Parish of Uig (1831-1845) - Parochial Economy

Market-Town.Stornoway is the market-town of the Lewis, and is thirty miles from the manse of Uig. It is also the only place of a post-office in the whole island.

Villages.-All the people dwell in little farm villages, in several of which are from 40 to 50 families.

Harbours.-Loch Roag is the principal harbour in the parish it is covered with islands. One of them, Large Bernera, is about eight miles long, and inhabited. The whole of this curious and interesting arm of the sea abounds with safe places of anchorage, sufficient to hold the whole British Navy.

Ecclesiastical State.-The parish church is situated in the most convenient and eccentrical part of the parish; notwithstanding of which, those inhabiting the north and north-east coasts of Loch Roag, are thirteen miles from church. The church was built in the year 1829, and affords accommodation for 1000 sitters. The manse was repaired with additions (as I have already stated) in 1824. The present incumbent has an arable glebe of no great value, and the amount of stipend is L 150 Sterling per annum. There is one catechist in the parish, appointed and principally supported by the Society for Propagating Christian Knowledge. The number of communicants is 60. The parishioners, as circumstances permit, and exigencies demand, make collections for religious and charitable purposes; but the amount of these is small,
from the extreme poverty of the inhabitants. There is not a mission or a Government church in the parish but there is an extensive field for one of these on the north and north-east coasts of Loch Roag. There are no disenters of any description within the bounds of the parish. The people’s appreciation of religious instruction is increasing much and the attendance on the public ordinances of religion here is probably as punctual and full, as in any parish in Scotland.

Education.-There are at present five schools in the parish, all of which, excepting the parochial school, are supported by Societies. Three of said schools are supported by the Edinburgh Gaelic School Society, and the fourth by the Inverness Education Society. There are other two English schools soon to be opened at the districts of Valtos and Callernish. The ordinary branches of education are taught in the English schools, and the parochial teacher has the legal accommodations. His salary is L. 28, and his fees amount to about L. 5 a-year.

Poor and Parochial Funds.-There are 50 persons receiving parochial aid in the parish. The yearly church collections are very inadequate, indeed, for meeting the exigencies of so many paupers, and there is no other fund for their support; but several of them go about, seeking parochial relief; and the whole of them are partly supported by their own relatives.

Inns.-There is one inn in the parish.

Fuel.-Peat moss is the fuel made use of here of which the people have abundance, and at very little expense.

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