|Lieutenant Colonel John Stewart of the 1st Vth V.B.|
On Tuesday 11th June Inverclyde will be the first place in Scotland to honour the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (5 SCOTS), the 5th Battalion of the Royal Regiment of Scotland on their return after service in Afghanistan. The Battalion will be marching in Port Glasgow on Tuesday 11th June. The march will start at the Shore Street car park, Port Glasgow at 11 am. The march will take in Princes Street, John Wood Street, Fore Street and on to the War Memorial before retuning to the Shore Street car park.
This honour is part of a long local association with the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, dating back to the earliest years of the regiment. An example of how closely local people were associated with the regiment can be seen in the life of John Stewart (1842-1897) whose portrait is shown above. He held the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Volunteer Division of the 1st Vth Volunteer Battalion of the A. & S.H. in the later nineteenth century. John Stewart lived in Greenock and in Kilmacolm and ran a ship's chandlery business in Greenock, leading to his local nickname of 'Beef' Stewart. A talented local artist, he numbered many professional artists amongst his friends, including John Pettie (1839-1893) who painted this portrait of Stewart as a token of their friendship. The 1st Vth made an important contribution to Inverclyde's effort during the First World War, and were to suffer very severe casualties during the Gallipoli campaign.
Next year the McLean Museum will be mounting a major exhibition on the First World War which will include the story of the 1st Vth. as well as many other aspects of Inverclyde's First World War experience.