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Appears in Collections:History and Politics eTheses
Title: Sir James Maitland and the Howietoun Fishery
Author(s): Hill, Stephen Anthony
Issue Date: 1995
Publisher: University of Stirling
Abstract: For several millennia man has in some way farmed his waters by holding fish captive in ponds. Not until the second half of the nineteenth century, however, as a result of a general concern in the industrialised nations that fishery stocks were declining, were serious attempts made to breed fish artificially. The most concerted of these attempts in Britain effectively began in 1873 when Sir James Maitland (1848-1897), a Scottish landowner, commenced experiments which evolved into the construction of the world's largest salmonoid piscicultural establishment. This operation, the Howietoun Fishery, sold its produce nationally on the open market, a new departure in pisciculture. It also advanced the piscicultural process scientifically in selectively breeding fish superior to nature's own. Maitland's work was not, in itself, particularly successful commercially. This was not, however, the result of commercial failure on his behalf but rather a reflection of his desire to develop pisciculture for the public good in an attempt to restock impoverished fisheries and to disseminate knowledge in the hope that others would be encouraged to imitate his example on a more commercial basis. Maitland's piscicultural work was highly important to the development of what has today become a significant global industry, though his contribution has not hitherto been recognised. The thesis intends to set out Maitland's piscicultural advances and their significance. It offers a detailed analysis of Maitland's entrepreneurship and casts its net wider to draw in some discussion of his work away from Howietoun, particularly on his membership of the Fishery Board for Scotland where it examines the debate over state support for nineteenth century British science. The thesis concludes with an analysis of the development of Howietoun in the seventy years after its founder's death. In addition to Maitland's own writings, the thesis uses evidence from Howietoun's general records, Maitland's family papers, Fishery Board for Scotland material, and a very wide variety of published sources.
Type: Thesis or Dissertation
Affiliation: School of Arts and Humanities
History and Politics

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