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Caldercruix
& Glengowan
 
Caldercruix is situated to the north-east of Airdrie on the Bathgate road and it owes its rise to the building of a paper mill and a textile printing works which attracted workers to settle there. The name Caldercruix or Caldercrooks is derived from the proximity of the village to the meandering River Calder. 
 
From the 17th century a series of grain mills and a flax mill had been situated by the Calder but the industrial revolution changed that.  The village was originally populated by by farmers and agricultural labourers. 
 

 
The Glengowan (Textile) Printworks was set up in 1869 to harness the North Calder Water.   The mill was sold to John Glen, a Glasgow merchant, in 1877.  Glen invested heavily in the printworks, extending the plant and introducing new machinery.  The mill  printed both calico and silk materials.   Glen built housing for his workers and the village became known as Glengowan after Glen's house "Glengowan" built in the late19th century.
 
 

 
The Caldercruix Paper Mill, owned by Robert Craig and sons,  was famous for being powered by two of the largest water wheels in Scotland and their paper products secured a high reputation for quality in Scottish and English markets with the company being particularly noted for the manufacture of blotting paper. 
 
The Craig brothers acquired the ground beside the river as well as the rights to use the soft water of the outflow of the Hillend Reservoir. They set up Caldercruix Paper Mill which was to become the largest produced of rag blotting paper in the world.  Rags were disinfected, steamed, ground into a pulp and processed into a paper.  The success of this enterprise effectively formed the Caldercruix community.
 

 
New houses and an Institute were built for the workmen in the village and the church was even named after the mill owners and called the Craig Memorial Church. The Craig Institute was built in 1908 by the mill owner to provide facilities for mill workers. It had a diner, recreation room and library. 
 

 

 

 

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