St Andrews Citizen
10 December 1904
It is familiar knowledge now that civilisation is favourable to longevity, and it it so because it improves the quality of human life. It makes life better worth having, and so makes it longer. In civilisation men have better food, better clothing, better lodgings; they drink purer water, they breathe purer air, their dwellings are better ventilated and drained; they work under more favourable conditions, the hours of labour are fewer, the wear and tear of labour is less; they have more society, more amusement, more recreation, they have more resources within themselves; in a word, as human creatures, they possess greater powers of adaptation and resistance. None but the intelligent comprehend these things at present, consequently the results of the knowledge are not enjoyed on a large scale, and there is room yet for superstition. But when the intelligent shall be the many, as in due time they probably will be, there will be no axiom more familiar than this, that according to the quality of life will be its quantity. The stuff will determine the wear.
10 December 1904
Wonders of the heavens
There are 18 stars of the first magnitude. These are at least 211,000 times further from the earth than is our sun, and their light takes over three years to reach us. There are 55 of the second magnitude, their light taking over six years to reach us. One hundred and seventy of the third magnitude, their light reaching us in over nine year. Five hundred of the fourth magnitude, their light taking 12 years to reach us. Stars as distant as those of the sixth magnitude, their light taking 36 years to traverse the intervening space, are visible to the naked eye. Of these there are about 6,000.
A nine-foot telescope reveals stars of the twelfth magnitude, about 10,000,000 in number. An 18-foot telescope reveals about 43,000,000 stars, including those of the thirteenth magnitude, whose light takes 2,700 years to reach us. Each of these stars is thought to be the centre of a solar system like our own. Our own solar system consists of the sun, and the following planets revolving around it: Mercury, nearest the sun, is 35,000,000 miles distant; Venus, 66,000,000 miles; the Earth, 91,000,000; Mars, 139,000,000 miles; the Asteroids, about 266,000,000 miles; Jupiter, nearly 476,000,000 miles; Saturn, 872,000,000 miles; Uranus, 1,754,000,000 miles; and Neptune, 2,746,000,000 miles from the sun.
Aberdeen Press and Journal
11 December 1833
Inverness: escape from jail and apprehension of the culprits
Three of the prisoners confined in our jail effected their escape on Saturday night, viz – John Wilson and John Mitchell, two idle vagabonds from Dumfries, who were committed for trial on a charge of housebreaking and theft in Badenoch; and John Macdonald, a hardened offender belonging to this town, though only 16 years of age, who was convicted at our Circuit Court of Justiciary in April of theft, and sentenced to nine months' imprisonment. It appears that on Saturday, the three prisoners had gone into a private closet, taking part of their bed-clothes with them; and conceaed themselves there whilst the turnkey was locking up the cells. Between eight and nine o'clock in the evening, after the jail had been finally locked up, the offenders came out of their hiding place, and with the aid of an iron spike taken from the window in the passage, made their way into the Court House, threw open the window, descended into the Close occupied by Mr Gillan, vintner; and proceeded unmolested out of the town.
They took the road to Drumnadrochit, by the west bank of Loch Ness; and arriving at Temple house they stole two bee-hives from the garden by the roadside. They next obtained whisky, and Macdonald with eating honey and drinking spirits got sick, and was left behind. The other two proceeded four or five miles further, when they entered a house and succeeded in stealing 27s. The theft being detected, they were pursued, and the money restored to the owner, who suffered the rascals to go at large. By this time, however, the owner of the bee-hives had discovered his loss, and having got some information of the depredators, he took the road, overtook them, and brought them back. Wilson again effected his escape, but was taken the same night near Invermoriston. The whole were then put into a cart, and brought to Inverness, where they are located in their former quarters. Their next adventure will undoubtedly be across the seas.
Airdrie and Coatbridge Advertiser
12 December 1885
Husband or no husband – an amusing case
On Thursday a woman named Elizabeth McIlwain or Munday, described as 'wife of and residing with Manus Munday, a puddler, at Cameron's Land, Coatdyke,' was at the JP Court – before Mr Andrew Aitken and Bailie Harvie – charged with assault and breach of the peace. It appeared that the accused had quarelled with her next door neighbour on Sunday afternoon over a pot which her neighbour got the loan of, but refused to give up until the accused returned a pan and kettle which she had in loan from her. On being refused the pot the accused informed her neighbour that she would just take the worth of it out of her, and suiting the action to the word, she struck her a blow on the forehead.
For the defence, Manus Munday was placed in the box. The Fiscal (Mr W G Jameson) asked the accused if this was her husband, and she replied that he was not. The witness stated, however, that the accused was his wife. Bailie Harvie – Are you married? Witness – No. They only lived with each other. Mr Jameson – They are married to all intents and purposes. (Laughter.) The accused was fined 7s 6d, or eight days.
12 December 1891
Too big for the Forth Bridge
On Tuesday morning the large sailing ship Lord Brassey, which had been built by the Grangemouth Dockyard Company at their Alloa yard, was towed down the Forth to Leith. The vessel has four masts, and the height from the water line to the truck of the highest of these is 187 feet. As the height of the highest span of the Forth Bridge at high water is only 150 feet, it was found necessary to lower three of the masts about 37 or 40 feet to allow the barque to pass underneath the bridge. The compasses of the new vessel were adjusted at Leith, and the vessel will now proceed to London where it will receive a general cargo for Australia.