Records of William Lindsay & Son Ltd, coopers, Edinburgh, Scotland

Scope and Content

  • Corporate records 1923-1977;
  • Shareholding records 1931-1959;
  • Financial records 1950-1959;
  • Staff records 1950s;
  • Promotional material 1936-1950s;
  • Public relations 1938-1957;
  • Photographs 1970s.

Administrative / Biographical History

William Lindsay of Edinburgh, Scotland, started his cooperage business in 1829. He made wooden tubs for housewives to do their laundry. His cooperage was situated at the banks of the river Leith. In 1874 the business was taken over by William Lindsay's son James, who went to Germany to buy the machinery to produce casks for the export of beer. The business was expanding rapidly. On James Lindsay's death his two sons James and William took over the business. James was killed in 1916 and his brother William became the sole partner.

The firm of William Lindsay & Son Ltd became a private limited company in 1923 and William Lindsay was managing director until 1941. Mr Kenneth Lindsay then took over until he sold out to Scottish Brewers Ltd, Edinburgh, in 1942. By 1968 the use of metal casks had cut down the demand for oak casks by the brewing industry, but the whisky industry still needed oak casks. Thus most of William Lindsay's cask production in the 1960s was for Mackinlay-McPherson Ltd, wine and spirit merchants, Edinburgh, Scotland. No more is known about the company's history.

Source: Archer, James. "By the Water of Leith" in "The Essanden" (Spring 1968)


The material is arranged according to the Scottish Brewing Archive classification scheme used within all SBA collections.

Access Information

Access to certain records within this collection is restricted in accordance with data protection legislation as they contain information about potentially living individuals. Please email Archives and Special Collections for advice:

Acquisition Information

Scottish & Newcastle plc

Other Finding Aids

See also University of Glasgow Collections

File level list available in searchroom

Alternative Form Available

No known copies of this material

Conditions Governing Use

Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the ArchivistReproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents

Appraisal Information

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

Custodial History

The collection was previously housed with the rest of the Scottish Brewing Archive at Heriot-Watt University. It moved to the University of Glasgow in 1991. Custody of the Scottish Brewing Archive was transferred to Glasgow University Archive Services in 2008.


None expected

Related Material

  • GB 0234 GD287: Records of William Lindsay & Son Ltd (National Archives of Scotland);
  • GB 248 ARTEFACTS: Scottish Brewing Archive Artefacts Collection;
  • GB 248 SB: Records of Scottish Brewers Ltd;
  • GB 248 SNB: Records of Scottish & Newcastle Breweries plc;
  • GB 248 MAC: Records of Mackinlay-McPherson Ltd.

Location of Originals

This material is original

Geographical Names