Articles

Archibald Montgomery Craig (1872-1947)

Donor- Archibald Montgomery Craig (1872-1947)

Painting

(c) Glasgow Museums; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation
Figure 1. © CSG GIC Glasgow Museums Collection.

A Miser- 18th Century German School Accession Number 2367

The painting was donated in 1944. It is unsigned but has been attributed to the eighteenth century German School by Hamish Miles in 1961.1 In addition the National Inventory of Continental and European Paintings gives 1700 as the earliest date and 1800 as the latest date and goes on to say, “The figure of the old man,the embodiment of greed and miserliness,reflects well-known models of Netherlandish tradition ,including those of Rembrandt.”The inscription in the painting,”Haec mea voluptas” means,” this is my obsession.”

Although the painting was donated by Archibald Montgomerie Craig(AMC) it had belonged to his father William Blackburn Craig , a wealthy Glasgow merchant, at least as early as 1902.AMC also donated an 18th Century Scottish tablecloth  dated 1783 or 1788 to Glasgow Museums in September 1925.4

There is no record of the painting  ever having  being exhibited.

Family Background

AMC’s paternal grandfather was James Craig, a wine and spirit merchant, who married Margaret Aitkin Blackburn in 1821.5James Craig had various business premises in Glasgow including 22 Stockwell Street and 9 Miller Street.6They were fairly affluent, living at  such genteel addresses as Abbotsford Place7 and 4 Carlton Place in the Gorbals.8 Carlton Place was begun in 1802, designed by Peter Nicholson and the brainchild of John and David Laurie  who had bought the land on the south side of the river, now known as Laurieston, with the intention of developing an up-market suburb on the south side of the River Clyde.9  James Craig and his family , including AMC’s father William, were living at 4 Carlton Place from at least 1851 to 1861 along with two live-in servants10, an indication of affluence. By 1861 ,William, aged 18, was a clerk, possibly in his father’s business.11

Family Homes to c 1890

Athough AMC  was born at Fordbank House , Lochwinnoch, the Craigs only occupied this house between c 1872 and c1874.12  William Craig and his family followed the path of most wealthy Glasgow merchants, living first of all at various addresses in Glasgow’s New Town, Blytheswood Hill.13 William and Elizabeth’s first home post marriage in 1863 was in West George Street( formerly Camperdown Street) 14.From 1865 to 1871 they lived at 239 St Vincent Street.15

On returning from Renfrewshire they lived at 245 St Vincent Street then c187516 , as Blytheswood Hill was more and more being turned over to business premises, they moved out to the west end of Glasgow to 2  Lancaster Terrace off Great Western Road.17By the time AMC was about nine years old the family were living at 10 Westbourne Terrace18,in a terrace of houses designed by Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson.19

Schooldays

AMC’s father owned 10 x£10 shares in Kelvinside Academy20, a private school which opened in the West End of Glasgow on 21st September 1878 with places for 155 boys.21The Kelvinside Academy Company Limited had a share capital of £15-20,000 in £10 shares.22 In Colin McKay’s History of Kelvinside Academy 1878-1978 there is a photograph of the First Elementary Class 187823 ,one of whom is Arthur Blackburn Craig, AMC’s elder brother.

Figure 2. © Kelvinside Academy

There is also a photograph of the Third Junior Class of 1881 where we find young Archibald Montgomerie Craig aged about eight . He is named in the photograph as ‘Montgomerie’.  Elsewhere in the book we are told that AMC was known as ‘Gummy’ to his classmates.The curriculum in those early  years included shorthand and book-keeping . The reason for this was that most of the pupils then were the sons of business men and were expected to join their father in business at the end of their time at the school rather than go to University.24   Although there is no evidence that Edward, the youngest Craig brother attended Kelvinside Academy, the fact that if three members of one same family attended the school only half the fee was due, might lead us to believe Edward went there too.25

AMC illus 5
Figure 3. © Kelvinside Academy

Family Wealth

According to the 1871 UK census William Blackburn Craig’s occupation was that of “drysalter”, a dealer in gums, dyes and various chemicals. From that period onwards he appears in census records as ‘living on private means’ or a ‘retired drysalter’.26 However the real wealth came from property. His obituary in the Bearsden and Milngavie Herald referred to “ …Mr William Blackburn Craig, well-known in property circles in Glasgow. One of his latest undertakings was the purchase of the valuable ground and the erection of a handsome block of red buildings in course of completion at the corner Buchanan Street and St Vincent Place…”.27 The Valuation Rolls tell us that in 1865 W B Craig was the owner of 5 properties in Glasgow City Centre consisting of three counting houses(Great Clyde Street and St Vincent Street) a warehouse(St Vincent Street) and two stores(St Vincent Street and Fox Street). 28 By 1895 he owned 41 properties in Glasgow City Centre, mostly in St Vincent Street and Virginia Street. These were rented out to a variety of businesses. No 11 Virginia Street was a Gospel Hall. No 63 St Vincent Street-presumably  at street level- was a tea room.29 No 151 St Vincent Street was a branch of the Commercial Bank.30His own main business premises were at various times 63a St Vincent Street  where John  Smiths Bookshop was for many years31 and 147 St Vincent Street.32

Family Homes from c1890

Our donor, AMC, never married and lived most of his life with his family first with his parents and brothers and sisters 33  and latterly with his unmarried or widowed  sisters .34 About 1890 the family moved to ‘Borva’, a substantial house in Middlemuir Road, Lenzie35 , a growing suburb of Glasgow to which many wealthy Glasgow merchants moved when the opening of a railway station made commuting to the city easy.36

AMC illus 6
Figure 4. Borva Middlemuir Road  Lenzie © J M Macaulay

William Blackburn Craig continued to follow the path of many wealthy Glasgow merchants when in 1896 he bought the 836 acre Ballagan Estate near Strathblane in Stirlingshire. Ballagan House was completely renovated and the family moved in around 1897.37 AMC was 18 by this time.

AMC Ballagan House
Figure 5. Ballagan House Strathblane © Norma Farquar 2005

Earning a living.1891-1914

According to the 1891 UK Census AMC was an accounts clerk, one presumes in the family business. He first appears in the Glasgow Post Office Directory in 1897 as an iron merchant ‘at Arthur Blackburn Craig , iron merchant’ at 63a St Vincent Street. Thus he was working with or for his elder brother. He remained there until 1903. 38 William Blackburn Craig died in February 190339 and AMC became  one of the trustees of Ballagan Estate along with his younger brother Edward and his three sisters. Strangely, Arthur Blackburn Craig, the eldest son, is not mentioned in the Will of William Blackburn Craig either as a beneficiary or as a trustee.40 Had Arthur already received his share in the family wealth, perhaps to set up in business for himself or is there some other explanation for the eldest son not to be mentioned?

Arthur had married Mary Balfour Robertson on 19th June 1900. The wedding took place at the Windsor Hotel, St Vincent Street. The wedding was carried out under the rites of the Episcopal Church.41  According to the 1901 UK census Arthur and his bride lived at ‘Beechmount’ Dalkeith Avenue Dumbreck, which was the home of Mary’s parents, Mr and Mrs Anthony Robertson. Anthony Roberston was an iron master42, which was also Arthur Blackburn Craig’s occupation at the time of his marriage.43

Had there been a family feud? Arthur’s sister Williamina was one of the witness at the wedding so some of the family were there.44 There is no evidence as to  why Arthur was not mentioned in his father’s will.

AMC became head of the household at Ballagan in 1903. Also living in the house were his mother, Elizabeth Samson Craig until her death in 1908 45, his younger brother Edward who was an accountant and his three sisters, Elizabeth, Williamina and Margaret.46

In 1903 AMC joined H F Docherty and Company-gas and steam heating and appliance manufacturers of Robertson Street.47 He remained with Docherty and Company until around 1906.48 During this period AMC and HF Docherty registered three patents:-

1903     Improvements in Gas Cooking Attachments for Kitchen Ranges

1905     Improvements in Apparatus for the Production of Acetylene Gas

1905     A New or Improved Generator for the Production of Acetylene Gas 49

Perhaps HF Docherty and Company manufactured this equipment for their customers but there is no information available to support this.

From about 1906 until 1914 AMC was in business for himself as a ‘bakery utensil manufacturer’ of whom there were many in Glasgow at that time.50 He had premises in St Enoch Square, then Queen Street, then from 1911 in Springfield Court between Buchanan Street and Queen Street.

In 1912 AMC put his name to another patent registration-Improvements in Egg Whisks.51 Robert McDiamid was the other name on the application. This was possibly a business or work colleague.From the technical drawing it appears that the egg whisk was for industrial rather than domestic use.

AMC’s  elder brother Arthur was also operating his business as an iron merchant from the Springfield Court Premises from about 1910.Whatever the reason for not being mentioned in their father’s Will the two brothers appear to have been on good terms.52

The Saturday Soldier 1890-1903

Around 1890 at the age of 17 AMC became what was often referred to as a ‘Saturday Soldier’. He joined what would be known today as the Territorial Army. He joined the 5th Volunteer Battalion (Glasgow) Highland Light Infantry.53 This battalion is better known as ‘The Glasgow Highlanders’.

In 1859, after the Crimean War had ended, the Government decided   a civilian Volunteer Force was needed in time of war when regular forces were deployed overseas. Regiments were formed at county level with no connection to the regular army.54

In 1868 a group of Glasgow migrants from the Highlands formed such a regiment. It was called the 105th Lanarkshire (Glasgow Highland) Rifle Volunteers.55

The 105th wore the Black Watch kilt and cap badge at that point.56 In 1881 Secretary of State for War Childers put through a series of reforms which linked the Volunteer Defence Forces more closely to regiments of the regular British army.57 The 105th was allied to the Highland Light Infantry and became the 10th Lanarkshire Rifles. In 1887 this was changed to the 5th Volunteer Battalion(Glasgow) HLI in . 58 Headquarters was  81 Greendyke Street near Glasgow Green.59

5. THE PIBROCH VOL1 NO3 DEC 1897 P11 HEADQUARTERS GREENDYKE ST (002)
Figure 6. Glasgow Highlanders Headquarters Greendyke Street The Pibroch 1897 ©CSG CIC Glasgow Museums and Libraries  Collections: The Mitchell Library, Special Collections

The 5th VB was distinct from the other HLI volunteer battalions because they continued to wear the Black Watch kilt rather than the Mackenzie tartan trews of the HLI. They did have their own cap badge by this time.60As well as regular drills and rifle shooting out at the Rifle Range at Patterton61, there was annual camp which , according to the The Pibroch, the annual report of the Glasgow Highlanders published each December from 1895, was much enjoyed by the volunteers.

3. THE PIBROCH VOL1 NO2 DEC 1896 P28 IN THE FIELD (002)
Figure 7. The Annual Camp  The Pibroch 1896 © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums and Libraries  Collections: The Mitchell Library, Special Collections

An annual gathering each December at St Andrews Halls and one can imagine the good social life that would go along with the serious purpose of the organisation. In time of war many of the volunteers went on active service,in the South African War for example. In fact in 1900 the Annual Ball was cancelled and only a concert was held in order to respect those of the Highland Brigade who had fallen at Magersfontein.62

4. THE PIBROCH VOL1 NO2 DEC 1896 P34 REGIMENTAL GATHERING (002)
Figure 8. Pibroch 1896 © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums and Libraries Collections : The Mitchell Library ,Special Collections

The 5th VB had companies A-M all over the city. AMC joined M Company based at Hillhead.63  This Company was commanded by Alexander Duff Menzies. AMC’s   brother Arthur was already in M Company as Colour Sergeant.64 The Pibroch-the annual record of The Glasgow Highlanders- enables us to follow  AMC’s career as a Saturday Soldier.

1. THE PIBROCH VOL1 NO1 DEC 1895 FRONT COVER (002)
Figure 9. First edition of The Pibroch December 1895© CSG CIC Glasgow Museums and Libraries Collections : The Mitchell Library Special Collections

In 1895 AMC was promoted to Lance Sergeant and in 1897 to Sergeant.65

On 21st June 1897 both AMC and his brother Arthur took part in Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Parade in Glasgow.66

6. THE PIBROCH VOL1 NO3 DEC 1897 P19 DIAMOND JUBILEE DETACHMENT (002)
Figure 10. The Pibroch 1897©  CSG CIC Glasgow Museums and Libraries Collections: The Mitchell Library Special Collections

In July 1987 they both attended a summer camp at Aldershot for all volunteer regiments to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee.67

8. THE PIBROCH VOL1 NO3 DEC 1897 P31 THE REGIMENT AT ALDERSHOT (002)
Figure 11 The Glasgow Highlanders Sergeants at Aldershot July 1897 The Pibroch 1897 ©CSG CIC Glasgow Museums and Libraries Collection: Mitchell Library,Special Collections

For some reason AMC was demoted to Lance Sergeant again in 1899. The reason is not evident.68 Arthur resigned in 1899, the reason given is ‘expiry of term of service  and other causes’ one of which may have been that he was due to marry  the following year. AMC served until 1903, still as Lance Sergeant .On resignation he was given a special certificate ‘For long and good service’. AMC does not appear to have distinguished himself in any way-winning rifle shooting competitions etc- but appears to have given good service.69 Perhaps he resigned because of heavier business and family duties. His father had died in February 190370 and he was now head of the household. Also the volunteer forces were changing. The annual camp was shortly to be lengthened to two weeks and was to be compulsory, while the training was to brought much more in line with that of the regular forces.71 AMC was 31 by this time and perhaps he thought he had been a Saturday Soldier long enough.

War Service 1914-16

By the beginning of World War One in August 1914 the volunteer forces had been reorganised yet again.72 In 1908 the reforms of Richard Haldane,Secretary of State for War, had established the Territorial Force (TF) from the old volunteer brigades. In Scotland the TF consisted of 2 Divisions (1) Highland Division and (2) Lowland Division . AMC’s former battalion became the 9th (Glasgow Highland )Battalion HLI Territorial Force and was in the Lowland Division. The conditions of service had been altered from 1908.The men now had to complete 10 drills and a musketry course. The annual camp was now two weeks and was compulsory. This meant the entire annual holiday and more for many men in Glasgow and elsewhere. Even though many employers cooperated and the men were paid, a lot of good men resigned, either unwilling or unable to make this commitment. The weakness in the system, however was that no man in the Territorial Force was obliged to serve overseas.73

The 9th (Glasgow Highland)HLI now had eight companies-A-H and its HQ  and Drill Hall was still 81 Greendyke Street. It was probably there that our donor reported when on 9th September 1914 at the age 41 he enlisted in 2/9th Battalion(Glasgow) HLI-still known as the Glasgow Highlanders.74

Along with his fellow volunteers AMC was sent to Lochend Camp  Dunfermline. According to army records AMC (Service no 2989) was five foot  six inches tall with grey eyes and grey hair. His occupation is given as that of commercial traveller .75 In October 1914 he was promoted to sergeant .76 On 24th October AMC signed Army Form E624 whereby he volunteered for overseas service. It appears that the volunteers in Dunfermline had been paraded before the commanding officer, Colonel W Fleming, for the purpose of urging them to commit themselves to overseas service, which most of them did .77

The 2/9th Battalion (Glasgow) HLI embarked for France in November 1914.78 However AMC did not go with them. No reason is forthcoming at that point but in August 1915 we find AMC in Craigleith Military Hospital  in Edinburgh suffering from heart problems which had begun to show themselves in June 1915 . The medical report of 4th August 1915 states that he was suffering from myocardial disease which manifested itself in shortness of breath and occasional pains in his chest when marching etc. He was recommended for light duties.79

On 18th August 1915 AMC was transferred to 9th Scottish Provisional Battalion, Company A which was a reserve battalion used for coastal defence  formed in May 1915 of home service men. The 9th Scottish was a battalion of the 1st Provisional Brigade. The 1st Brigade was moved down to Kent in June 1915 and  the 9th Scottish Provisional Battalion was stationed in Deal .80  There is no information as to whether AMC was in Deal, one can only presume that he was with his battalion.

What is known is    from 3rd September to 12th October 1915 AMC was a patient in Newcastle on Tyne Workhouse Military Hospital.  His medical records state that he although he has myocardial disease the reason for his stay in Newcastle was that he was also suffering from a  disease which was very common in the army at that time .   AMC was discharged on 12th October 1915, presumably to go back to his battalion.81 In November 1915 he was promoted to Acting Company Master Sergeant of C Company. 82

There were several changes to the organisation and names of regiments and battallions of the British Army during 1915 and it has proved difficult to track the movements of AMC and the 9th Scottish Provisional Battalion during the period following  AMC’s stay in Newcastle. However, by September 1916 he was at the 2nd Scottish Command Depot near Randalstown  County Antrim in Northern Ireland. 83

Sir Alfred Keogh, Director of Army Medical Services, concerned about the availability of beds in UK Hospitals , set up four large convalescent camps in Blackpool, Epsom, Dartford and Eastbourne. This system was further refined early in 1916 by the establishment of over twenty Command Depots for the rehabilitative training of wounded soldiers who were too fit for a convalescent hospital but not fit enough to return to the front. One of these Depots was at Shanes Park near Randalstown, County Antrim in the grounds of Lord O’Neill’s Estate .84 Presumably AMC was there to assist in the retraining of troops as he had already been declared unfit for duty abroad .85

It was from here on 8th September 1916, after two years, that AMC was discharged from military service at his own request. The only reason given for his discharge was  ‘Termination  of Engagement ’.86 Perhaps it was AMC’s health problems or his age-he was 43 by this time. The Military Service Act of January 1916  had ended the distinction between home and  foreign service and all Territorial Force soldiers became liable for overseas service but they had to be medically fit, which AMC was not. Also the age limit for conscription was 41 so perhaps it was a combination of his health and his age which led him to request his discharge.87

Home Again-Glasgow 1916-c1921

At some point in 1914 our donor’s three sisters, Williamina, Elizabeth and Margaret, had left Ballagan House and became tenants of  Woodhall House , Kirkintilloch Road ,Bishopbriggs. 88  Ballagan House was rented to a farmer, John Paton. 89 Perhaps this was done because AMC, the head of the household, had volunteered for the army and the ladies wanted to live somewhere smaller(though Woodhall was a sizeable house ) and perhaps nearer to other members of the family. Younger brother  Edward and his wife lived in nearby Lenzie in a house called ‘Craigmillar’ .90 The Ballagan Estate was eventually advertised for sale in November 1917 .91 It was sold   to Colonel Peter Charles Macfarlane ,shipowner.92 The purchase price was £15,925.00. 93

It was to Woodhall House that AMC went after his discharge .94 According to the Glasgow Post Office Directories up to 1921 AMC  was a commercial agent based at 63a St Vincent Street.After   1921 there is no trace of AMC in Glasgow again until 1931 except in 1925 when he donated an eighteenth century Scottish tablecloth to Glasgow Museums95 giving his address as 9 Kelvin Drive. The  three Craig sisters had moved to 9 Kelvin Drive in the west end of Glasgow around 1922. 96

Where did he go? 1921-1931

AMC’s brother Arthur and wife Mary had moved to London around 1918 where Arthur set up in business as a merchant  in Chancery Lane 97 with a home at 24 Regent Court Park Road in  Westminster 98,a prestigious address  and later as a land agent at 8 Blenheim Street Mayfair,SW1.99  Arthur and Mary spent the rest of their lives in London at various prestigious addresses including Belsize Park Hampstead, Baker Street100, Courtfield Gardens  Kensington101 and from c about 1938 at 52 South Edwards Square Kensington 102 where Arthur died in on 20th August 1947. 103

Did AMC go down to London to join his brother? There are a few  tantalising yet inconclusive pieces of evidence that suggest he may have gone to London. In the London Telephone Directories of 1922,1923,1925 and 1927 there are entries for an A. Montgomerie Craig  in Chancery Lane where his brother Arthur was in business at that time and then in Dane Street Holborn. 104 As we have seen   AMC was probably known as Montgomerie rather than Archibald since his school days. Did his sisters move to the much smaller house at 9 Kelvin Drive because their brother was moving to London? We can only speculate. These slight pieces of evidence alone cannot allow us to say definitely that these London Post Office entries refer to our donor. So his whereabouts remain a mystery until further sources of evidence can be accessed.

Later Life 1931-1947.

AMC re -appears as a Glasgow resident in 1931 living with his sisters at 9 Kelvin Drive. He was about 60 years old by this time.105 There is no evidence that he worked again after his return to Glasgow. 106 As we know he donated the painting The Miser to Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in 1944. He died on May 26th 1947 of chronic myocarditis   at the age of 74. 107 He was buried in the family grave at Glasgow Necropolis which had been designed for his father in 1903 by Glasgow architect James Thompson (1835-1905). 108

AMC illus 22
Figure 12. Craig Family Memorial Glasgow Necropolis-  Epsilon. Copyright J M Macaulay

References and Notes

  1. Miles, Hamish Catalogue of Dutch,Flemish and Netherlandish Paintings in the Glasgow Art Gallery.  Glasgow Corporation 1961. Vol I p59
  2. The National Inventory of European Paintings. http://www.vads.ac.uk
  3. Label on reverse of painting. GMRC object file
  4. GMRC Object File 1925/2
  1. http://www.scotlandspeople.go.uk/opr/marriages
  2. Glasgow Post Office Directories 1824-1829
  3. UK Census 1841
  4. UK Census 1851
  5. Foreman, Carole Lost Glasgow:Glasgow’s Lost Architectural Heritage. Birlinn. 2002  pp 88-89
  6. UK Census 1861
  7. as above
  1. www.scotlandsplaces.gov.uk Land Ownership Commission 1872-3
  2.  McKean, Charles et al – Central Glasgow: An illustrated Architectural Guide.   Pillans and Wilson 1989. pp116-118
  3. Glasgow Post Office Directory 1863-4
  4. as above 1865-71
  5. as above 1875-6
  6. 17.as above 1876-7
  7. UK Census 1881
  8.  www.e.architect.co.uk/Greek-Thomson,
  1. Will of William Blackburn Craig. www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk/wills
  2. Mackay, Colin H. History of Kelvinside Academy 1878-1978.  Kelvinside  Academy 1978
  3. as above p16
  4. op cit Mackay pp32,33
  5. op cit Mackayp26
  6. op cit Mackay Chapter 1
  1. UK Census 1871-1901
  2. Bearsden and Milngavie Herald 13 /02/ 1903
  3. http://www.scotlandspeople.go.uk/valuation rolls 1865
  4. as above 1895
  5. as above 1885
  6. Glasgow Post office Directories 1871-1901
  7. op cit 30 above
  1. UK Census 1881-1911
  2. Glasgow Post Office Directories 1912-21; Glasgow Electoral Rolls 1931-1947
  3. Glasgow Post Office Directories 1890-1895
  4. The Edinburgh and Glasgow Railway Company opened a station in 1848 to serve the town of Kirkintilloch,naming it Kirkintilloch Junction. The building of houses around the station for Glasgow commuters began in the 1850s but the housing and population boom really began in the 1870s when piped and running water was made available to the villas. The North British Locomotive Company renamed the station Lenzie Junction in June 1890. http://www.edic.co.uk Local History and Heritage.
  5. http://www.strathblane.org.uk/history/Ballagan House
  1. Glasgow Post Office Directory 1903/4
  2. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk/statutory deaths
  3. as above/statutory wills. William Blackburn Craig
  4. as above /statutory marriages-marriage certificate
  5. as above
  6. op cit ref 41
  7. as above
  8. op cit ref 39
  9. UK Census 1901,1911
  10. op cit ref 38
  11. Glasgow Post Office Directory 1906/7
  12. Espacenet Patent Search. http://worldwide.espacenet.com
  13. Glasgow Post Office Directories 1905-14
  14. op cit ref 49
  15. Glasgow Post Office Directories 1910-14
  1. http://www.ancestry.co.uk British Army Pension Records 1914-20. Attestation Papers Archibald Montgomerie Craig
  2. http://www.scottishmilitary articles.org.uk
  3. The Pibroch December 1895. Introduction to first issue by commanding officer.
  4. http://www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glasgow Highlanders
  5. op cit ref 54
  6. as above
  7. Glasgow Post Office Directory 1892-3
  8. op cit ref 56
  9. op cit ref 59
  10. The Pibroch December 1900
  11. The Pibroch 1895
  12. as above
  13. as above
  14. The Pibroch 1897
  15. as above
  16. The Pibroch 1899
  17. The Pibroch 1903
  18. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk/statutorydeaths
  19. http://www.wikipedia.org/Territorial Force
  1. The Territorial and Reserve Forces Act 1907,also known as the Haldane reforms after Richard Haldane, Secretary of State for War, transferred existing volunteer and yeomanry units into a new Territorial Force where all units were attached to regiment of the British Army.
  2. Glasgow City Archives TD366/3/2. Glasgow Highlanders, Notes on Battalion 1908-18.
  3. as above
  4. http://www.ancestry.co.uk/ British Army Pension Records 1914-20
  5. as above
  6. op cit ref 73
  7. as above 79. op cit ref 75
  8. wikipedia.org/wiki/221st Mixed Brigade
  9. op cit ref 75
  10. as above
  11. as above
  12. The Long Long Trail. http://www.1914-18.net/commandposts
  13. op cit ref 75. Army Form B179. Medical Report on an Invalid
  14. as above Army FormB268A Proceedings on Discharge During The Period of Embodiment.
  15. Military Service Act 1916. Op cit ref 85 /msa1916
  1. http://www.scotlandspeople.co.uk/valuationrolls 1915
  2. Stirling County Archives. SC4/3/40. Stirling County Valuation Rolls 1916/1917/1918.
  3. op cit ref 88
  4. Stirling Advertiser and Journal 15/11/1917
  5. op cit ref 89 1918/19
  6. Stirling Advertiser and Journal 15/11/1917
  7. Glasgow Post Office Directory 1916/17
  8. Glasgow Museums Accessions. Object File 1925/2
  9. Glasgow Electoral Roll 1922
  10. http://www.ancestry.co.uk/British Telephone Directories 1880-1894
  11. http://www.ancestry.co.uk/London Electoral Roll 1918
  12. op cit ref 97 1934
  13. op cit ref 97 1936
  14. op cit ref 98 1936
  15. op cit ref 98 1938-48
  16. http://www.ancestry.co.uk/wills and probate
  17. op cit ref 97
  18. Glasgow Electoral Role 1931
  19. as above 1931-47
  20. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk/statutory deaths. Death certificate of Archibald Montgomerie Craig
  21. http://www.kinnairdhouse.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

Alexander Macphail M.D.Glas., F.R.F.P.S

In June, 1927, Dr Alexander Macphail gave Iona, White Sands of Iona, by George Huston, to Glasgow museums. (1)

GL_GM_1708
© CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection

Alexander Macphail was born on 31 August 1872 to Janet Macphail nee Merry and her husband Dougal Macphail(2). They lived at 185 Hill Street, Garnet Hill, Glasgow. He was educated at Garnet Hill School, Partick Academy and Hamilton Crescent in Glasgow (3).After his father died, in 1887, he lived with his older brother Donald, a general Practitioner ,and his young family in Coatbridge.(4) In 1890, he matriculated in the medical faculty at Glasgow University and graduated (with high commendation) four years later. While still a student he edited the Glasgow University magazine ((GUM). He was a member of the Kelvin Jubilee students committee.(5)

Shortly after graduating, he took a post as surgeon on the s.s.Clan Mackenzie, sailing between the ports of Columbia and Suez. On the ship he encountered a case of confluent smallpox in a Lascar seaman. He wrote this up in the Lancet (6).

His first appointment was a demonstrator in the Anatomy Department at Glasgow University, a post he held until 1900. In 1900, he became Dean of the St Mungo’s Medical School, based at the Glasgow Royal infirmary in the east end of the city, a post he held until 1907. (7)

In 1907, London and Anatomy beckoned and he took up a post as lecturer in Anatomy at Charing Cross Hospital and King’s College, London. In 1912 he moved to St Bartholomew’s as lecturer in Anatomy a post he held until 1922.(8) During the First World War, he was a Captain in the RA MC attached to the ninth Battalion Highland Light Infantry .(9) In 1922, he proceeded MD at Glasgow University. His thesis was entitled “Historical and other notes on the Administration of the Anatomy Act “and is in the Glasgow University library. (10)

alecport
Dr Macphail. British Medical Journal 10 Septmber 1938. RCPS Glasgow. (Elliot and Fry)

In 1922, he was appointed HM Inspector of Anatomy for England and Wales (11) and a medical officer in the Department of Health.y The obituary in the British Medical Journal gives full acknowledgement of the manner in which he undertook the task. After the scandals of the early 1800s, the Anatomy Act of 1832 undertook the provision of bodies for dissection in medical schools. After World War I, the arrangements for obtaining such subjects had broken down and medical schools were facing a difficult situation. The Ministry of Health asked the Boards of Guardians for their cooperation in allowing unclaimed bodies of inmates in institutions to be released as subjects for dissection. (12) Tact and diplomacy were required and Dr Macphail exhibited both; an extra obituary in the Lancet (13) talked of” that rare combination of refinement and gentleness with moral courage and on occasion righteous indignation” which he showed. Prof FG Parsons told in the British Medical Journal(13) of Dr Macphail’s wish that his own body go to Oxford to be dissected. “Macphail felt that until an anatomist had himself been dissected, we should have no answer to the demagogues who accused us of cutting up the friendless poor”. Thus did he practice what he preached.

During his working life he served Anatomy in many roles. He was Chairman of the Board of Studies in Human Anatomy, University of London: Secretary and Vice President of the Anatomical Society of Great Britain and Ireland (15). He published in the Journal of Anatomy.

His recreations are listed as painting and music. He was a water colourist and exhibited at the Ministry of Health exhibitions (16). In 1934, (16) he was appointed Professor of Anatomy at the Royal Academy in London (the first Professor of Anatomy at the Royal Academy was William Hunter, another Glasgow man).(17) This involved giving 10 lectures a year to students in October and November. This was an appointment of which he was very proud.

Dr Macphail’s life reflects his upbringing so it is pertinent that his father was a native of Mull and a well-known Gaelic bard. The choice of painting to donate to Glasgow museums must have been influenced by his family origins.

References

  1. Minutes of Glasgow City Council June 1927
  2. National Records of Scotland Statutory Births 1872
  3. Who Was Who 1929-1940
  4. National Records of Scotland Census 1891
  5. Who Was Who 1929-1940
  6. The Lancet 1986 ;June20   A case of confluent smallpox in a lascar seaman
  7. British Medical Journal 1938; Sep 10: 600
  8. Op cit
  9. http://www.archives.gla.uk/honour/index
  10. Glasgow University library
  11. British Medical journal 1922; 2 :787
  12. British Medical Journal 1938; Sep 10: 600
  13. The Lancet 1938; Oct 15:922
  14. British Medical Journal 1938; Sep 10: 600
  15. British Medical Journal 1938; Sep 10: 601
  16. The Lancet 1938; Oct 15:922
  17. The Times, July 03,1934; p9

 

Dugald Macphail

Dugald MacPhail, the Bard, was from Mull, from the parish of Strathcoil living at Derrychullin Farm. He was born in 1819. His family had lived in Glen Forsa for many years (1 ).He married Janet Merry at Tarasay on the 23 August 1853.(2) His first son, Donald, was born there. (3) He left Mull shortly afterwards. He was initially a contractor but he studied   architecture and later became a   master of works. A devout Presbyterian, he joined the Free Church following the Disruption.(4)  His movements can be followed using the places where his children were born.(5 ) The family moved to Newcastle. (6) While there, he wrote the Gaelic song An T-lanmullach (7)which has been called the anthem of Mull. This is probably best known in the translation used by Sir Hugh Roberton and the Orpheus choir “O Isle of Mull, Isle of Joy Beloved”. He then moved to work for the Duke of Westminster as master of works in Shaftesbury where he lived at 1 Church yard (8) and the family had a servant. He moved back to Scotland, to Edinburgh and then to Glasgow. The family home was in Glasgow where Alexander was born (9) but in 1871, he is a lodger at 16 Gladstone Terrace Edinburgh.(10 )In the 1881 census(11) the family are in Glasgow without him so one can surmise that this was the stable family home and he moved with his work. He is at various times found in parish registers and voters rolls(12 ) in Edinburgh and in Glasgow. He died in 1887(13) in Partick in Glasgow. But he is buried in New Monklands Cemetery in Coatbridge, where it is said his firstborn grandson was buried.(14 )

His sons and daughters were well educated. Three sons, other than Alexander, were doctors. Donald was a General Practioner in Coatbridge(15 ): John was a Physician and Surgeon in Barnsley(16 ) : Rev James Merry Macphail was a missionary in India and died there. (17 )His daughters were schoolteachers. All bear witness to their upbringing in a religious and educated household.

monument 001
Thanks to Harry Davidson, Arran

In 1929, at Tarasay, a monument was constructed from the stones of his old cottage(18). It was recently refurbished by public subscription. It stands as a lasting monument to the Bard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

  1. Macleod M C Dugald Macphail in Modern Gaelic Bards pp136-152. Stirling, 1908
  2. Ancestry
  3. Op cit
  4. Op cit
  5. Op cit
  6. Macleod M C Dugald Macphail in Modern Gaelic Bards pp136-152. Stirling, 1908
  7. English census 1861
  8. National Records of Scotland Statutory Births 1872
  9. National Records of Scotland Statutory census 1871
  10. National Records of Scotland Statutory census 1881
  11. National Records of Scotland Statutory valuation rolls
  12. National Records of Scotland Statutory deaths 1887
  13. Gazeteer for Scotland
  14. Macleod M C Dugald Macphail in Modern Gaelic Bards pp136-152. Stirling, 1908
  15. National Records of Scotland census 1891
  16. English census 1901
  17. Scottish National Probate Index. Wills and confirmations
  18. The Oban Times 2017 November 20

Marc A Béra (1914-1990)

Introduction

On 30th June 1948, M Marc A. Béra of the Institut Français d’Ecosse, 13 Randolph Crescent Edinburgh presented Kelvingrove Gallery with an oil painting named Apres la Guerre painted by Lucien Simon[1]. The name of the painting has since been translated into English as After the War and it is now known by this name in The Oil Paintings in Public Ownership series of catalogues and also in ART UK©.

The painting is shown below in Fig.1.

After the War painted by Lucien Simon (1861-1945)

Simon, Lucien, 1861-1945; After the War
Fig. 1 Simon, Lucien; After the War; © CSG GIC Glasgow Museums Collection. http://www.artuk.org/artworks/after-the-war-86073

The office of Institut Français d’Ecosse [2] in Edinburgh was contacted and I learned that our donor Marc A. Béra had been its First Director in 1946. A further search on the Internet revealed an article in the Scotsman of 22nd June 2002 which gave the address of the French Institute in Edinburgh. [3] An extract from that article is printed below:

HEROES of the ‘French resistance are to reunite in Edinburgh tomorrow to mark the anniversary of a safe house opened by their country’s most famous Second World War general, Charles de Gaulle. The building in Regent Terrace, now home to the French Consul General, was opened by General de Gaulle in 1942 as a place for members of the Free French movement to recuperate between missions. After the war, the French government declared that the house was to be the permanent residence of its representative in Scotland. During the conflict, the building was particularly popular with members of the French naval forces, and tomorrow senior members of the French Admiralty will join resistance heroes at a special anniversary celebration organised by the Consul General of France for Scotland, Michel Roche.

There has always been a strong link between France and Scotland. War time was very difficult and it was vital at that time to stress the importance of historical links, because the Free French had to impose their existence on the world’s attention. We had long-term links with the Scots, but it is easy to forget about such connections when things are going well. But it is in difficult times of war that the strength of these connections is really tested.
said Mr Roche.

Marc André Béra (1914-1990)

Marc A Béra was born in Paris in 1914 and studied and graduated from the prestigious l’Ecole normale supérieure in Paris in 1935. He became the first Director of the Institut Français d’Ecosse in Edinburgh [4] when it opened in November 1946. He married the celebrated pianist Nadia Tagrine (1917-2003), whom he had met when she was touring in Scotland in 1947. They had two children. Their son, Michel Béra had become a mathematician and their daughter, Nathalie Béra-Tagrine, a pianist, who was as equally celebrated as her mother and often performed with her.

He stayed in Edinburgh until 1952. From 1953 to 1957, he was appointed Director of the Centre Culturel de Royaumont which was an Abbey in France built in the thirteenth century. It was partly destroyed during the French Revolution and had gone through several transformations. During the First World War, the family who owned the site made it available to the Scottish Women’s Hospital, which cared for more than 10,000 wounded soldiers between 1915 and 1919. Later, in the 1950s, it became a cultural centre.

Under our donor’s directorship, Royaumont established music, literature and philosophy firmly at the heart of the Abbey. This was exactly as Henry Goüin, who was the owner of the Royaumont estate had wished as he once remarked ‘a meeting place where attention is focused entirely on the mind and the intellect’. [5]

Our donor was an extraordinary man of his time. He made a colossal number of contributions during his life and most of them related to British scientists, authors and philosophers. In 1990 Marc A Béra was listed as Maître de Conférences at the l’Ecole polytechnique and l’Ecole des Sciences politiques de Paris – an important position in these two very prestigious institutions.

It is important to mention here that, apart from the contributions he made in the fields of literature, music, general art and science while he was living in France and Scotland, he also became a specialist in the works of two very important British scientists of the twentieth century.  They were Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947) and James Gerald Crowther (1899–1983). Alfred North Whitehead was a British mathematician and a philosopher known for his work in mathematical logic and the philosophy of science. [6] His most notable work in these fields is the three-volume Principia Mathematica (1910–13), which he wrote with his former student Bertrand Russell.

On the other hand, J.G. Crowther was Britain’s very first official science correspondent. [7] During World War II, as Director of Science for the British Council, he furthered international links between scientists, which he thought could be a model for peace and cooperation between nations.

Royaumont Abbey

As mentioned earlier Royaumont Abbey played an important part in the life of our donor Marc A Bera. Therefore, it is appropriate to give some more information about it. Scotland has a strong connection with the Royaumont Abbey [8] which was built between the years 1228-1235 for the Cistercian order of monks, which was dissolved during the French Revolution in 1789. From 1914-1918 the Abbey was turned into a hospital. The Abbey was owned by the Goüin family from 1905 and when the war started, they made the site available to the Scottish Women’s Hospitals (SWH).  The SWH was founded by Dr Elsie Maud Inglis [9] (1864-1917) who was a remarkable person in her own right [10]. She was born in India to British parents and was educated privately. She was then enrolled in Dr Sophia Jex-Blake’s newly opened Edinburgh School of Medicine for Women and completed her training under Sir William Macewen at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary. She qualified as a licentiate of both the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in Edinburgh, and the Faculty of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow in 1892 – a remarkable achievement for women in those times.

A little anecdote relating to Dr Inglis’s life is as follows. During World War I, Dr Elsie Maud Inglis approached the Royal Army Medical Corps to offer them a ready-made Medical Unit staffed by qualified women. However, the War Office told her ‘go home and sit still’ [11]. It was, instead, the French government that took up her offer and the first hospital was based at the Abbey of Royaumont which worked under the direction of the French Red Cross.

In 1918, the Helensburgh born Scottish artist Norah Neilson Gray [12], went to Royaumont and served as a voluntary aid detachment nurse at one of the ten hospitals run by the SWH. She was also doing some paintings in her spare time. It should be mentioned here that she was commissioned by the Imperial War Museum to record the staff and the patients at the hospital in her paintings for their collection.

 

Gray, Norah Neilson, 1882-1931; A Belgian Refugee
Fig. 2  Gray, Norah Neilson; A Belgian Refugee; © CSG GIC Glasgow Museums Collection. http://www.artuk.org/artworks/a-belgian-refugee-84289

Norah Neilson Gray, who was also one of the painters known as the Glasgow Girls, [5] painted very interesting works during the war. As early as 1916, she had painted a sensitive portrait of a Belgian Refugee (see Fig 2. Above) who had come to live in Glasgow when his country was invaded by the Germans. The painting of the Refugee shown above won the Bronze Medal in Paris 1921. Another one of the paintings she made Hôpital Auxillaire d’Armee 301-_Abbaye de Royaumont is often displayed in the Helensburgh library and it is depicted below in Fig3.

Gray, Norah Neilson, 1882-1931; Hopital Auxiliaire d'Armee 301 - Abbaye de Royaumont
Fig.3  Gray, Norah Neilson; Hopital Auxiliaire d’Armee 301 – Abbaye de Royaumont; Argyll and Bute Council; http://www.artuk.org/artworks/hopital-auxiliaire-darmee-301-abbaye-de-royaumont-163952

The other painting that Nora Neilson Gray made in Royaumont is called The Scottish Women’s Hospital and it is in the Imperial War Museum [14].

Conclusions

Our donor, Marc André Béra was a great specialist of Britain (he was agrégé d’anglais).[15] He was a shining example of a French intellectual and was a very competent person in many areas of literature, science and art to mention just three areas of human endeavour. He had made translations from the English Language to French of many plays by Shakespeare as well as works of many scientific articles and books. He also translated works of other scientists (i.e. by J. G. Crowther) and in addition to these, he wrote many books about various subjects himself.

A list of most widely held works by Marc André Béra is given in Reference [16] where his contributions at various dates in his life are listed.

Marc André Béra and his wife Nadia remained married for nearly 40 years until Marc André Béra died on 31st March 1990.

Acknowledgements

I should like to thank my colleague Caroline Steel and her husband James Steel for putting me in touch with their friend Prof. John Renwick of Edinburgh University to whom I am indebted for his invaluable help.

References

[1] Record of donor’s gift to Kelvingrove Gallery.

[2] Institut Français d’Ecosse 13 Randolph Crescent Edinburgh. (Please note the new address of Institut Français d’Ecosse is West Parliament Square, Edinburgh, EH1 1RF.

[3] https://www.scotsman.com/news/french-salute-to-city-safe-house-1-844615

[4] Private correspondence with Senior Honorary Professorial Fellow Prof. John Renwick,  MA (Oxon), MA (Cantab), PhD (Glasgow), DLitt (Glasgow) FRHistS, FRSE, University of Edinburgh.

[5] Royaumont estate https://www.royaumont.com/en

[6] Alfred North Whitehead https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/whitehead/

[7] JG Crowther https://archiveshub.jisc.ac.uk/search/archives/d56f811d-2417-38ea-9486-f230c94f4653

[8] Op.cit. Royaumont estate

[9] Maud Inglis https://www.ed.ac.uk/about/people/plaques/inglis

[10] Ibid.

[11] Ibid.

[12] Noble, Stuart (Ed.) 200 years of Helensburgh. Argyll Publishing,  pp.166-67

[13] BurkHauser, Jude (Ed.) Glasgow  Girls. Cannongate, 1990

[14] Op.cit. “200 Years of Helensburgh”

[15] Op.cit. Private correspondence.

[16] WorldCat Identities http://worldcat.org/identities/lccn-no00104229/.

 

 

Allan Maxwell Wilson (1873 – 1951)

Allan Maxwell Wilson of 14 Kelvin Court, Glasgow presented three oil paintings by R. Macaulay Stevenson to Glasgow on the 30th of November 1946

Two of these paintings are in the Glasgow Museums Resource Centre (GMRC).

Stevenson, Robert Macaulay, 1854-1952; In the Gloaming
In the Gloaming (2586) © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection
Stevenson, Robert Macaulay, 1854-1952; An Old World Mill
An Old-World Mill (2587) © CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection

The third painting, Lambing Time was one of ten paintings given by Glasgow to the Museum of Brest in France in 1948 1 “as a goodwill gesture in light of the town’s wartime suffering”.

Allan Maxwell Wilson was born at 125 John Street, Glasgow on the 21st of February 1873.2 His parents were William Wilson a mercantile clerk and Marion Mitchell Maxwell. William and Marion were married on the 26th of January 1869 and had a family of three boys and four girls. The family moved to 17 Princes Street, Govan3 and then to 11 Newark Drive in Kinning Park.  In 1891, Allan was described as a “coal merchant`s clerk”4 presumably employed by D. M. Stevenson and Co. although this connection is first mentioned in 1899.5 In the 1901 census he was a “coal exporter”, aged twenty eight living at 11 Newark Drive with his mother, four sisters and two brothers, 6 his father having died the previous year.7

By 1903 Allan had become one of three partners in D. M. Stevenson & Co. (This was the coal exporting business – the largest in Scotland – established in 1879 by Daniel Macaulay Stevenson – later Sir Daniel Macaulay Stevenson, Bart., Lord Provost of Glasgow and Chancellor of the University). With the retiral of one partner in 1903, the business was carried on by the two remaining partners, Allan Maxwell Wilson and Daniel Macaulay Stevenson.8

The following year on the 14th of June 1904, Allan married Janet Craig Wallace the daughter of a grain merchant from Sherbrooke Avenue – not far from Newark Drive.9 The couple took up residence at Hillside, 26 Hamilton Drive, Pollokshields, Glasgow and had two children, William born in 1905 and Allan Maxwell in 1909.10 In the 1911 census the family was at the same address and employing three servants. Allan is described as a “coal exporter, employer”. By 1915 they had moved to 45 Sherbrooke Avenue, probably to Janet`s former home.11

By 1920 they had moved to Roundelwood, Drummond Terrace in Crieff.12 (This was a baronial style mansion designed by John Honeyman). However, by the late 20s they had moved again, this time to Barnsford, Kilmacolm.13  By 1938, Allan was 65 and seems to have retired from D. M. Stevenson & Co. as this connection is not mentioned in the GPO Directory.14 The family was still at Kilmacolm in 1940 and moved to Kelvin Court probably just after the war. This may have occasioned the donation of the paintings to Glasgow as a result of moving to a smaller house.

In 1946 the three oils were presented to Glasgow. The artist was a brother of Daniel Macaulay Stevenson, Allan`s business partner.

Allan Maxwell Wilson died aged 78 on the 19th of September 1951 at 15 Park Terrace, Glasgow. His “usual residence” was 14 Kelvin Court.15 His death certificate states that he was a “retired colliery director”. Janet Craig Wilson died on the 10th of August 1959 at 1 Kelvin Court. She was 80.16

References

  1. Entry on file at GMRC – Object File 2588
  2. Scotland’s People, Birth Certificate
  3. Ancestry.co.uk, Scotland Census, 1881
  4. Scotland`s People, Census 1891
  5. Glasgow Post Office Directory, 1899-1900
  6. Scotland`s People, Census 1901
  7. Scotland’s People, Death Certificate
  8. The Edinburgh Gazette, 22nd Jan 1904
  9. Scotland’s People, Marriage Certificate
  10. Scotland’s People, Birth Certificates
  11. Glasgow Post Office Directory, 1915-16
  12.  Ibid, 1920-21,
  13.  Ibid, 1927-28,
  14.  Ibid, 1938-39
  15. Scotland`s People, Death Certificate
  16. Scotland`s People, Death Certificate

 

William Graham Greig (1910-1999)

In 1949 Baillie William Graham Greig (WGG) donated the following paintings to Glasgow.

Lavery, John, 1856-1941; Potter at Work
Figure 1. Potter at Work  John Lavery 1888  Acc. 2835 © CSGCIC Glasgow Museums
Lavery, John, 1856-1941; Woman Painting a Pot
Figure 2. Woman Painting a Pot  John Lavery 1888 Acc 2834 © CSGCIC Glasgow Museums

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two potters from Bengal,Tarini Charan Pal and Harakumar Guha, were brought to Glasgow to demonstrate their craft in the Indian Court at the 1888 Glasgow International Exhibition. The Indian Court was a very popular feature of the Exhibition.¹These paintings were two of the fifty or so which Lavery  painted of the 1888 Glasgow International exhibition. In October 1888 the paintings were exhibited at the Craibe Angus gallery in Queen Street ,Glasgow.²

There is no information as to how these paintings were acquired by William Graham Greig. Woman Painting a Pot has been exhibited on several occasions including in 1951 in an exhibition of John Lavery paintings at the Belfast Museum and Art Gallery, in 1983 at the St Andrews Crawford Centre for the Arts, again in an exhibition of John Lavery paintings,  and  in 1990 at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow in an exhibition entitled  Women in Art and Design 1880-1920. The paintings are currently on display in the Glasgow Boys Gallery at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow.3

The model featured on the Doulton stand was Alice Groom. According to the 1881 census she was living in Auckland Street, Lambeth with her widowed mother  Eilzabeth, who was a dressmaker, and two younger brothers. Alice’s occupation is recorded as ‘artist/painter’. She almost certainly trained at the  Lambeth School of Art which had been set up in 1854 to teach applied art and design to working artisans. The school formed a close relationship with the nearby Doulton &Co Pottery and from the 1870s had a curriculum designed to train young men and women for the pottery trade.4

John Lavery saw Alice demonstrating the art of painting pottery at the Doulton and Co stand at the 1888 Glasgow International Exhibition. He described her as,”a fascinating, red-haired beauty, attracting crowds by her dexterity in decorating vases.5 “. Even though her career at Doultons was short, vases  bearing her name still appear in auctions from time to time.6

Lavery was so taken with Alice Groom that he used her as the model again a year or so later. This painting, My Lady Disdain ,was painted in 1889.

It was exhibited at the 1890 annual exhibition of the Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Arts (No748) and was bought for  £50 by a Mr W. Shields of Perth. Today this painting is on show at the Berwick Museum. It was one of 46 paintings, drawings and watercolours donated to the town in 1949 by Sir William Burrell to form the basis of an art gallery for the town.

Lavery, John, 1856-1941; Dear Lady Disdain
Figure 3. My Lady Disdain John Lavery 1889 © Berwick Museum and Art Gallery

How it came to be in Burrell’s collection is unclear but he must have bought it fairly soon after the 1890 exhibition, possibly through a dealer, as Burrell loaned it to Glasgow’s East End Industrial Exhibition of Manufactures, Science and Art in 1890. It appears in the exhibition catalogue as no 26.7 Burrell’s home, Hutton Castle in the Scottish Borders, was near Berwick.

In September 1888  Alice  married an artist called Frank Markham Skipworth9   who often used her as a model in his paintings. For example Portrait of a Red Haired Lady, painted in 1889 and which is in a private collection.10  Skipworth often exhibited at the Royal Academy in London.

She then went on the stage, appearing in 1894 at Daly’s Theatre in London in ‘The Gaiety Girl’. In 1895 the couple moved to New York where Alison Skipworth, as she was known there, carried on her stage career on Broadway. In 1897 she joined the company of Daniel Frohman at the Lyceum on Broadway and toured the US  acting and singing in plays and light opera. She did return to England in 1898 as The Stage reported on June 23rd . She appeared in a musical drama Adelaide  at St Georges Hall Langholm Place in London.  The review stated, ‘Miss Alison Skipworth ,a pretty and clever young lady, showed most commendable versatility as Clara, acting with intelligence and sympathy, singing charmingly and accompanying skilfully.’ However this was just a visit and she returned to New York appearing in many Broadway plays throughout the 1920s. She received very good reviews on many occasions. One such review appeared  in  The Era, an entertainment magazine ,on 2nd February 1927  when she appeared in  a play called New York Exchange in which she played the role of a wealthy and elderly cradle snatcher.’The role of the elderly pursuer of youth is in the skilful hands of Alison Skipworth and she acts the part for all its worth.’ Alison made her movie debut in 1912 in silent films and by 1930,by which time she was in her sixties, she had moved to Hollywood and graduated to ‘talkies’. She played character roles in over 50 films.

Alison Skipworth
Figure 4. Alison Skipworth as Mrs Crawley in Becky Sharp 1935. © Mary Evans Picture Library.

Alison Skipworth appeared in many films with W.C.Fields , Mae West, and Marlene Dietrich,often playing the role of formidable ‘grande dame’. In 1935 she appeared in The Devil was a Woman which starred Marlene Deitrich and was directed by Josef von Sternberg for Paramount. ‘Skippy’ as she was known to her friends and colleagues, played the part of the formidable Senora Perez. Photographs of her appear in the collection at the Paul Getty Museum. She was said to be very popular. 11

In 1936 John Lavery went to Hollywood with the intention of painting the stars. On his arrival at the Plaza Hotel he found an invitation to lunch from Alison Skipworth 48 years after he had painted her on the Doulton Pottery stand at the Glasgow International Exhibition. She reminded him of the other portrait he had painted of her12, telling him she had no idea at that time that she would become an actress. She introduced him to several famous stars of the time  including  Marlene Deitrich, Herbert Marshall and Rod La Roque.13

In his book  John Lavery A Painter and his World  Kenneth McConkey refers to a painting of  film actresses Maureen O’Sullivan,  and Loretta Young which was done by Lavery during his Hollywood visit.The painting was donated to the Limerick  City Gallery of Art  by the artist.

LCGA4458_Lavery_Sir_John_Stars in Sunlight_copyrightLCGA (002)

Stars in Sunlight by John Lavery ©  Permanent Collection of Limerick City Gallery of Art

The Donor

William Graham Greig(WGG) (1910-1999)

Our donor was the only son of James Graham Greig(JGG) (1879-1951) and Janet Alexander Buchanan, daughter of John Buchanan, a Falkirk timber merchant. At the time of WGG’s birth on 16th July 1910  the family home was at 2 Strathallan Terrace, Dowanhill in Glasgow’s West End.14 Janet Alexander Buchanan was JGG’s second wife. His first wife, Helen Stewart Jacob, who he married in 1905, sadly died at the age of 28.15

JGG was a stockbroker. Originally a co-partner in the firm of Service Brothers and Greig of 118 Queen Street, in 1909 the partnership was dissolved and James Graham Greig set up his own stockbroking business -James Graham Greig & Co- at 8, Gordon Street16. By 1930 the business had moved to 164 Gordon Street, premises owned by the Commercial Bank of Scotland.17

By the time of the 1911 census the family were living at 2, Caledon Street, Hillhead, off Byres Road. They had one live-in servant, Elizabeth McDonald18. In 1912 a daughter, Margaret Alston was born, followed a few years later in 1919 by another daughter, Doris Graham.19

JGG was a member of the Glasgow Stock Exchange Committee for many years. He was also appointed a Justice of the Peace for the County and City of Glasgow in 1935. He was a member of the Sandyford Burns Club and was president for a term. JGG was also one-time chairman of the Partick Unionist Association.20

There is little information available on the life of our donor, WGG, in the 1920s either about his schooldays or whether or not he went to university. Like his father he became a stockbroker and went to work in the family firm.21 He and his father shared an interest in angling. There are newspaper reports of them taking part in competitions for example on Loch Leven in April 1935.22

In 1936 WGG entered Glasgow local politics and was elected councillor for the Whiteinch Ward which he served until 1955.23 He stood for the newly formed Glasgow Progressive Party(formerly known as the Moderate Party) which was a mixture of  Liberals,Unionists and Independents. The Progresssive Party  supporters were members of the public who opposed the policies of the Socialists on Glasgow Corporation who were in the majority at that time.  The terms ‘Conservative’ and ‘Labour’ were not really used until the mid 1960s. Instead ‘Unionist ‘and ‘Socialist’ were used. What we now know as the Scottish Conservative Party was then the Scottish Unionists Association.24

WGG won the Whiteinch Ward from the sitting Socialist Hector McNeill with a comfortable majority of 1036.25 Overall the Progressive Party won seven additional seats, not quite the dozen they had hoped for but now the Progressives had   49 seats to the Socialist 55, an improvement on the previous election.26 At this time the family were living at 88 Balshagray Avenue in the West End27.

For the rest of the 1930s, while continuing his career as a stockbroker, WGG  served  on many of the Glasgow  Corporation committees. These included  Housing, Education, Water and Markets as well as the Police Committee, Sub- Committee on Baths and Washhouses  and the Sub -Committee for Continuation Classes. He was also on the Western School Management Committee   and the Advisory Committee for Juvenile Employment on which he represented Partick. WGG was one of the Town Council patrons of Hutcheson’s Hospital.28

Although only 29 when war broke out in 1939 there is no record of WGG serving in any of the services during World War Two. Whether this was because of a medical condition or some other reason there is no information available at this time. According to the National Register of 1939 WGG was  a   Stockbroker, Member of the Police Committee and of the Emergency Police Committee. There is no information available as to whether he was involved in such organisations as the Home Guard or Air Raid Wardens etc. His younger sister Doris, however, became a British Red Cross driver during the war.29 At the outbreak of war WGG was living at 88 Balshagray Avenue with his parents and sisters.30

During the war years WGG continued his career in local politics. In addition to the committees already mentioned he served on the Libraries Committee and the Special Committee for Public Indoor Gymnasia. In 1943 WGG was elected a Bailie of the Burgh by his fellow councillors, and was thus a magistrate.31

WGG also followed in his father’s footsteps by taking an interest in Robert Burns. He was a member of the Sandyford Burns Club and one of the speakers at the Annual Burns Supper   held on January 25th1943. This was the Jubilee Year for the club. Attending the meeting was King Peter II of Yugoslavia who happened to be on a visit to the west of Scotland and expressed an interest in the traditional ceremonies associated with the Bard.32

A report in the Glasgow Herald in October 1945 relates WGG as attending a meeting at Dunoon of the Glasgow and   West of Scotland Seaside Convalescent Homes where he was a speaker along with Reverend Neville Davidson of Glasgow Cathedral.33 Whether WGG was a patron of the home or a representative of Glasgow Corporation is unknown.  The home had been opened in 1869 ‘for the purpose of affording sea air, bathing and repose to those invalids (from Glasgow) whose circumstances prevented them regaining in any other way the health and strength necessary to resume work.’ Glasgow philanthropist Beatrice Clugston, along with councillors James Salmon and James Thomson, had been instrumental in raising the £11,000 to build the home, which housed 150 patients.34 The running costs were covered by annual charitable subscriptions from various philanthropic individuals and bodies, for example The Incorporation of Coopers of Glasgow.35  The Homes had been requisitioned by the Admiralty in September 1940 for the training of radar operatives. WGG spoke in support of a motion for the homes to be de-requisitioned quickly so the normal work of providing convalescent facilities for workers and their families could resume.36 The Dunoon Homes were de-requisitioned in May 1946 and eventually re-opened around 1948 after extensive renovation which was needed after damage done during the war-time occupation by the Admiralty. They remained supported by charitable subscription until closure around 1971.37

The Chief Constable of Glasgow  had not had a rise in salary since 1931. So reported The Scotsman in May 1947. WGG, as a member of the Police Committee, was reported as speaking in favour of such a pay rise as had been recommended by the Secretary of State for Scotland. The recommended rise was to £1700 per annum rising by £50 increments to a maximum of £2,200 plus a free house. This was still below the Secretary of States recommendation of £1900 with increments of £100 up to a maximum of £2400 plus a free house. The proposal was carried by 42 votes to 35. Opposition came from   Labour and ILP councillors.38  

In 1949 WGG was on the Galleries and Museums Committee of Glasgow Corporation, remaining on that committee for a couple of years.  As 1949 was the year in which WGG donated the two Lavery paintings,perhaps it was his membership of this committee which influenced him to make the donation. There is no record of the donation in the Glasgow Corporation Minutes.

In January 1951 the death of James Graham Greig, our donor’s father, was reported in the Glasgow Herald.  The business by this time was at 22a West Nile Street. JGG was reported as being one of the oldest members of the Glasgow Stock Exchange, joining in 1903, serving as a member of the Stock Exchange Committee for 12 years. He was a Justice of the Peace and also Chairman of the Partick Unionist Association and past president of the Sandyford Burns Club.39

In December 1953 WGG was adopted as Unionist Parliamentary Candidate for the Bothwell Constituency. Perhaps,once again, this was due to his father’s  interest in the Scottish Unionist Party. The Motherwell Times describes WGG as,”Former police judge and ex-Bailie of the Corporation of  Glasgow. Representative of the Whiteinch Ward since 1936 as a Progressive and at present sits on the Public Health and Welfare Committee”. At this time the Bothwell Constituency included Mount Vernon, Carmyle, Springboig and Garrowhill as well as Uddingston and Bothwell. 40 

In March 1955 WGG retired from Glasgow Corporation. 41 In May of that year he was appointed Master of Works for the following year.42 The appointment of Master of Works meant that WGG was the Glasgow Corporation Representative  in the Department of Public  Works (later the Engineers Department)and also on the Dean of Guilds Court which, until its abolition in 1975, dealt with all matters pertaining to the positioning and construction of streets and buildings.43 

In the General Election held on May 26th 1955 WGG had the daunting task of overturning a Labour majority of 6,000 gained at the previous election in 1951.  However in a report in the Motherwell Times of 18th May 1955 entitled,” No Need  for Despondency” , WGG was optimistic about his chances of being elected  because of the enthusiasm and hard work of his team of Unionist Party Workers and the reports from the canvassers and reports that many in the constituency  who voted Labour in 1951, seeing the job done by the current Tory Government, did not intend to vote against the government this time.44 In the event WGG was not elected but he did reduce his opponent’s (John Timmons) majority to 3,610.45

After retirement as a councillor WGG continued to work as a stockbroker at the firm his father had founded, still at 229a West Nile Street. By this time he had moved to another address in the West End-Westcraig ,22 Victoria Park Gardens North.46 He was living with his mother, Janet and his sister Margaret.47

In February 1958 at the annual meeting of the Bothwell Unionists Association WGG was once again elected as the prospective Unionist Candidate for the Bothwell Constituency.48 A few days later WGG gave a short address at the meeting of the Bothwell Constituency Association. At this meeting a motion from the Uddingston Branch was passed overwhelmingly, recommending the death penalty for all types of murder. This motion was to be forwarded to the May Conference of the Scottish Unionist Conference.49

WGG is reported as attending a meeting of the Women’s Section of the Bothwell Unionist Constituency Association later in February 1958.The Motherwell Times reported that a vote of thanks was given by Miss G Greig.50 This must have been WGG’s sister Margaret A. Graham Greig as his other sister Doris had married George Campbell McKinlay in 1943.51 Margaret appears to have had a similar interest in the Unionist Party to that of her brother. Also in March 1958 the Motherwell Times reported on a whist drive held by the Newarthill Unionist  Association,presumably a fundraiser,  which was attended by WGG who spoke a few words and by Miss G Greig who presented the prizes.52

In the Queen’s Birthday Honours List of June 1958 William Graham Greig Esq. JP  was awarded the OBE ‘for political and Public Services to Glasgow’.53

The General Election of 8th October 1959 proved no more successful than that of 1955 for our donor, though again he lost by the comparatively small margin of 4,352 again to John Timmons.54  At this time  the Labour Party were almost unbeatable in the Central Belt of Scotland, especially around Glasgow. This was to be the last time WGG attempted to become a Member of Parliament.

WGG continued as a stockbroker under the name of James G Greig until the early 1960s. He then moved to the firm of Campbell Neill and Co,Stock Exchange House,69 St Vincent Street. He appears to have remained there until around 1974 after which time his name disappears from the Glasgow Post Office Directory. By this time WGG would have been around 65 and perhaps he retired. His home up this point remained Westcraig in Victoria Park Gardens.55

There is no more information concerning our donor until his death on February 1st1999 at the age of 88. He died at the Lyndoch Nursing Home in Bearsden.56

References.

    1. Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum Glasgow. Glasgow Boys Gallery. Information Panel Potter at Work by John Lavery
    2. McConkey,Kenneth John Lavery :A Painter and His World pp40-45 .2nd Edition 2010   Atelier Books  Edinburgh
    3. Glasgow Museums Resource Centre Object File. Lavery, John
    4. www.artisansinscotland.shca.ed.ac.uk
    5. Lavery, John The Life of a Painter p239 Cassell 1940
    6. op cit. 4 above
    7. e-mail . Amoore@museumsnorthumberland.org.uk
    8. https//www.berwickshirenews.co.uk/burrell_family_life_at_hutton_castle.
    9. www.ancestry.co.uk Statutory Marriages
    10. www.artnet.com
    11. https//Wikipedia.org/wiki/Alison_Skipworth
    12. Hull Daily Mail 14/11/1936
    13. op cit 5 above
    14. www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk Statutory Births
    15. ibid. Statutory Deaths
    16. Edinburgh Gazette 25.05/1909
    17. www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk Valuation Rolls 1930
    18. ibid Census Records 1911
    19. ww.scotlandspeople.gov.uk Statutory Births
    20. Obituary James Graham Greig. Glasgow Herald (GH) 08/01/1951
    21. Glasgow Post Office Directory 1936-7
    22. Dundee Courier (DC) 20/04/1935
    23. Corporation of the City of Glasgow: Town Council Lists 1938-9. Glasgow Corporation 1939
    24. Seawright, David. An Important Matter of Principle:The Decline of the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party. 2nd Edition. Routledge  2018
    25. GH 04/11/1936
    26. DC 04/11/1936
    27. op cit. 21 above
    28. op cit. 23 above
    29. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk  Statutory Marriage
    30. www.ancestry.co.uk Glasgow,Lanarkshire,Scotland Electoral Registers 1857-1962.
    31. Glasgow Corporation Minutes 05/11/1943 Ref C1/3/109
    32. Burns Chronicle and Club Directory Second Series Vol X1X
    33. GH 23/10/1945
    34. https//historic_hospitals.com/gazeteer/argyll_and_bute
    35. Mair,Craig The History of the Incorporation of Coopers of Glasgow. Pub Neil Wilson 2013
    36. GH 08/10/1946
    37. www.live.argyll.co.uk
    38. GH 08/01/1951
    39. GH 08/01/1951
    40. Motherwell Times (MT) 18/12/1953
    41. Glasgow Corporation Minutes 17/03/1955. Ref C1/3/130
    42. ibid 06/05/1955 Ref C1/3/131
    43. www.mackintosh-architecture.gla.uk
    44. MT 20/05/1955
    45. Birmingham Daily Gazette 28/05/1955
    46. Glasgow Post Office Directory 1957-58
    47. op cit. ref 30
    48. MT 01/02/1958
    49. ibid. 07/02/1958
    50. ibid. 14/02/1958
    51. www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk Statutory Marriages
    52. MT 07/03/1958
    53. London Gazette 12/06/1958
    54. GH 10/10/1959
    55. Glasgow Post Office Directories 1960-1975
    56. www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk Statutory Deaths

 

 

 

William McInnes (1868-1944)

In 1944 ship owner, Sir William Burrell donated to Glasgow his collection of paintings, Japanese and Chinese ceramics, tapestries, sculpture, stained glass and many other artefacts, totalling some 6000 items. By the time of his death in 1958 the donation had grown to over 8000 items, probably one of the greatest collections ever amassed by an individual. The collection is housed in a dedicated building in Pollok Park and has a world-wide reputation for its range and quality.

Earlier that year, on the 19th March, another ship owner, William McInnes, died at his home in Mariscat Road, Glasgow. In his will he bequeathed his collection, some 700 items including over 70 paintings, to Glasgow. Compared to Burrell, McInnes is much less well known to the Glasgow public, however his French paintings, which include works by Degas, Renoir, and Matisse are amongst the finest in any European Municipal collection.

Undoubtedly McInnes is, correctly, overshadowed by Burrell. The following however is an attempt to appropriately redress the balance between the two men. Whilst there can be no doubt that Burrell’s gift is and will remain unsurpassed, McInnes’s significant contribution to Glasgow’s cultural life deserves broader acknowledgement than it has received so far.

William McInnes’s paternal family originated in Crieff, Perthshire. His grandparents William and Janet married in 1825 [1] and had eleven children, not all of whom survived childhood. William’s father John was the oldest child, born in Crieff at the end of December 1825.[2] Seven of the children were born in Crieff or Comrie, the others in Glasgow after the family moved there sometime between 1841 and 1851.[3] Grandfather William, John and his brother Alexander were all working on the railways by 1851, William as a labourer, John as an engine man and Alexander as a fireman.

Ten years later the family home was at 6 Salisbury Street in the Gorbals where John and his siblings lived with their parents. The three men continued to work on the railways, William now being a timekeeper. John’s three sisters, Jessie, Jeanie and Mary were milliners.[4]

In 1867 John McInnes married Margaret McFadyen from Neilston on 28th June. At the time of his marriage he was working as a railway engine driver.[5] They lived at 6 Cavendish Street where their four children were born: son William on 13th September 1868[6], to be followed by Finlay (1870), Thomas (1872) and Ann (1876).[7]

Tragically, at the early age of 33, Margaret, died of plithisis (tuberculosis) in 1879 [8] which resulted in John  and the four children, who were aged between 3 and 11 years, moving to 6 Salisbury Street to live with his brother Andrew and sisters Jessie and Mary; where Jessie acted as housekeeper and surrogate mother to the children.[9] This manifestation of strong family ties working to bring some good out of a bad and difficult situation I’m sure had a lasting impression on William. His friendships, particularly with the artist George Leslie Hunter and his support of family members in later life, provide evidence of that.

It’s not clear where William received his schooling although one source has suggested that he attended Hutcheson Grammar at the same time as the author John Buchan.[10] Having talked to the administration staff at the school this has not been confirmed.

In 1882 John’s sister Mary married Gavin Shearer in Glasgow.[11] Gavin aged 44 was an Insurance Broker working for the Glasgow Salvage Company Ltd.[12] whose business was marine salvage. The marriage was childless and short lived as he died in 1887 from tuberculosis. At the time of his death he was secretary of the salvage company.[13]

William was aged 19 at this time and probably had been in employment for some time. Was Gavin Shearer his entrée to the world of insurance when he was old enough? Considering how the family stuck together and supported each other it’s not unreasonable to think that his uncle helped him to get work, especially in an industry where he would have some influence. This is clearly conjecture as it’s not known what employment, if any, he was in at the time of his uncle’s death, however by 1891 he was working as a marine insurance clerk for P.H.Dixon and Harrison.[14]

Four years later the company merged with Allan C. Gow to form Gow, Harrison and Company. Allan Carswell Gow had established his shipping company in the early 1850s. In 1853 he was joined in the business by his brother Leonard who on Allan’s death in 1859 became head of the firm. His younger son, also Leonard, in due course joined the business which by this time had offices in London as well as Glasgow.[15] Senior partners in the new company which was located at 45 Renfield Street were the young Leonard Gow and John Robinson Harrison; McInnes continued to be employed as a marine insurance clerk.[16]  In 1899 the Glasgow Ship Owners and Ship Brokers Benevolent Association was formed, which Gow, Harrison and McInnes joined in its inaugural year. Another well-known Glasgow shipping name also joined later that year, George Burrell of William Burrell and Son, brother to the future Sir William Burrell.[17] McInnes possibly became a partner in the business in 1907, the first year he appeared in the Glasgow Post Office Directory, however it’s more likely to have been 1922 when John Harrison retired from the business and his son Ion joined it. In 1929 William became godfather to Ion’s son Iain Vittorio Robinson Harrison.[18]

Between 1899 and 1907 William’s brothers and sister married. Thomas married Jessie McEwan in 1899 at the Grand Hotel, Glasgow, there were no children of the marriage; Finlay married Agnes Hamilton at 95 Renfield Street on 15th February 1907, they had one son who was born on 8th December of the same year; Ann married William Sinclair on 27th February 1907 at 22 Princes Street, which was where the McInnes family then stayed.[19] Shortly afterwards Ann and William emigrated to the United States and settled in Maine where their three sons William (1908), John (1912) and Andrew (1916) were born.[20]

William McInnes never married although according to one source he was close to it. Lord McFarlane of Bearsden relates the story that his wife’s aunt and McInnes planned to marry but her father forbade it because he ‘didn’t have enough siller’.[21]

McInnes moved to 4 Mariscat Road, Pollokshields in 1909 and lived there for the rest of his life with his elderly father and his uncle Andrew and aunt Mary.

It’s not clear when he started his collection, however it’s likely that his collecting activity would be prompted, certainly influenced by his relationship with Gow who became a renowned collector in his own right, particularly of paintings and Chinese porcelain. You can also envisage that Gow was the means by which McInnes met Alexander Reid and hence Leslie Hunter. What is known is that he bought his first painting, ‘Autumn’ by George Henry from Alexander Reid in 1910.[22] His final purchase was ‘The Star Ridge with the King’s Peak’ (near Gardanne) by Cezanne, in 1942, from Reid and Lefevre, London.[23] This painting eventually came into his sister-in-law Jessie’s (widow of brother Thomas) possession.[24] In between those purchases he bought a number of significant paintings ranging from French Impressionists to Scottish Colourists. He bought works by Degas, Renoir, Picasso, and Matisse[25] and was the first Scottish collector to buy a van Gogh, (The Blute Fin Windmill, Montmatre) bought in 1921 for £550.[26]

Fig. 1 van Gogh, Vincent; The Blute-Fin Windmill, Montmartre© CSG GIC Glasgow Museums Collection. (http://www.artuk.org)

He also purchased, glassware, ceramics and silver which in due course, along with his paintings, formed the basis of his eventual bequest to Glasgow.[27]

In a Kelvingrove museum publication of 1987 the then Fine Art keeper Ann Donald commented as follows: ‘The most important individual 20th Century benefactor to date has been William McInnes (1868-1944), a Glasgow ship owner who left to his native city his entire collection of over 70 paintings as well as prints, drawings, silver, ceramics and glass. The bequest included 33 French works (many of them bought from Alexander Reid) by key artists such as Monet, Degas, Renoir, van Gogh, Cezanne and Picasso, whilst the British pictures were mostly by the Glasgow Boys and the Scottish Colourists, of whom he was a regular patron. This donation firmly established the international importance of Glasgow’s French collection.’[28]

McInnes is described by those who knew him as a modest, unassuming individual who did not seek attention or the limelight.[29] and may have found these comments not particularly welcome, despite them being highly complimentary. McInnes valued his friendships and his family, which is evident from the support he gave, and his ability to listen to the advice he was given. He was able to take the artistic guidance given him by the likes of Leslie Hunter, Tom Honeyman and others, and act on it if he thought it appropriate to do so, which wasn’t always. He bought paintings it’s said not only for his own pleasure but for that of his friends.[30] He gave unstinting support to family and friends, particularly Leslie Hunter and his closest family members.

As stated earlier, William lived with his father, and aunt and uncle, for a number of years at Mariscot Road, incidentally where most of his paintings were housed. His father died in 1911, aged 85, cause of death being senile decay and pneumonia. His uncle Andrew, aged 81, died in April 1930 from senility and glycosuria (untreated diabetes); his aunt Mary, aged 83, also died in 1930 (August) from glycosuria.  Both died at home.[31]

These are very distressing and difficult conditions, not only for the sufferers, but for those who have to care for them. When it is considered that he had a senior position in a significant shipping business, that he was a member and leader of a number of industry organisations and also of the Ship Owners Benevolent Association, in addition to whatever he had to do at home, it’s clear that William had a strong sense of service and duty, perhaps inculcated by his early family experiences. It seems reasonable to presume he found this to be more intrinsically rewarding than anything else. When his support of Leslie Hunter is taken into account, then that presumption gains credence.

The artist must have seemed to McInnes to be a vulnerable, possibly unstable individual, whose life style could be fraught and chaotic at times. This must have resonated with McInnes’s home life in that here was another person who needed care and support. This may be more fanciful than factual, however there does seem to be this pattern to how William lived his life.

Hunter and McInnes met before 1914 and are known to have been in Paris pre WW One along with John Tattersall, the trip expenses, according to Hunter, being paid for by his two friends.[32] There are examples of how Hunter was helped and encouraged by McInnes and others in Tom Honeyman’s biography of him.[33] The most tangible evidence of McInnes’s support is, I suppose, the fact that his collection contains 23 paintings by Hunter.[34] There was one occasion apparently when McInnes commissioned a portrait of himself because the artist needed the money.[35] The friendship between the two men was not a one-way street however. McInnes was in many respects helped and guided by Hunter in his artistic education; however the better part of the bargain must have what McInnes gave to Hunter in encouragement, friendship, and in helping to sustain his motivation and confidence. McInnes has been described as Hunter’s most important patron; that is true in a way that goes well beyond the expected understanding of the phrase.

After Hunter’s death in 1931 [36] McInnes continued to promote him by persuading Tom Honeyman to write his biography of the artist[37] and along with Honeyman and William McNair, by organizing a memorial exhibition of his work, which was held in Reid and Lefevre’s gallery in West George Street during February 1932. Mrs Jessie McFarlane, the painter’s sister, asked the group to decide which paintings to keep and which to destroy.[38]

McInnes and Honeyman met around the time Honeyman gave up medicine and moved into art dealership, probably through Leslie Hunter. It developed into a well bonded relationship, not only when Hunter was a common link between them but also after his death. Probably Honeyman is the only person to have recorded in any detail McInnes’s personality and interests which he did in his autobiography ‘Art and Audacity’. He is described as having a keen interest in classical music in which he indulged through his gramophone records and pianola, and his attendance at the Scottish National Orchestra’s Saturday evening concerts. He is said to have played the church organ in his younger days. Art and learning about paintings and artists was also a primary interest. It’s perhaps a moot point as to which he preferred. He also enjoyed travelling to the continent, during which time visits to the various museums and galleries would further develop his knowledge of art, art styles and artists, particularly when in the company of Hunter. Honeyman describes visits to the McInnes home as always stimulating and interesting.[39]

Fig.2 Matisse, Henri; Woman in Oriental Dress.© CSG GIC Glasgow Museums Collection. (http://www.artuk.org)

In many respects because of his interest in painting in particular, McInnes was fertile ground for Honeyman in his quest to interest industrialists of the day in fine art and bring them to the idea of donating to municipal collections. I don’t believe this was a ‘corruption’ of their friendship but a celebration of its strength and depth. Between 1921 and 1943 he donated works by Hunter, Peploe and Fergusson and in 1940 William presented Matisse’s ‘Woman in Oriental Dress’ to Kelvingrove to commemorate Honeyman’s appointment as Museum Director.[40]

In 1931 McInnes was nominated for the vice-presidency of the Ship Owners Benevolent Association and was duly elected. The rules of the Association meant that he would become president in 1932.  However at the last board meeting of the year it was agreed that ‘having regard to the very serious time through which the country was passing the directors felt that the president and vice president should carry on for another year, especially as the honour to Mr McInnes was only deferred.’ In 1933 McInnes duly became president.[41]

It’s clear from the minutes of the meetings held during his tenure that he played a full and influential part in the decision making process of the Association.[42] On his retiral from the post he donated £100 to the association funds, equivalent to £5000 in today’s money.[43]

William McInnes died at home on 19th March 1944 from a heart attack.[44] He was senior partner in Gow, Harrison and Co. at the time of his death, taking over from Leonard Gow on his death in 1936. In his will he left in excess of 700 items, including 70 paintings, to Glasgow. His bequest was made free of any legacy duty or any other expenses, his only stipulation was that his paintings would go on show at Kelvingrove. The same day his bequest came before a special meeting of Glasgow Corporation’s committee on Art Galleries and Museums it was accepted with ‘high appreciation’ following a report on the collection by Tom Honeyman, the Director of Art Galleries.[45]

His obituary in the Glasgow Herald stated: ‘McInnes was a man of cultured taste, he was keenly interested in music and art. He had brought together in his home a collection of pictures which was notable for its quality and catholicity.’ It adds finally “He was an intimate friend and patron of the late Leslie Hunter with whom he made several visits to the continent.’[46]

In a sense William’s contribution didn’t stop there. In 1951 his sister-in-law Jessie donated Cezanne’s ‘The Star Ridge with the Kings Peak’ to Kelvingrove.[47] In 1985 a portrait of McInnes by Leslie Hunter was sold to Kelvingrove by his sister Ann’s son Andrew McInnes Sinclair of Massachusetts, USA. The painting was handed over in person by Andrew and his cousin John McInnes, the son of William’s brother Finlay, on 9th July.[48] The portrait had been commissioned by William for his sister to take back to America following a visit to Scotland in 1930[49]

Fig.3 Cezanne, Paul; The Star Ridge with the King’s Peak.© CSG GIC Glasgow Museums Collection. (http://www.artuk.org)
Fig.4 Hunter, George Leslie; William McInnes (1868-1944).© CSG GIC Glasgow Museums Collection. (http://www.artuk.org)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References.

[1] Marriages (OPR) Scotland. Crieff, Perthshire, 342/00. 1 May 1825. McINNES, William and McDONALD, Janet. GROS Data 342/00 0020 0113. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[2] Baptisms (OPR) Scotland. Crieff, Perthshire, 342/00. 1 January 1826 McINNES, John. GROS Data 342/00 0020 0019. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[3] Census. 1851. Scotland. Gorbals, Glasgow City, 644/02. GROS Data 644/02 126/00 012.

Census. 1861. Scotland. Tradeston, Glasgow City, 644/09. GROS Data 644/09 027/00 001.

http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[4] Census. 1861. Scotland. Tradeston, Glasgow City, 644/09. GROS Data 644/09 027/00 001.

http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[5] Marriages (OPR) Scotland. Tradeston, Glasgow City, 644/09. 28 June 1867 McINNES, John and McFADYEN, Margaret. GROS Data 644/09 257. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[6] Births. Scotland. Tradeston, Glasgow City, 644/09. 13 September 1868, McINNES, William. GROS Data 644/09 1456.  http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[7] Births. Scotland. Tradeston, Glasgow City, 644/09. 1 May 1870 McINNES, Finlay. GROS Data 644/09 0689. Births. Scotland. Tradeston, Glasgow City, 644/09. 2 June 1872 McINNES, Thomas GROS Data 644/09 0989.

Births. Scotland. Gorbals, Lanarkshire, 644/12. 22 October 1876, McINNES, Ann GROS Data 644/12 1367.

http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[8] Deaths. Scotland. Gorbals, Glasgow City 6444/12. 12 June 1879. McINNES, Margaret. GROS Data 644/12 0428. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[9] Census. 1881. Scotland. Gorbals, Glasgow City, 644/12. GROS Data 644/12 025/00 002.

http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[10] The Art Review, Vol 1, no.1, 1946 Tom Honeyman.

[11] Marriages. Scotland. Blythswood, Glasgow, 644/07. 14 September 1882. SHEARER, Gavin and McINNES, Mary. GROS Data 644/07 0321. http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[12] The Post Office. 1881-1882 Glasgow Post Office Directory Glasgow: William McKenzie p.475.

[13] Deaths. Scotland. Kelvin, Glasgow, 644/09. 20 February 1887. SHEARER, Gavin. GROS Data 644/09 0178.

http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[14] ibid

[15] The Merchant Navy Association: The Red Duster: The Glen Line http://www.red-duster.co.uk/GLEN.htm. accessed June 2011, AND

George Eyre-Todd (1909) Who’s Who in Glasgow in 1909 – Leonard Gray Glasgow: Gowans and Gray Ltd.

[16] Census. Scotland. 1901. Tradeston, Glasgow City. GROS Data 644/13 035/00 021 http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[17] Glasgow Ship Owners and Ship Brokers Benevolent Association (1899) Minutes of meeting 5th May 1899 and 1899 year end Director’s report dated January 1900, page 8.

[18] Iain Vittorio Robinson Harrison – June 2011

[19] Marriages. Scotland. Kelvin, Glasgow City, 644/09. 5 July 1899. McINNES, Thomas and McEWAN, Jessie GROS Data 644/09 0344.

Marriages. Scotland. Blythswood, City of Glasgow, 644/10. 15 February 1907. McINNES, Finlay and HAMILTON, Agnes GROS Data 644/10 0144.

Marriages. Scotland. Pollokshields, 644/18. 27 February 1907. SINCLAIR, William and McINNES, Ann GROS Data 644/18 0049.  http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011

[20] Ancestry.com. UK, Incoming Passenger Lists, 1878-1960 Class: BT26; Piece: 755; Item: 25. Passenger lists for SS California 1924 show Ann, husband and three sons, the sons’ birth place being stated as Maine USA. They arrived in Scotland in July and returned to America in September. http://search.ancestry.co.uk/cgi-bin/sse.dll?indiv=1&db=bt26&rank=1&new=1&MSAV=1&msT=1&gss=angs-d&gsfn=william+&gsln=sinclair&msbdy=1876&msedy=1908&cpxt=1&uidh=hd2&msbdp=2&_83004003-n_xcl=f&cp=11&pcat=40&fh=9&h=18164070&recoff=&ml_rpos=10

[21] Lord McFarlane of Bearsden –June 2011

[22]  Frances Fowle (2010) Van Gogh’s Twin: The Scottish Art Dealer Alexander Reid. Edinburgh: National Galleries of Scotland. p. 63.

[23] VADS (2008) National Inventory of Continental European Paintings  http://vads.ac.uk/large.php?uid=87972&sos=2 accessed October 2011.

[24] Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum donor attribution.

[25] Glasgow Art Gallery and Museum (1987) The Building and the Collections. Glasgow: Wm. Collins. p. 101

[26] Fowle, op.cit. p. 134.

[27] Glasgow Museums Resource Centre (GMRC) – Inventory list of the McInnes Bequest.

[28] Glasgow Art Gallery and Museum (1987) The Building and the Collections. Glasgow: Wm. Collins. p. 101

[29] T.J. Honeyman (1971) Art and Audacity London: Collins p.124.

[30] Honeyman, op.cit. p. 127.

[31] Deaths. Scotland. Cathcart, Glasgow City, 560/00. 8 September 1911. McINNES, John GROS Data 560/00 0483.

Deaths. Scotland. Pollokshields, Glasgow City, 644/18. 19 April 1930 McINNES, Andrew GROS Data 644/18 0222.

Deaths. Scotland. Pollokshields, Glasgow City, 644/18. 1 August 1930. SHEARER, Mary GROS Data 644/18 0355.

http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[32] Fowle, op.cit. p. 116.

[33] Honeyman, op.cit. pp various.

[34]Glasgow Museums Resource Centre (GMRC) – Inventory list of the McInnes Bequest.

[35] McTears auction 25th April 2006 – auction house notes on lots 455, 455a: William McInnes at his piano by Leslie Hunter, plus copy of Introducing Leslie Hunter.

[36] Deaths. Scotland. Hillhead, Glasgow City, 644/12. 1931. HUNTER, George Leslie GROS Data 644/12 1155.

http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[37] Honeyman, op.cit. p. 126.

[38] Honeyman, op.cit. p. 208.

[39] Honeyman, op.cit. p. 124. .

[40] Honeyman, op.cit.p. 126.

[41] Glasgow Ship Owners and Ship Brokers Benevolent Association (1931). Minutes of meeting 14th December 1931

[42] Glasgow Ship Owners and Ship Brokers Benevolent Association (1931/1934). Minutes of meetings January 1931 to January 1934.

[43] Andrew Nicholson (2011) Secy. Of Scottish Shipping Benevolent Association – email May 2011

[44] Deaths. Scotland. Pollokshields, Glasgow City, 644/18. 19 March 1944. McINNES, William GROS Data 644/18 0218.

http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk: accessed June 2011.

[45] Glasgow Corporation Minutes April 1944 to November 1944. Mitchell Library reference: C1/3/110

[46] Obituary (1944) Glasgow Herald 20 March 1944. McINNES, William. p. 4 http://www.glasgowherald.co.uk; accessed June 2011.

[47] Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum donor attribution.

[48] T.J. Honeyman (1937) Introducing Leslie Hunter London: Faber and Faber Ltd. pp. 149,150 and 167.

[49] Glasgow Museums Resource Centre (GMRC) – Object folder on William McInnes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

James Lindsay (1857-1914)

James Lindsay was an architect whose work consisted mainly of large commercial buildings in his home city of Glasgow. Although he rarely won major commissions, he regularly just missed out on the top awards. 

He bequeathed the painting Head of Holy Loch by George Henry to Glasgow. Henry was one of the most influential of the ‘Glasgow Boys’ artists based in or associated with Glasgow. The painting is dated 1882 and was sold at an exhibition of The Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Art in that year for £25 and it is possible that the purchaser was James Lindsay.

Henry, George, 1858-1943; Head of the Holy Loch
Head of the Holy Loch by George Henry 1882 (© CSG CIC Glasgow Museums Collection)

James was born on 10th May 1857 to William Lindsay, victualler and Mary Duncan (1) . He attended St James Parish School and Glasgow High School. He was articled to the firm of Peat and Duncan, Glasgow for five years followed by three years as a draughtsman during which time he studied at Glasgow School of Art, and in 1876 he won the RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) Silver Medal. In 1880 he set up on his own at 196 St Vincent Street (where he also lived).  At around this time James had become friends with James Sellars, one of Glasgow’s leading architects with many fine examples of his work surviving, and who won the competition to design The International Exhibition of 1888 in Kelvingrove Park (2).

In 1881 James was admitted as an Associate of RIBA, having been proposed by John Honeyman (whose partnership was later to include John Keppie and Charles Rennie Mackintosh), James Audley, and John Burnet. He was living at 8 Morris Place by then (3), situated to the east end of the city centre.

James married Jessie Millar Black in 1883. Jessie lived at 48 Caledonia Street, Paisley and was the daughter of Robert, a local spirit merchant (4). They had six children, three boys and three girls, and by 1891 the family was living at 48 Garnethill Street (5).  James had business premises at 167 St Vincent Street in 1884 and moved to 248 West George Street around 1886 and remained there till his death in 1914 (6). James junior followed in his father’s footsteps as an architect and carried on the business at the same premises after his father’s death. James junior is probably best known for Walter Hubbard’s bakery, 508-510 Great Western Road, Glasgow, an art deco design which is currently a nightclub (7).

DSC_3381
508-510 Great Western Road, Glasgow – James Lindsay junior.    (image by author)

Among James’ many architectural commissions were several schools including Wellshot Secondary at Tollcross, Glasgow which became a primary school in 1970.

Unusual commissions were for the Glasgow Sausage Works at 240 North Woodside Road in 1895 and The City Manure Office in Parliamentary Road, Townhead (horse manure on city streets had become a major health problem in cities around the world). Possil Iron Works in 1889, Kames Free Church on the Isle of Bute of 1898 and the City of Glasgow Dyeworks of 1902 are further examples of his numerous commissions (8) 

On a more ambitious scale he entered competitions for major city projects. In 1884 he submitted plans for the New Admiralty and War Office, Whitehall, London and although awarded a £600 ‘premium’ did not secure the job. In 1889 he reached second place to design Sheffield Municipal Buildings and won a £100 ‘premium’. In 1905 his design for Hutchesontown Library in Glasgow was not taken up, and in the same year he submitted a competition design for Kirkintilloch Town Hall which made second place (9).

In 1880 James submitted an entry for the new City Chambers in Glasgow. This was described at the time as a ‘mannerist Hotel de Ville with a roman temple front, huge angle mansards and a Greco-Roman tower which bears a striking, and more refined and satisfying, resemblance to that of William Young’s winning design’ (10).

lindsay-city-chambers.jpeg
Plan for Glasgow Municipal Buildings by James Lindsay 1880                                                                (c Glasgow City Archives, Mitchell Library ref. DTC 6/3)

He also entered the competition to design plans for the new Glasgow Art Gallery and Museum in 1891, won by the London firm of Simpson and Allen. Entries were received from many established architects, and some from ambitious youngsters including Charles Rennie Mackintosh (11).

Occasionally he designed private houses, one such being Ardenwohr at 233 Nithsdale Road, Pollockshields, Glasgow. It has been described  as ‘looking remotely Jacobean with a repulsive red rock-faced finish’ (12), perhaps a little unfair as it would probably be described now as a rather handsome Victorian villa.

The Lindsays moved to 11 Moray Place in 1896 (13). This fine terrace sits alongside 1-10 Moray Place which was designed by Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson, one of Glasgow’s most renowned architects. Thomson himself lived at number 1 from 1861 and the terrace incorporated some typical classical features e.g. the giant order of pilasters arranged along the frontage (14). The terrace which includes number 11 was added later and although sympathetic to Thomson’s work, was more eclectic in style.

DSC_3386
No 10 Moray Place, Glasgow by Alexander ‘Greek’ Thomson 1859-60 (image by author)
DSC_3384
No. 11 Moray Place, Glasgow             (image by author)

Jessie Lindsay died in 1898 (15) and James continued to live at Moray Place till his own death in 1914 (16). At that time he was working on a successful commission to design The Netherton Institute (public baths and library) in Dunfermline, which was completed after his death (17). Although recognised as a talented architect who often came second best, it is ironic that success really came at the end of his life.

DS

References

(1) 1857 births 644/1 857) – https://scotlandspeople.gov.uk

(2) Royal Institute of British Architects, 66 Portland Place, London – Biographical Details 8/4/2009

(3) ibid. 8/4/2009

(4) (1883 marriages 573/445) –https://scotlandspeople.gov.uk

(5) (census 1891 644/96/35) –https://scotlandspeople.gov.uk

(6) Post Office Directories, Mitchell Library, Glasgow

(7) Dictionary of Scottish Architects – www.scottisharchitects.org.uk, Lindsay james (junior)

(8) Royal Institute of British Architects, 66 Portland Place, London – Biographical Details 8/4/2009

(9) ibid. 8/4/2009

(10) www.glasgowsculpture.com, architects, Lindsay

(11) Royal Institute of British Architects, 66 Portland Place, London – Biographical Details 8/4/2009

(12) Williamson, Elizabeth, Glasgow. Penguin for National Trust for Scotland. 1990. (The Buildings of Glasgow Series)

(13) Post Office Directories, Mitchell Library

(14) Dictionary of Scottish Architects – www.scottisharchitects.org.uk, Thomson Alexander

(15) (1898 Deaths 644/14 489)) –https://scotlandspeople.gov.uk

(16) (1914 Deaths 644/18 276) –https://scotlandspeople.gov.uk

(17) Royal Institute of British Architects, 66 Portland Place, London – Biographical Details 8/4/2009