"A parish situated in the County of Angus, at the discharge of the Southesk into the ocean. It extends along the sea coast about 4 miles, presenting a rocky craig or precipice to the sea; its length is about 6, and its breadth about 2 and a half miles. The surface is elevated about 400 feet above the level if the sea, but is upon the whole flat. The soil is good, producing excellent crops. There are two fishing villages in the parish viz Usan and Ferryden. There is an island in the mouth of the Southesk, called Inchbraick, attached to this parish, through which the new road passes from Arbroath to the bridge of Montrose."
The Gazetteer of Scotland, W Chalmers, Dundee 1803.