Papers of businesses, political, governmental and religious organisations, and other associations
The library holds many papers relating to organisations, associations and businesses within the northern and eastern parts of Fife. The brief list below is not comprehensive, and individually describes only the larger and more significant collections. Searchable lists for the Church and Burgh collections will be included in the online database.
Church Records ("CH2" and "CH3")
The formal records of the parishes comprising the former Presbyteries of St Andrews and Cupar are held in the Library under the charge and superintendence of the Keeper of the Records of Scotland. They consist of the surviving Kirk Session Records, as well as communion, baptism and proclamation rolls and some other records such as accounts, for all of the parishes of the 'East Neuk', and east and north Fife. The amount of material available varies from parish to parish, and includes records for many of the non-established congregations which have subsequently re-united with the Church of Scotland.
A full handlist is available.
In addition, the Library also holds records of some other congregations - for example, the Episcopal and Congregational congregations in St Andrews, as well as other business and less formal records of some of the parishes included within the 'CH' classes above. (msdep11, msdep18, msdep47, msdep23, msdep49, msdep67)
Partial lists available.
Burgh Records ("B" series)
The formal records of the administration of the burghs of north-east Fife (until the local government reorganisation of 1975) are held in the Library under the charge and superintendence of the Keeper of the Records of Scotland. The extent and nature of the records vary from burgh to burgh, but typically include council minutes, accounts, burgh court books, and frequently also stent rolls, valuation rolls, Police Commissioners records, licencing courts, and other common series. For some burghs there are also considerable series of additional documents, and for a few there are records of such bodies as the Trades Guilds. The overall chronological span is 12th -20th c. A full handlist is available, and there is an ongoing project to catalogue the records of the Burgh of St Andrews, see further details at Burnwynd Project on the Projects page.
In addition, the library holds several other series on deposit from Fife Council, including the records of the St Andrews Dean of Guild Court (comprising several thousand architectural plans, with registers, 19th-20th c. (msdep103)), and several late medieval charters and other documents (msdep106). Further relevant volumes (e.g. Trades Books) are held at various locations within the manuscript collections; these may be located through the relevant hard copy indices within the library; see also Individual Manuscripts and Small Collections.
Gillespie and Scott, Architects (ms37767-37778)
The records of Gillespie and Scott, Architects, St Andrews. Although the partnership of James Gillespie and James Scott did not begin until the 1880s, there are plans within this collection as far back as the 1850s. In 1981, James' grandson, Mr Michael Scott gave to the University Library approximately 15,000 plans as well as contract documents, contract ledgers, fee ledgers, account books, survey notebooks, price schedules and other miscellaneous documents. The firm is still in existence, however, and the post 1960s plans are still held by them as working drawings. Well known throughout Fife and beyond, Gillespie and Scott were responsible for many landmark buildings. Their varied output included country houses, estate cottages, farm steadings, miners' housing, town halls, co-operative societies, schools, factories, and other public and institutional buildings, as well as many small alterations.
The Library also holds much of the firm's architectural library.
Hard-copy lists of the plans and other documents are available within the department, and an online catalogue will be available soon. For the printed material, see the Gillespie and Scott Collection in the Rare Books section.
Madras College and Madras Trust (ms37023; msdep13; ms38438 and others)
Madras College was founded by the eminent educationalist Andrew Bell in 1832, as one of several educationally experimental schools. It is now the state secondary school for the St Andrews area. The papers relate to the foundation, building and running of the school in the 19th and early 20th centuries (including an important set of architectural plans by the eminent architect, William Burn). The Library also holds substantial papers relating to the administration of the Madras Trust, through which Andrew Bell effected the foundation and running of the school, and which is still an active body.
Handlists for parts of the collection only.
Small Business etc Collections
The following list gives an idea of the range of smaller collections of business (etc.) papers held in the library, along with brief details of the status of their finding aids.
- Ancient Order of Foresters Court Ancient City No. 6582 (ms37197-37222); 19th, 20th c; handlist available.
- J.L. Anderson & Co., Solicitors, Cupar (msdep116); 19th, 20th c.; brief handlist available.
- East of Scotland Shipbuilders Association (and predecessors) (ms38381); 20th c.; hand list only.
- Gateside Mill Co.(ms38110-38168); 19th, 20th c.; handlist available.
- Lodge St Andrew 25 of St Andrews (msdep68); 18th-20th c.; handlist available.
- John McGregor of St Andrews Ltd. (mss37336-37443), 19th , 20th c.; handlist available.
- Markinch Co-operative Society (ms38215-); 20th c.; no list.
- National Union of Women Workers, St Andrews Branch (& successor organisations) (msdep16); 20th c.; no list.
- Pagan, Osborne and Grace, Solicitors, St Andrews (ms37601-27; ms38437-38443);19th , 20th c.; handlists available.
- Patrick & Mitchell, Solicitors, Cupar (ms30357-30380); 17th-20th c.; no list.
- St Andrews & District Horticultural Association (msdep83); 19th, 20th c.; no list.
- St Andrews Sea Box Society (msdep51); 17th-20th c.; handlist available.
- Scots Philosophical Club Minutes (msdep1); 20th c.; no list.
- Scottish Society for the History of Medicine (msdep87); 20th c.; no list.
- West Fife and Kirkcaldy Burghs Conservative Associations, and Kirkcaldy Unionist Club (ms3693-36694); 20th c.; brief handlist available.
- John White Automations Ltd, Auchtermuchty (ms38487); 19th, 20th c.; handlist available.