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Ooh give this a go! No peaking at the answers!Alison
07/01/2021

Ooh give this a go! No peaking at the answers!
Alison

Since we're back in lockdown, and you may have some empty half-hours to fill, here are twenty local history questions for you, to exercise your brain cells. Most are fairly easy, but there are one or two more tricky ones.

1. Which Torphichen man designed the first ocean-going steamship, and what was the boat called?

2. Which Bathgate-born doctor discovered the anaesthetic properties of chloroform?

3. Which Linlithgow-born chemist suggested chloroform to James Young Simpson?

4. Which order of knights had its Scottish headquarters at Torphichen?

5. Which castle stands on the banks of Harperrig Reservoir?

6. Which Edinburgh butter merchant made his fortune as Depute Master of the Rolls under James VI and I, and built himself a fine house near Linlithgow?

7. Which regiment was raised at the Binns in 1681?

8. Which West Lothian peer was Viceroy of India from 1936 to 1943?

9. Whose daughter married Walter the High Steward of Scotland in 1315?

10. Where was the first large commercial oil works in the world built in 1850-51?

11. Who was born in Linlithgow Palace in 1542?

12. Before a famous battle, a Scottish king saw a ghost in St Michael’s Church, Linlithgow. Which king and which battle?

13. Mrs Elizabeth Bishop died and was buried in Whitburn South Churchyard in 1817. Who was her father?

14. What was the official name for West Lothian until the 1920s?

15. In which town or village was the Thistle Tower?

16. Which family used to own the estate of Polkemmet at Whitburn?

17. Which two rivers formed the southern boundary of the old West Lothian county (pre-1975)?

18. With what industry do you associate the terms ‘stoop and room’, ‘sinkers’, ‘brushers’ and ‘dooks’?

19. In what year did the Burngrange disaster happen, when 13 men died in an explosion in a shale mine?

20. In what year was Tam Dalyell MP first elected to Parliament?

The answers are shown below.

Answers

1. Henry Bell. The Comet

2. James Young Simpson

3. David Waldie

4. The Knights of St John of Jerusalem (also known as the Knights Hospitallers)

5. Cairns Castle

6. Thomas (or Tam) Dalyell

7. The Royal Scots Greys (also accept their original name – the Royal Regiment of Scots Dragoons)

8. The (second) Marquess of Linlithgow (also known as Lord Linlithgow)

9. Princess Marjory, daughter of Robert the Bruce

10. Bathgate (the Bathgate Chemical Works)

11. Mary Queen of Scots

12. James IV. The battle of Flodden in 1513

13. Robert Burns. His daughter (‘Dear bought Bess’ of the poem, The Inventory) married John Bishop, the overseer at Polkemmet Estate.

14. Linlithgowshire, or the County of Linlithgow.

15. West Calder

16. The Baillie family

17. The Breich Water, and the River Almond. (There was a short stretch where the Caw Burn was the boundary, but mainly it was these two rivers.)

18. Mining – coal and shale

19. 1947

20. 1962

So it’s your first day back at work, and we’ve been put into tougher restrictions, and you’re probably thinking ‘Do you ...
05/01/2021
Linlithgow Museum Online Talk: The Battle of Nechtansmere, 685AD

So it’s your first day back at work, and we’ve been put into tougher restrictions, and you’re probably thinking ‘Do you know what would help me? To find out how a battle between the Picts and the Angles in 685AD could have changed Scottish History forever! And also, what is that wee church doing at Abercorn and why is it important? And also where is my secret stash of emergency After Eights?’

Well I can help you with two out of three of those things- and let’s face it, i probably ate the After Eights!!! Get booked up for our online talk with Eve Boyle on Jan 28th and bring a little Pictish light onto lockdown January!

See you there!
Alison

Join Eve Boyle for a trip back run time to 685AD, explore The Battle of Nechtansmere and find out why Abercorn doesn’t have a cathedral!

So 2020 wasn’t the year we’d hoped for at Linlithgow Museum. But as we’ve started to dip our toe into the world of digit...
31/12/2020

So 2020 wasn’t the year we’d hoped for at Linlithgow Museum. But as we’ve started to dip our toe into the world of digital content, we’ve been learning new things that will hopefully see us develop in new ways in 2021.

Our Creepy Christmas videos were watched a whopping 8000 times!!!!!!!! Thank you so much to you all for such amazing support. And of course to Gillian for her stories.

As a treat, here’s some behind the scenes shots!
Aa the best
Alison

KLAXON!!!! Yes it’s the second in our online talks series. How exciting! This time we’re doing a little bit of Pictish m...
29/12/2020
Linlithgow Museum Online Talk: The Battle of Nechtansmere, 685AD

KLAXON!!!! Yes it’s the second in our online talks series. How exciting! This time we’re doing a little bit of Pictish malarkey with the talk: ‘The Battle of Nechtansmere, 685AD, or: why Abercorn doesn’t have a cathedral!’

The talk will take place on the 28th January at 7.30pm on Zoom. It will be delivered by Eve Boyle from Historic Environment Scotland (HES), here’s some info:

‘On Saturday 21st May 685, the Northumbrian King Ecgfrith was killed in a disastrous battle against the Pictish King Bridei. The battle is one of those pivotal moments that are studded across our historical narrative; indeed, an argument can be made that, had it gone the other way, the history of these islands could have been very different. In recent years Nechtansmere has become a talking point amongst scholars, as new evidence has cast doubt on the traditional view of its context and, indeed, its location.
In this lecture, Eve Boyle, archaeologist with Historic Environment Scotland, will explain the background to the battle, its consequences, and explore the arguments over its location. The lecture will also take in Abercorn, where a bishop had recently established there by the Northumbrians, only to flee south in the aftermath of the battle.’

I heard Eve give this talk recently and it was amazing so I’m delighted we’ve been able to book her.

Tickets cost £3 and can be booked using the link below!

See you there!

Join Eve Boyle for a trip back run time to 685AD, explore The Battle of Nechtansmere and find out why Abercorn doesn’t have a cathedral!

Oh Linlithgow! Tut tut tut.....😉
27/12/2020

Oh Linlithgow! Tut tut tut.....😉

The festive period is normally a time for attending theatrical performances. Our enjoyment of these occasions can often be affected by those around us, such as the uncharacteristically tall person sitting blocking our view or children repeatedly throwing popcorn from the balcony. This isn’t just a problem of our times. In December 1891, the Linlithgow Gazette reported on a number of complaints from “respectable” theatre-goers at the Victoria Halls who had witnessed the repeated poor behaviour of young gentlemen sitting in “the gods”, who had taken to shooting peas and sweets at the audiences below. Image courtesy of St John’s Church.

19/12/2020
Knock Three Times: Creepy Christmas Part 4

'Knock Three Times' is another exclusive Creepy #ChristmasStory written for us by Gillian. Our Communities Co-ordinator Julia finds this story a bit too spooky for her. Enjoy part four of our series!

This is fascinating! And remember, when we reopen,  that we have our own ancient Egyptian artefact which was confirmed i...
16/12/2020
5,000-year-old piece of Great Pyramid puzzle discovered in cigar box in Aberdeen

This is fascinating! And remember, when we reopen, that we have our own ancient Egyptian artefact which was confirmed in 2019 by NMS. It will be in need of visitors. 😉

History Scotland is your number one online resource for Scottish history and nostalgia, bringing you daily news and expert articles on Scottish heritage, history and events.

Linlithgow Ladies Choir have recorded some lovely Christmas music as they weren’t able to have their usual concert. Abso...
15/12/2020
In The Bleak Midwinter, Holst, arranged by Tracy Hill

Linlithgow Ladies Choir have recorded some lovely Christmas music as they weren’t able to have their usual concert. Absolutely beautiful ladies. 🤶🏻🤶🏻🤶🏻

Linlithgow Ladies Choir chamber ensemble, recorded December 2020

🎲🎲🎲
15/12/2020

🎲🎲🎲

Historian Michael Pearce has updated the Wikipedia page for Kinneil House: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinneil_House

Among the details, interesting to read that King James VI 'held court' at Kinneil at Christmas-time in 1588, and was recorded to have played various card and dice games, including the intriguing-sounding 'mumchance'.

According to the 'Tudor Times' web site (https://tudortimes.co.uk/daily-life/tudor-indoor-games), this was a variant of another game called 'hazard'. Hazard 'was for two players, and needed three dice. The four lowest and four highest numbers that can be rolled with three dice (3,4,5,6,15,16,17,18) are the hazard numbers. After rolling a die to pick the first player, the two players make their bets, then the first aims to roll a hazard number. If he does, he wins, if not, the second player rolls. Again, if a hazard number comes up, then the player wins. If neither win, the second round is an attempt to either roll the number made by the player in the first round, or a hazard number. The game continues until a player has won. Additional hazard numbers arise if both players roll the same value in one round. If the game were played in complete silence, it was known as mumchance. Presumably, any squeak of excitement led to the other player winning!'

In 1588, the house would have looked somewhat different from now. The main front would have been a more austere-looking and defensive tower house or keep, with smaller and narrower windows and without the two side 'pavilions'. These were only added, together with fashionable new sash-and-case windows, by Duchess Anne Hamilton in the 17th Century.

12/12/2020
Creepy Christmas Part 3 - Smee by A. M. Burrage

Join us for part three of 'A Creepy Christmas'. Do you play games at Christmas? If so be careful what game you choose. Tonight, Gillian shares Smee a ghost story by A. M. Burrage #ChristmasStory

Have you seen Linlithgow Canal Centre  #Christmas film? See Santa and his cheeky elves having fun on the canal.Help rais...
11/12/2020

Have you seen Linlithgow Canal Centre #Christmas film? See Santa and his cheeky elves having fun on the canal.

Help raise funds for LYPP Linlithgow and River Kids Children's Charity. https://youtu.be/EIBODY06mKY

Due to Covid 19 restrictions, this year the members of Linlithgow Union Canal Society are unable to hold the ever-popular Santa’s Grotto and Boat Trips at Manse Road Basin.

However, LUCS members still wished to make their annual Christmas contribution to the families and children of the Linlithgow and West Lothian communities and have produced their very own Christmas Video ~ Santa (and his mischievous elves)

As you will see in the video, we are also raising funds for two very special local charities ~ Linlithgow Young Peoples Project, and River Kids from Livingston.

Now sit back, and enjoy the antics of Santa (and his mischievous elves) at .... https://youtu.be/EIBODY06mKY

Usually at this time of year we would be busy doing family #Christmas crafts. Our volunteers have created some #museumma...
11/12/2020

Usually at this time of year we would be busy doing family #Christmas crafts. Our volunteers have created some #museummakes that you can do #athome. Follow the link and have a good at our Christmas pop-up cards or design your own!
Please share them with us. https://bit.ly/372ytI4
More craft activities coming next week!

We had such a good time on our first online talk tonight with Gordon Barr on the history of Scotland’s cinemas. We had f...
10/12/2020

We had such a good time on our first online talk tonight with Gordon Barr on the history of Scotland’s cinemas. We had folks in from Australia. USA and Canada, as well as all over the UK, which was super exciting! And I think 2020 is crying out for a re release of the no doubt classic ‘Merrypimples Fire Extinguisher!’ 😂
Thanks to everyone who attended- it was great to ‘meet’ you. And we didn’t break Zoom - hooray! Keep an eye out here for announcements on what’s coming up next!

Here’s Linlithgow High Street in c.1900 and 2020 - the eagle eyed might spot something in particular is missing - find o...
10/12/2020

Here’s Linlithgow High Street in c.1900 and 2020 - the eagle eyed might spot something in particular is missing - find out what tonight at our free talk on Scotland’s Cinema Buildings by Gordon Barr of Scottish Cinemas - some tickets still available to book until 4.30 this afternoon! Talk starts at 7.30pm.
tinyurl.com/LinCinemas

On this day.....
08/12/2020

On this day.....

#OTD in 1542 Mary, Queen of Scots was born right here in Linlithgow Palace. On that particular December day it was bitterly coldwith snow on the ground. At just 6 days old her father dies and she becomes Queen.

She leads a tumultuous life full of intrigue, power struggles, marriages, deaths and betrayal.
At just 25 yes of age she throws herself on the mercy of Queen Elizabeth, but then spends her life in captivity until she is beheaded at them age of 44

Mary's Meanders are based in Linlithgow and named after our most famous resident. If you would like to find out more about Mary join us on a tour - from a 1 hr walking tour of Linlithgow, through to a 3 day castles and palaces tour.

Or right now you can download our Virtual Mary, Queen of Scots story from our website - link in comments

05/12/2020
'A House without a Ghostie'

Here is our second installment of 'A Creepy Christmas'. Tonight, cozy up for Gillian's #ChristmasStory 'A House without a Ghostie'. Enjoy!

One week to go till our first digital talk. There’s still a few places left if you’d like to book a spot!
03/12/2020

One week to go till our first digital talk. There’s still a few places left if you’d like to book a spot!

Sound the Klaxons!!! Since the current restrictions have put an end, for now, to our talks series, we have decided to take a leap into the digital world and have some online talks. So exciting! Sadly you'll have to provide your own chocolate biscuits but we are looking forward to seeing you there.

Our very own Trustee, Gordon Barr, is going to kick us off on December 10th at 7.30pm.

The Scottish Cinemas & Theatres Project (www.scottishcinemas.org) has been recording and researching Scotland's palaces of entertainment for nearly 20 years. Gordon will lead us through the social and architectural history of this often overlooked part of history.

From West Lothian to the Western Isles, from Bathgate to Bo’ness, from Armadale to Aberdeen, Scotland has some of the most architecturally diverse cinema buildings of anywhere in the world. Gordon will cover the full range of cinema history, from converted roller-skating rinks, via the earliest purpose built halls to the finest thirties art deco super-cinemas. He will highlight some of the most interesting buildings, eccentric architects, and unusual discoveries (including a prancing deer!).

Discover cinemas that were, cinemas that are, and cinemas that might have been. Although many cinema buildings have been demolished or converted, there are still a lot of interesting gems to discover if you know where to look

If you want to book then click the link and we will see you there. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/scotlands-cinemas-on-screen-tickets-128841868497

Thanks for your ongoing support of Linlithgow Museum.

Happy St Andrew’s Day! 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿
30/11/2020

Happy St Andrew’s Day! 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

Happy St Andrew's Day everyone! 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Now commemorated as Scotland's patron saint, the association of St Andrew and Scotland can be traced back to the medieval period, and the idea of the saint as Scotland's 'patron' gained particular traction during the First War of Scottish Independence. There is even some evidence that the Scots may have called on St Andrew's intercession ahead of the fighting here at Bannockburn on 24th June 1314.

In the Gospels, St Andrew is presented as a fisherman from Galilee who becomes one of the twelve apostles of Jesus. According to early Christian tradition, St Andrew played a crucial role in spreading Christianity through Turkey and into Scythia (a rough geographical area covering modern-day Ukraine and Georgia). Medieval mythological narratives of how the kingdom of Scotland was founded claimed that the Scots originated in Scythia, but whether this influenced the Scots' fascinating with the saint or whether Scottish devotion to St Andrew led medieval Scottish writers to insist on a Scythian origin for their people is uncertain. Early tradition also has St Andrew martyred for his faith at Patras in western Greece, although the notion that he was crucified on a sideways or 'X'-shaped cross seems to have come slightly later.

Devotion to the cult of St Andrew can be identified in Christian communities across medieval Europe from as early as the fourth-century. The precise origins of the cult of St Andrew in Scotland are difficult to identify, with a popular legend (repeated since at least the fourteenth-century) claiming that the eighth-century Pictish king Onuist [Angus] I received a vision of St Andrew promising him victory in battle and that afterwards he founded a religious community dedicated to St Andrew at Kinrymont (now St Andrews) in Fife. By the sixteenth-century, Scottish writers were claiming that Onuist had witnessed the cross of St Andrew appear in the sky - inspiring the adoption of the saltire as the Scottish flag - but this is not present in fourteenth- and fifteenth-century versions of the story. Whatever the case, the community at St Andrews flourished, thanks in large part to the presence of relics associated with St Andrew that had reputedly been brought to Scotland by a monk named Regulus in the fourth- or fifth-century. This made St Andrews one of the premier pilgrimage sites in the kingdom, and by the tenth-century the Bishop of St Andrews was acknowledged as the most important clergyman in Scotland.

The earliest association of St Andrew with the governance of Scotland came around 1286, when the Guardians of Scotland - a council appointed to manage the realm until a new king could be found - had a representation of St Andrew included on their communal seal. Around the figure of St Andrew, on his X-shaped cross, were the word 'Andrew, be leader of your Scottish compatriots', showing that the saint was already viewed as a unifying and inspiring figure for late thirteenth-century Scots. According to a text attributed to Bruce's chancellor Bernard, Abbot of Arbroath, St Andrew was one of the saints King Robert called on ahead of the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314:

'Happy is this day! John the Baptist was born on it; and St Andrew and St Thomas [Becket] who shed his blood along with the saints of the Scottish nation will fight today for the honour of the people, with Christ the Lord in the van.'

In July 1318, King Robert was also present for the consecration of the cathedral at St Andrews, at which he may have given thanks for his victory at Bannockburn. Most famously, the Declaration of Arbroath identifies St Andrew as Scotland's patron ('patronus') for the first time. The Declaration of Arbroath also describes him as 'the first to be an Apostle, despite being second or third in rank'. This is a reference to John 1:40-42, in which Andrew, a disciple of St John the Baptist, hears Jesus teaching and then brings his brother St Peter to meet Jesus. This gives us some clue as to why the cult of St Andrew became so important to the Scottish political community, especially after 1286. One of the main motivating forces behind resistance to the English during the First War of Scottish Independence was the Scottish church, who feared that English occupation of Scotland would disrupt their direct connection of the papacy and force them to go through the English church to make appeals to the pope. The Scottish clergy anticipated that the Archbishopric of York would be the main threat to the independence of the Scottish church, and York Minster was dedicated to St Peter. By emphasising Scottish associations with St Andrew then, the Scottish clergy could present the subjugation of the Scottish church as being unnatural, since it was St Andrew who introduced St Peter to Jesus.

The images below show the development of iconography associated with St Andrew across western Europe in the medieval period. The first image - from the mid thirteenth-century work entitled 'Lives of the Saints' by a French writer named Wauchier de Denain - shows a rather short-tempered looking St Andrew being crucified on a cross tipped on its side. The second is an impression of the seal of the Guardians of Scotland, showing the saint pinioned to the X-shaped cross. Finally, the third image - from the so-called Taymouth Book of Hours, a mid fourteenth-century English work - shows St Andrew once again being tied to an X-shaped cross. If you look closely in the top right hand corner of the image, you will see a banner featuring an early version of the saltire.

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Linlithgow Partnership Centre, High Street
Linlithgow
EH49 7EZ

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Linlithgow Museum Project

The “A New Museum for Royal Linlithgow” project aims to enable community involvement in the development, delivery and interpretation of heritage and provide opportunities for local people to find out about the history of Linlithgow. The new Linlithgow Museum opened its doors to the public in Spring 2019.

This project relocates Annet House Museum to its new home in the Linlithgow Partnership Centre, Tam Dalyell House. The Partnership Centre is home to a host of local services such as a Library, Customer Information Services, Local History Library, Family History Society, Police Scotland and Linlithgow & District Community Day Care Centre.

The museum will feature three new galleries and a bespoke Community Space. Together these will provide a fresh interpretation of the town's history and showcase the Trust's rich collection of objects, photographs, and archive material. Participation and engagement will be placed at the heart of our new community centred museum. Volunteers from across the area will develop a range of heritage-based skills, whilst local people will have a chance to take part in exciting activities from art workshops to a community archaeology dig.

The National Lottery are the largest funder of the funder of the project having awarded the Linlithgow Heritage Trust a £240,000 grant. Other funders include LEADER, West Lothian Council, Linlithgow Town Centre Management Group, Museums Galleries Scotland The Land Trust, EB Scotland, Viridor, Robertson Trust, Levenseat Trust and the Association of Independent Museums.

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Find out about the adoption of HMS WALLACE by West Lothian after WARSHIPS WEEK in 1942 on the website of the V & W DESTROYER ASSOCIATION: http://vandwdestroyerassociation.org.uk/HMS_Wallace/West_Lothian2.html but where is the crest of HMS Wallace presented to West Lothian by the Admiralty?
I am telling the story of the adoption of HMS WALLACE by West Lothian on the website of the V & W Destroyer Association. Prince Philip was the Patron of our Association, served as 1st Lt in HMS WALLACE and visited West Lothian after her adopotion. Can anybodyn help research this story? Or provide photographs or stories for the website? See: http://vandwdestroyerassociation.org.uk/HMS_Wallace/West_Lothian.html
Had a great time and found all the lego pieces