Online Encyclopedia

PORT GLASGOW

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V22, Page 117 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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PORT GLASGOW, a municipal and police burgh and seaport of Renfrewshire, Scotland, on the southern shore of the Firth of Clyde, 204 M. W.N.W. of Glasgow by the Caledonian railway. Pop. (1901), 16,857. The ground behind the town rises to a height of 700 ft. and is partly occupied by villas. Amongst the principal buildings are the town house (1815), with a tower and spire; the town hall (1873); the library (1887) founded by James Moffat, a merchant of the burgh, and the Carnegie Park Orphan-age, also provided from the same bequest. Birkmyre Park was opened in 1894. The industries include shipbuilding and allied trades, engineering works, and iron and brass foundries. The area of the port (which has wet and graving docks) amounts to 16 acres, and there are 2000 yds. of quayage. The harbours are accessible at all stages of the tide. The district originally formed part of the parish of Kilmalcolm, the nucleus of the town being the village of Newark attached to the barony of that name. In 1668 it was purchased from Sir Patrick Maxwell of Newark by the Glasgow magistrates, who here constructed a harbour. In 1695 it was erected into a separate parish under the name of New Port Glasgow. In 1710 it became the chief custom-house port for the Clyde, until superseded by Greenock. The graving dock made in 1762 was the first dock of the kind in Scotland. In 1775 Port Glasgow was created a burgh of barony and since 1832 has formed one of the Kilmarnock parliamentary burghs (with Kilmarnock, Dumbarton, Renfrew and Rutherglen). It is governed by a council with provost and bailies. Adjoining the town on the east are the picturesque ruins of Newark Castle, a quadrangular building dating from the end of the 16th century. Formerly the property of the Dennistouns, it now belongs to the Shaw-Stewarts.
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