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The Anecdotage of Glasgow
William Elphinstone, the Father of Glasgow Trade

ABOUT, or soon after, the foundation of the University in 1457, William Elphinstone, a younger member of the aristocratic family of that name, came to the city, and became a merchant therein, he is mentioned as a curer of salmon and herrings for the French market, for which brandy and salt were brought back in return; and from this fact it will be seen at once that it was not without good reason that the Saut Herring was promoted to the dignity of a Glasgo’w Magistrate. it was one of the first articles of Glasgow trade, and was thus certainly well entitled to the honour. William Elphinstone acquired the estates of Gorbals and Blythswood. His wife was Margaret Douglas of the house of Mains, in Dumbartonshire, and amongst the descendants of the family, the estate of Blythswood remains to this day.

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