstasy, much to the astonishment of St. Bernard Carlo, who came running up to me, manifesting in his intelligent eyes a puzzled concern that was very ludicrous, which had the effect of bringing me to my senses. A brown bear, too, it would seem, had been a spectator of the show I had made of myself, for I had gone but a few yards when I started one from a thicket of brush. He evidently considered me dangerous, for he ran away very fast, tumbling over the tops of the tangled manzanita bushes in his haste. Carlo drew back, with his ears depressed as if afraid, and kept looking me in the face, as if expecting me to pursue and shoot, for he had seen many a bear battle in his day.

Following the ridge, which made a gradual descent to the south, I came at length to the brow of that massive cliff that stands between Indian Canon and Yosemite Falls, and here the far-famed valley came suddenly into view throughout almost its whole extent. The noble walls — sculptured into endless variety of domes and gables, spires and battlements and plain mural precipices — all a-tremble with the thunder tones of the falling water. The level bottom seemed to be dressed like a garden - sunny meadows here and there, and groves of pine and oak; the river of Mercy sweeping in majesty through the midst of them and flashing back the sunbeams. The great Tissiack, or Half-Dome, rising at the upper end of the valley to a height of nearly a mile, is nobly proportioned and life-like, the most impressive of all the rocks, holding the eye in devout admiration, calling it back again and again from falls or meadows, or even the mountains beyond, — marvelous cliffs, marvelous in sheer dizzy depth and sculpture, types of endurance. Thousands of years have they stood in the sky exposed to rain, snow, frost, earthquake and avalanche, yet they still wear the bloom of youth.

I rambled along the valley rim to the westward; most of it is rounded off on the very brink, so that it is not easy to find places where one may look clear down the face of the wall to the bottom. When such places were found, and I had cautiously set my feet and drawn my body erect, I could not help fearing a little that the rock might split off and let me down, and what a down! — more than three thousand feet. Still my limbs did not tremble, nor did I feel the least uncertainty as to the reliance to be placed on them. My only fear was that a flake of the granite, which in some places showed joints more or less open and running parallel with the face of the cliff, might give way. After withdrawing from such places, excited with the view I had got, I would say to myself, "Now don't go out on the verge again." But in the face of Yosemite scenery cautious remonstrance is vain; under its spell one's body seems to go where it likes with a will over which we seem to have scarce any control.

After a mile or so of this memorable cliff work I approached Yosemite Creek, admiring its easy, graceful, confident gestures as it comes bravely forward in its narrow channel, singing the last of its mountain songs on its way to its fate — a few rods more over the shining granite, then down half a mile in showy foam to another world, to be lost in the Merced, where climate, vegetation, inhabitants, all are different. Emerging from its last gorge, it glides in wide lace-like rapids down a smooth incline into a pool where it seems to rest and compose its gray, agitated waters before taking the grand plunge, then slowly slipping over the lip of the pool basin, it descends another glossy slope with rapidly accelerated speed to the brink of the tremendous cliff, and with sublime, fateful confidence springs out free in the air.

You can read the rest of this chapter at

The rest of the chapters can be read at

Home and Farm Food Preservation
By William V. Cruess (1918)

Have added several more chapters to this book...

Chapter XIV - Vinegar Manufacture

79. General Principles
80. Raw Materials
81. Crushing Fruits for Vinegar
82. Diluting Honey
83. Preparation of Fruit Cores and Peels and Dried Fruits for Vinegar Making
84. Addition of Yeast and Control of Alcoholic Fermentation
85. Pressing Fermented Fruits
86. Removal of Sediment
87. Adding Vinegar Starter
88. Vinegar Fermentation
89. Vinegar Generators
90. Aging of Vinegar
91. Clearing the Vinegar
92. Vinegar Diseases and Pests
(a) Wine Flowers
(b) Lactic Acid Bacteria
(c) Vinegar Eels

Chapter XV - Fruit Wines

93. Red Wine
(a) Crushing
(b) Yeast
(c) First Fermentation
(d) Pressing
(e) Final Fermentation
(f) Settling and Filling Up
(g) Racking
(h) Aging
(i) Clearing the Wine
(j) Bottling

94. White Wine

(a) Crushing, Pressing, and Settling
(b) Fermentation
(c) Racking, Filling Up, Aging, Clearing
95. Other Fermented Fruit Juices

Chapter XVI - Preservation of Vegetables and Fruits by Salting and Pickling

96. Preservation of Vegetables by Salt
(a) Dry Salting
(b) Salt and Fermentation
(c) Strong Brine
97. Dill Pickles
98. Pickling Vegetables in Vinegar
(a) Storage in Brine
(b) Removal of Salt
(c) Addition of Vinegar
99. Pickling Fruits in Vinegar
100. Olives
(a) Pickled Ripe Olives
(b) Green Olives
(c) "Greek" Olives
101. Tomato Ketchup
(a) Pulping
(b) Addition of Flavoring Materials
(c) Boiling
(d) Sterilizing
102. Miscellaneous Tomato Products
(a) Tomato Paste
(b) Puree
(c) Chili Sauce, Piccalilli, and Relishes

Chapter XVII - Preservation of Meat

103. Salting Meats
(a) Dry Salting
(b) Preserving Meats in Brine
104. Drying Meats
105. Preservation of Meats by Smoking
(a) Salting
(b) The Smoke House
(c) Smoke Producing Substances
(d) Length of Smoking
(e) Storing Smoked Meats
106. Miscellaneous Meat Products
107. Preservation of Eggs with Water Glass
Chapter XVIII - Milk Products
108. Sterilization and Pasteurization of Milk
(a) Sterilization
(b) Pasteurization of Milk in the Household
109. Storage of Butter
110. Cheese
(a) "Cottage" Cheese
(b) Cheddar Cheese
(c) Other Types of Cheese

PART III. Food Preservation Recipes

Chapter XIX - Fruit Canning Recipes

1. Canning Peaches
2. Alternative Method for Canning Peaches
3. Canning Apricots
4. Lye Peeling Peaches and Apricots
5. Canning Pears
6. Canning Cherries
7. Canning Apples
8. Canning Plums
9. Canning Rhubarb
10. Canning Rhubarb without Sterilization
11. Canning Figs
12. Canning Strawberries
13. Canning Blackberries
14. Canning Raspberries and Loganberries
15. Canning Oranges
16. Canning Grape Fruit
17. Canning Grapes
18. Canning Pineapple
19. Canning Currants, Cranberries, and Gooseberries

Chapter XX - Canning Vegetables

20. Canning Artichokes
21. Canning Asparagus
22. Canning Green String Beans and Wax Beans
23. Canning Beets
24. Canning Carrots, Turnips, Parsnips, and Onions
25. Canning Corn
26. Canning Green Peas
27. Canning Pimentos and Sweet Peppers
28. Canning Pumpkin and Squash
29. Canning Spinach and Other Greens
30. Canning Tomatoes
31. Canning Sweet Potatoes
32. Canning Dried Beans
33. Canning Hominy
34. Canning Egg Plant
35. Canning Okra

All the chapters can be read at

Parish Life in the North of Scotland
By Rev. Donald Sage A.M. (1899)

More chapters up this week and we now have...

Chapter XIII - Sutherlandshire: "First Clearance"
Chapter XIV - Licensed and Ordained to Preach
Chapter XV - Prominent Persons in Sutherland
Chapter XVI - The Sutherland Clearance of 1819
Chapter XVII - Ministry and Contemporaries in Aberdeen
Chapter XVIII - The General Assembly of 1820
Chapter XIX - Ministerial Prospects - Marriage

Here is how Chapter XIX starts...


I WAS invited when in Aberdeen on several occasions to assist Mr. MacLeod, of the Gaelic chapel in Dundee, at the communion. His church was nothing else than an ordinary-sized dwelling-house converted into a place of worship by being fitted up with seats and galleries. The congregation consisted of Highlanders from the mountainous districts of Perthshire—plain, unsophisticated men. It was during my visits to Dundee that I first became acquainted with Dr. Peters, who was married to a sister of the wife of Professor Stuart of Marischal College. Mr. MacLeod and I were invited to sup with him, where we found before us Mr. W. Thomson of Perth, brother of Dr. Andrew Thomson of Edinburgh. Mr. Thomson of Dundee was, I think, there also. Mr. MacLeod sang a few of the old Gaelic psalm tunes. ["In 1626 Lord Reav, Munro of Fowlis, etc., with thousands of their retainers, were influenced by their Protestant zeal to embark for Germany and fight for the ascendancy of their religion in that part of the continent. Many of them fell there, others returned, and afterwards upheld the covenanting canoe in Scotland under General Leslie. The old Gaelic tunes are only to he found in those parts of the Highlands whence those soldiers came, and it is supposed that they; learned them in Germany, and brought them to this country." (Gustavus Aird, D.D.)—Ed.] These tunes, producing the most solemn impression when sung by a congregation in the open air, laboured under every possible disadvantage when set forth by Mr. MacLeod, whose voice, naturally husky and coming exclusively through his nose, made the effect so perfectly ridiculous that his guests had the greatest difficulty in reducing their countenances within the limits of decorum. Another of the acquaintances I formed at Dundee was a Mr. Kirkaldy. He was then a wealthy merchant in town, and had been married to a daughter of Dr. MacLauchlan, one of the town's ministers; but she had died, and the trial, a very sore one, for they lived most happily together, was eminently sanctified to her widowed husband.

In the year 1821 I received a unanimous call from the congregation of the Gaelic chapel at Rothesay. The offer was a most advantageous one in every way, and in looking back upon the circumstances, I can only wonder that I did not see my way to accept it. But Providence had designed for me another sphere.

About this time a great breach was made among the veteran watchmen on the walls of our Sion by the death of Dr. Ronald Bayne, minister of Kirtarlity, Inverness-shire, of whom mention has already been made. He died in February, 1821, aged 66 years. His second son, Charles John, was at the time a preacher. He was a candidate for his father's charge and living, but the patron disappointed him. He became minister of Fodderty in 1826, and died in 1832, at the age of 35 years.

Mr. Kenneth Bayne, minister of the Gaelic chapel in Greenock, died in 1821. This truly eminent minister was brother of Dr. Bayne of Kiltarlity, who preceded him to his everlasting rest only a few months before. Mr. Bayne's ministerial labours at Greenock were very specially owned and blessed. His wife, an eminently pious woman, died some years before then, and Mr. Bayne, tenderly attached to her, never fully rallied from the shock which that heart-rending event had inflicted upon him.

You can read the rest of this chapter at

The other chapters can be read at

Sketches of the early days of New Zealand, Romance and Reality of Antipodean life in the infancy of a New Colony by John Logan Campbell (1881)

We now have up several chapters...


Chapter I.
My Advent on this Sublunary Scene.—Six Years' Despotic Nursery Reign.—My Deposition
Chapter II.
The Kind of Boy I Was.—Why and How I Became a Doctor
Chapter III.
I Weigh in the Balance the Chances of Life, and Determine to Forsake my Fatherland
Chapter IV.
Portraying the Depth of a Sister's Love
Chapter V.
"Ho! for the Great South Land"
Chapter VI.
I Forswear the Great Convict Land


Chapter I.
The King of Waiou
Chapter II.
We Start on the Exploring Expedition
Chapter III.
We Sing and Row Ourselves over the Hauraki
Chapter IV.
The Timber-Draggers.—A Pull for Dear Life
Chapter V.
The Night Camp.—The Morning's Vision
Chapter VI.
The Isthmus of Corinth of the Antipodes

Here is how that Chapter IV starts...

The western shore of the Hauraki Gulf is studded with numerous large islands and chains of smaller ones. Between some of these there are fine deep-water channels which form sheltered roadsteads for large vessels, one alone being large enough for the combined navies of the world to ride at anchor in.

The Delhi was lying in one of the lesser roadsteads, at its entrance from the gulf, for the convenience of being in the immediate vicinity of the timber-loading ground, so as to save distance as much as possible in towing off the rafts. But for this consideration the vessel would have lain a mile farther up channel, and this would have sheltered her from the north-east fetch, to which she was now exposed. The reasons for my being particular as to the locale will be apparent before you have read to the close of this chapter.

The row across the gulf had so whetted our appetites that the captain of the Delhi had no cause to complain that we did not do justice to his hospitality. When Waipeha declared that he must leave us at our wine and be off on shore to visit the forest we begged off from our host too, so that we might have an opportunity by accompanying Waipeha of seeing the timber operations in the bush. Borrowing the ship's dingy, we pulled ourselves ashore, leaving our native crew to rest on board. We landed to the welcoming cry of "Haeremai! Haeremai!" from a large assemblage of the Maori feminine gender. What males there were, were of such tender years that they were of no account. The grown men, and the half-grown too, were all in the forest dragging out the last large log for the vessel's cargo.

As we passed through the native village, nestling in a little valley at the base of the high land, we noticed that the women were all busy preparing food, and the preparations were of rather an extensive kind, the fact being that as the last log was expected to reach the water's edge this day the timber- draggers were going to be regaled with a sort of small feast, and as no wars had lately been going on, giving a war supply of animal food, a virtue was to be made of necessity, and the modern substitute of pig was to be the order of the day.

In days of which I write Maori ladies did not flaunt in the last new fashion—or say the second last—from Paris, but if they were less fashionably they were far more picturesquely attired. Their flax mats and the blanket folded around their persons formed drapery which hung gracefully around them, and in which they looked natural and at ease, and, unencumbered with shoes and stockings and accompaniments, they moved about gracefully, cum grano. At all events they did not look as if they were going to topple over, as they do now when clothed in those "troublesome disguises which we wear," and balancing themselves on high-heeled boots. 'Tis true we should have preferred that some of the old bags we saw scraping potatoes and kurneras had been somewhat more disguised. The short mat from waist to knee only exhibited to our view their "ugliness unadorned displayed the most!" But we had just to put that against "beauty unadorned adorned the most," and, rolling them together, accept the average as it came out before us.

You can read the rest of this chapter at

We now have the first few chapters up which can be read at

Fraser's Scottish Annual
I came across this publication which has the 1900 - 1904 issues of Fraser's Scottish Annual.

Here's some background on Fraser...


When Alexander Fraser left Scotland in 1886, he could not have known that he would become a leading historian and a prolific author who would devote his life to promoting the interests and culture of the Scottish community in Canada. Educated at Inverness High School, Davidson's Classical Academy, Perth and Glasgow University, where he received his M.A., the son of Hugh and Mary (Mackenzie) Fraser came to Canada on the recommendation of Sir Charles Tupper, to take up a position on the editorial staff of the Toronto Mail (later the Toronto Mail and Empire). He also served as editor of the Scottish Canadian, Massey's Illustrated, Presbyterian Review, and Fraser's Scottish Annual.

In 1889 Alexander Fraser married Christina Ramsay, daughter of Dr. Samuel Ramsay of Toronto and his wife Jessie Fraser, daughter of James George Fraser and Chistina MacLeod of Galt, Ontario. Alexander and Christina Fraser had nine children, two of whom died in infancy. The letters to his wife and children during his many absences contain vivid commentary on his travels, concern over their welfare and advice about household matters.

During a 1994 interview, his daughter Shelagh recalled the wonderful ceilidhs she had watched as a child, and the continuous stream of visitors including Mme Alice (Fraser) Prevost ( a descendant of Lt. Malcolm Fraser of the 78th Fraser Highlanders) and Archbishop McNeil from Nova Scotia (one of the few outside the family to call her father by his first name). She showed me the rare book Huronia (1909) on the history of the Jesuits, authored by her father (a Presbyterian), for which he was awarded a medal by the Pope.

Alexander Fraser organized the Gaelic Society of Canada in 1887; was its first Secretary, for many years its President. He was a key organizer of the 48th Highlanders of Toronto in 1891; the revival of Clan Fraser Society in 1894; and the Toronto Historical Society, of which he was President. He served as President of the Sons of Scotland Benevolent Association for 12 years and as President of St. Andrew's Society of Toronto. He assisted in placing 426 families from the Highlands on Canadian Free Homesteads without cost to country or to settlers.

Colonel Fraser became the first Archivist of Ontario in 1903 and continued in that position until his retirement in 1935. He served as Honorary ADC to the Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario from 1914 through 1932 and was an Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel of the 127th York Rangers. He was one of the charter members of the Empire Club, a Past Master of St. John's Lodge, A.F. and A.M. and later an officer of the Grand Lodge. He was a notary public, a justice of the peace, and special representative for the Province of Ontario at the International Exposition at Havana, Cuba in 1924.

He edited or authored numerous books, papers and articles including the 2 volume History of Ontario ; Huronia; Brock Centenary 1812-1912; The Last Laird of MacNab; History of the 48th Highlanders of Toronto; The Highland Regiments at Quebec; District of Hesse, U.C.; The Clan Fraser in Canada; Simon Fraser, the Discoverer of the Fraser River; and many others in English and Gaelic.

Copied from Clan Fraser Society of Canada web site with permission at


These articles are taken from the 1900 - 1904 issues of Fraser's Scottish Annual and my intention is to post up one article per day and so far we have up...

Sir Sanford Fleming
The Empire
Robert Burns, An Appreciation, by A. B. Liddel
Scottish Patriotism
Highland Mary

These can be read at

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


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