Edinburgh 24 m. W b N. Stirling 12 m. S b E. Pop. 11,530. M. D. Thurs. Fairs, last Thurs. in Jan.; 1st Thurs. in March and Nov.; 3d Thurs. in May and Ang.; 2d Thurs. in June and July; Trysts for Highland cattle, 2d Tues. in Aug., Sept., and Oct.
A considerable market, post-town and parish, the former of which is pleasantly seated on a commanding elevation. It consists of several good streets, the principal one being three quarters of a mile long, and containing many commodious houses and shops. In the centre of the town is a spacious area, where the markets and trysts are held, the latter of which may be deemed the largest for the sale of cattle, horses, and sheep, of any in Scotland. Facing the market-place, is an elegant and commodious new church, with a fine steeple, rising to the height of 130 feet; the dimensions of the ancient structure, which is cruciform, being insufficient to contain the increased population. The suburbs are very extensive, and comprise the town and port of Grangemouth, with the villages of Briansford, Camelon, Grahamston, and Laurieston. Falkirk was formerly a burgh of regality, subject to the Earl of Linlithgow and Callander, who exercised authority in criminal, as well as in civil cases, previously to the abolition of hereditary jurisdictions. It is now governed by a baron-baillie, appointed by the lord of the manor. Here are a grammar-school and an English school, both in high repute, with good salaries annexed. There are large tar-works in the vicinity. The parish is nearly seven miles in length, by about four in breadth, and is bounded on the north by the river Carron, which gives name to the celebrated iron works adjacent to the level and fertile tract, termed the Carse of Falkirk; but the chief boast of the parish consists in the improvements recently made by that astonishing work of art, the great canal, uniting the German and Atlantic Oceans, having been cut across its limits. The surface is mostly enclosed, and in some parts richly diversified with woods, and adorned with genteel mansions. This has been the scene of various military exploits, the last of which was a victory gained by the Pretender, in 1746, over the royal army. Of antiquities, the most noted is the Roman wall, known by the name of Graham’s Dyke, on the history of which, much light has been shed, by inscriptions found here. Many stone coffins and sepulchral urns also have been met with in its track through this parish.
Source: A Topographical Dictionary of Great Britain and Ireland by John Gorton. The Irish and Welsh articles by G. N. Wright; Vol. II; London; Chapman and Hall, 186, Strand; 1833.