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Modern Maybole has risen into fame chiefly through the Shoemaking industry. For the introduction of this trade among us, we are indebted to the enterprise of two men— Mr Charles Crawford, and Mr John Gray; while for its remarkable expansion we are indebted to Mr James Ramsay, Mr T. A. Gray, Mr Robert Crawford, Mr Lees, and several others. It says not a little for these men that they have hitherto managed to secure a comparative monopoly of this branch of manufacture in Scotland. Other towns, more favourably situated, might have equalled or surpassed us, but these contrived to be first in the field, and have so led the way that Maybole shoes are now found all over the world.

At the present date, there are ten shoe factories in the town:

Messrs John Gray and Co., Ladywell.

Mr T. A. Gray, Lorne.

Mr James Ramsay, St. Cuthbert’s.

Messrs John Lees and Co., Townend.

Mr William Boyd, St. Helen’s.

Maybole Shoe Factory, Drumellan St.

Mr J. M. Runeie, Greenside.

Mr G. Dick, Ladyland.

Messrs M’Garvie and Co., Society St.

St. Cuthbert’s Shoe Factory.

These ten factories employ over 1500 people, and produce annually about a million pairs of boots and shoes, valued at £250,000.

To aid in disposing of this immense stock of shoes, a large number of shops have been established throughout the country, each bearing MAYBOLE SHOE SHOP on it's front. This well-known sign may be seen not only in Scotland but also in England and Ireland. A friend even noticed it in far off Manitoba. It is chiefly the heavier class of shoes that are manufactured here, although large quantities are also made for ordinary wear. The employers have ever been foremost in the introduction of new machinery, so as to keep in the forefront of the trade; and a walk through one of our factories is a treat to the visitor. Most of these factories have tanning and currying works connected with them also, so that while the raw hide is brought in at one door, it is taken out as manufactured goods at the other.

St. Cuthbert's factory best known to visitors as standing in the main line of traffic. It is adjacent to St. Cuthbert’s Well, whose name it has taken, and fronts the castle, whose well-known figure it has adopted as a Trade Mark.

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