Blantyres Past

Blantyre's Ain Website

Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland

Blantyre history

Blantyre’s Past

Another bite sized chunk of Blantyre History

Well Margaret,

Now that spring is here, Sam and I will be out on the golf course pretty regularly. I also have a fairly large garden and that too will be keeping me busy, so I am afraid you will not be hearing too much from me. I will try to post once a month up until next winter.

I did have a wonderful trip back to Scotland and renewed my friendships with a lot of close friends. It was fairly cold, then we had sunshine, then we had snow, then we had rain, then we had more snow flurries, but the rain seemed to miss us as we moved around,
Overall I would say that the weather was good to us and that was only on our first day!!

The Single Malt Scotch keep me warm most times. Great stuff. Try as I may I just could not drink all of it in my 25 days there, so I had to leave some for my next trip. If only I had not had to go to the toilet so often for a pee, I might have drunk the lot.  Hasties Farm Whiskey

Blantir or pronunciation of has changed a lot and then in some places very little, if you know what I mean.
The people are still great and will still will go out of their way to help you with any little queries you may have, again as I have said before that’s what makes this town, not the streets or buildings.
But then in total I have found that to be the case throughout Scotland when one compares it to the rest of the travelled world where I have been. They do have an inner core of friendship that is always available to make a stranger or a home coming person at ease within their surroundings.

Yes I dearly love my homeland!! and its too bad that one has to leave or grow old as in my case, to really appreciate its warmth and beauty.

When I was young my eyes did not see that which was always available, only in abstinence do I now see and appreciate its wonders. As I try to explain my feelings. I am thinking to myself does a person who has lived in Scotland all of his life really appreciate what he has. I am sure with many, they do.

But do they appreciate and feel the same way that a prodigal son does when he returns.

This silly old sentimental fool really really enjoyed his trip and I thank all of you who contributed to this enjoyment and I look forward to my return to Scotland in the future.

I am enclosing a ditty that a very close friend of mine wrote, his name is James Cornfield, a miners son and if you enjoy it, I will enclose some more in my future ventures into the Streets of Blantyre. I do have his permission to do so.

Until then Margaret


This is part of a conversation between Thomas Dunsmuir Hartman in Chicago (known as TDH or Drapadew) and Margaret in Queensland Australia on TalkingScot.

Blantyre’s Past

Childhood Memories of Blantyre

Paterson family

When memory took me the other day,
to ‘Dixon’s Raws’ I made my way,
place of my birth and childhood too,
of folk and streets that I once knew.

Little we had of worldly wealth,
two Wally Dugs upon a shelf,
the Sett-in-beds in which we slept,
with space below, where coal was kept.

The Fender we all gathered roon,
tae sup our porridge wae a spoon,
before we left to go to schools,
oor Mither’s made sure we knew the rules.

The games we played all through the Summer,
seemed to last for ever and ever,
the names of them, run through my brain,
let’s see, if I can remember them…..

Hunch-Cuddy-Hunch, Bools and Jorries,
stolen lifts on backs of Lorries,
Hide and Seek, Beds and Ropes,
Guesses at the sweetie shoaps.

The many miles we walked and ran,
played Nurky-Nurkey and Kick-the-Can,
Run-Sheep-Run and Free the Den,
then started to play them, over again.

‘Fair Monday’ came and away we ran,
to Portobello with the ‘Sally Ann’,
the whole of Blantir on the train,
with hardly a ticket tae their name!

Doon the Clyde and Up the Cawther,
we seemed to manage, with nae much bother,
Picnics at the Spittal Burn,
then hame as fast as we could run,

Saturday Pennies carefully spent,
to the Dookit Picture Hoose’ we went,
when it spilled out, the kids all shrieked,
a hundred cowboys ran up Logan Street.

Slappin their bums, howling and hooting,
at all the Bad Wans they were shooting,
the Indians too were shot as well,
before the posse reached, Springwell.

The ‘Co-op Gala’ was the annual event,
and to it, all of Blantir went,
with Tinnies on Ribbons, tickets in hand,
we followed the Floats and Silver Band,

To Boat Joak’s orchard, the boys would flee,
steal pears and apples from the tree,
then up the road to meet the rest,
stolen fruit still tastes the best……

When darkness comes, it brings the night,
and from the Raw a Woman shouts,
”Come in wee weans o’ Blantir Toon,
come in, come in, tae coorie doon,

Tae sleep, until anither day,
when wance again, ye go oot tae play,
the fun an’ games, that weans dae,
upon the streets of Blantir”.

I stood there as if mesmerised,
as deep inside I realised,
The woman we loved and called Oor Maw,
she was the woman from the Raw…

Written by James Cornfield
December 2002

Your Comments:

Etta Morrison: In our room and kitchen at 1 Dixon Street, there were seven children plus parents. We moved when I was 1 yr old, so don’t remember it, but my eldest sister tells me lots of stories.

Jack Owens: Shows the poor quality of the RAWS housing.

Marian Maguire: God love them, life was very hard for them.

Jean Boyd: Amazing photo.


Continuing the conversation between Thomas Dunsmuir Hartman in Chicago, formerly Logan Street, (known as TDH or Drapadew) and Margaret in Queensland Australia on TalkingScot.


Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland

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