A Glasgow Herald newspaper report of February 1886 commented that the estate of the late Alexander Sherriff was selling his public house and properties at Kirkton, High Blantyre. As described on this website, this is commonly thought to have been the buildings that once stood at the corner of Hunthill Road and Main Street, on the land now occupied by the Cornerstone Pub. The description in that advert describes the location well, describing buildings which existed in a time BEFORE the current pub building at the location.
Early photographs are exist in the 1890’s showing Logan’s Pub, in the building we now know as The Cornerstone Pub (formerly Vals, Victoria Bar, Carrigan’s and Steeles Pub). There have been many owners of this public house, but the earliest I can trace is Logan’s Public House, which I’m suggesting here dates from 1886.
From Census information, a David Logan lived nearby at Orchardhead, Kirkton in 1891, moving to the area after 1885. He is noted as being a spirit dealer and is the only Logan in the area noted with this profession. We know he owned the pub in 1891, and as such is the likely owner from Springtime 1886, after Alexander Sherriff’s estate sold it. With the nearby collieries, the pub is likely to have done well, and David Logan enjoying some success is the likely person who demolished the old Sherriff’s pub buildings and stables and rebuilt new tenements squeezed on to that corner piece of land, one which remains today as The Cornerstone.
David Logan was born on 4th September 1856 in Blantyre. Son of David Logan, a millworker and Margaret Cullen, they lived at 10 Middle Row, Blantyre Works in 1861 with his 5 elder brothers and sisters. By 1871, the family still in Blantyre lived nearby to that location at 1 Mid Row, Blantyre Works. David is noted as being an Apprentice Engineer, a practical man. By 1881, and with the mills in decline David Logan sought a career as and Engine fitter and pops up at 25 years old at 120 McLellan Street in Glasgow, living with his mother. (His father had died by then and the family moved out of Blantyre). David Logan at 25 was still unmarried.
David must have married shortly after this time between 1881 and 1884, as we know he had a daughter Mary Logan in 1884 and in 1886, they all moved to Orchardhead at High Blantyre. (Orchardhead was a collection of up to 22 houses at Kirkton Cross, bordering School Lane and Hunthill Road and the current Park Crescent. Only 1 cottage remains now at Orchardhead, pictured at 16 Hunthill Road, home of Mr Stewart, although at the time this belonged to William Dixon, not the Logans.)
David Logan was to take up being a spirit merchant, a change in profession and it is thought he bought over the land and former pub in 1886 from Alexander Sherriff’s estate. It is unknown if he demolished the properties immediately and rebuilt the new tenements, or if he operated the older pub for a time first, rebuilding them later using wealth from successful business. This seems likely, as during the early 1890’s the whole area of Kirkton was undergoing massive change. New tenements being built, a decade earlier the new water supply and homes appearing in many surrounding areas. The construction of Logan’s Public House may have just been a natural progression to clear the old stables and dilapidated former pub known to have existed from at least the mid 1800s. Of course Logan may have leased the pub, but the Valuation books of 1895 give no evidence to suggest this.
His daughter Mary Logan is noted as being a domestic servant and must have assisted the running of her fathers pub, for when she married in 1906, the pub was being run by her and her husband. Joseph Steele. Unfortunately, Joseph died a young man in 1907 and David Logans, then 50 years old had to step back in to run the pub, which he did until his death at Orchardhead, Hunthill in 1911, aged 55. The pub was then inherited by his daughter, Mary Steele (nee Logan).
Sources: Narrative by Paul Veverka. Ancestry.com, Scotlandspeople, Old Maps, Britishnewspaperarchives