George Ferguson & Sons


Colour photograph of George Ferguson & Sons' invoice for studio furniture for the Glasgow School of Art, 1909

George Ferguson, wright and joiner (born Carstairs, c.1822–1906), was a master joiner, employing five men and one apprentice at his North Portland Street, Glasgow, premises in 1851. 1 The Ferguson family in fact had two businesses: George was a 'packing-box maker'; his wife and sister, took in lodgers and medical students boarders at 82 George Street, the family home. 2 By the early 1870s, Ferguson had around 65 staff in Holmhead Street (now subsumed by Queen Street Station). 3

Ferguson relocated in the early 1880s to 144 Gardner Street, (now St Peter's Street), Cowcaddens, where his workshop comprised 'three flats' [storeys] and had a travelling and a 'Carson's saw bench, mortising and tenoning machines' and a dry-wood shed. 4 A few years later, Ferguson moved his family of three sons to 'Janefield Villa', in the middle-class, railway suburb of Lenzie. 5 His 41 employees now included his son James (born c. 1859) as his cashier, while George Junior (born c. 1863) was an architect's apprentice, who later worked as a joiner. 6

Ferguson was probably the 'George Ferguson, joiner' who sold off scaffolding, trestles and a portable engine when Hartwood Asylum (later Hospital), North Lanarkshire, was completed in 1895. 7 He also worked on Mount Melville, the St Andrews mansion of brewer James Younger, in 1901, which gave 'a fillip to the building trade'. 8

Ferguson left £15,054 in 1906. 9 George Junior retired, and James and John Ferguson (born c. 1866), who both lived with their families in Lenzie, continued the firm after 1907. 10 John was still running George Ferguson & Sons, and living at 'Carradale', Lenzie in 1930. 11


1: Death record,; census data, [both sites accessed 18 June 2013]; Glasgow Post Office Directory, 1850–1, p. 107.

2: Census data, [accessed 18 June 2013].

3: Census data, [accessed 18 June 2013]; Glasgow Post Office Directory, 1873–4, p. 147.

4: Glasgow Herald, 16 June 1879, p. 3.

5: Glasgow Post Office Directory, 1880–1, p. 206.

6: Census data, [accessed 18 June 2013].

7: Glasgow Herald, 8 May 1895, p. 13.

8: Dundee Courier, 14 November 1901, p. 6.

9: Scotsman, 19 May 1906, p. 11.

10: Edinburgh Gazette, 8 November 1907, p. 1184; Census data, [accessed 18 June 2013].

11: Glasgow Post Office Directory, 1930–1, pp. 264–5.