Friday, 17 February 2017

Visit to Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in Glasgow

I had a great time earlier today visiting the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in Glasgow (, as part of a tour organised for the Scottish Genealogy Network ( We were met by one of the librarians and shown around the facility on Glasgow's St. Vincent Street.

First established in 1599 in Glasgow's Trongate area, the college has evolved over time with regards to its training role. At one time barbers were trained there, as well as surgeons, and the college also had premises for a time in the St. Enoch's Square area of the city, before arriving at its current location in the 19th century.

Today the facility deals with postgraduate tuition, and has a superb archive and library service, which we were keen to get our hands on! For a quick run down of its history, see

On our travels we were shown the Livinsgtone Room, dedicated to the memory of explorer Dr. David Livingstone, and various other museum items and rooms along the way. I grabbed a few images to give you a flavour:

Of course, the library was the the main jewel from our family historian based perspective, where we were shown several items such as class cards, which students collected after attending each class for their studies, registration rolls, vaccination registers and more.

My own five times great uncle, Dr. William Henderson, is someone that I have been researching for many years, and I was delighted to find an article that he wrote in the Edinburgh Medical Journal from 1822 that I had not come across before, about a "Case of Amaurosis", as well as another version of an article he wrote about a caesarean birth which he was also involved in during the 1820s, which I had previously located in The Lancet.

A superb facility which I must return to one day to carry out some additional research! Note that many archival items in the college's collection have been digitised and can be freely viewed at

Thanks again as ever to Emma Maxwell for arranging, and to the college staff for a superb experience. If interested in finding out more about the SGN, please visit the website mentioned above.


My next 5 week Scottish Research Online course commences Feb 21st 2017 - details at For details on my genealogy guide books, including A Beginner's Guide to British and Irish Genealogy, A Decade of Irish Centenaries: Researching Ireland 1912-1923Discover Scottish Church Records (2nd edition), Discover Irish Land Records and Down and Out in Scotland: Researching Ancestral Crisis, please visit

1 comment:

  1. I love history, especially old books! Dr Livingstone is a legend.