St Patrick’s Chapel was purchased from the United Secession Church by the Roman Catholic Church in 1856. The chapel would have provided a community centre for the working class men and women of Irish and Highland descent living in the Cowgate. The poet William McGonagall was brought up in the area. His parents may have […]
The illustration shows the entrance in the Cowgate leading to the meal market. Held in the High Street the meal market became difficult to control and in 1538 a proposal was made in to re-site it at the foot of James Aikman’s Close.
The time ball on the Nelson Monument is not visible from the Cowgate. The residents would have had to depend on the One o’ clock Gun to set their clocks and watches to the correct time.
The houses in the Cowgate were occupied mainly by unskilled and casual workers and their families. Although the landlords collected rent from their tenants they failed to improve the property. The Free Church of Scotland campaigned to have the insanitary conditions within the property improved.
Rent collectors had a hard time collecting the rent from many of their tenants. Those unable to pay would pack their furniture and belongings on to a cart and leave after dark. They were known as moonlight flittens.
The house belonging to Andrew Symson the printer who specialised in producing books for children was demolished under the civic planning project. The printer’s workshop stood at foot of Horse Wind in the Cowgate.
The Magdalen Chapel in the Cowgate escaped demolition. Built during the sixteenth century the building was occupied by the Edinburgh Medical Missionary Society.
The illustration showing the houses in the Cowgate opposite South Gray’s Close was drawn by Mrs J Stewart Smith who decided to record the buildings to be demolished under the civic planning project with pen, pencil and camera.
John Craig was appointed royal chaplain to Mary, Queen of Scots in 1561. The minister owned a house in the Cowgate which was demolished under the civic planning project.
The Earl of Argyll owned a house which stood in the courtyard of the Mint.