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Saturday, 8 November 2008

Scottish Surfaceman

Scottish Surfaceman. Alexander Anderson, (1845-1909), who wrote under the name "Surfaceman", was born on the 30th April 1845, at Kirkconnel, Dumfriesshire, but spent most of his childhood at Crocketford in Galloway, Scotland. He was educated at the local school but spent his spare time gaining a fluent knowledge of German, French and Spanish. Through his self-education Anderson was able to leave his work as a railway navvy or surfaceman, and in 1881 he was appointed assistant librarian at the University of Edinburgh, becoming librarian in 1901. He died on 11th July, 1909. Anderson wrote four collections of light verse and is perhaps best remembered for his 'cuddle doon' poems (lullabies for children), and his poems celebrating the railways in A Song of Love and Labour (1873) and Songs of the Rail (1878). His Works included; A Song of Love and Labour and Other Poems (1873); The Two Angels (1875); Songs of the Rail (1878); Ballads and Sonnets (1879).

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