Russian Deportations, 1909

On 20th March 1909, a fight broke out on Glasgow Road, Blantyre between three Russians.

The men spilled out into the street from a popular public house and a dispute arose about their game of cards. George Rutkowski of Glasgow Road and John Mutt of Fallside, both Russian miners confronted a third Russian male accusing him of cheating. Words were heated and fists flew. However, it was the shocking next event which saw them ending up in jail.

Both men drew knives and on the Glasgow Road stabbed their fellow countryman on the neck, arm , back and breast. The victim had only been discharged from hospital on the earlier Tuesday. Police were called, the men arrested and a day in court in early April was had.

The Sheriff passed 60 days imprisonment on each of them, insisting upon hard labour and that at the end of the sentences, each were to be immediately deported back to Russia.


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  1. No wonder the Russians were deported, great that they got to do a couple of months hard labour for the cost of police and court. Did their compatriot live??

  2. My goodness Paul, you uncover some very nasty incidents, no wonder Blantyre had a once dubious name! A long time ago I was talking to a Maori colleague about where I come from, I was astounded when I said to him “I come from Blantyre in Scotland,” his immediate retort was, and deadly serious “Don’t you mean Blan’er, Linda”.

    You could have knocked me over with a feather. Here is this indigenous Maori New Zealander, never been anywhere near Scotland and I felt very embarrassed at using my anglo saxon version of Blantyre! Serves me right. I now always say “A come fae Blanter (soft t)! Using my native tongue, a lot of people look puzzled so I then translate. I’m empowered!

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