The Queen at the International Exhibition, Glasgow

’Twas in the year of 1888, and on August the 22nd day,
That Her Majesty arrived in Glasgow, dressed in mourning array;
And on Wednesday Glasgow put on her best holiday attire,
Which Her Majesty graciously seemed to admire

The decorations along the streets were magnificent to be seen;
And the people paid great prices to look upon their Queen;
And the decorations along the route from St. Enoch’s Station
To the Municipal Buildings, filled every eye with admiration.

And thence to the International Exhibition, all the way,
Each householder seemed to vie with his neighbour in decorations gay—
Such as flags, trophies, and festoons of cloth and flowers, mixed with green bay,
In fact there has seldom been such a grand display.

Red and yellow were the prevailing colours of the day,
But, here and there, was a mass of blue and white in grand array;
And Sauchiehall Street was the most beautiful in style,
And its appearance the spectators will remember for a very long while.

The royal train was timed to arrive at St. Enoch’s station
About four o’clock in the afternoon, which caused a great sensation,
Because the streets were almost impassable, with sightseers bustling about there,
All anxious to see Her Majesty enter the Municipal Buildings, I do declare.

At the Exhibition, in front of the main entrance, a porch was erected,
Also a dais in the grand hall, which Her Majesty highly respected;
And the woodwork was covered with gold and crimson cloth, the best in town,
And both porch and dais were surmounted with a crown.

And there were companies of military and volunteers moving here and there,
Which rendered the scene lively, and helped to drive away dull care;
And as for the reception of Her Majesty, the Magistrates didn’t fail,
Because everything was complete and satisfactory in every detail

And shortly military dignitaries began to arrive,
And the streets with sightseers seemed all alive,
All anxious to see Her Majesty as she alighted from the train,
And to get one glimpse of her every nerve they did strain.

The Royal Navy Artillery Volunteers were in front of the railway station,
To the number of over two hundred, who looked most splendid in their decoration,
And under the noble Marquis of Ailsa’s command;
Besides one hundred men of the Seaforth Highlanders, who looked robust and grand.

And the 15th Hussars were there also in readiness
To form Her Majesty’s escort, who looked beautiful in their dress;
Besides, the Lord Provost of Glasgow, Sir James King, was there,
Wearing his robes and massive gold chain, which made the people stare.

Besides Lady King, and Dr Marwick the town clerk, were there,
Also, Lord Hamilton of Dalzell, who seemed happy and free from care,
Besides the Marchioness of Lothian, and the Duchess of Buccleuch,
Mistress of the royal robes, to whom honour is due.

Besides there were Sheriff-Principal Berry, and Major-General Annesley,
Commander of the forces in Scotland, who waited the arrival of the train patiently;
And when the royal train steamed slowly into the station at half-past four,
Owing to its late arrival amongst the spectators there was quite a furore.

Then the Marquis of Lothian presented to Her Majesty
The Lord Provost and Lady King, and Sheriff-Principal Berry,
And Lord Hamilton, and Major-General Annesley;
Then Lady King handed the Queen and Princess Beatrice each a beautiful bouquet.

Then the royal party walked across the platform,
Which the railway officials with crimson did adorn,
To honour and welcome Her Majesty to beautiful Glasgow,
Which certainly was a magnificent show.

Her Majesty was accommodated in a landau, semi-dress,
And on her left sat Princess Beatrice, who looked charming I do confess;
Besides the Duke and Princess Alice of Hesse,
With her sweet smiling countenance which was most lovely to see.

Then Her Majesty and escort proceeded on their way to St. Enoch’s station,
All seemingly quite happy and in a state of admiration;
And the procession moved on to the Municipal Buildings, George Square,
While every available spot was crowded with spectators there.

There were thousands of crushing and pushing loyal subjects assembled there,
While the shouts and jeers of the sightseers did rend the air;
And much praise is due to the Corporation who had the arrangements in hand,
For erecting large platforms to accommodate the Lord Provost and Magistrates most grand.

The seats on the platform were draped in red baize,
And there were police officers placed at the gateways;
And half-an-hour before the arrival of Her Majesty;
The Magistrates and Town Council took up their position allotted their official dignity.

And abut half-past four the Queen appeared,
And by the populace she was loudly cheered;
Then in a few seconds the outriders appeared in grand array,
And entered by the entrance of the quadrangle straight way.

Then they were followed by the officers of State and the Queen,
In a semi-state carriage, most beautiful to be seen;
And accompanied, in the carriage, by the Princess Beatrice,
Besides the Princess Alice and the Duke of Hesse, which looked very nice.

Then to the Magistrates’ platform the royal carriage drew near,
And the Lord Provost prevented a gold casket to Her Majesty without fear,
Which the Queen most graciously received, as well as the key
For the opening of the Municipal Buildings, which was a grand sight to see.

Then Her Most Gracious Majesty read a short reply,
Which was only heard by the audience near by;
Then she drove to the Exhibition, where a crowd had collected,
And she was met by Sir Archibald Campbell, and courteously respected.

Then he conducted her to the throne, in the grand hall,
And the National Anthem was sung by the Choral Union, heartily one and all,
But the music was drowned by the firing of artillery on the neighbouring heights,
But Her Majesty was pleased with the Exhibition sights.

And after Sir Archibald Campbell had read the Exhibition address,
Then the Queen visited the Exhibition, and she was highly pleased she did confess;
And she ordered samples to be sent on to her at Blythswood
From the Scotch, English, Welsh, and Irish Courts, which she considered good.

The Queen’s Visit to the West of Scotland

Her Majesty the Queen brought to a close yesterday three arduous, but it may be hoped enjoyable days of residence among her Scottish subjects of the West. It may safely be said, indeed, that, so far as they were concerned, nothing was left undone which could have made her visit a memorable one. Every token which loyalty could suggest was used to show how warm was the attachment to her person, and Her Majesty must have been greatly impressed of the depth of hearty good will with which she was received among all classes of the people. Fortunately the weather was, on the whole, propitious. Excepting during the visit to Paisley on Thursday, bright Sunshine added splendour to the pageantry, and enabled the people to enjoy it. Yesterday Her Majesty paid a more extended visit to Glasgow than on the occasion of her State entry on Wednesday. It included a private visit to the Exhibition, a visit to the University at Gilmorehill, and to Queen Margaret College for the Higher Education of Women. Travelling by train from Renfrew early in the day along with her suite, Her Majesty alighted at St Enoch Station, and the party having entered the Royal carriages, proceeded under escort through Argyle Street and Dumbarton Road to the Exhibition. The day was not observed as a holiday in the city, but all along the route thousands of people lined the barricades, and Her Majesty was received on all hands with demonstrations of hearty welcome. At the Exhibition loyal addresses were presented on behalf of the Grand Lodge of Freemasons, and by the Consular Corps of the city. To the former of these she replied, and then she made a somewhat extended tour of the leading courts, evincing on all hands the greatest interest in the Exhibition. Next Her Majesty paid a visit to the University buildings, overlooking the Exhibition, and was there presented with a loyal address by the various academic bodies connected with the western seat of learning. To this address Her Majesty made a very graceful reply, and then had several of the University officials presented to her. The sight at Queen Margaret College was particularly picturesque and pleasing, and here also the usual compliments were exchanged. The Queen seemed in the best of spirits the whole day, as if she had been greatly delighted with her stay in the neighbourhood of Glasgow. The Princess Beatrice and Prince Henry of Battenberg, as will be seen, stayed behind Her Majesty in the Exhibition, and further inspected it, and afterwards visited several places of interest in the city. At eleven o’clock last night the Royal party left Blythswood for Renfrew en route for Her Majesty’s Highland home at Balmoral.

The Scotsman, 25th August 1888

Further Reading

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