Records of the Lumsden family, stationers, Arden, Dumbartonshire, Scotland

Scope and Content

  • Family papers, especially Sir James Lumsden (1808-1879), James Lumsden (1851-1911), and the family of Susan Campbell MacKenzie Lumsden undated
  • Illustrated children's books published by James Lumsden and Sons c.1810-1850
  • Title deeds undated

Administrative / Biographical History

The Lumsden family have been in existence since the end of the 17th Century. Possibly the most important figure in the family history was  Sir James Lumsden of Arden. He was born in  1808  , the eldest son of Margaret Mirrlees and James Lumsden, proprietor of James Lumsden and Sons, Stationers, Glasgow. He went to the  University of Glasgow in  1821  and then joined the family firm, working for a time as a representative and travelling widely. In  1834  he was made a partner in the firm. In July 1835 he married Elizabeth Pinkerton. The couple's surviving children were a son and three daughters. After his father's retirement from the business in  1852  , James Lumsden took over management until his own retirement in 1876. In addition he invested in stocks and shares and bought, sold and rented out a variety of properties. Following his father's example, he became involved in civic affairs as a member of the Town council. In  1861  he was made Dean of Guild and was Lord Provost of Glasgow from  1866-1869  . He acquired the territorial title ‰??of Arden' in  1868  when he was knighted after acting as host to the Prince and Princess of Wales during their visit to Glasgow to lay the foundation stone of the new University of Glasgow Buildings on Gilmorehill.

He had a variety of other interests in local business and civic affairs. Lumsden was a director of the Glasgow and South Western Railway Company from 1849, becoming Chairman in  1871  . He was a director and later Chairman of the Board of the Clydesdale Bank. He was the last Chairman of the Clyde Shipping Company before the partnership sold it to private interests in 1857. He maintained a continuing interest in the Clyde Navigation and Lighthouse Trusts. He contributed a total of £1150 towards the building of the the Bute Hall in the University of Glasgow. At his death in  1879  , the family houses were at 194 Bath Street in Glasgow, and at Arden House in Dumbartonshire. The premises of James Lumsden Son and Co, Wholesale Stationers were, at that time, at 20 Queen's Street, Glasgow. Sir James' son, James Lumsden (  1851-1911  ) continued to be involved in the family business although his interests lay more in the area of natural history.


The arrangement of this material reflects the original order in which it was received

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Indefinite loan: Mr Lumsden of Helensburgh (Ref BACS 642)


Compiled by Vikki Laidlaw, Hub Project Assistant, 08 October 2004

Other Finding Aids

Digital file level list available in searchroom

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

Conditions Governing Use

Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the Archivist.

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents.

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with standard GB 248 procedures

Custodial History

Acquired directly from the Lumsden family


None expected

Related Material

No related material

Location of Originals

This material is original


No known publications using this material

Family Names