The following publications about cultural and natural history are sold from An Iodhlann and can be purchased from us either in person at the museum, via PayPal by clicking the ‘Buy Now’ button below (please select the correct postage rate), or by posting a cheque made payable to ‘AN IODHLANN’ to:
An Iodhlann, Scarinish, Isle of Tiree, PA77 6UH. Tel: 01879 220793
An Caolas Tirisdeach / Caolas, Tiree, 1600-1900
An extensive history of the people, places and events of the township of Caolas at the far east end of Tiree, retold by Prof. Donald E Meek, whose parents worked the croft at Coll View. The book includes a mine of information and statistics about crofting and land tenure, local family histories, connections with the neighbouring island of Coll, the Gaelic poetry of local bards, the church, schools and Caolas at the turn of the 20th century. Donald E Meek 2022, 300 pages. £15.00 + Postage and Packing.
Beataidh Banrigh Super-Bee
Queen Betty, or Beataidh Banrigh as she is known by her Gaelic-speaking friends, is a rare wild bumblebee who lives a peaceful life among the machair flowers of a Scottish island with her friends Mimi the mouse, and Redrick and Racey Red-Clover. When a large hive of greedy and mischievous honeybees move into the area, suddenly she cannot find enough food for her family. What will she do? Who will help her? A tale of friendship and wildlife conservation told in English and Gaelic by Primary School Children on the Isle of Tiree. Beautifully illustrated in full, glossy colour and packed with fun characters and bee facts. Paircwood Publishing 2021, 50 pages. £8.00 + Postage and Packing.
Tiree Tales / Sgeulachdan a Tiriodh
A collection of 25 stories from Tiree history and folklore told in English and Gaelic, and illustrated by the author. From tales of the hill of the harp, tinkers, supernatural visions and sounds, the battle of the sheaves, the vanishing piper and Island House, to the Land League, the Balephuil fishing disaster and the China tea race, this booklet is still the best modern, concise collection of such stories about Tiree. Fiona MacKinnon 1997, 50 pages. £2.75 + Postage and Packing.
Nud’s Notebook / Leabhran Nud
A children’s story book in English and Gaelic about some of the Eerit Clan who live in the Land Below the Waves and who are guardians of the flora and fauna, the history and the environment. Nud learns of his heritage through ceilidh stories around the fire in his crannog home, then goes out exploring the island. With illustrations of places, animals and plants, and blank pages for children to make their own notes and drawings. Tiree Heritage Society ca. 2009, 17 pages. £5.00 + Postage and Packing.
Tiree and the Dukes of Argyll 1674-1922
This book is a concise history of one island during arguably the most dramatic period in Scottish history. It is a story of change and controversy. At its core are ducal policy, burgeoning population growth, destitution and emigration, followed by government intervention and land settlement. The book reflects on the islanders’ natural desire to better their lives and the dukes’ attempts to modernise this important part of their estates. Much of Tiree’s history in the period is characterised by the resulting tension. Shaun Tyas 2019, 144 pages. £14.95 + Postage and Packing.
Religion in a Hebridean Island
Christianity came to Tiree in the 6th century with Irish Christian travellers. To this day, there remain a host of early ecclesiastical sites across the island including three church communities, ten chapels, ten graveyards, seven crosses and three holy wells. This monograph is the fulfilment of a promise made by Rev Robert Higham when he served as the Church of Scotland’s Minister of the Parish of Tiree during 1995-2002. It recounts the evolution and progress of religion from its primitive pre-Christian roots, through the introduction of the Catholic faith, the Norse invasion, the Lordships of the Isles, the Reformation and Covenanters, and into the 20th century. An Iodhlann Press 2020, 178 pages. £17.00 + Postage and Packing.
Birds of Tiree and Coll
Visitors to Tiree and Coll often remark on the abundance of birds on the islands compared to the mainland. Several species that are in decline or extinct on the mainland are thriving in these islands. The corncrake, for example, can be heard calling loudly on still summer nights, while Greenland white-fronted geese are visible feeding in winter. This book details the status and history of all bird species which are resident, migratory and rare visitors to the islands, and there is a section on other common wildlife. Maps guide the reader to key locations, while introductory chapters describe the key habitats. Paircwood Publishing 2007, 209 pages. £9.00 + Postage and Packing. Please get in touch if you would like both versions of Birds of Tiree and Coll (see below) at a discounted rate.
Wild Flowers of Coll and Tiree
Tiree, and the neighbouring island of Coll, are home to a rich diversity of native wild flowers, some of which can be found only in the islands’ unique habitats. This handy pocket-guide features photographs and descriptions of all the more noticable flowers, which are arranged according to flower colour, making it easier to use than the average botanical guide. Maps guide the reader to key locations, while introductory chapters describe the key habitats and provide an example ‘Plant Walk’ for each island. Cinquefoil Publishing 2008, 190 pages. £7.99 + Postage and Packing.
Look and See History and Heritage on the island of Tiree
This pocket-sized spotter book about Tiree heritage is the third in the ‘Look and See’ series. It highlights 34 historical landmarks scattered throughout the island and includes photographs, location maps and information about each one. Discover Tiree and Nàdair Thiriodh 2016, 39 pages. £3.00 + Postage and Packing.
Look and See Wildlife on the island of Tiree
The second in this series of pocket-sized spotter books, this guide includes photographs and information about more of the showier land animals, sea mammals, fish, birds, insects and wild flowers on the island. Each item is colour-coded to indicate how easy they are to see and there is space for children to tick off each item as they spot them. Discover Tiree and Nàdair Thiriodh 2017, 39 pages. £3.00 + Postage and Packing.
Look and See on the island of Tiree
The first in a series of pocket-sized spotter books, this guide introduces the reader to some of Tiree’s more noticable landmarks, wildlife and activities. Divided into four sections, there are photographs and information on what might be spotted in the Open Sea, the Shoreline, on the Rocks and on the Land, with a colour-coded guide to how easy they are to see. Children will enjoy being able to tick off each item as they spot them. Discover Tiree and Nàdair Thiriodh 2017, 39 pages. £3.00 + Postage and Packing.
Tiree Walks – 12 walks through an island landscape
The twelve walks in this book have been carefully chosen to give a taste of what’s special about this small Hebridean Island’s unique landscape and abundance and diversity of wildlife. Some of the walks take in favourite destinations while others encourage the walker to explore less well-known parts of the island. All are accompanied by a clear map, a detailed description of the route and notes about the wildlife you may encounter at different times of the year. Friends of Nàdair Thiriodh 2016, 63 pages. £10.00 + Postage and Packing.
From Shore to Shining Shore – a walk around the island of Tiree
Dr John Holliday takes the reader for a walk around the coastline of Tiree, taking in its historical sites. The walk is some 50 miles and takes 22 hours in total but the book divides it into 40 managable sections each with a map, a guide to the history, stories and place-names of the area, and images from An Iodhlann’s archive. An Iodhlann Press, 2022, 180 pages. £12.00 + Postage and Packing.
Virtue Mine Honour – Charles McLean’s War
Two days before the start of the Second World War, the grandson of a Kenovay family was called up by the RAF. At the age of 24, Charles McLean became a Pilot Officer with 217 Squadron flying out of St Eval in Cornwall. Tragically, he went missing in action over the Channel during operations, and was never recovered. A collection of letters and photographs given to An Iodhlann by his family forms the basis of this book, providing an engaging and deeply personal account of a young man’s life in the RAF in the first two years of the war. An Iodhlann Press, 2021, 161 pages. £12.00 + Postage and Packing.
Longships on the Sand (2nd edition)
Viking and later medieval settlement on the Island of Tiree
The Norse origin of many Tiree township names, such as Cornaig and Crossapol, has never been in doubt. It has previously been thought, however, that the Vikings settled the southern Hebrides less intensely, and for a shorter period, than islands to the north. This new analysis is based on over 200 probable Norse place-names. These have been winnowed from over 3,000 collected during decades of fieldwork on the island, shedding a fascinating new light on Scandinavian settlement in Scotland. This analysis suggests that the Norse influence on Tiree was strong and lasted several centuries, profoundly shaping the island in the Early Medieval period as part of the Norse expansion zone. This second edition examines a number of additional place-names of probable medieval origin and re-analyses the collection.
John Holliday – An Iodhlann Press 2021, 724 pages. £25 + Postage and Packing.
This title is also available to download free at tireeplacenames.org
The Secret Island – Towards a History of Tiree
Tiree is one of the most fertile Hebridean islands and has had a relatively large population since early times. One of its Gaelic names – ‘Tìr ìseal an eòrna’ (the low land of barley) – encapsulates its reputation for productive agriculture, while another – ‘Tìr bàrr fo thuinn’(the land below the waves) – illustrates its generally very low-lying nature. And yet, strangely, Tiree is one of the few Hebridean islands without a full-length recent book published about its remarkable history. In the summer of 2013 the Islands Book Trust held a three-day conference on the island in an attempt to explore this hidden history. The conference brought together a wide range of people, from the academic world and from the local community, with knowledge of aspects of Tiree’s history from 1600 to the present day, so they could discuss their views with the ultimate objective of filling this gap. This is the fascinating result of those few days. The Islands Book Trust, 2014, 428 pages. £12.00 + Postage and Packing.
Tiree – War among the Barley and Brine
** CURRENTLY OUT OF STOCK **
In the early 1940s, as country after country fell to Hitlerism, Tiree became a sentinel for the Clyde, other west coast sea ports, Atlantic supply convoys and even the weather in Europe. While the role that Tiree played in defending Britain and liberating Europe was of enormous importance, the influx of military personnel and infrastructure had a dramatic affect on the island’s residents and culture. In this definitive work, the authors have captured many memories of this momentous time. The Islands Book Trust, 2012, 154 pages. £15.00 + Postage and Packing.
Òrain an Eòrna – Songs of the Barley
The island of Tiree is known for many things, but an increasingly forgotten part of its heritage is the island’s traditional poetry and song. During the 2011 Fèis Thiriodh – the local Gaelic festival – islanders and visitors were asked to list their favourite songs written by Tiree people. This book is the result of that survey. It contains, in order of popularity, the musical score to the top 20 Tiree songs, along with their lyrics in Gaelic and English. Fèis Thiriodh and An Iodhlann, 2012, 52 pages. £12.00 + Postage and Packing.
Island of Two Harvests
Still the most complete account of Tiree’s history with chapters on the Crofter’s War, the tea clipper Taeping and emigration. An abridged version of The Island of Two Harvests in PDF format is available to download without charge: The Island of Two Harvests.pdf . The Tiree and Coll Gaelic Partnership, 2003, 47 pages. £8.00 + Postage and Packing.