In June, 1927, Dr Alexander Macphail gave Iona, White Sands of Iona, by George Huston, to Glasgow museums. (1)
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)
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.
Minutes of Glasgow City Council June 1927
National Records of Scotland Statutory Births 1872
Who Was Who 1929-1940
National Records of Scotland Census 1891
Who Was Who 1929-1940
The Lancet 1986 ;June20 A case of confluent smallpox in a lascar seaman
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.
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.
Macleod M C Dugald Macphail in Modern Gaelic Bards pp136-152. Stirling, 1908
Macleod M C Dugald Macphail in Modern Gaelic Bards pp136-152. Stirling, 1908
English census 1861
National Records of Scotland Statutory Births 1872
National Records of Scotland Statutory census 1871
National Records of Scotland Statutory census 1881
National Records of Scotland Statutory valuation rolls
National Records of Scotland Statutory deaths 1887
Gazeteer for Scotland
Macleod M C Dugald Macphail in Modern Gaelic Bards pp136-152. Stirling, 1908
National Records of Scotland census 1891
English census 1901
Scottish National Probate Index. Wills and confirmations
The office of Institut Français d’Ecosse  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.  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  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’. 
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.  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.  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.
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  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  (1864-1917) who was a remarkable person in her own right . 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’ . 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 , 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.
Norah Neilson Gray, who was also one of the painters known as the Glasgow Girls,  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.
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 .
Our donor, Marc André Béra was a great specialist of Britain (he was agrégé d’anglais). 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  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.
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.
 Record of donor’s gift to Kelvingrove Gallery.
 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.
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).
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
In 1949 Baillie William Graham Greig (WGG) donated the following paintings to Glasgow.
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 Artand 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.
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.8
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 RedHaired 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 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.
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 PostOffice 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
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum Glasgow. Glasgow Boys Gallery. Information Panel Potter at Work by John Lavery
McConkey,Kenneth John Lavery :A Painter and His World pp40-45 .2nd Edition 2010 Atelier Books Edinburgh
Glasgow Museums Resource Centre Object File. Lavery, John
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  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. Seven of the children were born in Crieff or Comrie, the others in Glasgow after the family moved there sometime between 1841 and 1851. 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.
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. They lived at 6 Cavendish Street where their four children were born: son William on 13th September 1868, to be followed by Finlay (1870), Thomas (1872) and Ann (1876).
Tragically, at the early age of 33, Margaret, died of plithisis (tuberculosis) in 1879  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. 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. 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. Gavin aged 44 was an Insurance Broker working for the Glasgow Salvage Company Ltd. 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.
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.
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. 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. 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. 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.
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. 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.
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’.
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. His final purchase was ‘The Star Ridge with the King’s Peak’ (near Gardanne) by Cezanne, in 1942, from Reid and Lefevre, London. This painting eventually came into his sister-in-law Jessie’s (widow of brother Thomas) possession. 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 and was the first Scottish collector to buy a van Gogh, (The Blute Fin Windmill, Montmatre) bought in 1921 for £550.
He also purchased, glassware, ceramics and silver which in due course, along with his paintings, formed the basis of his eventual bequest to Glasgow.
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.’
McInnes is described by those who knew him as a modest, unassuming individual who did not seek attention or the limelight. 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. 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.
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. There are examples of how Hunter was helped and encouraged by McInnes and others in Tom Honeyman’s biography of him. The most tangible evidence of McInnes’s support is, I suppose, the fact that his collection contains 23 paintings by Hunter. There was one occasion apparently when McInnes commissioned a portrait of himself because the artist needed the money. 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  McInnes continued to promote him by persuading Tom Honeyman to write his biography of the artist 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.
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 andAudacity’. 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.
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.
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.
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. On his retiral from the post he donated £100 to the association funds, equivalent to £5000 in today’s money.
William McInnes died at home on 19th March 1944 from a heart attack. 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.
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.’
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. 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. The portrait had been commissioned by William for his sister to take back to America following a visit to Scotland in 1930
 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.
 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.
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.
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).
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).
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 describedas ‘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.
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.
In the minutes of the Corporation of Glasgow on 28th March 1924, ex-Bailie Mr Charles Carlton (see Fig. 1) had offered to present to the Corporation an oil painting entitledThe Old Boating Station (1880) on the South Bank of the River Clyde, opposite Glasgow Green, by John MacNiven (1819-1895)RSW (as shown below in Fig.2). This painting is now called The Glasgow Regatta, The Closing Stages.
Our donor, Mr. Charles Carlton came from a large Glasgow family. His father, also Charles Carlton, was a Master Painter with his own Painter Decorator Company employing 25 men and 7 boys . In the 1871 Census, it is recorded that the family consisted of Mr. and Mrs. Carlton and 7 children, including our donor who was 16 at that time. They all lived at 72 Bath Street, Glasgow. The Family also had a servant living with them.
After leaving school, our donor was trained as an apprentice clerk . At that time his father was in partnership in a Glasgow painting and decorating firm which was headed by Hugh Locke Anderson (c. 1818–1888) for 43 years. On 5th February 1883 it was reported in the Glasgow Herald  that the partnership of M.L. Anderson and Charles Carlton, House Painters and Decorators located at 141 St Vincent Street Glasgow, was dissolved . It was then our donor came into his father’s new firm, now named Charles Carlton & Son, Painters and Decorators . Our donor’s father had started his own firm of Painter, Decorator and Gilders in the1840s  and his son took over as sole principal in 1886.
In 1886 Charles Carlton was now a married man, after marrying on 23rd April 1885 Miss Jessie McLean, daughter of William McLean, a carting contractor, and his wife Janet McLean, as well as being the sole proprietor of a well-known painter and decorator firm. They celebrated their marriage at the Grand Hotel in Glasgow after which they moved to 2 Athol Gardens, Kelvinside, Glasgow .
One of the first big contracts after becoming the sole principal of the firm Charles Carlton & Son, was the contract for painting the dome and main avenue of the 1888  International Exhibition building. Another big contract came soon after for decorating the Industrial Hall for the 1901 International Exhibition in Glasgow . Other commissions included the redecoration of Ardrossan Parish Church and work on the Municipal Chambers, the Mitchell Library and the City Hall . Furthermore, it may be mentioned that Messrs Charles Carlton & Son were also responsible for decorative painting of the principal hotels and numerous halls, churches and mansions throughout the country .
In 1911 Charles Carlton was elected to Glasgow Corporation as a Council member for the Blythswood Ward, and served as convenor of the Committee on Art Galleries and Museums. He was also a member of the Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts. He traveled widely on the continent, partially in connection with his work and he showed a keen interest in societies connected with his business. He was a Fellow of the Incorporated Institute of British Decorators, a former president and member of the Council of the Master Painters of Scotland, a member of the Worshipful Company of Painter-Stainers, and a director of the Glasgow Master Painters Association. He was Vice-President of the architectural section of the Glasgow Philosophical Society and acted as chairman of the Art Union in Glasgow. He was a member of the Conservative Club and also the Royal Clyde Yacht Club. Furthermore, he was on the Municipal Buildings Committee and the Parks Committee, where he did sterling work. His most prominent endeavour was for the preservation of the Tollbooth in Glasgow. It was while he was convenor of the Parks Committee that the Lynn Estate at Catcarth was acquired for Glasgow. As convenor of the Committee on Art Galleries and Museums he was instrumental in carrying through improvements at the southern front of the Kelvingrove Art Galleries .
According to the archives of the Glasgow Art Club  Charles Carlton was admitted as a lay member in 1886 and was elected Vice-President in 1916 and 1917. He was one of the first people admitted when the Club opened up for lay members. Prior to November 1886, only “artists” could obtain membership by being elected .
Furthermore, he was one of those people who, in 1891, appended their names to a list requesting that the Corporation of Glasgow buy Whistler’s Arrangement in Grey and Black No2, a portrait of Thomas Carlyle  who was a Scottish philosopher, writer, historian, mathematician and teacher. The Corporation had agreed that the painting be bought and it hangs now in the Kelvingrove Art Gallery.
The picture depicts a boat race with the winner at the closing stages. You can almost hear the crowds of people who have gathered on the banks of the Clyde cheering the winners. Judging by the size of the crowd in the picture, it is clear that the boat races were in those days extremely popular.
When you look at the painting above, it tells the story of the Clyde and the people who used it. The artist John MacNiven (1819-1895) was employed by the town council. His favourite subject was The Clyde and the busy traffic on it. The people travelled to their places of work on the Clyde using Clutha ferries . The Clyde Navigation Trust introduced the first ferries in 1884 to provide passenger services along the river. There were twelve ferries, operating by 1898, collectively known as Cluthas, stopping at ten landing stages between the city centre and Whiteinch. The service was withdrawn in 1903 because it could not compete with cheap and efficient tramway and railway services along the riverside.
Apart from commuting on the Clyde, the Glaswegians, in their free time, gathered in the rowing clubs scattered along the riverside. Rowing was a popular sport among the young. It is important to note that there was a very strong link with the rowing clubs on the Clyde and the birth of football. One of these clubs was the Clydesdale Amateur Rowing Club and the early members of the club are credited with involvement in the formation of Glasgow Rangers Football Club. J Allan in his book The Story of the Rangers: Fifty Years’ Football 1873-1923 mentions that in the club minutes of the time, there are bitter complaints of the amount of football being played by members of Clydesdale Amateur Rowing Club to the detriment of their rowing . Rangers Football Club acknowledges its rowing roots on a mural in Ibrox. In 1872 the nucleus of what was to become Rangers FC played their first match on the Flesher’s Haugh in “The Green”.
Allan further writes: “In the summer evenings of 1873 a number of lusty, laughing lads, flushed and happy from the exhilaration of a finishing dash with the oars, could be seen hauling their craft ashore on the upper reaches of the river Clyde at the Glasgow Green. As keen then was their enthusiasm for the sport of rowing as it became in later years for the game of football; for these lads were the founders of the Rangers Football Club.”
Mr Charles Carlton was the representative for the Blythswood Ward from 1911 until 1920 when he was defeated at the polls. When he retired he went to Boscombe in Wiltshire, England where he lived at Stresa, Chessel Avenue until his death on 28th December 1933 .
In the ‘Wills and Bequests’ column in The Times of Tuesday 8th May 1934 , the following was reported:
Mr Charles Carlton of Boscombe, late Glasgow, died on 28th December 1933 and he had an estate of £73,577. He is survived by his wife Jessie Carlton. His nephew was Dr W. H. McLean, M.P. for the Tradeston Division of Glasgow.
I should like to thank the project leaders, information officers and the liaison officers of the institution, business and club, as well as all the librarians and information officers for their help and kind permission for letting me use information for the production of the above blog.