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Empire Exhibition

Mitchell Library, Glasgow Collection

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Empire Exhibition

An Clachan at the Empire Exhibition in Bellahouston Park was a resurrection of the successful Highland Village at the Scottish Exhibition of National History, Art and Industry in 1911. The photograph shows the village post office in the foreground, with Tait's Tower providing a modern contrast in the background.

Architect Colin Sinclair assembled cottages from various parts of the Highlands and Islands and included one of his own design, which he saw as a model for the future. Painted backdrops rather detracted from the authenticity of the village.

The people who inhabited the village, carrying out their daily tasks as though at home, were genuine Gaelic-speaking Highlanders. One of the stars of the Exhibition was Mary Morrison from Barra, who sang Gaelic laments while working at her spinning wheel. Among the visitors who enjoyed her performance were King George VI and Queen Elizabeth on opening day, and Queen Mary on a later occasion.

Reference: Mitchell Library, GC ef606.4 (1938)

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Libraries Information and Learning

An Clachan, Empire Exhibition, Empire Tower, exhibitions, Highland Village, post offices, Scottish Exhibition of National History, Art and Industry, spinning wheels, Tait's Tower, thatched cottages, Tower of Empire

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