The following document is transcribed from rough, typed notes compiled by Dan McAleer. It has been reproduced as accurately as possible with any typewritten errors as they occurred in the original. Please note that there are both numbered section breaks (1 ) and page breaks -1- which can be a little confusing. With thanks to Susan McAleer for assistance in the reproduction of the material.
PAST AND PRESENT MEMORIES OF OLD SHETTLESTON AND I PROPOSE RECALLING SUBSEQUENT ARTICLES AND MY OWN EXPERIENCE FOR OVER 66 YEARS IN THE SHETTLESTON DISTRICT.
"The earliest bit of information that I have been able to give regarding the ancient place is the fact that it was included in a Charter dated at Jedworth 29th October, 1226. That Charter was granted by the religious Scottish King, Alexander II, to the Bishop of Glasgow and his successors. It was to prohibit the Provost, Baillies and officers of Rutherglen from taking Toll within the burgh of Glasgow at the Cross of "Schednestun." I presume that is the present Sheddons, the name given to the place where the roads part for Parkhead and Duke Street. Another piece of information I gathered was from another Charter dated at Holyrood 3rd November, 1587. That document under the great seal of King James II granted in fue to Walter Commendator of Blantyre the lands of "Scheildilton." The next form of the name then in a similar document, dated at "Dumbartane" 26th August, 1591. The King conveyed to the Commendator "Scheddilstonn" and the other places to be called the lordship of Glasgow. Thus the lands passed from the Church to the State. The name itself evolved as houses increased for in future documents it is spelt "Sheddilstonn", "Schettleston" and then finally "Shettleston" by which it is now best known.
"A TANGLED WEB"
"Over 66 years ago when I was a boy, a big stone lay at the Cotton land behind the I.L.P. Hall in Darleigh Street and as there were many weavers then in Shettleston and surrounding district and many of them in their daily travels paid a visit to the stone and sharpened their shuttle on that stone, hence they called it the Shuttlestone. I am afraid that Historians have copied a little from the Shettleston weavers in the way of spelling. The name, of course, has nothing to do with the industry which, in after days, has led many to think of it as a Consumption of Shuttleston but the spelling is a tangled web which cannot be entirely unravelled."
Until 1595 the Parish of Glasgow and the Barony Parish were only one. But the statistical accounts published in 1794 "Shettleston and Middlequarter - then, containing a population of 766 - were included in the Barony. I also found from a foot note in that account that the first Steam Engine drawing water from coal pits was erected on James McNair’s Colliery in 1764 about that time besides Colliery, there were many people employed in the weaving and farming work. Colliers wages then were very small. They ranged from 2/9d to 3/- per day, and weavers 10/- to 14/-, and some 20/- per week according to experience. The harvesters received 1/4d to 1/6d per day, women 1/- per day, labourers £16 per year and domestics £3 to £5 the half year.
Sixty two years ago the place was only a village at the Sheddons, now Old Edinburgh Road. There was only a single house and shennans row is there yet. There was a Coal Pit about 100 yards East from the Cross Roads named Sheddans pit. About that time and nearly all the Collieries in the Shettleston District were confronted by superfluity of surface water in the mines. The Caroline Pit owned by the Grays was located at the foot of Quarry Brae and was in a straight line from Sheddons, 300 yards south. It was a productive Pit, no railways then but much troubled with water, continuous pumping/
pumping night and day. Although the pit was well equipped with a first class engine, large pipes and sufficient pumping rods, it was not adequate to cope with large amount of water coming in from other Collieries. The masters of Grays Colliery made a necessary appeal to the other coal masters in the district, including the masters of Sandyhills Colliery, the masters of the Peesweep Colliery, the masters of the Glenduffhill Colliery, etc., etc. but they gave no support with the result that in a short time afterwards the Grays stopped their pit and withdrew their pumping rods and pipes. Slowly and surely, these masters I have quoted felt the effects of the stoppage and were powerless to do anything for the increasing water. The only remedy lay in financial assistance to the Masters Grays by the other local masters but this they failed to give with the result in years later all pits I have mentioned were flooded out. Grays Offices and workshops were situated where the old Argus Newspaper was printed. Now it is a gospel hall. At that time there were many prosperous pits in the district of Shettleston, including Barrachnie, Wellshot pit, Dug Pit, Old Engine Pit, Greenfield Pit, Eastbank Pit, in close proximity to where the Shettleston Church Established stands at present, the Station Pit close to Shettleston Station, the Tile Work Pit, the No. 7 Gartocher Road, and a pit in the centre of where now is Sandymount Cemetery called the Warrior. The fields used to be called "Early Braes. I worked in them when I was a boy with old Mr. Anderson of Sandyhills farm at the howking and potato setting, etc. etc. There was no "tattie" digger, or reaping machines. All the field labour was done mostly by women and their howes and grabs.
I am exceedingly sorry to relate a fatal accident that took place in the Dug Pit about 56 years ago. The pit was idle that day but Wm. Kinnaird, a rodsman in the pit, and a young lad named Charles Nelson about 16 years of age, whose father was Oversman at the time in the pit. During the day a Carter called at the pit for a cart of coal and while the "Cleekies" were filling the cart he asked one of the officials at the pit if they would let him down to see what like it was in the bottom. His request was granted and the official and the Carter were down for a quarter of an hour and got safe back to the hill. Two hours later when Wm. Kinnaird and young Nelson came to the bottom to get up they chapped the usual three bells to get up. The engineman acknowledged by his signal, ready, and they gave the signal to go ahead. When half road up the shank rope broke and two men were killed instantly. They lived in Glen Place not 50 yards from the pit.
After the Sheddons, came Shettleston Middlequarter, Eastmuir, Sandyhills and Barrachnie. Within 60 years the Post Office has been in six different places - three different places in Eastmuir and three in Middlequarter. The last place in Eastmuir where the Post Office did business was in an old school opposite the old Established Church. The Schoolmaster’s name was Peter Campbell. The Post Office then was managed by a family named Campbell. Old Geordie was a shoemaker, and attended to his business only. Mrs. Campbell and her daughter, sometimes the son, James, assisted, but the mother and daughter done the whole district of Shettleston. There was no Carntyne Post Office or pillar boxes then. The late James King, wife and family, occupied the house lately the number is l434 Shettleston Road, then the Police Office was at the corner of Station Road, now Annock Street. The two Police Officers lived next door where old Sam Rodger, wife end family, lived for many years. The number of the police office now is 1275 and the police houses 128l-1283 Shettleston Road. About the year 1870 a new Police Station/
Station was built in Firpark Street, now Darleith Street, and houses for the officers. Their names were Dan McMullen and David Crichton. They had a large district much scattered. At that time "shop keepers" who were eligible at that period were sworn in to assist the police in cases of emergency. I remember of two occasions when their assistance was called on, they were known as "baton men". Then with the increasing population and the rapid building of new houses they erected a larger Police Station with accommodation for many of the officers.
In the year of 1876 and further there was a large number of pits in the Shettleston District, although they were small pits and most of them sunk to the first coal the miners were always kept in good work. It was a frequent occurrence amongst the miners if anything was wrong with their place they made tracks for the nearest neighbouring pit and were mostly successful in getting a shift. There was a pit called "Sandy Rankins Pit". It was in close proximity to where Lightburn Hospital stands. The raising of the men and coal up the shank was worked by a responsible man and horse and went round a circle so many times till the cage reached the bottom of the surface. They did not require the horse to let the men down. The man in charge did that with a weight or trailer on the beam. I was a slow process but very successful with few accidents. The station where Thomas Jaap was engineman. He married Betty Dunsmore. She belonged to the Public House now called the "Wee Seller". Shettleston Brass Band used to practice over 58 years ago. Then the Palace pit where Ritchie Jack was Hill clerk and old Willie Robb was weightsman, then No. 2 pit where old Dugald Baird worked his Beam engine and old Tom Ewing was pithead man.
No. 9 had a large output of coal but it was troubled with very much water. It was well equipped with pumping engine and three boilers although it was very expensive fireing, it was successful. Peter Fleming and Willie Birell were the enginemen, old Jack Dobbie pitheadman, and Malcolm Brown was manager. When the pit stopped Malcolm got a public house licence and renovated the old truck store at Sandyhills into a public house.
A sad occurrence took place about 61 years ago to an old man named Mick Murty who lived in Sandyhills Row. Miners in those days, were old men at 45 and 50 years of age. Mick was an oncost man and had to do any kind of work in the pit that was required. The men usually stopped work about 4 o’clock. He was not home at six and his son Pat, reported the case to my father, Dan McAleer. He was working in No. 9 pit at the time and with all haste he got Pat Fleming and his son Tom, and they descended to the pit bottom and in a short exploration not far from the bottom they heard the groans of the old man lying in a "guttan" where a fall of stone took place, and he was overcome by fire-damp, the current of air being stopped, but about that time all the pits in the district were badly ventilated. That’s what made miners old men at an early age. Had he been much longer in that place he couldn’t have lived. They hurled him in a truck to the bottom, took him up in the Cage to the hill. They howked a large hole in the bing, .put the man in it for two hours and he came round. They got a horse and cart and hurled him home, and three weeks after that he was at his work again. After that a worse calamity befell three miners in the same pit named James Travers, Eastmuir and Stevenson and Teevan, Tollcross. They were started to their work in the morning when an explosion of gas took place and the three men were badly burned. They hurried them to the hill and Stevenson and Teevan were taken to the Infirmary where they died shortly afterwards. James Travers was run home to Eastmuir with his two sons, James and Willie, and immediately was taken to the Infirmary where he was kept in for 19 weeks, and recovered. There were no doctors then in Shettleston. Doctor Willis, Baillieston, was the nearest and Doctor Sten, Tollcross. Then/
Then came to Shettleston Doctors Stevenson, Anderson, etc. In 1881 the population was about 3608 amongst the first new buildings. In Shettleston was Main Street and turned up Hill Street, now Edrom Street. Andrew Garrand, the Registrar, his office was in the first close in Hill Street or Edrom Street, then May Place and Grays Land between the two schools in Eastmuir.
The Palace Pit was opposite where now stands York Terrace, now the entrance to the house of the late Mr. Wm. Burnside, butcher. Where Doctor Davidson’s house is built, there used to be a small row of houses owned by Wm. Gardiner, wife and family and about 30 yards to the west of Gardiners there were a clachan of houses called Crown Hall. Gardiner had 14 horses and he carted the coals from the Palace pit, No. 2 and No. 9 pits to Parkhead Forge. There were no railways then. There was then Broad-Rails laid down from Sandyhills to Parkhead Cross. The three pits that I have mentioned were all worked in the "Truck System". The Colliers received no money. There was a store in Sandyhills and the miners got goods for their work.
About 58 years ago, Shettleston had a first class Brass Band. It was called "Pricky Mair Band". It was composed of Lawsons, Cunninghams, Allans, McBride, Dick, Carey, etc. "Dandy Allan", as he was styled, was a handsome man over 6 ft, wore a Glengarry bonnet and the ribbons hanging down his shoulder with a staff he looked like a Drum Major, followed the Band everywhere. They were in great demand at that period for excursions, etc. but it took a day and a half for an excursion. They had to leave at 5 a.m. in the morning, play in Bridgeton, through G1asgow Green to the Broomielaw and return about 11 or 12 at night. No conveyance of any kind then. "Kings David Lawson" is the only one I now of the old school of the Band.
Thirty one years ago the first day of the year and the new Centuray, the Shettleston Band arranged a march through the town and the Bells struck 12, the Band marched through the Main Street, etc. I played a "Guid New Year to Ane and A and mony may we see". Middlequarter had its worthies in "Chuckie" Adair. He was a bit of a florist and cultivated cabbages, shillots, etc. and the Annual Flower Show was held as far back as 57 years ago in the Public School, Eastmuir, at the corner of Gartocher Road, now the Cripple School. The flower, fruit, etc. was judged the night before the Show and the admission was six pence. The morning after the show the children of the district were in their element.
The Competitors had not as big a burden the morning after the show removing their flowers, fruit and vegetables, and the amusing bit about the whole show was "Chuckies" Shillots and cabbages were always taken away. He kicked up rows with everybody and hunted the youngsters for their dear lives. He wore clogs and was a little oddit and he had a voice that could be heard from one end of the town to the other. He used to take all the young lads of the village down to the vacant ground to the old Engine where the McKies lived and drilled them there with an old rusty sword. His mother kept a cow and nanny goats. She was often seen almost daily round at the "Mount" or Tam Hamiltons of the Glen, feeding her nanny goats. They lived opposite Boyds Iron Works, a wee house by itself, and a nice garden. He was well educated and at a period of his life he kept a night school. After his mother died he went to Baronhill. Then we come to Eastmuir. At the foot of it lived "Beardy Jock" and David Blair prided himself when he got a dram and that was often, that he was David Blair from Shannons Mill, the Scotchiest place in Ireland". Then there is Crownhall where there was a wee clachan of houses at the head of Eastmuir and only one house remains now owned by Jas. Gilmour who used it as part of a Garage, and at one time/
time there was a large family lived in it. The only kind of sport in the village then was the game called "Smuggled, Bar the Door, or Charlie ower the Water, Bethleun, Presently Brace". These games were all played on the Toll Road, that was the play ground. There was very little traffic on the road. You could hear a cart half a mile away and when it arrived your game was finished. The management of all the games and sports was superintended by "Tinker Jock Gilmour". He was a miner but a handyman. In his idle days he had done a lot of soldering cars, flasks, etc. hence they called him "Tinker Jock". He was a very intelligent man and assisted the boys and girls in their innocent fun. About 400 yards further east there is a place called Sparrow Castle. The house was a two storey, the gable facing the Toll Road and the roof was thatched with straw and all the sparrows from the surrounding district came and built their nests there, hence it was called the Sparrow Castle. At the back of the castle there was a draw well. There was a large stone on the top cut out like a half moon. There was always a pail and a rope stationary where you lowered the pail and filled your bucket with water. There was only that and pit water for home use. At the back of the castle there was a smith’s shop and a joiner’s shop belonging to the Colliery and a row of houses where four families lived - James Walker, who was oversman in No. 2 pit and his "Biddy", Mr Walker worked as a engineman at the "Jet Pit" about 70 yards from Barrachnie Burn Bridge north.
At the site of the old Sparrow Castle there is a beautiful cottage built and Miss Clyde lives there now. I met her one day later and she told me the well was still there but not in use. Then the next cottage, the first after the Glasgow Boundary, divided by the Railway Bridge of N.B. Railway North, resides Norman Stephenson who is a well known Shettleston business man and about 50 years ago when a severe and fatal epidemic of colic illness with severe pains in the bowels took place in Shettleston and Tollcross, Norman’s father took a very active part in rendering assistance to the poor and suffering people. Now in my passing remarks to the old and new comers if they take a look through the gate of the old Established Church in Shettleston they will see opposite 1934 Shettleston Road, two Sentry Boxes as good as they were nearly a hundred years ago. At that period men in the district had to take their turn of watching the grave yard when the students went prowling about in the "Death Coach", looking for dead bodies to experiment on. The men in the district patrolled. I knew one man named Peter Fleming of Crownhall who had to take his turn of watching.
Then the Public House called the "Kirk House" where the penny reels and the "Blin Bookings" took place, up stairs Fiddler Stinson sat in a chair on the top of a table with his head almost touching the roof, then the dancing started and the men paid a penny for each reel and when you danced 12 you got the 13th free, then you were ready for a pint of beer which was carried up for you, if you required it, then the boys and the girls in the village, if they wanted a night’s enjoyment, two were selected or volunteered to get married hence the "Blin Booking". Small presents were given, and the young voluntary cleared the expense. But all had to clear out at eleven o’clock. About 59 years ago Eastmuir had an occasional visit from Mr. Wm. Lannigan. He was called the "Scottish Legion Singer." I consider he was the best in Scotland at that period. I remember him winning a singing competition in the old Masonic Hall, Wellshot Road. The title of his song was "Shabby Genteel". Few people were aware when Lannigan was an apprentice Bricklayer he worked at a house where the Hayes live at present. The last number 1830 Shettleston Road, in the Glasgow Boundary and the last number in the first ward Constituency of the Parliamentary Division. Lannigan worked at the back of Hayes’ house putting up brick building extensions, and then he married a Bridgeton weaver. He afterwards bought a hotel at Bridge of Allan. Then it wouldn’t be/
be a concert if Joe Mason was not present and singing "Oh Rowan Tree, Oh Rowan Tree". I remember 43 years ago engaging Thomas Simpson to sing and dance at a presentation concert in Eastmuir School. Tommy was the favourite singer and dancer in Shettleston. He was also the oldest member of the Shettleston Independent Labour Party when he died and I think he was first President. The late Right Hon. John Wheatley, J.P., M.P., took his place now for seniority.
Then we had another Public House in Eastmuir called "Lucky" Thomsons. Her husband was a shoemaker, and left the whole management for his wife, two could go in for a refreshment and call for a bottle of Scotch Porter. It would cost him 2d and if they were very dry they would order another refreshment that would cost them 4d altogether. If they were lavish with money they could get a gill of whiskey for 5½d and that was a good fuddle for 9½d for two. For no refreshment was drunk in the kitchen or the bedrooms when the kitchen was full. Old Mrs. Thomson got living in the house after the restrictions were put on the Publicans prohibiting them from staying in the house. She had a daughter married to Mr. Smith who was station master at St. Enoch’s Station about 45 years ago. On the site of Mrs. Thomson’s old shop in Eastmuir there is a beautiful and well equipped Masonic Hall built. The first Public school built about 65 years ago was in Gartocher Road, the first schoolmaster was Mr. Peter. St. Paul’s School about 80 yards east from it was built a year afterwards. The School master’s name was Mr. Ronald McDonald. Before these schools were built the children of the village went to Barrachnie school that was in connection with the pits Andrew Buchanan Colliery. There was a small seminary school up Gartocher Road superintended by two ladies. It was abandoned over 60 years ago. It is now occupied by Mrs. Queen and her family, the number, 87 Gartocher Road. It is very remarkable that two schools about 62 years ago were occupied latterly by Kings and Queens and the later is in the old seminary school for 24 years and is at present Mrs. Queen and family.
For a nice walk and splendid scenery go to the top Gartocher Road through the two Railway Bridges and take the Hallhill Road to the right and to the North of Sandymount Cemetery You are viewing Larchgrove Estate, belonging to Mr. John Adams who was elected to the County Council in the north division of Shettleston on the second of April 1895 and also the Rev. John White who was minister of Shettleston Established Church. He is now the Very Rev. John White, Barony Church, Glasgow. Mr. Adam’s father was the first member of the Shettleston, School Board elected by the heritors along with other six members namely, the Rev. Mr. Auld, minister of Parkhead N. F. Church, Thomas Dunlop Finlay, Easterhill, The Rev Gilbert Johnstone, the Manse, Shettleston, Rev. George McBrearty, R. C. clergyman, Eastmuir, George John Miller of Frankfield, Croftersigh and John Pinkerton of Hogganfield. The first School Board meeting took place on 12th May, 1873. The scenery of the interior from Hallhill Road of the Larchgrove Estate is picturesque. The neighbouring estate is called Barlanark and was owned by Doctor Hill for 40 years. He was a solicitor and a bachelor, and now a nephew of Sir Robert Horn. Mr. Lamberton has occupied it for many years. Opposite Barlanark Estate lived the Rev. Gilbert Johnstone in the manse. It is one of the most delightful walks in the district of Shettleston between the old manse and Barlanark Estate the main road on each side is covered with beautiful trees and shrubbery for 70 yards and you are walking in a tunnel beneath trees. I consider it one of the most beautiful spots in Lanarkshire.
After the Rev. Hector McKinnon died in the manse, it was converted into dwelling houses for the officials of Sandyhills Colliery Co. Then there is a place called Crosspars which is bordering between Barlanark estate and Wellhouse estate where three or four families live.
About sixty four years ago a man named James Hayes and his family left Crownhall, Eastmuir to live at Crosspars. The families that lived there were very much handicapped due to the lack of good drinking water, and James Hayes sunk a well about 100 yards from the houses on the Wellhouse estate. It was spring water and was very cold even in the summer months and clear to the bottom and the men and women, boys and girls walked from Eastmuir very frequently in the summer to get a drink of water from Jamie Hayes’ well. I passed through the estate about a year ago but no trace of the well was to be found. Only I knew the spot I frequently visited when a boy.
And then the first road to the right is Glenduffhill and estate was occupied a good number of years by James Todd who fell heir to the estate about fifty years ago after a long and expensive trial. He was afterwards called Laird Todd. Before that he and his mother lived in a small house called the "Birks" in Barrachnie but after his successful law suit he and his mother moved to a fine mansion in connection with the estate and large farm. The Laird did well for many years and was most generous and a quite inoffensive man who took an interest in his native village Barrachnie. He was very good in relieving people who were in financial difficulties that was very often. He stood as a member of the Shettleston School Board in May l894. There were ten members stood for seven seats and James Todd topped the pool with l,424 votes, and again in 1897 he stood as member. There were l8 candidates for 9 seats and the "Laird" got seventh place with 876 votes. He served six years on the Board and several years after that he began to lead an idle, rich, and careless life, took no interest in his farm, his rich and fertile soil became uncultivated, his ground was getting rapidly mortgaged year by year, and finally, lost the whole of his ground, farm etc. His mother died in Glenduffhill House, and shortly after that the Laird went back to the wee house in "Birks" in Barrachnie and died a poorer man than when he first left it. It is very remarkable that for many years before he died he went about the district with a tame sheep as a companion and it knew all the public houses in the district as well as the Laird himself. Sometimes it got in but if the bar was busy it remained outside till his master was ready for their walk. I was at Barrachnie School with James Todd when there were no schools in Eastmuir then, and Barrachnie’s Bonnie Woods and Braes was our playground. He was a nice quiet boy and I knew him well before he died I don’t think he had an enemy. He was a kind and affable man foolish and careless and a bachelor all his life. The road leads you to the top end of Barrachnie East, you walk straight across the car rails and down Barrachnie Avenue but is is now called Mount Vernon Avenue. Since they built new houses in Barrachnie Wood they changed the name of the Avenue. The Avenue now extends about ¾ of a mile and is a main road. To the east of the avenue and for two or three hundred yards you can view the beautiful estate of Major Maxwell who lived there about fifty five years ago. It was often stated in the village that he and his lady never lived in Scotland during the winter but spent their time on the continent. I think they had no family. I used to see him walking through Eastmuir on his way home from Shettleston Station as there was no other nearer conveyance. His estate lay between Barrachnie and Baillieston and over 28 years ago a pit was sunk bordering it called Barrachnie Pit. It cut out the view from Mount Vernon Avenue. It is interesting to note that Mount Vernon mansion on the right of Mount Vernon Avenue has few equals in Lanarkshire for beauty and accommodation. Viewing it from the main road where the cars run on the Avenue, the scenery is magnificent. Over 50 years ago, Mr. Jas. Gardiner who was Manager of the Union Bank of Scotland, lived in the mansion and had a butler, footboy, two gardners a coachman, etc. and nine lady servants for various household duties.
When Mount Vernon Station of the North British Railways was opened over fifty years ago newspapers were very difficult to get then, but the guard of the train always brought out the Citizen with him. The porter at the Station had a beautiful walk up to the big house every night with the paper and was rewarded by a generous butler with a tasty bite. Mrs Finlay, a friend of Colonel Buchanan, lived in the big house last about 18 years ago and shortly after that it was taken over by the Glasgow Corporation and refitted and made into a beautiful country home for children and had several nurses in charge.
But the original name of Mount Vernon was called "Windyedge", but in 1758 when it was bought by George Buchanan, one of the Virginia Merchants, builder of the famous Virginia Mansion in town. An ancestor of the Buchanan’s of Drumpellier, he built his Country House here, and gave it the name of the estate of his friend, George Washington, which adjoined his own in Virginia, hence Mount Vernon House. But to continue your walk down Mount Vernon Avenue, and two or three hundred yards to your left of the road you see one of the oldest farms in the district owned by the Bairds of Burnt Broom. At the foot of the avenue, the London Road that begins at the Glasgow Cross end at the foot of Mount Vernon Avenue, where the Corporation car runs to Uddingston and Glasgow only separates them, there is a beautiful Mansion, the last house at the foot of the Avenue and about thirty years ago it was christened the "Golden Gates". It has a history. Fifty years ago Mr. Christie, Colonel Buchanan’s Land Estate Factor, lived in it. When he left, Mr. Roxburgh, the Proprietor of the Britannia Theatre, Glasgow, bought the house and spent a large amount of money in renovating the whole of the estate with the interior and exterior of the whole surroundings, a beautiful new dyke and costly panels and large gates all which were painted gold, hence it was called the Golden gates. When the Corporation was widening the roads, etc. the dykes, panels, gates etc. were all taken down and replaced many yards back.
Sir Rodger Tichborne lived with Mr. Roxburgh at the Golden Gates, Mount Vernon, after serving 14 years in Prison for fraud. Mr. Roxburgh exhibited him in the Britannia Theatre for a long time and drew crowds nightly still declaring that he was the real Sir Rodger. I think his case lasted 150 days, amongst one of the longest trials on record. At the finish of the trial he could not tell his mother’s name. He had impersonated the long lost son and Doctor Kinalla lost about £20,000 on him as he had charge of the case. Sir James Tichborne, the 10th Baronet, had two sons one of whom, Roger, disappeared when voyaging from South America in 1853. Refusing to believe he was dead, his mother advertised for him. As a result a butcher from Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, put in a claim and was acknowledged by the then dowager, Lady Tichborne, but the judge and jury found him guilty of fraud. They found him to be Arthur Arton and the real Sir Rodger Tichborne was lost at sea in the year 1853. Three years before his death he confessed he was Arthur Arton, the son of a Wapping butcher.
At the foot of the avenue you look direct south for about 400 yards and you have a fine view of the Kenmuir Woods, though the beauty of the woods with its large, shrubbery and foliage have been cut down many years ago and the people who frequently attended it were robbed of a piece of Bonny Scotland’s scenery. It was for many years a favourite place for Botanists and Herbalists. It is only a narrow path along the banks of the Clyde from Carmyle to the woods and many a "right of way" battle has been fought for the rights of the Glasgow citizens who took the pleasure of having a stroll along the banks and also the citizens of the district. The agitators battled was led by David Kirkwood with a fighting determined gang of miners, labourers, tradesmen, etc. and won their rights of citizenship and kept the right of way paths open to the public. The riverside path along the banks ends at Kenmuir Woods at the place called the "Dooket" at the foot of the wood. Shy bridesmaids and their groomsmen used to visit after a wedding to drink the mystic waters of the marriage well. Certain places about the woods were well adapted for picnics, etc. After tea and refreshments the lads and lassies passed hours in amusement trying to step over the well and anyone soiling the water in any way while stepping across it would not get married that year.
Further eastwards comes the beautiful wooded parklands of Daldowie and the scenery on both sides of the Calder where it runs into the Clyde at that particular place is well worth a visit even looking at it from the New Calder Bridge on the main road through Broomhouse. At that spot there is a wood called the "Twelve Streets of Jerusa1em" but many of the trees have been cut down and is barer now but about forty years ago I looked through the wood hundreds of times and could always find a straight street with beautiful tall trees on each side, and from any angle you find the same.
"Right of Way" righted, David Kirkwood, M.P. scored another victory over/
over a colliery company regarding the famous Kenmuir right of way on the banks of the Clyde near the Clyde Iron Works on January, 1930. The colliery Company had allowed slag and refuse to overflow the path which became impassable. Mr Kirkwood raised the matter in Parliament and the Lanarkshire County Council ordered the pathway to be cleared so that the right of way is protected.
Leaving Mount Vernon Avenue and walking westwards along the main road where the electric car runs, you pass through South Mount Vernon and those who are interested in flowers, shrubbery, beautiful cottages and villas, would enjoy an hour along this route. Then you come to a place called Wood-end. This is a very old place, only five or six homes in it, but 40 or 50 years ago, there were two public houses here. Mr. Aikman held a licence and also Mr. McGibbon and his family has been continually in it for over 50 years and some of the family has charge of it at present. Mr. Aikman gave his up 40 years ago. The road opposite the shop takes you down to the beautiful village of Carmyle or to the banks of the Clyde and Kenmuir Wood. To continue along the main road from Wood-end, you come to the entrance of Sandyhills Golf Course, which is only 150 yards from Wood-end. From the main road there is a narrow path about 4 ft. wide which runs right through the centre of the Golf Course for half a mile and is a right of way no person can stop you. In the centre of the Golf Course there is a burn which runs from East to West and about 50 or 60 years ago very few people about the Eastmuir district knew the right name of the burn. The old inhabitants called it the "Bloody Burn", but before the Golf Course was made it was called the "Sheep Park". I remember the park being cultivated once that is 38 years ago. Before that the people of Tollcross, Shettleston, Eastmuir and Sandyhills had the same privilege in the Sheep Park as what the people of Glasgow had in Glasgow Green. No person interfered with you, thanks to old Lady Houston and her daughter, Mrs. Cassells and latterly, Mr. John Cassells, whom I had met in many a political election and we were always opposed to each other but good friends. John Cassells had always a kind word and a warm handshake for me. In the 1885, 1886 and 92 elections it was Lee Park and no damage done and complaints and I considered if landlords in all parts of Scotland were considering the villagers as I have stated there should be less discontent among the people.
Now Sandyhills House where the Cassells lived, only one son left and is still living in the house at present. It is situated at the top of the Golf Course north of Sandyhills Road. The house and estate is the most romantic and picturesque spot in the district of 80 yards in the Sandyhills Road. You are shaded by beautiful trees on each side of the road. Then take the first turn close to the Lodge Gate and you are on another narrow lane that extends about ½ mile from Sandyhills Road to Shettleston Road. About 64 years ago the path was about 4 ft. wide and a large hedge on each side, very lonesome at night or wintertime and a steep bray on the Sandyhills Road and a steep bray of the Eastmuir side, it was near cut to Tollcross and Carmyle and Broomhouse. But half road down the lane you cross another small bridge where a burn runs beneath and at the very edge of the burn there is a small spout running with water fed by a small spring. To my knowledge it has been running for 66 years and has never ceased and is still running. It is exactly one yard from the bridge east coming from Shettleston. It is remarkable that the small spout had to supply the village of Eastmuir with water, and sometimes the water was brought from nearby pits for washing purposes.
It was a treat to see the boys and girls, old and young, go with their gallows over their shoulders and a stoup and pail in each hand and many a good story is told about these days. It was the rule in some homes that the one who took the last drink had to don the gallows and go for a rake of water. No one ever went alone. Always several people went together. The road was very narrow. Two could not pass each other with a rake of water. They had to walk sideways. 60 years ago it was called Galloway’s Lane, then Lovers’ Lane, then the Burn Road, and now half of the Burn Road has grown into a large and busy street called Culross Street. At that time there was an old and respected Citizen of Eastmuir called John Travers, who had a horse and cart and a large barrel which he filled with Loch Katrine water at Parkhead and he/
sold it through the town of Shettleston including Cotton Lawn. He sold the water one halfpenny a stoup. I helped to fill the stoups and cans many times.
The Loch Katrine water supply came to Shettleston in 1869 and went no further than the head of Eastmuir. The Cockstop was at the east of St. Paul’s School railing on the main road. The pressure was tried over a tree that is standing in the same place and the house attached to it belonged to the Gilmours and the only remaining house of the small clachan of houses called Crown Hall. It is now used as a garage by one of the Gilmours. The pressure and force of the Loch Katrine was not sufficient to carry it any further for several years. It was a permanent blessing to the householders of Shettleston and Eastmuir, etc. and the older generation will never forget its arrival and use, but the present generation will never know what it was to don the gallows and stoups and cans on a late winter night and walk half a mile with your rake of water. But Lord Provost Stewart, who was always advocating a scheme to bring the Loch Katrine to Glasgow which he managed in 1859 and ten years later it arrived in Shettleston, and the wells were mostly placed outside the houses and keys used to fill the dishes and remained that way for many years.
A Sketch of Shettleston - October, 1930.
By Dan McAleer - Memoirs.
NOTES: Updated for 1st July, 2010.
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