11 November 1922 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

A lovely cloudless calm day like the day four years ago – Armistice Day.1 Paid my Feu Duty + fire Insurances. Strange to say I have got none of the Parochial + other salaries due at this date. Nor has David2 given me the Viewfield rent.3 I went up to Innerleithen to the opening of a new Hall – a War Memorial4 – on the invitation of Prov. Mathieson.5 I was introduced to MacDougall of Raeside6 + some other people. I was on the platform. The Hall was declared open by Sir H Ballantyne7 whose uncle has given the site.8 There was a programme of singing + speeches. Helen9 motored to the meet at Riddell10 with Nancy and Barbara.11

1 Armistice day “News that the armistice between the allies and Germany had been signed at 5 O’clock this morning was received here about 11 & there was great rejoicing. The church bells rang. Flags appeared as if by magic at windows & in the streets. The mills closed and everybody congratulated everybody as if in harmony with the glad tidings. The sun shone ? in an unclouded sky , after a sharp frost. There were services in all the churches at 3. Dav., Jean, Helen & I shared a pint of fizz. D. & I made 40 town calls. I did Sunderland Hall & in the afternoon Dav. went to Ettrick Shaws and Shaws. I am thankful I have been spared to see this glorious day.” [Dr Muir’s diary for 11 November 1918, Scottish Borders Archives SBA/657/21].

2 David Charteris ‘Dav.’ Graham (1889-1963), M.B., Ch.B., medical practitioner and Dr Muir’s business partner.

3 Dr Muir purchased Viewfield for £1800 plus £54 9 0 of expenses paid also for Duty etc. on 11 November 1919 with the intention of renting it to the new Muir and Graham medical co-partnership [see Dr Muir’s diary entry for 11 November 1919.

4 The Memorial Hall was built in 1922. A Roll of Honour on the auditorium wall commemorates everyone from Innerleithen Parish who served in some capacity during World War I. In 1919, Henry Ballantyne, the managing director at Waverley Mill, purchased the adjoining house (Home Villa) and donated the building and grounds to the burgh for council use. Funds were raised locally by public subscription to pay for the building of the hall [Past Innerleithen ‘Memorial Hall’].

5 Provost Mathieson is Robert Mathieson (1861-1941), druggist and Provost of Innerleithen for forty years [for full details see Dr Muir’s diary entry for 4 November 1922].

6 MacDougall is not yet identified.

7 Sir Henry Ballantyne (about 1855-1941), tweed manufacturer and sometime Provost of Peebles, son of David Ballantyne (1825-1912).

8 Henry Ballantyne (1842–1928), manufacturer, of Tweedvale House, Walkerburn.

9 Helen Frances ‘Mousey’ Muir (1880-1963), Dr Muir’s third daughter and sometime housekeeper.

10 Riddell, Lilliesleaf.

11 Agnes Amelia ‘Nancy’ Roberts née Muir (1878-1948), Dr Muir’s second daughter, and Andrina Henderson ‘Barbara’ Roberts, later Twhigg (1902-1996).

[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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