In Print

Newsprint – 1908

1908 January 1 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – CHILDREN’S CONCERT AND CHRISTMAS TREE. – A very pleasant evening was spent last Friday in Sourin School. A Christmas tree had been erected for the children, and in spite of the rough weather a large number of parents and others turned out to enjoy themselves with the children. The tree looked very pretty, lit up by candles and Chinese lanterns, and with the various presents hanging from its branches. A varied programme of song, recitation, and physical exercises was submitted by the children and much appreciated by the elder folks. The chairman, Rev. Mr Pirie, gave an interesting address to the children on their “Knowledge Box,” while the Rev. Mr Abel, in the course of the evening, made everyone laugh with his humorous remarks. At the interval there was a service of cake and biscuits, and at the end the children each received some present off the tree. Votes of thanks and a verse of “God save the King,” brought a very pleasant evening to a close. The following is the programme: –

Christmas hymn, Children; Chairman’s remarks, Rev. Mr Pirie; song, “Star of the Twilight,” Children; dumb-bell exercises; recitation, “Cuddle Doon,” Miss Lydia Robina Horne; duet, “Brooklet on the Plain,” Misses Isa Grieve and K. Lyon; remarks by Rev. Mr Abel; song, “The Birdies’ Ball,” Children; violin and piano selections, Miss Marwick and Mr Grieve; recitation, “The Infant Orator,” Master Hugh Craigie; bar-bell exercises; song and chorus, “Tramp, Tramp, Tramp,” Miss A. T. Harrold; Japanese Fan song, Girls; recitation, “Gentleman John,” Master Hugh Gibson; song, “I’se gwine back to Dixie,” Children; hoop drill; recitation, “A fair little girl” by Misses Grieve, Mainland, and Corsie; remarks by Rev. Mr Abel; piano and violin selections, Miss Marwick and Mr Grieve; song, “Marching through Georgia,” Children; “God Save the King.”

1908 January 11 The Orcadian

EGILSHAY. – A correspondent writes – The Egilshay young men have stopped crossing to Rousay to see their sweethearts as the famous sea-serpent or some uncanny monster has been following their boat. It seems that on a recent occasion two young men belonging to the island were crossing Rousay Sound when “something” appeared first on one side of the boat and then on the other. The occupants took fright and landed on a small island nearby (the Holm of Scockness we presume) and there stood shivering for some time till they summoned up courage to betake themselves to their boat once more.

1908 January 14 The Scotsman

SOCIETY OF ANTIQUARIES OF SCOTLAND. – …..The usual monthly meeting of this Society was held in their library at the Museum, Queen Street, Edinburgh, last night – Dr George Macdonald in the chair….. A TRIANGULAR DAGGER. – Mr J. W. Cursiter, Kirkwall, exhibited and described a very rare example of the thin triangular dagger characteristic of the early part of the Bronze Age, which was found in 1905 in a peat moss in the island of Rousay. The peculiarity of this example is that it still retains its hilt of ox-horn affixed to the broad butt end of the blade by three rivets of bronze, and is the only Scottish specimen which preserves its handle. The pommel of the horn handle is wanting, but the short projecting tang on which it was fixed still retains the wooden pins by which it was fastened…..

1908 February 8 The Orcadian

DEATHS: TRAILL-BURROUGHS. – At 70 Warwick Square, London, on the 1st February, Lady Eliza D’Oyly Traill-Burroughs, widow of General Sir Frederick William Traill-Burroughs, K.C.B., of Rousay and Veira, Orkney, and daughter of the late Colonel W. Geddes, C.B., in her fifty-eighth year. This is the only intimation.

1908 February 15 The Orcadian

THE LATE LADY BURROUGHS – MEMORIAL SERVICE. – A memorial service was held in Trumland Church, Rousay, on Tuesday at the same hour at which the funeral of Lady Burroughs took place in London. There was a large attendance of the tenants, the servants from Trumland House, and other friends. The service was conducted by the Rev. A. Irvine Pirie, assisted by the Rev. R. H. Abel. In the course of the service Mr Pirie made the following reference to the deceased: –

“Lady Burroughs has been the most prominent lady in our social life for well nigh forty years. In the year 1870 the late proprietor of Rousay – Sir Frederick Traill-Burroughs – brought her as a young bride to Rousay, and the tenants gave her a hearty welcome on landing at Westness House. Since that day she has gone out and in amongst the people, acquiring as the years passed, an ever-increasing attachment to her island home, and the people have been acquiring an ever-increasing esteem for her. She filled her high position with dignity, grace, and brightness. Her home life was full of love and a high and pure atmosphere enhanced and sanctified by Christian devotion. Possessed of a bright and cheerful disposition, and full of active energetic life she took a deep interest in everything going on around her. Home industries had strong attractions for her, and she constantly laboured to encourage and help forward such work. The education of the children was a subject that she thought much about, and sought in many ways to promote. There are many people on the estate, and many who have left the parish and gone to reside in other islands and in other lands, who will retain as long as they live pleasant memories of the children’s entertainments at Westness House, and latterly at Trumland House, and there are many homes holding as cherished possessions the beautiful prizes given year after year for the best sewing and knitting in the four schools on the estate. When I came to Rousay twenty-five years ago I found her carrying on a Sabbath school in Trumland House. After the girls grew up and left school Lady Burroughs still maintained her interest in them, and for many years she had a strong local branch of the Scotch Girls’ Friendly Society. She was an attached member of the Episcopal Church, but for twenty years she has found it convenient to worship with the congregation meeting in this church. She always manifested a devout spirit, and frequently spoke to me about the subjects I preached upon, and shewed by her conversation that she loved gospel truth, and wished to encourage me in my work. Living beside her for a quarter of a century I can say that she wished to encourage what was good, and that her life and conversation had an elevating and refining influence on all who were privileged to be in her company. She has had a brief widowhood. She has appeared amongst us during the past three years stricken, lonely and desolate. All hearts have been drawn out to her because of her loneliness and grief. She has been called away, whilst life to her was still strong, and work attractive and we sorrow deeply that we shall see her face no more. We believe, however, that we can say of her: – “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth; yea saith the spirit that they may rest from their labours and their works do follow them.”

1908 February 22 The Orcadian



To the general public the passing of Lady Traill Burroughs would be a matter of small importance, but of those who had the privilege of a more intimate acquaintance, deep and sincere would be the regret felt, genuine would be their sorrow. She who had gone out and in amongst us for so many years, and who as the years went by gained for herself ever truer and truer affection had now passed to the great Beyond, and we had not had even the mournful satisfaction of bidding her farewell. The position which she filled so elegantly, so graciously, as lady of the estate, may be filled by some other equally elegant, equally gracious, but in the minds of many who have known her from their childhood, there will linger a halo round the memory of Lady Burroughs which cannot easily be eclipsed. From the time when she came to our island a youthful bride in all her girlish bloom, and ever on through the years she took a keen interest in the life and well being of the people on her island home, gaining for herself well-merited affection and esteem. Perhaps our hearts went out to her with deepest affection and sympathy when she came back to us in her lonely widowhood, bereft of the soldier husband who for so many years had been the loving helpmate, the sharer of her joys and sorrows. Even then she did not shut herself up with her grief, but still extended with chastened dignity her hospitality, especially to the children on the estate. She all along took a very keen interest in the school children and wished to inspire in their hearts a love for what was pure and noble, wished them to grow up worthy sons and daughters of the British Empire. To those of us who knew her more intimately was revealed something of her inner life, but to those not so privileged perhaps a deeper and more beautiful insight into her character than already known may be shown by quoting part of an address given by her to the children of Rousay in the summer of 1907…..”What do you think makes worthy sons and daughters? Just think of it in our own homes – Obedience and respect to your parents, to your teachers, to your elders. Truthfulness in word and deed, kindness and unselfishness to your brothers and sisters and companions…..never taking a mean advantage of anyone but trying to go straight…..Now I want to speak of another Great Empire, and another Great King, greater than our own King Edward, for this King is the King of Kings and His Empire is the world, and you and I and everyone are his sons and daughters. Let us be very fearful lest we become His enemies. We must study His book which is to be our guide, in which He plainly tells us we are to love Him and do to others as we would have them do to us. Now these orders are not always quite easy to obey but if you ask him every morning, quite simply, how you are to serve in His Empire every day and be sure you mean it, that is quite sufficient, and He will make and keep both you and me worthy sons and daughters in his universal Empire.”


ROUSAY PLOUGHING MATCH. – The Annual Ploughing Match of the Rousay Agricultural Society was held last Friday, on a field on the farm of Furse, kindly granted for the occasion by Mr David Inkster. The weather was all that could be desired for the work and the ground was in excellent order for ploughing, consequently the work all over was well done. Eighteen ploughs entered for competition, including four champions. The ploughmen and others were well supplied with refreshments through the day. The judges were – Messrs R. Fraser and Norquoy, Rendall, and Mr Barclay, Royal Hotel, Kirkwall, who after a most careful inspection of the work awarded the prizes as follows: –

Champions – 1st and medal, Hugh Robertson, Scockness; 2, Thomas Gibson, Broland; 3, John Corsie, Knarston; 4, Malcolm Leonard, Quoys.
Ordinary – 1st and Highland Society’s Medal, James W. Grieve, Faraclett; 2, John Marwick, Knarston; 3, David Moodie, Trumland; 4, John Craigie, Falquoy; 5, David Craigie, Avelshay; 6, James Russell, Langskaill; 7, John Gibson, Avelshay; 8, James Craigie, Falquoy; 9, Hugh Marwick, Trumland; 10, David More, Saviskaill.
Youngest ploughman, James Moodie, Glebe.
Best feering on field, best finish on field, straightest ploughing and best ploughed rig, Hugh Robertson, Scockness; neatest ends, Robert Sinclair, Skatequoy.
Grooming – 1, John Seatter, Banks; 2, David Moar, Saviskaill; 3, James W. Grieve, Faraclett; 4, John Gibson, Avelshay; 5, Thomas Gibson, Broland; 6, Hugh Marwick, Trumland. Best matched horses, James Russell, Langskaill.
Harness – 1, David Moar; 2, James W. Grieve; 3, Malcolm Leonard; 4, John Seatter; 5, James Moodie. Best decoration, Malcolm Leonard.

At the close of the match, Dr Forrest handed out the prizes to the successful competitors, for which she, along with the judges, was awarded three hearty cheers. In the evening the judges, the committee, and a number of friends were entertained to dinner in Furse. Mr Logie, Trumland House, acted as chairman, while the duties of croupier were performed by Mr James Gibson, Hullion. The usual loyal and patriotic toasts were given and duly responded to, and a pleasant evening spent. The Committee take this opportunity of thanking the donors of the special prizes, also all those who so liberally subscribed to the funds of the Society.

1908 March 4 Orkney Herald

SNOWSTORM. – The first heavy fall of snow in Orkney this winter took place on Thursday, and was accompanied by a strong gale from the west and north-west. Snow also fell heavily on Friday, and lay to a considerable depth. On Saturday, however, a rapid thaw set in, with showers of sleet and rain, and the snow quickly melted. Owing to the stormy weather the steamer St Ola returned from Scrabster on Friday and Saturday without waiting for the arrival of the afternoon mail train at Thurso.

1908 March 7 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – To maintain the unbroken interest of an audience in a programme of violin music lasting two hours is a feat of which most violinists might well be proud, and it says much for the measure of Miss Agnes Copeland’s accomplishment as a violinist that at her recital in the Freemason’s hall (says the “Scotsman“) she set herself this difficult task, and overcame it with complete success. A varied and exacting programme, which contained the Mendelssohn Concerto, the well-known Tartini Sonata in G minor, the Beethoven Romance in F, and the Rondo Capriccioso of Saint-Seans, tested her abilities at all points, and with uniformly satisfactory results. Miss Copeland joins a breadth and volume of tone which is almost masculine, while alike in the interpretations of her music and in the quality of her tone, last night’s performance displayed a real charm and distinction. Since her first appearance as a concert-giver, a little over a year ago, Miss Copeland has made an advance in her art which augurs well for her future career. (Miss Copeland is a sister of the Rousay doctor.)

1908 March 14 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – The United Free Church Guild held its closing social on Thursday evening in Ritchie Church. There was a full house, and the whole proceedings were most enjoyable and successful. The Rev. A. Irvine Pirie who presided had with him on the platform the Rev. Messrs MacLaren, Kirk, and Abel. These gentlemen gave racy and humorous speeches, whilst Messrs MacLaren and Kirk contributed much to the evening’s enjoyment by singing several pieces. The guild choir, under the skilful leadership of Mr James W. Grieve, sang a number of hymns with spirit and taste. Mr William Grieve, church leader of praise gave a solo in fine style, and he and his little daughter Mary [10] sang the Welsh tune, “Diadem” as a duet with excellent precision. A committee provided a sumptuous tea. The meeting was closed with votes of thanks proposed by Mr Alexander Grieve in a humorous speech.

1908 March 18 Orkney Herald

INTERESTED IN A BIG ROLLING MILL. – The following is from an Ohio paper: – ‘Mr Marwick is a native of Rousay, and when a young man went to South Ronaldshay with his parents. Thence he emigrated to the United States, settling first in Chicago: – Mr D. B. Marwick, who came to Warren from New Brittain, Conn., last fall to place the Penn Shovel Manufacturing Co.’s rolling mill plant on a paying business, as well as become general manager of the company, has resigned his position. Mr Marwick has just returned from a business trip to Canada, where he was successful in interesting American capital to the extent of 200,000 dollars in the forming of the Canadian Steels Rolling Mill Co. This is not Mr Marwick’s first venture in this kind of work as he has erected and operated mills in various portions of the country, one being the Columbia Steel Works, at Elyria. Mr Marwick is to be president and general manager of the new company, which will erect its big mills at Campbellsford, Ontario, Canada, about midway between Toronto and Montreal, on the river Trent. Several inducements led the company to erect mills there. First, the River Trent furnished untold water power, which will not cost the company more than 10 dollars per horse power for continuous service during the year; second, there is no firm in the Canadian province which is manufacturing sheets, bar and cold drawn steel, which will be the products of the plant. There are over 6,000,000 dollars worth of these brands of steel imported into Canada each year on which a duty of 585,000 dollars is paid. Without the duty to pay the company figures it stands a good chance to get a portion of this import business.’

[David Baikie Marwick was the son of James Marwick, Ervadale, latterly Bankburn, South Ronaldsay, and Mary Baikie, Evie. He married Elizabeth Norquay in 1892, and their five children were born in the USA between 1895 and 1908.]

1908 April 29 Orkney Herald

SNOW STORM. – After about a week of very cold weather, snow began to fall last Wednesday, and during the night and the following morning there was a heavy fall. There were frequent snow showers throughout Thursday, and again a heavy fall on Thursday night, the result being that on Friday morning snow lay to a depth of eight inches on the plain. On Friday and Saturday there were occasional periods of thaw but at night keen frost again set in. On Sunday rain fell, and the snow melted rapidly. The wind was generally from the North and North West, though for an hour or two on Friday morning it blew from the South West. From the country districts it is stated that a number of lambs have been lost. Not for many years has a snow storm of such severity been experienced so late in the season. In April 1862, forty-six years ago, there was a gale of north wind with snow, which lasted for three days, 11th to the 13th. The unseasonable weather this year has not been confined to the Orkneys, but has extended over the whole of Great Britain and part of the Continent.

1908 June 3 Orkney Herald

VISIT OF CROFTERS COMMISSION. – The Crofters Commission have given notice that they will arrive in Orkney on June 20, and hold sittings to dispose of a number of local cases. These comprise twenty-three applications for fair rent, six for compensation for improvements, four for resumption of holdings, four for enlargement of holdings, one to fix boundaries, one to sist procedure in action for removal, and there are four other applications. There are also six appeals, three of which are with reference to the fair rents.

1908 June 17 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – SCHOLASTIC. – Under the auspices of the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, a prize has been awarded to Mary Ann Sinclair, a pupil in Frotoft Public School, for writing an essay on “Some Benefits we Derive from the Lower Animals” (excluding the domesticated animals).

[Born in June 1896, Mary Ann was the youngest of six children born to James Hugh Sinclair, Newhouse, and Margaret McKinlay, Sound, Egilsay.]

1908 June 20 The Orcadian

ROUSAY. – The sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was celebrated in the Parish Church here on Sunday last, 14th June. The parish minister was ably assisted by his brother, the Rev. John Spark, M.A., of Clyne Parish, Sutherlandshire, who preached from Isaiah 44, 22, “I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions, and as a cloud thy sins.”

The sacrament was also celebrated at Glebe Cottage at 2 p.m., and at Wasbister School at 4 p.m., where the assistant minister gave an excellent discourse from Rev. 21, 1 – last clause – “And there was no more sea.”

1908 June 27 The Orcadian

CROFTERS’ COMMISSION IN ORKNEY. MONDAY’S SITTING. – The sittings of the Crofters’ Commission in Orkney commenced in the Sheriff Court House, Kirkwall, on Monday. The Commissioners are Sheriff Kennedy, K.C., Mr P. B. MacIntyre, and Mr Forsyth…..


The next application was one for compensation by William David Gibson, Hurtiso, Holm, formerly a tenant on the Rousay estate, for £114 2s 4d for improvements on the croft of Curquoy, on the Rousay estate.

Applicant, replying to Mr Low, said – In 1900 I succeeded my father. In 1907 I renounced the tenancy of Curquoy. Curquoy had been in the family for about 27 years, and Brittany was added in 1880. The whole place was practically broken in by my grandfather and father, and I broke in some myself. Curquoy extends to 30 acres, and Brittany about 170 acres including outrun, of which about 15 acres were arable. All the buildings on the place were built by my grandfather and father. My father put up a stable on Brittany. A barn and two byres, a stable, pig-sties, and a cart shed were put up on Curquoy. The proprietor contributed nothing. It is a considerable time since some of the buildings were put up. The barn was erected about 15 years ago, and the other buildings have been repaired and rebuilt from time to time. I have been told by my father that the place was started on the bare hill, and was broken out. The rent rose from 27s in 1854 to £10 10s. in 1858; and after Brittany was added to £17. In 1877 the rent was raised by the Commission to £18 10s. In that application there was a mistake of 10 acres in the acreage and on that being proved the rent on revaluation was reduced £16. The buildings were in a good state and were kept up regularly till I left. It is false to say that the stable on Brittany was erected by a boarder kept by my father. My father erected that stable for keeping Shetland ponies. This boarder, Mr McCrie, was not a dealer in ponies. He bought one, which we kept. Some of the stones in that stable were trenched out of the land and others taken from six miles away. I could not say what the buildings cost my father; but I consider the claim a moderate and reasonable one. There were 43 chains of drains and 44 chains of five feet ditches. I wrote the proprietor and offered to show him all the drains I had claimed for; but he never came. The ground that the ditches were in was very hard. The stones for the drains were trenched out of the land as the proprietor would not allow us to quarry. I was refused permission to quarry. When I left the farm the drains and ditches were all in working order. I consider the amount of my claim, reckoned at 2s a day, is moderate. My claim for a dyke is for one round the kailyard. I claim for 17 acres of ground reclaimed. I think £1 an acre is a moderate charge. My claim is £2 15s for building a dam and water race. The proprietor states that the land and buildings had been allowed to deteriorate through neglect. My last crop I suppose was the best I ever had. I also claim for unexhausted manures, and it is my wish that the Commission fix the amount as compensation.

By Mr Robertson – I came back to the croft when my father became unwell, in 1899. Up to 1855 part of the same farm steading was let to another man, and when my grandfather came in the rent was £2 10s. When the hill was added in 1858 the rent was raised to £10 10s, and then Brittany and the grazing on Kierfea Hill was added at a rental of £25. When the grazing was taken away the rental came down to £17. In 1895 the rent was reduced to £16, and remained at that till I left. When I left it was worth as much as when the Crofters Commission re-valued it. It was the custom on the estate to raise the rent one-third, and the first seven years that amount was not paid, in lieu of draining. General Burroughs never allowed a penny piece for improvements on Curquoy. I was living at home when the stable was built at Brittany. I say this – McCrie did not build this stable. I know that Mr McCrie paid William Reid, carpenter, some money for this stable. He did not breed Shetland ponies. He had a stallion, and a foal. One of the animals was kept at Woo. The stable was built on the foundation of an old house at the place. My grandfather made all ditches, and all the boundary ditches on the north and west. The dyke round the kailyard was dry built before I remember. I repaired it. I broke in some of the land reclaimed. Some of it was trenched. I think there was use for a water mill. The incoming tenant would not buy the water wheel, so it was sold at the sale. Q – So there is no use for the dam? A – Yes if they like to put a wheel here as we did. It is a great saving of labour. When renounced the croft I offered £10 for the croft and had been paying £16.

Mr Low said he wished to question his witness as to a statement made by General Burroughs that if applicant persisted in his claim for compensation he would make him spend all his means.

The Chairman – Well, I think you better let that disappear with the General.

James Cooper, Stumpie [Lower Gripps], Sourin, Rousay, answering Mr Low – I know the farm of Curquoy, and think the farm was as well cultivated the last four years as the previous four years. I saw nothing to lead me to think that the farm was neglected or not properly cultivated. I saw no evidence of neglect from the crops.

William Marwick, White Meadows, Wasbister, Rousay, answering Mr Robertson said – I was tenant of Curquoy the year after Mr Gibson left. I paid £16, and left because I found it was too much. The dwelling house was in good enough order, but the steading was in very bad condition. I could not have worked the farm with the steading as it was. One or two flags on the roof of the house were cracked, and took in water. I know nothing about the stable on Brittany. Q – Is it called McCrie’s stable? A – I don’t know. I never used it. It was too small for horses and I had no Shetland ponies. I know nothing about the drains. The ditches at Curquoy were deep enough, but those at Brittany were almost full up, and had not been cleaned out for long. The kailyard was only partly enclosed. The dyke standing would keep out cattle but not sheep. The wooden part of the mill race was of no use as it was all rotten. I never used the dam, and I think the tenant who came after me also thrashes with a hand-mill. If I had stayed on, the stable was in such bad condition it would not have done. A new stable has now been erected.

John Logie, land steward on Rousay estate, answering Mr Robertson said – I have been in General Burroughs’ service since 1870, and know the farm of Curquoy. The general rule on the estate was to allow off one third of the rental for the first seven years, the tenants to make all necessary improvements in the way of ditching and so on. Mr McCrie told me he had been refused permission by the General to put up the stable for breeding Shetland ponies as the General thought it would only be throwing away money. He afterwards told me that General Burroughs had given him the permission. Mr McCrie kept ponies and I have negotiated with him for the purchase of ponies. This stable is of no use for a stable on the place as it is only suited for Shetland ponies. When Gibson left, Marwick took the farm for one year at a rental of £18. It was a great deal better after Marwick left than when Gibson left; but owing to the state it was in great difficulty was found in getting a tenant. It was let to a man John Craigie on a five years’ lease and he says he will not stay unless he gets the house repaired, and a new byre.

By Mr Low – I do not know if Gibson offered to point out the drains and ditches to the General. I should think it would be very difficult to point out drains made 50 years ago. The question is if they are drains now. Some of the buildings are not safe to go into. Q – But that is quite common in Rousay? A – No. It is not at all common in Rousay.

1908 July 15 Orkney Herald

VISIT OF WARSHIPS. – We understand that one of the destroyer flotillas attached to the Home Fleet, with parent ships, will, if nothing unforeseen takes place, probably arrive at Scapa on the 27th inst., and may make Scapa its headquarters for some time. There will in all, be about twenty-seven warships.

1908 July 22 Orkney Herald

ORKNEY AND THE TERRITORIAL ARMY. –  The Military Mail contains the following: – From far-away Orkney comes the report that the number of men enrolled is the satisfactory total of 351, exclusive of officers. The establishment of the corps – the Orkney Garrison Artillery – is 529. It says a great deal for the patriotic spirit of the Orcadians, such a large number responding to the country’s call, and it is a remarkable fact that in proportion to the population the Orkney establishment is three times that of the rest of the country. Bravo Orcadia !

1908 August 1 The Orcadian

ROUSAY – HOEING MATCH. – On Tuesday evening, 21st inst. a hoeing match was held at Trumland Farm on a field kindly granted by James W. Craigie. The weather was somewhat threatening in the afternoon, but cleared up towards evening, when between 60 and 70 hoers took part in the competition. The field being in splendid condition for hoeing, all the work was of first class quality. The hoers worked till 9 p.m., and then were kindly entertained to supper by Mrs and Miss Craigie, after which the young people took part in a very enjoyable dance which was kept up till the early hours of the morning. Mr George Gibson, farmer, Avelshay, and Mr John Cutt, gardener, Trumland House, acted as judges, and awarded the prizes as follows: – 1, Maggie Mainland, Weyland, Egilshay (silver medal); 2, Thomas Garson, Crugar, Egilshay; 3, David Moar, Saviskaill, Rousay; 4, James Flaws, Castlehall, Veira; 5, John Harrold, merchant, Rose Cottage, Rousay; 6, James W. Craigie, Trumland, Rousay; 7, James Hourie, mason; 8, Hugh Mainland, Weyland, Egilshay; 9, Alex. Donaldson, Watten, Egilshay; 10, John Corsie, Knarston, Rousay.

ROUSAY REGATTA. – The annual regatta of the Rousay Boat Club took place in Veira Sound on Friday, the 24th inst. Being the annual July holiday in Kirkwall, the Fawn arrived about 10.30 a.m., with a full complement of holiday seekers, who took a lively interest in the day’s proceedings. There was a good number of entries for all the races, and the regatta was one of the most successful yet held by the club. Mr Thin’s yacht, the Snowflake, looked very pretty, lying anchored off the pier, with a full display of bunting. Mr Baikie’s sailing yacht also arrived during the forenoon and came to anchor, and with the several boats cruising about, the Sound presented a very lively appearance. The day was very calm in the morning, but towards noon a nice light breeze sprang up from the south east, and though not very strong, proved sufficient to carry the boats round the course. The course was the usual triangular one, being from the markbuoy off Trumland Pier round a markbuoy at Avelshay, thence to the Grand of Egilshay and back to Trumland Pier.

The first race was for boats 16 feet waterline and under, for which there were five entries, viz. : – Alice, Thistle, Janet, Ceska, and Nelly. After the first gun was fired there was the usual jockeying for places, and all the boats made a good start, the Thistle and Ceska being the first to cross the line, followed by Alice, Nelly and Janet. Thistle was first to round the buoy at Avelshay, but on the beat up to Grand buoy, Alice took the lead and improved her position right to the finish, and came in an easy first. The Thistle was second to arrive, followed by Nelly and Ceska; Ceska took third place on time allowance. The finish was as follows: – Corrected time

Alice, Dr Forrest – 1h 31m 57s
Thistle, Jas. Johnstone – 1h 32m 45s
Ceska, John Gibson – 1h 34m 46s
Nelly, J. Alexander – 1h 34m 50s
Janet, R. Fraser – Retired.

The second race was for racers, 22 feet waterline, for which there were only two entries, viz. Hero and Pretoria; and as there was also a race for 22 feet ordinary boats both classes were started at the same tune. For the ordinary class there were five entries, viz.: – Sigurd, Aim, Sweyn, Lily, and Sylphyte. This race, with the exception of one or two, made a bad start, and some little time elapsed after the starting gun had been fired before all the boats got well away. In the racer class the Pretoria took the lead and maintained her position all through, coming in an easy first. The finish was as follows: –

Pretoria, James Groat – 1h 16m 35s
Hero, M. Grieve – 1h 21m 52s

In the ordinary class the Sweyn took first place, Lily with a bad start coming second, and Aim third; and, with the exception of Lily, which improved her position very much throughout the race, there was little changing of places. The following was the finish: – Corrected time.

Sweyn, John Garriock – 1h 22m 5s
Lily, R. Miller – 1h 25m 47s
Aim, P. Finlayson – 1h 28m 8s
Sigurd, E. C. Thin – 1h 28m 32s
Sylphyte, A. Cursiter – 1h 28m 52s

The last and best race of the day was the all-comers, for which there were 8 entries, viz.: – Hero, Pretoria, Sigurd, Sweyn, Lily, Annie, Alice, and Aim. The first to cross the line on the starting gun being fired was Hero, followed closely by Pretoria, Sweyn, Lily, and Sigurd, with Annie behind. On the run down to Avelshay all boats kept their respective positions. However, on sighting up Egilshay Sound, Annie was seen to lead, followed by Pretoria and Hero, with the others some little distance behind. These positions were maintained throughout the race, Annie always increasing her lead; however, on time allowance, she had to take second place, and Pretoria again came out first. The following was the finish: – Corrected time.

Pretoria, Jas. Groat – 1h 12m 23s
Annie, John Logie – 1h 14m 48s
Hero, M. Grieve – 1h 16m 59s
Lily, R. Miller – 1h 23m 58s
Sweyn, John Garriock – 1h 28m 59s
Sigurd, E. C. Thin – 1h 28m 53s
Aim, P. Finlayson – 1h 32m 29s
Alice, Dr Forrest – retired

The last items on the programme were the rowing races, and the fouls, etc., caused the usual amount of amusement among the spectators. In the ladies’ rowing race the first place was taken by Mrs Cunning and Mrs Partridge, with Mrs Giles and Miss Walker an easy second. At the request of the first prize winners, their prize was handed over to the other successful competitors.

In the men’s rowing race, which was to Veira and back, an exciting race took place between one of the local boats and a crew from the Snowflake. The latter took first place, but had the advantage of a superior rowing boat. The following were the winners in the rowing races: –

Boys – 1, J. Cooper and J. Gullion; 2, J. Marwick and Jas. Moodie; 3, J. Sinclair and W. Traill; 4, Murray Spark and Jas. Craigie.
Ladies – 1, Mrs Cunning and Mrs Partridge; 2, Mrs Giles and Miss Walker; 3 Miss Marwick and Miss Sinclair.
Men – 1, Capt. McBay and D. Reid; 2, Geo. Reid and J. Rendall; 3. J. Thomson and J. Stout; 4, Jas. Petrie and J. Stout; 5, R. McBay and W. Craigie.

At the close of the races Mrs Thin handed over the prizes to the successful competitors for which she was accorded three hearty cheers. As usual the Club had a tea-room for the benefit of visitors, and much credit is due to the ladies who presided, for the able and efficient manner in which they carried out all the arrangements.

A dance was held in the store in the evening which was largely attended and kept up with much spirit till 12 o’clock. The Committee take this opportunity of thanking all those who contributed towards the funds and helped to make the Regatta a success.

The Kirkwall boats returning at night had a very rough time, the wind continuing to increase all evening. Mr Groat in the Pretoria, after passing the Grand of Egilshay, found that even double-reefed, he had too much canvas, and had to unbend his mainsail and put on a try-sail. The experience was rather a trying one, and the passage to Kirkwall occupied nearly five hours. A number of Kirkwall youths, no doubt attracted by the dance, remained in Rousay all night, and those in one boat, returning in the early hours of the morning, had rather an unpleasant time on coming into the tide off Veira, their boat shipping a considerable amount of water. Ultimately they were forced to return to Rousay and await a more favourable opportunity of returning to Kirkwall.

1908 August 8 The Orcadian

CROFTERS COMMISSION DECISIONS. – The Crofters Commission has issued the following decisions: – …..Application by William David Gibson, Curquoy, and Brittany, Rousay, for compensation for improvements. Sum claimed by tenant £114 2s 4d. Compensation fixed at £69.

The Commissioners having heard parties, considered the evidence adduced, and one of their number assisted by two assessors having made inspection of the subjects for which compensation is claimed on 29th July, 1907, in anticipation of the hearing: find that the applicant was a crofter within the meaning of the Act in respect of the holding of Curquoy and Brittany on the estate of Rousay, now belonging to the Trustees of the late Lieut.-General Sir Frederick William Traill Burroughs, K.C.B., and renounced the tenancy of the said holding as at the term of Martinmas, 1901: find that the said renunciation was duly accepted by the landlord, and that the applicant removed from said holding at that term: find that the application is made for compensation in respect of permanent improvements under sections 8 and 10 of the Act: find that the claim is well founded in so far as said improvements are suitable to the holding, have been executed or paid for by the applicant, or his predecessors in the same family, and have not been executed in virtue of any specific agreement in writing under which he was bound to execute same: finds further that the amount of compensation payable falls to be assessed of such sum as fairly represents the value of said improvements to an incoming tenant, but under deduction always of any deterioration committed or permitted by the applicant within the four years preceding the date of his quitting his holding: find that the total sum claimed by the applicant is £114 2s 4d: finds that the sum to which he is entitled is £69: ordains the respondents to make payment to applicant of the said sum of £69 in name of compensation, and decern. Find no expenses due to or by either party. – N. T. D. Kennedy. P. B. Macintyre. James N. Forsyth.

1908 August 12 Orkney Herald

HARRAY – GUILD PICNIC. – The U.F.C. Guild, along with older members of the congregation and friends, went on a picnicking excursion to the island of Rousay on Thursday last. Numbering over 100, the company were conveyed in brakes to Finstown, and thence by s.s. Fawn to Trumland pier. On their arrival the party, by the kind permission of Mr Thin, walked through the garden and grounds of Trumland House, thereafter sitting down to lunch in a field kindly placed at their disposal by Mr Craigie, Trumland farm. The company then scattered for a few hours’ ramble over the island, reassembling at 4.30 at Trumland farm where, after games, entered into with zest, a substantial tea was served. Before leaving, votes of thanks were given to Mr Thin and to Mr and Mrs Craigie, whose kindness throughout the day was highly appreciated; and also to the donors of prizes and all others who had helped in the day’s programme. After a pleasant return sail, the company left Finstown about 8 o’clock, all delighted with the day’s outing.

1908 September 2 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – ENTERTAINMENT TO PARISHIONERS. – By the kindness of Mr and Mrs Thin, a large and representative number of the parishioners were entertained at Trumland House on the afternoon of Tuesday of last week. Unfortunately, owing to the weather, the intended garden party had to be abandoned, but everything was done to make the guests enjoy themselves indoors. Tea was served, to the strains of a fine gramophone, after which all assembled in the library. Mr Thin gave a most genial word of welcome, saying how much pleasure it gave Mrs Thin and himself to have them all there, especially as they were met in honour of Mrs Thin’s birthday. A programme of songs, choruses, recitations, etc. was submitted by members of the house-party dressed as Pierots. An enthusiastic vote of thanks was given on the motion of Rev. Mr Pirie, seconded by Rev. Mr Spark, jr. The National Anthem brought to a close a most successful and highly appreciated gathering.

1908 October 31 The Orcadian

ROUSAY – AGE OF MIRACLES. – People will he pleased to know that the age of miracles has not entirely passed away, for an Orkney island still possesses the miraculous! While the miracle of turning water into wine at Cana was performed on one occasion of a marriage there, the old manse of Rousay has enjoyed the unique privilege of having its water turned into “wine” for nigh 20 years! And it is a matter of fact already that the new manse is about to adopt the miraculous role of the old one. Weaklings always prefer mystery to matter-of-fact. But “seeing is believing” even with higher critics, and the mystery has been solved, so Providence is not to be blamed. This levelling-up-age of equality gives water-supplies by metal pipes both to devil and divine alike. The precipitate of iron is the result of corrosion of metallic surfaces and the Rousay manse water has, by the folly of the unscientific, been changed into chalybeate. Verily, wonders will never cease!

[chalybeate: of or denoting natural mineral springs containing iron salts.]

1908 November 21 The Orcadian

ROUSAY – SOCIAL MEETING. – The Guild of the United Free Church held its opening social for the winter session in Ritchie Church on Friday evening. Mr Pirie, the minister of the congregation, presided over a very large audience. Interesting and instructive addresses were delivered by the Rev. James Whyte and the Rev. John Hendrie, and the two vice-president, Mr John Inkster and Mr Alex. Grieve. Two well-rendered recitations were given by Dr. Murchieson, and the Rev. Mr Whyte and Mr William Grieve, congregational precentor, gave solos in excellent style. Mr James W. Grieve, Guild conductor of praise, led a well balanced choir, which rendered a number of hymns with ability and precision. Tea was provided by an active committee. The whole proceedings were most successful and enjoyable.

HARVEST THANKSGIVING SERVICES were held in the Rousay churches on Friday. Mr Pirie was assisted by the Rev. John Hendrie of Egilshay. The Sacrament was observed by the United Free Church congregation on Sunday in Trumland Church. Mr Pirie was assisted by Mr Whyte of Deerness. In the evening, Mr Whyte preached an able and appropriate sermon in Ritchie Church, under the auspices of the Guild.

1908 December 2 Orkney Herald

GALE. – On Tuesday and Wednesday last week, very severe weather, with a strong westerly gale, was experienced in Orkney. On the former day the steamer Fawn was unable to leave Kirkwall on her round of the North isles, and on the following day the steamer St Ola did not cross the Pentland Firth, nor did the Iona cross from Shapinsay.

1908 December 5 The Orcadian

Firemaster Inkster of Aberdeen is on the short list of nine chosen from sixty-one applications for the post of Firemaster of Glasgow. The “Free Press” referring to the above says: – Firemaster Inkster, who as noted above, is a candidate for the vacancy in Glasgow, was appointed to the Aberdeen brigade in 1896, and at that time was a member of the Metropolitan Fire Brigade. He has had a large and varied experience, and is familiar with every detail of Fire Brigade equipment and administration. Since he came to Aberdeen, the Fire Brigade has been put into a condition of thorough efficiency, and its operations have been conducted with conspicuous success. Firemaster Inkster is a native of Rousay.

1908 December 12 The Orcadian

SUNDAY WEATHER. – Last Sunday evening was very rough and wild in the early part. A strong gale was blowing from the west when several flashes of lightning were seen, and the third flash was of a vivid blue nature, with a strong sulphuric smell, while the peal of thunder was very loud, followed with what the people would call, a “cruel” shower of hail. In some parts the hail lay on the ground like snow. So far as known no damage was done.

1908 December 19 Aberdeen Press & Journal

SOCIETY AND PERSONAL. – …..Lieutenant-General Sir Frederick William Traill-Burroughs, K.C.B., of Trumland House, Rousay, Orkney, and Veira, some time colonel of the Warwickshire Regiment, and who saw service with the 93rd Sutherland Highlanders in the Crimea, also during the Indian Mutiny and in the Umbala Campaign of 1863, and who died on April 9, 1905, aged 74 years, left personal estate valued at £1750 19s 10d, in addition to which he had real estate apparently worth more than £2000 per annum, the amount of rents due to him at his decease amounting to more than £900…..

1908 December 19 The Orcadian

KIRKWALL TOWN COUNCIL. – A monthly meeting of the Town Council was held last Wednesday. Present – Provost Slater, Baillie Baikie, Dean of Guild Garden, and Councillors Scott, White, Flett, Spence, and Shearer…..


Letters were submitted from the Rev. J. B. Craven, D.D., asking, on behalf of Lady Sinclair of Dunbeath, for permission to erect a memorial tablet to the late General Sir Frederick Traill Burroughs, K.C.B., and Lady Burroughs, in St Magnus Cathedral.

The wording of the tablet is as follows:

In Loving memory
of Rousay and Veira
Colonel of the
Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders in the 2nd Battn.
of which (the 93rd) he served throughout the
Crimean War, the Indian Mutiny War,
and the Umbeyla Campaign.
Vice-Lieut. of Orkney,
Died in London, 9th April, 1905,
aged 74;
also to the memory of
his wife
his faithful companion
through storm and sunshine.
Died 1st February, 1907, aged 58.
Erected by her devoted niece,
Lady Sinclair of Dunbeath.