Logie Cemetery Scotland

 A church originally sat at the top of the mound.

Logie Cemetery

By Liz Smith
Dundee Scotland


Main Entrance to Logie Cemetery.




Logie Cemetery
Located on road between Lochee and Dundee, Scotland

ORIGINS of Church and Graveyard

At one time Logie was a separate independent parish, which lay in the valley between Balgay Hill and the Law and contained the estates of Balgay, Blackness and part of Dudhope. It formed part of the landward possessions of the Burgh of Dundee and was known as Logie-Dundee. Logie Burn flowed through the valley and joined another tributary to form the Scouringburn, which continued on through Dundee to the Tay.


Very little is known of the history of the parish but it is known that a church existed there as far back as the 12th century which was linked ecclesiastically with the churches of Liff and Invergowrie. It stood at the top of a mound with the graves round it and extending down the sides of the mound. It is not known when interments began but it is a very old graveyard. The earliest gravestone which is known is one from the 18th century.



The church stood at
the top of a mound
 with the graves
round it and
 down the
 of the mound.



 It is thought that the church was destroyed during the Reformation when a mob from Dundee marched to Liff destroying as it went. The road to Liff at that time lay to the southwest of the church and it would have been the first church that they came to. It does not appear to have been rebuilt and no trace remains.



Overcrowding & Body Snatchers

Logie Cemetery became seriously overcrowded so much so that some graves were dug in the pathways. It is also said that in one year a hundred burials took place when there was only room for three. Not surprisingly because of this and also because of its isolated position the graveyard had a very unsavoury reputation.

Overcrowding in Logie Cemetery
 lead to health
concern by local citizens.


It was reported in The Advertiser of May 13th 1834 that body snatchers or Resurrection men had tried to steal a newly interred body. However, two men who had been employed to watch the grave managed to repulse the robbers. They returned the following night but again were driven off.

In December that year it was also reported that a gang of highwaymen were organising attacks on passers-by in Logie Road. There was no wall round the graveyard and it was a haunt of ‘loafers’ and other unsavoury characters. During the day, animals could roam at will and it was not uncommon to see cattle or horses amongst the graves.

The Wall

Originally there was no wall round the graveyard. This problem was finally addressed in 1837. Because ‘those in authority’ were not prepared to do anything’, a meeting was held in Lochee one Monday night in February 1837 when it was proposed that an 8 feet high stone wall should be built round the churchyard. The cost (about 200/-) would have to be raised by public subscription. The heritors agreed to contribute 40/- and Lord Duncan 10/-. A committee was appointed to raise the remainder of the money.



Public subscriptions help finance
 the building of an eight foot  high
wall around the cemetery in

The wall was moved back six
 feet from the road in 1878 to
alleviate traffic problems.


Logie Cemetery - Health Concerns


One book spoke of ‘horrid scenes’. These were graphically described in a newspaper report in 1869 when the Magistrates and Town Council of Dundee presented a petition to the Sheriff to have the graveyard closed. (This was only after Liff and Benvie Parochial Board had made several approaches to Dundee Town Council to have this done.)

One ‘expert witness’ said that ‘it is dangerous to health, and it is offensive and contrary to decency.’ Another said that his house was within 12 feet of the graveyard and that when the wind was in a certain direction he always ‘felt a disagreeable smell’ which made him feel ‘a little curious in the throat’.




Last interment in Logie Cemetery occurred in 1875



1870 - Logie Cemetery Closed to Interments


Other descriptions were worse. It is not surprising that the Sheriff agreed that the graveyard should be closed.


The graveyard was closed to burials in 1870.  Representations were made by several people who had "rights of burial" that these rights should continue for a time. These were agreed to and the last burial is believed to have taken place in 1875.


After the closure the top of the mound was levelled and tidied and many stones moved.

The parish was sparsely populated. Maps show that even in 1871 the road between Lochee and Dundee had very few houses along it. In the early part of the 18th century the parish was divided into three parts with one third being given to Dundee and the remaining two thirds to the Parish of Liff.  




1878 - Wall Improvements

Very little was done to the wall and by 1878 it was in great need of repair. Many new buildings had been built in the area and much of the rubbish from these houses had been thrown over the wall. This caused pressure on the wall and parts of it finally collapsed. There was an additional problem as the angle of road at that point was so abrupt that serious collisions were a frequent occurrence.


It was decided to move the wall back about 6 feet and make it lower. It would be surmounted by ornamental railings. The footpath was to be paved, several street lights added and ‘the whole place renovated and improved’. The cost this time would be about £300 but this would be met by the local authority. The trees surrounding the graveyard were to be preserved.

The stone commemorating these events is part of the stone wall and is to the left of the entrance. The mason work was done by Messrs D & A Powrie, masons. I would expect that they used the stones from the original wall. The railings and gates were made by Messrs D. Neave & Co., blacksmiths. These were removed as part of the war effort.




One of those who made representations for "rights of burial" after the closure of Logie cemetery  was Mrs Helen Dysart or Hay, widow of John Kidd, mason, Lochee, and one of our family. She died in 1871 and is almost certainly buried in Logie.

In the early 1950s Sidney Cramer recorded as many of the inscriptions on the headstones as he could. Many of the stones were illegible. However, amongst the ones he managed to record was the following one, belonging to our family:


Erected by John Kidd, mason, Lochee, and Helen Daysart his wife in memory of their daughter Margaret who is interred there; their son William died 27th August 1834 aged 7 2/12; the above John Kidd died 5th June 1844 aged 51; their daughter Ann died 4th October 1852 aged 28. The above Helen Daysart died 27 November 1871 in her 80th year.


Location of Kidd/Daysart Headstone at Logie Cemetery

Unfortunately, when Logie cemetery was inspected later, in 1978,
there was no sign of the headstone erected by John Kidd and wife
Helen Daysart.  However, using the information given by Sidney
Cramer and that from the 1978 inspection, I am confident that the
site of the grave would appear to be at the top of the mound, in
the grassy area just behind the three headstones shown in the
front of the photograph.


Erected by
 John Kidd, mason, Lochee,
and Helen Daysart his wife
 in memory of their daughter Margaret
who is interred there;
 their son William
 died 27th August 1834 aged 7 2/12;
 the above John Kidd died 5th June 1844 aged 51;
their daughter Ann died 4th October 1852 aged 28.
The above Helen Daysart died 27 November 1871 in her 80th year.

1) Newspaper reports
The Advertiser, 13th May 1834, "Logie Burying Ground" Two persons employed to watch a grave in Logie Burial Ground
         were attacked by two resurrection men. The intended violators of the sepulchre were, however, repulsed. They returned
         the following night but were baffled.
    b.  The Advertiser, 19th December 1834, "Logie Road" A powerful and well organised gang of ruffians have made several
         attempts at highway robbery lately, on the roads leading to the town, particularly on the Logie Road.

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