"SORN, a parish in the district of Kyle, county Ayr, Scotland. It contains a village of its own name, and the quoad sacra parish of Catrine. It was anciently called Dalgain, and formed part of the Mauchline parish till 1692, when it was erected into a separate parish. It extends about 6½ miles in length by about the same in breadth, and is bounded by the parishes of Galston, Muirkirk, Auchinleck, and Mauchline. The surface, stretching along the northern bank of the river Ayr, is diversified with hill and moorland, attaining its greatest altitude at Blackside Hill, which rises 1,540 feet above sea-level. Part of the land is barren waste, and the remainder is in wood, pasture, and arable. The soil is chiefly a reddish clay upon a subsoil of blackish till. The parish is traversed by the road from Mauchline to Muirkirk, and is within easy access of two stations on the Glasgow and South-Western railway. The village of Sorn is 4 miles N. of Cumnock and 4 E. of Mauchline. It is situated on Ayr Water, and is principally inhabited by colliers, miners, and persons employed in agriculture. West of the village are the remains of Sorn Castle, built upon a projecting rock overlooking the water of Ayr. The lands and castle of Sorn formerly belonged to the Hamiltons of Cadzow, from whom they passed by marriage to the earls of Winton, by whom they were sold to the Loudoun and Tenneut families. In this parish is a cairn 250 feet in circumference and 10 feet high. This parish is in the presbytery of Ayr and synod of Glasgow and Ayr. The stipend of the minister is about £195. The parish church was erected in 1658, and was enlarged and restored in 1826. There are several schools. In that part of the parish now forming the quoad sacra parish of Catrine are a Free church, a United Presbyterian church, a chapel-of-ease, and a Morisonian chapel."
"CATRINE, a village and quoad sacra parish in the parish of Sorn, in the county of Ayr, Scotland, 2 miles to the S.E. of Mauchline. It is seated in a pleasant spot on the banks of the river Ayr, and was founded about 1787 by the proprietors of the cotton factories then established here. It is regularly built, with a spacious square in the centre, and has a library for the use of the workpeople, a bank, and a brewery. There is a chapel of ease, the living being in the presbytery of Ayr, and in the gift of the communicants; also a Free church and an United Presbyterian church. This village was for a time the residence of the philosopher, Dugald Stewart."
Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003