University of St Andrews

University Library Special Collections


The United College of St Salvator and St Leonard

Images related to the United College collection

The United College was founded in 1747 by amalgamating the colleges of St Salvator and St Leonard under common management. At the same time teaching methods were transformed with the ending of the medieval regenting system and the confirmation of the practice of professors becoming specialists in a particular subject or group of subjects.

The union took place after a period of decline in student numbers and the decay of buildings. The St Salvator's site was chosen as the home for the new United College and was renovated after 1747 while St Leonard's College, except for the chapel, was sold off by 1772. The new United College buildings, except for St Salvator's Chapel, were rebuilt in the 1840s with science facilities being added behind the East wing. The college retained its independence until its powers were subsumed under the University Court after 1890.

The extensive records don't just start in 1747 but include earlier material, particularly relating to the lands owned by both St Salvator's and St Leonard's Colleges (1550-1891) with cartularies (1699-1856), and papers relating to visitations (1616-1719). There are titles, presentations and other documents relating to bursaries in both St Salvator's and St Leonard's Colleges from 1530. Material relating to students includes annual lists (1854-1962), prize lists (1829-1845) and a discipline book (1851-56). The minutes of the college from 1751-1962 continue the series of minutes of St Leonard's College (1710-1747) which extend to 1751. The letter books series covers 1833-1892, and financial material includes annual accounts (1747-1901) as well as a comprehensive set of vouchers for the accounts from 1748 to 1892. There are daybooks from 1769 to 1896, reports on the accounts (1839-1898), diet books (1768-1784), as well as apparatus fund, sinking fund and class fee books. The factors' letters and other business papers cover all aspects of college life from 1747 to 1892. There is also material relating to the administration of college lands from 1755-1906 and bursaries from 1770-1936.

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