Many of you will have visited Abbotsford House near Melrose, extravagantly built and furnished by Sir Walter Scott. But did you know that much of the ancient wooden panelling was “salvaged” from the old Dunfermline Abbey Church, when the new church was opened in the 1820’s. In “Sir Walter Scott and his “Hawl” from Dunfermline Abbey“, Jean Barclay explains what happened.
In Gray & Harrower Ltd, Grain Millers, George Beattie presents the latest in his extensive series of articles on Dunfermline’s Industrial Past. The Harriebrae Mill had a long life, but was used most recently, and until the 1960’s, by a local Grain Merchant. George’s detailed research has unearthed a power of information about the business and the people who made it.
In The Millport Spinning Mill, Sue Mowat tells the story of the varied uses of a building which once stood in Bruce Street, on the site of a medieval meal mill. It was built as a yarn spinning mill and we learn of it’s construction and of what it was like to work there. Later it became a damask weaving shop and finally, a rather insalubrious lodging house.
In “The Auld Weavers’ Drive” Jean Barclay tells us how the elderly, former handloom weavers of Dunfermline were treated to an annual outing. Hundreds of men and women were taken by fleets of horse drawn carriages for visits to “big houses” around Fife.
This fascinating article gives us all sorts of insights into life and social attitudes one hundred years ago.
In the fifth of our series of Tales from the Kirk Session, Jean Barclay recounts the stories of two kirk elders from the 1720’s who each got into trouble themselves. One was dealt with swiftly by Robert Ferguson’s case was more complicated. The tale unfolds in “Elders with Feet of Clay“.