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Plant barrows

Burrell Collection Photo Library

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Plant barrows

A pipe-smoking street trader selling plants from a barrow at a market in Calton, early 20th century.

Traders with barrows were once a common sight on the streets of Glasgow, selling everything from books and clothing to fruit, fish and much more. The street traders did not usually own the barrows themselves, but rented them out from barrow hire yards for the day.

Maggie McIver was a street trader who built up her own business hiring barrows to other traders. In 1923 she acquired land between the Gallowgate and London Road in the Calton, and let stances there to local street traders. The market space was originally uncovered and traders continued to operate from rented barrows, and so the market acquired its popular name, "The Barras".

Reference: 140.78.231

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums

barrows, clay pipes, florists, markets, pipe smokers, plant sellers, street traders, The Barras

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