(Mars Magazine)


David Douglas (73) – 846 Seventh Avenue, New York. –

“Sir, I have just had the pleasure of reading Mr A. McDougall’s memories of his 50 years on the Mars, which I shall keep, being an old pupil of his, and I am sure there are many more of us scattered throughout the world who will do the same, for, although I don’t belong to Dundee, I get the People’s Journal every week, and look for news of the Mars, as it’s good to see how the boys are getting along”.

 (Douglas left the Mars in 1913. Our retired veteran Carpenter had passed away before receipt of this letter.)


1925 Monday, 31st August



John Sweeney White, a twelve year old boy, of 41 Cable’s Wynd, Leith, pleaded guilty in Edinburgh Sheriff Court on Saturday to having broken into a confectioner’s shop in Leith and stolen a number of articles. It was stated that the method adopted by the boy was that of a well-known Edinburgh housebreaker. He climbed up a soil pipe twenty feet high and reached an open window of an unoccupied house. Inside, he made a hole in the floor, dropped by means of a rope into the shop below, committed the theft, and escaped in the ordinary way by unlocking the door. Sheriff Jameson ordered the boy to be sent to an industrial school. A different means of entry was employed by another Edinburgh schoolboy, who was sent to the Mars training ship for thefts of money from stationer’s shop in Bruntsfield Gardens. The boy pushed open the fanlight window and squeezed himself through into the shop.

1925 Tuesday, 22nd September.




(William Palmer and Alexander Brown)

The sequel to a burglary which took place in the grocery department of Bathgate Co-Operative Society, between 6th and 7th September, was heard at Bathgate Burgh Court yesterday. Four local lads – David Neil (16 ½ ) oncost worker, 69 Cochrane Street; John Frederick Thom (16 ½ ) oncost worker, Ballencrieff Cottages; Wm. Palmer (13 11/12 ), 14 North Street; and Alex. Brown (11 9/12), 79 Cochrane Street – pleaded guilty to entering the premises and stealing 186 boxes of matches, 878 cigarettes, a quantity of tobacco, and other articles, including pickles, cheese, aerated waters, biscuits, and two pocket knives. The statement by the Fiscal was to the effect that entrance had been gained by breaking a pane of glass in the rear of the premises. The pane only measured 11 by 14 inches, and the window was protected by iron bars 5 ¼ inches apart. After the broken glass had been removed the youngest boy had divested himself of his clothes, except his trousers, and wriggled himself through, and thereafter let his companions in by opening a back door, which was secured by bolts on the inside. The lads helped themselves to biscuits and ginger beer, and then filled their pockets with cigarettes, &c. Later they buried a quantity of the stolen property in a “redd” bing Balbardie Pit, where it was recovered by the police. It was also stated that there had been such a serious leakage of cigarettes in this department that all the employees were threatened with dismissal if it did not cease. Bailie Wright ordered the two younger boys to be sent to the Mars Training Ship until they attained the age of 16. Neil and Thom were each fined £2 or 20 days’ imprisonment.