The Cellardyke Echo – 27/10/2022 – Issue 362


The storm of Wednesday last in the Firth of Forth was succeeded another of equal severity on Saturday night and the following morning. About six o’clock on Sunday morning, a Cellardyke fisherman observed a sloop endeavouring to work up the Firth. The wind was SSE. at the time. The vessel, which bad lost the greater part of her canvas, began to drift rapidly to the eastward, and shortly before seven o’clock she went ashore among the rocks, about two miles from Anstruther. The vessel was seen among the rocks by the foreman the farm, who once gave the alarm. Several persons then proceeded to the shore, where the waves were rolling with great force. The ship was on high rock; but the sea broke over her in such a manner as to cause the greatest fear for the safety of the crew, who had taken to the rigging. While those on shore were engaged in trying effect some communication with the ship, her mast gave way, precipitating the crew (two men and boy) into the sea. They were all washed on rock, however, but it was too far from the shore for the spectators to render assistance. In a short time one the seaman was washed off the rock to which be and the two others were clinging; but, fortunately, he managed to get hold of another, which held until a ploughman went into the water up to his neck, and succeeded in palling him ashore. Meanwhile, the other two were washed off by a huge wave, and drowned. The vessel turned out to be the Watsons, of Thurso, Thomas Barry, master and owner, from Newcastle Andrews, with coal. The vessel a total wreck.

A “LIGHT” CASE. John Adamson, manager of the Anstruther and Cellardyke Gas Co., sued George Peebles, tailor, Anstruther, for the sum of 11s 2d, for gas consumed by him. Defender stated that his reason for refusing to pay the amount was that he considered it a gross overcharge. He handed the gas-book to his Lordship, remarking that he would see the great difference in the quantity of gas burned in the other quarters, while he (defender) was of opinion that he had burned less instead of more. From the evidence of the pursuer and another witness, if appeared that the meter in defender’s house had been taken out and repaired. The meter was examined on the 4th of February 1869, indicating at that time 300 feet, which was paid for at the time. It was again examined on the 4th of May, when it indicated 1900 feet, being a consumption of 1600 feet, the price of which was now sued for. The Sheriff said as the meter seemed to have been going regularly enough after it had been repaired, it would never do for him to decide against the company on such slight grounds as a comparison of the quantity consumed in former quarters. Decree for pursuer, with 4s 7d of expenses.


CELLARDYKE. STABLE ON FIRE. —About eight o’clock on Wednesday night, a fire broke out in a stable occupied by Mr Alex. Myles, it appears that a boy had gone in to supper the horse, and while doing so had laid the lantern on the floor, when by some means or other the straw got ignited. The alarm was at once given, and in a few minutes a large number of persons turned out, by whose assistance a part of the roof was taken off, and the fire soon subdued. The horse was got out of the stable immediately after the fire commenced, but some pigs which were also in it received a slight scorching. The stable, which was insured, is not very seriously damaged.

Cheap Sloop.— The other week we reported that tut Anstruther herring boat had been offered for five shillings, and failed to find a purchaser; but that incident folly found a parallel on Friday last, when a smack of fifty tons burden, fully equipped for sea, was sold by public auction at the harbour for £14 10s. The smack was the well-known coaster Maggie Lander, which has been owned for some months past in South Shields, but, in consequence of the dull state of the times, her owner determined to sell her here at any sacrifice. No upset price was named, but a Cellardyke shipowner made offer of £5, which led to a short but spirited competition that resulted in the vessel being knocked down at the figure already stated to Mr David Anderson, slater, St Andrews. This sloop is of great age, having been built at West Anstruther in 1790. The old sloop was singularly fortunate, and it was often a jocular remark that the wind would become fair when the Maggie Lauder was ready for sea; and though she often embarked on a London and Caithness passage, and that at a time when no Bell Rock lighthouse, or even serviceable beacon of any kind cheered the mariner as he toiled along the dark and dangerous coast, the little Dutch-looking smack out-braved All perils, and is one of the last of the numerous fleet of coasters built at Anstruther, which, indeed, in the end of the last and beginning of the present century, was the principal ship-building seat in the Firth.

CELLARDYKE. OPENING OF A TELEGRAPH OFFlCE.—Although the telegraph wires have been extended to the Post Office here for some time back, it was not until Wednesday that the office was formally opened fur the despatch of messages. On that day, four telegrams were sent off, which, taking into account the dull state of trade at present, may be considered very satisfactory for a commencement. This office, however, does not as yet deliver messages, those arriving at Anstruther for persona residing in Cellardyke being delivered by the message boy at the former place. This materially detracts from the benefit the opening of the office was expected to confer, but it is to be hoped that the Post Office authorities will favourably consider the representations of Provost Martin, who, ever attentive to the interests of the burgh, has already taken steps to endeavour to have messages delivered as well as despatched from the office here.


Fishing boat ashore at Yarmouth

Last Thursday afternoon, as the fishing boat belonging to Skipper Robert Keay, of Cellardyke, was proceeding to sea with a strong breeze blowing, she struck the ground at the side of the river. Fearing that they were in danger, the sail was let go, and the boat made fast to the side of the quay. The crew then made fast thick ropes aft and forward to the shore, in order to keep the boat from being driven down by the tide, which runs very fast. While in this position, one of the beachmen let go the stern rope, and immediately ran off, and the boat then went down the river until she went on shore at the north bank. The sea was running pretty high at the time, and breaking over the boat; which soon filled with water. The assistance of other Scotch fishermen at present at Yarmouth was obtained, and the boat hauled up as far as possible, but it was not until four o’clock next morning that she was got up at the back of the quay, with her ‘ gibber strikes’ split, and her bilge ropes off. It is to be hoped that the beachman who played the dastardly trick to the crew will be discovered, and receive the reward he so richly deserves.


Another severe gale from the south-west raged over the Firth of Forth on sabbath night which again has swelled the calendar of the sea with wreck and disaster. When daylight broke on the Fife coast many an anxious eye scanned the stormy offing, and she foreboding  was not in vain, for scarcely a vessel was to be seen, but was more or less broken spars and rigging though the most unfortunate of all was a large schooner which lay dismasted about midway between the Billowness and the Bass Rock. The veteran Cellardyke pilot, Thomas Cunningham, there and then braved the tempest-tossed waves in a small yawl, and, after hailing the disabled craft, returned on shore with the intelligence that she was the Isabella of Arbroath, coal laden, from Shields to Grangemouth, when Mr Keay, of H. M.’s Customs, at once telegraphed to the owner and also for one of the steamers stationed at Leith. The schooner which had only a stump of her foremast standing rode gallantly at her anchors ; but, in the course of the forenoon, as the tempest began to shift to the northward, the Rev. F. K. Lloyd, of St John’s, Pittenweem, seeing the danger of the disabled ship which in the freshening gale would have drifted as helpless as a log on the surf-beaten lee, communicated with the secretary of the lifeboat, when the echoes of the signal gun had scarcely died along the shore when she was manned by an intrepid crew of Cellardyke fisherman, George Moncrieff as coxswain, and so with fore and main sheets tightened to the blast, the noble boat sped like bird on her errand of deliverance and mercy towards the disabled hulk. The Piers and every look-outpoint were crowded with anxious spectators, but before the lifeboat could reach the schooner, two tug steamers fortunately came alongside and by their united agency —though with great difficulty— she was towed to Leith. In the meantime, however, an exciting scene was going on at Anstruther pier, where a disabled foreign schooner lay in a situation of great alarm and danger. The vessel was steering for the harbour under the charge of the experienced old pilot already named, when the wind fouling as she neared the east quay, she was carried on the outlying skerrie known as the Wildfire, on which she rested, notwithstanding the anchor was cast, and every effort made to avert the disaster. Happily, however, a rope was taken to the West pier, when by the willing help of the large crowd who had gathered on the spot, the schooner was dragged int safe moorings with comparatively little damage. She proved to be the Karen Elese of and from Christiana with a cargo of wood for Burntisland, and had been thirty-six days on the voyage before she had encountered the gale, which had carried away her foreyard and damaged the rigging. The crew were suffering from want of provisions, but on being examined by Dr Mac Arthur, who went board at the request of Mr Keay, of the Customs, no contagious disorder had made its appearance.


NARROW ESCAPE OF YOUNG WOMAN.—Yesterday morning a young woman, a daughter of Mr John Muir (Anderson), Cellardyke, had a very narrow escape from being run over by a cart. She was turning the corner at the entrance to Cunzieburn Street, just as two casts loaded with barrels full of herrings were passing, when her dress got entangled among her feet, and she fell with her head right in front of one of the carts. The carter was on the other side of the cart at the time, and did not observe the occurrence, but the young woman succeeded in raising her head just as the wheel was about to go over her, although so narrow was her escape that the side of her face was slightly bruised grazed by coming into contact with the wheel.

A COWARDLY ASSAULT.—At a Burgh Court held on Monday—Provost Todd and Bailie Darsie presiding—Henry Williamson and Peter Murray, fishermen, Cellardyke, were charged with assault and breach of the peace, in so far as, between seven and eight o’clock on the evening of Thursday the 15th instant, one or both of them did strike Alex. Parker, fisherman, one or two blows with clenched fists, and with kicking him while he was lying unconscious on the ground. Williamson pled guilty with greet provocation, but Murray denied the charge. From the evidence whim was led, it appears that the panels and Parker had been in the Forth Tavern together, and that the former had been struck by each of his companions. Williamson alleged that he had first received a blow from Parker, but this the latter denied. The landlord hearing the noise which they made, turned them out of the house, and on reaching the Street Parker was knocked down, and while insensible Williamson kicked him twice, Murray, according to two of the witnesses, urging him to ‘go into’ Parker. Both Williamson and Parker bore the marks of fighting. Murray alleged that Parker took ‘ glass for glass’ with him, and that the latter was ‘ drunker’ than himself. The Provost characterised the assault as a very brutal one on the part of Williamson, and the Magistrates sentenced him to pay a fine of 30s, or suffer 30 days imprisonment and Murray to a fine of 20s or 20 days in jail. When the sentence was read over, Murray exclaimed against Parker not being fined as well as himself, and on being cautioned to be quiet he shouted out that the Bench could not prevent him speaking. He, however, paid his fine and disappeared, when Williamson commenced to complain against the Magistrates’ sentence, and to cry ‘Shame.’ Although asked to be quiet he refused to be so, when he was fined other 10s for contempt of court. On hearing this, he declared his intention of going to prison rather than pay, and wished to get his first fine refunded. This, however, the officials declined to do, and ultimately a friend of Williamson’s paid the 10s and he was allowed to depart. The proceedings at the close created much excitement in the Court, which was crowded while the case was being heard.

CELLARDYKE. SCARLATINA.—ScarIet fever is at present very prevalent here, and there is scarcely a family where one or two of the children are not affected. It is generally of a mild type, but two fatal cases have occurred this week. Acting under the advice of Dr Macarthur, the Rev. Dr Christie, Chairman of the School Board, deemed it prudent to instruct the teachers under the Board to close their schools until the epidemic abated, and this was accordingly done in the beginning of the week.

WANTED two BOYS for the Boat Building Trade. Good Wages, and short Apprenticeship. Apply to J. A. MILLAR, Cellardyke.

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