Extract from John Knox’s Tour through the Highlands and the Hebrides in 1786

Transcription of an extract from ‘A Tour through the Highlands of Scotland and the Hebride Isles, in 1786’ by John Knox.

In 1786 the British Society for Extending the Fisheries sent John Knox to the north and west coasts of Scotland to prospect for new harbours and fishing grounds. During his visit to Tiree, he surveyed the coastline and concluded that Gott Bay was the most practicable place for a pier.

This was in line with the thinking of the Society’s Governor, the 5th Duke of Argyll, who over the previous fifteen years had encouraged settlement in a new fishing village at Scarinish by offering ‘a few years’ free possession of a house-room, two acres of arable and a cow’s grass.’

In 1793 the Duke again instructed the island’s Chamberlain to encourage his tenants to attend to the fishing. However, in a list of exports from Tiree in the following year there is still no mention of any fish being sent from the island.

The full publication is available to borrow from An Iodhlann: 2017.50.3

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