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date: 06 December 2019

Gunn, William locked

  • Jeannie Campbell


(b Kildonan, Sutherland, Scotland, 1789/90; d Glasgow, Scotland, Feb 14, 1867). Highland Scottish bagpipe maker. By the time of his marriage in 1809 Gunn had moved from Kildonan to Glasgow where he worked as a weaver. He played at the Edinburgh bagpipe competitions from 1822 to 1838 and won fifth prize in 1824. He was piper to the Glasgow Gaelic Club and taught many pipers. Gunn appeared in the Glasgow trade directory from 1834 to 1866 as a bagpipe maker, first at 48 Gallowgate, then from 1850 at 25 East Clyde Street and from 1853 at 273 George Street.

An article in the Glasgow Argus in December 1843 described a bagpipe made by Gunn for the Duke of Sutherland: ‘The tubes are of silver, and drawn perfectly airtight—an improvement only adopted and perfected by Mr Gunn on this instrument. The wood is of the finest ebony, richly silver-mounted, and the Scottish Thistle tastefully wreathed in chased work, and blending appropriately in one place with his Grace’s Stafford “arms”, and in another with that of Sutherland, together with other appropriate devices and decorations’. In ...

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