Thursday, November 18, 2010

Cultural gold dust

I've been hunting for this for about 10 years, and finally located a copy a few weeks ago. It arrived in the post this morning - published in 1848 from Blair's personal manuscripts and also those of his son-in-law - this is 625 pages of Blair's childhood and early career in Scotland, his experiences among the early Ulster-Scots settlements of Antrim and Down, Eagle Wing, and his return to Scotland right up into the "Killing Times" of the later 1600s. The Googlebooks version is a useful research tool, with its text-searchability, but as reading for enjoyment (rather than fact-hoking) you can't beat a real book. This will also be a big help for my forthcoming biographical booklet of Blair's protegé, James Hamilton of Ballywalter. I might just have to stop blogging for a few weeks!