This colourful guide presents the story of life in Lewis and Harris from the appearance of the first stone age hunter-gatherers up to 10,000 years ago, to the crofters of the last century. It offers a vivid account of the development of the islands, suggesting some of the most rewarding places to visit and providing clear descriptions of each site.
Dr Christopher Burgess has been County Archaeologist at Northumberland County Council since 2002, but for many years has led campaigns of archaeological survey and investigation in the Outer Hebrides and especially in Lewis, leading to significant advances in our understanding of the human landscape of the islands.
South Uist, at the southern end of the Western Isles, is only 22 miles long and, even though it is without the stone circles of other Scottish isles, it is covered in archaeological sites. This well-illustrated archaeological study places South Uist within a tradition of island archaeology, arguing that this island, just like most others, is fascinating because of its isolation and for the ways in which its occupants have chpsen to make contact with the outside world. Following a discussion of the island's geology, the book begins a chronological tour through its archaeological remnants, placing all within their historical context. South Uist is shown to be rich in archaeology from the Neolithic onwards, including chambered tombs, Beaker sites, a Bronze Age hoard, roundhouses (one of which contained a mummified human burial), brochs, cairns, ogham insciptions, Viking settlements, medieval longhouses and post-medieval industry. At times, the archaeology reveals evidence of a troubled past. Illustrated throughout and includes a list of sites to visit. 224p, 114 b/w illus, 18 col pls (Tempus 2004)
A vast canon of literature has been produced over the years on St Kilda, most of which has focussed on the resilient people who have lived there, but before now none have focussed on the natural history of the island, nor has such a book been written by a native resident.
In 1697 Martin Martin, a Gaelic-speaking scholar from Skye, travelled to St Kilda to study the island’s flora and fauna and to learn about the now extinct great auk. Much of the information that he gathered during this expedition was relayed to him by the islanders. Naturalists from Martin down to Robert Atkinson in 1938, not only witnessed the people’s way of life but also the wildlife around them, both priceless assets that have recently won for St Kilda dual World Heritage Site status.
A Natural History of St Kilda is a synthesis of what these naturalists and scientists experienced and gives evidence that shows just how important wildlife was to the survival of the islanders. Much of this information has lain for years in little known private diaries, files, reports or obscure scientific journals. John Love puts background and personalities to the names whilst describing the natural features of the islands of St Kilda, creating a fascinating and insightful account which will appeal not only to naturalists, but to all who are fascinated by the St Kilda, by its human history and by islands in general. Its remoteness and inaccessibility are notorious but one need not have set foot on St Kilda to enjoy this book.
ISBN-10: 1841587974 ISBN-13: 978-1841587974
This new book sets its small horizontal island mills within the social and historical life of the island. It seeks to answer where these mills may have come from, given that their every part is to be found in horizontal mills in many countries in Europe and beyond. Were they, for example, introduced by Viking settlers – hence their being named Norse Mills – or were they brought at an earlier period by Celts from Ireland where there is concrete evidence of their early use? The book contains a detailed gazetteer of over 250 sites where mills were once worked throughout the island, along with a map reference for each and a simple grading of the condition of the sites. Almost all these sites are ruins of the former mill building and lade. The book is extensively illustrated with pen and ink drawings and a range of photographs and other images.
This colourful guide presents the story of life in the Uists from the appearance of the first stone age hunter-gatherers up to 10,000 years ago, to the crofters of the last century. It offers a vivid account of the development of the islands, suggesting some of the most rewarding places to visit and providing clear descriptions of each site.