Papers of Sir Henry Jones, 1852-1922, Professor of Moral Philosophy, University of Glasgow, Scotland

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

  • Copies of log book of Ironworks School, Brynamman, 1873-1875;
  • Publications 1894-1919;
  • Bibliographical material c 1913- 1934;
  • Memorial Fund and Memorial Trust c 1922- 1998.

Administrative / Biographical History

Sir Henry Jones was born at Llangernyw, North Wales, on the 30 November 1852  , the third son of Elias Jones. His father was a shoemaker and Jones left school at the age of 12 to help in his father's workshop. However, he continued with his studies at home and in 1870 he qualified for admission to the Bangor Normal College. In 1873 he was appointed master of the Ironworks School in Brynamman, South Wales. He received the Dr Williams Scholarship to study at the University of Glasgow and first matriculated in 1875  .

During his time at University he took classes in Latin, Greek, Maths, Ethics, Physics, Logic, Advanced Logic and English Literature. He received many prizes and merits, including a first prize for Moral Philosophy, second prize for excellence in written examinations for Moral Philosophy and the best examination on Plato's Republic. He also received a prize for Logic and Rhetoric and won the Buchanan Prize in English Literature and joint first for the best prose essay on the decline of the drama. Upon graduating in 1879  , with an MA, he had intended to join the ministry but was was dissuaded by Edward Caird, chair of Moral Philosophy at the University of Glasgow, and won the G A Clark fellowship to study for 4 years in Oxford, Germany and Glasgow.

In 1882 he was appointed lecturer in Philosophy in University College, Aberystwyth. In 1894 he started work as Professor of Philosophy and Political Economy in the new University College of North Wales, Bagnor. In 1891, he returned to Scotland after being appointed Professor of Logic, Rhetoric, and Metaphysics at St Andrews University. Finally in 1894  , he succeeded Edward Caird in the chair of Moral Philosophy at Glasgow University, a position he held until his death. He received honorary doctorates from St Andrews University (1895) and the University of Wales (1905). In 1904 he was elected a fellow of the British Academy and he was knighted in 1912.

In January 1922  , just before his death, he was made a Companion of Honour. Following his death later that same year, a memorial fund was established with Ramsey MacDonald as President and David Lloyd George as vice-president. His childhood home, Y Cwm, was bought with funds raised and David Lloyd George opened it as a museum in 1934  . It is now run by the Sir Henry Jones Memorial Trust. Source: The Syr Henry Jones Musuem website .


Arranged chronologically within record series.

Conditions Governing Access


Acquisition Information

Transfer : Professor Downie : December 2000 : ACCN 2007;

Gift : Jean Hunt : June 2000 : ACCN 2028;

Gift : Trevor Williams : April 2003 : ACCN 2368

Other Finding Aids

Digital file level list available in the searchroom

Alternative Form Available

None known

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements


Conditions Governing Use

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

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

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with standard GB 0248 procedures

Custodial History

This is an artificial collection put together from three separate deposits.


None expected

Related Material

GB 0012 MS 7671, Letters to May Crum.

GB 0058 MSS Gilbert Murray, Correspondence with Macmillans, 1896-1918.

GB 0210, National Library of Wales

GB 0222 BMSS SHJP, Sir Henry Jones Papers.

GB 0247, University of Glasgow Library Special Collections, Applications and Testimonials and a number of publications.

Location of Originals

This material is original, with the exception of the various publications which will be found at the British Library. The original school log books may be held at Brynamman Primary School, Dyfed, Wales.


Hetherington, Hector J W, Sir, The life and letters of Sir Henry Jones, professor of moral philosophy in the University of Glasgow. London: Hodder and Stoughton.  1924. Mattews, E G , Yr Athro Alltud: Syr Henry Jones 1852-1922. Dinbych : Gwasg Gee,  1998. Jones, Sir HenryOld Memories: autobiography. London: Hodder and Stoughton  , 1922.

Boucher, David & Vincent, Andrew , A radical Hegelian: the political and social philosophy of Henry Jones. New York, Cardiff: St Martin's Press,  1994.

Additional Information

Description compiled in line with the following international standards: International Council on Archives,ISAD(G) Second Edition, September 1999 and National Council on Archives,Rules for the construction of personal, place and corporate names

Scotland is the location of all place names in the administrative/biographical history element, unless otherwise stated.

Fonds level description compiled by Sarah Beckinsale, Archive Assistant, 01 March 2007. Collection converted to Encoded Archival Description bySarah Beckinsale, Archive Assistant, March 2007.