The Albert Institute (now the McManus, Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum) was established in 1867 as the first civic museum and art gallery in Dundee. It was funded entirely through public subscription with 261 subscribers pledging £15,770 in 1863. By February 1865 the number of subscribers had increased to 327 and share capital totalled £21,470. Read more...

This project was set up by the McManus 168 Group (Supporters of The McManus) to mark the 150th anniversary of The McManus and to shed new light on Dundee’s history and heritage by discovering more about the men and women that gave so generously.

One of the Original Subscribers

Peter Gibson gave £10 towards the building of The Albert Institute. Like his father and brother, Peter Gibson made a living as a blacksmith. His trade, over more than 40 years, developed further to incorporate machine making and wheel/cart production from his premises at the foot of Gellatly Street, bordering Dock Street.

Read more about Peter Gibson...

ABOUT

From June 2017 to June 2018, the project brought together all the heritage groups in Dundee supported by an expert project planning team with academics, genealogists, archivists, the library service and Leisure and Culture Dundee, project managers and history enthusiasts.

We recruited 30 expert lead researchers and a further 75 novice researchers, ranging in age from 16 to 84 and from right across Dundee. Together they collected information on the subscribers among which were, manufacturers, nautical instrument makers, grocers, hecklers, waiters, ship’s chandlers, dyers, bleachers, and flax spinners. View in the Subscriber Archive....

Watch interviews with McManus168 researchers and find out more about the project...

Dundee had a key role in the Scottish arts and crafts movement. This hanging was designed by George Dutch Davidson around 1900 and shows talent for stylising forms from nature. It was sewn by Davidson’s cousin Elizabeth Burt.

Courtesy of The McManus Collections. Copyright: Dundee City Council (Dundee's Art Galleries and Museums)