The Stair Society: Scotland’s Legal History Society

The Stair Society History, Part 3 – 1967–2019

Thomas H. Drysdale


In two previous articles, I considered the Society’s history from its inception in 1934 up to an indeterminate point in the late 1960s. The story has continued for half a century since then, and I have been persuaded to bring it up to date. What follows is my attempt to do so. My text is largely based on a study of minutes of meetings of the Society and its Council as well as its annual reports and accounts, all of which, with the exception of those relating to one year’s accounts, have been preserved, and also from my experience as the Society’s Secretary and Treasurer from 1998 to 2016. During this fifty-year period, the Society has published more than forty volumes of valuable historical material and, as we shall see, has survived a revolution in the publishing and printing industries and the economic downturn of 2008–9, and it has come to terms with the electronic age. It has also seen a significant growth in the number of academic lawyers, most of them researchers and teachers in the universities, taking a specialist interest in legal history, engaging in extensive research projects and passing on to their students their enthusiasm for the subject.


Miscellany VIII (Stair Society Volume 67)


Published 2020


pp. 319–362


Open Access DOI