Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Cramond Iron Works

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Cramond Iron Works, Falkirk, a group of small traditional mills on the River Almond.

1759 Roebucks, Garbett and Cadells purchased Cramond Iron Works

1765 Thomas Edington, having gained experience from Bedlington slit mill, became manager of Cramond Iron Works

In October 1770 William Cadell, Senior and William Cadell, Junior exchanged their Carron Co shareholding for the Cramond Iron Works

1772 Thomas Edington became ‘joint proprietor’ of Cramond.

Edington improved and extended Cramond Iron Works, adding a furnace for producing steel (possibly the first in Scotland). Initially, the main products were hoops for wine and spirit casks, handle iron to be fitted to cast-iron products at local foundries, pan plates for the salt-works of the Forth, and, most importantly, rod iron for nails.

In the 1780s a wider product range included spades and shovels, plough socs, files, and a great variety of nails.

1786 Cramond ironworks depended upon imported Swedish and Russian bar iron, which rose in price, thereby encouraging the William Cadell, Junior and Edington to seek cheaper supplies by investing in blast furnaces and associated bar-iron plants. The first venture was the Clyde Iron Works, which became Edington's responsibility.

1787 Three malleable-iron companies (Smithfield, Dalnottar, and Cramond) formed a partnership to exploit Ayrshire minerals at Muirkirk Iron Works. Muirkirk became a major source of bar iron for Cramond, but like Clyde it was heavily engaged in armaments production during the French wars.

1788 Edington moved from Cramond to Glasgow.

1860 The Cadell family sold their interest in Cramond.

See Also

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Sources of Information

  • Biography of Thomas Edington, by John Butt, ODNB [1]