The History of Leith

September 2, 2004

Famous People connected to Leith

Sir Thomas Graham Lieutenant General in 1810 the hero of St Sebastian, afterwards Lord Lynedoch and proprietor of Balgowan in Perthshire, began life as a Leith Merchant.

Sir James Kempt. Major General in 1812 a distinguished officer under Wellington was a native of leith; he was created a Knight of the Bath.

John Home author of the “Douglas” was born in a house now rebuilt which stood at the East corner of Quality Street on the 22nd September 1777. He was buried at South Leith Churchyard. His father Alexander Home was Town Clerk of Leith.

Dr Hugh Blair minister of the High Church of Edinburgh and Professor of Rhetoric at the University of Edinburgh, a celebrated author in his day, lived long in the house enclosed with high walls at the foot of Restalrig Road and there on 27th December 1800 aged eighty two.

The Rev John Logan was minister of the second Charge at South Leith from 1772-1786 when he resigned and went to London. Born at Soutra Farm in East Lothian in 1748. Wrote paraphrases and tragedies along with his lectures on Roman and Universal History.

Dr George Kellie was a celebrated doctor in Leith for a long time. His house was in Baltic Street which later was taken down by the Leith Gas Light Company. His name is found in the list of members of the Royal College of Surgeons as far back as 1809 and marked as an examinator

His pupil Dr Lewins and a native of Leith practised for many years a Haddington took over Dr Kellie’s practice and lived in Quality Street where he died in 1832
A further two famous surgeons lived in Leith Fr James Scarth and Dr Charles Anderson both were members of the Royal College of Surgeons and examiners.

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