Tuesday, August 18, 2009

University of Glasgow graduate database goes back to the 15th century

The University of Glasgow in Scotland has launched an online database which gives details of all of the people who graduated from the university from its foundation in 1451 until 1896.

It can be found as part of the The University of Glasgow Story at www.universitystory.gla.ac.uk , where people can browse or search through the details of the 13,000 graduates.

Lesley Richmond, Director of Archive Services said: "This is a fantastic resource for family historians. University Graduates to 1896 opens up the University’s archives to researchers around the world so that research that would have previously required contact with Archive Services can now be carried out online."

The very first graduates of the University were Nicholaus Bully, Michael Levinstone and Alexander Levinstone, who all graduated Bachelors of Arts in 1451.

University Graduates to 1896 provides access to other notable ‘first’ graduates from the University, including Alexander Sinclair, the first international graduate. Alexander, who graduated Masters of Arts in 1461, was born in Orkney in the 1440s when it was under Norwegian rule. In between 1451 and 1499 there are 301 graduates

Alongside the records of the University’s eminent and well-known graduates are the records of the men and women who studied at the University and went on to make a significant contribution to their local communities.

To support the records of their graduation, Archive Services are working on building up biographies of selected graduates. Basic biographical details are available for a number of graduates from the seventeenth centuries onwards, allowing researchers to build up fuller pictures of their ancestors lives.

Some additional information is also known for a handful of the medieval graduates. For example, Robertus Colquhone, who graduated in 1470, was referred to as a Canon of Glasgow (canonicus Glasguensis).

The Archives welcome details from descendants of these graduates to help them provide additional biographies online.