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1791 - 99 - Page 124 - NUMBER XIII
PARISH OF GLAMMISS (GLAMIS)
(COUNTY OF FORFAR)
By the Rev. Mr JAMES LYON.
Name, Extent, and Surface.
The modern name of this parish is Glammiss, but its etymology is unknown. It lies in the presbytery of Forfar, and synod of Angus and Mearns. It is about 12 miles in length, and the greatest breadth is 5 miles; but in some places it is hardly one. The greatest part of this parish is flat country and lies in the heart of Strathmore, which is an extensive plain, situated at the root of the Grampian mountains, and remarkable for its fertility. Large plantations of trees, together with the fields regularly divided and fenced by hedge rows, make the country round exceedingly beautiful. Part of this parish is rocky and mountainous and the Sidlie (Sidlaws) hills run along the South side of it. They are covered with heath, and are not remarkably high.
Soil - The soil is in general good. It his been well cultivated, and produces plentiful crops. About 60 years ago, the people were sunk in sloth and indolence; but a variety of causes have concurred to call forth their vigour, and to . .
. . rouse them into action. Improvements have been, and still are, carried on with ardour and success. The discovery of marle has wonderfully contributed to the improvements in agriculture.
Fuel. - Amidst the many advantages which the people here enjoy, the want of fuel is a great inconvenience. They generally use peats of which there are plenty in different mosses; but they are dug at a considerable expense, and will soon be exhausted. Some transport coals from Dundee, the nearest sea-port town, which is twelve miles distant from Glammiss. This defect, however, will in a short time be supplied by the extensive woods planted by the Late Earl of Strathmore, which are in a very thriving condition, and are a great ornament to the country.
Diseases. - The air is rather moist, and neither very healthy, nor very unhealthy. Agues and melancholy habits are not much known here. Fevers and consumptions are the most prevalent distempers, owing. it is supposed, to the moisture occasioned by the hills to the South, and the great quantity of planting. We have no mineral springs of any consequence.
Rivers and Fishes. - The river Dean, 2 deep running water, is supplied from the lake of Forfar. The Kerbet, and the burn of Glammiss, run through the parish, and abound with plenty of fine red trout.
There is a very considerable lake in the East end of the parish, near Forfar, called the Loch of Forfar.
It originally contained 140 acres ; but 60 of these have been drained, and a great quantity of marle and peat have been dug out, which has proved very advantageous to the Earl of :Strathmore, the proprietor. When the lake was
. . was drained a number of curious antiquities were found and are to be seen in the Castle of Glammiss.
Antiquities. - Within a few yards of the manse of Glammiss, there is an (Pictish Stone) obelisk, of rude design, erected, as is generally supposed, in memory of the murder of Malcolm II King of Scotland. On one side of the monument, there are figures of two men, who, by their attitudes, seem to be forming the bloody conspiracy. A lion and a centaur, on the upper part, represent the shocking barbarity of the crime. On the reverse, several sorts of fishes are engraven, as a symbolical representation of the lake, in which, by missing their way, the assassins were drowned. In a neighbouring field (it may be that near Loanhead to the East of the village of Glamis), there is a stone on which are delineated a variety of symbolical characters similar to those already mentioned, and intended, as is supposed, to express the same facts. At the distance of one mile from Glammiss, near a place called Cossans, there is an obelisk (another Pictish Stone), not less curious than either of the two preceding monuments. It is vulgarly called St. Orland's Stone. No probable conjecture has been formed relating to the facts designed to have been perpetuated by it. On one side is a cross rudely flowered and chequered; on the other, four men on horseback appear to be making the utmost despatch. One of the horses is trampling under foot a wild boar; and, on the lower part of the stone there is the figure of an animal somewhat like a dragon. It has been thought that these symbols represent officers of justice in pursuit of Malcolm's murderers. There is a fortification on the summit of a hill, two miles South-west from Glammiss, known by the name of Denoon Castle. It probably was designed for a place of retreat in times of danger. It is encompassed by a wall,. supposed to have been 27 feet high, and 30 broad. There are two entries, one to the South-east, and another to the North-west.
The whole circumference is about 340 English yards; but, although this wall be much defaced, and almost covered with grass, yet there are evident traces of buildings in the intermediate space. The only other work of antiquity in the parish, is the Castle of Glammiss. This venerable structure, the property of the Earl of Strathmore, and his chief seat in Scotland, is of very ancient date. For some time it remained in the hands of the Crown; and, in the year 1372, it was granted by Robert II to J. Lyon, his special favourite, who not long after received his daughter in marriage. Since its original construction, it has been greatly enlarged.
Quarries - Besides other quarries of inferior note in the parish, there is near the village of Glammiss a freestone quarry, the stones of which are very durable, and are excellent for building and for millstones. There are abundance of fine grey slate quarries, in different places, belonging to the Earl of Strathmore and Lord Douglas. About twenty years ago, an attempt was made to find out a lead mine near the village of Glammiss. It was wrought a considerable time, and some ore was found; but the scheme was not persisted in.
Cattle - A considerable number of fine cattle are fed in this parish. One dealer in this article is often possessed of ten thousand pounds worth of cattle at a time, most of which he carries to the English market.
Population - In the year 1783, the number of souls in the parish amounted to about 2040. In Dr Webster's Report, the number is 1780. From the Register, it appears that, in the year 1718, there were 63 baptisms, in the year 1740, 60, and in 1750, 60. In the year 1784, there were 51 . .
. . baptisms, 36 burials, and 14 marriages. In 1786, 47 baptisms, 38 burials, 17 marriages. From the 1st of October 1789, to the 1st of October 1790, there were 42 baptisms, 37 burials, and 16 marriages. There are a number of villages in this parish. The village of Glammiss contains about 500 souls; the Newtown of Glammiss about 140; Arnefont 80; Cotterton of Hayston 48; Nether-Handeck 39; Milltown of Glen-Ogilvie 67; and Cottertown of Drumglye 120. The number of farmers in the parish is about 80; some of their farms are extensive, and others but small. The number of weavers and manufacturers is about 70. (Old photograph of a handloom weaver.)
Heritors, &c. - The parish is divided among four heritors, the Earl of Strathmore, Lord Douglas, William Douglas of Brigtown, and Mr Henderson of Rochilhill. Lord Strathmore's estate contains about 6,000 acres. The greatest part of the un-arable ground consists of thriving plantations, to the extent of about 1,000 acres. The yearly rent may be from £2,500 to £3,000 Sterling. The value of land, on this estate has risen considerably within these fifteen years. One farm. in particular, which was rented at £52 twelve years ago, now gives £300. The rental of the estate of Lord Douglas in this parish is about £500, an advanced rent from £200 since the year 1770. The whole of this estate contains about 3,000 acres. The estate of Mr Douglas of Brigtown in this parish contains about 70 acres, and the present rental is about £50. The estate of Rochilhill contains above 200 acres, and brings about £70 yearly rent. The parish supplies itself with provisions, and generally lends a considerable quantity of meal and barley to different parts of the country.
Church. - The Earl of Strathmore is patron of the parish.
The stipend is, of money, £5 : 15s : 6d, with 40 bolls of meal, and 16 bolls of barley. The glebe contains rather more than six acres and a half, and is worth 40s. an acre.
Wages. - The expense of a labouring servant is generally about £8 or £9 a year, with six bolls and a half of meal. Maid-servants wages are about £3, besides maintenance.
Poor. - The number of poor supplied from the funds of the parish are about twenty, besides others who receive charity
occasionally. The kirk session have a number of seats in the church at their disposal, for which they draw about
£7 annually. The average of weekly collections is 10s. 6d. The session have also about
£200 at interest.
N U M
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PARISH OF GLAMMIS.
PRESBYTERY 07 FORFAR, AND SYNOD OF ANGUS AND MEARNS.
THE REV. JAMES LYON, D. D., MINISTER.*
I. - TOPOGRAPHY A14D NATURAL HISTORY.
Name. - The name seems to be descriptive of the most striking natural feature of the parish. A burn flows in a ravine down its centre, for some miles, and crosses a ridge of high grounds immediately above the village, through a very deep and romantic rocky gorge, in which there is a waterfall; and thereafter, the ravine continues rough and rocky, and the rush of water along its bottom, particularly in winter, makes a murmuring sound. In somewhat similar situations, where there are ravines in the district, the affix iss, yss, eis, which signifies an obstruction or barrier, is common in the names of places, with some descriptive prefix; and in this case Glamm, noise or sound, seems to be so applicable, that no reasonable doubt need be entertained on the point, although etymologists have hitherto been at a loss about the derivation of the name.
The parish constitutes a portion of the southern side of Strathmore, or great plain, situated at the foot of the Grampians, and remarkable for its extent and fertility, and stretches from the centre of that strath to the summit of the Seidlaw hills (Sidlaws), which bound it along the southern side.
Topographical Appearance.- In respect to the configuration of its surface, it presents three general divisions. The northern side of the parish, extending from near the town of Forfar, westerly along the centre of the strath, for, about five miles and one in breadth, in comparatively flat, for although undulated into numerous gentle swells and hollows, yet all the summits of the swells are much upon the same level; and this quarter ranges between 160 and 250 feet above the level of the sea. The central portion stretches along the northern face of smooth and gently uprising grounds, from the water of Dean in the bottom of the strath; the summits of some of which attain an elevation of from 500 to 700 . .
* Drawn up by the Rev. Dr. Lyon, assisted by Mr. Blackadder, civil engineer.
. . feet, and are about four miles in length from east to west, and one in breadth, beyond which, the surface is subdivided into the two nearly parallel glens, that of Ogilvie on the east, and Denoon on the west, terminating, at their southern end, in the highest summits of the Seidlaw hills, which here range from 1,000 to about 1,500 feet in height. The length of this portion is, from north to south, about four miles, and varies from two to four in breadth.
The shape of the whole parish is irregular; but its extreme length from east to west may he stated at 10 miles, and its breadth from north to south at 5; and it contains, of arable, 8,062 imperial acres; pasture, 4,422; woodland, 1,566; roads, waters, &c. &c., 559; total 14,609.
Boundaries. - It is bounded, on the south, by the parishes of Tealing, Auchterhouse, and Newtyle; on the west, by Nevay and Essie (Eassie); on the north, by Airlie and Kirriemuir; and on the east, by Forfar and Kinnettles.
The climate is now dry and early, over all the lower portions of the parish, the extensive drainage of the swamps and mosses which has taken place, of late years, having had a great effect in its improvement. Agues, which formerly prevailed, and other complaints attendant upon a damp moist atmosphere, have now disappeared; and the harvest is within a few days of being as early as along the coast side.
Hydrography. - The Loch of Forfar is within the parish, and extended to nearly 200 imperial acres, but was reduced sixty years ago, by drainage, to about one-half the extent. It is supplied chiefly by powerful springs, contiguous, and partly within itself, and forms the head of the water of Dean, which flows westerly, draining Strathmore into the river Isla, and thence into the Tay; it is the principal water in this quarter of the districts and is joined by three tributaries within the parish, first by Ballandarg bum, from Kirriemuir on the north; second, by the Kerbet water, from Kinnettles on the south-east; and thirds by the Glammis burn, from Seidlaw on the south, which flows down its centre. But the Denoon burn, also within the parish for some distance, leaves it before its junction on the west. The united waters form a deep sluggish stream, from twenty to thirty feet in width, and from one to six in depth, much of it being nearly stagnant.
The mineral wells are merely some weak chalybeates, and none of any celebrity. The soil along the flat division of the parish, on the north side of the water of Dean, consists chiefly of light gravelly . .
. . and sandy loams, with a few portions of clay and a considerable quantity of moss in the hollows surrounding the sandy and gravelly swells, the greater part of this division being of indifferent quality, notwithstanding its fine locality in the centre of the strath. Along the side of the Kerbet water, and after its junction with the Dean, westerly along the south side of the latter, there is some breadth of flat and deep alluvial brown loam of fine quality; and within the middle division, forming the rising grounds southerly, there is a considerable extent of good soil along its centre, being black and brown loams incumbent on an absorbent bottom, and partly of very fine quality, but also intermixed, both above and below this central stripe, with damp inferior sands, and a mixture of clay, provincially called mortar.
Along the bottoms of the glens of Ogilvie and Denoon, there is also a fair proportion of sharp gravelly loams of good quality, but defective in climate; the hills are mostly all of a moorish cast, and covered with heath, unless some grassy swamps.
The best soils contiguous to the village rent, in parks, at the rate of £3 per imperial acre, and downwards to £1. The average rent of farms runs from £1 to £1. 10s. for the arable land; but the rent of many of them varies according to the fiars prices of grain.
The size of farms ranges between 50 and 600 acres of arable land, with numerous possessions, chiefly from six to ten, held by manufacturers and labourers.
The woodlands, which are extensive, have been all planted; none are natural; the greater proportion are of larch, spruce, and Scotch fir, of seventy years and under. The park timber around the (Glamis) castle is a century older, and is chiefly ash and elm, with some oak birch, and other varieties. Some of the ash trees measure 15 feet in girth, and contain 200 cubic feet of timber.
Much of the largest of the larch and spruce have been, of late, cut away, for the behoof of the hard-wood. Some of them measured 60 and 70 cubic feet of timber, and a few of that size still remain.
The chief natural production of the lower portion of the parish, where the soil is inferior, and not under cultivation, is broom with heath; and in the mosses there is heath with a mixture of course aquatic grasses; the wood found in them is birch, alder, and hazel, with some oak, but no fir, or very little. Along the higher grounds at the foot of the glens, there is at places a considerable mixture of whins amongst the broom, which stretch upon the flanks of the Seidlaw, the higher summits of which are . .
. . covered with heath, and very little mixture of grass, unless in swamps and sides of burns. The wild raspberry is common, but the, bramble is very rare, although common in some other quarters of Strathmore.
Botany. - Although there is no particularly rare plant having its locality in the parish, yet the dens and ravines afford a very rich and varied display of flowers during the season, in particular of the avens, geranium, anemones, &c. &c; and the marshes along the Dean, of the yellow water-lily and others. Among the more ram plants, may be noticed the Orobus sylvaticus.
Minerology. - The minerals consist chiefly of different beds of the oldest sandstone formation which flanks the Grampians, the lowest of which are of a grey colour, and underlie all the southern side of the parish, from a line crossing it a short distance north of the village, and form the Seidlaw range.
Their direction is from the north-east to the south-west., and they dip very uniformly to the north-west, usually at an angle between ten and twenty degrees.
Along the northern side, in the centre of the strath, they are overlaid with beds of a dark brownish-red colour, having a conformable direction and dip; they are the newest beds in Strathmore, but yet much older than the coal, and hence there is none of that useful mineral in the district; neither is there any limestone, beyond occasional nodules, within the sandstone and veins of calcareous spar.
The grey beds of sandstone are occasionally overlaid with trap or whinstone, forming the summits of the rising grounds, and at others much disrupted wish dykes and veins of it, having great variety in their mineral character, but not productive of agates; and such as are to be found are very coarse. There are, however, occasionally beautiful quartz crystals in these rocks, in the Seidlaw district.
The mineral character of the sandstone beds varies from coarse conglomerate or puddingstone, through the intermediate stages down to calmstone, which consists of impalpable powder, and when exposed to the weather, decomposes into clay.
The pebbles and grains are not crystallised, but are water-worn and conglutinated together by a paste of calcareo-ferruginated matter, and are of great variety, the most abundant being brownish-red quartz, and a species of hornstone. Porphyry, jasper, Lydianstone, . .
. . are also to be found, and occasionally serpentine; but granite and other compound rocks of the immediate Grampians are very rare.
The conglomerate beds, as also those of calm, are turned to no practical use; and when they occur in the quarries, are thrown aside as rubbish. The intermediate beds afford valuable building materials of all descriptions, as well as pavement and slates, and are extensively wrought for these purposes. There is one quarry close upon the village, long known for the excellent millstones it produces, some of which are exported: the stone having also the quality of withstanding the effects of fire, is in much request in Dundee and elsewhere, for oven soles.
The beds of slate, which are thin grey flags, are in the Seidlaw district, and have at some very remote period been very extensively wrought, both in this and the adjoining parishes, much beyond what the wants of the immediate country, inclusive of Dundee, could have required; it has therefore been suggested, that the old town of Edinburgh and others in the Lothians might have had, at that period, a supply from this quarter. These beds, by being now wrought deeper, produce the pavement so well known by the name of Dundee or Arbroath pavement.
The whinstone affords excellent materials for roads, and in extensively wrought for that purpose.
Some veins of lead ore were wrought about sixty years back, but were abandoned as not being worth the expense. The mines are close upon the east end of the village, where the remains of them are still to be seen; the veins cross the burn, and traverse the grey sandstone, and are accompanied with sulphate of barytes. Traces of carbonate of copper are also occasionally to be met with in the trap rocks of Seidlaw, but to no great extent.
Shell marl is found along the northern side of the parish, within some of the mosses, and in great abundance in the loch of Forfar, which was partially drained for the purpose sixty years ago. The drained portions having been very much exhausted, it has for many years been dredged up from below the water, by an apparatus attached to a boat, and many thousands of pounds of this useful manure have been obtained out of this loch. Of late years, however, it has been much less in request, partly owing to the greater part of the lands having been repeatedly marled, and partly from the depressed state of agriculture.
Among the grey sandstone beds, impressions of plants and scales . .
. . of fishes have been long observed; and of late years, two entire specimens of a non-descript fish, besides various imperfect portions, have been obtained; one out of the millstone quarry, and another out of the quarry a short distance to the eastward of it, at Thornton. They have always been enveloped in the solid portion of the rock, and not in the fissures. Similar fishes have been found in other quarries in the district, but are very rare, and none of them so perfect specimens as the two found here. The first one was got at Thornton upon the splitting up a block into two rybats in 1831, when a section of a fish was exposed in each of them, from the nose to the tail, along the centre of the back bone, as if it had been cut up. purposely by a lapidary's wheel. The block was taken out of the bottom of the quarry, thirty feet down in solid rock.
The second was found, two years afterwards, in the millstone quarry, and was entire, the stony envelope having been removed off its back in the breaking of a block.
They were each about six inches in length, having a very large head in the shape of a shield, with the eyes, close together near the centre, on the crown of it.
Specimens of this curious fossil fish, which proves to be a species of a new genus, named by Agassiz, from the peculiar shape of its head, Cephalaspis, were, we are informed, many years ago, sent to Professor Jameson, and by him shown to the Wernerian Society of Edinburgh. Mr. Lyell, Junior, of Kinordy (Kinnordy), has also interested himself very much in bringing together specimens of the Cephalaspis, and M. Agassiz, we understand, intends figuring the Forfarshire animal from drawings of Professor Jameson's specimens, under the name Cephalaspis Lyelli, in compliment to Mr. Lyell, for the eminent services he has rendered to geological science. The impressions of plants are most numerous in the pavement beds, having the appearance of reeds and a clustered fruit, the points being star-shaped, something similar to that of the equisetacea when pressed flat. Similar impressions, we understand, are not infrequently met with in the same formation in other parts of Scotland, and will be figured in Brongniart's great work on Fossil Plants, at present in the course of publication.
There is also an impression frequently to be met with on the pavement, very like to that of. an unshod colt's foot, and is probably the impression of something organic. Naturalists, however, . .
. . have been unable to come to any conclusion about it, although it is also common in some parts of England.
The whole of these organic remains are confined to the oldest or the grey beds of sandstone. No traces as yet have been found in the red beds, which are newer. Neither is there any in the clays or gravels, which immediately overly the rocks, and underly the marl and moss; but in both the latter, very large antlers of the red-deer are sometimes found, also tusks of the wild boar, and very large skulls, and horn flints of the ox, and numerous shells of the fresh water testacea, - among which is the pearl mussel, also common in the Dean Water. All the sandstones and pebbles of the clays and gravels are referable to the rocks of the district, or to the contiguous range of the Grampians. None have been transported further, since the deposition of the conglomerate beds. But various of the pebbles of the conglomerate beds, or rocks, are not to be found in any other locality, and do not belong either to the district or to the Grampian range.
Zoology. - The wild animals found in the parish are the roe-deer, hares, and rabbits. The latter, at one period, were plentiful, and, having been extirpated out of the district for many years, are now beginning again to appear. Foxes are also numerous. The badger occurs occasionally; and otters are common at the Dean Water. Some pine-martins have also been killed, but they are rare; polecats and weasels are common; squirrels also are plentiful, though rare ten years ago.
Among the feathered tribe, the cross-bill may be noticed as having appeared here since the introduction of larch woods, upon the seeds of which they live. Black-cock are also becoming common in Seidlaw, of late years. Grouse are not common; partridge occurs in abundance, and pheasants occasionally. Jays are still very numerous; and the drainage of swamps has in a great degree banished the wild goose, which seventy years ago was very common along the Dean in winter.
Pike of very large size and perch are found in the loch of Forfar, and in the Dean; and the trout of the Dean have been long famed for their fine quality; but it is remarkable that salmon do not enter it, although they cross the mouth of it, in passing up the Isla river. It may here be mentioned, however, that fifty or sixty years ago a solitary salmon was killed in the Dean.
II. - CIVIL HISTORY.
Antiquities. - The castle at Glammiss, a venerable, and majestic . .
. . tic pile of building, is situate about one mile north from the village, on the flat grounds at the confluence of the Glammiss Burn and the Dean. There is a print of it given by Slezer in Charles II's reign, - by which it appears to have been anciently much more extensive, being a large quadrangular mass of buildings, having two courts in front, with a tower in each, and gateway through below them; and on the northern side, was the principal tower, which now constitutes the central portion of the present castle, upwards of 100 feet in height. The building received the addition of a tower in one of its angles, for a spiral staircase from bottom to top, and of numerous small turrets on its top, with conical roofs. The wings were added, at the same time, by Patrick, Earl of. Strathmore, who repaired and modernised the structure, under the direction of Inigo Jones (1573-1652). One of the wings has been renovated within the last forty years, and other additions made, but not in harmony with Earl Patrick's repairs.
There is also a secret room in it, only known to two or at most three individuals, at the same time, who are bound not to reveal it, unless to their successors in the secret. It has been frequently the object, of search with the inquisitive, but the search has been in vain. There are no records of the castle prior to the tenth century, when it is first noticed in connection with the death of (King) Malcolm II in 1034. Tradition says that he was murdered in this castle, and in a room which is still pointed out, in the centre of the principal tower; and that the murderers lost their way in the darkness the night, and by the breaking of the ice were drowned in the loch of Forfar. Fordun's account is, however, somewhat different and more probable. He states that the King was mortally wounded in a skirmish, in the neighbourhood, by some of the adherents of Kenneth V; accordingly, to the eastward of the village, within a wood near Thornton, there is a large cairn of stones surrounding an ancient obelisk, bearing similar characters with the one near to the church, and which is called King Malcolm's gravestone. Now, although he was buried at Iona, it appears probable that these stones mark the spot where the battle had taken place, and where the king fell.
King Malcolm's Gravestone. - Within a few yards of the manse is to be seen an obelisk or large stone of rude design, erected, as is generally supposed, in memory of the murder of Malcolm II, King of Scotland. (now recognised as a Pictish stone.) The perpetrators of that horrid deed fled with precipitation, eastward, during night, and when the fields were covered . .
. . with snow. By mistake, they directed their flight across the loch of Forfar, where they perished. On one side of the monument there are the figures of two men, who, by their attitude, seem to be forming the bloody conspiracy. A lion and a centaur on the upper part represent, as is supposed, he shocking barbarity of the crime. On the reverse of the monument, several sorts of fishes are engraven an a symbolical representation of the loch in which the assassins were drowned.
St. Orland's Stone. - At the distance of about a mile north-east from the castle, near a place called Cossins (Cossans), there stands an obelisk not less curious than the two already mentioned. It is vulgarly called St. Orland's Stone. (also, now recognised as a Pictish stone.) No probable conjecture has been formed, as to the object of it. On one side, is a cross rudely flowered and checkered; on the other side, four men on horseback appear to he making the utmost dispatch. One of. the horses is trampling under foot a wild boar; and on the lower part of the stone, there is a figure of an animal resembling a dragon. It has been supposed by some, that these symbols represent officers of justice in pursuit of Malcolm's murderers.
Glammiss was given to the present family, by a grant of Robert II in 1372 to John Lyon, his secretary, who afterwards married the King's daughter, and got the barony of Kinghorn (in Fife) as her dower. At the time the castle was renovated by Earl Patrick, he also planted the present old timber around it in the ancient style of rows and avenues. The principal avenue, upwards of one mile in length between the castle and the village, and forming an approach in which there were three antique gateways, was almost entirely destroyed, in the course of a few hours, by a hurricane in 1772. About sixty years ago, in Earl John's time, the grounds were turned into one park, which is yet called the "Angles", from the angular shape of the old enclosures, and rows of trees along them; and the gateways were removed. The avenues were also much mutilated. The gateways were rebuilt at the three different entrances into the present park, and are still kept up in repair.
There were also three other castles within the parish, but they are now wholly raised; one at Cossins, belonging to the same family; another in the glen of Ogilvie, which belonged to the family of that name, now property of Lord Douglas; and the third in the glen of Denoon. In the latter glen there are also the remains of an ancient fort, upon the top of an isolated basaltic hill rising up in the bottom of the glen, and to such a height as to command . .
. . an extensive view of Strathmore. It presents a precipitous front of rocks to the south and south-west. On the other side, although steep, it is covered with a most vivid green sward, forming a remarkable contrast with the heath-clad hills of Seidlaw, which adjoin it. Its top is surrounded with a high wall of earth and stones, supposed to have been 27 feet high and 20 broad; it contains within it, upwards of one acre and has been a place of great strength. An ancient toft close by its side still retains the name of "Pict's Mill." On the top of Hayston hill, an arm of the Seidlaw, on the east side of the parish, there is a small circular moat surrounded with a clay dyke, which was probably a Roman station for observation. There is another moat exactly similar on the Glammiss property, in the adjoining parish of Airlie.
When the Loch of Forfar was drained, some Roman camp-kettles of brass were found, and an iron battle axe, now preserved in the castle. Other Roman weapons have been found in the mosses.
Parochial Register. - The earliest parochial register bears date the year 1634.
Landowners. - There are only four proprietors in the parish; and the greater part of it belongs to the Earl of Strathmore and Lord Douglas: thus,
Water Roads, Arable. Pasture. Wood. etc. Total. Rental. The Strathmore property 5,837 1,531 1,500 425 9,293 £7,000 0s. 0d. Douglas property, 2,000 2,800 50 130 4,980 1,784 0s. 0d. Rochel-hill property, 188 90 6 2 286 418 0s. 0d. Part of Brigton property, 37 1 10 2 50 69 0s. 0d. ------ ----- ----- ---- ------ -------------- Imperial acres, 8,062 4,422 1,566 559 14,609 £9,262 0s. 0d.
The Strathmore property comprehends the whole of the northern division, and the greater part of the central, with the glen of Denoon. The Douglas property is confined to the glen of Ogilvie. That of Rochel-hill lies at the foot of the glen of Ogilvie between the Strathmore and Douglas estates, and belongs to Mr. James Henderson; and that portion of the Brigton estate which belongs to Mr. William Douglas, is situate on the eastern side of the central division.
The bulk of the woodlands is upon the Strathmore property, and what lies within the parish has been estimated as worth £150,000.
The rental of the glen of Ogilvie was, sixty years ago, only . .
. . £200; but since that time a great improvement has taken place, by draining, subdivision of the lands by stone dykes, and a better mode of agriculture, all tending to counteract the disadvantages of a late climate. A few plantations have also, been recently made on this glen. It was anciently the property of the Ogilvies of Powrie, who had their residence in a castle, now totally demolished. It afterwards became the property of Graham of Claverhouse. The last of his family fell, in the Rebellion, at the battle of Killiecrankie, and the estate was forfeited; and as it did not hold of the Crown, it reverted to the Douglas family, who were the superiors.
Forty years ago, the rental of Rochel-hill was about £75, - since which time great improvements have also taken place on it, in building houses, dykes, and drains; and since March 1833, three acres of it have been feued at the rate of £8 per acre, and fifty houses built. The village is called Charleston.
III. - POPULATION.
The population of the parish is 2,150 Males, 1,045 Females, 1,105 ------ 2,150 Inhabited houses, 396 The number of families - - - - - -470 chiefly employed in agriculture, - - - 92 in trade, manufactures, and handicraft, 180 In 1834 there was 52 births, 28 deaths, 20 marriages. There are a number of villages in the parish. Glammiss contains - 520 inhabitants. Newton of Glammiss, - 128 Arnifoul (Arniefoul), - 106 Millton of Glen of Ogilvie, 77 Wauk-Mill, about - 100 Drumglye (Drumgley), - 113 Charleston, a new village fast increasing, 230
Within the last three years, them have been 8 illegitimate births in the parish.
IV. - INDUSTRY.
Agriculture, &c. - The mode of husbandry is much the same over all the parish, embracing usually about one-half of the arable lands in grass; and hence a great quantity of cattle are kept, most of them bred on the spot, and principally the "native Angus," so well known at Smithfield market and other places in England, to which a number are sent by the Dundee steamers.
The short-horned breed have of late also been introduced upon . .
. . the best soils and in sheltered situations. A great quantity of Highland wedders (castrated male lambs) are also fed on turnips in winter.
The consequence of all which is, that, instead of inferior soils being allowed to go out of cultivation, since the peace, their improvement has actually been much extended, in the face of the low prices of produce.
The tenants are most industrious; and the progress of improvement has been much aided by the liberality of the proprietors in the reduction of rents.
Manufactures. - In 1806, a mill for spinning flax was built on the Glammiss burn. It contains 16 frames. The water-wheel is of sixteen horse power. And in 1820, a steam-engine of ten horse power was added, to assist when the water becomes scarce in summer. There is also a plash-mill on the same stream, for cleaning the yarn. 66 people of both sexes are employed on the premises. The females have 3s.6d. to 7s.6d., and the males from 12s. to £1 per week, of wages. The yarn spun at the mill is manufactured in different parts of the parish, and produces about 4,000 pieces of brown linen annually, principally for the Dundee market. There are also manufactured annually by private individuals in the parish, about 7,500 pieces of brown linen, besides those wove by the proprietors of the mill. The cloth is chiefly Osnaburgs and sheetings.
In 1831, a circulating library was established for the use of the mill people, and now contains from 200 to 300 volumes.
V. - PAROCHIAL ECONOMY.
Villages, Means of Communication, &c. - The village of Glammiss is situated nearly in the centre of the parish; it is a post-town. The great northern road from Edinburgh to Aberdeen passes through it, and another crosses there, from Kirriemuir to Dundee, which is the nearest port, and from which it is twelve miles distant by that turnpike.
Ecclesiastical State. - In this parish there are very few dissenters from the Established Church, not above 10 or 15 in all. The parish church was built in 1793, and is remarkably well attended. It is a plain house, with a spire. It accommodates about 950 sitters. The average number of communicants is about 750. The manse, which is commodious house, was built in 1788: and during the present incumbency, a considerable addition was made to it. The stipend is 136 bolls of barley, and 136 bolls of meal, payable according to the fiars prices, . .
. . with £8 : 6s.: 8d. for communion elements. The glebe and garden contain nearly 7 acres Scots. The last augmentation was settled in 1824. The teinds are not exhausted. The present incumbent was ordained in 1780.
Poor and. Parochial Funds. - The number of paupers who receive regular parochial aid is 25, exclusive of occasional paupers. One old woman, who is bed-ridden, costs the kirk-session 5s. per week. Another, who in deranged, is boarded at the rate of £12 per annum. Some receive from 2s. 6d. to 10s. monthly; and others from 1s.6d. to 2s.6d. weekly, according to circumstances. The amount paid out by the kirk-session in 1834, was £136: 5s.: 6½d. The poor's funds of the parish being exhausted, the heritors, wishing as long as possible to avoid a general assessment, have agreed to advance what is necessary for the support of the indigent. The church collections and the money received for marriage proclamations, the use of the mortcloth and hearse, in 1834, amounted to £77: 19s.: 5½d.
Friendly Societies. - There are two friendly societies in the parish, namely, those of the Masons and the Gardeners. Some years ago they erected a handsome building in the village, where they hold their meetings. It consists of two large halls, and some smaller apartments. There are about 200 members in each society. Each member of the Masons' Society pays 1s., and of the Gardeners 1s.6d. per quarter. When any of the members are in distress and unable to work, they have a weekly allowance for their support. The widows of masons are allowed £1.:10s. yearly, and their children under seven years of age are allowed 10s. each per annum. Their orphans have 10s. yearly, till they are ten years old. The widows of gardeners are allowed £1 per annum, and their children under ten years of age are allowed 10s. each yearly. The stock of the Mason Lodge amounts to £350; and that of the Gardeners to about £300.
Library. - In 1828, a subscription library was formed in the village of Glammiss, and now contains from 600 to 700 volumes, managed by a, committee of the members. The annual subscription is 4s.; entry-money, 5s. Various donations of books have been given by individuals in the neighbourhood.
Education. - Besides the parochial school, there are three private schools in the parish. The salary of the parochial schoolmaster is the maximum, with a good house and garden. The average number of his scholars is 70. His fees may . .
. . amount to £26 per annum. The other teachers depend on the school fees. One of them is allowed, by the farmers in his district, a few bolls of meal yearly. The number of their scholars may amount to 100 or 120.
There are four Sabbath schools in the parish, generally well attended. An infant school was opened in the village of Glammiss at Whitsunday last, and is very flourishing. It is attended by about 60 scholars, who pay 1d. each per week. The school mistress has a salary of £25 per annum, which is paid by a subscription in the parish and neighbourhood. The Trustees of the late Earl of Strathmore have generously allowed the teacher a house and garden, with playground, and have fitted up the school in the best manner for the purpose; and they and the other heritors are now about to erect a new parochial school at Glammiss, the present one being found much too small and inconvenient. Mr. Jamieson Willis, the minister's assistant, besides his other labours, has regular classes through the week in different parts of the parish, for instructing the young people in the knowledge of the great truths of the Gospel.
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This page was updated - 09 December, 2014