Archive researcher and publisher
As an archive researcher and publisher, we want to bring the past to life as accurately as possible. Every establishment, business, town, city and building has a history that defines everything about them.
We can help create an in-depth historical research record using our expertise to create engaging content to share with audiences. This can help gain awareness and share the story to a wider audience.
Baseline Research has its publishing imprint and welcomes submissions. All topics and subjects will be considered, but our particular focus is on Northern Scotland’s history and culture as well as historical resources aimed at young people.
Historical Research and writing investigations
Caithness to Patagonia
Patrick Sellar and the Sutherland Clearances
As an Archive researcher and publisher based in Caithness, the book ‘Caithness to Patagonia‘ came about when a friend suggested that more should be known about the people from Caithness who made the long trek to the tip of South America. The research challenge was to understand the reasons and to track down the current descendants of those early Patagonian pioneers.
Three trips to Patagonia along with information from families both in Patagonia and Scotland helped formulate a picture. Researching the lives and conditions that these pioneers met with and conquered. The ultimate book tells the stories of these men and women. Baseline Research is indebted to Whittles Publishing for believing in its potential – a potential that continues to attract new readers.
This is an extraordinary and little-known story of emigration from Scotland. Caithness and Patagonia are literally a world apart, yet in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, a number of Caithness men and women took on the challenge of this wild, open and windswept land. The book provides the origins and backgrounds of these Caithness Patagonian pioneers. Exploring their experiences alongside the growth and development of Patagonia as one of the world’s great sheep farming areas.
An archive researcher and publisher with a passion for Caithness History.
The story begins with John Hamilton, the son of a tailor from Wick, who arrived in the Falkland Islands in 1880. Over the following 60 years he and other Caithness men and women became a significant force in the development of sheep farming in Patagonia.
As one of Patagonia’s most enterprising sheep farmers, he was the catalyst for a number of other Caithness men making what must have been a huge decision to uproot from their native home. It was not just Caithness men who embarked on the journey – sisters and wives followed as new lives were ground out of the unforgiving landscape.
There are stories of endurance and determination against the odds; accounts of death and disaster. There are tales of how these Caithnessians conquered Patagonia and built successful businesses. Today their descendants are integral to many aspects of Patagonian and Argentine society.
The roll call of names – Bain, Barnetson, Begg, Bremner, Budge, Cormack, Harper, Mowat, Nicolson, Plowman, etc. – is like a Caithness directory. Their stories and legacies continue to be proudly held dear by descendants and relatives both in Caithness, the UK and in Argentina.
The Caithness Patagonian story was originally brought to light by Margie Sinclair for the BBC Odyssey series. Caithness to Patagonia charts the backgrounds, successes and failures of these intrepid pioneers who created a new life, far away from their homes and families.
Contact with Patagonia and the families of these original Caithness pioneers has led to ongoing interest both in the UK and in Patagonia. One such has led to being asked to contribute to a chapter produced by the University of Patagonia.
This publication looks at various aspects of immigration to Patagonia and as such we contributed a chapter entitled The Land they Left Behind, which details some of the conditions in Caithness in the late 19th and early 20th century when the Patagonian pioneers were leaving their homes.
The Man who went to Farr:
Patrick Sellar and the Sutherland Clearances
The publication of The Man Who Went to Farr was the culmination of a number of years research. Patrick Sellar is a name well known in the North of Scotland in respect of his involvement in the often notorious Sutherland Clearances.
Sellar was ultimately arrested and stood trial for the crime of culpable homicide. His trial was largely regarded as a sham, in that large elements of potential evidence was never presented.
Patrick Sellar was acquitted, and no one can argue, that in law, he was cleared of all charges brought against him, but he was never able to escape the continuing clamour and ever present accusations.
Today, the debate rumbles on amidst the ongoing indulgence in discussion about the Highland Clearances.
The aim of this work is to try and create a bigger picture. The picture that still remains incomplete, but may stimulate others who hold missing links and pieces to engage in the debate. This book aims to gather together some of that evidence, so that today’s audiences might understand better his actions and their consequences.
This publication can bepurchased on amazon – The Man Who Went to Farr
Grannies and Other Folk: folk tales with a Caithness Twist
Folk tales with a Caithness Twist
The stories feature a number of familiar folk tale themes, but are uniquely set in Caithness. Brownies, mermaids, and trows, mingle with stories featuring a Caithness Granny called Granny Clyne. The book is illustrated by the pupils of Canisbay Primary School in Caithness. Short Stories include:
- Granny Clyne and the missing bagpipes
- The Haven Brownie
- Granny Clyne and the Trowie wife
- The mermaid’s return
- A meteor at Ackergill
- Granny Clyne and the Groatie Buckie
Available at amazon: Grannines and other Folk