United Society for Christian Literature (Scotland) and predecessors
Name of creator(s): Chinese Book and Tract Society
Administrative/Biographical history: The Christian Literature Society for China had a complex genesis. It originated as a School and Text Book Committee of the China Missionary Conference in 1877, developing into the Chinese Book and Tract Society in Glasgow in 1884 and forming the Society for the Diffusion of Christian and General Knowledge (SDCGK) among the Chinese in 1887. It was supported by the Christian Literature Society for China, organised in 1892 to succeed the Chinese Book and Tract Society. In 1906 the SDCGK changed its name to the Christian Literature Society for China. In 1942 the Scottish Committee organising support for the Christian Literature Society for China was incorporated into the United Society for Christian Literature. For further information see G Hewitt, Let the People Read (London, 1949).
Immediate source of acquisition: The surviving records of the UCSL and its predecessors to 1953 were deposited in the Library of the School of Oriental and African Studies in 1982. A second deposit of additional papers was made in 1988 (UCSL Add).
CONTENT AND STRUCTURE
Scope and content/abstract: Records, 1885-1977, of the UCSL (Scotland) and predecessors, comprising:
minutes of the Christian Literature Society (CLS) for China Scottish Central Committee, 1891-1942 (Ref: USCL/S 1-3), including annual meetings of the Society, 1893-1901 (Ref: USCL/S 1), Edinburgh Committee, 1893-1921, 1940-1942 (Ref: USCL/S 2, 7), and Glasgow Committee, 1893-1942 (Ref: USCL/S 5); USCL Scottish Central Committee, 1942-1977 (Ref: USCL/S 4), and Glasgow Committee, 1943-1972 (Ref: USCL/S 6); CLS for India and Africa Edinburgh Auxiliary Committee, 1926-1935, continued by the USCL Edinburgh Auxiliary, 1935-1976 (Ref: USCL/S 8), and USCL Glasgow and South of Scotland Auxiliary Committee, 1935-1942 (Ref: USCL/S 9);
other papers, 1885-1942, relating to the history of the CLS for China (Scotland) and USCL (Scotland) and their union (Ref: USCL/S 10-13);
annual reports for the Book and Tract Society of China, 1885-1890 (Ref: USCL/S 14-19), Society for the Diffusion of Christian and General Knowledge Among the Chinese, 1893-1895 (Ref: USCL/S 20-22), Christian Literature Society for China, 1893-1905, 1912-1942 (Ref: USCL/S 23-68, USCL Add 37), and USCL (Scotland), 1943-1971 (Ref: USCL/S 73-98);miscellaneous publications, c1893-1966 (Ref: USCL/S 104-130).
System of arrangement:
ACCESS AND USE
Language: Mainly English
Conditions governing access: Records which have been microfilmed may be viewed on microfiche only. Other original material may be viewed if it is in good condition.
Conditions governing reproduction: Copyright holder: USCL/Feed the Minds. No publication without written permission. Apply to archivist in the first instance.
Finding aids: Unpublished handlist.
Related material: The City of Glasgow, Mitchell Library, holds minutes, 1884-1892, of the Book and Tract Society of China Glasgow home committee (Ref: Numbered series no 30).
Copies: Microfilm copy at SOAS Special Collections Reading Room.
Archivist's note: Compiled by Rachel Kemsley as part of the RSLP AIM25 project.
Date(s) of descriptions: Jun 2002