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Collection RC7 - Dr J L Robertson Bequest

Identity area

Reference code

GB3002 RC7


Dr J L Robertson Bequest


  • 1928-1975 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

11 items

Context area

Name of creator

Dr J L Robertson Bequest (1930-)

Administrative history

Dr John L. Robertson, born in 1854, was Senior Chief Inspector of Schools for Scotland. He was educated at the General Assembly School in Stornoway and later Edinburgh University where he graduated as Master of Arts after three years and later Bachelor of Laws. In 1888 he was appointed as acting Chief Inspector of Schools, a position he later succeeded to fill. In 1912 he was given an Honorary LL.D. by Edinburgh University and in 1919 he was awarded a C.B. As well as the Dewar Committee he served on Lord Pentland’s Committee for the employment of Highland boys and girls and on the Craik Commission on teachers’ salaries. Sir Henry Craik, M.P. considered him to be ‘a landmark in the educational history of Scotland’.

When he died in Inverness, six years after his retirement from the post, his popularity was clear in the extent of the activity surrounding his funeral; when his body was returned to Lewis the flags on the island were at half mast and all businesses were closed at noon. All schools throughout Lewis were closed and ‘the senior boys of Nicholson Institute headed the funeral procession, which included the Lewis Pipe Band, the Brethren of the Masonic Lodge, the Provost, Magistrates and Councilors of Stornoway and members and officials of all the other public bodies’. In addition, ‘there was a very large and representative attendance of the general public, including people from all parts of the island’. Sir George Macdonald, the Secretary of the Scottish Education Department, extolled his virtues and said ‘Few men in our time have laid their native country under so deep an obligation as he has done’.

A Trust was established in his honour to help aid and assist those seeking help in education and even emigration from the islands. The Trust is still active and operated by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar.

Archival history

Held by Museum nan Eilean

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Accn A2011/13 : 2011 :Internal transfer from Museum nan Eilean

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Minute books 1930-1974; applications for benefit 1931-1974; registers of beneficiaries 1937-1975; general register: dead and transferred 1931-1970; forms of enquiry 1957-1965; cash books 1928-1975

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


The Trust is still active and operated by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar. Further records are likely to be accessioned in the future.

System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Records containing personal information are closed for 100 year from the last date in a given volume. Please ask the archivist if you are interested in seeing records that may be covered by this closure period.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copyring and reproduction are subject to preservation and confidentiality requirements

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Paper volume

Finding aids

A manual and digital file level catalogue is available in the searchroom

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Notes area

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Description control area

Description identifier

Institution identifier

Rules and/or conventions used


Level of detail

Dates of creation revision deletion




Rights area

Accession area