1814

February 1814

2          Sent one Beef and two Mutton Hams to London in a present to Mr McNaughton along with James Campbell.

The frost still very intense, and the Streets one Sheet of Ice by some sleet having fallen which Froze immediately.

5          A partial Thaw which was succeded with a high wind and a heavy fall of Snow to which a hard frost succeded.

10        A cold thaw commenced which continued, the Snow disolved on the low grounds and in part on the Hills, the Ice on the Forth began to break up.

Rain during the night which swelled the river so that the Ice gave way about noon and passed the Bridge without damage and the

12        next day the river was quite free from Ice excepting great quanti­ties of Broken Ice of great thickness were left on its banks The Ice is not yet disolved in the streets and there is much snow on the hills. This storm has been more intense than any that has happened for these 17 years past.

A Sloop of 60 tons loaded with powder and ball from the Magazine in the Castle has sailed from the Shore, ‘tis supposed for the Dutch in order to enable them to resist the French in Holland and Flanders.

14        More Ammunition is sending to the Shore to be embarked. The weather cold with easterly winds, the snow still on the hills.

20        The frost is still impeding the Plough, snow continues on all the Hills, a thaw however commenced this morning but is rather of a cold nature.

A strong talk of peace Lord Castlereagh having gone to the Continent in order to concert measures with the Ministers of the Allied powers viz the Austrians Prussians Swedes Bavarians Saxons Danes Etc,

25 – Frost and snow came on again.

The Durhamshire Militia Marched into town from Perth on their tour to the South, they had a very great quantity of Baggage and there was great difficulty to get Carters to drive it forward, the Constables being obliged to go to the Country to press the farmers’ horses and Carts. It appears that the allowance made by the government is not adequate and that the Carters are often Cheated and Maltreated by the Soldiers.

To the End of the month the weather was various, snow today rain tomorrow alternately.  The Markets, excepting Sugar and Tea with Butcher Meat were reasonable the Quartern loaf was sold for 11d, Butter from 14d to 18d Eggs from 7d to 10d, but Sugar on account of the opening to the Continent was very dear.

March 1814

1          This month began with a heavy fall of snow with cold weather. Frosty weather with snow, with a cold thaw alternately untill

 

13        the 13th the weather cleared up a little.

 

14        John Graham arrived from France, in Stirling. He had been a prisoner of War for 11 years in that country mostly at Verdun in Lorrain.

Drew all Mr McNaughton’s money out of the bank of Scotland amounting to £1104;11:5 including Intrest, one thousand pound of which was paid to (…..) Yool of Oxhill on his bond, the remainder was paid to my son James as factor for Mr McNaughton.

 

20        The Cannons of the Castle were fired on account of a Great Victory over Bonaparte by Marshal Blucher the Prussian Generall near Laon and Soissons in France. 80,000 men on each side were engaged, the French lost 70 Cannon and 50,000 men. Planted Peas and early potatoes. The Weather is now rather more moderate.

Wrote Mr McNaughton London relative to his money and Heritable bond on Oxhill.

23        The Castle fired 21 Guns in honor of another Victory of Lord Wellingtons at Bayone he having forced their lines but with great loss.

The weather cold and wet.

27        The Weather very wet however the farmers have got their Beans and a part of their oats sown.

April 1814

1          A considerable degree of vegetation appears, the Gooseberry bushes and other Shrubs are beginning to put forth leaves.

9          After a series of herd fought battles with Bonaparte in which the Allies were constantly successful and in which the French lost many men, Cannon and Stores, the Prussians under Blucher and the Austrians etc, under Schwanterzburgh got to Paris, which city surrendered on the 29 of last month, on the 30 the Emperor of Russia the King of Prussia etc entered it. The wife of Bonaparte and her son fled to Rambouillet.

The Dynasty of Bonaparte has been declared at an end by the French Senate.

The French Soldiers have been freed from their Oath of Allegeance and exhorted to leave the standards of the Tyrant.

The Bourbons have been well received in many parts of France.

12        Fine warm weather.

Got the Paviment altered before my Shops.

14        News arrived that Bonaparte had abdicated the Throne of France in a most pusilanimous manner and is to retire on a pension to some Island on the Coast of Italy and that the Bourbons have been proclaimed in Paris and many other towns in France. The Guns were fired from the Castle and Mobs of boys shouting all over the town, with bonfires in severall parts.

A Storm of Thunder with hail, which has done some damage to the Gardens.

Bought a Bureau for Six Guineas from Conveener John Reid.

The weather mild and warm.

15        The Town and all the Villages adjacent were illuminated most splendidly many emblematic transparent paintings were exhibited in the Windows, all on account of the downfall of Bonaparte in France. Bonfires were also made on the hill of Dymaiat and on all the eminences in the neighbourhood.

22        Sent twelve Guineas to Edinr to William in order to enable him to pay the Tickets for the Summer Classes he is to attend at the University.

Cold rainy weather.

28        An Armistice by sea and land betwixt France and Great Britain.

Lewis the 18th left England and embarked at Dover for France after being treated with great distinction everywhere in England particularly in London by the Prince Regent who created him a Knight of the Garter and accompanied him to Dover, from whence the Duke of Clarence with a Squadron of 5 Sail of the Line convoyed him to Calais in one of the Royal Yachts.

The latter part of the month was wet and cold, the markets are tolerably cheap excepting Butchers Neat and Butter, these two articles being uncommonly high.

William came from Edin

May 1814

1          The weather very cold, snow is on the Ochill hills but vegetation is well-advanced.

12        Cold Frosty weather. The Caterpillar or some insect has materially hurt the fruit trees.

16        Began to move from my shop into my other shop that was last possessed by John Anderson.

Had a letter from Mr McNaughton at London.

20        Got the front of the Shelves in my shop painted with green paint.

23        Got the front of my shop painted with Blue together with the Window Shutters and Door.

Sent twelve pounds to William At Edinr ten pounds of which to be placed to his account with Mr Lucas and two pounds for his private expences.

26        The weather more moderate with slight Showers of rain.

Finally settled with Thomas Traquair the ballance that was still owing him for extra work about my house.

The fair of Stirling, the town was much crowded, the day was fine, observed very few drunken people.

28        Eleven Guns were fired from the Castle in commemoration of the Restoration of’ Charles the Second.

The weather is very dry and cold with frost every morning whereby vegetation is much hurt, some of the early potatoes are much hurt and burnt.

The country is in a great fermentation on account of a bill that is likely to pass in parliament regulating the price of all Kinds of grain, it has been brought forward by one Parnell, an Irish Member. Our poor silly Scottish Members have mostly voted in its favor.

June 1814

1          Cold frosty weather which has greatly damaged the Potatoes and other tender plants.

4          The Castle fired 11 Guns in commemoration of the King’s birthday but there was no Bonefires, drinkings of health at the Cross nor even a Guzzle in the council room by the Magistrates and their partisans as used to be the case on this occasion, the Poor King is forgotten !!!

A great complaint of the dullness of trade throughout the nation, which is an event contrary to every person’s expectation. The French Prisoners of War are returning home from all the Depots, the British prisoners are also returning home from Ffrance.

6          News arrived of the Signing the Preliminaries of Peace with France,

21 guns were fired from the Castle and the Church and Tolbooth bells were set a ringing but, strange to tell,  nobody seemed to rejoice on the occasion, the conditions of the peace are not yet made Public.

9          The French Copy of the Treaty as copied from their papers gives back to France all our conquests excepting the Mauritius, Tobago and St Lucce, we grant them the liberty of Fishing as formerly in Newfoundland and factories on the coast of Coromandel. France renounces all the Conquests of Bonaparte but there is certain towns and portions of Territory allowed her in the Netherlands Switzerland and Italy but of no great moment, however the Peace is too favourable to her and Britain as usuall has not got much justice done to her.

10        The Emperor of Russia, the King of Prussia and many Illustrious Foreigners of high rank came over to England after signing the peace at Paris on a Visit to the Prince regent and to see London etc. They were received with extraordinary Splendor and had every possible mark of distinction paid them.

15        A quantity of rain fell which was very seasonable both to the gardens and to the fields.

17        A Steamboat, that was built at Kincardin and intended to run as a passage boat between the town and Leith came up to the Shore but the debut was rather unfavorable for instead of running up by means of the Steam Engine with which it is furnished, it had to be towed up with Horses and Men.

24        Being the Anniversary of the famous battle of Bannockburn the Weavers of Bannockburn, the Nailers of Chartershall and Milton and many others assembled at St Ninians to the Amount of five hundred and upwards, walked to the Bore Stane above Milton in grand procession with four or five Bagpipers, and there drunk severall appropriate Toasts, after which they separated. The Concourse of Spectators was very great.  NB the Battle was fought 500 years ago.

25        The weather very hot with a great drought.

July 1814

There seems to be a page missing here — next entry 24 July

24        after they had appeared above the ground, when the plants were destroyed so far as they appeared above the ground. Currants both white red and black and fitt to be made into jellies etc.

28        A Fine warm rain that was very much wanted.

30        William Returned from Edinburgh.

The Hay Crop is a scanty one, the Wheat and Beans look well, the Oats are short but look well, the Barley is indifferently good in some places. Meal is £2:2 per load, Beef is 7d per lib, Lamb is still high in price.  Garden stuff s are in abundance moderate cheap.  Butter and eggs however are dear the one being 1/6 the other 8 to 1/- per dozen.

Trade both domestic and foreign is said to be bad however the price of Grain and Sugar is on the advance.

A great many failures in the Mercantile line have taken place particularly those who bought up colonial produce at the Peace.

 August 1814

 1          Mrs Leckie returned to Glasgow. Mr Allan Buchanan from Glasgow accompanied her.

5          The weather rather soft, with high winds.

James McNie our neighbour was buried he having died on the 1st Inst. of an enlargement of his liver.

6          The Steamboat went to Alloa with above 50 passengers in her in order to Attend the Burgher Sacrament and returned again with them on the evening.

10        The Stirlingshire Militia came into town from Edinburgh, they were a Fine body of men about 600 strong, but their officers were rather of the indifferent Kind, very few of them being gentlemen of any fortune.

14        The Harvest is not yet begun the weather being rather rainy.

22        Settled with Mr Raeburn for Thomas’s (sic) board untill Martimas which completes the business so far as regards board and Lodging. The Stirling Militia have delivered up their arms into the armory of the Castle and Part of them that belonged to Dunbartonshire have gone home.

The Steeple and buildings at the Mealmarket have been contracted for by ….. Johnston, Mason and builder at the Valley, his estimate was much lower than any other that was given in being £700 cheaper than Traquair ‘s and Bowie’s.

The weather very fine but rather inclining to Rain, the harvest being not yet begun.

26        Two small detachments consisting of 20 men each and an officer from the 21 and 75 Regiments are sent to the Islands of Bute and Arran in order to help the Officers of Excise to keep the Smugglers under in these Islands.

During the month the markets have been rather high Sugar especially which sells (rare) at 1/- per lib.

September 1814

5          Mrs Lucas’s friends from Edinburgh gave us a Call, viz Mrs Barker and two others.

6          James set out on an excursion to Lochlomond, Benlomond and Dunbarton in company with two or three of his companions. The Town is full of Strangers mostly on their travells to different parts for the sake of health or Viewing the Country.

10        The Weather continues fine and the Harvest is fast advancing.

15        The Tryst of Falkirk or rather Stenhouse Muir.

14        Sheep were sold on the 13, they sold well and fetched good prices. Black cattle and horses sold the next 2 days they sold middling well. During the market Pickpockets were not idle, some got their pockets picked, and James Downie the Cooper was Knocked down off his horse, severely bruised and Robbed of £37 sterling. This is the 2 Tryst, the 3rd and last is held In October. Our early potatoes are all used, they have been a Tolerable crop.

17        The Justiciary Judge (Lord Gilles) came into town but owing to a mistake of the Sherrif in not giving a man the name of McAllan his Indictment in time for uttering forged notes, there was no business cane before the Court, and the fellow must either continue in Jail untill the next Circuit Court, or he will be let out privately.

Reports of another robbery in Ffalkirk and a third on the Dunbarton Road near into Buchanan.

21        A very heavy rain from the south which continued eight hours.

22        The weather is wet with high winds.

23        A party of Strollers came to town who perform various feats of Horsemanship in the Valley and give out different articles as prizes, to encourage the Mob to throw up their Shillings to them. The prizes consist of Knives, forks, small tin servers, bits of Cotton Corderoys, gown pieces of Printed Cotton Etc etc.

27        The Annual Election of Magistrates and town councill comes on this day four of the Deacons of the trades were changed. Finding my back shop cold I built up the back shoop [shop]) door with Bricks and Lime.

28        The Physicians and Surgeons in Stirling at this time consist of Twelve persons besides one Apothecary and severall Quacks Midwives Etc etc.

This is the last entry for the year 1814.

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