Papers of William Romaine Paterson, 1871-1942, novelist 'Benjamin Swift'

Scope and Content

MS Gen 1034 includes: 

  • Typescripts drafts, final versions and proofs of plays, essays, poems and short stories
  • Correspondence 1934, 1942
  • Personal travel journal 1886-1887
  • Offprints of Paterson's work in journals 1904-1908
  • Photographic portraits of William Paterson and his mother, Marion Paterson, c1870-1951

MS Gen 1614 includes: 

  • Typescripts and galleys of plays and poems
  • Presscuttings and offprints relating to William Paterson and his work 1917-1923
  • Photographs of William Paterson; correspondence with his brother, James Venn Paterson 1918-1941
  • General correspondence 1923-1941
  • Correspondence of Marion Peterson 1897-1911

Administrative / Biographical History

William Romaine Paterson ( 1871-1942 ) was a Glasgow based novelist and writer, often writing under the pen-name of Benjamin Swift. William lived in University Gardens near the University of Glasgow, Scotland and was interned in Vichy, France, during the war. As well as writing novels, he wrote a number of essays, poems and short stories.


The material was received in 2 accessions and each accession was catalogued separately. The arrangement of this material reflects the original order in which it was received.

Access Information

Access is open, however an appointment may be required. Please email Archives and Special Collections for advice:

Acquisition Information

Gift : estate of Catherine Paterson : 1960 : ACCN 4021 (MS Gen 1034 only)

Purchase : Bloomsbury Book Auctions with help from Local Museums Purchase Fund : 1990 : ACCN 5412 (MS Gen 1614 only)

Other Finding Aids

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

Conditions Governing Use

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents. Applications for permission to quote should be sent to Archives and Special Collections, please email:

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with standard GB 247 procedures

Custodial History

MS Gen 1034 passed to William Paterson's sister, Catherine Paterson, upon his death. MS Gen 1614 purchased at auction


Accrual MS Gen 1614 bought from Bloomsbury Book Auctions 6 February 1990, with support from Local Museums Purchase Fund


Geographical Names