OS1/29/5/2

Continued entries/extra info

Parish of Castleton County of Roxburghshire

and of the lower part hilly which for the most part presents a bleak and wild appearance. The inhabited part consists of the two valleys respectively
along Liddel and Hermitage Waters containing arable lands finely studded with natural wood and thriving plantations - rich holm lands occurring frequently at the
curves of the streams. Several of the hills as Roan Fell, Greatmoor Hill, Millstone Edge, Tudhope Hill, Larriston Fells and Cauldcleuch Head have an elevation of from 1800 to 2000 feet, the
features of which being generally sharp and prominent. The principal streams are Liddel Water from the NEn [North Eastern] point running in a SSW [South South West] direction
through the entire length of Ph [Parish] and Hermitage Water from the NWn [North Western] district running East by South to Liddel Water. Braidley, Dawston, Tinnis
Tweeden, Long Gill, Black and Kershope Burns all considerable streams rising in the district contribute their waters to the two larger streams. There is no
sheet water of any consequence - mineral springs occur frequently of which Deadwater Well (sulphureous) near the En [Eastern] boundary has attained considerable celebrity. Another
spring on the Tweeden Burn is noticeable for its petrifactive qualification the moss on either side of it having become hard as stone. The Turnpike Road
between Carlisle and Jedburgh entering at the Southern point runs NNE [North North East] and nearly bisects the Parish. Two lines of railway have been proposed for the
district to extend from Hawick to Carlisle. Limestone of different qualities is abundant and is extensively wrought on the Estates of Larriston and Thorlieshope
in the eastern district. Coal also exists at Liddelbank at the Sn [Southern] point of Ph [Parish]. Freestone is everywhere found except in the NWn [Northwestern] district, where blue whinstone
only exists. The Ph [Parish]in every way and pastoral district has only one village that of Castleton usually called New Castleton which is situate on the NE [Northeastern] bank of Liddel Water
towards the Sn [Southern] district. It consists of two principal streets nearly 1/2 mile in length running parallel to each other and bearing the names of the two streams Liddel
and Hermitage. The houses one and two storeys high with gardens and each having from 2 to 4 acres of land attached are held on leases of 99 years and the land of 19 years from
the Duke of Buccleuch. The village was commenced in 1793 - the houses are in bad repair it contains a population of about 1200 who are employed chiefly at loom
weaving. In the Parish are four Parochial Schools, three of which are side or auxiliary, a Ph [Parish] church, Free and United Presbyterian Churches. The Duke of Buccleuch owns
about 3/4 of the Parish. Population as the last census 2130.

Roman Camps and Pictish or British Forts are of frequent occurrence throughout this Ph [Parish]; also a Section of Roman Road in the NEn [North Eastern] district
commonly called Wheel Causeway from the proximity thereto of an old structure called Wheel Church or rather from the circumstance of its constituting the only path in that part of Scotland which admitted the passage of wheeled carriages - may still be traced. This district fell before
the Roman power at the period of Agricola's invasion and which having been comprehended anterior thereto within the territory of the Gadeni was thereafter
incorporated with the Roman province of Valencia. After the Roman abdication the district enjoyed for a short time the flickering independence of the Eastern
Romanized Britons but was latterly compelled to settle down into a Section of Northumbria and to acknowledge the ascendancy and sway of the Saxons. As part of
the Northumbrian Kingdom and bearing in common with other localities the name of Saxonia the entire district was invaded and wasted by Kenneth the conqueror of the Picts.
It may therefore readily be supposed that these camps and Forts originated during these several eras and tho' the locality does not appear to have been minutely explored by the antiquarians so as definitely
to affix the respective character to these ancient fortifications - the local authorities together with features and formation of objects have been the means of determining the character assigned
to them on Plans. From its position to England this district was the scene of many bloody engagements during feudal times, and it seems to have been studded with an almost
incredible number of Castles and Towers, many of which having now entirely disappeared their sites can only be recognised. Of these Hermitage Castle is the most remarkable and may be classed as the
principal antiquity of the Ph [Parish]. This fortress consists of a tall, massive, gloomy looking tower protected by a ditch and strong rampart and rising aloft from the centre of an extensive waste overlooks Hermitage
Water amid a bleak and barren scene. It was considered one of the largest and strongest of the border fortresses. It was built in the 13th century by Comyn Earl of Menteith it afterwards became the property
of the Soulis family, then by forfeiture went to the Douglasses made over by Archibald, sixth Earl of Angus - representative of that family - to Hepburn Earl of Bothwell in exchange for the Castle and
lordship of Bothwell in Clydesdale whose possessions etc having become the property of Francis Stewart it passed by forfeiture into the hands of the Buccleuch family who still possess it. During the Douglas possession
the brave Sir Alexander Ramsay was starved to death within its walls. it was visited by Queen Mary previous to her marriage with Bothwell (see Grant's "Bothwell") a chapel stood within a few yards of it in a burial
ground now partially in use. Various religious structures seem to have existed in the district of which St Martin's and Wheel Churches have been noticed.

A remarkable trenched line of fortification is stated by Statistical Authority to have existed in the NEn [North Eastern] district faint vestiges of which have been traced on the ground. The Gazetteer of Scotland
says there can hardly be a doubt whether the Catrail was once a dividing fence between the Romanized Britons of the Cumbrian Kingdom and their Saxon invaders on the East (See Ph [Parish] of Teviothead
where it is fully described). Some other minor antiquities as Crosses and monumtal or commemorative stones are yet extant.

  Transcribers who have contributed to this page.

Skinnb1- Moderator, SuzyC1978

  Location information for this page.

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