The History of Leith

August 2, 2011

The leading merchants

1 Octr. 1843.—-Immediately after Divine Service, the Session adjourned to the Session House, when, after receiving the right hand of Fellowship, the New Deacons signed the Formula enjoined by this Church, and their names were ordered to be added to the Roll, which will now stand thus :
Elders.
Messrs. Adam White,
Thomas Barker,
Alexr. Law,
James Comb,
Wm. Thomson,
Andw. Park,
Thos. MacRitchie,
Willm. Dickson,
James Scarth,
Thos. Hardie,
James Reoch,
James Duncan,
John Simson,
Alexr. Robertson,
J. Thos. Robertson
Deacons
Messrs. H. J. Johnston,
Wm. Anderson,
Alexr. Simson,
Andw. Sceales,
John Lyon,
Thos. B. Watson,
Chas. M’Kinlay,
Robt. Whitson.
(Note.—The list indicates that many of the leading merchants in the town were membsrs of the Kirk Session. Adam White and James Reoch were both provosts of Leith. The former is buried in one of the
tombs along the east wall of the churchyard. His granddaughter was wife of Sir Thomas Hutchison, Lord Provost of Edinburgh. A handsome monument was erected by public subscription to Provost Reoeh
on the west wall of the church. Several of the gentlemen in the foregoing list have descendants in business in Leith or resident here. Interesting particulars regarding the merchants at this period will be found in a small book entitled ” Reminiscences of the Port and Town of Leith,” by John Martine, published in 1888. Thomas Barker was a brewer in the premises now occupied by Bernard & Coy., Yardheads. The brewery of Mr Giles, who is mentioned in earlier Minutes, is now occupied by Mr Christie, pipe maker. The companies mentioned don’t exist now.)

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