1901 January 2 Orkney Herald
ORKNEY & SHETLAND VIGILANCE ASSOCIATION.
FIVE POUNDS REWARD will be paid to any local Association giving information
to the Fishery Board, Edinburgh, which secures the conviction of vessels
trawling within the three-mile limit, thereby depriving the local fishermen
of the means of living. – J. CATHCART WASON.
1901 January 16 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – GUILD MEETING. – The Ritchie U.F.C. Guild met on the evening of Tuesday the 8th inst. The evening was wet and windy, yet, notwithstanding this drawback to attendance, a goodly number of the members were present. The principal item on the programme was an essay by Mr Lewis McLeod, vice-president, entitled “People We Meet,” which subject he succeeded in making very interesting and instructive, and his essay was listened to with pleasure and profit. Hymns were sung at intervals, and the secretary, Mr Grieve, contributed a somewhat humorous reading on the drink question. After the usual votes of thanks and the pronouncement of the benediction by the president, a hearty and harmonious meeting was brought to a close.
MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT.—The Parish Church choir and the Bible Class along with Sunday scholars and some neighbouring children were hospitably entertained at the manse on Saturday night last week by Mr and Mrs Spark. A few pieces were given, and an excellent musical evening was spent to the enjoyment of all.
1901 January 23 Orkney Herald
DEATH OF QUEEN VICTORIA. – Every subject of the Queen will have learned with the deepest feelings of sincere regret at the issue of the serious and dangerous illness which has overtaken their sovereign. For some weeks it has been rumoured that she was in indifferent health, but not till last Friday was anything known beyond court and official circles to indicate that her condition was so critical as it undoubtedly is. Since then, though there have been slight recoveries of ground lost, the great tenor of the bulletins issued have left little room to doubt that Her Majesty was gradually growing weaker, and that a fatal termination to her illness was more than a probability. Thus the end came yesterday (Tuesday) evening, at half-past six o’clock.
SHERIFF CRIMINAL COURT. – At the Sheriff Criminal Court yesterday – before Sheriff Cosens – Benjamin Moodie, farm servant, Rousay, pleaded guilty to a charge of assault. After hearing statements by the Procurator-Fiscal and by Mr Low for the accused, the Sheriff said the offence appeared not to be a serious one and imposed a fine of 7s 6d with the alternative of twenty-four hours imprisonment…..
1901 January 30 Orkney Herald
EX-PUPIL TEACHER (Male or Female) WANTED for Frotoft public school, Rousay.
Salary, £45 per annum, with free House (partly furnished) and Garden.
Apply, with testimonials, immediately to Clerk of School Board, Rousay.
1901 February 6 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – RITCHIE U.F. CHURCH GUILD. – This Guild met on Wednesday last. There was a good attendance. The principal item of interest was an essay by Mr William Grieve, entitled, “Rousay a Century ago and to-day: a Contrast.” He skilfully described the condition of things then and the very great changes for the better which the progress of the century had brought in domestic, sanitary, social, agricultural, and ecclesiastical matters. Mr James M. Reid gave a reading, which was highly entertaining. The choir at intervals sang very sweetly several appropriate pieces. The special feature of the evening, however, was the presentation of a beautiful album and framed view to Miss [Margaret Marwick] Gibson, Curquoy, who severs her connection with the Guild on the occasion of her marriage [to George William Mainland, Cotafea]. The President, in making the presentation, expressed the sense of loss the Guild felt, as Miss Gibson was one of the most energetic and helpful members. Miss Gibson, replying, said she had been taken unawares, as she expected no such proof of appreciation, but warmly thanked the Guild for their kind appreciation. Votes of thanks to Messrs Grieve, Reid, and the choir brought to a close a very enjoyable meeting.
A SHORT time ago the skeleton of a carrier pigeon was picked up on Eynhallow, having a ring marked “32 N.L., 1809.”
MUTUAL IMPROVEMENT GUILD. – On Monday of last week a debate took place on the question, “Was Britain justified in going to war with the Transvaal?” Mr John Leonard was for the affirmative, seconded by Mr James G. Craigie; and Mr Mark Kirkness for the negative, seconded by Mr Alex. Craigie. A lively discussion took place, and when put to the vote the affirmative was carried by 3 votes. The annual assembly of the Guild was held on the 1st inst. After tea and an interesting programme, dancing was engaged in and was continued until early morning.
1901 February 16 The Orcadian
ROUSAY. – The Rev. Alexander Spark, on Sunday, the 3rd February, preached in the Parish Church from Psalms CXVI., 15. – “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints,” concluding with a characteristic and appropriate encomium on Queen Victoria [who died on January 22]. The pulpit was draped in black and evergreens, and the musical service became the occasion, especially the last hymn tune, Gotha, which had been composed by HRH Prince Albert.
1901 February 20 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – GUILD MEETING. – At a meeting of the guild, held on the evening of Monday the 11th inst., the debate, “Moderate Drinking” versus “Total Abstinence,” was taken up. The former was upheld by Mr D. J. Inkster, seconded by Mr Jas. Kirkness, and the latter by Mr A. Leonard, seconded by Mr J. Leonard. After the papers were read and a discussion took place, a vote was taken, when moderate drinking carried the point by one vote. Mr W. Pearson also gave a reading entitled “The Auld Folks in a Huff,” which was much enjoyed. Some members present contributed songs and recitations, which were also much appreciated.
1901 March 2 The Orcadian
ROUSAY. – The annual ploughing match of the Rousay and Viera Agricultural Society was held on Thursday the 21st ult., on a field on the farm of Brendale, kindly granted by Mr John Russell for the occasion. Seventeen ploughs came forward for competition and the various prizes were keenly contested. The ploughmen were liberally supplied during the day with refreshments provided by Mr Russell. Mr Fred. Yorston, Orquil, Evie, and Mr John Mowat, Schoolhall, Evie, acted as judges, and their decisions gave entire satisfaction. Notwithstanding the inclemency of the weather a large number of spectators visited the field during the day. Annexed is the prize-list:-
PLOUGHING. – 1, (medal) Malcolm Leonard, Nearhouse; 2, William Scott, Hurtiso; 3, Thomas Gibson, Broland; 4, James Grieve, Whitehall; 5, John Harrold, Bigland; 6, George Munro, Woo; 7, James Shearer, Trumland; 8, John Russell, Brendale; 9, Alexander Sutherland, Avelshay. Best Feering – John Harrold. Best Finish – Malcolm Leonard. Youngest Ploughman – Benjamin Moodie, Ervadale.
GROOMING. – 1, George Munro; 2, John Shearer, Trumland; 3, James Shearer; 4, Malcolm Leonard; 5, Alexander Sutherland.
HARNESS. – 1, Robert Paterson, Scockness; 2, James Yorston, Oldman; 3, John Gibson, Faraclett; 4, James Shearer, Trumland; 5, George Munro, Woo; most complete horse in harness and decoration, James Yorston, Oldman; best matched horses, William Scott, Hurtiso; best decorations, James Yorston, Oldman.
A large number of special prizes were also given which greatly increased the Society’s prize list, and for which the Society beg to thank the donors. After the prizes were distributed the judges along with the Secretary and some of the members of the Committee sat down to an excellent dinner in the Old School, Sourin, prepared by Mrs Christina Munro in her usual sumptuous style. The usual toasts were given and responded to, and altogether an enjoyable evening was spent. The Committee take this opportunity of thanking all those who so kindly contributed towards the funds of the Society.
1901 March 6 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – RITCHIE U.F. GUILD. – There was a large attendance at the Ritchie U.F. guild on Wednesday last. The musical programme arranged for by Mr James W. Grieve – the guild precentor – was a decided success. Mr Alexander Grieve, Nethermill, gave a masterly paper on “Hope.” He did not attempt to define so familiar a term, but in chaste and beautiful language, illustrated his subject from many departments of life, showing the all-embracing influence of this affection, that explorer, merchant, student, etc., were all under its fascinating spell. Mr Louis McLeod, of the Sourin Public School, gave a brief and bright address, and characterised Mr Grieve’s essay as a wonderful production, and said the essayist was not in his right position, but should be where more could know him. Before such ability could be in his work, it must be in the man. Other members also took part. A highly humorous reading from Mark Twain was given by the secretary. A closing hymn by the choir and the benediction brought to a close one of the most successful meetings of the session.
1901 March 20 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – A MAGIC LANTERN ENTERTAINMENT under the auspices of the Guild was given in the Ritchie U.F. Church on Wednesday evening last. The South African War was the subject of illustration, and the weather being fine there was a large attendance of the public, many coming a considerable distance. Very great interest is taken here in this war, for apart from the fact that it is a matter of vast national importance, several young men, natives of the island, are at present residing in that part of the “dark continent,” and one, James Inkster, has lost his life while scouting in his country’s cause. Seventy views were shown to a deeply interested and appreciative audience, and when the heroes of Ladysmith, Mafeking, and Paardeberg appeared on the screen, the audience gave vent to its patriotic feelings in prolonged applause. The Guild president described the different views, and the secretary manipulated the lantern.
[James Inkster, born on December 3rd 1864, and his brother John, both went to South Africa. They were the sons of James Inkster, Ervadale, later Quoys, Sourin, and Margaret Pearson, Kirkgate.]
1901 March 23 The Orcadian
MOTOR CAR IN ORKNEY. – The motor car has at last found its way to Orkney, and will probably remain! The machine which is fitted up for carrying 8 passengers arrived at Stromness by the steamer St Nicholas and a trial run was made to Kirkwall on Tuesday afternoon. On Wednesday the vehicle made a few experimented runs around the town, and these were considered of a fairly satisfactory character. One representative tried a short spin on the car, and was much impressed not only with its speed but also with the clever way in which it was manoeuvred, turning corners as if on a pivot, and gliding in past vehicles. The car is very comfortable to sit in, and as it is said to run at a speed of something like fourteen miles an hour, it will no doubt become very popular with the travelling public. We understand a company is to be formed for the purpose of running motor cars in Orkney, and it is said the syndicate are to have a second machine at Kirkwall by steamer on Saturday. The promoters say they will be able, even with the necessary stoppages for taking on and putting off passengers, to accomplish the journey to Stromness in a little over an hour, and at half the fares presently charged for the trip. Whether the promoters will be able to accomplish all they anticipate remains to be seen, but there can be no question that motor cars ought to reduce the time taken on the journey between Kirkwall and Stromness by at least one half, which of itself will be a great consideration to travellers, and if they can be profitably run at half the rates presently charged their success should be assured. At any rate the arrival of the motor car in Orkney has caused quite a sensation, and its performances have been watched with no little interest by large crowds of people, though there has been some disappointment over the fact that the vehicle, though never carrying the full complement of passengers, has broken down more than once.
1901 April 3 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – GUILD SOCIAL MEETING. – The U.F.C. Guild brought the session to a close with a social on Friday evening last. Notwithstanding the continued inclemency of the weather, there was a large attendance. The chair was occupied by Mr L. McLeod, vice-president, the president being unavoidably absent in the South. Cake and fruit were served during an interval in the proceedings. Mr James M. Reid gave a very good paper on “Perseverance,” well calculated to give fresh impetus in striving to gain the prizes of life, and renewed vigour in fighting its battles with ‘nil desperandum’ as the motto and battle-cry. With humorous readings, pathetic recitation, sacred songs, duet, solo, and chorus, the evening wore pleasantly to a close, and although the programme was long, one was sorry when it came to an end. Mr James W. Grieve deserves to be congratulated on the signal success which has attended his unwearying efforts to improve the music, which, now leaves little to be desired, as witness Friday evening’s performance, and the members of the choir are also praiseworthy for their regular attendance at practice, (no small matter when darkness, bad weather, and bad roads are taken into consideration), and without which no such order of merit could possibly be obtained. The session just closed has been as hearty and harmonious as any of its predecessors, the average attendance has been better, and the essays, readings, and recitations have been fully up to the standard of former sessions.
1901 April 10 Orkney Herald
THE CENSUS. – The returns of the census, which was taken as at midnight on 31st March, are now coming to hand. So far as Orkney is concerned, there will undoubtedly be a large decrease in the population as compared with 1891. In South Ronaldshay and Burray the decrease approaches 300, though in the island of Burray itself there is an increase of 4. In Rousay, Egilshay, and Weir the decrease is about 150, and there is an equally large decrease in Birsay. In Westray the decrease is 201, the present population being 1826, against 2027 in 1891; in Evie and Rendall the decrease is 149, the present population being 1084; in Holm, population 817, decrease 133; Stronsay, population 1084, decrease 125; Orphir 877, decrease 124; Shapinsay 781, decrease 122; Eday 639, decrease 66; Harray 676, decrease 59; Hoy and Graemsay 485, decrease 52; and Firth 700, decrease 31. In Stronsay the males outnumber the females by 4.
[In 1891 the population of Rousay was 774; Egilsay, 147; and Wyre, 67. There were 473 males and 515 females. Total 988. – In 1901 there were 398 males and 427 females – a total population of the three islands of 825 – a decrease of 163 folk.]
1901 May 1 Orkney Herald
LIEUTENANT-GENERAL BURROUGHS, C.B., of Rousay and Veira, has been appointed chief honorary representative of the Shipwrecked Fishermen and Mariner’s Society in Orkney.
1901 May 11 The Orcadian
COMFORTS FOR SOLDIERS. – Mrs Burroughs, through the kindness of the Editor of the “Orcadian,” takes this opportunity of warmly thanking Orkney friends of “Our Soldiers” in South Africa for the large consignment of socks, etc., also sums of money sent her in answer to Lord Kitchener’s appeal for comforts for the troops. By this means, and with the help of friends in London, a large parcel of comforts has been despatched to the Seaforth Highlanders (the territorial Regiment) and others. The patriotism of Orkney and its practical sympathy, both this year and last, with our soldiers in the field has been listened to with pride and gratification by all who have heard the tale. And it is a fact that this has been no small encouragement to many a returned and disabled, or weary soldier, as well as to those in authority to know that the heart of the outmost part of the British Isles beats as one with the rest of the Empire.
1901 May 18 The Orcadian
CROFTERS’ AMENDMENT ACT. – In our sixth page we print the text of a Crofters’ Amendment Bill, which has been introduced in the House of Commons by Mr J Cathcart Wason, and which is backed by Mr Bignold and other representatives for the North of Scotland.
THE CROFTERS’ HOLDINGS SCOTLAND ACT, 1886. – The following is the text of the Bill brought in by Mr J. Cathcart Wason, Mr Bignold, Mr John Dewar, Mr Leweson-Gower, Mr Harmsworth, Mr Weir, and Mr Gordon, to amend the Crofters’ Holdings Scotland Act, 1886:-
Be it enacted by the King’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:-
1. This Act may be cited as the Crofters’ Holdings (Scotland) Act, 1901, and shall be read along with and as part of the Crofters’ Holdings (Scotland) Act, 1886, herein called the principal Act, and Acts amending and extending the same.
2. The crofter shall not use any part of the arable or old arable land of his holding for other than agricultural or pastoral purposes, except as after mentioned, without the consent of his landlord in writing.
3. The crofter may use part or parts of the outrun of his holding, not exceeding in all one fourth of such outrun, and may erect buildings on such part or parts of his outrun for purposes connected with or relating to sea fishing, and including the drying of nets, and drying, storing, storing, curing, kippering, buying or selling of all kinds of sea fish, or for any lawful purposes connected with the trade or business of a merchant, or buying and selling or dealing in groceries, provisions, and other produce, or connected with the trade or business of a weaver, knitter, joiner, carpenter, blacksmith, mason, tailor and clothier, shoemaker, cooper, rope and sail maker, miller, common carrier, or cart, coach, or boat builder or hirer, or for other the like home industry, trade or business.
4. The landlord shall not be entitled to pay the crofter compensation in the event of his removal from the holding for any buildings, erections, or improvements made under the above section.
5. The crofter may use the foreshore from the highest mark of the flood to the lowest of the ebb, and also the adjacent waste land for the space of one hundred yards beyond the highest high-water mark, so far as such foreshore and waste land are ex adverso of the arable land or outrun of the holding, for all purposes connected with or relating to sea fishing and the curing, drying, storing, kippering, buying and selling of all manner of sea fish.
6. The crofter shall have the right to quarry stones out of the outrun of his holding for the purposes of all or any of the improvements mentioned in the schedule to the principal Act, and under section three of this Act.
7. In the event of the crofter being unable to work his holding through old age or infirmity he may assign his right to the same to a member of his family; such assignation shall be intimated to the landlord within twenty-one days, and the assignee shall have all the rights of a crofter in the holding.
8. Application may be made to the sheriff of the county to grant an order restraining any crofter from unduly exercising any privilege or right hereunder by this or under the principal Act or Acts amending the same, and the decision of the sheriff shall in every such application be final.
1901 May 29 Orkney Herald
VICTORIA DAY. – Friday was observed as a general holiday in Kirkwall [being the anniversary of the birth of Her late Majesty Queen Victoria]. There was some fog in the morning, but not enough to prevent the excursion steamers leaving for their destinations, and when it cleared off the day was all that could be desired for a holiday. The Orcadia had large contingents of excursionists for Sanday and Stronsay, among the latter being members of the Orkney Golf Club, who enjoyed the hospitality of Mr George Sutherland at Rothiesholm, and had a pleasant game on the links there. The Fawn ran to Rousay and Egilshay, among her passengers being the Provost and Town Council of Kirkwall, whom General and Mrs Burroughs had invited to be their guests at Trumland for the day. Shapinsay had, as usual, a number of visitors by the Iona; while from Scapa the Hoy Head carried excursionists to Stromness. Every vehicle was engaged by family and picnic parties, and cyclists were out in all directions.
1901 June 8 The Orcadian
THUNDERSTORM. – On Friday last a severe thunderstorm passed over several districts in Orkney. In Orphir there was an almost unprecedented fall of rain, and a piece of ground in the Petertown district was struck with lightning, but no serious damage was done. In Rousay the rain was so heavy that the sea was discoloured for a considerable distance from the shore with clay and peat water flowing from the hills.
1901 June 26 Orkney Herald
KIRKWALL TOWN COUNCIL. – A monthly meeting of the Town Council was held on Friday. Present – Provost Spence, Bailies John Sclater and James Slater, Dean-of-Guild Sutherland, Treasurer Drever, and Councillors Irvine, Flett, Tait, and Baikie…..
GENERAL BURROUGHS AND THE COUNCIL. The Provost thought that it would be proper, before proceeding to the business of the meeting, to refer to a matter mentioned in the minutes. The Council, on the invitation of General Burroughs, had spent Victoria Day at Rousay, and he (the Provost) suggested that they should now minute their appreciation of General Burroughs’ kindness. – This was agreed to, and the Town Clerk was instructed to send an excerpt of this part of the minute to General Burroughs…..
1901 June 29 The Orcadian
THE CROFTERS COMMISSION IN ORKNEY.
The Crofters Commission met in the County Buildings, Kirkwall, on Monday. Sheriff Brand presided, and had on the bench with him as assessors Messrs Macrae and Mackintosh…..
A ROUSAY CASE – THE STONE QUESTION AGAIN. – William Reid, Wasdale, Rousay, applied for a revaluation of his croft. His area is 22 acres, 2 roods, 7 poles, arable, and 35 acres, 0 roods, 3 poles, outrun. The old rent was £25, and the fair rent is £18. There were £12 of arrears at the last application, which were all cancelled. The tenant at that time was George Reid. Witness said the fair rent was fixed in 1888. He had 3 cows, 2 young cattle, 2 horses, 3 sheep and 2 lambs.
Mr ROBERTSON – Only 2 lambs.
Witness – One of the sheep is a lamb from last year.
The SHERIFF – Ah, Mr Robertson, he has a lamb up his sleeve. (Laughter.) He could have been a professor of mathematics.
Witness, proceeding, said he considered the farm too dear.
The SHERIFF – What do you think would be a fair rent?
Witness – Some competent judges consider that £13 would be quite sufficient. I do not say that the Commissioners were wrong with their valuation –
The SHERIFF – Oh, they are fallible. (Laughter.)
Witness – But I would prefer local valuators.
The SHERIFF – You must take the valuators appointed under the Act, and if you are not pleased with them you can withdraw your application.
Witness (continuing) said – I have been tenant for two years, and succeeded my father who, I think, went to the place in the year 1841. He put up all the buildings, but he got some help. There is a one-storeyed house of 4 rooms on the place. I have a byre, a barn, and 2 little out-houses, and another house where we work some joiner work. There are three other joiners in Rousay. I only work at my trade occasionally – I devote most of my time to working the farm. The landlord gave some cupples, also 2 windows, and I think 2 doors.
Mr ROBERTSON explained that he found from the factory accounts that up to 1863 the estate had given £7 10s 11d for repairs, and in that year the landlord gave a reduction in the rent of 25s.
Witness (proceeding) said – I am a married man. I have two sons and two daughters. Ono boy and one girl is at home. My boy helps me on the croft, and also does joiner work. I keep an apprentice joiner. His name is James Alexander Munro. I understand the late factor, Mr Morrison, would not have been surprised if the Commission had taken down my rent to £12 – comparing what was done with other places. Since 1888 we almost built a barn. We built it all but 3 or 4 yards on one side. This year I sold one-year-old stirk for £7 10s, and a four-year-old cow for £13 10s. In 1900 I sold a cow on January 9th for £10 10s, in April a calf for £3, on 20th August 2 stirks for £15 10s, and on November 13, a lamb for £1 4s. On February 4, 1899, I sold one calf for £2, on March 20th, 2 stirks for £19 10s; on May 25, one ewe for £1 11s 9d; also on the same date one stirk for £7; and in December two Iambs for £2 2s. In 1898, on August 15, I sold one cow for £16 10s, on September 19, one cow for £12 10s, and one lamb for 16s. On October 27, I sold 3 Iambs for £2 14s.
The SHERIFF – That is the most distinct statement of sales that I have heard for a long time. Q. – Did you enter these sales down in a book at the time they took place? A. – Yes.
Mr ROBERTSON – You have not given us at full account of your lambs. Q. – Did you give one away? A. – You may depend upon it that I did not. Q. – Did you cure one? A. – I don’t think so.
The SHERIFF – You had two sheep last year, and only two lambs. Why was there only two lambs? A. – One of the sheep was too young to have a lamb. Q. – Were all these sales made to drovers? A. – The sales were made in the island. We never ship cattle. We sell locally, and we never get “cheat.”
THE QUARRYING OF STONES. – Witness then said he would like to make a statement. He had asked the factor to be allowed to quarry stones for the repair of his holding, and the factor had refused. He handed in the correspondence.
The SHERIFF read the applicant’s letter to the factor, which was in the following terms:-
“As some of my houses are needing repair, I respectfully ask if you would allow me to take stones from the usual place. I am willing to pay any reasonable charge.” To this letter a reply was received in the following terms:- “In reply to yours of yesterday, General Burroughs regrets that he cannot see his way to allow you to take flags.”
The SHERIFF – Q. – Were the stones required for roofing purposes? A. – Yes. They were for the repair of the roof of the barn, and I had to go elsewhere for the stones. Q. – You say you wanted stones from the usual place. How far is it from your dwelling? A. – Not far – perhaps about ¾ of a mile. When this application was refused I had to go to ground owned by Mr Gibson of Hullion, who has a quarry, and I got the flags from him. I did not pay him any money, but I made an acknowledgement. Q. – How far is Gibson’s place from your dwelling? A. – I am not quite sure. Going over the hill it would be three or four miles, but by the cart road, by which we went, the distance would be six or seven miles. We had about 16 or 18 cart loads.
Mr ROBERTSON thought that this might be a question for discussion in the matter of compensation, but he contended it did not arise in a claim for fair rent.
The SHERIFF said they were directed by the statute to take cognisance of such matters. He could not say that this man was doing anything wrong in giving evidence upon this point. In December 1897 he found the Commissioners had a pretty strong note on this very point, which he quoted. Proceeding, he said this man was bound under the Act to prevent his holding from deteriorating, and he complained that the landlord was preventing him getting stones for the repair of his buildings.
Mr Robertson said that on one estate the tenants had to go to Caithness for their stones.
The SHERIFF replied that that might be quite true, but it made a difference when there were no suitable stones to be got nearer hand. Here there were stones, and the landlord refused to let the crofters use them.
Witness said he also wished to call attention to the loss he sustained from finger-and-toe. Last year his crop of turnips was a failure, and the people all around were in a similar position. Q. – What do you do to put down the disease? A. – There is nothing that I know of to prevent it. Q. – Have you tried the application of lime for finger and toe? A. – Last year I put on a little lime, but I did not see that it made any difference. Q. – Could you not alter your shift, so as to allow the land to get a rest? A. – I understand we are not allowed to do that.
Mr ROBERTSON had no authority for saying so, but he did not think the landlord would object to a longer shift.
Witness in reply to Mr Robertson said he had sold no horses nor hay. He had sold oats, but had bought bere in its place, and some meal besides. He did not sell any potatoes, but had sold some butter. He had no idea of the quantity, just little bits fresh. They sold some eggs – but he knew nothing about these. No man interfered with the eggs. That was women’s work, and it was generally understood that the women were rough on the men if they interfered in that department. We have a lot of hens, but only one duck. The hens get grain and Indian meal. They had ground 33½ quarters of grain, but that was above the average. He did not grow as much as that every year. He remembered one year they just ground 5½ bolls of meal. That was the lowest, and the highest was 18½ bolls. The average was a little over 12 bolls. They had just one pig for eating. He did not believe in these gutter-snipes. They were not payable. Since 1888 the letting value of farms in Orkney had gone down. He knew of one house in Orkney that was down about £30. He was not aware of any croft the size of his own that was let lately. He did remember Skethequoy [Sketquoy] – the rent was £30, and it was reduced to £24. He did not know what was given for it recently. He would take it from Mr Robertson that the new tenant offered £30, that he got it at that rent, and held it still. Q. – How does the price of stock compare now with 1888? A. – I do not remember exactly that time, but I know we got £26 or £27 for two beasts. That might be before 1888. I think the prices will be about the same as in 1888. I think my croft is too highly valued. My own opinion is that it is more highly valued than the other crofts round about. I cannot say what rent would be got for my croft if it was put in the market to-morrow. I know a farm in my district, where the tenant gave a few pounds advance in rent, and had to leave the place. The man was only three or four years in it.
Mr ROBERTSON then handed in a statement showing that a number of crofts had fallen into the hands of the landlord – many of which in the open market had been again let at the old rent, such as Redland, East Cray, West Cray, and so on.
Witness said that in some of these cases the landlord had given assistance to the tenants to repair their buildings.
Mr ROBERTSON explained that he only knew of one case of that kind, and the sum only amounted to few shillings.
1901 July 3 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – PICNIC. – A very successful and enjoyable picnic, under the auspices of the U.F.C. Guild, was held at Faraclett on Friday last, on a field kindly given for the purpose by Mr [John] Gibson. Mrs [Margaret] Gibson [John’s mother] also very kindly granted the free use of her kitchen which was a very great convenience for tea making. On arrival the picnickers were liberally served with bread and milk. Thereafter disposing themselves over the field, they enjoyed themselves in running races, jumping, skipping, swinging, throwing the hammer, and putting the stone. After the day’s sports tea and cake were heartily enjoyed and done ample justice to. Hearty cheers were given to Mr and Mrs Gibson for their hospitable kindness in granting the use of field and kitchen, and to the picnic committee for their trouble in making all the arrangements. Everyone came away satisfied with the days’ outing and its enjoyment.
1901 July 17 Orkney Herald
MR HUGH CRAIGIE, formerly a pupil-teacher in Wasbister Public School, Rousay, and at present teaching under the Manchester School Board, has been appointed assistant inspector of schools for the Manchester district.
1901 July 20 The Orcadian
PICNICS. – Last Saturday the members of the St Magnus Cathedral Sabbath School had their annual outing, the place chosen this year being Rousay. The Fawn, which was chartered for the occasion, left Kirkwall pier at 10.30 a.m. for Rousay, and on the company’s arrival there, proceeded to a field adjoining Trumland House, kindly granted by Mr [Hamilton] Horne of Trumbland Farm, where games, &c., were engaged in. The steamer left Rousay on the return trip at 6.15, everyone having thoroughly enjoyed the outing…..
1901 July 24 Orkney Herald
THE HOTTEST DAY. – The heat on Thursday was the greatest that has been recorded in Orkney. In 1846 the late Dr Charles Clouston noted 75 degrees; last Thursday the thermometer registered 78 degrees, or 3 degrees above the previous record. – [78F=25.55C.]
1901 July 31 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY REGATTA. – The annual regatta of the Rousay and Veira Boat Club was held in Veira Sound on Friday, the 26th inst., under rather unfavourable circumstances. In the morning a close mist and calmness prevailed, which prevented many of the usual competitors getting forward. However, notwithstanding the mist, a few boats did arrive from Kirkwall and the neighbouring places, while others were too late in arriving. The Orcadia, which, we understand, had been chartered for Melsetter, but was prevented from going there by the fog, arrived at Rousay pier about 12 o’clock with a large number of people on board, who, we understand, were as disappointed as the Rousay folks at the unsatisfactory state of the weather. About 1 o’clock, however, the fog suddenly cleared away, and with a light breeze from the east the first race was started at 1.35. In this race, which was open to boats 16 feet waterline and under, there were four entries, namely, Amorita, J. Spence; Maggie, R. Graham; Jean Ann, W. Miller; and Alice, C. Logie. On the starting gun being fired, all boats got well away together, but as the wind was still very light the race was not of a very exciting nature. The wind, however, freshened, and when the boats came in sight after rounding the Sourin mark boat it was seen that the Jean Ann had a long lead, followed by Alice and Amorita. On the run home before the wind the Alice overhauled Jean Ann and was first to cross the line, but having to allow Jean Ann time allowance, only secured second place. The finish was as follows, with time allowance deducted: –
Jean Ann, Wm. Miller – 1h. 55m. 0sec.
Alice, C. Logie – 1h. 55m. 44 sec.
Maggie, R. Graham – 1h. 59m. 46½sec.
Amorita, J. Spence – 1h. 59m. 52½sec.
The next race that should have started was the yacht race, 35 feet waterline and under, but as no one but the Annie came forward, the race had to be put off.
The 22 feet boats started next, the Annie sailing in the race and allowing all boats 55 seconds on the mile. The entries were – Sigurd, General Burroughs; Walrus, A. Leask; Nancy Lee, R. Stevenson; Weyland, J. Mainland; and Annie, J. Logie. All boats made a good start, and the race to the point of Avelshay was a very close one, however, on coming down Eglishay Sound the Annie was seen to have a long lead followed by the Walrus and Sigurd. On the run home, however, the Walrus overhauled the Annie a long way, and although some minutes after Annie in crossing the line secured first place. The finish was as follows: –
Walrus, A. Leask – Cup – 1h. 28m. 57sec.
Annie, J. Logie – 1h.29m. 22sec.
Sigurd, Gen. Burroughs – 1h. 31m. 26sec.
Weyland, J. Mainland – 1h. 40m. 22sec.
Nancy Lee, R. Stevenson – 1h. 51m. 10sec.
The all-comers race started at 4.35 with a nice fresh breeze. For this race there were six entries, namely, Annie, Walrus, Sigurd, Alice, Jean Ann, and Weyland. In this race there was very little changing of places; the Annie took the lead from the start, followed by Walrus and Sigurd, and these positions were maintained throughout the race. The following is the actual time:-
Annie, J. Logie – 0h. 50m. 12sec.
Walrus, A. Leask – 0h. 55m. 59sec.
Sigurd, Gen. Burroughs – 0h. 58m. 25sec.
Weyland, J. Mainland – 1h. 8m. 0sec.
Jean Ann, W. Miller – 1h. 10m. 2sec.
Alice, C. Logie – 1h. 10m 35sec.
The following were the rowing races: – Boys – 1, Sinclair and Craigie; 2, D. Munro and B. Moodie; 3, K. McLean and H. Munro; 4, H. Inkster and J. Sinclair. Ladies – 1, Misses Inkster; 2, Misses Craigie and Gibson. Men – 1, H. Robertson and W. Stevenson; 2, Jas. Yorston and Walter Muir; 3, W. Sutherland and W. Craigie; 4, J. Craigie and M. Flaws.
At the close of the races, Mrs Burroughs handed out the prizes to the successful competitors, for which she was accorded three hearty cheers. Cheers were also given for General Burroughs, commodore, and Mr A. Leask, vice-commodore. The club, as usual, opened a refreshment room during the day, which was well patronised, and the club feel much indebted to the ladies who presided for the way in which they attended to the wants of all and sundry. The committee take this opportunity of thanking all those who contributed so liberally to the funds of the club.
1901 August 7 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY. – The Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was dispensed in the Ritchie U. F. Church on Sabbath last. The Rev. Robert Bonellie, of Darvel, Ayrshire, formerly minister of the congregation, conducted the fast day services on Thursday in the church and in Wasbister Public School, and also assisted on Sabbath. He was warmly received by the people, and his services were much appreciated.
1901 August 10 The Orcadian
ROUSAY – PICNIC AND CONCERT. – The Bible Class and choir of Trumland U.F. Church and the scholars attending the public schools were invited to a picnic and phonograph entertainment at the Church on Friday. They assembled on the Church green in large number where refreshments were served, abundance of milk having been kindly supplied from neighbouring farms. After games, all adjourned to the church, and at 6 o’clock many parents and friends joined the children at the concert. Mr Pirie presided and introduced Mr Taylor of Parks, Sandwick, who entertained the audience with songs, secular and sacred, from his Edison Phonograph. The Church choir, under the leadership of Mr Alan Gibson, with Mr Irvine Pirie at the organ, sang a number of choruses and quartettes with much credit to themselves and enjoyment to those present. Votes of thanks to the singers and to Mr Taylor, who had come so far with his phonograph, brought a very pleasant meeting to a close.
1901 August 17 The Orcadian
General Burroughs of Rousay and Veira has presently on exhibition with Mr D. B. Peace, Albert Street, Kirkwall, a Neilson floating lobster incubator. This incubator is largely used in Newfoundland, and it might be found of use in developing the Orkney lobster fisheries.
1901 August 21 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – SCHOOL PICNIC. – The children attending the Wasbister Public School were treated to their annual picnic on Friday, the 9th inst. The weather, which was rather dull and threatening in the morning, cleared up towards noon, and the remainder of the day was everything that could be desired. The scholars assembled at the school at 11.30, and with flags flying marched to a field kindly granted by Mr [Walter] Muir, Saviskaill. On arriving at the field the children, with their parents and visitors, were treated to buns, milk, etc., after which both young and old took part in a long and varied programme of races and games, which was much enjoyed by all, and reflected much credit on Miss [Jessie] Marwick and her committee. Mr and Miss [Isabella] Muir also deserve a word of praise for their kindness to all and sundry during the day. After the games had been finished the scholars and all present repaired to the school, where an excellent tea was served in the school playground. After ample justice had been done to this repast another pleasing feature took place, namely, the presenting of the prizes won by scholars attending the school during the year. Mrs Burroughs, who along with General Burroughs and party had visited the field during the day, handed out the prizes to the successful pupils. The first prizes to be handed out were prizes presented by Mrs Burroughs for sewing and knitting. The sewing prize, which took the form of a beautiful work box, was won by Maggie Jessie Craigie [Turbitail], and the knitting prize, a nicely framed picture, was won by Lydia Inkster [Furse]. Next was a prize, also presented by Mrs Burroughs, for an essay on “How to me a Good Citizen.” This prize was won by Willie Inkster [Furse]. The Orkney and Zetland Association Bible prizes were also handed out by Mrs Burroughs, the winners being: – In Standard I., Ivy Craigie [Everybist]; Std III., Emily Craigie [Everybist] and Anna May Cooper [Langskaill], equal; Std. V., Mary Jane Craigie [Deithe]; Std. VI., Beatrice Craigie [Everybist]. Mrs Burroughs then, in a few appropriate remarks, took leave of teacher and scholars and left the playground amid much cheering The teacher then handed out the prizes for the races, but the programme is too long and varied to publish fully. It may be said, however, that all the scholars were quite delighted to be the proud possessors of a few coppers. After the picnic was over, the young people present took part in a dance in the school, which was kept up with much spirit till 12 o’clock, when all went home fully satisfied that they had spent a most enjoyable day, and that the picnic was one of the most successful ever held in connection with the school.
1901 September 4 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – CATTLE SHOW. – One of the most successful shows ever held under the auspices of the Rousay Agricultural Society took place on the farm of Banks, Sourin, on Tuesday the 20th ult., on a field kindly granted by Mr [Robert] Seatter. The number of entries in each section far exceeded any previous year, the quality being also very much improved, making the task of judging rather a difficult undertaking. The judges were – Mr Scott, Odinstone, Shapinsay; Mr Walls, Gutterpool, Holm; and Mr Bews, Ribbaquoy, St Andrews; and their awards gave general satisfaction. In some of the sections several very fine animals were shown. For shorthorn cows, Mr Inkster, Westness, took first with a splendid red cow in forward condition; in one-year-old heifers Mr Muir, Saviskaill, was first with a fine black heifer; and in the one-year-old steers Mr Learmonth, Innister, took first place with a nice red polled stot. Horses were also a good turnout, and some splendid animals were brought forward. Annexed is the prize-list :—
HORSES. – Entire Horses – Hugh Inkster, Westness. Draught Geldings – 1, Robert Mainland, Nearhouse; 2, Peter Yorston, Oldman; 3, Alex. Munro, Woo; hc Allan Gibson, Myres; c William Learmonth, Innister. Mares with foal at foot – 1, Hugh Inkster, Westness ; 2, John Corsie, Knarston; 3, William Gibson, Curquoy. Draught Mares – 1, John Gibson, Faraclett; 2, Hugh Inkster, Westness; 3, James Flaws, Hammerfield; hc John Gibson, Broland; c William D. Gibson, Curquoy. Two-year-old Fillies – 1, George Gibson, Avelshay; 2, William D. Gibson, Curquoy. One-year-old Fillies – 1, John Russell, Brendale; 2, Robert Seatter, Banks; 3, Peter Sinclair, Bigland. Ponies – Hugh Inkster, Westness.
HORSE SHOEING COMPETITION. – 1, Archibald Leonard, Wasbister; 2, William Sutherland, Trumland.
CATTLE. – Polled Bulls – 1, Hugh Inkster, Westness; 2, Walter Muir, Saviskaill; 3, Robert Seatter, Banks. Polled Cows, section A – 1, John Russell, Brendale; 2, Robert Mainland, Nearhouse; 3, John Gibson, Faraclett; hc Walter Muir, Saviskaill; c, David Gibson, Langskaill. Shorthorn Cows, section B – 1, Hugh Inkster, Westness; 2, William Learmonth, Saviskaill; 3, George Gibson, Avelshay; hc John Gibson, Faraclett; c Walter Muir, Saviskaill. Two-year-old Heifers – 1, and 3, Hugh Inkster, Westness; 2, hc, and c, William Learmonth, Innister. One-year-old Heifers – 1, Walter Muir, Saviskaill; 2, and 3, William D. Gibson, Curquoy; hc Robert Mainland, Nearhouse; c George Reid, Tratland. Two-year-old Steers – 1, and 2, Hugh Inkster, Westness; 3, and c William Learmonth, Innister. One-year-old Steers – 1, 2, and hc William Learmonth, lnnister; 3, and c Walter Muir, SaviskailI.
After the prizes had been read out, the judges, along with the committee and a few friends, sat down to an excellent dinner purveyed by Mrs and Miss Munro. The usual toasts were given and responded to, and all present went home fully satisfied that the Agricultural Society was in a flourishing and healthy condition.
1901 September 21 The Orcadian
ORKNEY SCHOOL REPORTS. – SOURIN PUBLIC SCHOOL, ROUSAY. – This school continues to exhibit an upward tendency, particularly in the infant and junior divisions, where the work is at once accurate and well advanced. In the senior division the only comparative weakness is in the fifth class, where spelling is somewhat defective and arithmetic falls below the general high level reached by the other classes in this subject. The merit certificate candidates make in all respects a good appearance. Singing is excellent; and sewing, drill, and drawing are all very good. The general tone of the school is admirable. Average attendance 33; grants earned (inclusive of £10 under Art. 19 D.) £53 10s 3d.
WASBISTER PUBLIC SCHOOL, ROUSAY, – Miss Marwick conducts this school in a manner deserving of hearty praise. The children are bright under oral examination and their written tests were worked with commendable neatness and accuracy. Due attention is devoted to all the ordinary subjects of instruction. Good progress is being made in drawing, and the grant is now recommended. Average attendance, 24; grants earned (inclusive of £15 under Art. 19 D.) £46 5s 9d.
FROTOFT PUBLIC SCHOOL, ROUSAY. – This school is now in a very satisfactory state of efficiency. The written work is on the whole very good, and the children acquit themselves creditably under oral examination. The merit certificate candidates made a very creditable appearance both in written and oral work, three of the four presented obtaining the certificate. The tunefulness of the singing and the precision with which the physical exercises are gone through deserve praise. Sewing and drawing have received due attention. Avenge attendance, 19; grants earned (inclusive of £15 under Art, 19 D.), £39 10s 9d.
1901 September 28 The Orcadian
ROUSAY. SPECIAL SERMON. – In reference to President McKinley’s death the Rev. Alexander Spark preached in Rousay Parish Church from Deut. Xxxiv. 5, “So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord.” An epitome of the sermon will be found on page 7. “Nearer my God to Thee” was the concluding hymn.
[William McKinley Jr. was the 25th president of the United States, serving from March 4, 1897, until his assassination in Buffalo, New York, on September 14th 1901, six months into his second term].
CINEMATOGRAPH. – Mr J. Elrick Fraser, Edinburgh, has been visiting Rousay with his excellent cinematograph. Under special arrangements with Mrs Burroughs, Trumland House, who wished to give the Community an opportunity of seeing this most enjoyable exhibition, Mr Fraser came to Rousay and gave his entertainment in Trumland United Free Church. General Burroughs presided and introduced Mr Fraser to a full house. The living pictures of the South African War, the late Queen’s funeral, railway travelling, the Shamrock ready for her race, and many other beautiful films were greatly admired, as were also the large selection of variety and clever trick films. Mr Fraser also exhibited a powerful Edison shell phonograph, which by its musical performance combined with the cinematograph, made a memorable entertainment. Mrs Giles gave the organ and piano accomplishments, and songs at intervals were tastefully contributed by Mrs Broadbent, and Mrs Giles. Votes of thanks to all who had assisted, and especially to Mrs Burroughs who had brought Mr Fraser, closed a most delightful evening. This is Mr Fraser’s first visit to Orkney with the cinematograph, but we hope he will return soon with his splendid entertainment.
1901 October 23 Orkney Herald
It is announced in the Court Circular of last Tuesday that Mr Elrick Fraser, photographer, Edinburgh, who, under the auspices of General and Mrs Burroughs, gave a short time ago his cinematograph performance in Rousay, has by the command of the King exhibited his cinematograms at Balmoral Castle. His Majesty invited a large company, and at the close of the entertainment Mr Fraser was called into the Royal presence and personally thanked by the King and Queen for the very enjoyable exhibition he had given them.
1901 November 9 The Orcadian
REPORTED LOSS OF A TRAWLER. – Two men belonging to Rousay report that they saw a trawler fill and sink off Faraclett Head on Saturday afternoon. As no wreckage has come ashore, and the crew have not landed anywhere on the coast, there is a feeling that the men have been mistaken, especially as there was a slight haze at the time, but they are positive the vessel sank.
1901 November 13 Orkney Herald
NORTH ISLES DISTRICT COMMITTEE. – A meeting of the North Isles District Committee as Local Authority was held yesterday (Tuesday). Present – Messrs Grant, Sutherland, and Reid. Mr Grant in the chair. The application by David Gibson, Hullion, Rousay, for sanction to license the premises of Hullion in which the Local Authority has already sanctioned the establishment of the business of a slaughterer of cattle, was considered. It was unanimously resolved to grant the license asked for. The Clerk was instructed to inform Mr Gibson that the Committee expect that he will give the use of the slaughter-house to parties desirous of killing animals for sale on payment of a reasonable fee for the use of the place…..
1901 November 20 Orkney Herald
ROUSAY – GUILD SOCIAL MEETING. – The Ritchie United Free Church Guild commenced its meetings for the season on Thursday last by a social tea. The president, Rev. Mr McLeman, gave an address on “Some reasons why we should attend the Guild.” Subjects were discussed which would be out of place in the pulpit. We could cultivate the social side from nature. Talent would be discovered and developed. Such gatherings were splendid occasions for drilling the youth for public speaking. Messrs McLeod and Grieve, vice-presidents, also gave addresses. There were recitations by Messrs Inkster, Leonard and the secretary. The Guild choir rendered some inspiriting pieces, which they had carefully prepared. About the middle of the programme justice was done to a substantial tea. A hearty vote of thanks was given to all who had promoted the evening’s enjoyment, special reference was made to the young ladies who had prepared the refreshments and the choir.
1901 November 23 The Orcadian
EDINBURGH UNIVERSITY. – We observe that Alexander Spark, eldest son of Rev. A. Spark, minister of the parish of Rousay and Egilshay, has gained, by written competitive examination, one of the two “Simson” bursaries of the value of £25 per annum, tenable for 3 years, in Arts at Edinburgh University. Privately taught by his father, who himself was a distinguished student at Aberdeen University, having been 9th public bursar in Arts, and 5th public bursar in Divinity, he succeeded in gaining a County Council bursary of £15 per annum, tenable for 3 years at Kirkwall Burgh School where he has gained all the “leaving certificates” exempting him from the “University Preliminary” proper. Judging from what we know of this young man in Kirkwall as well as from his up-to-date successes, we divine for him yet higher distinctions in the Scottish metropolis.