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General George Wade

Routes, Roads, Regiments and Rebellions:...
A Brief History of the Life and Work of General George Wade


Scottish Military Roads

There were military roads in Scotland from Roman times, but they became important after the 1715 Jacobite Rising, when a network of roads was built by soldiers
under the command of General George Wade, with bridges built by civilian contractors. These roads linked the Lowlands with a series of forts and barracks designed to deter a further rising. After the 1745 Rising the network was overhauled and much extended by Major William Caulfelld. The military roads were designed as strategic routes for marching troops to military objectives, but many of them formed the basis of civilian routes through the Highlands. After the Napoleonic Wars, roads for mainly military purposes were built from Carlisle to Glasgow and Portpatrick, for Ireland, and from east to west across Lanarkshire. The routes of some military roads are still in use, but in many instances the modern routes diverge from them, though their remains can still be traced.

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