John James Dalyell

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John James Dalyell

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John James Dalyell, son of James Dalyell and Marie Ann Dalyell, was born in France c.1835. He was brought up in Scotland, mainly at Carnoustie. He became a commission merchant and agent of the Royal Insurance Co, Dundee, specialising in setting rates for the transportation of jute products as well as dealing with industrial and domestic property insurance. Dalyell was an active member of a number of local organisations and clubs. He was instrumental in establishing the 3rd Forfarshire Artillery Volunteers, in which he served as Lieutenant and later Captain of B. Battery, and took a prominent role in the administrative business of the corps. Dalyell was a keen sportsman, being a member of the Angus and Mearns Rifle Association, Dundee Cricket Club, and the Caledonian Union, Dalhousie, and Monifieth Golf Clubs. He was Captain and later Honorary Secretary of the Caledonian Union Golf Club, Carnoustie, for whom he was an enthusiastic advocate and promoter. Dalyell tried his hand at authorship, and a number of his stories survive mainly in draft copy. They are generally humorous accounts of sporting excursions. In the early months of 1872 Dalyell contracted what became a serious illness, being chiefly afflicted with severe head pains. In its initial stages the malady resulted in several months spent travelling, but it soon became serious enough for Dalyell to give up his work with, first, the Royal Insurance Co, and then with William Shiels & Co, wine merchants of Leith, whom he had joined in late 1872. By summer 1873 Dalyell was forced to sever all his social and sporting ties with the area. He was admitted into the Royal Lunatic Asylum, Montrose, at about this time, and it appears that he was detained there, possibly until his death, which occurred some time after 1897.

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