British History Online provides historical notes for Kirkby Thore from The Later Records relating to North Westmorland by John F. Curwen (1932)
Cumbria County History Trust has published a "Jubilee Digest" for the township of Kirkby Thore
Magna Britannica et Hibernia.Volume 6: Westmorland by Thomas Cox (Vicar of Bromfield, Essex) 45 pages, printed in 1731.
Transcription by Sarah Reveley, Joan Fisher and Lisl Schoenwald. (Rootsweb Westmorland Listmembers) (c) 2003
"Kirkby-Thore, or Whelp-Castle, a small Village standing upon the River Eden, whose Lordship was in the Lord Clifford, 13 Rich. II. below which appear the vast Ruins of an antient Town, where Roman Coins and Urns are now and then dug up, and about the End of the 16th Century, this Inscription was found there, viz. DEO BELATVCAD / RO LIB VOTV / M FECIT / IOLVS.
Time has worn out the old Name quite, and the People call it at this Day, Whelp Castle, Cambden guesses, that it was the Gallagum mentioned by Ptolemy, and called by Antoninus in his Itinerary, Iter. X. Gallatum, and in some Copies Galacum, yea, Calacum, which Conjecture (he says is not only favoured by the Distances, but the present Name; for it is unusal with the Saxons to turn such British Names as begun with Gall, into Wall, as is evident from Galena, which the Saxons turned into Wallingford. It was doubless a Place of considerable Note, seeing the old military Way, (now commonly called the Maiden Way) runs through it almost directly to Caer Vorran, which our Antiquaries will have to be Walwich, which stands near the Picts Wall. Dr. Gale is of Opinion, that Catguoloph is the same that is now called Whelp, or Whellop-Castle, but the Editor of Cambden says, 'tis a Man' s Name, and not a Place's. But whether it be the old Gallagum, or not, 'tis almost certain, that the old Saxon God Thor (from whom our Thursday takes its Name) had a Temple here, and seems implied in the Name. What his Worship was, and how magnificient his Temple, we refer our Reader to Mr. V (illegible) to be informed, and shall now only take Notice of a curious Coin relating to this Idol, lately discovered here. (picture of both sides of coin)
It is about the Bigness of a silver Groat, but what it really was, and for what End it was coined, our Antiquaries dispute about several Ways. We can't spare Room to relate them all; that which is best supported, is this: Stephanus describing the God Thor, in his Notes upon Saxo Grammaticus says, That his Head (in his Image) was surrounded with a Flame like the Sun, and in his Hand he held a Seepter, which exactly agrees to the Figure on this Coin. On the Reverse are these Words, as the Learned read them: Thur gut Luetis, ie. As some interpret them, Thoris Dei facies, or Effigies, i.e. The Face or Effigies of the God Thor; but Dr. Hicks tells us the Meaning of them is, Thor Deus Patrius, ie. Thor the God of our Country. The Figures of the Half-Moon and Stars, which are stamped round the Idol, confirm this Opinion, for the Gothick Nations had the same Notion of their God Thor, that the Phoenicians had of the Sun, whom they called, The God of Heaven, to whom the Stars were all Subject, and worshipped him as such, above all other Gods; and so did the Saxons. What is said of it by others, 1. That it was an Amulet; 2. That the Figure is our Savior's, as King of Kings, and Thurgut is the Name of the Mint-Master; 3. That it is a Medal struck in Honour to the Danish Admiral who blocked up London, we pass over, as Lusus ingenioforum.
Crawdundale Waith, a Place hard by Whelp-Castle, where there appear Ditches, Rampires, and great Mounts of Earth cast up, among which was found this Roman Inscription, cut in a rough Sort of a Rock, but the fore Part worn away with Age. (Untranscribable)
This (S with an umelot) is set down in the last Edition of Cambden, but Mr. Burton on the Itin. P. 126, puts a C instead of it, which seems more agreeable to the Reading. Plus Mr. Burton gives us this for the whole Inscription.
It thus read: Varronius Prafectus Legionis Vicefime Vatentis ViEtricis, AElius Lacanus Prefectus Legionis fecunda Augufte caftrametati funt. The Manner of Graving, the one rude and deep, the other in a finer Character, proves them to be different Inscriptions, of which this may be the Interpretation. The first of them imports, That Varonius, who with his Legion lay at Deva, or West-Chester; and the other, that Lucanus, who was in Garrison with the seconti Augustan Legion at Isea or Carleon in Wales, being both detached against the Enemies in those Parts, pitched their Camps for some Time in this Place; and 'tis probable that the Officers in Memory therof might engrave these Lines on the Rock. Mr. Machel, late Minister of Kirby-Thore, who made a Collectionof the Antiquities of this County, in order to compose the History of it, found here the following Inscription, never before observed, viz. (Untranscribable) but we do not find any that have attempted to read it, and so must leave it to bolder and more experienced Antiquaries to spell out the Meaning of it."