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Broadside entitled 'Letter from Kirkaldy'


This report begins: 'Letter from Kirkaldy. DREADFUL ACCIDENT At Kirkaldy. By a Gallery in the Church falling down, during the time the Rev. Dr Irving was preaching to a crowed Audience whereby a great number was killed and wounded.' The letter that is included in the report is dated 'Monday Morning, June 16th 1828'. There are no publication details on the broadside.

The tragedy described in this report occurred on Sunday 15th June 1828, in Kirkcaldy Parish Church, which later became known as St Brycedale's. Later reports suggested that twenty-eight people were killed and more than one hundred injured when part of a crowded public gallery gave way. The congregation was apparently swollen because of a guest sermon from 'Rev. Mr Irving' . This is probably a reference to Edward Irving (1792-1834), a famous evangelical Church of Scotland minister who worked in Kirkcaldy before taking up a post in London in 1822. Irving was ejected from the Church of Scotland for heresy in 1833, and founded the Catholic Apostolic, or Irvingite Church.

Broadsides are single sheets of paper, printed on one side, to be read unfolded. They carried public information such as proclamations as well as ballads and news of the day. Cheaply available, they were sold on the streets by pedlars and chapmen. Broadsides offer a valuable insight into many aspects of the society they were published in, and the National Library of Scotland holds over 250,000 of them.

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Date of publication: 1828   shelfmark: L.C.Fol.74(089)
Broadside entitled 'Letter from Kirkaldy'
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