First Edition of Morning Tide, by Neil Gunn

Dunbeath Heritage Museum

Neil Gunn was one of the most important writers of Scottish fiction in the early twentieth century. His works explore Highland life, including the impact on communities of the Highland Clearances. He was awarded the prestigious James Tait Black Memorial Prize in 1937 for Highland River.

Morning Tide was Neil Gunn’s second novel. It is a coming-of-age story set in a fishing village in Caithness, with some of the settings and experiences inspired by the author’s own childhood.

During the novel, we follow twelve-year-old Hugh MacBeth as he grows and learns, set within the context of life after the Highland Clearances. Hugh learns how to poach, encounters traditional songs of the region, and watches his mother’s fear of losing her family to the dangerous fishing industry, preferring to lose them instead to emigration. Gradually, Hugh realises that his family is being separated as the Highlands way of life is lost.

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Date: 1931
Materials : Paper
Size : 15cm x 25cm

Associated Activity

On Reflection

Memorialising… Children who experienced brutality at school



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