John Aikman

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There is nothing in the earliest records of our Club to suggest that a John Aikman was ever a Member of ‘Let it Blaw.’

However, there’s a report in Club Records of a farewell meeting held in the Malleny Arms on Friday 27th May 1910 to mark the departure of Club Member Robert Torrance for Canada. That record of Club Secretary John Fairbairn stated : “Various members contributed to the enjoyment by giving songs and recitations. One Member sang “To the West, to the West, to the Land of the Free” as he had done exactly 28 years before (presumably 1882 or thereabouts) on the occasion of John Aikman, Johnsburn, leaving for Chicago.”

A check of official records revealed that a John Aikman (62), a widower, and his son, also John Aikman (21), worked as Blacksmiths at Johnsburn in the very early 1880s ………… presumably for Club Member Tom Horsburgh who we know was renting the Johnsburn smiddy at that time. It seems reasonable to assume that it was the younger Aikman who was heading for Chicago and who was mentioned at the 1910 meeting.

While the Aikmans are virtually unknown in our written Club Records, this connection to Thomas Horsburgh in 1881 opens up the possibility that one, or maybe both of them, were amongst the 23 Gentlemen who attended the first ‘Let it Blaw in 1881.