Papers of the British Association for the Advancement of Science Meeting, 1901, 1928 and 1958, Glasgow, Scotland

Scope and Content

  • Minutes of B.A. meeting in Glasgow, 1928;
  • Correspondence, 1928;
  • Booklets of excursions, 1928;
  • B.A. meeting information materials, including lists of members, 1958;
  • B.A. leaflets, 1958;
  • Maps showing location of B.A. meeting in Glasgow, 1958;
  • B.A. programmes, 1958;
  • B.A. advertisements, 1958;
  • B.A. receptions and social events records, 1958;
  • B.A. excursions records, 1958;
  • B.A. press releases, 1958;
  • Various publications, 1958;
  • Various publications, 1901.

Administrative / Biographical History

The British Association for the Advancement of Science (known later as the BAAS, the BA, and now the British Science Association) was founded in York, England, in 1831. Its original aim was to encourage a more efficient and methodical approach to scientific research by encouraging discourse within the scientific community on both a national and international scale. Furthermore, the association also encouraged the promotion of science to ensure those from non scientific backgrounds were aware of how scientific progress could benefit them, and were thus in sympathy with scientific endeavour rather than impeding it.

David Brewster, Scientist and Editor of the Edinburgh Journal of Science, is largely credited with arranging the first meeting of the association. This would be the first of several annual meetings interrupted only during periods of war. The attendees of these meetings included several world leading scientists, and it would be here they would announce and debate the major advances of their fields, such as Charles Darwin's seminal work, The Origin of Species .

Meetings took place throughout the UK, and often resulted in the formation of smaller, local scientific associations, such as the Glasgow Geographical Society formed after the meeting of 1855. The 1901, 1928 and the 1958 meetings of the association took place in Glasgow, with excursions and gala dinners organised in both the city and surrounding areas, and each generated great interest from local and national press and publications.

Now known as the British Science Association, the organisation still strives to both encourage debate among scientists and to promote awareness and understanding of science. The latter aim is met through ensuring those of varying ages and backgrounds can engage in ongoing debates and activities, thus gaining an understanding of how science can benefit and change their lives.


Arranged chronologically within the record series

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Internal transfer : University of Glasgow Library.

Other Finding Aids

Digital level finding aid available in searchroom

Alternative Form Available

None known

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

Material was held at the University of Glasgow Library before transfer to GUAS.


None expected

Related Material

GB 1187, SZ/BAAS, the Zuckerman Archive: BAAS, 1934-1958; GB 161, Dep BAAS 1-453, Papers of the BAAS, 1831-1972; GB 247, MS Gen 1706, Album of press cuttings of BAAS visit to Australia in 1914.

Location of Originals

This material is original


Howarth, O.J.RThe British Association for the Advancement of Science: A Retrospect 1831-1921 . London (England) : , 1921 (2nd ed. 1931)  .

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 Elva McLean, Archives volunteer, 09 March 2006. Lower level descriptions compiled by Elva McLean Archives volunteer, 09 March 2006. Amendments made by Vikki Laidlaw, Assistant Archivist (Cataloguing), 26 April 2006. Revisions to lower levels made by Alma Topen, Assistant Archivist (Cataloguing), 2011. Revisions to administrative history and fonds level description made by Emma Anthony, Assistant Archivist, 16 February 2012. Catalogue edited by Michelle Kaye, Archives Assistant, 18 July 2012. Amended by Sam Maddra, Assistant Archivist (Cataloguing), 5 June 2014.