Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for Grange

Grange, a parish in the Strathisla district of Banffshire, containing, towards its southern extremity, Grange Junction on the Great North of Scotland railway, 4½ miles E by S of the post-town Keith, 16¼ SW of Banff, 3¾ SW of Knock (another station in Grange), 8½ NNW of Huntly, and 48¾ NW of Aberdeen. It is bounded N by Deskford, NE by Fordyce and Ordiquhill, E by Marnoch, SE by Rothiemay, S by Cairnie in Aberdeenshire, and SW and W by Keith. Its utmost length, from E to W, is 6 miles; its utmost breadth, from N to S, is 5¼ miles; and its area is 63481/7 acres, of which 52 are water. The river Isla winds 7 furlongs eastward along the Keith border, then 3½ miles east-south-eastward through the southern interior, on its way to the Deveron; and to the Isla run Altmore Burn 3¼ miles southward along all the western border, Shiel Burn 41/8 miles south-westward along all the boundary with Rotbiemay, and two lesser burns that drain the interior. The surface is somewhat hilly, sinking to 295 feet above sea-level at the Shiel's influx to the Isla, and rising thence to 913 and 1199 feet at *Little and *Meikle Balloch, 810 at Sillyearn Hill, 537 near Crannach, 1409 at *Knock Hill, 1028 at *Lurg Hill, and 860 at *Black Hill, where asterisks mark those summits that culminate on or close to the confines of the parish. The rocks are mainly Silurian; and limestone has been largely quarried; whilst plumbago-a comparatively rare mineral-occurs at Seggiecrook. Much of the arable soil is excellent; but much, again, rests upon such stubborn subsoil as to resist all efforts at improvement. Most or all of the land was anciently covered with forest; and there is now a largish extent of peat-moss, embedding roots and trunks of primeval trees. Grange Castle, once the residence of a section of the Kinloss community, under a sub-prior, who here had a large farm or grange that gave the parish its name, stood on the rising ground now occupied by the parish church, and overlooked extensive haughs along the course of the Isla. A stately edifice, surrounded by a narrow moat, it left, till a comparatively recent period, considerable remains. The Gallow or Green Hill was the place of capital execution by sentence of the Abbots of Kinloss, and figures dismally in local tradition. Remains of several trenches or encampments, supposed to have been formed by either the ancient Caledonians or the Picts, are on the haughs of the Isla; and scenes of ancient battles are pointed out by dim tradition on the N side of Gallow Hill, on the S side of Knock Hill, and at Auchincove near the Isla. Edingight is the chief mansion; and the Earl of Fife shares most of the parish with Sir John Innes and the Earl of Seafield. Grange is in the presbytery of Strathbogie and synod of Moray; the living is worth £374. The parish church, 1½ mile WNW of Grange Junction, was built in 1795, and contains 616 sittings. There are also Free and U.P. churches; and three public schools -Crossroads, Grange, and Sillyearn-with respective accommodation for 120, 113, and 120 children, had (1881) an average attendance of 82, 68, and 64, and grants of £74, 16s., £63, 14s., and £51, 9s. Valuation (1843) £5299, (1881) £7470. Pop. (1801) 1529, (1831) 1492, (1861) 1909, (1871) 1876, (1881) 1754.—Ord. Sur., sh. 86, 1876. See the Rev. Dr J. F. S. Gordon's Book of the Chronicles of Keith, Grange, etc. (Glasg. 1880).

(F.H. Groome, Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland (1882-4); © 2004 Gazetteer for Scotland)

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "a parish"   (ADL Feature Type: "countries, 4th order divisions")
Administrative units: Grange ScoP       Banffshire ScoCnty
Place: Grange

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