The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Moderators: John, Sharon, Fossil, Lucky Poet, crusty_bint, Jazza, dazza

The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Knightmare » Fri Jun 19, 2009 5:44 pm

With William Wallace being a Glasgow chappie, I thought I'd qualify this post by at least refering to his Elderslie origins and start by showing some photos that i took after reading a extract from a book called Airdrie: A Historical Sketch, which was written in 1921. I purchased the book from a New York book shop and began reading it, only to discover in the early pages, a significant reference to a large upright stone situated in Riggend (by Airdrie).

According to the book, the stone was used by Sir William Wallace to sharpen his "Twa Eged Claythorn" sword on his way to the battle of Falkirk in 1298. see photo's

Image
Image

I've passed this stone a number of times without realising its existance. Equally as surprising is the fact that, as the crow flies, I actually lived within a 1/2 a mile of this stone for around 6 years. I've never even heard of it being spoken about in the local village.

Obviously its interesting to me from the point of view that this very small piece of history is still in existance to this day and hasn't yet been swept away by housing or industrial developments. But what stands out is that 88 years ago, an ex-provost and Honourable Sheriff Substitute (James Knox) thought enough merrit in the story to include it within his aforementioned book.

So we know it exists within at least one historical record and we know it exists because you can go and see it, touch it and photograph it, but the real question for me is:-

Is there any other written reference to the event prior to 1921 or is this merely hearsay transfered to text by James Knox?

Any help most welcome.
User avatar
Knightmare
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 9:00 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Icecube » Sun Jun 21, 2009 2:54 pm

Hi Knightmare, I've just joined on seeing your post about the upright stone in the corner of the field at Brackenhurst. I took some phots of this a few years ago for the local history library at Airdrie and the officer there was sceptical about Knox's suggestion and if you examine the object you have to ask why it looks so well cut and in truth it does not look as if it has sat there for 800 years. The location is also a bit of a tell tale in that it is exactly in the corner of a field.
There are Wallace caves/stones/seats etc. all over the place, ditto Bruce, all usually there by tradition.

Did you visit the well preserved anti aircraft gun site across the road?
Icecube
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 369
Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:22 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Lucky Poet » Sun Jun 21, 2009 3:03 pm

If it's nothing to do with Wallace right enough (as you say it looks in rather good nick if it's been there for that long), I wonder what it is? Strange to see a dressed stone sitting there by itself like that.
All the world seems in tune on a Spring afternoon, when we're poisoning pigeons in the park.
User avatar
Lucky Poet
-
-
 
Posts: 4161
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2007 1:15 am
Location: Up a close

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Knightmare » Sun Jun 21, 2009 3:32 pm

Thanks for your reply's....

Yes, I can see where you're coming from, however around 800 years ago the field boundry probably didn't exist as it is today or at all for that matter. The fact that its a field with a stone on one corner is probably a result of some smart thinking land-owner who decided to create the boundry so that the stone did not interfere with agriculture.

There is no mention of the stone on any old-maps.co.uk maps.

There's little or no evidence to suggest the story is false...in fact there is more evidence in its favour. For example the Airdrie Book, which is of course a written account and also that fact that the Wallace Society of Scotland still look after the site as detailed on the link below

http://www.thesocietyofwilliamwallace.com/min.htm

It seems that my question remains, is there any other record of this event by way of corroboration.

Also i should add that, in shape, the stone doesn't really look all that unnatural. It doesn't look quarried or tampered with in any way.
User avatar
Knightmare
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 9:00 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby purplepantman » Sun Jun 21, 2009 4:27 pm

I saw your stone a few weeks ago when I was visiting the Anti-Aircraft site directly to the north.
It was right next to where I parked.
The stone really does stand out like a sore thumb!

Image

To me (and I'm no geologist) it looks like sandstone.
I'm sure there are no sandstone quarries anywhere nearby - I'm sure they're all granite, ironstone or whinstone.
So someone's carted it there for a reason.
purplepantman
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 297
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 4:31 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Icecube » Sun Jun 21, 2009 5:22 pm

This thread might be more Hidden Glasgow than you think because Glasgow Corporation once owned Brackenhirst and other farms in the neighbourhood in the early part of the last century.

As for the stone it looked quarried to me and there are old quarries aplenty nearby from which it could have come from. It could easily have been dumped off a passing train on the mineral line that ran along there and used by the land owner to mark the boundary of his property.
One things for sure it was put there by somebody as it is not a natural rock protruding from the ground. James Knox you should remember said "tradition has it" he never claimed it as fact.
I can have a look at some other local history books and see if it is mentioned. Good discussion.
Icecube
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 369
Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:22 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Knightmare » Sun Jun 21, 2009 5:25 pm

I'm enjoying this wee debate!

I haven't visited the Anti Aircraft Battery but i've seen some photos of it both from the 1940's and from 1999. Must go and see it some time soon.

I think this Wallace story needs further examination. I just can't agree with the Airdrie librarian who was sceptical about the story. James Knox was someone held in very high regard and was a trustee of a local institution called the Airdrie Savings Bank. There's actually a photo in the book of him welcoming Andrew Carnegie to the town in 1905 to open the new Library buildings (currently Airdrie Arts Centre). Further to this there is a photo of him greeting Queen Mary and King George in 1914 when they visited Airdrie.

I guess what i'm getting at is that I would very much doubt that a guy who took on the task of writing a history of the town up to 1921, combined with his somewhat unquestionable credentials, would go to print with anything that he felt dubious about or at the very least without alluding to his uncertainty in some way.
User avatar
Knightmare
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 9:00 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Icecube » Sun Jun 21, 2009 5:39 pm

I know what you mean regarding Provost Knox, he was an important resourceful man but I stress again he only said "tradition has it".
The online versions of the early OS plans don't show anything but the original paper 1858 1/2500 might do so, I'll have a look soon.
Icecube
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 369
Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:22 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Knightmare » Sun Jun 21, 2009 8:03 pm

My thoughts are that if at the very least Knox is accurate about Wallace camping in the field to the east of Airdrie House (probably Whinhall somewhere) then his heading (in the general direction of Falkirk) would reasonably take him through the west side of Glenmavis and through Riggend.

It would be a shame if the story had been traditionally handed down through the generations only to be lost by this one. The sad thing about the story is that there is little or no reference to it on the Internet, until now of course!!

Look forward to your findings from the OS maps.

In the meantime, I'm going to try to get more photos from the other side. Might take my carbon dating equipmnt with me too!!! :D
User avatar
Knightmare
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 9:00 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Icecube » Tue Jun 23, 2009 9:22 pm

The Local Studies Room in Airdrie has just been closed for about 4 weeks due to building work which is about the reinstatment of listed building features previously removed by the council (NLC).

Need to wait to progress this investigation.
Icecube
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 369
Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:22 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Knightmare » Fri Jun 26, 2009 5:54 pm

Okay, no problem. Look forward to your update.

Knightmare
User avatar
Knightmare
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 9:00 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Knightmare » Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:24 am

Image

Here's a quick update for anyone who wishes to visit the site of the Wallace Stone. Quite easy to find really! If you can find Glenmavis at the north of Airdrie, then you'll easily find the stone. The stone sits right by the road but its a bit overgrown at present so you'll have to be prepared to stand on your tip-toes.

Knightmare
User avatar
Knightmare
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 9:00 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby purplepantman » Wed Jul 01, 2009 9:23 am

Yes, it's worth a visit if you're in the area.
Stopped by it last week and the grass around it was well long!

Cracking views too from near Brackenhirst Farm out over Glesga n' that - right out to Arran!

Anyone thinking of going should also consider visiting the Drumbowie Anti Aircraft Battery about 200 yards to the north.
purplepantman
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 297
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 4:31 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Icecube » Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:43 pm

Knightmare wrote:Image


Nice trick there Knightmare. Your inset highlights the fact that the stone sits on what was the property of the LNER.* I've had a read of both Statistical Accounts for New monkland parish [1793 and 1842] and neither author mentions this stone.

* Walk along this old line [in the direction of Glemavis] towards Ryding - a distance of a few hundred yards - and you'll find the very visible remains of an unlisted goods halt, this was used to load perishable vegetables and other argicultural produce from the surrounding farms for despatch to Glasgow Corporation.
Icecube
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 369
Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:22 pm

Re: The Wallace Stone (Riggend)

Postby Knightmare » Wed Jul 01, 2009 9:57 pm

Bit of a shame there's no mention of this. Another forum on another site seems to allude to possibility of this stone quite literally falling off the back of a lorry (or a train of some kind in this case).

I really don't want to give in to this theory but assuming for a moment that this is the case. I was wondering if its at all possible that the Wallace Stone story has perhaps been confused along the years? Is it possible...... and this is a long shot, but is it possible that the stone along with lots of others was quarried, loaded onto train wagons and intended for the buidling of the Wallace Monument in Stirling? The monument was built in the 1860's so its intirely feasible that the stones and building materials for the monument came from far and wide.

Perhaps the story has grown arms, legs and a very long nose between the 1860's and 1921 when my book was written?? Maybe the story about the stone has gotton mixed up along the years and its affiliation with Wallace comes from the above??

All theory of course!

Any comments most welcome!
User avatar
Knightmare
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 9:00 pm

Next

Return to Hidden Glasgow Projects

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 13 guests