We are currently researching material for a talk on February 26th 2020 about Dr. John Mason, the much respected and loved former Dominie at Queensferry School. He was a pioneering educationalist, soldier, war poet, journalist, writer, historian, gardener, and much more. He is also credited with the opening of our town museum.
In preparing for this talk, we would very much like to hear from anyone who has recollections of John Mason, and we intend to include these and any anecdotes in the talk, where possible. A large part of his legacy to the town was indeed its museum. He had pioneering views on its development, arguably creating Scotland’s first community museum.
Queensferry Heritage Trust has embarked on a project to promote, support, and invigorate our town museum to protect and grow our heritage and history therein. We would be interested, therefore, to hear any views from the Queensferry community as to how you think our museum could be developed and what you would like to see in the future. There will be a discussion on this during the latter part of the February talk.
Trevor Whittley’s talk in January 2019 told the tragic story of the SS Kapunda and the mystery of the model in the museum. Following responses it has now been established that the model ship was donated to the Queensferry Town Council on 13th March 1950 through the good offices of the then Burgh Chamberlain, William M. Moir. The gift was gladly accepted by Provost Lawson as particularly appropriate given Queensferry’s long established and close connection with the sea. Mr Moir had a great interest and love of the sea and had worked as a clerk at Trinity House in Leith. [We would be very interested to hear if anyone knows anything about William M. Moir] Queensferry Heritage Trust has organised a visit to Trinity House on Thursday 5th March 2020 where we will follow in the footsteps of Provost Lawson who in 1950 was given a personal tour of Trinity House by Burgh Chamberlain Moir.
Pleased also to tell that in July a long lost American cousin of Trevor’s stepped off the liner Crown Princess in Queensferry; his side of the family had emigrated five generations ago back in the 1880s. Together they went to see the model ship in the local museum and commemorated the loss of four of their cousins who perished aboard that unfortunate vessel whilst on its way to Australia in 1887.