Local newspapers are a great source of
information for family historians and researchers. We are especially
lucky in Aberdeen with records of one paper - The Aberdeen Journal -
dating back to the 18th century. In this section we will record just a
few snippets of local interest from our papers - some trivial, some
tragic, but all fascinating. Let's hope you find something of interest -
I'll be surprised if you don't!
The Aberdeen Journal, February 3rd, 1819
Mr Barclay of Ury has given 50 Bolls
of Coals to the poor in the Newtown of Stonehaven. For several preceding
winters he has made the same generous donation to the great benefit of
many indigent families.
A meeting of the Parishioners of Strachan was held
on the 18th January, 1819 for the purpose of stopping the influx of
vagrants and wandering beggars into the parish when a Constable was
appointed to carry into effect this salutary measure and a liberal
subscription was made to defray the necessary expenses of its
At the annual market (St Anthen's fair), held last
Wednesday at Laurencekirk, there was not much business transacted.
Married ploughmen engaged for the year from Whitsunday next were
bargained at from £5 to £8 sterling with a house, cow, meat, and the
usual allowance of potatoes, etc. The hiring of unmarried servants is
now delayed until towards the term of entry.
The Aberdeen Journal, February 24th, 1819
The inhabitants of Stonehaven having come to the
resolution of establishing a Dispensary there under the medical charge
of Mr John Taylor, surgeon, for the benefit of the Poor of the Town and
neighbourhood, it was opened on Monday last at apartments in the house
belonging to Mr Knox, Allardice Street. Mr Knox, the Treasurer, will
thankfully receive whatever the benevolent may be inclined to bestow
towards supporting this useful charity.
The Aberdeen Journal, March 10th, 1819
Died at Ravelston, on 26 ult., Alexander Keith,
Esq. of Dunnottar.
The Aberdeen Journal, June 2nd, 1819
Stonehaven 1st June, 1819 - A most distressing
accident happened here yesterday afternoon. Just as the mail coach was
descending from the Bridge of Cowie, and making a quick turn into the
Bridge Street, a child of between 3 and 4 years of age, belonging to Mr
David Henderson, merchant here, unfortunately chanced to be in the way
of the coach and but a very little distance ahead of her, when running
to get out of the road, it fell just before the horses and although
every possible exertion was made by the driver to stop the horses and by
some people near at the time to save the child, one of the wheels passed
over the poor infant's head and part of the breast and crushed it to
death. The whole blame lies in the abominable bridge over the Cowie
Water - its excessive narrowness and steepness besides the acute turn
which it causes in running into the town of Stonehaven. It is much to be
wished that a new bridge were put up, of the proper breadth and higher
up the water for no person can be safe to pass the present one on foot
at any time but particularly at night.
The Aberdeen Journal, June 9th, 1819
Last week, without any object but the common wages
of industry, a labourer in Stonehaven, in the course of one day, carried
from a vessel in the harbour, across the deck of another vessel, 600
bags of coals, and placed them in carts on the quay, thus having borne
on his back the astonishing weight of 38 tons, and walked during the
time on very insecure footing, about 9 miles.
The Aberdeen Journal, December 18th, 1822
In consequence of information lodged with Messrs
George Sutherland, riding officer of Excise, and John Anderson,
supernumerary, of Aberdeen Collection, they proceeded on the morning of
the 10th inst, to the farm of Crossgate, parish of Dunnottar, where they
discovered an extensive private distillery at work, in which were three
tuns, containing 210 gallons of wash, in a state of fermentation, which
they destroyed. One mash tun, upwards of 200 gallons content, and from
which worts of a very high gravity were running off, two coppers at work
boiling worts, and and five bags, containing 20 bushels of dried malt,
they seized and lodged in the Excise Office, Stonehaven. The distillery,
being contiguous to a small rivulet, was calculated to defraud the
revenue a very condiderable amount weekly.
The Aberdeen Journal, January 8th, 1823
Last Friday night , Captain Barclay of Ury's
Gamekeeper, in returning from Stonehaven, missed his way, and by some
traces of him to the bank of the water of Cowie, it is but too certain
that he is unfortunately drowned. Every search has been made for his
body, but without effect. He has left a widow.
The Aberdeen Journal, March 5th, 1823
On Saturday, the 2nd ult., Mr Alexander Cormick,
supervisor, Messrs Reid, Money and Young, officers of Excise, Montrose,
and Mr Morrison of Brechin Ride Division, were approaching the
Cairn-o-Mount, they met with a strong party of smugglers, and after some
alteration succeeded in seizing about one hundred and forty gallons of
Highland whisky, which has been safely lodged in the Excise Warehouse,
Montrose. This is the greatest seizure that has been made in that
quarter for several years, and much praise is due to these officers for
their activity on the occasion.
The Aberdeen Journal, October 27th, 1823
On Friday night, an attempt was made to set on
fire the Weaving Shop in Barclay Street, occupied by Messrs Maberly &
Co., by throwing a lighted peat or other combustible stuff in at the
broken pane of glass in one of the windows. The malicious intention was
not, however, carried into effect as the fire had gone out.
The Aberdeen Journal, March 17th, 1824
On Sunday night, a child of William Donald's
forester to Mr Duff of Fetteresso fell into the water of Carron,
opposite the Kirktown, and was drowned. The child had been playing with
some others, at the foot of the yard close by the water, and having got
up on a stone generally used for beetling clothes, was precipitated into
the water by the violence of the wind. The body was afterwards found at
the Tannery, a distance of about a mile; but the vital spark had fled;
and all attempts to restore animation were without effect.