Sunday, November 4, 2012

Abstinence Tour of Robert Marshall (1819-1891) – Journal Entry of 1st and 2nd October 1839

Due to heavy work load at work and other commitments, it has been a long while since I have posted a journal entry.  Time to get back on track!

The pages from September 27th – September 30th are missing from the journal, so we start up again with the entry from October 1, 1839.  Since this entry is short, I’m also posting the entry for October 2nd.

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lst October l839

I spent the greater part of the day in study, and in the evening I went out to Lochside, where I lectured to a most attentive audience chiefly composed of females, about 2 hours.  This Society is flourishing.  Nearly all the inhabitants of the district are members.  I was earnestly requested to leave a Song I had wrote with Mr. Troup that they might publish it which I promised to do.

2nd October l839

I finished the Song and left it with Mr. Troup as promised.  About 2 o'clock p.m. I went to the Coach Office and with difficulty obtained a seat for Bervie.  But here I paid for my whistle as in most other places I have done.  Alas!  I pity the poor traveller who has nothing to depend on but the conversations of his companions.  In my case however the matter was different, for I but seldom court the conversation of those who travel with me.  The scenery being almost new to me, I had enough ado with it and considering the important work in which I was engaged without giving any attention to the dull morose companions who travelled with me.  Another 3 were in the Coach, an old lady with a face for the world like a shrivelled white clout with a pair of spectacles on her grey eyes, in which beamed pride in a most horrifying degree.  I was relieved from this silent deformity about Lauriston.  The next was an old gentleman little better.  Pride seemed to be his chief virtue, and the last was a young lady, who perhaps like myself, was too much taken up with personalities to care much about her companions.  She employed her time in reading.  Not a word passed the whole l3 miles and I was happy on reaching Bervie at finding myself relieved of such a Society. The payment of 5/- for my ride together with these circumstances put me in a rather bad humour, but the scene was not long in shifted.  I was scarcely landed when I had to encounter a Taylor on the subject of the Charter.  This man was also a curiosity.  He was one of those who make a virtue of a necessity, for example he got so very high in the discussion that he believed he would do better were he to get on his feet, and in attempting to rise for this laudable purpose he brought the chair in which he sat which had but the greater part of the seat up with him.  And all that he could make of this occurrence was to ask me if I could play that?  My gravity forsook me as I witnessed the old fool walking through the floor with the pride of some heathen prince, carrying the chair after him without the assistance of his hands.

My Bills had reached, and were circulated, and I sent the Bellman through the town.  The meeting was held about 7 o'clock in Mr. McKenzies Chapel.  The attendance was numerous, and very attentive.  I lectured nearly 3 hours without any opposition but from a Drunken Saddler, who growled like a Bear in a cage, who could not possibly get at his prey.  I was most kindly treated by a Robert Barclay, and his family.

There are about 200 members here. The sect. has weekly meetings.  They are starting a Band and have got an excellent Drum, and a few other instruments.

Altogether my visit to Bervie gives me much satisfaction, and I hope has been productive of some good.

Typed by Betty Kay 11th May 1996, from Dan Marshall`s notes of the original journal.

©2012, copyright Alana Farrell

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