"CRATHIE-AND-BRAEMAR, a parish, in the district of Kincardine-O'Neil, county of Aberdeen, Crathie being 22 miles and Braemar 32 miles (W. by S.) from Kincardine O'Neil; and the whole containing 1712 inhabitants. The word Crathie is supposed to be of Gaelic origin, and derived from the words crag and tir or thir, which signify "stony or rocky land," and are descriptive of the general appearance of the surface. The ancient parish of Braemar (a name expressive of the highest land in the three districts, Buchan, Garioch, and Mar, into which the county was once distributed) was in early times called St. Andrew's, and subsequently Bridgend. . . The united parish extends about forty miles in length and twenty in breadth, and is situated in the heart of the Grampian range.. . . The most lofty mountain is Ben-Macdhui or Bennainuickduidh, rising to an elevation of 4390 feet, and which, by a recent survey, has been found to be twenty feet higher than Ben-Nevis, previously reputed the highest mountain in Britain. . . Ecclesiastically, the parish is in the presbytery of Kincardine O'Neil, synod of Aberdeen, and in the patronage of the Crown; the minister's stipend is £233. 10., with manse, and a glebe valued at £8 per annum. The church, built in 1806 stands on a foundation hewn out of a rocky terrace, which juts out at the base of Craigoun, on the north side of the new Deeside road. It is a plain structure, of no pretensions in point of architecture, but commands a very fine view of the valley of the Dee. Nearly opposite, only a little to the west, the river makes a noble sweep round a fair and spacious haugh, on which stands the castle of Balmoral, surrounded by ancient and stately trees. The sacred building contains 1400 sittings. An ordained missionary regularly officiates at Castletown, and there is a Roman Catholic chapel at the same village; also a place of worship for members of the Free Church in the parish. The parochial school affords instruction in the usual branches; the master has a salary of £26, with a house and garden, and £8 fees. There are two schools for boys, and three for girls. . . More"
[From Samuel Lewis A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1851) - copyright Mel Lockie 2016]