Records of the Scottish Temperance League, temperance organisation, Glasgow, Scotland

Scope and Content

  • Minutes, 1846-1921;
  • Agents' appointments, 1920-1923;
  • Press cuttings, 1893-1922;
  • Printed material, 1860-1940;
  • Manuscript material, c1890-1903;
  • Photographic material, c1918-1950s.

Administrative / Biographical History

The  Scottish Temperance League was founded in Glasgow, Scotland, in  1844 . The League believed in using the power of temperance propaganda and education to change the attitude of the electorate rather than legislative prohibition.

The League occupied offices first at 108 Hope Street, Glasgow, and later at 226 West George Street, Glasgow. It was governed by an executive committee, with sub-committees on finance, advocacy and publicity, and youth. The League produced a large number of educational tracts, pamphlets and other printed material. Its official organ, advocating prohibition, was the League Journal newspaper, established in 1857.

The League was affiliated to the London-based National Temperance Federation. Though politically neutral, it did support suitable political candidates when appropriate and petitioned Parliament to support relevant Bills. It maintained contact with the various temperance organisations of Scotland, which worked together to promote the 1920 district veto polls on prohibition under the Temperance (Scotland) Act of 1913.

In  1922 , the League amalgamated with the  Scottish Permissive Bill & Temperance Association to form the  Scottish Temperance & No Licence Union, retaining the offices of the Scottish Temperance League. By 1924, this organisation had changed its name again to the  Scottish Temperance Alliance.

Elspeth King , Scotland Sober and Free: The Temperance Movement 1829-1979, (Glasgow, 1979).


The material is arranged into series as shown in the scope and content. Within series items are generally arranged chronologically.

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Deposit : Scottish Temperance Alliance : 1975

Other Finding Aids

Digital file level list available in searchroom

Manual file level list available at the National Registers of Archives in Edinburgh (NRA(S) 2804) and London (NRA 30487)

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

None which affect the use of this material

Conditions Governing Use

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

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use & condition of documents

Appraisal Information

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

Custodial History

Held by the Scottish Temperance Alliance prior to deposit with University of Glasgow Archive Services. Previously catalogued as part of the Scottish Temperance Alliance Archive (GB 248 DC19), the collection was re-catalogued in March 2003.


None expected

Related Material

GB 248 DC 19/2 Records of the Scottish Permissive Bill & Temperance Association

GB 248 DC 19/3 Records of the Scottish Temperance & No Licence Union

GB 248 DC 19/4 Records of the Scottish Temperance Alliance

GB 248 DC 19/5 Records of the Glasgow & District Municipal Federation

GB 248 DC 19/6 Records of the Citizens Vigilance Association

GB 248 DC 19/7 Records of the National Citizens Council

GB 248 DC 19/8 Records of International Order of Good Templars: Grand Lodge of Scotland

GB 583 Records of British Women's Temperance Association (Scottish Christian Union) (Huntly House Museum, Edinburgh)

GB 233 Minute Book of the Scottish Permissive Bill & Temperance Association Ladies' Auxiliary 1894-1902.

See also our Temperance Source Guide

For contact details of all repositories with a GB code, see the  Archon repository search page

Location of Originals

This material is original


No known publications using this material

Additional Information

Compiled by David Powell, Hub project Archivist, March 2003

Lower level description retro converted into EAD by Alma Topen, Senior Assistant Archivist (cataloguing), 30 October 2014.

Geographical Names