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Between the Ochils and the Forth
A Description, Topographical and Historical of the Country between Stirling Bridge and Aberdour by David Beveridge (1888)


IN the History of Culross and Tulliallan the author endeavoured to present a monograph of two Scottish parishes occupying a somewhat secluded situation on the northern shore of the Firth of Forth. He also sought to exhibit a picture of the domestic life of a bygone day, as elucidated from the kirk-session records of the two parishes, and the minutes of town council of the ancient burgh of Culross. The present undertaking may be characterised as having to a considerable extent a similar object in view, though the illustration of the theme by extracts from the municipal and ecclesiastical archives has not been attempted. A much wider field, however, is included, and at the same time a minute and careful description has been furnished as far as possible of every locality and event of interest belonging to the district under notice. It is a region which, though neither inaccessible nor remote, is still comparatively unknown to, and unvisited by, the majority of Scottish tourists. Yet it is connected with some of the most important events in Scottish history, and as regards natural beauty, it will in many places vie in richness with the finest specimens of English rural scenery.

Whilst the work in question aims rather at a picturesque and historical delineation of that portion of the upper shores of the Forth lying between Stirling Bridge and Aberdour, than at the formal and business-like character of a guide-book, it is nevertheless hoped that in the latter capacity it may not be found wanting in attraction or devoid of practical utility. The distances between the different places have all been set down with special care, as ascertained both by personal investigation and a careful comparison with the maps of the Ordnance Survey. The line and direction also of the varous pub1ic roads, as well as the principal inns in the different towns and villages, have all been indicated. The author has trodden himself almost every foot of the district, with the most of which he has been familiar from childhood, and he has, moreover, quite recently made a pilgrimage through and investigated the particular localities with great care and minuteness. He would thus fain hope that the completed work, the outcome in great measure of these wanderings, may prove interesting and useful both to travellers and general readers.

Of late years locomotion by means of bicycles and tricycles has come greatly into vogue, and one of the results has been that the old coach-roads, long deserted, have again been largely utilised. For travellers on such vehicles it is also hoped that this work may be found to contain some useful information and directions both as to the line of route and the objects of interest by the way.

Rosehill, Torryburn, May 1888.


General view of the district—Its early history and inhabitants.


Chapter I - North Queensferry and Inverkeithing
The Forth Bridge and its vicinity—Island of Inchgarvie— North Queensferry and its peninsula—Rosyth Castle— The town of Inverkeithing—Its history and objects of interest.

Chapter II. - From Inverkeithing to Aberdour
Victory of Cromwell's army near Inverkeithing—Road to Aberdour—The Moray family and estate—Inchcolm, Donibristle, and Dalgety—Village of Aberdour—Otterstone.

Chapter III. - From Inverkeithing to Crossgates, Cowdenbeath and Lochgelly
The Great North Road—House and grounds of Fordel— Village of Crossgates—The Hill of Beath—Great conventicle held there—Mess Murran ami Lochgelly,

Chapter IV. - From Cowdenbeath to Blairadam and Cleish
The drained site of Loch Ore—Its ancient island castle— Ancient Roman station—Interest attaching to Loch Ore in connection with Sir Walter Scott—Approach to Blairadam—Its classic associations—Benarty Hill and Paranwell—Ballingry church—First view of Loch Leven— Village and barony of Cleish—History of its ancient lords, the Colvilles of Ochiltree—Ruined castle of Dow hill —Gairney Bridge and its associations—The first Secession Synod—Michael Bruce,

Chapter V. - Kinross and Loch Leven
Town of Kinross and its environs—Kinross House—Loch Leven and its history—The Castle Island and its memorials of Queen Mary— The Isle of St Serf and its priory,

Chapter VI. - Round Loch Leven
The loch and its surrounding scencry—Levenmouth and the sluices—Scotlandwell and the Bishop Hill—Portmeak church and village of Kinnesswood—Michael Bruce and his poetry—Hamlets of Easter and Wester Balgedie— The old church of Orwell,

Chapter VII. - From Kinross and Glen Farg
Further progress on Great North Road— Village of Milnathort— Parish of Orwell—Castle of Burleigh and its proprietors—History of the Balfour family—Road from Milnathort to Damhead—Church of Arngask—Glen Farg and the Bein Bin—Old road from Damhead to Perth—The Wicks of Baiglie—Sir Walter Scott's account of distant view of Perth from that neighbourhood—Old drove-road to the Kirk of Dron— The Rocking-stone— Mill and hamlet of Dron,


Chapter I - The City of Dunfermline
Leading features of the "city"—Its ancient history—Malcolm Canmore and Queen Margaret—The monastery and its church— Dunfermline as a. royal residence— Remains of the Abbey and Palace—Relations of Edward I. with Dunfermline—King Robert Bruce interred there —Its first Protestant minister, David Ferguson—The Earls of Dunfermline—Visits of Charles I. and II.— Events during insurrection of 1715—Introduction of the damask manufacture — Dunfermline the cradle of the Secession movement—History of the Erskine family— Churches and public buildings.

Chapter II. - From Dunfermline to Torryburn
Old and new roads from Dunfermline to the west— Urquhart Cut—Berrylaw Top— Villages of Crossford and Cairney-hill—Conscience Bridge—Village of Torryburn — The Colville family and the estate of Crombie—Torrylurn witches,

Chapter III. - From Torryburn to Culross and Kincardine
Village of Newmills— Newmill Bridge and its vicinity— Western limit of Fife—Detached district of Perthshire— Approach to Culross—Valleyfield House and the Preston family—Upper road to Kincardine—Tuliallan woods— Bordie and the Standard Stone—Town of Culross—Its early history in connection -with St Serf and St Mungo —Sir George Bruce and his descendants, the Earls of Kincardine—Ancient monastery and church of Culross —Mansion of Culross Abbey—The "Colonels Close" and Sir George Bruce's Moat—Lower road to Kincardine—Dunimarle and Blair Castle—Blair and Longannet quarries and their traditions—Phenomena of the "lakies"—Town of Kincardine-on-Forth.

Chapter IV. - From Kincardine to Clackmanan and Alloa
The old castle and estate of Tulliallan— The Blackadder family—Kilbagie and its distillery—Kennet village— Town of Clackmannan—Clackmannan Tower and the Bruce family—Approach to Alloa—Alloa and the Earls of Mar.

Chapter V. - Another Way from Dunfermline to Alloa
Road from Dunfermline to Carnock—Baldridge—Luscar— Village and church of Carnock— Their associations with Scottish ecclesiastical history—John Row and Thomas Gillespie—Sasramtntal occasions at Carnock—Roadfrom Carnock to Clackmannan and Alloa.

Chapter VI. - Other Excursions from Dunfermline
Road from Dunfermline to Rumbling Bridge—Village and parish of Saline—Road from Dunfermline to Queensferry —St Leonards Hospital—Pitreavie and the Wardlaw family—Broomhall and Pitliver.


Chapter I - From Logie Church to Alva and Tillicoultry
The Ochil Hills—Road along their base from Bridge of Allan —Logie chureh and Blair Logie—Ascent of Dunmyat— Menstrie and its glen—Alva and its silver-mines—Ascent of Ben Clench—Tillicoultry and its glen,

Chapter II. - From Tillicoultry to Dollar and Yetts of Muckhart
The Colville family as Lords of Tillicoultry—Harvieston and its associations with Burns—Town of Dollar—Castle Campbell and its surroundings—Road from Dollar to the Yetts of Muckhart.

Chapter III. - Glen Devon, Crook of Devon and Rumbling Bridge
General account of the Devon and its vale—Glen Devon and Glen Eagles—Parish of Fossoway—The Crook of Devon and Titllicbale—The Devil's Mill, Rumbling Bridge, and Cauldron Linn,

Chapter IV. - Aldie Castle and South Fossoway
Read from Powmill to Cleish—AIdie Castle and its traditions —Ancient connection of the Athole family with Fossoway —Blairingone— The "Monk's Grave".

Chapter V. - From the Cauldron Linn to the Forth
The Vicar's Bridge—Lower course of the Devon—Sauchie Town—Tullibody—Its church and other objects of interest—Farm of the "King of the Muirs,"


Cambuskenneth, the Abbey Craig, and the Bridge of Allan,

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