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October 2007
Drone Reeds

Christmas Shopping already!?!? We've got a lot of great new specials while supplies last!

We offer Kinnaird Carbon Fibre Drone Reeds in 4 styles: Regular pitch, Lower Pitch, Regular Pitch Easy Strength, and Lower Pitch Easy Strength.

Not sure what kind of Kinnaird Drone Reeds are best for your bagpipes? Click on the picture to see what we recommend for you.

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Create your own custom made sporran. Choose from fur, horse hair, leather, hunting or dress sporrans. You can choose your own tassels, front, flaps, tartans and more! See what it will look like before placing your order.

Help Jim Make a Fashion Statement

Design a sporran on Build-A-Sporran for Jim McGillivray. He will select and receive the winning sporran. Also the designer will win a custom made sporran of their choice. Add sporran designer to your resume! The contest will run from October 13- 27. Check the website for more details.

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Feature Article
Whisky Smuggler

Whisky Smuggling

Despite its criminal aspect, whisky smuggling was seen as an honorable career in the late 18th and early 19th century. These smugglers had to be sly and creative in order to produce a small income and provide for the ever thirsty enthusiasts.

Many of the Scots living in these regions were crofters with very little money. Whisky became a form of payment used to pay tinkers for clothing and sold to land owners to pay rent. It became big business, employing many and involving most of the people in the area in some way. As incomes rose, people flocked to the border villages to be a part of it. City dwellers also took to this black market very quickly.

Authorities tried to get rid of illegal distilleries which only resulted in a better quality of Highland whisky and the smugglers quickly learned to better cover their tracks. They used small stills that could be taken apart quickly and sunk into the lochs to avoid detection. These stills produced a heavier whisky with more flavor than the lighter products from Lowland stills. People quickly took a liking to the new whisky.

Stills were built in caves and hillsides for concealment. They used long tunnels to distract authorities into thinking the source of the escaping still fire smoke was far away from the actual source. One area even introduced a warning system. If a tax collector was seen approaching, the people would hang their washing on the line as a signal. However, some distillers were caught on Mondays as it was the regular washing day. Occasionally, sly smugglers would tip off authorities to an old abandoned still to collect a recovery reward, using it to purchase copper for their own still.

This was not an easy or safe job. Rewards for turning in smugglers and stills increased and penalties rose. Smugglers began traveling in packs and carrying weapons. George Smith's Glenlivet whisky was the most sought after, forcing him to sleep with 2 guns for protection.

You can still travel many of the old smuggling trails today. Some companies, like the Glenlivet distillery, offer tours giving visitors the chance to explore the history of the smugglers.

Check out our selection of Whisky and Guinness shirts.


Rauncie Kinnaird
Kinnaird Bagpipes
Phone: 306-249-2939