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New Assembly Rooms

Mitchell Library, Glasgow Collection

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New Assembly Rooms

The New Assembly and Concert Rooms (later the home of the Athenaeum) on the north side of Ingram Street, c 1800.

The building was financed on the Tontine principle, with 274 shares of £20 each taken out by a number of Glasgow citizens. Their aim was to provide the city with a meeting place for dancing, music, reading and other cultural pursuits. Designed by the brothers Robert and James Adam, it was begun in 1796 and two wings were added in 1807.

The Athenaeum, an educational society formed by young businessmen in the city to bridge the gap between the Glasgow Mechanics' Institution and the University, met at the Assembly Rooms from its foundation in 1847. In 1892 the General Post Office acquired the building and demolished it to make way for an extension. The central arch was rescued and subsequently re-erected in Greendyke Street at Glasgow Green as the McLennan Arch. The Athenaeum moved to new premises in St George's Place, now Nelson Mandela Place.

Reference: Mitchell Library, GC 941.435 DEN (1804)

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Libraries Information and Learning

arches, Assembly Rooms, Athenaeum, dancing, General Post Office, Glasgow Mechanics' Institution, McLennan Arch, music, New Assembly and Concert Rooms, reading rooms, tontines, University of Glasgow

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