Collection MS 331 - Buist Family personal and business papers

Identity area

Reference code

MS 331


Buist Family personal and business papers


  • c1806-c1945 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

1 box and 1 file

Context area

Name of creator


Biographical history

The Reverend John Buist was born in Abdie in around 1762 and in 1802 he married Margaret Jafferson and went on to have nine children; he died in 1845. Alexander Jafferson (A. J.) Buist (1818-1901) was born in Tannadice, Forfarshire, As a young man he joined the business of his elder brother James Jafferson Buist (1810-1844) who was engaged in spinning at Ward Mill Dundee
The Buist family had strong links to Dundee and the thriving textile industry, indeed Alexander Jafferson Buist was one of the first mill owners to provide a crèche and a school for the children of those who worked in his mills. In 1865, sometime after John James Buist's death, A. J. Buist entered into partnership with William and John Don to form Don Brothers, Buist & Company, a company that still exists today in the form of Don and Low, Forfar. A. J. Buist went on to become a Governor of University College, Dundee, an Elder of the Free Church, a Justice of the Peace, and a Deputy Lieutenant of Dundee. He was also involved in politics as a Unionist.
John Charles Buist (1852- 1944) was the son of A. J. Buist and was born on 17th March 1852. He was educated at Merchiston Castle School, Edinburgh before joining Don Brothers, Buist & Company in 1874. He eventually became managing director of that firm, a position he held until his retirement in 1933. Dr Buist was a member of the Council of University College, Dundee, President of Dundee Chamber of Commerce and a Director of Dundee Royal Infirmary for over five decades (being Chairman of the institution on three separate occasions) . He was awarded an LLD by the University of St Andrews in 1925. Like his father he was involved in politics as a Unionist. John Charles Buist married Isabella Watson of Bullionfield, Invergowrie. He died at his home, Balgillo, Broughty Ferry on 27th August 1944.
J. C. Buist's son Frank D. J. Buist (1900-1980) became a director of Don Brothers, Buist & Company in 1933 and was chairman of the company in the 1960s. His brother Captian Charles Edward Buist MC died on active service in 1917. F. D. J Buist married the daughter of the Right Reverend Walter John Forbes Robberds (1863-1944), Bishop of Brechin (1904-1934) and Primus of the Episcopal Church in Scotland (1908-1934).

Archival history

The papers were kept by the Buist family, any material material collected by the Jefferson's was passed to the Buist family

Content and structure area

Scope and content

Accounts, receipts, bills, business correspondence, personal cashbooks, bankbooks


Not expected

System of arrangement

Usually chronological within series.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Open for consultation subject to preservation requirements. Access must also conform to the restrictions of the Data Protection Act (2018), General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR, 2018) and any other relevant legislation or restrictions. Clinical information is closed for 100 years.

Conditions governing reproduction

Reproduction is available subject to preservation requirements. Charges may be made for this service, and copyright and other restrictions may apply; please check with the Duty Archivist.

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements


Finding aids

Descriptive list. Subject source lists and databases are also available.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

MS 100 (Don and Low )

Related descriptions

Notes area

Alternative identifier(s)

Access points

Subject access points

Place access points

Name access points

Genre access points

Description control area

Description identifier

MS 331

Rules and/or conventions used

Description compiled in line with the following standards: International Council on Archives, ISAD(G) General International Standard Archival Description; International Council on Archives, ISAAR(CPF): International Standard Archival Authority Record for Corporate Bodies, Persons, and Families; National Council on Archives, Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997



Dates of creation revision deletion


  • English



Accession area

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