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History of Grangemouth
Historic Dates in History AD 142 - 1885


Pre Roman, this was the home of the Cymri Welsh speaking Celts.

A.D. 142
The start of the building of the Antonine Wall

182
The Romans evacuate "The Wall" leaving behind Easter and Wester Caer to outposts that become the Kerse.

541
Cunneda, the "Father of Wales" takes the Cymri south to protect the Romans from the invading Irish.

574
King Aidan of Dalriada drove out the Saxons who had taken over from the Picts.

654
Donal Breac King of Dalriada defeated by the Anglos.

711
The Picts and the Scots defeat the Northumbrians, all these battles fought between the Avon and the Carron.

1130
Sir John de Striveling starts to build Wester Kerse Castle. He changed his name to Stirling.

1140
Part of Easter Kerse is given to Arbroath Abbey for farming and salt manufacture. King David I gave the rest to Newbattle Abbey, and the title changed to Abbots Kerse. King Alexander 2nd gave the Abbey lands to Holyrood.

1245
Sir John de Striveling's grandson, takes over Kerse Castle and his second son assumes the title Sir John Stirling of Kerse.

1347
Daughter Marjory, inherits the estate, she married John De Menteith grandson of the one who betrayed William Wallace.

1513
The Menteiths settled their feud with the Bruces of Airth when William married Helen Bruce, he became a M.P. and James 4th granted him "The lands of Wester Kerse, the fortalice, manor, gardens, orchards and the river fishings".

1552
Robert, half brother of Mary Queen of Scots, seels East, Mid and West Saltcoats, Carronflats, Inch and Reddoch Abbey lands to the Duke of Hamilton.

1629
William Menteith imprisoned in Blackness Castle for a feud with the Livingstones of Dunipace.

1631
Kerse Estates confiscated for the refusal of the Menteiths to conform to the new religion.

1637
New owner Sir Thomas Hope, involved in the riots at St.Giles when "A multitude of wives threw their stools at the Bishop of Edinburgh". He was issuing the "New Prayer Book".  The Hopes removed the castle, and built the Kerse House we knew.

1750
Lawrence Dundas buys Kerse Estates.

1768
He cuts the first sod to build the Great Canal.

1770
The building of the 3rd Granary at the side of the Canal, it became the Seamen's Bethel and Sealock Hall.  The first Granary was in Glensburgh to store grain from Dundas Mill which stood where Central Avenue is now, the Miller and his assistants lived at Bowsplank Cottages. The 2nd Granary was in the Boatyard; it was demolished in 1994.

1772
Dundas lays the foundation stone for the first house twixt the Carron and the Canal that became Grangemouth.

1782
J.Welsh builds a 47 ton sloop "Jean and Janet" the first ship built in Grangemouth.

1783
Ships registered at Grangemouth, the first use of the name.

1784
A Whale Boiling Factory opened in Esplin's Building in North Basin Street.   The Crown Inn opened in Canal Street, the first licensed place in the town - population 424.

1786
Fish Curing Factory opened in Dalgrain Road.

1788
J.Cowie takes over the Boatyard, a 56 ton sloop "Jean" is his first ship.

1789
A school house in Burnett Street. Lord Dundas gives to the "fchool-mafter a houfe to dwell in, a fchool-room and L5. a year". Pupil's fees were 4/- to 6/- a quarter.  Farm workers earned L12 a year with board, "common" servants L3 to L4. without board. (L was a Scottish Pound).

1790
The Opening of the Forth and Clyde Canal.

1790's
A.Hart takes over the Boatyard.

1797
Kerse Road constructed Polmont to Glensburgh, and the Grange Burn diverted to new course.

1801
The building of the "Charlotte Dundas" (Mark 1). The hull was built by A.Hart and taken to Carron Iron Works where W.Symington's engine was installed, it didn't generate enough power and so Symington designed and patented a new engine.

1803
"Charlotte Dundas" (Mark 2 - 58ft long x 18ft beam) sails to Port Dundas but the Canal Company refuse to take up their option. Symington retired to London where he died a pauper.

1804
J.Allan takes over the "Yard" his first ship, a 64 ton sloop "Crawford".

1805
The first of the Rope Works and sail makers.

1808?
New School in West Middle Street.  In 1827 was called the Zetland.

1809
The first Post Office, Canal Street. G.Gibson, Merchant.

1810
Custom House built.

1811
The first Dry Dock opened.  4th Granary opened in Carron Street, during the Great War it became a Naval Billet and housed the first W.R.N.S. in 1918, it then became the Hosiery. Grain was imported from Canada and the sailing ships were called "Quebecers".

1818
Falkirk - Burke and Hare meet while working on the "Black Tunnel" on the Union Canal.

1820
Opening of the first Bowling Club.

1825
Adamson's the ship builders of Greenock take over the "Yard" and in 1827 build a Brig, "Alexander" 259 tons.

A scow from Liverpool bound for Grangemouth held in Canal at Cadder, its cargo, corpses bound for Dr. Knox in Edinburgh. Dr. Knox was the anatomist who bought the bodies of the victims of Burke and Hare.

1829
Grangemouth introduces "Boating Regattas" to the Forth.

1831
March 22, Death of W.Symington buried in a pauper's grave at St Botolph's churchyard at Aldgate in London.  This Epitaph was unveiled in 1905:

"He constructed the "Charlotte Dundas" the first steamboat fitted for practical use; dying in want he was buried in the adjacent churchyard."

St.Botolph's is now a refuge for homeless who walk the streets of London.

It's ironic, the year he died a pleasure steamer "Lord Dundas" started excursions through the Canal from Glasgow to Grangemouth to Alloa.

1869
New Gas Works opens in Dalgrain Road.

1872
31 Dec. Grangemouth becomes a Burgh.

1873
Opening of Police Station at Basin Bank with 2 cells (to be rented out when no in use)

1874
12 Licensed premises; population now 3,000.

Hospital built where the present Dock Gates are now.

1875
Dundas School opens, also new Zetland school.

Start of the decline in the popularity of the "Regatta" only 4,000 turn up; population only 3,000!!

1876
Millhall Water Works opens.

1877
2 constables added to the Police Force.  Our first Fire Brigade formed, the engine cost 155.

1878
First Sawmill, McPherson and McLarnes.

Dobson and Charles take over the "Yard".

1879
They build a 297 ton Iron Screw Steamer "Emerald".

1880
Fire Brigade unable to attend fire at Overton Farm, they had lost the harness for the horses.

Sgt. McGregor of the Police Force suspended, he opened a Dram Shop in Dundas Street.

1882
Dows Mill which had the first sawdust bing, it became Muirheads.

3 June Opening of the New Carron Dock and the Zetland Public Park.

"Craighill" a 1116 ton Steel Screw Steamer built in the "Yard".

1884
Opening of Charing Cross Church.

Electricity introduced by the railway for dock use.

Foundation stone laid for new Town Hall.

Post Office moved to Charing Cross.

1885
Brownlees opened.

Grangemouth Dockyard Company take over the boatyard, and build their first twin-screw steamer "The Knight of St.Patrick".

1887
Mrs Andrew Carnegie launches a ship in the "Boatyard" and offers 600 to the building of a library.

Drill Hall opened in Talbot Street. Peter Kincaid starts business.

We'd like to thank Grangemouth Heritage Trust for supplying the above information.


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