Category Archives for Research Story

Celebrating St Andrew’s Day in the Far East

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The 1886 St Andrew’s Day Ball in Hong Kong. From a larger print in The Graphic, 26 February 1887.*

St Andrew, Scotland’s patron saint, was celebrated by Scots around the world. In Asia, early references come from India where dinners were, by the 1850s, a common affair and widely reported in the press. They only achieved a more stable base, however, in the late-nineteenth century. As Stewart, in his exploration of the jute industry in Calcutta, has noted, the dinners were ‘the most important public ceremonial occasion each year for the British community’.

From India Scottish dinners soon extend their … Read more

28. November 2014 by Tanja Bueltmann
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Expatriate Commemorations on Poppy Day

On 7 November 1919, King George V issued a proclamation calling for a two-minute silence on 11 November: ‘All work, all sound and all locomotion should cease, so that, in perfect stillness, the thoughts of every one may be concentrated on reverent remembrance of the glorious dead’. The Times reported on this ‘simple service of silence and remembrance’, deeming that there could be ‘no service worthier, or so sure to touch the inmost feelings of the British race’. Sure enough, four days later, at 11:00am, throughout Britain and the Commonwealth, people fell silent in remembrance of those who had lost … Read more

11. November 2014 by Lesley Robinson
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Wartime Charity from Singapore

On 1 October 1918, 96 years ago today, a short notice was printed in the Straits Times—a Singapore-based broadsheet—detailing the recent charitable efforts of the Singapore St Andrew’s Society. The Society’s Honorary Secretary and Treasurer, A.M. McNeil, had written to the publication to inform readers that recent donations from Society members to the Scottish Soldiers Comfort Fund had amassed a total of $5,540—a sum which was to be sent directly to the St Andrew’s Society in Edinburgh (Straits Times, 1 October 1918). A subsequent article about the charitable activities of the Scots in Singapore, printed the following … Read more

01. October 2014 by Lesley Robinson
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