The Parish of Caerlaverock has always been a little separate from the rest of Dumfriesshire, the land forming a peninsula between the River Nith and Lochar Moss, however, the history of land ownership is also important. For around eight centuries, the same family have owned the large majority of the parish. In Caerlaverock the Edgars of Glenhowan and the Stobas of Southfield were two such families. The landowners are the Maxwells, who built the first Caerlaverock Castle in 1220, became in later centuries Earls of Nithsdale, and, about 100 years ago, a descendant married into the family of the Duke of Norfolk. In the eighteenth century, the parish had seven villages. Of these Greenmill, Glenhowan and Blackshaw have mostly vanished. Shearington and Kelton are reduced in population and even Bankend has lost shop and school. The fate of Glencaple was rather different. Formerly a farm the Dumfries Town Council built a quay on the Nith and it became known as Glencaple Quay. Around the mid-nineteenth century, shipbuilding declined but Glencaple as a resort was becoming increasingly popular. The Nith Hotel has been busy for 200 years!
Many local people have helped in the creation of this book, but particular thanks must go to Pat Grieg who, with good humour and perserverance, has seen it through to completion.