Busby, originally called Newmill in 1654, took its name from the thickly wooded area on the banks of the River Cart. It appears as "Bushby" on John Ainslie's map of 1792. "By" is Old Norse for village. Originally Busby only existed on the Lanarkshire side of the river and a plan of 1787 shows an old, ghost village near to Busby Bridge; Maxwell of Williamwood had already enclosed the farms on the plan.

Busby had thriving industries, which included chemical works, cotton mills, a paper mill and bleachfields. By 1854 it was an established and significant, textile village, with a population of over one thousand, whereas Clarkston was described as a "small cluster of houses" (Rambles round Glasgow by Hugh MacDonald, 1854). Today the position is reversed with Clarkston the far larger of the two.

Busby has a number of substantial, sandstone villas, built to house the wealthy, local businessmen: two which are sadly now demolished are Dr. Moore's Home, built in 1799 as a home for the manager of Busby Cotton Mills; and Busby House, the home of Durham Kippen, the owner of a local bleaching works, extended by Alexander Greek Thomson. 


MacDonald, Hugh. (1854). Rambles round Glasgow. Glasgow.

The full text of Rambles round Glasgow can be found on the Electric Scotland website: go to the External website area. It contains chapters on areas within East Renfrewshire, e.g. Eaglesham and Lochgoin, The Earn, Mearns Castle and Moorhouse, Barrhead and Neilston.