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IN MEMORY OF
JAMES POLLOK, OF BLACKHOUSE,
WHO DIED IN 1826, AGED 70 YEARS.
JANET MANN, HIS SPOUSE.
AGNES MANN, OF BLACKHOUSE,
DIED DECR 1851, AGED 57 YEARS.
DIED 18TH JANY 1863 AGED 74 YEARS.
MARGARET REID, HIS SPOUSE
DIED 20TH MAY 1864, AGED 70 YEARS
DIED IN 1838, AGED 5 YEARS.
DIED 6TH DECR 1890, AGED 63 YEARS.
DIED 3RD MARCH 1905 AGED 75 YEARS.
JAMES POLLOCK, OF BLACKHOUSE,
DIED 17TH AUGUST 1914 AGED 90 YEARS,
WILLIAM G. POLLOK, OF BLACKHOUSE
DIED 17TH SEPT 1925, AT TICEHURST, SUSSEX,
AGED 50 YEARS.
[ On the base ]
FRANCES ANNE SPARROW, HIS SPOUSE,
DIED 14TH JULY 1967, AGED 91 YEARS.
The Pollok family commemorated on this memorial established one of the lengthiest occupations of one farm, namely Blackhouse. Perhaps the position occupied by this farm on moorland several miles south-east of Mearns village was a contributory factor in their obvious liking to this holding, preferring its isolated situation. No roads would connect this farm to civilisation, only tracks on which horses would be used to carry goods and people. Carts were not very common, being too expensive for many farmers, and the tracks between farms were often too narrow for their use.
The farm at Blackhouse as its name suggests had been established for many years, possibly even from as far back as the 15th or 16th centuries. A ‘blackhouse’ was a primitive one roomed hovel, thatched with straw or heather, in which a family would live sharing its interior space with its cattle during winter months. These dwellings can still be seen in parts of the Western Isles where some were occupied into recent times.
The patriarch of this family James Pollok, born in 1756 in Eaglesham, was to marry a woman from Mearns by the name of Janet Mann. Raising their family in such isolation would have presented many problems for the parents but despite any drawbacks they seemed to prosper.
James, widowed for 19 years, was to die in 1826, when the farm passed to his son Allan to run. Allan married Margaret Reid, a woman from Kittochside and a member of a well respected farming family from that locality. By this time extra land had been acquired giving a total land holding of 100 acres.
One of Allan’s sons James, who as a young man had followed the trade of general dealer and merchant, was to take on the responsibility of the farm management on the death of his father. He chose not to discontinue his occupation as dealer and merchant, and gave the day to day responsibility of the running of the farm to his younger brother John. Sister Lilias also remained on the farm and this trio were to remain together, unmarried, for a period of twenty three years until the death of John in 1890.
During their occupancy farm land was sold off until by 1881 only sixty acres remained associated with Blackhouse Farm. After John’s death brother James and his sister Lilias remained on the farm until Lilias died in 1906. By this time James was very old and unable to cope with the tasks associated with the farm so he sold it off. He lived till he was ninety years of age.
One of the siblings, William, had married a lady from Sussex named Frances Anne Sparrow and both are listed on this stone.