3 June 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

[Text at top of page transcribed as part of 31 May entry]

Dull morning + a wet afternoon. Saw a few town cases walking + left at 12 for a cycle run. Called for Jessie Boyd1 + then went to Melrose, Leaderfoot, Smailholm, Mellerstain, Middlethird, Greenlaw, Choicelee2, Westruther + Lauder. Took my tea beyond Middlethird. Near Greenlaw it began to rain + I nearly returned [?]. It was very wet before Polwarth but faired after Choicelee. Kept fair till before Lauder + was wet all the way home. I was soaked through. Got hot bath. W. + S. [whisky & soda ?], dined + went down to Elmpark with a trout which Johnny Murray sent me. Mrs Simpson + her son’s fiancée there3. The latter is a daughter of Tom Hamilton my “Graceful Consort”4.

1 Jessie Milne Brack Boyd (1867-1961), of Faldonside, plantswoman and gardener

2 Middlethird, Gordon, grid reference NGR NT678,435, and Choicelee, Langton (Gavinton), NT746511 – Dr Muir has done a longish loop into Berwickshire almost reaching Duns but turning off at Choicelee towards Westruther on what is now the B6456

3 Margaret ‘Maggie’ Simpson née Watson (1857-1939), sister of Mrs Agnes Mackintosh née Watson of Elm Park, Selkirk; her son John Watson Simpson (d.1929), M.B., married, 1921, Helen Gladys Hamilton, the daughter of Thomas Hamilton (1843-1918), M.B., F.R.C.S.E.

4 The Editor reads this as Graceful Consort, the most likely reference being to a duet from Haydn’s oratorio ‘The Creation’, but the allusion is not obvious in this context except to say that Dr Muir must have been a near contemporary of Hamilton’s at medical school

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/23, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1920]

2 June 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

Rather a dry arid day with W.N.W. wind. Mrs William Brunton1, Backrow, confined. Didn’t expect her till after 15th. She is living with Rob. Brunton who has flitted to the house above Blair the butcher. The child was born in my absence at 11.20. Message to Dewar2, Prieston, cycled there. Had my hair cut. Vaccinated 15 people. David [Graham] went to a meeting of the Medico Chirurgical Society3.

1 Catherine Lilico Brunton, later Dunbar, born 2 June 1920, died 5 November 1968 she was the daughter of William Moffat Brunton, mechanical engineer, and Elizabeth Duncan Brunton née Fraser

2 William Dewar was an Inhabitant Occupier of a house at Prieston, Bowden, Roxburghshire, 1920 Valuation Roll

3 “Based on the successful Medico-Chirurgical Society of London, The Medico-Chirurgical Society of Edinburgh was founded in 1821 by our first president, Dr Andrew Duncan. In the beginning, the main object of the Society was “communication of facts and the interchange of opinions on medical subjects and the collection and preservation of important practical observations so frequently made by gentleman whose avocations do not permit them to undertake separate publications”. http://www.edmedchi.co.uk

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/23, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1920]

1 June 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

Not a cold day today but blowy from W. Dora [Muir] left at 5.51 for Edinburgh to assist Jean [Muir] at her tea room for a while. I had to hire from Bryson1 as D. [David Graham] was using the car. Walked to Curror Street, Tweed + Linglie Mills + Hospital. Banked £220. Saw A Riddell2 from Lilliesleaf, our first patient at Viewfield3. Pulled a lot tulips + Endymion4 for Dora to take to Jean. Wrote Mrs McGill, Springholm5 + Swift Co6. 2nd postage began today. Did 40 Vaccinations. Total now over £200.

1 Bryson, later Croall Bryson, a Selkirk motor garage and vehicle hire

2 Assume Andrew Riddell, draper, of Lilliesleaf

3 Viewfield, now the Andrew Lang Unit, had been acquired in 1920 by the Muir & Graham co-partnery as a surgery and cottage hospital; its previous tenant had been Alexina Margaret Buist (1853-1936)

4 Endymion, the English bluebell or wild Hyacinth – Hyacinthaceae – sometimes named Endymion non-scriptus – though the naming is agreed to be confusing

5 Janet MacGilvray, tenant occupier at Crocketford Special Water District, Kirkpatrick Durham, Kirkcudbrightshire [1920 Valuation Roll] seems to be the only possible match

6 Swift Motor Co., whose motor Dr Muir has had problems with going back several years

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/23, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1920]

31 May 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

(Scott) Painters busy at the outside wood work + Smith at the gates + railing.

Decidedly cold today, wind W. & N.W. Shower at 9 + a little in evening: Tweed + Ettrick full. Dav. [Graham] better but didn’t go out to see anybody. Cycled to Elmrow, Goslaw Green &c + up to Oakwoodmill: called at Mauldsheugh + on to Bogle House, East Lodge, Dunsdale + Forest Road. Vaccinated 40 at night = 27 private + 13 insured. Had to send away a lot as I ran out of Lymph. Paid my War Memorial Subscription. £20 + gave Ross the £1 I got from Mrs McGill. Drew £200 from M & G [Muir & Graham co-partnery].

Smith & Son repairing railing.

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/23, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1920]

30 May 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

Heavy rain during night + this morning. River full + coloured. Faired after in forenoon + a N. to N.W. wind dried up the roads. It was not nearly as warm. Dav. [Graham, co-partner] in bed with diarrhoea. Motored to Forest Road, Dunsdale + Sunderland Hall East Lodge + Curror Street + went to morning service. Was called hurriedly about 4.30 to a boy who had fallen in the river at the “Wee Haugh”, cycled right down O.B. [Old Bridge] Road but could find no trace of any accident. Looked in on D. [Graham]. Went to evening service. Do. [Dora] + I supped at Wellwood. Vaccinated Nancy, Wallace [?] + Tim. Jack1 in London.

1 Agnes Amelia ‘Nancy’ Roberts née Muir (1878-1948), her youngest child, George Edward ‘Tim’ Roberts (1911-2005), Wallace, an unidentied person possibly one of the staff, and John ‘Jack’ Roberts junior (1876-1966), Nancy’s husband and Tim’s father

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/23, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1920]

29 May 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

Beautiful morning gradually getting duller + raining after 3. Cycled round the town. No County work. Mrs Watt (Marion Henderson1), Dunsdale fell on her mother’s door step + broke both bones of her leg clean to the ankle. Got David to help to put it up on a McIntyre2 + then carried her home. Dora [Muir] at Lauriston3 for tea. Got letter from Swift Co. saying they don’t know when they can repair the steering of the car.

The Swift Co. wrote to say they can’t get the material for the steering rod + can’t say when they will be able to send it. Bunkum!

1 Marion O Henderson married John Watt, 1899, Selkirk

2 Assume McIntyre’s double inclined plane splint c.f. Salter, S. Jas. A. “On a New Swinging Apparatus for the Treatment of Fracture of the Leg.” Provincial Medical and Surgical Journal (1844-1852), vol. 14, no. 21, 1850, pp. 564–567. JSTOR, http://www.jstor.org/stable/25501452. Accessed 11 May 2020.

3 Lauriston, Selkirk, home of Katie Smith née Locke (c.1843-1934)

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/23, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1920]

28 May 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

A delightful day. Cycled to Fairnilee: all the 8 vaccines I did have taken. Saw Kirkwood at the Lodge + went on to Faldonside. Poor Jessie2 is very lonely + I advised her to have a change. She thinks of going to Rodono. Had a big night vaccinating from 6 til 9 = 42 people of whom 15 were insured. Late I had to assist assist Dav. [Graham] at Mrs Keddie [?]2 confinement. It turned out to be a Batrachian4 monster. Most perfect night + [illegible]. The Swift

1 Kirkwood was 27 and 31 Forest Road, Selkirk, occupied by the Dobson family so Dr Muir is describing the family by its residence

2 Jessie Milne Brack Boyd (1867-1961), of Faldonside, plantswoman and gardener; her connection with Rodono (Ettrick) is not known

3 Not identified, the Editor reads the surname as Keddie

4 The Editor read this as Batrachian – amphibian – and an expert reader kindly confirmed this and supplied the following information here

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/23, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1920]