Electric Scotland News
Electric Canadian
Canadian Monthly Magazine
Reminiscences of the Early History of Galt
Lovell's Gazetteer of the Dominion of Canada
The Glittering Mountains of Canada
The Scots Canadian
Heritage Minutes - Canada
The Flag in the Wind
Electric Scotland

Northern Notes and Queries
Kirkintilloch Town and Parish
Shetland: Descriptive and Historical
Robert Burns Lives!
Waddell’s Life And Works Of Robert Burns
Reminiscences of the Royal Burgh of Haddington
Sketches of Virginia (New Book)
Reminiscences of the Lews (New Book)
From John O'Groats to Land's End

Electric Scotland News
I've been expanding the ScotNews feed a bit by also linking to pdf newsletters from within the Scottish Diaspora Community. For example I got in the Fall 2012 newsletter from the Scottish Studies Society of Toronto. This publication reveals the links between Canada and Scotland.


I am considering building a relationship between Electric Scotland and a Scottish company that sells tartan products. I do get quite a few enquiries in asking me to recommend a company that can help with the purchase of a kilt and to be frank its been a long time since I had any connection to such companies. So the other week I started to contact such companies to get an idea on who they were and what kind of service they offered. I have found one company that made a point that they really need to talk to their customers to give the best service as in their opinion only some 20% of sales can be done entirely online. They believe many people end up with products that were not up to the standards they expected.

It's a bit like purchasing your first kilt. What tartan do you want? Where are you going to wear your tartan? Like if you will mainly wear it during the day then one tartan might be better than one you would mainly wear in the evening.

And so I am in discussions to see what might be possible.


The Council of Scottish Clans & Associations and The Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs invite you to join us for a live webcast of an upcoming conference called "From Scotland To Stone Mountain 2012: Chiefs And Clans Connecting To Sustain Our Common Future".

Date: October 19, 2012
Time: 2:00pm - 4:30pm EDT

A great number of Scottish Chiefs, all members of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs, will gather at Stone Mountain Highland Games this year to help celebrate Stone Mountain's 40th Anniversary. COSCA and SCSC have partnered to host a roundtable event on Friday afternoon prior to the Games opening.

This event will bring together leaders of the American Scottish Diaspora, Scottish Chiefs and special Scottish guests to discuss a bit of important business of the Scottish Diaspora.



Webcast: CLICK HERE http://coscastonemountain.eventbrite..._medium=email# to register for the online event as it is live streamed on the web from Atlanta, Georgia starting at 2:00pm EDT on October 19, 2012.

If you plan to be at Stone Mountain Highland Games and would like to attend the event in person, we still have limited seating available. Please give us a shout directly at to reserve your seat!

Electric Canadian
Canadian Monthly Magazine
Published by the Vanderhoof-Gunn Publishing Company

I've now added Volume 19.

This can be found at

Reminiscences of the Early History of Galt
and the Settlement of Dumfries in the Province of Ontario By James Young (1880).

Almost completed this book with just one chapter to go.

In Chapter XVIII we learn...

From the year 1850 to 1857—when Galt became a town, and our narrative closes—was probably the most active and prosperous period in its history. Not only was the village the best grain market for twenty or thirty miles west, but in consequence of its flouring mills, foundries, woollen mills, axe and edge tool works, paper mill, and numerous mercantile establishments, it had already become sufficiently prominent, more particularly for the excellence of its manufactures, to be called the “Manchester of Canada.”

Among the principal manufacturing establishments carried on in Galt, before or shortly after 1857, the following may be mentioned :—

Messrs. James Crombie & Co.’s foundry; McNaughton & Wilson, Dumfries flouring mills; H. H. Date’s axe and edge tool factory—as early as 1851, this establishment obtained medals at the World’s Exhibition in London for a case of edge tools exhibited; Robinson & Howell’s woollen factory; Lutz, Cook & Co., foundry; J. B. Attwood & Co., staves and shingles; R. & J. Blain’s flouring mills; R. & D. H. Forbes’ paper mill—in 1857, this had given place to a steam waggon factory, begun by Mr. Wm. A. Shearson; Peck & Dykes’ malt house; Edward Whitney, brewery; James W. Davis & Co’s, foundry; Barbour, and Malcoin’s chair and furniture factories; the carriage shops of James Kay, and Todd, Walker & Brydon; and Andrew Elliott’s distillery. Besides these establishments, there was a pail factory, at one time carried on by James Young, grain-buyer; a, last factory, commenced by Lioniel Foster, and afterwards carried on by Danforth & Young; the planing mills of James Scott and of Roger and James Robson; Galt woollen factory, carried on by Thomas Davidson; Angus Ferguson’s sash and door factory; John Scott’s marble works; a haime factory, and the usual accompaniment of carpenters’, smiths’, and similar shops.

You can read the rest of this chapter at

You can read this book at

Lovell's Gazetteer of the Dominion of Canada
I am just not getting the time to put up this gazetteer the way I want to so have started to add letters by pdf file. So far I am up to the letter P. You can see these at

The Glittering Mountains of Canada
A Record of Exploration and Pioneer Ascents in the Canadian Rockies 1914 - 1924 by J. Monroe Thorington (1925).

We now have up several chapters of this book...

Chapter I. Lake Louise: The Entrance to the Northland.
Chapter II. Trails of the Waputik.
Chapter III. The Freshfield Group.
Chapter IV. The Mountains of the Alexandra Angle.
Chapter V. The Ascent of North Twin.
Chapter VI. Mount Saskatchewan and Mount Columbia.
Chapter VII. Passage of the Saskatchewan Glacier.
Chapter VIII. Athabaska Pass and the Voyageurs, 1811-1827.

In chapter IV we read...

It was the unfrequented region surrounding Mount Columbia, a land almost “lost behind the ranges,” which lured Dr. William Ladd and myself into joining forces on our Expedition of 1923. During winter days we had spent hours in poring over available maps and photographs, familiarizing ourselves as best we could with the geography and history of North Saskatchewan headwaters. We were to visit an area much less compact than the Freshfield Group, with peaks carved on a vaster scale and more widely separated. It was plain that the Columbia Icefield must be crossed, in part at least, before climbs could be made; we knew that the distances were very great. A further incentive was the fact that the mountains were situated near the limits of journeys made by earlier explorers, whose observations had frequently been made under conditions that precluded satisfactory results. There would be work for us to complete.

You can read the rest of this chapter at

You can read the other chapters at

The Scots Canadian
The Newsletter of the Scottish Studies Society for Fall 2012 which you can read at:

Heritage Minutes - Canada
I just learned that there were a series of one minute videos produced about various aspects of Canadian History which are now available on YouTube. You can learn more at

The Flag in the Wind

This weeks issue was Compiled by Clare Adamson.

You can read this issue at

Electric Scotland

Northern Notes and Queries
This week we include 1894 Volume 10 Notes 682 To 693

This issue includes...

Abbots of Cambuskenneth
The Old Seals of Stirling
Shaw of Sauchie and Knockhill
Abstract of Stirling Protocol Book
Old Carved Stones
Account of Charles Bailly
Abercromby family in Stirlingshire
Old Monument at Dollar
Reminiscences of the ’45
On the Trail of Palaeolithic Man
Old Edinburgh Register
693. Account of a Journey into Scotland, 1629


Forbes of Thomtoun
Forbes of Foveran
Family of Crichton
Sir Lewis Craig


St Clairs
Haliburton of Denhead

Notices of Books

This issue can be viewed at

Kirkintilloch Town and Parish
By Thomas Watson (1894)

We have now completed this book with the following chapters......

Gifts of 1,000 and Two Fountains
Willie Malenny
Dan Cooper
Coach Will
Appendix - Letter to the Pope from the Barons of Scotland

These chapters can be read at

Shetland: Descriptive and Historical
Have now added the final chapter of this book...

Chapter XLII. - The Poor Law.

I also found another 2 volume publication "A View of the Ancient and Present State of the Zetland Islands" by Arthur Edmondston M.D. (1809) which you can download at the foot of the page.

You can now complete reading this book at

Robert Burns Lives!
Edited by Frank Shaw

Recently a good friend of mine recommended Ian Campbell as a contributor to our web site. As our regular readers know, we try to add weekly articles on Burns, and if we don’t, it means the cupboard is bare until the next contributor comes along. I contacted Professor Campbell asking his favorable consideration to provide a paper on Burns, and not only did I receive the one below, but his email introducing the article contained this most delightful sentence:

”Congratulations on assembling a cast-list as you have; people like Ron Jack are absolutely first-rate on Burns, ditto Ross Roy, Patrick Scott, etc. As a former President of the Edinburgh Burns Club it gives me great pleasure to offer you the attached, an essay I wrote in 1975 for the late wonderful Donald Low, whose works editing Burns’ songs you probably know well. If this piece is of use to you, please let me know.”

Not only am I familiar with Donald Low, but last January Susan and I were invited by his charming wife Sheona to visit her in Bridge of Allan by Stirling for tea in her lovely home there. As Dr. Campbell can attest, she is a vivacious woman, who not only served us the best afternoon tea we have had this side of the Savoy in London, but our conversation was extremely interesting as we discussed her husband, his work, and his friends such as Ian Campbell. That is the great thing about Burns people. They share their warmth and open their hearts to fellow Burnsians.

I will always be indebted to Professor Campbell for this article and will remember that he “took me in”, a complete stranger, and contributed an article on Burns whereas a less concerned person might have brushed me off with reasons that their articles had been spoken for or that their schedules were too busy. But as the pages on Robert Burns Lives! roll along year after year, I’m impressed with the number of people who want to be a part of what has become a site for people around the world to pull up and read for pleasure, or to do research for a Burns Supper talk, or simply to stay in touch with what’s going on in the world of Burns.

I’m also grateful for the use of biographical information on Professor Campbell provided by Edinburgh University. I must conclude by saying I’m touched that Ian, like so many others, would help me continue what I believe is the truth - “Robert Burns Lives!” (FRS: 10.3.12)

You can read this article "Burns's Poems and their Audience" By Ian Campbell at:

Other articles in this series can be read at

Waddell’s Life And Works Of Robert Burns
We already have a huge amount up about Robert Burns but we acquired this 2 volume publication and consulted with Frank Shaw and so we decided to serialise this on the site. It also has a number of excellent illustrations and some colour plates.

We added the final chapter on his correspondence and you can read this at:

Reminiscences of the Royal Burgh of Haddington
And Old East Lothian Agriculturists by John Martine (1883).

We added the following chapters this week...

Old Haddington and its Characters
Haddington Grain Market
Lizzie Richardson
Haddington Burgh Schools
Old Ecclesiastical Buildings in Haddington
Town of Haddington Library
Haddington Old Sunday School

Here is how the chapter on Lizzie Richardson starts...

IN an old tenement in Church Street, betwixt Mr John Richardson’s dwelling-house and the Grammar School, up two storeys of an old-fashioned, round-about stair, very dark in the under part of it, there lived, fifty or sixty years ago, an old woman of the name of Lizzie Richardson. It wag a common custom long ago for farmers sending their families to the Haddington Schools to take a house for them, and place them under the superintendence of a trustworthy person, who took the management of the house, and looked after them. Lizzie Richardson was servant in this capacity to the very old respectable family of Shirreffs of Mungoswells. When the Shirreffs were done schooling, and old age came on Lizzie, she took up her domicile in the above house, and began the trade of “clagham” maker to help her slender income, in opposition to Nannie Cairncross, an old-established seller of the same article in Jack’s Land opposite. Lizzie, being a superior kind of woman in her station of life, soon became a general favourite with the numerous scholars ; and, as she made good stuff, her manufacture of “clagham” became famous. Attracted by her kindly manners, her humble dwelling became a favourite resort of the lads and lassies, many of whom, now old ladies and gentlemen, will still recollect old “Clagham Lizzie,” and the happy hours spent in her house; but, alas! the recollection of many who have died in the course of fifty years throws a gloom over old reminiscences.

You can read the rest of this chapter at

You can read the rest of these chapters at

Sketches of Virginia
Historical and Biographical by The Rev. William Henry Foote D.D. (1856)

This is a new book we're starting and figured it was time to depart from histories of places in Scotland for a wee while.

Essentially this book while telling the story of Virginia also tells the story of many of the Scots and Scots-Irish folk that settled in this area of the USA along with other ethnic groups. This is the same author that did Sketches of North Carolina that we also have up on the site.

The first chapter give an Introduction and starts...


The first habitations of white men, west of the Blue Ridge in Virginia, designed for a permanent residence, were erected upon the waters that flow into the Cohongorooton, and with it form the Potomac. The grant of the northern neck, to the ancestors of Lord Fairfax, claimed for its western boundary a line from the head-spring of the Rappahannoc, supposed to rise in the Blue Ridge, to the head-spring of the Potomac, supposed 'to rise in the same ridge, or not far to the west. The Shenandoah, or more probably the Monoccacy, was reckoned the main branch of the Potomac. As the beauty and fertility of the country, west of the Blue Ridge, became known by hunters and explorers, Lord Fairfax naturally searched for the longest stream that passed through the Blue Ridge at Harper’s Ferry, gave the name of Potomac to the Cohongorooton of the aborigines and looked for its head-spring in the distant ridges of the Allegheny. The name Potomac, became by general use the appellation of the river, that is the dividing line between Maryland and Virginia, from its mouth to its headspring. The western or south-western lines of the grant being extended so far into the Alleghenies, Lord Fairfax claimed that extensive and fertile country embraced in the counties of Jefferson, Berkeley, Morgan, Hampshire, Frederic, Clarke, Warren, Page, Shenandoah and Hardy. While the claims of Fairfax to this extended grant were not admitted in Virginia, or established in En-land, warrants for surveying and appropriating extensive tracts, west of the Blue Ridge, were granted, by the governor of Virginia, to enterprizing men, on condition of permanent settlements being made, on portions of the territory covered by the warrants. John and Isaac Vanmeter obtained, from Gov. Gooch, a warrant for 40,000 acres to be located among the beautiful prairies at the lower end of the valley. This warrant they sold to Joist Hite of Pennsylvania, who proceeded to make locations of the land, and to induce emigrants from the European nations to take their residence on his grant.

You can read this book at

Reminiscences of the Lews
By Sixty One (1871)

While this if of course a place in Scotland it's also a tale of hunting, fishing and shooting. The Introduction starts...

AND so it’s all over; and, like the M’Gregor, I am landless — or, rather, shooting-quarterless. I must bid adieu to the home of twenty years, to seek another, and begin the world again—old, worn out almost, but tough still.

They might as well have let me linger out the two or three years the old legs would have carried me still, and left me and my doggies in peace. But that was not to be. I had spent years in turning a bad shooting into a good one; I had tried to civilise, as much as in my power lay, the district in which I lived. I was not hated by the surrounding inhabitants. But, then, I could not afford the vastly increased rent demanded for my own creation; and so I vacated my quarters for some more opulent successor. And sorrowful indeed was my departure, and the parting with the friends of those twenty years. The companions of the wild sports of those outlandish countries become your friends and associates; and you can venture to make them so, for the Highlander is a gentleman at heart, and never forgets his respect for you, so long as you respect yourself. Besides this, if you have ever killed a stag, a salmon, or an otter in his company, you stand well with him for the rest of your days. There were also other remembrances that bound us much to one another, which, though nothing to the world, were much to ourselves. As, then, keepers, and stalkers, and gillies wrung my hand as we drank the parting “morning” together, I felt there was truth in that grasp—nay, even in the tear that stood in the eye of some, and certainly in my own. It was agony, I own, to leave that desolate home; and when I reached the hill-top, from 'which I caught the first glimpse of that long-loved cottage, like the Highland woman, I sat me down and cried. But, as I said, it is over; and what is to be done through the long dreary days, now that I can no longer live upon the hopes and prospects of my annual migration to my wild home? I will try and recollect the past, and solace myself with giving some of its .reminiscences, collected from notes, and journals, and game-books kept during some twenty shooting seasons passed there. They will be truthful, for it is a land with too many charms, not only for my perhaps too partial recollection, but for every true sportsman, not to be able to bear criticism and truth; and those only who do not or cannot appreciate its true worth, will feel any soreness at the remarks I may at times make upon its failings.

You can read this book and the opening chapter at

From John O'Groats to Land's End
By Robert Naylor and John Naylor

This is a book I picked up from the Project Guttenberg as I was looking for some description of John O' Groats. Having read the parts I wanted I went on to read the whole book and enjoyed it that much I thought I'd share it with you.

On the page I have also provided a link where you can download the book in text format. You can read this book at:

And finally...

Below the Belt

A middle-aged Glasgow chap who joined a gym in the New Year was admiring his body in the bedroom mirror. Quietly pleased with the view, he went through to the living room, stood in front of his wife in the classic muscleman pose, with one arm curled up and the other held out in front of him.

"What does that remind you of?" he asked.

"A teapot," she replied.


Dog Story

Would you believe the jeweller in the Argyll Arcade who claims that a distraught woman came in with a picture of her recently deceased dog, and asked if a gold statue of it could be made so that she would have a permanent reminder of her faithful companion?

He says he asked her: "Eighteen carat?"

And she replied: "No, chewing a bone."

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