On Thursday 26 September 2013 a most important treasure was unearthed amongst the ruins of Glenlair House. Whilst dismantling the South wall down to the original footings level, a large square stone was removed revealing a square cavity, in which was a glass jar standing upside down. The jar had been sealed with wax, which you will see from the photo has dried out and discoloured, but otherwise the capsule was in perfect condition.
No attempt has yet been made to open the casket and this will only be done under controlled conditions with the guidance of a professional conservator It is however possible to read much of the writing on the outer layer of the papers enclosed, which has allowed us to determine that the capsule was placed there by John Clerk Maxwell on 25 March 1831, written in Roman numerals, (some 50 days before JCM was born) to mark the building of a house at Nether Corsock.
Hand drawn sketches of the house design are clearly visible and there are obviously a number of other documents rolled up within the jar, including what appears to be part of a newspaper. The reason for the house being called Nether Corsock at that time was that clearly there was no dwelling at Glenlair and the Middlebie Estate, owned by John Clerk Maxwell was run from the adjacent farm, Nether Corsock.