Colonel Ferguson has at length met the electors of the Kirkcaldy, and seems to have given them great satisfaction. He spoke against the Corn-laws ; and said he would at the end of each session meet the electors, and deliver up his charge if his votes did not give sa- tisfactioo.
We are given to understand that the Lord Advocate has refused the invitation to dinner, given him and Mr. Fox Maule by the Edinburgh Non-Intrusionists.—Scottish Pilot.
A meeting of the Presbytery of Strathbogie was held at Keith on the 30th ultimo. The consideration of the Marnoch case was resumed ; when the Reverend Mr. Edwards, the presentee to that parish, appeared and renewed his application for induction. A service-copy of the de- cree decerning and ordaining the Presbytery, and the members thereof composing the majority, "forthwith to admit and receive the said Mr. John Edwards as minister of the church and parish of Marnoch, according to law, and to take all the necessary and competent steps for that pur- pose," was laid before the Presbytery and minuted. Mr. Cowe there- upon said, it was now their duty as members of the Established Church of Scotland, and as loyal subjects, to give effect to the decree which had been pronounced against them. He would therefore move, "That the Presbytery, finding that no other course remained for them than to obey this peremptory order of the Supreme Court, or to incur the guilt and subject themselves to the pains and penalties of disobedience, re- solve to meet at Marnoch on Thursday the 21st day of January next, for the purpose of receiving and admitting the said Mr. J. Edwards to be minister of the church and parish of Marnoch, according to the rules of the Church." The motion was unanimously agreed to.—Caledonian Mercury.
A procession of the Irish Teetotallers in Glasgow took place on Sa- turday. The numbers of Irish who have taken the pledge in that city is stated to be 10,000.
An important case was last week tried before Mr. Sheriff Alison, in Glasgow, which threw considerable light on the profits of the cotton- trade. The Trustees of the Clyde Navigation had obtained an Act of Parliament, in virtue of which they proposed to encroach on or remove the works of Messrs. Todd and Higgenbotham, at Springfield. Mr. Todd, the original proprietor of the works, is dead ; and his repre- sentatives claimed for the land, from which they derived a feu (chief rent) in addition to his share in the value of the works. Mr. Higgen- botham, who was formerly an inhabitant of Manchester, had attracted the notice of Mr. Todd by his business-like habits, at a time when the latter was becoming infirm, rather more than six years ago. So im- perfect were Mr. Higgenbotham's ideas of the value of the concern when Mr. Todd offered him a share to secure his services, that he stipu- lated for a salary of 400/. per annum, secured, before he would remove. The works at Springfield contained 16,000 spindles, printing and Turkey red dyeing-works, and about twenty looms. The manufacture was entirely for the home market. The total number of hands em- ployed was 889. The compensation tendered by the Trustees was 6,2301.: the Jury found for Higgenbotham 43,7331., for Todd's exe- cutors, 8,119/.
From the Brokers Circular just issued, we notice that the consump- tion of cotton in Scotland for the year 1840 amounts to 122,946 bales, against 98,425 bales in 1839; showing an increase of consumption last year of 24,521 bales. The consumption in 1839, however, had been considerably less than that of any of the three preceding years of 1836, 1837, and 1838; in which the consumption was 100,804, 101,859, and 112.726 bales respectively.
Two merchants of Glasgow were last week apprehended on charges of forgery. The charge against them is, that they procured several blank acceptances of a mercantile clerk in London, filled them up from time to time, as suited themselves, and discounted the bills at the City of Glasgow and other banks, representing the acceptor as an extensive wine-merchant in London, and as residing at a place in London where he never resided, but where a gentleman of the same name lived. In- quiry being made as to the circumstances of the gentleman at the address given, the banks were satisfied, and consequently induced, it is said, to cash the bills ; and the drawers, taking care to remit funds to London to take up the bills as they became due, the system was carried on for a considerable time. One or two of the bills, however, being returned dishonoured, inquiry was set on foot, and the result was an exposure of the system and the apprehension of the parties. They have been liberated on bail.
The Times of Wednesday contained the following account of the burning of three churches in Dundee, on the same Sunday so fatal to the church-steeples of Streatham, Spitalfields, and Wolverhampton- " Sunday morning, Jan. 3.—This morning, about five o'clock, a fire was dis- covered in a portion of the venerable pile of buildings which have for many centuries been the pride and ornament of our town. The alarm was immediately given to the police ; the fire-engine and fire-brigade hastened to the spot; the alarm-bell pealed forth to rouse the inhabitants; and thousands were disturbed from their rest to witness the entire destruction of three of the churches, and one of the most sublime spectacles which ever took place in Scotland. The fire originated from a stove in a passage betwixt the Steeple and South Churches: and when we arrived at the scene of destruction, the flames were bunting out of one of the windows situated in an angle of the latter building. Nothing could equal the frightful vehemence of the devouring element : it ran with the speed of lightning along the galleries of the church ; the pulpit was a mass of fire, and in a few moments was entirely consumed ; an intense white flame burst through the roof, while from the back part of the church an overwhelming volume of massive fire moved towards the front, and, gathering force as it proceeded, burst with irresistible fury out of the beautiful window facing the street, driving the
assembled populace backward by the intensity of the heat. At the same mo- ment, the venerable cathedral, which has for seven hundred years weathered the storm, caught fire; and the sympathies of the spectators were much excited at
the approaching destruction of the noblest remnant of antiquity of which our town can boast. Meanwhile the Cross Church, forming a limb of the crass in which the churches are built, and situate immediately behind the South Church,
which was first on fire, was one mass of flame. About half-past six, the con- flagration was at its height : the three churches, from the base to the highest pinnacle, were wrapped in the devouring element. The sublimity of the spec- tacle may he imegined, not described : its astounding grandeur paralyzed every effort of the fire-brigade, the military, and the police; all seemed to feel at once thehopelessness of any attempt to check its fury, and to ponder upon the feeble- ness of man's efforts in comparison to the awful ravages of the flames. While all this was going on below, the ancient tower, which rises to the height of 150
feet, and is attached to the Steeple Church, the only one not in flames, rose
phcenix-like above the terrific contention ; and the peal of the alarm-bells from its interior added to the grandeur of the spectacle. The utmost efforts were made by the firemen to prevent the fire-spreading to the Steeple Church ; and happily
this WBB effected, by directing the hose to a door communicating with the lobby between it and the part of the edifice in flames. Thus both the steeple and
the church were preserved. The utmost alarm prevailed for the safety of the old buildings to the east and south-east—the sparks flying in these directions in showers resembling the thickest hail, many of them of considerable size ; hut we are happy to say the destruction was confined to the churches. The build- ings are almost entirely ruined. The East Church, or Cathedral, is a complete wreck : the fine Gothic arches with their supports are destroyed ; and the only articles rescued were the silver communion-service and the records of the Pres-
byter). of Dundee : a valuable library, composed of many works of the Fathers of the Church, in Greek and Latin, is entirely lost. The fire spent its fury before nine o'clock in the morning, and all fears for the safety of other buildings had subsided. The damage done to the churches is estimated at betwixt 30,0001. and 40,0001.; and the event has occasioned great and universal regret in the minds of our townsmen the great mass of whom are warmly attached to the church of their fathers, and to the venerable edifices themselves. No lives have been lost, nor have we heard of any other casualty."
A cottage occupied by a man named Wright, at Millbank Mill, near Ay ton, was on New Year's morning destroyed by fire ; and Wright, his wife, and three children, were burned to death. There had been a merrymaking at the Mill on New Year's eve, but Wright appeared to be sober.