8 May 1922 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

Penielheugh Gate to Maxton 2.15
Maxton to St Boswells 2.5
St Boswells (Green) Selkirk 8.7

Warm at last – at least warmer Strong S.W. + N.W. wind but not cold. In some places it felt quite balmy. I had in a real Indian from Broncho Bill’s Circus2 with Cystitis. a splendid man 6ft 6 at least with long hair + typical dress. Cycled to Curror Street, Hospital + then to Tower Street + Castle Street. Finally to Henhouse3, Riddell (where I saw Mark4 at the door) + on by Cotfield, Rapierlaw [sic], Belses, Rawflat, Pinnacle, Sandystones to Penielheugh5 where I took my tea + enjoyed the glorious view.

1 This looks like Dr Muir’s route home from Penielheugh Heugh, N.N.E. of Monteviot House, grid reference NGR NT650,258 and Maxton, E.S.E. of St Boswells, NT613,301; the distance from St Boswells is about right, if the reading of Selkirk in Dr Muir’s increasingly poor handwriting is correct

2 The circus was Broncho Bill’s Great Wild West Exhibition and Mammoth Circus which was at Victoria Park, Selkirk 8 May 1922 (also Kelso 4th, Jedburgh 5th, Hawick 6th, Galashiels 9th and Peebles 10th May) and included “The World’s Funniest Clowns” and “Indians! Prairie Mustangs!” [advertisement in Southern Reporter 4 May 1922]

3 Presumably to see William Braid Laidlaw (1902-1985), whom Dr Muir had been attending for what may have been Diphtheria; the son of John Laidlaw, saw miller, and Agnes Laidlaw née Taylor, brother of John Laidlaw (1904-) and Robert Braid Laidlaw (1906-), all living at Henhouse, The Haining, Selkirk at the 1911 Census

4 Assume Mark Sprot (1881-1946), landowner and army officer, of Riddell, Lilliesleaf, 1920 Valuation Roll

5 Cotfield, Lilliesleaf, grid reference NT532,226, Raperlaw NT552,234, Belses NT571,249 (indicative only), Rawflat NT582,247, Pinnacle NT589,253 and Sandystones NT594,265

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/25, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1922]

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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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