Number 3 - Information on residents

1804 – 1811 William and Elizabeth (neé Gardner) Richardson
William Richardson had owned the estate of Keithock, near Forfar, but sold it in 1802 and moved to Edinburgh. Two years later William died. The family had a series of tragedies. One son died when just a child the year they moved to Albany Street. Another young son died in 1809 and their eldest son, William, who became a Midshipman in the Royal Navy, drowned off Portsmouth in 1810.
The family suffered a further heartbreak fifteen years later. Their daughter Jane’s husband, Hugh Rollo, a solicitor, drowned in 1825 when the Paddle Steamer Comet II sank after colliding with another ship near Gourock, Scotland. The Comet had no lights, both lookouts were apparently otherwise occupied, and by the time the boats spotted each other, it was too late to avoid a collision. The Comet went down in less than five minutes killing 62 of its 80 or so passengers. Although a nearly identical collision had happened only three years earlier, the ‘quality’ of the passengers lost with the Comet meant that a much greater fuss was made over this incident. It was immediately suggested that in light of the rapid speeds with which these boats travelled – up to 10 miles an hour! – greater regulation was called for (not to mention better lighting), and, as a result, steam travel on the Clyde did become safer.
Fortunately the fates of their other three daughters were more kind. Elizabeth, married David Jolly, a banker in Perth. He also served as Chairman of the Murray Royal Institution for the Insane. The third daughter married Michael Ramsay, an officer in the East India Company’s 57th Regiment of Native Infantry. The youngest daughter, Agnes, married Captain James Pearson in 1822. He served in the army in India, and was involved in a number of military actions, including in Java and Nepal. In 1828 he became a major of the 65th Regiment serving in India at Agra.  Mrs Elizabeth Richardson died in 1822.

1811 – 1816 Captain Matthew and Henrietta (neé Reveley) Buckle
Captain Buckle was a Royal Navy Officer (seen here in an unknown portrait), His father had been an Admiral who won national fame when a captain by capturing a Spanish man-of-war, the Glorioso, off Cape St Vincent. He went on to take part in the capture of Louisburg and in the battle of Quiberon Bay.
Buckle followed his father into the navy, going to sea in 1786 as an Able-Seaman on board HMS Salisbury. In 1796 he was appointed Commander of the sloop Ferret, and then commanded store ships in the North Americas and West Indies for two years. For the next six years he was in charge of the Sea Fencibles – a naval militia - based in Portsmouth. During this time Buckle repeatedly applied for a command at sea, but instead was given command of HMS Adamant, the land based naval establishment at Leith. It was at this point he lived in Albany Street with his family.
Buckle is mentioned in a report of a major fire in at Bishop’s Land, just off the High Street. The menace of fire was shown by the number and range of people who came to assist in controlling the blaze: ‘The Lord Provost and Magistrates, the constables ordinary and extraordinary, the firemen, etc. were early on the spot. The Commander in Chief and several officers belonging to his staff were also present during the greater part of the night. General Lay, Royal Artillery Captain Buckle of the Adamant, and a detachment of the 1st regiment of Royal Edinburgh Volunteers, together with many gentlemen of the city, were also present, and distinguished themselves by their example and exertions…spectators of all descriptions were busily employed in bringing continuous supplies of water.’ The first fire service had been set up in 1703, but was amateurish and disorganised. It was not until 1824, after another spate of disastrous fires, that the city council set up a professional Fire Brigade, the first in the United Kingdom. Unfortunately, the Great Fire of Edinburgh broke out before the new brigade had been properly trained. The fire began in a printer’s shop on the High Street and swept through the Old Town for four days destroying 400 homes and other buildings, including the Tron Kirk. 13 people died in the fire, including two firemen.
Although Buckle went on to become an Admiral, he continued to be disillusioned at having being denied the sea command to which he felt he was entitled. His disappointment was no doubt all the greater as he had progressive deterioration of eyesight which diminished his prospects of active service and ultimately left him blind.
The Buckles had four daughters and four sons. Claude followed his father into the Royal Navy. He took part in the First Anglo-Burmese War and was involved in the capture of Rangoon in May 1824. He later served in South America and the West Indies. Promoted to the rank of commander he commanded the gunboat HMS Growler, on the coast of Brazil and afterwards on the west coast of Africa. In 1849, he served in Africa and 'administered condign punishment' to a horde of pirates. In 1850, due to failing health he had to return to England, where he was superintendent of Deptford dockyard. Like his grandfather and father he too became an admiral.
The eldest son, Matthew, became a Vicar and Headmaster of Durham Grammar School and published various books. His wife published Fifi, or Memoirs of a Canary Bird. The third son, Edward, became a Captain with the Madras Engineers, and the fourth son, Randolph, a Lieutenant with the Madras Artillery, dying young near Tranquebar, India. The only daughter traced is Georgiana who married Captain William Robinson of the 72nd Highlanders.

1816 – 1824 Miss Lee’s Boarding School for Girls.
No details have been found about this particular school. Such institutions normally were for upper- and upper-middle-class girls and provided a social rather than an academic education. It was not unusual for these to begin as small establishments and, if successful move on to larger premises, which may have been the case for Miss Lee’s school as it later located to Royal Circus. See Education - Girls

1824 – 1829 William Smith 
William Smith gave lessons in Greek and Latin from the house, and later from 17 George Street. Like a number of Albany Street residents of the time, Smith was a member of The Edinburgh Phrenological Society. A German physician, Franz Joseph Gall, introduced the idea of Phrenology during the end of the 18th Century, although then it was called ‘Cranioscopy’. His pupil, Johann Gasper Spurzheim, renamed it Phrenology and Gall and Spurzheim toured Europe lecturing on their new science, convinced they had found the key to understanding the mind. A lawyer, George Combe, heard Spurzheim lecture in Edinburgh and was quickly convinced of the science, so founded the Edinburgh Phrenological Society and helped boost the subject’s popularity with large debates. Phrenology became hugely popular in the city in the 1820s and the Edinburgh Phrenological Society was the first and foremost phrenological group in Britain. Phrenologists believed that the brain was the organ of the mind and that human behaviour could be usefully 
understood in neuropsychological rather than philosophical or religious terms. 
On a visit to Edinburgh, Audubon, the well-known naturalist and bird artist described having his personality assessed by Combe. ‘I reached Brown Square at 9, and breakfasted most heartily on mutton, ham and good coffee with George Combe. We proceeded upstairs into his sancto sanctorum. A beautiful silver box containing the instruments for measuring was opened. I was seated facing the light. Combe thrusting his fingers about my hair, began to search for miraculous bumps! My skull was measured as accurately as I measure the bill or legs of a new individual, and all was duly noted by a scribe. Then with the most exquisite sense of touch each protuberance was found, as numbered by the phrenologists, and also put down to their respective sizes. I was astounded when they both said that I must be a strong and constant lover and affectionate father, that I had great veneration for highly talented men, that I would have made a brave general, that music was not to be compared with painting in me, that I was extraordinarily generous, etc. Now I know all these to be facts, but how they discovered them to be so is quite a puzzle to me.’
Phrenology’s claim to be scientific was mocked by many at the time yet it had many strong supporters. One was Dr John Scott (Number 41), a surgeon and contributor to the Cyclopedia of Practical Surgery: ‘Your writer takes the liberty of communicating to his Lordship his thorough conviction of the truth of Phrenology. He has not passed a day for the last twenty years, without bestowing at least some thought upon it; and the vast number of facts which he has witnessed, without any certain exception as to any of the chief points, convince him that it is as real a science as Astronomy or Chemistry. Nor does he know any branch of science more important, as it is interwoven with morals, religion, government, education, and in short with everything that regards human or brute nature.’ Although it is now regarded as a pseudoscience, phrenologists’ distaste for supernatural explanations meant that - in Edinburgh, at least – the movement encouraged thinking about evolution. Charles Darwin, a medical student in Edinburgh from 1825-1827, was much engaged in phrenological discussions. It also inspired a renewed interest in psychiatric disorder and its moral treatment. By the mid-19th century interest in phrenology had declined in Edinburgh, although the theory remained popular in other countries, and around 1870 the society disbanded.
The Smith family moved to Drummond Place.

1829 – 1838 Thomas and Janet (neé Murray) Murray
Thomas Murray was born of working-class parents in 1792, in Kirkcudbrightshire, and after his education at the parish school, went to Edinburgh University in 1810. He was friends with two students who would go on to great things - Thomas Carlyle, the philosopher and writer, and Alexander Murray, the oriental scholar - and the three walked together from Galloway to Edinburgh each session during their college career. A regular correspondence passed between Carlyle and Murray for some years afterwards.  Although Murray became a Minister, after a short time he focused instead on writing and published a number of books, including The Literary History of Galloway. He was one of the writers of the Edinburgh Encyclopædia which was published in 18 volumes between 1808 and 1830. In competition with the Edinburgh published Encyclopædia Britannica, The Edinburgh Encyclopaedia was considered to be strongest on scientific topics, where many of the articles were written by the editor, David Brewster. Other contributors, ‘Gentlemen Eminent in Science and Literature’, included Charles Babbage, John Gibson Lockhart and Thomas Telford.  
In 1841 Murray established in Edinburgh the printing business of Murray & Gibb, the firm afterwards becoming her majesty's printers for Scotland. 
In 1843, Murray was one of the founders, and for many years afterwards (1843–72) secretary, of the Edinburgh Galloway Association, the prototype of numerous county associations that later flourished in Edinburgh.  He also was one of the founders and original members of the Edinburgh Philosophical Institution (of which Thomas Carlyle was president till his death), and acted as secretary of the Edinburgh School of Arts from 1844 to 1872 and from 1854 to 1860 was a member of the Edinburgh Town council. In 1833 Murray was the Convenor of a committee set up to raise funds to erect a monument at the birthplace of Alexander Murray, the son of a shepherd who grew up in an isolated cottage in Dumfriesshire. His only schooling was three weeks a year when he stayed with an aunt in New Galloway. However, he taught himself to read from the Bible, and learned some Greek and Latin, encouraged by the local minister. A travelling tea salesman was so impressed with the boy's ability that he contacted a friend at Edinburgh University and Murray was given a place. There he studied theology, and pursued an interest in oriental and dead languages. He became Professor of Oriental Languages at Edinburgh University but after only two years in the post died at 38 of consumption. Alexander Brunton (Number 35) succeeded him. The memorial was erected in 1835 on a prominent position on the hillside near where he was born.
Murray and his wife moved into the house 
and their new baby son, and soon after had another child, but sadly both children died when infants. However, two further daughters survived into adulthood. One married Sir William Wilson Hunter, who worked in the Indian Civil Service and produced a comprehensive statistical survey of India.  
Thomas Murray died at Elm Bank, near Lasswade in 1872. 

1838 – 1840 Mrs Kennedy and her son David Kennedy.
David Kennedy was recorded as receiving a Game Licence but nothing more traced.

1840 – 1874 Lodgings
The Lodgings were run by William and Elizabeth Borthwick, and later by Peter and Janet Clerihew. The lodgers listed in the 1861 census were William and Mary Arundell, a lander proprietor; Elinora Anderson, a widow, her teenage daughter and son James, a member of Her Majesty's Royal Civil Service in the East Indies, and his wife. There were two servants, Isabella King (27) from England and Christine Campbell (24) from Perthshire. 

Like other lodging houses in Albany Street, a number of women had their babies delivered here. In 1840 Helen Macdonald, the wife of William Bell Macdonald, 2nd of Rammerscales, had at least one of her two daughters in the house. William was a surgeon in the Royal Navy and for a time the Physician to Catherine the Great, Tsarina of Russia. Other wives who had babies delivered here included Mary Mann, the wife of Deane Mann, a Lieutenant-Colonel in Royal Tyrone Fusiliers and 4th Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers; Mrs Meldrum of Kincapale House; and Mrs Maitland Makgill Crichton of Rankeilour. 

Others were wives of soldiers and two lodged with their husbands while giving birth: Major Robert Hope Moncrieff Aitken & Captain Francis Edward Henry Farquharson
In the 1860s/1870s, the lodgers included Major Robert Hope Moncrieff Aitken 
(portrait by unknown artist) and his wife Mary (neé Atkinson), and Captain Francis Edward Henry Farquharson and his wife Harriet (neé Lowe). The couples lodged here at different times with their wives who were giving birth. 
Major Aitken (portrait by unknown artist) and his wife stayed again, ten years after their first lodging, and this may have been due to seeking medical help for their youngest daughter, as she died in the house. 
Aitken served in the 13th Bengal Native Infantry and in the Staff Corps of the Bengal Army, and latterly was Inspector of Police in Oudh. With Mary’s birth imminent the couple had probably returned temporarily to Scotland as he had family in Edinburgh. Their daughter, Ida, was born here and following her birth they advertised for ‘An experienced nurse to take charge of one baby; a good needlewoman who would not object to go to India if necessary.’ After returning to India Aitken reported that: ‘the working of the Lucknow Police Force during 1868 shows great improvement over former years. The percentage of apprehensions and convictions are high and the percentage of stolen property recovered is good.’ 
Nine years earlier, the couple had been trapped in Lucknow during the siege that was part of the Indian Rebellion (Mutiny) and they must have doubted they would live, let alone raise a family. Inside the Lucknow compound were around 1,000 soldiers and 1,500 non-combatants, including hundreds of women and children. The Honourable Lady Inglis, the wife of one of the army officers, kept a diary of the time. 
‘May 16 - Still worse news was received; Delhi was said to be in the hands of the mutineers, and the military and civil authorities were consulting together all day as to what measures should be taken. The result being that this evening all the women and children were sent into the city Residency with a company of the 32nd and four guns. Major Banks evidently considered we were in a critical and dangerous position.’ 
‘June 13 - Still no news. I asked John (her husband) if he thought the enemy would attack us. He said it was his firm opinion that they would. I then said, “Do you think we can hold out?” He answered, “Our position is a bad one, and we shall have a hard struggle”.’ 
‘July 1 - John came in and told us we should soon hear heavy firing; his words were verified, and in a few minutes the cannonading and musketry firing were most terrific. We felt sure the enemy must get in, when the most terrible death awaited us. We sat trembling, hardly able to breathe….Poor Miss Palmer had her leg taken off by a round shot to-day, she, with some other ladies, having remained in the second story of the Residency house, though warned that it was not safe.’ 
While inside the residency compound the women and children were struggling with difficult conditions and fear, the soldiers defending them were experiencing terrible conditions. ‘The enemy's fire never ceased, night nor day, and the casualties were frequent. The bad smells from imperfectly buried bodies was horrible; the want of change of diet was beginning to be felt, and in addition to other diseases cholera, small-pox, and especially scurvy, began to be fearfully prevalent. We lost several fine fellows from these diseases, who had escaped the enemy's fire. Scurvy took the form of loose teeth, swollen heads, and boils, and gained the name of ‘garrison disease’. Men began to pull long faces at the absence of all news from without, or prospect of relief, and several suicides occurred. 
‘July 31 – No news; distant guns reported; all sorts of conjectures afloat to account for the non-arrival of our relieving force.’ 
'Aug 28 - Definite news from the relieving force reached us that there was no hope of our being relieved for another twenty-five days. The opium-eating native members of the garrison stole Captain Boileau's double-barrelled gun and left, leaving on the walls inscriptions, “Because I have no opium." …The soldiers, too, felt the want of tobacco very much. Spirits, wine, and beer had long run out, except a very little which was kept for the sick.' 
‘Sep 25 – A day never to be forgotten. Heavy firing all round, and towards the middle of the day our relieving force could be descried. It was evident they were having a hard struggle, though the enemy could also be seen leaving the city in large numbers, swimming the river and crossing the bridges. We shelled them severely to expedite their departure.’ 
While those inside Lucknow were suffering, for many months, in harsh weather conditions, beset by illness and opposed by large opposing forces, a small British force had been struggling towards the city to relieve those trapped. One of the officers was Major-General Walter Hamilton (Number 56), at the time a Captain in the 78th Highlanders. In one of the many battles fought on the way Hamilton led his soldiers against the enemy under heavy fire. As they approached ‘they cheered and charged with the bayonet, the pipers sounding the pibroch.’ The village was taken, and the enemy guns captured. In another battle Hamilton had his horse shot from under him by a musket ball. Yet although they were now in sight of Lucknow they were stopped from the final push by fierce Indian resistance. 
‘Oct 6 – The enemy made rather a determined attack to-day. The firing lasted about three hours, and was very sharp. They managed to regain a position from which we had driven them yesterday.’ 
‘Nov 2 – A great many casualties to-day. A letter arrived from Cawnpore, saying that the commander-in-chief had arrived there, and would be at Alum Bagh on the 10th; so the end of our weary siege seemed really approaching.’ 
Towards the end of November the relief forces finally arrived and the siege ended. 
For his part in the defence Aitken was awarded the Victoria Cross, the highest medal for gallantry. In conferring the decoration, General Sir Hugh Rose, Commander-in-Chief in India said: ‘You, Major Aitkin, were conspicuous amongst those who upheld the cause of their country, of humanity, and of civilization. Not satisfied with a resistance within the Residency, which never yielded an inch, you acted on the offensive and carried the war into the enemy’s camp. Assisted by only a few faithful Sepoys of the 13th Native Infantry, who were as resolute and devoted as British soldiers, you captured on two different occasions enemy’s guns, and on two others fortified houses. With respect to the native troops, I am of opinion that their loyalty has never been surpassed. They were indifferently fed and worse housed. They were exposed, especially the 13th Regiment, under the gallant Lieutenant Aitken, to a most galling fire round shot and musketry, which materially decreased their numbers. They were so near the enemy that conversation could be carried on between them, and every effort, persuasion, promise, and threat was alternately resorted to in vain, to seduce them from their allegiance to the handful of Europeans who, in all probability, would have been sacrificed by their deserting.’ Unfortunately the presentation of the medal was marred by the regrettable fact that Aitken’s Victoria Cross medal had been misplaced somewhere between London and Simla. Undaunted, Aitken had a painted, leather replica made. This he wore for many years until eventually a proper replacement was made for him. Aitken later retired from the army, and died, aged 61, in St Andrews. 
But many of the brave souls trapped inside Lucknow did not survive. William Dumbreck (Number 49), an army surgeon, was killed, and Alexander Robertson (Number 28), a Major in charge of Gun Carriages, died along with his wife and infant daughter. 
Although the siege ended, the city was later retaken and the following year further fierce fighting took place to take it back into British hands. It was at this point that Captain Farquharson (Depicted in the painting above Lieutenant Farquharson winning his VC at Lucknow on 9th March 1858 by Louis William Desanges) who was serving with the 42nd Regiment won his VC. The fighting to clear the Indian fighters from the city took ten days, with viciousness on both sides; the British forces were ordered to ‘use nothing but the bayonet.’ Farquharson ‘stormed a bastion mounting two guns, and spiked the guns, by which the advanced position held during the night being rendered secure from the fire of artillery.’ Farquharson was severely wounded while holding an advanced position until the following morning, but survived. He was later promoted to Major and fought in the Gold Coast, but died soon after that campaign, at only 39. 

1875 – 1876 Wybert Reeve
The resident of Number 3 from 1875 – 1876 was Wybert Reeve (photo), an actor and theatre manager. Reeve was born in London and started his acting career in Bradford in 1849. A few years later he produced his first play, a farce called An Australian Hoax. He combined acting, play writing and theatre management, running the Theatre Royal Sheffield for three years and then, in 1867, becoming the proprietor of the Theatre Royal Scarborough. His plays - mainly farces - included Never Reckon your Chickens, Parted, A Match for Mother-in-law and Pantomime for Bluebeard. Reeve then returned full-time acting in London, taking the lead role of Count Fosco in Wilkie Collins's dramatic adaptation of his own book, The Woman In White. In 1873, Reeve joined Collins on the author’s reading tour of North America and performed in The Woman in White on Broadway. 
In 1875, the owners of the new Edinburgh Theatre, Winter Garden and Aquarium Company in Castle Terrace brought Reeve to Edinburgh to run their new theatre. Built in just three months, the auditorium accommodated 2,300 people. The announcement of the opening of the Edinburgh Theatre promised great things: ‘A Numerous and Talented Company. At Half-past Seven, the Entertainments will commence with God Save the Queen, sung by the Company. An Opening Address by Mr Wybert Reeve. To be followed by the Admired Comedy, Used Up, after which the Laughable Farce Last Legs. Concluding with the Farce of Brother Sandy. On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday December 21st, 22nd and 23rd, Shakespeare’s Beautiful Comedy of As You Like It. N.B. Arrangements have been made to have Tramway Cars for Leith, Morningside and Newington, in waiting at North (Princes’ Street) end of Castle Terrace at the Close of the Performance each evening.’ 
However, things did not go as hoped, and within eighteen months the theatre had closed. A contemporary report from The Annals of the Edinburgh Stage implicates Reeve in the theatre’s failure: ‘The promoters of the Edinburgh Theatre were not the only people who looked forward with confidence to the financial success of the under-taking. If a magnificent building, handsome appointments, and the most elaborate machinery for working everything on the stage, could have made the scheme a success, the Edinburgh Theatre would probably have been still in existence. It was opened on December 20th 1875, under Wybert Reeve, whose management cannot be recorded as brilliant. Carl Rosa's Opera Company occupied the boards in February 1877 and a superb spectacle production of Henry V, but with Mrs Stirling’s last performance on Saturday in Masks and Faces, the history of this splendidly equipped theatre came to a close.’ 
Reeve left Edinburgh, and Albany Street, soon after the theatre’s closure. Nevertheless, this blip in his career did not set him back. For the next two years he returned to acting in The Woman In White, performing in the play over 1,500 times in England, Canada, the USA and Australia. It was in Australia in the late 1880s that he returned to theatre management, running the re-built Theatre Royal in Adelaide. This stint was more successful, and after twelve years he returned to live in London where he died in 1906. 
One wonders if Reeve knew that Catherine Dickens had once, also live in Albany Street when he met her at the Dicken’s house in Doughty Street. Reeve recounted that in response to a question from a lady guest, when and how Dicken’s ideas came into his head, the author replied that he didn’t know. ‘They come at off times, sometimes in the night,' Dickens went on. ‘I jump out of bed, and dot them down, for fear I should have lost them in the morning.’ To which Catherine added, ‘That is true. I have reason to know it, him jumping out of bed and getting in again with his feet as cold as stone.’ At which Dickens left the table, and was afterwards found sitting alone in a small room off the hall. – silent and angry.’ 
Following its closure, the Edinburgh Theatre and Winter Garden was eventually sold for a quarter of its original price and became the Synod Hall and Offices of the United Presbyterian Church. For details see Theatre.

1876 – 1878 Duncan McIntosh
Macintosh moved here with his wife, Anne Sinclair (nee Macfarlane) from Forth Street. He was probably the Minister at the Arthur Street Church. At some point, 
possibly 1878, Anne divorced him and he left the house, although she remained living here until her death in 1882.1878 – 1894 Lodgings
It seems likely that the two who ran the lodgings, Miss Macfarlane, and later Ann McIntosh, were related to the divorced couple. The lodgers at the 1881 census were George Robertson, a retired medical officer and his grandson George Newfoundland; Robert Millmot, of the Indian Medical Department of London University and his wife Agnes; Lieutenant Young and his wife Lillian; and Jemina Barry, living off income from the United States government. 
In 1878, Mr Seltman offered assistance with stammering.

1894 – 1902 Thomas McNaught 
Thomas McNaught (photo c. 1900) was born in 1851 and became a solicitor (SSC) around 1880. He lived and practised in Hanover Street and York Place, before moving to Albany Street. He shared his chambers there with four other solicitors; James McQueen, Alexander and Hugh Campbell and George Cowan. Alex and Hugh lived in Bruntsfield Crescent, and George Cowan in Morningside Drive. While McNaught was abroad these solicitors continued to practise from the building and it appears that James McQueen lived in the house at that time. In 1905, McQueen moved to Number 9, while Alexander and Hugh Campbell and George Cowan moved to Number 29.
Outside of his legal work, McNaught acted at different times as Honorary Secretary and Honorary Treasurer of the Scottish Home Rule Association (SHRA). Set up in 1886 soon after William Gladstone had introduced an Irish Home Rule Bill into the House of Commons, the Association campaigned for a Scottish Parliament to be established in Edinburgh. Many in Scotland felt betrayed that there was no equivalent Home Rule Bill for Scotland, as they believed the Scots had more entitlement given the country’s loyalty to the Crown, unlike the Irish who were being rewarded for just the opposite. However, there were many critics of the SHRA and the dismissive view of its work in the Dundee Courier was not uncommon: ‘We are by no means a down-trodden race ... we have generally got what we wished.’
In 1888 McNaught, now titled the Honorary Colonial Secretary of the SHRA, set off on a tour of America and Canada to raise funds to fight the cause. At a meeting in San Francisco McNaught argued the case: ’The Kingdom of Scotland although its population does not exceed that of London, has within its bounds a much greater variety of physical, moral and religious aspects than is possessed by England. There is hardly anything upon which we do not differ—in land, law, education, and everything else we have an altogether different system from the English system. Why should we be governed then, by people who are in no way connected with us? Scottish bills in Parliament, when not in accordance with English principles, were always rejected. And this was so even in the case of relief for suffering crofters. The Irish peasant is in a state of opulence in comparison with the Highland crofters. The fight will be hard, it will be long, but we will be successful and Scotland’s history will be as proud as it was.’ The newspaper account of the meeting reported: ‘The speaker was frequently applauded, and his hearers gave way to cheers when he predicted that the Parliament in Scotland lost in the eighteenth century would be restored.’
In 1894, when McNaught moved to Albany Street, he was appointed to the position of Secretary and Fiscal of the Society of Procurators of Midlothian, and was still deeply involved in the work of SHRA. Thus, as he seemed completely established in Edinburgh, there is nothing to explain definitively the next chapter of his life. So, some of the following is a hypothetical account from the known facts. 
In 1896, he set sail for Canada on board the steamship, Ethiopia, to take up the post of manager of a new spa complex, the Halcyon Hot Springs Sanatorium Company. Perhaps when he was touring Canada in 1888 he had met either Robert Brett or David McPherson, two Scots established in Canada, who in that year were in the process buying the Halycon Hotel in British Columbia to turn into the spa resort, complete with drinking, dancing and gambling. McNaught's odd change of career might be explained by the fact that in 1891 he had enjoyed a stay at a Scottish spa, the Swanstonhill Hydropathic at Port Bannatyne on the Isle of Bute, and so, possibly, he suffered from ill health that was helped by spa treatment, and a job with spa health benefits on the side may have appealed. 
Also sailing on the Ethopia was Mary Ada Horner, a forty four year old school teacher from Lancashire. She was an active member of The Peace Society, and in 1892, had attended the Fourth Universal Congress for Peace in Switzerland. Originally established as The Society for the Promotion of Permanent and Universal Peace in 1816, it advocated a gradual, proportionate, and simultaneous disarmament of all nations. In 1882 the Quaker, Priscilla Peckover, launched a ladies auxiliary of the Peace Society and while the Peace Society lost some of its energy in the 1880s, the Ladies' Peace Association was more dynamic, having over nine thousand members. On the eight day crossing Thomas and Mary fell in love and eventually became engaged to marry.

The Halycon Sanatorium [photo] was a great success and advertised itself as ‘the most complete resort on the continent of North America. Situated midst scenery unrivalled for grandeur. Boating, fishing and excursions. Resident physician and nurse. In telegraphic communication with all parts of the world. Its baths cure all nervous and muscular diseases. Its waters are a sure remedy against all argentiferous poisons. Terms $12 to $15 a week.’ Thomas clearly was successful in his new career as a newspaper reported him to be: 'the enterprising manager of the Halcyon Hot Springs sanatorium.’
In 1902, Thomas and Mary married in Winnipeg and the newspaper account reported: ‘The bride wore a tailor made cream basket cloth, with revers of tucked silk and blouse of lace insertion.’ The wedding reception was held at the house of Thomas’s sister where: ‘from the centre of every room was suspended a perfect bell of pure white sweet peas.’ Following the wedding the newly married couple took the train to Halycon.
Then in 1906 Thomas and Mary returned to Scotland. Perhaps McNaught was seriously ill, and wished to end his life in Scotland, as he died at the home of his brother in Kirkmichael, Dumfries soon after their return. Mary took up teaching again in Lancashire until her own death in 1913.
Thus both were spared the negative impact of the First World War on their respective passions. Home Rule for Scotland was brought up 13 times in the House of Commons between 1890 and 1913 without success. However, in 1913, a Bill giving Home Rule for Scotland looked all set to be put into law, but was abandoned due to the outbreak of war. It would be over eighty years before the Scottish Parliament McNaught had worked for, was finally re-established. Also the War ended any hopes of global peace and the Peace Society's failure to condemn the outbreak of the war resulted in internal divisions.