Exhibition at Blackness Castle will reveal untold stories from past, as part of Scotland’s Year of Stories

An exhibition featuring the untold stories of 12 people from Scotland’s history will open at Blackness Castle later this year.

By Anna Bryan
Monday, 10th January 2022, 1:36 pm
Updated Wednesday, 12th January 2022, 6:09 am

The exhibition, named Unforgettable, will celebrate the stories of people from marginalised communities whose lives shaped or were shaped by Scotland.

Visitors to the exhibition will learn about Walter Sholto, a trans writer who was the illegitimate child of George Douglas, 16th Earl of Morton, and Agnes McDonald, who was executed in 1714 and was the last Scottish Traveller to be hanged under anti-Gypsy legislation in Scotland.

Other historical figures featured include Ethel Moorhead and Tom Jenkins.

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    Meanwhile, Tom was the son of a West African King and slave trader and is thought to have been Scotland’s first black schoolteacher.

    An illustration of Agnes McDonald, who was the last Scottish Gypsy/Traveller hanged under anti-Gypsy legislation in Scotland, which was drawn by artist Leanne McDonagh.

    The stories featured have been told by a variety of artists – all of whom have either a connection to the story or to the community.

    The exhibition will also feature images from the Historic Environment Scotland (HES) archives and specially commissioned artworks.

    Alex Paterson, chief executive of Historic Environment Scotland, said: “Stories are vital to our culture, our communities and our understanding of our past, and many of our Properties in Care, including Stirling Castle and Blackness Castle, are linked to these stories, both old and new.

    “Our heritage and the stories which shaped it, are of course more than the bricks and mortar, and through the themed year we want to take the opportunity to highlight Scotland’s unknown stories and provide a voice for the individuals and communities who went before us.

    “As a key partner in Scotland’s Year of Stories, we hope to encourage and inspire people to experience and share Scotland’s story as part of this themed year and we look forward to what I am sure will be an engaging, inspiring and immersive programme of activities.”

    The exhibition is just one of many events and activities being organised by HES to celebrate Scotland’s Year of Stories.

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