In 1872 education in Scotland became the responsibility of the state, and Local Schools boards were established. Before the Education (Scotland) Act 1872 schools were run primarily by the churches and at that time in Abernethy there were two schools, one Parochial and one Secession and a school in Aberargie run by private patronage but still examined by the local Presbytery.
Abernethy Parochial School or Dominie Williamson’s School, as it was known, was erected in 1743 and demolished in 1866. On average around 50 pupils attended this school. It was located in the Kirk Wynd beside the old UF Church.
In 1905 the Free Church in Abernethy amalgamated with the United Presbyterian Church to become the United Free Church. The first Minister of the united charge was Rev. William Cairns, MA, followed by Rev. John Thomson MA in 1909, by Rev. Archibald Taylor MA in 1919 and finally by Rev James Haggart Clark MA in 1925. Rev. Clark retired in 1950.
In 1929 the UF and the Church of Scotland united nationally and in Abernethy the two churches existed separately until their union in 1951. It was decided to hold church services in the North, or Parish Church and the former UF Church was then leased to a business firm which used it as a furniture store.
The railway network reached Abernethy in 1848 during the transport revolution and the Lindores to Abernethy branch of the line on 17th May 1848. At that time it was possible to travel to Edinburgh, through Glenfarg, by train and ferry. The railway through Glenfarg was lifted in 1970. In 1955, Abernethy station closed to passengers.
1956 the station closed to all goods, but retained the coal sidings.
James Roy Court used to be the village’s primary school, the building opened on 2nd December, 1874. In December 1909, work began on the re-construction of two new classrooms and a new double window was inserted into the wall of the block on the right hand side of the building. This work was completed by 10th January, 1910, allowing the children a few days extension to their New Year holiday. On 15th May, 1911, the Infant Division of the School was transferred temporarily to the Williamson Hall to allow construction of an upper storey above the infant room. The Infant Division room re-opened on 11th September 1911 and by December of that year the upper storey extension for Manual work was opened
From the Dominie’s log Two cases of whooping-cough reported in Infant Room to-day. Several absentees in same Division through colds.
Wretched weather has prevailed all week. Colds are prevalent in Infant room where attendance has been 76%.
Senior classes are better and attendance for whole school works out at 89.1%
Headmaster off duty owing to his having to attend a funeral in Dundee
The present week has been another of good progress. Attendance has been very good, working out at 94.2%.
There are still cases of irregularity, however, that of the girl ................ In the supplementary Class being a glaring case of exploiting child labour.
in 1907 Richard Burdon Haldane, 1st Viscount Haldane, Secretary of State for War addressed the people of Abernethy. He informed them, at a public meeting, that the Government was to purchase it’s horseshoes from America, as they were 15% - 20% cheaper than buying from Britain.
NOTABLE PEOPLE WITH THE SURNAME ABERNETHY Alan Abernethy (born 1957), Irish bishop Alexander de Abernethy (died ca. 1315), Scottish magnate ArthurTalmage Abernethy (1872–1956), journalist, theologian, poet; first North Carolina Poet Laureate Bob Abernethy (born 1927), American television journalist Bruce Abernethy (born 1962), Australian rules football player Charles Laban Abernethy (1872–1955), American politician James Abernethy (1814–1896), British civil engineer Jim Abernethy (born 1902), Australian rules footballer Liam Abernethy (born 1929), Irish hurler Lord Abernethy, hereditary title in the Peerage of Scotland John Cameron, Lord Abernethy (born 1938), a Senator of the College of Justice of Scotland Milton A. Abernethy (died 1991), American journalist, magazine editor, business owner, and stockbroker Moira Abernethy (born 1939), South African swimmer Robert Abernethy (born 1971), Australian swimmer
FROM HERE TO THE GOLD MINES IN AUSTRALIA
Thomas Drummond Wanliss (1830 -1923) former proprietor of the Ballarat Star, died in Edinburgh on the 20.4.1923.
Thomas Drummond Wanliss migrated to the Ballarat gold mines from Abernethy in 1850 and later became a community and business leader, author, member ofthe legislative council and founder of the Ballarat Star newspaper.