John Knox House
and other buildings in the Royal Mile, Edinburgh
When might this photo have been taken?
Reproduced with acknowledgement to
Tom Yanul, Oak
Lawn, Illinois, USA
Knox House and Moubray
Royal Mile, Edinburgh
to Tom Yanul for allowing me to reproduce this photograph of:
- John Knox House (the house in the centre
of this photo that juts out into the Royal Mile)
- Moubray House (the house immediately to
the left of John Knox House).
Date of the Photo?
believe this photo may date from the mid- to late-C19. The movement
captured in the figures suggests that this was a fairly long
wording on the roof of Moubray House, and the wording on the frontage of
the house ('Knox Temperance Hotel') may be helpful in dating the
can suggest a date,
please email me.
Thank you. - Peter Stubbs:
April 7, 2008.
Thank you to Dr Alfred Grandl, Germany who wrote:
"The photo must have been shot
after 1858 surely, since an old travel report of those days says, that in
summer 1858 there was still a puppet at the corner of the Knox House
featuring the preacher himself.
of the engravings of John Knox House on the EdinPhoto web site show this
Perhaps 1880s or later
"On the photo below, you can see
a later relief figure, in rather poor condition. So I think this
photo would have been shot at least 20 or 30 years after 1858."
Dr Alfred Grandl, Germany: April 15, 2008
Thank you to Jay Ell for telling me about other buildings in the Royal
Mile, near Jay Knox House. They are the tenements at Paisley
Close that collapsed in 1861.
Jay is a descendant of the Bruce family, mentioned in the death column
for this collapse. Jay tells me that his great grandfather and his
brother escaped the tragedy.
"Paisley Close, at 99-103 High
Street, lies on the same side of the road as John Knox House, but is a
little further up the Royal Mile. The 250-year-old houses at Paisley
Close collapsed on November 24, 1861.
Thirty-five of the occupants
died, but as the debris was being cleared away a young lad was heard to
shout from within the collapsed building: 'Heave awa' lads, I'm no' deid
The memorial inscription above
Paisley Close, which was built on place of the collapsed houses, has a
more anglicised, middle-class interpretation of what was said: 'Heave awa'
chaps, I'm no dead yet'.
This tragedy (and the
overcrowding which was prevalent at the time) resulted in a Medical
Officer of Health being appointed in Edinburgh for the first time."
Jay Ell: January 16 +23. 2011
Thank you to Siobhan
Wildman who wrote:
Paintings of John Knox House
"I came across your photo above, as I
had been looking at three paintings of John Knox' House between
around 1861 and 1877 (if I've understood it correctly) by Louise
Dudley Mall web site gives
details of the dates of these three paintings. It also
states that house No.35 was demolished to make way for the church,
which is in your picture.
Dudley Mall web site
also give details about the Temperance House. I don't know
if this website would help you in finding the date of your
interesting photograph. I hope it helps.
Siobhan Wildman, Overton, Hampshire,
England: 22 January,
Thank you, Siobhan, for sending me the link to the
Dudley Mall web site. that site has some interesting
comments about some of the buildings in Edinburgh Old Town, not
just John Knox House.
Peter Stubbs, Edinburgh: 22