Records of Donald Brothers Ltd, linen, canvas and furnishing fabric manufacturers, Dundee, Scotland

Scope and Content

This collection consists of educational certificates, weavers note books, an index to sample books, Old Glamis Fabrics stitch books and sample books of Jacquard textiles. These were generated for Donald Brothers Ltd by N & N Lockhart & Sons, flax, hemp and tow spinners, net and twine manufacturers Kirkcaldy, Scotland, under a friendship agreement.

There are 68 sample books of Jacquard textiles. There are also 5 notebooks giving the patent and colour numbers for each design. There is a final notebook that gives a list of the patent numbers for the designs of the fabrics.

Source: Heriot-Watt University collection level description for Donald Brothers Ltd. See Publication Note below.

Administrative / Biographical History

Donald Brothers Ltd emerged out of the coarse jute and linen industry of Dundee, Scotland, manufacturing rugged textured art canvasses and linens for use as wallcoverings and furnishings by 1896. Their art fabrics were extensively used within art galleries and the arts & crafts interior in Britain and America between 1896-1914.

Building on their early success with craft manufacture between the 1930s and 1960s the firm made a significant contribution to the design of furnishing textiles, gaining international recognition for their fabrics marketed under the trade name Old Glamis Fabrics . Best known for their high quality woven linen furnishings, their range included textured weaves, Jacquard woven tapestries and prints. In 1983, the company was taken over by William Halley & Son , and has since, re-emerged as active makers of quality furnishings.


The material is arranged in the order in which it was deposited.

Access Information

Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections are open for research by appointment.

Other Finding Aids

An item level list of the collection is available in the searchroom.

Alternative Form Available

No known copies.

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

There are no physical characteristics that affect the use of this material.

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections standard procedures.

Custodial History

The material was held by N & N Lockhart & Sons, Kirkaldy until the firm closed in the early 1980s. The material was then split between Heriot-Watt University and the Glasgow School of Art.

Deposited at Glasgow School of Art : early 1980s

Related Material

GB 0582 HWUA DB: Records of Donald Brothers Ltd, 1869-1980 (Heriot-Watt University Archive, Records Management and Museum Service)

GB 80001 NRA 22370 Lockhart: Records of N & N Lockhart & Sons Ltd, flax, hemp and tow spinners, net and twine manufacturers Kirkcaldy, Fife. Held in private hands, enquiries to be sent via the National Register of Archives


Helen Douglas, The emergence of Donald Brothers as manufacturers of decorative fabrics: the feel for rugged texture , Ph.D. Thesis, (Edinburgh University 1997) Christine Boydell , The Architect of Floors; Modernism, Art and Marion Dorn Designs , (Schoeser 1996)