George Square, and the Growth of the City,
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its first, and now there are few more beautiful squares in Europe.
George Square In 1805.
(Reproduced from picture in the Northern Looking Glass.)
I have made the request to one or two friends to favour me with their recollections of the Square in their early days. Among others a venerable minister replies:—
“DEAR SIR,—My memory is rather failing me, but so far as I remember, the north side of the Square was the same in my youth as it now is externally. The house at the extreme east belonged to Mr. Cooper of Ballindalloch. His elder son succeeded his uncle in the estate of Failford, in the parish of Tarbolton. He took an active interest in the public business of the county of Ayr, and was for a number of years representative elder to the General Assembly from the Presbytery of Ayr. The house at the extreme west belonged to Mr. Hagart of Bantaskine, two of whose sons rose to considerable rank in the army. His daughter was married to Mr. Alexander Spiers of Elderslie, M.P. for Renfrewshire. Mr. Dunn of Dalmuir, who erected large cotton mills at Duntocher, as well as engineering works in Glasgow, also resided here. The east side of the Square was much as it remained till occupied by the present Municipal Buildings. It consisted of comfortable dwelling-houses with a double flight of steps to the second storey, the south corner being the George Hotel for many years. The west side of the Square consisted of plain dwellings, but were the residences of many most respectable families. I am not quite certain, but think it was in one of these that Burns’ lass o’ Ballochmyle resided for a time. The south side consisted of a few dwellings and warehouses. At the corner of Hanover Street were the Manhattan Buildings, taken down for the Post Office, and at the opposite corner buildings which gave way to the premises of Henry Monteith & Co.”
I have received the following from a well-known citizen. Who has taken great interest in the city:—
“The earliest recollections of George Square, by one who “Was born in Miller Street, date from about 1824. The Square was surrounded with a low railing, and he remembers the hindquarters of the horses at a military display pressing against it. He remembers being taken to the house of Mr. Samuel Cooper of Ballindalloch, Balfron, of the firm of W. & A. Cooper & Co., 12 Stirling Street. The Windows of the house looked into George Square, but the entrance was from North Hanover Street. The west corner of that compartment of the Square was the residence of Mr. Robt. Hagart, probably of the Hagarts of Bantaskine. The intermediate space was vacant ground, but occupied