Calder, James Tait (DNB00)

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Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 08
Calder, James Tait

by Thomas Finlayson Henderson ‎
James Traill Calder in the ODNB.

CALDER, JAMES TAIT (1794?–1864), author of the ‘History of Caithness,’ was born at the village of Castletown, Caithness. He studied at the university of Edinburgh, and, after acting for some time as private tutor in the house of the Rev. Mr. Gunn at Caithness, became parish teacher at Canisbay. In 1842 he published at Wick ‘Sketches from John o' Groat's in Prose and Verse,’ which contained an interesting chapter on ‘Ancient Superstitions and Customs in Caithness.’ In 1846 he issued a volume of poems entitled ‘The Soldier's Bride,’ from the name of the largest poem in the book. His ‘Sketch of the Civil and Traditional History of Caithness from the Tenth Century,’ published in 1861, is a work of undoubted merit, in which he has made admirable use of the materials available, although they are less full than in the case of most other counties. He died at Elwick Bank, Shapinshay, on 15 Jan. 1864.

[Orkney Herald, 19 Jan. 1864.]

T. F. H.