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Cranshaws

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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Cranshaws, a Lammermuir hamlet and parish in the N of Berwickshire. The hamlet lies, 676 feet above sea-level, on the right bank of Whitadder Water, 16 miles SE by E of Haddington, and 9 NW of Dunse, under which it has a post office.

The parish consists of two sections, which are separated from each other by a strip (¾ mile broad at the narrowest) of Longformacus, and the northernmost of which contains the hamlet. This, with an utmost length and breadth of 23/4 and 23/8 miles, is bounded N by the Gamelshiel section of Stenton in Haddingtonshire, E and S by Longformacus, and W by Whittingham in Haddingtonshire. The southern and larger division measures 5¼ miles from E to W; has a varying width, from N to S, of 1½ and 31/8 miles; and is bounded NW, N, and E by Longformacus, S by Greenlaw and Westruther, and SW by Lander. Including 30½ acres of water, the total area is 8738¼ acres, of which 2589 belong to the northern, and 6149¼ to the southern, porstion. The Whitadder runs 3. miles on or near to the northern and eastern border of Cranshaws proper, whose highest points are Cranshaws Hill (1245 feet) and Mainslaughter Law (1381); whilst Dye Water runs 5 miles east-by-southward along all the northern boundary of the lower division, whose surface rises from less than 700 feet above sea-level to 1298 on Dunside Hill and 1522 on Blyth Edge. The rocks are Silurian; and much of the soil is poor, the arable land along the streams amounting to only some 900 acres. A tumulus crowns Mainslaughter Law, which is said to have got its name from the battle fought in 1402 between Hepburn of Hailes and the Earl of Dunbar. The fine old peel tower called Cranshaws Castle, standing towards the centre of the northern section, measures 40 by 24 feet, and is 65 feet high; a former stronghold of the Douglases, and the haunt of a drudging brownie, it now is the seat of the eldest son of the Earl of Morton, Sholto-George-Watson Douglas, Lord Aberdour (b. 1844), who, holding 2551 acres in the shire, valued at £1050 per annum, divides this parish with 2 other landowners. It is in the presbytery of Dunse and synod of Merse and Teviotdale; the living is worth £200. The church, at the hamlet, was built in 1739, and contains 120 sittings; whilst a public school, with accommodation for 55 children, had (1880) an average attendance of 35, and a grant of £52, 14s. 6d. Valuation (1882) £2492, 16s. Pop. (1801) 166, (1831) 136, (1861) 134, (1871) 142, (1881) 106.—Ord. Sur., sh. 33, 1863.

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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