Records of the Caledonian Railway, Scotland

Scope and Content

  • Plan and papers relating to the Grangemouth Harbour and Charles Brand & Co, contractors, Glasgow 1877-1885
  • Directors' half-yearly reports and accounts 1844-1849, 1855
  • Tables of rates 1854-1855
  • Caledonian Railway Bill evidence 1845
  • Railway bills 1846-1861
  • Agreements with other railway companies 1844-1865
  • Agreements with the Monkland & Kirkintilloch Railway 1844-1849
  • Estimates for a sewage contract with plan 1892
  • Lists of occupiers of land to be purchased by the company [c1840]
  • Book of reference 1844
  • Parliamentary session book 1845-1846

Administrative / Biographical History

The Caledonian Railway , Scotland, was authorised by the Caledonian Railway Act of 1845  . The line provided a service from Carlisle, England, to Glasgow, Scotland; Edinburgh, Scotland, and Greenhill (near Falkirk), Scotland.

The first section of the railway between Carlisle and Beatock, Dumfries & Galloway, Scotland, was opened in 1847  . The line was completed to Glasgow, Scotland, in 1848 along with a branch line to Castlecary, North Lanarkshire, Scotland. The company purchased the Wishaw & Coltness Railway , Scotland, in 1849  . In 1853, Edinburgh Station, Edinburgh, Scotland was opened along with a line from Slateford, Edinburgh, Scotland to Haymarket, Edinburgh. In 1901 a branch to Leadhills, South Lanarkshire, was opened and was extended to Wanlockhead, Dumfries & Galloway, the following year. The company acquired other lines and later the services encompassed Aberdeen, Dundee, Forfar, Perth, Stirling, Oban, Ardrossan, Peebles and a large number of other locations in Scotland. This was done through the purchase of smaller railway companies.

Between 1849 and 1864  the company repeatedly tried to absorb the Edinburgh & Glasgow Railway Co into the Caledonian system. If it had succeeded the Caledonian would have had a virtual monopoly of Scottish Railways. Although it failed to achieve this, as it had routes to both Glasgow and Edinburgh from the south of Scotland it took the policy of buying-up small railway companies and using their approach routes to those cities. They purchased the Glasgow & Kirkintilloch Railway, the Monkland & Coltness Railway and the Monkland & Kirkintilloch Railway in the 1840s along with the Glasgow & Garnkirk Railway which brought with it parliamentary approval for a station at Buchannan Street, Glasgow. The Caldeonian were powerfull in Glasgow as a result, and its competitors, the Edinburgh & Scotland Railway, the Glasgow & South Western Railway and the North British Railway united against the company in competition for traffic, urban space and local influence in a battle that lasted for nearly 60 years.

The company merged in 1923  with the Glasgow & South Western Railway Co , the Highland Railway, the London & North Western Railway, and the Midland Railway to form the London, Midland & Scottish Railway Co in 1923  . This company was nationalised as part of British Rail in 1948.

John Kellet,Railways and Victorian Cities(London, 1979)

David Thomas, vol 6A Regional History of the Railways of Great Britain: Scotland(Newton Abbot, 1971)


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

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Loan : Mitchells, Johnston & Co : Glasgow : prior to 1966

Other Finding Aids

The archive forms part of the Scottish Railways Collection held by Glasgow University Archive Services, finding aid reference GB 248 UGD 008

Digital file level list available in searchroom

Manual file level list available at the National Registers of Archives in Edinburgh (NRA(S)1631) and London (NRA21659)

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

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 Mitchells, Johnston & Co , solicitors, Glasgow


None expected

Related Material

GB 234 BR/CAL Records of the Caledonian Railway (National Archives of Scotland)

GB 254 MS 105 Ledgers, day books, accounts re lands purchased, chartularies, and letterbooks of the Caledonian Railway (Dundee University Archives)

GB 233 MSS 6354-56 Miscellaneous papers of the Caledonian railway (National Library of Scotland)

GB 248 UGD 008 The Scottish Railway Collection

GB 248 UGD 008/2 Records of the Monkland & Kirkintilloch Railway Co

GB 248 UGD 008/5 Records of the Wishaw & Coltness Railway and Wilsontown, Morningside & Coltness Railway

GB 248 UGD 008/6 Records of the Edinburgh & Glasgow Railway Co

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


J R Kellet,Railways and Victorian cities(London, 1979)

Additional Information

This material is original

No alterations made to date