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Beautifully illustrated family history books with a difference by a frequent contributor to the UK family history press. I write for Family Tree Magazine UK; Discover Your Ancestors Online Periodical and Bookazine; Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine. The publishers of my family history books are Pen and Sword Books and The History Press. I tweet (and retweet) thought-provoking content designed to help you tweak your approach to (your family) history at @RuthaSymes . Do follow me.

Friday, 14 September 2012

Vision of Britain

My Ancestor Came from Scotland 1891-1900

Edinburgh  Diary 1891-1900

Edinburgh in 1891 from the road known as ‘Rest and Be Thankful’. From Scottish Pictures Drawn with Pen and Pencil by Samuel G. Green, The Religious Tract Society, 1891.

1891  The first sod of the Barnton railway (providing a service from Barnton and Craigleith into Edinburgh is cut on 29 October.


1892 On November 26, the premises of Messrs. Charles Jenner and Company, silk mercers and drapers (and forerunner of today’s famous department store), are completely destroyed by fire. The damage is estimated at £250,000.


1893 Royal visitors, the Duke and Duchess of York, visit Edinburgh in October and receive their wedding gift from the town - a service of glass for the table and some books. The Duke receives the freedom of the city and opens a new wing of the Longmore hospital.


1894 During May and over the summer, there is an outbreak of smallpox in the city. A temporary wooden hospital has to be erected in Queen’s Park to deal with the high number of cases.


1895 On 11 April, Mrs M’Donald, wife of the Lord Provost, turns on the electric lighting in the city. This has been installed at a cost of about £120,000.


1896  A new observatory, which has taken four years to erect, is opened on Blackford Hill.


1897 Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee is celebrated all over the city on 22 June. Bonfires are lit on many hills during the evening.


1898 On 9 December the 1st Gordon Highlanders arrive home from India and meet with a splendid reception to celebrate their triumph over Afridi tribesmen in the Dargai Heights the previous year.


1899 The Scots Greys and the Gordon Highlanders leave in early November to fight in the Boer war in South Africa. More than 50,000 people turn out to see them off.


1900  Motor cars arrive in Edinburgh after the first half of a thousand mile run  (to London and back) and are exhibited on May 3. They are very much a novelty - only 10,000 vehicles (most of them made abroad) exist in Britain at the time.