11 February 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

A old N.W. gale + severe snow blasts with bright intervals: Breakfasted at 7.13 + left at 8.30 motoring to Curror Street Bleachfield Road, Fairnilee East Lodge, Yair (Dubs1 much better), Yair Farm (Ormiston2), Bogle House + caught the 10.19 at Clovenfords. Was very late of course for the Panel Comttee Conference at N.B. [North British] Hotel which commenced at 10.30. Moved the resolution in name of Selkirkshire re the notice of going away for a month [illegible] by a week [?] but withdrew it. Lunched at the hotel with Easterbrook. After the meeting went to Picture House + came out by the 6.5. with Stewart Alexander3. There had not been anything wanted.

1 Frank Albert or F A Dubs (1860-1920), engineer and locomotive builder, later of ‘private means’ with nine servants [source: 1911 census]; born Anderston, Glasgow but retired 1902 and latterly staying at Yair

2 See also diary entry for 12 February 1920

3 Not identified

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

10 February 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

A very rough day with torrential rain in the morning and a N.W. gale at night. Ettrick in top flood. Got out pretty sharp + saw town cases + then motored to Dunsdale, Yair, Bogle House (where I failed to pass the stomach tube of Peter Peden1) + Bowhill. Saw one or two more after lunch in town. Wrote some letters to Jean, Dora, Guy2 + Agnes Durnford. Went back to Yair at night. Dubs3 pretty weak.

1 Peter Peden, labourer, was at the Bogle House, Fairnilee, Caddonfoot, 1920 Valuation Roll

2 Gavin Struthers ‘Guy’ Muir (1846-1927), Dr Muir’s brother

3 Frank Albert or F A Dubs (1860-1920), engineer and locomotive builder, later of ‘private means’ with nine servants [source: 1911 census]; born Anderston, Glasgow but retired 1902 and latterly staying at Yair

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

9 February 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

A fresh day + a strong Sou’ Wester with heavy blasts of rain with one or two blinks of sunshine. Message to Beechwood, Bogle House + Caddonlee for all of which I motored. Wrote Sarah Twentyman1 + the Patons (who sent me “The Way of an Eagle” by Ethel M Dell2). Helen + I had tea at Elmpark with Mrs Mack, Lady Belhaven + Lady Napier3.

1 Sarah Twentyman (1877-1963) – see diary entry for 4 February 1920

2 Ethel May Dell Savage (1881-1939) known as Ethel M Dell, British writer, her first book ‘The Way of an Eagle’ was published in 1911 and went through dozens of printings; it was not Dr Muir’s first Ethel M Dell novel, he previously noted reading ‘The Rocks of Valpré’, 1914

3 Agnes Mackintosh, née Watson, formerly Harper (1859-1946), of Elm Park, Selkirk, her sister Georgina Hamilton née Watson (1856-1940), Lady Belhaven and Stenton and her niece Clarice Jessie Evelyn Napier née Hamilton (1881-1951), Lady Napier

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

8 February 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

A much duller day than yesterday. It was our Communion but I was prevented from getting to either service by Mrs Malkin (Jeannie Christy) who, after hanging on all day, had a S. [son] at 5.401. I gave chlor[oform] to Maggie Warwick whom D. [Dr David Graham, co-partner] curetted at the Home + saw a few town cases. Jack, Nancy + Johnny Ingles2 (who was hunting yesterday) came for supper. Yesterday the ground remained hard in the shade but today the frost quite disappeared.

1 Cyril John Leslie Malkin, born 8 February 1920 at 23 Market Place, Selkirk, son of Jeannie Clark Malkin née Christie and Joseph Malkin, motor mechanic; the parents had married 14 October 1916 at St John’s Episcopal Church, Selkirk

2 This is conceivably John Ingles, designer, noted as Proprietor of a house at Kirkwynd, Selkirk but also an address at Ravensthorpe, Dewsbury [Valuation Roll, 1919]; details: John Ingles (1861-1929), woollen mill designer, son of Walter Ingles, shoemaker, and Mary Ingles née Scott, and married to Alice Scott

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

7 February 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

My 75th Birthday which finds me in good health: sound in wind + limb + fit for my work. My only disability is some impairment of my hearing which however does not however + fortunately interfere with auscultation1. Well may I say with a thankful heart “Surely goodness + mercy have followed me all the days of my life”. I had presents from Mrs Mackintosh2, Jean, Helen3 + the Patons4, a card from Agnes Durnford5 + letter from Guy + Mary6. It was a lovely day + after motoring to Yair I went out to the Gala Rigg + with Nancy, Helen + Fairy7 [?] saw a lot of the hunting from Whitmuirhall. I was out from 11.15 till 4 + did a lot of running. The hunt went to Haining, Deepslade8, [?], Riddell, Shawburn, Curling, Prieston [?], Clarilaw Moor + Whitmuir.

1 Auscultation (Latin auscultare) listening to the sounds of the body during a physical examination

2 Agnes Mackintosh, née Watson, formerly Harper (1859-1946), of Elm Park, Selkirk, aka ‘the Magic Cave’

3 Jane Henderson Logan ‘Jean’ Pike née Muir (1877-1941) and Helen Frances ‘Mousey’ Muir (1880-1963), two of Dr Muir’s daughters

4 Isabella Clementina ‘Isa’ Paton (about 1838-1929) and Marion Agnes Paton (about 1841-1940), sisters living on their own means [1901 Census] and at Galashiels from 1918

5 Agnes Watson Durnford née Harper (1888-1976), daughter of Ebenezer Erskine Harper, Sheriff Substitute of Selkirkshire, and Agnes Harper née Watson (Mrs Mackintosh), a Red Cross V.A.D. and holder of Red or White Stripe [‘Selkirkshire V.A.D.s.’, the Southern Reporter, 6 April 1922], she had married in 1918

6 Gavin Struthers ‘Guy’ Muir (1846-1927) and Mary Jane Wallace née Muir (1836-1933), Dr Muir’s brother and sister

7 Agnes Amelia ‘Nancy’ Roberts née Muir (1878-1948), Dr Muir’s daughter , Helen footnoted above and if the reading is correct Fairy is unidentified, Dr Muir’s acquaintance Euphemia Cranston ‘Fairy’ Roberts having died in 1917

8 The locations are, by and large, ones south and east of Selkirk and familiar to Dr Muir followers, the possible exception being Deepslaids, approximate grid reference NGR NT485268

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

6 February 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

Dull sunless day: a little frost in morning but soft after. Roads good in places but sticky in others. Cycled to Ettrickvale Mill, , Yair, Hospital, Goslaw Green + after tea went round with communion cards + voting papers (cups) [?]. Lady Belhaven1 sent me a present of 4 bottles port + 2 of Whiskey [sic]. Helen paid the books + accounts. Minnie Brown2 came down at 8 + ‘phoned Mrs Scott Plummer3 about the meeting of Red Cross Commttee. Geo Roberts + Co4 have given £1000 for the War Memorial.

1 The Hon. Georgina Hamilton née Watson (1856-1940), Lady Belhaven and Stenton

2 Minnie Mackay Brown (1874-1966), teacher and V.A.D. nurse who served in Egypt and France 1916-1919

3 Muriel Grace Scott Plummer née Johnstone-Douglas (1874-1961), of Sunderland Hall

4 George Roberts and Co. (about 1840-1973), woollen manufacturer, Selkirk

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

5 February 1920 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

On Saturday got payment of John Hume’s (Lilliesleaf) 1915 account amounting to £10. 8. 6. Saw Agnes (who came in with the money) 12/- for a marriage present. Yesterday the back wheel of my bicycle was very stiff + Baptie discovered a huge accumulation of mud inside the [mud-]guard which acted like a brake.

Another lovely day but with some cloud in the morning. A tough of frost too + the roads good before the sun touched them + in the shade. Gave the epileptic boy Turnbull chlor[oform] and extracted 3 teeth. Cycled to Tre… Crescent, Goslaw Green, Ashybank, Newark Mill, Bowhill, Carterhaugh + Oakwoodmill. Went to meeting of St Andrews Commttee at [illegible]. Besides myself there were only Johnstone + Carnegie2. Arranged to deliver [?] a circular re the motor ambulance. Helen + Nancy3 had a walk + tea at Thornfield4. Jack5 looked in at night about his elbow.

1 Assume John Hume, draper, at Thorncroft, Lillieleaf, 1915 Valuation Roll

2 David Carnegie Alexander, ‘Carnegie Alexander’ or ‘D.C.A.’ (1856-1928), solicitor

3 Helen Frances ‘Mousey’ Muir (1880-1963), and Agnes Amelia ‘Nancy’ Roberts née Muir (1878-1948), two of Dr Muir’s daughters

4 Thornfield, Scott’s Place, home of Charles Henry Roberts, manufacturer [1920 Valuation Roll]

5 John Roberts junior ‘Jack’ (1876-1966), Dr Muir’s son-in-law, mill owner and Provost of Selkirk, later knighted “for political and public services in Selkirk”

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