In Print

Newsprint – 1905

1905 January 4 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY. – The annual meeting of the Rousay Agricultural Society was held in Sourin Public School on the 26th ult. The old committee was reappointed, the accounts examined and found correct and funds in a flourishing condition. The ploughing match falls to be held in Wasbister district this year, and we understand Mr Craigie, Saviskaill, is to grant the use of a field for the occasion.

ENTERTAINMENT TO CHILDREN. – On Monday, last week, Mrs Arbuthnot, Westness House, entertained all the children from Trumland to Westside at Westness. Accompanied by a number of parents, the children arrived at Westness at three o’clock, and were entertained to tea. Games were afterwards engaged in by the children, and a most happy evening spent. A handsome Christmas tree was made to yield its fruit, and all the young people left for home laden with gifts, everyone, both parents and children, appreciating Mrs Arbuthnot’s kindness at this season.

1905 January 11 Orkney Herald

WRECK OF TRAWLER. – During the storm on Sunday afternoon, the steam trawler Excelsior (Martin, master), of Hull, ran on the rocks at The Graand, Egilshay. She was severely damaged, and was making water. During the night the crew, with the exception of the master, were taken off and landed in Egilshay. The steam trawler Edward Roberts came up during Sunday afternoon, and remained in the neighbourhood till Monday afternoon, when, all hope of getting the Excelsior off by ordinary means having been abandoned, she took the Excelsior’s crew to Kirkwall. The Excelsior is likely to become a total wreck.

1905 January 18 Orkney Herald

LARGE BEQUEST TO BALFOUR HOSPITAL. – By the will of Miss Mary Harcus, who was found dead in her house in Tay Terrace, Dundee, on the 5th inst., a sum of about £2000 is expected to fall to Balfour Hospital, Kirkwall. Miss Harcus, who was a native of Rousay, where some of her relatives still reside, was 65 years of age. For thirty-five years she was in the service of the late Bailie Harris, Dundee, and latterly had lived alone in a three-roomed house in a tenement in Tay Terrace, Dundee. As she had not been seen by her neighbours since December 27, the police were informed, and on Thursday the 5th inst. Inspector Gordon entered the house by a ladder, and found Miss Harcus sitting in her arm-chair, dead. Dr Templeman, who examined the body, certified that death was due to natural causes. The funeral took place on Tuesday last week, when the contents of the deceased’s will were made known. The estate amounts to about £3000. Legacies are left to several friends, and £20 to Trumland U.F. Church, Rousay, the residue of the estate, estimated, as stated above, at about £2000, being left to Balfour Hospital, Kirkwall.

THE WRECKED TRAWLER. – The trawler Excelsior of Hull which stranded on the Graand of Egilshay during the storm on the afternoon of Sunday, 8th inst., still remains on the rocks there, and it is feared she has been seriously damaged by recent heavy seas. A tug boat arrived at Kirkwall last week with the object of trying to take the vessel off, but owing to the stormy weather it has not been possible to make the attempt.

1905 February 4 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – On Sunday last after sermon from Philip iii 14, the Rev. A. Spark announced the re-opening of his usual classes at the Manse, viz., the Musical Class open to all and free of charge, on Wednesday at 6.30 p.m., and the Bible Class on Sunday at 6 p.m. In making such an announcement, he took occasion to say that Manses are not the most suitable places for public classes, but what are we here to do? We are forced to so meet or to forego such meetings. Yonder in Wasbister we had a petition signed by 100 persons for a Mission Hall, and we had the promise of money to build it besides the sanction and recommendation of the Presbytery and of the Commission of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, but the chief heritor refused a site. Here we have a church – called a church – we requested liberty to have it heated, but again the chief heritor refused permission. This is the Church of Scotland – a persecuted, oppressed, suffering church – the only church which the British Government has bound itself to maintain as one of the conditions of the union of England and Scotland – whose chief sin consisted in opposing the corruptions of Italy and the cruelties of England – but, withal, a church whose maintenance is a perpetual proviso in the Act of Union, and to maintain which our King found it to be his first duty to give his signature – but a Church which, if rightly reformed and brought up-to-date, will vie with the Jewish Church and become in its Catholic Constitution and popular usefulness, the One House of God to the people of Scotland and to the Nation.

1905 February 8 Orkney Herald

In answer to many enquiries we are requested to state that the illness which struck down Sir Frederick Burroughs on the eve of his attending the 50th anniversary of the Balaclava gathering of his old regiment, “the thin red line,” still continues, and gives cause for the greatest regret and anxiety to his friends.

1905 February 18 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – The Star of Peace Lodge I.O.G.T., held an open meeting in the Frotoft Public School on the evening of Friday, the 10th February, being the anniversary of the formation of the Lodge. The meeting commenced about 8.15 p.m. Rev. A. I. Pirie occupied the chair, and gave a stirring temperance address in his usual happy style. A lengthy programme was then gone through, and was sacred throughout, the readings being appropriate and of a temperance character. A number of sacred pieces were sung by the Lodge as a choir. Solos were sung by Sister Ida Gibson and Brother Sinclair; duets by Sisters Anna Craigie and Anna Reid, Sister Reid and Brother James Gibson, Sister Munro and Brother Gibson; quartettes by Sisters Munro and Craigie, and Brothers Gibson and Craigie, and Sisters Reid and Craigie, and Brothers Gibson and Craigie; and readings by Brother Inkster, and Sisters Lily Inkster and M. J. Craigie. The Lodge-Deputy gave a short address at the close of the meeting, and, in the name of the Lodge, extended a cordial invitation to all present to join the order. Owing to the inclemency of the weather the audience was not so large as it would otherwise have been, but quite a few turned up. Votes of thanks to the chairman, performers, and to the audience for their quiet, attentive hearing, brought the meeting to a close.

1905 February 22 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – PLOUGHING MATCH. – The annual ploughing match of the Rousay Agricultural Society was held on Thursday the 16th inst., on a field on the farm of Saviskaill, kindly granted by Mr Craigie for the occasion. Seventeen ploughs came forward for competition – 3 in the champion class and 14 in the ordinary – and the work done was the best yet seen since 1 in. of back was adopted. The day proved to be somewhat wet, but nevertheless a good number of spectators visited the field and remained to the finish. The judges were – Messrs Scarth, Burgar; Mowat, School Hall; and Yorston, Orquil, Evie; and theirs was a difficult task, but they did their work in a thorough and painstaking manner, and their decisions gave general satisfaction A great number of special prizes were forwarded for distribution to the ploughmen, and the committee take this opportunity of thanking the donors. They are also indebted to Mr Horne, Trumland, for visiting the field during the day, thereby enabling them to secure the Highland and Agricultural Society’s medal. The ploughmen were liberally supplied with refreshments throughout the day, and in the evening the judges and a few friends were kindIy entertained to a first-rate dinner, purveyed in sumptuous style by Mrs White, Saviskaill, and a number of willing assistants. The usual toasts were given and responded to, and a most successful evening was brought to a close by thanking Mr Craigie and Mrs White for their kind hospitality, to which Mr Craigie suitably replied. The following is the prize-list: –

PLOUGHING. – Champions – 1 and medal, Tom Gibson, Broland; 2, Tom Sinclair, 3, Malcolm Leonard, Grips. Ordinary – 1 and Highland Society’s’ medal, Walter Muir, Westness; 2, James Craigie, Falquoy; 3, James Grieve, Faraclett; 4, Hugh Robertson, Scockness; 5, Andrew Laird, Trumland; 6, Hugh Marwick, Westness; 7, John Pearson, Innister; 8, George Munro, Woo; 9, David Moodie, The Glebe; 10, John Grieve, Saviskaill; best feering – Walter Muir: best finish – Hugh Robertson; best ploughed rig – T. Gibson; youngest ploughman – Jas. Russell.

GROOMING. – 1, Hugh Munro, Saviskaill; 2, George Munro; 3, Walter Muir; 4, John Pearson; 5, H. Robertson, 6, Andrew Laird; 7, Hugh Marwick.

HARNESS. – 1, Malcolm Leonard; 2, Hugh Robertson; 3, James Grieve; 4, Hugh Munro; 5, John Pearson; 6, John Seatter, Banks; 7, James Russell, Brendale.

1905 February 25 The Orcadian

We are requested to state in answer to many kind enquiries, that the improvement in Sir Frederick Burroughs’ health this last week is maintained and that he has been down stairs for the first time in five weeks.

1905 March 18 The Orcadian

NORTH ISLES PRESBYTERY – NEW MANSE REQUIRED FOR ROUSAY. – The North Isles Presbytery met with the heritors of Rousay in the Parish Church there on Tuesday. Mr A. Gordon Jenkins, architect, Aberdeen, was present, and his report, pointing out some repairs requiring to be made on the Church, was read. After inspecting the building the Presbytery found the Church was not ruinous, and the heritors undertook to make the repairs recommended by Mr Jenkins. The Presbytery thereafter inspected the manse, and heard the architect’s report thereon, pointing out a large number of repairs which he considered necessary. He further stated, that in his opinion it would be better for the heritors to build a new manse. After consideration the Presbytery ordained the heritors to build a new manse and submit plans and specification to a meeting of Presbytery to be held on 15th August.

1905 March 29 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – SOCIAL MEETING. – The Ritchie U.F.C. Guild brought the session to a close with a social meeting held in the church on the evening of 16th March. Although rain came on for a while in the evening, which hindered many from attending, yet before the hour of meeting it cleared away, and when the president, Rev. J. McLeman, took the chair at 7.30, there was a large attendance of the public present. The choir, under the leadership of Mr J. W. Grieve, sang a number of hymns, quartettes, &c. in a style which reflected the highest credit both on leader and choir, but special mention may be made of the quartettes, the rendering of which left nothing to be desired. The piece of the evening, however, was the duet by Miss Agnes Munro and Mr J. W. Grieve, which showed to the fullest advantage their splendid voices. Speeches were given by the president, and vice-presidents Messrs Inkster and A. Grieve, and Rev. A. I. Pirie, of Trumland Church, whose presence added greatly to the enjoyment of the meeting. Humorous readings were given by the secretary, Mr W. Grieve, and the precentor, which were much appreciated, Mr J. W. Grieve keeping the audience in convulsions of laughter from beginning to end. The inner man was also amply provided for, tea, with an abundance of cakes and other good things, being served in the middle of the programme. A most enjoyable evening was brought to a close with hearty votes of thanks to choir, speakers, and committee.

1905 April 12 Orkney Herald


We regret to have to record to-day the death of Lieutenant-General Sir Frederick William Traill Burroughs, K.C.B., of Rousay and Viera. Sir Frederick fell ill towards the close of last year. Recovering somewhat, he was able in December to leave home for London. For a time hopes were entertained that he would be fully restored to health, but during the last week or two, notwithstanding the best medical treatment he gradually became weaker, and died on Sunday at the age of 74.

Sir Frederick Burroughs was the eldest son of Major-General Frederick William Burroughs, of the Bengal Infantry, and grandson of Sir William Burroughs of Castle Bagshawe, County Cavan. His mother was Caroline, only daughter of Captain Charles Adolphus Marie de Peyron, son of the Chevalier Charles Adrien de Peyron. In 1789, sometime after the death of the Chevalier de Peyron, his widow, a daughter of Sir George Colebrook, Bart., married William Traill of Woodwick, from whose son, George William Traill, the Commissioner of the Province of Kumaon in India, who purchased Rousay for a relative, Sir Frederick Burroughs succeeded to the estates of Rousay and Viera, and under a condition of the will prefaced the name Traill to his own surname. He was born in 1831, and received part of his education at Blackheath and part in France [in fact it was in Hofwyl, Switzerland]. Like so many of his forebears, he chose the army as his profession, and on March 31, 1848, he joined as an ensign the regiment with which the whole of his active service was spent and to the command of which he was to rise – the 93rd Highlanders. One of his earliest duties was as an officer of the guard of honour to Queen Victoria on her first visit to Aberdeen in September 1848. With the exception of a colour-sergeant he was the last survivor of that guard. With the 93rd he went to the Crimea on the outbreak of the war with Russia. He took part in the battle of the Alma, his regiment forming the centre of the Highland Brigade under Sir Colin Campbell, the 42nd being on the right and the 79th on the left. Later when the siege of Sebastopol had begun, the 93rd was thrown the responsibility for the defence of Balaclava and for preserving communication between the British forces and the outer world. Sir Colin Campbell, with the rank of Major-General, was Governor of the post. The story of the Russian attack is well-known, but will bear telling once again.

THE THIN RED LINE. – On the 25th October 1854, an enormous force of Russians – 25 battalions of infantry, 34 squadrons of cavalry, and 78 guns – in all about 24,000 men – advanced in the direction of the Turkish redoubts outside Balaclava. These were easily occupied, the Turks evacuating one after the other, and fleeing in the direction of the port; though many of them halted and formed up on the flanks of the 93rd, who were drawn up in line on a hill outside the town. The historian of “The Highland Brigade” thus describes the battle:-

“And now the victorious Russians, being in full possession of the redoubts, advanced in force into the gentle valley which lay between themselves and the Highlanders, who occupied a piece of slightly rising ground. In their thousands they moved forward, and their artillery, coming within range, opened fire so successfully that one or two of the Highlanders and some of the Turks were wounded. Seeing this, Sir Colin retired his men behind the crest of the hill, and as they lay down he watched the development of the Russian movement. It was quickly revealed to him, for, as they watched, four squadron’s of the enemy’s cavalry, suddenly detaching themselves from the main body and heading straight for the 93rd, galloped forward at the charge. A critical moment was at hand, and one in which the chances were entirely in favour of the advancing horsemen. The force in Campbell’s hand was slender indeed when the task before it is considered. Formed in line, only two deep, were 550 of the 93rd, and about 100 invalids whom Colonel Devaney had drawn up on the Highlanders left. In addition were the Turks already mentioned, on whom, however, no reliance could be placed. But the General had confidence in his Highlanders, and to show it he rode down the line and said – ‘Now, men, remember there is no retreat from here. You must die where you stand.’ The response was decided and cheerful – ‘Aye, ay, Sir Colin; an’ need be, we’ll do that.’ It was John Scott, the right hand man of No. 6 Company [Burroughs’ Company], who spoke, and others took up and shouted forth the reply. Sir Colin immediately ordered the Highlanders forward to the crest of the hill, and the men obeyed with an impetuosity which suggested a desire to rush on and charge the advancing enemy. But this would have ruined all, and as they sprang forward Sir Colin, with his temper at fever heat, was heard fiercely shouting – ‘Ninety-third! Ninety-third! D—n all that eagerness.’ ‘The angry voice of the old man,’ says Kinglake, ‘quickly steadied the line.’ And now came an exhibition of quiet, resolute courage such as soldiers have seldom displayed on the field of battle. Discarding the usual method adopted by infantry on receiving cavalry in square – not even troubling himself to throw his men in fours – Sir Colin awaited the onslaught with his ‘thin red line’ of two deep. As the thunder of the furiously-galloping horse and the cries of the riders fell upon the ears of the Turks, huddled on the flanks of the 93rd, they quickly broke, and once more ran to the rear in utter affright, holding out their hands to the ships in the roadstead, and crying out, “Ship, ship.” But the 93rd stood firm as the unshaken rock. Nearer and nearer came the cavalry, their swords, lance-heads, and bright helmets glittering in the now clear morning light. Their pace was furious – General Wolseley calculates it at three hundred and fifty yards a minute – the ground seeming literally to fly beneath their feet, and the manner in which they brandished their weapons showed the fierceness of their desire for the combat. But combat was hardly to be expected, for ‘that thin red streak, tipped with steel’ might have been regarded as no greater an obstacle than a fence of furze. And coming on behind the leaders were squadron after squadron, says James Grant, ‘the successive waves of a human sea.’ It was a terrible trial for men to stand unmoved and watch this raging avalanche hurling itself against them. ‘In other parts of the field,’ says Dr Russell, of the Times, who saw the action, ‘with breathless suspense every one waited the bursting of the wave upon the line of Gaelic rock.’ But the time for action had come. Suddenly a word of command rang out sharp and clear, and the rifles of the 93rd were levelled at the advancing foe. The plumed heads drooped as the regulation three seconds were spent in taking careful aim. Then flashed out from flank to flank a withering volley, which sent dismay into the enemy’s ranks, caused them to reel, stagger, stumble, and recoil. Their headlong course was checked, and as they tried to extricate themselves from the wild confusion into which they had been thrown, the cool Highlanders, calmly as if on parade, brought their butts to the ground and reloaded. A detachment headed off from the main body of the enemy, and moving to the left attempted to outflank the 93rd. ‘That man knows his business, Shadwell,’ said Sir Colin to a staff officer beside him; and also knowing his business Sir Colin wheeled a portion of his men to the right to meet the emergency. The movement was successful. One more volley, and the discomfited horsemen were galloping back in full retreat. ‘Well done, brave Highlanders,’ shouted the spectators, as they for a moment breathed again. A great end had been achieved, a marvellous feat in warfare accomplished. The weakest point in the defence of Balaclava had been maintained, and the Russian opportunity lost. General Burroughs, who was at the time lieutenant of No. 6 Company, states in ‘The Records of the 93rd Regiment,’ that a party of British officers were afterwards informed by Russian officers who were in the engagement that ‘few of us were killed, but nearly every man and horse was wounded.’”

The safety of Balaclava was thus secured, but cavalry fighting followed, including the famous charge of the Light Brigade.

OTHER SERVICES IN THE CRIMEA. – In the following year Sir Frederick Burroughs took part in the expedition to Kertch, then the most important point in the Crimea, on the eastern shore the peninsula, on the strait of Kaffa or Yenikali. Kertch was levelled to the ground. He also shared in the attacks of 18th June and 8th Sept. 1855 on the Sebastopol forts. The capture of the Malakoff and Redan on the latter date compelled the Russians to evacuate the town and retire to the north side. Peace negotiations followed and resulted in the termination of the war. For his services in the Crimea he received the Crimean Medal with three clasps, the Turkish medal, and the 5th Class of the Turkish Order of the Medjidi.

THE INDIAN MUTINY. – Shortly after the end of the Crimean War the Indian Mutiny broke out, and the 93rd was sent out to assist quelling it (1857-8). In that campaign Sir Frederick Burroughs took part in the relief of Lucknow by Lord Clyde (Sir Colin Campbell), the storming of the Secundrabagh and of the Shanujeev, the battle of Cawnpore on 6th December 1857, the pursuit of Seraighat, the action of Khodagunge, the storming of the Beegum Khotee, and the capture of Lucknow. He was first through the breach of Secundrabagh, and was slightly wounded on the head with a tulwar cut, and was severely wounded at the battle of Lucknow. He was given the Brevet rank of Major in his regiment and received the Mutiny medal with two clasps.

THE CAPTURE OF THE SECUNDRABAGH. – Of the capture of the Secundrabagh some account must be given because of the discussions which have taken place over the awards of the coveted Victoria Cross for valour on that occasion. Lord Roberts’ book, published in1897, gave rise to a correspondence in the Standard of considerable military interest. The question mooted was whether Captain Burroughs or Lieutenant Cooper (who was given the Victoria Cross for it), was the first in at the hole in the wall. We are not aware (said the Broad Arrow, commenting at the time on this correspondence) that Cooper himself actually claimed that he was the first man in, but others, among them Colonel Malleson and now Lord Roberts, have made the claim for him. On the other hand, Burroughs distinctly and officially claimed that he was the first of the survivors who entered by the hole in the wall, and all who knew him will feel convinced that he is not the man to rob his comrade of an honour. Lord Roberts, in describing the assault which he witnessed, asserts that a Highlander was the first, but was shot as he entered; a man of the 4th Punjab Infantry came next, and he also was slain; that Lieut. Cooper was third, and that he was immediately followed by Lieutenant-Colonel Ewart, both of the 93rd. Forbes Mitchell, in his account of the storm, asserts that Burroughs was the first officer to enter, and that he – Forbes Mitchell – assisted Lieutenant-Colonel Ewart to enter, he himself following with Lieut. Cooper. Col. (afterwards Gen. Sir John) Ewart, according to Malleson, when writing in 1880, said – “I cannot tell you precisely who was first through the hole, Captain Burroughs claimed the honour, and certainly he was in before me, for when I jumped through I noticed him inside with his head bleeding from a sabre cut.” The most important contribution to the controversy was, however, the letter in the Standard signed “W. G. A.. Lieutenant-Colonel (late 93rd Highlanders),” who is evidently Lieut.-General William Gordon Alexander. That officer states that he kept a diary during the whole of the mutiny campaign, that he was Captain Burroughs’ subaltern at the capture of the Secundrabagh, and that he was one of the first four officers who entered the breach. His story is that the wing of the 93rd was on a sloping bank facing the Secundrabagh, and within close range of it, whilst the artillery was trying to make a breach. After waiting about an hour and a half, Lord Clyde gave the order to storm. Burroughs had for some time been standing on the top of the bank drawing down a heavy fire by thus exposing himself – so as to get a good start. When the signal was given Burroughs rushed. He had only to jump down, while his company had to rise, climb the bank, and then jump down. Owing to the trend of the bank he had twenty yards start of both Ewart and Cooper. Colonel Alexander says that he ran his best to get through the heavy fire and saw Burroughs “go a header” through the hole before there was a man near him; Burroughs was followed in by Cooper and a private, then Alexander after helping Ewart in, entered himself. Colonel Alexander affirms most positively that not a single Native soldier entered by that breach. It is quite clear therefore that Burroughs was the first man who passed through the hole, and the differences of opinion and narrative can easily be explained. The fire was hot, nerves were highly strung, the atmosphere was clouded by smoke and dust, claymores were flashing, tartans and the foxtails of the feather bonnets were flying in the air. What wonder then if mistakes were made about details. Moreover the Highland full dress is such that at a distance it is not easy for a stranger to identify any one individual out of several Highland soldiers. Still, after considering the evidence of Ewart, Forbes Mitchell, Alexander, and Burroughs himself, we have no doubt that General Burroughs was the first man who passed alive through the hole in the Secundrabagh, and we consider the question as now finally settled.

WOUNDED AT LUCKNOW. – Reference may also be made to the last day’s fighting at Lucknow – 27th March 1858. On that day No. 6 Company of the 93rd Highlanders under Captain Burroughs was on guard at the Burra Durree Gateway, when it was reported that some Sepoys held a house near the post and were firing at all passers-by. “Captain Burroughs,” says Croall, “at once started with a party to dislodge them, and having gained the top of the flat-roofed house occupied by the Sepoys, he was making arrangements to dislodge them, when he saw a puff of smoke beneath him. Instantly expecting an explosion, Burroughs sprang down the stairs, but too late to escape. The staircase was blown from under him, a brick struck his right leg, breaking it. As he fell the leg was broken again, and he was covered by the falling wall of the building. In a badly bruised and injured condition the unfortunate officer was removed to the Dilkoosha, where he was put under chloroform and had his twice-broken limb set. The explanation of the explosion was that a party of another regiment, bent on the same errand as the party under Burroughs – but each knowing nothing of the other – had got within the building, and resolved to clear out the enemy by bringing it down about their ears. They were entirely successful and Burroughs in due time perfectly recovered.”

RECEIVES FREEDOM OF KIRKWALL. – Though the 93rd did not return to Scotland after the Mutiny till 1870, Major Burroughs was at home for a time, and in 1859, the freedom of the Burgh of Kirkwall was conferred on him. Returning to India he was with the regiment at Peshawar in 1862 when cholera raged and carried off many of the officers and killed the rank and file like flies. By the deaths of Lieutenant-Colonel Macdonald and Major Middleton, Major Burroughs succeeded temporarily to the command. He marched the regiment across a low range of hills to Jubba, when the epidemic abated and finally disappeared. The Adjutant-General issued an order in which was this passage:- “It is most gratifying to the Commander-in-Chief to learn that the conduct of all ranks throughout the trying season was so admirable, and that, notwithstanding the adverse circumstances of cholera and fever, the drill and discipline of the 93rd Highlanders did not suffer in any way, a state of things which reflects the greatest credit on Major Burroughs, the officers, and non-commissioned officers and men of this very distinguished regiment.”

THE EUSOFZAI EXPEDITION. – In the end of 1864, the regiment was ordered to form part of the field force under Sir Neville Chamberlain. The campaign was against the Bonyers and other mountain tribes on the N.W. frontier. The campaign involved more hard marching than fighting. Major Burroughs commanded the regiment in the Umbeyla Pass, and was mentioned in despatches, and received the medal and clasp for the operations.

ASSAULTED BY A TEMPLE OFFICIAL. – On 18th June 1868, Col. Burroughs (as he then was) was assaulted by the Darogah when visiting a mosque at Lucknow. The Colonel wished to ascend a minaret when the Darogah insulted him, and the Colonel became angry. The Darogah called on the hangers-on about the temple, and some thirty of these attacked Colonel Burroughs with bamboos and latees. He was severely beaten, but managed to escape to his buggy. The attackers followed, cut the reins of his horse, and beat the syce [groom]. The Darogah was tried and sentenced to a month’s imprisonment.

RETURN HOME. – In 1864 the promotion of Colonel Sisted led to the further promotion of Major Burroughs to be Lieut.-Colonel in command of the regiment, and it was under his command as Colonel (to which he was promoted in August 1869) that the regiment landed from the troopship Himalaya at Leith on their return home after thirteen years’ service in India. The regiment was at first sent to Aberdeen, and then removed to Edinburgh. Here new colours were presented to the regiment in the Queen’s Park by the Duchess of Sutherland. Before the new flags were presented, the worn and tattered colours which the regiment had carried through the Mutiny were trooped. Colonel Burroughs, in offering to her Grace the old colours, which had been presented to the regiment by the Duke of Cambridge after the Crimean War, said:- “These colours that are now so war-worn and tattered were our rallying-point in the Indian Mutiny War. We offer them for your Grace’s acceptance, and hope you will accord them an asylum at Dunrobin Castle, where the regiment was first mustered. On former occasions of presentations of colours, it is recorded that the officers then in command promised and vowed, in the name of the regiment, that it would do its duty to its King, Queen, and country. The pages of history are witnesses how faithfully those vows have been kept. In accepting these new colours at your Grace’s hands, I call upon the officers, non-commissioned officers, and soldiers of the 93rd Sutherland Highlanders to bear in mind that they were presented by her Grace the Duchess of Sutherland, and I call upon the regiment to vow with me that we will defend them to the last; that we will ever faithfully do our duty to our Queen and country; that we will never permit the good name of the Sutherland regiment to be sullied, and, remembering that the Sutherland motto is sans peur [without fear], at it will ever be our endeavour that our conduct on all occasions shall be sans reproche.”

RETIREMENT FROM THE COMMAND. – In October 1873, after twenty-five years’ service, during which he was never on half pay, Colonel Burroughs gave up command of the 93rd and returned to Orkney, where he afterwards made his home. His retirement was the occasion of a great demonstration by the soldiers at Aldershot, where the regiment then was. Every person in the lines of the regiment turned out to give him a hearty farewell and wish him happiness in private life. No sooner had he taken his seat in the carriage to drive to the railway station than a scene presented itself of rare occurrence in the orderly north camp. The regiment and band formed up, the horses were removed from the carriage, which was dragged along by a number of the men, preceded by the band playing “Will ye no come back again?” the rest of the men following and cheering lustily. On reaching Farnham Road, the band took up a place at one side, and played “Auld Lang Syne,” the horses were re-yoked, and the Colonel drove slowly on while the men mounted the trees on the roadside and cheered as only British soldiers can. The demonstration was a remarkable and spontaneous tribute to the relations existing between Colonel Burroughs and the men under his command. He was the soldiers’ friend as well as their commanding officer. Before handing over the command he delivered a farewell address, in which he thanked officers and non-commissioned officers for their support, and the men for their exemplary good conduct. He expressed his unfeigned sorrow at quitting a regiment in which he had spent the best years of his life; and concluded by saying – “I remind the regiment that it has always borne the honourable reputation of being one of the finest, bravest, and best-conducted regiments in Her Majesty’s service, and that the maintenance of this high reputation has been and is dependent on the deportment of every individual in it; and I hope that everyone will earnestly strive to uphold the name of the 93rd Sutherland Highlanders.”

HONOURS. – After retiring from active service, Colonel Burroughs continued to take a keen interest in military affairs, and his kindness to old soldiers was well known. He was made a Major-General, March 16, 1880, and Lieutenant-General, July 1, 1881. In June 1897 he was appointed Honorary Colonel of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, a post which he vacated last year on being appointed Hon. Colonel of his old regiment and its linked battalion, the Argyle and Sutherland Highlanders, much to the satisfaction of the regiment. On the occasion of the visit of the Prince and Princess of Wales to Aldershot in the summer of 1873, Colonel Burroughs was created a Companion of the Bath. On the King’s Birthday last year he received the honour of knighthood in the same Order.

LOCAL INTERESTS. – Colonel Burroughs made Rousay his home after 1873. He built Trumland House, and resided there. He took much interest in the Volunteers, and was for several years Colonel in the Orkney Volunteer Artillery, presenting the regiment a challenge shield for company drill. His relations with his tenantry were generally friendly, though some friction was caused in recent years by the working of the Crofter’s Act, which General Burroughs regarded as a most unjust measure. He was for many years a member of most of the county and parish boards, both before and since the passing of the Local Government Act – County Council, Commissioners of Supply, Orkney Harbours Commissioners, Road Trust, School Board, Parish Council, &c. He was also a Justice of the Peace; and after being for some years a Deputy-Lieutenant of the County, he was a few years ago appointed Vice-Lieutenant. He gave his support to nearly all the public institutions and associations in the county.

In politics a Conservative, Sir Frederick did not take a very active part in political affairs. He leant particularly to the school of political thought which is represented by the Liberty and Property Defence League, of which he was one of the office-bearers. In an article in the Liberty Review, the League’s organ, he expounded his views on the land question. He was, we believe, engaged in writing a volume of reminiscences when his last illness seized him.

An attached member of the Episcopal Church, Sir Frederick T. Burroughs was one of the founders of St Olaf’s Church, Kirkwall, the foundation stone of which he laid in November 1874, and he was for many years a member of the vestry of that congregation.

Sir Frederick Burroughs married on 4th June 1870, Eliza D’Oyly, youngest daughter of Colonel William Geddes, C.B., of the Royal Artillery, by whom he is survived. Their visit to Orkney in the end of July of that year, after their marriage, was the occasion of a hearty demonstration of welcome by the tenantry on the estates of Rousay and Veira. The last occasion which the tenants had of congratulating him was last June on his receiving the honour of knighthood, when they presented him with an illuminated address.

His character may be easily summed up. He was a loyal subject, a brave soldier, a kind commanding officer, the soldier’s friend, and a most courteous gentleman.

FUNERAL ARRANGEMENTS. – The funeral will take place in London on Friday. A service will be held in St Gabriel’s Church at 12.45 p.m., and the interment in Brompton Cemetery at half-past one o’clock.


The steam trawler Excelsior of Hull, which went ashore on the skerry, south end of Egilshay, during the storm on 8th January, has been abandoned, all attempts to take her off having failed.

1905 April 15 The Orcadian

ROUSAY CONCERT. – A very successful concert was held in Sourin School on the evening of Friday the 31st ult. The Rev. A. I. Pirie occupied the chair and performed the duties of chairman in his usual efficient and hearty manner. The choir under the leadership of Mr J. W. Grieve rendered a number of part songs in a pleasing and capable manner, while a number of quartettes were also very well done. Out of such a good programme it may seem invidious to give special mention to any items, but the soloists deserve praise for the very pleasing manner in which they performed their various songs. Mrs Horne very sweetly sang “The Old Countree,” while Miss Aggie Munro’s rendering of “Cam ye by Athol” left little to be desired. Miss Munro possesses a very fine voice of wonderful richness and beauty, and was awarded a well-merited encore. Miss Edith Spark also sang in a specially pleasing manner “Mill May,” and this young lady’s voice coupled with her extreme youth gives great promise for the future. Mr A. Gibson, our well-known tenor, rendered in capital style “The Highlandman’s Toast,” while Mr Scott’s “Killiecrankie,” and Mr Grieve’s “McAllister’s Bonnet” as well as a trio, “Dame Durden,” by Messrs Scott, Grieve, and Marwick called forth roars of laughter. Two humorous readings by Mr Grieve also fairly convulsed the audience. One pleasing feature of the concert was the parts performed by the school children, an action song, “The Japanese Fan,” by girls, and music drill by boys being specially appreciated. Altogether the concert was a great success and Mr Grieve cannot be too highly praised for the unselfish way in which he worked, nor for the capable and cultured manner in which he performed his duties as conductor. Annexed is the programme: –

Opening chorus, “All Among the Barley,” choir; Chairman’s remarks ; quartette, “Sir Knight, Sir Knight,” Misses Munro and Marwick and Messrs Gibson and Grieve; musical drill, dumb bells, school boys; solo, “The Highlandman’s Toast,” Mr A. Gibson; reading, “The Exercise Book,” Mr J. W. Grieve; chorus, “Speed Bonnie Boat,” choir; recitation, “Story of a Stowaway,” Master W .Marwick; solo, “The Old Countree,” Mrs Horne; Quartette, “Dublin Bay,” Mrs Grieve and Miss Spark and Messrs Craigie and J. Gibson; action song, “The Japanese Fan,” school girls; solo, “McAllister’s Bonnet,” Mr J. W. Grieve: chorus, choir. Service of tea. Chorus, “Rose of Allandale,” choir; dialogue, “The Fair Unknown,” Misses Seatter and Spark and Messrs Munro and Marwick; solo, “Killiecrankie,” Mr D. Scott; song, “Marching through Georgia,” school children; quartette, “I had a dream,” Mrs Grieve and Miss Leonard and Messrs Scott. and Marwick; solo, “Cam ye by Athol,” Miss A. Munro; recitation, “Charge of the Light Brigade.” Master J. Irvine; trio, “Dame Durden,” Messrs Grieve, Scott, and Marwick; reading, “A School Examination,” Mr J. W. Grieve; musical drill, dumb bells, school boys; solo, “Mill May,” Miss E. Spark; quartette, “Song of the Gipsies,” Misses Spark and Marwick and Messrs Gibson and Grieve; chorus, “Will ye no come back again,” choir.

1905 April 22 The Orcadian





The funeral of Sir Frederick W. Traill-Burroughs took place on the afternoon of Friday, April 14th, at Brompton Cemetery, London, the interment being in the vault of the late George William Traill of Viera.

The first part of the service was held at St Gabriel’s Church, Warwick Square. The body was carried to the church by a bearer party of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (Princess Louise’s Own) consisting of the regimental sergeant-major and seven non-commissioned officers, preceded by their pipe major, who came from Longmore Camp for the occasion. The coffin was covered with the Union Jack, on which were placed the late General’s cocked hat and sword, together with his orders and medals. On and around the coffin were placed floral crosses and wreaths. Conspicuous among these were a beautiful cross from General Burroughs’ family, a magnificent wreath from the Colonel and officers of the Orkney Volunteer Artillery, also wreaths from both battalions of the General’s regiment, from the old officers of the 91st and 93rd Highlanders, and wreaths from friends in Rousay and the household.

The chief mourners were Lady Traill-Burroughs, Colonel C. Burroughs, Miss Burroughs, Mrs Dunbar, the Misses Keene, Mr Justin Keene, Mr Hume Dunbar, Mr John Logie, Sir John Sinclair of Barrock, Mr Lillie and the Misses Lillie.

During the seating of the congregation, the organist, Mr G. Douglas Smith, played Beethoven’s “Funeral March on the Death of a Hero” and Chopin’s “Marche Funebre.”

The service was conducted by the Rev. Canon Morris, vicar of St Gabriel’s, assisted by the Venerable Archdeacon Sinclair. The body was met at the west door by clergy and choir, who preceded it up the nave, the vicar reciting the opening sentences of the burial service. The psalm “Domine, Refugium,” was sung, and the hymns “Rock of Ages” and “O God our help in ages past,” were beautifully rendered by the choir of St Gabriel’s. At the conclusion of the service in church, the organist played the Dead March in “Saul” whilst the body was removed to the hearse for conveyance to Brompton Cemetery.

At the grave the service was taken by the Venerable Archdeacon Sinclair, the regimental pipe-major playing a solemn lament before the numerous mourners separated. The pall-bearers were:- The Lord Lieutenant of the County (Capt. Laing), Sir John Sinclair of Barrock, Colonel Urmston, of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, Col. Menzies Clayhills (one of the survivors of the “Thin Red Line” at Balaclava), Mr Justin Keene, Mr Hume Dunbar, Colonel Chator (late Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders), Colonel Colquhoun, and Mr Sutherland-Graeme of Graemeshall.

A very large number of friends were present at the church at Brompton Cemetery. Among those connected with Orkney were Mrs Sutherland-Graeme, Miss Maud Balfour, Mrs Garson, Miss Macrae, Miss Traill (of Woodwick), Mrs Thompson, Mr Henry Traill (of Woodwick), Major Jas. Traill of Ratter, Capt. Murray Traill, Mr Thos. Traill (of Holland), Mr Patrick Sutherland-Graeme, younger of Graemeshall, Mr and Mrs Grahame Watt, Mr and Mrs Cathcart Wason, Mrs Logie, Miss Mainland, Mr and Mrs George Taylor, Mr W. Corsie, Mr Thompson, Mr Inkster, Mr Alex. Murison, and Dr and Mrs Broadbent:…..

Wreaths and flowers were sent by the officers of the 93rd highlanders; the officers of the 91st Highlanders; old officers 91st and 93rd Highlanders; Colonel and officers, Orkney Artillery Volunteers; the family of the late Sir F. W. Traill-Burroughs; Mrs Arbuthnot, Westness, Rousay; Mrs Arbuthnot’s children, do., do.; Colonel Colquhoun, Mrs and Miss Colquhoun, Mrs Barry, Mrs Walter Forbes, Mrs Sutherland-Graeme, Colonel and Mrs Balfour of Balfour, the Misses Balfour, Mrs Radcliff, Rev. E. R. Burroughs, Miss Mainland, Mr and Mrs John Logie and servants, friends in Rousay…..

A great number of telegrams was received by Lady Burroughs, among others from the Duchess of Argyll, Princess Louise; the Provost of Kirkwall and Town Council, Mr Middlemore of Melsetter, Col. And Mrs Balfour of Balfour, Rev. J. B. Craven, Rev. Mr and Mrs Pirie, Mr Baikie of Tankerness, Colonel and Mrs Bailey, officers and men of the Orkney Artillery Volunteers, Mrs Arbuthnot, Mr and Mrs David Johnston, Rousay; Mr Munroe, do.; Mr, Mrs, and Miss William Logie, do.; Mr, Mrs, and Misses Craigie, do.; Mr and Mrs Cutt, do.; Superintendent, Mrs, and Master Atkin, Kirkwall; Firemaster Inkster, Aberdeen.



On Friday, 14th April, at 12.45 p.m., the funeral of the late Sir Frederick Traill Burroughs took place in London at Brompton Cemetery, and, at the same hour, a memorial service was held in the Trumland United Free Church, Rousay. There was a large attendance of tenants and friends, notwithstanding the inclemency of the weather. The service was conducted by Rev. A. Irvine Pirie and Rev. John McLennan. In addition to devotional exercises and Scripture readings, several appropriate hymns were sung, and the congregation stood whilst the “Dead March in Saul” was played on the organ. During the service Rev. A. I. Pirie made the following statement regarding the late esteemed proprietor:-

Our thoughts to-day go out to the solemn procession that is at this moment wending its way to the Brompton Cemetery on the south west side of London. The earthly remains of Sir Frederick Traill Burroughs, the late esteemed proprietor of this estate, and to many of us a long-standing personal friend, are at this hour being committed to their last resting-place with military honours. As we, his tenants and friends resident on the estate, cannot be present at the funeral obsequies in London, we meet here to show our high respect for the deceased and to express our heartfelt sympathy with Lady Burroughs in her sad bereavement, and to unite in prayer that the God and Father of all comfort may comfort her in this time of heavy affliction and loneliness. It is not necessary for me to dwell upon Sir Frederick’s early life and military career; that has been published in considerable fullness elsewhere. He was a thorough soldier. His whole character and conduct were shaped and strongly influenced by military training and standards. Thirty-two years ago he retired from active service, and he and Lady Burroughs came to reside here on their estate. During the whole of these years, he has been a most active and painstaking sharer in the life and work of the place. Called to occupy a high position in life, it was his constant aim to play his part well and to leave no duty unattended to. His high sense of duty made him ready and anxious to serve the parish on its public boards, and he highly appreciated the confidence shown to him repeatedly at the election of members to these boards. He fulfilled these public offices most faithfully, sparing neither time nor expense in doing so. He fearlessly contended for what he conscientiously believed to be right, and as fearlessly condemned what he believed to be wrong. It may be honestly said that he lived a model private life, and those who knew him best were most attached to him. Very gentlemanly and considerate to those dependent on him, the soldiers in his regiment and his household felt the fascination of his character, and were strongly attached to him. Punctual and severely correct in his habits, he appreciated the same virtues in others, and frowned on all that was slovenly or low in act or speech. His speech was at all times singularly pure, and anything bordering on the profane and vulgar he abhorred and instantly condemned. Strictly temperate in all things, and devoutly religious, his example and influence were always on the side of what makes human life pure and noble. An Episcopalian in sympathy, and by church connection, he nevertheless was liberal in his views of church order; he was strongly evangelical in his beliefs, and held that the Christian life was more important than church forms. During his long residence on the estate he worshipped regularly in the Presbyterian Church, and for more than half of that time in this church in which we are now met. Except when away from the island, he was rarely absent from public worship, and was always anxious to bring his visitors with him. Only a few months ago we met to welcome him home on his return from receiving the honour of knighthood conferred on him by His Majesty the King. He had been spared but a very short time to enjoy this well-earned honour. Truly “all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth and the flower fadeth.” During his late illness Sir Frederick quietly looked forward to his departure, in the expectation that he would then enter a brighter world. He expressed himself as wearied of earthly things and scenes, and stated that his trust was in his Saviour who would never leave him. Personally, I found him extremely kind, and I feel to-day that I have lost a true and genuine friend. Death is always busy making blanks in homes and social circles, but when one occupying such a prominent position as Sir Frederick Burroughs occupied is removed, the blank seems very great and the changes involved far-reaching. The greatest change of all will be experienced by Lady Burroughs, and our sincere sympathy goes out towards her to-day. She has been a true helpmeet to her husband during all the time of his residence on the estate, entering most cordially into all movements for the well-being of the community, and l am sure I express the universal feeling when I pray that in this, the heaviest of all human afflictions, she may be comforted and strengthened by the divine grace, and that she may find consolation in the faith that her late devoted husband has gone “to be forever with his Lord.” [Orkney Herald]

1905 April 29 The Orcadian

ROUSAY – SERVICE OF SONG. – On the evening of Sabbath last the Bible Class, conducted by Mr [Alexander Irvine] Pirie during the winter in the Frotoft Schoolroom, brought its session to a close with a service of sacred song. A large choir, under the able leadership of Captain Craigie, sang with excellent taste a number of choruses and individual members rendered solos, duets, and quartettes with much precision and skill. In the course of the evening Mr Pirie gave a resumé of the teaching of Christ which had formed part of the subject of study for the class during the session. The whole service was much appreciated by a large audience.

1905 May 3 Orkney Herald

IN AN ORKNEY CHURCH. – During the singing of a Psalm in an Orkney church a goose entered and quietly waddled up the passage towards the pulpit, just as the precentor had got out of tune and almost come to a standstill – a not very unusual occurrence at that time. The minister observing the goose leaned over the pulpit, and addressing the church-officer said – “Mr R., put out the goose.” That functionary, not observing the feathered parishioner, and supposing that the minister’s direction had reference to the precentor, marched up to that individual, and to the no small amusement of the meagre congregation, collared him saying at the same time – “Come out o’ that, ye idiot.”

1905 May 10 Orkney Herald

THE WEATHER OF APRIL – …..has been exceptionally bad – in fact one of the worst Aprils on record. The only period of seasonable weather was during an anticyclone from 16th to 21st, and then it was very cold. A severe snowstorm extended from 5th to 10th, which was for temperature, but probably not for snowfall, the most severe on record. The minimum thermometer fell on two successive nights to 25 deg. [-3.88C.]; which has not been equalled for 45 years – that is since a record of minimum temperature was commenced. Showers of hail and snow fell occasionally during the latter part of the month. Pressure was considerably below the mean. The temperature was 3 deg. below the mean, and, with the exception of 1903, which had a mean temperature of 39.58 deg., the coldest April since 1851. The rainfall was about 1 inch in excess of the mean, but still not so wet as the two preceding Aprils. The sunshine was 30 hours in defect of the mean, and the most sunless April since 1800, when sunshine recorders were instituted. There were no severe gales during an otherwise unseasonable month.

NORTH ISLES DISTRICT COMMITTEE. – A meeting of the North Isles District Committee was held on Friday last. Present – Col. Balfour, Messrs Grant, Sutherland, Reid, Gibson, and Stevenson. Before proceeding with the business of the Committee, the Chairman moved that the meeting record an expression of their sincere regret at the loss by death of Lieut.-Gen. Sir F. W. Traill Burroughs, K.C.B., who has for a long time been a member of this Committee, and their deep sympathy with Lady Burroughs in her bereavement, which was seconded by Mr Reid and unanimously agreed to, and the Clerk was instructed to send Lady Burroughs an excerpt of the minute…..

ORKNEY COUNTY COUNCIL. –The statutory general meeting of the County Council of Orkney was held in the County Buildings, Kirkwall, on Friday…..Col. Balfour [the convener], before the Council proceeded with the business on the card, moved that the Council record their deep sense of the loss that the County of Orkney and this Council have sustained through the death of Lieutenant-General Sir Frederick William Traill-Burroughs, K.C.B., who has been a member of the bodies administering the affairs of the County for over 50 years; he was appointed a Commissioner of Supply by the Act 1853, and was a member of the County Council since the Local Government Act of 1889 came into operation, and during all that time he gave his services freely and ungrudgingly for the benefit of Orkney. He further moved that the Council express their sympathy with Lady Burroughs in her bereavement. The Convener’s motion was adopted unanimously and the Clerk was instructed to send an excerpt from this part of the minute to Lady Burroughs…..

1905 May 20 The Orcadian

ORKNEY SMALL DEBT COURT – A CATTLE TRANSACTION. – John Logie, cattle dealer, Rousay, claimed £2 in name of damages from James W. Shearer, crofter, Eastcraig [East Craie, above Curquoy], Rousay, for alleged failure to implement a bargain.

The evidence led explains the cause of the dispute.

The Pursuer, examined by Mr D. J. Robertson, deponed – I am a cattle dealer and live in Rousay. I remember on the 19th of April last going to Eastcraig, defender’s house. I had heard he had a beast to sell – a year old stot. I met Shearer outside his house, and asked him if he had a beast to sell. His wife was there when I arrived. I examined the beast in the byre and afterwards outside. Defender came along the road a short distance with me, and I asked him what price he expected for the stot. He said he expected £6. I told him the animal was size for the money, but not in good condition. He told me he had to sell the animal as he had just one week’s keep. I offered him £6 if he would pay the freight to Kirkwall. He agreed to that. The agreement was that he was to deliver the beast at Trumland pier on the following Monday, and I was to pay the money then less the freight. I was selling to a man in the North Isles, and I offered him the stot. On Thursday night Mr Shearer came to me and said he was not to sell the stot. I offered the beast to another man that morning, and I told Shearer he had better sell it to me as I had made an offer to a man in the North Isles. He told me his wife did not want to part with it. On Saturday night I notified him to deliver the beast according to bargain, and on the Monday I was at the pier to take delivery but defender was not there. On that date I employed my agent to write defender, informing him that if the beast was delivered next Monday I would still adhere to the bargain. That letter was not replied to, and I have never heard anything from him. I have suffered Ioss by this. I expected to make a profit by the sale of the stot, and it also affects my business position because I have not been able to carry out my bargain. The least I can put the loss and damage I have sustained at is £2.

Cross-examination – When I called at Shearer’s house I asked him if he had anything to sell. The stot in question was a year old. Shearer did not tell me he had nothing to sell. He did not tell me he was not to sell the stot. He did not tell me he would “see.” Eastcraig is a croft of some 17 acres. Shearer told me the following night he was not to sell the stot. Q. – How do you make out the damage? A. – I have a lot of expenses to pay for coming to this court. Q. – That has nothing to do with it. How do you make out the damages to be £2? A. – I have lost £2 to-day by not being at my business.

By the Court – Apart from legal expenses and loss of time coming here, what have you lost? A. – I think I have lost about £2. Q. – How do you make that up? A. – I make it up through disappointment at not getting the beast. Q. – What profit did you expect to make? A. – I know the price I would have got.

Cross-examination, continued – Q. – Has the man in the North Isles made any claim against you? A. – No. Q. – Have you lost one penny piece by this transaction? A. – Yes, I have lost my credit. Q. – Can you turn that damage into money? A. – Yes. I have had legal expenses, and have lost time coming here to-day. Q. – How much have you lost on the beast? A. – I had sold it for £7.

Re-examination – I have lost £1 through not getting delivery of the beast. I was to have sold it for £7. I consider I have lost another £1 at the lowest by the annoyance I have been put to.

James William Shearer, defender, examined by Mr W. P. Drever, deponed – I am tenant of the croft of Eastcraig, and a farm servant at Papdale, St Ola. I only got the summons in this action yesterday morning. I remember the pursuer calling on me about the 19th of April. He asked if I had anything to sell and I said I had not. I told him I put a value of £6 on the year-old, and he said it was far too much. I did not sell the stot. I told him I would not sell it as I needed it. I am in service now so as to pay for stocking the croft. I told Logie I would see whether I would sell the stot or not. I told him I had decided not to sell the stot. I asked him what he thought the stot was worth as a matter of advice. I refused £6 10s. the next day from James Scott, and I have the animal yet. I intended all along to keep this stot till the back of the Lammas, so as to provide for my rent. Logie told me that if I had called on the Thursday morning he would not have minded. I called on him in the evening and told him I was not to sell the stot.

Cross-examination – I turned the stot out of the byre so as to let Logie see it. I wished to know what he thought the value of the animal was as this was the first time I had had anything to do with the valuing of cattle. He wanted to buy the stot, and have it delivered at Trumland Pier on the following Monday morning. I told him I would see. I went to Logie and told him I would not sell after James Scott had offered me £6 10s.

Re-examination – My croft is able to carry a calf yet, even with the stot in question.

By the Court – Logie said he would buy the stot as an obligement. I would have sold my stot fast about the Christmas time. I saw I was to be short of keep, but seeing I had not disposed of it, and that I had managed to keep it so long, I decided to keep it through the summer. The stot was put out on the 19th, and has been out since.

Mrs [Elizabeth] Shearer, wife of defender, deponed – I remember Logie the cattle dealer coming to our house sometime in April. I heard some words passing between him and my husband. I heard my husband saying he was not going to sell the beast. I heard Logie saying the stot was thin and not worth £6. We had decided to keep the beast. We did not have much keep, but enough to do till the summer came. We were intending to keep the ox till after the Lammas to help to pay for the rent, as we would then get a better price – something for our trouble – as we paid dear for him at first. My husband said he was to tell Logie if he would sell on the morrow. He went to Logie the next day after he got his tea, and told him he would not sell the beast. Logie’s house [Grindlesbreck] is less than half a mile from our house.

Cross-examination – Logie wanted a luck-penny, and the luck-penny he suggested was that my husband should pay, the freight to Kirkwall.

The Sheriff said he had only one man’s word against the other, and as the pursuer’s averments were in no way supported, his only course was to decide in favour of defender, whom he assoilized [absolved or finally decided in favour of the defender] with 5s. expenses.

Agent for pursuer – Mr D. J. Robertson, solicitor; agent for defender – Mr W. P. Drever, solicitor.

1905 June 7 Orkney Herald

By special permission of Lady Traill Burroughs, Messrs Walton & Co., London, are to publish a portrait of the late Lieut.-General Sir Frederick Traill Burroughs, K.C.B. The size of the portrait is 23 by 17 inches, and the subscription price for artist’s proof, with autograph, is fifteen shillings.

1905 June 14 The Scotsman


There will be Exposed for SALE by Public Roup , within Dowell’s Rooms,
18 George Street, Edinburgh, on Wednesday the 16th day of August next,
at 2 o’clock Afternoon  unless previously disposed of by private bargain.
Entry at Martinmas 1905,
in the united PARISH of ROUSAY and EGILSHAY, ORKNEY.
Extent, about 12,000 Acres. The Gross Rental is about £2700,
and the Annual Burdens about £500.
The Property consists of the Islands of Rousay, Veira, and Scockness.
Rousay is about 20 miles in circumference. There is an excellent Mansion-house
on the island, and also a beautifully-situated Shooting Lodge.
The Shootings are first-class, comprising Grouse and many kinds of Wild Fowl,
also Hares and Rabbits, with splendid Loch and Sea Trout Fishing,
and Sea Fishing. The Estate affords continuous and varied sport
throughout the season. There is excellent Yacht Anchorage.
For further particulars and Cards to view the Estate, application may be made
to the Subscribers, in whose hands are the Title-Deeds and Articles of Sale.
MACKENZIE & KERMACK, W.S. Edinburgh, 9 Hill Street, June 1905.

1905 July 19 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY MANSE CASE. – The appeal by the heritors of Rousay against the Rev. A. Spark, minister of Rousay, came before Sheriff Harvey in the Orkney Sheriff Court yesterday. Mr T. P. Low, for the parish minister, said he had enrolled the case, which had been adjourned on a previous occasion to allow the trustees of the late Sir Frederick Burroughs to sist themselves as parties to the action if they wished to do so. He did not think there should be a long delay, and wished to know what was to be done. Mr Robertson, for the heritors, said he had a letter from Sir Frederick’s agents stating that the trustees were not yet in a position to intimate whether they would go on with the action or not. The Sheriff further adjourned the case till 5th Sept., and ordained pursuers to intimate to the trustees of the late General Burroughs that the Court ordered them to intimate at that time whether they were to go on with the case or not.

1905 August 5 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – The Rev. William Kidd, minister of St George’s Presbyterian Church, Leytonstone, London, E., is expected to preach in the Parish Church here during the month of August. The Rev. A. Spark is at present attending Forest Gate College of Music in the interests of Scottish Psalmody, while his Church has been closed for repairs during July. It is to be hoped that parishioners may take the opportunity of hearing one of the most popular ministers in London. His Church cost over £5000 and had an organ built into it last year costing £400.

1905 August 9 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY REGATTA. – The annual regatta of the Rousay and Veira Boat Club was held in Veira Sound on Friday, 3th ult. Being a holiday in Kirkwall, the Fawn ran a special trip to Rousay, and a good many people availed themselves of the opportunity of witnessing the regatta. The day was very fine, with a light westerly breeze, but not sufficient to prove an ideal racing day. However, the boats had quite enough wind to carry them over the course in good time. The entries this season were less than formerly – noticeably in the first race, 16 feet and under – there being only four entries. The rowing races proved exceptionally good this year, and were greatly enjoyed by the spectators. For two special rowing races, one for boys and girls, the other a scull race for men, there were a great number of entries. After a very exciting race in each case, the prizes were finally won by the Misses Arbuthnot, Westness, and George Reid, Tratland. We may mention that those special prizes were presented by Mr Barkworth, Edinburgh, who, along with Mrs Barkworth and family, is spending a holiday in Rousay. Mrs Arbuthnott and party arrived in their boat during the afternoon, and anchored off Trumland Pier; also, the Njala, from Kirkwall, with party on board. The course was the usual triangular one, being from a buoy off Trumland Pier to a mark boat off Sourin, thence to a mark boat at Graand of Egilshay and back to Trumland Pier.

The first race was for boats 16 feet waterline and under, for which there were four entries, namely, Mary, Alice, Ceska, and Tina. All four got well off together with starting gun, and kept well together to the Sourin mark boat. When sighted on run to Graand, the Ceska was seen to have a considerable lead, followed by Mary, Tina, and Alice, which positions they maintained throughout the race, with the exception of Mary, retired. The finish was as follows, corrected time: –

Ceska (W. Miller) – 1h 54m 24s
Tina (T. F. Fyffe) – 2h  9m  36s
Alice (C. Logie) – 2h 18m 19s
Mary (W. Costie) retired.

The second race was for boats 22 feet waterline and under, for which there were three entries, viz., Hero, Lily, and Sweyn. All three made a good start, and kept well together on the run to the point of Avelshay. When sighting on the reach to Graand, the Hero (which is a new boat built on racer lines), far out-distanced her opponents, and came in an easy winner. Finish as follows, corrected time: –

Hero (M. (Grieve) – 1h 26m 7s
Lily (R. Miller) – 1h 41m 37s
Sweyn (J. Garrioch) – 1h 45m 31s

The next race was for all-comers, and was the best race of the day, there being nine entries, viz., Annie, Lily, Sweyn, Mary, Tina, Hero, Sylvite, Ceska, and Alice. In jockeying for places the boats presented a very pretty appearance, and at this time cameras were very much in evidence. All the boats made a good start, and, as usual, kept well together running down before the wind. The exciting element in this race was the close race between Annie and Hero, and it was very doubtful for some time which was to be the winner. However, on the beat from Graand to Trumland Pier, the Annie greatly improved her position, and came in an easy first. Annexed is the corrected time: –

Annie (J. Logie) – 1h 25m 32s
Hero (M. Grieve) – 1h 31m 19s
Lily (R. Miller) – 1h 51m 37s
Sweyn (J. Garrioch) – 1h 52m 50s
Sylvite (A. Cursiter) – 2h 15m 25s
Ceska, Alice, and Tina retired.

The following are the rowing races: –

LADIES – 1, Misses Kemp and Marwick; 2, Misses Wards and Isbister; 3, Misses Marwick and Moodie; 4, Misses Kirkness and Yorston.
BOYS – 1, W. Marwick and R. Grieve; 2, R. Sinclair and R. Wards; 3, J. Irvine and J. Moodie.
MEN’S – 1, J. Johnstone and J. Flaws; 2, J. Harrold and G. Harrold; 3, W. Sutherland and G. Reid.
SPECIAL ROWING RACE FOR BOYS AND GIRLS – 1, Miss Arbuthnott; 2, David Sinclair and David Stout; 3, Ralph Barkworth and James Moodie; 4, Miss Sinclair.
MEN’S SINGLE SCULL RACE – 1, Geo. Reid; 2, J. Rendall; 3, —– Thomson; 4, W. Sutherland.

At the close of the races Mrs Arbuthnott handed out the prizes to the successful competitors, for which she was accorded three hearty cheers. Cheers were also given for the secretary and the Rousay Boat Club. As usual the club had refreshments in the store, which was well patronised, and much credit is due to the ladies who presided for the able and efficient manner in which they carried out all the arrangements. At the close of the regatta the young folks held a dance, which was kept up with much spirit till midnight. The committee take this opportunity of thanking all those who so liberally contributed to the funds and in any way helped to make the regatta a success.

1905 August 26 The Orcadian

The estate of Rousay and Veira was offered for sale in Edinburgh last week, at the upset price of £55,000; but failed to find a purchaser.

1905 September 13 The Orcadian

TO BE LET, on Lease, with entry at Martinmas 1905,
the following FARMS on the above Estate: –
1. LANGSKAILL, extending to 184 acres arable and 741 acres pasture.
2. INNISTER and BRECKAN, extending to 99 acres arable and 266 acres pasture.
These holdings might be let separately. The extent of INNISTER is 62 acres arable and 146 acres pasture and of BRECKAN 37 acres arable and 120 Acres pasture.
3. HURTESO, together with the MEAL MILL of SOURIN. The Farm extends to 63 acres arable and 18 acres pasture. The Farm and Mill will he let as one subject.
4. TRUMLAND, extending to 162 acres arable and 1017 acres pasture.
5. WOO and BURNSIDE, extending to 50 acres arable and 9 acres pasture.
6. HELZIGITHA (VEIRA), extending to 44 acres arable and 48 acres pasture.
7. HALLBRECK (VEIRA), extending to 34 acres arable and 27 acres pasture.
8. COT-A-FEE (or VI., FROTOFT), extending to 8 acres arable and 3 acres pasture.
9. OLD SCHOOL, SOURIN, extending to 4½ acres arable.
The above measurements are not guaranteed,
but are believed to be approximately correct.
The present tenants will not be offerers.
The holdings will be let subject to the Estate Rules and Regulations,
to be seen in the hands of Mr A. MUNRO, Sourin, Rousay,
or of the Subscribers, who will receive offers.
The Farms will be let as soon as suitable offers are received.
9 Hill Street, Edinburgh.

1905 September 20 Orkney Herald

A CURIOUS INSTRUMENT – SCOTT SKINNER AND THE STROH VIOLIN. – We would draw our readers’ attention to the entertainment in the Temperance Hall, Kirkwall, on Saturday the 23rd and Monday 25th inst. by Mr David Thomson’s concert company. Mr Thomson is well-known in Orkney as a great favourite, and is sure of a hearty welcome. Besides himself, he has in his company Miss Violet Davidson, the eminent soprano, Miss Marie Rose, coon vocalist and dancer, and Mr Bert Herbert, pianist and entertainer. A splendid programme is being submitted, and the entertainments are worthy of being well patronised. Included in Mr David Thomson’s company is Mr [James] Scott Skinner, the distinguished Scottish violinist, who visits these parts for the first time. Mr Skinner has been for the last several decades the most notable figure in Scottish music. As a composer he has added – and is still adding – to the national stock music of a characteristic and pre-eminently Scottish style – in quantity and quality equal at least and, in the opinion of many good judges, superior to what any previous Scottish musician has produced. As a performer he is head and shoulders above any player of the present or last generation. As an artiste he is richly endowed by nature, and, in listening to his rendering of Scottish music, one recognises at once the perfect freedom that finds expression in the wonderful grace and power of his playing. Highland pibrochs and Highland laments, reels and strathspeys rendered with a melody and vivacity which no other hand can infuse into them; pawky jigs that breathe sly Scottish humour; old familiar song tunes which make an echo in every heart – all flow from his violin in profusion with that ease and certainty of execution which betoken consummate skill. Local instrumentalists will be interested to learn that during his visit here Mr Skinner (besides playing on his own violin, which is a very fine old one worth £100), will play one of his selections on a Stroh violin. This peculiar instrument was invented some four years ago by a German named [John Matthias Augustus] Stroh, who spent five years’ study and experiment in fashioning it. It is asserted to possess all the tone qualities of an old violin with an increase of volume equalling three violins, and at public tests in the south it has passed with flying colours. Violin enthusiasts will be surprised to learn that the new fiddle is a compound of aluminium and other metal. Whereas the construction of the violin up to the present has consisted of three parts, the strings, bridge, and body or sounding-box, Mr Stroh’s instrument, preserving the strings and bridge, does away with the sounding-box. The body of the violin consists of a simple piece of wood, and the bridge rests on an aluminium lever, which in its turn rests on a round disc of aluminium. To this disc is attached a trumpet-shaped arrangement somewhat like the bell of a gramophone, the open end pointing in the same direction as the head of a violin. The disc (representing the belly of the ordinary violin) is free to vibrate, so that once the strings are set in motion by the bow, the bridge and rocking lever vibrate accordingly. Thus every vibration is transmitted to the diaphragm, and the diaphragm sets in motion the air of the resonator. During the stay of Mr Thomson’s company in the town this curious instrument will be exhibited daily in the shop of Messrs Peace & Son, book-sellers.

[I include this for Rousay fiddler Jim Craigie was the proud owner of a Stroh fiddle. There is a photo of him playing it on the Deithe page.]

1905 September 25 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – A dance was held in the barn of the Rousay Glebe on Tuesday, 12th September on behalf of the Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Glasgow.

1905 October 11 Orkney Herald

NORTH ISLES DISTRICT COMMITTEE. – A meeting of the North Isles District Committee was held on Friday. Present – Messrs W. Cowper Ward (in the chair), B. Swanson, J. Reid, J. Grant, and G. Sutherland…..A letter was submitted from Mr D. Gibson, Hullion, Rousay, who holds a slaughterhouse license, complaining that Mr J. M. Harrold, merchant, [Rose Cottage], Rousay, had been killing sheep on his own premises which are not licensed and exposing same for sale to the public. The Clerk was instructed to write Mr Harrold calling his attention to the section of the Act under which it is required that all animals slaughtered for consumption as food shall be slaughtered in duly licensed premises and calling upon him to comply with the requirements of the Act.

1905 October 14 The Orcadian

SMALL BOAT BURNED AT ROUSAY. – Some of the inhabitants of the island of Egilshay were rather startled last Monday evening to see flames and smoke arising from about the shore on the adjoining island of Rousay. They knew there was no house in that particular spot – only a boat noust – and to see a fire at such an hour and at such a place filled them with wonder and amazement. On making enquiries next day, however, it was learned that a young man named Marwick, a native of the island, who is presently home on holiday, had been busy for some days painting a small yacht of which he is owner, at a boat-noust near the farm of Midgarth or Midgitha, Rousay.

The intention of Marwick, we are told, was to sail his yacht round to Stromness, and then ship it to Liverpool on one of Langlands’ steamers. With that object in view he had been smartening up his little craft, and he had only that day completed his work.

All the gear had been placed in the yacht, preparatory to launching, but on the evening of Monday last about 6 p.m. the vessel was discovered to be on tire. The boat, sails, etc., seem to have been destroyed, but this loss is said to be covered by insurance. The cause of the fire is unknown.

1905 October 18 Orkney Herald

WRECKAGE. – During the last few days large quantities of wood, consisting of deals, etc., have been washed ashore on Westray, Rousay, Shapinsay, and other of the North Isles of Orkney. It appears that this formed part of the deck cargo of the steamer Waterville, of North Shields, which arrived at Bristol last Friday from Archangel. The master reports that on Thursday, 5th inst., when off Noup Head. Westray, the Waterville encountered a heavy gale, laboured and strained, and shipped large quantities of water. About a hundred tons of the deck cargo were washed overboard, the steering gear was damaged, various damages were done about the deck, and the cabin was flooded, etc.

1905 October 21 The Orcadian

THE ROUSAY MANSE CASE. MINISTER’S STUDY USED FOR STORING POTATOES. – “Oh give a poor lawyer a fee” is a favourite song among students, but from the discussion which took place at the Orkney Sheriff Court on Tuesday, it seems the legal fraternity are also averse to paying them. It would likewise appear that the representatives of the “cloth” are no less anxious to obtain a fee – just to keep their pockets – without touching their ordinary income.

The discussion arose in regard to an interlocutor pronounced in the case of the Heritors of Rousay against the parish minister in regard to the order of the Presbytery of the Northern Isles to build a new manse for the minister of Rousay and Egilshay. The interlocutor ordained the Clerk of the North Isles Presbytery to lodge with the Clerk of the Court certain documents pertaining to the cause, and, this the Presbyterial Clerk refused to do unless he was paid his copying fees, or the usual fee fixed by the Presbytery for the production of originals.

Mr Duncan J. Robertson argued that when the case was appealed from the ecclesiastical court to the civil court all the documents ought to be transmitted to the Clerk of the Court; but the Sheriff took the view that he was hearing the case anew, and that, unless the parties’ agents wish the documents referred to neither did he.

Mr Robertson then asked for an adjournment so as to consult his heritors looking to the fact that the Sheriff refused to proceed in the way of having these documents brought into Court, but the Sheriff refused to grant any adjournment.

Continuing the discussion, Mr Robertson again adverted to the documents, and Mr Kerr, the Clerk of the North Isles Presbytery, who was present, said that Mr Robertson wanted to get the documents without paying the fees, and he (the Clerk) therefore would not give up the papers. The Sheriff ultimately gave it as his opinion that it would be better if he had the documents before him; but he could on no account recognise the superiority of the civil over the ecclesiastical court; and Mr Kerr, reciprocating, at once offered to produce the documents for the use of the Court.

Mr Robertson strongly objected to the proposal to build a new manse which would at least involve the heritors in an expenditure of £2000. They would much rather pay the £350 estimated for the repairs or even £500. As to the minister’s statement that he required more accommodation he (Mr Robertson) had paid a surprise visit to the manse, and had found that the study was being used for storing potatoes in. They had also to look at the requirements of the island – the minister’s stipend. The present minister might have private means; but his successor in office with such a small stipend would find a huge manse a white elephant. The principal reason for condemning the manse seemed to be that the chimneys smoked and that the building leaked – a feature of all Orkney houses.

His lordship remarked that at Berstane some of the chimneys smoked with certain winds and he had to move to other rooms. The minister of Rousay would just require to do as other people did.

The Sheriff took the case to avizandum, and is to frame an interlocutor making a remit to a man of skill, with whom he is to inspect the manse.

Mr Low, on behalf of the minister of Rousay, objected to any local architect being chosen for the purposes of the remit.

1905 October 28 The Orcadian

Letters to the Editor


Sir, – If your last issue’s report be correct, I am to say that Mr Duncan J. Robertson’s fiddle-faddle interpretation of ecclesiastical law and procedure is pitiable in the extreme, and stands contrasted to a greater “Duncan.” It is a question whether his puerility or his pusillanimity is the more conspicuous. He boldly obliterated the res judicata of the Sheriff Court, and resumed his former ravings about “storing potatoes.” As I wish to dispossess his mind from its fulsome hallucinations, I am to assure him that during my incumbency potatoes have never been stored in the manse here, but, that if any parish minister has a mind to do so, he has by law an absolute free unfettered right to use the manse like the glebe, as he pleases. I am, etc., ALEXANDER SPARK. The Manse, Rousay, Parish Minister.

1905 November 4 The Orcadian

A MUSICAL ADVENTURE IN THE ORKNEYS. – “Orcadia” writing in the “Musical Herald,” says:-

Who has not heard of the Orcades? These islands lie in the restless rush of the Gulph stream, “where roars the Pentland with its whirling seas.” The most inaccessible and northernmost of the group is North Ronaldshay, being 60 miles north by sea distant from Kirkwall, and 3 from the neighbouring island of Sanday. In 1893, I agreed on a fortnight’s music mission to Ultima Thule. If it was a miracle how I got there, it was as great a miracle how I ever got out of it! Leaving Rousay on Monday 13th February I reached Sanday on Wednesday, where I was storm-stayed for 10 days. At last on the 11th day the post-boat – a boat with 10 feet of keel – arrived with mails from North Ronaldshay, but the two boatmen expressed a doubt if they could venture back that night! But, as “night walked in beauty o’er the peaceful sea,” we set sail at 4 p.m. The boat was literally filled with bags of maize, meal, and the mails, so we had scarce room to move. We hugged the shores of Sanday 1½ hour, but, wind failing, the boatmen proposed drawing her up a rocky “geo” for the night. Fortunately this was not to be, for a breeze sprang up, and we made across those three miles of swirling tides, the water oft mounting above the gunwale! It was “touch and go” a thousand times, but reached, with gladness, our “desired haven.” Classes held every week night in the Parish Church were opened and attended by 80 persons, some of whom took the Elementary Certificate. We used Curwen’s Charts and “Song Primer,” and made progress. My fortnight’s engagement ended, I prepared for leaving, but, as no boat could venture o’er swirling tides, I was imprisoned here another fortnight, the only letter from home during all my six week’s absence having accompanied me thither. At last the boatmen agreed to venture, but such a heavy land sea was breaking on shore, that, freighted with men and mails, a dozen men actually lifted the boat over the surge into the sea, which otherwise might in a moment have made her matchwood. I reached Kirkwall on 25th March, hired a boat to take me home in the dead of night over miles of sea, and found myself scrambling up the Rousay Rocks on Sunday morning.”

1905 November 11 The Orcadian

MUSICAL ADVENTURE. – When we gave last week the above adventure, we omitted what was published in the “Musical Herald” of London, the occasion, and the prize offered for it. This we now give – “The prize was offered for the best paper, not exceeding 400 words, giving a musical anecdote or musical experience of any kind. Such a large number of anecdotes have been received, and their quality has been so high, that we have found it difficult to decide upon the best. The experience of the Rev. Alexander Spark [junior], Rousay, Orkney, is certainly the most adventurous and unusual, and we therefore award him the prize.”

1905 November 18 The Orcadian

BRILLIANT DISPLAY OF THE AURORA BOREALIS. – One of the finest displays of the aurora borealis that has been seen in Orkney for many years was witnessed on Wednesday evening. About six o’clock the whole north-western sky assumed a beautiful saffron colour, with a deep blood-red bordering out of which the merry dancers, as they are locally called, began to play in the most fantastic way, sometimes jutting up to the zenith. For some time the whole western and overhead sky seemed instinct with motion, and though the brilliancy of the red background detracted somewhat from the brightness of the silvery streamers, the sight was one that will not readily be forgotten by those who saw it. Gradually a dark thundery-looking cloud rolled over the western sky, but for some time afterwards the streamers could be faintly descried jutting out in all directions. Nearly three hours later, a similar scene was witnessed above the eastern horizon, which attracted crowds of spectators; but it only lasted a short time, after which dark clouds blotted out the brilliant spectacle.

1905 December 6 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – SUPPER. – A large number of friends of Mr William Learmonth and Mr Alexander Learmonth, Innister, who are about to leave Rousay, entertained these gentlemen and their families to supper in Wasbister School on the 24th ult. The Chairman, Mr John Logie, cattle-dealer, expressed the general regret at the departure of the families. The Learmonths had been in the island for fifty years, and the good wishes of their many friends for their future prosperity would go with them. Mr Logie also expressed regret that Mrs [Mary] Learmonth, senior, was unable to be present. Mr Wm. Learmonth and Mr Alex. Learmonth replied, thanking those present for their good wishes.

1905 December 16 The Orcadian

ROUSAY – DEATH OF MR WILLIAM INKSTER. – Mr Wm. Inkster, Cogar, died on the 7th inst., in his 75th year. Deceased was a contemporary of the late General Burroughs, the proprietor of the island, and was much respected in the district. He had ten of a family, seven of whom, along with his widow, still survive. Several of the sons have gone south, and done very well, one of them being in the Town Clerk’s Office, Glasgow; another is a Baptist clergyman, and the eldest, William, is the respected fire-master of Aberdeen. The late Mr Inkster was of a genial, kindly, disposition, and by his removal one of the landmarks of Rousay has disappeared.

[William was the son of William Inkster, Upper Cogar, and Rebekkah Marwick, Negar, and was born on August 14th 1831. He married Mary Gibson, Langskaill, on January 27th 1859, and between November that year and 1879 they raised a family of nine sons and one daughter].

1905 December 16 The Orcadian

SCHOOL REPORTS – ROUSAY. – Sourin Public School. – While much work has been done in this school during the year, the results of the teaching are in some respects scarcely satisfactory [teacher ‘Miss Cooper’]. Reading is decidedly above the average, but speaking is too often indistinct, and it is more difficult than usual to get full and intelligent answers to questions bearing on the work overtaken. Arithmetic is slow and mechanical, little ability being shown to solve questions mentally. Singing and sewing on the other hand are very well taught, and draw in merits the highest praise. Average attendance, 30; grants earned (inclusive of £10 under Art. 19D. and general aid grant, £4 10s), £53 16s 3d.

Wasbister Public School. – This school is taught with vigour and marked success, and its condition reflects credit on the teacher [Miss B. Norquoy]. A special word of praise is due to the appearance made by the oldest scholars in both written and oral work, and to the excellent quality of the singing and sewing. Average attendance, 23; grants earned (inclusive of £15 under Art. 19D. and general aid grant, £3 9s), £48 15s 6d.

Frotoft, Public School. – The new teacher [Martha Wards] is doing good work, and there is evidence that substantial progress is being made in the various subjects of the school curriculum. The following points, however, call for mention. The children are slow to display their knowledge, and their speech is more provincial than is usual. Writing, especially in exercise books, is frequently slovenly, and spelling is susceptible of improvement. Some new maps should be supplied. The re-seating of school with modern furniture at present under the consideration of the Board, will be a great improvement to the equipment of the school. Average attendance, 8; grants earned (inclusive of £15 under Art. 19D, and general aid grant £1 4s), £26 7s 9d.

1905 December 23 The Orcadian

ROUSAY I.O.G.T. – Presentation. – On Saturday, the 16th inst., Sister Mary Inkster or Sinclair was presented with a clock by members of the Star of Peace Lodge, on the occasion of her marriage to Mr Thomas Sinclair. After the company had been supplied with tea, Brother Craigie, Lodge Deputy, made the presentation, in the name of the Lodge. He referred to the active part that Sister Sinclair (who is one of the charter members) had taken in the work of the Lodge, both as a member and as an officer, and expressed a hope that she might be long spared to help on the work. Sister Norquoy, Chief Templar, replied on behalf of Sister Sinclair, and thanked the members for the kindly feelings that prompted the gift, and assured them that the clock would always serve as a remembrance to her of the happy evenings that she had spent in the Lodge.

[Mary Margaret Inkster, born in Unst, Shetland, on March 12th 1880, was the daughter of Hugh Inkster and his first wife Isabella Kirkness, Quoyostray. Having left Rousay to farm the land of Greenfield, Unst, Hugh and his children returned to Rousay on the death of his wife, taking over the tenancy of Westness farm. Mary married Thomas Sinclair, Banks, Frotoft, on November 23rd 1905, and between 1907 and 1918, they raised a family of four children; Thomas, Anne Inkster (Cissie), Mary Isabella (Mabel), and Lily].