Papers of William Berry
The papers forming this collection enjoy only a modest homogeneity. There are few family papers, almost all the material being correspondence addressed to William Berry, in his offices at Edinburgh during term, or else to Tayfield [Newport on Tay] outside the law terms. About half relates to the affairs of the families of Makgill of Kemback [Fife] and of Law of Drums [Fife]; Berry was related to both families. The remainder of the material represents what must have been only a very modest tithe of the paperwork of a busy writer's office, which appears to have had many dealings with Fife, particularly along the corridor from Burntisland through Kirkcaldy and Cupar and on to Newport and Dundee, with a modest interest in legal activities in Stonehaven [Kincardineshire]. As a leading local figure in North East Fife, Berry served on the principal local committees with an especial involvement in the roads and ferries, in which he also enjoyed a personal interest.
A small proportion of the collection does not relate to Berry, but it has been kept with the rest since it has the same provenance.
Most of the collection came to the University of St Andrews by purchase in 1959, but other items were added subsequently to what was already a somewhat eclectic assembly of documents. For this reason the documents were first calendared by author rather than in chronological sequence.