22 November 1921 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

Cullen, St Boswells1, died

A dull Misty wet day. Went to Edinburgh by the 2.29, a very good train non stop to Gala, + getting to Ed. at 11.402. Jack3 went on same train + Sam Steel4. Went out to Lutton Place5. Pike6 looking very ill. Saw Dora7 + arranged to take her + Miss Brown8 with whom she is staying to the theatre. Booked seats at the Lyceum for “Paddy the Next Best Thing9. Had some lunch at the Called.10 + went to meeting of the Scottish Sub-Comttee11 at 6 Rutland Square. Cairns, Greenock12, in chair. Spoke to Rorie13, Martin14, Drever15, Dewar16. Capital performance at Lyceum17. Gave the girls supper afterwards.

1 William Laing Cullen (1861-1921), M.D., medical practitioner, of Fairholme, St Boswells, had died on 22 November 1921, aged 60

2 The Editor finds it difficult to believe that Selkirk to Edinburgh by train took 9 hours; one can now do that journey by bus and train from Selkirk in less than an hour and a half and modern rail services were hardly faster than their Victorian predecessors until the latest generation of lighter trains was introduced recently after which acceleration out of stations increased dramatically

3 John ‘Jack’ Roberts junior (1876-1966), mill owner, husband of Agnes Amelia ‘Nancy’ Roberts née Muir and thus Dr Muir’s son-in-law

4 Samuel ‘Sam’ Strang Steel (1882-1961), 1st Baronet, M.P., J.P., T.D., Lord Lieutenant of Selkirk 1948-1958

5 Lutton Place, Newington, Edinburgh home of Frederick and Jean Pike

6 Frederick Charles Pike (1883-1921), theatrical agent, had married Dr Muir’s daughter Jane Henderson Logan ‘Jean’ Muir in 1920 but was gravely ill by this time

7 Andrina Dorothy ‘Dora’ Muir (1882-1978), nurse and Dr Muir’s youngest daughter

8 It may be possible to identify Miss Brown when the 1921 Census is published early next year

9 ‘Paddy the Next Best Thing’ a 1908 romantic comedy novel by the British writer Gertrude Page; this will have been an adaptation for the theatre because the film versions documented online were not released until 1923 (British silent adaptation) and 1933 (American adaptation) respectively

10 The Called. is presumably the Caledonian Hotel at the junction of Princes Street and Rutland Street, very much on Dr Muir’s way to Rutland Square in Edinburgh’s West End

11 The British Medical Association (B.M.A.); the meeting appears to be at the premises of T S Paterson & Davidson W.S. [1925 Valuation Roll, VR010000495-/3, Edinburgh Burgh, page 3 of 249] but house numbers are unreliable so this is a cautious identification

1 Dr Cairns is not yet identified

13 Perhaps Dr Frank Miller Rorie (1895-1949), medical practitioner, of Alford Place, later Albyn Place, both Aberdeen [1925 Valuation Roll, VR008600096-/376, Aberdeen Burgh, page 376 of 1047; birth, 1895, 405/ 115, Auchterderran; death, 1949, 168/2 604, Aberdeen Southern District]

14 There were at least five doctors with the surname Martin in Scotland at this time so without recourse to the B.M.A. records it is impossible to identify this individual

15 James Richan Drever (1873-1956), medical practitioner and administrator, M.A., M.B., F.R.C.P.Ed., born Alexandria, West Dunbartonshire, M.A., 1893, M.B., C.M. (Glasgow), 1906, Scottish Medical Secretary of the B.M.A., 1919- [“J. R. Drever, M.A., M.B., F.R.C.P.Ed. Late Scottish Medical Secretary, British Medical Association.” The British Medical Journal, vol. 1, no. 3772, BMJ, 1933, pp. 725–26, http://www.jstor.org/stable/25351306.%5D

16 There were at least nine doctors with the surname Dewar in Scotland at this time so without recourse to the B.M.A. records it is impossible to identify this individual

17 The Royal Lyceum Theatre, Grindlay Street, Edinburgh [Canmore ID 106416], adjacent to the Usher Hall and not far from the Caledonian Hotel; Dr Muir has planned his day carefully

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/24, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1921]

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Archivist, interests include Dr John Stewart Muir 1845-1938) of Selkirk, general practitioner, and Seton Paul Gordon (1886–1977), naturalist, author and photographer

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