The Art of Fair Isle Knitting

The Scottish-Irish Pub and Hearth Cookbook

Chapter XIV.
Thomas Graham

Thomas Graham

Thomas Graham.
Statue By William Brodie, R.S.A. Erected 6th June, 1872.

It is a great advantage to be well born. By this we mean to be born of virtue, healthy habit, and honourable lineage, rather than of aristocratic blood and rank. Strong qualities are long lived, and manifest themselves in varied ways. The bravery of the old families in feudal times comes out in the perseverance of their descendants in the peaceful pursuits of modern days. The gallant Grahams took no small part. in the battlefields of our country. All are familiar with the exploits and unhappy fate of the courageous Duke of Montrose, who fought alternately on the side of the Covenant and against it. He was one of the best soldiers of his day; and Thomas Graham, the descendant of one of the brave men that fought under the standard of Montrose, became one of the first men of science of modern times. His forefathers, ever since the fighting days, had nearly all been farmers, greatly respected and long-lived, around the district of Dunblane. An uncle, the late Dr. Graham of Killearn, and his granduncle, who was his predecessor, were ministers there for 125 years. Their united ages amounted to 175 years. Thomas Graham’s father, James Graham, had also been intended for, the ministry. But he was opposed to this, and left the old farm-steading for Glasgow, where he ultimately became a prosperous manufacturer. He built and resided in Clover Bank, a comfortable Mansion in Garngad district. It may still be seen near the gate of the Blochairn Ironworks.

Here Thomas Graham was born in 1805. He entered the High School in 1814, where he studied under the famous Dr. Dymock, and the no less famous Dr. Chrystal, whose son, the venerable minister of Auchinleck, was moderator of the Assembly in 1879. Even at this early age, he was marked by habits of regularity and perseverance. He became prominent among his class-mates for methodical and careful study. We have said class-mates rather than companions, because both as a boy and as a man, he made few companions in the ordinary sense, being reserved and reticent. All through life he was distinguished by the intensity of his friendships, rather than by their number.

In 1819 he entered the neighbouring university in the High Street, and passed through the Arts course with much


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