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General view of 221-229 Canongate, Big Jack's Close, Edinburgh, from SW.

DP 190162

Description General view of 221-229 Canongate, Big Jack's Close, Edinburgh, from SW.

Date 27/5/2014

Collection RCAHMS

Catalogue Number DP 190162

Category On-line Digital Images

Scope and Content This shows tenements at 221-229 Canongate, Edinburgh. These 17th/18th century tenements were redeveloped by Edinburgh's City Architect, Ebenezer James MacRae (1881-1951), as part of his Canongate Improvement Scheme in 1930/1. Along with several others on the Canongate, they were rebuilt incorporating serveral design features of the vernacular architecture expected in a traditional Scottish burgh, whilst also improving the facilities within. This particular tenement has rusticated rubble stonework on the main elevation and retains traditional timber-framed, multi-paned sash and case windows. The attic floor of the block at 227-9 Canongate has a repeating pattern of bipartite and single windows in gabled dormers. There is a large gated opening at 225 Canongate leading to the backlands which follows the line of Big Jack's Close. Big Jack's Close is believed to be named after John Jack, a slater and Baillie of the Canongate burgh during the ealy 18th century. Along with his brother and fellow slater, Robert, John Jack owned lands in the area now occupied by these tenements. John Ainslie's maps of 1780 and 1804 have 'Jack's Court' and 'Jack's Closs' assigned to the two closes in this block. The Ordnance Survey 1:1,056 maps of 1852, 1877 and 1894 all note the clse names as 'Big Jack's Close' and 'Little Jack's Close'. Both closes led to a tobacco pipe factory to the rear, which the opening at 225 Canongate probably reflects.


File Format (TIF) Tagged Image File Format bitmap

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