Past - Pollokshaws Heritage Group

Pollokshaws Heritage Group
Pollokshaws Heritage Group
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Pollokshaws Heritage Group
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Pollokshaws "The Past"
To Accompany this history we are proud to offer for download "Pollokshaws: A Brief History" by Jack Gibson (Edited by George Rountree) in PDF Format for viewing using Adobe Reader

To Download just click on the image below and save the file.
A lot of  work has gone into the preparation of this book, which is offered  Free of Charge.

If you would like to make a donation to the  Pollokshaws Heritage Group to support this Website and its  continual development, this would be much appreciated.
A History
Pollokshaws has a long recorded history dating from before the year 600 AD. A monk named Conval, son of an Irish prince, left  Ireland, his native country and according to legend crossed the sea  standing on a slab of stone, and stepped ashore at Inchinnan on the  Clyde. The meaning here may be that the stone was of some significance  to the Celts, or was simply being carried in some kind of craft as  ballast. Two stones reputed to be connected with this event can be seen  lying in a small railed enclosure near the Normandy Hotel in Inchinnan  Road, Renfrew. From there Conval joined St. Kentigern (or St. Mungo as  he is better known), and was directed by him to preach the Christian  faith to the pagan people in the  wooded area to the south east of Paisley, a region now known as  Eastwood. Here, beside a spring of clear water, he built his little  wattle-and-daub church in what is now Eastwood Old Cemetery and  commenced his work of bringing Christianity to the district. The church  was no more than a small hut used by Conval for his own devotions, and  he preached to the people in the open air.
As time  passed he gathered round him a number of converts who, as monks who  lived in other huts nearby, formed a group which in the course of time  became a small village named Kirkton. This village existed in various  forms until industrial development nearby from the middle of the 18th  century caused the spring to dry up. Conval was canonised later,  becoming St. Conval, and is believed to have died on the 18th of May  612.
 The next significant event in the development of Eastwood came around  the middle of the 14th Century. Descendants of a Saxon Nobleman named  Maccus, who had previously settled in an area that became known as  Maccuswell near Dumfries in the 12th century, acquired land in the  Eastwood district. In time the family name became Maxwell, and branches  were established around West Central Scotland. One of these, the  Maxwells of Nether (lower) Pollok, were given a charter for their lands  in 1494, and Haggs Castle, thought to be the third building belonging to  the family in the area, was built by a Sir John Maxwell during the  years leading up to 1585.
Through the centuries the  Maxwells were benevolent benefactors of the people of Pollokshaws, and  it is significant that the first mention of Pollokshaws should be in a  document concerning members of the family. It occurs in a Papal Bull (a  proclamation by the Pope) issued in 1536, and the story behind it is  that some years before, a Laird of Pollok had three sons, the eldest of  whom was to succeed him.

The first son's marriage produced a daughter  who was the heiress of Pollok. When the second son married, his father  gave him the lands of Cowglen that had been purchased from the Earl of  Lennox in 1518. This marriage produced a son and the two, the heiress of  Pollok and the heir of Cowglen wished to marry, but as they were first  cousins the consanguinity laws of the church did not allow this.  

However, it was possible to overcome the barrier by applying to the Pope  for a special dispensation. The Laird's third son had entered the  church and became Bishop of Orkney, and he was persuaded to apply to the  Pope for the dispensation. Permission was granted for the marriage in a  Papal Bull of the time, which also referred to Pollokshaws and its meal  mill. At this time, under Scots Law each Laird had to erect and  maintain a mill for the use of his tenants, and it is evident that from  then on there was such a mill and that Pollokshaws was well established.  
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