Glen Mhor Bill of Sale 12th March 1956
Thanks to the successful Go Fund Me initiative, I have a pile of Glen Mhor related documents that I will bringing to you in the coming months, full of new insights and details as you'll have heard in the recent podcast episodes. However, before I embark on this document quest, I wanted to cover this 1956 deed of sale.
This particular invoice was a successful purchase on eBay earlier this year when a steady stream of documents from the Montrose area appeared. Sadly, these seem to have dried up since. At the time, I was unsuccessful in bidding for several other items, including a similar bill of sale from 1955 which we've discussed before (also a 1954 invoice, a 1956 bonding invoice) and which provides a useful comparison with this bill a year later. This was my single auction success, which was gutting at the time, but since having purchased the aforementioned collection of documents, all good things come to those that wait. It's also worth considering that this 1956 order, replaces the casks that we know were bonded in Montrose just a month prior.
So, we have a pattern of building up business with this Montrose bottler over a number of years, and this 1956 order is for 20 casks, interestingly to be matured at Glen Albyn, warehouse number 15, which was the larger site. You'll note the variation in these casks in terms of proof gallons, ranging from 76.3% to a measly 55.8%.
We have previously mentioned the buyer in the earlier mentioned article. This was the mainstay of the business in Inverness. The daily work at Glen Mhor distillery was primarily comprised of filling casks, known as "filling". Mackinlay & Birnie's decision to sell to D.C.L. in 1972 was prompted by the drying up and growing difficulty of obtaining this type of business. D.C.L., with a strong demand for Highland malt, made a logical acquisition.
As you'd expect, I showed this bill of sale to Alan Winchester and he reflected on the work it would have meant for the men:
'It shows quite a variety of sizes in hogsheads genre, Warehouse staff would have some packing to do with the rails to keep the rails level.'
Always great to have that practical detail and you'd expect the teams at either distillery were well versed in casks and their movements. However, I've not seen anything around casks being rolled across Telford Street, which would have made for an iconic photograph.