The Blue Blanket

Posted on June 9, 2014 | in Collections, Featured, Library | by

Each week the Centre for Research Collections receives two deliveries of Special Collection items from the library annexe. Usually these items go back to the annexe when the reader is finished with them, but occasionally we choose to keep the item in the main library, especially if its contents are closely related to other items in the collections. This happened recently with a journal requested by Fiona Donaldson who is researching the history of the University of Edinburgh Reid Concerts.

The item is called The Blue Blanket, An Edinburgh Civic Review. Four issues of the journal were published during 1912 and its contents relate to a number of special collection items.

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The title of the journal is inspired by banner of Edinburgh Craftsmen. Our rare book collections include a 1780 pamphlet about the Blue Blanket and the craftsmen of Edinburgh:

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The Historical Account of the Blue Blanket includes illustrations of the emblems of different crafts and guilds, such as the Waulkers and Bonnet Makers:

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The journal includes a number of articles by Marjory Kennedy-Fraser (1857-1930), singer, pianist, folk song collector and arranger. The Centre for Research Collections holds her archives, including personal correspondence, manuscripts and musical fragments. Further information can be found on the Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue:

Each issue of The Blue Blanket included a portrait of a notable individual. The portrait for October 1912 was of Professor Patrick Geddes (1854-1932). Geddes was a biologist, sociologist, geographer and town planner. Our collections hold a number of items relating to Geddes, including correspondence to Sir Donald Francis Tovey (1884-1932) and papers relating to the Outlook Tower (some of the photographs from this collection can be seen on the online image collection).

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The Blue Blanket can be consulted at the Centre for Research Collections:

Fran Baseby, Service Delivery Curator

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