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Empire & Industry

The Industrial Revolution

Water Wheel and Pump from Dumfries

Description:

Water wheel driven pump installed underground for mine drainage, made by McKinnel of Dumfries. This water wheel and pump was used to drain water from the Barjarg limestone mine in Dumfriesshire.

 

Quarrying and mining limestone for agricultural and building purposes saw a dramatic rise in the eighteenth century. Although lime had been used to make mortar for centuries, its growing use in agriculture as a fertiliser lead to the huge increase in demand. Lime was also used to a lesser extent in metallurgy and chemicals.

 

The Barjarg limeworks began operations in 1788 on the estate of the Hunters of Barjarg. In 1794 they employed as many as 40 seasonal labourers and delivered large quantities of lime to local farmers and estates in the surrounding areas of Stewarty, Balmaclellan and Kirpatrick-Durham.

 

Eventually railways, changes in agricultural practice and the practical issues involved in operating limeworks instigated a major decline in the industry to the extent that, by 1891 only four people were still employed in limeworks in the whole of Dumfriesshire. Barjarg itself finally ceased operations in 1904.

Place of Production:
Palmerston & Stakeford Foundaries, Dumfriesshire
Materials/Media:
Cast iron, wood
Dimensions:
height 2288 mm, length 1163 mm L, width 1830 mm; wheel diameter 6ft; weight 1.00 tonne
Source:
National Museums Scotland
Accession number:
T.1984.202
Digital Number:
NMMA002a, b
Creation Date:
Mid 19th century
Copyright:
Board of Trustees, National Museums Scotland


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