In 1882-4, Frances Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland described the Isle of Whithorn like this:
Isle of Whithorn, a seaport village in Whithorn parish, SE Wigtownshire, at the head of a small bay, 2 miles NE of Burrow Head, and 3¼ SE of Whithorn town. The most southerly village in Scotland, it stands upon what was once a rocky islet, and conducts some commerce with Whitehaven and other English ports, having a well-sheltered harbour, with a pier erected about 1790, and with capacity and external advantages sufficient to invite extensive commerce. It contains remains of a Scandinavian fort or camp and the roofless ruin of ` St Ninian's Kirk,' which has been falsely identified with the Candida Casa (397 a.d.), and so believed to represent the earliest place of Christian worship in Scotland, but which was probably merely a chapel attached to the priory of Whithorn. ...
The village has a post office, with money order, savings' bank, and telegraph departments, an inn, some tasteful villas, a lifeboat, a public school, and a neat Free church. Pop. (1831) 697, (1861) 458, (1871) 459, (1881) 352.Ord. Sur., sh. 2, 1856.
A Vision of Britain through Time includes a large library of local statistics for administrative units. For the best overall sense of how the area containing the Isle of Whithorn has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Dumfries and Galloway. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering the Isle of Whithorn and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of the Isle of Whithorn, in Dumfries and Galloway and Wigtownshire | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 20th June 2013
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