The printing revolution

At the beginning of the 19th century, a revolution in printing took place. The era of the hand press came to a close with the invention of the printing machine. Now more actions could be performed automatically or partly mechanically.

Paper became much cheaper and was produced in much greater quantities than before. Literacy among the general population increased and with it the demand for more and affordable reading material.

19th century printing towns

This revolution is reflected in a 400% increase in the number of Scottish printing towns. In the first 300 years of printing, Scotland had 38 printing towns. In the following 100 years, another 159 were established.

Ordered by Town.   Order by Year?

TownYearPrinter
Aberfeldy1841D. Cameron
Aboyne1890Unknown printer
Airdrie1820J. and J. Neil
Alloa1831James Lothian
Alva1877Unknown printer
Alyth 1869Thomas M'Murray and George Milne
Annan1822P. Forrest
Anstruther1856Lewis Russell
Aquhorties1816Seminary Press
Ardrossan 1853Arthur Guthrie
Auchinleck 1815Ruthven's Patent Press
Auchterarder 1859Thomas McQueen
Baillieston1896George Hutcheson & Co.
Bankfield (Lerwick)1840Unknown printer
Barrhead1871Unknown printer
Bathgate1860J. Johnston
Beith1818Dr Gemmill
Bellshill1888W. B. Reid
Biggar1843Unknown printer
Blairgowrie1858David Christie
Bo'ness1878Francis W. Broome
Bridge of Allan1893Unknown printer
Brodick1888Henry Ribbeck
Broughty Ferry1867Charles Milne
Broxburn1891Clark & Steel
Buckie 1880William Forsyth Johnstone
Burntisland1853Pitsligo Press
Cambuslang1896J. Lithgow and Sons
Carluke1840R. Langlands
Carnoustie1874Alexander Reid
Castle Douglas1823A[nthony] Davidson
Clydebank1891John Cossar
Coatbridge1846Baird & Bowskell
Coldstream1844Robert Kerr
Colinsburgh1883[Robert Dick
Coupar Angus1837William Liddell
Cumbrae (Isle of)1865Garrison Press
Cumnock1889 (1873)George McMillan
Cupar1801Robert Tullis
Dairsie1899Unknown printer
Dalbeattie1883Robert Grieve
Dalkeith1805Published by John Macintosh
Denny1878David Ritchie
Dingwall 1838Unknown printer
Dufftown1894James Ingram
Dumbarton1828Dumbarton Printing Office
Dunblane1831Unknown printer
Dunfermline 1811John Miller
Dunkeld1826D. M’Donald
Dunoon1868John Colegate
Earlston1889Thos. Weatherly
Fintray1843John Cumming
Forfar1821Alexander Anderson
Forres1837John D. Miller
Fraserburgh1852Gordon Lyall
Galashiels1830David Fair
Galston 1881William McDonald & Sons
Girvan1856Unknown printer
Glamis Castle1866Unknown printer
Golspie1899Unknown printer
Govan1883John Cossar
Grangemouth1878George G. Stephen
Grantown-on-Spey1881Angus Stuart
Haddington1804George Miller
Hamilton 1820William Murray Borthwick
Helensburgh1872W. Battrum
Huntly1863Adam Dunbar
Inchgarvie1867Benjamin Franklin
Innerleithen 1871R. Smail
Inverary1810Unknown printer
Invergordon1855Hugh Graham
Inverkip1900Unknown printer
Inverurie1884Thomas Dare
Iona1887W. Muir, J. McCormick
Irvine1815J. Mennons & Son
Jedburgh 1815Walter Easton
Johnshill1838Unknown printer
Johnstone1829Archibald Arnot
Keith1849George Masson
Kennoway1880printed privately
Kilbarchan1881Unknown printer
Killin 1898MacWilliam and MacRay
Kilmartin1857L. Malcolm
Kilsyth1882D. Drummond Cairns & Co
Kilwinning1861A. W. Cross
Kincardine1820W. Liddell
Kinfauns 1828Kinfauns Press
Kinghorn1817J. Birrell
Kinross1838John Taylor
Kintore1879Unknown printer
Kirkcudbright1805Alexander Gordon
Kirkintilloch1846Wiliam M'Millan
Kirkwall 1844James Urquhart Anderson
Kirriemuir1848William B. Mills
Kirtlebridge1844Unknown printer
Lanark 1818William Murray Borthwick
Langholm1848Thomas Laidlaw
Largs1826Robert Harriston
Leslie1860H. Jollie
Leuchars1890Unknown printer
Leven1860T. Porter
Linlithgow1813Alexander Waldie
Loch Awe1900T. Dow
Lochaber1860Unknown printer
Lochgelly1892J. Westwater
Lochgilphead1884[George] Higgie and [Robert] Paterson
Lochmaben1847Unknown printer
Lochwinnoch1821William Taylor
Lockerbie1853D. Halliday
Millport1883Unknown printer
Moffat 1858William Muir
Monifieth1884David Macrae
Motherwell1868F. Crawford
Musselburgh1808J. Findlay
Nairn 1840Unknown printer
Newburgh1857James Wood
Newhills1893Davidson & Sons
Newmilns1890M. & W. Walker
North Berwick1871Haddingtonshire Journal Steam Printing Works
Oban1861James Miller
Orbiston1826Orbiston Press
Orkney1828Unknown printer
Partick1854A. Ferrie (publ.)
Peterhead1816Peter Buchan
Pitlochry1887A. Doggart
Pittenweem1844James Scott
Pollockshaws1884Barrhead News Publishing Co.
Port Glasgow1843R. Montgomerie
Portobello 1832J. Johnstone
Portsoy1857Thomas Anderson
Prestonpans1892Unknown printer
Pulteneytown1863John George
Queensferry1888Queensferry Printing Co.
Renfrew1851Alex. Gardner
Rothesay 1847John Wilson
Rutherglen1878J. Kelly
Saltcoats1820Unknown printer
Sandbank 1870J.E. & R. Inglis
Selkirk1817Thomas Brown
Sleat, Skye1881Unknown printer
Stevenston1879H. Thomson
Stewarton1837Thomas Wilson
Stonehaven 1843W. Johnson
Stow1897Sanderson & Son
Stranraer1816D. Duncan
Strathaven1859Alexander Morton
Tain 1824Kenneth Douglas
Tayport1900Cynicus Publishing Co
Thurso1826William Todd
Tighnabruaich1900D. J. McKechnie
Tillicoultry1879Roxburgh & Rae
Tranent 1864P. M'Neill (publ.?)
Troon1898R. Young
Turriff1858Cuddy Skene
Uddingston1887William Myles
West Calder1885A.H. Aikman
Whithorn1888Belmont Hall Bazaar
Wick1830William Todd
Wigtown1807R. Hetherton
Wishaw1853Unknown printer