CollectionGB 3380 Scottish Catholic Archives, Historic Archives
TitlePreshome Letters: Northern District Vicariate
Date1641 - 1933
Extent166 boxes
Administrative HistoryOn the re-introduction of the Catholic Hierarchy after the Reformation, the first Vicar Apostolic for Scotland, Bishop Thomas Nicholson, made his home on the Gordon Estates near Preshome in the north east of Scotland.

His 'Headquarters' was a single-storied, thatched cottage, which remained the strategic centre of Scottish Catholicism for more than a century, only ending with the death of Bishop James Kyle in 1869.

It was at Preshome that Bishop James Kyle amassed a vast collection of books, historical letters and manuscripts. After his death in 1869 at Preshome, the Scottish Bishops transferred this collection to Blairs College, near Aberdeen, to form part of the "Blairs Collection".

The final transfer of material from Preshome was as recent as 1973. This included some 25,000 letters, known as the "Preshome Letters", now deposited with the Scottish Catholic Archives and the 4,750 books forming the "Preshome Chapel Library", currently on a 30 year loan to the National Library of Scotland.
DescriptionThis consists of the following sections:-

1) North East Papers, 1641-1738
2) Kyle family letters, 1744-1884
3) Mission letters, 1800-84
4) Kyle family documents etc, 1771-1886
5) administrators' and procurators' papers, 1700-1915
6) correspondence Mission and much financial, 1792-1913
7) Friendly Society, 1809-1972 (SECTION PL7/20 - 29 IS CLOSED FOR 100 YEARS)
8) Mission properties, wills, legacies and donations, 1618-1933
9) Ruthven Trust, 1875-1928
10) Mission papers and miscellaneous, 1704-1832
Access StatusRestricted
Access ConditionsSection PL7/20 - 29 is closed for 100 years.
Finding AidsPlease note that only a paper catalogue exists and is available in the Wolfson Reading Room and/or available as a PDF via the Special Collections website.
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