[Gazetteer of Scotland Contents]
ANNAN, a parish in the district of Annandale, Dumfries-shire, on the northern shore of the Solway frith, along which it extends above 3 miles. It is about 8 miles in length, and from 1 to 4½ in breadth, containing 11,100 imperial acres; bounded on the north by Hoddam and Middlebie parishes; on the east by Kirkpatrick-Fleming, and Dornock; on the south by the frith of Solway; and on the west by Cummertrees. The surface is comparatively level, with a declination towards the south. Woodcock-air is the highest elevation. It is a conical shaped hill, clothed with wood, and rising to an altitude of 320 feet above sea-level. The shores are flat and sandy. The soil is generally a rich clay. There are extensive tracts of heath-covered moorland towards the east of the town of Annan. The banks of the Annan, and the elevated parts of the parish, are onamented with belts of planting. There is a salmon fishery at the mouth of the river. The turnpike roads from Dumfries to Carlisle, and from Annan to Edinburgh, intersect the parish. Population of the parish and town, in 1801, 3,341; in 1831, 5,033. By a survey of the parish-minister in 1835, the population was then estimated at 5,613, of whom 3,951 belonged to the established church. Houses 808. Assessed property £12,800. In 1836, a portion of this parish, comprehending the village of Bridekirk, and a population of 765 souls, was annexed to the new quoad sacra parish of BRIDEKIRK: which see. Minister’s stipend £279 2s. 4d., with a manse, and a glebe of the annual value of £30. Unappropriated teinds £191 15s. Church built in 1790, and recently repaired; sittings 1,200. Patron, Mr Hope Johnstone. – An United Secession congregation was established in Annan in 1805. Church built in 1834-5; sittings 746. Minister’s stipend £110, with manse and garden. – A Relief congregation was established in 1833. Church built in 1834-5; sittings 639. Stipend £100. – A Roman Catholic chapel was opened in 1839. – There are 3 parochial schools; and 19 schools not parochial. The master of the burgh parish-school has a salary of £32 10s.; with about £40 school-fees, and £12 other emoluments: the salaries of the other two parish schoolmasters are £10 each, with about £20 of fees. Annan parish is in the presbytery of Annan and synod of Dumfries. It was formerly a rectory.
ANNAN, a royal burgh in the above parish, and the capital of Annandale, is 15½ miles east by south of Dumfries; 8½ west of Gretna-green; 12 south of Lockerby; and 79 from Edinburgh. It is situated on the left bank of the river Annan, near its discharge into the frith of Solway. It is one of the most ancient towns in Scotland, having received its first charter from Robert Bruce. The subsisting charter was granted by James VI., in 1612; but it had previously been erected into a burgh by James V., in 1538. The houses are neat and well-built of good freestone, and the town has been considerably improved of late years; several new streets having been opened, and a number of new houses built. At the east end of the town is the parish-church; and at the other extremity are the town-house and markets. There is a bridge of 3 arches over the river at the west end of the High-street; from this bridge, a street conducts to the New quay, about 1,000 yards lower down the river. The academy, erected in 1820, in Ednam-street, is a large building, with apartments for the rector. Annan formerly carried on a considerable trade in wine, and exported nearly 15,000 bolls of corn; ship-building is carried on to a considerable extent; and there is a small cotton-mill and rope-works. A considerable quantity of coarse ginghams are manufactured for Carlisle. Hand-loom weavers make about 6s. per week; 35 years ago they might make 35s. Bacon and hams are extensively cured here and exported to Newcastle and London; and fat cattle are exported to Liverpool. The Commercial bank, the British Linen company, and the Southern bank of Scotland, have branches in Annan. Hiring-markets are held on the 1st Thursday in May, and 3d Thursday in October. The weekly market-day is Thursday. The mouth of the river forms a good natural harbour, having from 12 to 13 feet water in the lowest tides, and from 18 to 20 in the lowest spring-tides. In 1833, there were 33 vessels, measuring 2,264 tons, belonging to this port. Annan is governed by a provost, 3 bailies, a treasurer, a dean-of-guild, and 15 councillors. It possesses extensive burgh-roods and commonties, the latter of which have been divided, and are in a state of improvement. Its revenue, arising from rents, fisheries, tolls, and feu-duties, amounted, in 1833, to £670; its debts to £4,500; its expenditure in ordinary to £437. In 1837, the corporation revenue was £644. The real rent of the old royalty was, in 1833, about £11,861; and of that part of the burgal property within the parliamentary bounds £8,000. The ancient royalty comprehends a district of above 5 miles in length; the parliamentary line has greatly limited the burgh. The magistrates hold no patronage; and there is no guild or incorporation. The parliamentary constituency, in 1832, consisted of 170. The amount of assessed taxes payable from the burgh is £381 9s. 6d. Annan joins with Dumfries, Lochmaben, Sanquhar, and Kirkcudbright, in sending a member to parliament. The municipal and the parliamentary constituency, in 1837-8, was 176. The population of the town is about 4,500. Annan was the birth-place of the late Rev. Edward Irving.
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