Sir James Watson (1801-1889) was a stockbroker and Lord Provost of Glasgow, 1871-1874.
Educated at the University of Glasgow, Watson became a businessman and then one of Glasgow’s first stockbrokers, serving as the Chairman of the Glasgow Stock Exchange for twenty-two years from its opening in 1844. A firm believer in the need to clear the old city centre slums, he was involved with Lord Provost John Blackie Jr in the Philanthropic Company, set up in 1861 to acquire property for clearance. In 1866 he became the first Deputy Chairman of the City Improvement Trust. He was one of the founders of Glasgow’s first three model lodging houses, and of the Mechanics’ Institution.
Watson was knighted in 1874.
Reference: Mitchell Library, 920.04BAI
Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Libraries Information and Learning
City Improvement Trust, Glasgow Stock Exchange, Lord Provosts, Mechanics' Institution, model lodging houses, slum clearance, stockbrokers, The Philanthropic Company