Edinburgh Evening News
27 May 1902
The Burns Monument
Pedestrians passing eastwards along Waterloo Place must have, after reading the notice board in front of the Burns Monument, intimating that the relics of the poet were transferred to the City Museum and that the public were debarred from admittance inside the monument, felt disgusted at the treatment meted out to the memory of Scotland's national bard, and more especially at the hands of his fellow-countrymen in the capital city.
As is well known, the Burns Monument has always been an eyesore and it is now high time that something in the shape of a substantial life-size statue should be erected to the poet's memory. There are plenty of influential men in this city who would, I am sure, be only too glad to open subscription lists to defray the cost of such. As for a site, the present one is all that could be desired. It is to be hoped, therefore, that ere another anniversary or two of the poet comes round we shall have the pleasure of seeing reared on the site of the old monument a statue that will show our neighbours in other Scottish towns – Leith included – that the poet holds a warm place in the hearts of the people of 'Auld Reekie'.
29 May 1850
The very beautiful estate of Murlingden, situated near the burgh of Brechin, and which has been for some time in the market, was sold in Edinburgh last week by public roup – having been purchased, we understand, by James Cooper, Esq, merchant, of this place. The estate, which is delightfully situated, fetched £4,500.
[£4,500 would be the equivalent of £595,000 in today's money.]
30 May 1863
A scene at a sale
At the sale of the late Marquis of Breadalbane's stock the following incident occurred. Among the numerous list of competitors were the Dukes of Athole, Hamilton, Argyll and Sutherland, and Archie Chalien or Menzies. Nothing remarkable occurred till a fine bull of pure Highland breed was exposed. The four dukes then entered the lists, and a brisk bidding took place in which Archie seemed to take a deep interest. On the price reaching £120, Argyll and Sutherland retired from the lists, leaving only the illustrious dukes of Athole and Hamilton to do battle. Archie's eye was observed to glisten with pleasure, but as the other offer came from Hamilton it would occasionally glance fire.
At length a pause ensued, Athole has the last bode, and the auctioneer is going to give the last call, when the stillness is broken by one more challenge from Hamilton. Archie, who had never once left the duke during the sale, could stand no more; suiting the action to the word, he gave the duke a slap on the shoulder, and shouted 'Stick in, my lord duke, if ye be short of cash I'll risk a £5 on you myself,' an advice Athole took. He gave one bode more and immediately the clear ringing voice of the auctioneer sounded gone, the joy of Archie was unbounded. He seized the duke's hand and informed him who was his opponent, upon which Athole observed that with Archie's assistance he would have had it although it should have cost five times as much.
John o' Groat Journal
1 June 1900
The Whitsunday term
Tuesday was the Whitsunday term, and the fact was self-evident in the numerous flittings that were to be seen and the way-goings of servants. The weather was dull, and some rain fell, but the conditions were on the whole not unfavourable for the removal and exposure to the open air of household goods. In Wick and district a good few changes took place. A large number of farm servants were in town on their way from one situation to another, and to judge from the number of 'kists' being conveyed through the town there seemed to be quite as large a number of servants changing situations as usual.
Of changes among house-holders in the town, there seemed to be more than usual. Much difficulty has been experienced in getting suitable servants, especially female servants for farms, and wages have increased in a very sensible degree. The domestic servant difficulty also increases yearly. In some large towns they can practically get their own terms, and even then the supply is not nearly equal to the demand. Many Shetland families have for a number of years got their domestic servants form Norway, as a home supply was simply not to be had.
The scarcity of farm servants is due to more temporary causes, but it will be some time before the pressure is relieved, for although the war in South Africa were to end tomorrow, many reserves and volunteers would not come home, but would settle in the new territories, while at present there is a large demand for labour at home in works of a public nature. An era of high wages and scarce labour may continue, therefore, for some time until, by natural means, matters arrange themselves on a normal basis.