CollectionGB 0231 University of Aberdeen, Special Collections
TitleDepartment of Anatomy, University of Aberdeen: papers
Date19th century - 20th century
Extent11 volumes, 3 archive boxes, 1 box file, 1 large box, 4 loose photographs
Creator NameUniversity of Aberdeen, Department of Anatomy (est. 1860)
Administrative HistoryFrom 1818 - 1839 King's College and Marischal College operated a Joint Medical School in Aberdeen, with a dedicated Lecturer in Anatomy. The School was dissolved in 1839 owing to a disagreement regarding its original terms of agreement, and individual training courses in the subject were pursued by the 2 colleges until their union in 1860. A Department of Anatomy was subsequently established at the newly formed University of Aberdeen in 1860. In 1990 it joined with the departments of Pharmacology and Physiology to create a new School of Biomedical Sciences.

Marischal College had established Aberdeen's first Chair in Anatomy after dissolution of the Joint Medical School in 1839, to which Allen Thomson, well-known histologist and embryologist was appointed, 1839 - 1841. His successor, Professor Jardine Lizars, 1841 - 1860 became first Chair of Anatomy in Aberdeen University, 1860 - 1863. He was succeeded by Sir John Struthers (1823 - 1899), 1863 - 1889, made famous for his enthusiasm in using comparative animal material in his teaching presentations (most notably, the "Tay Whale", a huge humpbacked whale, beached at Stoney and later towed to Dundee), and under whom the first Regius Chair of Anatomy was instituted; Robert W. Reid, 1889 - 1925, founder of Aberdeen Anthropological Museum (now Marischal Museum), who achieved prominence through the discovery of 'Reid's Base Line'; Alexander Low, 1925 - 1938, a modest man who made important contributions to understanding the embryological development of the mandible, the skeletal remains of Neolithic and bronze age skeletons and to human anthropometry (his work in this field laying the foundations for the Aberdeen Growth Study of 1956); Robert Lockhart, 1938 - 1964, an outstanding teacher of Anatomy and author (with Gilbert F. Hamilton and Forest William Fyfe) of the much re-published textbook, Anatomy of the Human Body (London: Faber, 1959); David Sinclair, 1964 - 1977, who made important contributions to curricular development of the Anatomical sciences in Aberdeen; and E. John Clegg, 1977 - 1993, last Regius Professor of Anatomy, and an acknowledged authority on the historical demography of isolated populations.
SourceThis collection was transferred from the Department of Anatomy c 1995 - 96 (MS U 1332) and in April 2004 (ACC 066). Some photographs in the collection were transferred from the Honorary Curator of the Natural History Museum in June 2004 (ACC 082).
DescriptionStudent records, 1899 - 1965; financial records, c 1961 - c 1984; administrative records, 20th c; Anatomy Act Committee records, c 1833 - 1973; anthropometrical laboratory records, 1896 - 1984; anatomical museum records, 19th c - 20th c; photographs, 19th c - 20th c; documentary and printed material, 1930 - 1969; 'Arctic Flora', 1857 - 1859; Anatomical Society of Great Britain and Ireland, 1986; building plans, 20th c.
AppraisalRecords of Aberdeen University Anatomical and Anthropological Society and the personal papers of Robert Reid (1851 - 1930), Alexander Low (1868 - 1950) and William Clark Souter (1880 - 1959) were extracted from the departmental records and catalogued independently. See 'Related material' field for further details of these collections.
ArrangementSee 'Description' field, above
Access StatusOpen
Access ConditionsAccess restrictions apply to the Anatomy Act Committee and anthropometrical laboratory records in this collection: further details are available at the appropriate series and file level descriptions of this catalogue. The remainder and majority of the collection is open, subject to the signed acceptance of the Department's access conditions.
Physical DescriptionVolumes, files, loose paper, photographs, printed material
Related MaterialRecords of Aberdeen University Anatomical and Anthropological Society (MS U 1438).

Papers of Robert William Reid (1851 - 1939), Regius Profesor of Anatomy, University of Aberdeen (MS 3753).

Papers of Alexander Low (1868 - 1950), Regius Professor of Anatomy (MS 2629).

Papers of Robert Douglas Lockhart, (1894 - 1987), Professor of Anatomy, University of Aberdeen (MS 3270).

Papers of William Clark Souter (1880 - 1959), ophthalmologist (MS 3755).
Publication NoteJoseph Dalton Hooker, An account of the plants collected by Dr. Walker in Greenland and Artic [sic] America during the expedition of Sir Francis M'Clintock , Journal of the Proceedings of the Linnean Society. Botany , 5 (1861).
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