Archibald McFarlane


Archibald McFarlane (c. 1846–1907) was born in Strathblane to the north of Glasgow. He founded his Glasgow firm of wrights, builders and packing-case makers in 1863. By 1871, as a master joiner, he employed 29 men and four boys. In the early 1880s, the firm became Archibald McFarlane & Son, when Archibald Junior joined, and they moved to Cathedral Street. There, about 40 men worked from three-storey premises with modern machinery, 'including circular saws, planing, grooving, [and] turning ... machines driven by steam power'. Another son, Walter, was working with his father by 1891, but the firm does not ever appear to have been known as 'Archibald McFarlane & Sons'. The family partnership was dissolved in 1894 and Archibald Senior continued alone. In 1893, one of the Archibald McFarlanes was vice-president of the Glasgow Master Wrights' Association. The firm reappeared as Archibald McFarlane & Son around 1905 and continued until around 1910. 1

Among the firm's contracts were Maryhill Burgh Halls (D. MacNaughtan, 1876–8); Spier's School, Beith (C. Douglas & Sellars, 1887–8); the roof of the Glasgow Cattle Market (J. Carrick); and the Glasgow Central Post Office (probably W. W. Robertson's 1892–4 remodelling). 2


1: The name is sometimes spelled Macfarlane. Glasgow and Its Environs, London: Stratten & Stratten, 1891, p. 130; census information, [accessed 20 June 2012]; Glasgow Post Office directories 1880–1911; Glasgow Herald, 12 April 1893, p. 8; Edinburgh Gazette, 10 April 1894, p. 446.

2: Glasgow and Its Environs, London: Stratten & Stratten, 1891, p. 130; Elizabeth Williamson, Anne Riches and Malcolm Higgs, Buildings of Scotland: Glasgow, London: Penguin, 1990, pp. 166, 407, 456; Speirs School Building Report [correct title is 'Spier's], www.scottish [accessed 20 June 2012].