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History, Local History
Publication Date
02 May 2013
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Birlinn Limited

The History of St Kilda

Foreword by Roger Hutchinson

'Beautifully written and historically significant . . . a hugely important piece of social history' – Scottish Field

As one of the most remote corners of the British Isles, the island archipelago of St Kilda has long held a fascination for travellers from mainland Britain and beyond. The unique way of life and customs of its inhabitants has generated an enormous amount of literature over a period of hundreds of years. Kenneth Macaulay's book is one of the most significant works ever written about the islands, and is a description of what he saw there on his visit of 1763, at which time the island population had dwindled to just 88. In addition to giving vivid descriptions of the islanders themselves and their living conditions, Macaualay also offers a huge amount of information on the animals and birds found there - the sheep and cattle, and above all the wildfowl, which were used for a huge variety of purposes, including oil, shoes and medicine as well as food.

Roger Hutchinson is an award-winning author and journalist, who joined the West Highland Free Press in Skye. He is a columnist for the WHFP, a book reviewer for The Scotsman and the author of over 15 books. His book The Soap Man (Birlinn 2003) was shortlisted for the Saltire Scottish Book of the Year (2004) and the bestselling Calum's Road (2007) was shortlisted for the Royal Society of Literature's Ondaatje Prize.