Caledonian Brickworks, Braidwood, Carluke, South Lanarkshire

(Note – SBH – Is this the same James Allan that operated out of the Craighall Brickworks?).

James started tile manufacturing at Hillhead in 1855. He had no capital but his father gave him money to start up.

In 1860 he took a lease on a clayfield at Braidwood which worked until the sequestration – proceedings started in 1887.

In 1870 he took a lease of a tile works at Auchengray which worked until sequestration.

Both of these businesses were profitable.

In 1872 he started a coalfield at Auchengray. He had a partner for a short time, a Mr Hunter. The coalfield lost £2000 in 3 years, mostly searching for minerals.

In 1876 he started a small chemical works at Auchengray. He erected more retorts to increase output after making a profit in the first year. However foreign competition meant prices declined and he ceased operations in 1883, suffering losses of £2150.

He then started manufacturing cattle cake but lost £20.

He struggled for 10 years but thought profit from the tileworks would keep him going.

He borrowed £2800 from Hillhead Estate and £300 against his house.

Creditors from Carluke:- Alexander Tudhope, Lilypark. John Allan, Hillhead Farm. National Bank.  Martin & Symington, Builders and Contractors. John Hamilton, engineer, Braidwood. Wm Martin, Builder. Thomas Clarkson Snr, Brickwork Carluke. Marion Wilson, Lengmeer. Richard Gibson, Tile Merchant. Thomas Pettigrew, Joiner. Thomas Morton, Shoemaker. McKinnel and Dryer, Wood Merchants. John Hislop, Ironmonger. Alexander Harvey, Painter. Dr Stewart. George Henshilwood, Merchant. Andrew Gold, Tile Merchant. Discharged October 1889

1860 – 1861 – Extracts from valuation rolls. George Morton and James Allan, Brick and Tile Works ( still operating 1881). James Stevenson Esq was the proprietor of the land.

15/09/1866 – Hamilton Advertiser – James Allan, brick and tile manufacturer embraces this opportunity of rendering his sincere thanks for the liberal patronage received since commencing the manufacturing of brick and drainage tile; and he now begs leave to inform his numerous customers and the public, that he has commenced the manufacture of fire clay goods and having secured the services of first-class practical workmen he is now prepared to execute all orders entrusted to him, giving first-class goods at a moderate price. Caledonian Brick, Tile & Sewage Pipe Works, by Carluke.

19/10/1867 – Hamilton Advertiser – James Allan, brick, tile and manure merchant returns his sincere thanks for the very liberal patronage received and begs to state that he has generally in stock all the principal classes of fire clay goods, glazed or white; also common and composition pipe from 1 to 16 inches bore. Goods made to any pattern on the shortest notice by addressing to the works via Carluke. Goods are delivered, per carts, in the district at a reasonable price.

Orders are now being booked for first-class proven manures delivered free at any railway station on C.R or N.B systems or discharged from vessels in quantities of ten tons and upwards.

Agents for the Crown Life Assurance Company. Established in 1825

03/10/1868 – Hamilton Advertiser – James Allan, Caledonian Brick, Tile and Fire Clay Works, Braidwood Station near Carluke has generally in stock all sizes of agricultural drainage tile from 1 1/2″ to 18″, sewerage pipes, spigot and fawcett joint – plain or with collars. Composition and fire brick, cattle, pig and calve troughs, horse mangers, cisterns, pickling jars, glazed stable and causeying brick, gutter blocks, byre gripping, joist shields, vent linings, paving tiles, flue covers, flower vases, fern stands, garden borders, chimney cans – plain and ornamental and all descriptions of goods made to order. Orders to the above address will meet with prompt attention and despatch. Railway communication into the works. All goods are loaded into trucks free of charge.

27/03/1869 – Hamilton Advertiser – Wanted  – 2 respectable tenants for houses at Braidwood Station. Men preferred who would work in brickworks if required. Apply to James Allan or at the Works.

10/07/1869 – Hamilton Advertiser -For sale. Drain tiles and sewerage pipes from 1 to 18 inches in diameter. Composition and fire bricks and all kinds of fire clay goods, plain and ornamental manufactured by James Allan advert. Caledonian Works, Braidwood via Carluke.

Below – 30/10/1869 – Hamilton Advertiser – James Allan advert. Brick, tile and sewage pipe manufacturer. Works Braidwood via Carluke.

1870 – 1871 – Extracts from valuation rolls. James Allan Tile Maker, Bushelhead Tileworks. House Hillhead Cottage, Bushelhead. Samuel Rolland, Tile Works Manager lived in a house at the works.

Below – 29/01/1870 – Hamilton Advertiser – James Allan advert for bricks and manures.

Below – 23/07/1870 – Hamilton Advertiser – James Allan advert for bricks. Advertising ‘Patent pressed’ bricks. Caledonian Works, Braidwood via Carluke.

Below – 28/09/1870 – Headed notepaper – James Allan, Brick, Tile and Manure Merchant, Carluke. Invoice for 250 firebricks.


Below – 25/02/1871 – Hamilton Advertiser – James Allan advert.

Below – 30/09/1871 – Hamilton Advertiser – James Allan, Caledonian Brickworks, Braidwood.

07/03/1873 – Glasgow Herald – Tile burner wanted. An experienced tile burner for the Caledonian Brick and Tile Works at Braidwood. Apply to the manager or James Allan, Hillhead Cottage, Carluke.

Below – 21/01/1876 – Headed notepaper – James Allan, Manufacturer of Agricultural and Sewerage Drain Pipes, Carluke – perforated, composition, fire, glazed stable and scullery bricks. Chimney cans, vents, vases, paving tiles, flue covers, cattle troughs, mangers, jars, stable and street blocks, byre gripping, garden borders, wall cope etc. Caledonian and Auchengray Works, Hillhead Cottage, Carluke.


04/05/1881 – Glasgow Evening Post – Brick and tile machines for sale. James Allan, Carluke … also  Wanted a large cast-iron retort. James Allan, Carluke.

Below – 1882 – Advert James Allan.

1882 James Allan Carluke

Below – 1886 – Advert James Allan.


30/07/1887 – Dunfermline Saturday Press – Scotch bankrupts – Sequestrations. James Allan, brick and tile and manure manufacturer residing at Hillhead Cottage, Carluke.

Below – 05/08/1887 – The Scotsman – James Allan bankruptcy.

18/05/1907 – Carluke and Lanark Gazette – On Monday there passed away at 15 Budhill Avenue, Shettleston, James Allan aged 72 years. The deceased was at one time the proprietor of brickworks at Carluke and Achengray. He left Carluke about 20 years ago.

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