23 November 2014

Champion ploughmen in Kincardineshire

Ploughing Matches, Kincardineshire. - On Wednesday the 9th instant, the Competition for the Premiums given by the Highland Society of Scotland to the Ploughmen in the Highland District of the County, took place on the Farm of Maryfield, in presence of a Committee of the Society, of which General Burnett, of Banchory, was Convener.  Twenty-five Ploughs started; and although the day was most unfavourable, the zeal of the Ploughmen induced them to persevere, in the midst of excessive wind and rain, until they had completed a sufficient quantity of work to enable the Judges to determine as to their respective merits.  The whole work, notwithstanding the badness of the weather, was well excecuted, and the Premiums were awarded as follows:-

The 1st, being 3 L. and the Highland Society's Medal, to David Nicol, servant to Colonel Wood, at Deebank.

The 2d, being 2 L, and the Society's Medal, to David Moir, servant to Sir Robert Burnett of Crathes.

The 3d, being 1 L. 12s. 6d., to George Stevenson, tenant's son at Balfour of Durris.

The 4th, being 1 L. 5s., to Alexander Gordon, at Denside of Durris.

The 5th, being 1 L., to William Thom, at Balbridie of Durris.

The 6th, being 15s, to James Burnett, at Maryfield.

The 7th, being 10s, to Andrew Reid, at East Boat of Durris.

The 8th, being 7s. 6d., to William Duncan, servant to Gen. Burnett.

On the Wednesday following, the Competition for the Premiums given by the Kincardineshire Agricultural Association to Ploughmen in the Lower District, took place on the Farm of Mr Garland, at Cairnton, in presence of Mr Menzies of Pitfodels, the Vice-President, and a great concourse of spectators.  On a signal by Mr Menzies, from a neighbouring eminence, no fewer than fifty-two Ploughs started, forty-nine of them drawn by horses, and three by oxen.  The day was fine, and the spectators were much pleased with the gratifying sight of more than half a hundred Ploughs at work at the same time.  The horses and oxen were in the best condition, and their value was estimated at upwards of three thousand pounds.  When the work was completed, the Judges came upon the field: but from the extent of the ground ploughed, and difficulty, where the whole was excellent, of determining what was best, they were only able, that night, to report in general, that they had never before seen such work.  Next morning, they awarded the Premiums as follows:

The 1st, being 3 L. and the Association's Medal, to Alexander McLarin, servant to Mr Garland, at Cairnton.

The 2d, being 2 L. and the Association's Medal, to Thomas Spalding, also servant at Cairnton.

The 3d, being 1 L. 10s., to David Milne, servant at Kinkell.

the 4th, being 1 L. 5s., to James Simpson, servant to Mr Williamson Burnett of Monboddo.

The 5th, being 1 L., to George Ellis, servant to William Taylor at Fordoun.

The 6th, being 15s., to George Thow, servant at Balbegno.

The 7th, being 12., to William Hendry, at Corsebauld.

The 8th, being 8s., to James Caird, servant to Mr John Johnston, Pitnamoon.

The first premium was gained with oxen, and the others with horses.

The emulation of the ploughmen, and the excellence of the work at these matches, shew the good effects which have been produced by the establishment of Ploughing Matches in Kincardineshire; and it is pleasing to observe the great improvement which is yearly taking place in this important department of husbandry.

On both occasions, a considerable number of landed proprietors and farmers dined together; and spent the evenings with much conviviality and harmony.

Published in the Aberdeen Journal, Wednesday 23rd November 1814.

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