The Elusive Watch!

This watch has a striking depiction of the Paschal Lamb in the centre of the dial. This watch could only belong to a cleric, and that, of its self, greatly limits its currency but the fascinating fact about this timepiece was that it was given to the Rt Rev Dr Andrews Curruthers (1770-1852) by the parishioners at St Peters Church on Craignair Street Dalbeattie, upon the occasion of his consecration on 13th January 1833, in the Catholic Chapel Edinburgh, as Ceramis and Vicar Apostolic of the Eastern District of Scotland.

This watch is signed Chas Spears, Liverpool and numbered 1844. The 18-carat gold case is hallmarked for Chester and the case maker was John Helsby. The cuvette is inscribed: " To the Rt.Rev. Dr Carruthers from the Catholic Congregation of St Peter's Dalbeattie.

A wonderful gift and a remarkable testimony too from the relatively small number of people who had respect, affection and gratitude towards him, since the church has only seats for only 252 people, and in 1833 these would have been almost exclusively poor Irish workers in the local granite industry.

Catholic Church DalbeattieDr Curruthers was born at Glenmillan near New Abbey Dumfrieshire in 1770. He came to Dalbeattie in 1814 due to the rising Catholic numbers in the village of Dalbeattie. Dalbeattie was a thriving place at this time due to several factories for the production and processing of paper, wool and grain. There were also two saw mills in the area. The granite quarry opened and there became a good demand for Dalbeattie granite, which was used for such projects as the Thames Embankment, Chatham docks, and the Mancherster City Hall and Assize Courts. All this activity drew many workers into the area and Dr Carruthers was granted 3 or 4 acres on which to build a chapel.