SHIELDAG, lately a quoad sacra parish, partly in the parish of Gairloch, but chiefly in the parish of Applecross, county of Ross and Cromarty, 10 miles (N. W.) from Lochcarron; containing 1899 inhabitants, of whom 188 are in the village. This place includes the north-eastern portion of the parish of Applecross, which, together with the south-western part of the parish of Gairloch, was separated from those parishes for ecclesiastical purposes, and erected into a quoad sacra parish, by act of the General Assembly, in 1833. The district is about eighteen miles in extreme length, and nearly fifteen miles in breadth, comprising a large extent of surface, of which, with the exception of some narrow strips of land near the coast, the whole is one continued tract of barren rocky hills, affording only scanty pasturage for a few flocks of sheep and herds of cattle. The soil of the very small proportion under cultivation is tolerably fertile, producing favourable crops of barley, oats, and potatoes; but there is nothing either in the system of husbandry, or in the management of the lands, requiring any particular notice. The population, except two or three families in the interior who are employed in the feeding of sheep and cattle, are resident on the coast, and place their chief dependence on the fisheries, which are carried on to a considerable extent. The agricultural produce, beyond what is requisite for the supply of the inhabitants, is sent to Glasgow; and the few sheep and cattle reared in the pastures are sold to small dealers in the adjacent districts, who purchase for the more distant markets. The coast is indented on the east by Loch Shieldag, which forms an inlet from the centre of Loch Torridon towards the south, and is about two miles and a half in length and one mile in mean breadth, and an excellent station for vessels employed in the herring-fisheries.
   The village is situated on the west of Loch Shieldag, and consists chiefly of irregularly-built cottages extending along the shore, and inhabited by fishermen who, at their intervals of leisure, are employed in the cultivation of the lands. The fish taken here are, salmon, which are found in considerable numbers, yielding a tolerable rent to the proprietors, cod, ling, sythe, cuddy, flounders, and various other kinds of white-fish, with shell-fish of different sorts, among which the cockle and muscle are found in large quantities. Several boats are also engaged in the herring-fishery, which is carried on to a good extent, affording the principal means of subsistence for the inhabitants. Within a small distance from the village is a natural wood of fir, producing excellent timber for boat-building and other purposes. Facility of inland communication is maintained by the turnpike-road from Shieldag to Lochcarron, the nearest post-town, from which letters are brought by a carrier at the public expense; and several foot-roads intersect the parish in various directions, all of which are kept in decent repair. Loch Shieldag affords safe anchorage to the vessels employed in the fisheries, and at Loch Torridon are ample opportunities of conveyance to distant ports. The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Lochcarron and synod of Glenelg. The church was built in 1827, by parliamentary grant, at a cost, including the manse, of £1480; and is a neat substantial structure containing 300 sittings. The minister's stipend is £120, paid from the exchequer; with a manse and garden: patron, the Crown. A place of worship in connexion with the Established Church, and in which the minister of Shieldag preaches once a month, was erected at Kishorn by the proprietor of Applecross and a few of the inhabitants; it is a commodious structure containing 200 sittings. A school is supported from the funds of the General Assembly; and there is a Free church.

A Topographical dictionary of Scotland. . 1856.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Applecross —    APPLECROSS, a parish, in the county of Ross and Cromarty, 18 miles (W.) from Lochcarron; containing, with the island of Crolin, and part of Shieldag, quoad sacra, 2861 inhabitants. This parish was originally called Comaraich, a Gaelic word… …   A Topographical dictionary of Scotland

  • Gairloch —    GAIRLOCH, a parish, in the county of Ross and Cromarty, 60 miles (W. by N.) from Dingwall; including the islands of Horisdale and Longo, the late quoad sacra district of Poolewe, and part of that of Shieldag; and containing 4880 inhabitants.… …   A Topographical dictionary of Scotland

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