"In 1853 the Clydesdale Chemical Company, often erroneously called the Cambuslang Oil Company, started in the oil business, and its operation led to one of the most famous lawsuits ever tried by jury. The trial commenced on November 1 1860, and lasted over a week, during which time the services of Great Britain's most eminent chemists were brought into requisition by either one side or the other, their testimony being taken with a view to determining the line of demarkation between shale and coal.
The Clydesdale Chemical Company's works were built at Cambuslang by Brown Brothers and Co., with Bain (on whose estates the works were situated) as sleeping partner. When operations were first commenced, crude oil was produced from Parrot Coal, but the company eventually resorted to the use of Boghead Coal which they retorted by the process known as the Continuous Distillation in Ovens, obtaining by this process a yield of 85 to 90 gallons of 880 specific gravity, crude oil per ton of coal.
Refining operations were also carried out at these works, and everything went along prosperously for about seven years. As the company was using an infringement of Young's patent, it very naturally made every endeavour to prevent the nature of the work being made public; but notwithstanding every precaution being taken, word reached Young's ears of what was going on at those works, and he immediately started a law plea referred to and, being awarded favourable verdict by the jury, he stepped in and relieved the Clydesdale Co. of £6,000 and 3d or 3.5d for every gallon of crude oil manufactured by it.
The result was disastrous to the company, which was completely ruined and Brown Brothers withdrew from the business in 1862; but Bain took Carlile (who had previously been acting as chemist for the company) into partnership, and the new firm carried on the business under the name of Thomas Carlile and Co. until the year 1867, when the work was finally abandoned. "