Wow! I must have been busy not to notice I’d not provided a site update since July last year!

What better reason to update folk than it being RSH.scot’s 4th birthday!

Here are the annual site stats to show how it’s been getting on since we like a bit of transparency here at RSH:

The main reason I’ve been able to continue doing what we do is from the support of our most enthusiastic Patreon patrons. You guys are the absolute best of people and I love every single one of you tae bits for the support you’ve given for the work. You guys are SO appreciated!

We had a big project over Hallowe’en with research into Glasgow’s Square Mile Murders, as originally covered by author Jack House. This was for a series of YouTube Videos, which took far longer to produce than expected but I’m happy with how it went. There was so much information gleaned that we decided to Publish the information along with illustrations by the wonderful Alex.

On being contacted for further information of an ancestor I posted what I found for the very interesting Robert (Bob “Dragon”) Dreghorn.

I then continued our Scottish Railway Incidents research for volume 2 of our Publication, completing 1906 and 1907.

Since my last update we’ve had a few books typed up & scanned for the site; the first being Guthrie’s ‘History of Scotland‘ (1767), vol. 1, a patron gift, which was uploaded in full, complete with all its long ʃs. This also lent to our list of Scottish Monarchs.

After being inspired by a patron, I obtained a few Scottish Cartes de Visites, and uploaded these wonderful faces from the past.

Then we had ‘Black Agnes; A Romance of the Siege of Dunbar’ which was a story posted as a series to the Aberdeen Weekly News newspaper in 1890.

Off the back of the Black Agnes chapters I obtained, typed up, and scanned in ‘Heroines of Scotland‘ (1889).

The very popular ‘Anecdotes of Burns‘ (1893) was the next addition and made for an excellent read.

I had provided iScot Magazine with a Timeline of Events between Scotland and England at the start of last year for a series of articles. This led to the fuller run-down of events, Scotland in the Union, which was used by them for the same articles. I obtained their authorisation to publish the original info to RSH and these became wee Pamphlet Publications, too, being good accompaniments to the ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ (2019).

From the Kelso Chronicle we had a series of articles on Scottish Cryptids, Fairies, Witches, &c.

We also had Brownies, Fairies, &c. and Glaistigs, &c. as part of our Scottish Cryptids research.

We then had ‘Reminiscences of Scottish Life and Character’ (1861) which gave a wonderful illustration of life and ways in the Scotland of the past.

We’re at present halfway through the uploading of Ramsay’s ‘Tea-Table Miscellany,’ (1733) the scans of which were uploaded almost at the start of the site 4 years ago, so I felt it was time to crack it open and deliver its contents to the interested.

I was invited to be interviewed, on what it is I do with regards RSH, by John Drummond for his Independence Live TNT Show at the end of January, which was a lot of fun. This interview is also available as a Podcast.

This led to my newest engagement, being that from Independence Live who have asked if I can create a show for them each month. The first of which, Scottish Courtship & Marriage Customs, goes live at 19:00 GMT on the 25th of February.

With more YouTube offerings on the go these days feel free to pop over to the Random Scottish History Channel to see what’s new. The new series at the moment is comprised of Newspaper Article Lucky-Dips from Yvette’s top hat. These go live every Monday and Thursday with the 5th episode being available as of 06:00 GMT this morning. These aren’t always for the faint of heart so I recommend checking the description of what the episode covers before deciding whether it’s for you or not.

Again, I’d like to thank RSH supporters and patrons for the last 4 years, without whom none of this would be achieved.

21/02/22   01:31

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So! It’s really been a while, eh?

I’d like to welcome our new Patrons and those donating via Ko-fi, we’re very happy to have you on board. By showing us you value what we do you give us the momentum to continue long into to the future. Some awesome new friends have been made and we truly value each and every one of you. We’re here for you, so don’t be too shy to tell us what you’d like to see and know more about.

A lot has been added and done since I last caught you guys here. To begin with ‘Scottish National Memorials‘ (1890) was completed. An absolutely excellent tome of information. The illustrations were fantastic, too, and I’m very pleased it’s available in full for those looking for its contents. A lot of thanks goes to previous Site Contributor Tam McCann for bringing that particular publication to my attention.

IndyLive have continued with their run of RSH ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ readings in their Podcasts. iScot have, over their last 4 issues, made awesome use of RSH Treaty of Union Articles research, too.

I’ve been considering branching out into making more YouTube Videos. It’s a nice way to connect with folk and they can see a bit about what goes on here at RSH HQ. So we have a slowly growing Channel on the go now. Towards the end of March there, I began a 12-part Show & Tell series, starring items that have been collected along with the books while I’ve been on the Random Scottish History adventure, with the odd cameo from Zara and Fargo cats. These were Patron-only videos, as most will be, but now the series has come to an end they’re being made public every Friday. The most recent Patron-only video was the ironing of the Map of Scotland from volume 2 of Guthrie’s ‘General History of Scotland‘ (1767). While that certainly made the map easier to scan, I’m awaiting Alex’s expertise in putting both sides back together so you could never tell it was scanned in two pieces (too big for the A3 scanner). I’ll post everywhere when it’s updated on the site.

The RSH RedBubble Shop is being populated on a near daily basis with images; from the publications uploaded, Alex’s illustrations, and some of my photos. We’ve been quite happy with the quality of the productions so far. We’re hoping you guys are too.

We’ve been continuing with ‘Book of Days‘ (1886) daily posts, on the Homepage, which I’m still updating with new information gleaned from the latest publications uploaded.

I’m very pleased to say volume 2 of Grant’s brilliant ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘ (1880) has now been completely uploaded. Volume 1 was one of the very first books uploaded to the RSH and I’ve been looking forward to carrying on with the series for quite a while now, but we like to mix things up a wee bit here.

That now leaves me free to continue with our own compilation of ‘Scottish Railway Incidents‘ (1904-1907), which will be our volume 2 of the series. Those following along on social media will be aware I paused this series after my dreams started to get, not “negatively” affected, “unnervingly” might be a better word…

In our Non-Scottish Publications section we have the new addition of ‘Confessions of an Opium Eater‘ (1890s) by Thomas de Quincey, the opium-eater himself. I read a more modern edition of this as a teenager and it’s a publication mentioned occasionally through the texts uploaded so far.

Our Scanned Images section also, I feel, benefits from the recent addition of the Rev. Robert Menzies’ ‘Circle of Human Life‘ (1847). This was obtained after being brought to my attention by another YouTube channel, Storied, as it’s the first mention in English text of the “Grim Reaper.” Which I thought was interesting enough by itself for inclusion on RSH.

The most recent addition, which I feel can only make navigating the site and finding us on social media easier, is the RSH LinkTree. See the top of the Homepage for the main link to this, as well as in profile headers wherever you usually find us.

Until next time everyone!

08/07/21   06:35

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It’s RSH’s 3rd birthday!

Thank you to everyone who’s helped keep us going. As it’s just Alex and myself, our Patrons have been invaluable this last year in helping us to maintain the site throughout us both having been furloughed from our full-time occupations. We appreciate you guys so much! I’ve reuploaded the ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ to KDP (for Kindle, paperback, and hardback versions) with an updated Patron list as a small way to thank everyone. I’ll be doing the same shortly for ‘How Scotland Lost Her Parliament’ too.

Screenshot_2021-02-21 UpdatesScreenshot_2021-02-21 Site Yearly Stats docx - Microsoft Word Online

I said in my last update that I’d need to finish Balfour’s ‘Historical Works‘, vol. 2, and I’m happy to say that’s now done, although a translation of Charles I.’s chapters from 1625-1640 is required and that will take some amount of time, so I might do it on the side while I continue uploading ‘Scottish National Monuments‘ (1890). Speaking of which, our friend and contributor Tam McCann had pointed me in the direction of this publication and it arrived on my doorstep from Xanthe of Bird’s Books Leith with a cute postcard of the Edinburgh Museum of Science and Art. It’s a huge publication. 14 x 10 x 2 inches and weighty! It was a bit difficult to Scan for its spot in Scanned Images but I like folk to be able to see the books I’m typing up for them to read. It’s thoroughly illustrated within and to save it from becoming a working copy with its binding coming apart I’ve decided not to scan its contents using the flatbed scanner but with my wee handscanner instead. As the pages aren’t entirely flat there are going to be wee blurry spots on the scans, which I’ll try to mitigate, but it will preserve the book better in the long run, which is the main thing, as well as making its contents available.

We’ve also started a Scottish Cryptids section, from the Scottish Press, in our Miscellany, which Alex is providing illustrations for. Theres;

so far, with quite a few to go. I also did a quick post, also from the Scottish Press, Curious Coincidences, which I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t an enjoyable use of time.

I finished readings of the 20 main chapters of ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘, I’ve included links to the readings under each chapter. I wasn’t sure if folk would be interested in hearing the compiled smaller articles and I had some pushing me to get on and do ‘How Scotland Lost her Parliament‘ so we now have the Introduction and first five chapters uploaded to our YouTube Channel. Alex wanted to get involved so he has cameos whenever a quoted passage makes an appearance. It’s been good fun to do. I just hope folk are enjoying them.

The YesCowal & IndyLive podcast team are fair getting through our ‘ToUA’ readings, having our Introduction, the Articles themselves, and five chapters uploaded.

I hope I’ve not missed anything. Feel like there’s probably a few things I may come back and add when I remember what they are. In the meantime, all the best. We’re off for a wee toddy tae celebrate 🥃

Slàinte Mhòr!

21/02/2021   03:10

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Good morning,

Things don’t seem as bleak, though very little has changed since we entered 2021. I hope everyone is well and had an excellent Christmas and New Year, despite restrictions. At RSH, we’ve welcomed a couple more Patrons to the family, who I hope have received their wee bits and pieces from our welcome package.

We’ve been continuing with the ‘Book of Days‘ articles daily, as I think it makes for a good homepage and folk know that the site’s up-to-date and active. I’ve not really been keeping up with Balfour’s ‘Historical Works,’ though Volume 2 is just about complete, so I’ll need to get on that.

I allowed myself, instead, to get sidetracked with newspaper articles. There are now 3 articles uploaded on the ‘Popular Superstitions of Clydesdale,’ from the ‘Scots Magazine;’

Along with 6 articles from the same magazine on ‘Scottish Antiquities;’

As well as 12 articles uploaded from ‘Chambers’ Edinburgh Journal,’ along with those mentioned in our last update we now also have;

Then I decided it was time there were some readings of the ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ (2019) out there. I wanted the information in as many different formats as possible and to that end we have now 16 videos uploaded to our YouTube Channel of the main chapters. By subscribing to our channel you’ll receive updates on new videos we’re putting out there. I’ve 3 more main chapters to go and then we can get into those chapters that comprise of many wee articles that help to build up the story of Scotlands time within the union of 1707. So you have available to you just now;

These can be found along with others in the RSH Videos section. IndyLive have joined us and are ripping the audio from these to put out as podcasts every Friday as another way to get the information out there and, as far as I’m told, they appear to be doing pretty well and are getting a good look-in.

After the ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ have been uploaded I think the plan is to try and do Charles Waddie’s ‘How Scotland Lost Her Parliament‘ justice in the same formats.

I did get back to Balfour’s ‘Historical Works’ for enough time to upload the Original version of;

But then allowed myself to get side-tracked again by ‘Horace in Homespun‘ (1886), a collection of Hugh Haliburton’s Poetry in Scots, which I enjoyed immensely. I uploaded all of those over the course of about 4 or 5 days.

Then we had a couple of random side articles one, after a conversation with a Facebook and Twitter friend about cryptids and I thought perhaps I might be able to find something in the Scottish press I could use to make up a post of weirdness. That turned into;

which was pretty interesting to explore. Also, after a Twitter inquiry, I posted an additional article from the ‘Gazetteer of Scotland,’ on Inchinnan.

I think that rounds up our last month or so of new additions to the site. I hope it’s been interesting for folk. After I complete volume 2 of ‘Historical Works’ we’ll likely get back to Scottish Railway Incidents while I decide which book to get onto next.

All the best to you and I’ll be back here soon.

19/01/2021   07:11

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We’re now well under way with Volume 2 of Balfour’s ‘Historical Works.’ The first part concludes James VI.’s life from Volume 1. There’s both the Original version of James VI. (1604-1625) and the Companion version available. Also, both the Original and Companion versions of a chapter devoted to the same king’s character, which doesn’t put him in the best light.

I was asked why I bother with the Companion copies for chapters in this publication. The website was set up in order to make the information in the books, newspapers, and prints I have to hand searchable and available to those looking for it. With the archaic spellings and word usage of Balfour’s original text, it would be pretty difficult to find what you were looking for. Updating the text is necessary to make the text more accessible. For those looking to quote from Balfour, I’d recommend you not use my companion version. Instead, find the information from that version and then locate the same within the original text, e.g.;

“The motion of this comet, (says he,) from my first observation, was on Wednesday morning, the 18th of November, 1618, to Wednesday the 18th of December; the which whirled about the earth every 24 hours, and declined 12 degrees towards the south, making his [daily route] over that terrestrial circle wherein lies New Guinea, the Isles [of] Timor and Java, in the east; the north part of St. Lawrence, Mozambique in Africa; the middle of Brazil and Peru, in the west.” And,

“The motion of this comet, (sayes he,) from my first obseruatione, was one Vedinsday morning, the 18 of Nouember, 1618, to Vedinsday the 18 of December; the wiche whirled aboute the earthe eurey 24 houres, and declynned 12 degrees touardes the southe, making his diurnall gyve ouer that terrestrial circkell quherin layes Noua Guinea, the Iles Timor and Jaua, in the easte; the north pairt of St. Laurence, Mosambiq: in Africa; the midele of Brasilia and Peru, in the vest.”

I’d think quoting from the original would have far more authority. The companion copy of the Charles I. chapters, the original of which are still being uploaded, will be done once the original’s completed. Makes sense to space out the information, instead of posting 2 versions of the same chapter one after the other.

We celebrated St. Andrew’s Day (Andersmas), on November 30th, though not with the usual get-togethers. With the news of a vaccine now being offered to those of high-risk, we’re definitely on the positive route out of the predicament the pandemic has left us in.

In the meantime, to break up the monotony of archaic text, and to take a wee step away from the Railway Incidents for a wee minute (for why see Twitter or Facebook), though  not for too long, I’ve gone and typed up some articles from newspapers Alex got me as an early birthday present. There are five posts in total, while I await a sixth arriving, from ‘Chambers’ Edinburgh Journal,‘ chosen articles from varying editions;

  • Extraordinary History of Mr Thomas Jenkins, Saturday, December 15, 1832.
    • Which details the life of the son of an African king who was given to a trading vessel, in order that he might obtain an education and see something of the world. He was taken to live in Hawick, where his guardian died, leaving him on his own with no money, or knowledge of the language. With the aid of locals, he really outdid all expectations, quickly taking to teaching himself Latin and Greek, before taking on Mathematics, too. He became a teacher against all the odds and gained the support of some folk in high places. It’s striking that Chambers’ makes a very obvious point of taking to calling the young teacher “Mister Jenkins,” only after it was beyond doubt that he had risen himself up to fill a role that was agreeable. It’s a wee look into the mind of the author of the articles as well as those they inform us about.
  • The Hermit of Manor, Saturday, April 27, 1833.
    • We’re told about a man, David Ritchie, physically disabled from birth, who made his mark on the area in which he set himself up in Peeblesshire. Though there’s respect evident from the author for his subject and an appreciation for the adversity David had suffered, it’s not a story treated in quite the way we might these days, but again, it’s as much an insight into the contemporary mind of the author.
  • Judicial Torture in… Scotland, Saturday, May 16, 1835.
    • The title is self-evident, I guess. This one does need a wee trigger warning for those who might be sensitive to graphic descriptions of some of the tortures prevalently used in Scotland prior to the 19th century. It’s pretty terrible what folk used to do to each other, also staggering, in the amount of punishment some of those mentioned sustained without ever revealing secrets, even when it may have benefitted them. Not bed-time reading, this one.
  • Epitaphs, Saturday, September 17, 1836.
    • This article comes from a copy of ‘Chambers’ Edinburgh Journal’ I had obtained just after finishing the Rev. D. Macrae’s ‘Book of Blunders‘ (1883) with the chapter, Queer Epitaphs. I thought it might be interesting and that it may be a compilation of other clever and witty Scottish epigraphs. Not so much. They make for sad reading. Some really beautiful sentiments expressed throughout, which the grieving might find of comfort.
  • Sketches of Superstitions, Saturday, March 13, 1841.
    • Everyone likes superstitions. These are some or Irish origin. I’m collecting as much of these things as possible on the side, to go along with J. F. Campbell’s ‘Popular Tales,’ which I’m a big fan of. In between illustrations for the ‘Scottish Railway Incidents’ publications, Alex is also working away on those for the Popular Tales series. It’s all very exciting, but frustratingly time-consuming. I look forward to putting it all together.

On the side, Mark, via Twitter, requested help to provide his daughter with information on Scottish Wedding Customs, for a school assignment. I went through the papers and picked a few that seemed relevant to the subject, and they made for a really interesting, in a lot of cases enlightening, read. Alex provides us with a few illustrations throughout and it made for a good post. I didn’t hear back about the assignment it was in aid of.

Contents pages, via the links above, Bibliography, and Glossary have been updated. Take care, stay safe, and I’ll catch you next update.

12/12/2020   08:25

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That’s another book down with the final chapter having been posted of Dr. James Browne’s ‘History of the Highlands and Highland Clans‘ (1850). Contents page for the book has been updated, as has the Bibliography.

I’ll need to get on to the next book, and with so many to choose from, it’s a wee battle deciding which should be next up. I’d quite like to get some more volumes of those series, with volume 1s already uploaded, done, and Balfour is cited in the last publication on the history of the Highlands, so it might be good to revisit Balfour’s ‘Historical Works‘ (1824) and do volume 2. It gives me the chance to play translator and create a Companion to the volume, so it might be fun to go back and type up.

In the meantime we’ll continue treating ourselves to ‘Scottish Railway Incidents‘ on alternate days to break things up a wee bit. Since my last update there’s been a year (July 1904 – July 1905) uploaded, so we’re fair getting on with it. ‘Scottish Railway Incidents: 1900-1903‘ (2020), volume 1, is now available to buy, but as Amazon is pushing us to overprice it  in order to make ourselves a couple of quid after their profit, we’re offering £5 discount on any purchases of this publication bought via ourselves instead of them.

RSH also ran a wee raffle for a week, while we collected donations and names for the hat. One of our wonderfully generous Patrons contributed funds towards 3 copies of our newest publication which we made our prizes. We raised £150 for the Scottish Association for Mental Health who are doing a great job just now helping those feeling particularly isolated during lockdown this year. Today we received a beautiful wee thank you card from them I’d like to share, especially for those who participated and donated to their cause. Congratulations to Julie, Barrie and Adam on their names having been picked from Yvette’s top hat.

Stay safe and take care!

23/11/2020   15:12

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Well, that’s far longer than I thought since my last update!

I’d like to begin by welcoming our new Patrons and thanking long-time Patrons for the continuation of your support. I’ve, hopefully, earned such excellent support. Typing up your requests from the excellent ‘Gazetteer of Scotland‘ (1847) has fair kept me busy over the last couple of months. 174 articles later and I felt a break was needed – it’s not nearly so random and interesting if we spend our time on the one thing for ever, and the Gazetteer may very well have taken the rest of my lifetime to upload in its entirety. I’m still making returns to the Introduction as I’m set on getting it uploaded, as it’s 61 pages long (approx. 45,000 words), however, it’s taking a minute.

I’ve added ‘return to contents’ options to the top right of a few books and articles. WordPress negates any spacing intentionally left when posts are edited now, so that’s also fairly time consuming and it may be a while before all the older posts have this handy addition. New posts are uploaded with their own links. Those posts done so far are;

In the last week, since pausing the Gazetteer, the Scottish Railway Incidents from

of 1904, have been uploaded. Which is the first half of the first year of volume 2 of our ‘Scottish Railway Incidents’ publications. So far only Patrons have received their hardback copies of volume 1 (1900-1903), of which only 35 were printed for us (super limited edition), while I await a publisher in Edinburgh getting back to us to let us know if they want to run with the series or not for general sale. If not, I’m happy to get them out there in the same fashion as the ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ (2019).

I’m alternating between these and Dr. James Browne’s ‘History of the Highlands and Highland Clans‘ (1850) at the moment. On the fair assumption there are those out there who are put off by stories of railway tragedies, every other day there’s a nice straightforward wee (long) chapter about the Scottish Highlands and those who’ve lived there since the first few hundred centuries of the common era;

Chapter III. – Pictish Period, anno 446 to 843; should be ready for posting tomorrow.

Until next time, take care and remain safe.

18/10/2020   12:30

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It’s been a busy couple of months since my last update. I honesty hadn’t realised it had been so long, illness not an excuse – used to be a near daily thing. I’ll try to get the order of events as close as possible to how they occurred chronologically.

We continued with an article from the ‘Scottish Review‘ selection;

The very popoular Maps of Scotland in 850 & 1066 C.E., Showing Tribal Populations/Kingdoms was then posted. Lots of debate on what was represented but my conclusion is that it’s a rough idea based on the information available at the time, and I still find it pretty useful as a reference when reading about our ancient history.

I’m not sure how it came about, but a conversation about unicorns, somewhere with someone, put me in mind of the fact my old friend Harry, retired professor, heraldry expert, and Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, hadn’t been able to procure any definite origin for Scotland’s unicorns. I made a post up of the mystery, Scotland’s Elusive Unicorns. Which kind of goes with a recent post containing some examples of what the Scottish press had to give us, with regards unicorns – Facebook / Twitter – all pretty interesting, I’m sure you’ll agree.

Charles Waddie’s, ‘How Scotland Lost Her Parliament‘ (1891) arrived from our super generous, anonymous, Patron! Within a week I had the whole thing typed up and posted to the site, some kind of anxiety grabbed me the moment it was in my possession as the full information within wasn’t available anywhere for love nor money. I then had Alex re-do the cover, I typed up an introduction, and RSH formally Republished it via KDP in both kindle (18/06/20) and hardback (20/06/20) editions. We felt it was important the information was, once again, out there. There had been 4 editions published from 1891, yet not a copy existed, no full transcriptions available online. Strange.

We then obtained a 6-volume set of A History of the Scottish People‘ (1894), of which I had only volume 1 previously. It’s yet to be uploaded though the previously mentioned Maps of Scotland in 850 & 1066 C.E. is from that volume so I’ve hopes of finding many more maps to upload from them before we get round to typing up the information.

I think it was a conversation on Twitter regarding the Bonnie Prince and his paramours that inspired me to upload scans of Sketch Book of the North‘ (1896) which mentions Bonny Jeanie Cameron, as discussed by the author, George Eyre Todd, in the Scots Lore article linked to her name there.

We obtained the Rev. David Macrae’s Book of Blunders‘ (1883), as he was a favourite author/activist of mine from the ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ research. I enjoyed typing it up, it gave us a lot of laughs, a great wee compilation of daft anecdotes with a final chapter of Queer Epitaphs that I enjoyed. Especially that from Burns;

   “…nothing, in this way, equals the epitaph which Burns prepared for Andrew Turner:- 

‘In seventeen hunder an’ 49 

Satan took stuff to mak’ a swine, 

And cuist it in a corner; 

But wilily he changed his plan, 

And shaped it something like a man, 

And ca’ed it Andrew Turner.’ “

Then we had another map, this time a Map of Glasgow (1773). This took quite a bit of time to clean up on Photoshop but was entirely worth it. I love its representation of Glasgow’s Coat of Arms.

I wanted to get the input of RSH followers on varying platforms, and with so many individual requests for information about random Scottish places I’ve taken over the last few years, I figured it might be an interesting excuse to get into the ‘Gazetteer of Scotland‘ (1847). I put out requests for places folk had an interest in and so far this is our working list:


One tick – Article Available, Two ticks – Article Posted, Cross – No Article Available.

We’ve had a great response and I feel like I’ve been getting thru them fairly quickly, though Fifeshire maybe took me 3 days, its length was such that I didn’t even want to go looking to find out where it ended. They’re posted in exactly the order I receive them. That way it’s far more randomised, which is just how I like it.

Yesterday, finally, was posted the Map of Scotland (1850ish), from Miss Julia Corner’s ‘History of Scotland‘ (1851), which I’m not sure I’ll be posting too soon, though I’m tempted to make up a post of the timeline of Scottish history she provides at its conclusion.

That, I believe, brings us up-to-date. The British Newspaper Archive have also got onboard with us and have provided banners you’ll see at the bottom of any menu page for Newspaper Research. Anyone subscribing to them, via the banners or links wherever their site is mentioned, will now be helping to support Random Scottish History, which we appreciate very much.

Take care all. I’ll try not to let it be so long next time.

12/08/2020   12:50

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I thought I’d take time for an update this morning in order to commemorate an old friend I met at the Bridgeton History Group meetings. Willie Gallagher was, in himself, an archive of Glasgow’s history. I woke up to the sad announcement of his passing fromm friends of the BHG by email. John Gorevan at Old Glasgow Pubs was kind enough to inform the wider community via his Facebook Page;

   “Saddened to hear of the passing of one of Old Glasgow Pub’s longest friends, Willie Gallagher.

   Willie was not just an absolute wealth of knowledge of Glasgow’s history, he was a dear friend.

   We will miss having a chin wag in the Heilan Jessie or the Scotia with you.

   Here’s to you Willie 🍻


   My friend Mr William Gallagher (Willie) was in his own right a historian he collected a vast knowledge of Glasgow’s past and collected a mass of memorabilia on Glasgow’s old theatre’s. His flat near Glasgow green. Was like an Alladins cave of programs old newspapers and thousands of books in his library. He was a funny gentleman and always had a joke to tell. You always got Willie the same way. He lived for many years in the Gorbals flats and looked after his sick mother, when she passed he continued to live there until he was rehoused to a flat across from Templeton Carpet factory at the Glasgow green. He made many friends in and around Glasgow over the years and many famous people in theatrical circles, friends in the H L I museum in Sauchiehall street. When I met Willie for the first time in 1990 I became friends right away, his knowledge of Glasgow was second to none. He contributed to Old Glasgow Pubs with my images and documents that he collected from the famous Glasgow Barras and second hand shops all over Scotland. In recent years he broke his hip and poor willie was slowed by his disability. However he still managed to get around with his walking frame and phoned me last year to say he had found something for me that would interest not just me but many of our readers, he found in Edinburgh 8 fantastic images of Dean’s bar on Shettleston road some dating as far as the late 1800s. I phoned Willie a couple of weeks ago to see if he needed anything and how he was coping with the covid 19 he said he was ok and did not leave the house. A few days ago he ventured out and fell and banged his head he never [woke] up and died in Hospital. God bless Mr William Gallagher. R I P.”

Willie didn’t keep his knowledge to himself. I don’t know that he was happier than when reminiscing upon one subject or another. He edited a newspaper from the Scotia Bar called ‘Scotia Folk’. He brought in an example which I’ve scanned in here.

He was so easy to chat to. The Bridgeton History Group was doing a Bridgeton Streets project and he’d requested information on Templeton Street and I’d scoured the newspapers for interesting tidbits he might like. Unfortunately the recent pandemic has prevented us meeting as usual and I was therefore unable to get the information to him. We talked books and he would bring in the odd publication for me to get jealous over. I regret not having had contact with him outside of the group for a prolonged conversation over coffee. He lived his life well and we’ll all miss him hugely.

03/06/2020   06:52

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An update is wanting what with everything happening. So in order of what’s new to the site;

The contents of ‘A History of Scotland‘ (1881) have been uploaded, with thoughts towards those homeschooling their children during lockdown. It’s very well laid out to that purpose and makes for an easy-to-follow round-up of Scottish history until the Union of the Crowns in 1603.

To add to some information I was compiling for a requested project I’ve uploaded the ‘Statutes of Icolmkill / Iona‘ for those interested in a route the government took to deal with those pesky Highlanders they weren’t able to fully control.

Then, as those on social media will be aware, we took receipt, now of 2 shipments, of bound ‘Scottish Review‘ articles. It’s the full set from Volume 1, November, 1882, to Volume 36, October, 1900. In uploading  what scans I could as well as photos of them I thought I’d explain a wee bit about how we come to acquire some of the publications we do here at RSH HQ. On receiving the first box, which fortunately contained vols. 8, 9, 10, & 14, I couldn’t help myself and immediately got to work.

Our ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ (2019) compilation contains articles quoting from these volumes and they were, therefore, invaluable sources of additional suuplementary information to give a fuller view of some of the topics discussed throughout ‘ToUA,’ especially the chapter ‘Financial Cost to Scotland of the Union.’

So, we have uploaded from these volumes;

which is a far more interesting write-up than that of the already posted ‘London Literary Review‘ (Oct, 1855).

as cited in the ‘Scottish Review’ article below, ‘Parliament in Scotland.’

as quoted from in our chapter, ‘Financial Cost to Scotland of the Union.’

We’re not done yet by any stretch of the imagination. I’ll be returning occasionally to add to the collection of Scotland-relevant articles available to you from this set.

Site Bibliography has been updated.

We’ve also been made aware that another book is winging its way to us. This is also very exciting. One of my favourite letter-writers to the papers at the end of the 19th century, was Mr Charles Waddie, aka Thistledown. So much so that he got his very own Chapter along with only two other exceptional Scottish patriots in ‘ToUA’ (2019). Well, in the same excellent chapter, ‘Financial Cost to Scotland of the Union,’ footnote 3, is mentioned Mr Waddie’s publication ‘How Scotland lost her Parliament and what came of it;’

3  In the interesting book just published by Mr. Waddie, Hon. Secretary of the Scottish Home Rule Association, ‘How Scotland lost her Parliament and what came of it,’ he give figures to show that, in the period of thirty years, from 1861 to 1891, Scotland has lost from over taxation alone no less than £92,684,319.”

This book, and in fact no other non-fiction by him, could be found available to read, much less obtain. A copy of this publication is what we’ve apparently obtained. Another huge thank you to the Patron who has made this happen!

28/05/2020   11:31

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So, we’re all experiencing a bit of a strange time at the moment with no end in sight, as yet. There are a LOT of folk worldwide in isolation. The world has been a far quieter place. Going outdoors requires planning and a good reason. Folk have mentioned to me how this is history in action and that I should keep a plague diary to record the experience for future historians. I’m afraid that would have made for a super boring read. Alex and I were furloughed a month ago. We’ve been fortunate in that we’ve not experienced shortages in the local newsagents and I mostly stayed in with the books pre-pestilence anyway, so not too much has changed other than being less regimented due to not having to be anywhere at any time. The schedule went to bits for a couple of weeks but I’ve settled back into a night shift routine in order to get work done while the other house residents are asleep.

I thought it best to spend my newly found time providing people with chapters to read and scans to have a look at to help pass the time. So we have available,  in order of posting;

Scans of Macpherson’s ‘Poems of Ossian‘ (1812), Chalmer’s ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots‘ (1818), ‘Gazeteer of Scotland‘ (1847), and Jane Porter’s Scottish Chiefs‘ (1840) have been uploaded.

The first quarter (1900-1903) of the Railway Incidents project  is completed. With January 1904 having been done to begin the next batch.

Scans of James Hogg, the Ettrick Shepherd himself’s, ‘Poetical Works of the Ettrick Shepherd‘ (1838), five volumes, containing an autobiagraphy that might turn out to be quite a funny piece of writing, I look forward to getting into it.

Scans and transcription of a Vellum Affidavit of Heirship (1853) from James to his son John Baxter.

Scans of Mure’s ‘History of Glasgow‘ (1830) which is long overdue, really. It’s so often quoted in other publications I’m surprised I hadn’t uploaded scans sooner.

I went and set up a Maps Gallery on DeviantArt to allow the viewing of map details due to the ability to upload in high-resolution. Maps already uploaded to the Maps from Books section have been rescanned at 1000 dpi and reuploaded there.

Maps showing the Battles of Bannockburn, Flodden, and Pinkie Cleugh from ‘A History of Scotland‘ (1881), of which I’m uploading Chapters for those in the situation of home-schooling children while schools are closed as well as the interested, have been added separately to the Maps from Books section.

The Scottish fool, Jemmy Camber‘s, section from Armin’s ‘Nest of Ninnies‘ (1842) was uploaded to give folk an interesting wee bit of reading. It reminded me a lot of the transcribing of Balfour’s ‘Historical Works‘ (1824), though with less yoghs and thorns.

RSH also recently obtained a large vellum sasine, or “investment by registration of a deed transferring ownership of property,” which we’ll try and scan – not only is it quite a bit bigger than the A3 scanner but also, being vellum, it’s hardened to an almost plastic-like texture, this makes it very difficult to open from its folded position and it won’t lie flat without abuse we’d rather not subject it to.


Anne, Duchess of Hamilton is mentioned but it will take me more than a minute to decipher it enough for a transcription. This is where good scans will come in useful. I’ll keep you updated on its progress.

Regardless of how you’re choosing to spend your time in isolation I hope you stay safe and healthy during this weird moment in our timeline. If you’re one of many essential workers out keeping the country afloat or saving lives I wish you all the best and would like to add the RSH team’s gratitude to that of many millions around the world.

Take care all.

21/04/2020   06:42

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That’s John F Campbell’s ‘Popular Tales,’ Volume 1, completely uploaded. Alex is working through the stories illustrating them for our own publication. His progress, so far, can be viewed at RSH’s Patreon site. Volume 2 will be started soon, filled with more traditional popular tales translated from the Gaelic.

I’ll be continuing with the Railway Incidents as we’re just about finished with the articles from 1902. They’ve not failed yet to be interesting, funny, or shocking. I do want to apologise for the cat story from September, 1902, but I couldn’t justify not including it as it fit the criteria for sought-after articles for this series. I don’t know why those detailing accidents to people and farm animals didn’t have quite the same effect as that one report but there you go.

With the global “situation,” things are getting difficult for Alex and I at the moment, being as we’re both employed by the same company who’ve cut their staff, and our hours, right down. So I may be prodded by a general lack of finances to publish the Railway Incidents research sooner than I thought in the hopes of mitigating the hit we’ve taken a wee bit. Thanks to our Patrons for helping to maintain RSH.scot.

Don’t forget our ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ (2019) is still available to buy for those looking for more information on Scotland’s place in the British Union.

19/03/2020   05:05

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You guys seem to be enjoying the Railway Incidents so far from the comments I’ve been receiving. Regular followers of RSH will already be aware of how willing I am to undertake a wee bit of Newspaper Research having already uploaded Pride in Scottish History and the popular Treaty of Union Articles. Considering the slow start, I’m managing to average about a month a night and have up until the end of February, 1902, completed and uploaded to the site. I also, per request, wrote up articles, including any pictures, regarding the Cumberland Street Station Accident of September, 1934, which is a little beyond my remit of 1915, but anything for a friend and colleague of the Bridgeton History Group 😉, though Twitter wouldn’t allow me to post the link to the online Word Document.

Considering publishing these in a paperback format since they seem to lend themselves to that. Would be similar to the Treaty of Union Articles, except there’d not be hardback copies made available. It would be far too expensive to even consider going down that route, as instead of the one publication containing all the collected information, it’d all be split up into volumes to make it all more manageable. It could either be 16 volumes, a year per book, or 4 volumes of 4 years-worth each. They would be mainly unillustrated, though I’ve asked Alex if he’d be willing to illustrate, in his own style, any pictures included with any of the articles included in the original source. He’s up for that, but I feel there won’t be many of those as in 2 years, 2 months-worth of information already collected and uploaded, only one article so far has included an illustration; that of the Greenock accident, 13th May, 1900. So I can’t think it’ll be enough to keep him busy, which is a good thing, as we’re continuing on with J. F Campbell’s, ‘Popular Tales‘ and require his artistic talents to create, and populate, the world of the translated Gaelic tales.

I’ve caught up with Alex by uploading all the pictures he has for the Popular Tales, so far, to the Patreon site. Unfortunately only Patrons will be able to view those images, with only top Mormaer Tier Patrons able to view those images set for the gory edition.

11/03/2020   06:21

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It’s RSH.com’s 2nd Birthday!

Where’s the time gone? Wasn’t that long ago it was our 1st birthday, surely? A search of “21/02/2019” on this page proves it though. Crazy how fast time flies when you’re having fun, eh?

I figure I’d do the same as last time and offer up the site stats to anyone that’s interested;





Pages Viewed




Unique Visitors




Posts Created




Words Uploaded




Site Reach

Screenshot_2020-02-21 Stats and Insights ‹ Random Scottish History — WordPress com

So that’s where we’re at. Thank you so much to RSH’s Patrons who help keep the site running, all those following the site, and everyone that takes even a second to glimpse what we have on offer. We really appreciate it!

Here’s to the next one.

21/02/2020   07:48

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There have been BIG site menu changes this morning. Anyone visiting the site between 3 and 5am this morning will have been met with a chaotically changing menu with odd chapters appearing on the Home Page, thanks WordPress, I’ll not try an explain what was going wrong. What I’ve done is get rid of all the chapters of all uploaded books from the drop-down menu options. That’s over 1000 posts removed from the menu options as it was getting out of hand. On desktops there was no issue at all but on mobile devices the RSH menu was just one long list of everything on the site, which meant it could take a wee while to find the book/chapter/post you were looking for. Now its far more minimalist with the chapters obtained via the books’ Contents Pages. I hope this change will make the site slightly easier to navigate.

The last 7 limited edition ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ (2019) hardbacks were sold successfully and the excited feedback from those who won copies was brilliant. Thank you to everyone who took part in a bid to secure themselves a copy and apologies to those who failed in that endeavour. I can recommend the Paperbacks; the covers are that soft matt skin feel which makes the cover image come out really nicely. Plus, due to a different format & no cost to ourselves of printing, I was able to make some of the half-page illustrations full-page & the incidental images throughout are full colour.

I’ve begun another Newspaper Research project with regards Railway Incidents from 1900-1915. This is beyond RSH’s pre-20th century purview but was borne from a Patron‘s desire to discover any articles relating to his ancestor’s death on a Scottish railway. I was coming across SO MANY articles, literally a new incident every other day, that I thought folk might be interested enough in the information to be worth making up posts of the compiled newspaper articles, in much the same way as Pride in Scottish History and the  beforementioned Treaty of Union Articles. So far, over a week has been spent transcribing the first 4 months of 1900, which gives you an idea of the amount of information’s been collected.

17/02/2020   08:46

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Good morning and a very happy Thursday to you all!

I’m in a great mood because that’s David Ure’s ‘History of Rutherglen and East-Kilbride‘ (1793) now uploaded in its entirety, with the exception of the publication’s Subscriber List as it seemed extraneous (and many pages long). I hope everyone following along enjoyed it. I found it to be a fascinating wee glimpse into areas I know very little about.

We also have a couple more people have joined the RSH family via Patreon, including Bob McAllister, who we had round the other day to collect his ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ hardback. Welcome to the project guys!

Also, the 1st of our Limited Edition Hardbacks has sold. Congratulations to its new owner, we’ll have it shipped out as soon as possible for you. It’s been an exciting week here at RSH HQ and remember there are still 6 books left to go, with the last auction going live at 06:00 tomorrow morning;

Auction 1 (01/02 – 06/02) – Sold.

Auction 2 (02/02 – 07/02)– Sold.

Auction 3 (03/02 – 08/02)– Sold.

Auction 4 (04/02 – 09/02)– Sold.

Auction 5 (05/02 – 10/02)– Sold.

Auction 6 (06/02 – 11/02)– Sold.

Auction 7 (07/02 – 12/02)– Sold.

Take care all and I’ll see back here after the 12th.

06/02/2020   08:28

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For those following Ure’s ‘History of Rutherglen and East-Kilbride‘ (1793) we’re moving swiftly on with this publication and have started Chapter 6 – Containing an Account of Vegetable Impressions, Petrified Wood, Shells, Entrochi, Coralloides and Fishes Teeth. We may have this book finished by the end of this week.

After today, the house will be free and clear of all 320 of the limited edition ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ (2019) hardbacks, with the exception of those awaiting collection from those close-by and one box of 7.

Those 7 we’ve scheduled to go out on Ebay over the course of 7 days from 06:00 each day beginning on the 1st of February there. There were far too many individuals seeking copies of this particular edition, having missed the Crowdfunder in October, 2019, to be able to comfortably pick and choose who was to get one and who would have to consider the other options. To take the pressure off a wee bit we figured they could be fought over on Ebay, thereby, potentially enabling us to recoup at least some of the last of the expenses from the publication of said edition, while being a little more fair.

To keep track of each day’s Ebay listings I’ve made a list of links which will only become active on the day they’re associated with from 06:00;

Auction 1 (01/02 – 06/02)

Auction 2 (02/02 – 07/02)

Auction 3 (03/02 – 08/02)

Auction 4 (04/02 – 09/02)

Auction 5 (05/02 – 10/02)

Auction 6 (06/02 – 11/02)

Auction 7 (07/02 – 12/02)

Thank you to everyone who’s supported, contributed to, and given such awesome feedback for this project. You guys have made this all worth it.  Thank you, too, to all who take the opportunity to bid on the last of the hardbacks. Good luck.

03/02/2020   05:45

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Good morning.

Struggling at the moment. Have been plagued with a migraine I can’t shift for almost 2 weeks now, which has kept me off work, and, therefore, away from David Ure’s, ‘History of Rutherglen and East-Kilbride‘ (1793). Fortunately I was quite a wee bit ahead of myself, which can happen when I’m particularly taken by a publication. We’re already up to Chapter Five, page 249 of 334, so we’re just about finished. After a couple of days with nothing typed up and ready to go, we’re back on track with the latest instalment posted this morning.

Also, before my brain failed me & I was knocked out the game, I’d received, three volumes of four, of the ‘Caldwell Papers‘ (1883). Pretty sure I’ll have to give Volume II Part I up for lost. The volumes I was able to obtain are numbered 75 out of the 86 published. So I feel very lucky to have even been able to get my hands on these. I wanted to get as much uploaded as possible as quickly as possible but, as I’ll type up the whole thing eventualy anyway, I wanted just the information relating to the illustrations and signatures I could offer on the post of its scans. Even just restricting myself to the footnotes ended up being the work of about 11 straight hours, but I’m happy with the wealth of information collected there, as a good introduction prior to the book itself being typed up.

I’d also like to welcome our newest Patrons, of whom Jock and Diane have agreed to allow their names on our Contributor’s Page. By subscribing to Random Scottish History you’ll receive limited hardback edition of every future RSH publication.

Those who feel they missed out on the chance to grab themselves 1 of the 320, limited edition hardback, ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ (2019), have another opportunity. We have a box of 7, so far unallocated, that we’ll be auctioning off in 2 days (Feb 1st), in an attempt to recoup costs. We’ll put them up 1 at a time and see how they do. Those who’ve expressed interest will be emailed, DMed, &c. Messaged, in whatever way you usually get me, with the ebay links to ensure you don’t miss out. Links will also be posted on Facebook, Twitter, Mastodon.Scot, and LinkedIn.

29/01/2020   05:29

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Good morning, and a very happy start to 2020 to everyone!

That’s a start made on the ‘History of Rutherglen and East-Kilbride‘ (1793) which appears to begin with charters in my favourite language…  So, heads-up for a bunch of Latin coming soon, straight to a computer screen near you. I may include a GoogleTranslated copy to give some kind of idea of what’s being said in the charter, but I’m not sure yet. Sometimes those translations can make text more confusing, we’ll see.

We’re also continuing with Campbell’s ‘Popular Tales‘ with a extraneous story of Conal Crovi which won’t be making it into our publication being too similar in nature to the already uploaded Conall Cra Bhuidhe.


04/01/2020   06:57

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With the posting of part 2 of the ‘Legend of the Vision of Campbell of Inverawe’ we’ve come to the end of Sir T. D. Lauders’ ‘Tales from the Highlands‘ (1881). I’m glad it’s available for folk in its entirety as I love this book and the wee bits of information and glimpses of a past life here in Scotland we get to experience through its pages. From Mermaids, to Culloden, to an honourable death abroad fighting for Britain, it’s certainly up there with some of my favourite books.

Only 2 more days of ‘Book of Days‘ (1886) to go too. It’s nice for everything to be coming to an end just in time for the year’s end so we’re able to get started anew in the New Year. I’ve had my fifth request for ‘History of Rutherglen and East-Kilbride‘ (1793), so I don’t believe there’s any avoiding this one as my next upload.

We’ll also be continuing with ‘Popular Tales‘ (1890-93), which I was taken away from doing due to the importance of having the ‘Treaty of Union Articles‘ made available for everyone. The illustrated publication can be obtained HERE.

Brian Millar, has gone ahead, after a lot of effort spent convincing me, and set up a GoFundMe in an effort to help make up our loss through the ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ having become so expensive for us to publish. It’s not something I was very keen to do as everyone’s skint at this time of year and I didn’t want to add to folk’s financial annoyances. The response, however, has been overwhelming, and the hankies have been out a number of times over the last couple of days due to folk’s obvious generosity and willingness to help out. That folk are commenting saying their giving to make up the cost of their copies which they felt they didn’t pay enough for is amazing as they in no way needed to and it really bolsters our positive belief in humanity! We’re so thankful to everybody but are wondering what we can do to show it.

If I’m not back on this page before the bells toll, we wish every one of you and your’s a wonderful start to the New Year and happiness throughout the year to come!

All the best & thank you!

02:09   29/12/2019

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Good morning,

Today you have available to you the ‘Caledonian Mercury,’ for Monday, June 29, 1801, which has had its pages put together again so you have whole pages to view. Also, I’ve scanned and uploaded David Ure’s ‘History of Rutherglen and East-Kilbride‘ (1793). This book is an anonymous gift from an unknown source. So that in itself makes it an interesting publication to me. I’m very grateful for the chance to be able to type this one up as I’ve already had 4 requests to do it as fast as I can. Within the book is a map, and I know everyone likes a good map, so I’ve put its scan into the Maps from Books section, it’s a nicely wee detailed Map of N. W. View of Torrance [G75].

All site menus have been updated as has the site Bibliography.

27/12/2019   08:43

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A very merry Christmas Eve to you!

While everyone may be looking forward to receiving their Christmas presents tomorrow, we were given our’s yesterday and this morning in the form of new Patrons of Random Scottish History!

We’d like to welcome to our wee family; Angela Jones, Alistair MacKinnon, Brian Traynor (who had to go out of his way in order to join us!), Michelle Jamieson, and Diane McElroy. Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to ensure a great experience finding out every random historical Scottish piece of information we can come across.

That’s us down to a mere 15-odd books still requiring their collection/delivery ordered. A lot of you will know we had to put out a bit of a call for folk willing to volunteer payment of their delivery costs as this venture ended up costing us a fair amount (3x the initial printing cost per book), and while it was always a non-profit effort to get the ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ information out there to folk, we did not expect it to cost, us personally, even close to the amount it has done.

Those still awaiting receipt of their books should know that what they’re set to receive is not the £5 pamphlet of information they perhaps subscribed for. You’ll see what I mean when you have the final product in your hands. So while we were quite happy to make up the shortfall in printing costs, we were less happy to have ended up paying the, ultimately huge, delivery costs on top. In the end it’s what we signed up for and what needed to be done to complete the project.

Once Twitter was alerted to our having been put below the breadline, however, we couldn’t believe the response. While many subscribers haven’t been heard from since their subscription to the crowdfunder, the amount that not only covered their own postage, but those of others, was incredible and heartwarming. Then we had the wonderful Danny Owens who, on his own time, came round to pick up all those headed for the west end and Milngavie area and successfully hand-delivered those to other subscribers like himself.

All in all, while it could’ve been planned better, its’ been a fantastic experience on the whole that has us set on getting the next publication out there as soon as possible.

New chapters added to the site since my last update are;

and that’s us almost finished the ‘Book of Days‘, which has been an excellent book to have seen us through this year. We can always trust Robert Chambers to supply us with random miscellany written for an English audience, but we filtered and amended somewhat, getting there in the end. I’ll not wish you happiness in the New Year yet as I’ll likely be back with another update before then.

24/12/2019   06:05

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Good morning, once again!

With all the work surrounding the publications (Crowdfunder hardbacks, as well as the Paperback and Kindle versions) I’m behind on the site updates, so here we go.

Firstly, site-wise, new additions come in the form of scans having been uploaded of the donated set from the very generous Mr Graham Christie, ‘Pictorial History of Scotland’ (1884-1888), it may be a wee bit of time yet before I’m able to get round to uploading the contents but I’m really looking forward to it.

We’ve, of course, been continuing with ‘Book of Days’ (1886), which has provided us with some amount of miscellaneous information throughout this year. Quite an amount of info coming your way over the Christmas period from this publication too.

There’s also a new menu tab, RSH Publications,  containing; RSH Videos, Books Available, RSH in iScot Magazine, and is now also where Those Who’ve Helped Make Random Scottish History is located too.

A wee bit of a late update for this one, but I made sure the post itself was shared at the time, in the Days to Celebrate section, we’ve added to Robert Burns & His Night and Real Life Hallowe’en Stories from History with St Andrew’s Day – Andersmas.

Continuing with Sir T. D. Lauder’s ‘Tales of the Highlands’ (1881), we have additiona; chapters; Comforts of London Club-house and Legend of Serjeant John Smith’s Adventures Continued, the latter of which is a tale of Culloden. 

Back to the subject of the publications; we’re now in receipt of the Crowdfunded hardbacks, as completed for us by RSH’s usual go-to guys at Cameron Bookbinders. They’ve done a superb job of them. They’re super substantial publications so everyone who contributed got themselves some deal.

We’re in the process of organising them for posting out to folk, while those who are able to collect theirs from us in Bridgeton can obtain theirs today, Saturday, Dec. 14th, from midday onwards. Or any morning in the days thereafter. Just drop me a wee message to let us know to expect you and I’ll send address details.

For those out Helensburgh way, the RSH team will be out in Helensburgh itself, at the Henry Bell from about 11am on Sunday, Dec. 15th, until early evening, for those able to make it there for collection.

14/12/2019   06:09

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Good morning!

So, as you’re probably aware, we did the publishing thing & here it is fully illustrated by our own artist, and cover artist for this month’s iScot Magazine, 5th Anniversary edition, Alex Eeles.


Full of information all Scots should have access to. The viewpoints of British Nationalists in favour of the British Union as to exactly what made (and makes) it so unequal a deal. Makes for a fascinating read and may prove enlightening to those who allow their British patriotism to prevent them from being patriotic to their own country at the same time. These articles, letters and reports prove you can have it both ways and help in the fight for a fairer deal for Scotland whether in or out the Union.

Britannias Treaty Finished

Paperback Edition

Of course if, like myself when it comes to contemporary prints, you prefer a Kindle version, grab your’s here

Kindle Edition

There are links throughout to take you to the associated webpages.

Also, iScot Magazine’s excellent free online PocketMags abridged version, of RSH’s ‘Treaty of Union Articles’, fully illustrated.

We’ve been told by the bookbinder that the Crowdfunder hardback copies should be available for collection on December 10th. They’ll all be sent out in the couple of days thereafter.

Please let me know your take aways from the information on offer within this publication on whatever social media platform you usually find me on or in the comments section of the ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ Contents Page.

Take care all, and enjoy, as always!

04/12/2019   04:44

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Morning all,

Too much going on to be keeping track of, I’m afraid.

You may have caught us in iScot’s issue 57, ‘Not so Random Scottish History.’ Gordon Craigie had interviewed me about the site and the ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ publication. They even used Alex’s cover for our publication as their own without the usual added hints as to what’s inside, which was fantastic of them. We’re looking forward to working with them again in the future.

The crowdfunded hardback edition of ‘Treaty of Union Articles’ should be ready soon. I had posted an update to the Crowdfunder site explaining the changes that have been made due to the haggling over price. To keep it to £17, cost price, per book the incidental pictures are no longer colour but greyscale. The frontispiece is in colour as is the publisher’s page. They should be ready soon and with us so we can post them out to folk.

In order to satisfy the extra orders of paperbacks, without the finances to do so, has meant uploading a reformatted (for smaller page size) version to Amazon to have them print and distribute the copies. I get that there are folk who, for very good reason, can’t stand Amazon, but that’s just how much I needed to get these books out there. In fact, the prices set are as low as Amazon will allow me to price them at for each currency. The fact that out of that cost a mere £0.75 is my cut, shows how set I am to just get the information out there. Since there wasn’t a price restriction, as they get paid for the printing costs from the book sales, I was able to keep all the incidentals coloured, and the reformatting has led to some of Alex’s larger cartoons getting pages to themselves.

The chapter, ‘Scotland wasn’t Conquered, Ceded to, or Occupied by England,’ has now the full article. Only just a portion of it, that in the hardback edition, was available from the Kilkenny Journal, which was rereporting an article from another paper a fews days earlier, but I was certain I had the entire thing screenshot from a different source. I found said screenshot but it wasn’t good enough to copy the text from. I went to the British Newspaper Archive to find it. Even knowing what newspaper and the date it was reported, it refused to come up with any search terms like; “Scotland,” “British,” “Union,” or even its title “Declaration of Rights,” all of which terms occur in the article. So I searched for it using the generic term “Protocol,” which heads the original article, and hey presto! So after that wee battle I transcribed it and added to the online version here and it’s uploaded as the text for the paperback too.

We’re also awaiting a donation of books from Mr Graham Christie, who’s sending us a 6 volume set! of james Taylor’s ‘New and Enlarged Edition’ of ‘Pictorial History of Scotland‘ along with another mystery publication. I’m very excited to take receipt of this delivery. Can’t wait!

13/11/2019   01:01

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Good evening all. I’m sorry that, once again, it’s been a while.

Just a wee update tonight. There’s been a lot going on. The Crowdfunder is still running, for folk to be able to get their hands on a limited edition hardback copy of the ‘Treaty of Union Articles,’ until Hallowe’en when we hope to have enough to print as many copies as we’ve planned.

I’ve also been interviewed for a YouTube Video, out now, and an iScot magazine article out in the next couple of days. So hopefully, I’ve done the site justice.

24/10/2019   22:12

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It’s October people! I hope ‘Book of Days‘ has been doing it’s usual daily duty of keeping you historically updated along with the ‘On this Day’ snippets. It’s made my year fly, so far, due to always preparing for the next day’s post.

There have been updates with regards the Treaty of Union Articles. We’ve decided the reception to them was such that they needed published, the information is important and very few of us are aware of the events in our country’s history that have led us to where we are in the political arena today. To that end we set up a Crowdfunder to fund the publication on a number of platforms; Kindle, hard-copy, and audio book. We set the target for £500 in order to cover our achieving the first 2 options with a view to seeing what kind of support we could expect. Well, not only did the first subscription blow our minds, but the target was met, and some, within 3 days. I have high hopes for raising enough to pay a good Scottish narrator to do the book justice. We’ve had a few recommendations but I’d hate to think what their usual going rate might be. We’ve until the 25th of October until the fundraiser ends. Crowdfunders will receive the a copy of the first & only run of the hard-backed edition. Those already subscribing to RSH via Patreon will automatically receive a copy should they wish one. With any remaining funds we’ll print a run of paperbacks for anyone wishing to purchase a copy after Hallowe’en. ISBN codes have been purchased too so we’re a step nearer publication.

I’d like to thank every subscriber so far. We really can’t thank you enough. To be true patriots on a quest for knowledge of your own country is a noble endeavour but to help fund and support the distribution of said information is going above and beyond and we’re very grateful. The site Contributor’s Page has been updated with RSH’s new supporters. I’d also like to welcome our new Patreon subscriber to the family.

The articles, on the site themselves, have been proofread, finally, my apologies for not having done it sooner. I was just trying to get the information out there as fast as I was able. For the purposes of the publication I’m breaking up the articles some by taking some of the longer more interesting and informative and giving them chapters to themselves. I’ll be mostly doing that over the next few days, I think. The Contents Page now has more options:

Alex has done the Front Cover for the Book too and we’re very excited about it. He’s done an excellent job. He’s made a start on the incidental illustrations for throughout the publication so we’ve that to look forward to. I’m wondering if they’ll be in the same style as those for the Pride in Scottish History or whether he’ll do some more serious pictures to fit with the information it’s to illustrate. Can’t wait either way.

Britannias Treaty Finished

So please, if you’re able and interested, help us make this project amazing and aid in getting the information out there so Scots can take their country forward in an informed way that takes into account our past wins and losses and allows folk to learn from them.

Most of all, enjoy.

02/10/2019   09:12

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I can’t believe it’s been over a month since my last update. Should I be feeling as guilty as I do about that? I’d like to say welcome and a big thank you to Random Scottish History’s new followers on Twitter/Facebook/Wordpress. It’s been a busy summer. It’s been sketch-1565322301103.pngvirtually non-stop work but that’s at an end as of 2 days ago when the seeking out, typing up, and compilation of Newspaper Articles and Letters Relating to the Treaty of Union was finally completed. It was a project put forward to me by David Taylor and I really appreciate having been set on that path. The result of which I feel is a resource of, not only super interesting, but super important information of political struggles Scotland has found itself in since the enactment of the Treaty of Union with England in 1707. I can’t recommend them enough. RSH is able to now offer you;

  • Treaty of Union – The Articles agreed to.
  • Articles 1750-1800 – There was almost half-a-century of political apathy from the side of Scotland, who’s people felt their country had been sold then calls for a national militia in line with England’s begin.

  • Articles 1800-1850 – Notice is being taken of the disparities with Ireland’s treatment after their Treaty with Great Britain in 1801 and Scotland’s experiences. Scotland is feeling over-taxed and under-funded.

  • Articles 1850-1875 – The grievances from Scotland become so numerous as to inspire talks of Home Rule, in a bid to create a fairer system of local Government, from that majority of the population who were still hopeful of saving the union with England.

  • Articles 1875-1890 – Centralisation has really become the big topic of discussion alongside with, what appears to be, impending Home Rule. A cross-partisan petition, three-quarters of a mile long, with over 104,000 signatures, is sent to Queen Victoria demanding the practice of substituting England/English with Britain/British be ended.

  • Financial Cost to Scotland of the Union – This article speaks for itself and outlines the reasons for the feelings that began to gain traction from 1800.

Associated with the Treaty of Union Articles (1875-1900) is a book I obtained, George Outram’s ‘Legal & Other Lyrics‘ (1888), which contains the Invitation which was to have him actually reported for treason by the Lord Advocate for Scotland, who had been invited. The humourous aspect of it was explained to the honourable gentleman with the result being that he attended and everyone enjoyed themselves at this particularly Scottish event. The book itself has been scanned in as well as the Invitation.

We’ve been continuing daily with the ‘Book of Days’ and On this Day in Other Sources, though WordPress has been causing me issues that will hopefully be resolved when we move to RSH.scot. Rab at the DotScot team is on it and we appreciate how he’s helping us out here.

It’s quite late in the month to be starting on October’s chapters but that’s what I’ll be racing to do now before said month starts, so I’m away to begin that.

As always, folk, enjoy.

19/09/2019   00:57

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I should really be getting September started for the ‘Book of Days‘ posts but I have found myself somewhat sidetracked by research I thought wouldn’t take me half as long as it has.

I was set on the project of researching, in much the same way as I did for the Pride in Scottish History post, more about the Treaty of Union between Scotland and England. I was to see if I could find correspondence that was based on feelings of the natives with regards said union. I figured the best way again was to appeal to the British press as open letters to newspapers can be one of the best sources of information. And boy, did I find information.

For the most part, every believer in the union, had a grievance of some kind; whether it was in Scotland’s under-representation in Westminster, the paying of England’s debts, England’s attempts at Centralisation both by the dissolution of our establishments & parliament (supposedly protected by the treaty) and by insisting Britain/British could be just as easily replaced with England/English, the under-funding of Scotland despite the amount we parted with to Westminster in revenues, the shortfall in pay to Scotland’s government employees in comparison with those in England, &c.

The wealth of information is truly astounding and due to the sheer amount post-1850 it seemed a better idea to publish the information in a 25-year chunk instead of the 50-year chunks 1750-1800 and 1800-1850 were posted as.

So available for your perusal are Newspaper Articles and Letters Relating to the Treaty of Union;

The Contents’ pages for everything are up-to-date. I can’t wait to get back to what this year was meant to be spent on, ‘Popular Tales‘. It’ll happen.

14/08/2019   06:37

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Good morning.

August is upon us, so says the ‘Book of Days,’ and we have a few Acts of Parliament for today, as the 1st of August seems to be a day for the commencement or conclusion of Acts of Parliament. Those mentioned in the ‘Other Sources’ section from 1715, are those I have obtained, scanned & transcribed to the website, which are specific to the consequences of the ’15 and ’45 Rebellions and therefore are far more interesting than you’d think. John F. Campbell gives his opinion, in Popular Tales’, of the 1747 Act of Parliament denying Scots their usual mode of dress and this is included in today’s write-up. Menu for the ‘Book of Days‘ is up-to-date.

I hope to see some of you out on Saturday for Free Pride, where we’ll once again be in attendance as Rainbow Unicorns to help the LGBTQ+ community have their voices heard. The post I wrote up with research on ‘Pride in Scottish History‘ will be on the header menu again over the weekend so it’s easy to find for newcomers to the site. We’ll no doubt have another Video to upload to Youtube too. Hope to meet you there.

01/08/2019   07:53

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A very good morning to you!

I’m hoping everyone has recovered from the weekend. It was a massive knees-up for everyone who attended Mardi Gla on Saturday there. The atmosphere on the walk was great with folk lining the streets to watch, participate from the sidelines and film the event.


Stills taken from Kathrine Stokes’ YouTube Video.

Really really hot in those onesies though! It was awesome to come out of West George street, which was crammed full of rainbow-clad folk, out into the open George square to see just how many had already arrived. In the YouTube Video (click to view) I took you can hear people around me vocalising their “wows” at the scene opening up before us. Then there were speeches and music and photos with some of the mascots and best dressed before saying goodbye to a departing Alex, who was on the night shift that night. We took ourselves off up to the Strathclyde Students Union on John street to see Paul Burns play the fiddle at the Pink Saltire stand for those arriving to party. Lots of new RSH Pride Cards were handed out:


Great day had by all with memories and new friends made. The next event we’ll be attending will be Free Pride on Saturday, 3rd of August, which meets at the CCA, 350 Sauchiehall street, at midday. We’re looking forward to getting in about it again in our rainbow unicorn onesies.


23/07/2019   00:56

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Good morning!

sketch-1563326570115.pngAs ever we’re continuing with Chambers’ ‘Book of Days‘. Have done things backwards this month for August by starting with the “in Other Sources” and I’ll now get on to typing up the ‘Book of Days’ itself. I feel as though that may make the end of the month less of a desperate rush to get everything finished for the next beginning.

We’ve been preoccupied in getting prepared for Pride week here in Glasgow. I’ve been scouring the papers for information in order to make up a wee post about Pride in Scottish History. Turned out not to be such a wee post… It was difficult finding Scotland-specific information too. But I feel it’s a fairly comprehensive history from varying perspectives/countries. Alex then went through the basic draft in order to find opportunitessketch-1563326616009.png to illustrate various articles throughout. I think it turned out alright. I’ve had a couple of LGBTQ+ friends and colleagues read the rough draft to ensure I’d basically covered everything and stood little chance of offending folk. I hope you guys find it as interesting as I did while researching and typing it.

We look forward to getting out to meet everyone at MardiGla this Saturday (20th of July). Don’t be too shy to come and say hi to us, we’ll be easy enough to spot in our rainbow unicorn onesies. There’s a walking history tour from Glasgow Cathedral down the High street to the High Court on the Saltmarket an hour before MardiGla begins at the other end of the city so I may very well be attending that dressed in my gay togs 😉

Enjoy. We’ll hopefully catch most of you this weekend.

17/07/2019   04:45

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A very good morning to you. It’s been a while since my last update as other historical projects have been taking up an awful lot of my time. The Bridgeton Streets project for the Bridgeton History Group isn’t specific enough to keep me to just the essentials of what they’re looking for so I’ve been compiling lists of every business that ever existed on the streets I’ve been given and any names of folk who lived there as well as events that took place. I feel like that way I can’t miss anything and they can scrap the surplus info.

The document I’ve researched and typed up to try to illustrate the History of Pride in Scotland is pretty extensive and contained a few shockers and super interesting tidbits of information, including the reason for why debates on continuing the use of the Pillory were instigated (see Book of Days, 30th of June, footnote).

I’ve also been set on the hunt for historical info for a Twitter friend’s project. Busy days. But we’ve taken some time off work, using the excuse that today is Alex’s and my 13th wedding anniversary. So that allows me time to complete all this research but I don’t have the space for a decent set-up to type up books outside of my place of work.

We’ve decided that we should be historically proactive on our holiday. To that end we ventured into Glasgow, using Glasgow City Heritage Trust Plaque Scheme’s Map.

Screenshot_2019-06-29 OBSCURE 4515c NOV08 OBSCURE 250805 - merchant-city-obscure-history pdf

I have to say we were sad, and a little frustrated, to find some of those marked on the map to be either gone or so completely hidden as to avoid our noticing them. We spent some amount of time trying to track down the missing one’s but decided we’d have to be content with those we did get. On our travels we started noticing Oor Wullie installations around the city and we had Alex oblige.

This is the 2nd time Alex has been up close with Wullie. Dundee is the home of D C Thomson’s Oor Wullie, the Broons, and the Bash Street Kids. While we were there we encountered statues to commemorate this and Alex sat with one.


I think I prefer Glasgow’s colourful homage.

So it’ll be another week before I’m back to typing up the books, but we’ll be continuing as ever with the ‘Book of Days‘.

We’d like to wish RSH’s theme creator, Tony Wilson, a speedy recovery & Bridgeton History Group’s Brian Charlton all the best. We’re thinking of you guys.

As for the rest of you, get oot and enjoy the braw weather we’re having at the moment & we shall catch up with everyone soon.

03/07/2016   09:38

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Good afternoon! We have good news. RSH.scot is ours. Do it, try it out 😛 We like its neatness and possibilities for freebies we can give to folk to spread the good word of Random Scottish History. The website is headed for a bit of a big change too and even I’m not sure what to expect from that but we have the extremely capable Anthony on it. We basically need something to handle the amount of information we’re posting in a better way.

Anyways, to celebrate our request to obtain the domain we made hot toddies then thought, “why not show folk who maybe don’t know that such things exist how to make them.” So we did and you can see it on YouTube HERE.

There’s also a final take that contained nothing  of use but made for very funny watching (which we can’t advise you watch if the odd sweary word offends) HERE.

We also, finally, have a group pic from the Random Scottish History base that’s been uploaded into Those Who’ve Helped Make RSH.

On that note, enjoy all!

12/06/2019   12:30

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We have an intro song! This is only thanks to the wonderful Tony ‘Lucky Dog’ Wilson having taken time out of his super busy schedule to help us out and we’re extremely grateful for the resulting piece of music, it makes us very happy here at RSH. He has of course been gifted with all we can offer, being Mormaer tier goodies from Patreon and a copy of the book when finished as well as, of course, being credited as a site Contributor we’re ecstatic to have helping us.

This is our Completed Intro, provided I don’t take the notion to tweak anything in the morning when I get home:

Delaying my start on the next chapter of ‘Tales of the Highlands‘ as it’s a long one, July really needs to be started for ‘Book of Days‘, I’m researching our history as it relates to diverse-sexuality in preparation for Glasgow’s Mardi Gla Pride Festival in July, and of course I’ve got my designated streets to investigate for the Bridgeton History Group.

All relevant contents pages are up to date and we’ll hopefully be able to get some video randomness out to you soon.

10/06/2019   02:32

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So a wee quick update, as ma pit’s fair callin’ tae me, just before very much more is uploaded. We’re well under way with Sir T. D. Lauder’s ‘Tales of the Highlands‘ (1881). A dozen chapters uploaded, apologies for the slightly long wee stories, I’m hoping folk get as invested in them as I do when typing them up.

We also have, as of this morning, scans from within the ‘International Library of Famous Literature‘ (1898) I obtained a while ago. I had bought a 19th century picnic case and 15 out of the 20 volume set were within. So I took a moment to dig it out and see what was included of relevance to the site. I was pleased to find I wasn’t disappointed in my endeavours and have uploaded the result with links to further information with regards the various photos, illustrations and engravings.

Scans of Alex‘s artwork for the updated ‘Popular Tales‘ are being uploaded to Patreon when he’s happy with them and made them available to me. Those designated for the Gory-edition are locked for Tiers under Mormaer (sorry) as only that Tier have the option of that edition when published.

And that’s my update for today. Another wee chapter from ‘Tales of the Highlands’ tomorrow and of course we’re continuing with the ‘Book of Days‘. I’m away tae ma kip.

31/05/2019   11:32

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Exciting news, at least, we’re excited. The new RSH video has been made and I think we’re all pretty pleased with it here, so it seems like it’ll not change for a wee while. The idea was to create something that would act as a teaser trailer to the website and also as an intro to any future videos we produce. It’s not entirely completed, however, as we’re lacking a backing track, which we’re hoping some wonderful, musically inclined person, may be willing to help us out with.

We wanted an animation to be part of it, which is something none of us have tried to create as yet, and I think it went OK. It’s basic, in that there’s only 1 moving part of the scene, so as not to create problems for ourselves.

I decided on this picture from volume 1 of ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘, Chapter 4, as the main background:


Then made it black and white and stripped out all the unnecessary details to clean it up a bit:


The people hinted at in the original were taken out too as we needed as few moveable objects as possible. Then we had to decide what animated object to add. There were ideas along the lines of Claymore in the ground with a plaid hung over it billowing in the wind or a cluster of thistles doing the same, &c. We decided a flag would perhaps be easier, it wasn’t, and I was toying with the idea of having the clouds moving in the sky but for what would end up a 2 second animation I felt that they’d only get in the way of the flag animation, thereby giving us more work.

Here’s what we ended up with:

Which we then added to a series of selected book and image scans that would give an idea of what the site contained which has given us this final product (minus backing music).

Which we’re quite proud of. I’ll update when we obtain some suitably Scottish music behind it.

Still continuing ‘Book of Days‘ and becoming more certain that I’ll begin uploading ‘Tales of the Highlands‘ probably no later than the start of next week.

18/05/2019   01:14

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Lots going on at the moment. I was wanting to start Sir T. D. Lauder’s ‘Tales of the Highlands‘ (1881) but didn’t want to commit to another book until I knew I would be able to finish it without distraction. Alex is getting on with the artwork for ‘Popular Tales‘ but hasn’t quite caught up with the stories published as yet due to there being 2 lots of illustrations per tale (child friendly & gory).

We’re preparing already, just a wee bit early, for Glasgow’s Pride Weekend on the 21st and 22nd of July. Our outfits just arrived and, well, you can see I’m pretty excited about it. Our videographer and the world’s only PR person not online ensured their arrival was captured.

Also have just one wee animation to complete and add to the RSH video/intro to future videos. Mind you, we’re trying to come up with a backing track for it. If anyone can help, or knows of someone who can, with a wee appropriately Scottish ditty they don’t mind us using that would be awesome. Said kind person would of course be properly credited and would receive the same option of benefits as a Mormaer Tier on Patreon.

That’s it for now. We’ll of course be continuing daily with the ‘Book of Days’ but I may find myself starting T. D. Lauder’s tales sooner rather than later.


17/05/2019   04:06

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Good morning.

Continuing, as usual, with ‘Book of Days‘. Also the 13 chapers of the SketchesAppendix uploaded and linked to their varying book chapters. Since the last update there’s now;

I’ve also gone through the book’s ‘Glossary‘ and updated the site’s with words I hadn’t yet included. Relevant contents pages have been updated.

11/05/2019   23:56

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As I’m a wee bit ahead of myself with the ‘Book of Days‘ advance posts and Alex has a wee bit of catching up to do with the ‘Popular Tales‘ illustrations I thought I’d start getting the Appendix to Cosmo Innes’ ‘Sketches of Early Scotch History‘ typed up and published here. The sections relate to footnotes throughout the rest of the book and supply some super interesting wee tidbits of information. The Appendix note I. Records from the Scots College has been linked to the Bishopric of Glasgow chapter.

I’ve also been able to finally scan in the 2 page Map of Glasgow for Comparison (1773-1880) from MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘. It had originally been a photo as it was near impossible to scan on the old A4 scanner (see the update for 25/10/2018).

Aside from that we have, recently uploaded, scans of ‘Memorials and Letters‘ (1762) of James VI.’s reign and scans of the 3 Mauchline Ware Books in the collection. The first is a new acquisition, a Photo Album dated to about 1890, which we were very excited to receive from an exceptionally generous Patron who I’m, unfortunately, not allowed to “out”. The 2nd and 3rd I acquired myself a few years ago, an undated copy of Sir Walter Scott’s ‘Marmion‘, inscribed “1890”, and an undated copy of the ‘Story of Queen Mary‘. They both need a wee bit of help from the Cameron Bookbinders who I use for all my repairs.

All relevant contents pages have been updated.

06/05/2019   02:35

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Finally got round to scanning in Sir T. D. Lauder’s ‘Tales of the Highlands‘ (1881) to link to the Battle of Culloden article, referring to the callousness and barbarity of Cumberland in its aftermath, taken from it for the 16th of April post for ‘Book of Days‘. The Contents Page for Scanned Images has been updated as has the Bibliography.

19/04/2019   07:23

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Chambers is still annoying me with his perspective for the ‘Book of Days.’ He says things like, “in the days of Elizabeth and the first Stuarts.” The first Stuart on the throne of Scotland was Robert II. in 1371 with James VI. ascending to the English throne on the death of Elizabeth in 1603, therefore, his quote suggests “the days” as being about 230 years apart. Of course we already know this Scottish author is writing for an English audience and that he means the end of the 16th, start of the 17th, century when England obtained their first Stuart monarch.

11/04/2019   01:18

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Book of Days‘ continues with its daily dose of information and more from Volume 1 of ‘Popular Tales‘ uploaded. We have; The Young King of Easaidh Ruadh – Notes, The Battle of the Birds, and The Battle of the Birds – Notes.

Alex‘s pictures so far, for the stories, are being uploaded to the Patreon page but are only viewable to subscribers. Respective content pages have been updated.

10/04/2019   03:56

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My parents-in-law, Julie and Hilton, have just given us a framed drypoint picture of Arbroath Abbey, just in time for tomorrow’s information relating to the Declaration of Arbroath in the Other Sources for Chambers’ ‘Book of Days.’ It was pretty difficult to scan in its frame and with Zara cat walking all over it when the scanner sounds grabbed her attention. The scans came out pretty dark but a wee bit of level fiddling on photoshop mean they’ve turned out not bad.


05/04/2019   10:19

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Another end to another month. If anything, doing this daily round-up thing for the ‘Book of Days‘ is making this year pass faster than I’d like. Scary that we’re headed so swiftly for summer.

The stories from ‘Popular Tales‘ are going to be posted fairly spaced apart as offline I’m rewriting the stories after posting while Alex is drawing the illustrations that occur to him after he’s read them. His reaction and questions throughout the reading of the original versions would seem to justify the text requiring an update. For sneak peaks of pictures for the upcoming publication subscribe to RSH’s Patreon page.

Besides that the Book of Days stuff isn’t quick work. The ‘In other Sources’ section is about 20hrs in its compilation so as to be ready for the coming month. Interesting to see the information collected. Makes me look forward to particular days. April 1st is a good example for the examples of April Fools jokes from our history, Scotland was somewhat harsh on its “Fools.”

Speaking of which, Robert Chambers mentioned for the 27th of March in  his ‘Book of Days’ that,

“During his reign in Scotland, King James had a fool or court jester, named Jemmy Camber, who lodged with a laundress in Edinburgh, and was making love to her daughter, when death cut him off in an unexpected and singular manner, as related by Robert Armin in his Nest of Ninnies, published in 1608.”

Intrigued, as this is something I’d definitely read, I obtained an 1842 publication of ‘Fools and Jesters: with a Reprint of Robert Armin’s Nest of Ninnies. 1608,’ printed for the Shakespeare Society. I’ll get that scanned in just now and up loaded into Non-Scottish Publications. Bibliography and Miscellany contents pages will be updated.

31/03/2019   09:14

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Still continuing with ‘Book of Days.’ Some interesting information from Mr Chambers, when he deigns focus his attention on our wee country, but it’s more interesting for me going back through the information already uploaded for the Other Sources sections.

Popular Tales;’ We’ve got started with the first of the Tales from Volume 1The Young King of Easaidh Ruadh, pp.1-11. & Volume 4‘s complete (though I may type up the Appendix too at some point) – West Highland Stories, Supernatural History, A Plea for Gaelic, Highland Dress, Celtic Art, Music, and Notes which referenced 6 Acts of Parliament, of which I’d already uploaded 4 into Scanned Images, so I typed those up and stuck them in Miscellany. There’s George I., 1st Year, Chapter 54, 1715 & George I., 11th Year, Chapter [26], 1724, which deals with Scotland post-1715 Rebellion, George II., 21st Year, Chapter 26, 1747 which deals with the same post-1745 Rebellion, and George III., 21st Year, Chapter 63, 1780 which repeals the lot.

Should be finished compiling the first decade of Bridgeton’s Streets as they appear in the Glasgow Press this week for the Bridgeton History Group. There’s been a lot of super interesting information appearing to the point where I may upload the information here when the Group’s finished getting what they can from it. It would be street by street as I’ve over 60,000 words in total for the area with half a year still left to go.

20/03/2019   08:07

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I feel like I’m back in the swing of things. I start my nights with a chapter from ‘Popular Tales‘, tonight’s was Aryan Theory, then maybe 3-5 days from the ‘Book of Days‘, as I have to stay ahead of myself with that one, then I finish my night by transcribing Bridgeton street information found in Glasgow publications, courtesy of the British Newspaper Archive, from 1840 onwards, which is when Bridgeton’s first street, Main street, was first mentioned, for the Bridgeton History Group. This schedule tends to make for pretty quick nights.

I know folk visit RSH for Genealogical reasons and with a view to finding out a bit more of my own background I sent away a DNA sample to Ancestry. I thought I’d share the results here.


I’ve checked with a maternal aunt and my dad to find out why Donegal was specifically mentioned when there were no specifications mentioned in Scotland or the North England border regions. They both came up blank though there are certainly Irish roots on the maternal side, just not the Donegal region of Ireland. Interesting thing to do anyway and I’d recommend anyone curious about their own heritage give it a go.

06/03/2019   03:54

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A very good morning to you.  While we’ve been continuing daily with ‘Book of Days,’ I’m finally recovered enough that I’m back in work and able to get back to ‘Popular Tales.’ New available chapters are Welsh Stories and Origin of Such Stories. Contents pages for both publications are up to date.

05/03/2019   05:01

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Today is RandomScottishHistory.com’s Birthday!

To celebrate I thought maybe supporters and the interested would like to see the site’s stats from the last year. The worldwide reach surprised me, as did the site’s estimated word count, it’s made me realise just how much has been uploaded so far and I’m confident this momentum will be maintained over the years ahead.

Thank you to everyone who’s taken time to follow the site and engage with the information provided. A massive thank you goes to those who’ve subscribed via the site and Patreon for helping me to afford to maintain the site for the long run. It’s my mission this year to publish the book of Folklore in order to give you something tangible in return for your aid of a wee Scottish History site from Glasgow.

21/02/2019   14:20

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I wanted to take a moment to apologise for it only having been the ‘Book of Days‘ daily pages that have been updated and even then I’ve had to curtail my addition of titles to the ‘in Other Sources.’

Jens ill pic

I was in for surgery at the start of the month for a minor day procedure. Unfortunately I took home a lung infection with me to deal with as I recouped. So I figured it’d only be for a couple of weeks max, if that. Though I’m afraid another wee lurker was waiting for it’s chance to stop me in my tracks. So I’m stuck, bedbound, with C. Diff (read Cholera), taking the odd 5/10 mins to compile the daily pages when I can. It’s not been fun and I’m regretting the amount of work I’m missing out on. It would seem February’s a bust but I shall be back as soon as I’m literally physically able.

Take it easy all.

16/02/2019   13:06

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Evening, Over the last few days all 6 parts of Hector MacLean’s ‘Gaelic Poetry of Known & Unknown Bards, Published & Traditional‘ have been uploaded as well as short chapters; Gaelic Proverbs and Family History.

Book of Days‘ has been continuing. All menus have been updated as has the Bibliography.

I was discussing with a Patron the idea of having a page devoted to recommendations. I want to help support Scottish-based businesses that I know from experience do good work but I have the feeling if I activate the Ads on the site not only will they be everywhere (and I don’t want them on all pages) and are also likely to be a random pick of businesses & services. I’m not stoked about the thought of gambling apps, &c. being promoted here but there are companys like Tradeston-based Cameron Bookbinders, who I’ve used & mentioned often in the Scanned Images section, every so often we’ll order a box of meaty goodies from Linlithgow-based Campbells and we’ve yet to be disappointed. Also deserving of mention are the only bakers that have ever made a glazed doughnut I’m prepared to eat, Yorkhill-based Tantrum Doughnuts who supply the Finnieston-based Clydeside Distillery with their whisky-glazed tastiness, we also recommend taking a tour of said distillery or just popping in for a coffee and snack, it has an excellent atmosphere and the staff couldn’t be nicer – pictures below in the update for 23/11/2018. There are more I’d mention but I’d like to have them all in one place so I’ll think on it. I’m sure these places won’t mind me mentioning them.

I can only assume that for the rest of the week it’ll be just the ‘Book of Days‘ posts as I head home from work this morning at 07:00 only to have to be in hospital all ready to be operated on from 08:00. All very exciting but I doubt I’ll be good for much thereafter so I hope you’ll excuse my inactivity this week. I may even find a minute to get some frivolous for-no-purpose reading done. Thousand & One Nights (1841) looks really appealing.

Enjoy for now and I shall be back soon.

05/02/2019   00:08

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Just ‘Book of Days‘ again today. My time has otherwise been spent compiling February’s ‘On this Day in Other Sources’, as I’ll be out the game for the first part of the month, and mentions of Bridgeton’s streets from 19th century newspapers in preparation for the Bridgeton History Groups’ next publication.

Back to ‘Popular Tales‘ tonight as I figure it’s a better set-up to transcribe books in work and it would be just as easy compiling the lists in the house.

Alex is creating a new logo for RSH which will be uploaded the moment he decides he’s finished with it.

28/01/2019   07:28

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Celebrating Robert Burns on RSH today we have him mentioned, of course, in the ‘Book of Days‘ chapter for today, 25th of January – Burns’ Night, as well as having some dedicated posts for the occasion. ‘Robert Burns & His Night‘ is a wee bit about the man from ‘Poetry of Robert Burns‘ (1896) followed by a run down of traditional Burns’ Supper procedure to which is added links to ‘Address to a Haggis‘ (& Notes) and ‘Tam o’ Shanter‘ (& Notes). I hope folk enjoy whatever their plans for this evening constitute.

25/01/2019   04:00

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Only just the ‘Book of Days‘ and Other Sources posted today. What with tomorrow being Burns’ Night I got down to typing up what I felt would make for some posts with plenty of information that’ll be posted every 5 minutes from 00:05-00:35. Typing up the posts and scanning/editing the pictures for inclusion took a solid 14.5 hours and I’m done now.

Looking forward to doing  nothing for a wee while.

24/01/2019   05:15

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We’re continuing with Chambers’ ‘Book of Days‘ and it’s been nice to revisit chapters posted throughout the site to add to the ‘On the Day in Other Sources’ section for each day.

For Campbell’s ‘Popular Tales‘ volume 4 we have the chapters; Ossian and Ballads, Internal Evidence, &c., and, from Hector MacLean‘s offering, Gaelic Poetry of Known & Unknown Bards, Published & Traditional.

I also posted scans of ‘Dantes’ Visions; Inferno, Purgatory, & Paradise’ (1888) as I’d been reminded of them by Campbell’s mention of Milton’s ‘Paradise Lost’ in Gaelic Ossian – Internal Evidence, &c.

Also added was my second copy, an earlier edition, of ‘Popular Tales‘ volume 4 to the scans of the volumes I’m already working from. It has an excellent front cover, which was my reason for purchase.

Tales of a Grandfather‘ was also mentioned in Campbell’s chapter, Popular Ballads, so I’ve uploaded my copy into Scanned Images.

I’m off now to scan in whatever books on Robert Burns I can find for the bard’s birthday remembrance on the 25th.

23/06/2019   08:15

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An A3 scanner has been obtained, purchased entirely with vouchers obtained from surveys, as those of you on my Facebook feed will know from my joy at the time. So I’ve spent my night off tonight rescanning in Punch’s ‘Willing Hands for India’ 2-page cartoon for the Chapter from ‘Gloomy Memories‘ of the same name and finally uploading a large A3 publication of Rob Roy inspired engravings, Six Engravings in Illustration of Rob Roy (1868). The Bibliography has been updated. I was going to also redo the 1767 Map of Scotland though I’ll need to do something about flattening it some more.

20/01/2019   06:11

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I’m sorry I’ve not found time to keep up with regular updates. I wanted to get the first chapters of ‘Popular TalesVolume 4, relating to Ossian, typed up and uploaded as quickly as possible. Also ensuring there’s a post goes out from the ‘Book of Days‘ daily.

Unfortunately, as will happen, today is one of those without any Scotland-relevant articles included. Even though Chambers is both the author of ‘Domestic Annals of Scotland‘ (1885) and ‘Book of Days‘ (1886), I’m finding its ‘Domestic Annals‘ that makes up for a lot of the missing information from ‘Book of Days.’

The chapters dedicated to Exploring the Ossian Controversy have now all been uploaded; Points for Argument, Heroes of Ossian, Ossianic Heroes & Poems in Old Writings, Traditions, Writings, &c., Translating the Poems, and Published Evidence.

Heading out to pick up our new A3 scanner this morning, so I’ll be spending my nights off now uploading all my big pictures and maps to the site. Images like the Map of Scotland (1767) that were scanned in sections and pieced together for upload will be rescanned as one image for a, hopefully, cleaner result. I’ll issue a list of any that are updated as well as new additions once done.

18/01/2019   06:36

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Good morning.

I went and tidied up the volume 1 Contents Page for Popular Tales. The Introduction is now the contents for the 10 parts. I’ve tidied up the urls a bit too so the links for the parts, as posted in the last update, won’t work.

Also, all that’s left, text-wise, of volumes 1-3 are the stories, fables, and poems. Now, as I want to get as much background information as  possible uploaded before I start on those, we’re jumping straight to volume 4 which starts us of with an in-depth look at the history, work, and controversy of Ossianic poetry.

Trying to get as much of Chambers’ ‘Book of Days’ typed up in advance of being required as possible as I’ll be in hospital and indisposed for the first part of February [fingers crossed folk]. So 2019 has proven to be a super non-stop year so far.

Here’s to time off.

12/01/2019   08:13

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There have been so many additions to the site in the last week or so I’ll maybe just list them for ease:

You’re already aware Chalmers’ ‘Book of Days‘ is being uploaded in order to give you historical info about whatever day of the year it happens to be. I hope you’ve found it interesting enough that you’ll not hate it taking up the whole year. I copy the details for the day it is over to the Homepage as well.

For Campbell’s ‘Popular Tales‘ we have available; Dedication, Advertisement, Introduction – Part 1 – Fairy Eggs, Part 2 – Obtaining the Stories, Part 3 – Types of Story, Part 4 – All in How You Tell it, Part 5 – Evolution of Stories, Part 6 – Etymological Objects Within Stories, and Part 7 – Nature in the Stories.

The new books in Scanned Images are; ‘Popular Tales of the West Highlands‘ (1890-1893), ‘Poems of Ossian‘ (1812), ‘Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides‘ (1908 & 1909).

I’ve also done as I said I’d have to in my previous update and scanned a few books into the Non-Scottish Publications section of the Miscellany tab; ‘Popular Tales from the Norse‘ (1862), ‘Iliad of Homer‘ (1756), ‘Thousand and One Nights‘ (1841), ‘Nights of Straparola‘ (1894).

All relevant Contents Pages have been updated as has the Bibliography.

Now I’m away for a coffee before I disappear to bed. Enjoy.

11/01/2019   07:41

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Good morning and a very Happy New Year to everyone. I wanted plenty of new things to have been uploaded before the first Update of 2019. I think we’ve accomplished that here. We have two books on the go; the ‘Book of Days‘ (1886) by Robert Chambers, which will be posted daily and allows me to add information from the other sources already uploaded, and volume 1 of ‘Popular Tales of the West Highlands‘ (1890) by John F. Campbell, which I’m very excited about. His introduction is fantastic but long, so I’m breaking it up into bite-size parts. Many of the books he mentions as his sources formed the beginnings of the Random Scottish History library, therefore, whenever a title is mentioned for the first time in the introduction it’ll be highlighted in BOLD text until the book mentioned is scanned in and I can link it to give you an idea of the texts he speaks of. The Scottish publications will be uploaded into the usual Scanned Images section and those from elsewhere will be added to the Non-Scottish Publications section. I’ll begin scanning the first couple already mentioned. Also in BOLD text will be stories from further ahead in ‘Popular Tales’ which I’ll make links to the stories as they’re uploaded.

Just to clarify, for our supporters on Patreon, the original text published here is not what will be published in hard copy to thank you for your support later on in the year. I’ll be updating the text, though not the dialogue, of the stories and Alex will of course be making it beautiful with a plethora of illustrations.

09/01/2019   06:40

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Nothing posted over the last couple of nights as I’ve been preparing posts for the New Year. I’ve a couple scheduled which’ll set the tone for the year’s Home Page. I’m finally getting round to something I’ve been putting off, in lieu of getting more general information uploaded, transcribing Chambers’ ‘Book of Days’ (1886). It’ll provide you with information on each month and day of the year. The days will be posted to the homepage each day.

Now, although Chambers and his brother were Scottish Authors/Publishers operating out of Edinburgh, quite a heavy amount of the information contained within these 2 volumes is not in any way Scotland-related. So, I’m going to do something that I’ve abstained from with the other Scottish books, but that I did with the London-based ‘Punch,’ and I’m going to pick out the relevant information. Unfortunately there isn’t always anything Scottish for every day so I’ll fill those spaces with an ‘On This Day from Other Sources.’

I’ll also be typing up John F. Campbell’s ‘Popular Tales of the West Highlands’ (1890) which will ultimately form the basis for the book of Gaelic Tales I’ll have published next year and which’ll be available to Patreon supporters to obtain one of a few different editions we have in mind. So that’ll be exciting!

Enjoy your Hogmanay and we shall see you back in here in the New Year. Slàinte!

31/12/2018   08:12

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A huge welcome to New RSH patrons Louise & Andy! Thank you so much for your interest in & contribution to the site 😊

The updating of Footnotes is complete, as of about 03:30 this morning. I spent the rest of it collecting information associated with January dates for the RSH ‘Page per Day’ doodah I’ll be starting as of January 1st, 2019. It’ll be Chambers’ ‘Book of Days’, ‘cept with only Scotland-relevant information, of which he’s failed to include a tidbit for every date, so I thought I’d bulk it up some with events mentioned in the books already uploaded to the site.

Yesterday I was also in receipt of my copy of the inimitable Marilee Wein’s ‘Double Genealogy’, which will make for a great read, if the Site‘s anything to go by.


On that note, I’ve been inspired to send off a DNA sample to Ancestry to see what comes of it. Shall include update of the results when I get them back.

29/12/2018   07:31

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My 8 hours at work last night were spent satisfying my OCD by continuing with my fixing of footnotes throughout the books already uploaded. Scots Lore had already been done so I got on with ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘, ‘Gloomy Memories‘, ‘Memorial Catalogue‘, ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots‘,  ‘Select Views on the River Clyde‘, the first couple of introductory chapters from the Original ‘Balfour’s Historical Works’ and all of the Companion ‘Balfour’s Historical Works’, ‘Domestic Annals‘, and I’ve managed to make a start on ‘Old Glasgow‘ as well. I’ll be finished with the clean-up tonight.

28/12/2018   06:51

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Good morning and a very merry Christmas to those of you partaking in today’s festivities. It’s suitably frosty outside so wrap up warm for those family visits.

Last night I was able to get the final chapter (bar the Appendix) of Cosmo Innes’ ‘Sketches of Early Scotch History‘ published, so this morning you have ‘Kilravock Papers‘ available to you. I also finally uploaded my copy of Jamieson’s Scottish Dictionary to the Scanned Images section. Contents pages have been updated.

Enjoy today, whatever you have planned.

25/12/2018   08:43

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Came so close to finishing last night’s chapter, Kilravock Papers, but no biscuit I’m afraid. Shall be completed tonight.

_20181224_034106.JPGI’ve had a couple of friends exclaim over my intentions to work through the Season and one US friend in particular who seems to have almost taken offense to the lack of festive randomness on the webpage. I celebrate Christmas about as much as I would the Muslim celebrations of the Birth of Muhammad (Mawlid), or the Jewish observance of the Tenth of Tevet, or the Hindu celebration of Tulsi Pujan Diwas, or the Buddhist Dharma Day. I don’t hold religion. As my American friend seemed almost insulted that I was set on keeping the page politics and religion-free, to the exclusion of anything Christmassy, I’ve thrown him a bone, I hope he’s content with, in the form of a wee sprig of holly and berries on the Homepage. Fortunately my workplace is populated by folk of a similar mind on the night shift and so the Kerrang radio station was picked as our playlist for the night in order to escape the repeated seasonal songs that can be difficult to avoid at this time of year. Thank you Kerrang 😆


24/12/2018   07:51

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As promised, the footnotes to the Breadalbane Papers chapter were added on Friday night. Last night I was able to get the entire Cawdor Papers chapter typed up and published for you, so that made me happy. The Contents Page for ‘Sketches’ has been updated too.

I’m not sure there’s very much left, meaning I could very well be on-target to finish this one for the end of December in order to get next year’s project started.

23/12/2018   07:30

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I’m afraid there was no chance of finishing the Breadalbane Papers chapter, from ‘Sketches‘, completely. I’ve published it to the site anyway as the only things missing are the footnotes, I apologise to those of you who enjoy the extra tidbits and clarifications. There is quite a lot of really interesting information included. It’s my night off tonight and my birthday tomorrow so I hope you’ll excuse me. I’ll have the footnotes added and the chapter updated on Friday night. The pictures included for this one are from the Black Book scans already posted.

Welcome to RSH’s newest patron Deborah Campbell. I hope this most recent chapter is of interest as it’s dedicated to the family history of the Campbells.

19/12/2018   07:30

Update: Thought I’d do a quick wee re-do of the footnotes throughout the books so far uploaded as I’ve just been let in on how to make x → x using the HTML coding bit. This means that not only am I able to forgo the use of hundreds of weird symbols, see ‘Old Glasgow‘ for good examples of how out-of-hand that could get, but also Mcs can be Mcs.

I started at the beginning with ‘Scots Lore‘ intending on getting most, if not all, done. Nope. Turns out that one book took 5 hours from getting home this morning. I took a wee break for a quick sandwich & didn’t realise the one thermos of coffee had seen me through. Still one down…

19/12/2018   13:28

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This morning another chapter from Cosmo Innes’ ‘Sketches‘ has been uploaded, the Morton Papers, detailing the history of the Douglases. Next up is the Breadalbane Papers which I’ve been able to supply with some scanned illustrations from the Black Book of Taymouth. I’m glad I didn’t type up the Black Book as Cosmo Innes was also its author and I’d be repeating him for this chapter.

Alex’s illustration of a burning croft was initially for the Gloomy Memories Contents Page but I feel it’s a little too illustrative for that purpose. We’ll maybe stick to spot character illustrations for the Contents. It has been included into the ‘Eviction by Fire in Sutherland‘ chapter instead.

18/12/2018   06:14

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Yay! The chapter for Aberdeen University is finally complete and uploaded. It ended up as a total of 24,482 words, the footnotes alone are 10,763 words., and I don’t know how much of the total is in Latin, I hazard a guess at 15,000… At least that’s what it felt like. This is what the footnotes looked like throughout this chapter:


Alex also has a picture in the works for the ‘Gloomy Memories‘ contents page:


17/12/2018   06:42

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My 8 hours of work last night resulted in 13,002 words typed. Yet I’m still 4 pages away from completing the Aberdeen University chapter, not including all the footnotes (103 so far) that still need typed up. This is a BIG chapter… So, to punish myself for not having completed it in the time allotted, I’ve brought my work home with me in order to get it finished over my nights off. It must be done if we’re hoping to have Innes’ ‘Sketches’ uploaded before the new year.

I hope everyone has more interesting plans for their weekend.

13/12/2018   07:46

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Good morning all. Only just a few wee updates. Couple more chapters added from Cosmosketch-1544508080669.png Innes’ ‘Sketches’; Inchaffray, which ends the Monastery section of the first ‘Church Organization’ chapter, and Glasgow University,  which is the first half of ‘The University’ chapter, Aberdeen’s next. Contents Page has been updated. That’s us halfway through now so should be on-track to finish by the start of the new year.

The Contents Page for Chalmers’ ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots’ (1822) now has a wee Mary character too.

12/12/2018   05:53

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Quite a lot uploaded from ‘Sketches of Early Scotch History‘ in the last week;  Bishopric of CaithnessBishopric of AberdeenMelroseScone, NewbattleArbroath,  and Kelso. A lot of information on the ecclesiastical history of Scotland so far with a few really interesting wee incidentals. The Contents Page is up-to-date. Almost halfway through the book now with hopes of having it fully uploaded by the end of the month.

2019 is finally the year I’ve decided to buckle down and get the book of John F. Campbell’s saved Gaelic tales out to those of you interested. The Patreon page had suggestions for tiers, pricing, &c. But I found these didn’t suit what I was wanting. Firstly I want everyone who subscribes as a Patron of Random Scottish History to end up with a book, not just those able to contribute a wee bit more. Secondly I figured the price options were a wee bit steep so I’ve amended those too as I want this to be accessible to everyone who has an interest. So please have a wee look at what’s on offer, as well as earning yourself a spot on the ‘Those Who’ve Helped Make RSH‘ page, and helping to aid the spread of Scotland’s history to those who missed out, were denied, or are just curious.

10/12/2018   06:23

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Good morning all. Another chapter from Innes’ ‘Sketches of Early Scotch History‘ added, this one is the Bishopric of Glasgow. The next chapter has been started and should be done fairly quickly tonight.

I’ve updated the goal of Random Scottish History’s Patreon page and the information on the Contact/Donate page. It’s a goal I’ve had for a while now. John F. Campbell’s 4-volume set ‘Popular Tales of the West Highlands’ was one of the first additions to the ‘Library.’ His introduction is a fully comprehensive run-down of the etymology of Scottish Gaelic folklore. He quotes from many sources and when faced with a quote I tend to get curious about its original context. So I started collecting pre-1900 editions of the books he named. Fairly quickly I decided I wanted to republish these stories with updated narrative, original dialogue, and illustrations. These are not fairytales everyone will be comfortable sharing with their young children. These are pre-Disneyfied, sometimes bloody, tales told to prepare children for the world they were entering. So for general release the illustrations would be child-friendly for those who’re happy to involve their children in their readings. I was always going to publish myself a copy with alternative, more gory, illustrations but I’ve decided to offer that edition as a super-limited run to those patronising the site at the highest, Mormaer, tier.

It’s freezing out this morning so wrap up well and watch your footing.

04/12/2018   08:00

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Happy St. Andrews Day all! _20181130_051633.JPG

Attempted to type up the entire Bishopric of Glasgow chapter tonight. It was so busy I only had 5717 words when my 1st break arrived at 3am. Needless to say, I’m 14 pages short of finishing and as it’s my nights off I’ll not finish it until Monday night. This means I can’t publish anything to my page in the meantime as the unfinished post will also be published.

I am, however, able to amend already published posts so I’ve added one of Alex’s cartoon pictures of Wallace to Balfour’s ‘Historical Works’ Contents Page. I’ll update you as more are added.

30/11/2018   06:35

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Many things done since yesterday. Scans of ‘Sketches of Early Scotch History‘ (1861) have been uploaded, as have the Prologue and The Parish (part one of chapter one). I realised the WordPress editor format had changed in that links didn’t go blue automatically, they’d just stay the same colour as the surrounding text, but would underline. I didn’t feel that highlighted the links enough so they’re now the custom purple any in-text additions by myself already go in order to highlight them as not original to the prose.

The desire to maintain site continuity, however, has led me to change the link colours for all the contents pages to said purple. The ocd wouldn’t have allowed me sleep had I not. I’m tempted to go down this page and through all the already uploaded posts to do the same to them but I’ve resigned myself to leaving that until I have a wee bit more free time on my hands. It’ll happen.

Also I’d noticed that the Book List drop-down menu of the book titles contained therein had an issue. The 80 chapters uploaded for ‘Scotland Illustrated’ seemed like they were taking over the menu so that you could see a couple of them without hovering the cursor over the book title, as you would normally need to. They had hidden the book titles of ‘Scotland Illustrated‘ (1845) and ‘Old Glasgow‘ (1880). I’ve split the chapters into 2 parts of 40 chapters. That seems to have fixed it. All the associated contents pages have been updated.

Lastly, in my attempt to find out more about Scotland’s whisky history I obtained another disbound Act of Parliament. Not as old as the others, this one’s almost a century older than the first two Acts uploaded. It’s entitled “An Act to reduce the Allowance on Spirits made from Malt only in Scotland and Ireland. [9th April 1832.]” and is at the bottom of the Acts Relating to Scotland post.

29/11/2018   09:21

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The last 5 chapters of ‘Scotland Illustrated’ (1845) have been uploaded; Plate LXXVI., Loch Fad, Plate LXXVII., Dundonald Castle, Plate LXXVIII., Hunters’ Bog, Plate LXXIX., The Falls of Lochy, and Plate LXXX., Anstruther. The Contents Page is fully populated. I’m sad there’s not more as it was super easy to get into and makes me want to visit pretty much everywhere mentioned, even if just to see how they’ve changed. ‘Select Views on the River Clyde’ (1830) is an excellent complement to this book as it covers areas not mentioned in ‘Scotland Illustrated’ in a similar format.

Next up is Cosmo Innes’ ‘Sketches of Early Scotch History’ (1861) as it was cited often in the previous book uploaded to Random Scottish History, MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow’ (1880), and as I happen to already have a copy I feel I may as well. That should take us to the New Year when I’ll be focussing on the main crux of the project, John F. Campbell’s ‘Popular Tales of the West Highlands’ (1890).

28/11/2018   01:20

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Morning all! I had hoped to have completed ‘Scotland Illustrated’ (1845) this morning so I could take the weekend off, however, it was not to be. Far too busy last night to get nearly as much as I wanted done. Still 7 chapters isn’t bad; Plate LXIX., St. Fillan’s Games, Plate LXX., Edinburgh from the Pentlands, Plate LXXI., Dryburgh Abbey, Plate LXXII., Broughty Ferry, Plate LXXIII., Musselburgh, Plate LXXIV., Castle Hill, Edinburgh, and Plate LXXV., Dairsie. Only 5 chapters left to go. Contents Page has been updated.

25/11/2018   06:22

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Good morning. Regardless of it seeming to me as though I hadn’t gotten through very much of ‘Scotland Illustrated‘ (1845), it turns out I managed to get through 9 chapters. I might have hazarded a guess at 6, so that’s nice but also shows how it doesn’t feel much like work when it’s a truly enjoyable book.

This morning we have available for you; Plate LX., City of Perth, from Moncrieff Island, Plate LXI., Distant View of Kinfauns, Plate LXII., Carrick Castle, Plate LXIII., St. Fort, Plate LXIV., Glen Ericht, Plate LXV., Rothesay Castle, Plate LXVI., Murthly Castle, Plate LXVII., Newburgh, and Plate LXVIII., Ardvraick Castle. The book’s Contents Page has also, as usual, been updated.

I think Alex and I are set on starting his new wee troop of historical cartoon characters on the Contents Pages for the books so far uploaded. I’ll keep you updated as they make their appearances.

24/11/2018   06:32

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A whole 10 chapters uploaded tonight. Barely stopped for coffee. For you this morning we have; Plate L., Crichton Castle, Plate LI., Gleneagles, Plate LII., Kelso Abbey, Plate LIII., Sir Walter Scott’s Burial-Place in Dryburgh Abbey, Plate LIV., Craighall, Plate LV., Broomhall, Plate LVI., Loch Tay and Taymouth Castle, Plate LVII., Saint Monance, Plate LVIII., Portobello, and Plate LIX., High Street of Dundee.

You know how it can be difficult to spot what’s missing from something? That it can be easier to see when something’s out of place than absent? Turns out that’s something like what appears to have happened to our whisky barons. There have been more than a few mentions of tobacco barons and the tobacco trade, yet very little on Scotland’s whisky trade. We discovered this when Alex and I went on a tour of Glasgow’s Clydeside Distillery a couple of days ago. Our friend David works there and was happy to tell us all about the place.

Whisky Timeline.

I was lamenting the lack of mentions within the books and trying to work out why that might be. I have two running theories; Firstly, that Temperance was a huge movement in the 19th century. Those guys were vehemently against alcohol and would have stifled marketing as much as they possibly could. Although


Dewar’s Scotch Whisky Advert (1897)

suggests they weren’t causing too much of a problem there. Secondly we have that whisky is a homegrown trade. Keep that in mind. Now England tried on a continual basis to thwart Scotland’s trade. Ships were attacked or made to turn back to shore. They also deemed Scots foreign for the purposes of trade to inhibit our trading capabilities but that meant they spent huge amounts of money upkeeping their regulations against us, therefore, making it detrimental to themselves. So, post-Union, suddenly we have these historians telling us how much the Union benefitted trade, without mentioning why there was any kind of an issue beforehand. In order to laud this change they tell us about the Tobacco, Cotton, and Sugar trades, &c. As we required to be able to trade with other countries to maintain these commodities coming into our country and the manufacturing into marketable wares. Whisky, however, doesn’t lend itself so neatly to this narrative. We need no other country to trade anything with us to support the market, it’s something we’ve produced for centuries regardless of England and its policies against us.

_20181120_173848.JPGThe Clydeside Distillery is beautiful, with excellent views. They’ve been very lucky with obtaining their premises as it’s a building the owner’s great grandfather, John Morrison, built in 1836, though not with a view to whisky distillation. We recommend a visit to everyone partial to a wee tipple of Uisge Beatha, though, even if not, the cafe would be difficult to beat. We recommend the Bank Note whisky glazed doughnut.

23/11/2018   06:44

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Loads of chapters uploaded since the last update. 7 chapters were uploaded on the 18th/19th November; Plate XXXVII., Auchtermuchty, Plate XXXVIII., Craigmillar Castle, Plate XXXIX., Hermitage at Dunkeld, Plate XL., Loch Awe, Plate XLI., Wemyss Castle, Plate XLII., Dalkeith, and Plate XLIII., Loch Ken.

Tonight has produced 6 additional chapters; Plate XLIV., Grave of Bessie Bell and Mary Gray, Plate XLV., Hawthornden, Plate XLVI., Bandirran, and Dunsinnaine Hill, Plate XLVII., Melrose Abbey, Plate XLVIII., Loch Lochy, and Plate XLIX., Inchrye Abbey.

We’re also now have a Patreon Profile for anyone wishing to become a patron of the page. I’m going to try and convince our artist, Alex, to agree to draw portraits of selected famous Scots from history, to be sent as prints to those kind enough to help fund the site.

We’ll see how it goes.

22/11/2018   06:21

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Another very good morning all! The speed these chapters are getting posted is making me feel super productive of late. That’s another six chapters for your reading/viewing pleasure; Plate XXXI., Falkland Palace, from the Court-yard, Plate XXXII., Roslin Glen and Castle, Plate XXXIII., Roslin Chapel, Plate XXXIV., Burntisland, Plate XXXV., Loch Winnoch, and Plate XXXVI., The Falls of Bruar. I’ve been enjoying the accompanying pictures immensely for the detail they contain. Contents Page is updated as usual.

17/11/2018   05:51

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Good morning! Five chapters uploaded for you last night; Plate XXVI., Invermay, Plate XXVII., Loch-Eck, Plate XXVIII., Dura Den, Plate XXIX., Loch Oich, and Invergarry Castle, and Plate XXX., Town of Falkland and Palace. I was going to go on and do a sixth but I thought stopping at Chapter 30, page 60, was a nice place to stop for the morning as it appealed to my OCD for anything 3-related.

The Contents Page for ‘Scotland Illustrated’ (1845) is looking fairly healthy for the small amount of time I feel like I’ve spent with this publication. Hope you’re enjoying it as much as I am.

16/11/2018   05:05

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Another seven chapters uploaded tonight; Plate XVIII., Habbie’s How, Plate XIX., Ballendean, Plate XX., Loch Doon, Plate XXI., Duddingston and Arthur’s Seat, Plate XXII., Craighall, Plate XXIII., Castle Urquhart, and Plate XXIV & XXV., The Twa Brigs O’ Doon.

Also Alex has done us some wee cartoon characters of four of the more obvious Scottish folk from history. ‘Warring Wullie’ Wallace, Robert ‘Balshie Bruce’ , Queen ‘Mary Doll’, and Rabbie ‘Bardie Burns’ (provisionally). We’ll see how we can make use of them later on.


13/11/2018   06:51

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More chapters uploaded tonight; Plate XI., Borthwick Castle, Plate XII., Jedburgh Abbey, Plate XIII., Interior of Jedburgh Abbey, Plate XIV., Crail, Plate XV., Loch Maben and Castle, Plate XVI., Linlithgow Palace, and Plate XVII., Balcarres Craig. I have to say I’m not stoked about how the scans are turning out on this one. They seem a bit dark and I didn’t want to edit them too much but if I find a better way to scan them in I’ll be sure to replace them all. This is a great book though with nice wee chapters that should make it a fairly speedy process to upload.

12/11/2018   05:52

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Over the last few nights we’ve got right in about ‘Scotland Illustrated’ (1845). Professor Wilson’s rather lengthy introduction, Remarks on the Scenery of the Highlands, took a couple of nights but the chapters themselves are fairly short; Plate I., The City of St. Andrews, Plate II., Loch-Lomond, Looking North, Plate III., Abbey of Balmerino, Plate IV., Dunstaffnage Castle, Plate V., Scone Palace, Plate VI., Ancient Gateway of Scone Palace, Plate VII., Loch-Leven Castle, Plate VIII., Dunfermline, Plate IX., Dunfermline Palace, and Plate X., Harbour of Dundee, have all been uploaded for your perusal. The pictures are as good as I can get them with the hand scanner as the pages are very tightly bound and this has made the pages a wee bit warped and bumpy. I do what I can and hope it’s enough.


11/11/2018   04:53

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Apologies for my absence for the last 11 days. I absconded to Crete with Alex, RSH’s illustrator, to immerse ourselves in Greek history. My interest in history began with Classical Greece, leading me to do Arts and Humanities at the Open University with a view to learning ancient Greek in order to read Homer’s original works without the need to rely on, say, Alexander Pope’s translations. In changing my field to Scottish history it turns out Latin is of more use to me though of a less interesting nature.

We covered a fair amount of the island’s places of historical interest, though we’d have needed maybe a month to get through everything there was to see.


Aptera Fortress.
Agia Triada Monastery.
Statue of Spiros Kayales, Akrotiri.


Venetian Lighthouse at Chania Harbour.
Arkadi Monastery.


Mosque turned Church in Rethymno.
Palace of Knossos Archaeological Excavation Site.


Morosini Fountain, Heraklion.
St. Peter & Paul Church, Heraklion.
Wooden Model of the Palace of Knossos, Phaistos Disc (both sides), and Skeletal Remains in a Jar at Heraklion’s Archaeological Museum.
Palace of Phaistos Archaeological Excavation Site.


Carved Tree at Matala.
Wee Windmill at Elounda, with our Artist, where we boarded the boat to Spinalonga Island. We had our picture taken as we boarded. The resulting keyring. The Island itself.
Round Spinalonga Island a former Leper Colony or Lazar House.
Europa Sitting on Zeus as a Bull (both sides) and Lake Voulismeni in Agios Nikolaos.

We captured a fair number of Crete’s wildlife on camera. A skink was the first in Skaleta. We were told it was basically a lizard that didn’t use its legs, to the point of being basically a snake. The praying mantis I caught by the pool, in Hersonissos, was striking as it appeared to be albino though this is how they are just after molting. There were also what I took to be geese, though they’re apparently large ducks, by Lake Voulismeni in Agios Nikolaos happily co-existing with the local cat population.

There’s also a kind of moth that mimics hummingbirds called the Hummingbird Hawk Moth which I was lucky to catch on video in Hersonissos.

Plenty of cats. I’ll not bore you with all the pics and vids. The island is overrun with them but every one I came across seemed clean, without fleas or injuries, and were super friendly, if a little skinny in most cases. In our wanderings through varying residential areas we were happy to see plenty of folk left containers of water and food out indiscriminately for any wandering animals requiring them.

Cat in a plant pot at the Agia Triada Monastery and kittens at Arkadi Monastery.
Kittens with their mum at the Palace of Phaistos.

Also lots of fish. Super close to the shore in most cases, which is not something I’ve seen before, as well as trout and a Sturgeon in a decorative pool at the Argrypolis Waterfalls.

At the Rethymnon Harbour.
At the shore of Agios Nikolaos.

This is obviously only a taste of the 485 photos and 30 videos I uploaded as my holiday diary to Facebook but you’d need to send me a wee friend request in order to see them if you’re not already in my contacts.

Back to transcribing Professor Wilson’s Introduction to ‘Scotland Illustrated‘ (1845) which should be published tomorrow morning.

06/11/2018   06:10

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Over 8000 words typed up from the introduction to ‘Scotland Illustrated‘ (1845) and I’m just about halfway through. So nothing to post this morning I’m afraid. Professor Wilson, the author of said introduction, is another one of those we’ve become so used to, a Scottish historian who can’t help but compare everything they come across to its supposed counterpart in England. He spends an entire paragraph extolling the virtues of the Borrowdale scenery in Cumberland and begins the subsequent paragraph with the sentence, “No – there is no glen in all the Highlands comparable with Borrowdale.”, well gee thanks love…

It’s striking how often authors felt the need to do this as I would think it a fairly uncommon occurrence for French historians to devote entire sections of their writings to how incredible a random bit of Spain of Germany is, or the difference in the currency exchanges at different points of their histories between the countries… Anyways, it is how it is and we make do with the information we can get our hands on.

26/10/2018   06:54

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MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘ (1880) is now complete, with the exception of the appendix which I’ll decide on later. A whole 4 chapters typed up and posted this morning; Literary History, Value of Property, Price of Commodities and Labour, and Contrast Between Former and Present Condition of the City. As per usual the Contents Page has been updated too.

There’s an excellent map of Glasgow that’s part of the last chapter showing how the city changed in a century but I’ve tried scanning it in and the binding of the book makes it impossible. When an A3 scanner is obtained (we’ve obtained 2 of the same type we couldn’t get working in the last 2 weeks) it shall be done and will be included in the Maps from Books section  as well. I’ve included a photo of it in its spot in the chapter as a placeholder for the time being.

Scotland Illustrated‘ will be joining me in my place of employment tonight so I can get started on that wee gem.

25/10/2018   08:34

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Another couple of chapters typed up and published this morning for you; Education – Amusements – Fairs and Police, Water Supply, &c.. Some nice information in the latter chapter on Glasgow’s publishers. Contents Page for ‘Old Glasgow’ has been updated.

I’m afraid I’ve still not heard from anyone with regards M’Ure’s ‘View of the City of Glasgow’ and I don’t know that I’ll feel comfortable with it until I know where it originated. So please contact me – I’m happy to retain your anonymity – it’s really for my own peace of mind.

We’ll be done with MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘ (1880) as of tomorrow morning I’m thinking. On Thursday night I’ll make a wee start on uploading ‘Scotland Illustrated‘ (1845) before we disappear abroad for a wee break to immerse ourselves in Greek history.

24/10/2018   06:41

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Back to work and two more chapters uploaded for you this morning; The River and Harbour and Sanitary Condition of City – Habits of the People.

On a strange and confusing note, M’Ure (McUre) has been mentioned and cited quite a number of times in MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘ so far but he’s as much an author I’d go after as Tytler, in that you can expect originals of their work to cost far too much to be feasible for this project (maybe when I’m rich in my next life). A copy of John M’Ure’s ‘A View of the City of Glasgow’ was delivered to my humble abode yesterday morning and has me perplexed as to where it’s come from. It has a date of 1830 on the initial publisher’s page and a date on the second of 1733. I can only assume it’s been a wee fan of Random Scottish History but if you could contact me and let me know who you are so I can thank you (so much and forever), I think I’d feel better about it.

23/10/2018   06:40

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The last two nights have been spent on 3 chapters from ‘Old Glasgow‘; Municipal and Social History, Distinction of Classes, and Trade and Commerce. I felt it was necessary to add a few of my own footnotes at the bottom of the chapter on Trade to give a more rounded perspective of the information offered.

Alex has very kindly illustrated a wee sketched likeness of John Glassford taken from the tobacco lord’s family portrait for the ‘Municipal and Social History’ chapter.

20/10/2018   03:56

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Only just the one chapter uploaded this morning. I’m thinking I should’ve split it into two parts but as it was Ecclesiastical History I thought I’d just batter on and get it done.

Some numbers for you from tonight’s work; 26 pages, just over 10,000 words, in approximately 9 hours, with roughly 90 appearances of varying incarnations of the word “Presbytery”. Even typing it again there was painful. 65 Footnotes, to the point I ran out of symbols and resorted to those Greek Letters most dissimilar to our’s.

You may want to brush up on your yoghs (ʒ) and thorns (þ/y) for this one 😉 If in doubt I’ve explained these defunct letters at the start of the Glossary.

All in all just glad it’s done. Not my favourite chapter of MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘ so far.

18/10/2018   06:04

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Back to work and right back into the swing of things with MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘ (1880).

Three chapters uploaded for you this morning; The City Ports and Military Defences, Early State of the Land near Glasgow, and The People, and How They Lived. Lots more footnote links taking you to ‘Scots Lore‘ (1895) and Grant’s ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘ (1880).

17/10/2018   06:11

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I know  it was supposed to be my night off but I though I might as well post the recently obtained ‘Directory of Ladies of Pleasure in Edinburgh‘, originally anonymously authored and published in 1775, this facsimile edition published in 1978 as I could obtain no pre-1900 copies, into Scanned Images. I’ve decided not to type up the descriptions given though I’ve included searchable type-ups of the Preface in which the author really attempts to defend prostitution and its “virtues”. The contemporary engravings included at the end are very nice and swung my decision to publish it to Random Scottish History.

15/10/2018   04:30

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I’ve been steadily continuing with MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘. Since my last wee break I’ve managed to get six chapters uploaded with their respective pictures. The last of the said six chapters, Old Streets and Buildings, I’ve divided up into four parts as it was a little long for one post.

For your reading pleasure we now have; Tenure of Property, Rule of Bishops, Armorial Insignia and City Seals, Cathedral, Castle and the Manor Houses of the Bishops, Old Streets and Buildings Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

I’m off for another couple of nights. Enjoy all.

14/10/2018   04:46

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A very good morning to you. In the last 4 nights I’ve managed to get a whole 7 chapters of MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘ typed, scanned, and published. I wasn’t kidding when I said this book has me excited. I can’t get through it fast enough though the author’s comparisons with the English way of things got tiring fairly quickly. I assume this was his way of attempting to make the information relatable, though I’d have preferred to have the comparisons made with the other cities in Scotland to give  an idea of how the country evolved as a whole in relation to its fastest growing city. That and the Latin-heavy text are my only complaints, otherwise this makes for a fascinating read.

Covered so far are Glasgow’s; First Bishop, Bell and Miracles, Name, Early Church, Early Inhabitants, Early Language, and Early Houses which leads nicely to the Thomas Fairbairn Lithographs already posted.

Time for a couple of days off methinks.

08/10/2018   08:05

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I was hoping to have Chambers’ ‘Domestic Annals‘ (1885) completed within the space of a couple of nights. I’m very pleased, having had a night to myself, to declare my transcription of this book completely ended already. The last three chapters uploaded for your reading pleasure are; the Reign of Queen Anne (1702-1714), Reign of George I. (1714-1727), and Reign of George II. (1727-1745). Contents pages and Bibliography are up to date.

I’ll be taking the next couple of nights off to reset and prepare for MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘ (1880), which I’ve already mentioned has me very excited 😃

02/10/2018   06:14

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Good morning all,

A few additions over the last few nights to bring to your attention.

In Maps from Books I’ve added Maps of Edinburgh (Varying Years) which have been taken from James Grant’s ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘ (1880), volume 1, already uploaded in full.

The second of Charles II.‘s chapters, from Chambers’ ‘Domestic Annals‘, is uploaded, as is James VII., William & Mary, and William III. Only 3 wee chapters left to finish this book and allow us to get on to MacGeorge’s ‘Old Glasgow‘.

In the Interregnum chapter of ‘Domestic Annals’ is mentioned something called the ‘Caldwell Papers’ which I’d never heard of and being a Caldwell from Greenock I thought I’d seek out more information. To that end I obtained the London Quarterly Review’s write-up of the Caldwell Papers for those interested.

Also mentioned, in the first of Charles II.‘s chapters (‘Domestic Annals’) and Chapter 34 (‘Old and New Edinburgh’), is Scotland’s first newspaper the ‘Mercurius Caledonius‘ of 1661. I managed to obtain the “Fac Simile” copy of this edition in a disbound copy of the 200th celebration of the ‘Caledonian Mercury’. I’ve typed up the 1661 Edition and the 1861 Historical Sketch.

So I’ve not had too much time for a life recently but the upside is you’ve lots to look through 😉

01/10/2018   06:43

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Firstly tonight, the first of Charles II.‘s chapters has been uploaded and the Contents Page has been updated.

I’ve populated the Maps from Books section with Map of Glasgow (1879), which must be one of the very last maps of the city published before Central Station opened in the middle of that year, Maps of Glasgow & Edinburgh (1847), and Maps of Edinburgh and the Wider Suburbs (1884).

24/09/2018   02:55

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As I’m in receipt of all the books donated recently to Random Scottish History’s library I tried to have them all speedily scanned and uploaded to Scanned Images. They’re fantastic and I can’t wait to get properly into them. As you’ll be aware by now, I don’t get to read them until I’m typing them up for the site so I’m very excited.

To begin with a long-time friend, who would like to remain anonymous, has donated:

Pictorial History of Scotland‘, J. Taylor (1859), Vols. 1 & 2.

Old Glasgow‘, A. MacGeorge (1880). This will be the next book uploaded after ‘Domestic Annals‘.

Then my wonderfully supportive parents-in-law, Julie and Hilton Eeles have donated:

Edinburgh Almanack‘ (1794). This is so information-heavy with statistics and costs for various that it seemed wiser to scan in as much of the book as related to Scotland as possible instead of typing it all out for the Book List.

History of Glasgow‘, A. Brown (1795). I may have this bound at some point.

History of Scotland‘, Rev. J. MacKenzie (1894).

Scotland Illustrated‘, Prof. Wilson (1845). This book is so tightly bound and full of beautiful pictures it will be the next book uploaded after ‘Old Glasgow‘.

The Scanned Images menu has been updated as has the Bibliography.

23/09/2018   03:59

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Last night I completed the most recent chapter, Interregnum (1649-1660), of Chambers’ ‘Domestic Annals‘ and the contents page has been updated. As mentioned previously in the Updates here, Chalmers has been doing my head in a bit with his constant picking of majoritively negative quotes from our history, though he made quite the error in having a go at our tradesmen ancestors apparently adulterating booze in the 17th century. I’ve cleared up his error in the footnotes with an excerpt from James Greenwood’s excellent ‘Seven Curses of London’ (1869) detailing the publicans, in England’s capital, doing the same, perhaps even worse, in the mid to late 19th century. This is backed by the article, also cited in the footnotes, from Punch.

With a view to scanning in large newspapers, maps, &c. I went online and searched for an A3 scanner to purchase. One came up that I figured was a super reasonable price and so I went for it. The thing arrived only for us to quickly realise it was A4 size, which we already have… So I’ve made a shortlist of (definitely A3) flatbed scanners which I’ll whittle down to one as soon as Currys accept the return of their very badly marketed small one.

20/09/2018   07:46

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No more hospital for me for a while, fingers crossed, I may be able to tell you about it shortly, all very exciting.

For now though, that’s the last chapter of Charles I. uploaded and the Contents Page for ‘Domestic Annals‘ has been updated too.

I’ll be going through the books this morning looking for maps to upload into the Maps from Books section as near everyone I’ve ever met is a fan of old maps. I know I have a nice 1847 reproduction of a Glasgow map from 1650 that’ll need to be scanned in an innovative way, as you can see here:


I’ve scanned in Guthrie’s ‘General History of Scotland‘ (1767), vol. 2, which is where the Map of Scotland came from and added it to the site’s Bibliography.

Also Random Scottish History has been in receipt of a few donated books recently. A 2 volume illustrated set I’m very much looking to get stuck into and one on Glasgow I’ve been after for a wee while. I’ll elaborate on what they are with scans when I have them both. My donor of these fine publications is looking to remain anonymous though they are fully aware of my gratitude for these additions to the library.

18/09/2018   10:35

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It’s been a wee while since I wrote an update. I’ve been going through a series of medical procedures that have left me lethargic, uncomfortable, and incapable of completing anything quickly I’m afraid.

On Saturday, 8th of Sept., after a week of tracking down and typing out sources, I uploaded Curious and Interesting Deaths for those of you morbidly inclined like myself. This I was inspired to do from a post on the A Grave Announcement page.

The next night I spent fixing and ironing a very detailed Map of Scotland that had separated from its book, the 2nd volume of ‘A General History of Scotland’ by William Guthrie (1767). I then scanned it into the computer in 6 pieces due to its size and spent a few hours on Photoshop straightening and jigsawing said map back together again to post on Monday the 10th.

Monday night was spent typing up and scanning in Charles I.’s chapter, 1625-1637, from Chambers’ ‘Domestic Annals of Scotland‘ (1885), which was posted yesterday morning.

Last night was used in uploading my collection of the few miscellaneous postcards, photos, newspaper pages, and other Scotland-related ephemera, into the Miscellaneous Collected Pictures post for this morning. The Miscellany Contents menu has been updated.

12/09/2018   05:33

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Instead of giving myself the short-breathed chest pain the anxiety of trying to get a chapter done within as few nights as possible gives, I took my time over this one. Made for a far more pleasant experience.

So, the next chapter of Chambers’ ‘Domestic Annals‘, James VI. (1603-1625), has been uploaded.

Will go through my miscellany of pictures from various sources over the next couple of days and get them uploaded into the Scanned Images tab.


02/09/2018   08:21

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Thought I’d get something accomplished before I went to bed this morning. I’ve uploaded the ‘Royal Scottish Album of Glasgow and the Clyde‘ (undated). They seem to be drawings of Valentine & Son’s photos but there’s really no information within the book and I’m unable to find out more online. It doesn’t seem as though very many were made. I love these pictures though and if I can find out more I’ll update the post.

29/08/2018   10:26

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Had a wee bit of time on my hands and thought I’d upload scans of my copies of Valentine & Sons’ view books of Stirling (1890ish) and Glasgow (undated, end of 19th century). Stirling‘s done though the scanner stopped working halfway through Glasgow so I’ll finish it later. Scanned Images Content page has been updated.

28/08/2018   13:27

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James VI.’s third chapter (1591-1603) has been published. Was set on having it up and done before my days off. There were still 12,000ish words to type up in order to successfully do that, so I ended up having to bring it home to finish, apparently it’s not possible to do in 8hrs (ended up taking me 10). Content page has been updated. Still it’s done and I can treat myself to an early morning.

Good night all.

27/08/2018   09:09

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I’d mentioned, previously, the Glasgow Gallivanter inspiring me to post my Dundee pictures along with relevant information. Last night was spent organising the few that were of any use to the page and finding out more about the buildings featured therein. I’ve made the names of those pictured links to take you to websites that explain a wee bit more about them. The Miscellany Contents page has been updated.

It’s a beautiful city full of history and fantastic architecture and we’ll be back again in the future, if only to see if the interior and exhibits of the V & A Museum justify the exterior choice of design, as it would seem to be a little incongruous with its surroundings.

I’ll be continuing with James the VI.’s third chapter from Chambers’ ‘Domestic Annals‘ (1885) tonight.

24/08/2018   08:22

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The second of James VI.’s Chapters has been published for your perusal. Is super witchcraft heavy this one, but of course our author couldn’t resist finishing with a plague.

Have messed about, reordered and added to the Miscellany menu option in order to give space to our new guest author Mr Tam McCann of the Parkhead History Group and the new Wanderings folder.

Contents pages have been updated for both ‘Domestic Annals‘ and Miscellany.

Off for a couple of nights now and looking forward to meeting an active participant of Random Scottih History, in the form of the Glasgow Gallivanter, on one of my days off which I’m really looking forward to.

Enjoy guys!

21/08/2018   01:51

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So I was somewhat overconfident in my ability to complete everything last night. I’ve posted my own pics of Glasgow’s City Necropolis with the epitaphs that can be read, which may aid those in search of relatives. Still 7 pages short of completing James VI., however, when time ran out this morning.

I promise I tried.

20/08/2018   07:36

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I’ve been recovering from a minor medical procedure this week. Though I’ve made a start on the next chapter of James VI., it seemed like the break was a good opportunity to introduce Mr Tam McCann of the Parkhead History Group. He sent me a couple of articles he’s written about both the Eastern (Janefield) and City Necropolises in Glasgow. So I’ve typed them up and added the pictures he’s included. They’re full of super interesting information that would be of possible use to folk tracing their genealogy.

James VI.’s next installment will probably be published early bells tomorrow.

19/08/2018   09:20

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I forgot to update you on Sunday (05/08) night’s work, so that was the Regency of Morton. Last night was the Reign of James the Sixth, from 1578-1585. Contents page has been updated.

09/08/2018   09:05

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More of an update for this morning. Two more chapters uploaded; Regency of Moray and Regencies of Lennox and Mar, with illustrations. Contents page has been updated.

This Updates section was a page but that was annoying me so it’s now a post. and the menu options have been messed with a wee bit. C’est tout.

03/08/2018   08:32

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Morning all, just. Mary’s second chapter has been uploaded and Content page updated. Already! I know! These are nice quick chapters with beautiful wee illustrations.

Also, Random Scottish History’s very own illustrator, Alex, had entered a portrait of your’s truly into the Scottish Portrait Awards. He spent a good 3 months on it and used a mixed media of paint, pastels, pencils and even nail polish. He didn’t make the final pick but it’s something I’ll certainly treasure, regardless of his being sick of the sight of it 😆.


03/08/2018 00:04

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Afternoon. I was so relieved at finishing a number of things I’d been putting off with Random Scottish History that I nearly forgot to write an update.

The first of Queen Mary‘s chapters has been uploaded with illustration, taking us from 1561-1565. Contents page has been updated. There was a discrepancy with dates for the two factions seen fighting in the sky by thousands of people. Balfour claims it was 1529, during James V.’s reign,

“In Agust, this same zeire, light candells appeire one the topes of the mountans, neir Stirling, befor the sune; and 2 battalions of armed men seeme to skirmishe, in order of batell, in the firmament, to the grate astonishment of maney thousands that did behold the same.”

whereas Chambers has it occurring in 1564, as told by Knox, a man he obviously admires,

There were seen in the firmament (Feb. 15 and 18), says he, ‘battles arrayit, spears and other weapons, and as it had been the joining of two armies. Thir things were not only observed, but also spoken and constantly affirmed by men of judgment and credit.’ Nevertheless, he adds, ‘the queen and our court made merry.’

The Reformer considered these appearances as declarations of divine wrath against the iniquity of the land. Most probably they were resolvable into a simple example of the aurora borealis.

I’m inclined towards the latter as Balfour had a tendency to get dates slightly wrong.

The Scanned Images section had the books listed oldest uploaded first where the Book List was vice-versa, so I amended that. Firstly I’d realised, however, that the scans were pages instead of posts and they hadn’t shared when posted, so I copied them into new posts and reordered them in line with the other list. Now the OCD’s satisfied I can get on with the rest of Chambers’ somewhat biased Annals.

02/08/2018 13:03

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I created this site due a love I have of my country of origin. I wanted to know more about it and put the information I was coming across out there for others with a similar interest. It, therefore, saddens me when I come across an author, Scottish by nationality, who seems so set on putting Scotland down due to their own prejudices. Unfortunately some found the need to pander to the rest of the island’s population. A large proportion of Scotland’s population wasn’t overly enamoured with the union with England and so a faction arose of historians set on making the case for said union, for justifying it. This they did, mainly, by being derogatory about Scotland and its capabilities. If we were to only take their word for it, we’d wonder how Scotland managed to remain self-sufficient and independent as long as it did. Fortunately we have the Chalmers and McLeods of this nation to rely upon for a more balanced, investigative, take on our histories.

Chambers fulfils this ‘British-perspective’ role in our new [old] book, ‘Domestic Annals of Scotland’. It’s already hard going and we’re only the introduction and half a chapter in. For Queen Mary’s first arrival in Leith after her husband Francis’ death he chooses a quote, out of all the high-profile witnesses to that landing, from John Knox. Literally akin to her step-brother in being vindictive and a close contender for position as her nemesis. He very carefully chooses who’s quotes will lend themselves to his narrative and, as you’ll find out in reading his produce, relies heavily on hearsay and conjecture, from people who, from their own quotes, held super sectarian views heavily against Catholics and their religion. It’s difficult to see through the bias these are coloured with. A straight-forward, here are the facts, history would have been so much more useful to the generations that have been since. I’ve tackled a few of what’s said with footnotes but don’t have the will to take it sentence by sentence, as is probably needed.

Bibliography, Contents and Book List pages have been updated, and “tulyie/tulʒie” added to the Glossary.

Good luck history lovers.

01/08/2018 06:09

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It may have taken an entire week but James VI.’s updated Companion copy is now published for your enjoyment, the Contents page has been updated, and that’s us now finished Volume 1 of ‘Balfour’s Historical Works‘.

In my researches, of which there were many for this chapter, I came across both a 16th century Ritchie Rich and an English lawyer of Italian descent by the name of Julius Caesar. I also found my sister [granddaughter of a MacLean from Tobermory, Mull] had continued a trend from history of the MacLeans marrying Campbells in order to mitigate the feuds between the two families, though I doubt that was behind the decision.

I’m keen to upload the ‘Domestic Annals of Scotland’, Robert Chambers (1885), so no doubt that’ll be started tonight.

31/07/2018 09:19

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Good morning.

The Original version of James VI.’s chapter has been typed up and published and the Contents page updated.

Couple of days off now so you can expect the Updated version by the middle of next week. Then we’re done with Volume 1 of Balfour’s ‘Historical Works‘. Already deciding on the next random book to upload for the interested.

22/07/2018 04:24

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Apologies history fans. It took 3 nights to type up Mary’s Companion copy and 3.5 nights to complete the research of who/where/what was being talked about. Loads of fun. I almost feel like these guys are family now I know them so well, though I’m sure my shocking memory’ll cure me of that soon enough.

It is, however, complete for your enjoyment/research purposes. Contents page has been updated and more words have been added to the Glossary.

Next up, James VI., Mary’s son and first monarch of both Scotland and England.

20/07/2018 00:37

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Mary, Queen of Scots’, chapter (Original version) is finished and published complete with her portrait, thanks to the very talented Mr Alex Eeles. Contents page has been updated.

I have to say, though, that Balfour failed somewhat to really get into the intriguing done Mary Steuartby Elizabeth in her bid to oust Mary and deny her the birthright owed to her (the English crown) should Elizabeth fail to produce heirs. He does hint at it some, though completely ignores Mary’s brother the Earl of Murray’s part in Darnley’s murder and her downfall. He makes the Earl of Bothwell out to be some kind of lone wolf acting for the Queen when Chalmers provides us with evidence he was fully in league with Murray, Morton & Elizabeth. Darnley also wasn’t the “innocent Prince” Balfour makes him out to be as he would seem to have been behind the murder of David Rizzio, Mary’s personal assistant and confidant, through jealousy and the urging of the faction out against her.

It doesn’t correlate with the mountain of evidence George Chalmers provides us with in his ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots‘. Though does give us the extra interesting detail, I failed to notice in his dissection of her life, of Darnley having been strangled and tossed out into the courtyard before the building he had been residing in was blown up.

I’ve also added links to the bottom of the updated Companion chapters for this book as anyone looking to quote the information should do so from the Original versions. I’ll get onto the Companion updated copy and have it posted in the next few days. Enjoy.

10/07/2018 04:10

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Morning all,

So I guess I could’ve foreseen Mary having a chapter that outweighed her counterparts to this point, yet I was still hopeful of having it finished by this morning. Nope, ‘fraid not. I spent 9hrs working on it and have typed up 50% (and a page) so it’ll definitely be done for tomorrow (everything crossed). Alex has just about finished her portrait too which I’m excited for you to see, as I am about everything he does, I guess.

09/07/2018 08:05

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Good morning,

Still on holiday for our 12th anniversary but was getting super antsy about not having finished researching James V. for the Companion copy, so I spent last night doing just that and it’s now published for your perusal, Contents page is updated and more words have been added to the Glossary.

Next up is Mary, Queen of Scots, James’ daughter, who has already been fully written about by George Chalmers in his ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots‘ (1822). So there shouldn’t be any surprises to followers of Random Scottish History. Back to work tomorrow night so the Original version of her chapter should be typed and uploaded for Monday morning. Alex, our resident artist, has done a fantastic illustration of Queen Mary, using her death mask as its basis.

07/07/2018 05:29

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Has been a wee while, my apologies. Working out kinks. So videos can now be uploaded which was an issue before, in light of YouTube plans. The first tester vid has been posted below (update of 21/06) of the location of my sister’s wedding and it seems to have appeared fine.

James V.’s Companion copy is fully typed up but still has about 150 names and references that need researching before I can happily publish it. Will hopefully happen later on this morning.

28/06/2018 01:12

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Good morning.

James V., Original, was uploaded yesterday. Have been covering a supervisor shift tonight so I’m afraid the Companion copy is only done up until 1523, so I estimate it’ll be tomorrow morning at the earliest for it to be posted.

Thank you for your patience.

23/06/2018 06:51

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Good morning and a beautiful Summer Solstice to you.

Back from the continent, well and truly sunburned & skint. It was a very nice well-planned event with fantastic scenery. Here’s my album of the few pics/vids I took for those of you able to view them.

I’ve resumed Balfour’s ‘Historical Works‘. The Companion for James IV. has been typed and uploaded this morning, finally. Sorry if you were waiting for it with bated breath.

21/06/2018 08:11

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A very good morning to you.

The Original version of James IV. is freshly typed and published for your perusal. Contents page has been updated to show the chapter. It records varying events, as you might expect if you’ve been following Balfour’s Histories, including another “fearfull comett”, an earthquake, peace, death, and the battle of Flodden which, of course, ends James’ story for us.

I’ll not be able to get round to typing up the Companion version of this chapter until the start of next week, I’m afraid. My weekend starts in about 3 hours. Headed to France to witness a joining of the Caldwells and the Campbells as my sister gets married.

Take care all.

14/06/2018 04:56

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It may have taken all night (and an hour after I got home) but the Companion copy of James III.’s chapter is now available. The Contents page is also updated and many words have been added to the Glossary.


13/06/2018 09:12

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Good morning,

The Companion to James II. was uploaded on the morning of Friday 8th. I apologise for the lack of update. I’ve uploaded the Original of James III. The rest of tonight, and probably tomorrow night, will be spent updating the text and adding information for the Companion copy.

It’s been suggested to me that a YouTube channel might be a good addition to the page. I figure if I take the ‘Gazetteer of Scotland’, William and Robert Chambers (1847), and work through it alphabetically by city, it’ll give a good overview of the country as a whole. It would just be wee 5 minute episodes.

I’ve started with Aberdeen, which I have typed out, but I think it may take me some time to eke out the details that’ll be of interest to everyone as well as getting the artwork, music, &c. ready. We’ll see if it comes to anything.

03:36 12/06/2018

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Today’s update is to let you know that, regardless of almost 9 hours work having been done, there is no update. I’ve only made it halfway through James II.’s companion copy. I now remember what this was like while doing this book for the Facebook page. My previous joke about it taking 3 hours to track down who was being talked about in one sentence, wasn’t so much of a joke. I ended up getting stuck at 4am trying to work out who 6 people mentioned along with Mary of Guise on her journey to Scotland are. Had to give up at 7am as I had to get home. So, hopefully, this chapter will be completed tonight.

Thanks for your patience.

P.S., I also added options to Donate because the image cache is starting to push me out of the plan & I really don’t want to have to compromise between which pics to include on the site. I want them all out there as they’re as much a part of the information as the text. Thank you in advance for any consideration you give to helping.

07/06/2018 08:17

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We’re now up to date with where we were on the FB page for ‘Balfour’s Historical Works’, meaning I’ve run out of what I’ve already typed of the book. James I. has been posted, both Original & Companion, and James II., the Original, was typed up last night and has also been posted, it includes notice of the founding of Glasgow University by William Turnbull, Glasgow’s Bishop.

I’ll be spending tonight translating and typing it into its Companion option.

06/06/2018 07:01

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Lots accomplished tonight. We have 3 Roberts, two kings (one who changed his name from John) and a governor; Robert II. (Original & Companion), Robert III. (Original & Companion), and Robert, the Duke of Albany (Original & Companion). The respective contents pages have been updated. There was a naked religious sect mentioned in the text for Robert II. called the “Turelupins”. It took me a wee while but I found them finally mentioned in an obscure Dictionary and have added the information I found to the Companion copy as it was really interesting as well as being a pretty funny read.

Off the topic of history I have also been attempting the Dark Crystal font in preparation for its return to our screens in the form of a Netflix prequel series. Very excited.

05/06/2018 07:22

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This mugginess has no been of much use, proper migraine weather. Feeling a bit better this morning so have uploaded David II. into Original and Companion options.

04/06/2018 06:26

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We’ve come to Scotland’s Guardians. The run down of the events of this era, per Balfour, go something like:

Scotland Finds Itself Monarch-less as Foretold – 6 Protectors Chosen – 1, the Earl of Fife, Dies – Bruce or Balliol for King? – Bruce has Stronger Claim – English King Edward Chooses Bailliol for Scotland – Many Absent Themselves from his Coronation – King John Balliol Stripped of Royal Garb and Delivered to Edward – William Wallace Made Protector of the Kingdom – Defeats English at Stirling Bridge – 12 Protectors Chosen – Dunbar Castle Traitorously Handed to Edward; Earl of Ross, Earl of Menteith & Many Others Killed – Battle of Falkirk – Wallace Reclaims Dundee Castle – Wallace Destroys Northumberland – Battle of Black Earnside – Galloway Rebels Dealt With – Wallace Drowns English by Breaking Bridge – Wallace Resigns his Government – English Run of Bad Luck – Scottish Castles Reclaimed from English Occupation – Scots Victory in Battle Near Rosslyn – Robert Bruce Takes Control Against Oppression – Bruce Kills a Comyn and his Cousin – Wallace Betrayed & Delivered to Edward, Executed for Defending his Own Country.

Then Robert Bruce becomes king and carries on Scotland’s right to independence by drawing up the Declaration of Arbroath. It was an interesting time to be alive and in Scotland.

I’ve uploaded Six Protectors or Governors (Original & Companion) and King Robert I. (Original & Companion). The companion copy of Robert I.’s write up includes Dr Alan Borthwick’s translation of the Declaration of Arbroath. Contents pages for both Original and Companion have been updated.

Pictures for both are thanks to Alex Eeles who is on DeviantArt if you’re interested.

01/06/2018 07:30

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Another two Scottish kings uploaded. Alexander II. (Original & Companion) and Alexander III. (Original & Companion). Next up are Scotland’s Guardians, William Wallace steps up, and the Bruce.

Deliberating over venturing out for a day in Maybole. Weather’s looking dreich and fairly unwelcoming. I figure, if it doesn’t clear up by midday, I’m heading to bed. See you on the other side.

31/05/2018 08:33

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Three more of Scotland’s kings added from ‘Balfour’s Historical Works‘; David I. (Original & Companion), Malcolm IV. (Original & Companion), and William the Lion (Original & Companion). That’s all for this morning.

30/05/2018 08:12

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A few things accomplished last night. With regards ‘Balfour’s Historical Works‘, there are 3 more of Scotland’s kings uploaded in the form of Donald Bane & Duncan (Original & Companion), Edgar (Original & Companion), and Alexander I. (Original & Companion).

Remember the ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition (1894)‘? I know, I’ve kind of let it languish unfinished for a while. I apologise. So in a bid to get it completed I spent some time typing up Gallery 1‘s articles for Case P, Q, & R, that’s item Nos. 2582-2685. Woo, yeah, &c…

29/05/2018 08:04

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A new (old) book has been officially started! Yay, &c.! Scans of ‘Balfour’s Historical Works‘ have been posted. Also, the text from the Advertisement, Prefatory Memoir, and Testimonials in Regard to Sir James Balfour have been uploaded into the Original section for volume 1 and Malcolm III.‘s life has been uploaded both into the Original section and the updated write-up of his Life is in the Companion section.

Finding quotes, names, &c., will be easier to do from the updated text though the sharing of quotes probably should be from the original text.

I really hope you get a lot from the information Balfour left for us.

28/05/2018 08:50

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Good news everybody! ‘Select Views on the River Clyde has come to an end with the last four chapters completed last night; Dunure Castle, Colzean Castle, Pladda Light House, and Campbeltown. Contents Page updated.

I actually don’t know what I’ll pick next for your enjoyment. I’m super tempted to go back to James Haig’s ‘Historical Works of Sir James Balfour: Annales of Scotland’ (1824), the first volume of which, I had been in the middle of when I took the notion to create this page in order to make the information searchable.

On the FB page I had to upload the transcriptions into 2 separate folders as I felt that along with the Original information folk might quite like it written out in a readable format. If you’re not used to reading old Scots it can be a hard slog what with all the yoghs (ʒ/z), e.g., “zeire” – year. So in order to have a document that had not only the updated text but also had the added forenames/surnames and additional info I created a Companion copy that was posted at the same time as its root document. I found I was having to search ancestry, genealogy and gravefinder sites to find out who was who (there was a lot of GoogleTranslate use going on, especially of Scandinavian languages & latin) which has given me the idea it might be the most comprehensive version of Balfour’s Historical Works but I could be wrong. I certainly haven’t found the info all in the one place outside of its original state. So I figure it’d be a good idea to make it so I know it’s findable and all in the one place for others like myself who want to know this information.

I’m afraid I’m shattered after busy 12 hour shift so I’ll not upload the scans for it this morning but I’ll start uploading the text tonight. I’ll work out the format when I get to it. Take care all.

27/05/2018 08:38

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7 chapters of ‘Select Views on the River Clyde’ uploaded this morning, the result of last night’s 12 hour shift. You now have the option of perusing 1830s; Kelly House, Skelmorlie Castle, Largs, Kelburne House, Saltcoats, Eglinton Castle, and Ayr. Contents Page has been updated.

Bedtime for me. Enjoy.

26/05/2018 08:27

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Good morning,

Four more chapters added to ‘Select Views on the River Clyde’; Port-Glasgow, Roseneath House, Laven Castle, and Innerkip and Ardgowan House. The Contents Page has been updated.

I’m away now to enjoy a couple of nights off. Take care all.

23/05/2018 08:29

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I’ve made a few wee changes to the site this morning. Well, firstly I did my “chores” and typed up the Bothwell Castle, Blythswood House, View from Dalnotar Hill, and Dunglass Castle chapters for ‘Select Views on the River Clyde’, scanned in their engravings, got those posted and updated the Contents Page.

Now, the Book List menu option would annoyingly take you to just a list of my posts here with the most recent at the top like this. I didn’t want that but wasn’t sure how to change it. I spent time this morning and worked it out so now that information is in a page marked Recent Posts and can be found as an option under this Updates tab. Now the Book List option has what I was wanting all along, a Contents Page for the books.

I have also added a menu option entitled ‘Miscellany‘. The first addition, and reason for creating this option, is What Happened to the Scottish Monarchy? It was a question I was asked on Facebook a wee while ago and allowed me to lay out the history of the Scottish monarchy through the ages until it amalgamated with the British monarchy with James VI & I.

Hope everyone’s happy with these changes. Enjoy all!

22/05/2018 09:17

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More completed last night for ‘Select Views’. Lee House, Craignethan Castle, Mauldslie Castle, and Cambusnethan House are typed up in full with their accompanying engravings. Contents Page for the book has been updated.

21/05/2018 08:38

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Super busy 12hr shift last night so not too much accomplished. Something about a high-profile wedding and a folk celebrating a sport?

I typed up Corehouse & Falls of Stonebyres, got home, scanned & added pics, and posted. The Contents Page for ‘Select Views on the River Clyde’ has been updated. Info table within the text of Greenock has been fixed (not that you noticed it was messy, right?🙄).

20/05/2018 08:31

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Continuing with ‘Select Views on the River Clyde’, last night, I typed up Carstairs House, Bonnington Lyn, Cartlane Craigs, and Fall of Corehouse. Got home this morning and have scanned and added their respective engravings and added them to the Contents Page too.

19/05/2018 09:09

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Last night I began ‘Select Views on the River Clyde’ (1830) by John M. Leighton. I’d posted a poll on the Random Scottish History FB page to find out which places folk’d be most interested in reading about. A mere 1 vote guaranteed a town the right to be transcribed and scanned in to the page. I ended up with 13 places; Hamilton Place, Glasgow, Govan, Erskine House, Dumbarton Castle, Helensburgh, Greenock, Gourock, Dunoon, Cloch Light House, Castle Toward, Rothesay, and Millport. I have uploaded them all with scans of their respective engravings. I did, however, come straight in from work and rescanned the entire book, cos I wasn’t happy with how they’ve turned out after using the hand scanner. The pages are quite tanned and spotted and I don’t feel enough of the detail has come through in the final products, so there we are. I’m not really up for swapping them for the new ones this morning. Bed’s a-callin’ me. I will do it tonight along with getting started on the text for the other chapters. I’ll sort out uploading the cover and publisher’s page into the Scanned Images section tonight too.

The Contents page for the book is populated with what’s available at present and it’s been cited in the Bibliography.

15/05/2018 10:06

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I have finally finished ‘Punch‘ magazine’s Almanack for the year 1857. So much to read, so much to discard as irrelevant (or just too insulting to varying demographics), but it’s done. The random Miscellany offered has been sifted through and articles chosen because they’re curious, perhaps shocking, funny, or just bizarre. Typed, scanned, and published for your perusal. It’s in its own new menu option ‘Non-Scottish Publications‘. To which other publications will be added on occasion, though naturally, not nearly as often as Scottish-relevant ones.

Enjoy and please don’t let some of the more on-the-nose articles get to you too much. It’s difficult, I grant you, but it is possible and there’s always the next article to move onto (if your blood’s not boiling too much).

14/05/2018 08:37

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Volume 1 of Chalmers’ ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots‘ is now available in full to the interested readers who stop by.

I’ve added the ‘Punch Almanack for 1857’ to the Bibliography and begun to type up a few of the more interesting articles to make them available. There are some great wee cartoons but I want to choose some of the best as I’m not intending on scanning or typing it all.

30/04/2018 16:14

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A very good Saturday morning to you all.

Last night was more hectic, therefore, less accomplished. I received a year’s worth, January-December 1857, of ‘Punch’ magazines bound in a book yesterday. Though neither a Scottish publication, nor one to do with Scottish history, it enabled me to find and add a photo (too big to scan easily) of the cartoon described by Donald McLeod in his ‘Gloomy Memories’ chapter, ‘Willing Hands for India‘. So that’s done.

This purchase, along with another few I have in the collection, not Scotland related, has me considering another menu option specifically for those texts. I have one of the first translations of ‘Thousand and One Nights’, E. W. Lane (1841), 3 volumes, where “Alá ed-Deen Abu-sh-Shámát” sounds a lot like it’s popular fictional character Aladdin, and even contains a flying couch (rather than rug/carpet), the Italian ‘Nights of Straparola’, W. G. Waters (1894), 2 volumes, which, along with ‘Punch’, all provide hundreds of excellent illustrations throughout. There’s also Sir G. W. Dasent’s Icelandic ‘Story of Burnt Njal’ (1900) and ‘Popular Tales from the Norse’ (1904). So, if any of these grab your attention, watch this space.

Last night Chalmers’ ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots‘ was almost completed. Chapters 22, 23 & 24 are complete and the final Chapter, 25, will be completed tonight.

28/04/2018 08:37

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Morning all!

Last night was mostly spent typing furiously. I forgot to bring lunch with me, of course, so I had my breaks to work with too. So you have Chapters 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, & 21, of the ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots’, to peruse at your leisure. The Content Page has been updated to reflect this.

27/04/2018 08:09

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Good morning. I feel as though I got lots accomplished last night. Let me see if I can remember the things…

I uploaded Scans of volumes 1 & 2 of Chalmers’ ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots‘, finished Chapter 3, and typed up and posted Chapters 4, 5, 6, 7, & 8.

I also added the items from Case O in Gallery 1 of ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition’.

26/04/2018 08:20

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After the long weekend I figured I should get on with some stuff. To that end I’ve typed up ‘Rab and His Friends‘. I feel I need to emphasise just how sad this wee story is. The idea was to record it so it was available as audio too but I genuinely don’t think I could make it all the way through. Scans of the book can be found here.

I’ve also started adding a new book for your perusal. ‘Life of Mary, Queen of Scots‘ by George Chalmers (1822). Scans will be uploaded tonight (probably). The Preface and Chapters 1 & 2 (and half of Chapter 3) have been typed up. It’s also been added to the page’s Bibliography.

25/04/2018 07:58

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Good morning!

That’s Cases H, I, J, K, L, M, & N complete for Gallery 1.

I’m now away to enjoy a weekend away for friends’ birthdays. Enjoy!

20/04/2018 07:50

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So the night of Monday 16th into Tuesday 17th I finished typing up ‘Gloomy Memories‘ which is now complete. The last two chapters are ‘Well Done, Brave Highlands.‘ and ‘Eviction by Fire in Sutherland.‘ It’s a difficult and sad read but we’ll worth it.

Tuesday 17th into Wednesday 18th I finished typing up Case D from Gallery 1 of ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition 1894.’ and added Case E, F, and G in full to the same Gallery.

Last night I had typed up Case H, I, and J, at which point the computer glitched and the webpage I was typing the information to became unresponsive. I thought, it’s all good as WordPress offer a “more recent copy” when you go in to edit it again. So I went in to do that and it turns out the computer glitch has made it so my “more recent copy” is Gallery 1 with NO INFO whatsoever on it. Nothing. Not even the old stuff. So I’ve spent an entire night typing for what appears to be no reason at all. Complete waste of my time. So there we are.

19/04/2018 07:14

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For something a little more light-hearted, this morning I scanned in and uploaded ‘Rab and His Friends‘ which is a mid-19th Century story set in Glasgow. My copy is undated but the illustrations suggest late 19th Century. I’ll type it up so everyone can enjoy it as much as I did. It’s a sad wee tale with lots of lovely wee Glaswegian-isms throughout.

Scanned Images Content Page and Bibliography updated.

15/04/2018 08:35

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‘Gloomy Memories’ is now only a few pages away from being completely transcribed here. That’s ‘The Beloved and Great Hugh Miller on Sutherland as it Was and Is‘, ‘Willing Hands for India’, ‘The Freehold Movement and Highland Clearances‘, ‘3 Related Poems‘, and ‘Lord Palmerston’s Scheme & the Massacre of the Rosses‘, complete. The Contents Page has been updated to reflect this. Please be warned, those with a sensitive disposition may want to prepare themselves, as the descriptions in the ‘Massacre of the Rosses’ is disturbing and fairly graphic but I refuse to edit out anything. You get the whole book or none of the book and I’ve not come across a book I’m not prepared to share as yet.

I’m away to enjoy a well-deserved (I feel) long weekend. Take care all.

13/04/2018 08:32

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I’m very sad to say a very dear friend who was more of a book collector than I can ever hope to be passed away this morning. Some of the books I was fortunate enough to flick through, due to his desire to share what he had with others, were truly incredible and of the like I may never see in person again. I learned so much from him and I’d like to think I imparted some knowledge of my own in return. Every time I obtained a new book my first thought would go to what Harry might think of the acquisition. I believe it’ll be a while before that instinct leaves me.

I found a couple of the first posts I wrote on Facebook on meeting him and it gives you an idea of how attached I was to become to him:

“Yesterday thanks to Richard I met the most extraordinary gentleman, Harry, who has a book collection, the like of which I’ve never encountered. We spent 10 hours discussing and reading varying examples of literature. I was stoked he was impressed by a couple of the books I brought from my own burgeoning collection. Harry gifted me a book many would think was not to my taste but if anything was to inspire me to read the New Testament it’s the Scots edition. I cannot get over the amount of preparation Mr Lorimer dedicated to the creation of this book. Unfortunately he died before he could complete his effort. Let me give you a short example from the introduction, written by his son,

‘In December 1946 he asked the National Bible Society of Scotland to provide him with copies of several modern translations of the New Testament, including one Frisian, two Flemish, one Afrikaans, and three Roumanian. During the next ten years he scrutinised a great many translations of the New Testament in many different languages;(2)
‘2. Thus not content with having “read through” 72 different versions of Jude, Hebrews (11.32-8), and James (1) in 14 languages, including 4 Latin, 2 Scots, 22 English, 9 German, 3 Swedish, 4 Danish, 4 Norwegian, 2 Dutch, 2 Flemish, 11 French, 4 Italian, 3 Spanish, 1 Catalan, and 1 Rhaeto-Romaunsch, he also “read through” at least 174 versions of Philemon in 23 different languages, including 8 Latin, 2 Coptic, 2 Syriac, 2 Platt-Dutsch, 23 German, 7 Danish, 5 Norwegian, 3 Swedish, 1 Faroese, 6 Dutch, 2 Flemish, 22 French, 1 Occitanian, 2 Catalan, 14 Italian, 4 Rhaeto-Romaunsch, 4 Modern Greek, 2 Scots, 48 English, and (for good measure) 1 Esperanto.’

What a guy.” (13/02/2016 14:58)


‘The New Testament in Scots’, W. L. Lorimer (1983), The writing on the front cover (if it can be made out) is the Lord’s Prayer in Scots.

I openly expressed my desire to be a regular visitor of Harry’s:


A gentleman I’ve recently become friends with Harry through Richard and a mutual love of old literature had me round for tea this afternoon. Every visit is a revelation. I truly cannot think of another description. The amount of differing antique publications I’m allowed to read and flick through makes me genuinely anxious sometimes. Today I had the pleasure of going through a Greek/Latin book dated 1699, as you can see in the pic I insisted on taking. I felt like it was almost a guarantee a page’d tear or fall apart in my hands but it was surprisingly well bound.” (31/03/2016 19:19)


“This is a wee bit about ancient burial practices in Rutherglen. This book itself was published 1793 so is kinda ancient by our standards. It’s ‘The History of Rutherglen and East-Kilbride’. Thanks to Harry again for the ability to read such a thing 1st hand.” (comment within the post dated 31/03/2016 19:19)


Our friendship was interrupted by a falling out with the before-mentioned Richard over a disagreement in politics and how he treated a fragile friend of mine due to his beliefs. I was warned in no uncertain terms by him I wasn’t to meet with “his friend Harry” again. After finding more out about this person I acceded to that demand in order to avoid some real trouble. The threats were more than I could handle.


As I said before, every time I obtained a new volume of something I thought Harry would love, my thoughts went in his direction. So in the end I decided to deal with whatever came of it and wrote him a letter of explanation for my absence from his life. Thanks goes to my friend Dan for convincing me to do just that. On receipt of my correspondence he immediately called me and told me I was to visit him as soon as I was able. He, of course, found the situation between two of his friends ridiculous but, after I explained my concerns, our meetings were prearranged in order to avoid any confrontation.

Richard Convo

Of course the next meeting we had I was accompanied by a suitcase full of all the more interesting works I’d accumulated in our time apart.

“Getting ready to go see a book collector friend I’ve not seen in a year. Bringing a few choice books I’ve obtained in the meantime. His collection takes up most of the free space he has in his house and I can’t wait to see what he has that relates to Random Scottish History. I always come back with a list of books I’m determined to find.” (04/04/2017 12:36)


A tiny portion of the books I encountered in my time with this extraorindary man:


I’m afraid I can’t tell you much more about this book than what you can see in the pictures. It’s a 17th Century Froben publication.


This is Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy. And what a copy. The cover was this excellent fiery orange and really soft. It’s a 1928 Nonesuch edition.


Not a particularly old book this. Picture taken so I could obtain my own copy as the wee bits I read from it were exactly suited to Random Scottish History. J. A. Balfour’s ‘Book of Arran’ (1910).

My visits weren’t just a couple of hours worth either. So many times I found I was ordering a cab to go home 10 hours after I’d arrived. There was no end to the stories and knowledge he possessed. He will be greatly missed.

I haven’t the will to add to the page tonight I’m afraid. Take care all and remember to treasure those around you.

09/04/2018 23:17

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Another chapter, Glen Tilt and Stories of Those Who Emigrated, completed for’ Gloomy Memories’, last night. Chapter Page updated. “Disinterested” added to Glossary as it became clear folk were assuming it was the same as “Uninterested”, which really changes the meaning and tone of some of the information within Donald MacLeod’s work. That’s all for today people.

09/04/2018 10:19

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On finishing Mr. Alister’s 1st Letter in Response to the Marquis of Breadalbane, I felt I should take the opportunity, last night, to scan in and upload my copy of the Kilchurn Heritage’s ‘Black Book of Taymouth; With Other Papers From the Breadalbane Charter Room‘ (1855).

Today I also completed the transcription of Mr. Alister’s 2nd Letter in Response to said Marquis. The man really has a way with words. He presses his points, rather more forcefully than I think the Lord would have been happy with, making for a superb read.

Enjoy all.

07/04/2018 21:48

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Good afternoon. Just finished typing up Mr. Alister’s Response to the Marquis of Breadalbane, and what a response! I would have thought someone calling out a member of the aristocracy in quite the way he does, in 1853, might fear for his continued safety thereafter. It really makes for quite the read.

Enjoy all.

06/04/2018 16:51

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Still not quite 100% physically but I wasn’t about to let that put me off. At least typing gives me something to take my mind off it.

So last night I finished ‘Exiled Barramen and Their Calumniators‘. I also typed up the ‘Marquis of Breadalbane’s Refutation‘ and will get started on Letter 1 answering his claims tonight. The Chapter Page for ‘Gloomy Memories’ has also been updated.

For ‘Gallery 1‘ of the ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition 1894‘ I completed Case C., and almost finished Case D.

I’m away to get comfy so I can get started on enjoying my days off.

Take care all.

05/04/2018 10:39

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I’m afraid I’ve not been very well recently but I felt recovered enough to finish off Donald McLeod’s ‘Address to Harriet Beecher Stowe‘ and even almost completed ‘The Exiled Barramen and their Calumniators‘ (“calumniators” being folk who lie about something or someone and the “calumniated” are those who’ve been lied about) which will be completed tonight.

I had also posted a few holiday-appropriate posts to the Random Scottish History Facebook Page on Sunday there; the first was from Robert Chambers’ ‘Book of Days’ (1886) and explained April Fool’s Day, the second was Easter Terms from Jamieson’s Scottish Dictionary, and the third was Easter Occurences from the books I’d posted so far to the page; George Chalmers’ ‘The Life of Mary, Queen of Scots’ (1822), James Grant’s ‘Old and New Edinburgh’ (1880), and a book review from the ‘Literary Examiner’ (1860) detailing John F Campbell’s gathering of Gaelic folklore for his ‘Popular Tales of the West Highlands’.

That’s it for just now. I’m away to my bed to finish recuperating.

04/04/2018 08:30

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Hi all. Last night was spent adding more articles of information to Gallery 1 of the ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition 1894‘. ‘Portraits’ (nos. 1-110), ‘Domestic and Miscellaneous Articles’ (nos. 1982-1992), ‘ Arrangement of Cases Containing Literature’ (list), ‘Literature., Case A.: Books Printed in Glasgow Before 1700’ (nos. 2030-2060), ‘Case B.: Sir William Wallace’ (nos. 2061-2063), ‘Case B.: Robert the Bruce’ (nos. 2064-2066), ‘Case B.: Sir David Lindesay’ (nos. 2067-2071), and ‘Case B.: The Rebellion’ (nos. 2072-2076) are all complete.

The morning will now mostly consist of freaking out until the dentist. See you on the other side.

28/03/2018 08:45

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Good morning. Spent last night sorting out the Chapter page for the ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition 1894’. I also decided, as you’re referred to “See No. X” SO often, it would take way too long to work out all the item nos. you need to be able to refer to in order to only type up those. Instead I’ve decided to type it all out. All of it. I think there are about 2800 articles in all but as I don’t know what bits would be useful or interesting to whoever might stumble upon it, I feel it needs to be done. So I’ve almost finished the Portrait section of Gallery 1.

It’s a good thing I enjoy it.

27/03/2018 11:20

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Afternoon history lovers. More has been added to the ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition 1894‘. The additions with pictures included are:

Gallery 1 – Domestic and Miscellaneous Articles,

Gallery 2 – Domestic and Miscellaneous Articles,

Gallery 3 – Silver in Case No. 1, Silver of Present Century in Case No. 2, Old Silver in Case No. 1, Case No. 8, and Case No. 12, and

Gallery 4 – Domestic and Miscellaneous Articles.

I’m going to put the numbers they refer you to within the descriptions of articles, that don’t have an image attached, in their own chapter at the end.

25/03/2018 12:25

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Good morning. Headed out to a 4-weekly history group meeting this morning so I’m using that as an excuse to take time out.

Last night, however, I added a lot more from the ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition 1894’. I figured it would have been a gallery per section, e.g., a Portraits Gallery, Views Gallery, Charters Gallery, &c. Apparently not, so the galleries have been renamed to just Gallery 1, Gallery 2, &c., and as they seem kind of randomly placed throughout the catalogue it’s a case of updating each as I come across them. So, you’ll find each containing, as of this morning;

Galleries 1 & 2 still have only Portraits (illustrated) assigned to them,

Gallery 3 has Portraits (illustrated), Miniatures (not illustrated), Medallions & Sculpture (illustrated),

Gallery 4 has Portraits (illustrated), Views & Charters (including that cited in ‘Scots Lore‘), Burgess Tickets, &c. (illustrated),

Gallery 5 has Portraits (not illustrated), Sculpture (not illustrated), On the Staircase (not illustrated), & Views (illustrated), and

Gallery 6 has Portraits (illustrated), Views (illustrated), Maps, Plans, &c. (not illustrated).

I’ll go through them all adding any and all text you’re referred to “see” once all the pictures are posted into their relevant Gallery along with links to make referring to each source easier.

24/03/2018 08:27

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Evening all. I chose to spend last night uploading the first few Galleries of Portraits from ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition 1894‘. We were super under-staffed last night and doing pictures makes me happy and the night seem to pass faster. I began by uploading them into scans but realised there was way too much information involved and text to cross-reference for it to fit in there so I spent time, when I got home this morning, putting it all in with the Book List items with the Galleries divided into chapters. This one could take a while but the wealth of information, with regards family ties & genealogies especially, has already been interesting.

I also progressed ‘Gloomy Memories‘ by another 10 pages. It’s now past my bedtime so I’m away. Enjoy all.

20/03/2018 18:05

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Good morning! So, finally, I’m pleased to inform everyone that James Grant’s excellent work, ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘, is finally complete with all illustrations uploaded.

Then I spent the rest of the night typing furiously in a bid to finish Donald McLeod’s Address to Mrs. Harriet B. S. and failed about 14 pages short. There’s a LOT and I don’t want to deprive you of any of it as it makes for super informative read. It’s very funny in some places due to the author’s dry wit and liberal use of sarcasm. This one chapter in itself really outlines the whole situation and takes it apart in depth using quotes and relating it to examples from the wider world, for example, the Slave Abolitionsts find themselves criticised for the efforts and vast amounts of money spent in Britain to this end when worse was happening on their own doorstep. That the Duchess of Sutherland was a large proponent and patron of the movement spoke to the outward hypocrisy of this class at that time.

I will finish it tonight, I promise. Also I may start scanning and uploading some of the more interesting pictures and information from ‘Memorial Catalogue of the Old Glasgow Exhibition 1894’, Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts (1894), where the picture from the ‘Scots Lore‘ article “The Friars Preachers in Glasgow. – An Old Indenture” came from. But you’ll find out tomorrow if I was able to find the time, what with being only 60ish% through ‘Gloomy Memories‘.

19/03/2018 11:27

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Not too much time to myself last night but the pictures have been added to chapters 40-49 of ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘, strangely chapters 30, 37, 38, & 39 have apparently absconded. They will be found or rescanned in the next day or so. I didn’t get much of ‘Gloomy Memories‘ done either. Letter 25 and the Appendix are complete and have been added to the Contents page. I’m about half-way through McLeod’s response to Mrs. B. S. but there’s a lot of text. I’ve taken to breaking it up into manageable chunks within the post with titles. These will, hopefully, make navigating the post to points of particular interest easier.

I’m away to get ready for a guided tour of Glasgow’s City Necropolis. Photos will follow later, no doubt, including of the Cathedral.

17/03/2018 10:51

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No update yesterday, as nothing was done, so I thought I’d catch up last night. For those following Donald McLeod’s ‘Gloomy Memories‘, Letters 6-24 have been typed up and posted, contents page updated, and the book’s been added to the Bibliography. The rest of it should be published by tomorrow morning (well, a good chunk of the rest of it anyway).

Also happily, the scans from James Grant’s ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘ have been edited and are ready to upload tonight. So, assuming there are no pictures that were missed during the scanning spree, that should complete volume 1 of this set.

16/03/2018 12:21

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Updated ‘Gloomy Memories‘ by adding the Introduction and Letters 1-5. Think happy thoughts 😉

14/03/2018 15:03

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Couple of things done this morning. Pictures added up to Chapter 39 of ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘, it’s slow work I’m afraid, and the RandomScottishHistory Instagram page has been populated, now I finally have my phone back, from the scans already here. I’m off now to enjoy not having any plans or work.

13/03/2018 12:28

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So what did I get done last night and this morning? I’m a bit sleep deprived. Got maybe an hour and a half’s kip yesterday between night shifts, so I thought to keep myself busy and make it seem to pass faster I should choose a simple, yet time-consuming, task. To that end I have created the ‘Gloomy Memories‘, Donald McLeod (1892), menu option with all its chapters ready to populate with the most heartbreaking stories, testimonies, and revelations from the darkest era of our nation’s history.

To begin with I’ve spent the morning typing up the Prologue, which in itself makes for a truly eye-opening read. Prepare yourself for it to be a more difficult read than you expect. If you’re prone to bouts of rage, or are sensitive to the pain of others, maybe take a few breaths. Good night and good luck.

Tired but Working JenWhat’s the last thing you do before you pass out?
12/03/2018 13:18

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Not much of an update this afternoon ’cause Sunday’s are for chatting to friends for hours on the phone and arranging to get books to others. Far more sedate than my nights have been recently, working on the page (ya wee dirties).

Last night I uploaded the rest of the text for Chapters 41-49 and finished the contents page for it, completing that stage for volume 1 of ‘Old and New Edinburgh’. I have bad news however. My scanner is apparently feeling overworked as the rest of the scans for the book, I got last night, are either blank white or black, with the exception of 2 (out of 58). So I’ll be having to do the scans at home cutting the amount of time I have to get complete posts out, or I could just continue uploading mounds of text and let the pictures catch up when they can. I don’t know which would be less annoying, so comment if you have thoughts on how you’d like to see the information put out there until I’ve sorted my picture problem.

I have also create an Instagram page, for the scans I guess, on the advice of a friend and colleague, so when my phone’s fixed and back in my possession I’ll sort that out. Why is tech so unreliable? Honestly, I recommend a good book.

11/03/2018 12:52

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Finishing up a wee bit earlier this morning, I’m afraid, as I’m finding it difficult to keep my eyes open. I have managed to get some stuff done in the form of adding pictures to chapters 16-26, so they’re finished. Also I’ve added text to chapters 27-40, pictures are pending, so they’re about done, and I’ve added those as links to the ‘Old and New Edinburgh’ Chapters Page. I’ve gone through the footnotes of both books and those that can be cross-referenced to other posts have had links added to them to make this easier.

Finally, I wanted to add a search field, again to make navigation of the site easier for visitors, but found this more difficult than I figured it’d be. I’m not HTML literate and even when I found easy to follow steps to do it it just posted as the script text rather than becoming a search field. So… This is my compromise. You can find the Search link at the bottom of the Homepage as you can see below and it’ll take you to a Search Field for the page.

Screenshot-2018-3-10 Random Scottish History

10/03/2018 10:18

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Before I head to bed for work tonight I thought I’d let you know what’s new. Last night I decided to change the goals I’d set myself in order to get ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘ uploaded as quickly as possible. So I posted chapters 16-25 last night, without the pictures, deciding I’d edit as many as possible when I got home this morning. So there are 65 pictures ready to be added to the chapters tonight.

Also, as Allan Ramsay came up in one of the chapters posted, I thought I’d upload scans of ‘Tea-Table Miscellany: or, A Collection of Scots Sangs‘, by the man himself. It’s where I found Scotland gave the world the word “wow”. The Bibliography has been updated to include this book. Enjoy the sunshine we’re being treated to today and I’ll see you tomorrow.

09/03/2018 12:24

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I came across this article from yesterday’s ‘Scottish Legal News’, Campaigner’s appeal against Edinburgh Old Town development dismissed“, which would have James Grant, author of ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘, weeping into his whisky. He mentions in his 1880 publication how annoyed he was by the Victorian desire to “improve” the city by demolishing some of Edinburgh’s oldest and most historic structures. It would seem that desire has continued to the present day.

09/03/2018 05:50

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Afternoon all,

Last night in work I scanned up the next lot of chapters for ‘Old and New Edinburgh’, finished up James I. chapter for ‘Historical Works of James Balfour‘ and its updated Companion copy, which gave me a few more words to add to the Glossary. When I got home just before 08:00 I was straight on the computer to post those, and have spent the rest of the time since then straightening, cropping and uploading scans for chapters 11-15 of ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘ which is now done. So I leave you for another day as I’m headed to ma kip. I hope you enjoy these recent offerings from James Grant.

08/03/2018 12:51

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Good morning.

I’ve been up and on the computer sorting out the scans for chapters 6-10 of ‘Old and New Edinburgh‘ since 03:30 this morning, which have, as you can see, all been fully uploaded. The chapter links have been added to the book’s content page too. I expected this to be a fairly quick process but the cropping and wee edits to the scanned pictures are keeping me chained to Photoshop for hours, mind that’s due to there being such a plethora of images to upload into the posts. I’m really pleased at how they look and hope you get as much enjoyment from them.

07/03/2018 09:12

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Hi everyone. I didn’t think to update you on progress and what was new to the site because I was so focused on getting as much added for your perusal as possible while still riding the initial momentum that had me setting up the site to begin with.

I’ve had the Random Scottish History page on Facebook for just over a year, and was half-way thru uploading ‘The Historical Works of James Balfour’, James Haig (1824), but felt the format was too restrictive for the content. The main issue being that the posts were jpeg screenshots of the information, in an effort to maintain a format as close to the original text as possible, but I really wanted the documents to be searchable. After a chat with a very good friend it was decided that this was the way forward (and yes I owe them a very nice bottle of whisky ;-P).

Having the word documents already to hand from almost 3 years of transcribing the book collection, in an effort to make them fully searchable for a personal project, I found the aim of the project shifting. The more I shared the weird, horrific, funny, obscure anecdotes I was finding, the more I realised none of us seemed to be aware of our own country’s history, which was made obvious during Scotland’s 2014 independence referendum and was the reason for my collection itself changing from that of Victorian London Newsprints to Scottish texts. I didn’t feel like I was informed enough to make a decision then and the feeling was mirrored by friends and throughout social media comments.

So the project became about helping the Scottish population, those with Scottish heritage around the world, and the interested, to find more information on as many different fields of Scottish history as I was able to afford and lay my hands on. There are no political or religious views expressed here. It’s purely information for the sake of itself.

Anyway, this is supposed to be an update page and the most recent update is that all the pictures for ‘Old and New Edinburgh’, James Grant (1880), from the introduction to chapter 5, have been reuploaded. I felt they came out a bit blurry for some reason before so I’ve rescanned them. I hope you enjoy and I’ll see you here again soon.

04/03/18 11:48

5 thoughts on “Updates

    1. Thank you so much love. Nothing quite like those that have come before me but that’s what we’re here for 😊

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