Lindsay Papers

Scope and Content

Family and personal papers. The family papers include correspondence (some of it from India) during the second half of the nineteenth century, journals, albums of photographs, notebooks and some printed matter. The majority of the later material relates to Lord Lindsay and includes letters, copy letters, memoranda, lectures, sermons, diaries, articles (including printed broadcasts) and newspaper cuttings.

Administrative / Biographical History

Alexander Dunlop Lindsay, First Baron Lindsay of Birker (1879-1952), educationalist. The son of T.M. Lindsay; educated at University of Glasgow, 1899 and University College, Oxford, where he took a first clss in Literae Humaniores. He was president of the Union, 1902; Clark philosophy fellow, Glasgow, 1902-4; Shaw fellow, Edinburgh, 1904-9; fellow and classical tutor, Balliol College, Oxford, 1906-22; deputy controller of labour in France and lieutenant-colonel, 1917-19; CBE; professor, moral philosophy, Glasgow, 1922-4; master of Balliol, 1924-49. Lindsay welcomed the opening of Oxford to wider social classes; his democratic theories were the outcome of his Christian beliefs and his moral fervour made him a national figure. Lindsay was an adviser on education to the Labour party and the Trades Union Congress; chairman, committee on work of Protestant colleges in India, 1930; in 1938, he unsuccessfully contested Oxford City on the anti-Munich platform; was vice-chancellor, Oxford University, 1935-8; sponsored appeal for funds; piloted schemes for expansion of science departments, including new Clarendon Laboratory and absorption of Nuffield benefactions, including Nuffield College. Lindsay was the first principal of University College of North Staffordshire which he had worked to create, 1949-52. He was made a baron, 1945; Honorary Fellow, Balliol College; Honorary LLD, Glasgow, St. Andrews, and Princeton. Publications include The Essentials of Democracy (1929) and Religion, Science and Society in the Modern World (1943).

Reference: Robert Blake. Baron. 1916- , The Dictionary of National Biography 1981-1985 (Oxford. Oxford University Press, 1990).


At her request the papers are preserved in the order in which Lady Scott placed them during the preparation of her biography of her father.

Access Information

There are no restrictions on access to these papers. Viewing is by prior appointment.

Acquisition Information

This collection was presented to the University by Lord Lindsay's daughter.



Other Finding Aids

Listed to item level. There is also an index.

An authority record exists for Alexander Dunlop Lindsay, 1st Baron Lindsay of Birker (GB 152 AAR1975).

Conditions Governing Use

There are no restrictions on the use of this archive, apart from the requirements of copyright law.


Further deposits are not expected.


Works using the material:

Reference: Grimley, M., Citizenship, Community and the Church of England. Anglical Theories of the State c.1926-1939 (Oxford PhD, 1998).

Reference: Runciman. D.W., Pluralism and the Theory of the State in English Political Thought 1900-1939 (Cambridge PhD, 1994).

Reference: Harrison, B., The History of the University of Oxford Vol. 8. The Twentieth Century (Oxford Clarendon Press, 1994).

Reference: Stapleton, Julia, Political Intellectuals and Public Identities in Britain Since 1850 (Manchester University Press, 2001).

Reference: Stapleton, Julia, Englishness and the Study of Politics. The Social and Political Thought of Ernest Barker (Cambridge University Press, 2001).

Reference: Scott,Drusilla, A.D. Lindsay, A Biography (Blackwells, 1971).

Additional Information


Geographical Names