Following the death of Patrick Matthew in 1874, the estate of Gourdiehill passed to his son Robert. However, by 1879, as revealed in a letter reproduced in Wulf Gerdts’ Matthew Saga, Robert was in bad health and the running of the estate was effectively in the hands of Robert’s son, also called Patrick Matthew. Unfortunately, globalisation had made the growing of apples in Scotland economically unviable (cheaper ones could be bought from the USA), and in 1880 the Matthew family were forced to sell Gourdiehill. The younger Patrick Matthew trained as a civil engineer, and at some point he emigrated to North Carolina, USA. He made several return visits to Scotland from 1907 onwards, in part so that he could recuperate from a malarial infection he contracted in the USA.
He wrote a number of letters to the local papers.
Matthew Jr (1885-06-16): “Fruit-growing in the Carse of Gowrie”. Dundee Evening Telegraph, 16 June 1885
Matthew notes that competition with American produce has made fruit-growing in Scotland virtually untenable.