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Scottish Mactavish

Some time ago there was a smuggler in Glentartan, named Mactavish, who rented a small farm, and had “brewed his potent drink” for years without detection. He was strongly suspected by the revenue officers, and many a time his premises were searched, but without avail. There was not a vestige of distilling apparatus or ingredients to be found on his farm, and yet the officers felt certain that he was working on an illicit still. They had tried many residents in the glen for inIormation on the subject, but always without success.

They were at their wits’ end, and Mactavish crowed over
their helplessness with the greatest gusto. But ruin came upon him at last, and in a way that took the whole of
Gleotartan by surprise. One night an exciseman, with two comrades, went to a farm-house, knocked the people up, and demanded a horse and cart in the Queen’s name, as he had seized, he said, the secret smuggling bothy of Mactavish, and required assistance to carry off the prize. The demand was complied with, and a man sent along
with the conveyance. Getting into the cart with his companions, he ordered the man to drive on as fast as he could, without saying where ; and the stupid fellow, never dreaming but that the still bad been seized as the officer had told him, drove on, and took the exciseman to the door of the bothy where they soon had Mactavish a prisoner.

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