Smith Museum & Art Gallery Programme

an exhibition to commemorate the


anniversary of the Battle of Stirling Bridge

1297 to 1997

1 April to 15 December, 1997

Exhibition sponsors

Maclay Thistle Brewery Alloa

'In 1297, William Wallace lifted up his head ...'

The Battle of Stirling Bridge, 11 September 1297, was one of the greatest battles of Scottish history. William Wallace, fighting a guerrilla war against an army of occupation, met the English at Stirling Bridge, and defeated their superior army decisively.

To mark the 700th anniversary of this battle, a major exhibition looks at the life and legacy of William Wallace.

It draws together paintings and artifacts from public and private collections in Britain, including items treasured for generations because of their association with Wallace.

It looks at how the story of Wallace was handed down, how hundreds of places througout Scotland were given his name, and in the words of the poet Willam Wordsworth tells

How Wallace fought for Scotland; left the name

Of 'Wallace' to be found like a wild flower

All over his dear country; left the deeds

Of Wallace, like a family of ghosts,

To people the steep rocks and river banks,

Her national sanctuaries, with a local soul

Of independence and stern liberty.

Wallace was regarded as the first great freedom fighter by subsequent generations. When George Washington fought for American Independence, he was presented with a box made from the Wallace oak. The Scottish colliers, fighting at the same time against their status as serfs, formed themselves into the Sir William Wallace Grand Lodge of Free Colliers. The suffragette Marion Wallace Dunlop, who claimed her descent from Wallace's mother, introduced the principle of hunger striking (1909) to the women's struggle for the vote.

Guiseppe Garibaldi was regarded as 'the Wallace of Italy' while Louis Kossuth was the 'Wallace of Hungary'. Garibaldi, Kossuth, Mazzini, Karl Blind and Louis Blanc, liberators in their respective countries, actively supported the building of the National Wallace Monument.

Monuments to Wallace were erected throughout Scotland in the 19th and 20th centuries, and even at Ballarat, in the Australian goldfield. Patriotic Scots throughout the world drank Wallace India Pale Ale, brewed within sight of the National Wallace Monument ..... and still do.

William Wallace inspired, and continues to inspire historians, poets, playwrights, artists and film makers. Find out why through visiting 'Scotland's Liberator'. A new audio visual production For Freedom Alone - a Tribute to William Wallace by Anne and David Drackley will be showing at the Smith throughout the exhibition. Joseph Lozowy of Aon Brach has composed music for the Wallace exhibition. Guided tours, children's activities, souvenir booklet and education pack available.

Two coming Special Events at the Smith are:

Tuesday 2 September at 7:30pm
Talk on William Wallace by Elspeth King.

Tuesday 9 September at 7:30pm
Aon Brach. Music for William Wallace.

For ticket details Tel: +44 (0) 1786 471917

The 'Scotland's Liberator' Exhibition at the Smith is open Tuesday to Saturday 10:30am to 5:00pm, Sundays 2:00pm to 5:00pm, Admission free.

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