ON December 4, The Inverness Courier will reach the 200th anniversary of its first publication.
As the milestone in the paper's history approaches, we are undertaking a 200-day countdown highlighting some of the headlines on a year-by-year basis starting with the very first front page.
Counting down to the Courier's 200th anniversary
ON December 4, The Inverness Courier will reach the 200th anniversary of its first publication.
ON December 4, the Inverness Courier reached a remarkable milestone - the 200th anniversary of its first edition rolling off the press in a bookseller's shop in High Street.
THE campaign to raise money for a new state-of-the-art children's unit at Raigmore Hospital reached its £2 million target.
A LIST of bold proposals including improvements to transport links, digital connectivity and creating new skills academies were drawn up as part of a City Deal for Inverness and the wider Highlands.
THE routine presence of gun-carrying police in Inverness streets following the merger of Scotland's police forces was a controversial move.
THE first section of the 137-mile upgraded Beauly to Denny power line was switched on in July.
TIBET'S spiritual leader the Dalai Lama visited Inverness in June at the end of a UK tour.
THERE were celebrations in February when the UHI Millennium Institute became the University of the Highlands and Islands following approval from the Privy Council.
DANNY Alexander, the re-elected Lib-Dem MP for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey, played a pivotal role during five days of intense negotiations when the May General Election produced a hung parliament.
PLANS for a controversial housing project in Inverness faced further disarray when it emerged that the required funding was not in place.
SMOKED salmon producer Strathaird Salmon revealed in November it was planning to close its operation in Inverness with the loss of 354 city jobs.
A 12-MONTH celebration of Highland culture kicked off in January with fireworks and street entertainment including an aerial ballet.
A FAR-reaching report published three years after the murder of Inverness schoolgirl Danielle Reid made 68 recommendations for action to protect vulnerable youngsters.
THE campaign against controversial plans to develop a high-voltage overhead power line between Beauly and Denny stepped up a gear throughout the year.
THE murder of father-of-two Alistair Wilson on the evening of November 28 remains an unsolved mystery.
THE official opening of Falcon Square in May heralded the opening of the £70 million extension of the Eastgate Shopping Centre.
FLASH floods caused chaos across the city in September.
A DECISION to allow a second GM crop trial at Munlochy on the Black Isle proved highly controversial in September.
AFTER months of waiting and speculation, the capital of the Highlands was declared one of Britain's new cities to mark the new millennium and the Queen's Golden Jubilee.
SOLICITOR Fergus Ewing snatched victory as the SNP's candidate for Inverness East, Nairn and Lochaber in the first elections to the devolved Scottish Parliament in May.
AN innovative proposal to turn Inverness Castle into a major tourist attraction was mooted by a local tourism operator in October.
DAVID Stewart became the first Labour MP to represent Inverness when he secured victory in May's general election.
THOUSANDS of people packed the centre of Inverness as the town hosted the world premiere of the film, Loch Ness.
THE mystery company behind a medical research and production plant under construction next to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness was revealed to be Selfcare Incorporated.
THE historic merger between the Inverness Thistle and Caledonian football clubs ran into ferocious opposition from fans on both sides.
CONCERNS over the thousands of lost jobs in the oil fabrication industry at McDermott's in Ardersier and Highland Fabricators in Nigg were raised with Prime Minister John Major during a whistle-stop tour of the area.
DOZENS of guests - many in their nightclothes - had to flee an Inverness hotel as a massive night-time blaze ripped through the building in May.
THREE young soldiers were killed in the closing stages of the Gulf War when an American aircraft inadvertently fired on British forces.
THE death of Eveline Barron, former editor and owner of the Inverness Courier, marked the end of an era.
THE 127-year-old Inverness Railway Bridge collapsed under the force of flood water in February.
THE menswear department in an Inverness store was the scene of a Muscovite melee in October.
POLICE representatives accused the Northern Joint Police Committee of failing to provide enough money to meet policing requirements.
MANAGEMENT representatives and union leaders at the McDermott oil fabrication yard near Ardersier met the new Minister of State at the Scottish Office during his first official engagement in September.
THE opening of a £30 million multi-storey tower block at the main hospital for the Highlands marked a major milestone in its history.
THE MacKenzie Centre opened its doors for its first official housewarming in October.
THE Glen Albyn and the Glen Mhor distilleries in Inverness were on an 11-strong list across Scotland closed by Scottish Malt Distillers in February.
THE opening of the Kessock Bridge to carry the A9 trunk road was a significant milestone in the transport network for the north of Scotland.
AN estimated 10,000 people lined the streets when the Queen and Prince Philip visited Inverness in July as part of a Highland tour.
CHURCH leaders protested strongly after the Inverness Woolworth store announced plans for Sunday opening in the run-up to Christmas.
VOTERS in the Highlands and Islands confounded the pundits by backing SNP candidate Winnie Ewing in the first direct elections to the European Assembly held in June.
THE one-way traffic system and lack of car parking were blamed for hitting town centre trade.
FIREFIGHTERS in Inverness claimed widespread support as they joined almost 30,000 members of the Fire Brigades Union in the service's first national strike in November.
THE disappearance of Renee MacRae and her three-year-old son, Andrew, on November 12 marked the start of a mystery which remains unsolved to this day.
PROPOSALS to create a large community with a population of about 15,000 on the eastern edge of Inverness were knocked back in October.
INVERNESS Town Council sat late into the night in January to discuss the dilemma which had arisen over the building of Eden Court Theatre.
LABOURER Dennis Mackenzie was found guilty of the murder of a young girl and a young woman following a trial at the High Court in Inverness in December.
HUNDREDS watched helplessly as the Playhouse Cinema was destroyed by a fierce blaze in March.
PLANS for dual carriageway forming part of a new A9 route were debated by Inverness County councillors at a special meeting in March.
A DELEGATION including civic leaders and travel agents flew from Inverness to London Heathrow in April to mark the inauguration of direct air service between the UK and Highland capitals.
AMERICAN astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin made worldwide headlines as they became the first men to step on the moon on July 20, 1969.
A NEW venue with dancing to gramophone records opened in May with the aim of providing somewhere for young people to socialise.
THE arrival of the Royal Highland Fusiliers at Fort George near Ardersier in May marked the return of regular troops for the first time in years.
WILLIE Logan, one of Scotland's most renowned public works contractors, was killed when the private charter aircraft in which he was a passenger crashed into a hill shortly before it was due to land at Inverness.
THE newly-formed Highlands and Islands Development Board held its first meeting at its Inverness headquarters in November.
THE future of the entire rail network west of Inverness was in "dire jeopardy", it was revealed in March.
WELL-known Inverness solicitor John MacBean and his wife were among the survivors of a disaster involving the Greek Line cruising ship, Lakonia, in which 128 people lost their lives.
MORE than 1000 Girl Guides from all over the Highlands and Islands greeted the World Chief Guide Olave, Lady Baden-Powell, when she visited Inverness in October.
A NEW bridge over the River Ness opened in September replacing the old suspension bridge which had been demolished two years previously as it was unsuitable to carry modern traffic into the town.
PROPOSALS to introduce Sunday sport, recreation and entertainment in Inverness were rejected after a three-hour debate by councillors in January.
CONCERNS over the potential closure of Cameron Barracks in Inverness were raised with the new Minister of State for Scotland when he made a four-day visit to the Highlands.
INVERNESS bakers strongly opposed contentious proposals for a new bakery to be built in the Longman Industrial Estate.
THE Secretary of State for Scotland demanded more information about Ness Bridge in 1957.
IN 1956 it was announced that the North would have television within a year.
MOTORISED refuse vehicles replaced horse drawn carriages in Inverness in 1955.
A GAMEKEEPER spotted Nessie while at work by the water in 1954.
QUEEN Elizabeth the Queen Mother paid a visit to Inverness on August 6, 1953, to receive the Freedom of the Burgh.
FOLLOWING King George VI's sudden death on February 6, 1952, ceremonies took place across the country to mark Queen Elizabeth II's accession to the throne.
POWER from the North of Scotland's Hydro Electric Board's Glen Affric scheme was brought into the Highland Grid for the first time in 1951.
DEVELOPMENTS to harness the power of water in the Highlands boomed during the post-war years.
INVERNESS cinema-goers flocked to see the classic Ealing comedy, Whisky Galore, based on the novel of the same name by Compton MacKenzie.
AN estimated 80,000 people packed into Inverness to welcome King George VI and Queen Elizabeth.
INVERNESS experienced 15 degrees of frost as Britain found itself in the grip of severe wintry weather.
FORMER servicemen returning home to Inverness following the end of World War II turned to squatting with their families due to a shortage of permanent accommodation.
PEOPLE across the Highlands joined in the nationwide celebrations in May to mark victory in Europe.
THOUSANDS of Allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy in northern France at the start of a major offensive against the Germans.
A 700-STRONG parade through the streets of Inverness marked the third anniversary of the formation of the Home Guard.
INVERNESS-born Commander Anthony Cecil Capel-Miers was awarded the Victoria Cross for a daring raid on enemy shipping while in command of a submarine in the Mediterranean.
RESIDENTS across the Highlands and Islands raised £947,288 after rallying to the call to support the war effort.
A MASSIVE operation to evacuate Allied troops from the beaches of Dunkirk in Normandy took place at the beginning of June as German forces pressed deeper into France.
THE declaration of war in September brought immediate impacts to the Inverness area.
AMID growing tensions in Europe, the prospect of war loomed closer.
CONTROVERSIAL plans for a hydro-electric scheme in the glens to the west of Inverness were defeated in the House of Commons to the delight of opponents.
THE nation was rocked by the announcement of Edward VIII that he was voluntarily giving up the throne after less than a year.
THE first Belisha beacons with their distinctive amber-coloured globe lamp on top of a tall black and white pole appeared in the town centre in October.
AN aircraft carrying more than 2000 letters took off from the Inverness Municipal Aerodrome, marking the start of Britain's first inland air mail service.
THE first reported modern-day sighting of the Loch Ness Monster appeared in The Inverness Courier in May.
A CACHE of rare coins, including several thought to be from the reign of King David, was unearthed near the ancient chapel of St Ninian's in Glen Urquhart.
FISHING communities along the Moray Firth agreed to petition the British Government following the failure of herring catches for the eighth year in a row.
ON February 25, 1930, The Inverness Courier reported on the farming crisis facing the Highlands.
SCHOOLCHILDREN were given a day's holiday and local shopkeepers were instructed to close for the afternoon as the The Duke and Duchess of York visited the town in May.
THE foundation stone for the modernisation and enlargement of the Northern Infirmary in Inverness was laid amid great ceremony in May.
PLANS were announced for 100 new council homes to be built in the town.
THE Inverness Provost Alexander MacEwen urged calm as the impact of a UK-wide workers' strike began to be felt in the town.
THE reconstruction of the main road linking the Highlands with central Scotland officially began in May.
A SWITCHING-on ceremony of newly-installed public lighting took place in the village of Culcabock, just over a mile from Inverness.
DEVELOPMENTS in broadcasting heralded the advent of wireless sets bringing news and entertainment direct into people's homes over the airwaves.
CULDUTHEL Hospital ordered 40 bottles of whisky and two bottles of brandy over a three-month period, according to figures published in February.
AN emergency meeting of British Cabinet Ministers was convened at Inverness Town House on September 7 as the future of British-Irish relations hung in the balance.
ROADS were submerged and buildings across Inverness flooded as the River Ness reached its highest level for 28 years in February following heavy rain and westerly gales.
UGLY scenes broke out as American sailors based in Inverness attacked the police and members of the public in the town centre.
BELLS rang out across Inverness in November to signal the end of World War I after four years of conflict.
AS World War I continued to rage on the battlefields of Europe, The Inverness Courier reached its centenary in December.
THE Military Service Act in January brought conscription into effect for the first time in World War I.
THE Battle of Festubert was the first in World War I to bring news of significant numbers of Highland casualties.
THE declaration of war on August 4 resulted in immediate impacts for the people of Inverness although some sensitive information could not be reported.
FAMOUS Australian aviator Harry Hawker flew over Inverness and down the Great Glen in his attempt to win a £5000 prize for completing a circuit of Britain.
THE first cinematograph pictures were shown in the new Central Hall Picture House in Academy Street at a grand opening for invited guests in December.
INVERNESS councillors held a special meeting in August amid concerns about dwindling water supplies in a time of ongoing dry weather.
THOUSANDS crammed into the garage of Macrae and Dick next to Inverness Railway Station to hear Liberal politician Winston Churchill speak after a general election was called in January in the middle of a constitutional crisis.
SCOTTISH suffragist Helen Fraser outlined the arguments for giving women the right to vote when she addressed a meeting at the town's music hall.
ARMY deserter Joseph Hume was executed at Inverness Prison in March after being convicted of the murder of Lhanbryde road contractor John Smith.
THE Caledonian Banking Company, which had been established in Inverness in 1838 as a joint stock company, merged with the Bank of Scotland in July following a series of secret negotiations.
HOTELS and holiday lets were reported to be at near capacity in July and August as a large influx of visitors arrived to enjoy the attractions of the Highlands.
AN Inverness building was badly damaged when a blaze broke out just months after a previous fire.
THE legendary American showman Colonel William Cody - otherwise known as Buffalo Bill - and his huge entourage amazed and delighted thousands of spectators when his Wild West Show spent two days in Inverness.
THE age of car reached the Highlands by the early 20th century and although car ownership was rare, this new mode of transport caused concerns.
THE ringing of the steeple bells provided confirmation to a large crowd which gathered in Inverness that the war in South Africa was finally over.
A SENSE of personal sorrow fell over the people of Inverness as news of Queen Victoria's death in January spread across the area.
AN immense crowd of young revellers gathered by the Old Steeple in Inverness to mark the passing of the 19th century and welcome in 1900.
FORT George was the scene of busy activity in October as the 2nd Battalion Seaforth Highlanders were ordered to go to South Africa for what became known as the Second Anglo-Boer War.
THE Tweedmouth Memorial Chapel in the grounds of the Royal Northern Infirmary was built in memory of Dudley Coutts Marjoribanks, 1st Baron Tweedmouth.
SOCIAL reformer and writer Laura Ormiston Chant attracted considerable interest when she addressed various meetings in the town.
THE winning design was chosen in April for a bronze statue of Flora Macdonald to be placed in Inverness 150 years after she played a pivotal role in Scottish history.
PUPILS and staff of the Inverness Royal Academy moved from their old premises in Academy Street in February to a new building at Crown.
SIX men drowned after the ferry crossing the Beauly Firth from the Black Isle to South Kessock was caught in a storm.
TWO soldiers were killed and a third was seriously injured when a gun weighing 71 cwt slipped as it was being unloaded from a boat beneath the ramparts at Fort George near Ardersier.
THE collapse of a new steel lattice-girder bridge spanning the River Cannich raised questions over the cause.
A RABBI travelled to the Highlands from Hamburg in Germany to conduct his son's wedding ceremony in what was believed to be the town's first Jewish wedding.
A STRIKE by construction workers seeking better wages brought work in the town to a standstill in April.
FIGURES released by the Inverness Parochial Board in February revealed that the number of poor receiving help in the town had risen significantly over 20 years.
A GROUP of prominent Inverness businessmen met in October to discuss plans to build a swimming bath and steam laundry on a site in Montague Row behind the public bleaching green on Planefield Road.
THE people of Inverness observed a general holiday and decorated the town with bunting to celebrate the 50-year reign of Queen Victoria in June.
STANDING MP Robert Finlay was returned after a closely-fought battle against Sir Robert Peel.
A CONSIDERABLE crowd watched a goalless draw between the Crown (Inverness) and Nairn County at the Northern Meeting Park in March.
THOUSANDS of spectators turned out for a colourful procession of the town's tradesmen through Inverness in support of the Franchise Bill to extend the right to vote to more people.
AS the popularity of golf spread across Britain, the Inverness Golf Club was formed by a group of men meeting at the Caledonian Hotel in November.
RESIDENTS and businesses in Inverness were suddenly spurred into getting out the banners and bunting in January following the surprise revelation that Queen Victoria's second son, Alfred - the Duke of Edinburgh - would officially open the new Inverness Town House.
MUNICIPAL elections in November created a flurry of excitement with three wards in the town being contested.
A POLICE investigation was launched following a series of incidents in which cast iron chairs were placed on the region's rail lines in broad daylight.
THE first telephone conversations in Inverness took place in October and were declared a "complete success".
THE town came to a standstill as large crowds gathered, shops closed and church bells tolled solemnly to mark the funeral of Robert Carruthers, the highly-regarded editor and owner of The Inverness Courier.
THE new 350-pupil Central School, fitted with all modern conveniences and requirements for learning, was the latest to be opened by the Burgh School Board.
A NEW Benedictine monastery began to take shape at Fort Augustus after Simon Fraser, 13th Lord Lovat, gifted the land.
THE tragic case of a young boy who was killed when a pile of planks fell on him at the harbour was the subject of legal action by his family.
LORD Lovat was revealed to be the biggest landowner in Inverness, Scotland's largest county, with the Earl of Seafield a close second.
UNMARRIED members of the Beauly volunteers corps competed for the coveted prize of a "handsome gold ring" donated by the village's young ladies in the annual shooting competition on Christmas Day.
THE ownership of a parcel of land in the Longman area of Inverness was in question when an Army officer called at the Inverness Town Council offices asking to see the town charters or any documents relating to the site once occupied by Cromwell's Fort.
THE ever-present risk of infectious diseases such as cholera and smallpox - particularly from ships coming into Inverness - was cause for concern.
THE town celebrated the opening of a new market to replace the old one off Union Street.
NEWS that nuggets of gold had been found in the Kildonan and Suisgill burns in Sutherland spread like wildfire across the UK, bringing hundreds of hopeful speculators to the usually deserted glen.
THE Northern Counties Cricket Club lost out to a team fielded by Ordnance Survey in the closing match at the Northern Meeting Park in Inverness in October.
THE town's seafaring community was in mourning as the year drew to a close following the disappearance of the Jane Ferguson which had set off from Denmark for Leith.
LARGE crowds gathered by the banks of the River Ness in October to witness the historic moment when the foundation stone was laid for the new cathedral in Inverness.
GROWING prosperity and improved transport links were generating a renewed sense of confidence in Inverness which celebrated the opening of a 1300-seat music hall in Union Street.
ALMOST 700 lives were saved in one year alone from shipwrecks around the UK coastline thanks to the efforts and encouragement of the National Lifeboat Institution.
THE final piece of the jigsaw in an ambitious rail project to connect the Highlands with central Scotland was finally put in place in September.
A PROPOSAL to build a public urinal in the steeple of the old jail in Bridge Street was a frequent item on the Inverness Town Council agenda throughout the year although councillors seem to defer a decision.
THE census returns showed the number of people living in the burgh had increased by about one-fifth in the space of 10 years.
GOOD weather and buoyant times in manufacturing districts meant the sheep farmers attending the annual event in July were in better spirits than had been expected.
A GRAND ball was held at the Northern Meeting Rooms in November to mark the return home of the 78th Highlanders who had been posted to India in May 1857 to suppress the so-called Indian Rebellion.
CONTRIBUTIONS were sought to build a new ragged and reformatory school in Farraline Park after a blaze destroyed the previous building.
THE opening of Temple Pier near Drumnadrochit was hailed as a significant development both for boat passengers travelling along the Caledonian Canal as well as developing trade links in the area.
AS the Crimean War came to an end with the signing of the Treaty of Paris in March, soldiers serving in the region held a two-day Highland Games at Kamara.
MORE than six years after the old bridge was destroyed by floods, a new iron suspension bridge crossing the River Ness opened to traffic.
CROWDS brought the town to standstill in September as a general holiday was observed to mark the cutting of the first turf for the Inverness and Nairn Railway.
THE pitiful plight of the men, women and children of Glengarry who were subject to mass eviction and enforced emigration was outlined in the columns of The Inverness Courier in October.
EXCISE officers discovered evidence of smuggling and illegal whisky production in Glen Urquhart and Strathglass in September.
THE generosity of wealthy philanthropists and churches enabled the town's poorest to access health treatment at the Inverness Dispensary.
THE inaugural meeting of the Inverness Mechanics' Institution at the Fraser Street Chapel in June was attended by a reasonable and respectable crowd.
DISASTER struck the town when the River Ness broke its banks, flooding many streets and sweeping away the historic stone bridge.
THE Caledonian Banking Company's new building was revealed in its full glory in the High Street when the "ponderous" scaffolding was removed in November.
A GROUP of 16 blue-uniformed police officers took up their duties with the newly-formed Inverness Burgh Police in November.
TOWN councillors agreed the need to set up a properly organised and trained fire brigade to fight blazes in the burgh.
AS railway mania spread across Britain, moves were made to bring travel by train to the Highlands.
CROMARTY residents extended the hand of friendship to a group of Danish naval officers and seamen during a lively two-week stay in June which saw dinners, balls and a farewell fte held in their honour.
THE so-called disruption in the established Church of Scotland reverberated across the country including the Highlands.
Controversial plans by cash-strapped council to cut down Ness Island trees causes alarm in London in 1842
PLANS to cut down the trees on the Ness Islands and sell the timber to alleviate the burgh's debt ran into strong opposition in April.
A DAILY direct service between London and the Highland capital was advertised in July.
ETON-educated Henry Baillie was elected as the Inverness-shire MP in April following the sudden death of the previous incumbent F.W. Grant.
BLACK velvet hats were on the way out in favour of red ones while white or light-coloured cashmere shawls decorated with bouquets of silk flowers were very much in vogue in the spring.
THE people of Inverness were in festive mood as the town celebrated Queen Victoria's coronation throughout a long June day and late into the night.
A PRESSING case for establishing a King's College - possibly to be sited at Fort George near Ardersier, or in the grounds of the town's Academy - was outlined in October.
SINCE being established a decade earlier, the museum had built up a growing collection of items including coins, minerals and on one occasion had even been presented with a live alligator by former Inverness man John Fraser who moved to Charleston, Carolina, where he was a merchant.
ON Friday October 16, thousands gathered at the Longman on the eastern shore of the Moray Firth to witness what would become the last public hanging in Inverness.
CROWDS gathered in May to witness the start of what was to become a landmark building - Inverness Castle.
VISITORS from as far away as New York, Canada and Ireland were among those taking in the sights of the Highland capital and the surrounding area.
AFTER long-standing calls, wide-ranging electoral changes were eventually introduced across Britain in 1832 with The Representation of the People Act and the Scottish Reform Act.
TOWN leaders and officials held a special meeting in February to debate plans for a badly-needed new court house and jail for the Highland capital.
ON December 1, 1830, The Inverness Courier reported on attempts to suppress the Star Coach, which travelled daily between the Craigellachie Hotel, Elgin, and the Caledonian Hotel, Inverness.
THE notorious series of murders carried out by William Burke and William Hare in Edinburgh horrified and enthralled people across the country including the Highlands.
THE River Ness was turning into a common sewer and causing great inconvenience to the many families who did not live nearby as well as being time consuming for servants fetching water, according to a report in July.
PETTY thieves and vandals targeted the town's Douglas Row in March, stealing clothes and destroying fences.
TWO young men among a group returning home from a wedding fell into the river near Drumnadrochit and drowned.
CROWDS besieged the cathedral of Reims early on May 29 for the coronation of King Charles X, according to a report in The Inverness Courier's Foreign Intelligence column.
WATER transport was the easiest mode of travel for reaching many destinations in the early 19th century and the opening of the Caledonian Canal in 1822 led to increased opportunities.
LITERACY rates across Scotland were growing and Inverness was no exception.
LARGE crowds gathered along the banks of the Caledonian Canal for its official opening.
AS well as providing a vital news service, The Inverness Courier was also important for traders and businesses to promote their goods and services.
THE pages of The Inverness Courier carried black borders as it reported the death of King George III on January 29 at Windsor Castle, aged 81.
THE Highland Society of London agreed to donate 100 guineas to help educate poor children in their homeland.
THE port played an important role in the town's trade and economic growth. Wool was an important foreign export and the textile industry contributed to the further development of the Highland capital during the 18th century.
THE first edition of The Inverness Courier rolled off the press on December 4, 1817, after receiving the backing of subscribers including mainly booksellers, bankers and postmasters in the town.
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