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A Look Back on Ahmore (part 1)

A Look Back on Ahmore (part 1)

Island:

With Mrs Chirsty MacLean (daughter of Neil son of Alex son of William)

Ahmore was a part of the tack of Orinsay. A lot of people had it at first, but when it was made a part of the tack, many of the people were sent away, and the place went under sheep.

Ahmore was broken up into crofts in 1924. My father got a croft then. He was born in Knockqueen, and his father and mother belonged to there. He had land there. It was from Bhalacuidh that they left, and I think that they went there to work for the tacksman of Boreray, who had Knockqueen then. My mother, Mairi Phadraig Dhughlaich, was from Ahmore, and I was born there.

In my earliest memory, there were only three houses in Ahmore – Ruairidh Domhnallach’s, my father’s, and my mother’s sister’s house down at the main road, where the road salt is being stored today. The people who were here before the land was broken up are not well remembered. I can remember just one ruin where Alasdair’s house is today – Mairi Alasdair Frangach’s house, we called it. There was another ruin close to where John-Norman’s house is today – that was Domhnall Darach’s.

I went to Trumisgarry School at Clachan – it was a good way away from us, and we had to walk there and back. We used to walk barefoot from May until the school opened again in September. After that we wore big tackety boots – and weren’t they heavy! I remember well the children who were at school with me – Seonaidh Ailig MacFhionghain, Ruairidh Ban and Eoghainn, Seoras and Tormod and John Norman – Ruairidh Iain Tailleir’s family, and Dughall’s family. There was a missionary, Robertson, in the place at the time, and he had five children going to school along with us. Tormod MacAsgaill’s family were there, and Kate Margaret. Fionnladh Eoghainn’s family were there too. Tormod Dhomhnaill Iain Thailleir was there for a short time before I left. Neilidh MacAsgaill’s family were there, and Aonghas Ghilleasbuig’s, and Aonghas Iain’s. There were plenty going to the school at that time.

I remember the teachers we had there. We had Miss MacDonald when I began at school. We had Miss Forbes and Mrs Boyd and Miss MacDonald. It was a good building. We were doing arithmetic, history, geometry, algebra, dictation and writing. We had cookery too. We played games outside – games like ‘The Farmer Wants a Wife’, football, rounders and speilean – a Uist ballgame described in detail in Dwelly’s Dictionary.

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