coverage: 20th century
|Extent||1 digital audio file(s), 5 digital photograph(s), 1 papers|
|Subject||Childhood, Sports, Fiddle tunes -- Scotland, Mining, Community Life, Customs and Traditions, Television, Radio Broadcasting, World War, 1939-1945|
Detailed autobiographical interview with 87 year old Davie Graham. When Davie was a small child his father was made undermanager at Gateside Colliery and an early memory is of playing with his pedal car outside the house when he was rushed inside after the colliery hooter went off. This sound meant there had been an accident at the pit and an ambulance was on the way. Many of Davie's family had been miners and he became a miner himself, saying it was the only thing he ever wanted to do. He started to work at the pit from age 14 and gives detailed information and anecdotes here about pit work, cameraderie and conditions underground. He also talks about his schooling and this includes anecdotes about punishment and the hostel where he stayed when he was at Dumfries Academy.
After the outbreak of World War 2, he remembered being frightened for about six weeks or so before things returned to normal. Two bombs were dropped on Kirkconnel, in 1942, and these damaged the Co-op and the railway. One man was injured and the school was closed the following morning but open again for the afternoon. He married Bunty (who was one of a family of 13) and they spent their early married life in the family home, as was the tradition for each of the family - unless they were in the forces. His Lifelong interest in both football and 'box and fiddle' clubs are discussed as well as the thirty years Davie spent as a caretaker in the multi-storey flats at Clydebank (this was after the pit closed down).
He talks about the community around the Clydebank multis and says that Scottish Special Housing Association, who were responsible for this housing, were a very good firm to work for. He returned to the local area in 1993 and says Sanquhar is the best place in the world to live. Family and community are especially important to Davie. Other subjects covered include: school; domestic life; foodways; the relationship between farmers and miners; poaching; Christmas, birthdays and Halloween; recreation (holidays, radio) and Davie's long interest in writing poetry and prose. About television, Davie remarks that at the time of the coronation, 1953, only about six people would have had a TV in Sanquhar: he watched through a local shop window.
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