A Scottish silver Ploughing Medal
A Scottish silver Ploughing Medal
A Scottish silver Ploughing Medal

A Scottish silver Ploughing Medal

1838 Scotland

Offered by Peter Cameron

£880 gbp
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A large Victorian Scottish Agricultural Prize Medal formed as an oval with cast foliate suspension mount and pendant ring; the central panel engraved with 'Presented By Sir William Drummond Stewart of Grandtully Lodge, Almond, Bart., to Donald Stewart tenant of the Lagg, Grandtully, as First Prize at a competition of 93 Ploughs which took place on his Estate near Murthly Castle, 5th December 1838.' Engraved also on the reverse with the arms of Sir William Stewart [1795-1871] and his wife, Christian-Mary Steuart, and 'H. Gavin Sc.' The bead edged central panel of the medal is surrounded by an engraved starburst the points of which are soldered to an outer plain frame.
For the details of this Ploughing match, see the Farmer's Magazine for January 1839:
On Tuesday the 5th December one of the most animated and patriotic exhibitions ever witnessed took place near Murthly Castle. The late Sir John Archibald Stewart of Grandtully last year had intended in order to stimulate the agricultural energies of the tenantry of his numerous estates to present them with a splendid silver medal and other prizes to be competed for at a ploughing match. Death has since deprived the country of the worthy Baronet who originated the patriotic scheme but his brother and successor has nobly carried his predecessor's intentions into effect and again has the skill and science of our ploughmen been called into exertion. The field selected for the display was the large haugh nearly opposite Murthly Castle on the north bank of the Tay. Long ere day dawn seventy pairs of horses had passed Dunkeld Bridge for the combat and by eight o clock nearly a hundred competitors had arrived and a concourse most numerous of the inhabitants of the surrounding country had assembled to witness the contest eager if possible to anticipate the award of the judges. The gentlemen appointed to this difficult office were Messrs. Inches, Marlee House; Constable, Hill of Errol; and Jack, West Mill of Kinnaird. The prizes were awarded as follows: 1st to Donald Stewart Lagg of Grandtully. 2nd John Stewart, Meikle, Tombaue, Strathbraan. 3rd Robert Dow, Dalbathie. 4th Donald Keir, Ballanleek, Strathbraan. 5th James Robertson, Pitleoch, do. 6th George M Farlane, servant to Mr Campbell Mains of Grandtully. 7th Alex Chapman, Airntully. 8th Wm. M Kenzie, New Delvine. 9th John Tyrie, servant to Mr Sime, Airntully. 10th Peter Duff, Lednaskae, Grandtully. 11th James McLaren, Airntully. 12th James Duff, servant to Mr Robertson, Ballanloan, Strathbraan. 13th David Malcolm, servant to Mr Bruce, Airntully. 14th John Robertson, do. do. do.
The Medal given as the first prize is of the most splendid description of the most chaste design and beautiful workmanship and value 61. it bears on the one side the armorial bearings of the family, on the obverse the ordinary agricultural emblems with the inscription of Presented by Sir Wm. D. Stewart of Grandtully Bart. to Donald Stewart Lagg of Grandtully as First Prize at a Competition of 93 Ploughs which took place on his Estate 6th Dec 1838.
The other prizes were handsome gratuities in money and to the first was added a sovereign.

Sir William Drummond Stewart (1795-1871) had recently returned from his adventures in America [see the website http://www.clanmacfarlanegenealogy.info for details of his life]

Hector Gavin, the engraver of this medal, worked in Edinburgh.
Some cracks in the solder at the junction of the points of the engraved starburst and the oval frame.
Height 12.70 cm (5.00 inches)
Width 9.00 cm (3.54 inches)
Depth 1.40 cm (0.55 inches)
Weight 150.20g (4.83oz t)
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Peter Cameron

Peter Cameron
Vault 57
The London Silver Vaults
53-64 Chancery Lane

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