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Parish of Middlebie Co Dumfries
there are ----- seven villages Middlebie, Eaglesfield, Wallacehall, Waterbeck, Lauriesclose, Dalbate and Kirtlebridge. They are all hamlets with the exception of Eaglesfield near the South East extremity of the Parish which consists of a double line of one storey houses stretching from west to east a distance of nearly one mile. The houses are dilapidated and the tout? enarmble of this village uninviting, the population thereof numbering nearly 700 being almost entirely composed of poverty stricken weavers------ Middlebie has one Parish Church Parish Schools and an United Presbyterian Church. The houses and farm-steadings are in indifferent condition and have but limited accommodation. The Population of the Parish about 2,200 employed chiefly by Carlisle and Glasgow Manufacturers.
The principal Antiquity is a Roman Camp near the Southern extremity of the Parish "considered says the New Statistical Account "as almost the most perfect remains of Romas Antiquity or grandeur existing in Britain, the fossae, aggers and prcetorium being quite distinct" Though the entire dimensions of this Camp may still be traced , it is only on the North side where any remains now exist, the fossae and aggers being well defined there. The prcetorium as mentioned in the foregoing quotation cannot now be tracedhowever. - This Camp is of similar dimensions and construction to those which are supposed to have been constructed for a single Roman Legion without Allies. General Roy supposes it to be the Bloturn Bulgium of the Romans Entrenchment- forming a square are traceable in close proximity to the North West Parish Boundary pronounced by people in the locality as having formed those of a Roman Camp. The dimensions are so trifling and the apparent defences so slight as almost to preclude the supposition of its Roman origin. The only construction however is, that this work may - from its peculiar formation - have formed a temporary Post capable of accommodating 16 - 20 Roman soldiers. No mention of this work is made by any Authority. Four encampments of round formation are shown in the 2nd division of Parish, which the people in the locality characterise as British Forts, but respecting which the New Statistical Account remarks * The Remains of a Border Tower or Peel are still discernible near the Southern extremity of the Parish. This structure probably derived all its notability from the circumstances of a family called Bell being the original possessors, a member of which figures so conspicuously in the Tale of Fair Helen of Kirkconnel Lee. Middlebie consists of those of Pennersaughs, Carruthers and Middlebie all having been united in 1609. In the Ancient Parish of Carruthers there was a village of the same name which derived considerable notoriety from the circumstance of its having been a favourite resort of Freebooters during the Border Feuds. ---- the site of which has been shewn- Also the Site of the Parish Church of Pennersaughs as pointed by people in the district.
* There are in many places small extended Camps or Birrens of a round form, very prominent and in good presentation. It is conjectured that they were constructed by the Septs or Lairds for the protection of Cattle during Border Feuds, but on account of urns having been found in them it is probable that they are of an earlier date and may be what are called "British Fortifications" March 1857

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