In 1882-4, Frances Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland described Drumblade like this:
Drumblade, a parish of NW Aberdeenshire, whose church stands 4¾ miles E by N of Huntly, under which there is a post office of Drumblade. The parish, containing also Huntly station, is bounded NE and E by Forgue, SE by Insch, SW by Gartly, W and NW by Huntly. Its greatest length, from N to S, is 55/8 miles; its greatest breadth, from E to W, is 51/8 miles; and its area is 9332½ acres. ...
The Bogie winds 35/8 miles northward along the Gartly and Huntly border; and Glen Water, a head-stream of the Ury, 1¼ mile east-north-eastward along all the boundary with Insch; whilst several burns either traverse the interior or trace the remaining boundaries. The surface, sinking in the NE along the Burn of Forgue to 306 feet above sea-level, thence rises to 671 feet near Garrieswell, 637 at Boghead, 700 at Ba Hill, 716 at Woodbank, and 906 near Upper Stonyfield, the southern division of the parish being occupied by a series of gently-rounded hills. Clay-slate, grey granite, and trap are the prevailing rocks; and masses of limestone occur to the E of Lessendrum. The soil, in the valleys, is chiefly a deep rich loam; on the higher grounds, it is thin and gravelly, but fairly fertile. Fully three-fourths of the entire area are arable, extensive reclamations having been carried out within the last fifty years; woods cover about one-sixteenth; and the rest is either pastoral or waste. The chief historic event is Bruce's encampment at Sliach in 1307, when, sick though he was, he held Comyn's forces in check; and Robin's Height and the Meet Hillock are supposed to have been occupied by his troops. A Roman road is said to have run past Meikletown; and antiquities are two prehistoric tumuli, a few remaining stones of a 'Druidical' circle, and the Well of St Hilary, the patron saint, which was formerly resorted to by pilgrims. Lessendrum is the only mansion; and 3 proprietors divide most of the parish. Drumblade is in the presbytery of Turriff and synod of Aberdeen; the living is worth £206. The parish church, built in 1773, contains 550 sittings; and 1 mile SW stands a Free church. A public and a girls' and industrial school, with respective accommodation for 99 and 51 children, had (1880) an average attendance of 31 and 50, whilst the latter received a grant of £38,15s. Valuation (1881) £8533,4s. 8d. Pop. (1801) 821, (1831) 978, (1861) 926, (1871) 931, (1881) 943.Ord. Sur., sh. 86, 1876.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Drumblade in Aberdeenshire | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 30th April 2017
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