| the direction of Messrs Roebuck and Garbet, but passed
into other hands. Here they also make white salts and glauber
salts. Fifty men employed, and the works go night and day.
Men are bound under indentures of twenty-one years, which
time they are paid 6s. per week. Oil of vitriol sold at 3
1/2d. per lb., aquafortis at 7|d., and spirit of salt 6d.
per lb. Glauber salts, 12s. per cwt., and white ashes, is.
There are ten boats now employed, there were five more recently.
About twenty years ago (1776), 6,000 oysters per day were
frequently dredged by one boat. An agent in Leith purchased
for ten different merchants, and at that period, continuing
ten years, some £2,500 per annum were drawn for oysters
alone. At this time there were sixteen boats engaged from
Cockenzie, eight from Fisherrow, and sixteen from Prestonpans.
An old fisherman informed me that sixty or seventy years ago
oysters were in little estimation. Another residenter said
previous to 1776 only three or four boats were engaged. A
custom house is established here.
In 1754 there were sixteen breweries.
only five. Now (1901) there is one.
|In 1796 there were
TRADES, PROFESSIONS, ETC., IN 1796.
Clergymen, 1; schoolmasters, 1; private teachers, 3; surgeons,
1; officers of customs, 19; excise officers, 2; brewers, 5;
licensed spirit and ale shops, 32; sailers and salt agents,
14; shopkeepers, 23; gardeners, 18; barbers, 2; smiths, 11;
masons, 16; carpenters, 22; weavers, 13; shoemakers, 19; tailors,
13; watchmakers, 3; ropespinners, 4; candlemakers, 1; bakers,
10; coopers, 2; slaters, 3; midwives, 2; washerwomen, 8; carriers,
4; domestic servants, male, 7; female, 73; farm servants,
male, 24; female, 5; coaldrivers, 3; day labourers, 19; seamen,
20; regular fishermen, 23; employed at potteries, 252; employed
at vitriol works, 188; regular fishery, 94; salt pans, 47;
brick and tile works, 23.
POST OFFICE, ETC.
Post Office—Postmasters, etc.: D. Thomson—T. Cleuch—Mr Whyte—
Mrs \Vhyte-Miss Whyte—Royal Bank—Parish Council—Burgh Commissioners—School
Board — Hotel — Inspector of Poor, Registrar, and Heritors'
Clerk—Medical Practitioners—School and Staff—Successful Scholars
— Market Gardeners — Bankton Water Scheme — New Water Supply—New
Congregation Halls—Co-operative Society—Coffee-house and Recreation
Rooms—Public Parks and Bowling Green—The Old Church Clock—Gas
THERE was a Post Office in Prestonpans long before a similar
institution was established at Tranent. It is recorded that
the good folks there were wont to have their business notes,
love epistles, etc., conveyed to Prestonpans Post Office by
means of the carters who went between the coal pits at the
one place and the various manufactories at the other. The
exact date at which a Post Office was established here is
difficult to ascertain; but the place and the man we know.
The opening of that institution here must have been towards
the close of the 18th century. The first postmaster was David
Thomson, a flourishing merchant, and grandfather of Mr David
Marr. The first Post Office was in the house presently occupied
by Mr Marr, and the letter-box was fixed in that little window
which looks towards the east. The woodwork, with the slit
in it for popping the letters through, was removed a few years
On the decease of Mr Thomson, Mr Nimmo became postmaster.
The office was then shifted almost opposite to where it is
at present. In 1825 Mr Thomas Cleugh, grandfather of the present
postmistress, became postmaster, when the office was transferred
to the foot of Harlo Hill. Mr Robert Whyte, who attended the
High School, Edinburgh, along with the late Mr William Cadell,
brother to the late Mr Hugh Francis Cadell of Cockenzie, and
through him got into old laird Cadell's office,