Down memory lane, February 16 2018

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A Courier reader was recently clearing out some old papers and found a booklet published by the Courier in 1942.

A. Wylie  Blue’s Campbeltown Yesterdays contains many reminisences of events which took place in the early decades of the 20th century.

Some are very funny, such as this trip to the ‘dentist’: ‘We had no resident dentist in those days. He came periodically to treat us, but toothache took no account of the times of his arrival, and in the interval we had to make the most of what sources of relief we possessed.

I remember patronising a medical hall in Back Street presided over by Joe Howe. No molar, however deep its roots, could withstand his knowledgable onslaught. After the hesitations and fears that afflict all sufferers from toothache, a bout of raging agony ran me into Joe’s presence.

“I want a tooth out,” said I; “Come round here,” said he. He got something into his right hand at the same time encircling my neck lovingly and closely with his left arm. “Open your mouth,” said he, and the next moment with hard and devilish steel gripping my jaw, the whole world swung and rocked about me. If I did not kick Joe it was not through any restraining virtue in me. My yells must have been heard round Back Street and Reform Square.

Then, there it was, the hollow, long-pronged back tooth between the pincers, and I was free, feeling shaky but almost ready in gratitude to kiss the hand of Mr Howe. I have since had teeth out without feeling a grip or being desirous of kicking anybody. We’ve come on.’

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