Free Anderston Church Young Men’s Mutual Improvement Society (also includes the Free Anderston Church Literary Society)


This society was based at Anderston Church on University Avenue in Glasgow’s West End. Members of this society were most likely part of the congregation. (For more information on this church, see ‘Glasgow — Anderston‘ on the Ecclegen website.) Meetings were held on Friday evenings at the church.

The information on this group comes predominantly from their society manuscript magazine (see ‘Additional Notes’ below). According to the article, ‘Memorandum for the Curious’, the society met fortnightly from January until June 1849, and from then on, they met weekly. The average attendance is also listed for the yearly sessions running from 1851 until 1871, and during this period it was around 20 (‘Memorandum for the Curious’, The Literary Bond, Vol. 12, No. 1, October 1872). In the 1871-72 session, the Annual Report gives the following as its then current state of membership: 14 Honorary Members; 3 Correspondent Members; and 49 Ordinary Members (‘Report. Session 1871-72. Read at Annual Meeting 2nd Octr. 1872’, The Literary Bond, Vol. 11, No. 2, November 1872, [pp. 9-21, p. 20].

There are 15 bound volumes of The Literary Bond, and 2 bound volumes of The Literary Magazine, its successor. Like other literary society magazines, these were also miscellanies containing contributions on a wide range of subjects.

Date of Existence


Source of Information

1. ‘Glasgow Free Church Literary Union’, ‘Local Institutions–Religious’, Glasgow Post-Office Annual Directory for 1853-1854… (Glasgow: William Mackenzie, 1853), p. 79;

2. The Literary Bond: the Mitchell Library has Vol. 2 (Sept. 1862) – Vol. 13 (Dec. 1875), Vol. 16, No. 1 (Oct. 1876) – Vol. 19, No. 6 (March 1880), and Vol. 21, No. 1 (Oct. 1881) – Vol. 22, No. 6 (March 1883) (Vols. 14, 15 and 20 no longer extant?); The Literary Magazine: the Mitchell Library has Vol. 1, No. 1 (Jan. 1896) – Vol. 2, No. 2 (Feb. 1897) (MLSC)


Mitchell Library Special Collections (MLSC) (magazines, and Glasgow Post Office directory)

National Library of Scotland (Glasgow Post Office directory)

Reference Number

Mitchell (AL) 891310-11; Dewey Class: 820.80941443 (MLSC) (magazines)

Additional Notes

This society was part of the Glasgow Free Church Literary Union, which is listed separately.

See also entry for The Literary Bond of Free Anderston Church Young Men’s Mutual Improvement Society on our sister website, Literary Bonds.

The Glasgow Post Office directories are available at the Mitchell Library and the National Library of Scotland. Digitised copies are available through the NLS website: