In Print

Newsprint – 1907

1907 January 2 Orkney Herald

SNOWSTORM IN ORKNEY….. On Monday last week a heavy gale from the south-west, broke out. In the afternoon the wind went round to the north, and there were snow showers. During the night a good deal of snow fell, and throughout Tuesday, when the wind blew with gale force from the north-west, snow fell heavily. Wednesday and Thursday saw little improvement in the weather, but on Friday the wind took off considerably, though snow continued to fall both on that and the two succeeding days. In the North Isles the fall of snow is reported to have been particularly heavy, many of the roads being rendered quite impassable, the snow lying in some places to a depth of nine feet…..

1907 January 30 Orkney Herald


The weather during the past few days has been extremely stormy. Much snow has fallen, but most of it has quickly melted. On Monday the weather was particularly severe, a violent gale blowing from the west and north-west throughout the day, with frequent showers of snow. The gale reached its height about one o’clock, At this time the steamer lona was changing her position at Kirkwall Pier when a warp got entangled with the propeller, and she was driven ashore near the Mount. She sustained no damage and was got off in the evening. Some damage was done to the roof of the Coastguard Station, and during one of the squalls the Coastguard boat, which was laid up near the Burn of Weyland was lifted by the wind clean over a wall four feet high and set down about twelve feet inside the adjoining field. Some farm buildings were unroofed at Weyland and Corse, and there are reports of similar damage from nearly all parts of the country; while much minor damage – such as blowing down of ventilators and breaking of windows – has been done…..

1907 February 6 Orkney Herald

RESIDENT MEDICAL OFFICER (Male or Female) Wanted for Parish of ROUSAY
and EGILSHAY, to enter on duties 1st April prox. Salary £51 stg. per annum.
Apply to Clerk of Parish Council, Rousay.

1907 February 13 Orkney Herald

A magnificent display of aurora borealis was seen all over Orkney on Saturday evening.

1907 February 27 Orkney Herald


A severe gale, accompanied by heavy showers of snow, which, however, until Friday, did not lie for any length of time, broke out last Tuesday. Owing to the gale the mail steamer St Ola did not cross the Pentland Firth from Tuesday till Saturday, so that four days’ mails were due on Saturday. Telegraphic communication was interrupted for several hours on Wednesday, the interruption being south of Wick. On Friday and Saturday snow lay to a depth of several inches, accompanied by a keen frost; but on Saturday night a thaw set in. Since Saturday strong winds have prevailed, but they have not been so strong as to interfere with traffic by sea.

1907 March 6 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – PLOUGHING MATCH. – The annual ploughing match of the Rousay Agricultural Society was held on Wednesday the 27th Feb. Twenty-one ploughs turned up for competition – 17 ordinary in a field kindly granted for the occasion by Mr [Robert] Marwick, Scockness; and 4 champions in an adjoining field on the farm of Faraclett. The weather was all that could be desired for the work, and the fields during the day were visited by a large number of people. The ploughmen were well supplied with refreshments. A massive silver medal and ten shillings, presented to the society by Firemaster Inkster, Aberdeen, for competition in the champion class, having now been won for the third time by Thomas Gibson, Broland, becomes his own property. The Committee were fortunate in securing the services of Messrs Wm. Harvey and Alex. Voy, jr., St Ola, to act as judges, and their decisions were as follows: –

PLOUGHING. – Champions – 1 and medal, Thomas Gibson, Broland; 2, John Harrold, Bigland; 3, Malcolm Leonard, Gripps; 4, Walter Muir, Brecon; best feering and finish – J. Harrold. Ordinary – 1 and Highland Society’s Medal, Hugh Robertson, Scockness; 2, James W. Grieve, Langskaill; 3, John Marwick, Knarston; 4, John Craigie, Curquoy; 5, Alex. Pearson, Saviskaill; 6, John Russell, Langskaill; 7, Ben Moodie, Glebe; 8, John Gibson, Faraclett; 9, John Gibson, Avelshay; 10, Hugh Marwick, Trumland; 11, David Moodie, Avelshay; best feering – James W. Grieve; best finish – Hugh Robertson; straightest ploughing – H. Robertson; best ploughed rig – H. Robertson; youngest ploughman – Robert Sinclair, Stennisgorn.

GROOMING. – 1, John Seatter, Banks; 2, A. Craigie, Trumland; 3, John Craigie; 4, John Harrold; 5, Hugh Inkster, Westness; 6, Ben. Moodie.

HARNESS. – 1, M. Leonard; 2, H. Robertson; 3, John Craigie; 4, B. Moodie; 5, Hugh Craigie, Swandale; 6, John Seatter.

A large number of special prizes were distributed among the ploughmen. In the evening the Committee, the judges, and a number of friends were entertained to dinner in Scockness. The usual loyal and patriotic toasts were given and duly responded to, and a pleasant evening spent. The Committee take this opportunity of thanking all those who so handsomely subscribed to their funds, the donors of the special prizes, Firemaster Inkster for his medal, the judges, and all who helped to make the ploughing match a success. They are also indebted to Mr James Gibson, Hullion, for visiting the field and thus enabling them to obtain the Highland Society’s medal.

1907 April 10 Orkney Herald

qualified under Article 79 of the Code, to commence
duties as soon as possible. Salary, £50 stg. per annum.
Apply, with Testimonials, to Clerk of School Board, Rousay, Orkney.

1907 April 13 The Orcadian

LAST WEEK’S GALE. BOATING ACCIDENT, ONE MAN DROWNED. – Information only reached Kirkwall on Friday night of a boating accident which occurred in Egilshay Sound on Wednesday afternoon. Two men, named Flaws and Inkster, belonging to Egilshay, had been across at Rousay and were returning home in the height of the gale, when their boat was swamped by a sea breaking on board. David Flaws, tenant of Cott, who was between 60 and 70 years of age, was drowned, but the other was fortunately able to keep himself afloat with the aid of an oar till assistance arrived from the shore.

ROUSAY – PARISH CHURCH. – On Sunday last the Rev. A. Spark preached from the text St Matt. v. 4 – ” Blessed are they that mourn,” and ended his sermon by referring to the sad fatality in Egilshay Sound in these words: –

The sad boating accident in Egilshay Sound on Wednesday last resulting in the drowning of one man and the saving of another has cast a cloud of gloom over this parish. Little did these two realize that, on leaving Trumland Pier for Egilshay they were to run their course within an hour and an inch of eternity. When will man learn wisdom? The dire experiences of past days should, undoubtedly, teach man a lesson – to apply himself to perfect life-saving appliances. Floats of some kind, life-belts, cork jackets, buoys, etc., should be included in the equipment of every boat. Besides this, swimming should be part of our education outfit. We are duty-bound to save life as far as human skill can apply. In the present fatality it was one floating oar which effected its purpose, so saving the young man, John Inkster, but David Flaws had no float, so found his grave in the unseen depths of the sea. All so sad and all so sudden. We mourn and weep with her who thus suddenly and unexpectedly becomes a widow for the second time, and with the four members of his family by his first wife, who must all feel the sharpness of this stroke. May God bless them “until the day break and the shadows flee away.” Fair death is welcome to wound, but it is the tragic event that tears the heart. A peace-loving, quiet-living, upright man, an obliging and respected neighbour, a man of few words, and time-worn boatman, claiming a home first in Rousay, latterly in Egilshay, David Flaws divides his grave between the two. Just as the body of Moses was laid to rest upon an unknown spot of the lonely mountain, so that of David Flaws lies in some unknown spot of that devouring sea. It is meet for me to speak thus, for, although attending the U. F. Church of Egilshay, his second earthly home, David Flaws died an elder of the Church of Scotland, having been ordained on 18th March 1886. It looks like yesterday since I preached on 25th November last in Egilshay U. F. Church for the worthy and respected minister there Mr Hendrie – and I still feel, as it were, the hearty shake of David Flaws’ hand. Now he has left us once and for all for the home that is “fairer than day.” “Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord,” and “Blessed are they that mourn. May the lesson of the young man spared be the lesson of his life to lead him to live for God and for eternity. “Man never is but always to be blest.” Every home has yet to be emptied, and we must all cross the bar, equipped or un-equipped.

“Sunset and evening star,
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea,

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
When I embark;

For tho’ from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crossed the bar.”



[David Flaws was born in1841, the son of James Flaws, Hammerfield, and Isabella Gibson, Stennisgorn. On February 13th 1861 he married Margaret Louttit, daughter of Alexander Louttit, Northouse, Quandale, later Lower Blackhammer, and Janet Craigie. David and Margaret had five children, the second of which, also named David and born in 1865, was also drowned in Egilsay Sound when just a lad. Margaret died in 1893, three years after which event David married widow Ellen Mainland, nee Costie, and settling at Cott, Egilsay. – John Inkster, born in May 1867, was a farm servant at Cott. He was the oldest of the nine children of Hugh Inkster, Gorn, Hammer, Geo, later Knapper, and Georgina Harcus, Westray.]

1907 April 17 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY. – The United Free Church Guild held its closing social on Tuesday evening in Ritchie Church. There was a large gathering of young people. The Rev. A. Irvine Pine, who presided, gave a brief address on the purposes served by a Guild. The Rev. Mr Russell spoke on “Redeemed Life”. Readings were given by Messrs John Logie, J. W. Grieve, and William Grieve. Dr Thomlinson gave two recitations in splendid style. Solos from Mrs Russell, and Mr William Grieve, church praise leader, were greatly appreciated. A well balanced choir was conducted by Mr J. W. Grieve, guild praise leader. The singing was a special feature of the evening, and was very much enjoyed. An excellent service of tea was provided by an energetic committee. Votes of thanks moved by Mr A. Grieve, closed a delightful entertainment.

1907 May 18 The Orcadian

THE RECENT DROWNING ACCIDENT IN ROUSAY SOUND. PUBLIC INQUIRY AT KIRKWALL. – An inquiry was held in the Sheriff Court House at Kirkwall, on Monday afternoon, before Sheriff Harvey and jury, as to the death by drowning of David Flaws, farmer, Cott, Egilshay, which took place in Rousay Sound on 3rd April. Mr Begg, Procurator-fiscal, led the evidence.

John Inkster, farm servant, Cott, Egilshay, deponed – I was in the employment of David Flaws, farmer, Cott. Egilshay on 3rd April last. He was married, and was about 69 years of age. On Wednesday 3rd April he and I went over to Rousay pier in a small boat to get some work done at the smithy – to get some implements repaired. We left Rousay on our return to Egilshay about one o’clock in the afternoon. It was then a bit rough – the wind blowing strongly from the South-East. We had to tack across Veira Sound, and when we set the boat straight for Egilshay we were sailing close to the wind. We had got as far as the middle of the Sound when the accident took place – between the Point of Avelshay in Rousay, and the house of Vady in Egilshay. It was flowing water at the time, which made the sea rougher than it would otherwise have been. I was steering, and trying to run the waves. I managed this for a few seas, but at last one coming behind broke in over the quarter, the boat filled from the lee side, and went down. The boat only took a second or two to sink. The boat was an open one, with a lug sail. The length of keel would be about 11 feet. After the accident I got hold of one of the seats of the boat, which kept me floating, and afterwards I clutched an oar. Subsequently an Egilshay boat picked me up. James Craigie and James Seatter were in the boat. This would be twenty minutes or half an hour after the accident happened. Immediately after the boat went down I saw David Flaws. He would be on the surface of the water two or three minutes. I was then also in the water. I could not assist him in any way. Flaws did not manage to get hold of anything to keep himself afloat. The tackle on our boat was in good order. I think she was a fair good sea boat, but she was rather small. I wanted to wait in Rousay till the wind abated, but Flaws would not agree to that. I thought it was rather stormy for such a boat. The accident happened about half-past one o’clock. Besides the ordinary ballast we had some plough irons in the boat. The deceased was a fair good seaman. He had experience of the sea all his life. We had two reefs in when we left Rousay.

By the Court – Flaws had more experience of boating than me.

James Craigie, deponed – I am a farmer, and reside at Vady, Egilshay. On Wednesday 3rd April, at 1.15 I was standing at the end of my house and saw the boat belonging to Cott coming across the Sound. There were two people in it. It was then about the last of the flood tide, which was running against the wind. There was a good strong breeze of South-East wind blowing, and the Sound was pretty rough. When the boat was about half way across, I saw it go over. It went down by the lee bow. She was going rather before the wind. I think the sea struck her and sent her over. As soon as I saw what had happened I ran down to get my boat ready to launch, and sent my wife to Onziebust to get other men to heIp. The people there, however, had seen the accident, and were then on their way down to the beach. Five of us manned the boat and pulled to the scene of the accident. Here we picked up John Inkster, who was clinging to an oar. We saw nothing of David Flaws but his sou’-wester. We remained on the scene about ten minutes. Inkster was a good bit exhausted, and we were afraid to wait longer, as he might get worse in our hands. Flaws was an experienced seaman. Inkster had had some experience, but not so much as Flaws. The boat was a fair good one. I think I have crossed the Sound with her in as bad weather as it was that day. It did not appear to me as if there were too much sail on the boat. Neither body nor boat have been found.

George Seatter deponed – I am a farmer residing at Onziebust, Egilshay. On Wednesday 3rd April I was standing at the end of my house along with one of my sons, and saw a boat coming across from Rousay. It was then the last of the flood tide, with a strong breeze from the South-East. Whilst standing watching my son said the boat was gone. We then ran to the shore, and found James Craigie with a boat ready launched. We went out to where the accident took place, and picked up Inkster. He was then very much exhausted. I think we remained on the spot from five to ten minutes. Flaws and Inkster were both good boatmen, and accustomed to the sea. I think the boat was just little enough for such weather. I do not know whether they had in any reef or not. I do not think there was too much sail on the boat.

This concluded the evidence.

The Sheriff, addressing the jury, said this was the first inquiry held here under the new statute as to fatal accidents and sudden deaths, passed in 1906. He said the scope of the previous act had been considerably widened by this latter measure, but he did not think that in this particular case it threw on the jury any additional duties.

The jury then gave in a verdict in accordance with the evidence led.

1907 May 29 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY CASE IN THE COURT OF SESSION. – The action, General Burroughs’ Trustees v. Craigie of Saviskaill, has ended, the parties having lodged in the Court of Session a joint minute settling the case extrajudicially. Lord Salvesen, on the 22nd inst., interponed authority to the minute, and in terms thereof assoilzied the defender from the conclusions of the action and found the defender entitled to expenses. Counsel for pursuers, Mr J. S. Millar; agents, Mackenzie & Kermack, W.S., Edinburgh. Counsel for defender, Mr Scott, Brown; Edinburgh agent, James Gibson, S.S.C.; local agents, Drever & Heddle, solicitors, Kirkwall.

[ extrajudicial – beyond the usual course of legal proceedings: interpone – to intervene so as to prevent (something), of a court or judge: assoilzied – to free, or to be absolved of guilt.]

1907 May 29 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – AGRICULTURAL NOTES. – Farming operations, owing to the cold, briny easterly winds, have been dragging rather leisurely along for the past week or two, and although farmers have been daily at work preparing their turnip land, very little has yet been done in the way of putting in the seed. The braird and the young grass is also suffering from the severe drought, and is looking very brown and stunted, and a shift of wind with rain is very much needed to start all kinds of vegetation.

ECCLESIASTICAL. – The union between the two dissenting churches in this island, which was so peacefully accomplished last year, has hitherto been working very harmoniously. The Rev. Mr Pirie, the minister in charge, seems to give general satisfaction to all parties who are interested in promoting the welfare of the two united denominations. His preaching powers which are of no mean order, as well as his affable nature and kindly disposition, makes him a general favourite in the homes of the people. Mr Pirie, during the winter and spring months, has been very ably assisted in all his ministerial duties by the Rev. James Russell, M.A., a thorough evangelical preacher, whose earnest and stirring addresses have, it appears, made their influence felt in the hearts of the people. It might, we think, be said of this young minister, as was said of some of the apostles in the years of long ago, that he preaches the gospel to the people with great boldness. Mr and Mrs Russell, who leave Rousay this week for Edinburgh, both gave farewell addresses in Ritchie Memorial and Trumland Churches last Sunday which were listened to with rapt attention by large congregations. Mrs Russell, who has been of great assistance to her husband in singing the gospel at all the evening services, is possessed of a rich, well-trained soprano voice, which she uses with much pathos and feeling in her well-chosen songs and solos, and is also in the habit of addressing gospel meetings, and is able to tell the story of the Cross with rare eloquence and fervour. We have reason to believe that Mr and Mrs Russell, through their devoted labours in this island, have made many lasting impressions for good on the hearts and lives of many who have been privileged to hear them – impressions which we hope may in due time bear much fruit. And now that they have gone from our midst, perhaps never to come back again, they will carry with them to their future spheres of labour the prayers and good wishes of the many friends whom they have now left behind them.

1907 June 12 Orkney Herald

FARMERS, Farm Servants, Gardeners, Stablemen, Carters, Railway Surfacemen, Navvies, Miners, who desire to follow Farming or Railway Construction Work in Canada, also Female Domestic Servants, will receive the services of the Canadian Government Employment Agents in securing employment and other information on arrival at their destination in Canada. For this assistance no charge is made. Tickets, forms, and full particulars on application to W. PEACE & SON, Albert Street, Kirkwall.

1907 June 22 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – A very successful concert was held in Frotoft School on Friday evening last week. There was a crowded house. Mr Pirie, who presided stated that the members of the Star of Peace Lodge of Good Templars had arranged to present Bibles and New Testaments to the scholars as an expression of their gratitude to the School Board for the use of the school room for their meetings for several years. Mr Pirie also stated that as there were amongst them several gifted musical visitors advantage had been taken of their presence, and the concert had been got up, along with the presentation of Bibles. The programme consisted of songs and recitations. Miss Couper, from Edinburgh opened the proceedings with selections on the piano with splendid manipulation. Miss Tomlinson from Partick, Glasgow, and Miss Kirkness from Leith contributed several songs which were tastefully and charmingly sung. Dr Tomlinson gave a number of humorous recitations with skilful expression and action. Several of the scholars took part and did very well. Misses A. Johnston, Sinclair and Craigie sang a trio. Miss Jeannie Harrold, Miss Maggie Sutherland, and Master James Craigie gave recitations. The meeting was greatly enjoyed by the large audience and very hearty votes of thanks were given at the close to the young ladies who had contributed so liberally and so efficiently to the evening’s entertainment.

1907 June 26 Orkney Herald

The mansion house and shootings of Trumland, Rousay, have been let to Mr Fletcher of Saltoun.

[Captain Andrew Mansel Talbot Fletcher of Saltoun Hall, Pencaitland, East Lothian, married Frances Jane Winnington in 1902, the daughter of Sir Francis Salwey and Lady Winnington 5th. Bart. of Stanford Court, Worcester. She was the grand-daughter of Lady Alfred Churchill and cousin of The Duke of Marlborough and Sir Winston Churchill.]

1907 August 10 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – A very interesting and instructive lecture and phonographic sacred concert was given on Saturday night in the Ritchie Church by Mr Stewart, Commercial Bank, Kirkwall. The Rev. Mr Pirie introducing the lecturer said that Mr Stewart took a deep interest in Guild work, and had kindly come out for the weekend in order to help forward and encourage their Guild. Mr Stewart gave a brief account of the invention of the phonograph by Mr Edison, and the various useful purposes to which it can be applied. He then gave an excellent selection of hymns on a fine Edison phonograph. A very hearty vote of thanks was awarded the lecturer at the close. Mr Stewart was to address the young people on Sunday evening, but owing to the very heavy rain no meeting was held.

1907 August 21 Orkney Herald

GALE. – Early on Wednesday morning a strong westerly gale broke out over the Orkneys doing a good deal of damage. From four to five o’clock the wind blew at the rate of sixty miles an hour, and from five to six at sixty-three miles an hour, after which it gradually abated. The Grimsby smack, Alice Gertrude, which was discharging a cargo of salt fish at Shapinsay dragged her anchor and went ashore. Some anxiety was felt regarding the fate of two herring fishing boats, but both of these turned up safely on Thursday. On the Market Green, Broad Street, Kirkwall, the tents and stands [set up for the Lammas Fair] were overturned and much damage done. Trees, fruit, and flowers suffered severely from the gale.

1907 August 28 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY FLOWER SHOW. – The annual flower and industrial show was held in Sourin Public School, Rousay, on Tuesday, 20th inst. The weather was fine and great interest was taken in the exhibition by a large number of people. Owing to the backward season and the inclement weather which has been experienced lately, the show of flowers was rather short of last year. The industrial work was up to the average, and the baking section showed a decided improvement. Annexed is the prize list: –

SPECIAL PRIZES. – New Potatoes, – J. S. Gibson, Hullion. Cut Flowers, – J. S. Gibson. Pot Plants, Miss Annie Harrold, Bigland.

FLOWERS AND VEGETABLES. – Single Geraniums, – 1, Miss Cissie Harrold, Bigland; 2, Mrs Grieve, Whitehall. Blush Roses, – 1, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy. White Roses, – 1, Miss Gibson, Langskaill; 2, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy. Cut Geraniums, – 1, 2, and 3, J. S. Gibson. Single Stocks, – 1, J. S. Gibson. Shirley Poppies, – 1, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy. Begonia, – 1, Miss Reid, Wasdale. Double Geranium, – 1, Mrs Sutherland, Brinian; 2, Mrs Grieve. Pelargoniums, – 1, Miss Annie Harrold; 2, Mrs Kirkness, Quoyostray. Iris, – 1, J. S. Gibson. Honeysuckle, – 1, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy. Petunia, – 1, Mrs Sinclair. Pansy, – 1, J. S. Gibson. Stocks, – 1 and 2, J. S. Gibson; 3, Robert Inkster, Cogar. Yellow Calceolaria, – 1, J. S. Gibson. Red ditto, 1, J. S. Gibson. Chrysanthemum, – 1, Mrs Sinclair. Marigolds, – 1, Miss B. Cooper. Sweet William, – 1, J. S. Gibson; 2, Miss Cissie Harrold, Bigland. Turnips, – 1, J. S. Gibson; 2, Mrs Sinclair, Skatequoy; 3, Miss Inkster, Brittany. Peas, – 1, J. S. Gibson. Cauliflower, – 1, J. S. Gibson. Apples, –  1, James Low, Westness. Black Currants, – 1, J. S. Gibson. Bouquet Wild Flowers (school children), – 1, Mary Ann Hourie; 2, M. A. Cooper; 3, M. J. Inkster. Round Potatoes, – 1, Miss Inkster, Brittany. Kidney White Potatoes, – 1, J. S. Gibson; 2, John Mainland, Cubbierew; 3, Mrs Craigie, Swandale. Black Kidney Potatoes, – 1, Mrs Seatter, Banks. Cabbages, – John Mainland, Cubbierew; 2, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy; 3, Miss Inkster, Brittany. Lettuce (cabbage), – 1, J. M. Harrold. Lettuce (cos), – 1 and 2, J. S. Gibson. Parsley, – 1, Robert Inkster, Cogar; 2, J. S. Gibson. Potato Onions, – 1, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy. Leeks, – 1, Robert Inkster, Cogar; 2, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy; 3, John Mainland, Cubbierew. Onions, – 1, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy; 2, J. S. Gibson. Shallots, – 1, George Reid, Tratland; 2, Mrs Inkster, Swartifield; 3, Mrs Clouston, Tou. Radishes, – J. S. Gibson. Parsnips, – J. S. Gibson. Beetroot – Long Red, – 1, John Mainland, Cubbierew. Turnip, – 1, J. S. Gibson. Carrots, – 1, John Mainland, Cubbierew; 2, Robert Inkster, Cogar; 3, J. S. Gibson.

INDUSTRIAL WORK. – Knitted Lace Curtains, – 1, Miss Munro. Print Patchwork Counterpane – Complimentary, Miss Grieve, Blossom. Crazy Silk Patchwork Quilt, Miss Jean Scott. Chemise Tops (crochet), – 1, Miss Munro. Crochet, – 1, Miss Munro; 2 and 3, Miss A Scott. Drawn Thread Work, – 1, Miss A. Reid, Tratland; 2, Miss J. Reid; 3, Miss A. Scott. Sewed Embroidery, – 1, Mrs Reid, Wasdale; 2, Miss A. Scott, Hurtiso. Crochet Tea Cloth, – 1, Miss Munro. Linen Counterpane – Complimentary Prize, – Miss Munro. Knitted Doyleys, – 1, Helen Craigie. Hearthrugs, – 1, Miss Craigie. Tatted Doyleys, – 1, Miss A. Scott; 2, Miss Grieve. School Sewing, – 1, Mary Jane Inkster; 2, Annie Corsie; 3, Sybella Seatter. School Knitting, – 1, Ellen Craigie; 2, M. A. Cooper.

BAKING AND DAIRY PRODUCE. – Oven Scones, – 1 and 2, Mrs Harrold, Pier; 3, Mrs Gibson, Hullion. Flour Scones, – 1, Mrs Craigie, Breck; 2, Mrs Sutherland, Brinian; 3, Mrs Harrold, Pier. Drop Scones, – 1, Mrs Harrold, Pier; 2, Miss Munro; 3, Mrs Sutherland. Pancakes, – 1, Mrs J. S. Gibson. Fancy Bread, – 1, Mrs J. S. Gibson; 2, Mrs Harrold, Pier. Short-bread, – 1, Mrs Mowat; 2, Miss Ida Gibson. Fruit Cakes, – 1, Miss Ida Gibson; 2, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy; (Complimentary.) Jam Sandwich, – 1, Mrs Sinclair, Vacquoy. Bere Bannocks, – 1, Mrs Craigie, Breck; 2, Mrs Mowat; 3, Mrs Hourie. Oat Cakes, – 1, Miss Maggie J. Corsie, Knarston; 2, Miss Seatter, Banks; 3, Mrs Hourie. Salt Butter, – 1, Miss Inkster, Cogar; 2, Mrs Reid, Tratland; 3, Mrs Gibson, Avelshay. Fresh Butter, – 1, Mrs Reid, Wasdale; 2, Miss Munro; 3, Mrs Gibson, Avelshay. Cheese (Skimmed Milk), – 1, Mrs Reid, Tratland. Cheese (Sweet Milk), – 1, Mrs Reid, Tratland. Butter (for table use), – 1, Miss Jane Scott; 2, Miss Seatter, Banks; 3, Mrs Gibson, Avelshay. Eggs, – 1, Miss B. Cooper; 2, Miss Inkster, Brittany. Rhubarb Jam, – 1, Miss M. J. Grieve; 2, Mrs J. W. Grieve. Black Currant Jam, – 1, Mrs Gibson, Hullion (Complimentary). Black Currant Jelly, – 1, Miss Gibson, Langskaill (Complimentary). Orkney Chair (Plain Pine), – 1, Craigie Marwick and C. Logie (equal). Do. (Fumed Oak), 1, J. Sinclair.

The judges were – flowers – Mr A. Reid, Longhope. Industrial Work – Miss Gibson, Mrs Watson, and Miss Obel. Baking, etc. – Mr R. Spence.


ROUSAY CATTLE SHOW. – The annual cattle show was held at Sourin, Rousay, on Tuesday last week. The s.s. Fawn ran a special trip from Kirkwall, which was well patronised both from Kirkwall and Shapinsay – at which island a call was also made. The show was much larger than last year, and was visited by large numbers of people from all parts of the island. The judges were – Messrs Clouston, Graemeshall, Holm; Mackay, Flaws; and Scarth, Burgar, Evie. The following is the prize list: –

CATTLE. – Medal for best cow in yard – John Craigie. Polled Cows, – 1, John Craigie, Saviskaill; 2, and c, Geo. Gibson, Avelshay; hc, John Scott, Hurtiso. Shorthorn Cows, – 1 and hc, John Scott, Hurtiso; 2, J. Craigie, Trumland; c, R. Marwick, Scockness. Two-year-old Queys, polled, – 1, G. Gibson, Avelshay; 2, D. Gibson, Langskaill. Two-year-old Steers, – polled,  – 1 and 3, John Scott, Hurtiso; 2 and c, Jas. Craigie, Trumland; hc, R. Marwick. One-year-old Quays, polled, – 1, John Craigie, Saviskaill; 2, Jas. Craigie, Trumland. One-year-old Quays, shorthorn, – 1, Geo. Craigie, Saviskaill; 2 and 3, John Gibson, Faraclett. One-year-old Steers, shorthorn, – 1 and 3, John Gibson, Faraclett; 2, hc and c, R. Marwick, Scockness. One-year-old Steers, polled, – 1 and 2, John Craigie, Saviskaill; 3, hc and c Geo. Gibson, Avelshay. Calves, – 1 and 2, John Gibson, Faraclett; 3, John Craigie, Saviskaill; hc, James Craigie, Trumland; c, D. Gibson, Langskaill.

HORSES. – The medal for the best mare in the yard was awarded to George Gibson, Avelshay, whose property it now becomes, he having won it three times. Draught Geldings, – 1, and hc, John Gibson, Faraclett; 2, Jas. Craigie, Trumland; 3, John Craigie, Saviskaill; c, D. Gibson, Langskaill. Draught Mares, – 1, G. Gibson, Avelshay; 2, John Craigie, Saviskaill; 3, R. Marwick, Scockness; hc, John Gibson, Faraclett. Mares with foal at foot, – 1, Jas. Craigie, Trumland; 2, John Scott, Hurtiso; 3, R. Sinclair, Skatequoy; hc, Mrs Louttit, Brecon. Two-year-old fillies, – 1, John Craigie. Saviskaill; 2, H. Craigie, Swandale; P. Sinclair, Bigland. One-year-old fillies, – 1, R. Marwick, Scockness; 2, R. Sinclair, Skatequoy; 3, John Gibson, Faraclett. Two-year-old geldings, – 1, J. Craigie, Saviskaill; 2, D. Inkster, Furse. One-year-old geldings, – 1, G. Gibson, Avelshay; 2, H. Craigie, Swandale; 3 and hc, D. Gibson, Langskaill. Foals, – 1, John Scott, Hurtiso; 2, Jas. Craigie, Trumland; 3, Mrs Louttit, Brecon; hc, R. Sinclair, Skatequoy. Ponies, –  1, R. Marwick, Scockness; 2, H. Sinclair, Newhouse.

At the close of the show the committee and judges sat down to dinner in Banks. The committee take this opportunity of expressing their indebtedness to Mr and Mrs Seatter for their extreme kindness and courtesy, and for the use of their park for the show.

1907 September 4 Orkney Herald

At the end of this month, Mr John Louttit, postmaster at Coatbridge (who belongs to Rousay), will retire, after 45 years’ service, having been 22 years in the Edinburgh Post Office, and a quarter of a century in Coatbridge. In 1884 only 18,000 letters were delivered weekly in Coatbridge, while the deliveries now are 52,000 weekly.

[John Louttit, born at Faraclett in 1843, was instrumental in obtaining post office positions for several relatives and friends from Rousay.]

1907 October 2 Orkney Herald

SERIOUS BURNING ACCIDENT. – On Monday morning, Elizabeth Corsie, daughter of Malcolm Corsie, Faro, Rousay, was admitted to the Balfour Hospital, Kirkwall, suffering from severe burning injuries. The girl, we learn, is rather subject to fits. She was sitting at the fireside alone on Sunday afternoon, the other members of the family being outside, and it is supposed that she had had a fit and straightened out her limbs towards the fire. Before she was found she had sustained severe injuries to her legs, one of which, it is feared, will have to be amputated. The slippers she was wearing were entirely burned. The girl, we are glad to say, is progressing as favourably as possible.

FISHING NOTES. – There was a moderate supply of cod, haddocks, and flounders landed at Kirkwall last week by the local boats. During the first three days of the week most of the boats were out, and some good catches were got, the highest shot being 9¼ cwts. of cod. The average on Wednesday for 7 boats was about 6 cwts. A breeze of wind on Thursday, and a dense fog during the rest of the week, put a stop to further operations. The total landings for the week amounted to over three tons. Cod sold at 6s to 8s 6d per cwt.; haddocks, 8s 6d per cwt. There is a good appearance of fish on the grounds, both east and west, and the outlook for the winter fishing is somewhat better than for a number of years past. Quantities of small cod (“pooties”) are being got at various places, and two to four scores per boat are being got daily in Kirkwall Bay and the sounds in the vicinity. Sillocks and cuithes are plentiful, but are difficult to get inshore owing to the growth of weeds.

1907 October 2 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – TRUMLAND HOUSE ENTERTAINMENT. – On the invitation of Mrs [Frances] Fletcher, between 50 and 60 elderly parishioners assembled on Wednesday last, 25th inst., at Trumland House. The day was fair and the afternoon sun was shining brightly when the party assembled at 3 p.m. The Rev. Alex. Spark, parish minister, and Mrs [Jane] Spark and family were specially invited to be present. Gramophone programmes – which had been written out for the occasion by Miss [Iris] Winnington – Mrs Fletcher’s sister – were distributed to the visitors as they arrived by Master John and Miss Jean Fletcher from tiny baskets which they carried. The party met in the business-room, where the gramophone was placed, and Mrs Fletcher herself favoured the party by manipulating the instrument. The programme, consisting of 27 pieces, included: – “Stop your tickling, Jock,” by Harry Lauder; “Jewel Song,” from Faust, Mme. Donalda; “Auld Robin Grey,” pipes; “Goodbye,” Mme. Melba; “Departure of a Troopship”; “Rigoletto Song,” Caruso; “Chorister’s Waltz”; “Yodel Duet”; “Whistling Rufus,” band; “Auld Lang Syne,” Mme. Melba. The programme, which was received with rounds of applause, having been finished, Mrs Fletcher invited the party to adjourn upstairs to the dining-room for a cup of tea. The dining-room was most tastefully laid out, and all its tables were loaded with all kinds of cakes. The visitors next re-assembled in the business-room to return thanks to Mrs Fletcher. The Rev. Mr Spark addressing the company said: –

“Ladies and gentlemen, the entertainment which we have all so heartily enjoyed – the gramophone and the “cup” which refreshes but never intoxicates, call for the expression of our gratitude, and all our hearts unite in thanking Mr and Mrs Fletcher for such an unexpected yet much appreciated treat. Mrs Fletcher, with your kind permission I would improve this occasion by a brief reference to the person and place from whence our host and hostess hail. Scottish history has recorded upon its page one outstanding name – that of Andrew Fletcher of Salton, who, born in 1653, was a celebrated Scottish patriot and politician – descended, on his father’s side, from an aristocratic and titled family of Yorkshire, and, on his mother’s side, from King Robert Bruce of Scotland. Aristocracy and monarchy were then oft in conflict, and Andrew Fletcher, having offended the Duke of York (who afterwards became James II.) fled for dear life first to Holland, then to Spain, then to Hungary, and, at length, landed in London at the Revolution. There he met another great Scotchman – William Paterson – founder of the Bank of England, and projector of the Darien Expedition. It was at Fletcher’s suggestion that Paterson visited Scotland and offered Scotland to its advantage in that project what he had intended for Germany. Fletcher died in 1716, and 21 years after that event his writings were collected and published under the title of “The Political Works of Andrew Fletcher, Esquire.” So much for the person of your ancestry Mrs Fletcher, and now for the place from which you hail – Haddingtonshire or East Lothian. This county stands on Scotland’s eastern sea-coast and extends to about 280 square miles of the finest land in Scotland, bordered on its south side by the Lammermuir Hills. This shire is a pioneer in many respects. About 200 years ago there lived a great agriculturist John Cockburn of Ormiston, who was regarded as the father of improved Scottish husbandry. He helped and encouraged his tenantry by giving favourable leases. He himself had growing at Ormiston in 1725 the first turnips in drill, and there also the first potatoes – a field in 1734. The first thrashing machine was introduced into this county by Andrew Meikle a native, and the first steam-plough possessed by a tenant farmer in Scotland was introduced into this same county by Mr Sadler of Ferrygate. According to the agricultural statistics of 1857, Haddingtonshire stood first in Scotland for oats. Passing from agriculture to the ecclesiastical line, we must remember that the great Scottish Reformer, John Knox, hailed from Haddington, having been born at Gifford-gate close to that town in 1505. Thus the person and place of our host and hostess merit highest praise, and we do heartily tender to Mr and Mrs Fletcher our unqualified thanks for all their kindness which we have so very much appreciated. We shall honour the family by giving 6 hearty cheers: – A hearty cheer for Mr Fletcher (in absence) – hip, hip, hurrah, 2 hearty cheers for his better half, Mrs Fletcher and daughter – hip, hip, hurrah, etc., – and 3 hearty cheers for the son and heir – hip, hip, hurrah, etc., etc.

DANCE. – On Friday night last week a dance was given in the Glebe barn, when about forty of the youth and beauty of the district attended. The gramophone was lent from Trumland House to help the entertainment, and Mrs Fletcher and Miss Winnington graced the dance with their presence. Tea, in the course of the evening, was provided in the manse, and the party broke up about 2 a.m., delighted with the entertainment.

1907 October 16 Orkney Herald

The girl Elizabeth Corsie, daughter of Mr Malcolm Corsie, Faro, Rousay, who was severely burned by falling on the hearth in a room of her father’s house, on Sunday the 29th ult., when in a fit, died in Balfour Hospital, Kirkwall, on Sunday last from her injuries. The body was taken to Rousay yesterday (Tuesday) for interment.

[Elizabeth was the fourth eldest of seven children of Malcolm Corsie and Mary Inkster. She was 28 years of age when she died, her younger brother Malcolm dying in Larbert, Stirlingshire, in January the same year.]

1907 October 23 Orkney Herald

BIRTHS, MARRIAGES, AND DEATHS. – …..Mr and Mrs Corsie return sincere thanks to their numerous friends for kind sympathy extended to them in this their time of trouble. – Faro, Rousay.

1907 November 6 Orkney Herald

THE WEATHER OF OCTOBER. – ….. October, like September, was milder, drier, and sunnier than the average. It was really the case of nature making up the defects of a dull, wet, sunless summer, by a mild, dry, sunny autumn. The dense fogs of the last days of September continued for the first two of October. Winds throughout were of light velocity, and frequently there were dead calms. The statistics show that pressure was below the mean, and, with the exception of 1903, the lowest for 25 years. Mean temperature was one and a-half degrees in excess of the avenge. Rainfall was one and a-quarter inches below the mean. On the 15th the rainfall was 1.16 inches. Hours of sunshine were 6.8 in excess of the mean.

1907 November 27 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – SOCIAL MEETING. – The Rousay United Free Church Guild opened its winter session with a social on Thursday evening. The weather being favourable, there was a large gathering in Ritchie Church. Mr Pirie presided, and in his opening remarks gave a cordial invitation to the young people to join the guild. The Rev. R. H. Abel, presently assisting Mr Pirie, and who spent part of his ministry in South Africa. gave a racy and humorous address on features of native life in Africa. Mr Abel also gave two recitations in a taking manner. Dr M. Forrest gave very acceptable recitations with excellent elocution and taste. Mr John Inkster and Mr Alex. Grieve, vice-presidents of the guild, gave short speeches, which were much appreciated for their pawky humour. Mr William Grieve, congregational precentor, contributed solos with his usual skill, and his little daughter, Mary, charmed the audience with a hymn rendered with wonderful precision and sweetness of voice. Mr James W. Grieve, guild leader of praise, led a well balanced choir, which contributed a number of pieces in capital style. A committee provided an excellent tea. Votes of thanks concluded one of the most successful and enjoyable socials ever held by the guild.

SAD BOATING ACCIDENT. – A very sad boating accident, resulting in the death of Mr Robert Kemp, cattle dealer, [Langskaill] Gairsay, occurred near Egilshay on the night of Wednesday the 20th current. Mr Kemp had been in Rousay attending the sale at Saviskaill, and being very anxious to get to Egilshay that night, he left Rousay in a small sailing boat about 7 p.m. There was a light breeze from the south-west, and being an expert boatman he seemed perfectly capable of managing the boat alone. No danger was apprehended until the following day, when it became known that the boat had never reached Egilshay. As soon as this was known a boat left Egilshay for Rousay to make further inquiries, and fearing that an accident must have happened, they landed at the Holm of Scockness on their way to Rousay, where they found two oars and a walking stick. The boat subsequently came ashore at Mill Bay, Sanday, but no trace of the missing body has, so far, been found. How the accident happened must remain a mystery, but it seems that there was much heavier sea on the Egilshay side than at Rousay, and with the flood tide and the wind rising, it is thought most probable that the boat was swamped. Great sympathy is felt for the widowed wife and family in their sad bereavement.

1907 December 7 The Orcadian

THE ROUSAY MANSE. – At the Orkney Sheriff Court on Tuesday, Mr D. J. Robertson, for the heritors, said that one or two small alterations suggested by Mr. T. P. Low on behalf of the minister had been agreed to. The Sheriff approved of the plans, but reserved a question raised as to the new garden and steading. As to the water supply Mr Robertson said experiments had been going on with a view to tapping the spring from which present supply was got so as to give a gravitation scheme. That had failed, however, and it was now proposed to put down a ram at the well. He thought that would give an ample supply of water.

1907 December 21 The Orcadian

THE DROWNING ACCIDENT IN ROUSAY SOUND. PUBLIC INQUIRY. – Under the Fatal Accidents Inquiry (Scotland) Act, 1895, and the Amendment Act, 1906, a Public Inquiry was held in the Sheriff Court House, Kirkwall, on Tuesday, before Sheriff Harvey, and a jury, in regard to the death of Robert Kemp, cattle dealer, Langskaill, Gairsay, who was drowned on the evening of 20th November last, in the Sound of Rousay, by the capsizing or swamping of the boat in which he then was, while in the course of his industrial employment as a cattle dealer.

Mr James Begg, S.S.C., Procurator-Fiscal for Orkney appeared on behalf of the Crown.

EVIDENCE FOR THE CROWN. – Robert Seatter, farmer, Banks, Sourin, Rousay, said he remembered 20th November last. There was a sale at the farm of Saviskaill, Rousay, that day. He was at that sale, and saw Robert Kemp, Langskaill, Gairsay. He spoke to him there. He left the sale about four o’clock, and went straight home, and remained at home the rest of the evening. Mr Kemp came along to his house about seven o’clock and purchased a beast from him and gave him a cheque in payment. Mr Kemp afterwards asked him for the loan of his boat, remarking that he was going across to Egilshay. He said he would rather Mr Kemp would stop with him all night – indeed he urged him to stay rather than take his boat, as he did not approve of crossing that night alone. Mr Kemp replied that it was important he should be in Egilshay that night, and as he persisted in going witness went down to the shore with him.

By the Court – He kept his boat below his house in Sourin Bay, and they went down there together.

Examination continued – He had his boat hauled up, and Mr Kemp assisted him to launch it. When it was launched, Mr Kemp got into it, and witness handed him some stones for ballast. He then set the mast, shipped the rudder, and hoisted the lug sail. The wind was fair – from the south-west – and the tide was about half-flood. The wind was against the tide. That tended to make the sea a little rougher. The boat was about 13 feet of keel, with black bottom, and blue above the water line. Kemp left in the boat by himself. He watched him till he was about two-thirds across the Sound. At this time it was bright moonlight, and it was a fine night on the Rousay side. From the direction of the wind, the Rousay side would be rather more sheltered than the other side. He considered Kemp was perfectly qualified to cross the Sound. He himself had put him across the Sound before, but he generally went with the post boat. Kemp had a walking stick with him when he left Rousay. (Shown walking stick.) The stick Mr Kemp had was something like that produced. On the following day about one o’clock he met the postman from Egilshay, and asked him if Mr Kemp had arrived the previous evening, and he said he was not aware of it. About four o’clock the same afternoon he met James Alexander and Hugh Robertson and they told him they had picked up two oars at the Holm of Scockness which he identified as belonging to his boat. They also found the walking stick which had already been produced. He did not know what would be the cause of the accident. Perhaps the wind was a little stronger on the Egilshay side than on the Rousay side of the Sound, and perhaps the sea would be a little more choppy. The finding of the oars and walking stick on the Holm of Scockness bears out that opinion.

By a Juryman – He did not think it likely that the boat struck upon the Holm of Scockness. Kemp was not near the place.

By the Court – Mr Kemp understood perfectly the working of a boat. In witness’s opinion there was sufficient ballast in the boat.

John Seatter, farmer, Banks, Sourin, Rousay, said he was acquainted with Robert Kemp. He remembered him coming on 20th November and asking for the use of the boat to go across to Egilshay. He went to the shore, and helped his father and Kemp to launch the boat. They put ballast in it, and Kemp set the mainsail. The wind was from the south-west, and it was a fine night on the Rousay side of the Sound; but the wind would be felt more on the Egilshay side. The tide was about half flood, and was running against the wind. He had no opinion as to the cause of the accident. Mr Kemp had a walking stick with him on the occasion of his visit to his house. (Shown walking stick.) That is like Mr Kemp’s walking stick. He had seen the oars of the boat found at the Holm of Scockness, and he thought they were those belonging to his father’s boat.

By the Court – It would be between seven and eight o’clock that night when Robert Kemp left Rousay.

Hugh Robertson, farmer, South Tofts, Egilshay, said he remembered Thursday, 21st November. That afternoon the postman told him that Mr Kemp had left Rousay the night before with the intention of coming to Egilsay. James Alexander and himself took a boat, and went to the Holm of Scockness to make a search. On the west side of that Holm they found a walking stick and two oars. They took these to Rousay. Mr Seatter identified the oars, and he himself recognised the walking stick as belong to Mr Kemp. He crossed Rousay Sound on Wednesday, the 20th, to attend the sale at Saviskaill. He saw Mr Kemp at that sale. He was to come across to Egilshay with them, but said he had some business to do first, and would follow them. They crossed the Sound about six o’clock. On the Rousay side they had shelter, but on the Egilshay side it was rough, there being a strong wind and some sea. The wind was increasing, and about eight o’clock there was a single reef breeze blowing. In his opinion Kemp would come suddenly into the rough sea, and once in it he would find it impossible to take in a reef. He could not have left the helm to take down the sail; but he might have eased the sheet. Assuming that the boat was swamped the oars and stick would remain in the Sound for some time, and would ultimately be carried by wind and tide to the Holm of Scockness, and his opinion was that the only place where they would find anything belonging to the boat would be in the vicinity of the Holm of Scockness. Anyone leaving Rousay on the night of the accident could have no idea of the strength of the wind on the other side. It was a rising wind. He thought the boat was quite sufficient for the sea, but he was of opinion that the sail would be too much for it when it came into the tide. If there had been two men in the boat they might have had a better chance, as one could have tried to get in a reef, whilst the other remained at the helm.

By the Court – With the wind and tide going in opposite directions, a boat is more likely to be swamped than when the wind and tide are running together.

By a Juryman – The sea would be heavier when Kemp crossed than when he did, because there was more tide and more wind. The sea is generally heaviest on the Rousay side, but under the special conditions that night it was worst on the Egilshay side. Probably the swamping of the boat was caused by the rough sea and too much sail being carried.

By another Juryman – When the boat suddenly entered the tide carrying so much sail she may have given a lurch and the ballast shifted.

James Alexander, farmer, Nether Skaill, Egilshay, said he remembered on Thursday 21st November Hugh Robertson coming to him, and telling him about a boat which had left Rousay the previous night, and had not arrived at Egilshay. He accompanied Robertson in a boat, and made a search at the Holm of Scockness. At the west side of the Holm they found two oars and a walking stick. They then proceeded to Rousay and called on Mr Seatter, Banks, who identified the oars as those which had been in his boat. He was in Rousay the day before at the sale at Saviskaill. He went back to Egilshay the same night along with Robertson and six others. The tide had flowed a good bit at that time. They got home a little after six o’clock and the wind was then increasing. He thought it was too much sail, and the strength of the wind against the tide which caused the accident. They went to Scockness to look out for the missing boat. The flood tide is generally fully stronger on the Rousay than on the Egilshay side. The main run of the tide goes between Scockness and Rousay. The strongest ebb tide is generally on the Rousay side too. Looking to this, notwithstanding the direction of the wind, it was quite natural to find the oars and the walking stick belonging to Mr Kemp on the west side of Scockness.

By the Court – If he had been carrying too much sail when he entered the tide he would have let go the sheet, crawled forward, let down the sail, and put in a reef. To let go the sheet is the first thing to do if there is too much wind in a heavy sea. In a tideway a boat may be swamped even if the sheet is let go.

By a Juryman – On the night in question there was more sea on the Egilshay side than on the Rousay side.

By the Court – The distance from Rousay to Egilshay is about a mile and a half.

The jury returned a verdict in accordance with the evidence led, and, on the suggestion of the Sheriff, agreed, through him, to express their sympathy with the relatives of deceased.