Tongland Abbey, a medieval Premonstratensian monastic community, existed here during the Middle Ages. The remains of this may still be seen together with a church, which is in a state of disrepair. The Dee is crossed shortly downriver by Tongland Bridge, a stone arch bridge constructed in 1806 by Thomas Telford.
Since the 1930s, Tongland has been the site of a hydro-electric power station, part of the Galloway Hydro Electric Scheme. The station is open to visitors during the summer months. Slightly earlier, between 1921 and 1922 'Galloway' cars were made in Tongland in a First World War factory.
Since 2004, there have been several construction projects, with the site of a former garage now home to two new houses. There are also several more houses being constructed. In 2006, street lights were installed along the A711 which passes through the village.
- Joe Dobson, co-founder of Interflora was born in Tongland in 1875.
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