The Cellardyke Echo – 10/02/2022 – Issue 326


WINTER HERRING FISHING. We are sorry to note the continued unsuccess of the fishing up to this date. The extreme stormy weather which has prevailed since Saturday up till yesterday has prevented all fishing operations, and the only additions we have to make this week are the takes of Friday and Saturday last, which amount to 340 crans. This only brings the season’s catch up to 693 crans, which is a serious falling off as compared with former years, there being at this time last year about 5000 crans. The weather having cleared up on Wednesday, the fishermen again prepared to go to sea, but none of the boats went out until Thursday morning. This continued dullness in the trade is much to be regretted, as there are a great number of buyers on the ground, and the prices are good.

The two boats which came in yesterday morning with about seven crans each, sold their fish at the extraordinary high price of 60s. per cran – a figure scarcely ever realised before, even in a winter herring fishing.

The undernoted a statement of the catch at Anstruther and Cellardyke for the week ending yesterday (Thursday) :

Boats out.          Highest.              Total crans         Prices.

Friday,                 90                         10                          180                        46s. to 52s.

Saturday,            65                         10                          160                        52s. to 55s.

Tuesday,             Stormy. No boats out.

Wednesday,       Stormy. No boats out.

Thursday,.          2                            7                            13                          60s. to —?s.

Total for the week           353

Previous Week,                  340

Total for the season,      693

At same date last year   5535

Do. year 1868.                  2330

Do. year 1867,                  1655

D0. year 1866,                  1410


Man Drowned at Sea.

A dark gloom was thrown over this neighbourhood on Wednesday forenoon by the distressing rumour that Robert Drummond, one of the crew of the herring boat Elizabeth of Cellardyke (skipper Alex. Tarvit), had been drowned at sea. It appears that the boat was tacking towards the shore, when, as she was lying nearly becalmed after one of those passing gusts peculiar to light westerly winds, a flap of the sail had knocked the unfortunate man overboard. Instant efforts were made by Skipper Tarvit and the rest of the crew to save him ; but though the poor sufferer was so near the boat that the former touched him three times with his hand, and though three other boats were within hail of the fatal spot, yet notwithstanding all that could be done the luckless man sank into watery grave. Drummond, who was about forty years age, was a particularly strong and robust man, and, with the exception of the herring fishery, was usually employed a field labourer. He leaves a widow and seven young children helpless and unprovided for, and altogether seldom has there been as claimant an appeal to public sympathy and benevolence as in the present case. The calm weather had kept the boats long at sea, and the poor widow and her family were wearying, though by no means in alarm, for the well-known footstep, when the Rev. Cameron, the minister the parish, called to break the melancholy intelligence.


A Saturday Night Spree.”—At Burgh Court held here on Saturday—Provost Todd and Bailie Bonthrone on the bench—Robert Anderson and David Wood, two young fishermen residing in Cellardyke, pleaded guilty to having committed breach of the peace by being drunk and disorderly opposite to the Salutation Inn towards midnight on Saturday week. It appears that the former panel had been taken into custody by the policeman and lodged in the lock up, but the circumstances of the case were of such a mitigated nature as to induce the Magistrates to impose the nominal penalty of fine of 5s.

Encouragement to Sabbath School Teachers. —On Thursday last, the Australian mail was the medium of bringing a most interesting and valuable gift to three well-known and much respected Sabbath School teachers in Cellardyke—namely, the venerable postmaster, Mr Thomas Brown, and his old associates in the same sacred task, Mr Thomas Cunningham and Mr William Watson, who each received a letter with a cheque for £10, as a token grateful remembrance and affectionate esteem for their labours in the Sabbath School which he attended in the years of his ” boyhood”, from Mr Alex. Watson, native of Cellardyke, and sometime ironmonger in Anstruther, but who emigrated about twenty years ago to Australia, where he has latterly been very successful at the gold mines.


Brotherhood of the Sea.—One dark and stormy night some weeks ago, the boat of skipper Charles Carstairs of Cellardyke, was at the drift fishing, large sea going steamer ran foul of the gear and the rope, parting some eight or nine of the nets, which were carried away by the current and could not be found. This was a heavy loss, but such the everyday experience of the hardy fisher, though fortunately, in this case, the nets came the way of honest neighbours. These were the crew of the Cockenzie boat owned by Messrs Thomas Donaldson and Robert Johnstone, who took the nets on shore, and spread them as carefully the green as if they had been their own; but what is still more to their praise, they declined to take fee or reward for their trouble, on the missing gear being claimed the Cellardyke owners. A case like this may well lead to the reflection of how much ill-will and mischief at sea would be avoided, if sea-faring men would everywhere do, as in this instance, as they would like to be done by.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *