Thursday, 29 August 2013

Crieff’s High Street Before World War 1 ( 1913/1914 ) Part One

Crieff’s  High Street Before World War 1 ( 1913/1914 )
Part One


    Tom Cuthbert , grocer , East High Street ( now Mike Sweeney , barber )


                                            Crieff Coop about 1914

Our little  town was somewhat different shop wise than it is  today . This  analysis  is  taken from Leslie’s Directory of Perthshire published  100  years ago ! Included are a number  of  businesses which although not  located in the town  itself presumably regarded Crieff as their  nearest major centre . We  here in Crieff have  just enjoyed a well organised and well run Arts Festival in  which many  of the current traders  participated . The shops  provided an outlet  for the many talented people who live  in and  near to the town . Sadly the number of  shops  has  dwindled somewhat over the years and gone is the variety found in the pre War listing below . The  advent of  internet shopping  and large multi functioning  supermarkets has unravelled the intricate pattern of the traditional town centre as  we can discern  below . Eateries and carry out food shops have now usurped the position of the Berlin Wool and Fancy Repositories of yesteryear !

The demise of the railway in Crieff thanks  to the myopic  Dr Beeching in the 1960s saw the acceleration in the decline of  many retail and service areas in the town . King Street from the Square down to the Station ( now the Crieff Hospital ) had an abundance of attractive  wee shops -3 bakers – 2 woollen shops- 3 booksellers and stationers -2 boot and shoe shops-2 cabinet makers –a cycle shop -2 butchers – a fishmonger – 4 grocers- 4 tobacconists - a  fishing tackle maker – 2 hairdressers- 4 inns or hotels-an ironmonger – a laundry- a dressmaker – a watchmaker -2 plumbers – 4 “ refreshment “ rooms ( possibly tea shops ) and 3 tailors and clothiers ! The town boasted some twelve  hotels or  inns including the “ Pret “or Pretoria and the Star which  is  now the Crieff Hotel . All the others apart from the immensely  successful Hydro have all gone.  .The  five temperance establishments which reflected the mood  of the day have vanished . I refrain from suggesting  what the future  pattern of retail Crieff might be as there are  more than a few factors unclear as yet in the equation . What is certain the King Streets of yesteryear is now  most certainly gone .

In these days of internet banking and " holes in the wall " , we have  lost contct in many instances  with the the managers of yesteryear . Crieff immediately  prior  to the start of war had more than a few . Listed Banks  included The Bank of Scotland , The British Linen Bank ,The Clydesdale Bank ,Commercil Bank of Scotland ,North of Scotland Bank , Union Bank of Scotland , Post Office Savings Bank ( 3  in total  ) and a County and City of Perth Savings Bank -  a total of ten in total !

If your  material  self  was  well catered  for in the town , you could  most certainly  ensure that your sole  would  be in equally safe hands . Crieff had a  surely a church to suit virtually every belief that was  being  currently preached  ! The list is fascinating in its ecclesiastical complexity . We had 2 Parish Churches - St Michaels and the West Church ( known as a " Chapel of Ease " ) ,The North United Free and the South United Free , an Episcopal Church , a Roman Catholic Chapel , a Baptist Chapel and a Congregational Church all serving a population of  some 4 000 souls !

                              The Congregational Church now the Primary School Dining Hall

The list  below is a synopsis of Leslies Directory of Perth and Perthshire , published  in 1913/ 1914. These  were  published each year from about 1880 until the commencement of the Second World War in 1939 . The list  below gives  you the number of  each type  of retail outlet , busines or practice that functioned at that time . I have listed in Part Two of this blog the specific names and addresses  of each one . This  should  be of particular interest to those  who are involved with family history in Crieff and its environs in this period .

Summary of the Businesses  Listed In Leslie's Directory of Perth and Perthshire in 1913/1914
Bakers - 7
Banks - 10 
Berlin Wool & Fancy Repositories- 5
Billposters - 1
Blacksmiths - 13
Booksellers , Binders , Stationers , Printers and Newsagents - 10
Boot and Shoe Makers - 10
Cabinetmakers - 7
Cart and Ploughwrights -6
Chemists and Druggists - 4
China and Glass Dealers  -1
Coach Builders - 2
Coach Hirers - 11
Coal Merchants - 6
Cycle Agents and Hirers - 4
Dentists -3
Fishing Tackle makers - 1
Fleshers ( Butchers ) -5
Game Dealers and Fishmongers - 5
Greengrocers and Fruiterers - 4
Grocers --1
Grocers and General Dealers - 18
Hairdressers - 5
Hotels Inns and Hydropathics- 15 ( including 5 Temperance establishments )
Ironmongers - 4
Joiners and Carpenters - 9
Laundries - 8
Libraries - 4
Linen and Woollen Drapers -10
Commercial Wool Spinners - 1
Millers - 6
Milliners and Dressmakers - 12
Millwrights - 1
Music Teachers - 6
Local Newspapers - 2
Painters - 3 
Photographer - 1
Plasterers - 2
Plumbers and Gas Fitters  - 5
Preserve Makers ( Jam )- 1
Refreshment Rooms - 4
Saddlers - 3
Saw Mill Owners 4
Schools (including rural ones ) -6 in Crieff town and 6 rural ( excluding Muthill , Monzievaird and Comrie )
Seedsman - 7
Slaters- 2
Solicitors - 8
Stonemasons and Builders-5
Surgeons - 6
Tailors and Clothiers -14
Tobacconists -9
Undertakers- 8
Vetiranry Surgeons -4
Warch and Clock Makers -5

Friday, 16 August 2013


Innerpeffray - an ancient Chapel - the oldest lending Library in Scotland PLUS  a Roman Ford and Road !



Innerpeffray Library

Although Innerpeffray is  tucked  away by the  banks of the Earn  east of Crieff  and is now a quiet back water - it has a vibrant  past dating from the Roman invasion in the 1st century AD right up to date . This  unique  gem is an essential  visit when you come to Strathearn ! Read on !

(the following account of the Library  is reproduced  from the Innerpeffray Library wewbsite with grateful acknowledgement -

The Library and School at Innerpeffray were founded by David Drummond 3rd Lord Madertie in around 1680, the first free public lending library in Scotland. Madertie was a member of the Drummond Family, one of the most important landowning families of the area, friend and brother-in-law to James Graham, First Marquis of Montrose.
The original library was "partly in the west end of the chapel of Innerpeffray and partly in that little new house lately built by me at the east end of the kirk yard." Making books available to ordinary people free of charge was unprecedented. Madertie wished the library and school to benefit the community "in time coming" and leaving them with a legacy of 5000 Scottish Merks charged his successors with the responsibility.
In 1739 Robert Hay Drummond inherited the Innerpeffray estate and responsibility for the Library and School. He raised the funds and commissioned architect Charles Freebairn to design and build a new Library building immediately adjacent to the Chapel. This handsome Georgian edifice still houses the library today
By the nineteenth century the school buildings were 'dilapidated' and a new School and Schoolmasters house were completed in 1846. Pupils came from the surrounding farms and settlements and the school was still in operation until 1946.
The Borrowers' Register is perhaps the Library's most valuable book, a handwritten record all the local people to who came to choose a book, and take it home to read. Today, families from all over the world find their ancestors in the Register, often in their own handwriting, and can hold the books they borrowed.


View from the Library over the Earn towards Crieff


St Mary's Chapel- pre Reformation built in 1507  by John ,1st lord Drummond

Innerpeffray Chapel, also known as St Mary's Chapel, stands on the east bank of the Rive Earn a little over three miles south east of Crieff. It occupies a site of historical importance, where the line of defensive watch towers built by the Romans along the Gask Ridge during their first foray into Scotland crossed the River Earn.

The first reference to a church at Innerpeffray dates back to 1365. Nothing remains of this earlier church except, perhaps, the altar which still stands against the wall at the east end of the chapel

The lands in the area later passed into the hands of the Drummond family. The chapel you see today was built in 1507 by John, 1st Lord Drummond. As well as paying for the chapel, he paid for four chaplains to pray for the wellbeing of their benefactor and his family, both in life and in the afterlife.

By 1542 the chaplains serving the chapel had formed a "college", in effect a small religious community, and the church had become what is known as a "collegiate church". Its role remained very much as before: a place of worship for the lord and his family and retainers, and a place where the college of priests could pray for the souls of the Drummonds. The new status of the church seems to have been part of Lord Drummond's development of Innerpeffray as a home for one of his younger sons. The following year, 1543, saw the building of nearby Innerpeffray Castle, now an inaccessible ruin.

Innerpeffray Castle 

As originally built, there seems to have been a sacristy on the north side of the chapel. The western third of the chapel formed a small nave screened off from the larger choir at the east end, where the layfolk would have worshipped. A laird's loft was put in place over the east end of the nave, facing west. The larger choir was reserved for the use of the college of chaplains, and was fitted with stalls along both sides. A very unusual feature was the arch at the west end of the chapel, dividing the nave from what is thought to have been an alcove. At some point a room has been inserted in the upper part of the alcove, and traces of the highly decorative painting of the ceiling below still remain.

After the Reformation of 1560, the chapel survived by being converted into a family burial vault for the Drummonds. By 1680 the estate was in the hands of David Drummond, 3rd Lord Madertie. He was a renowned scholar who had built up a collection of 400 books in English, Latin and a range of European languages. These he kept in the chapel until they were rehoused in 1762 in a library built immediately to the west of the chapel by his descendent Robert Hay Drummond, who at the time was Archbishop of York. The following year it opened as Scotland's first free public lending library.

The chapel today is a fascinating example of a collegiate church which avoided falling into disuse after the Reformation. Drummond family crests and memorials adorn the walls, while the discreet medieval altar still sits against the east wall.

Today the alcove at the west end is home to one of the most magnificent old gravestones you are likely to find anywhere in Scotland. And also one of the most poignant. This is the Faichney monument. It was carved by John Faichney, a mason, and commemorates his wife Joanna, who died in 1707 and no fewer than ten of their children who had died before her. The couple are carved on the head of the stone, while the columns on either side of the body of the stone carry small figures depicting each child. The stone originally stood in the churchyard, but has been moved into the chapel to protect it from the elements.

The Faichney Stone

The Roman Road


Archaeologists have known for a number of years that a well preserved road cutting adjacent to Innerpeffray library was almost certainly of Roman origin. A dig was organised in June 2004 funded by the Perth & Kinross Heritage Trust. It coincided with the Exhibition being held that month in the Library “Crieff from 1745 “. The Library itself sits atop an eroded “drumlin “(a hillock formed by glacial deposits) besides a sheer cliff overlooking the Earn. The theory was that this road was constructed by the Romans to bring traffic up from the crossing of the river at the old ford connecting with the road in and around Parkneuk further northwards. The Romans had a fort at Strageath on the south bank of the Earn and this was part of the road system linking then Gask Ridge watch towers and fortlets.

The initial survey levelled the area and discovered that the road had a gradient of about 1:5.7 which would have allowed the passage of wheeled traffic from the bottom to the top of the cutting. Wheel ruts were discovered when the top soil was removed. Excavations failed to reveal any suitable deposits of datable carbon or pollen or other organic material. The diggers did find a small piece of 18th century glazed pottery as well as a small piece of medieval green glazed pottery. Conclusions as to the originality of the road were difficult to arrive at. No Roman remains were uncovered .It is likely that this stretch of road was an integral part of the local system of communications back as far as the medieval days long before the  Turnpike Acts of the 18th century and the bridge building in the area which significantly altered the route pattern that was existing .

Why then are we to believe that this road was constructed by the Romans? The line  was , as noted above , part of the chain of the Gask Ridge defences . Secondly the manner of construction was typically Roman with an engineering style that was in advance of that found later on in these parts. Calculation indicated the extent of the engineering work carried out. In excess of 2 000 tons of material had been removed and a durable hard core bedding lay. The gradient was gentle, indicating an engineering technique that was too sophisticated for periods up until the 18th century. The only known complex road building carried out in Scotland between the Roman occupation and the arrival of General Waid in the 18th century was carried out by the Cistercian monks who were skilled in such matters ( Hoffman .2004 ) The nearest Cistercian abbey was at Couper Angus and there appears no evidence of their involvement at Innerpeffray . There is evidence that the road was in use during the Tryst at Crieff in the 17th and 18th centuries. To quote Hoffman:

“Rather more can be said of the cuttings likely later history. The early modern period brought increased traffic to this part of Strathearn. In 1672 and Act of Parliament (***Note: this refers to the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh as it was prior to 1707) granting the earl of Perth the right to establish a large cattle market (The Tryst) at Crieff. This was held in mid October and quickly became the chief Tryst in Scotland with reports of 30 000 beasts changing hands in one week, to be exported to land s to the south. While the majority of cattle were brought in via the Sma’ Glen and the glens further west, cattle from Angus and Aberdeenshire tended to be driven from Perth via the “Old Gallows Road “. Described in 1715/1716 as “ the road to Stirling “ this leads out of Perth  , past Long Causeway , Burghmuir Road , the Old Gallows Road at Glen Devon Farm and continues today as a line of hedgerows , field tracks and short roads past the old farm of Gateside , East and West Cultmalundie , Westmuir , Clathymore , Clathy , Roundlaw , Ardunie  and Shearerston . It eventually crossed the Earn at Innerpeffray, with further branches leading to Crieff and Kinkell. As the name suggests , it appears to have run past the Gallows to the west of Perth , whilst the 19th century “ Notes of the Statute Labour Trustees “ already describe it as old and confirm its use as a drove road . ”

The importance of Innerpeffray in the road system in the pre Statute Labour Days of the late 18th century can be seen by reference to old Perthshire maps by cartographers Moll and Stobie. The old Roman road or street running parallel to the Gask Ridge watch towers became an important road to Perth . It followed the fort line before turning north near Windygates to reach the old Gallows Road near Tibbermore . According to Hoffman the road appears to have degenerated into a mere track east of Gask House. According to the Statistical Account for 1773 for the Parishes of Gask and Trinity Gask it ” saw little use  despite being in a good state “   .

The Innerpeffray road may have seen an upturn in traffic when the Tryst moved to Falkirk in the 1760s but this was brief . It  had ceased to be part of a major route when the Crieff bridge over the Earn opened in 1740- 1741 . In 1758 , Maitland described the Roman road from Strageath fort as “ descending the eminence and , crossing the Earn , mounting the hill to the village of Innerpeffray in the neighbourhood of which it became the common road ”. The fact that he was able to cross the and that the route still appears on Stobie’s map of 1783 , suggest that the ford and the cutting were still usable at this time . His statement that the common road did not begin until he reached the village might imply that this was no longer a major crossing point . If so , this would fit in well with Moll’s map , produced a decade earier in 1745. This still marks the Old Gallows Road but shows Kinkell , not Innerpeffray , as the Earn crossing point . Kinkell was originally a ferry crossing ( as Innerpeffray became ) but in 1793 was replaced with a toll free bridge . This cut travel times and drovers ‘ costs still further and would have had an impact on the importance of Innerpeffray .

The old Roman Road became redundant as with the advent of the Turnpike and Toll Roads drovers and other travellers were avoiding paying toll s by taking these old routes . Pressure was brought upon the adjoining proprietors to close non statute roads . The Old Gallows Road and a series of branch roads were formally closed in 1813 “on application by Lord Kinnoul and Robert Smyth of Methven ” .






Sunday, 11 August 2013

Crieff at the time of Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1897


Victoria who visited Crieff

and Strathearn in 1842 with her consort

Prince Albert




Victoria reigned  from 1837  to 1901 – an incredible 64  years . She  celebrated  her Diamond Jubilee of  60 years  upon the throne in 1897 .

Crieff as a centre of population has  been  around  a long time . Recent  discoveries have revealed a Neolithic past when this  part of Strathearn was emerging as a place of importance The present  town however is  solidly Victorian with a smattering remnant of the Georgian  in  places like Burrell Square ( The Octagon of yesteryear ) and Ruberslaw House . The following  little  essay is yet another  plucked  from  my tattered little copy of Dixons “ Crieff in the Victorian Era “ and was written in the year of the Jubilee in 1897 so reflects  what  our town was like in the pre motor car era !

“To know and understand Crieff as it exists in the year  of the Diamond Jubilee of her Majesty Queen Victoria , it is necessary  in the first place  to have some years experience in the town , and in the second place  to have some sense of observation . There are casts , sets ,cliques and circles  , sufficient to make India hide its face  in very shame ; and there are more public houses , doctors , lawyers , ministers , billiard rooms  and churches than  in almost  any town  in either Scotland , England or Ireland. If you are in one set , you are not in the other , your principal duty is to stick to it . You know  the sets by their unfailing attachment ; you know  the circles  by their  consequential airs ; you distinguish the casts by the way  they carry  their heads ; and you can easily discover the cliques   by their  unflagging attention  to everybodies tourist   affairs  but their own .


In the summer  time , Crieff life  actually  begins  to be of interest  about 10 am . The prosperous  business man charges  along the High Street  shouldering  his morning newspaper, and tells  everybody “it’s a good “ , or  a “ better day “ ; all the tradesmen  hanging about James Square , scatter like birds  in a thunderstorm ; the legal  men break  into a professional trot , and shortly disappear  into their offices ; all the budding doctors  on the hunt for broken legs , flutter about at every corner ; the matron seeks out the cheapest dinner , and stows  it away in an arrangement like a poacher’s net ; the early rising  visitors swagger   about in skirts , blouses and ties , suggesting  everything that is Jubilee ; the tourist , in the garb of the northern landlord  , shoulders  his knapsack , and strides away ; and the local  press men chase  one another to along to the Police Court  wondering if the weather is likely to be suitable  for a Comrie Earthquake . As time  wears on  to noonday , the streets are thronged  by another population . Where they come out of is hard  to say but they are all there . Stout ladies with delicate  looking husbands  step slowly  along the centre of the pavement and stop  and stare in every shop window . Behind come their beaming but sorely oppressed daughters, watching every thing and everybody , and behind them again comes the confounded  little brother   who swears  he will tell “ all about it “ if they don’t buy  him something  at the nearest sweetie shop . Mixed  among this crowd are the visitors who  imagine they know all  about everything . When they reach  the Murray fountain  , they stop  for a minute  and criticise the architecture  . “ Gothic “ , says one , “ Grecian “ , says  another . “ Both wrong “ remarks  another - “ Corinthian “ , and there  they stand pointing out  with their walking sticks  defects in  balance , and generally  condemning the  style of architecture . “ Who’s Murray ? “ asks  some one . “ Oh a Waterloo hero “, answers some one else. “ Correct “, says another , not to be behind in his  historical information , and away they walk congratulating themselves  on their knowledge  of everything that is  useful .  Then there is a multifarious  collection of visitors whose chief ideas  of a quiet holiday are a parade  about the streets  before dinner , and  a short walk in the afternoon . You can see them  any day in the summer mashing  about  with white parasols , and last year’s ball dresses improved at the neck , and all looking  supernaturally grand .


James Square with the Murray Fountain

to the right

It is not till the afternoon that Crieff people  themselves are seen  at their best . Round the shops  the older people  roam , admiring everything that is new, and buying  everything that is useless . A carriage draws up ; the head shop man  rushes to open the door ; the lady steps on to the pavement  with the airs   of an eastern princess , he orders  half a pound of cheese  and a pound of butter  , and pays  the account a  year hence .Later on there put in n appearance  the people  who have reduced   afternoon calling  to a fine  art  , and whose sole work  at home is dusting  the drawing - room  mantle shelf , and looking out  for new  and reliable  servants .Thy skip along  the High street  , and omit to recognise  all their old friends  , and practice  afternoon tea  in the back garden , in prospect of the  county gatherings  in the Autumn . About four o’clock stylish Crieff is afloat on bicycles . Like the new telegraph boys , they believe , because they are in a hurry , they can knock  everybody over , and never say “  Sorry “ .  Away they fly , all laughing  and gay , and when the chivalrous youths  round the corner   observe their approach , they raise their caps  , and shortly follow in their wake . Two hours thereafter the daughters of  the wheel return , tired and jaded , and next morning they get breakfast in bed . It is about  seven o’clock in the evening  that the male population  is most in evidence . Newmarket coats  , sticks, canes , cigarettes  and silk handkerchiefs  follow their masters  out to Ochtertyre   or round the Knock  , or oftener  to the nearest billiard table . The actual working population gathers in James Square  with the regularity  of an eight - day clock and the pavement swells with an interesting variety  of people of all castes and classes , trying to impress the population  with their outstanding importance . In the evening, too , golf  and bowling are in full swing , and there are   the usual spooning  and flirting at the tennis court . All are enjoyable games, - particularly th tennis. The patrons  become attached  to the game  , sometimes in the interests of  sport , but too often from a business point of view , and there the  fly about  till after sundown , while their mammas are slaving at home  with lodgers  to raise the rent  - Sic vita  est  .


Life in Crieff is an interesting study, and the subject gives ample scope in itself for a book which has yet to be written , In a short sketch , such as this , only the principal features can be  touched upon . To deal  withn the subject in a complete  form , one would require to start  with the men whose work is a profession , and the men whose profession  is doing nothing ; joining  in the same chapter  , the class who mix up their profession  with labour , by sweeping out the shop  on the Saturday morning . Then there would come the working classes  , for whom we hold the  highest respect , and then all the other  sections of the people  in the town which go to make up a highly intelligent community . Crieff is worth  seeing and knowing , and those who find nothing about it to interest and amuse , must walk with their eyes closed , or be in love  with their own shadow .”





Tuesday, 6 August 2013

The Sad Demise of The Crieff and Strathearn Hand Loom Weavers c 1860

The Sad Demise of The Crieff and Strathearn Hand Loom Weavers


Life in Crieff about 1860 – a fascinating social history


Weavers Hall Crieff ( Commissioner Street /Scott Terrace ) now flats

This little gem is culled from the tattered  little  book I have quoted  from  before . Published in “Crieff in the Victorian Era “( Brown. Crieff. 1897 ) it reflects  on the collapse of hand loom weaving  in the town in and  around 1860 . Prior  to this weaving  dominated occupations in the town  with over 50 % of the populous weavers, spinners or  associated trades . The linen weaving had  disappeared and given way to cotton . The cotton “ webs “ were brought to the  town  by cart and middle men  like James MacRosty’s father controlled supply and distribution . With the  outbreak of the American Civil War  the  supply of raw cotton dried up and the end was nigh ! The Weavers’ Hall in Commissioner Street closed and the Weavers’ Guild folded causing  untold poverty and famine . Read on !

“ Coming to later times , say forty years ago , we find  a change  of a striking  character has passed over the face of Strathearn’s capital .One by one the looms  break down and fall to pieces , and the weavers  , outmatched by the mechanic and the engineer , leave their  well- worn stools , and seek some new and more  remunerative field of labour . But , however great is the change  in the labour market , the thoughts , habits and constitution  of the people  remain as of old , and they observe  the march of science  as something to be deplored  . By no means ambitious , the weavers  take to dyking  and ditching , and with  such occupations  they pass  their lives , as contented  as the Belgian  butter makers in the time of Napoleon .

On a cool September night  a few old cronies  gather round   a neighbour’s pig- sty to discuss subjects which they have  so often discussed  before . One worth sits  on a barrel , another on a broken  wheel – barrow , another leans  on a spade , another lounges   against the wall , and there remain  for hours , guiding the world politically and socially  , and suggesting reforms and improvements  in the Government of the Empire , that would astonish  and amaze  many latter –day politicians . “

Monday, 5 August 2013

Crieff in the early Victorian Days

The following little poem  is about the weavers and kids  who lived in Bridgend Crieff  - a wee weaving  village within a bigger village - namely Crieff. I  found it  in an old booklet  published HK Brown a bookseller at 15 King Street in 1897 and reflects  life in  a by gone era . Hope  you enjoy it a s much as I did !


‘Tis on a lovely day in June

When shuttles play their lively tune
When summer’s sun shines forth on high
A throws a blaze across the sky
That merry boys  just out for play
Espy just of a little way
A fine big “ deilie “ – full of grace
A tempting prize for any race
Knowing soon the day must close
It quickly flies  from bud  to rose
So gaily flitting past the flowers 
It passes on to higher powers
The youngsters  start , with ready grace
And to the butterfly  give chase
Running off with childish hearts
Each for  a separate corner starts
But, when a bonnet at it flies
It rises upwards in the skies
And soaring far above their heads
Lights down upon a sweet briar hedge
Leaping on with boisterous glee
The rogue  behind  a blade they see.
Getting near with utmost caution
Scarce they set a twig in motion
They feast their eyes  upon the “ deil “
Which calmly sits at evening meal.
Along the hedge they slowly creep-
All tongues the utmost silence keep ;
But just when close upon their prey ,
It rises  up and turns away ,
And down the street, at fastest pace ,
It flutters  , with the boys in chase .
The weavers  hear the deafening noise ,
As past their windows charge the boys ;
And. What the sounds import ,
Rush from their looms  and join the sport .
Down the street they scamper on
And soon  they head the merry throng
For weapons  some have cabbage blades ,
Some kail-stocks , and some have spades ;
Some clutch at mutches  out to dry ,
While some a common broom stick ply;
Some seize a towel , some a shirt
As from their looms  they madly skirt ;
While some , with paling – posts  and sticks
Among the yelling huntsmen mix .
Hearing the approaching cries
The hens  outstretch their wings and rise
And settling high upon the roof
They cackle  forth a loud reproof
The grumphie  hides  behind the “ cree “
The cat it climbs  the nearest tree
While ducks  a- feeding in the mud
Before the awful tempest scud .
Ere yet  the “ deil “ has crossed the Earn
A hundred eyes its spots discern;
But , knowing safely in the breech
It keeps its flight wellout of reach
Bridgenders  , catching the alarm ,
And knowing sport in  all its charm
Join heartily  among the crew
Who close  upon the “ deil “ pursue
The butterfly with eager flight
Makes for a hilltop  now in sight
Where blood was spilt in days of yore ,
In wiping  off a clansman’s sore ;-
Where Murrays paid the price  of cattle
By losing all their men in battle
The “ deilie “ holds upon its course
The leaders  try the pace to force ,
And when  the Torleum hill is won
The huntsmen follow  one by one .
Sometimes  the “beastie “ spots a rose ,
And tempted  , to the ground it goes ;
But when a dozen missiles fly ,
It darts again  into the sky ,
And, charging forward  in its flight
It notes the near approach of night
As weavers spank o’er hill and glade
The daylight soon begins to fade ;
But while  the gaudy game ‘s in sight
They feel  their hopes are ever bright
Now , wild and panting with the race
But ever game upon the chase
They run as only deer hound can
To suit the sporting mind of man
The “ deilie “ startled  by the sound
Which echoes from the fields around ,
Decides the earn  agin to clear
And for the Laggan Hill to steer
Far over thistle , whin and fern
The weavers reach  the banks of Earn ;
But in the quickly darkening night
The little “ deil “ is lost to sight
When in the sky  they see it soar
The huntsmen know  the chase is o’er ;
And, as slowly home  they ramble 
Swear “the game ain’t worth the candle .”