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Bradshaw’s Guide


The capital of Forfarshire, seat of the Scottish linen trade, a port and burgh (returning one member), with a population of about 90,417, situated on the north side of the Tay. Coming direct from the metropolis, a ferry of two miles must be crossed, from Broughty to Tay Port, in connection with the railway. A swelling hill behind the town, called Dundee Law, is 525 feet high to the camp on the top. Here Montrose sat while Ms troops sacked the town, in 1645, after the battle of Tippermuir. Since 1815, Dundee has been greatly improved by the new quays, wet and graving docks, and the deepening of the chief harbour. About 50,000 tons of shipping belong to the port, a small portion being engaged in the whale fisheries. The factories for spinning and weaving flax exceed 100, employing as many as 16,000 hands, three-fourths of whom are women. Coarse linens, osnaburghs, diapers, sail-cloth, rope, canvas, &c, are the chief goods made up.

Near the harbour is the triumphal arch, 82 feet wide, built, on the occasion of the Queen’s visit in 1844. Among the modem improvements which have taken place in Dundee, may be noticed those in Union Street, which opens a communication with the Craig Pier and the Nethergate; indeed, nearly all the old buildings have been superseded by new ones. In front of the quay, along the margin of the Tay, are the various docks and shipyards, terminated on the west by the Craig Pier, which is exclusively used for the large ferry steam-boats. On the cast the piers project into the deep water, on which are placed various coloured lights to guide the seamen after sunset. Opposite the town is a beacon, which is built on a dangerous rock. Nearly the whole of the space now appropriated to the docks, was originally a semicircular sandy beach, but by great exertion the spirited inhabitants have erected a series of quays which are unequalled in Scotland. There are 20 churches and chapels. Three churches stand together on the site of that founded by William the Lion’s brother, David (the hero of Scott’s “Talisman”) in pursuance of a vow made at sea on returning from the Crusades; its square tower, 156 feet high, still remains, though damaged by a fierce storm in 1840. David also built a castle, which figures in the war of independence as having been taken by Wallace and Bruce. The former great patriot was educated at the priory in this town, and made himself known, about 1271, by killing Delly, an insolent young Norman knight in the Governor’s train. The Town House in High Street, was built by Adams, in 1734; other buildings are, the Exchange, Trades Hall, Academy, St. Andrew’s Church, with a tall spire, &c.

Some of the oldest houses are in Seagate. High Street and Murraygate are the most bustling thoroughfares. When Charles II. was crowned at Scone in 1650, by the Covenanters, he came to reside at Whitehall, in the Nethergate, since pulled down. Another house, in the middle of High Street, was occupied by Monk (after talcing the town by storm in 1645); and by the Pretender, in 1716; it was also the birthplace of Monmouth’s widow, Anne, Duchess of Buccleugh (the Lady of Branxholme Tower, in the “Lay of the Last Minstrel.” In the Cowgate is an arch from which Wishart, the martyr, preached during the plague of 1544, the infected part of his congregation being kept by themselves on one side. Towards Dundee Law, at the end of Dunhope Wynd, is Dunhope Castle (now a barrack), which belonged to the Serynigeours, (hereditary standard-bearers of Scotland), and to the famous Graham of Claverhouse, whom James II. created Viscount Dundee, before his death at Killiecrankie. Mackenzie, the great lawyer, and Ivory, one of the first mathematicians of modern days, were natives of Dundee, a name supposed to be derived from Donum-Dei, or, God’s gift, applied to it by David, its founder.

A magnificent Park presented by Sir David Baxter to the town is situated at the north east extremity on a very elevated plateau commanding pretty and extensive views of the Tay. It occupies a space of 3S acres, and is very tastefully laid out. A handsome pavilion in the Italian style of architecture, which cost £6,000, occupies the centre. There are two entrances to the Park, to each of which are handsome lodges. The cost of the Park, its embellishments, and the sam set apart by the doner for its maintenance, will not beless than £50,000.

Within a short distance are, Brouqhty Castle;
Gray, the seat of Lord Gray; Camperdown,
that of Lord Duncan; and Mains, another ot
Claverhouse’s seats.

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