- Published: 12 August 2016 12 August 2016
Serious raid by a bullock - Carlisle Patriot, 19 April 1867:
The spirit of mischief seems to have taken possession of the bovine race, as never a market day now passes without an adventure in the streets of Dumfries more or less exciting and dangerous with some of the animals in their progress to or from the market.
On Wednesday afternoon, a two-year-old red bullock, with a pair of long, straight, and formidable horns, the property of Mr. Wood, flesher, broke away from his drivers when being driven through the town.
After sundry scamperings and excursions in the direct of Castle Street, which had the effect of frightening the beast, and collecting a crowd of pursuers, he charged along High Street at considerable speed, and suddenly dive down the close at Mr. Bell's, ironmonger.
Finding Mr. Bell's warehouse at the bottom conveniently open, he entered the premises, and ensconced himself doggedly in the further corner. It was a work of time getting him dislodged from the awkward retreat, where, however, he had little opportunity of doing any damage.
After a deal of impressment he consented to leave the premises very quietly, and although considerably astonished at the collected crowd, he retraced his steps up the close with irreproachable sang froid*.
As ill luck would have it, however, he found the shop door of Mr. Lockerbie, clothier, open at the right hand, and preferring its offer of asylum to the unwelcome task of facing the mob, he entered at the charge, overturning a counter, and making havoc of some dry goods which lay in the way.
Having been without much trouble expelled from his unlicensed retreat among the cloth, he cut a wild and dangerous circuit round the green market, during which more than one person made a narrow escape from injury.
The frightened brute next made his way down Bank Street, which he soon had entirely to himself. Here, after coolly inspecting several doors to the right and left, he seemed to arrive at the conclusion that for a change there was nothing like leather, and accordingly entered the shop of Mr Blount, saddler, spreading a panic among its inmates, and demolishing a counter at the back of the shop.
It was some little time before he could be turned out, and being by this time open for anything, he made a desperate but unsuccessful assault upon the closed door of Mr Smith, draper, after which he rushed up Bank Street and along High Street, finally plunging into the narrow close at the side of Mr. Maxwell's stationery warehouse.
Here his dangerous cantrips# were brought to a termination, for a strong rope being obtained he was secured and led without farther trouble to the slaughter-house, there to expiate his crimes.
The occurrence of scenes of this kind are becoming much too frequent to be pleasant, and it is full time the attentions of the authorities was directed to the necessity of enforcing greater precaution in driving cattle through the streets of the town. - Dumfries Herald.
#Scottish word for playful act.