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Strathmiglo

A historical perspective, drawn from the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and Historical, edited by Francis H. Groome and originally published in parts by Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, Edinburgh between 1882 and 1885.

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Strathmiglo, a village and a parish of NW Fife. The village, standing, 200 feet above sea-level, on the river Eden or Miglo, has a station upon the Fife and Kinross section of the North British railway, 2 miles WSW of Auchtermuchty, 6¾ W of Ladybank Junction, 12¼ WSW of Cupar, and 8¼ NE of Kinross. Strathmiglo proper, which is a burgh of barony, lies on the left or northern side of the river; on the southern is the modern suburb of Cash Feus; and between is a fine level meadow, the Town Green. The burgh consists of one principal street, of rather an antique and picturesque appearance, running parallel to the river, with four or five wynds diverging at right angles, and a lane called the East and West Back Dykes, passing at the head of the gardens of the feus on the N side. The Kirklands are situated on the S side of the principal street, at its eastern extremity; the Templelands are also on the same side of the street, about the middle of the town; and the Stedmoreland Feus are situated at the western extremity on either side of the street. The suburb of Cash Feus forms a street ½ mile long, of well-built tradesmen's houses, also running parallel with the river. A castellated mansion, Strathmiglo Castle, which stood on a spot a short distance E of the town, is supposed to have been built in the time of James V., but was removed in 1734 as building material for a steeple in front of the town-house. This steeple is a handsome structure, comprising a square tower, terminating in an open balustrade, and surmounted by an octagonal spire 70 feet in height. From the front of it projects a defaced sun-dial, in the shape of a stone pillar; and above are the arms of the Balfours of Burleigh, who acquired the lands of Strathmiglo from the Scotts of Balwearie about the year 1600. Besides a bleachfield, there are two manufactories of damasks, diapers, and other linens. Strathmiglo has a post office, with money order, savings' bank, and telegraph departments, a branch of the Bank of Scotland, 5 insurance agencies, 3 hotels, a hall accommodating about 200 persons, a Young Men's Christian Association, a horticultural society, a gas company, a fair on the last Friday of June, etc. The parish church, built about 1785, contains nominally 750 sittings. One Free church dates from Disruption times, another (the North) till 1876 was Reformed Presbyterian. There is also an Evangelical Union chapel. The burgh acquired its rights so early as 1509, but lost those of them which pertained to its government in 1748, and has since that time been under the public management of a committee annually elected by the feuars. Pop. (1861) 1408, (1871) 1509, (1881) 1283, of whom 698 were in Cash Fens, and 753 were females. Houses (1881) 349 occupied, 23 vacant. The parish, containing also Edenshead or Gateside village, is bounded N by Abernethy, NE by Auchtermuchty, SE by Falkland, S and SW by Portmoak and Orwell in Kinross-shire, and NW by Arngask. Its utmost length, from E to W, is 5¾ miles; its utmost breadth, from N to S, is 3 miles; and its area is 9026 acres, of which 1¾ is water. Formed at Burnside on the western border by the confluence of Carmore and Beattie Burns, the Eden or Miglo flows 5¼ miles east-north-eastward and eastward, for the last 1¼ mile along or close to the Auchtermuchty boundary. Its chief and earliest afflnent is the Glen Burn, rising just within Portmoak, between the West Lomond and Bishop Hill, and running 27/8 miles north-westward. In the extreme E the surface declines to 150 feet above sea-level, and thence it rises to 898 feet at Pitlour Wood on the NE boundary, 600 near Freeland, 645 near Carmore (skirts of the Ochils these three), 447 at Upper Urquhart, 569 near Lappiemoss, and 1713 at the West Lomond-the highest point in all the Fife peninsula. The rocks, in some parts trap, in others sandstone, have been quarried for building material. The soil in the N is mainly a fertile friable loam, in the S is light and sandy. About fourfifths of the entire area are in tillage; some 350 acres are under wood; and the rest of the parish is either pastoral or waste. Down to a comparatively recent period there were numbers of cairns and tumuli, so arranged, and in such position, as to have given Strathmiglo a claim, among other places, of having been the scene of the famous Battle of the Grampians. In the days of the persecution the Covenanters often met in the sequestered vale of the Glen Burn. The principal mansions are Balcanquhal, Edenshead, Pitlour, and Wellfield; and 7 proprietors hold each an annual value of £500 and upwards, 10 of between £100 and £500. Strathmiglo is in the presbytery of Cupar and the synod of Fife; the living is 21 chalders, with manse and glebe. Two public schools, Gateside and Strathmiglo, with respective accommodation for 108 and 354 children, had (1884) an average attendance of 77 and 215, and grants of £66, 13s. 6d. and £209, 9s. 6d. Valuation (1856) £11.394, 2s., (1885) £13, 330, 6s. 7d., plus £2828 for railway. Pop. (1801) 1629, (1831) 1940, (1851) 2509, (1861) 2261, (1871) 2267, (1881) 2061.—Ord. Sur., sh. 40, 1867.

An accompanying 19th C. Ordnance Survey map is available, or use the map tab to the right of this page.

Note: This text has been made available using a process of scanning and optical character recognition. Despite manual checking, some typographical errors may remain. Please remember this description dates from the 1880s; names may have changed, administrative divisions will certainly be different and there are known to be occasional errors of fact in the original text, which we have not corrected because we wish to maintain its integrity. This information is provided subject to our standard disclaimer

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