The Tolbooth Steeple, Glasgow (PART II).

…From PART I

These pictures are from a 1915 report on the future of the Tolbooth Steeple at Glasgow Cross..
One idea was to dismantle the steeple and move it across the road where the Mercat building is.

The Plans:

I think the idea was to completely open up the High Street to allow for more traffic.
They might have been onto something because these days, the heavy amount of traffic around the steeple is causing thousands of pounds worth of damage.

I think the steeple would have slotted into that spot just fine although,
I like it where it is.

The Tolbooth Steeple, Glasgow (PART I).

By the 1600’s, Glasgow probably had a population of 7,000.
In 1626 a new tolbooth was built. It was demolished in 1812 except for the steeple.
Today it looks like this:

The Tolbooth Steeple played an important part in the jurisprudence of the period. Its High Street face was cheerfully garnished with spikes for the heads of traitors and other first-class misdemeanants.
Commoner criminals were hung against its Trongate face. A scaffold was raised for them to the height of the first floor, facing appropriately down the Gallowgate, and the prisoner was brought out from the Tolbooth by a little window door.
Below this, on the level of the street, a low half door led direct to the prison, by a turnpike stair in the steeple.

Here are some pictures of The Tolbooth Steeple over the years…

Looking North Up High Street, 1887:

Men consulting electoral rolls posted on the Tolbooth Steeple,  1904:

The Tolbooth was demolished in 1921:




Illustration (Date Unkown):

Painting by artist L.S. Lowry:

Did you ever hear the story about the planned re-location of the Tolbooth Steeple?
Head on over to PART II to find out.

The Trongate, Glasgow.

I’ve got a bit of an obsession going on with the Trongate area of Glasgow.
It’s one of the oldest streets in Glasgow and these days I’m spending more and more time down there.
I was thinking the other day about how little the Trongate seems to have changed over the years.

For instance,
I took this photo 2 days ago:

And here’s a drawing of the area facing the same direction from 1774:

I’ve been looking for photographs of Glasgow Cross and Trongate for 2 weeks now.
Here are some of the more interesting ones…

Looking West, 1770:

A lithograph depicting the visit of Queen Victoria to Glasgow in 1849:

Looking East, 1860:



Looking West,
This is an oil painting of the Trongate circa 1770-1790 by an unknown artist:

Notice the now demolished tollbooth to the right of the painting attached to the Clock Tower/Steeple.
That clock tower still stands and is well loved.

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