Frae: R. De Bruce Trotter, Galloway Gossip (1901), pp. 132-133

WHUN we wur weans we use’t tae mak wee water-mills wi rashes plettit thegither, an we set them in the bits o’ strans, an on the wat days in syres, an we made wee dams tae let oot whun they wur fu, an mak spates tae gar the mills gang faster.

The boys use’t tae mak wudden yins. They wurna mills, only mill-wheels. We use’t tae ca’ them Doctor Doddses Mills.

This Doctor Dodds wus said tae be a German yt leeve’t aboot the time o’ James the Sixt, an he wus a goold-hunter, an fun great lots o’ goold aboot the muntains o‘ Carsephairn.

They wey they said he got it wus raither an ingenious yin. He gaed awa up the burns tae naur the heid, whaur they wur joost strauns, an set a great lot o’ the wee mill-wheels in them, an had a’ the spokes o’ the clauber’t ower wi some kin’ o’ mercurial ointment. Than he took a spade an hokit in the buddum o’ the wee pools, an steer’t up the cley an san’ an dirt, an the drumlie water ran through the wee mill, an ony goold yt wus in’t stack tae the ointment. He strippit the ointment aff every noo an than, an put it in a box, an than put mair ointment on again.

He wud gang on this wey the haill day, whiles at yae burn an whiles at anither, an whun he gaed hame he put the strippins inta a kin’ o’ stell, an set it on the fire, an recover’t the mercury again, an gat the goold a’ in a lump at the buddum o’ the stell.

Than he had Dies for coinin’t, an he made it inta Spanish Doubloons, an sae the Government couldna punish him for’t.

Hooever, they sent an took him up, an took him tae Edinburgh, an sentence’t him tae be benish’t frae the country. Afore they took him he flung his dies inta Lagwine Wal, an they say they’r there yet.

There’s some springs they ca’ the Goold Wals naur the tap o’ Cairnsmuir, an there’s plenty o’ whut looks like goold in them, but it’s joost yella Mica, or raither decomposin Hornblende fae the rotten Greystane craigs aboot.



Partial Glossar

Definitions frae DSL (links are tae the relevant entries).

  • Stran ‘1. A little stream or run of water, a rivulet. 2 An artificial water-channel or gutter, a street gutter.’ [STRAND]
  • Syer ‘1 A ditch, drain, water-channel, specif. a field-drain lined with stones, and gen. covered in to form a small culvert. 2 A street gutter.’ [SYVER]
  • Gar ‘To make, cause; to force, compel, esp. to make (a person) do (something).’ [GAR]
  • Clauber ‘To cover with mud or dirt.’ [CLABBER]
  • Drumlie ‘Of streams or water: turbid, clouded, muddy, esp. of a river in spate.’ [DRUMLIE]
  • Whiles ‘Sometimes, at times, occasionally.’ [WHILES]