22 September 1922 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

There was a lucky change of weather today. It was a lovely calm sunny day with little or no wind. Fairly clear at first but hazy after noon. Saw no patients except Alec. Beattie to give the death certificate.1 Had a delightful run to Alnmouth via Kelso, Coldstream + Cornhill to a road which turns R. near Longridge Tower2 to the Gt. N. Rd. Here I made a mistake + took the Wooler Rd 3 landing myself at Lowick + striking the N. road at Fenwick, thus adding several miles to my journey.4 I stopped at Twizel Bridge5 + ate a bite I had with me. + at Warrenford for a glass of beer. I turned off about 2 miles after N. Charlton to Rock, Howick + Long Haughton, entirely new roads to me + very interesting. It was nearly 8 + almost lighting-up time when I arrived at Mt Pleasant6 + found Jack, Jock, Stewart7 + Alec Roberts8 finishing supper. Had a heart welcome + went to bed soon but was attacked by the most excruciating cramp in both my Sartorius muscles.9 Distance 78.5.

1 Joan Dickson Beattie had died 21 September 1922 at 3 Hill Street, Selkirk, aged 10 days, of “Congenital debility 10 days” certified by John S Muir M.B. etc; she was the daughter of Alexander Turnbull ‘Alex’ Beattie, woollen pressman, and Joan Stoddart Beattie née Dickson who had married 24 November 1904 at Selkirk.

2 Longridge Towers, grid reference NGR NT958,500.

3 By taking the Wooler Road (which runs southwards through NT933,351) Dr Muir had gone too far south and strayed away his intended route to the Great North Road.

4 At some point Dr Muir must have turned eastwards Lowick, NU015,396, Fenwick, NU065,401, Warenford, NU136,286, N. Charlton, NU168,230, Rock, NU202,202, Howick, NU258,177, and Longhoughton NU243,151.

5 Twizel Bridge, NT885,432, doesn’t seem to be on Dr Muir’s route and if anyone can come up with a better reading of this location the Editor would be pleased to know.

6 Mount Pleasant is immediately WNW of Alnmouth, NU244,110, see Ordnance Survey 6 inch Northumberland Sheet XXXIX.NE, published 1899.

7 John ‘Jack’ Roberts junior (1876-1966), Dr Muir’s son-in-law and three of his children John Stewart ‘Jock’ Roberts (1904-1950), Stewart Muir ‘Little Stewart’ Roberts (1908-2003) and George Edward ‘Tim’ Roberts (1911-2005).

8 Assume Alexander Thomas ‘Alec’ Roberts (1885-1972), son of Thomas James Scougal ‘Tom’ Roberts (1850-1921), tweed manufacturer, and Hyndmer Rutherford Roberts née Crawford.

9 See Dr Muir’s diary entries for 23, 24 and 25 August 1922; the sartorial muscle is a thin, long, superficial muscle in the anterior compartment of the thigh [source: Moore, Keith L; Dalley, Arthur F; Agur, A M R (2013). ‘Clinically Oriented Anatomy’. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. pp. 545–546].

[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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