Chirnside


Chirnside
   CHIRNSIDE, a parish and burgh of barony, in the county of Berwick, 4½ miles (S. W. by W.) from Ayton; containing 1203 inhabitants. The name of this place is interpreted "the Sepulchral Tumulus on the side of the hill." The parish is about three miles in length, and the same in breadth, and contains upwards of 5000 acres; the surface is flat, with the exception of Chirnside hill, in the northern part, from which some beautiful prospects are obtained. The Whiteadder river runs along the southern boundary of the parish, and is here a fine expansive stream, being but a small distance from its junction with the Tweed near Berwick: close to the northern boundary, flows the Eye water. There is no waste land; the soil is good, and in a high state of cultivation. About 370 acres are under plantations, which are in a thriving state, especially those on the banks of the Whiteadder, at Ninewells; about one-half of the rest of the land is in tillage, and the other in grass. All kinds of grasses and of grain are produced, of good quality, but oats form the most considerable crop; potatoes and turnips are also raised, and the latter are very fine and plentiful. About 2500 sheep are usually kept, which are the large Leicesters, and the cattle are of the short-horned breed; draining has been practised to a great extent, and large sums have lately been expended in embankments on the river Whiteadder. The rateable annual value of the parish is £8891. The rocks consist of freestone, which is abundant, and of which several quarries are wrought. The village is in the south-western part of the parish; it has a fair on the last Thursday in November, for the sale of sackcloth, linen-yarn, and pottery-ware; and the road from Dunse to Ayton runs through the centre of it. The principal mansions are, Whitehall, Ninewells, and Mains. The ecclesiastical affairs are directed by the presbytery of Chirnside and synod of Merse and Teviotdale; patron, Mitchell Innes, Esq. The minister's stipend is £247, with a manse, and a glebe valued at £29 per annum. The church, which is very ancient, is in tolerable repair; the western door is Saxon, and on one of the walls, evidently of later erection, is a tablet dated 1572, with the inscription Helpe the Pur; the edifice affords accommodation for 500 persons. The United Associate Synod have a place of worship, as have also the Reformed Presbyterian Congregation. There is a parochial school, in which are taught the classics, mathematics, and French, with all the usual branches of education; the master's salary is £34, with about £30 fees, and a house and garden. Until very recently there existed a circulating library, established forty years ago. The celebrated historian, David Hume, was brought up, from his infancy, at Ninewells House; and the Rev. Henry Erskine, father of the Rev. Ebenezer and Ralph Erskine, leaders of the Secession, was the first minister here after the Revolution: a handsome monument has lately been erected to his memory, in the churchyard.

A Topographical dictionary of Scotland. . 1856.

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