Sometimes a question just leaps out at you, doesn’t it? Today, we’ve discovered that it is very hard to trace copies of Flowers of Scottish Melody, a book of tunes compiled by J. Murdoch Henderson, who was a serious expert in Scottish fiddle collection bibliography. It doesn’t look anything special from the cover, but if Henderson had a hand in it, then there ought to be more copies in libraries. There are very few. Indeed, a reprint was made some 30 years ago, and there aren’t even any of those available for purchase. If you see one, do tell us. (Glasgow University Library and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland could both do with a copy!) That was our first piece of detective work, with no fruitful results.
The next was easier. Who was Mrs Garden of Troup (Troop)? There are enough collections with strathspeys written for Mrs, or Miss Garden of Troup. Stuart Eydmann leapt to our rescue. There’s plenty of information available in The Fiddler’s Companion – an online resource that MUST go into our web-resource list eventually –
http://www.ibiblio.org/fiddlers/ (The Fiddler’s Companion)
However, there are also other places to look for information, and Stuart reminded us that municipal archives often hold masses of information. In this instance, the city of Aberdeen has a huge archive of material about the Garden family of Troup. We don’t really have time to pursue this, but isn’t it great to know there’s so much out there?