Better five months late than never

Pictured are Tom and Gillian outside No2 Unthank Cottages, with the book.
Pictured are Tom and Gillian outside No2 Unthank Cottages, with the book.

Three copies of a book on the life of a convicted Brechiner, sent to Australia in the 19th century, have turned up five months after they were sent.

John Gall was transported to Australia for life in 1827 for cattle-stealing - despite pleading not guilty.

Family descendant Mary Reddrop wrote a book on his life, ‘Leatherwood Honey for Gall,’ and three copies were originally sent by another of Gall’s descendent, Dennis Walsh, to John Ritchie to present to the Brechin museum.

However they appeared to have been lost in transit, and two extra copies for the museum were sent. Now, five months on, the original books sent by sea mail have arrived.

Two books have now been presented to Brechin Library, and the final copy to the current owners at Gall’s home at No 2 Unthank Cottages.

Dennis remarked: “John’s ship, the ‘William Miles’ in the 19th century, could have sailed out here and returned in the same amount of time it took for the techno 21st century, with all our wizardry and gizmos, to finally deliver the goods. The irony now is, I put in a serious and hard-worded complaint to Australia Post, and was refunded my expenses. I guess I am duty bound to return my returns back to the authorities, for fear of them finding out and “transporting” me back to Scotland! Instead, I hope you and the locals and visitors enjoy the “extras” and I do agree with the lodgement of one of the books at Unthank. A nice tradition.”