Industry in Crieff in the 18th &19th Centuries




As Crieff grew in size after the ’45 Uprising , its economy was quite varied . Porteous in “ The History of Crieff  gives an excellent account of what was happening in and around the town .
Agriculture was of course pre eminent. The first Show was in 1815 run by the Strathearn Agricultural Society . Ploughing matches were also a regular occurrence . Two brothers named Fisken from the town are the reputed inventors of the steam  plough . There were a number of plots of land named “ pecks “ around the town which were rented by the many citizens . Broich Terrace ( location ) was the  most popular . The three Estates of Dollerie , Drummond and Broich all had pecks which they rented out . The Acres ( Strathearn Terrace ) were larger than the pecks . Crops such as oats , barley and potatoes were grown
Timber – Morgan , McAinsh and Lewis Miller all had sawmills around the town
Brewing – 1748 – there were  at least 5 breweries – Galvelmore – Milnab Street and Comrie Streets ( Hawkshaw Cottage was built  by owner David Porteous near the site ) Crieff Brewery was in Water Wynd ( foot of Mitchell Street ) . In 1792 produced 9 600 gallons from 14d a gallon – approx 6 pence in modern currency
Distilling – in 1812 there were  3 distilleries 8 malting houses . One at Milnab St  ( Porteous )  another in Meadow Lane and another at Coldwells . Others in the area were at Pittentian , Lochlane , Muthill , Tullybannocher ( Comrie ) , Tullibardine and the Hosh ( now Glenturret ). Financial hardship with taxation in 1838 and most became bankrupt .
Linen Manufacture , Wool and Wauk Mills , Cotton Weaving
Dyeing – grew as a result of growth of weaving/ cloth making .Porteous family started as dyers . In 1792 there were 4 dyers in Crieff and in 1825 a dye works was operating in Water Wynd. Dallerie Mills were to be converted into a dye works but this did not materialise when owner fell into financial difficulties.
Paper Making – first paper mill erected west of Bridgend beside the laid in 1763 and a second one in 1780 and operated for several years . Both by James Taylor
Oil Mills -  James Taylor tried out a linseed oil and oil cake mill . Linseed was a by product from flax  and linen weaving was in full swing at this time .
Cotton Mills and bleach fields – Taylor once again in the thick of things !! Mill was at the Turret where Crieff Holiday Village is now located . Two other merchants erected mills for carding and spinning cotton . These did not last long .
Tanning – Tanneries ( Tan Yards ) at Milnab Street – Leadenflower and Meadow Lane . Thomas Wright and story  – covered in Power Point separately .
Tambouring  - the embroidering of cotton fabric saw a “manufactory “ employing 30 girls from 8 to 12 years open 1792 and lasted  a number of years . When it closed a number of women continued on their own .
Rope making – a rope work or “ roperie “ was built in a field   at the south  side of the Earn ( where the Braidhaugh is  ) by a George Ronaldson
Wrights or Carpenters –formed a Society in 1792 with a Friendly or Provident Society to cater for members’ welfare . Once very active but like Weavers died off in the mid 19th century .
Printing – Muthill had a private print press at Pitkellony for use of the Estate ( about 1816 ) . Printing introduced to Crieff  in 1817 . Based in Ferntower Road near Miller Street with outlet in James Square .
Herald started in 1856 and printed in Cupar but produced in James Square from about 1861 . Other papers appeared - Crieff Journal – Crieff Advertiser – Crieff Trumpet – The Oracle .
Coal Mining !! – 1819 saw shafts sunk at Cultoquhey ( Gilmerton ) and at Tullibardine but no joy nothing found !
Meal and Barley Mills – Milnab Mill ( Park Manor ) – Dalvreck ( Turret Burn ) – Strageath – Dornock – South Bridgend
Farina Manufacture- this was the manufacture of potato flour and was located beside the Hosh Distillery .
Carriage Works – in lane off Commissioner Street at Weavers Hall – Galvelmore Street – Meadow Lane – Peter Crerar High Street and then Leadenflower .
Preserve Works or Jammery – McNees Jams and Jellies “ Strathearn Preserve Works “ used fruit from Colony and from Bridgend .

WALK-MILL, n. Wauk-mill. A fulling mill.
Fulling or tucking or walking ("waulking" in Scotland) is a step in woollen clothmaking which involves the cleansing of cloth (particularly wool) to eliminate oils, dirt, and other impurities, and making it thicker. The worker who does the job is a fuller, tucker, or walker.[1] The Welsh word for a fulling mill is pandy. This is used in several place-names.

Fulling involves two processes—scouring and milling (thickening). These are followed by stretching the cloth on great frames known as tenters and held onto those frames by tenterhooks. It is from this process that we derive the phrase being on tenterhooks as meaning to be held in suspense. The area where the tenters were erected was known as a tenterground.
Originally, this was literally pounding the cloth with the fuller's feet (whence the description of them as 'walkers'), or hands, or a club. From the medieval period, however, it often was carried out in a water mill.

Fulling mills
From the medieval period, the fulling of cloth often was undertaken in a water mill, known as a fulling mill, a walk mill, or a tuck mill. In Wales, a fulling mill is called a pandy. In these, the cloth was beaten with wooden hammers, known as fulling stocks. Fulling stocks were of two kinds, falling stocks (operating vertically) that were used only for scouring, and driving or hanging stocks. In both cases the machinery was operated by cams on the shaft of a waterwheel or on a tappet wheel, which lifted the hammer.

Driving stocks were pivotted so that the 'foot' (the head of the hammer) struck the cloth almost horizontally. The stock had a tub holding the liquor and cloth. This was somewhat rounded on the side away from the hammer, so that the cloth gradually turned, ensuring that all parts of it were milled evenly. However, the cloth was taken out about every two hours to undo plaits and wrinkles. The 'foot' was approximately triangular in shape, with notches to assist the turning of the cloth.



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