Records of the Monarch Steamship Company Limited, shipowners, Glasgow

Scope and Content

  • Minutes: Raeburn & Vérel Ltd, 1903-1956;
  • Minutes: Monarch Steamship Co Ltd, 1902-1940;
  • Annual returns, 1933-1952;
  • Contracts for ships and charter parties, 1901-1905;
  • Voyage book, 1926-1947;
  • Arrivals and sailings books, 1920-1960;
  • Letter books, 1921-1933;
  • Cash books, 1894-1967;
  • Ledgers, 1904-1959;
  • Staff testimonial book, 1916-1933;
  • Research files of Mr Burrows, 1874-1999;
  • Photograph album, 1956-1957.

Administrative / Biographical History

In 1873 William H Raeburn and Captain Dunn started a shipping company called Dunn & Raeburn with a fleet of good-sized steamers. John B Vérel replaced Captain Dunn in 1880 and the company was renamed Raeburn & Vérel. The fleet was varied, with the  Marbella trading to the Spanish ports, while the larger  Borghese traded from the Clyde to the likes of Buenes Aires, San Nicholas, and London. The  Dehli and the  Bonnington regularly traded in the Far Eastern ports. In 1902 Raeburn and Vérel formed the Monarch Steamship Company Ltd with a new steamer  British Monarch, and by 1911 the company had 9 steamers conforming to the same naming system. The usual trading pattern was coal out to the Plate and grain back. The fleet lost seven ships during the First World War (1914-1918), and at the end of the war the Shipping Controller placed five American built war-steamers in their hands, and the trading pattern became more extensive. By 1921 there were four vessels under the flag, and during the Second World War (1939-1945) the company had six steamers with another six from the Ministry of War Transport.

Raeburn and Vérel sold the company to the Woodside Shipping Company in 1960. The shareholders included Wordie Investment Co, ex-members of the Monarch Steamship Co Ltd, members of the Lithgow family, and the Harrison family. Management of the new company was given to Harrisons (Clyde) Ltd. Monarch Steamship Co Ltd was dissolved on 12 March 1985.


Two subfonds; 11 series and 1 file. Generally arranged chronologically within each record class.

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Mr Peter Wordie, Wordie Properties Ltd, Glasgow : October 2003: Accn 2463 on behalf of Mrs Burrows

Other Finding Aids

Digital file level list available in the 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 248 procedures

Custodial History

Previously held with the company and with Mr I Burrows.


None expected

Related Material

  • GB 248 GD 320/10/1/17, British Monarch photographs;
  • GB 248 GD319/19/2/87, British Monarch photographs;
  • GB 248 GD 319/16/237, 245, and GD 319/17/793, British Monarch plans;
  • GB 248 GD 319/18/4/3, Celtic Monarch photographs;
  • GB 248 GD320/10/1/23, Scottish Monarch photographs and reports;
  • GB 248 GD320/2/56/1, Annual Accounts.
  • GB 248 ACCN 3109, Records of Harrison (Clyde) Ltd.

Location of Originals

This material is original. Some material is photocopies, and may have been copied from originals in the Harrisons (Clyde) collection


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 1999and 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 Candida Fenton, work placement, 15 Apr 2004. Lower levels compiled by Candida Fenton, work placement, 15 Apr 2004, with some additional work by Alma Topen, Senior Assistant Archivist, and Elva McLean, Volunteer, 2012.

Geographical Names