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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Kincardine, a small seaport town in Tulliallan parish, SE Perthshire (detached), on low flat ground on the left or NE bank of the river Forth, 3 miles S by W of Kincardine station on the Stirling and Dunfermline section of the North British, this being 3 ¼ miles E of Alloa and 10½ WNW of Dunfermline. Occupying one of the best situations on the Forth, with a good quay and a roadstead 21 feet deep, where 100 vessels may ride in safety, it once, and for a long period, was the seat of commerce for nearly all places round the head of the Firth of Forth, precisely as Leith and Burnt. island are the seats of commerce for nearly all places round the southern and northern sides of the lower parts of the Firth. It commands a safe ferry, ½ mile wide, across the Forth; and, prior to the railway era, was the grand ferry station between Fife and Kinrossn shire on the one hand, and all the SW of Scotland on the other. Seventy years ago it carried on shipbuilding to so great an extent as sometimes to have from twelve to fifteen vessels on the stocks at once; and it still has a few ships, a rope and sail work, and two woollen factories; but its former extensive distillery, brewery, salt works, and collieries are now extinct or exhausted. It is a regular place of call for steamers on the passage between Stirling and Granton; ranks as a burgh of barony, under government of three bailies; and is the seat of a sheriff small debt court on the first Monday of February, May, August, and November. It contains some good, modern, slated, two-story or three story houses, but chiefly consists of red-tiled cottages; its environs are pleasant, with the ruins of Tulliallan Castle, its modern successor, and some good villas; but the town itself presents a very irregular alignment, and an unattractive appearance. At it are a post office under Alloa, with money order, savings' bank, insurance, and telegraph departments, a branch of the Union Bank, 6 insurance agencies, gasworks, 2 inns, and 3 schools. Tulliallan parish church, built in 1833 at a cost of £3400, is an elegant edifice, and contains 1176 sittings. A Free church contains 470, and a U.P. church, built in 1819 at a cost of £1200, contains 800 sittings. The distinguished chemist, Prof. James Dewar, F.R.S., was born at Kincardine in 1842. Two embankments were completed in 1823 and 1839, on the W and E sides of the town, for reclaiming valuable land from the tidal waters of the Forth. That on the W side is 11 feet high and 2020 yards long, cost £6104, and reclaimed 152 acres; while that on the E side is 16 feet high and 3040 yards long, cost nearly £14,000, and reclaimed 214 acres. Pop. (1841) 2875, (1851) 2697, (1861) 2169, (1871) 1983, (1881) 1985, of whom 1141 were females. Houses (1881) 506 inhabited, 55 vacant, 4 building.—Ord. Sur., sh. 39, 1869.

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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