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In Glasgow Scotland. My. Thoughts. Were. With the musical theme Scotland the Brave. I invite you to join me in the land of the Scots with its beautiful Highland hills and chanting lakes and moors its ancient castles its friendly and interesting people. This is the first in a series about Scotland and its people and its national poet Robert Burns. During my nine month stay here in Glasgow on a forward right assignment I have tape recorded many voices of the people telling me about their life here and sharing with me some of the part gray and music of their fascinating country. The way I want to begin with
our image of Scotland and its people and let you hear some of them talk about our misconceptions of their country. What is your image when you hear the name of Scotland. Do the people still wear the kilt and play the bagpipes. Is the country bigger or smaller than New Jersey or Ohio or Texas. What about the other and how did the people really talk. What kind of an educational system do they have. What do they think of the English and the Americans and what do the English and Americans think of the Scots. Do they still have clowns in Scotland. What about customs. Sports. And music. Is this the song comes to mind when you think of Scotland. The
traditional fill pipes and drums are still one colorful part of Scottish life. Not the Kings. See your hear them every day for they belong mainly for special occasions such as the numbers today for a young. November 11th. Are perhaps of the internationally famous and manifest. In fact. During our listening. To. One of the military. Performing. The. Last. 65. For many of you no doubt Scotland suggests favorite lines from the poetry of Robert Burns. What some of the giftie gie us to see all sales as
ever see is it what everybody are blended for us that hellish notion but years in dress and eat with leaves and even devotion. And I'm wondering how many of us have built our image of Scotland around a familiar song on perhaps around the personality and the voice of one. You now hear. The voice of the gun. Oh uh uh uh. Uh uh uh. OH OH OH OH OH
OH OH OH OH OH OH OH way to play in your yard. Oh oh oh oh oh oh oh. On the pitch with that was Harry Lauder who millions of Americans still remember from his personal appearances more than four decades ago. I ran through the recordings of the songs he made famous. So it is possible that here enlarger with his kilt and his crooked cane
still to perform as the Scots for many others. Now let's hear what one educated Scotsman said to me about such an image. That out. I've heard a lot of misconceptions about Scotland I think which result really from lack of proper communication. When the American thinks of the Scot I think he has a tendency to think of the hardy Groton Well Fife kind of damage with the good that may shine out bonnet time I shan't add in other words the less the kelp which is perhaps a shade too long. And of course I could stick you have to have a crooked stick. And speech which is to half the time almost maudlin. Now of course this is entirely wrong. I mean the kilt by a very small part of the community. The only people who have any real right to wear it
because of the galas the Klansmen and since the Bank of Scotland was lower than the Scots and never had any claim to a kilt at all. It isn't a national dress in any sense. It's our locally national dress. And when I went to the states of course people said to me you're a Scot and I said yes and it wasn't difficult. My tongue made it obvious. But then the first thing was worked out because I was supposed to have one. I didn't think this was a great disappointment. Then the next thing you know that I got to see was whether both parties were because I can't stand the stuff. There's this terrible I mean it happens I'm the only one in the family who can't stand the ponies or eat it. My wife likes her though she comes from England. She commits a heinous crime by putting sugar on it of course instead of salt and this is as proof that she couldn't be a Scot but I just can't stomach the stuff doesn't make me any less a Scotsman.
I then asked my friend whether it was true that all Scots love whisky as most Americans assume. In the same way of course because I'm a Scot I must drink whiskey and everybody think so I guess a Scotsman must drink whiskey. But I suppose that as many Scots who can't stand the sight of whiskey or the taste of it as that Ascot to drink it exactly the same proportion I would think as you have in the state or anywhere else highly concentrated liquid which has a strange effect on a lot of people. And if they've got any sense they take it in moderation. A slightly different view was taken by an English round who has lived in Glasgow for more than 30 years. It is said that the glass will be German. Is intitled to get drunk on four occasions during the year without being reproved by his wife. The first occasions are Hogmanay. That is
the thirty first of December. The anniversary of Burns Night twenty sixth of January. The Friday before the start of the Glasgow holiday known as the fair holiday. In the middle of July and Santander is night the 30th November. As an Englishman I make no further comment. I was reminded of a more serious kind of misconception about Scotland by a Presbyterian minister who for a brief period had served the church in the United States. Some ten years ago I was in America as any exchange of protest with an American minister in North Carolina. We exchanged about everything we exchanged but minus a. Motor car. Sorry and I got the best of that bargain. We got on the right is with us. I will be there to discover out of that
ignorance about Scotland. I was asked about ID please in Scotland. I was asked if Scotland with Utah during the war I was I'd associate here where I had learned to speak such good English. The words that there's no not to like that as well as that they had never read ahead of Rangers and Celtic. Well Reverend Patterson I think I could excuse an American for not knowing about the football rivals the Rangers and the Celtics. But I also think those questions about where did you learn to talk such good English and was Scotland neutral during the last war are are just about unforgivable and I later program we will consider Scottish speech. But right now I think we should remind our listeners that Scotland and England were united in seventeen hundred and seven. And of course we're both very much involved in the second world war. Also that Scotland is currently a major base for our nuclear
submarines. Now I imagine that many Americans like myself before coming here do not have a very clear image of the size the shape and other physical characteristics of the country. So without giving you a full scale lesson in geography I would like for you to hear a few statements from some of my Scottish friends trying to give me a little better understanding of such matters. Scotland is of course quite a small country. But I would say it would fit comfortably into the state of Pennsylvania. And. The Highlands which are the. Most attractive part of it. Therefore will be comparable in size with. The say the others are. Smaller in area than they had there and back. Certainly not so spectacular as the Sierra Nevada. But they have attractions due to their peculiar
characteristics because it is a small area with a climate is fairly uniform over over the whole. Don't have the big variety of climates that Americans are used to. And so anything one may say about different districts. Needs to be qualified by that. It has to be put in the setting of a of a quite small area. But first I think it's better to look at the. Build. Of the country. Because the basis of some of the scenery. Is of course the long geological past. I'm Scotland quite simply is. Divided into three regions. The middle of which. Is where the majority of Scots live. Is a low and in-between two upstanding. But. Like
area. Both the highlands and the southern part of Scotland. That are. Guarded as deeply distracted plateaus and any view of them from a distance will bring this out. One sees a fairly even skyline with just a few big hills sticking above the general level. One of the things that strikes the American when he comes here and you'll perhaps know this more than most is the lack of trees. I think the Scottish scenery by and large is almost identical with the scenery in the New England state. But the New England states glaciated hills and so on are completely covered in trees whereas in Scotland above a thousand feet you will hardly ever see her three at all unless it's been planted by a man and then it's got to be protected otherwise it doesn't survive because our tree line is somewhere between a thousand and twelve hundred feet. In America
Saturday I have stood on top of Cannon Mountain open the Presidential Range which is I think a five and a half 6000 feet and had trees up to my waist. They had grown not high but they couldn't grow any higher so there's a vast difference between the American mountains if you like the Scottish mountains. Highest mountain is only four and a half thousand feet. And yet for three thousand feet of its height there isn't that tree until about 2000 feet of its height most of what you get is lichen. Because of the change in my attitude you see another very interesting thing which was in relation to the size of Scotland. For the American. I think Scotland must be a bewildering thing. That remarkable thing about Scotland as its size is such that you can take it. You can splash it down and Lake Superior. And you can still have a
lake a hundred miles long because it's worth squat in the night. Two hundred seventy miles I think from north to south and about a hundred fifty miles east to west that is very brightest. And then it narrows that I think both ends so that there isn't very much of that. The result is that when you come to Scotland. You're going from router to router before you know where you are. And I think this surprises the American. And yet at the same time there are five million people living in the country and living in an area most of them less than half of the country because everything pretty well north of what our body into heaven is. But I don't. And most of the area south of Atlanta actually is equally bad in your Southern Uplands can. I was almost nobody and your husband's going to I was almost nobody in the central belt of Scotland which is what 70 80 miles across and perhaps 30 40 miles north and south
has got I don't know. So you know half a million other population and so it's a very very densely packed in that area. And what about Scottish weather. Well one thing is certain everybody here in Glasgow talked about deplores it and most people apologised to visitors for one of my good friends put it rather bluntly. Well Scottish weather is absolutely appalling with no other word for it. It is bad throughout the year. What people up here I think I was I have as a good camera. Further south they would think I was a poor sap as what they think I was hot weather up here is just mild weather further south. As a gardener I know what it is to garden even in the north of England. I see how much better it is than it is in Scotland. We have
airway troubles that go with too much moisture and too much wind and not enough sun. I think the Scottish weather is one of the worst features of Scotland. I've been up here since 1947. What impressed me when I first came up was they way the Scot was certainly not prepared for good weather because we did have a good summer then. But then in England you see people going about in cotton frocks you still need to get sunshine up in Scotland. They remain in their great overcoat and thick coat even fur coat so most of the summer. The best time in Scotland is undoubtedly at the spring when you can usually reckon on a good spell a rather roundabout March nice spring like relatively mild and fine days especially
in the West of Scotland. When they get there and to cycle over Norway which will give us cold but bright weather and here is a statement by and well-educated housewife who seems to take a rather objective approach to the weather situation in Scotland as you will realise Scotland is a comparatively small country and yet there are some interesting weather contrasts even in this small area. I think the major one is between the way west and be dry established in both Edinburgh and Glasgow and they're only 40 seven miles apart and yet there is an amazing weather contrast. We used to find the weather in Edinburgh was invigorating rather Brill easy. Perhaps rather cold but a dry cold which was invigorating and we felt healthy. Over on the west Strangely enough in spite of the prevailing westerly wind means we don't find that we get
much windy weather. There were maybe windy a weather further out on the coast but we certainly get wet weather. The other interesting contrast in Scotland is between the central lowlands drained by the rivers Firth and Clyde and the rest of Scotland which is higher either the Southern Uplands in the south or the Highlands in the north. I think this lowland Valley drained by the Clyde in the fourth. Seems to attract the mist and fog the mist and fog settles down in this lowland Valley and if you add to this the haze and murk that you get from industry we certainly find that on many days of the year we never see the sunshine a tour. You can motor out of Glasgow either north into the highlands or south on a very murky day and find that there is bright sunshine. So if you ever
visit Scotland and come to the largest city Glasgow you may be very disappointed in the weather because you miss the sunshine and there's so much dampness and fog that it's don't take the opportunity to travel into the higher land to the north and south and I'm sure you'll find the sunshine. But remember that it's all wetter on the West. And I heartily agree with this lady about the damp weather in the West of Scotland. The weather forecast on BBC Radio is almost like a repeat on a broken record. It would be something like this. There will be rain in places. Rain in places rain in places. In all fairness however we must add that the announcer would sometimes say there will be occasional sunny periods on the favorable side Also one must admit that here in Glasgow the people almost never suffer from extremes in temperature and two or three days of 70 degree
temperature is labelled a heat wave by the natives. A common expression in winter time here it isn't the cold it's the DOP. Words and Music of familiar songs may help create our image of a country. And so it is with Scotland. Let's consider and then listen to one of the best loved Scottish songs Loch Lomond. There was an old Celtic belief that when a man meets with a death in a foreign land his spirit returns to the homeland by the low road. This song is said to refer to two Scottish soldiers made captive in the second Stuart rising in 1745. One was to be set free. The other executed the one must take the low road of death and reached Loch Lomond before his friend who must take the terrestrial high road. And you will tak the high
road and I'll tak the little road and I will be in Scotland before you but me and my true love will never meet again on the bonnie bonnie banks of Loch Lomond. Listen to the high school girls choir of the city of air on the southwest coast of Scotland. Never ever ever.
Ever ever. Heavy. Heavy.
You're. This song so dear to the Scots and others throughout the world has a romantic theme yet has the power to provoke an image of Scotlands and chanting lakes and hills and is quite close to Glasgow. I have seen it many times and it is never disappointing. Its mood is always shifting and its clean air and quiet beauty are in sharp contrast to the noise and smoke. Glasgow a writer for the Scottish scene seems to express it best in the words which I now quote.
After a hasty look at Glasgow one would do well to drive down to Loch Lomond side and stare across the water at the sailing clouds. The crown the ban the flooding of colors changing and darkling and miraculously lighting up and down those misty slopes where night comes over the long mountain leagues. But no only. The padding use of the shy stray hair. The cry of this startled silence is so deep. You can hear the moon come up.
And with this image of Loch Lomond we come to the close of this first programme in a series about Scotland. I hope you will join me when once again we continue to explore this interesting country and Mar obvious interesting people. You.
Will. Feel. The. Heat.
Amang the Scots
Scotland image
Producing Organization
WOSU (Radio station : Columbus, Ohio)
Ohio State University
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program explores common misconceptions of Scotland. Includes recordings of Harry Lauder and the high school girls choir, Ayr, in traditional Scottish songs.
Other Description
A documentary series about modern Scotland.
Race and Ethnicity
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Host: Goldovsky, Boris
Performer: Lauder, Harry, Sir, 1870-1950
Performing Group: Ayr
Producing Organization: WOSU (Radio station : Columbus, Ohio)
Producing Organization: Ohio State University
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 67-26-1 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:29:34
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Chicago: “Amang the Scots; Scotland image,” 1967-05-16, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed August 17, 2022,
MLA: “Amang the Scots; Scotland image.” 1967-05-16. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. August 17, 2022. <>.
APA: Amang the Scots; Scotland image. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from