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Newsletter for 16th July 2021

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  • Newsletter for 16th July 2021

    For the latest news from Scotland see our ScotNews feed at:

    Electric Scotland News

    Today I am now fully vaccinated against Covid having had my second dose 2 weeks ago so in theory can stop wearing a mask and can meet with friends again. Mind you I suspect I'll still wear a mask when shopping. I note also there is a lot of talk about getting a vaccine passport. To be frank here in Canada I don\t see the point in getting a passport as I was given a receipt from the Vaccine centre that states I received the second dose and also quotes my health card number. So by providing the receipt and my health card I would have thought that was proof positive I have received both doses. Of course I don't know what other countries are doing so perhaps you could let me know how things stand in your country?

    I do understand that foreign travel is probably the most affected matter in this drive for a "passport" but I still feel that what I have in Canada should make the difference.

    Canada ranking No. 1 for percentage of population vaccinated with UK at No. 2


    I got some feedback from the MyHeritage folk to say that they only recorded some 28 clicks on their exclusive promotion and no sales. I'd be interested to get any feedback you can offer on why this wasn't of interest and what might be of interest to you going forward. There is little point in me doing deals that are not of interest to you so please let me know your thoughts on this as I'd appreciate it. While we are a history site I did think a lot of folk visited due to genealogy but looks like I may be wrong in this assumption.

    Scottish News from this weeks newspapers
    Note that this is a selection and more can be read in our ScotNews feed on our index page where we list news from the past 1-2 weeks. I am partly doing this to build an archive of modern news from and about Scotland and world news stories that can affect Scotland and as all the newsletters are archived and also indexed on Google and other search engines it becomes a good resource. I might also add that in a number of newspapers you will find many comments which can be just as interesting as the news story itself and of course you can also add your own comments if you wish which I do myself from time to time.

    Brexit hat-trick! Liz Truss secures TRIPLE trade agreement
    LIZ Truss has signed off on a new trade deal with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein which will boost critical British sectors like digital, slash tariffs on high-quality British food and farm products, and support jobs in every corner of the country.

    Read more at:

    Penny Mordaunt utterly destroys SNP's Ian Blackford as MPs reject his motion
    TORY MP Penny Mordaunt has won praise for utterly destroying the SNP's arguments after Ian Blackford railed against Westminster's "endemic cronyism" during the Covid pandemic.

    Read more at:

    Time to deliver
    By James Mitchell in Sceptical Scot. Too much thinking about policy formulation sees it as akin to a conveyor belt. In this view, Government announces policy that others deliver. The lever is pulled and the desired outcome emerges at the other end. And when this fails, the tendency is to pull more levers, seek more power to rectify matters. But power hoarding only makes matters worse.

    Read more at:

    Saturation point: why Scottish education needs fewer probation teachers
    62% of new teachers cannot secure full-time permanent jobs yet teacher training numbers are at their highest level in a decade. Scottish education must wean itself off cheap probationers before more damage is done.

    Read more at:

    Nicola Sturgeon abolishes top economic body set up by former First Minister
    The former FM was chuffed when he created the Council of Economic Advisers, but his successor has replaced it.

    Read more at:

    Why strawberry experts are hoping to serve up an Ace
    The new berry on the block is called the Malling Ace. And for the last six years, researchers at NIAB in East Malling, Kent - the UK's largest horticulture research and development centre - have been tinkering with strawberry varieties to come up with one they feel not only suits British palates, but makes growing and harvesting easier for the producers.

    Read more at:

    Bullying and cover-ups at Scots hospital put patients at risk
    Front line medical staff in the A&E department of Forth Valley Royal Hospital (FVRH) in Larbert, Stirlingshire, told an independent review they were often reduced to tears.

    Read more at:

    Whistleblowers who exposed bullying in NHS Highland praised by union for their bravery
    In 2019, concerns raised by a group of clinicians prompted the review, which found hundreds of health workers had potentially experienced inappropriate behaviour.

    Read more at:

    SNP under pressure for overwhelming failure in renewable energy progress
    SNP ministers have been issued a wake-up call after it was revealed the Scottish Government has not even reached the halfway point of its own renewable energy targets.

    Read more at:

    Kennedy fumes over slow progress in farming policy
    Frustration at the slow progress on the development of agricultural policy boiled over this week, with industry leaders expressing exasperation over the lack of direction in a major report designed to set the pace for change.

    Read more at:

    Scotland's high legal costs breach international environmental law
    Scotland’s legal system would be in breach of international environmental and human rights law, due to the extremely high costs of legal action, according to UN findings.

    Read more at:

    Nicola Sturgeon on brink as SNP’s unrecorded meetings expose culture of sleaze
    NICOLA STURGEON could be on the brink as reports of the Scottish Government's unrecorded meetings expose a "culture of sleaze and secrecy at the heart of the SNP," her critics argue.

    Read more at:

    Police launch official investigation into allegations of fraud within the SNP
    Police Scotland had previously been looking into complaints over "alleged financial irregularity", but officers have just confirmed they will launch a full investigation into the matter. The allegations concern about 600,000 of donations to the SNP which had been part of a crowdfunder for money to be spent on a future independence referendum. Last month SNP Treasurer Colin Beattie said the money raised in the fundraiser had already been spent by the party.

    Read more at:

    Why Canada is reforming indigenous foster care
    The revelations that there are hundreds of indigenous children buried in unmarked graves at the sites of former residential schools have shaken Canadians. They have also increased calls for changes to the country's foster care system, where indigenous children are vastly overrepresented.

    Read more at:

    Scotland has not met community justice target, says watchdog
    A Scottish government target to increase the number of offenders doing unpaid community work has not been met, Audit Scotland has said.

    Read more at:

    Electric Canadian

    Thoughts on a Sunday morning - the 11th day of July 2021
    By the Rev. Nola Crewe

    You can watch this at:

    BearPaw Legal Education & Resource Centre Newswire
    Added a sample copy of this newswire for September 25 - Oct 2, 2015 (pdf) which you can read at:

    Other copies can be found on the Internet Archive at:

    Canadian Bookman
    Added the 1919 issue of this magazine due to it being the first of what they call the new era of the magazine which you can read at:

    Jim Brewster
    An article about him from the May 1947 issue of Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies which you can read at:

    Electric Scotland

    Beth's Video Talks
    Beth has another video for you for July 14th - Fix your will to save your genealogy

    You can watch this at:

    Beth's Newfangled Family Tree

    Hi Everyone!

    Here is section B for August. I hope you enjoy it.

    Did you know that the original date for Burns Suppers was held on the fifth anniversary of Robert Burns' death, July 21, 1801? There's an interesting article about the Burns Two-Twenty Festival that was recently celebrated at Robert Burns's birthplace.

    Have you ever seen James May's Toy Stories on television? James May is known as "Captain Slow" on the long-running Top Gear program on American TV from Great Britain. After that program, the three, Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May did another Amazon TV Channel program called The Grand Tour. If you have streaming television, you may now see James May's Toy Stories here in the USA (Plus several other programs.) There have been programs about all manner of old-fashioned toys. One of the programs was the story of James May and some students building a 100% size replica of a World War II fighter plane, the Spitfire.

    Gilnockie Tower sort of did the same thing with a LEGO Lunar Lander! They enlisted the help of their local school students to build the model to honor the visit, back in 1972, of Neil Armstrong!

    The Lunar Lander is done and on display. Next, they are going to work on having a LEGO Apollo 11 kit on display at the tower! Shades of James May!

    Speaking of television. I have tried and tried to find out what VRBO meant. I have looked and looked and asked and asked, but to no avail. Last week, Scot MacGillivray, on his program about renovating your family vacation house, answered my question. If you have wondered about VRBO, it means, "Vacation Rental By Owners." So simple, why didn't/couldn't I come up with that on my own?

    The only time I have felt dumber was when I learned about "Mc" doing my genealogy. At that time, we had a gentleman in Clan Donald who loudly proclaimed that if your name was "McDonald" you were Irish and not even Scottish. I had done my family history long enough to know that was not true. However, one lovely day, I ran across the information that the spelling of your Scottish name was not filled with many rules. You could spell it anyway it sounded to you. Mmmm. However, the BIG news to me was that those of us who use "Mc" (with the "c" up high even with the top of the "M") are doing nothing more than abbreviating the "a" in "Mac." I punched myself in the head with the heel of my hand. How come I couldn't figure that one out by myself!

    BTW, those who spell their Scottish name with "Mc" are as Scottish as the ones who use "Mac." My grandparents spelled their "Mc" with the "c" up high and " under it, denoting the abbreviation.

    My AOL won't do the high "c." Sorry. In the BNFT, you will always see the "Mc" with the high "c." However, PageMaker won't do the " under the "c." Lord a'mercy.

    Please send me your games reports and your queries and anything you'd like to have printed in BNFT. If your email changes, please let me know. Send y our genealogical queries to me too. <>


    Read this issue at:

    Some Account of my Life and Writings
    An Autobiography by the Late Sir Archibald Alison in two volumes

    Alison was a criminal lawyer, historian and High Tory 'political philosopher', the author of numerous books and articles, especially for Blackwood's Magazine, including an attack on Malthus and liberal political economy in 1840 (Principles of Population and their Connection with Human Happiness), a 10 volume History of Europe during the French Revolution (1833-1842), and an autobiography, Some Account of my Life and Writings: an Autobiography by the late Sir Archibald Alison (largely written in 1851-2, completed in 1862 but published in 1883). Alison was satirised by Disraeli as Mr Wordy in Coningsby.

    Sheriff of Lanarkshire [December] 1834, moved to Glasgow February 1835 and lived at Possil House until his death; Rector of Marischal College 1845; Rector of University of Glasgow 1850.'He took a close interest in the American Civil War, as a defender of slavery and partisan of the Confederacy despite his humanitarian instincts'. As Sheriff, he was involved in action against the cotton spinners' strike of 1839, the miners' strike at Airdrie in 1842 and the Chartist 'insurrection' of 1848. 100-150,000 people lined the route of his funeral procession in 1867, according to Blackwood's Magazine. Michie describes him as 'a transitional figure in a transitional age.'

    You can read this account at:

    Scottish Review
    Added issues 7, 8 & 9 of their Best of 25 Years of the Scottish Review and you can get to these at:

    The Men of the Mountain
    By S. R. Crockett (1909) (pdf)

    You can read this at:

    Memoirs of Mr William Veitch and George Brysson
    Written by themselves with other narratives illustrative of the history of Scotland, from the restoration to the revolution to which are added, biographical sketches and notes, by Thomas M'Crie, D.D. (1825) (pdf)

    You can read this at:

    Scottish Society of Indianapolis
    Got in there July 2021 newsletter which you can read at:

    Added two more jigsaws to our Scotland Fact File - "The Sterling Engine" and "Scots Invented Suspenders" and one to our pictures of Scotland - "Cranogh at Aberfeldy".

    You can play these at:

    Scottish Politics
    By the Right Hon. The Marquis of Lorne (pdf)

    An interesting article that covers aspects of the Union between England and Scotland which you can read at:

    Luther's Scottish Connection
    By James Edward McGoldrick (2008)

    You can read this at:


    Hindrance to Genealogy
    From the 1904 issue of the Scottish Historical Review by J M Bulloch

    WHEN the first volume of the House of Gordon—which the New Spalding Club have in hand—makes its appearance, it may surprise many readers that the Editor has started so vast a subject by dealing with three lesser cadets, and not with any of the main lines. This arrangement, however, has been chosen with the utmost deliberation, and the principle involved in it is applicable to the genealogical treatment of nearly all the great families.

    Nothing strikes the genealogist of to-day so forcibly as the vast amount of wasted power which has been expended over the subject. This wastage has militated not only against the completion of the particular subject in hand, but against the practice of genealogy as a whole, and has brought that useful art at times into perilous disrepute. I believe that the curse which has affected much of our genealogical inquiry has been the desire for definitiveness. Investigator has followed investigator, travelling precisely the same road; but, unlike most travellers, he has too often failed to vouchsafe to posterity the results of his observations. Had he been content to print, or at any rate to leave in a form that could be manipulated by others, the result of his work, genealogy would to-day stand on a far better basis than it does. But each worker insists on starting on the main line himself, and working downwards through its cadets. The consequence has been that while we may have several books printed on the main line, the cadets are rarely dealt with.

    The history of the house of Gordon is a striking case in point. The whole effort of the genealogist, in something like 150 years, has gone to elucidate the history of the ducal line, and, as the activities of that line were practically identical with much of the nation’s history, the general result has been extremely disappointing. It has led, for example, to there being practically no book whatever dealing with the numerous branches of the family who were content to remain on the Borders, while the more important cadets in the North have remained without a historian at all. I have come across great collections of material, painfully got together, which are practicably unworkable, except by the original collector. The same books have been ransacked, the same sasines copied; indeed the whole sources of information have been utilised by the different workers over and over again, with but small result.

    The Antiquarian Clubs have been working assiduously for 80 years (the Bannatyne was founded in 1823); and the raw material has gone on multiplying persistently in every sort of form. Quarry after quarry has been opened up, and yet, so far as genealogy is concerned, little has been done to make use of the buried material. Even the genealogies which Sir William Fraser gave us were really quarries in themselves, illustrating in most cases the main lines of a family as told in its charter chest, with but little attempt to elucidate the history of the smaller branches.

    Short of a scheme of organised co-operation, it is almost certain that the complete history of the great families will never be properly done unless tackled in a piecemeal way; that is to say, by the publication of accounts of cadets of whatever importance as the worker finishes them, without reference to a general scheme: so that the next inquirer may be saved the trouble of doing useless research. Organised co-operation is practically impossible, for scarcely any of the workers will agree upon the same method, and the risk of overlapping is almost inevitable.

    Such a journal as the Scottish Historical Review can do much to help this piecemeal treatment of genealogy. That is why I venture to write in this strain. By way of a footnote I cannot help mentioning the enormous activity of American genealogists. Here is a people busy with the world of affairs in a way we scarcely understand: keen on money getting and eager for the day’s work. And yet the merest amateurs there find time to investigate their history with relentless energy. The fact is a useful reminder to those who regard Antiquary and Antediluvian as interchangeable terms.

    J M Bulloch


    And that's it for this week and hope you all have a great weekend.


  • #2
    Hi Alastair, regarding the MyHeritage offer, I was one of the clicks, but have to say that I already have the top end Ancestry subscription, plus two other databases, so just couldn't afford another one. But I appreciated your offer and hope that others will reconsider. Thanks!


    • #3
      Thanks for the feedback Rick.