A scrapbook seemingly begun by William McMurdo Duncan in the 1790s, based on the earliest manuscript entry entitled “Books Belonging to William McMurdo Duncan 10th Feby. 1799” with later additions perhaps made by other members of his family, as the names of William’s wife Marianne and his daughter Helen are inscribed on the front endpaper. The scrapbook includes newspaper clippings and broadsides relating to the city of Liverpool; shipping and naval news; the Napoleonic Wars; reports of the royal families of England and France; local news stories tending to reports of dramatic accidents and crimes, including reports of the abuse of servants and presumanbly enslaved girls. Also included are two manuscript poems (1816) and a manuscript list of books. Also included is a printed form, completed in manuscript, from New College Manchester, dated “May 1st, 1797”, for a Norwegian student, “Mr. Kield Moestre” (1776-1805), which gives his grades for two months (“March & April”) of lectures in the subjects of languages, mathematics, and natural philosophy. A page from the Observer (no. 1249) from 29 October 1815 includes a large woodcut “Island of Saint Helena” with “A descriptive sketch of the Island of Saint Helena”. Clippings from a column “Cabinet”. Laid in the front are over two dozen clippings from the column “Cabinet” that provide spiritual advice about conduct of life and marriage and other religious topics dated from the 1830s.
- Creator: Duncan, William MacMurdo, 1772-1853.
- Title: William MacMurdo Duncan Scrapbook : printed text and manuscript.
- Production: Liverpool?, England, circa 1795-1816.
LWL Mss vol. 270
Acquired October 2021
William McMurdo Duncan (1772-1853) was 2nd son of Rev George Duncan and his wife Ann McMurdo. He married Marianne Tobin (1776-1860). William was an elder brother of the Rev Henry Duncan DD, who opened the world’s first savings bank based on business principles in May 1810 in Ruthwell, Dumfries, Scotland. Henry is also noted as the person who restored the Ruthwell cross.