Records of Anderson's Institution / Anderson's University / Anderson's College

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Minutes and papers of the Managers and Trustees; Parliamentary Acts, Royal Commissions etc; Annual reports; Correspondence; Financial records; Estates and buildings; Syllabuses and calendars; Class admission tickets; Student records; Library and Museum.

Summary of records

Administrative / Biographical History

Founded under the will of John Anderson (1726-1796), Professor of Natural Philosophy in the University of Glasgow, Anderson's (or the Andersonian) Institution was established in 1796. The intention was to establish four Faculties, of Arts, Medicine, Law and Theology, though Law and Theology were never founded. Courses in chemistry, natural philosophy, mathematics and other scientific subjects, together with English, rhetoric, music and art were offered. In keeping with John Anderson's views, classes were offered for the mechanics of the city. Among the early Professors were eminent men such as Thomas Garnett, George Birkbeck and Thomas Graham. In 1828 the Institution changed its name to Anderson's University and in 1877 it changed again to Anderson's College, as it lacked a Royal warrant to function as a University.

An important part of the Institution (founded in 1799) was Anderson's Medical School, of which David Livingstone was perhaps the most famous alumnus. In 1887 the Medical School became an independent institution, and it eventually merged with the University of Glasgow Medical Faculty in 1947.

Anderson's College merged with other institutions in 1887 to become the main component in the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College. Information on the 19th century period can be found in the published histories, 'The first Technical College', by A H Sexton (1894), 'John Anderson and the College he founded', by James Muir (1950) and 'John Anderson's legacy', by John Butt (1996).

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Archivist's Note

Archivist's note: Description prepared by Margaret Harrison, Web version by Graham S. Holton, Jordanhill LibraryRules or Conventions: Description based on Scottish Archive Network guidelines, based on ISAD(G): General International Standard Archival Description, International Council on Archives (2nd edition, 2000). and Rules for the construction of personal, place and corporate names, National Council on Archives (1997)Date of descriptions: May 2007

Related Material

GB 249 OA Papers of John Anderson (1726-1796), natural philosopher

GB 249 T-AMS records of Anderson's College Medical School