KILSPINDIE, a parish, in the county of Perth; containing, with the villages of Pitrodie and Rait, 709 inhabitants, of whom 56 are in the village of Kilspindie, 2 miles (N. W.) from Errol. This place includes the ancient parish of Rait, which, after the dilapidation of its church, whereof there are still some portions remaining, was united to the parish of Kilspindie, prior to the year 1634. The present parish, situated partly in the Carse of Gowrie, and partly among the Stormont hills, is about five miles in length and three and a half miles in breadth, comprising 6500 acres, of which 3500 are arable, 200 woodland and plantations, 200 undivided common, and the remainder permanent pasture and heath. The surface, towards the south, is flat for nearly a quarter of a mile, and thence rises gradually towards the north for almost two miles, till it attains an elevation of more than 600 feet above the level of the sea. It is diversified with several hills, of which that of Evelick, the highest of the range, and nearly in the centre of the parish, has an elevation of 832 feet. This hill, which is of a conical form, and covered with verdure, commands one of the most interesting prospects in this part of the country, embracing a portion of the beautiful vale of Strathmore, with the Grampians immediately behind, and the lofty mountains of Benglo, Schihallion, and Benvoirlich in the distance; the Carse of Gowrie on the south-east and south-west; and, beyond the Tay, the coasts of Fife, with the Lomond hills, and the hills near Stirling. Between the hills, which are generally of barren aspect, are several narrow glens of great fertility and pleasing appearance; the slopes of the hills towards the carse are well cultivated, and the scenery is enriched with wood, and enlivened with the windings of the burns of Kilspindie, Rait, and Pitrodie.
   The soil of the lower grounds is extremely rich, producing fine crops of grain of all kinds; the slopes of the hills are of lighter quality, yielding a great abundance of turnips and potatoes. The system of agriculture is in a highly-improved state; the lands are well drained and inclosed; the buildings are substantial, and on most of the farms are threshing-mills. The hilly districts afford good pasture for sheep and cattle. The plantations, which are well managed, and in a thriving condition, consist chiefly of Scotch fir and ash. The substrata are mostly amygdaloid, trap, and whinstone, of which the hills are mainly composed; and beautiful specimens of agate are frequently found, which are made into brooches and other ornaments. Sandstone of coarse grain, and of a grey colour, is also met with; and whinstone is quarried at Pitrodie. The rateable annual value of the parish is £5822. Fingask Castle, the seat of Sir Patrick Murray Threipland, Bart., is beautifully situated on the braes of the carse, and commands a highly interesting view of the vale through which the river Tay pursues its course till it falls into the German Ocean, a few miles below Dundee. The castle, which is built on the brow of a deep glen thickly wooded, is a very ancient structure, bearing in one part the date 1194, but has been greatly enlarged and modernised by the addition of recent buildings, though still retaining its castellated form. The old castle was besieged by Cromwell in 1642; and in 1716, the Chevalier de St. George slept here, on his route from Glammis to Scone, on the 7th of January. In 1746, the castle was completely dismantled, and a great part of the building levelled with the ground, by the English troops, in consequence of the attachment of the Threipland family to the house of Stuart. There are three villages: a few families are employed in the weaving of linen for the manufacturers of Dundee, but the population of the parish is principally agricultural.
   The ecclesiastical affairs are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Perth and synod of Perth and Stirling; patrons, the family of Robertson. The minister's stipend is returned at £224. 17. 3., with a manse, and a glebe valued at £20 per annum. The church, a plain structure erected in 1796, is pleasantly situated on an eminence in the village of Kilspindie, near the confluence of two small rivulets; it contains 350 sittings, and is in good repair. The parochial school is attended by about sixty children; the master has a salary of £34, with a house and garden, and the fees average £10 per annum. Attached to the school is a small library. A private school in the village of Rait, which is attended by about the same number, is supported partly by the fees, and partly by subscription. On the summit of Evelick hill are the remains of a circular encampment, inclosing an area of twenty yards in diameter, of which the vallum and fosse are still plainly discernible. Upon the high grounds at no great distance, are the ruins of Evelick Castle, the ancient seat of the Lindsays, and the birthplace of Helen Lindsay, wife of John Campbell, Esq., of Glenlyon, whose daughter, Helen, according to the session records, was married on the 22nd of September, 1663, to the farfamed Rob Roy.

A Topographical dictionary of Scotland. . 1856.

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