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Falkirk (fŏlˈkûrk) [key], town (1991 pop. 36,372), Falkirk council area, central Scotland, on the Forth and Clyde Canal. The local coal and iron mines have been exhausted, but fireclay is still mined and the metal products industry (aluminium and metal casting) remains important. Light engineering and brewing are also part of the town's economy. Livestock fairs (including the "trysts of Falkirk") have been held for centuries. Carron, to the north, is well known for its ironworks, and Roughcastle, to the west, is the site of the Falkirk Wheel, a modern boat lift connecting the Forth and Clyde with the Union Canal. Grangemouth is Falkirk's port. In the first battle of Falkirk (1298), said to be the first battle in which the longbow was decisive, Edward I and the English defeated the Scots led by Sir William Wallace. In 1746, during the Jacobite uprising, Gen. Henry Hawley was defeated there by Prince Charles Edward and his Highlanders (see Scotland).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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