The map gives a good indication of the extent of the oil mill lands and an idea of how important the enterprise must have been to the local area. A significant proportion of the local working population would have been employed there during its years of operation. And periods of closure - temporary or permanent - must have had a big impact on individuals relying on the work. In addition, secondary employment would have been brought about by the mill. A list of suppliers and contractors to the mill has been created by John Band and can be viewed as a PDF by clicking here.
Some of these suppliers were local to Largo Parish. For example, the cleaning of the dam, which was required on an annual basis, was sometimes undertaken by James Anderson. James was born in Largo circa 1808 and at the time of the 1861 census was living in Kirkton of Largo with his wife Ann. His occupation was 'labourer' and his immediate neighbours included a shoemaker, a joiner, a blacksmith and a saddler. As a labourer, James must have undertaken a range of jobs but maintaining the cleanliness of the mill dam must have been a particularly strenuous and mucky job, involving the removal of leaves and other debris and dealing with the build up of deposits.
Brothers John and Alexander Mitchell of Lundin Mill, undertook alterations to the mill buildings. The men - born 1801 and 1807 respectively - were stone masons by trade and were among the six children of Allan Mitchell and Agnes Crawford. Both had daughters employed by another important Largo industry - David Gillies's net factory. Another local stone mason that had worked on the mill building was Alexander Tivendale. His daughters were linen weavers.
Archibald Bremner is recorded as having undertaken joinery work connected to repairs to the mill. In the 1861 census he is noted as a 'carpenter employing 5 men and 3 boys'. Born in Ross and Cromarty, the son of a millwright, Bremner married Elizabeth Orford in Kingskettle in 1851 before moving to Largo shortly afterwards. His daughter, Margaret, was born in 1854 and went on to set up and run the Lundin Links Post Office for many years. Archibald died in 1870, aged only 43.
Samuel Melville was a tinsmith and plumber, born in Haddington, East Lothian. Based for many years at the Shorehead in Leven, at the time of the 1861 census he was noted as employing 4 men and 4 apprentices. He died at his Shorehead home in 1863 - see below from the 30 May Dunfermline Saturday Press.