Friday, May 8, 2015

Scotland part 2

Next day we crossed the Firth of Forth via a bridge that included a Welcome to the Kingdom of Fife sign! We then skirted the southern coast of Fife county along the shore of the firth. We stopped in Leven for a stroll along the shore and some soccer playing. We then leisurely explored St Andrews which we all agreed was a nice surprise. We liked the ruins and tower of the Cathedral, the intrigue of the Palace (burnings at the stake, murder and assault tunnels) which figured in to the Catholic/Protestant kerfuffles of the reformation, the quad of St. Mary’s college, the baguettes for lunch, gelatto for snack and a drive by St. Andrews Golf course (where the game was invented centuries ago). Added to the draw of St. Andrews was the fact that it was the chief city of Fife from whence comes my middle name. For the record, my name is very geographical. Chad is a country in Africa, Fife is a county in Scotland and Emmett is a city in Idaho. We then drove via Dundee to Perth where we spent the night.

The ruins of St. Andrews Cathedral--A Catholic casualty from the Reformation. A climb to the top of the square tower from an earlier church provided nice views.

St. Andrews golf course is the yellow, tan and green flat in the distance.

Quad of St. Mary's College, a part of St. Andrews University

The bishop's palace.

The assault tunnel.

The oil rich North Sea.

Where Kate and William met.

Firth of Tay near Dundee in route to our hotel in Perth. I found out after the fact that Perth and Stirling were also cities where Fife ancestors once lived.

Old Scone where the Stone of Destiny once stood.

Stirling, with its well protected castle and strategic location.

We had thought we might go visit Stirling Castle, but instead we opted to climb to the top of the National Wallace Monument--built in the mid 1800s to honor Scotland's first national hero. My grandma Harriet Emmett's mother was a Wallace. I had always assumed that our Wallace line went back to Scotland's Wallace clan ( suggests otherwise). My brother Bob thought so too. Year's ago when the movie Brave Heart came out (with Mel Gibson playing William Wallace) my brother Bob jokingly told me he went to see this R-rated movie (neither of us make a habit of watching R-rated movies) based on the fact that it was part of our family history. I used his family history excuse and went to the movie too. It was a stretch but it assuaged our guilt. Yes there was some medieval violence and yes the Scots hoisted their kilts (far in the distance) and mooned the English, but that's not what I remember. What I remember is that watching the under-dog Scots fight for their freedom stirred within me a nascent nationalism that I, Chad Fife Emmett, was a Scot. Funny but I didn't feel that way when I wore a kilt in our high school production of Brigadoon, but it did influence my decision last fall to try and learn to play the bagpipe. I find it interesting that I identify more with Scotland than England even though I am equal parts both. Perhaps that identity speaks to a life long trait of supporting and standing up for underdogs.

We enjoyed our climb (brisk and breezy on the top) and the displays in the interior chambers that helped to break up our climb.

Geography matters.

Stirling Castle

The 1297 battle of Stirling Bridge where the Scots beat the English took place on what is now a rugby field in the center of the photo.

Looking north to snow in the highlands of Scotland.

Looking east. My line of Fife ancestors come from Clackmannan about ten miles in the distance on the north/left bank of the Forth River.

Next stop was Glasgow and St. Andrews Square. Our first stop was a neighborhood diner for some very authentic fish and chips and some interesting clientele. In 1856 Margaret McFall Caldwell and her four children including Agnes her 9 year old daughter and my great-grandmother (Agnes Caldwell Southworth, Veara Southworth Fife, Norda Agnes Fife Emmett, Chad Fife Emmet) left this neighborhood in Glasgow and emigrated to Utah with the Wiley Handcart company. I grew up hearing of their walk west from grandma Fife who was Agnes' 13th child. Agnes is my closest and most real British emigrant. From the life histories of Margaret and some of her children we learned that Margaret ran a boarding house on 7 Dryer Street near St. Andrews Square, that Agnes was born here and that the family departed for America from here.

Let Glasgow Flourish

Caldwell/Southworth descendants at the entry of Dyer Street. I had hoped to see the actual home from 1856, but it has been replaced with more modern housing.
Dyer Street.

Just down the hill towards the Clyde River was the Glasgow Green where the Caldwell children wrote they often went to play.

To read more about Margaret and Agnes check out this blog post:

Glasgow sends out emigrants and attracts new immigrants.

Nelson memorial in the middle of the green.

 Steeple of St. Andrews in the distance.

The River Clyde

Other ancestors coming from the environs of Glasgow (back during its coal mining and textile mill era) are John and Agnes Jardine. The location of their small coal mining village is now part of eastern Glasgow. Sarah’s line back to John and Agnes Jardine: Sarah Tueller Emmett, Chad Fife Emmett, Norda Agnes Fife Emmett, William Shumway Fife, Agnes Louisa Shumway Fife, Sarah Wilson Jardine Shumway, John and Agnes Jardine.

Hoping for food.

The Firth of Clyde. We traveled coast to coast.

Leaving Scotland on a ferry bound for Belfast.

On the 2.5 hour ferry ride, I needed a drink to go with my sandwich. I spied this concoction and asked the two clerks what it tasted like. They said it was indescribable, that it was an acquired taste and that it was something only the Scots liked (spoken by a self-confessing Irishman). I couldn't resist (plus it had caffeine and I was in need of something Dr. Pepper-like). I gave it a try (the kids all took a sip too). Not too bad. It was a too sweet combination of cream soda and a long gone favorite from my childhood--Iron Port. I'd drink it again--if there was no Dr. Pepper around.

1 comment:

  1. Another great report. Thanks for the tour of the homeland.