5 January 1919 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir (1845-1938) of Selkirk

Dull damp day but no rain. Gave Hall the builder’s boy Chlor[oform] + D. [Dr David Graham] extracted 2 teeth. Went to forenoon service. A small party of the A & S H1 (15) were present. Got on with writing in afternoon. Wrote long letter to Patrick + sent his last letter to Jean2. David [Graham] had a consultant out from Ed. [Edinburgh] seeing Carnegie [Alexander]. Jack, Nancy, Jock + [Barb?] came to supper3. The Durnfords called but I didn’t see them4. Was called at 10 to Miss Williamson, Kilncroft.

1 The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders; they were in the process of demobilising

2 Patrick Rodger Stewart ‘Pat’ Muir (1879-1961), Dr Muir’s only son, living in New Zealand since 1902 and Jane Henderson Logan ‘Jean’ Muir (1877-1941), one of Dr Muir’s daughters

3 John Roberts junior, Agnes ‘Nancy’ Roberts née Muir and two of her children, John Stewart ‘Jock’ Roberts and Andrina Barbara Henderson ‘Barbara’ Roberts

4 Major Norman Stanley M and Agnes Durnford, see 1 January 1919 entry

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/22, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1919]

4 January 1919 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir of Selkirk

Dav. was called up at 5 a.m. to see Carnegie Alexander who had an unconscious turn + he was sent for again in the forenoon1. After sick parade he came to breakfast + we arranged the work. I was not out [at] all + got a lot of clerical work done + sat mostly in the Smoke Room. Paid various moneys + wrote Dora + Guy2. D. [Dr David Graham] was at Thirladean + Bluecairn. It was a raw day with some sleet + the roads were very slippy. Helen, Nancy + Mark walked to Faldonside + had lunch with Jessie Boyd3. It was very wet as they came home.

1 David Carnegie Alexander aka ‘Carnegie Alexander’ (1856-1928); solicitor, often described by Dr Muir as D.C.A.

2 Andrina Dorothy ‘Dora’ Muir (1882-1978), one of Dr Muir’s daughters, nursing in the Baltic and Gavin Struthers ‘Guy’ Muir (1846-1927), Dr Muir’s brother

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

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/22, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1919]

3 January 1919 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir of Selkirk

Knocked up at 2 a.m. for Murdoch1. Roads frozen. Sick parade 7.30. Motored down Forest Road to Glebe Terrace, Thirladean, Bowhill N Lodge, Mount Benger + Lewenshope Hope. It was a fine sunny day + the frost improved the ground for walking. Took 45 minutes to go + 40 to return. Saw [illegible] town cases in afternoon. Paid Income Tax. David returned to Mauldsheugh from London. Helen had tea with Mrs Robertson2. Dav. [Dr David Graham] returned tonight earlier than I expected.

1 Murdoch, editors assume that this is George Murdoch (about 1842-1919), hall keeper, previously police constable, of Victoria Hall, Scott’s Place, Selkirk

2 Helen Frances ‘Mousey’ Muir (1880-1963), Dr Muir’s daughter and housekeeper

[Source: Scottish Borders Archives & Local History Service SBA/657/22, Dr J S Muir of Selkirk, medical practitioner, journal for 1919]

2 January 1919 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir of Selkirk

Wet morning but nearly fair all day. Fresh. Only a powdering of snow left on higher hills. Sick parade 7.30 + saw Murdoch. Message to Ettrickshaws and Faldonside. Went to former (after seeing 6 town cases en route), Annelshope and Bluecairn. Got home at 3 found message to Stewart, Thirladean, which I did first + then Faldonside + Hosp. (where a case of S. has come in from Ashkirk). Long letter from Minnie Brown1.

1 Minnie Mackay Brown (1874-1966), teacher and nurse: prior to war she was a school teacher. She left for Egypt September 1915; was part of the Selkirk Voluntary Aid Detachment of the British Red Cross Society and served until 29 May 1919. She was stationed at the Citadel Hospital, Cairo, 11 September 1915-13 April 1916 before she was moved to France where she served at the 11th Stationary Hospital from 15 July 1916

1 January 1919 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir of Selkirk

Was asleep when New Year came in. Ground white with snow this morning but it soon disappeared & the day was dull and mild with heavy rain in the evening. At sick parade only one man turned up but I had a cut head on a [sergeant ?] to dress in the forenoon. Message to Bluecairn to May Johnston. Almost nothing in town. Henderson’s party. Williamsons, Boylan, Durnfords, Mrs Robertson1. Spent a pleasant evening. Anne Brodie came to help. Wrote Jean2.

1 Those mentioned are respectively: unidentified; John Dun Boylan, retired engineer and friend of Dr Muir; Major Norman Stanley M Durnford (1889-1965), Army Service Corps and Agnes Watson Durnford née Harper (1888-1976), daughter of Ebenezer Erskine Harper, Sheriff Substitute of Selkirkshire, and Agnes Harper née Watson, later Mackintosh; and unidentified

2 Jane Henderson Logan ‘Jean’ Muir (1877-1941), one of Dr Muir’s daughters

Introductory notes

The diary of Selkirk G.P., medical officer and cyclist Dr John Stewart Muir has been transcribed on Tumblr since August 2014. It has has become dispiriting to see the lack of interaction that Tumblr generates, so the Blog has moved.

From the turn of 2018/19 the Blogging will continue, but on WordPress, https://rumblingclintonline.blog/, where we hope to generate greater interest and spark some interaction with or, at the very least, reaction from followers.

The editors will be delighted if readers of the old Blog choose to switch and keep up with Dr Muir, and we welcome new readers too as he pedals, in two gears and now with a formal business co-partner, towards the 1920s and beyond.

31 December 1918 diary of Dr John Stewart Muir of Selkirk

Did not get Mrs Tait over till 2.30. Jas Tait is a son of Mrs Tait, Peelburnhead who used to be at Kersknowe. Tait walked down with me1. Baptie had been entertained at Old Lewenshope. Got to bed at 4.30. Put off sick parade till 10. Saw Murdoch [? Resting] very easy2. Saw some town cases walking & in afternoon motored to Yair & Thirladean (Gray). Got some holly at Bowhill yesterday. Helen had Isobel Rodger & Helen Smith at tea. Yesterday morning Dora ‘Phoned that she was going off to the Baltic again (Copenhagen). Did not stay up to see the New Year in.

1 Betsy Morrison Bulloch Tait, daughter of James Tait, shepherd, and Marion Tait Black Tait née Bulloch, born 31 December 1918, Lewenshope Hope, Yarrow [birth registered 25 January 1919 at Yarrow]. The parents had married 2 March 1917 at Craigneuk, Dalziel, Lanarkshire

2 The editors assume that this is George Murdoch (c.1842-1919); hall keeper, previously police constable, of Victoria Hall, Scott’s Place, Selkirk

Note: Lewenshope Hope is at NGR NT369,317