Page 34 - Gloomy Memories by Donald MacLeod Eyewitness to Highland Clearances
ISSUE : Issue 46
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1987/8/1
the coast, such has had no cattle were reduced*to come down from the hills in hundreds, for the pur? pose of gathering cockles on the shore. Those who lived in the more remote situations of the country were obliged to. subsist upon broth made of nettles, thickened with a little oatmeal. Those who had cat? tle had recourse to the still more wretched expedi? ent of bleeding them, and mixing the blood with oatmeal, which they afterwards cut into slices and fried. Those who had a little money, came down and slept all night upon the beach, in order to watch the boats returning from the fishing, that they might be in time to obtain a part of what had been caught." This gentleman, however, omits to mention the share he had in bringing things to such a pass, and also that, at the same time, he had armed con? stables stationed at Littleferry, the only place where shell-fish were to be found, to prevent the people from gathering them At this period a great majority of the inhabitants were tenants-at-will and therefore liable to eject? ment on getting regular notice; there were, howev? er, a few who had still existing tacks (although some had been wheedled or frightened into surren? dering them), and these were, of course, unmo? lested till the expiration of their tacks; they were then turned out like the rest; but the great body of the tenantry were in the former condition. Meantime, the factors, taken advantage of the bro? ken spirit and prostrate state of the people--trem- bling at their words or even looks--betook them? selves to a new scheme to facilitate their in? tended proceedings, and this was to induce ewery householder to sign a bond or paper containing a promise of removal: and alternate threats and prom? ises were used to induce them to do so. The prom? ises were never realised, but, notwithstanding the people's compliance, the threats were put in execu? tion. In about a month after the factors had ob? tained this promise of removal, and thirteen days before the May term, the work of devastation was begun: they commenced by setting fire to the houses of the small tenants in extensive dis- Come for the summer, stay for the fall oolours- you are welcome to VICTORIA county; Make Victoria County the centre of your stay in Cape Breton. Hiking, swimming and golfing, motels or camping, music and dance, museums and crafts? people-Victoria County is a world to explore. And it's an excellent base from which to reach all other parts of the Island, ''::n. ''CIADMILE FAILTE'' One Hundred Tt)Ousand Welcomes VICTORIA COUNTY The Warden, Councilors and Residents Take time to meet the people of Victoria County. / >' SUMMER OF 1987 Closing Ceremonies International Gathering of the Clans AUGUST 8 Centre Bras d'Or Festival of the Arts JULY 17 to AUGUST 23 and Other Major Events Victoria County is a Year 'Round Joy! Whether it's a Summer sailing regatta, Winter Alpine and cross-country skiing, or driving and hiking through the Autumn- we invite you to join us, and... Enjoy Victoria County -We Do! (341
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