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Old Glasgow Pubs by john gorevan


Boar's Head Inn.

Marshall Lane, Off the Gallowgate.

exterior view of what the Boar's Head Inn would look like

This image is what the Boar's Head Inn would have looked like in the 1880s.

Marshall Lane was situated a few yards west from the popular Hielan Jessie on the Gallowgate. This very narrow lane occupied small shops, two taverns and it is said that the first Roman Catholic Church and school in Glasgow which was demolished in March 1904. Sometimes the Lane was called Marshall Street.

The two taverns that sat in Marshall Lane were the Boar's Head Inn and the Union Tavern. In 1825 the shop was then the Union Tavern was kept by Andrew McEvoy, the place may have appeared as a kind of side show to the prosperous Boar’s Head Inn.

The host and proprietor of the Boar’s Head in the late 1800s and later had the rather unique bit of good fortune to have himself and house perpetuated in place names, for the lane in 1904 bears both names the older natives using the term Boar’s Head Lane.

Marshall’s Inn as the locals would call it and stable yard in 1904 was as good repair as ever they were, but the licence to purvey intoxicants is gone, and the manufacturer of tin goods has succeeded. As for the Union Tavern, with its quaint double door and bow windows, it is closed for ever.

For many years the old tavern was used for the sale of various kinds of merchandise, but the faction for dealing in little shops situated in lanes, seems to be passing away.
But it still possesses the small importance of being the last of its kind.

In the narrow street which survive in many towns in Scotland till the 1860s, these old time shop fronts added not a little to the picturesqueness of the street architecture. Marshall's Inn was in its day the aristocratic military rendezvous and was patronized chiefly by sergeants and corporals from the barracks on the opposite side of the Gallowgate.

An etiquette was observed in its tap-room similar to what would have obtained in a London licensed house of the same class. Private soldiers were the customers of less high toned places of the western Gallowgate district.

Boar’s Head Inn on the east side of Marshall Street off Gallowgate which is now used as a tinsmiths shop in 1904 with three rooms and kitchen house above the 71st Infantry regiment (better known as the “The Glasgow Keelie’s) were located in the neighbouring barracks and used to gather here and fight their battles over again.

The landlady grazed her cows on the green, and when youngster’s accompanied their parents to the Boar’s Head inn were always treated to a complimentary glass of milk.

Sergt. Monk, of the Royal Horse Artillery, who recruited here and died only recently, had many a story to tell of it as a military rendezvous, and often the old veteran said as a young soldier had he sat in the snug little parlour and discussed oat-cake and cheese and sweet ale, the bitter beer of those days.

The old building opposite which formed the first Roman Catholic Church and school in Glasgow was demolished in March 1904.


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