A portrait of Archibald McLellan (1795-1854) by Robert Cree Crawford after John Graham-Gilbert.
Archibald McLellan had a sucessful coachbuilding company in Maxwell Street. He became a magistrate at the age of twenty-five and served as a town councillor for over thirty years. He was also a well-known art collector and was particularly interested in old masters. In his will he left his collection and the McLellan Galleries (which were then under construction) to the city, but when he died in 1854 he had vast debts and his heirs were forced to put the collection and the Galleries up for sale. The town council eventually paid £44,500 for the paintings and the galleries, valuing them highly as an educational asset and an expression of civic pride.
Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums
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