Born the son of a stonemason in Cargill, James Croll had a limited education, yet was fascinated by the world around him from his boyhood. He suffered a series of failures as a millwright, joiner, shopkeeper, insurance salesman and temperance hotelier in Blairgowrie before a series of fortunate events brought him into contact first with the Andersonian Museum in Glasgow and later with the Geological Survey. Intrigued by the recent discovery that Scotland and much of the Northern Hemisphere had been buried by glaciers, Croll went on to join the Geological Survey and develop theories about climate change which earned him the admiration of fellow scientists such as naturalist Charles Darwin and astronomer William Herschel at the time, and which are still relevant today. Though largely forgotten, Croll has recently had a memorial erected to his memory in a courtyard next to the Fair Maid’s House in Perth.