James Logan, son of an Ayrshire farmer arrived in Paisley at the end of the Eighteenth Century and set up a printing and Stationery business in Meetinghouse Lane, otherwise known as the ‘Dirty Steps’, off Moss Street.
His business flourished and he acquired a piece of land at Westmarch. As time went on he expanded his portfolio of land by purchasing other plots as far as Underwood and, early in the Nineteenth Century and with his Westmarch estate now being of considerable size, he conceived the idea of becoming a Laird. On his Estate he built a Mansion, Westmarch House, and lived in it as a Bachelor until his death. He had set out in his Will that a monument should be built on the estate as well as a mausoleum in which he and his ‘Heirs of Entail’ should be buried.
The Monument occupied a conspicuous site on the edge of the old Craigielee Wood (made famous by Robert Tannahills ” Thou Bonnie Wood O’ Craigielea”). On it was inscribed “In memory of James Logan Esq., of Westmarch who died 24th June, 1843. The Mausoleum was never built. His coffin containing a lead casket with his remains enclosed wasn’t interred in the grounds at Westmarch until some years later. By Mr Logans will it was directed that the monument and the ground on which it stood should be maintained for all time with access provided from the Roadway.
In 1934 Westmarch Estate, all 12 Acres as well as Westmarch House, was purchased by Paisley Town Council to fulfil a need for good quality social housing and the streets of Craigielee Drive, Logan Drive, Drums and Tannahill were planned and developed. The Logan Monument stood side by side with the houses, tenements and tenants until about the mid-seventies when it was deemed to be unsafe and for health and Safety reason (yes, even back then) it was deconstructed, it’s whereabouts are unknown. By the years 2000’s the whole of Craigielea was cleared of housing and in 2008 a new Football Stadium was built for St Mirren F.C., directly on the land which had once been Craigielea House. What does remain however, is the small patch of land on which stood the James Logan Monument, seemingly sacrosanct for the past 170 years and in keeping with his will.
Article courtesy of Roddy Boyd