Papers of the Reverend Stephen Ree

Scope and Content

This small collection reflects the broad research interests of the Reverend Stephen Ree, pursued over a period of more then 40 years. It contains extensive notes on the origin and descent of the Gordon, Leslie, Innes, Forbes and Duff families, including an inventory of charters in Gordon Castle, 1802 - 1803; four volumes of notes on schools and schoolmasters in the Presbytery of Aberlour, including a report of the Schoolmasters' widows' fund, 1823; a series of transcripts and extracts from official records, including Aberdeenshire register of sasines, 1599 - 1606, the Register of Privy Council for Scotland, 1545 - 1632, the Exchequer Rolls, 1264 - 1579, and the Great Seal Register, 1424 - 1659; a further series of extracts from printed sources, including Burke's Landed Gentry (1898), Lord Rosebery's List of Persons concerned in the Rebellion (1890), and the Scots Magazine, 1732 - 1825; and 15 small notebooks containing miscellaneous extracts and notes on similar topics.

Administrative / Biographical History

Stephen Ree was born in Letham, Dunnichen, Aberdeenshire on 12 May 1852, the son of James Ree, quarryman. He was educated at the University of Aberdeen, graduating MA in 1872 and BD, 1876. He was assistant librarian at the University under his uncle, John Fyfe, LLD, and later, after Fyfe's appointment to the Chair of Moral Philosophy, promoted to interim librarian for the period 1876 - 1877. He was licensed by the Presbytery of Aberdeen in May 1876, and appointed assistant at Cruden (1877) and West Aberdeen (1879), before being ordained to the ministry of Boharm, Aberdeenshire (1880), where he remained until his death on 15 Aug 1918. He was a popular figure in the parish, and under his curacy supervised the restoration of Boharm church and the installation of a new pipe organ and chamber.

Ree was a distinguished student, a keen antiquarian and genealogist, and an acknowledged expert on ecclesiastical law and procedure. He was a member of the editorial committee of the New Spalding Club, and published several works through his involvement with the society and independently. These include The Professor of Oriental Languages, 1870 - 1887, The Professor of Systematic Theology, 1867 - 1887, and The Professor of Church History in Aurora Borealis Academica (Aberdeen, 1899); and several works in House of Gordon (Aberdeen, New Spalding Club, 1903 - 1904), including Historiae Compendium de Origine et incremento Gordoniae Familiae, Johanne Ferrio, Pedemontano, auctore, apud Kynlos MDXLV. Fideliter collectum and Origio at Progressus Familiae Gordoniorum de Huntley in Scotia, auctore Roberto Gordonio a Straloch. He also edited The Records of Elgin (Aberdeen, New Spalding Club, 1908), and a series of works on parish ministers of the Presbyteries of Aberlour (Keith, 1911), Strathbogie (Keith, 1911), Elgin (Elgin, 1912) and Forres (Forres, 1912).


None observed

Conditions Governing Access

Open, subject to signature accepting conditions of use at reader registration sheet

Acquisition Information

Deposited by Malcom Bulloch c 1926.

Other Finding Aids

Very brief collection level description available on Aberdeen University Library Catalogue, accessible online

Alternative Form Available

No copies known

Conditions Governing Use

Subject to the condition of the original, copies may be supplied for private research use only on receipt of a signed undertaking to comply with current copyright legislation.

Permission to make any published use of material from the collection must be sought in advance from the Head of Special Libraries and Archives (e-mail: and, where appropriate, from the copyright owner. Where possible, assistance will be given in identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with normal procedures


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Additional Information

This material is original