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Annals of Dunfermline
A.D. 1801 - 1901 - Part 7

1823.— GREAT SNOW-STORM .—" 28th Jan., 1823: After snowing for about ten hours, the average depth of snow on the streets was found to be about 3 1/2 feet, and the height of drifted snow in several places 10 and 12 feet. (Vide Annals of Dunfermline, "Snow-Storm in 1827.")


DEATH OF THE REV. JAMES  M'FARLANE.—The Rev. James M'Farlane, minister of the Second Charge of Queen Ann Street Secession Church, died on 10th April, 1823, in the 64th year of his age, and 33rd year of his ministry.


COMMERCIAL BANK.—A branch office of the Commercial Bank of Edinburgh was established in Dunfermline in 1812, but shortly afterwards it was withdrawn. This year (1823) it was re-established permanently, Mr. Ker, Collier Row, manager. (MS. Note.)


FISH MARKET AT THE TRON.—This winter and spring there was so plentiful a supply of haddocks and herring from the east of Fife, that the former were selling at the rate of 12 and 13 Ibs. for 4 d., and the latter at 1 1/2d, per dozen! (MS.)


THE CHAMBER FLUTE-ORUM, Invented by David Hatton.—David Hatton, originally a weaver, afterwards a small grocer in PIttencrieff Street, Dunfermline, completed early in 1823 his new musical instrument, which he called a " chamber flute-orum," and in the scheming of which, he tells us, he had been engaged about 20 years. This machine became quite celebrated; so much so, that the inventor was better known by the name "flute-orum" than by his own name. The machine consisted of two large German flutes, mounted on a solid base of wood, in connection with air-cisterns and bellows. These bellows were worked by the elbows. Thus he was enabled to accompany " the flute-orum music" with his own voice, which he says, "pleases me well, and has met with the approbation of many hundreds of visitors." In the Glasgow Mechanics' Magazine for 31st July, 1824, vol. ii.p. 17, there is a copper-plate engraving of the flute-orum, with Hatton m the back-ground, in Quaker dress, in the act of performing on his instrument. David Hatton left Dunfermline for Bridge of Orr, about 1829, where for several years he kept a grocery store. He died on 12th March, 1851, aged 67.


THE ST. CRISPIN PROCESSION —Dunfermline 29th August, 1823 —The forthcoming Crispin Procession was the talk of the town and country-side for months before it took place, and when the day came, the procession was a splendid affair, and was witnessed by at least 8000 spectators. The following is an extract from the Minute-Book of the St. Crispin Lodge of Dunfermline regarding this great and splendid procession, viz.:—


  It has been known for some time past that the Cordwainers of Dunfermline have been employed in forwarding preparations for celebrating with due pomp the Festival of their Patron Saint. This ceremony will accordingly take place on Friday the Twenty-ninth of August this present year, being Eighteen Hundred and Twenty-Three (1823), when the Craft will assemble in the Town Hall at 10 of the clock forenoon, and the Grand Procession will move at one o'clock precisely.

  The following members are appointed a Committee to manage the procession, viz.:—Henry Lawrie, David Simpson, David Wardlaw, Robert Westwood, John Simpson, George Marshall, Alex. Bennet, John Marshall, Alex. Swrles, Alex. Mossman, Robert Chalmers, James Anderson.

  It was resolved and agreed upon that the following members bear the respective titles to which their names are annexed when in the procession:—

Champion,  ......                                David Simpson.

Macer, .......                                       George Marshall.

Secretary of State, .     ....                 John Marshall.

Chaplain,   ......                                         Andrew Young.

Archbishop, ......                                       George Shaw.

Lord High Chancellor, ....                         Henry Lawrie.

King, ,....                                                   Robert Burns.

Crispinus,   ......                                         James Simpson.

Lord Mayor,     .....                                    David Wardlaw.

Aldermen, …..                                          Robert Chalmers.

                                                                  Michael White.

Indian Prince,   .....                                    David Kennedy.

Aides-de-Camp to the Indian Prince,….. George Thomson,

                                                                  James Black

Page to Indian Prince, ....                          James M'Grouther.

Field-Marshal,    .....                                 Alexander Bennet.

Aids-de-Camp to Field-Marshal,   .    .    Andrew Moyes

                                                                  James Ellis

Sir Hugh,  ......                                          Alex. Mossman,

Supporters to Sir Hugh,………                James Drysdale.

                                                                  James Allison.

Standard Bearers to Sir Hugh,…..            Robert Glass, Red Rod

                                                                  Thos. Caw, Black Rod

Order of the Grand Processio:—


Two Heralds on Horseback.

Three Broad Swordsmen, Mounted.

Six Girls Strewing Flowers.

Four Spearmen (Two and Two).

Champion's Banner.

Champion's Shield and Spear,



Two Macers.

SECRETARY OF STATE IN HIS ROBES (Supported by two Lords).

Six Gentlemen Ushers.

Sword of State.

Chaplain in his Gown and Bands.


(In his Canonicles, with two Supporters).


(Supported by Two Dukes),

And guarded by Six Highlanders on each side.


(Brother to the King-Captain General).


Supported by two Aldermen.

Band of Music.


And Two Supporters.


And Two Supporters.

Two Ensigns bearing Colours.

Half of Main Body.

Stand of Colours.

Half of Main Body.

Band of Music,


(Three and Three).


Supported by Aids-de-Camp on each side,

All Mounted on Horseback.




Supported by Aids-de-camp on each side,

All on Horseback.

Two Ushers—Black Rod and Red Rod.


In his Robes, supported by Two Knights.


(Three and Three).



  It would appear from one of our notes that there were 356 persons in the procession, and that it was composed of members of several other trades in the town. About this period a great many towns in Scotland enjoyed the pleasure of seeing these mock processions. (MS. Note.)


LIMEKILNS CHURCH.—Rev. William Johnstone, A.M., ordained minister of this church, 27th August, 1823. (See An. Dunf. date. 1874.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—John Scotland, Esq., of East Luscar, re-elected Provost, Sept., 1823. (Burgh Records.)


PLAN OF THE TOWN OF DUNFERMLINE PUBLISHED. — In September, 1823, Mr. J. Wood, surveyor, Edinburgh, published a large and very accurate plan of Dunfermline, from his actual survey made during the months of July and August, 1822. The plan, a copperplate engraving, is 22 1/2 inches from east to west, and 21 inches from north to south, and is entitled—"Plan of the Town of Dunfermline from Actual Survey, by J. Wood, Edinburgh. 1823." The scale is 264 feet to the inch; the price was one guinea. It is to be regretted that "The Gardener's Land” buildings are not on the plan. The only error the writer can find on the plan is the position of the Palace Wall, at No. 17; on the plan this wall ought to have been laid down on a site farther to the north, and to have terminated at No. 18. The writer retains a lively recollection of leading Mr. Wood's chain in 1822, assisting him a little in measuring round the Auld Kirk, Monastery, Palace, and the Tower-Hill.  Mr. Wood, between 1820 and 1826, made plans of a great number of the larger towns of Scotland, and his labours were very favourably reviewed in the newspapers of the time.


WATER.—Cairncubie Water Tank or Pond was constructed and built in 1823. This large tank collects all the surface water which may run into it, and increases the Cairncubie supply. (MS. Note; see An. Dunf. date 1797; Chal. Hist. Dunf, vol. i. p. 15.)


The Postal Revenue this year amounted to £1000 2s. Id.


A ROMAN CATHOLIC CONGREGATION was formed in Dunfermline during the summer of this year. (MS. Note.)


1824.—FARMERS' SOCIETY.—The Dunfermline Farmers' Society was instituted in 1765 ; discontinued its meetings early in the century, and this year, 1824, it was resuscitated, and its constitution remodelled. (See An. Dunf. dates 1765 and 1834.)


THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF FIFE BIBLE SOCIETY INSTITUTED, 1824.—This Society distributes a considerable number of Bibles annually among the poor in the parish. The aggregate collections average about £25, which is transmitted to the Bible Society managers in Edinburgh. (MS. Note.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE. —James Blackwood, Esq., of Colton, near Dunfermline, elected Provost, September, 1824. (Bur. Rec.)


STAGE COACH called The Antiquary, commenced to run between Dunfermline and Edinburgh, October, 1824, and vice-versa, every day of the week, Sundays excepted. Fares to and from Edinburgh, 6s. inside, and 4s. outside. (MS.). This means of conveyance ceased in March, 1878.


POSTAL REVENUE.—From Post-Office, £1,867 19s. 3 1/2d. (Mercers Hist. Dunf. p. 153.)


THE REV. DAVID BLACK, D.D., Minister of the Antiburgher or West Church, Chalmers Street, died on 5th November, 1824, in the 61st year of his age, and the 35th of his ministry. (See An, Dunf. date 1789 and 1866.) He was the author of " Sermons on Death',' "The Covenanter's Directory," 1806, an Essay on "Early Piety," and a small work entitled "Edwin and Emma," a pastoral tale in verse.


1825.—METEOROLOGICAL TABLES BY REV. HENRY FERGUS.— In January, 1825, the Rev. Henry Fergus, minister of the Relief Church, Dunfermline, commenced his Meteorological Observations and Register; for ten years from 1825, he took his readings every morning at nine o'clock, recording the then state of the barometer, thermometer, &c. (See also Chal. Hist. Dunf. vol. i. pp. 10-13)


TWO MEN CONDEMNED TO BE EXECUTED IN DUNFERMLINE.— The two burglars, Henry Baleny and James M'Neil, who broke into the ironmongery shop of Messrs. Lock and Hutton, Bridge Street, Dunfermline, in December, 1824, were tried on 25th March, 1825, at the High Court of Justiciary, Edinburgh, and condemned to be "hanged by the neck until they were dead, at Dunfermline, where their crimes were committed." This sentence caused great excitement in Dunfermline and western district of Fife. " The Edinburgh gallows was hired for the occasion, and on its arrival in Dunfermline it was carted to the open square of the Fleshmarket." "The wrights in town joined in trials to put it together to be ready, but the two men were respited shortly after, and banished for life to Botany Bay. The commotion in town and country then subsided." (MS. Note.)


THE NATIONAL BANK, EDINBURGH.—Mr. John Malcolm was engaged by the National Bank as their bill collector for Dunfermline and district this year, 1825. (MS. Note.)


THE OLD ABBEY BARLEY-MILL,—This mill, which had stood from perhaps A.D. 1270 at top of the Collier Row [Bruce Street], was removed in March, 1825, to make way for Messrs. Wilson & Malcolm's spinning mill. This was one of the "three mills of Dunfermline" mentioned in old charters, title-deeds, &c.


WEAVING.—The "Jacquard Machine" introduced into the art of weaving by Alexander Robertson, Esq., and the Messrs. Kerr, manufacturers, in the summer of 1825. Matthew Parker commenced to manufacture these machines shortly after their introduction.


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—James Blackwood, Esq., of Colton, re-elected Provost in September, 1825, (Burgh Records.)


LIMEKILNS' CHURCH REBUILT.—This church was rebuilt in 1825, and seated for about 1050 persons. (MS. Note; see An. Dunf. date 1784.)


BRUCEFIELD SPINNING MILL NEARLY DESTROYED BY FIRE,— The old Flax Spinning Mill at Brucefield, near Dunfermline, conducted by Mr. Struthers, was nearly destroyed by fire on the evening of the 26th October, 1825. (See An. Dunf. date 1792.)


QUEEN AN STREET CHURCH DISRUPTION.—"In consequence of unpleasant misunderstandings among the members of this church, in their several attempts to choose a minister, and of "the military sort of defiance and worrying displayed by the dominant party towards the minority," the members and hearers composing the minority of 600, left Queen Ann Street Church in September, 1825, and formed themselves into a new congregation. The new body took a short lease of the Maygate Chapel until one was built for them." (See An. Dunf. 1827, for "St. Margaret's Church.")


MECHANICS' INSTITUTION ESTABLISHED, 20th SEPT., 1825.— A general meeting of the inhabitants of Dunfermline friendly to the formation of a Mechanics' Institution, was held in the Relief Meeting House on Tuesday, the 20th Sept., 1825—the Right Honourable the Earl of Elgin in the chair. Upwards of 400 mechanics and others were present. The Rev. Messrs. Chalmers, Fergus, and Brand, successively addressed the meeting on the design and importance of the Institution and Lord Elgin concluded with an animated speech to the same effect. After which, the Institution was declared to be constituted, and the following office-bearers were appointed,—


The Right Honourable the Earl of Elgin, President.

James Hunt, Esq., of Pittencrieff, and Rev. Peter Chalmers, Vice-presidents.

Mr. Henry Inglis, Treasurer.—Mr. David Laurie, Secretary.


The Rev. Henry Fergus.                                        Messrs. Alexander Pattison.             

The Rev, George Bell Brand.                                    “          John Roxburgh,

Messrs- Andrew Rutherford.                                  “          John Scotland

„            Alexander Robertson.                               “          James Cumming

„            Andrew Peebles.                                       “          James Allan

„            William Hunter.                                        “          Robert Bonnar

„            William Ferguson.                                    “          Robert Hay

                                                                                “          William Meldrum.


(Glasgow Mechanics' Magazine, vol. iv. pp. 214-215; see other dates in An. Dunf. relative to lectures, &c.) The inhabitants were solicited for subscriptions for a fund to defray the expenses of the institution, when £215 14s 6d. was collected. (MS. Note.)


MECHANICS' INSTUTUTE LECTURES.—Immediately after the formation of the Mechanics' Institute on 20th September, the Directors engaged the Rev. Henry Fergus to deliver a course of twelve lectures on Natural Philosophy, on Wednesday evenings, commencing 26th October, 1825, until finished; 3s. the ticket for the course; single lecture, Is. These lectures were delivered by Mr. Fergus in his own church—the Relief Church; 312 tickets were sold at 3s; average attendance, 450. Mr. Fergus received £26 5s. for the delivery of his course of lectures. (MS. Note.)


ANCIENT TIMBER TENEMENT IN HIGH STREET REMOVED.—In November, 1825, a singular old timber tenement, the property of Mr. James Hempseed, baker, south side of High Street (next door above Mr. Clark's, bookseller), was partly taken down, and the entire front rebuilt of stone. According to MS. Notes—


  The lower part of this house was built of stone, having a close in the middle, through which the public had a right-of-way to the back premises. On each side of the close there was a shop with projecting or bow-windows. Above the shops there was a timber-front, extending over the whole breadth of the building, the middle part of which was sunk a few inches. Along the bottom and top of this part there was a kind of wooden tramway, along which the window-frames slid horizontally to any required opening, with check-bars in the middle and at the end. Above this came a slated roof, then rose to the height of a few feet another timber front (the garret-front), having in it three small windows. This garret was covered with an uneven tile-roof. At each end towered to a considerable height the chimneys of the old building.

  We took a sketch of this house in October, 1825, just before it was taken down, and we reproduce it here as one of the last representatives of Dunfermline in the olden time.



1826.—DEATH OF THE OLDEST INHABITANT.—Ralph Miller, Damside Row, a disabled weaver, died on the l0th March, 1826, at the great age of ninety-eight years and two months. " Auld Ralph," as he used to be called in his latter days, was born in January, 1728, in the second year of George the Second. He had a remarkably strong memory; could recollect incidents concerning Dunfermline, and relate them with great distinctness, as far back as the year 1740. Between 1824-1826 the writer interviewed him on a great many points of local history. Several of his memorabilia are recorded in the Annals under the cover of "MS. Notes."


SECESSION CHURCH IN MAYGATE CHAPEL—The Rev. Robert Brown, of Jedburgh, was ordained minister of this new congregation on l7th May, 1826. He was the first minister of this congregation. (See An. Dunf, date April, 1828.)


THE LIMEKILNS SWIMMING CLUB was instituted in 1826, and in a short time "managed to get 56 members on their roll."


PLANTETARIUM AND LUMARIUM MACHINES—These two machines were made this year by the ingenious David Paton, a man for whose memory the writer has the highest respect. The Planetarium (a very fine one) was made entirely of wood—wooden wheels, wooden pinions, tin tubes, &c. It showed with great accuracy the mean motions of all the planets round the Sun. The Lunarium showed the apparent diurnal revolutions of the Sun and Moon, as also the time of high and low water at Limekilns. These machines were "the talk of the town" for a long period, and many came to see them from far and near. They afterwards came into the possession of the writer.


THE "DUNFERMLINE DRAWING ACADEMY."—This Academy was established on the 17th of July, 1826. The class assembled in the hall of St. John's Masons' Lodge, Maygate. It was established by the Dunfermline Manufacturers and the Board of Trustees, for the purpose of teaching young men to make designs for the damask manufacture.  Mr. Campbell was appointed teacher for five years. There were 37 pupils on the opening-day. He was succeeded by Mr. Joseph Paton, pattern designer, Wooer's Alley, in July, 1831. Soon after this date the Academy ceased to exist. (MS. Note.)


A STAGE COACH was established to run between Edinburgh and Crieff, via Dunfermline, on 22nd May, 1826. Another stage coach, called the "Aurora," also commenced running between Kirkcaldy and Glasgow, via Dunfermline, on 5th June, 1826.


POSTAL REVENUE. — The Post-office revenue of Dunfermline amounted to £1240 l0s. 10 1/2d. (Mercer's Hist. Duitf, p. 153.)


A SCIENTIFIC CLUB.—This year a "Scientific Club " was formed by John Millar, Ebenezer Henderson, Sinclair Thomson, James Smith, &c. They met weekly in a garret, at the top of the Kirkgate, for scientific discussion, and performing- of scientific experiments. Their library had 36 vols,; apparatus—a telescope, microscope, electrical machine, galvanic battery, mechanical powers, a planetarium, &c. The Club continued for about 2 1/2 years.


A HOT SUMMER.—"The summer of 1826 was very warm, and there was great drought, the thermometer frequently ranging between 95° and 100° of heat in the shade; no rain during the months of June, July, and part of August; the springs and burns were nearly dried up; great scarcity of water; water-carts, with barrels and tubs of water, travelled the streets, the water being sold at a halfpenny and one penny the stoupful" This summer was long remembered and referred to as 'the hot simmer"


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE—James Blackwood, Esq., of Colton, was re-elected Provost, Sept., 1826. (Burgh Records.)


THE WEAVING TRADE.—The Weaving Trade was " in a very depressed state, hundreds of weavers out of employment." (MS.)


POLLOCK, Author of "The Course of Time."—The Rev. Robert Pollok, came to Dunfermline for a change of air for the benefit of his decaying health. He had been advised to come to the town by his friend Mr, Campbell, drawing-master, in September, 1826. He lodged with Mr. Hempseed, baker, High Street. While in Dunfermline (from September, 1826, to April, 1827) he composed a considerable portion of his celebrated poem, " The Course of Time',' and amused himself at intervals in making sketches. The writer enjoyed many pleasant interviews with this amiable young man during his short stay. astronomical lectures.—A short course of lectures on Astronomy was delivered by Mr. Keir, illustrated with apparatus, in Maygate Chapel, in October, 1826.


1827.—SNOW STORM.—On the 15th January, 1827, snow fell for eight hours. The average depth of snow on the streets was 4 feet, and the drift was 10 feet in many places throughout the town and adjacent districts. (MS. Note.)


MECHANICS' INSTITUTE LIBRARY.—According to the Institute Report, there were 230 volumes in the library on 23rd of January, 1827.


THE DUNFERMLINE EQUITABLE FRIENDLY INSTITUTION was established on 9th February, 1827. (MS. Note.) Its rules, &c., were confirmed at Cupar-Fife on 28th March, 1831.


QUEEN AN STREET CHURCH—Ordination.—The Rev. Alex. Fisher, of Edinburgh, was ordained minister of Queen Ann Street Church on 20th of March, 1827. (See Annals of Dunfermline, date Sept, 1829.)


ORRERY AND ASTRONOMICAL CLOCK.—Between the years 1826 and 1828 the writer constructed an orrery and a complicated astronomical clock. The newspapers and magazines of the period gave in many instances exaggerated descriptions of them, and many of those who came to see them, not being able to understand the varied motions, carried away rather singular accounts of what they had seen, which tended to float many improbable remarks as to their construction and movements. As the writer still finds, at the distance of 50 years, some incorrect remarks in circulation relative to these machines, he has been induced to give here correct notes regarding them :—


  THE ORRERY was a small machine contained in a box of twelve sides, corresponding to the twelve signs of the Ecliptic, which supported a brass ring, on which were engraven the signs and degrees of the Ecliptic, days of the months, &c. It exhibited the rotation of the Sun on its inclined axis in 25 days 6 hours, the solar and sidereal rotations of the Earth on its inclined axis and its revolutions round the Sun in 365 days 5 hours 48 minutes 57 seconds—of the synodic revolution of the Moon in 29 days 12 hours 45 minutes, and of the Nodes of her orbit in 18 years 224 days ; and consequently all the eclipses of the sun and moon. The orrery contained 21wheels and 5 pinions, and was 12 inches in diameter, and 7 inches deep.


  THE ASTRONOMICAL CLOCK was constructed of brass wheels and steel pinions, mounted in a mahogany clock-case of about seven feet in height, and exhibiting the following astronomical particulars, viz,, the seconds, the minutes, the hours, day of the month, day of the Sun entering the sign of the Zodiac: the time of the rising and setting of the Sun throughout the year, with the different lengths of the days and nights; the age and phases of the Moon; the apparent diurnal revolution of the Sun and Moon; the ebb and flow of the Tides, and times of their occurrence; Solar and Sidereal Time. The ring on which the latter was shown had the necessary motion of a revolution on its axis in 25,920 solar, or 25,868 sidereal years:, and hence, supposing the clock to keep in motion for say 200 years, the sidereal and solar motions would be indicated on the dial-plate with great precision. This clock contained 32 wheels, and 7 pinions, and is now in Liverpool.


STATISTICAL NOTES.—The hard soap works of the Messrs. Laurie manufactured during the past year 216,282 lbs. of soap. One of the three tobacco manufactories in the same time produced 60,000 lbs. of tobacco. 20,000 gallons of water flowed into the reservoir daily. Weavers' looms in the Parish, 2795. Debt of the Burgh, £26,000. (MS. Note.)


ST. MARGARET'S CHURCH, East Port Street,—"The foundation of this church was laid in the summer of 1826. It was finished and opened for public worship on Sunday, 2nd Sept., 1827." (MS. Note.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—James Black-wood, Esq., of Colton, re-elected Provost, September, 1827. (Burgh Records.)


MECHANICS' INSTITUTE LECTURES.—The Rev. Mr. Gray, of Kirkcaldy delivered a course of twelve lectures on "Astronomy, Mechanics, Hydrostatics, and Pneumatics," in the Maygate Chapel, once a week, between September and January. He was engaged by the committee of the Mechanics' Institution, had an extensive and splendid apparatus, and had large audiences each evening. (MS.)


MATHEMATICAL AND GEOMETRICAL LECTURES, which met with tolerable success, were, during the months of October, November, and December, delivered in the Grammar School, by Mr. A. Haxton, the Rector.


1828.—DUNFERMLINE MISSIONARY PRAYER-MEETING INSTITUTED.—The meetings were held in the Chapel-of-Ease, North Chapel Street, on the first Monday of each month, at seven o'clock. The meetings were conducted by ministers of" the Established and Secession churches. (MS. Note.)


LITHOGRAPHIC PRINTING—Early in 1828 Mr. Miller, printer, &c., Dunfermline, introduced lithographic printing, which met with much encouragement. (MS. Note.)


DEATH OF THE REV. ROBERT BROWN.—On 19th April, 1828, the Rev. Robert Brown, minister of St. Margaret's Church, died in the 30th year of his age, and second of his ministry.


LITERATURE.—" The History of Dunfermline: from the Earliest Records down to the Present Time; including Historical Notices, and Present State of the Parishes of Inverkeithing, Dalgety, Aberdour, Beath, Torryburn, Caynock, and Saline, with a Descriptive Sketch of the Scenery of the Devon.  By A. Mercer, author of ' Dunfermline Abbey.' Dunfermline : Printed and Published by John Miller, 1828." This small-sized 8vo volume of 330 pages was published early in the year 1828, price 7s. 6d. A view of the New and Old Abbey Churches from the south-east fronts the short title.   The first eighty pages refer to ecclesiastical matters, not strictly belonging to Dunfermline. Pages 81 to 196 treat of Dunfermline, its antiquities, institutions, trade, &c.; pages 197 to 301 treat of the "Country Parts of the Western District; while the remaining thirty pages treat of Sundries, &c. This history is rather a superficial one. Many interesting particulars relative to Dunfermline have been passed over; but still there are to be found in it notanda which are not noticed in Fernies History of Dunfermline, published in 1815. The writer, during the years 1826 and 1827, collected several interesting facts for this history; and after it was printed, he continued to collect antiquarian and other information relative to Dunfermline, and then formed the design of compiling these Annals. Mercer's History has been long out of print. (See An. Dunf. date 1834.) It may be noted here, that Mr. Mercer, while engaged over his History, lodged with Mr. Leskie, customer-weaver, Rotten Row [West Queen Ann Street]—half up this street, north side. (See dates 1813, 1816, 1819, and 1838 for Mercer's other works.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—James Blackwood, Esq., re-elected Provost, September, 1828. (Burgh Records.)


ST. MARGARET'S CHURCH .—The Rev. John Law was translated from Newcastleton, and inducted minister of St. Margaret's Church, East-Port Street, on 1st October, 1828. (See An. Dunf. 1850.) He resigned his charge on December, 1850, and died at Eskbank, Dalkeith, 29th November, 1875, aged 85 years.


LITERATURE.—"A Description of about 300 Animals, &c. Dunfermline : Printed and Sold by John Miller, 1828." This compilation, the work of Mr. Miller, forms a 12mo volume of 268 pages, and is embellished with 123 small wood-engravings of animals, birds, insects, &c. Many of the wood-cuts are the work of a native self-taught artist, now deceased (Mr. W, W. Christie.) This little work—a very useful and interesting one—is now seldom to be met with, and has been long out of print.


GAS COMPANY.—The Dunfermline Gas Company was established on 11th November, 1828. Subscribed capital, .£6000; director of the works, Mr. Oliphant. (Dunf. Reg., 1832; An. Dunf. Oct., 1829.


LITERATURE.—"Tables of Land Measuring: Being tables for converting Scottish Land Measure into imperial, and the price or rate per Scottish acre into that of the imperial acre; with other tables useful to the gentleman farmer, and agriculturists in general. By Eben. Birrell, land-surveyor, Dunfermline. Printed by John Miller. 1828." This is a 12mo work of 32 pages, price is. These tables have been long out of print Mr. Birrell left Dunfermline in 1834.


DUNFERMLINE SAVINGS' BANK.—At the end of 1828 there were 440 depositors connected with this bank, and the total sum deposited by them amounted to £2,467 3s. 4d.


WEATHER STATISTICS.—Between 1st Jan., 1828, and 31st December, 1828, there were 157 rainy days in Dunfermline; during 57 of these days it rained incessantly; the number of days the wind blew from the west and south-west were 211; 39 from the south; 56 easterly, and 59 from the north, &c. (MS. Note.) Mean height of the barometer, 29 1/4 degrees; thermometer, 48 1/2 degrees.


1829.—LITERATURE.—"The Dunfermline Register for 1829: containing many useful lists connected with the Western District of Fife, the Counties of Clackmannan and Kinross, and the Culross District of Perthshire, comprising Public Offices, Civil and Religious Institutions, with their Office-Bearers, Roads, Coaches, Carriers, Fairs, &c., within these Districts. Printed by John Miller, Dunfermline. Price Ninepence, 16mo, 68 pp." This was the first number published of this useful little work. It was from this date issued yearly in January up to 1866, when it was discontinued.


GAS HOUSE in the course of erection in Priory Lane, and the streets are being opened for laying down the cast-iron pipes for the transmission of the gas throughout the burgh, &c.


DUNFERMLINE FLORIST SOCIETY ESTABLISHED 1829.—This society has for its object "the cultivation and improvement of the best fruits, the most choice flowers, and most useful vegetables." (Dunf. Regist, 1829.)


INFANT SCHOOL.—On 9th March, 1829, the Dunfermline Infant School was instituted, but not opened until 5th July, 1830. Children admitted between the ages of two and a-half and five years; entry payment, 6d.; fee, 2d. weekly.


DUNFERMLINE IN THE OLDEN TIME—Douglas Street.—During the spring of 1829 a venerable specimen of "Grey Dunfermling" was removed to make way for the thorough opening up of Douglas Street. It had a pended front of three large arches, with peaked windows above them; the middle arch covered the common entry which led up from High Street to "the toun's mercate." The writer made a sketch of this singular old house just before its removal, and in 1854 made a reduced copy of it for Chalmers's History of Dunfermline, page 131. Traditionally, it was known as the French Ambassador's House.


GAS-WORKS COMPLETED.—The Gas-House, Priory Lane, was completed on 26th Oct., and the main pipes, with the small branch pipes from them into the dwelling-houses, shops, &c., being all laid, "the gas was let on " on the evening of Wednesday, October 28, 1829. A great turn out of the inhabitants; the streets were crowded with town and country people to see the grand sight. There were some curious devices to be seen; one in particular at the west end of Bridge Street, which acted on the principle of Barker's Mill, viz., at the point where the burner is usually fixed, four horizontal arms proceeded from the centre of the stalk; at the extreme ends of each there were small holes, out of these issued the gas, and put them in motion. They were kept whirling round by gas-power from seven till ten o'clock evening, to the admiration of thousands.


THE REV. ALEXANDER FISHER, minister of Queen Ann Street Church, died on the 26th September, 1829, in the twenty-seventh year of his age, and third of his ministry. (See also An. Dunf. date March, 1827.) Mr. Fisher was the author of "Theohgical Gems," and "Memoirs of Alexander Clark."


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—James Blackwood, Esq., re-elected Provost. (Burgh Records, September, 1829.) Mr. Blackwood died on 18th December following. Provostship vacant until May, 1830. The first magistrate acted as provost during the interval.


1830.—LITERATURE.—"Remains of the late Rev. Alex. Fisher, Minister of Queen. Anne Street Congregation, Dunfermline, with a Brief Memoir of his Life. By Rev. John Brown, Edinburgh. 1830." This is an octavo volume of 448 pp., and contains eleven Lectures and Sermons, and six Sacramental addresses, &c. A profile likeness faces the title-page.


DUNFERMLINE TEMPERANCE SOCIETY was instituted 15th Feb., 1830. Coffee-house and Reading-room, St. Catherine's Wynd. (Dunf. Register.)


WEAVING.—Jacquard machines for looms, recently introduced into the trade, had hitherto made but small progress, only about a dozen being in use. About the beginning of 1830 a great impetus was given to them, and a great many of them were made by Matthew Parker and others. By the end of 1830 about l00 "Jacquards" were in use. (MS. Note.)


RELIEF CHURCH.—The Rev. Charles Waldie from Kelso was ordained assistant and successor to the Rev. Mr. Fergus on 3rd June, 1830, and translated to Dalkeith 17th Dec., 1834. (Mackelvie's An. and Stat., p. 176.


DOUGLAS STREET.—The old tenement and adjacent house on the east, noticed under date 1829, being removed, along with some old back-dikes, the street was in May this year opened for passengers and traffic, and had the name of Douglas Street given to it in compliment to the proprietor of most of the property here, viz., James Douglas, Esq., Writer.


TIDE-TABLE FOR LIMEKILNS.—" Calculated by and published for E. Henderson, by Wm. Meldrum, printer, Nethertown, April, 1830." This table is printed on a slip of paper 12mo size, at the top of which there is a woodcut engraving showing the increasing and decreasing phases of the moon, beneath which is "the Table," divided into four columns: the first contains the moon's age; the second, the moon's southing; the third, the high water, morning; and in the fourth, high water, evening; and concludes with an " Example," viz., Find out the age of the moon in the first column, then in the same horizontal line in the other columns will be found the moon's southing and morning and afternoon mean tides. Editions of this Table were printed in 1830, 1832, 1836; since the latter date it has not been printed. (The writer of the Annals is the author.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—Since the death of Provost Blackwood, 18th Dec,, 1829, there was no Provost in Dunfermline. On the 29th May of this year (1830) George Meldrum was elected Provost till the usual time of elections in September. (MS, Note.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—George Meldrum, Esq., was re-elected Provost in Sept., 1830. (Burgh Records.)


DUNFERMLINE TOTAL ABSTINENCE SOCIETY was established in Sept., 1830, by Mr. John Davie, and other friends of the teetotal cause.


LITERATURE—Dunfermline Directory.—In December, 1830, Mr. John Miller compiled and published the first number of his "Directory for the Town of Dunfermline, containing an Alphabetical List of the Inhabitants, and also Gentlemen's Seats and Farm Steadings in the Neighbourhood, with their Proprietors' or Tenants' Names at Martin- mas, 1830. Dunfermline: Printed and Published by John Miller, Dec. 25, 1830." 32 pp. 16mo. This Directory contains the names of about 730 of the inhabitants, their professions, and places of residence, and was afterwards made the " Addenda" to the Dunfermline Register; but it soon ceased to exist. (MS. Note.)


1831.—DUNFERMLINE SKATING CLUB was formed in Jan., 1831.


LITERATURE.—" The Gasometer; or Dunfermline Literary Magazine. Dunfermline: Published by John Miller." The first number of this 12mo monthly of 36 pp. was published on Saturday, 1st January, 1831. This miscellany was, during' 1831-32, published at the beginning of each month; the contributors to it were " native artists," &c., whose papers referred to "anything and everything. It might have lived longer, had many of said contributions been thrown into the waste-basket. The gas of the Gasometer was turned off on the appearance of the 12th number on Dec., 1831. The Gasometer, thus brought to a close, was bound and sold as a small vol., 12mo, pp. 497. It is now rarely to be seen; our copy from the editor was, we observe, presented to us in Jan., 1832.


GREAT SNOW STORM—Death of the Town Drummer m a Snow-Drift.—There was a great fall of snow in the middle of January, 1831; medium depth of snow on the street, 3 1/2 feet; in drifts, from 5 to 8 feet. James Dow, the town drummer, had, on the evening of the snow, been sent with a message to Headwell, a little to the north of the burgh; on his return home he mistook his way, got into a drift, and there perished. He was found on the following morning lying in the drift as if he had been asleep. Much sympathy was felt for his widow and family.


DR. JOHN MACKIE died, at Chichester, on 29th Jan., 1831, aged 82 years. This eminent physician was born in the Queen's House, Dunfermline, on 3rd June, 1748, and was educated in the Grammar School, Dunfermline.  Sometime before his death, he wrote and published for private circulation "A Sketch of a New Theory of Man." The late Rev. Sir Henry Moncrieff, one of his schoolfellows, says of him, that, both at school and at college, young Mackie "was the most remarkable youth he had ever known.'' (Chal.  Hist. Dunf, vol. i. pp. 532, 534.)


A GREAT REFORM MEETING was held in Queen Ann Street Church, on 8th March, 1831—Provost Meldrum in the chair. (MS.)


CENSUS.—The fourth government census of Dunfermline was taken in April, l83l. The result was as follows:—Population of Dunfermline and suburbs, 10,625; of parish, 17,068; males in the burgh and suburbs, 5,399; females, 5,225; males in the parish, 8,440; females, 8,628. Increase of the population of the burgh and suburbs since 1821 census, 2,584 souls; in the parish, 3,378 souls. (Burgh Register, August, 1831.) Thus, since 1801, Dunfermline had nearly doubled its population, while the parish was 1,892 souls short of the duplication, showing thereby an influx of the country population into the town.


THE REFORM BILL.—As in other places at this period, "the bill, the whole bill, and nothing but the bill" occupied much of the public mind. The following extract from the Fife Herald of 31st March, 1831, will show how matters were going on in the grey toun:—


  "So great was the crowd at the Temperance Reading Room when the post arrived on Friday evening (25th March) anxious to hear the result of the division on the second reading of the bill, that they had to adjourn to the May-gate Chapel, when, in the course of a few minutes, a congregation of nearly 300 assembled, who seemed to hear with intense delight [read to them] the summary in the Times relating to the subject, and who united in three hearty cheers to the King and his Ministers. The corporation of wrights walked through the principal streets with flags and music. At the Cross was drunk the toast "The King, his Ministers, and Mr. Johnstone, our Member." At eight o'clock several hundreds of the inhabitants walked in procession from the town-house, and notwithstanding the immense multitudes present no accident took place."


REFORM PROCESSION ON 10TH AUGUST, 1831.—"This was the first of a great many reform processions between 1831 and 1832." (MS.)


QUEEN ANN STREET CHURCH ORDINATION.—The Rev. James Young, of Mauchline, was ordained minister of Queen Ann Street Church on 1st June, 1831, as successor to the late Rev. Alexander Fisher, who died in September, 1829. (See An. Dunf. date December, 1829.)


BRITISH LINEN COMPANY.—The British Linen Company re-established a Branch Bank in Dunfermline on 31st July, 1831, Robert Douglas, Esq., St. Margaret's Street, Agent. Note.—This Banking Company established a Branch in Dunfermline in 1804. Shortly afterwards it was withdrawn.


WEAVING TRADE.—There were 2,670 looms in Dunfermline, and 450 in the vicinity; total, 3,120 in the parish, (MS. Note.)


MUNICIPAL ELECTORS in the Burgh of Dunfermline ascertained to be 493, or 9 more than the electors of all the Stirling Burghs united. (Newspapers of this date.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—John Kerr, Esq., manufacturer, Bothwell Haugh Row, elected Provost, as successor to Mr. George Meldrum. (Burgh Records, September, 1831.)


LITERATURE.—"Original Songs, by Robert Gilfillan" Published September. This small 12mo volume of 149 pages, contains sixty-three songs and seven ballads. The songs are chiefly love songs, which we shall pass over, and give the following eight lines as a specimen of his composition, entitled The Bright Sun o' Simmer:—


" The bright sun o' simmer but lately was shining,

The birds sang in joy and the earth blossomed green;

An' hope spoke of days without care or repining,

Like those that in dreams o' my childhood I've seen.


"But now the brown leaves o' the forest are fa'ing,

An' quickly the sun hastens down through the sky;

The winds frae the caverns of winter are blawing,

They tell me that simmer, like youth, has gone by."


This small work was well received by the public, and has passed through several editions.  (Vide An. Dunf. date December, 1850.)


1832.—CHOLERA MORBUS ALARM.--In February, of this year, " there was great consternation and alarm in Dunfermline, in consequence of intimations in newspapers, that the Cholera which had for some time before been raging on the Continent, had been imported into the town of Gateshead, near Newcastle. The magistrates ordered every species of nuisance to be instantly removed."


UNION OF THE TRADEMEN'S AND MECHANICS' LIBRARIES.— The Mechanics' Institute. Library was united to the Tradesmen's Library in 1832, in consequence of the depressed state of the Institute. The united Library, under certain restrictions, was then designated "The Tradesmen's and Mechanics' Library." (MS.)


A LOCAL BOARD OF HEALTH and Soup-Kitchen for Dunfermline were instituted in April, 1832. (Dunf. Register.)


REFORM PROCESSION.—There was a great Reform Procession in Dunfermline on S=8th May, 1832. From our notes, it appears that—


  "About 4000 took part in the procession, walking five men abreast. The pole-bearers carried, on poles and otherwise, many curious emblems and devices. On the top of a pole there was an excellent model of a loom and drivers. On the top of another pole sat the figure of an old woman, with her pirn-wheel at work. The colliers of Halbeath had on a pole a pretty large steam-engine. The Spinning Factory men had sets of heckles mounted on the tops of their poles ; while the incorporated trades of the burgh had their flags, and numerous bands of music enlivened the gay scene, and, lastly, in a cart there was a Printing Press, worked by William Wilson and Henry Ogg, printers from Mr. Miller's printing establishment, who threw off, and threw out on all sides of them, printed slips regarding the cause of Reform. This grand procession moved on to the west end of the Nethertown, into a park on the north side of the bridge, where hustings were erected for the speechifiers and for spectators. The Provost had only uttered a few words of his speech when the hustings fell; no lives were lost, but several persons were severely hurt. This awkward occurrence threw a damp on the proceedings, which soon after were brought to a close. It was computed that at least 10,000 spectators (inhabitants and strangers) accompanied this, the greatest procession ever heard of in Dunfermline."


CHOLERA MORBUS.—This terrible scourge reached Dunfermline on Sunday, 2nd September, 1832; "it made its first appearance in the suburb of Baldridge Burn, and caused great excitement and terror. A man named Mercer, a weaver, near Baldridge Burn Toll, was the first who died in the district of cholera." (MS.)


THE MASON LODGE, Queen Ann Place, was built in 1832. This New Union Lodge is a chaste building of two storeys; the upper storey is the lodge-room or hall, the under one is occupied by the Infant School, capable of accommodating 260 pupils ; both rooms are very spacious.


THE REV. GEORGE BARLAS was, on September 2nd, 1832, suspended from the ministry of Chalmers Street Church. He formed a new congregation on the 12th September, 1832, with the sanction of the Presbytery. The Maygate Chapel was purchased for £440 l0s., and used as a meeting-house of this new congregation; sittings, 410," (Mackelvie's An. and Stat. p. 176.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.—Henry Russell, Esq., merchant, was elected Provost, in Sept, 1832. (Burgh Records.)


CHOLERA MORBUS—Fast-Day.—"Thursday, October 11th, 1832, was kept as a Fast-day, and was observed with great solemnity on account of the rapid spread of the disease." (Fife Herald, &c.)


WILLIAM COBBETT IN DUNFERMLINE.—"On October 15, 1832, the celebrated politician, orator, and author, visited Dunfermline. During his short stay, he delivered a political lecture in the Maygate Chapel to a numerous audience." (Fife Herald, October 18, 1832.)


CHOLERA MORBUS.—Dunfermline and vicinity, on November 17, 1832, "was declared to be free of pestilence." >From the commence-ment, on the 2nd September, to 17th November, 1832, a period of 76 days, there occurred 349 cases of cholera and 158 deaths. "When at its height, there were from 15 to 24 funerals a-day." A note states that " the dead-cart collected the coffins at the doors of the deceased persons, and drove them to the Churchyard, where they were interred. Few of the relations followed the cart for fear of infection. Walter Bell, tailor and poet, Willie Nicol, the blue beadle, and other notables, died during the cholera period." (MS. and Newspaper Notes.)


1833.—LITERATURE.—"THE PRECURSOR: a Monthly Newspaper, edited by Thomas Morrison, senior, and printed by W. Liddell, west end of Bridge Street; on Tuesday, 1st January, 1833. Price twopence.  "It was a small 4to of four pages, and contained news, advertisements, &c. The publication of it ceased with No. 3.


THE Dunfermline Sunday School Association was instituted this year, 1833. (Dunf. Reg.)


THE Dunfermline Voluntary Church Association was also instituted this same year. (Dunf. Reg.)


LITERATURE.—"The Testimony of Nature and Revelation to the Being, Perfections, and Government of God. By the Rev. Henry Fergus, Dunfermline. March, 1833." This is an octavo of 387 pages, and is divided into the following sections, viz.:—Of the Origin of the World; Evidences of Design in Nature; Of the Perfections of Deity; and of the Gospel. (See also An. Dunf. date 1810.)


DRAWING ACADEMY.—The Dunfermline Drawing Academy, established on 17th July, 1826, was abandoned in 1833 for want of proper support.


ST. ANDREWS CHURCH, North Chapel Street.—In 1832 the old "Chapel of Ease" being considered too small and incommodious, it was resolved to remove it, and to erect a large building on the same site. The new church was finished and opened for public worship on 23rd June, 1833; there were sittings for 800. The old name, "Chapel Kirk," was deleted, and that of St. Andrew's Church substituted. (MS. Note; see also An. Dunf. date 1835.)


PROVOST OF DUNFERMLINE.— Henry Russell, Esq., merchant, re-elected Provost, September, 1833. (Burgh Records.)


ORDINATION, Chalmers Street Church.—Rev. Robert Cuthbertson was ordained minister of this church on 13th November, 1833. He resigned his charge in September, 1845. (Mackelvie's Annals and Statistics, pp. 176, 177.)


THE COLLIEROW—Bruce Street,—The Collierow, which had for upwards of 400 years been known by this same, was, at the end of 1833. changed; for a few weeks it was called King Street, but ultimately, the name. Bruce Street was given to it, which still continues to be the name of this ancient thoroughfare. The Messrs. Ker, manufacturers in this street, were the prime movers in getting the name altered, (MS. Note.)


MR. ROBERT FLOCKHART, weaver, politician, and poet, Back of Dam, died at an advanced age. (See An. Dunf. date 1793.) He died much respected by all who knew him.

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