Saturday 26 March 2011

Get outta that lazy bed

William Peace published an annual Almanac for a number of years and we hold editions from 1864 until 1940. They contain lots of useful information about local traders, church ministers, local officials etc. for each year and are a useful research tool. But more than that, as you can see below in a page from the 1864 edition, they provide all sorts of general advice on how to improve your life. When I read the title "He that would thrive must rise at five!" I thought "excellent, up just in time for The Weakest Link", but on reading further I was disappointed to find that I had misunderstood.

Another section in the same edition is titled Hints to careless wives and includes this dire warning; "Despair and recklessness have been planted in many a man's heart by the untidy dress and cheerless hearth, the sour looks and chilling discontent which await him". No wonder they're all getting up at five to go off to work!

Thursday 24 March 2011

Gone Fishing

The new trout season opened on 15 March and once again men and women all over Orkney dusted off their rods and tackle for the summer ahead. Although fishing in Orkney's lochs is free Orkney Trout Fishing Association maintains fish stocks in the main lochs. The Association was formed on 8 November 1905 when a number of local gentlemen got fed up with indiscriminate use of nets spoiling their gentlemanly fun. The original membership comprised of twenty five men, including two members of parliament, three doctors, fifteen men residing in Orkney and one Admiral.

From D8/4/2/6

Wednesday 16 March 2011

Some girls are bigger than others

First I must apologise for my attempt to keep the Smiths song titles link going from the last post. I'm hugely embarrased and obviously nobody should ever think that it applies to the elfin beauty below.

You're probably all too young to remember Mary Marquis but never mind Angela Rippon, Anna Ford or Jan Leeming, Mary became the face of television news in Scotland from 1968 and continued in that role for twenty years. Here she's photographed in Kirkwall in, I'm guessing, the 1970s. I'm not sure why she was in Orkney, perhaps as an early experiment in geese scaring, hence the coat.

Saturday 12 March 2011

This charming man...

In one of the collections we recently sorted through during our closure, we discovered this photograph of a very charming-looking man. He has been through the wars - literally - and we don't really want to throw him out, but if we can't identify him, we may have to. Can you help?

The thot plickens...
I've managed to extract the photo from the frame which looks like its been rescued from a fire. Phew! On the back it says that it was taken at Vivienne 20th Century Studios, London. So sadly not from Orkney, but maybe a film star?

Monday 7 March 2011

We have a little list

Our short stocktaking closure begins today. This is a far cry from the good old days when we closed for two weeks so, in an effort to appear super organised, we've made a little list. So over the next three days we will be appraising a new collection (very dirty!), matching up retrieval slips with records, moving equipment and boxes to make room for more records and having a big bonfire in the car park.

Ok, maybe not the last one.

We will be open again at 9.15 on Thursday morning, drained from our exertions over the past few days but ready as ever to serve you our (mostly) wonderful public.

Thursday 3 March 2011

Au Revoir Archiver

Yes readers, after long and sterling service as our regular blogger archiver has finally succumbed to the strain and has been confined to home for the next year. Or, as it's sometimes known, maternity leave. Enjoy Jeremy Kyle while you have the chance archiver, your daytime viewing will soon consist of endless episodes of Peppa Pig!

Looking at the images below from D1/517, copies of a menu and programme for a farewell dinner held in honour of HMS Victorious, soon to leave Scapa Flow after World War I, I can't help feeling that we didn't put in enough effort to mark archivers departure. No songs were sung, no toasts were made, not even a short recitation. Just a few lovely homebakes and a cup of tea. Shameful!