High Street, Dumfries


Dumfries. Fountain, High Street.
Postmarked 1913
Publisher: Woolstone Bros, London

Google Street View (in front of fountain).

The town centre fountain sits at the junction of English Street and the High Street. Made of iron and built in 1882. Constructed on the site of an earlier fountain built in 1850 to celebrate the first piped water supply in the town. The original fountain was moved to the grounds at the front of Nithbank Hospital. The 1882 fountain was sculpted and cast by the Smith (Sun) Foundry in Glasgow. The foundry closed in 1899 and this remains as one of the few larger cast iron features the foundry created.
Old Dumfries Wiki

Argyle Lodging, Stirling


Courtyard, Argyle House, Stirling
Dated 1908
Publisher: Valentine

Google Street View.

Argyll’s Lodging is the most complete surviving example of a seventeenth century town house in Scotland. It can be found in the upper part of Stirling, just below Stirling Castle’s Esplanade. The house sits behind a screen wall and comprises a collection of buildings built in two phases and in three ranges around an enclosed courtyard. Conversion and extension of an existing sixteenth century tower house began in the 1630s for Sir William Alexander, 1st Earl of Stirling, who had previously resided at Menstrie Castle. Further enlargement was undertaken in the 1670s for the 9th Earl of Argyll. Argyll’s Lodging shows considerable French influence. The turrets sited at each corner of the house overlooking the courtyard have conical roofs typical of French provincial townhouses. Visitors enter the complex through an archway from the road into the courtyard. This is much as it would have been in the 1670s.
Undiscovered Scotland

Argyll’s Lodging — View from the street, “The castellated and domestic architecture of Scotland from the twelfth to the eighteenth century”, David MacGibbon, 1887

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Doune Castle, Doune, Stirling


Doune Castle, Baron’s Hall
Publisher: “F W H”

Google Street View.

Doune Castle was rebuilt in the late 14th century by Robert Stewart, Earl of Fife and son of King Robert II. . . . His new palace consisted of a large square tower-keep with a projecting round tower to one side; through the basement of this building ran the entrance passageway to the courtyard, and above this was the Duke’s inner hall. Adjacent to this four storey building was the block containing the Great Hall, above three vaulted cellars. These two buildings took up the whole of the north front of the castle. Surviving on the western side is the kitchen tower; other buildings took up the rest of the courtyard walls.
The Castle Guy

The magnificent castle of Doune, which is one of the best examples of the quadrangular architecture of the fifteenth century, was built by Murdoch, Duke of Albany, and was, like Falkland, forfeited to the crown in 1424. It had superseded an earlier structure, the seat of the Earls of Menteith, which came into the possession of Robert, the great Duke of Albany, on his marriage to Margaret, Countess of Menteith. In 1431 it was the dwelling-place of James, Duke of Rothesay, the heir to the throne, then six months old, for whose use forty-eight pounds of almonds were sent to it.
“Royal palaces of Scotland”, Helen Douglas-Irvine & Robert S. Rait, 1911

Doune Castle “The baronial and ecclesiastical antiquities of Scotland, Vol 2”, Robert William Billings, 1845

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Culloden Moor, Highland


Battlefield – Culloden Moor
c.1910
Publisher: “M D & Co Ltd, Glasgow”

Google Street View (approximate).

The course of British, European and world history was changed at Culloden on 16 April 1746. A ferocious war had come to Scotland, dividing families and setting clan against clan. It was here that the Jacobite army took their last stand to reclaim the thrones of Britain from the Hanoverians for a Stuart king. The Jacobites fought to restore the exiled James VIII as king and were led by Prince Charles Edward Stuart, James’s son; George II’s government army (led by the Duke of Cumberland, George’s son) was equally determined to stop this happening.
National Trust for Scotland

Although a road was built across the battlefield in 1835, attempts have been made by the National Trust for Scotland to restore the parts of the site in their care to how they would have appeared to participants in the battle. Archaeological investigations, including the use of metal detectors to recover musket balls and other battlefield debris, have pinpointed the spots where the heaviest fighting took place. It seems that the Jacobites were using muskets in greater numbers than was first thought, while the recovery of heavy iron shell fragments shows that the government army fired mortars in a bid to halt the onrushing Jacobites.
. . .
This 20-foot-high memorial cairn was erected by Duncan Forbes in 1881. Forbes was the owner of Culloden House (now a luxury hotel), which had been in the hands of his family since the 17th century, and was the descendant of a key figure on the government side in 1746.

History Extra

On Culloden Moor on April 16 1746 arguably the last Scottish army sought to restore Prince Charles’ father James to a multi-kingdom monarchy more aligned to European politics than colonial struggle. Forget any idea of Highland clans against British regiments. The Jacobites were heavily armed with muskets and formed into conventional regiments. They were drilled according to French conventions and some British army practice and fought next to Franco-Irish and Scoto-French allies. They possessed numerous artillery pieces and fired more balls per man than the British.
The Conversation

Argyle Street, Glasgow


Argyle Street, Glasgow.
c.1920
Publisher: W. Ritchie & Sons (“Reliable series”), 1902-28

Google Street View.

Argyle Street

Glasgow Trams through the Years

Originally known as Westergait, Argyle Street led west from Trongate to the city’s West Port, the western gate out of the city’s walls. It was renamed in honour of the Duke of Argyll, some time after the removal of the West Port in 1751, as a result of the expansion of the city westward. The old West Port Well stood at the beginning of the street. On both sides of the street stood courts where businesses operated: Sysdney Court, Morrison’s Court, Moodies’s Court, Wellington Court, Wilson’s Court, Buchanan Court, Turner’s Court and Pratt’s Court.

Major reconstruction of the area at the turn of the 1970s which saw the construction of the Glasgow Inner Ring Road, the demolition of Anderston Cross and its replacement with the Anderston Centre complex changed the line of Argyle Street, the eastern half now terminating underneath the Kingston Bridge approach viaduct whilst the main vehicle route over the motorway runs along St. Vincent Street, leaving a 250-metre stretch of the western half of road in Anderston isolated as a cul de sac.
Wikipedia.

Abottsford, Melrose, Roxburghshire


The Library, Abbotsford
c.1920
Publisher: W. Ritchie & Sons (“Reliable series”), 1902-28

Google Maps

Abbotsford is a historic country house in the Scottish Borders, near Galashiels, on the south bank of the River Tweed. Now open to the public, it was built as the residence of historical novelist and poet Sir Walter Scott between 1817 and 1825. . . . The estate and its neo-Medieval features nod towards Scott’s desire for a historical feel, but the writer ensured that the house would provide all the comforts of modern living. As a result, Scott used the space as a proving-ground for new technologies. The house was outfitted with early gas lighting and pneumatic bells connecting residents with servants elsewhere in the house.
Wikipedia.

The library at Abbotsford is entirely the creation of Scott: it begins with the chapbooks he collected as a child and continues through the small volumes of poetry he annotated as a schoolboy.
Abbotsford: the home of Sir Walter Scott

From this you pass into the largest of all the apartments, the library, which I really must say, is really a noble room. It is an oblong of some fifty feet, by thirty, with a projection in the centre, opposite the fireplace, terminating in a grand bow window, fitted up with books also, and, in fact, constituting a sort of chapel to the church. The roof is of carved oak again a very rich pattern I believe chiefly a la Roslin; and the bookcases, which are also of richly carved oak, reach high up the walls all round. The collection amounts, in this room, to some fifteen or twenty thousand volumes, arranged according to their subjects : British history and antiquities, filling the whole of the chief wall ; English poetry and drama, classics and miscellanies, one end : foreign literature, chiefly French and German, the other. The cases on the side opposite the fire are wired and locked, as containing articles very precious and very portable. One consists entirely of Books and MSS. relating to the insurrections of 1715 and 1745; another (within the recess of the bow window), of treatises de re magice, both of these being (I am told, and can well believe) in their several ways, collections of the rarest curiosity. My cicerone pointed out, in one corner, a magnificent set of Mountfaucon, ten volumes folio, bound in the richest manner in scarlet, and stamped with the royal arms, the gift of his present Majesty.

There are few living authors of whose works presentation copies are not to be found here. My friend showed me inscriptions of that sort in, I believe, every European dialect extant. The books are all in prime condition, and bindings that would satisfy Mr. Dibdin. The only picture is Sir Walter’s eldest son, in hussar uniform, and holding his horse, by Allan of Edinburgh, a noble portrait, over the fireplace ; and the only bust is that of Shakespeare, from the Avon monument, in a small niche, in the centre of the east side. On a rich stand of porphyry, in one corner, reposes a tall silver urn, filled with bones from the Piraeus, and bearing the inscription, “Given by George Gordon, Lord Byron, to Sir Walter Scott, Bart.” It contained the letter which accompanied the gift, till lately — it has disappeared, no one guesses who look it ; but, whoever he was, as my guide observed, he must have been a thief for thieving’s sake truly, as he durst no more exhibit his autograph, than tip himself a bare bodkin ! Sad, infamous tourist, indeed ! Although I saw abundance of comfortable looking desks and arm chairs, yet this room seemed rather too large and fine for work and I found accordingly, after passing a double pair of doors, that there was a sanctum within and beyond this library. And here you may believe, was not to me the least interesting, though by no means the most splendid, part of the suit.
Sydney Gazette, 16 May 1829


The Study, Abbotsford

The Study was designed as Scott’s private sanctum and was the last room to be completed at Abbotsford in 1824.
Abbotsford: the home of Sir Walter Scott

ABBOTSFORD
AND SIR WALTER SCOTT’S STUDY.

The lion’s own den proper, then, is a room of about five-and-twenty feet square by twenty feet high, containing of what is called furniture nothing but a small writing-table in the centre, a plain arm chair covered with black leather–a very comfortable one though, for I tried it.–and a single chair besides, plain symptoms that this is no place for company. On either side of the fire-place their are shelves filled with duodecimos and books of reference, chiefly, of course, folios ; but except these there are no books save the contents of a light gallery which runs round three sides of the room, and is reached by a hanging stair of carved oak in one corner. You have been both at the Elisée Bourbon and Mulmaison, and remember the library at one or other of those places, I forget which ; this gallery is much in the same style. There are only two portraits, an original of the beautiful and melancholy head of Claverhouse, and a small full length of Rob Roy. Various little antique cabinets stand round about, each having a bust on it : Stothard’s Canterbury Pilgrims are on the mantlepiece; and in one corner, I saw a collection of really useful weapons, those of the forest craft, to wit–axes and bills and so forth of every calibre. There is only one window pierced in a very thick wall, so that the place is rather sombre ; the light tracery work of the gallery over-head, harmonizes with the books well. It is a very comfortable looking room, and very unlike any other I was in. I should not forget some Highland clamorers, cluttered round a target over the Canterbury people, nor a writing-box of carved wood, lined with crimson velvet, and furnished with silver plate of right venerable aspect, which looked as if it might be the implement of old Chaucer himself, but which from the arms on the lid must have belonged to some Indian Prince of the day of Leo the magnificent at the furthest.
Sydney Gazette, 16 May 1829


Ground Plan of House (from Wikimedia Commons.)

Oban, Scotland


On the back:
Oban is picturesquely situated on the eastern shore of Oban Bay and, being protected from the full force of the sea by the sheltering Island of Kerrera, is a safe and comfortable harbour. Boats for the western parts of Scotland call here regularly, and it one of the best centres for the exploration of the Western Highlands.
Postmarked 1920
Publisher: Raphael Tuck & Sons

Google Street View.

Oban is a resort town within the Argyll and Bute council area of Scotland. Despite its small size, it is the largest town between Helensburgh and Fort William. During the tourist season, the town can have a temporary population of up to over 24,000 people. Oban occupies a setting in the Firth of Lorn. The bay forms a near perfect horseshoe, protected by the island of Kerrera; and beyond Kerrera, the Isle of Mull. To the north, is the long low island of Lismore and the mountains of Morvern and Ardgour.
. . .
The modern town of Oban grew up around the distillery, which was founded there in 1794. A royal charter raised the town to a burgh of barony in 1811. Sir Walter Scott visited the area in 1814, the year in which he published his poem The Lord of the Isles; interest in the poem brought many new visitors to the town. The town was made a Parliamentary Burgh in 1833. A rail link – the Callander and Oban Railway – was authorised in 1864 but took years to reach the town. The final stretch of track to Oban opened on 30 June 1880. This brought further prosperity, revitalising local industry and giving new energy to tourism. Also at this time work on the ill-fated Oban Hydro commenced; the enterprise was abandoned and left to fall into disrepair after 1882 when Dr Orr, the scheme’s originator, realised he had grossly underestimated its cost. Work on McCaig’s Tower, a prominent local landmark, started in 1895. Paid for by John Stewart McCaig (1824-1902) the construction aimed, in hard times, to give work for local stonemasons. However, its construction ceased in 1902 on the death of its benefactor.
Wikipedia.

Burntisland, Scotland


The Port, Burnt Island
1930s
Publisher: Valentine

Google Street View.

“The Port” is the tall building on the corner.

Burntisland stands on the north shore of the Firth of Forth, more or less opposite Leith. As a settlement it formed at a very early date around what was one of the best natural harbours on the river. It is believed that the Romans under Agricola brought troops and supplies ashore here during their invasion of northern Scotland in AD83 (see our Historical Timeline). Fast forward a thousand years or so, and in 1119 Rossend Castle was built on a rocky bluff overlooking the harbour and ideally placed to help defend such a strategically important site. The land around Burntisland was part of the property endowed by David I on the Abbots of Dunfermline in around 1130, and in 1382 the abbey extended the castle.

In 1850 Burntisland became the terminus for the world’s first roll-on roll-off ferry, when a railway ferry carrying trains loaded with coal, grain, whisky and limestone opened across the Firth of Forth to Granton. When the Forth Rail Bridge opened in 1890, the rail ferry ceased, though main line trains to Dundee and Aberdeen continue to pass through the town. Over the past 150 years, Burntisland has seen booms resulting from the export of coal and in shipbuilding. During the Second World War the town’s shipyard produced 69 ships of all types.
Undiscovered Scotland

Dunkeld Cathedral, Dunkeld, Scotland


Dunkeld Cathedral Tower
1900s
Publisher: G.W. Wilson & Co. (1852-1908)

Google Street View (approximate).

Canmore entry (has images including a floorplan)

The history of Dunkeld can be traced to the ninth century when it emerged as an important religious centre for the early Celtic Church. No building of this period survives, the present Cathedral dates from 1318. Partly destroyed during the Reformation (1560), the choir is roofed and now serves as the parish church for regular Sunday worship. The rest of the cathedral is ruinous, but is preserved as an Ancient Monument in the care of Historic Scotland
Dunkeld Cathedral

In 849, relics of St Columba were removed from Iona to protect them from Viking raids. They were brought to Dunkeld by King Kenneth MacAlpin, who appointed a bishop at Dunkeld. Columba became the patron saint of Dunkeld and its monastery. The see was revived in the early 1100s, when Cormac became Bishop of Dunkeld. The cathedral developed over about 250 years, and the earliest surviving part is the choir of the late 1200s. It later became a parish church. The nave was begun in 1406, and lost its roof shortly after the Protestant Reformation of 1560. There are paintings dating from the 1500s on the vault of the bell tower’s ground floor, which once served as an ecclesiastical court. There are also fine memorials in the choir (not in our care), including the effigy of Alexander Stewart, Earl of Buchan – notorious as “The Wolf of Badenoch”.
Historic Environment Scotland

Historian Sir Richard Burton describing Dunkeld as the site for a battle wrote: ‘it is difficult to imagine a position by the nature of the ground more dangerous for a Lowland force, for it is deep sunk among hills commanding it and cutting off a retreat while a rapid river forms the diameter of the semi-circle. But the next day – despite the fact that it was a. Sunday – the garrison set about fortifying Dunkeld Cathedral tower and the Duke of Atholl’s new mansion Dunkeld House.
Dunkeld Cathedral: Battle of Dunkeld

The much-restored cathedral choir, still in use as the parish church, is unaisled and dates to the 13th and 14th centuries. The aisled nave was erected from the early 15th century. The western tower, south porch and chapter house (which houses the cathedral museum) were added between 1450 and 1475. The cathedral was stripped of its rich furnishings after the mid-16th century Reformation and its iconoclasm. The nave and porch have been roofless since the early 17th century. They and the tower in the 21st century are in the care of Historic Environment Scotland. Below the ceiling vault of the tower ground floor are remnants of pre-Reformation murals showing biblical scenes (c. 1490), one of very few such survivals in Scotland. The clearest to survive is a representation of the Judgement of Solomon. This reflects the medieval use of this space as the Bishop’s Court.
Wikipedia.


Dunkeld Cathedral from the North-West
1900s
Publisher: G.W. Wilson & Co. (1852-1908)

Aberdeen, Scotland


Aberdeen from Craiginches
Postmarked 1904
Publisher: Frederick Hartmann (1902-1909)

Google Street View.

Aberdeen’s Craiginches Prison – where the last man to be hanged for murder in Scotland lies buried – will close its doors for the last time today. The prison, once one of the most overcrowded jails in Scotland, is being closed as part of plans for the new £140 million “super jail” HMP Grampian which will open in March in Peterhead. The last inmates at the Victorian prison, built 124 years ago, left Craiginches yesterday. Over recent weeks an estimated 200 prisoners have been transferred to Perth Prison and Barlinnie Prison in Glasgow.
The Scotsman, 10 January 2014/a>