[Gazetteer of Scotland Contents]
DUNDEE,1 a parish in the south of Forfarshire, having the main body lying along the Tay, and a detached portion to the north-east. The principal part is bounded on the north by Liff, Mains, and Murroes; on the east by Monifieth; on the south by the frith of Tay; and on the west by Liff. It is of an elongated form, stretching from east to west, broadest at the east end, and narrowest at the middle; and it measures diagonally, from Ninewells on the south-west to Saltside on the north-east, 6¼ miles, and has an average breadth of 1½ to 1¾. The detached part is bounded on the west by Tealing, and on all other sides by Murroes, and has nearly the figure of a square, 1½ mile deep. The whole parish is supposed to contain 3,700 Scotch acres. The surface rises with an easy arought from Fifeshire, andscent from the Tay; behind the burgh it swells somewhat suddenly up, and forms the conspicuous hill called Dundee Law, whose summit is 525 feet above the level of the Tay; and toward the west it again swells considerably and forms the lesser elevation of Balgay hill. The appearance of the whole slope toward the Tay, as seen from the river or the opposite shore, is beautiful. Balgay hill, in addition to its own fine form, possesses the attraction of a sylvan dress; and Dundee Law is cultivated up its whole ascent, till it shoots into a round, green, unusually pleasing summit. Most of the parish is in a state of good cultivation, and is sufficiently planted to be adorned without being encumbered. The soil, to the west of the town, is thin and dry; in the north-west of the parish, and behind Dundee Law, is poor, upon a bottom of till; and in the eastern division, is, in general, good, being partly alluvial and partly mixed with clay. A part of the eastern division is intersected by the Dichty and the Frithy, which form a confluence just before leaving it. The united streams form the southern boundary of the parish for about 600 yards. Tods-burn and Wallace-burn will be afterwards noticed. The Tay, along the parish, varies in width from 1 mile to 2½; and is marred by a shifting sand-bank, upwards of a mile in length, parallel with the channel of the river. On the lands of Balgay are large rocks of porphyry; and the greater part of the parish is incumbent on rocks of igneous origin. The detached portion of the parish abounds with excellent freestone; at one quarry it is extensively wrought, and pavement and slate are also raised in small quantity. The town is chiefly supplied with building-stone from Lochee, Kingoodie, and by railway from the parishes of Strathmartine and Auchterhouse. The supply of pavement, often exported, and of slate, now little used, is chiefly from the immediate neighbourhood of the Sidlaw ridge. Of late years the true sandstone of the carboniferous group has been brought from Fifeshire, and used in some of the principle buildings. In the sulphureous atmosphere of Dundee it soon acquires a bloated and unseemly appearance, and it is presumed that its future use is proscribed in any work of consequence. – Along the coast stretches the great northern mail-road from Edinburgh to Aberdeen by way of Perth; and at remarkably brief intervals roads intersect one another, both westward and northward. A railway, recently completed, leaves Dundee on the north, passes through a side of the Law in a tunnel 340 yards in length, and stretches away toward Newtyle, opening a communication between Strathmore and the navigation of the Tay. On the summit of Dundee Law are vestiges of a fortification, traditionally ascribed to Edward I. According to tradition, a Pictish force having encamped on Tothel-brow in the parish of Strathmartine, the Scottish army, under their king, Alpine, occupied the Law, rushed to battle on the intervening plain, and having been defeated, suffered the mortification of seeing their king captured and beheaded. This event occurred in 834. Assessed property, in 1815, £27,288. Of this, £22,878 was within the burgh. – Dundee gives name to a presbytery, and is in the synod of Angus and Mearns. By act of Assembly the parish has been constituted, quoad sacra, into 8 separate parishes. These shall be described in the article on the burgh.
DUNDEE, a royal burgh, an extensive sea-port, the fifth town of Scotland in point of population, and the first in the rapidity of recent increase in prosperity, is pleasantly situated on the north side of the estuary of the Tay, about 10 miles above Buddonness at the embouchure of the river. It stands in 56° 27′ 33″ north latitude, and 3° 2′ 55″ longitude west from the meridian of Greenwich, and is distant 22 miles east from Perth, 14 south from Forfar, 17 south-west from Arbroath, and 42 miles, by way of Cupar, from Edinburgh. It occupies chiefly a stripe of ground along the base of an acclivity, and seems pent up by Dundee Law and Balgay hill as if they were a pursuing foe urging it into the sea; but though it has at both ends crept along the Tay and sought to escape the pressure from behind, it has also begun to tread, in spacious streets, upon the lower acclivities in its rear. – The population, within the royalty, in 1841, was 59,135; in habited houses 13,204. Within the parliamentary boundaries, the population was 63,825; houses 14,078.
Till recently the royalty was confined within narrow limits. From the south side of Balgay-hill a rill called Tod’s-burn flows eastward, and, having been joined by another on the west side of the law, pursues a south-east course, till, after intersecting the modern town nearly in the middle, it falls into the Tay. These two streams are, perhaps, the most valuable in Scotland in proportion to their volume of water. They supply the greater part of the steam-engines in the town; and from their upper sources water is carted to town, and sold at the rate of 6 gallons a penny. Little of the united stream now appears above ground. Another rill, called Wallace-burn, rises on the north of the law, runs first eastward and next southward, and then falls into the Tay ¼ of a mile east of the mouth of the former. Between these rills, on low flat ground along the shore, stood ancient Dundee; consisting of only two principal streets, – the Seagate next the Tay, and the Cowgate on a somewhat parallel line to the north. West from the mouth of the first stream, rocks of from 50 to 90 feet above the level of the Tay swell up from the low grounds; and these, before being assailed by the levelling operations of modern improvement, were of considerably greater elevation, and must have formed a fine feature of the burghal landscape. On these rocks, at the point where they were highest, stood for centuries the ancient castle of Dundee. This important stronghold probably resembled, in its architectural features, the fortified edifices of the 11th century; but, it has long since disappeared.
The modern town of Dundee has bounded far beyond the limits of the ancient burgh. In one great line of street – somewhat sinuous, but over most of the distance not much off the straight line – it stretches from west to east, near and along the shore, under the names of Perth-road, Nethergate, High-street, Seagate, and the Crofts, nearly 1¾ mile. In another great line, first north-west, next north, and again north-west, it stretches from the shore, through Castle-street, Murray-gate, Wellgate, and Bonnet-hill, upwards of ¾ of a mile; and even there straggles onward through the incipient appearances of farther extension. A third line of street, – commencing on the east at the same point as Perth-road, but diverging from it till it is nearly ¼ of a mile distant, and called over this space Hawkhill; then, under the name of Overgate, converging toward it, till both merge into the High-street; then at the latter street diverging northward through that part of the second line which consists of Murray-gate, and at the end of that street, debouching away eastward, under the name of the Cowgate, nearly parallel to Seagate, – this line extends about 1½ mile. But while thus covering an extensive area, Dundee possesses little regularity of plan. Excepting the numerous new, but in general short streets, on the north, and most of the brief communications between the two great lines along the low ground, not even the trivial grace of straightness of street-line is displayed. Most of the old streets, too, are of irregular and varying width; and many of the alleys, as well as portions of the principal thoroughfares, are inconveniently and orientally narrow. Yet the town makes up by a dash of the picturesque, by its displays of opulence, and by the romance of its crowded quays, full apparently of plots which issue in the startling but delightful denouement, what it wants in the neat forms and elegant attractions of simple beauty. Its exterior, also, and its general grouping, and its richness of situation in the core of a brilliant landscape, eminently render it, as seen from the Fife side of the Tay, or from Broughty ferry-road, the justly lauded “Bonny Dundee” of song, and Ail-lec, “the pleasant” or “the beautiful” of Highland predilection. In a military point of view it is accessible on all sides, and is entirely commanded by the neighbouring heights, so as to be quite indefensible; but as regards commerce, comfort, and beauty, it is enriched by its singularly advantageous position on the Tay, and sheltered and adorned by the eminences among which it is cradled.
The most bustling and important part of the town is the High-street, called also the market-place, and the Cross. This is an oblong square, or rectangle, 360 feet long, and 100 feet broad, wearing much of that opulent and commercially great and dignified appearance which characterises the Trongate or Argyle-street of Glasgow, or even the less crowded parts of the great thoroughfares of London. The houses are of freestone, four stories high, rich and gaudy in their shops, and generally regular and modern in their structure, though in two or three instances, surmounted on the front by the gable-end construction. On the south side, projecting several feet from the line of the other buildings, stands the Town hall. This is a fine Roman structure, erected in 1734; but, being built of a mouldering, dark-coloured stone, it has a dingy and somewhat defaced appearance. Beneath, it lies open in piazzas, and above, it towers up in a spire of about 140 feet in height. At each end of the High-street, is a building which closes up the wide and stirring area of the rectangle, but allows, on both sides, sufficient space for thoroughfares into the adjoining streets. That which occupies the east end, is the Trades’ hall, dividing the commencement of the Seagate from that of Murray-gate. It is a neat though plain building, adorned in the front with Ionic pillars, and surmounted by an elegant cupola. The Seagate, one of the streets of the ancient town, and formerly the abode of the Guthries, the Afflecks, the Brigtons, the Burnsides, and other principal families, is a long, sinuous, and very narrow street, extending away to Wallace burn. The line of street is then continued to the eastward, through the Crofts and Carolina port, till it merges in the road to Broughty ferry. South of the Seagate are the Gas works, and the East and the Tay foundries. Murray-gate, opening on the northern end of the trades’ hall, is narrow and incommodious at its entrance, but soon expands in width, and assumes a pleasing appearance of well-built and somewhat regular lines of houses. In this street are banking-houses and several other public offices, and also the quarters of the carriers to the east and the north. At Wellgate-port, the eastern termination of Murray-gate, the street forks into two, – the Cowgate, which runs eastward, and the Wellgate, which runs northward, forming a straight line with Bonnet hill. The Cowgate, more remarkable for business than any of the other thoroughfares, and virtually the exchange of the town, has some handsome buildings, most of which are devoted to commerce, and is adorned at its east end with a venerable archway, originally one of the town gates, where the reformer Wishart preached during the prevalence of the plague in 1544, the archway or gate serving to keep the infected and the uninfected in separate crowds. From the Cowgate, Queen’s-street, St. Roque’s-lane, and the Sugar-house wynd, lead off to the Seagate. King-street subdivides and contracts the Cowgate, and breaks off at an acute angle from its north side, running north-eastward to Wallace burn, and there merges in the great north road, by way of Arbroath and Montrose, to Aberdeen. In King-street stands the royal infirmary, built in 1798, on an elevated situation sloping to the south, well-detached from other buildings, and having a promenade for convalescents. The Wellgate rises gently from the Murray-gate, and, on market-days, is a scene of bustling and tumultuous business. At the head of the Wellgate is the Lady well, whence the street has its name, and which draws ample supplies of excellent water from various springs on the high grounds. From this point Buckle-maker wynd – formerly the seat of a craft whence it derived its name, but which is now extinct – goes off at right angles and extends to Wallace burn. An extensive rising ground lying northward of this wynd, and called Forebank, is adorned with numerous elegant villas and gardens. On a line with Wellgate, and mounting up the ascent, Bonnet hill rejoices in the additional names of the Rottenrow and the Hill-town of Dundee, and stretches away over the acclivity on to the lands of Clepington; but it has a motley and grotesque appearance, and, though the seat of very extensive manufactures, consists generally of ill-built houses, confusedly interspersed with cloth factories. Maxwelltown, a suburb of recent origin, occupies the grounds which lie between Hill-town and the villa of Hillbank, to the northward of Forebank. Opposite to Buckle-maker wynd, Dudhope wynd, which forms the northern boundary of the Chapelshade, breaks off to the west, and runs along nearly half-a-mile, terminating at the barracks.
From the High-street, to which we now return, Castle-street goes off at right angles with the commencement of the Seagate, and leads down to the harbour. This street contains several fine buildings; and is the site of the theatre and an Episcopalian chapel, the lower part of the latter edifice containing the office of the Dundee bank. At the south-east corner of Castle-street stands the exchange coffee-room, – a commodious and beautiful building, having a spacious opening to the west, and erected by a body of subscribers at an expense of £9,000. Its western front, on the basement story, has Doric pillars, boldly relieved by deep recesses of the doors and windows; and, on the second story, is in a style of the Ionic order, more ornate than what usually occurs. The reading-room is 73 feet by 38, and is 30 feet in height. From the south-west corner of the High-street, and parallel with Castle-street, Crichton-street leads down to the green-market, and on to Earl Grey’s dock. Opposite to the town-hall, and in a direction the reverse of Castle and Crichton streets, a splendid street has recently been built, combining uniformity with elegance, and rivalling, in the beauty of its buildings, some of the admired parts of the Scottish metropolis. The splendour of Reform-street – the name imposed on this public-spirited and tasteful addition to the thoroughfares of the burgh – is greatly enhanced by the magnificent appearance of the new public seminaries, which close it up on the north, and look down along its area. This edifice is in the Doric style of architecture, and has its portico or central part copied from the exquisite model of the Parthenon of Athens. A double-columned gateway, closed in by an iron-palisadoed wall which encircles a beautiful shrubbery, leads to the principal entrance. The building contains a room 42 feet by 40 for classes studying the higher departments of science, another of the same dimensions fitted up as a museum, one 37 feet by 30 for the junior classes, as well as a large provision of other apartments; and it was erected at an expense of about £10,000.
At the west end of the High-street, closing up the area, is an ancient building, long called the Luckenbooths, on the corner of which is still a turret indicative of its former character. This venerable pile was the adopted residence of General Monk, when he entered Dundee and consigned it to the pillage of his soldiery; and it was the birthplace of the celebrated Anne Scott, daughter of the Earl of Buccleuch, and afterwards Duchess of Monmouth, whose parents had sought a refuge in the town from the effects of Cromwell’s usurpation; and it was also, in 1715, the adopted home of the Pretender, during the period of his stay in Dundee. The lower part of the building was originally divided into arched sections; but is now modernized. An edifice connected with the Luckenbooths, and originally called the tolbooth, is also very ancient, and had before it, in old times, the Tron in which the public weights were kept. In its vicinity is an alley still called Old Tolbooth lane. Within St. Margaret’s close, at the High-street, were formerly a royal residence and a mint. The palace, after ceasing to be a home or a possession of royalty, was inhabited by the Earls of Angus, by the Scrymseours of Dudhope, and afterwards by John Grahame of Claverhouse, Viscount Dundee. Robert III. was the first sovereign who struck coin in the mint. An alley leading from the High-street is still called Mint-close.
Passing out of the High-street, on the north side of the Luckenbooths, the Overgate runs away westward for upwards of ¼ of a mile to the West-port, and there forks into lines of street called Hawkhill and Scouringburn, which pass on to the limits of the town. The Overgate was originally called Argyle-gate, from the connexion it had with the family of Argyle; and, opposite the Windmill, it still has a house to which tradition points as that family’s quondam property. As the street proceeds, it sends off several branch-streets to the north which run up toward the base of the Law. This district, though containing many good houses, exhibits utter recklessness of architectural taste or uniformity, and is the site of the larger portion of the great manufactories. But Tay-street, the principal communication with the lower part of the town, is elegant and possesses a beautiful square. The streets, or rather alleys, parallel with it, breaking off on the south side of Overgate and Hawkhill – Tally-street, Thorter-row, School-wynd, Long-wynd, and Small’s-wynd – are narrow and cheerless communications. From the west end of Overgate, but chiefly from Scouringburn or Witch-know, Lindsay-street, leading to the new jail and bridewell, Barrack-street and other openings break off northward, and present fine lines of new and pleasingly constructed buildings. The barracks occupy a commanding eminence at the foot of the Law, and enclose the remains of Dudhope castle, formerly the residence of the constables of Dundee; and, for advantageous and healthful situation, they excel all other buildings of their class in the north of Scotland.
Returning again to the High-street, we find a wide opening from its western end, on the south side of the Luckenbooths. Most of this opening is closed up, at the distance of a few yards, by an Episcopalian chapel, of very neat appearance, which has its lower story fitted up and occupied as shops. On the south side of this chapel, leading out from the High-street, and forming the main line of communication with Perth and Glasgow, opens the Nethergate, which stretches away, through the direct continuation of Perth-road, into the carse of Cowrie, and, through a forking continuation sea-ward, into the delightful promenade of Magdalene-yard. The Nethergate is a well-built and somewhat spacious street of nearly ½ a mile in length; and leaves behind the hustle and confusion of the business parts of the town, and puts on appearances of architectural neatness and modem improvement. As it advances westward, it becomes the site of the elegant or the flaunting homes of the elite of the town; and, along with its branch-streets, has quite as aristocratic an air as comports with its propinquity to manufacture and commercial stir. The houses, instead of forming continuous lines, now stand apart, environed with lawn and flower-plots; and eventually they announce their inmates to be parties who know quite as well to luxuriate in the results which affluence produces, as to ply the arts by which it is obtained. To render the Nether-gate somewhat straight, and achieve a considerable degree of order and neatness in the collocation of modern buildings, many edifices of antique character and historical interest, shared a common demolition with the gaunt and ungainly houses which at one time jostled one another along the line. Among others, a short way after the debouch of the street from the cross, stood Whitehall, the residence, at various periods, of the kings of Scotland, the scene of frequent conventions of estates and burghs, and the meeting-place of several general assemblies of the Church of Scotland. A memorial of the building still exists in the name of an alley, called Whitehall close, which leads down to the shore; in a sculpture of the royal arms of Charles I. over the entrance to this alley, with the inscription in decayed letters, “God save the King, C. R. 1660;” and in the insertion of some sculptured stones which belonged to it in several of the buildings which stand on or near its site. All that remains of it is a portion of the west wall. On the lintel of a door, leading to three low vaults, which communicate with one another, and are hemmed in by an outer wall of great strength, is inscribed, “Tendit acerrima virtus.” Opposite this lintel is a niche with several ornamental figures; two of which, though much decayed, appear to have been statues. Whitehall was the home of Charles immediately before his ill-fated expedition to Worcester; and it seems to have been strictly a court-residence, surrounded by numerous houses belonging to the nobility. A little to the westward of Whitehall close stood one of the most ancient and spacious mansions in Dundee, the town-residence of the powerful Earls of Crawford, said to have been built in the 13th century, and, along with its grounds, stretching downward from the Nethergate quite to the river. Sixty or seventy years ago, vestiges of the mansion were still in existence, having the word “Lindsay” embossed in a sort of battlement. The lords of Crawford resided here in feudal splendour; and, in the beginning of the 15th century, Archibald, sixth Earl of Angus and Lord of Liddesdale, commonly called Bell-the-Cat, visited the mansion, and was married within its walls, amid a pomp and magnificence of ceremony which were remarkable even in those days of excessive pageantry, to Maud Lindsay, daughter of the contemporaneous Earl of Crawford.
Passing off from the Nethergate, near the site of the mansion of the Crawfords, Union-street leads down to the shore. This is a spacious and beautiful thoroughfare, traced along the sites of many unseemly and frail houses which formerly disfigured and menaced the locality. From its west side branches Yeaman shore, having in its southern line of buildings a plain and indifferently situated public edifice, the Sailors’ hall. Merging from Union-street on the south we find ourselves near the western point of the quays and docks of Dundee. Hence to the Trades’ lane, Dock-street, consisting of new and elegant erections, runs parallel to the Tay, and forms a fine background to its series of docks, with their marine forest of masts. Going off from an open area at the foot of Castle-street is Exchange-street, running nearly parallel with Dock-street; and crossing the further end of this at right angles, and coming down to Dock-street, from the Seagate near the High-street, is Commercial-street. Both of these are new thoroughfares, and in keeping with the neatness and taste of the modern improvement-spirit of the town. In Green-market square, foot of Crichton-street, is the old custom-house, one of the most antiquated buildings in Dundee. The lower part was formerly arched, and seems also to have been surrounded with a kind of piazza, now converted into shops and cellars. At the top it originally terminated in fine circular turrets; in each story it has circular turreted rooms, as well as other apartments bearing vestiges of ancient comfort and magnificence; and altogether it appears to have been one of those baronial residences which, in feudal times, abounded in the town, and which either have bequeathed their names to streets or left some scanty physical memorials to stimulate the curiosity of the antiquarian. The old Fish-market beside this edifice is now abandoned; a clean area, well-supplied with water, and placed under suitable regulations, having been provided between the end of Castle-street and the Green-market. At the extreme west of the harbour, and nearly opposite Union-street, is Craig-pier, exclusively used by the large steam-vessels which ply at brief intervals on the ferry to the Fife coast, and constitute nearly a complete succedaneum for a bridge across the estuary. From this pier on the west, to the ship-building-yards opposite Trades’ lane on the east, stretch the proud and opulent series of docks which are at once the boast of Dundee, the chief means of its wealth, and the best evidence of its enterprise and taste. Previous to 1815 – when commissioners were appointed by act of parliament to extend and improve the harbour – the only accommodations for shipping were a small pier and a few ill-constructed erections which could not be reached by vessels of any considerable draught of water. But between 1815 and 1830, a wet-dock, with a graving-dock attached to it, was constructed, – the tide-harbour deepened and extended, – sea-walls and additional quays built, – and various other improvements made, at the munificent cost of £162,800. The wet-dock, then constructed, and called William the Fourth’s, covers an area of nearly 8 acres, and has its adjoining graving-dock in corresponding proportion. Since 1830 a large part of the tide-harbour has been converted into another wet-dock, called Earl Grey’s dock. Still further improvements, on a magnificent scale, have been made or are in progress; and include an extent of space eastward equal to nearly double the area of the docks and harbours which have been noticed. All of these improvements are considerably within the range of high-water mark, leaving an important space of ground skirting along the town to be occupied as the site of buildings, and the area of a continuation of Dock-street; and part of the improvements are also within low-water mark, leaving, even there, between the new wet-docks and the sea, a space to be occupied by warehouses and building-yards. Two additional wet-docks, a tide-harbour with a very deep water draught and greatly improved accommodation for shipping, are the principal elements. The great outer sea-wall is extended considerably to the eastward, and does great credit to Mr. Leslie the engineer, for the skill and science he has displayed. When the improvements are completed, they will render the harbour of Dundee one of the finest, safest, and most convenient in Britain. One valuable advantage is that, like the harbours of Liverpool and of Greenock, it is situated almost all within the line of low-water mark, and offers commodious ingress in very reduced states of the tide. The estuary of the Tay, where it washes the town, is about 2 miles broad, and is pent up by banks which, in general, have a sufficiently rapid declination to leave little of the beach bare at low water. Most vessels, especially steam-boats, can, in consequence, enter the harbour at even the unfavourable epochs of the tide. Various sand-banks, indeed, at the mouth of the estuary, opposite the town, offer obstructions to the navigation; but they are now, by the appliances of lighthouses, beacons, and accurate charts, rendered nearly harmless, and fail to impede the rapidly increasing progress of the commerce of the river. Mr. Leslie has erected on the quay of Earl Grey’s dock a stupendous crane, by which eight men easily lift a weight of 30 tons. The height of the sheave above the level of the quay is 40 feet; the total weight of the castings, bars, chain, and brasses, 59 tons.
Several public buildings and places of interest require more detailed mention than could be made of them in a general sketch of the town; and others – including all the ecclesiastical edifices – remain yet to be noticed. The Trades’ hall was built by the nine incorporated trades, and was originally fitted up with separate apartments for their respective use. Besides being a considerable ornament to the High-street, it occasioned the removal of shambles formerly on its site, which were a great public nuisance. The ground-floor is fitted up in commodious and elegant shops; and the second floor contains an elegant hall, 50 feet long, 30 broad, and 25 high, which, previous to the erection of the theatre, was occasionally used for histrionic exhibitions, and is now occupied by the Eastern bank of Scotland. The Town-hall was built on the site of St. Clement’s church, from a design of the celebrated William Adam. The ground-floor, behind the piazzas, is fitted up in apartments for business, – the west end being a long-established apothecary’s shop, and the east end affording accommodation for the town-chamberlain and the treasurer of police. The west end of the second floor contains a very handsome hall, profusely embellished, in which the town-council hold their sederunts; and the east end contains a hall equally spacious, though less ornate, in which the guildry incorporation and the sheriff and justices hold their courts. On the same floor are four rooms with strongly arched roofs, for the use of the town clerks and the conservation of the public records; and though threatening, from their peculiar structure, to wear a heavy appearance, are airy, well-lighted, and cheerful. The third floor – in ludicrous inconsistency with the importance and public-spirit of the town, and in painful incongruousness with the suitable lodgment or the effective moral reclamation of the miserable inmates – continued, in 1836, to be the jail, ill-aired, wretchedly planned, and utterly too limited. The apartments are five, three of which, in the front, are lighted by small oval windows, and were appropriated to debtors; while the two in the rear were strong rooms for male felons. Of the attic rooms, part was occupied by the turnkey, and part by female prisoners, debtors, and felons, without classification. Even the tower of the spire surmounting the town-hall was partly fitted up and used as a prison. New public buildings, however creditable to the character of the burgh, adapted, to the multiplied exigencies of its social condition, and consisting of jail, bridewell, and police-office, have recently been completed, at the south-west comer of the town’s gardens, from a design of Mr. Angus, and at a cost of £26,000. The first jail in Dundee stood in the Seagate; and near its site is still pointed out a spot where a woman, named Grizel Jeffrey, was ignominiously burned to death under an imputation of witchcraft. – The lunatic asylum was opened for patients in 1820, and is a well-arranged edifice, and well-conducted institution; situated about ½ a mile north of the town, upon an inclined plane considerably higher than the vale of the burgh, commanding a fine view of the Tay and the country along its shores, and encircled with spacious airing-grounds and delightful garden-walks. – The theatre – it may be remarked, as an instance additional to several which have occurred, of an economical disposition of public buildings, peculiarly characteristic of Dundee – has its ground-floor fitted up and occupied as shops. – The Watt institution is an elegant Grecian structure, consisting of a front building and an attached back-building of two floors, and commodiously distributed in the interior, into a library 29 feet by 21, on the ground-floor, a laboratory, 21 feet by 14½, and an apparatus-room 21 feet by 14; on the second-floor, into a lecture-hall 50 feet by 35; and in the back-building, into a museum, lighted below by 10 windows, and above by 2 cupolas. – At the head of a lane, between Castle-street and the old fish-market, is the hall of the Caledonian lodge of free-masons. – At the part of the Nethergate, opposite the foot of Tay-street, stand the dilapitated remains of the hospital. The date of its foundation is unknown. On the 15th of April, 1567, Queen Mary granted to the magistrates, council, and community of Dundee, for behoof of the ministry and hospital, all lands, &c. which had belonged to any chaplainries, altars, or prebendaries, within the liberty of the town, with the lands which belonged to the Dominican and Franciscan friars, and the Grey sisters, which were incorporated into one estate, to be called the foundation of the ministry and hospital of Dundee. This charter was confirmed by James VI., in 1601. The property of the hospital, though under charge, nominally, of an hospital master, is, in fact, under the administration of the magistrates of Dundee. The house has been allowed to fall down, and the funds belonging to it are now applied to the aid of poor burgesses. – The Howff, or burying-ground of the town and parish, is situated in Barrack-street, formerly called Burial-wynd. But a new cemetery, as an enlargement of the old, which was crowded and of repulsive aspect, has been laid out on ground sloping gently to the south, in the lower Chapelshade gardens, and is so decorated in incipient imitation of the celebrated Pere la Chaise of Paris as to have become a favourite promenade of the burghers. – The new bleaching-green, lying north of the new cemetery, is an oblong of nearly 4 acres in area, surrounded with wall and hedge, and tastefully intersected with decorated paths.
The most prominent object in Dundee – that which most visibly connects it with antiquity, and bulks most largely among its public edifices, and constitutes the most distinctive feature in its burghal landscape – is the agglomeration of buildings called the churches and the tower. Whether looking up from the area before the Trades’ hall, or peering through any vista or opening among the sinuous streets, the tower looms largely in the view, and looks like the impersonation of fleeting Time casting a dark shadow upon the bustling scenes of the hour; and, look upon Dundee from what point or visible distance we may, whether from the east or from the west or from the south, the tower lifts its gaunt length high above the undulating surface of a sea of roofs, and suggests thoughts of many generations who have fluttered away their ephemeral life, and passed to their long home, beneath its shadow. The churches are situated west of the Luekenbooths, between the Overgate and the Nethergate. A chapel, it is supposed, originally occupied that part of their site on winch now stands the East church, and was founded by Prince David, Earl of Huntingdon. Around this as a nucleus, other portions of the structure were raised to complete the form of a cathedral; and the whole must, for a considerable period, have been a church in the fields, the town having its boundary at the west end of the High-street. The edifice, in its present form, is irregularly cruciform, and is divided into 4 sections, called the West or Steeple church, the South or New church, the North or Cross church, and the East or Old church. The choir is 95 feet long, 54 high, and 29 broad; and has 2 aisles, each 14½ feet broad. The cross part has no aisles; and is 174 feet long, and 44 broad. The roofs of the four sections were originally of one height, and presented an uniform appearance of architectural beauty. But the West or Steeple church having been destroyed by the English before the national union, a new one was erected in 1789, of such niggard and inharmonious proportions, as utterly to mar the symmetry of the interesting pile. In fact, so many additions and vast alterations have, in the course of ages, been made, that, with the exception of the tower, probably no part whatever of the strictly original structure remains. The tower stands at the extreme west of the churches, and is most advantageously seen, with its elegant gable windows, from an alley leading out opposite to it from the Nethergate. Its height is 156 feet. At the corners, it is adorned with lofty abutments, terminating in carved pinnacles; half-way up, it has a bartizan or gallery; and, at the top, which is flat, and apparently unfinished, it is battlemented with a stone rail, and surmounted by a cape-house resembling a cottage with a double slanting roof. The cape-house, in the estimation of competent judges, is much more modern than the tower, and probably was erected as a watch-post to accommodate a warder in the age of forays and predatory incursions; it could never, at all events, except by the most grotesque of blunderers, have been constructed with a view to architectural decoration; for it sits, in vile deformity, as a disfiguring excrescence upon the fine, care-worn brow of architectural beauty which it surmounts. The tower, so far from having had destined for it so tiny and unseemly a termination, appears, from the abrupt Hat formation of its second bartizan, to have had designated for its summit, either a tapering spire, or more probably an imperial crown, similar to what adorns the towers of St. Giles’ of Edinburgh, and the Cross or the tolbooth of Glasgow.2
All the other ancient ecclesiastical edifices of Dundee – which were numerous, well-endowed, and quite in keeping with the spirit of ostentatious display and prodigal expenditure which characterized the bastard and superstitious spirit of the dark ages – have disappeared. The oldest, St. Paul’s, was situated between Murraygate and Seagate. St. Clements occupied the site of the present Town-hall. A mile-and-a-half west of the town, a burying-ground, still in use, marks the site of the church of Logie; – a mensal or table-furnishing church of the Bishop of Brechin. On a rocky rising ground, north of the High-street, stood the chapel of St. Salvator, probably an appendage of the royal palace situated in the adjoining close of St. Margaret, or Maut close. Outside of the Cowgate-port, between the Den-bridge and the east end of the Seagate, stood the chapel of St, Roque; commemorated in the name of a lane, which runs from King-street to the Seagate, and is called St. Roque’s lane, or vulgarly, Semirookie. On a rock, a little eastward from Carolina-point, stood the chapel of Kilcraig, meaning, in the language of the Culdees, the church upon the rock, but afterwards called by the Roman Catholics, the church of the Holy Rood. This chapel is commemorated in the name of Rood-yard, still applied to the locality. At the foot of Hilltown, stood the chapel of Our Lady, commemorated in the name of the adjoining Lady well. On a rock at the western part of the harbour, originally called Nicholas rock, and afterwards Chapel-craig, stood the chapel of St. Nicholas. On the east side of Couttie’s wynd, still stands a vestige of the basement part of the wall of the chapel of St. Mary. A large cluster of houses called Pleasance, near the western approach to the barracks, probably indicates the site of a forgotten chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Placentia. There appear to have been 4 or 5 other chapels; and there were also, in the churches, particularly in the cathedral one which still survives, various well-endowed altars, dedicated to particular saints, and served by separate officials. There were likewise 5 convents; – a Franciscan friary on the Howff; a Dominican friary to the west of the Franciscan, and separated from it by the Friar’s Vennel, afterwards called the Burial-wynd, and now called Barrack-street; a monastery of Red or Trinity friars, on or near the site of the hospital, possibly the hospital itself, at the foot of South Tay-street; a convent of the Nuns of St. Clare, still in existence at the head of the Methodist close, Overgate, and containing now a large hall which is occasionally used by the incorporation of hammermen, by the preacher, by the scientific lecturer, by the itinerant salesman, and even by the histrionic actor; and a cloister of Magdalenes at the west end of the town, commemorated in the name of the large irregular field or promenade, called Magdalene-yard.
In modern ecclesiastical edifices, as to both number and architectural beauty, Dundee will bear comparison, if Edinburgh and Glasgow be excepted, with any town in Scotland. St. Andrew’s church, built in 1772, occupies a slightly rising ground on the north side of the Cowgate; and is much and justly admired for its uniform and simple elegance. An exquisitely formed spire rises, from its west end, to the height of 139 feet, and contains a set of fine music-bells. Adjacent to it stands the Glassite chapel, a neat octagonal edifice, built, in 1732, for Mr. Glass, the founder of his sect. An Independent chapel, on the west side of Constitution-street, directly west from the public seminaries, has its east or principal front of Gothic architecture, with two buttresses on each side, the transverse ribs springing from ornamental corbels, and crossed by smaller ribs running longitudinally on the ceiling. The new chapel of the second United Secession congregation, situated in the same street, and opened on the last day of May, 1840, is both a spacious and a very splendid edifice. The Episcopalian chapels, already incidentally noticed, are finely ornamental of the localities in which they stand. The Roman Catholic chapel in Nethergate is a beautiful Gothic structure; and forms a fine feature of the rich agglomeration of architecture seen eastward from the High-street. St. David’s church, in North Tay-street, though a plain edifice, is spacious, and of pleasing exterior. Two United Secession chapels, respectively in School-wynd and Tay-square; the Gaelic church, in South Tay-street; the parish-churches of St. Peter, and Chapelshade; an Independent chapel in Princes-street; an Independent Methodist chapel, in Lindsay-street; a Reformed Presbyterian chapel, a United Christian chapel, and other places of worship belonging to various denominations, are elegant or comfortable erections.
Dundee is rich in charitable, literary, and public institutions. Besides the royal infirmary, the royal lunatic asylum, and the ancient hospital fund, it has a medical and surgical dispensary and vaccine institution, – a royal orphan institution, – an indigent sick society, – a clothing society, – a medical institution for the lame, – an eye institution, – 18 endowments for various philanthropic purposes, – the charitable funds of the guildry, the nine trades, the seamen fraternity, and numerous voluntary associations, – funds for the poor, raised partly from collections at church doors, and partly by assessments on the inhabitants in the burgh; – a seaman’s friend society, – a florist’s and horticultural society, – the Watt institution, – a mechanics’ institution, – a phrenological society, – a Highland society, – numerous public libraries, – and religious and school societies, general and congregational, for promoting almost every variety of enlightening and Christianizing effort at home and abroad. – The banks in Dundee are, – the Dundee banking company, established in 1763, and located in Castle-street, – the Dundee Union bank, established in 1809, and located in Murraygate, – the Eastern bank of Scotland, established in 1838, and located in Seagate, – the National Security savings bank, established in 1838, and located in Reform-street; and branch offices of the bank of Scotland, in High-street, – of the royal bank of Scotland, in Seagate, – of the British Linen company, in Murraygate, – and of the National bank of Scotland, in Cowgate. – Dundee has 3 newspapers:- the Advertiser, the Courier, and the Chronicle.3 Oftener than once, periodicals of a literary character have been commenced; but uniformly, after a brief and hopeless career, they have been discontinued.
Dundee is remarkable for failure, perseverance, and eventual success in attempts at manufacture. Coarse woollens, under the name of ‘plaiding,’ dyed in Holland, and exported throughout Europe, – bonnets, so extensively manufactured as to employ a large proportion of the population, – coloured sewing thread, made by seven different companies, maintaining 66 twisting-mills, and employing 1,340 spinners, – the tanning of leather, in at least 9 tan-yards, and to the annual value of £14,200, – glass in two factories, one for window and the other for bottle-glass, – the spinning of cotton undertaken, and, for a time, spiritedly conducted by 7 different companies; – these, and the making of buckles and other minor manufactures, all flourished for a season, and, in the end, went utterly to ruin; bequeathing, in some instances, their names to streets, and in others the vestiges of their factory walls to the inspection of the commercial antiquary, as memorials of the instability of trade. The making of soap, the brewing of ale, and the manufacture of cordage, are ancient, but the first is extinct, and the second in a declining state, while the third is in an increasingly prosperous condition. Linen of various kinds is at present the most extensive and prosperous manufacture, and gives an impulse to all other departments of trade. Brown linen, since the period, considerably remote, when the manufacture was introduced, has always been the largest article; and while of various sorts, consists largely of Osnaburghs, for clothing to the West Indian negroes. Bleached linen, in imitation of the sheeting and duck of Russia, and made from yarn which is bleached by a skilful chemical process before being woven, is also a large article. Another fabric is sailcloth, exported in considerable quantity to America and the East Indies. Another is bagging for packing cotton, made indifferently of hemp or of flax, and sent to the West Indies and America. Coarse linens for household purposes, though formerly manufactured, are now nearly superseded by the cheaper linens of Ireland. All these goods, till a recent date, were manufactured by the hand, and employed vast numbers of persons in the towns and villages of Forfarshire. Machinery, however, has been introduced to a vast extent, and has not only increased to a prodigious extent the quantity of the manufacture, but so considerably improved its quality, and lessened the cost of its production, as to enable it successfully to hold its way in the face of the menacing competition of Germany and Russia. In the town and its immediate vicinity, there were, in 1832, 36 flax spinning-mills, employing a steam-power equal to that of 600 horses, and annually consuming 15,600 tons of flax, and producing 7,488,000 spindles of yarn. The mills are in general large buildings, from 4 to 6 stories high, having on each flat a vast number of spindles or carding machines, and attended by about 3,000 individuals, considerably the larger proportion of whom are children and youths. According to the census of 1831, the number of linen manufacturers was 363; and the number of persons employed in the linen manufacture, 6,828.4 So greatly has this manufacture increased, that while Dundee imported, in 1745, only 74 tons of flax, it imported, in 1791, 2,444 tons of flax, and 299 of hemp; and in 1833, 15,010 tons of flax, and 3,082 of hemp; and exported proportionally of manufactured fabrics. Causes of its prosperity are found in the advantageous position of the port, with reference to the Baltic, whence the raw material is obtained, – in its being the grand emporium of Forfarshire, the Carse of Gowrie, and the northern parts of Fifeshire, which all depend upon it for the supply of their material and the sale of their productions, – and in a bounty granted by Government on all home-linen exported, and the impost of a heavy duty on all foreign linen imported. But flourishing as the linen manufacture of Dundee has been, dark clouds have passed over it, and let down drenching rains upon not a few houses connected with it during four years preceding October, 1840; and at that date continued still to have such a lowering aspect, as to occasion doubt whether a return of sunshine were near.
An interesting view of the commercial condition of the town will be afforded by an extract from ‘An Account of the Trade of the Port of Dundee, during the three years ended 31st May, 1838. By John Sturrock, Esq., Banker and Convener of the Finance Committee of the Harbour Trustees, Dundee:’ – “The commercial crisis, which commenced in October, 1836, and which extended over Great Britain, Ireland, and the continents of Europe and America, was severely felt in Dundee. Its injurious effects were aggravated by the circumstance, that during the year from 1st June, 1836, to 31st May, 1837, an excessive importation of flax and flax codilla, the raw materials from which the greater part of our exports is manufactured, took place. The flax imported in that year was 22,461 tons, while the average of the four preceding years ended 31st May, 1836, was 15,726 tons, showing an excess of 6,735 tons. In the same manner, the importation of flax codilla being 8,279 tons, exceeded by 3,405 tons the average of the four preceding years, which was 4,874 tons. The consequence was – a great part being held by persons who were dependent upon credit – that the prices fell in a double ratio: first, from the check given to credit, – and, secondly, from the importations being greater than the trade of the place required. Hence D. C. flax – of which a greater quantity is consumed than any other – which in June, 1836, was worth £42 15s., had fallen to £33 in July, 1837; and flax codilla fell, during the same period, from £21 15s., to £17 per ton. Therefore, although the average quantity of flax imported during the three years ended 31st May, 1838, only exceeds the average of the four years ended 31st May, 1836, by 1,845 tons; the former being 17,571, the latter 15,726; and the average of the flax codilla, for the same period, only exceeds by 944 tons, the average for the three years being 5,818, and of the four years, 4,874 tons; yet we see the injurious results arising from the excessive importations from the 1st June, 1836, to 31st May, 1837, amounting to 30,740 tons; the price of the whole being affected according as the excess bears a greater or less ratio to the actual quantities required for consumption.
“On an inspection of the exports, the most gratifying conclusions are to be drawn from the returns of the sheetings, dowlas, sacking, and sailcloth exported. The quantities of the three first-mentioned articles have regularly increased; and though the last year of the latter article falls short of the first year by 4,492 pieces, yet it exceeds the year 1836 by 21,199 pieces. The most important and valuable article of our trade are sheetings. Their value, during the three years, amounts to a third of the whole exports; and, as half of the quantity is said to be used in home consumption, the trade is of the best and surest kind, and the most likely to continue to increase. The next is dowlas, of which 3-4ths are reported to be exported; then follows sailcloth, half of which is exported; and thereafter sacking, of which 2-3ds are supposed to be used for home consumption. The article of Osnaburghs forms a considerable part of our exports, but seems liable to great fluctuations, as the average number of pieces exported during the last three years is only 81,967; while that of the three years ended 31st May, 1835, was 120,784. This probably arises from 9-10ths of the article being exported, and, from the difficulties which the exporters experience, from imperfect information, in regulating the supply to the demand. Whether the great change which has taken place in our colonies by the complete emancipation of the negroes, whose clothing was generally made of this article, will influence this manufacture, can only be ascertained by time. Conjecturing that free labour will not only improve the state of the proprietors but of the labourer, we may anticipate an increase.
|Years ended.||Cotton Bagging exported. Pieces.||Aggregate of each 3 Years.||Yearly average of the 3 Years.|
|May 31, 1827||44,777|
|“ “ 1828||63,805||168,611||56,203|
|“ “ 1829||59,969|
|“ “ 1830||63,383|
|“ “ 1831||65,592||179,011||59,337|
|“ “ 1832||49,036|
|“ “ 1833||27,179|
|“ “ 1834||30,521||137,858||45,952|
|“ “ 1835||80,158|
|“ “ 1836||159,494|
|“ “ 1837||79,649||262,359||87,453|
|“ “ 1838||23,216|
“The value of cotton-bagging, of which 19-20ths are reckoned to be exported, exceeds that of several of the articles enumerated; but the remarkable circumstances attending the exportation of this commodity during the last 12 years, require to be particularly considered. On reference to the return of cotton-bagging, it will be found that the number of pieces exported in the 12 years from 1st June, 1826, to 31st May, 1838, is 746,839, making an annual average of 62,236. The average of the three years ended the 31st May, 1829, is 56,203; of the three years ended the 31st May, 1832, is 59,337; of the three years ended the 31st May, 1835, is 45,952; and of the three years ended the 31st May, 1838, is 87,453. During the first six years of this period, the difference of the annual number of pieces exported was not very great, and the profits of the trade were fair. During the next three years the exportation, as a whole, was moderate, particularly in the two first years, when great profits were realised. This led to an excessive and foolish exportation in the year ended 31st May, 1836, when no less than 159,494 pieces were sent from this port, exceeding the exportation of the whole three years, ended 31st May, 1835, by no less than 21,636 pieces. The crop of American cotton this year, one of the greatest they have ever had, is estimated at 1,700,000 bales, which, allowing a piece of bagging to pack 11 bales, will consume 154,500 pieces. As the Americans themselves furnish one-half of this quantity, the exportation of 1836 was equal to two years’ consumption. Hence, although a part of that year’s exportation may have been sold at a profit, its ultimate effects, followed by the commercial crisis which took place in the same year, were to depress the prices, and to render the speculations ruinous. The same results which followed the excessive importation of flax have therefore taken place, and before the trade will furnish profits, it will be necessary that more attention be paid to proportion the supply to the demand.
“On taking a general view of the trade during the three years ended 31st May, 1838, it appears that the value of the articles imported, and principally used in our manufactures, amounts to £3,284,585, and that the value of the articles exported in the same period is £4,108,970. This leaves a surplus of £824,385, being a little more than 25 per cent, on the imported value. But as, taking one manufacture with another, the expense of the labour added to the value of the raw material may be 30 per cent., it follows, that during these three years, the loss sustained by the community, on the whole trade, has been nearly 5 per cent. If each particular year be examined, we find that the value of the imports, in the year ended 31st May, 1836, is £1,253,296. The value of the exports is £1,651,439, being a surplus of about 32 per cent., to meet the 30 per cent. paid for labour, added to the prime cost of the raw material. In the year ended 31st May, 1837, the cost of the imports amounts to £1,248,776, whilst the exports are only valued at £1,284,862, showing a surplus of nearly 3 per cent. to meet 30 per cent., the cost of the labour of converting the raw material into manufactured articles. In the year ended 31st May, 1838, the value of the imports amounts to £782,513, while the amount of the exports reaches £1,172,669, showing an increase of nearly 50 per cent. to meet the additional cost of labour of about 30 per cent., added to the value of the raw materials of which the manufactured articles are composed. This would leave a profit of 20 per cent.”
During the year ending April, 1840, the export of manufactured goods was as under:-
|1839. Pieces.||1840. Pieces.||Inc. Pieces.||Dec. Pieces.|
|Cotton Bagging,||4,313||4,828||515||– –|
|Sundries Bagging,||1,520||1,273||– –||– –|
Other manufactures than those already mentioned, are the making of ‘Dundee kid gloves,’ famed over the whole country, chiefly on account of the superior manner in which they are sewed, and made of a fine leather principally imported from England; – sugar-refining, conducted in one sugar-house, – the making of candles and snuff, – the working of iron, – the constructing of machinery, – and the making of hand-cards, and cards for cotton, wool, silk, and tow.
In 1731, the entire shipping belonging to Dundee, Perth, Broughty-ferry, Ferry-Port-on-Craig, and St. Andrews, amounted to 70 vessels, 2,300 tonnage. In 1792, the number of vessels belonging to Dundee alone was 116; tonnage, 8,550. In 1815, a grand impulse began to be given to commerce by the vast improvements which were commenced upon the harbour. In the years 1824, 1829, 1833, 1836, and 1840, the vessels and tonnage were as follows:-
|In 1824, 165 vessels,||17,945 tonnage.|
|In 1829, 225 vessels,||27,150 tonnage.|
|In 1833, 284 vessels,||35,473 tonnage.|
|In 1836, 302 vessels,||39,531 tonnage.|
|In 1840, 324 vessels,||51,135 tonnage.|
Several of the larger vessels belonging to companies are employed in whale-fishing. The amount of produce brought home by these vessels in 1833, was 2,020 tons of oil, and 100 tons of whalebone; jointly about £54,000 in value. The vessels next in size trade to the Baltic, the West Indies, North and South America, and other foreign markets, for the manufactures of the town. Many vessels are employed by various shipping companies, in maintaining regular and frequent communication with London, Hull, Newcastle, Leith, Aberdeen, and Glasgow. Numerous small vessels also are employed in the coasting trade, carrying lime and coals, and other bulky cargoes. But the most brilliant and stirring movements in the port are those of steam navigation. With the coast of Fife a communication is maintained hourly during a large portion of the day. The vessel employed on this ferry is of peculiar construction, substantially and handsomely built, and performs the trip across in 20 minutes, allowing 10 minutes at each side for disembarkation and embarkation. The length on the deck is 92 feet, and the breadth about 34. One end, for 32 feet, is 2 feet lower than the rest of the deck, and railed in for carriages and cattle, and has its side-doors fitted with a drawbridge, by which an easy egress is afforded to the quay. The vessel consists of 2 hulls, with a canal between, and is worked by 2 engines of 15 horse power each, driving a paddle in the intervening canal. The machinery is so constructed that either end may be the stern; allowing the vessel to land and start again without turning. About 100,000 persons are annually conveyed across the estuary by it, besides carriages, horses, and vast numbers of cattle. Steam-boat communication, in a style combining speed with elegance, is maintained daily with Newburgh and Perth, and in summer this communication is extended to Broughty-ferry, and Ferry-Port-on-Craig. An excellent steam navigation is maintained between Dundee and Leith; and three splendid steam-ships maintain communication with London. The actual and comparative prosperity of the port, from the commencement of the improvements on the harbour in 1815, till May, 1828, will be shown by the following table of the nett amount of harbour-revenue derived from the shore-dues:-
|From July, 1815, to July, 1816,||£4,006|
|From May, 1820, to May, 1821,||5,910|
|From May, 1825, to May, 1826,||8,055|
|From May, 1827, to May, 1828,||9,236|
The amount of customs duties received at the port in 1833, were £48,608; in 1838, £78,028; in 1840, £63,346; and in 1843, £40,471. The number of sailing vessels under 50 tons, registered at the port on 31st Dec., 1841, was 64; above 50 tons, 273; total tonnage, 50,666 tons. The aggregate tonnage of sailing vessels as on 31st Dec., 1843, was 48,920 tons. The number of steam-vessels in 1843, was 1 of 23 tons; and 8 of the aggregate burthen of 1,727 tons.
Two railways leading from Dundee have been constructed respectively to Newtyle, to Arbroath and Forfar. – The Newtyle railway – for which the first act passed in May 1826, and which was opened in 1831 – opens a communication with Strathmore, and was projected under an apprehension that the commerce of that far-extending and populous and fertile valley, as well as that of Perth, might be diverted to Arbroath. This railroad is a single truck line, 11 miles in length; runs for two-thirds of its length through the lands of Lord Airlie and Lord Wharncliffe; and cost upwards of £100,000. Starting from the north side of Dundee, it ascends an inclined plane over a distance of 800 yards, rising 1 yard in 10; it then passes through a shoulder of Dundee-law, in a tunnel of 340 yards in length; and it afterwards passes along two other inclined planes before reaching Newtyle. The waggons employed to carry goods on this line are assisted up five inclined planes by stationary steam-engines. This railway has literally perforated the obstruction which the heights behind the town placed in the way of communication with Strathmore, and has already prodigiously increased the traffic between that district and the town. The number of passengers by this line during the year ending April 30, 1840, was 71,004; amount of goods carried 43,192 tons; revenue £8,260. There are branch lines from Newtyle to Cupar-Angus, 5¾ miles in length; and to Glammis, 7½ miles in length.
Dundee is connected with Arbroath and Forfar by two distinct lines, the Dundee and Arbroath, and the Arbroath and Forfar line. The former of these lines is described in a subsequent article: see DUNDEE and ARBROATH RAILWAY. The distance from Dundee harbour to Arbroath is 16¾ miles, and is nearly level throughout; from Arbroath to Forfar the distance is 15¼ miles, with a rise of 220 feet. This line will probably continue to be the most advantageous line of communication between Dundee and Forfar, though it is twice the length of the turnpike road between these towns. this is owing to the difficulty of crossing the Sidlaw-hills, which intersect the direct line nearly at right angles, the undulations of the intermediate country being also in a great measure parallel to their direction. The summit-level of the Dundee and Newtyle railway, is 544 feet above the level of the sea, though it crosses the Sidlaw ridge at the lowest point to be found for 10 miles eastward; whereas the summit-level of the Arbroath and Forfar railway is 280 feet lower, and this height is attained without expense and delay of stationary engines. the total expenditure on the Arbroath and Forfar line up to April 1844, was £140,782. The receipts for the year ending April 15, 1844, were £8,360, of which £2,945 were for passengers, and £4,858 for goods.
In addition to these actually executed lines, an extensive series of projected railways are connected with this important town. Among these the Scottish Midland Junction line, running from Perth to Forfar, with a total length of 38 miles, 22 chains through the vale of Strathmore, along the right bank of the Tay, and on the left bank of the Islay, it is proposed will employ about 4 miles of the present Cupar-Angus branch of the Newtyle railway; and after a short deviation, about 4½ miles of the branch to Glammis; and at Forfar will effect a junction with the Dundee, Arbroath, and Forfar lines. From this line before it reaches Cupar-Angus, the projected and competing Perth and INverness, the Direct Northern, and the Great Northern lines all branch off; while from the line betwixt Arbroath and Forfar, the Aberdeen coast-line will branch off at Friockheim. The length of the line from Frriockheim to Aberdeen will be 49 miles 930 yards. – Another approved line of railway, known as the Dundee and Perth, runs direct from Perth to Dundee, by the valley of the Tay, or the Carse of Gowrie, a distance of 23¾ miles, joining the terminus of the Dundee and Arbroath railway at the docks of Dundee; and besides these lines, it is proposed to connect Dundee with the Edinburgh and Northern line running from Burntisland, through Fife, to Perth, by a branch from Cupar, by Guard-bridge, to Ferry-Port-on-Craig opposite to Dundee.
Dundee is excellently accommodated with flesh and fish markets. Its fuel consists of coal, brought chiefly from England. A somewhat scanty supply of water is furnished by pipes. The town, in its streets, in its shops, in its public buildings, and in some of its private houses, is cheerfully lighted up with gas. Altogether, Dundee is behind no town of Scotland in the race of social and civic improvement; and, for a considerable series of years, it has outstripped most in the careerings of commercial enterprise. “In population,” – says the writer in the New Statistical Account of Scotland, under date December 1833, – “In population, manufactures, and trade, in the luxury and comfort which prevail, Dundee has perhaps advanced faster than any similar town in the kingdom. There are men alive in it who remember when its population was only one-fifth of what it is now, – when its harbour was a crooked wall, often enclosing but a few fishing or smuggling craft, – when its spinning-mills were unknown and unthought of, and its trade hardly worthy of the name. And curious would it be could we anticipate the future, and tell what will be its state when another generation shall have passed away, and other hands shall perhaps be called to prepare a record of its progress or decline.” We were much amused with the following account of Dundee, written in 1678, and now present it to our readers as a curiosity in its way. It is taken from a Description of the County of Angus, originally written in Latin, by Robert Edward, minister of Murroes, and published in the year 1678, along with a pretty large map of the county, executed by the same hand. A copy of this “Description” was found among some loose papers in the House of Panmure about 60 years ago, and being the only copy that could be traced, a translation was made from it and published in 1793, inscribed to the Honourable William Ramsay Maule, now Lord Panmure. After stating that there are rive royal burghs in Angus, and specifying four of them, viz., Forfar, Brechin, Montrose, and Arbroath, the following description is given of Dundee, as the fifth:- “But at Dundee, the harbour, by great labour and expense, has been rendered a very safe and agreeable station for vessels; and from this circumstance the town has become the chief emporium, not only of Angus, but of Perthshire. The citizens here (whose houses resemble palaces) are so eminent in regard to their skill and industry, that they have got more rivals than equals in the kingdom. The town is divided into four principal streets, which we may suppose to represent a human body, stretched on its back, with its arms towards the west, and its thighs and legs towards the east. The steeple represents the head, with an enormous neck, rising upwards of eighteen stories into the clouds, and surrounded with two battlements or galleries, one in the middle, and another at the top, like a crown adorning the head, whose loud-sounding tongue daily calls the people to worship. The right hand is stretched forth to the poor, for there is a large and well-furnished hospital on that side; but the left hand, because nearer the heart, is more elevated towards heaven than the right, indicating a devout mind panting after celestial enjoyments. In the inmost recesses of the breast stand the sacred temples of God. So remarkable were the people of this place for their adherence to true religion, that, at the Reformation, it was honoured with the appellation of a second Geneva. On the left breast is a Christian burying-place, richly and piously ornamented, that the pious dead may be long held in veneration and esteem. In the belly is the market-place, at the middle of which is the cross, like the navel in the body. Below the loins stand the shambles, which, as they are in a proper place, so are they very neat and convenient, having a hidden stream of fresh water, which, after wandering through the pleasant meadows on the left, runs under them; and having thus, as it were, scoured the veins and intestines of the town, is afterwards discharged into the river. Here the thighs and legs are separated. The sea approaching the right invites to the trade and commerce of foreign countries; and the left limb, separated for the right a full step, points to home trade in the northern parts of the county.” Such is the account given of Dundee in 1678; and if the writer of the above were now to view the human body which he so minutely describes, we doubt not that, owing to the huge corpulency and great stature it has attained in the course of eightscore years, he would be much puzzled to trace out the features of the child in the full-grown man.
By act of 3° and 4° William IV. the town-council of Dundee is fixed at 20, exclusive of the dean-of-guild, who has a seat ex officio. All the councillors retire in a cycle of 3 years, 6 the first year, and 7 the second and the third; and, the burgh being divided into 3 districts, 2 are returned each year by each district, and 3 the second and the third year by the first district. The magistrates are a provost and four bailies, – the provost being chief magistrate. They exercise jurisdiction over the whole ancient and extended royalty, including all the suburbs and urban population. They try questions of debt to any amount; and all criminal cases within burgh. There is a sheriff-substitute in Dundee, whose jurisdiction is cumulative with that of the magistrates within the royalty, and at the same time extends over a portion of the county of Forfar, forming the parishes of Dundee. The magistrates have the appointment of the town-clerks, procurator-fiscal, chamberlain, collector of cess, jailer, and other city-officers. The town-clerk and procurator-fiscal are appointed ad vitam aut culpam; the other officers hold their appointments during the pleasure of the council. There are five churches of the Establishment within the burgh of Dundee, of which the magistrates and council are patrons. The guild-burgesses – about 750 in number – enjoy the exclusive privilege of carrying on trade within the burgh; and are possessed of funds, secured upon heritable bonds, amounting at Michaelmas, 1832, to about £2,000. There are nine incorporated trades and three united trades of Dundee, all enjoying the exclusive privilege of exercising their crafts within the burgh, and possessing funds which are employed chiefly in giving assistance to decayed members and widows. The police of Dundee is now regulated by statute passed in 1837 [7° Will. IV. c. 109], by which the town is divided into eleven wards, and the provost, four bailies, dean-of-guild, the sheriff of the county, and his substitute for the Dundee district, together with two general commissioners for each ward, are appointed general commissioners for the purposes of the act. There are also two resident commissioners chosen for each ward; both the general and resident commissioners are chosen by the persons occupying houses or other premises within their respective wards, valued at £2 and upwards of yearly rent. The general commissioners for each ward are head constables. – The public property of the town consists of lands, houses, churches, and salmon-fishings; and in 1833, was estimated at £123,447 10s. 10d. The revenue of the burgh in 1692, was £279 4s. 6d. In 1788, it was £2,820 8s. 83/12d. The present ordinary revenue, arising from lands, houses, fishings, &c, feu-duties, ground annuals, vicarage-duties, multure-malt, interest of money from petty customs, burgesses’ entries, duty of 2d. Scots on the pint of ale, rent of shops, rent of kirk-roods, and duty on coals paid to kirk-fund, and church seat-rents, is £7,011 11s. 311/12d. There was also a casual revenue, in 1833, of £528 4s. 11d., making the total revenue of the year £7,539 16s. 211/12d.5 The revenue, in 1838-9, was £7,936 7s. 7d.
Dundee formerly united with Perth, Cupar-Fife, St. Andrews, and Forfar, in sending one member to parliament; but under the reform act it returns a member for itself and suburbs. In 1839, the parliamentary constituency was 2,740; the municipal, 2,693. Population of the burgh and parish, in 1801, 26,084; in 1831, 45,355; in 1841, 63,825. Houses, in 1841, 14,078.
Previous to the act of assembly in 1834, the whole burgh of Dundee, with a considerable landward territory, formed only one parish. This, for convenience, was divided into several districts, over each of which a minister and his elders presided. Since then the original parish has been divided quoad sacra into 12 separate parishes.
1st, ST. MARY’S, comprehends the rural district of the original parish, together with a portion of the suburbs of the town. Population, in 1837, 5,395; of whom 3,384 belonged to the Establishment. Two places of worship, the Old church, with 1,094 sittings, and the South, with 1,354, both supposed to have been built in the 10th or 11th century, and of late thoroughly repaired, were used, previous to the late fire, in common by the congregation of St. Mary’s, and by those of the second and the third parishes. Stipend £286 10s. 7d.; glebe £25. Unappropriated teinds £48 13s. 11d.
2d, ST. PAUL’S. This is wholly a town-parish, about ½ a-mile square. Population, in 1837, 3,969; of whom 2,335 belonged to the Establishment. Stipend of the minister £274 17s. 2d.; of the assistant and successor, who is also parochial missionary, £95 – The fourth United Secession congregation was established in February 1837. The church is rented for £44 a-year, and has 420 sittings. – The Original Seceder congregation was established in 1818. The church was purchased from a Relief congregation for £650, and repaired at an expense of £100. Sittings 900. Stipend £120. – The Baptist congregation of the Meadows was established in 1810. The chapel is the upper flat of an edifice, built in 1835, at a cost of £1,400. Sittings 300. No stipend. – The Society of Friends’ congregation was organized about 1833, and meets in a dwelling-house. No stipend. – The Pædobaptist Berean congregation was established about 1778, and assembles in a school-room rented at £5. Sittings 125. No stipend. – The Baptist Berean congregation, formerly one with the preceding, meets in the Wrights’ hall, Nethergate, rented at £5. Sittings 125. No stipend. – The congregation in Ranken’s close has no particular denomination, was established in 1832, and meets in a large flat rented at £9. Sittings 80. No stipend.
3d, GREYFRIARS. This parish includes about one-eighth of the town and suburbs. Population, in 1837, 4,991; of whom 3,398 belonged to the Establishment. Stipend £275 1s. 8d. – The Established church Gaelic chapel had not, in 1837, any parish attached to it; but was designed for the whole Gaelic population, estimated at from 600 to 700. Sittings 391. Stipend about £110. – The first United Secession congregation was established in 1745. The church, situated in School-wynd, was built in 1825, and cost upwards of £2,000. Sittings 1,010. Stipend £200, with an allowance of £20 for sacramental expenses. – The second United Secession congregation was established in 1747. The church used in 1837 was built in 1764, and had 750 sittings. But a new and very commodious church was opened in Constitution-street in 1840. Stipend of senior minister £120, with a house; of junior minister £120. – The Original Burgher congregation is supposed to have been established about the year 1745. The church, situated in Barrack-street, was built in 1814, and subsequently enlarged, at an entire expense of £1,769 16s. 4d. Sittings 756. Stipend £175. – The Congregational church assembling in Constitution-street was established in 1800. The chapel was built in 1833, and cost £3,000. Sittings 1,250. Stipend £300. – The Old Scotch Independent congregation was established in 1771, and meets in the upper flat of an edifice, built in 1826, and fitted up as a chapel. Sittings 160. No stipend. – The New Jerusalem congregation was established in 1817, and assembles in a hall rented at £4. Sittings 250. No stipend. – The Wesleyan Methodist congregation was established in 1764. The chapel was purchased in 1788 for £300. Sittings 522. Stipend £120. – The United Methodist congregation was established in 1835. The chapel, situated in Lindsay-street, was built in 1838, and cost about £2,000. Sittings 1,035. Stipend £104. – The United Christian congregation was established in 1830, and, in 1837, assembled in the Scotch Episcopal chapel, rented at £7, and containing 600 sittings. But a new and commodious chapel has since been built at a cost of about £1,800. Sittings 1,150. Stipend £100. – The congregation of the Holy Apostolic Catholic church was established in 1836, and assembles in a hall rented at £35. Stipend variable. – The Unitarian congregation was established in 1834. Sittings 300. Salary £74.
4th, ST. JOHN’S. The greatest length of this parish is about half-a-mile. Population, in 1837, upwards of 5,000. The parish-church, usually called the Cross church, has been used as a place of worship during the last 100 years, and was altered and enlarged in 1830. Sittings 1,037. Stipend £275. – The third United Secession congregation was established in 1832. The church was built in 1834, and cost £2,300. Sittings 1,014. Stipend £200. – The Relief congregation was established in 1820. The chapel, built in 1792, was purchased in 1833 for £1,000. Sittings 870. Stipend £100. – The Roman Catholic congregation was established about 1790. The chapel was built in 1836, and cost about £6,000. Sittings 1,182.
5th, ST. CLEMENT’S. This is wholly a town-parish; ¾ of a mile in extreme length, and ¼ of a mile in extreme breadth. Population, in 1837, 6,446; of whom 3,917 belonged to the Establishment. The parish-church, usually called the Steeple-church, was rebuilt about 1782. Sittings 1,463. Stipend £300. – The Episcopalian congregation of St. Paul’s was established at a remote period. The church was built in 1812, and cost £3,686 14s. Sittings 504. Stipend £200. – The Baptist congregation, north side of Seagate, was organized in 1769. The chapel was built in 1789, and cost £420. Sittings 300. Stipend £20. – The Baptist congregation, south side of Seagate, was established about 1790. The chapel cost upwards of £500. Sittings 250. No stipend. – The Reformed Presbyterian congregation was organized in 1831. The chapel was built in 1838, and cost about £800. Sittings 650. Stipend £100.
6th, ST. ANDREWS. This parish is partly landward but chiefly town. It measures in extreme length, 1 mile; in extreme breadth, ¾ of a mile. Population, in 1837, including that of Hillton parish [see below], 8,723; of whom 4,360 belonged to the Establishment. The church was built in 1774, and cost £3,000. Sittings 1,486. Stipend of the incumbent £70; of the assistant and successor £100. – The Primitive Methodist congregation was established in 1835; and meets in a building fitted up as a chapel, rented at £15. Sittings 170. Stipend £44. – The Glassite chapel was built in 1732.
7th, ST. DAVID’S. This parish is chiefly town, but includes a small landward district, and also comprises a small part of the quoad civilia parish of Liff. Its greatest length is about 2 miles; greatest breadth about ¾ of a mile. Population, in 1837, including that of Dudhope [see below], 8,384. The parish-church was built in 1800 by the Haldanites; and, in 1822, was bought and fitted up by the town-council at an expense of £2,221 6s. Sittings 1,608. Stipend £275.
8th, CHAPELSHADE. This parish is partly landward and partly town: greatest length, 1¾ mile; greatest breadth 1 mile. Population, in 1837, 7,320; of whom 3,538 belonged to the Establishment. The church was built as a Relief chapel in 1789, and was united to the Establishment as a chapel-of-ease in 1791. In 1830 it was enlarged to the extent of 500 additional sittings, at a cost of £880. Sittings 1,280. Stipend £150.
9th, ST. PETER’S. This is a suburban parish, extending about a mile into the country. It measures, in extreme length, 1½ mile; in extreme breadth, about ¼ of a mile; and in area, about 240 acres. Population, in 1837, estimated at 4,000. Stipend £220, with £12 for communion expenses.
10th, HILLTON. This is a newly erected quoad sacra parish, having been cut off from St. Andrews parish in 1838. It includes nearly all the suburban and all the landward part of that parish. The population is about 4,000. The stipend averages £170. There are a private school, and an infant school, in this parish, and a commodious parish-school is about to be erected beside the church.
11th, DUDHOPE. This quoad sacra parish is chiefly composed of the western portion of the former parish of St. David’s. Its population is about 2,200. The church is elegant and commodious, and contains about 1,050 sittings. Stipend £150.
12th, WALLACETOWN. This quoad sacra parish embraces a suburban district of about half-a-mile in length, and a quarter-of-a-mile in breadth, containing a population of about 3,000. Its church cost £2,700, and seats 1,075. Stipend £150. There are a school attached to the church, and an efficient infant-school, and school-of-industry, in this parish.
The parliamentary documents on the state of education in Dundee, follow the ecclesiastical division which existed in 1834, and exhibit the town and original parish, not in 12 districts, but in 7. – 1st, Cowgate district. There were 9 schools, all non-parochial, and attended by an average of 435 scholars, being fewer than 1 in 19 of the population. – 2d, Chapelshade district. There were 7 schools, all non-parochial, attended by 503. – 3d, St. Clement’s parish. There were 5 schools, all non-parochial, attended by 645. – 4th, Greyfriars’ parish. There were 5 schools, all non-parochial – 5th, Hawkhill district. There were 10 schools, all non-parochial, attended by 900. – 6th, St. Mary’s parish. There were 5 schools, all non-parochial, but free, attended by 1,065 scholars. – 7th, St. Paul’s parish. There were 13 schools, all non-parochial. Seven were endowed. One of these is an academy, one a grammar-school, and one a sessional school, attended by 500 children.
Among many celebrated natives and citizens of Dundee, may be mentioned, Alexander Scrymseour, one of the heroic companions of Wallace, and the first of Dundee’s hereditary constables; – Sir John Scrymseour, one of the former’s descendants, who became Viscount of Dudhope, and adhering to Charles I., fell in the battle of Marston-muir; – Hector Boethius, the Scottish historian, in 1470, the Principal of King’s college, Aberdeen, and one of the revivers of elegant literature; – Robert Pittilock, now called Patullo, who, as first Captain of the Scottish guard, in the service of France, acquired distinguished military honours under Charles VII.; – James Halliburton, one of the earliest and ablest of the Scottish reformers, through whose influence Dundee became the first town of Scotland in which the reformed religion was openly professed; – George Mackenzie, Lord-advocate of Scotland, author of the ‘Institutes of the Scots Law,’ and founder of the Advocates’ library of Edinburgh; – John Mar, the constructor, in the 17th century, of a curious chart of the North sea and the frith of Tay, which cannot, even at the present day, be excelled in correct illustration; – George Yeamen of Murie, the representative of the town in the last Scottish or Union parliament, and one of the ablest and most patriotic legislators of his country; – Dr. John Willison, the well-known and cherished author of ‘The Afflicted Man’s Companion;’ – Robert Fergusson the poet, and Robert Stewart, a friend of his, and an eminently literary man; – James Weir and James Ivory, teachers in the Dundee seminary, and profound mathematicians; – Admiral Duncan, the hero of Camperdown, and of many other naval fights; – Dr. Robert Small, the author of a luminous view of the astronomical discoveries of Kepler, and of many valuable papers in the Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. – To these might be added Alexander Wedderburn, 1st Earl of Rosslyn; and Charles Middleton, 1st Lord Barham. Dundee has even claimed Sir William Wallace as a native.
Dundee was anciently fortified with walls, begun by the English, and completed, in 1547, by the French. The existence and even the position of its gates are commemorated in the names of its streets, Nethergate, Overgate, Seagate, and Murraygate, – the first formerly called Fluckergate, and the second Argylegate. The town was at an early period a royal burgh. In the 12th century David, prince of Scotland, Earl of Huntingdon; the hero of Sir Walter Scott’s graphic and exciting story of the Talisman, landed at Dundee on his return from the crusades; and, in fulfilment of some vows which he had made in the spirit of the period, he built a gorgeous church, and surmounted it with the magnificent tower which stills forms the most striking feature in a scenic picture of the burgh. Dundee was twice taken by Edward I., pillaged of its records, robbed of its property, defaced in its churches, and even burned to the ground; and, though burned a third time during the inroad made to Scotland, in 1385, by the Duke of Lancaster, it speedily towered to an eminence of prosperity greater than it had ever attained previous to its disasters. At the period of the Reformation it was the first town in Scotland which publicly renounced popery; and it became so noted for the energetic and uncompromising spirit of its protestantism as to acquire the title of the “Second Geneva.” General Monk encountered a stubborn, prolonged, and sanguinary resistance beneath the walls of Dundee; and when, at length, he took the town by assault, he repaid the bravery of its burghers and of numerous strangers who had fled to it for refuge, by abandoning it to pillage. So great was the spoil, that each soldier in Monk’s army received for his share nearly £60 sterling, – a sum, in the comparative value of money at the period, truly wonderful. Once more, however, the town speedily emerged, in a degree, though not fully, from its calamities; and thenceforth ceased to be the theatre of any such events as ensanguine the pages of its previous annals.
Dundee has at two periods given noble titles. Sir John Scrymseour, of the family who were long constables of the town and standard-bearers to the King of Scotland, was created Viscount Dundee, in 1641; and his second successor, the third Viscount, was created Earl of Dundee in 1661. On the latter’s death, without immediate heirs, the Scrymseours of Birkhill, now Wedderburn of Wedderburn, were defrauded of their inheritance. In 1686 the estates – after having been for a time in the possession of Maitland of Hatton – were bestowed by James VII. on Captain John Graham of Claverhouse. This man, of infamous memory in the history of the persecution of Scotland’s Worthies, was, in 1688, created Viscount Dundee. On, his death, a few months afterwards, at the battle of Killicrankie, the estates were finally conferred by King William on the family of Douglas.
1 The name, in former times, was generally spelt Donde or Dondie; and in Queen Mary’s charter Dondei; in law-Latin it is Deidonum; and it has been affirmed by various Highlanders, that they consider it as signifying, what this Latin imports, ‘the gift,’ or otherwise, ‘the hill of God.’ These circumstances give probability to the tradition, that it obtained the name, about the middle of the 12th century, from David Earl of Huntingdon, who landing here, after a dreadful storm in his return from the holy wars, designed by it to express his gratitude for his deliverance; and, in consequence of a vow, built the present parish-church. Had the signification been the hill of Tay, as Taodunum, according to Buchanan, it would in Gaelic have been pronounced Duntaw. The ancient name was Alec, in. Boece’s Latin, Alectum, and by this it is distinguished in the Highlands. The signification of Alec is said to be, ‘pleasant’ or ‘beautiful.’ The language spoken by the inhabitants, has, from time immemorial, been the broad Scotch; that is, English or Saxon with a peculiar provincial accent. The names of places in the parish are partly in this language, and partly Gaelic. Of the former kind are Blackness, Coldside, Clepington, and Claypots. Balgay, Dudhope, Drumgeith, Duntroon, Baldovie, and various others are examples of the latter.
2 Since the first edition of this Work issued from the press a few weeks ago, Dundee has been nearly despoiled of her venerable groupe of ecclesiastical edifices by a fire which broke out in the pile of buildings above described early on the morning of Sunday the 3d of January, 1841, and by which the South and Cross churches have been entirely gutted, and the Old church, with its fine Gothic arches, nearly reduced to a ruin. The total damage sustained cannot be under £15,000, and it is at present questionable whether any attempt should be made to repair the old structures.
3 In October 1840, the ‘Dundee Chronicle,’ which had, for some time, been under the management of trustees, was exposed for sale in the office of Messrs. Shiell and Small. The Non-intrusionists had given out that they intended to purchase the copyright, but on the day of sale they did not make their appearance: and the only bidder was Mr. Peter Brown, for the Chartists. The paper and printing materials in the printing-office were put up at £700, and, after a spirited competition, were knocked down to Mr. Brown at £820. The Non-intrusionists have since started a journal for the advocacy of their views in Dundee, under the name of ‘The Warder.’
4 “The number of weavers in Dundee” says the Report of the Assistant Hand-Loom Weavers Commissioner, dated 27th March, 1839, “is from 4,000 to 5,000, all engaged on linen fabrics. This was ascertained about the year 1834, from the number of signatures attached to a petition in favour of payment by the yard. The number that signed this petition was 4,673, about 700 of whom resided in Lochee. The account which the witnesses gave,” respecting the amount of wages, “rather varied; but they agreed that the average was about 8s. per week, clear of deductions, which might amount to about 1s. 1½d. per week to those working in factories, and 1s. 8½d. to those working in their own premises. The difference of wages made at different fabrics was from 1s. to 2s. per week. Mr. Easson stated, that, taking the average of 10 men’s work (100 pieces) for eight weeks in May and June, 1837, and deducting the charge for winding the weft, the average to each per week was 8s. 1⅝d. For February and March, 1838 (202 pieces), the average was 9s. 3⅛d. This he considered a fair average of the earnings of the factory weavers.”
5 At a meeting of the Town-council held at the close of 1837, Mr. Moyes produced and read an abstract of the income and expenditure of the town from 26th September, 1831, to 6th November, 1817. He then read the following resolutions, and moved their adoption.
“1. That from an abstract of the revenue and expenditure of the burgh from 26th September, 1831, to 30th September, 1840, made up by the Town-chamberlain, it appears, that, during the six years ending 6th November, 1837, the expenditure of the burgh exceeded the income to the extent of £12,840 0s. 6d., or £2,140 0s. 1d. per annum.
“2. That, notwithstanding this great and continued deficiency in the revenue, the Town-council, in the year 1834, engaged in attempts to introduce water into the town by means of compulsory assessment, contrary to the wishes of a large number of their constituents, as well as of the owners of property in Dundee; and during that and the three following years debts were incurred, or are alleged to have been incurred, relative to the matter of the water, to the extent of £15,031 2s. 116d.
“3. That it thus appears, that from September, 1831, to November, 1837, the expenditure of the burgh exceeded the income to the extent of £27,871 3s. 56d.
“4. That by the act 3 George IV., cap. 91, § 11, it is enacted, ‘that it shall not be lawful lor the magistrates or the Town-council of any burgh to contract any debt, grant any obligation, make any agreement, or enter into any engagement, which shall have the effect of binding them or their successors in office, unless an act of council shall have been previously made in that behalf.’ And as a doubt has recently been started whether the predecessors in office of this council did, by act or acts of council, authorize the various accounts as to the water bills (payment of which is now sought from the council) to he incurred, so as to render it incumbent on this or any succeeding council to discharge them, the council now recommends to their successors in office to make inquiry how far the provisions of the foresaid act in relation to the several water accounts were complied with, and thereafter to proceed as they shall be advised,
“5. That, from the abstract of the income and expenditure before referred to, it appears that the expenditure of the burgh during the period from 7th November, 1837, to 30th September, 1840, exceeded the income by £7,187 13s. 1 4-12d. or £2,595 17s. 85d. per annum.
“6. That the additional interest chargeable against the burgh, in consequence of the extra expenditure during the six years ending 7th November, 1837, exceeds £1,000 per annum.
“7. That, besides this yearly interest, the foresaid sum of £7,187 includes £999 4s. 3d. paid to the managers of the burgh, and other accounts, amounting to £1,144 11s. 106d. – all which sums were incurred previous to November, 1837; and deducting them and the said interest (in all £5,143 16s. 1d.) from the total extra expenditure for the three years since November, 1837, the actual extra expenditure beyond the income from that time to 30th September last, amounts to £2,043 16s. 1110d., or £681 5s. 7d. per annum.
“8. That, under all these circumstances, it is the opinion of this council that the resolution of the Committee on the Funds of the Town, dated 13th October current, and approved of by the council, should be strictly adhered to for the future,” Mr. Easson then seconded the resolutions, which were adopted – the dean-of-guild dissenting. Very little discussion took place on these resolutions; but Mr. Moyes read the following abstract of the chamberlain’s report:-
Income and Expenditure of the Town from 26th September, 1831,
to 6th November, 1837, – abridged by Mr. Moyes.
|Yearly Expenditure and Income.||Deficiency.|
|Ordinary expenditure for the above period,||£18,760||£8,126|
|Ordinary income for the same period,||45,015||7,507|
From November 6th, 1837, to September 30th, 1840.
|Deficiency on ordinary expenditure from 1831 to 1837,||£3,717|
|Do. Extraordinary, do. do.||9,122||£12,840|
|Do. on Ordinary do. from 1837 to 1840,||1,767|
|D. Extraordinary do. do.||5,420||£7,187||£20,027|
|Paid on Account of Water Bills,||£11,976|
|Claimed as due for Water Bills,||3,054||15,031|
14 thoughts on “Dundee, pp.371-384.”