The market town of Castle Douglas, beside Carlingwark Loch in the southern Scottish region of Dumfries and Galloway, is relatively new, though the area has been inhabited from prehistoric times and the Romans had a military base close by. In the fourteenth century, Archibald the Grim, the 3rd Earl of Douglas, built Threave Castle nearby.
The town came into being thanks to fertiliser found in the loch and wealthy merchant William Douglas, who laid out the present town in 1792. Though his dream of creating a cotton industry failed, Castle Douglas became a flourishing market town. The opening of the rail line to Dumfries in 1859 improved the town's connections.
Though the railway closed in 1965, the A75 trunk road ensured the town's survival as a major stopping point for travellers. Today, it is a major tourist destination, with many visitors using it as a base for exploring this beautiful part of Scotland. All these changes are recorded in this unique and fascinating series of new and old photographs, making this book essential reading for anyone interested in the history of Castle Douglas.
Mary Smith is an author, poet and freelance journalist. Her previous publications include fiction and non-fiction titles, such as Drunk Chickens and Burnt Macaroni: Real Stories of Afghan, Thousands Pass Here Everyday (poetry) and No More Mulberries (her debut novel). In the past, she has also written for a number of local and national publications, such as The Galloway News, The Dumfries & Galloway Standard, Dumfries & Galloway Life, The Herald and Guardian Weekly. A prominent member of the Dumfries Writers' Group, Mary is a familiar face in the area, having also been involved in a number of local community projects. Allan was born in Glasgow then spent most of his young life travelling around Scotland finally coming to rest in Dumfries and Galloway. He became a freelance photographer in 2000. Originally he started up taking landscape photos for publishing companies as well as supplying images too Stock Photo Libaries. Today his commissioned work includes social event type photography as well as images for local and national press. As well as taking photos he has also written articles about being out of doors in Dumfries and Galloway for national magazines. Currently as well as his photographic work he writes a monthly walking article for Dumfries and Galloway Life magazine which has won Scottish Magazine of the Year 2016.