Kirkintilloch back in time: Over 100 years of Kirkintilloch history in 16 pictures

We gathered these old photos of Kirkintilloch from 1900 up until 1953 - travel back in time with us through the historic town

Kirkintilloch is one of our favourite places around Glasgow - a canalside East Dunbartonshire town which is the perfect blend of urban Glasgow and the beautiful nature of the Campsie Glens.

Kirkintilloch has a storied history, dating all the way back to the mid 2nd-century where there was a Roman fort in what is now Peel Park - defending the Antonine Wall which ran through the town, long before the foundations of the town were ever placed.

A thousand or so years later in the 12th century, a castle and church was established by Clan Cumming - a small settlement grew around the buildings and it was granted burgh status in 1211, it was an important staging post for caravans leaving Glasgow for the east.

During the wars of independence, soldiers from the castle were dispatched to arrest William Wallace at Robroyston in 1305 - in retaliation, the castle was attacked by Scottish forces in 1306 under Bishop Wishart of Glasgow (using timber given to Glasgow diocese by the English for cathedral repairs), but the siege was unsuccessful. It’s believed the castle was later ordered to be destroyed by Robert Bruce.

Kirkintilloch would again find itself at the centre of Scottish history when it became one of the furnaces stoking Scotland’s industrial revolution. The construction of the Forth and Clyde Canal in 1773 and the establishment of the Monkland and Kirkintilloch railway in 1867 made it a hub for transport as well as a huge production centre for iron, coal, nickel, and even smaller ships.

By 1790, there were 185 weavers in Kirkintilloch, a popular trade practiced in cotton mills - by 1867 James Slimon’s mill at Kelvinside employed around 200 women.

Now that we’ve covered Kirky’s contributions to Scottish history, we wanted to look at some more recent, local history through some historic pictures supplied by East Dunbartonshire Council.

To find out more about Kirkintilloch’s proud heritage, check out East Dunbartonshire Council’s collection of historic photographs, museum & gallery collections, and archives.

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