Papers of John W Sharpe, 1916-1997, arts graduate, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, Scotland

Scope and Content

  • Mathematics notebooks, 1935-1939;
  • Natural Philosophy notebooks, 1935-1939;
  • Degaussing notebooks, 1940.

Administrative / Biographical History

John Walker Sharpe was born in Stenhousemuir in Falkirk, Scotland on the 21st October 1916. He was a student at the  University of Glasgow from  1935-1939  , gaining a First class MA degree in Mathematics and Natural Philosophy in 1939. The collection has 43 of his lecture notebooks from his time at the university. He then spent a short time as Assistant Lecturer in Natural Philosophy at the Royal College of Science and Technology (now the  University of Strathclyde ).

He spent most of World War II as a scientific officer in the Admiralty, and two of his notebooks from this period are included in the collection. He did important work first on mine design, and subsequently on the demagnetising of ships to prevent them detonating magnetic mines (degaussing).

After the war he spent 2 years at Aberdeen as a lecturer in R V Jones' physics department. This was followed by two years with ICI at Runcorn, where he did pioneering work on Electron Microscopy, and was the first to photograph African Trypanosoma, a virus causing sleeping sickness in African cattle. The rest of his career was spent in the Natural Philosophy Department of the Strathclyde University, where he eventually became Reader. He died on 14 August 1997.


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

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Gift : Betty Sharpe, Classics Department, University of Glasgow : 1998

Other Finding Aids

Digital file level list available in searchroom

Alternative Form Available

No known copies

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

None which affect the use of this material

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

Received directly from the wife of the creator.


None expected

Related Material

No related material

Location of Originals

This material is original


No known publications using this material

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 Nyree Morrison Archive Assistant, 27 June 2000. Lower level description compiled by members of Glasgow University Archive Service staff.

Geographical Names