In Print

Newsprint – 1927

1927 January 5 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – CHURCH UNION. – In view of the increasing number of vacant churches in our country districts a good deal of interest has been aroused in Rousay by the unanimous decision of the Established Church Commission of Assembly that congregations be fused together if this be possible, as a temporary or working arrangement, so as to prepare for union. It followed the joint statement made by deputations from both Churches which visited Shetland in the spring, and which stated that “by mutual arrangement it may prove possible so to place the agents of Churches as to prevent all duplication of services and economise both men and money.” Surely the Presbyteries could now take such concerted action as would be fair to both Churches, and for that reason would be heartily supported by all who would see them prosper. It would lessen the difficulties which arise from the shortage of ministers and help to end the strife arising from divided counsels and competing churches, and help the United Protestant Church, in alliance with those of the scientific spirit who have no creed, but who feel the world’s need of religion, to maintain its progress in the things that matter. After all “it is Christ who unites and only doctrines that divide.”


Letters To The Editor


SIR, – The inhabitants of Rousay are seeking for a better postal arrangement; it could hardly find a worse. At present a letter posted on Thursday leaves Evie on Monday morning, and will be delivered in Kirkwall, eleven miles away, sometime on Monday. This spoils good business. We cannot even send away perishable gifts in this season of good-will, and feel like the stammerer who couldn’t visit the florist to buy chrysanthemums because “the thing was wilted before he got the word out.” And this, too, in an age when a Colonial Premier on a visit to this country sent a message to Australia and got an answer hack in twenty-four minutes. We need and want a daily post bag as a beginning. – Yours, etc., S.O.S.

1927 January 12 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – FANCY DRESS DANCE. – This dance, held in the Frotoft School on Christmas Eve was one of the most popular events organised by the Frotoft Entertainment Committee. The gaily decorated school-room, combined with the bright-hued costumes of the revellers and many-coloured streamers, presented the true carnival atmosphere. The prizes were awarded by Miss Logie, Mr John Logie and Dr Thomson, who performed their difficult task to the satisfaction of all. After supper Mrs Gibson presented the prizes to the following successful competitors: – Most Artistic Costumes – Ladies, Miss M. J. Mainland, “A Japanese Lady”; Gent’s – Mr William Gibson, “Chinese Mandarin.” Most Original Costumes – Ladies – Mrs Marwick, “British Goods.” Gents – Mr James Gibson, junr, “Why did I kiss that girl?” The prize-winners among the juveniles were Mary Yorston, “A Butterfly,” Sarah Smith, “A Fairy,” Hugh Marwick, “A N—– Boy,” James Yorston, “A Soldier.” After the usual votes of thanks dancing was resumed for several hours.

1927 January 19 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – U.F. GUILD. – Rousay U.F. Guild, which is undenominational, held an open meeting in Trumland Church on Wednesday night, January 12th, when an instructive address and demonstration on wireless was delivered by Dr Thomson. In spite of the wind and rain, there was a good attendance from the different parts of the island. The Rev. D. S. Brown presided, supported by members of the Guild committee.

1927 January 26 Orkney Herald




About 5.20 on Monday morning distinct earth tremors were experienced in the North of Scotland, from Aberdeen to Shetland, the whole of Orkney being affected.

The inhabitants were awakened by a low rumbling sound, lasting fully a minute, followed by a decided shake, of a few seconds duration, after which there more rumblings. Houses trembled, windows and doors shook, and crockery rattled, while pictures were observed to swing against the walls.

People already astir, thinking the sounds were caused by a long-continued peal of thunder, went out of doors, only to find a clear sky and a calm, frosty atmosphere, with good moonlight. This was the experience of districts as far apart as Birsay and Deerness, Evie and Holm, and the North and South Isles. Fortunately there are no reports of damage…..

PLOUGHING MATCHES – ROUSAY. – The annual ploughing match of the Rousay Agricultural Society was held at Hurtiso last Tuesday on a field kindly granted for the occasion by Mr Hugh Mainland. There was a fair turnout, and by 10 o’clock 16 pairs were lined up at their rigs ready to try their skill, all ordinary ploughmen, and the work done by them was up to a good standard. The judges were Mr John Rendall and Mr David Kemp, both from Evie, and after a careful and painstaking examination, awarded the prizes as follows: –

PLOUGHING. – 1 and Highland Society’s medal and cup, Robert Johnston, Trumland Farm; 2 James Craigie, jr., Falquoy; 3 Malcolm Hourie, Saviskaill; 4 Samuel Inkster, Wasdale; 5 John Leonard, Faraclett; 6 George Logie, Hurtiso; 7 Hugh Gibson, Bigland; 8 Albert Munro, Brendale; 9 John Petrie, Trumland Farm; 10 Archie Wylie, Westness. Youngest ploughman, George Craigie, Falquoy; best feering, Robert Johnston; best finish, Robert Johnston; straightest ploughing, James Craigie.

HARNESS. – 1 and medal, Archie Wylie, 2 James Craigie, 3 John Petrie, 4 John Leonard, 5 Malcolm Hourie.

GROOMING. – 1 and medal, John Petrie, 2 Alexander Donaldson, Quoys; 3 Archie Wylie, 4 Hugh Gibson, 5 Samuel Inkster.

SPECIAL PRIZES. – Medal, given by Mr Tinch, Kirkwall, for the ploughman under 21 years who had the most points in ploughing, grooming, and harness, John Petrie; best pair of mares, John Petrie.

During the day the ploughmen, committee, and judges were liberally supplied with refreshments, and in the evening the judges and committee were hospitably entertained to tea by Mr and Mrs Mainland.

The committee take this opportunity of thanking Mr Mainland for the use of the field and for his hospitality; Mr M. M. [Mark Mackay] Kirkness, Quoyostray, for visiting the field, thus allowing the Highland Society’s medal to be competed for; Mr William Bertram. Kirkwall, for the cup for best ploughed rig: Mr J. F. Groundwater, Kirkwall, for medal for harness; Messrs Flett & Sons, Kirkwall, for medal for grooming; Mr Tinch, Kirkwall, for medal for most points in ploughing, grooming, and harness for ploughmen under 21; and also the donors of the special prizes, and all who so liberally contributed to the funds of the society.

1927 February 16 Orkney Herald

HEAVY SHIPMENTS OF WHISKY. – Over a hundred barrels of whisky were shipped from Kirkwall on Monday and Tuesday of this week, both the Highland Park and Scapa Distilleries sending consignments. Shipments of eggs were also large, while seed potatoes were sent away in large quantities.

MONSTER HALIBUT. – An exceptionally large halibut was landed at Kirkwall on Wednesday afternoon by the fishing boat Daisy belonging to Messrs C. and W. Keldie. This, the first halibut landed at the port this season, was caught off Gairsay, weighed 1¾ cwts. Ungutted, and was 6 feet 8 inches long by 2 feet 9 inches broad from fin to fin. The fish was bought by Mr W. Keldie, fish merchant, and was despatched to the southern markets on Friday morning.

1927 February 23 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – GUILD SOCIAL. – Rousay U.F. Church Guild held its annual social meeting in Sourin Church on the evening of Thursday, February 10th. Rev. D. S. Brown, M.A., presided, and the meeting was suitably addressed by Messrs Alexander Grieve, Nethermill, and John Inkster, Woo, who are Guild officials. A programme of sacred music was carried through by a choir formed by both churches, and ably conducted by Mr J. W. [James William] Grieve, Whitehall. Tea and refreshments were distributed during the interval by a committee of the young folks. The usual votes of thanks brought to an end a meeting which was admitted on all sides to be one of the best of its kind which have been held here during recent years. Miss [Isabella] Grieve, Whitehall, presided at the organ. A proposal is being considered to repeat the programme of sacred music in the form of a praise service in Trumland U.F. Church shortly. This Guild continues its undenominational work, promoting good-will between the churches and preparing for the forthcoming union in a most praiseworthy spirit which leaves nothing to be desired. Would that the spirit were more common in some other places!

LAPWING PROTECTION. – Lord Buckmaster has brought into the House of Lords a Bill, which applies to England and Scotland, for the protection of lapwings. The Bill provides that it shall not be lawful during any time between March 14 and August 11 to sell any lapwing for human consumption, or to sell for human consumption any egg of the lapwing.

A KINDLY BUTCHER. – A curious incident took place in a butcher’s shop in Kirkwall on Monday. One of the assistants was surprised to notice is small object fluttering a few inches from the floor of the shop and then disappear into a room at the back. His curiosity aroused, the assistant went in to investigate, and there found a snipe, which had evidently been pursued by a hawk. The bird was trembling all over, and the young man, thinking a pity of the poor refugee, picked it up in his hand, carried it to the door, and released it, when it flew away towards the Cathedral.

1927 March 8 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – OPENING OF RECREATIONAL HALL. – Rousay ex-service men have conferred a great boon on the island. By their efforts a recreation hall has been built and equipped. A building such as this was much needed and the Comrades are to be congratulated on the success that has attended their efforts. The hall was formally opened on Friday, 25th ult., by a concert and dance. When the president, Dr Thomson, rose to address the audience every available seat was occupied. He referred to one of the effects that the war had had on the ex-service men of Rousay. They had returned to their native island from which they were for a time exiled more satisfied than ever that their lot had been cast in so pleasant a place. He referred to the formation of the Rousay Branch of the British Legion, and the resolve then made that every effort would be directed towards the erection of a place where comrades in the war could reunite one with the other. The consummation of this resolve was seen in the fine building in which they had met. Dr Thomson declared the hall open. Mr David Gibson then took the chair, and in introducing the programme, referred to the value of the new hall as a club room for the young men of the island. He gave an outline of some of the various recreations which he thought might be taken up. He expressed the hope that a reading room would be established, and that eventually a wireless installation would be erected. A varied and interesting programme by performers representing all three districts was then begun, and listened to by a most appreciative audience. Not a single item failed to please. A sumptuous tea was served in the interval, and the programme was then continued. The Legion is greatly indebted to the ladies who so generously contributed “homebakes,” to Mr Fred Inkster who conveyed the gifts to the hall, to Mr David Gibson for the use of his piano, and to the ladies who made such excellent tea. On the call of the Chairman. a very hearty vote of thanks was accorded the performers. Other votes of thanks were proposed by Mr Johnston and Dr Thomson, and the singing of the National Anthem brought to a close a splendid evening’s entertainment. After the floor had been cleared, dancing was begun, and continued until about 3 a.m., with intervals for tea and refreshments.

1927 March 16 Orkney Herald

NO OFFERS FOR ROUSAY FARM. – The farm of Banks, Sourin, Rousay, occupied by Mr Robert Seatter, was re-exposed to sale by public roup in the chambers of Messrs T. P. and J. L. Low, solicitors, Kirkwall, on Monday at the reduced upset price a £600. There were no offers, however, and the sale was adjourned. Mr D. B. Peace was the auctioneer.

ROUSAY – WHIST DRIVE AND DANCE. – On Wednesday evening a most successful whist drive and dance, organised by the ex-service men of Rousay, was held in their new recreation hall. This was the first social function held there since the opening concert and dance on Friday, 25th Feb. Fifteen tables were occupied by whist enthusiasts when play commenced at 8 o’clock. After sixteen hands had been played scoring cards were handed in, and the prize-winners were found to be: – Ladies – 1 Miss W. Stout (116), 2 Mrs W. Marwick (112). Gents – 1 Mr James Craigie (127), 2 Mr J. F. [John Forrest] Petrie (119); consolation prize, Mr Hugh Robertson (82). A pleasant interval followed, during which tea was served. The prizes were presented by Miss Rendall, who was accorded a hearty vote of thanks on the call of Dr Thomson. The dance which followed was a most enjoyable one, and everyone agreed that the floor was perfect and the music excellent. The Legion wishes to express its thanks to the musicians, to the ladies who kindly presided in the kitchen, and to all others who contributed to the success of the evening.

1927 March 30 Orkney Herald

Mr John Scott, seed and manure merchant, Kirkwall, despatched a very large consignment of seeds and manure to Rousay on Saturday, the steamer Countess of Bantry being specially chartered to carry the goods.

STALLIONS FOR ORKNEY. – The West Mainland Horse-Breeding Society have re-engaged for the ensuing season Milton Monarch and Milton Anchor, the former for the third time, and the latter for the second time. Milton Monarch, 14 years old, is a son of Baron’s Pride and out of a Revelenta mare. Milton Anchor is a seven-year-old by Hiawatha Again, and out of a Royal Favourite mare. Mr Robert Bain, Bennachie, Halkirk, has let his eight-year-old horse Dryfesdale to the Rousay Association, Orkney. He was bred by Mr W. Hodge, Lockerbie, is by Bonnie Buchlyvie, and out of a Mendel mare.

ROUSAY – PRESENTATION. – A meeting of Rousay U.F. Church Guild was held on the evening of Thursday, March 17th, in Sourin Church. at which Rev. D. S. Brown presided. The chief event of the meeting was the presentation of a gold wristlet watch by the Guild members to Miss Jessie Reid, Wasdale, in recognition of her services during many years in the musical and social work of the Guild. The presentation was made by Mr John Inkster, Woo, in a few appropriate words, and Miss Reid suitably replied. Guild members contributed to the social success of the evening in the way of reading, recitation, sacred song, and speech. There was a good attendance at this meeting, which is the last for the season.

1927 April 6 Orkney Herald

THE LATE MR ISAAC COSTIE. – By the death of Mr Isaac Costie, retired Sheriff Officer, Kirkwall, and indeed Orkney, has lost a figure which has been familiar to the community for well over half a century. Coming to Kirkwall from his native island of Rousay 62 years ago, he became a shoemaker, and for many years he and his brother John have been in business in that line. Mr Costie become a Sheriff Officer in Sheriff-Substitute Robertson’s time, and succeeded the late Mr Thomas Hutchison as Bar Officer twenty-five years ago, only retiring in September of last year. At his retiral fitting tributes were paid by Bench and Bar to his zeal as an officer and to his commanding presence in the Court. Towards the close of the year Mr Costie’s health broke down, and for some time prior to his death he was practically confined to bed, passing away on Wednesday morning. Mr Costie was predeceased by his wife a number of years ago. The funeral took place to St Olaf Cemetery on Friday, and was attended by a very large company.

[Isaac, born on December 5th 1845, was the son of Frotoft miller Isaac Costie, Newark, and Catherine Craigie, Egilsay. On April 14th 1870 he married Jemima Helen Robertson in Kirkwall, and they raised a family of three girls and a boy, who was also named Isaac.]

1927 April 20 Orkney Herald

Letters to the Editor


SIR, – The postal arrangements in this island are still unspeakable. Not so much because of our thrice-a-week delivery, a system which we share with other islands, but because correspondence and perishable stuff for the south, which is posted here, let us say, on Thursday, is in Kirkwall, eleven miles distant, on Monday night, and cannot leave Orkney before Tuesday morning. We press for the removal of this unsightly letter-and-parcel dump and for a daily post bag at least as a beginning, and may the improvement be speedy When a woman was ill in another locality and an absent relative was wired for, his appearance on the spot next morning mystified an old crone, who went about whispering to those she met on the road that “the tillygraph had fetched Walker fae Yell.” And when is our great postal administration, which is in many ways so efficient and British, to astonish us rural folks by bringing our local service into line with other places without taking into consideration the trifling cost? Meanwhile thanks are due to Sir Robert Hamilton for his endeavours to help in improving it. – Yours, etc., RESIDENTER. Rousay, 18th April 1927.

1927 April 27 Orkney Herald



On Wednesday afternoon of last week there passed away at Cogar, Rousay, as the result of an accident which occurred the previous day, and other complications, the oldest inhabitant in the island. We refer to Mrs [Mary Gibson] Inkster, widow of Mr William Inkster, farmer, and the mother of a family of nine boys and one girl, several of whom, including Councillor Inkster of Kirkwall, and Rev. John Inkster, D.D., of Knox Presbyterian Church, Toronto, have held, and still hold, important public appointments.

Mrs Inkster, who was the last survivor of the large family known as the Gibsons of Langskaill, in the Wasbister district, was born at that farm on the 27th of August 1836, and was therefore in her 91st year. In her girlhood she spent some years in Kirkwall, during which time she became an associate and afterwards a member of the Congregational Church, Rev. Mr Smith being then the pastor.

Returning to Rousay, she married and settled down in 1858. In the following year she took a prominent part in the great revival which then swept the islands, presiding at weekly meetings for women held in their several homes during that time, and as long as she was physically able she was an enthusiastic supporter, both in word and deed of the United Presbyterian Church, being ever ready to minister to the sick in their homes in all parts of the district in which she lived.

Mr Inkster predeceased her 22 years ago, and of her family one died in infancy and two of diphtheria while at school. The youngest two, Mary Ann and Robert, stayed at home, and were most zealous in their devotion and attention to their aged mother while she was spared to be with them. The funeral took place to Wasbister Churchyard on Saturday, and was attended by a very large company from all parts of the island. Unfortunately the weather prevented her son David and family and others from being present at the funeral.

1927 May 4 Orkney Herald

MOTOR CYCLIST INJURED AT ROUSAY. – A motor cycle accident occurred in Rousay on Saturday evening, through which Mr Mark Kirkness, Quoyostray, had his collar bone broken. Accompanied by his son [13-year-old Frederick] in the side-car, Mr Kirkness was on his way home from Trumland Pier, and when opposite the farm of Cott, in Frotoft district, some lambs strayed onto the roadway. Mr Kirkness swerved in order to avoid running over them, and in doing so his cycle overturned. Both Mr Kirkness and the boy were thrown off the cycle, and, as we have said, Mr Kirkness was injured, but fortunately the boy was unhurt. The accident was witnessed from the farm of Cott, and the doctor was sent for. Mr Kirkness’ injury was attended to, and he was afterwards driven home in Mr Fred Inkster’s motor car.

1927 May 25 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – SUDDEN DEATH. – Quite a gloom was cast over the district of Wasbister, Rousay, on Friday evening, when it became known that Mrs Inkster, Quoyostray, had passed away with startling suddenness. It appears that she was in the cowshed with her niece, Mrs Mark Kirkness, when she suddenly collapsed. Mrs Kirkness [Martha Wards, known as ‘Mattie’] ran to her, and helped her to a seat, where she expired. Mrs Inkster [Eliza Robson Kirkness], whose husband [Hugh Inkster] was drowned in the Westray Firth about 50 years ago, was held in great esteem by all the people of the neighbourhood. She had a very kindly disposition, and her cheering and comforting words endeared her to all. She is survived by an only son [David James Inkster], who has for many years been a detective in Glasgow. He only retired from the service recently, and arrived in Rousay, where he was looking forward to spending the years of his retirement, on Monday of this week. Much sympathy is felt for him in his sudden bereavement.

1927 June 15 Orkney Herald



Salvage operations are being actively carried out on board the sunken German battleship Moltke by Messrs Cox & Danks at Lyness. On Thursday and Friday compressed air was pumped into the vessel, and as soon as she began to rise above water a Union Jack was hoisted on the stern.

On Saturday afternoon towing began, and partial success was attained by getting her stern shifted 100 feet nearer the island of Cava, where it is intended, if possible, to beach her. She is now less than half a mile from the shore.

The Moltke was one of the most valuable ships in the German Navy, and if she can be got sufficiently dry, breaking up operations will be begun through her bottom.

1927 June 22 Orkney Herald

EXCURSIONISTS VISIT SALVED GERMAN BATTLE-CRUISER. – On Wednesday afternoon the steamer Countess Cadogan, of Stromness, ran an excursion from Scapa Pier to Lyness, and a large number of people, anxious to get a glimpse of the salvage operations being carried out on the battle-cruiser Moltke by Messrs Cox & Danks, took advantage of the trip. When the steamer arrived at the Moltke, Mr Cox very kindly allowed all the trippers to board her and have a look round, a privilege which was greatly appreciated by all. Almost every one of the excursionists carried a camera, and many were the snap-shots taken of the most unusual sight of people walking about on the bottom of an overturned battleship, or making a promenade of her keel. Movie pictures were also taken. When all had again got aboard the Countess Cadogan, hearty cheers were raised for Mr Cox as the vessel moved away.

1927 June 29 Orkney Herald

KIRKWALL SHIPPING. – Two coal ships arrived at Kirkwall last week for Mr John Jolly, coal merchant – the motor vessel Millrock on Thursday morning, and the Ferndale the same evening. Friday being a holiday, the steamer did not commence discharging until Saturday. Only part of the cargo, however, was landed, the vessel proceeding to North Ronaldshay with the remainder. The schooner Mary Grace, of Stromness, which had been to Rousay with a cargo of coals, anchored in the bay on Saturday, and remained over the week-end. The steam drifter Lily, of Burray, came to the pier on Saturday with a leak in her boiler. Repairs were executed by Messrs W. & J. Leslie, engineers.

1927 July 6 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – POSTAL REFORM. – As the result of agitation Rousay has now a daily post bag; and as this involves the daily crossing of the local mail-boat, weather permitting, our communication with Evie is much improved, to the advantage of all concerned. We thank the postal authorities most heartily for this concession, and hope that in due time the island will have also a daily delivery.

PICNIC. – The Wasbister annual picnic was held on Friday, 24th June, in a field, the use of which was kindly granted by Mr [John Gibson] Marwick, Innister. The excellent weather conditions, together with the ideal spot, did much to make the picnic the success that it was. The brightness of the day drew forth the brightest and happiest spirits from both children and adults, who assembled at the field at 1.30 p.m.

After partaking of an enjoyable lunch, the sports were commenced and carried through with great zest, thanks to the splendid working committee, who were assisted by Dr Thomson.

The sports over the company repaired to the school, where a sumptuous tea was served. After tea, Mrs Thomson, who was on a short visit to the island, very gracefully presented the prizes. Votes of thanks were then proposed by Mr [John] Sinclair, Vacquoy, for Mrs Thomson, and by Dr Thomson for Miss [Tina] Mathieson, the picnic committee, the lady helpers, and all those who had in any way contributed to the success of the day. A most enjoyable dance followed.

Annexed is the Prize-list: –

FLAT RACES. – Boys – 13 years – 1 Armit Sinclair, 2 Fred Kirkness, 3 Fraser Moar; 12 years – 1 Spencer Dexter, 2 Douglas Craigie, 3 James Craigie; 9-11 – 1 Leonard Marwick, 2 Jim Marwick, 3 Sinclair Craigie; 8 years – 1 Roderick Marwick, 2 Tom Donaldson; 7 years – 1 Tom Marwick, 2 Willie Marwick; 6 years – 1 Hugh Sinclair, 2 Jim Craigie; 5 years – 1 Jim Sinclair, 2 Stanley Muir. Girls – 9.11 – 1 Netta Sinclair, 2 Betsy Marwick, 3 Jeanie Donaldson; 8 years – 1 Thora Kirkness, 2 Kathleen Craigie; 5-7 years – 1 Anna Marwick, 2 Clara Donaldson, 3 Agnes Marwick.

EGG -AND-SPOON RACES. – Boys – 13 years – 1 Armit Sinclair, 2 Fraser Moar, 3 Fred Kirkness; 12 years – 1 Douglas Craigie, 2 Spencer Dexter, 3 Jim Craigie; 9-11 years – 1 Jim Marwick, 2 Leonard Marwick, 3 Sinclair Craigie; 7-8 years – 1 Wm. Marwick, 2 Tom Donaldson, 3 Roderick Marwick; 5-6 – 1 Jim Sinclair, 2 Hugh Sinclair, 3 Jim Craigie. Girls – 8-10 years – 1 Netta Sinclair, 2 Kathleen Craigie, 3 Betsy Marwick; 6-7 – 1 Clara Donaldson, 2 Anna Marwick, 3 Agnes Marwick.

FOUR-LEGGED RACES. –  Boys – 9-13 – 1 Fred Kirkness, Spencer Dexter, and Douglas Craigie.

SKIPPING RACES. – Girls – 8-11 – 1 Netta Sinclair, 2 Thora Kirkness, 3 Jeanie Donaldson.

SACK RACES. – Boys – 13 years – 1 Armit Sinclair, 2 Fraser Moar, 3 John Donaldson and Fred Kirkness (equal); 12 years – 1 James Craigie, 2 Spencer Dexter, 3 Douglas Craigie; 9-11 years – 1 Leonard Marwick, 2 Jim Marwick, 3 Sinclair Craigie; 7-8 years – 1 Tom Marwick, 2 Willie Marwick, 3 Tom Donaldson. Girls – 8-13 years – 1 Kathleen Craigie, 2 Netta Sinclair, 3 Thora Kirkness.

WHEELBARROW RACES. – Boys – 12-13 – 1 Fraser Moar and Armit Sinclair, 2 Jim Craigie and Fred Kirkness, 3 Douglas Craigie and Spencer Dexter; 7-11 – 1 Jim Marwick and Leonard Marwick, 2 John Donaldson and Sinclair Craigie, 3 Roderick Marwick and Tom Donaldson.

BOOT AND SHOE RACES. – Girls – 8-10 – 1 Kathleen Craigie, 2 Thora Kirkness, 3 Jeannie Donaldson; Boys and girls – 5-7 – 1 Clara Donaldson, 2 Jim Sinclair, 3 Anna Marwick.

RELAY RACE. – Douglas Craigie’s team.


SINGLE LADIES RACE. – 1 Miss L. Mathieson.

MEN’S RACES. – Under 30 – 1 Mr Robert Inkster; over 30 – Mr R. Sinclair, snr.

HIGH JUMP. – 1 Mr S. Inkster.

LONG JUMP. – 1 Mr H. Sinclair.

HOP, STEP, AND LEAP. – 1 Dr Thomson.

CIGARETTE RACE. – 1 Miss R. Craigie and Dr Thomson.

1927 August 3 Orkney Herald



The annual regatta of the Rousay Boat Club took place in Veira Sound on Thursday, the 28th ult. The morning broke wet and calm, but towards midday there was as a light sailing breeze from a northerly direction, but not enough to test the sailing qualities of the different boats.

This year the club gave a silver cup for the 18 feet race, a barometer for the all-comers, while Dr Thomson. Vice-commodore, presented a silver cup for the 14 feet boats.

The course was the usual triangular one, being from a mark buoy off Trumland Pier, round a mark boat at Point of Avelshay, thence round a mark boat at Point of Veira, and back to Trumland Pier.

The first race started at 12 noon, and was for boats 14 feet waterline and under, for which there were 7 entries – namely, Mary Ann, Ivy, Surprise, Lily, Rose, Daisy, and [a second] Rose. The first to cross the line on the starting gun was the Daisy, followed by the Ivy, Surprise, Lily and others. Their respective positions were well maintained throughout the race, and the finish was as follows (corrected time): –

1. Daisy (Charles Logie, snr.) 0h 56m 5s
2. Surprise (Tom Sinclair) 0h 59m 22s
3. Ivy (George Harrold) 0h 59m 24s
4. Lily (John Foulis) 1h 3m 51s
5. Mary Ann (Sam Mainland) 1h 9m 38s
6. Rose (Harry Logie) 1h 10m 13s
7. Rose (Charles Craigie) 1h 26m 10s

The second race, which started at 12.30, was for boats of 18 feet waterline and under, for which there were five entries, viz., Snowdrop, Viking, Thora, Bulldog, and Ceska. The conditions for this race was twice round the course, and all made a good start, with the exception of Thora, which was late in crossing the line. She, however, very much improved her position throughout the race, and took third place at the finish. The chief interest in this race was the contest between the Snowdrop and Viking for premier position. These two boats, with a larger spread of canvas, had a decided advantage over their opponents, and after a well-contested race the Snowdrop proved the winner. The finish was as follows: –

1. Snowdrop (Charles Logie. jr.) 1h 58m 17s
2. Viking (Dr Thomson) 1h 59m 33s
3. Thora (William Miller) 2h 20m 15s
4. Ceska (David Gibson) 2h 22m 59s
5. Bulldog (Tom Isbister) 2h 31m 30s

For the all-comers’ race all the boats entered, the club giving special prizes to boats 14 feet and under in addition to the ordinary prizes. The conditions for this race was once round the course, and all got away well together on starting. The Snowdrop and Viking had another tussle for first place, but the Snowdrop again proved the winner, thus carrying off both the cups and barometer. Some of the smaller boats did exceedingly well in this race, the Daisy and Surprise taking third and fourth places respectively. The finish was as follows (corrected time): –

1. Snowdrop (Charles Logie, jr.) 0h 55m 29s
2. Viking (Dr Thomson) 0h 59m 56s
3. Daisy (Charles Logie. sr.) 1h 3m 4s
4. Surprise (Tom Sinclair) 1h 10m 4s
5. Thora (William Miller) 1h 13m 20s
6. Mary Ann (Sam Mainland) 1h 16m 3s
7. Rose (Harry Logie) 1h 18m 4s
8. Ceska (David Gibson) 1h 19m 22s
9. Ivy (George Harrold) 1h 38m 0s
10. Bulldog (Tom Inkster) Retired

Special prizes for boats under 14 feet: –

1. Daisy (Charles Logie, sr.).
2. Surprise (Tom Sinclair).
3. Lily (John Foulis).

The usual rowing races were held after the conclusion of the sailing races, and were keenly contested. The winners being as follows: –

Ladies’ rowing race: –

1. Misses Cilla and Alice Logie (gold crosses).
2. Mrs Grieve and Miss Mainland.
3. Misses Kathleen Gibson and Mabel Sinclair.

Men’s rowing race: –

1. David Gibson and James Grieve.
2. Charles Craigie and John Petrie.
3. Robert Inkster and David Sinclair.
4. S. Gibson and W. Gibson.

Boys’ rowing race: –

1. William Craigie and John Marwick.
2. David Miller and Isaac Costie.
3. John Wyllie and James Wylie.

Miss Logie, Rose Cottage, handed over the prizes to the successful competitors, for which she was accorded three hearty cheers.

For the convenience of visitors, the club opened a tearoom in the store, which was well patronised, and much credit is due to the ladies who took charge for the able manner in which they carried out all the arrangements.

The Committee would take this opportunity of thanking all those who contributed towards the funds, or in any way helped to make the regatta a success. In the evening Mr Johnston, Trumland Farm, granted the use of his barn for a dance, which was largely attended, and kept up with much spirit for a considerable time.

1927 August 10 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – OVERLAPPING. – Deputies from both Assemblies have visited Rousay and elsewhere to secure co-operation if possible, and end the over-lapping of church agencies, of which here is an example. It has for three weeks been intimated in the U.F. Church that a service would be held in Wasbister School on Sabbath at 6 p.m. And last week it was intimated on the notice boards that Dr Murison would hold an E.C. service in that school on that evening at 5. This collision could not be intentional, as he introduced the E.C. deputation on its visit to the U.F. Presbytery with a pleasing speech, as reported last week, in which he said that “they were not present for the purpose of considering their own interests at all, but of taking a grip of those movements which might help to benefit and strengthen the people among whom they lived.” Under the circumstances the U.F. office-bearers have waived their right of priority, which does them credit as trustees of the public peace. But surely this bumping arrangement need not have happened. It makes one think of the sailor who “made for Noss Head and hit it.”

1927 August 17 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – SUDDEN DEATH OF MR HUGH INKSTER. – The death took place with startling suddenness at Rousay on 11th inst. of Mr Hugh Inkster, fourth son of the late Mr William Inkster of Cogar, Rousay, and brother of Rev. John Inkster, D.D., of Knox Presbyterian Church, Toronto, and of Councillor Inkster, Kirkwall.

Serving his apprenticeship with Mr John Macrae. Solicitor, Kirkwall, Mr Inkster proceeded south, and was for a year in the office of Sir James Marwick, City Clerk of Glasgow. Whilst there he contracted writer’s cramp, and this compelled him to leave work for a time. After spending a year at home, he returned to Glasgow, and entered the service of Messrs McLure, Naismith, Brodie & Co., the well-known firm of solicitors. His employers early recognising his abilities, he soon occupied a position of responsibility with this firm, ultimately rising to the position of head cashier. At the firm’s centenary celebration held recently the senior partner referred to Mr Inkster (who was unable to be present) in most appreciative terms, and of his long association with this firm (36 years), saying that a function such as this was not complete without him.

As was his wont, Mr Inkster again came north to spend his holiday at the old home beside his brother Robert and his sister, arriving in Orkney on the 5th inst. It was observed that he did not appear as robust as usual, but this did not cause alarm to his friends. On Wednesday evening, however, his condition grew worse, and he passed away early on Thursday morning. The funeral took place to Wasbister Churchyard on Saturday.

Being of a genial and kindly disposition Mr Inkster was very popular with all with whom be came into contact. During his apprenticeship days he was a member of the choir of St Magnus Cathedral, and during all the time he was in Glasgow he was a member of the choir of St George’s in the Fields. Possessing a fine tenor voice, he was keenly interested in music, and he will be missed in the choir to which he was so deeply attached and in the congregation where he was such a regular worshipper.

1927 August 24 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – CHURCH UNION MEETING. – Divine service was held on Sabbath evening, August 14th, in Wasbister School. It was well attended by members of both churches, and having been called as a meeting in furtherance of Church Union, was in all respects an excellent illustration of the spirit of it. Rev. Dr Murison conduced the service and delivered an interesting and helpful address on the question, “What is the true human glory?”…..Rev. D. S. Brown was present to greet and welcome Dr Murison, and Miss Waterston, U.F. Manse, acted as organist, and the hearty congregational singing was pleasant to hear.

1927 September 7 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – THE LATE MR JAMES G. CRAIGIE, IVYBANK. – It is with deep regret we have to announce the death of Mr James Gibson Craigie, Ivybank, Wasbister, which took place on Friday, the 2nd inst., after a very brief illness. Mr Craigie, who was 65 years of age, was much connected with the public life of the parish, and will be much missed by a large circle. He held most of the public offices, being clerk to the old School Board, and later clerk to the Education Authority’s local committee. He was also clerk to the Parish Council and Collector of Rates, and lately had been appointed clerk to the Heritors. Being of a quiet and retiring disposition, and very capable, as before mentioned, he will be much missed in the parish. He was a member of the United Free Church, of which he was an office-bearer and latterly an elder, representing the Wasbister district. He leaves to mourn his death a widow [Annabella Flaws Chalmers], one son [William] and two daughters, Annie the eldest being married and resident in Canada. [The younger daughter was Margaret Forest Craigie, known as Rita]. The funeral, which was a public one, took place to-day (Tuesday), to Wasbister Churchyard.

MOLTKE ALONGSIDE LYNESS PIER. – Messrs Cox and Danks have succeeded in getting the ex-German battle-cruiser Moltke alongside Lyness Pier, and she now lies in a very convenient position for breaking up purposes. It was no easy task getting her there, and is one of the finest feats ever accomplished in salvage work. The firm is now giving employment to a large number of men, and are encouraged to go ahead with other vessels.

DEATH OF REV. A. I. PIRIE, ROUSAY. – Rev. Alexander Irvine Pirie, senior minister of Rousay United Free Church, died in Edinburgh on August 29th, in his 83rd year and the 54th year of his ministry. Since his retirement from the active ministry in 1914 he had enjoyed good health until a year or two ago, when advancing years begun to tell, and the end came suddenly.

Mr Pirie spent all the years of his ministry in Orkney. A native of Drum, Aberdeenshire, he had prepared himself for a business career when the call came to him to consecrate himself to the Christian ministry as his life work. He proceeded to Aberdeen University, and, after completing course there, and in the Congregational Theological Hall, he was called to his first charge in Kirkwall Congregational Church in 1873. There he spent 10 years of fruitful service. During his ministry the congregation successfully carried through the building of a new church and manse.

In 1883 a call was presented to him from Rousay United Presbyterian congregation, and, having accepted it, Mr Pirie was admitted by the Synod as a minister of the United Presbyterian Church. In Rousay he ministered to a devoted people for 31 years, and identified himself during that lengthy period with every cause which promoted the well-being of the Rousay people. His ministrations, both in the pulpit and in other more intimate ways were greatly appreciated, and he earned the goodwill of all the people by his broad, generous, and sympathetic spirit. For many years he was chairman of the Rousay School Board, and he was also chairman of the Rousay Medical Association. Through his interest and labours a church and manse were built in the island of Egilshay and a missionary was secured for that island under his charge.

When a vacancy occurred in the Ritchie United Free Church, Rousay (formerly Free Church) negotiations for the union of the two congregations in Rousay were begun, and it was a tribute to Mr Pirie’s wise and tactful guidance that these were carried through to a successful issue. The united congregation showed its complete confidence in Mr Pirie by unanimously inviting him to become minister of the united charge. Although he was over 60 years of age, Pirie shouldered the increased responsibility, and was able to consolidate the union before his retiral about eight years later.

In 1914, acting on medical advice, he decided to ask for a colleague and successor. Thereafter he went south to be nearer the members of his family, and ultimately settled in Edinburgh. He had the great pleasure of returning several times to visit his folks in Rousay, and on the occasion of his return in the summer of 1921 he conducted the War Memorial service, and Mrs Pirie unveiled the War Memorial at Trumland pier. At the celebration of his ministerial jubilee four years ago he received illuminated addresses of congratulation from the Rousay congregation and from the Orkney United Free Church Presbytery.

Mr Pirie is survived by Mrs Pirie, a daughter, and four sons. All the sons are graduates of Aberdeen University. The eldest, Dr G. J. Pirie is Deputy Director of Sanitary Services in Nigeria. The second son, Rev. Alexander Irvine Pirie, B.D., is minister of the Barclay Church, Edinburgh. The third son, Dr Alfred J. Pirie, M.D., is in medical practice in Congleton, Cheshire, and the youngest son, Mr John W. Pirie, M.A. (Oxon), is lecturer in Comparative Philology in Glasgow University. The daughter is married to Dr A. B. Giles. Edinburgh.

1927 September 14 Orkney Herald

ROUSAY – WEDDING BELLS. – On Friday, 2nd Sept., a very pretty wedding was solemnised at Gorehouse, Sourin, when Miss Violet [Bisset] Drever Mainland, adopted daughter of Mr [James] and Mrs [Mary] Mainland, was united in marriage to Mr George [Harcus] Logie, son of Mr [John] and Mrs [Mary Jane] Logie, Myres, Sourin. The bride, who was given away by her adopted father, looked charming in a beautiful dress of white charmoline trimmed with silver beads, and wore a becoming veil, held in place by a wreath of orange blossom. She was waited on by Miss Elsie Inkster, Woo, Sourin, who looked very sweet in a dress of Oriental silk with shoes and stockings to match. The bridegroom was supported by his brother Robert, of J. & W. Tait’s, Kirkwall. After the ceremony, which was performed by the Rev. D. S. Brown, and the signing of the register, the wedding cake was served, following which the guests, numbering about forty, were entertained to a sumptuous tea by Mr and Mrs Mainland. After tea, dancing was engaged in and kept up until the wee sma’ oors, supper and refreshments being served in abundance during the time. The happy couple were the recipients of many useful presents, and the best wishes of their many friends are extended to them for their future health and happiness.

1927 November 9 Orkney Herald



The death of Mr George Gibson took place at his home Avelshay, Rousay, on the 31st ult. He had been in indifferent health for the last two years or more, but had been able to attend to his duties until the beginning of this year, when he came gradually worse. His death, however came rather unexpectedly.

Mr Gibson was of a genial, kindly nature, sympathetic with those in trouble, always willing to help, and generous to a fault. He became tenant of the farm of Avelshay soon after his marriage to Miss Annabella Logie, and held the farm till his death. When the Rousay estate was sold, he, along with the other tenants, purchased his farm.

Mr Gibson was keenly interested in agriculture in all its branches. He was one of the island’s best ploughmen in his younger days, was an active member of the Rousay Agricultural Society, and did his best to improve the breed of horses and cattle. His advice was often asked in cases of illness of farm stock, as he made a study of their different complaints, and was very successful in his diagnosis, always willing to give his help freely to those requiring it. He was president of the Rousay Agricultural Society, and gave its work his best attention. He was a member of the Parish Council of Rousay and Egilshay for many years, and chairman since the death of General Sir Fred. Burroughs, K.C.B., 22 years ago, and these duties he carried out carefully and faithfully. He was a regular worshipper in the Trumland U.F. Church, where he gave his services gratuitously as leader of praise. He was elected a manager in the U.P. Church before the union with the Free Church, and later became a ruling elder, interesting himself in all Church work.

For over 20 years Mr Gibson was road inspector and collector of rates, and sanitary officer for the parish, which duties be carried out faithfully. The roads were well and economically maintained and improved during his term of office. In politics Mr Gibson was a Liberal-Unionist, very fond of discussing questions of the moment, and was keenly interested in the coming Church union.

His passing leaves a blank in the island that will not be easily filled, and his willing services will be much missed. The funeral took place on the 3rd inst., when his remains were laid in the new Brinian burial ground. There was a large cortege of mourners and friends, representing almost all the homes in the island, but owing to the stormy day those from Egilshay and Viera were unable to attend. The funeral service was conducted both at Avelshay and the grave side by the Rev. D. S. Brown.

Mr Gibson was 63 years of age, and leaves a widow and grown-up family, for whom the sincerest sympathy is felt.

1927 November 16 Orkney Herald



A well-known and highly-respected Kirkwall citizen, in the person of Mr John Craigie Marwick, shoemaker, 78 Victoria Street, Kirkwall, departed this life last Friday after a short illness of only four days. He was at work in his usual health on Monday, but complained that evening of severe pain in his hand. Medical aid being called it was found that he had contracted septic poisoning, the progress of which could not be arrested, and he succumbed to its effects.

Mr Marwick, who was of a genial, kindly disposition, sympathetic with those in trouble, and keenly interested in Church and Temperance affairs, was born at Midgarth, Rousay, 63 years ago. As a youth he was engaged in farm work in his native island, afterwards proceeding to Aberdeen, where he was for two years a grieve on a farm there.

Thirty-six years ago, however, he joined H.M. Prison service. For 15 years he was a warder at Barlinnie Prison, Glasgow, and for two years at Ayr. While at Barlinnie he qualified as a shoe-maker-warder, thereafter teaching the convicts the craft of boot and shoemaking.

He contracted blood-poisoning nineteen years ago, which left such ill effects that he had to retire from the service. He thereupon returned to Kirkwall, where he commenced business as a boot and shoemaker.

Early in life Mr Marwick became a member of the Scottish Temperance League, and has ever since been keenly interested in temperance work. He was one of the stalwarts in the Kirkwall No-Licence campaigns of 1920, 1923, and 1926; but it may be said that he worked for the cause which he had so much at heart in so quiet and tactful a manner that he never made an enemy. He joined the local Lodge of Good Templars in 1920, and quickly rose to be Chief Templar. Three years ago he represented the lodge at the Grand Lodge session, and the following year he was elected to the highest office in the Order in Orkney, namely, District Deputy, a position which he held at the time of his death.

Mr Marwick was always a friend of the children, and very soon after joining the Good TempIars he became Assistant Superintendent of the Juvenile Lodge. For the past few years he has been Superintendent, and though he had his business to attend to he never missed a meeting.

Mr Marwick was a ruling elder in Paterson U.F. Church. Fourteen years ago he became a Sunday-school teacher, and for the past two years has been superintendent of Scapa School, to which he travelled in all weathers. Here also he was at home amongst the children, and was in return beloved by them.

The funeral, a public one, took place on Monday afternoon to St Olaf’s Cemetery, and was very largely attended. The coffin was borne shoulder high from the house to the hearse by members of the District Lodge of Good Templars and the subordinate Lodge, and a large number of the juveniles, two-deep, walked behind the hearse. On arrival at the cemetery the Good Templars acted as the bearer party, and along with the relatives and elders of Paterson Church lowered the coffin into the grave. There were many beautiful floral tributes, testifying to the respect in which deceased was held.

The services both in the Victoria Street Hall and at the grave were conducted by Rev. C. A. Gray, M.A., minister of Paterson Church.

Mr Marwick is survived by a widow [Sarah Ann Mainland], two sons [Charles Allan, and William Robert] (both of whom are in Canada), and one daughter [Isabella Sabiston], for all of whom much sympathy is felt in their sudden bereavement. The eldest son, John [James], was killed in the Great War.

1927 December 7 Orkney Herald

A CROFTER STORY. – By way of showing why so many people in London were able to claim descent from Scotsmen, and how the Scotsman always had his eye on the alleged advantages of residence outside his own country, Sir Douglas Hogg [lawyer and Conservative politician] at the annual dinner of the Glasgow University Club in the Trocadero told the story of a crofter who applied to the Scottish Board of Health for a loan in connection with a house he wished to build. The reply was a form to fill up, accompanied with a list of conditions which had to be filled. The crofter wrote back, “Dear Sir, – I am returning the form which you sent me, and, what is more, you can keep it. I certainly will not sign it. You are mistaken if you think I am going to tie myself down to keep 22 rules and regulations in order that I may have a mere miserable earthly dwelling when my Heavenly Father has promised to give me a mansion if I only keep Ten Commandments.”