The Rev Dr David Welsh
Was born in Moffat, the son of a sheep farmer at Earlhaugh and Tweedshaws. He was educated at Moffat Parish School, then the High School in Edinburgh. He studied divinity at the University of Edinburgh and was licensed to preach in 1816. In the 1820s, Welsh was notable for his attempt to forge an alliance between the evangelicals and the Edinburgh Phrenological Society - then at the height of its influence. However, Welsh was outmanoeuvred by George Combe, who prohibited all discussion of religious matters at phrenological meetings. Welsh and his fellow evangelicals then left the society. In 1831 he was appointed professor of ecclesiastical history in the University of Edinburgh. In 1834 he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, his proposer being Sir William Hamilton. Welsh later presided at a major event in 19th-century church history. In 1842 he was Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland therefore being moderator during the critical Disruption of 1843. He then chaired the first General Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland.