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Annals of Dunfermline
A.D. 1801 - 1901 - Part 10

  1843.—HERITORS AND LANDOWNERS OF THE PARISH.—The following shows the name of the landowners in the Parish of Dunfermline, in April, 1843, with their valuations in the Cess Book of the county:--

  The Right Hon. the Earl of Elgin                             £4426     19    6
  Mrs. Madox Blackwood, Of Pitreavie                       1801     18    5
  James Hunt, of Pittencrieff                                       1706     15    6
  Sir John Halket, Bart., Pitferrane                               1553       8   4
  Andrew Moffat Wellwood, of Garvock                    1220       0   0
  George Robertson Barclay, of Keavil                       1008     11    4
  Charles Durie, of Craigluscar                                      702       3   4
  Robert Downie, of Appin, for Touch, &c                   399     13    7
  Col. Martin Lindsay, of Halbeath                                367       6   8
  Adam Rolland, of Gask                                            317        7   11
  Lady Buchan Hepburn, of Blackburn                        314        4   7
  James Kerr, of Middlebank                                       310        3   3
  Mrs. Winstanley, 1/5 of Pitliver, &c                          305        0   0
  Messrs. Aitken, of South Fod                                   283        0   10
  The Guildry of Dunfermline                                      268      15  11

  POLICE COMMISSION.—On 30th April, 1843, the debts of the Board were £2,044 14s. 5d. This debt is in gradual process of being reduced, by payment of yearly instalments

  WEAVING—Jacquard Machines.—These machines, when first introduced in 1825, cost from £12 to £15.  In 1843 the same description of machine could be purchased at from £2 5s. to £3 5s.  (MS Note)

  GREAT “ECCLESIASTICAL EXCITEMENT”—The Free Kirk.—As in other parts of Scotland, at this period, “the citizens of Dunfermline were much agitated on the subject of non-intrusion when they heard of the vote of the General Assembly at Edinburgh, and of the march of  the non-intrusion ministers to Tanfield Hall,” May, 1843.  “Great ecclesiastical excitement” was the consequence.  “After this the building of Free Kirks became the order of the day.”  (MS Note)

  STAMP OR DIE FOUND ON TOWERHILL.—During the summer of 1843, while “digging” on the site of the Towerhill, an iron or steel “coining-stamp” was found.  It is supposed to be the coining-stamp of some ancient coiner.  It is now in the Museum of the Society of Antiquaries, Edinburgh.  (Vide Antiq. So. Mus. Catal. p. 88; Chal. Hist. Dunf. )

  THE Poor House (Old Town Green) was finished and occupied in July, 1843.  It is a plain oblong building of two storeys, capable of accommodating 130 persons.  (MS Note)

  THE Postal and Stamp Revenues for 1843 were—Post Office, £3,275 10s. 9d. Stamp Office, £2,477 4s. 10d.

  THE Assessed Taxes for 1843 amounted to £155 19s. 4d.

  PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—“In consequence of a Town Council hitch,” Henry Kidd, banker, was in September, 1843, elected pro tem. Provost.  In November, 1843, James Smith Ronaldson, banker and writer, was elected Provost.  (Burgh Records.)

  PAWNBROKERS.—In December, 1843, there were no less than twelve pawnbrokers in Dunfermline, “besides others who did a quiet business in a similar way.”  They styled themselves general merchants (MS Note)

  NATIONAL SECURITY SAVINGS BANK.—The number of depositors in December, 1843, was 1021; total fund of bank, £18,915 17s. 11d.  (MS Note)

  SHIPPING AT LIMEKILNS AND CHARLESTOWN.—At the end of the year 1843 the shipping at these places was a follows:--Limekilns—6 brigs, 980 tons; 7 schooners, 641 tons; 16 sloops, 738 tons; 1 pinnace, 16 tons.  Charlestown—2 schooners, 137 tons; 4 sloops, 121 tons.  Sailors, &c., 185; wages, from £2 per month.  (MS Note)

  1844.—FREE ABBEY CHURCH.—this church was founded in June, 1843, and was finished and opened for public worship on 21st January, 1844; it had 777 sittings.  The gable or front of this church is of a singular type, having two dwared towers, affecting the old Cathedral style, but it is a most decrepit imitation.  (Newspapers for Jan., 1844)  The “auld Licht Kirk” was purchased by this congregation immediately after the Disruption, when it was taken down of r a site for the Free Abbey Church. 

  ECCLESIASTICAL CENSUS.—The following ecclesiastical census was compiled for the Rev. P. Chalmers, A.M., Abbey Church, early in 1844:--Members of all ages belonging to the Established Church, about 4,00; Free Church, 2,500; United Secession Church (U.P.), 8,000; Relief Church, 700; Baptists, 300; Episcopalians, 163; Congregationalists, 436; Roman Catholics, 105; Rowites, about 50; Swedenborgians, 60; Methodists, 30; Unitarians, 36; Universalists, 26; Friends, 8; about 3,420 not belonging to any congregation.  (M.S.)

  THE Ancient Society of Gardeners in January, 1844, had about 270 members. 

  THE Weaving Trade was in a state of depression this year, 1844; there were about 500 unemployed.  (Newspapers.)

  BATHS were established in Queen Anne Street by Mr. Edward Young, slater, &c.  (MS)

  LITERATURE.—“The Stranger’s Companion Amid the Antiquities of Dunfermline.  Printed and sold by J. Miller & Son.  1844. Price 6d.”  This is a small 12mo. of 60 pages and is divided into six chapters, and contains a very good account of ancient and modern Dunfermline.  A small vignette of the Monastery from the north-west fronts the title page.  This little work went through several editions, and is now out of print. 

  MR. DAVID PATON died at this residence, Wooer’s Alley, Dunfermline, on 13th July, 1844, in the 78th year of his age.  We take the following from our MS notes:--

    Mr. Paton was originally a weaver, but in after life he constructed a turning lathe, and commenced the business of turner, supplying weavers with pirns, bobbins, &c., and was often in request by youths for their peeries and tops.  He was a great mechanical genius; his workshop was quite a repository of art and science, being well filled with all kinds of mechanical nick-nacks of his own making, finished and unfinished, such as box camera obscura’s; telescopes and microscopes; a magic lantern, made out of an old tea chest; a Franklin harmonicon; wooden clocks, common and astronomical; a planetarium constructed with wooden wheels, the teeth of which were cut with a knife, and finished up with a file, but which, nevertheless, showed very satisfactorily the motions of all the then known planets round the sun; a machine for twining thread; a mouse mill, which twined thread by the mouse driving round a wheel, and which also showed several curious mechanical exhibitions; and last, though not least, a model for a perpetual motion, but which would not continue its movement longer than seven and a-half minutes.  Besides all these contrivances, he constructed a curious printing press in 1810, and by its aid he printed a great many little books between that period and 1826, which are noticed in the Annals under the dates of publication.   The types, of which he had bu7t a moderate supply, were much worn out.  A story is till current that he made his own types!  This is a mistake, such a feat was beyond the reach of his art; besides, had he been able to make one type, it would have taken a life time to have produced a few thousands of them.  It is true, however, that he cut initial letters about half an inch square for his books, &c., and he likewise made his own woodcuts for his illustrations; these letters and woodcuts were made by the assistance of a penknife, small chisel and sprig-bits (brugs) of various sizes.  The writer has again to repeat his great respect for the memory of this ingenious man, having in his early days spent many of his leisure hours in his little workshop.

  LITERATURE.—“Historical and Statistical Account of Dunfermline.  By the Rev. Peter Chalmers, A.M., Minister of the First Charge, Abbey Church, Dunfermline, 1844.”  This is a most elaborate volume; full of ancient lore and modern detail; and to future generations it will show forth the unwearied and persevering researches of its learned author.  The work is a large octavo of 592 pages, and has 17 fine illustrative copper-plate engraving.  Published by William Blackwood & Sons, Edinburgh and London, 1844; price 14

  EPISCOPAL OR TRINITY CHURCH, St. Ann’s Place.—the Rev. William Bruce was ordained minister of this church in 1844.  (See An. Dunf. 1847)

  THE Dunfermline Presbytery was this year disjoined from Kinross.  fourteen members (clergymen) now constitute the Presbytery of Dunfermline.  (MS Note)

  PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—James S. Ronaldson, Esq., banker, &c re-elected Provost, November, 1844.  (Burgh Records)

  CHALMERS’ STREET CHURCH.—The Rev. T. Walker was ordained minister of this church on 16th November, 1844.  He resigned his charge in July, 1858, having received a call to Ballarat, Australia.

  1845.—THE New Prison, which had for some time past been in course of erection, was finished and occupied early in January, 1845.

  ROTTEN ROW—West Queen Ann Street.—The Rotten Row, leading east from the middle of Collier row, or Bruce Street, had its name changed to West Queen Ann Street, in 1845, because it was “an ugly name.”  the Dunfermline Rotten Row was known by this name 400 years ago.  (MS Note; see An. Dunf. dates 1487, 1500, 1735.)  In reference to the name Ratton, rattin, and Rattan, it may be noted that it was anciently applied to undressed timber.  Houses, when constructed entirely of rattons, were ratton-houses, and when a number such ratton-houses adjoined each other, they were known as ratton rows.  There was a quay at Ayr known as the Ratton Quay.  (See Burns’s Poems.)  When worship was conducted in the nave of the Abbey Chuirch, Dunfermline, there was “a sounding roof” known across the church, half way up to the “top roof,” to keep “the sound down.”  this roof was constructed wholly of undressed timber, and was known as the rotten or rattan laft.  the Rotten Row of London appears to have got its name from a row of undressed timber huts.

  ABBEY CHURCH—Induction.—The Rev. James French, of St. Bernard’s Church, Edinburgh, was inducted minister of the Second Charge of the Abbey Church, Dunfermline, on 2nd May, 1845.  (Parish Regist.)

  THE Burgh-Tron and Site of Fish-Market, &c Removed, 1845.—“From time immemorial the public Tron and Market for the sale of sundries was near the lower end of the High Street (north side).  When the Tron-beam was put in its place, “the top beam overhung the pavement, and as the weighing scales were suspended from this beam, it caused great annoyance to passersby.  This year the site was changed to Black’s Close, High Street.”  (Newspaper.)

  CARTOON—“Spirit of Religion.”—The splendid cartoon, entitled, “The Spirit of Religion,” painted by Mr. Joseph Paton, was finished early in 1845, and gained the Government prize in August of same year.  (MS Note)

  GYMNASIUM.—A very excellent gymnasium was erected in 1845 in the playground of the High School, by Mr. A. Haxton, the Rector, which was much appreciated.

  PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—James Smith Ronaldson, Esq., banker, &c re-elected Provost, November,1845.  (Burgh Records.)

  POLICE.—“A night-watch of twelve policemen was this year permanently established by the Commissioners of Police.  They were clothed in uniforms, and were supplied with dark lanterns for night service.”  (MS Note)

  HALBEATH COAL PIT.—The fitting up of Halbeath Coal Pit, executed during the year 1845, is said to have cost of about £12,000.  (MS Note)

  DUNFERMLINE PRISON STATISTICS.—During 1845, the first year’s term of the new jail, there were 262 prisoners for short periods of confinement. 

  1846.—THE Western Bank of Scotland opened a branch in Dunfermline in February, 1846.  It was closed in February. 1858, in consequence of the disastrous failure of the head bank in Glasgow. 

  NEW WATER COMPANY FORMED.—In consequence of the frequent dearth of water experienced about this time, and occasioned by the great increase of inhabitants and the erection of public works, a new water company was formed, early in 1846, with a share-capital of £13,500 (subscribed).  The water to be brought from Craigluscar to the town.  (MS Note; see also Chal. Hist. Dunf. vol. ii. pp. 63-65.)

  FOSSIL ORGANIC REMAINS.—In the spring of 1846 several specimens were discovered of the tooth of the Megalichthys at Halbeath Colliery.  They were highly prized and excited great interest.  Some of the specimens were given to the Rev. Mr. Chalmers.  (MS Note and Newspapers.)

  THE Proposed Stirling and Dunfermline Railway.—A petition in favour of this railway was, in April, 1846, sent to the House of Commons, in London, with 2,000 signatures appended to it.  (Dunf. Advert.)

  A GRAND Procession and Public Meeting took place in Dunfermline, in honour of the Repeal of the Corn Laws, on 3rd July, 1846.  The sum of £78 was subscribed to defray expenses.  There was a concert and soiree in the evening.  (Dunf. Advertiser)

  HUGHES Mammoth Establishment of Elephants, Camels, and Horses visited Dunfermline early in August.  Business was almost entirely suspended.  Upwards of £250 was drawn on that occasion by the establishment.  (Dunf. Advertiser.)

  ROMAN CATHOLIC CONGREGATION.—The members of this congregation in 1846 numbered 397.  Their clergyman then became a residenter.  (Dunf. Advertiser.)

  DESTRUCTIVE FLOODS IN DUNFERMLINE.—The Dunfermline Monthly Advertiser, in noticing the floods, says:--

    “On the evening of Sabbath, 5th July [1846] this district was visited by one of the most tremendous floods ever witnessed here.  The rain fell, not in torrents, but in cataracts.  About four o’clock on Monday morning the various streams in the neighbourhood were swollen to raging rivers.  ‘Tumblinbroun, the burns cam doun, roarinfrae bank tae brae.’  Fifty eight looms were immersed.  The water rose 6 inches above the webs.  A set of cards worth £30 were destroyed.  Part of the Spittal Brig fell.  Embankments and dykes were levelled.  Mr. Beveridge, of Urquhart, sustained a loss of nearly £200 by such mishaps as sheep drowning, &c.  Several persons were drowned.  Several bridges on the Carnock-burn were overthrown.  Gardens were inundated with slush, mud, rubbish, &c.”  (See also Chal. Hist. Dunf. vol. ii. pp. 283, 284.)

  THE EARL OF ELGIN Appointed Governor of Canada.—The Right Hon. the Earl of Elgin was appointed Governor of Canada, September, 1846, which office he held until September, 1854, when he was selected to proceed on a special mission to the Chinese Government.  (Newspapers, &c.)

  PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—James Smith Ronaldson, banker, re-elected Provost.  (Burgh Records)

  THE East of Scotland Malleable Iron Company was formed by Alexander Allison, Esq., of Blair, Parish of Culross.  a large copartnery was formed.  It never proved remunerative, and ended in a disastrous failure, in November, 1850.  (Newspaper)

  THE Freedom of the Burgh was conferred on the Right Hon. the Earl of Elgin, along with a M.S. address, on 16th December, previous to his leaving this country to assume the Governorship of Canada.  (Burgh Records, 16th December, 1846.)

  1847.—“EARL OF ELGIN.—A public dinner was given to the Earl of Elgin in the Free Abbey School in January, 1847, previous to his departure to assume the reins of government in Canada.”  (Dunf. Advertiser.)

  THE Free Abbey Schools were opened by Mr. Bruce on 15th February, 1847.  There was a large attendance if boys and girls. 

  STIRLING AND DUNFERMLINE RAILWAY.—The Dunfermline portion of this railway was commenced by James Anstruther, Esq., who cut the first turf on the 8th March, 1847, in a field near Milesmark.  A grand procession afterwards took place of the Directors, and also of the Trades, the Mason Lodges, the Gardeners, &c.  After the procession a public dinner was partaken of with the usual hilarity of toasts.  (Dunf. Adver.)

  UNION OF THE SECESSION AND RELIEF CHURCHES.—The union of these churches throughout Scotland was effected on the 13th May, 1847, in Tanfield Hall, Edinburgh.  The Relief Church of Dunfermline had its name changed to the Gillespie Church, and the Secession, along with the new adherents, was called the United Presbyterian Church. (U.P.)  (Newspaper)

  THE REV. WILLIAM BRUCE was inducted minister of Trinity Church, Bath Street (Episcopal), in 1847.

  OLD CHURCH REPAIRS.—The repairs on the old Abbey Church (internal and external), by the direction of H.M. Board of Works, were commenced in May, 1847, under the superintendence of Mr. Andrew Balfour, builder.

  FREE ST. ANDREW’S CHURCH, St. Margaret’s Street, was finished and opened for public worship May 23, 1847.  The opening service was conducted by the Rev. Dr. Candlish, Edinburgh.  (Dunf. Advertiser.)

  THE REV. J. MIDDLETON was inducted minister of St. Andrew’s Church in April, 1847.  (MS Note)

  THE DUNFERMLINE STEAM POWER WEAVING FACTORY.—This factory, erected in Pitmuir Street for another purpose about 1816, was, in the year 1847, established by Mr. Scott, but it turned out unsuccessful.  The present proprietors, Messrs. A. Reid & Co. have had this factory since 1859, and they employ about 500 operatives.  (MS Note)

  A BRANCH of the Scottish Educational Institute was established in June, 1847.  (Dunfermline Advertiser.)

  RELIEF CHURCH UNTENABLE.—In July, 1847, the old Relief Church, built in 1775, was declared untenable.  A new building was proposed, the congregation removing in the meantime to Maygate chapel.

  THORNTON RAILWAY.—The construction of this railway commenced in October, 1847—the pick, spade, and crowbar, being busy at work at the east end of Reform Street, Gardener’s Land, &c.  this railway is a continuation eastward of the Stirling and Dunfermline railway also forming.  (Dunfermline Advertiser.)

  A NEW COACH was “started to run” between Dunfermline and Burntisland in connection with the Edinburgh and Dundee Railway.

  1848.—GREENWICH TIME.—The Dunfermline Advertiser for February says,--“On Sabbath, 30th January [1848], the early ringing of the bells took both ministers and people by surprise, the clocks having been put forward 12 ½ minutes all over the country to bring them to Greenwich time.”  It would have been more correct to have stated that all the clocks in the country had to be set to Greenwich time, because many of them were “put forward” more or less than the above noted minutes.  Some clocks required no alteration at all, while others were “put back” several minutes, according to their position east of the Greenwich meridian.  The difference of time between Dunfermline and Greenwich meridians in 13 minutes 50 ½ seconds—that is, Dunfermline time is so much behind Greenwich time.

  LITERATURE.—The Dunfermline Monthly News.—The first number of a small news sheet, under the above title, was issued on the 23rd February, 1848.  It ceased to exist on 23rd February, 1855.

  EAST OF SCOTLAND MALLEABLE IRON COMPANY.—The following note is taken from the Dunfermline Advertiser for February, 1848:--

    “The first annual general meeting of the shareholders of this company was held in Hutton’s Inn, Bridge Street, when 60 shareholders were present, representing 3443 shares.  It was reported at this meeting that the works would be in operation about the end on June, 1848, and turning out 150 tons of iron weekly.  It was also stated at this meeting that 9928 shares had been allocated, and the calls paid on these, £21,474 5s.

Another note, from the same paper of 11th August, 1848, says:--

    “Wednesday, the 2nd of August [1848] was a great day at our Malleable Iron Works.  The large foundry and machinery being all in working order, it was resolved to start the works that day, and by the kind permission of Mr. Cadell, the public were permitted to view the whole.  The steam, having been got up in three very large boilers, was set on, and immediately the engine went off in majestic style, playing sweetly and easily in all its parts, and setting in motion those ponderous wheels and beams which lately passed through the streets of the town.  The engine is 80 horse power; the fly wheel, which is 27 tons, makes 70 revolutions per minute,” &c.

  GILLESPIE CHURCH.—“The foundation stone of this handsome church was laid by the Rev. Professor M’Michael, on the 19th Sept., 1848; but the church was considerably advanced at this period.”  (Dunf. advertiser; An. Dunf. date 1849)

  PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—James S. Ronaldson, Esq., banker, &c was re-elected Provost in November.  (Burgh Records.)

  1849.—THE ELECTRIC LIGHT.—On the evening of January 26, 1849, Mr. J. H. Pepper, of London, delivered a lecture in the Independent Chapel, Canmore Street, on “Light, and Natural Magic,” during which he exhibited the Electric Light, “the lion of the evening,” to the great delight of a well filled house. 

  SONG SCHOOL OF DUNFERMLINE.—Mr. George Martin received the appointment of Master of the Song School, and Parish Clerk in April, 1849.  (Dunf. Advertiser)

  Mr. James Rankine, Master of the Song School and Parish Clerk of Dunfermline, died on April 21, aged 52 years.

    Mr. Rankine was appointed to these offices in November, 1819, and had therefore held them for the long period of nearly 30 years.  In 1820 he established a school in the Mason Lodge, Maygate, for “teaching English Reading, Writing, Arithmetic and Music.”  The speculation turned out unsuccessful, and his school was closed early in 1822.  In the years 1820 and 1823 he published “Song Books” (of which notices are given in the Annals under these dates).  Mr. Rankine was a great master of music; he had a fine melodious voice, and sang with great taste and effect, for which, says a newspaper, “his fame was in all the churches.”  He was kind, open hearted, genial, and social and a popular man wherever he was known.  He had been long sickly and Session Clerk of the Parish of Dunfermline.  He died highly respected and deeply regretted.  “He was interred in the South Abbey Churchyard, where there is to be seen a small tombstone with a strung harp cut on it, erected by some of his admirers.”  (MS Note)

  THE Society of Maltmen and Whipmen was dissolved on the 26th of May, 1849.  (Dunf. Advertiser.)

  RALPH ERSKINE’S STATUE.—The statue of Rev. Ralph Erskine, sculptured b y Mr. Handyside Ritchie of Edinburgh, was erected by Mr. A. Balfour, builder, Dunfermline, in June this year, if front of Queen Ann Street Church, a few yards from the position occupied by the pulpit in the kirk of 1740.  It was inaugurated on the 27th of that month.  “There was a grand procession on the occasion, composed of a great number of ministers and members of the Secession Church in Dunfermline and elsewhere, accompanied by the Freemasons of Dunfermline, and deputations from the Grand Lodge of Edinburgh, and St. John’s Lodge, Cupar, accompanied by the Dunfermline Instrumental Band,” &c.  (Annals of Dunfermline, dates 1740 and 1799.)

  NORTH CHURCH—Induction.—The Rev. Charles Rogers was inducted as minister of this church in July 1849.  He relinquished his charge in June, 1850.  (See Dr. Rogers’s “Leaves from my Biography,” for an account of his work while in Dunfermline.)

  M’Lean’s Hospital—This hospital is situated to the east of the Poorhouse—a commodious building of two storeys; it was finished in June, 1849.  It is so named in consequence of a donation of £500 from the Rev. A. M’Lean’s trust-funds for its erection, at the suggestion of the trustees.  (Chal. Hist. Dunf. vol.ii. p. 322.)

  STIRLING AND DUNFERMLINE RAILWAY.—“The works on this line at Boufies Brae are progressing rapidly.  A viaduct of five noble arches is to span the valley; two of the arches are thrown, and the piers for the others are built; while to make way for several minor bridges, &c, several small houses have been swept away, and the aspect of the district has been completely changed.”  (Dunfermline Advertiser, Aug. 17, 1849.)

  THE CHOLERA.—“The ravages of this disease here during the week were fearful, about eight or ten being reported dead every morning.  The medical men are nobly doing their duty, and standing between the living and the dying.  the prayer-meetings in Queen Ann Street Church were well attended.”  (Dunf. Advertiser, Oct. 12, 1849.)

  THE REV. MR. CRAIG was inducted Minister of the Independent Church, Canmore Street, in 1849.

  FREE ABBEY CHURCH, Canmore Street,--The Rev. James M’Kenzie, from Annan, was inducted minister of this church on 1st November, 1849.  (Dunf. Advertiser.)

  GILLESPIE CHURCH was opened for divine service on Sunday, Nov. 4, 1849; builder Mr. Andrew Balfour.  The collection during the day amounted to £242 5s. 4d.  Captain Cameron, R. E., Ordnance Map Office, Southampton, once informed the writer that Gillespie Church stand on the highest ground in the city, 354 feet above the level of the height of mean tide in the Firth of Forth.  this site brings to our remembrance the inscription on the stone in Pannier Alley, the highest elevation in ancient London.  It may be applied to the site of Gillespie Church:

“When ye have sought the City round,
Yet still this is the highest ground.”

What a fine site for a steeple!  Since this church was built the want of a steeple has often been regretted.  A fine and large lithographic view of this church, facing the street, was published in October, 1849, by Miller & Buchanan, Glasgow. 

  PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—William Kinnis, Esq., was elected Provost, Nov., 1849.  (Burgh Records.)

  FIRST LOCOMOTIVE ENGINE IN DUNFERMLINE.—The Dunfermline News, of 24th November, 1849 says:

    “About the 9th [November, 1849] happening to be in the eastern district, my attention was arrested by several youngsters bawling out to their faithers and mithers, ‘The steam-coach is coming! Come!  Come!’  In an instant the click of the shuttle ceased, and almost every door poured forth its inmates, while men and women were to be seen making their way through closes and yards.  When it passed the bridge at the Old Washing Green, it gave the warning whistle, and many jokes were passed.  It has been no stranger since, as it may now be seen every hour dragging a score of wagons behind it.”

  OPENING of the Railway from Dunfermline to Crossgates.—The Dunfermline Advertiser of 14th December, 1849 says:

    “On Thursday, the 13th [December, 1849] this line was opened for traffic from Dunfermline to Crossgates, whereby 25 minutes are saved, and the journey to Edinburgh performed in two hours and a half.  A spacious road to the terminus, or station, near Inglis Street, has been made from James’ Street, at the back of St. Margaret’s Church, which will be the entrance to the railway at present.  A considerable number of the inhabitants were astir to witness the start, dark as the morning was.”

  LITERATURE.—“Poems.”  Published by Andrew Ewing Shoolbred.  The Scottish Press Newspaper says;--“We commend this modest, but very meritorious volume to all who relish real poetry offered without pretension.”  The volume consists of 312 pages; price 5s.  December, 1849.  The following is an extract from one of the hymns, entitled “Sun of Righteousness”:

“When darkening clouds of sorrow roll,
And cast a gloom across the soul.
To Thee I turn for sheer and bliss,
Thou glorious Sun of Righteousness.”

  COUNTY BUILDINGS.—The large spired edifice at the cross, successively known as the Cross Buildings, the Guild Hall and Spire Hotel, was, during the later part of 1849 and 1850, converted into a public Court House, &c., for the use of the Sheriff of the County and his Substitute for the Western District of Fife, to hold their courts in.  The Procurator Fiscal has also offices in the same building.  The business of the Post Office is conducted in one of its spacious rooms fronting the High Street. 

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