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The Anecdotage of Glasgow
The Deacon of the Baxters, and the Partick Mills

A LITTLE way above its meeting with the Clyde, the river Kelvin rushes dinsomely over a rocky bottom, and is in several places dammed up by artificial barriers for the service of the extensive Corporation Mills. The channel also is here spanned by a time-honoured bridge, which commands a picturesque prospect of the more ancient portion of the old-fashioned town, many of the houses around being evidently of no recent date.

The Mills of Partick, as is generally known, have for many years belonged to the Incorporation of Bakers in our city, to whom they were granted by the Regent Murray, after the victory of Langside. It is said the Glasgow baxters of that day, besides supplying his army with bread while it continued in the neighbourhood, actually sent an armed deputation of their number to assist the Regent in his encounter with the Queen’s forces. This party, it seems, did good service on the occasion, and materially aided in the overthrow of the unfortunate Queen’s adherents.

On his return to the city after this decisive battle, Murray publicly expressed his gratitude to the bakers for the important services which they had rendered; upon which Matthew Fawside, the Deacon, who seems to have estimated properly the value of mere word gratitude, shrewdly seized the golden opportunity, and humbly suggested that a gift of the Crown mills at Pertigue, by way of acknowledgment, would be highly acceptable to the Incorporation.

The Regent, who was naturally in high spirits at the time, acceded to the opportune request, and granted the mills to the sturdy craftsmen, in whose hands they continued to grow and flourish. The establishments went on gradually extending their productive powers, as the wants of the community increased, until they became of the most stately dimensions. Some years ago a destructive fire consumed a large portion of the buildings, on the site of which a most imposing and commanding fabric of the most substantial kind has been erected, and fitted up  in the best manner with the most recent and approved mechanical appliances. The Incorporation to whom they belong is one of the most wealthy in the city.

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