Moses McCulloch & Co.

Iron founders and smiths

B/W Advertisement  for Moses McCulloch &  Co.

Moses McCulloch & Co., architectural ironfounders, of Cumberland Ironworks, Glasgow, were Scotland's second-oldest such concern after the Carron Ironworks at Falkirk. 1 Moses McCulloch started an ironmongery in Cumberland Buildings, Gallowgate c. 1800, and began ironfounding c. 1810. 2 As a successful industrialist, McCulloch commissioned Balgray Tower (c. 1820) from leading Glasgow architect David Hamilton. 3

After McCulloch's death in 1831, the firm (with a founder's share of 10,163 11s 3d) was initially run by his trustees, including his nephew James Somerville. 4 In the 1860s it passed to co-partners William Borland and James Beith. After Borland left to set up the City Iron Foundry in 1872, Beith continued at McCulloch's as the sole partner until his own death in 1887. 5 6 The firm was purchased by its manager, Alexander Hill, in 1899. 7

Its output was described in 1901 as '... first-class work. Special attention is given to all kinds of structural castings, such as columns and beams, which are now so extensively used in the construction of warehouses. Lamp pillars for street lighting are also made ... in use in the streets of Glasgow ... and suburbs, the Corporation having got their supply at these works for many years. Various other ... stable fittings, cast iron windows, etc. Mountings for baker's ovens are a speciality ... so that their name has long been closely associated with the baking industry all over the country.' 8 Moses McCulloch & Co. was liquidated in 1962. 9

B/W Advertisement for Moses McCulloch & Co., 'Glasgow Building Trades Exchange', 1896, p. 199


1: 'William Borland', in George Eyre-Todd, Who's Who in Glasgow in 1909, unpaginated, Glasgow Digital Library, [accessed 8 July 2012].

2: Glasgow Directory 1801–2, Glasgow: McFeat & Co., p. 66; Glasgow Directory 1810–12, Glasgow: McFeat & Co., p. 88; Glasgow Herald, 6 April 1857, p. 3.

3: Elizabeth Williamson, Anne Riches and Malcolm Higgs, The Buildings of Scotland: Glasgow, Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1990, p. 432.

4: Edinburgh Gazette, 21 January 1831, p. 20; inventory and testament information, [accessed 9 July 2012].

5: Edinburgh Gazette, 9 April 1872, p. 226.


7: Edinburgh Gazette, 7 February 1899, p. 144.

8: Henry Dyer, 'Mechanical Engineering', in Angus McLean, ed., Local Industries of Glasgow, Glasgow: British Association for the Advancement of Science, pp. 35–91, 37.

9: Edinburgh Gazette, 3 August 1962, p. 485.