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Kay's Originals Vol. 2


8 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. No. CLXXIII. THE LAWNMARKET COACH ; A JOURNEY ALONG THE MOUND. THIS Print is commemorative of an affair connected with the formation of the Mound, or “ Mud Brig,” as, in olden time, it was not unfrequently called by the lower classes. The inconvenience arising from the want of direct communication between the Lawnmarket and Princes Street began to be seriously felt as the New Town extended towards the west. In 1783, when the Mound was first projected, Princes Street was built as far as Hanover Street. Prior to this, some individuals in Edinburgh had formed an association for the purpose of furthering Burgh Reform. Among the members were Lord Gardenstone, Robert Grahame of Gartmore, William Charles Little of Liberton, and several other gentlemen holding similar opinions. This movement in the capital was speedily responded to in the provinces, and delegates were despatched from almost all the Royal Burghs in Scotland to co-operate with the committee formed in Edinburgh. The first Convention was held in Mary’s Chapel, on the 25th March 1784-Mr. Little of Liberton,’ president-at which resolutions were passed declaratory of their rights as citizens. Some of the original promoters of the Burgh Reform Convention, encouraged by the success of their political exertions, began to agitate on the subject of local improvements. Residing chiefly either in the Lawnmarket or its neighbourhood, they had long felt the want of some kind of communication with Princes Street more direct than by the North Bridge. They at first thought of applying for aid by petition to the Town Council; but, recollecting how obnoxious their late proceedings must have rendered them to the corporation, they abandoned the idea, and resolved to open a subscription, which they did at “ Dunn’s Hotel,”’ for the purpose of constructing a thoroughfare. The subscription was Mr. Little lived in a house at the bottom of Brodie’s Close, Lawnmarket, built by his ancestor William Little, a magistrate of Edinburgh in the reign of James VI., and xhich was entailed in the family; it wa8 afterwards occupied by Deacon Brodie, from whom the Close obtained its name. The tenement was demolished to make room for the city improvements. Several of the carved stones, and other parts of the house, have been taken to Inch House (Mr. Little’s residence near Liberton), as relics of the habitation of the predecessors of the family. Mr. Little afterwards resided in a house forming the angle between Potterrow and Bristo Street, which was known, from its shape, by the name of the Ace of Czuhs. a A small phblic-house in the Lawnmarket, at the mouth of the uppermost entry to Jam& Court, kept by Robert Dunn, much frequented by the merchants at that period, and termed ‘‘Dum’s Hotel,” by way of burlesque-Dum’s elegant hotel in Princes Street having been then newly opened.
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